Clichéd Storytelling: The Furnace by Prentis Rollins

At their best, graphic novels—comics—combine visual intensity and compelling narrative, like a television show without the drawbacks of actors and a special effects budget, and I’ve read enough to I know what I like. Veristic art, with clean lines and either black & white or strong, realistic colours; narratives that include interesting women (you’d never have guessed that one); and a strong thematic argument.

When I heard that Tor Books was publishing an original science fiction graphic novel called The Furnace, I was pretty interested.

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Rebecca Roanhorse on Which Aspects of Diné Culture Are Featured in Trail of Lightning

When the cover for Rebecca Roanhorse’s debut novel Trail of Lightning was first revealed, the Nebula Award-winning author emphasized how she hadn’t wanted Dinétah monster hunter Maggie Hoskie to be depicted in “the typical trappings non-Natives associate with Native Americans” such as feathers or braids. Yet she still wanted Maggie to be recognizably Navajo, which is why she wears traditional Navajo women’s moccasins alongside her leather jacket and knife.

A similar discussion came out of Roanhorse’s recent Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything) on r/fantasy, in which the author of the award-winning short story “Welcome to Your Authentic Indian Experience™” explained which aspects of Diné culture she incorporated as Easter eggs, and which were off-limits. It makes for fascinating insights into an already engaging novel that kicks off a new rural fantasy series.

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“We’re not going to have a meaningful conversation, are we?” — Ghost Rider

Marvel’s first character called Ghost Rider, appearing in 1967, was a cowboy in the Old West named Carter Slade who rode a horse and wore a costume that made him appear to be a ghost. It was actually based on a 1940s comic on which the copyright had lapsed, and Marvel jumped on it.

A few years later, Roy Thomas, Gary Friedrich, and Mike Ploog all collaborated to create a new contemporary Ghost Rider. Originally conceived as a Daredevil villain, Thomas decided he needed his own storyline, and the character—this time riding a motorcycle, inspired by the popularity of Evel Knievel and his ilk—debuted in Marvel Spotlight in 1972, later getting his own title.

The character was hugely popular for a while before flaming out (sorry), and his title was cancelled. But a guy named Nicolas Cage was a big fan…

[I feel like my skull is on fire…..]

Series: 4-Color to 35-Millimeter: The Great Superhero Movie Rewatch

Impractical Magic: Lily Anderson’s Undead Girl Gang

Mila Flores is miserable. She’s an outcast at school because she’s fat, grumpy, and Mexican American in a town of skinny white people. She abides by Wicca instead of Christianity, much to the chagrin of her community. She is drowning in a sea of unrequited love for a boy who barely notices her. But mostly she’s miserable because her best friend Riley is dead. It was not, she’ll have you know, a suicide, no matter what the incompetent police say. They also declared the hangings of two other schoolmates, June and Dayton, to be suicides as well, despite the suspicious circumstances. No, someone killed Riley, and Mila is going to find out who no matter what it takes. Especially if that “whatever” means raising her BFF from the dead.

[“Ry, you died. You’ve been dead for almost an entire week.”]

15 Rituals The Office Has Developed has existed on the internet for 10 years. And when you work in an office and you also work on the internet, where one day gives you a week’s worth of events to react to, you develop a lot of shorthands and rituals to get through the day.

Some of these rituals are straightforward, like our Friday/Monday morning watercooler-style breakdowns about the latest blockbuster, with everyone hashing out what they liked and didn’t like. (Chris hated Infinity War, for example, sparking off a Infinity War War.) Some of these rituals are specific to the people here, like the weird voices we use to irritate/amuse one another when we’re feeling low on energy. And then there are the internet-specific rituals: Videos and in-jokes and events we keep coming back to time and again because…well, we’ve never figured out the “because”.

Here are some of our stress-fed emergent office rituals. Brace yourself. There are a lot of unicorns.

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Everybody Focus Your Chi! We have Details for Iron Fist Season Two!

Iron Fist‘s San Diego Comic-Con panel opened with Jeph Loeb leading the crowd in a chant while brandishing a foam Iron Fist, before making a Mr. Miyagi reference that we’re in no mood to process. Jessica Henwick, who plays Colleen Wing, came out and took the Iron Fist away from him.

With that out of the way, the rest of the cast and new IF showrunner M. Raven Metzner came out and dropped some footage and some exciting teases for Season Two. Click through for highlights!

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Nightflyers Used Alien‘s Camera Lenses for Maximum Terror in Space

When Nightflyers‘ Executive Producer Jeff Buhler decided to adapt the George R.R. Martin science fiction/horror mashup for Syfy, he didn’t screw around: “We paid homage to the greats: 2001: A Space Odyssey, Psycho, Alien. The lenses were actually the same ones used for Alien.”

Buhler and the cast discussed their new show at San Diego Comic-Con. Check out some panel highlights below!

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Check Out the New Trailer for George R. R. Martin’s Sci-Fi-Horror Hybrid, Nightflyers!

The new trailer for Nightflyers, Syfy’s adaptation of George R.R. Martin’s science fiction/horror novella, was unveiled at San Diego Comic-Con! And it looks just as creepy as we were hoping.

Nightflyers follows a group of scientists who head off into space to make contact with aliens…but most likely make contact with UTTER HORROR instead.

Check out the trailer below!

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Maze Master Sweepstakes!

We want to send you a copy of Kathleen O’Neal Gear’s apocalyptic thriller Maze Master, available now from St. Martin’s Press!

LucentB is a retrovirus that’s inevitable, unstoppable, and utterly catastrophic for humanity. The US government believes the only person who can find the cure is the geneticist who tried to warn them about it and then disappeared: James Hakari. They assign the task of finding him to his former student Anna Asher, who in turn recruits paleographer and religious studies scholar Dr. Martin Nadai.

The brilliant but insane geneticist is leaving clues for Anna and Martin to follow, showing he’s truly earned his students’ nickname for him: the Maze Master. The search takes Anna and Martin around the world and into a warzone they never imagined.

Maze Master‘s LucentB is based off of the real retrovirus HERV-K, which has caused several plagues over the past 75,000 years, almost wiping out Neandertals 50,000 years ago, and maybe 30,000 years ago. Modern geneticists consider HERV-K not to be extinct, but rather to be waiting for some trigger to come alive again.

Comment in the post to enter!

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Politics and Fairy Tales: Early Versions of “The Three Little Pigs”

Recently, author Chuck Wendig got into a minor spat on Twitter with another Twitter user who insisted that stories do not have to be political. As an example, the Twitter user mentioned “The Three Little Pigs.”

My screams probably could have heard on the other side of the ocean.

So, even though Chuck Wendig already did a good job of explaining just why this story is perhaps not the best example of non-political storytelling, I thought it might be worthwhile to take a more in depth look at the tale here and its history. Even though I HATE THIS STORY. And even though many early versions don’t even MENTION pigs at all…

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Oathbringer Reread: Interludes One, Two, and Three

Welcome back to the wide world of Roshar! As we examine the first set of Interludes, our scope once again widens to include parts of the world we haven’t observed, at least recently: the far eastern coast of New Natanatan, the western slopes of the Horneater Peaks, and a chasm near the center of the Shattered Plains. All three center on the aftereffects of the Everstorm.

[Sequels always have to be bigger.]

Series: Oathbringer Reread

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