Drop What You’re Doing and Watch DefunctTV’s Jim Henson Special

We have just under three weeks left until The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance hits Netflix, and what better way to prepare for the long-awaited sequel than a six-part ode to its creator? On Sunday, DefunctTV uploaded the last episode of their miniseries on Jim Henson’s “life and works,” and we’re not hyperbolizing when we say you should drop whatever it is you’re doing and go watch the whole thing right now.

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3 Possible Star Trek: Picard Storylines that Are too Depressing to Contemplate

One of the hallmarks of Star Trek: The Next Generation is its meditative quality; unlike like the excellent, nail-biting action in Star Trek: Discovery, the vast majority of TNG’s best episodes are quiet and more reflective. In fact, current Trek executive producer Alex Kurtzman has described Discovery as a “bullet” contrasting it with the upcoming TNG prequel saying: “Picard is very contemplative show. It will find a balance between the speed of Discovery and the nature of what Next Gen was.” And part of what the show is seemingly contemplating is not just what is happening with Picard in real time, but also what has happened since the events of Star Trek Nemesis. We’ve all got theories, but what if Kurtzman, Michael Chabon, Kirsten Beyer, and Patrick Stewart are willing to go super-dark? Here’s a speculative peek into the Picard possibilities you haven’t even brought yourself to consider yet…

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The MCU’s Spidey Is a Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man that Looks Like His Neighborhood

Spider-Man has always been inextricably linked with New York City. From his very first appearance in Amazing Fantasy #15, he’s been a city kid, though that he was actually in the Big Apple wasn’t specified until later. (Marvel’s earliest superhero comics tended to take place in generic, unidentified cities, or in “Central City” or the like…)

Some of Spidey’s most iconic moments have been part of the city that never sleeps, most notably Gwen Stacy’s death on the Brooklyn Bridge (or the George Washington Bridge, depending on whether you believe the art or the script, though the story really only makes sense at the former, given the geography).

But while his surroundings have always looked like NYC, his supporting cast has never quite lived up to it—at least until the Marvel Cinematic Universe…

[He looks out for the neighborhood, has a dope suit, and I really respect him. … ‘Sup, dickwad?]

The Tao of Sir Terry: Pratchett and Political Philosophy

“It wasn’t that the city was lawless. It had plenty of laws. It just didn’t offer many opportunities not to break them.” —Night Watch (2002)

In the Discworld series, Ankh-Morpork is the Ur-city, of which all other cities throughout time and space are mere echoes. But politics is, quite literally, the life of the polis, of the city, as Pratchett himself was keenly aware:

“‘Polis’ used to mean ‘city’, said Carrot. That’s what policeman means: ‘a man for the city’. Not many people knew that.” —Men at Arms (1993)

And again, in the finale of the same book: “Have you ever wondered where the word ‘politician’ comes from?” said the Patrician.” It is therefore little wonder that politics, and political philosophy, is a core subject of most, if not all, of Pratchett’s works at some level or another—and this is especially true of the Discworld novels

[Free men pull in all kinds of directions…]

Great Lost Civilizations of Science Fiction and Fantasy

As previously discussed, it’s possible to do such a thorough job of destroying a civilization that all knowledge of it is lost…at least until inexplicable relics start to turn up. One example: the real world Indus Valley Civilization, which might have flourished from 3300 to 1300 BC, across territory now found in western and northwestern India, Pakistan and northeastern Afghanistan. It was contemporaneous with the civilizations of Ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, and China. History did a thorough enough job of erasing the Indus Valley Civilization from the records that when modern archaeology began to study it, it wasn’t at all clear whose ruins were being explored. It just goes to show that no matter how great a civilization might be, time is greater.

[Here are a few of my favourite SFF lost civilizations…]

War, Betrayal, and Dark Secrets in This Summer’s Upcoming Young Adult Speculative Fiction

With the MASSIVE amount of amazing YA science fiction, fantasy, and horror dropping in July, August, and September, I might as well give up on trying to get my TBR queue under control. We’ve got sequels and anthologies, epic journeys and small town horrors, and all kinds of goodies to while away the hot summer nights and long sunny days.

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“Get off my plains!” — Cowboys & Aliens

Platinum Studios released Cowboys & Aliens in 2006. The storyline, conceived by Platinum’s Scott Mitchell Rosenberg, had been in development since 1997, both as a graphic novel and as a film. Universal and Dreamworks bought the rights to the concept, which Rosenberg eventually put out as a 105-page graphic novel written by Fred Van Lente and Andrew Foley, with art by Dennis Calero and Luciano Lima.

The movie finally came out in 2011.

[“If it’s all the same, I’d like to ride along, too.” “Yes, ma’am. Got a kid and a dog, why not a woman?”]

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

Ranking the Very Best Dogs of Star Trek

The latest Star Trek series—the forthcoming Next Generation sequel, Star Trek: Picard—will boldly go where no Trek series has gone before by seemingly having a dog as a central cast member. As fans surely know by now, a new poster for Picard reveals the titular former-Starfleet captain standing resolutely with his loyal dog Number One by his side. Now, in real life, this probably has something to do with Patrick Stewart’s love of pitbull rescues, but we really don’t know what role the dog will play in the show. Yet. But the possibilities are clearly awesome.

And although this is the first time a dog has featured on a promotional image for a big Star Trek event, this isn’t the first canine to brave the final frontier. Here are nine dogs (or dog-like creatures) from across the wide canon of Star Trek, ranked in ascending of how adorable and wonderful they are. All of these dogs are very good boys and girls (mostly), but some are just bolder than others.

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George R. R. Martin Has a Theater Full of Signed SFF Books and They’re Up For Grabs

Would you like to do George R. R. Martin a favor? As many of you know, Martin runs a fantastic independent movie theater, the Jean Cocteau Cinema, in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Like all good movie theaters, this one has a bookstore, and like all good bookstores, it’s hosted a lot of author events. As a result, the store is now a deep treasure overflowing with signed books—and Martin would love it if you’d take some off his hands.

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Tor.com’s Guide to Literary Panels at San Diego Comic Con 2019!

It’s almost time for the wonderfully chaotic weekend that is San Diego Comic Con! Whether you’re a newbie or a seasoned pro, it’s always helpful to have a guide of sorts to help navigate the panel circuit. If you trust in Tor.com’s taste, check out our recommendations for these literary panels at San Diego Comic Con, featuring pop culture favorites, topics on the future of science fiction and fantasy, and in-depth conversations with some of the SFF’s leading authors of today!

Of course you should also stop by Tor Books at Booth #2701 on the show floor for a ton of giveaways and programs—check out our schedule here, and head below to fill your dance card with tons of great book discussions!

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17 Factual and Fictional Stories About Space Exploration

The Space Race encapsulates both the best and the worst of aspects of U.S. history. On the one hand, there is humanity’s drive to learn and explore. All space programs have no choice but to celebrate the wonders of mathematics, physics, and engineering. (To put this into ’80s film terms: no matter how jock-ish an image an astronaut wants to put forth, it’s still nerds who get us into space.) Space exploration doesn’t just raise the possibility that humanity will find new homes across the galaxy, but it also leaves technological innovation in its wake.

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