Torture Cinema Poll for the Halloween Special: You decide!

15 Oct

You know the drill.  Bring on the torture!

227. The Omega Man (1971) — A Torture Cinema “Adventure”

15 Oct

Cultists, motorcycles, and Jesus metaphors, oh my!  The crew joins forces to take a stab at The Omega Man, the second adaptation of Richard Matheson’s classic, I Am Legend.  Needless to say, this episode went in some really strange places, including a long discussion about cadavers.

We hope you enjoy the episode!

Note:  If you have iTunes and like this show, please give us a review on our iTunes page, or feel free to email us with your thoughts about the show!

Here’s the episode (show notes are below):

Episode 227 — Download (MP3)

The Omega Man (1971)


Show Notes:

Our new intro music is “Time Flux” by Revolution Void (CC BY 3.0).  Additional music from “Black Vortex” Kevin MacLeod (
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0.

That’s all, folks!  Thanks for listening.  See you next week.

Diversity in SF Film: The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)

15 Oct The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)

I thought I’d seen this film before, but apparently not. For a film made in the early ’50s — the era when post WW2 women were told to return to their “feminine roles” — it’s pretty inclusive. From the beginning, we see PoCs as part of the world’s population — even as part of the American population. They may not always have lines, and they may not be a big part of the action, but they exist in the background. Watch an American film today and you’ll see exactly what I mean. Not only do non-model-worthy people not exist, but neither do PoCs. Mind you, the British newscasters say things like “Throughout the Empire and the rest of the world,” and we see shots of these colonials in their colonial-ness — but hey, they EXIST. Wooo. Continue reading

226. Anne Lyle (a.k.a. Skraelabite) — The Night’s Masque Trilogy (An Interview at CONvergence)

13 Oct

Swords, weird London, and humanoid critters, oh my!  Anne Lyle, author of the Night’s Masque trilogy from Angry Robot Books, joined Paul and Shaun at CONvergence to talk about her work.  A few laughs were shared!

We hope you enjoy the episode!

Note:  If you have iTunes and like this show, please give us a review on our iTunes page, or feel free to email us with your thoughts about the show!

Here’s the episode (show notes are below):

Episode 225 — Download (MP3)


Show Notes:

Our new intro music is “Time Flux” by Revolution Void (CC BY 3.0).

That’s all, folks!  Thanks for listening.  See you next week.

My Superpower: David Colby

13 Oct Debris Dreams by David Colby

My Superpower is a regular guest column on the Skiffy and Fanty blog where authors and creators tell us about one weird skill, neat trick, highly specialized cybernetic upgrade, or other superpower they have, and how it helped (or hindered!) their creative process as they built their project. Today we welcome David Colby to talk about how the power of Realism relates to Debris Dreams.


So, I once tried to read Game of Thrones, and I got fifty pages in before I threw my Kindle across the room. The first thing that came to mind was:  Oh god, that was a hundred bucks and my Mom’s, I’m so screwed. The second thing that came to mind was:  Man! Everyone in that book was a gigantic A-hole.

But it is realistic. Feudalism, by and large, was a social system that did little more than create self-entitled jerks by separating the ruling class from the ruled and telling them from birth that they were chosen by God to run everything forever, which (as we can see from today’s spate of “affluenza” news stories) is a great way raise sociopaths like Joffrey. Continue reading

Women Destroy Reviewing!

12 Oct Women Destroy Fantasy

…Fantasy is a genre that tends to destroy women — or if not destroy, then de-story.

–Wendy N. Wagner

I’ve been quite curious what Women Destroy Fantasy!, the October 2014 special issue of Lightspeed/Fantasy Magazine, would be all about. You don’t hear so much whiny dudebro noise about girl cooties in dragon lairs as you do in rocketships; fantasy seems to have far more female protagonists and memorable secondary characters in its canon than science fiction does; more people can at least name some female fantasy authors. Fantasy seems to be a genre that is at least less inhospitable to women than science fiction is.

Well, the opening quotation from the editorial pretty much sums it up. Women are often erased from the genre:  the authors are not talked about; their work is marketed differently and, well, less; they’re stricken from certain genre categories. Female characters are fridged and used as gross object-fantasies. And that’s to say nothing about how many potential female readers may be alienated from the genre by frightful covers and the overwhelming numbers of books titled something like “The Half-King of the Dude-Sword,” as I was for so many years. The fight for women in fantasy is not just to exist, but to have agency at all. Continue reading

Tell Me About _______ Science Fiction

10 Oct

As someone who’s asked to talk about Filipino science fiction and fantasy, and after listening to several podcasts (including the Skiffy and Fanty show) interviewing authors who eventually end up representing their country/continent/ethnicity, one question that inevitably gets asked is how they would describe science fiction or fantasy from their country: “What is Filipino speculative fiction?” “What is Chinese science fiction” “What is Carribean fantasy?” The interviewers have good intentions (and I’m one of those people who’ve used that particular phrase numerous times), but the more I think about it, the more problematic the question becomes.

At the root of the question are certain assumptions and privileges people take for granted. The first is that they are coming from a Western paradigm, where Western literature is at the center. The answers and responses of the interviewee will always be compared and contrasted to concepts and ideas from Western literature, because Western literature has become the status quo that everyone in the world has to adapt to. This will impact what seems to be a reasonable question in several ways. Continue reading


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