Tag Archives: discussion

#22. Godzilla (2014) — A Shoot the WISB Subcast w/ Rachael Acks

1 Jun

Giant monsters, nukes, and sad skyscrapers, oh my!  Shaun, David, and Paul are joined by Rachael Acks to take on the brand new Godzilla movie.  Prepare to be stomped!

We hope you enjoy the episode!

Spoiler Alert:  the following podcast contains spoilers for the film being reviewed; if you wish to see the film without having it ruined for you, download this podcast and save it for later.

Godzilla (2014)

Download the episode here.

Show notes (info about our contributors can be found on the about page):

Comment away!

Languages Matter: Some Thoughts on Language and Dialect

28 May

I want to expand on what I have written in my essay, “Languages, Dialects and Accents:  Why Our Voices Matter.” Much has been said about the use of dialect in science fiction and the outcry that follows. I would like to see more of such discussions because we have been shying away from issues that really matter to us. Perhaps, it is the shift from white Anglo science fiction to a more international/world science fiction that has started the ball rolling. For a long time, the world has been white, male and painfully Anglo-centric, not to mention US-centric. Now we have new voices coming into the song, and some are naturally reacting rather angrily, I would say.

Why are we fixating on English – and for that matter, proper grammatical English English? Let’s not bring in the American versus British spelling argument. Let’s talk about English. Why do we insist SFF writers write in English? Probably because science fiction, at the moment, is dominated by the Americans and the British? Bear in mind that science fiction is also written in Mandarin Chinese, Finnish, Spanish, Portuguese, French and Bahasa. Why does English have so much hegemony in the SFF-sphere? Continue reading

#21. Prince of Darkness (1987) — A Shoot the WISB Subcast

27 May

Possessions, creepy churches, and mirror demons, oh my! For our 21st Shoot the WISB discussion, Shaun, David, and Paul tackle John Carpenter’s 1987 low-budget horror flick, Prince of Darkness.

We hope you enjoy the episode!

Note:  This episode was selected as a perk for Shaun’s Worldcon fundraiser by Usman Malik. The fundraiser is, as of this posting, $115 shy of completion.  If you would like to help out, please head to the GoFundMe page and donate!

Spoiler Alert:  the following podcast contains spoilers for the film being reviewed; if you wish to see the film without having it ruined for you, download this podcast and save it for later.

Prince of Darknes (1987)


Download the episode here.

Show notes (info about our contributors can be found on the about page):

Comment away!

The Disquieting Guest — A Few Thoughts On ‘The Quiet Ones’

25 May The Quiet Ones -- 2014

The Marvel logo that introduces the company’s movies (and their respective trailers) is a pretty sharp piece of work. That flipping by of comic book images primes the viewers, gesturing toward the history of all that came before. I bet that many viewers feel a bit of a thrill the moment that logo appears, even if — when seeing a trailer for the first time — they don’t know what movie is coming up after those images.

I have much the same reaction to the new Hammer logo, which you can check out here. Hammer Studios are a storied institution. They brought Quatermass to the big screen and revived Gothic horror with 1957’s The Curse of Frankenstein. That first pairing of Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee has a hallowed place in horror history, as do the films that followed. But the late-sixties and early-seventies brought difficult times to Hammer. Films such as Rosemary’s BabyNight of the Living DeadThe Texas Chainsaw Massacre and The Exorcist changed the face of the horror film. Hammer’s period pieces, which had been so radical with their colour, gore and sexuality (tame though those elements appear today), now seemed quaint. Attempts to modernize (Dracula A.D. 1972) were met with mixed success (to put it kindly). The last theatrical hurrah was To the Devil… A Daughter in 1976, an attempt both to follow up the earlier success of  The Devil Rides Out and mimic The Exorcist. Continue reading

Book Review: The Best Fantasy and Science Fiction of the Year, Volume 8

22 May 1781082162.01._SCLZZZZZZZ_SL400_

While not quite Dozois-sized in the number of stories and pages it contains, The Best Fantasy and Science Fiction of the Year Volume 8 edited by Jonathan Strahan does have one major advantage over its counterpart. Strahan, unlike Gardner Dozois’s own yearly tomes, boldly mixes both science fiction and fantasy into one volume, rather than trying to figure out what belongs in Science Fiction and what is firmly in the domain of fantasy. Eight volumes in, Strahan’s editorial voice in selecting the best of the year from both SF and fantasy together is distinctive and strong.

The stories are: Continue reading

205. Mary Anne Mohanraj & Cecilia Tan at ICFA (An Interview) #WorldSFTour

22 May

Sri Lanka, erotica, and world sf futures, oh my!  Mary Anne Mohanraj and Cecilia Tan join Julia and Shaun at ICFA to discuss a whole lot of amazing things.  We cover the history of Circlet Press, the nature of erotic sf/f, Mary’s incredible The Stars Change, Sri Lankan politics, sexuality and genre, immigration from South Asia and assimilation in the West, and so much more.

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 205 — Download (MP3)

Show Notes:

You can also support this podcast by signing up for a one month free trial at Audible.  Doing so helps us, gives you a change to try out Audible’s service, and brings joy to everyone.

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: James L. Sutter

20 May The Redemption Engine by James L Sutter

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 James L. Sutter to talk about how the power of talking about the important things relates to The Redemption Engine.


When asked what my superpower is, I’d usually talk about sneezomancy. For reasons unbeknownst to me, my sneezes are a reliable indicator of my general health. One sneeze means I’m getting sick. Two sneezes means I’m fine. Three or more sneezes means “wow, it’s dusty in here!” Not exactly the sort of thing that gets one onto the X-Men, right? So in getting ready for this article, I started rifling frantically through other powers. The ability to bend my thumb back, like, really far. The ability to eat several pounds of blueberries in a sitting without Serious Gastronomic Distress. The ability to consistently hit the high note in “Take On Me.”

And then I realized that I actually have a superpower that permeates every aspect of my life.

I can talk to people about things that matter. In fact, I adore it. Continue reading


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