Tag Archives: question

? of the Week: What was your favorite novel in 2012 and why?

21 Feb

No need for introductions.  You’ve got the question and fingers for typing.  So do some thinking and offer your responses in the comments below.

To get things started, here are our answers:


Who would have thought that I’d pick another “literary” SF novel, replete with intense character development, an extraordinarily rich near future world with a slice of the weird, and an unconventional narrative style?  Oh, right.  That’s normal for me.  And that’s why I’ve picked Lost Everything.  Brian Francis Slattery’s novel blew me away last year.  You could call it a “river novel” set in a near-apocalyptic future and get away with loose comparisons to Mark Twain and Cormac McCarthy — comparisons even I’ve made.  But I think there’s something more to Lost Everything.  The characters are complex and beautiful, the world terrifying and yet strangely enticing, and the narrative just slightly off kilter enough to make this more than just another “dystopia.”  The deeper I got into the book, the more intrigued I was by the characters and their way of viewing the world.  From houseboat scenes, savage war with no apparent end goal, and a mysterious super storm set on destroying everything, Lost Everything never ceased to amaze me.   It’s the kind of book only Slattery can write, but also the kind of book that SF desperately needs because it has a depth of “reality” that so many SF novels lack (perhaps because they are too focused on plot and action).  We’ll see if it makes any awards lists this year… Continue reading

Question of the Week: Which Doctor Who villain should be retired?

30 Jan

We’re sure to get more of the classic villains in the final episodes of this season of Doctor Who.  Some of these have been with us since the beginning (or close enough) and haven’t had the same scary effect on audiences in the new incarnation of DW.  But should the makers of DW retire some of these classic villains? Or are some of the newer villains worse?

Doctor Who

That’s what we want to know.  If you were going to retire one a Doctor Who villain, who/what would it be and why?

The comments are yours!

Torture Cinema Poll #9: Emergency Movie Poll — Help Us Fill the Gap!

29 Apr

Jen and I were supposed to read Tom Kratman’s Caliphate, but after trying to read the book, we realized that the kind of bad we are looking for when we do these Torture Media segments doesn’t exist there.  Caliphate is a bad book, but it’s not a book that we can make fun off without crossing our own lines of comfort with comedy.

That’s where you all come in!  We need to pick a movie for Torture Cinema, and fast!  If you’ll be so kind, please vote for the bad movie you’d like us to watch this week to fill the gap.

The poll will run for 24 hours.  Thanks!

Episode 93 — Defining Urban Fantasy, Plus Doctor Who Companions and Dying American SF

26 Mar

This week’s episode is an impromptu discussion about some fantastic topics (thanks a lot, Stina Leicht, for making us ramble like buffoons).  On today’s show:  Paul Weimer forces us to attempt, albeit at the last minute, urban fantasy; Doctor Who finally has a new companion, about which we feel like bitching; and apparently science fiction in American TV is dying (yes, we’re not playing the “SF is dying” game; specificity is everything).

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!

Note 2:  Because we only briefly covered defining urban fantasy in this episode, we are going to bring it into our interview this week with Stina Leicht.  Expect more discussion then!

Here’s the episode (show notes are below):
Episode 93 — Download (MP3)

Intro and Discussion (0:00 – 33:44)

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.

? of the Week: SF/F Books That Made You Cry

26 Feb

This week, we really want to know about the SF/F books you’ve read that made you cry.  What about those books put tears in your eyes?

The last book to make me cry was the 6th Harry Potter book, in part because I had fallen in love with Richard Harris’ portrayal of Dumbledore.  I cried from the moment of Dumbledore’s death until the end (a good 40 pages worth of crying) and my sister had to console me.

What about you?

(To be fair, this feature has never been a weekly thing.  So be it.)

Flick Bits: Terry Brooks’ Magic Kingdom For Sale Optioned!

31 Jan

From the man himself:

Warner Brothers has optioned Terry Brooks’ best-selling MAGIC KINGDOM OF LANDOVER series of books for Akiva Goldsman’s Weed Road Pictures and Andy Cohen’s Grade A Entertainment. Goldsman and Cohen will produce with Weed Road’s Kerry Foster and Alex Block overseeing for Weed Road. Warner Brothers’ Matt Cherniss brought the book series into the studio and will run point. Brooks was represented by Anne Sibbald of Janklow & Nesbit Associates.

Weed Road is in preproduction on A WINTER’S TALE written and to be directed by Goldsman. Recent credits include PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 3 and FAIR GAME.

Cohen last produced UNTRACEABLE starring Diane Lane. He’s currently working on the stage show, HEATHERS – THE MUSICAL and the indie film, IN SIGHT.

I’ve said it before:  this kind of news always makes me grin.  Brooks is a widely read author.  While I haven’t read any of his novels, I did read his book about writing, which I found incredibly fascinating (more autobiography than writing text).  If you’re of the writing persuasion, I’d recommend it.

And since I haven’t read Brooks’ novels, I have to ask:

Have any of you read them?  If so, what did you think?  Do you think Magic Kingdom For Sale will make a good movie?

The comments are open to all of you!

Flick Bits: Tad Williams’ Otherland + Warner Bros. = Feature Film (Your Thoughts?)

21 Jan

If you haven’t heard already, Warner Bros. has acquired the rights to Tad Williams’ science fiction series (Otherland).  From Variety:

Warner Bros. is heading to “Otherland,” acquiring feature rights to Tad Williams’ sci-fi book series and setting it up with Dan Lin to produce.

Studio has tapped John Scott III to script the film, based on the four books published by DAW-Penguin USA between 1996 and 2001 as “City of Golden Shadow,” “River of Blue Fire,” “Mountain of Black Glass” and “Sea of Silver Light.”

Good news?  You bet.  Some of the folks attached to this project have been involved in Sherlock HolmesSherlock Holmes:  Game of Shadows, Gangster Squad, Terminator Salvation, The Departed, etc.  John Scott III is currently penning an adaptation of Isaac Asimov’s Caves of Steel, which better turn out great if he knows what’s good for him…

The good thing about this is that it shows how valuable SF/F has become to the Hollywood community.  There have been so many announcements for pending or currently-being-produced adaptations in the last five years that it’s rather surprising there are any properties left to snatch up (hyperbole police, anyone?).  And if we’re really lucky, maybe Philip K. Dick won’t be the only classic SF/F author to have over 10 of his works adapted for the small or big screen (I’ve intentionally taken H. G. Wells and Jules Verne out of the equation because, from a generic standpoint, they are only SF/F authors in retrospect; science fiction was not codified as a generic tradition until decades after Well and Verne had released their most popular genre works.  But you can ignore me on this point and include Wells and Verne as high contenders for the SF/F-author-with-the-most-film-adaptations Award.)

In any case, Tad Williams is a fairly recent author.  I haven’t read any of his work, but I’m told he’s quite good.  Have any of you readers/listeners read the Otherland series?  Do you think it will make a good movie?  Why or why not?

More importantly:  what do you all think about all these film adaptation announcements?


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