The Czech science fiction comedy I Killed Einstein, Gentlemen (Zabil jsem Einsteina, panove) starts off with a fairly shocking scene, even by the standards of today: two bearded men locked in the throes of a passionate kiss. It’s a fake-out, we soon learn, a way to introduce both the central premise of the plot — the future has been ravaged by radioactive fallout that has caused women to grow beards — and the fact that this movie is going to have a grand time tweaking its nose at gender expectations, stereotypes, and comfort zones. The comedy is a mix of subtle and slapstick, something like Monty Python meets Charlie Chaplin meets the Marx Brothers, with a bit of Benny Hill-esque sex farce thrown in. Sadly, no one ever pats an old man on the head, though I’m sure Karel Effa (who should have teamed up with HK comedy actor Richard Ng) would have been up for it. Continue reading…
This site is updated Thursday afternoon with a new article about an artistic pursuit generally considered to be beneath consideration. Carol Borden draws out the best in comics, Chris Szego dallies with romance, alex MacFadyen stares deeply into the screen and Keith Allison probes science fiction.
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Now is the summer of our discontent…
We’ve finally gotten down to actual summer weather in the last two weeks. So of course I spent the last two weeks without AC as I dealt with a series of cascading electrical problems. One complete power shut-down later, things are finally back on the level… just in time for the humidity to drop to a bearable level.
Argh, argh, argh.
Since I’ve pretty much hit peak Crabby, I’m believe I’m in a good place to write my annual complaints piece. This is the column in which I enumerate the things I dislike about the Romance genre. As usually, I won’t single out specific titles — rather, I’ll talk about the larger trends and habits across the genre that make me go “”@#$%!”
But since I didn’t manage to burn every good feeling out of my heart (because the AC came back on before I actually had to sacrifice the contractor to the dread gods of the humidex), this time I’ll also add counterexamples, writers who manage to do whatever-it-is well instead of poorly. Continue reading…
Awhile back I had one of those moments where I read something that made all the kaleidoscope pieces shift slightly into a pattern that made more sense: part of our problem in trying to make the best, healthiest choice about everything is that self-control is a limited resource. If you’re constantly forcing yourself to behave in ways that don’t feel very good, by the end of the day you’ve got no willpower left and you find yourself with your head in the refrigerator licking the pie plate, or using your to do list as a coaster while you watch a third episode of some show you don’t even like. If you don’t actively decide what’s important to you and cut yourself some slack around it, the things you succeed and fail at get decided for you by how worn down your resistance is when they come around. Continue reading…
Summer is almost here, and I can’t tell you how glad I am. So smear yourself up with sunscreen and bug repellent, find your kickiest sandals, put the finishing touches on your Wicker Man and don’t forget to wear a hat because I have some comics to make your summer just a little more fun whether it’s by the pool, on your porch, holed up in your bedroom with a box fan set on high or dancing and singing “Sumer is Icumen In” as you sacrifice a virgin representative of a king to the Old Gods to ensure a good harvest in the fall.
I like to think I’ve provided a Variety Pak so no matter what your flavor of comics is you might find something you like: Pop superheroics; dark fantasy; horror; clever short stories set in Edo; Fifties pulp; Mod secret agents; Weird Westerns; comic but still graphic fantasy; graphic novel mystery; YA science fiction fun! Continue reading…
Posted July 7, 2012
As part of the harassment of Feminist Frequency‘s Anita Sarkeesian, a guy from Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario made a “game” where players could punch her. The Internet found the game’s designer and people talked to him on Twitter. Storify has more as does Gameranx. And She Was Disclaiming has an analysis of the ensuing conversation.
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Of Note Elsewhere
Friend of the Gutter, Will McKinley writes about his past as a soap opera fan and the return of a classic soap opera, The Doctors, and its significance for the genre.
Action choreographer, director and stunt performer Panna Rittikrai has died. Films Panna worked on, whether as a choreographer, director, producer and/or actor include: Born To Fight / Gerd Ma Lui (1986 and 2004), Tom Yum Goong (2005), Chocolate (2008), Spirited Killer (1994), Power Kids (2009), Dynamite Warrior/Khon Fai Bin (2006), Bangkok Knockout (2010) and all three Ong-Bak films (2003, 2008, 2010). Film Business Asia, The Bangkok Post and Wise Kwai’s Thai Film Journal have obituaries. City On Fire and Far East Films also remember Panna. Here’s an interview with Panna from Thai Indie. Panna kicks ass in this tribute video.
Actor and singer Elaine Stritch has died. Stritch worked extensively on Broadway, but she also appeared in September (1987), Small Time Crooks (2000), Monster-In-Law (2005), the British television series, Two’s Company, 3rd Rock From The Sun, My Sister Eileen and 30 Rock. The New York Times, Variety and The Detroit Free Press. Saara Dutton remembers Stritch in her piece, “In Praise of Broads.” Here Stritch performs, “Zip” from Pal Joey, “Why Do The Wrong People Travel?” from Sail Away and “I’m Still Here” at the White House. Here she is in a 2008 production of Endgame. And here she is on Theater Talk.
Actor and producer James Garner has died. Garner is probably most famous for his role as Jim Rockford in the tv series, The Rockford Files, but he also starred in Maverick (the tv series and the 1994 film), Support Your Local Sheriff (1969), Marlowe (1969), The Great Escape (1963), Victor/Victoria (1982), Move Over, Darling (1963), My Fellow Americans (1996), Space Cowboys (2000), God, The Devil and Bob, Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood (2002), 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter and The Notebook (2006). The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times and Variety have obituaries. Here is Garner in what is reportedly his favorite television series, Nichols (1971). And here Garner talks about acting.
The Projection Booth watches Mario Bava’s Planet of the Vampires with Troy Howarth.
The Comics Journal takes an in-depth look a Tony Wong Yuk-Long, Ma Wing-Shing and the massive Hong Kong comics publisher, Jademan Holdings Ltd., and Jademan in North America: “He is a showman, this Tony Wong–a real Stan Lee, though I would argue that he is more interesting than the American model.” (via Kaiju Shakedown).