Ray Harryhausen passed away last week. This has been noted by people more qualified than I to discuss the master of stop-motion magic—Rick Baker, Adam Savage, Todd Masters, George Lucas, Peter Jackson, and more. The superhuman talent and perseverance evident in a Harryhausen effects sequence can easily be seen in countless visual effects artists since he first brought his creations to frame-by-frame life on the big screen. That makes sense. So how can I really say anything of worth when I say that I was also profoundly influenced by the artistry of Ray Harryhausen? With modesty, and a story about Clash of the Titans. 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 once a month a Guest Star shines in The Gutter.
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I have a ghost story of my own. At least, I have a ghost-cat story.
My final year as an undergraduate was spent in relative splendor. My friends and I lucked into tenancy in the house of a professor on sabbatical. Twelve foot ceilings! Built in bookshelves! Three cats! Real, grown-up furniture! Wait… let’s get back to the cats. The professorial family had three cats and a dog, though the dog was sent to a friend with a farm (later, they told us later that we clinched the lease when they told us that cat care was part of the deal and our response was, “Aw, we don’t get the dog?”).
So. Three housemates, three cats. One morning around the (solid oak!) table, we were chatting about the cats’ sleeping habits. Two of the cats routinely slept in my room, the third with one of the others. Feeling a little left out, the third roommate said, “That’s okay, because Ghost Cat slept on my bed last night.” Continue reading…
A man with dark wavy hair wakes up in an iron-framed bed in the middle of a windowless room. He leaps out from under the white sheets and stares intently at a corner of the white ceiling. Suddenly, gracefully, he spins to defeat an invisible opponent in four swift motions, finally falling to his knees in front of an empty chair, hands outstretched.
There’s something about the way Benedict Cumberbatch plays the lead role in the BBC series Sherlock that seems like it could be Holmes’ fantasy version of how a brilliant detective behaves. Continue reading…
“You hit him with a frying pan,” he said to her. “How come you didn’t grab a knife?”
“The frying pan was closer.” Her eyes slid away. “It’s not like I had time to pick a weapon. It’s not like the frying pan is my weapon of choice.” –Agnes And The Hitman (27)
Growing up in a town where Elvis was sighted post mortem, I despised and mocked The King. Now, I have held wakes in his honor. I used to only like punk. Then I used to say I liked everything but country. Now I don’t even bother arguing that I’m listening to “Americana,” not country. It is a truth universally acknowledged that something I once despised I will come to appreciate and, often, love. So when both Chris and alex recommended Jennifer Crusie, the author of many romance novels, and in particular her collaboration with Bob Mayer, Agnes And The Hitman, I knew I needed to read it. Continue reading…
This week Screen Editor alex MacFadyen and Comics Editor Carol Borden continue discussing The Dark Knight Rises. We both like Batman and we’re fascinated by how many different Batmans there are. Even though there are things we like about the film, we want to figure out what is it about The Dark Knight Rises‘ Batman [...]
Of Note Elsewhere
At Sequart, Julian Darius makes the case that Star Trek: Into Darkness damages the Star Trek franchise and that “Starfleet must be destroyed.” (via Mike White)
This tumblr collects many bad jokes kids have invented.
“It’s easier to tell the same stories everyone else does. There’s no particular shame in it.
It’s just that it’s lazy, which is just about the worst possible thing a spec fic writer can be.
Oh, and it’s not true.”
Kameron Hurley writes about lazy writing, cannibal llamas, female soldiers, and women here. (Thanks, James!)
Patton Oswalt’s multi-franchise super-movie described in his Star Wars filibuster from Parks and Recreation, animated.
Corrigan Vaughan writes an open letter to “Fans of Geek Things“: “I appreciate that you think I have a nice rack and that some of you even find my friends and I to be pretty. That’s very kind. I’m not, however, super in love with the fact that having a rack at all seems to preclude me from being considered a ‘real’ fan.”