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Messages - SmallBlueThing

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Off Topic / Re: Y'know what really grinds my gears?
« on: 07 July, 2015, 08:36:27 AM »
Both of those are forgivable though.  "Could of" seems to be a consequence of the contraction "could've", which sounds more like "could of" than "could have", and so is a reasonable mistake to make.

As for "its"- while it's annoying no doubt,  I find I can lay the blame for my usage of the wrong type firmly at the feet of my bloody smartphone, which corrects "its" to "it's" everytime without fail, despite it being the second choice in the list of potentials the screen throws up.  The word being only three letters long and correctly spelled both ways and so not underlined in red,  it often slips past my notice. 

People who say "pacific" rather than "specific" however,  they deserve a spanking. 


No,  I'm in complete agreement.  These large-cast police procedurals are all the rage,  and the science-fiction hook may hoik it out of the crowd and get it noticed.  Dredd could still be the "main character", much like wotsisname in the CSI franchise, but surrounded by more human judges may make him more palatable to the audience.  A Netflix (type) series could allow for proper development and multiple plots to further grab the viewer. 
If they insist of spinning it out of the movie,  why not call it 'MC1: Sector 13' and dunk it in a healthy bath of cynical pisstaking of exactly those type of procedurals it pretends to be?  Who knows,  it might then lead to multiple spin-offs ('MC1: Psi Division',  'MC1: The Low Life' etc) and an eventual blanket presence in that section of the EPG I usually flick straight past on my way towards Babestation and its naughty brethren. 


My 12 and 13 have just arrived, and as usual they look splendid.  I can't honestly say I'm up to date, as the last one I read was Mandroid,  but I'm passing them on to the eldest and he seems to be enjoying them hugely. 
The shelf they eventually sit on once he's read them is beginning to look great too.  Though as usual with these things,  I'm going to have to add little spine stickers so I know what's actually in them.
Do we know what's next?


Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 26 June, 2015, 11:09:31 PM »
I've watched quite a bit of late,  during my recovery, but tonight's exploration into the weird is one I really have to talk about.

A Haunting at the Rectory (2015)

I have no idea.  None at all.  Was it the worst film I've ever seen,  or one of the best? Was it an amateur fan film with occasional flourish,  or a modern classic?  Or none of the above?  Or all of them? 

Ostensibly based upon "True Events", I guess it's a story about Borley Rectory.  The only way you'd gather this however,  is because the titles proclaim it to be produced in association with "the Borley Rectory Company", otherwise it's never mentioned.  Not once.

You'd think,  it being the "true story of England's most haunted house" and all,  it would be a horror film,  yes?  Ah ha, well you'd only be half right.  What this is,  is a peculiar drama about a love triangle,  set sometime in the past,  in which some ghosts appear for a bit. 

The film exists in a strange absence of context.  It seems to be some time around the turn of the last century... give or take twenty or thirty years.  No mention is made of world events outside the grounds of the house, no historical context is given,  and the characters exist in a weird limbo in which the three main actors display such varied and contrasting acting styles as to render the whole thing akin to an AmDram stage performance of Agatha Christie. Annemarie, the Lady of the house, seems to think it's a modern piece,  her husband Lionel the reverend uses a naturalism more suited to an audition for Emmerdale's next vicar,  and Frank the supposed Alpha sexpot who so violently upsets their life is played as a Welsh Rhett Butler by way of Uncle Frank from Hellraiser.  I say Welsh, but I think that was just the accent slipping.

The vicar is warned Evil lurks in the rectory, by a woman in his graveyard and sure enough, we are treated to a couple of scenes of low level haunting. There's a literal skeleton in the cupboard,  people are killed, other people are buried,  and it stops.

And it sounds bloody awful. But,  oddly,  it's not.  In fact I'm reminded of the first time I saw The Wicker Man on late night TV and absolutely hated it.  It was only years later, after reading about it,  obsessing about it,  and seeing it with a huge audience, that I came to appreciate the "morbid ingenuities" of that glorious work of genius. And there's something, something,  of that about A Haunting at the Rectory.

Sex abounds,  and is surprisingly grphic for this sort of thing. An example of the dissonance between the acting styles and the tone of the piece comes late in the film,  when Annmarie (in her 10s/20s/30s/40s twinset and pearls) shouts fiercly (I'll use rhyming so as not to incur moderator ire) "YES HE CLUCKED ME! I MUCKED HIS SOCK TOO.  MUCKED HIS SOCK AND LET HIM CLUCK ME UP THE GRASS!" in a scene that quite possibly may become this film's equivalent of "Oh god! Oh Jesus Christ! Oh Christ! Christ!".

And it's shot on video,  so certain scenes look like all "liney" and at one point bannisters look like old fashioned 3D because of the video artefacts surrounding them. But at the same time,  the lighting is superb, and it looks as good as a high end BBC period drama.

As I say,  I dont know what to think and I'd be hugely grateful if someone else who has seen it would share their view. At the moment,  again like The Wicker Man before it that first time,  I'm beginning to wonder if I hallucinated the whole thing.


Prog / Re: Sci-Fi Special 2015
« on: 26 June, 2015, 06:48:12 AM »
I dunno.  Maybe there is a market for a large format,  hardback reprint books to sit on the shelves around Xmas.  A 'Best of 2000AD: THE 80s' kind of thing.  All reprint,  for the nostalgia stocking filler market.  At the £7.99 price point they'd be cheaper than the standard collections and possibly attract the kind of shopper who doesn't have the time or inclination to wander over to Waterstonea graphic novel section and look for specifics,  but may recognise from their youth. 

What I'd like to see is a series of original hardback graphic novels,  along the lines of Marvel's OGN range currently.  Release them at the end of the year, sure, but they'd have an indefinite shelf life. 
But,  as with anything,  I'm sure it's been suggested and that there's a damn good financial reason they haven't been done. 
But yeah,  a 64page Wagner/ Ezquerra original,  a Mills/ Langley Slaine and an Abnett/ Elson Kingdom would certainly make my Xmas.


Prog / Sci-Fi Special 2015
« on: 24 June, 2015, 11:47:52 AM »
Can't believe a thread doesn't exist already, so if I've just missed it please feel free to merge.

Picked up this morning. Lovely.  All stories bar one hit the target for me,  with Dredd and Ace Trucking taking the top spot equally.  So nice to see Ace and crew back, and this was a fitting continuation or pastiche or whatever it was. Nick Dyer's art does not pale in comparison to the Great Bellardinelli- of which he should be very,  very proud.  I'd be very happy to see this strip back on  regular basis.

Dredd felt very old school,  especially the final panel gag,  and again I would like to see More of This Type of Thing.

Future Shock was brave in its central conceit,  and didn't outstay its welcome.  I'd be lying if I didn't say it was John Higgins's art that thrilled me most though. 

Robot-Hunter actually made sense and was fun!  Hooray for Alec Worley! 

Survival Geeks is not for me.  Would have preferred old-style quizzes,  crosswords,  droid profiles or a poster,  frankly. Or a classic reprint.  Or perhaps Bonjo?

Cover was magnificent.

8 ejaculations of excitement out of ten! 


Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 23 June, 2015, 10:57:39 PM »
Dawn being sixth only means that it's my least favourite,  not that I don't like it.  I should have made that more explicit.


Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 23 June, 2015, 08:57:35 PM »
You don't get a bigger fan of GAR than me,  and Day is absolutely at the top of the list.  But then,  maybe that's because I saw it on general release at the cinema,  and loved it so much I went back three times in the six days my local fleapit showed it (delayed one day due to snow).
It's one of my comfort films,  along with The Thing,  The Fog,  American Werewolf and The Wicker Man, and gets watched several times a year even now. 

I'd stick his zoms in the following order, but am aware I am in the minority.  Just like NO ONE liked Day on release,  and it took the world a couple of decades to catch up.  So Mark my words,  Land, Diary and Survival will find their audiences in time.

1. Day
2. Land
3. Diary
4. Night
5. Survival
6. Dawn. 

Roll on George A Romero's Marvel's Empire of the Dead,  is all I can say.


Books & Comics / Re: Whats everyone reading?
« on: 18 June, 2015, 06:19:32 AM »
fifty titles a month,

I know.  And yet there you are,  publishing lovely comics ever so often as well.  You monster.


Books & Comics / Re: Whats everyone reading?
« on: 17 June, 2015, 10:40:09 PM »
Just finished The Martian by Andy Weir, and while it pains me to agree with Richard & Judy,  everything they say in their reviews as part of their TV book club is absolutely spot on.  Truly one of the most gripping science fiction thrillers of recent years,  and possibly the best of its kind since Arthur C Clarke's A Fall of Moondust fifty-odd years ago.  Weird that it's immediately a film,  like it really has been pounced on,  chewed up and spat out before it's had a chance to percolate in the wider culture.  Still,  I read it in three days flat and so maybe its time is now.  Maybe it's just one of those novels that has a window to smash otherwise it will be lost forever.  The book is magnificent, and if the film is clever enough this could really be the 2001/ Alien of the new century.
In ten years,  when we've seen three sequels and Mat Damon has become the first man to go back to Mars three  times, I'm sure we'll all be sick of it.  But until then,  I'm going to be optimistic and hope in Andy Weir we have a Clarke for a new generation.

Comics wise,  basically everything.  I'm now up to fifty titles a month, so it's easier to list what I don't read.
I don't read DC.  Except Aquaman,  Wonder Woman and Constantine.
Best things that pass before my eyes on a monthly basis are Letter 44, Walking Dead,  Nailbiter, Dan Slott's Spidey,  Howard the Duck, Conan the Avenger now they've changed the artist, Gail Simone's Red Sonja,  Daredevil,  Afterlife with Archie and Sabrina. Rat God was fun,  as was Autumnlands too.


Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 17 June, 2015, 07:37:13 AM »
Jurassic World

Loved it.  And that love loved it all over again,  but with extra love.  Hugely entertaining,  tense,  amusing and full of spectacle, and easily the most crowd-pleasing since the original. 
I was 22 when JP came out,  so any nostalgia is tempered somewhat.  Though obviously 22 year old me wept like a baby at finally seeing dinosaurs on screen.
The Lost World was hugely disappointing, but JP3 was a taut little monster movie and so probably my personal favourite, before this.
JW reinvents the amazing spectacle of that first JP viewing in spades,  and provides just enough story and character to glue the set pieces together. 
Yeah,  there's some dodgy effects- the raptors in their head harnesses just weren't really there at all- but on every other level it succeeded spectacularly.
Going again with my family on Monday for my birthday, and will live in expectation of future installments. Just brilliant.  After Age of Ultron so disappointed, it was rewarding to go see a film that reminded me why I love this type of thing.


Megazine / Re: Meg 361 and new logo
« on: 10 June, 2015, 03:09:49 PM »
Yeah,  I like that too. I'd been expecting a progbadge next to a movie-alike font.  But that's really nice I think.

Film & TV / Re: Constantine TV show to be directed by Neil Marshall
« on: 13 May, 2015, 06:53:34 AM »
*I freely concede that this may be a minority opinion.

If it is,  it's one I share wholeheartedly. Sandman being one of the few comics I find genuinely toe-curling.
Admittedly,  the other ones of that few are also written by Neil Gaiman. And Paul Cornell.


Off Topic / Re: Where the dust goes to gather - comics variant
« on: 20 April, 2015, 09:02:02 AM »
On a bit of a whim,  I decided to spend some time this weekend idly fantasising about how best to rearrange the trade collections I currently store in our lounge and dining room. Briefly pondering the purchase of new shelving, I decided to count how many I currently have down here,  and not including actual comics or trades stored upstairs.

700 and change. 

Fuck,  as my nan used to say,  me. 

400 in the dining room,  300 in the lounge. 

When is enough enough?  :-\


Books & Comics / Re: The Dracula Files Collection from Scream!
« on: 09 April, 2015, 03:33:26 PM »
Thankyou to the good people at Hibernia- mine has just arrived,  and it's blinking flipping gorgeous.  Printing is lovely, it smells nice,  and will be devoured tonight.

Thanks for all the time and effort that goes into these. Everything from the editorial to design and printing is first class. 

Of course,  I haven't yet checked if the spine matches Library of Death.  If it doesn't there will obviously be a vlog about it later,  with me tearfully screaming.


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