This Week in Geek (4-10/06/07)


Two major purchases this week. The first is a comics bundle that includes the All-Star Superman hardcover (see below), Essential Iron Fist (mmm, punches), and ACME Novelty Library vol. 17, which could easily be mistaken for a 1950s school book. God I love Chris Ware's stuff.

The other purchase of note is a new Doctor Who boxed set called New Beginnings, which basically covers the transition between the 4th and 5th Doctors -The Keeper of Traken, Logopolis and Castrovalva. I look forward to hours of enjoyment.


Big week as far as reading goes! Got into Douglas Coupland's JPod in a major way and read it through in some three days. Really breezy and fun, something of a mix between his Microserfs and All Families Are Psychotic. Excellent for geeks (though especially computer geeks), I really identified more than I should have with the characters, and found out that I was borderline autistic, as are probably most of my visitors here (read the book to find out how!).

I find that reading has momentum to it, and so I couldn't sit on my laurels and stop at JPod. I have this bad habit of reading while I walk to and from work (I know the route well, don't worry about me), and it helps to have something easy to read for that purpose. Looked at my Doctor Who shelves and picked up Gareth Roberts' I Am a Dalek, a short 100-page "quick read". Lasted a day. It's a fun enough adventure that might easily span an episode of the show, with a sweet ending. It's a bit overrated with fandom, but definitely better than The Shakespeare Code.

Then I had to fess up. There's this New Adventure (Doctor Who again) called Shadowmind by Christopher Bullis that I'd given up on last September. Well, with 90 pages to go, why not use my momentum to finish it? It's done. It's not that it's bad - it's got some interesting ideas and plenty of twists, maybe even one too many - but it does feel a lot less necessary than some other NAs I've read. But I'm now ready to move on - in the NA range and others.

Indeed, this has been a week for finishing stuff. I've also been sitting on the last part of The One Doctor (a Big Finish audio starring the 6th Doctor) for a couple weeks. Don't know why I let it lie since it's pretty hilarious. Could've done without the bathroom humor, but most of it is very clever and fans of New Who might find a Weakest Link scene that predates Bad Wolf's!

Before that I'd finished About Time 2, Miles and Woods' unauthorized guide to the 2nd Doctor's stories. Reading About Time is always a major project, and I'd been nursing that particular volume for months.

In the same category is Jarhead. I'd watched the film months ago, and had even listened to the writer commentary (was interested in hearing the book's author discuss the film with its scriptwriter), but "flipping the tape" was just something on my to-do list since then. Once again, time to buckle down. Sam Mendes' director commentary was interesting and insightful, and the documentaries not the run of the mill stuff you often get. Thumbs up and sorry I didn't do this sooner.

I also finished watching Murder One Season 2, which I keep calling Murder Two. It was nice to finally see the stuff that was pushed back to the summer when the series was canceled (something I'm now having to do with the similarly doomed Studio 60), but I do have to admit Murder One had lost its way. Losing Teddy Hoffman as the lead character was problematic at best, but covering three cases over the year instead of one just went against the series bible (though I can understand the reasons behind it). Other problems include one story being a little too close to the original story arc, day shoots that constrasted too starkly with the look of Season 1, and a romance without any chemistry. Ah well. Still enjoyed that last arc tremendously.

I know fans of my Unauthorized Doctor Who CCG had been waiting a long time for me to finish designs based on The Armageddon Factor, so I delved into that this weekend and produced 26 new cards, my favorite being Power Corrupts.
That covers it for stuff I'd started before last monday. Completely new stuff includes reading the All-Star Superman HC, collecting the first 6 issues of Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely's take on Superman. It's all Silver Age premises with his usual postmodern twists and it just pops. Superman should probably be like this in normal continuity. It's got all the classic bits, many of which have sadly been lost over the years. And look at that cover. Can you blame me for not realizing just where the big guy was sitting at first?

Apostrophe(') Over-Nite Sensation is a cheap DVD I got to bring my Amazon total over the 39$ limit after which shipping is free, but I'm a Zappa fan, so it was an easy choice. I didn't really know what this was before getting it. Turns out it's a VH1 Classic Albums episode with frankly made me nostalgic for my old Zappa records. Haven't listened to most of them in too long. It's only 50 minutes, but they throw in another 50 minutes in unedited performances and studio deconstructions by Frank's son Dweezle. Made me weepy.

Finally, just because I didn't think I'd geeked out enough apparently, I flipped the tape on H2O, not the Halloween rehash, but the Canadian tv mini-series about a conspiracy at the highest levels of the Canuck government. Hampered by clumsy transitions to commercial breaks, it's just about its only flaw. It's otherwise a complex, really unpredictable thriller with excellent writing and performances. If you don't know much about Canadian politics, you might get a little lost, but it makes great use of the political climate in this country.

Ok, well, it looks like I've proven SOME kind of autism here. Let the fun continue.



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