This Week in Geek (16-22/01/12)


Only one purchase this week, and that The French Connection on DVD.


DVDs: Without having seen the original, I can still tell how the 2010 Korean remake of John Woo's A Better Tomorrow differs from it. First, a North/South Korean reality is imposed on the original's Mainland China/Hong Kong set-up, and second, it probably focuses less on stylish action (though director Song Hae-Sung knows how to fill the frame with style) and more on the tragic drama aspects of the story. The film is about a brotherly love triangle, loyalty between men, and redemption for a child's betrayal. The relationships are complex up front, so getting into the story wasn't the easiest thing to do, but time spent on character scenes pays off in the second hour. The extras are all short and skewed to marketing the movie, and suffer from bad sound on the interviews, especially producer John Woo's, as he's apparently giving his opinion from a tele-conferencing unit.

Audios: Finished volume 3 of Lost Doctor Who Episodes narrated audios with The Moonbase, the triumphant return of the Cybermen and the first of many "base under siege" stories for the 2nd Doctor. On the moon! I have the story already on DVD, the two surviving episodes and the audio from the other two are on the Lost in time boxed set, but Frazer Hines' narration comes in handy, describing the action scenes with gusto. It's not the best story, but I do enjoy early Cyberman stories, and it strikes me once again that Polly was a kickass companion. Not at all the time-traveling secretary she's been made out to be in fan circles, she's the big revelation of this CD set. Certainly a better character than Victoria who replaced her, and maybe even better than Zoe (I know, heresy... nevertheless...).

With the next Lost set not yet released (boo!), I've return to my Big Finish originals (audios allow me to walk to and from work, in sleet and snow, and still listen to my "stories"). And it seems I'd left the Key2Time trilogy after the first story! My bad! The second part is, I'm glad to report, a great story. In The Destroyer of Delights, writer Jonathan Clements has crafted a wonderfully verbose and witty tale of the 1001 Nights, throwing meticulous historical research in with spaceships and robots in the Sudan to inspire the story of Ali Baba. The 5th Doctor and Amy the Key Finder (not Pond) are wonderfully used in the setting, but Clements offers one more entertaining element: Modern versions of the Black and White Guardians that are actually funny and endearing. The Black Guardian is played by David Troughton, and man does he ever sound like his father on audio. I wouldn't be surprised if this was still one of my favorite CDs come Siskoid Awards time next January. And bonus! Very nice interviews with the writer, director and cast are included!

New Unauthorized Doctor Who CCG cards: Finally regained control of my website, so those few new cards I had only shared with my specialized CCG forum are available to everyone. There's a 10th Doctor in there for the gals, and some new Daleks for... well, for the gals too. You know who you are, don't dare deny it.

Hyperion to a Satyr posts this week:
III.ii. Instructing the Players - BBC '80
III.ii. Instructing the Players - Zeffirelli '90


Randal said...

I really felt that the Key 2 Time arc went nowhere fast...maybe only doing three stories (and one companion story) wasn't seems to me I've got the sequel/spin-off sitting around here somewhere, but God knows where. I'm so far behind in my listening (though I just finished the Jago and Litefoot stories, and THEY. ARE. AWESOME.)

Siskoid said...

Story ends in the very next chapter, so yeah, it's a short one (still, longer than a single audio). I'll just have to see for myself.

The Jago and Litefoot audios look really great, I just haven't gotten them yet. After Key2Time, I'm committed to 8th/Lucy Season 3.

idiotbrigade said...

While I generally always enjoy our KFFs, I actually really dug this installment. I was sitting there wondering "OK so its one of those Triad/Cop films, there's going to be action sometime soon." and then not being rewarded with a never-ending buffet of cool action scenes. But at that point, I kind of didn't want them!

I was all up ins for Hyuk and Chul's developing story arc that I really couldn't have bothered with Tae-min at that point. But that stuff was great too. Extra icing on a Korean cake.

Distinct lack of StarCraft, however.

Toby'c said...

Strange, the later serials have been out in Australia for a while - I listened to Fury From the Deep a few months ago, and I have the Yeti stories and the two Troughton Dalek stories on hold at my library. Have you tried searching for them individually rather than in the Collections?

Though the Yeti stories actually are in a box set of their own, and there's also an "Adventures in History" set with The Massacre, the Highlanders and the Myth Makers (likewise on order).

Siskoid said...

IdiotBrig: Still, like all good Asian villains, Tae-min HAD to die. That dude was a little bitch! Best character is still the restaurant lady, the only woman in the film, a real hoot and somehow the moral center of the film.

Toby: Those are out of print here. And by here, I mean Amazon. I've never ever ever seen a Doctor Who audio (of any kind) on sale here. Is it Canada in general? Is it that I live in a relatively small town? I can't say.


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