April 29, 2016

This one has been a long time coming. Maybe the most significant animated series of my childhood, Thundercats (1985) was, for me, age 6, the promise of adventure. Seven cat-people escape the doomed planet of Thundera and find a new home in the lush, expansive new world of Third Earth. But then never bargained on their old enemies, the mutants pursuing them and forming an unholy alliance with this new planet's ancient demon priest, Mumm-Ra. 

When you go back and investigate aged 36 however, it's a creaky, ponderous, derivative, bloodless, tension-free grab-bag of embarrassing dialogue, ridiculous over the top performances and tropes that were worn into the ground a decade or two ago. 

I've got so much better TV to watch, animated series' have reached unforeseen heights of excellence... so why do I still love Thundercats?

And in 2011 when a new series was attempted and sank without trace after an unsatisfying ending that suggested a much larger story-line, why did I love that too? 

It's not just nostalgia, there's more to both of these shows. Allow me and Sharon and Jerome McIntosh of GameBurst to elucidate for you. We framed this so that fans of the show, people who hated the show and those who have never had the dubious pleasure of watching it could all enjoy our podcast. 

In the second section we discuss Mumm-Ra's motivation, some unanswerable questions and our favourite episodes.


Bad Review Against Humanity: Vol. 7

April 22, 2016

After the heaviness of Batman Punches Superman and the depth of The Hero's Journey, let's all take a break for some very silly words. 
James Carter of Cane and Rinse and Paul Shotton join us to cover the random lunacy that was the Netflix Summary Bug. We do some Amazon reviews and finish off with a bunch of toy nightmares and some of the most ill-conceived children's playthings of all time, including of course, RobertCop. 

Netflix Summary Bug:

@AmznMovieRevws on Twitter:

Awful Toys:



The Hero’s Journey

April 15, 2016

This show (which is one of the best individual podcasts we've ever put together) is all about The Hero's Journey. It explores the monomyth, the idea that nearly all of the tales that we embrace as a species are telling the same story. 

Carl Jung theorized with the collective unconscious that our brains are all roughly the same shaped organ, with very similar emotional responses which have remained very similar for thousands of years, so it stands to reason that there would be certain universally appealing themes that we like to explore time and again. 

Joseph Campbell codified this in the 1940s by examining our mythology, dating back to ancient times and analyzing recurring patterns in the most abiding stories from all over the world when he put together his seminal work; The Hero With a Thousand Faces. This includes a multi-part symbolic series of events a hero always seems to go through in some form or another and what that really means. 

Christopher Vogler took this further with his book The Writer's Journey, examining the most popular and successful movies and the similarities therein.

And we ourselves have produced literally hundreds of podcasts covering our favourite movies, the greater proportion of which this manner of thinking can be applied to. 

So it's time to take a deep dive into what those steps are and why they are so important to our species. 

Joining us are Megan Hopwood and Lorin Grieve, both of whom have also taken a longtime interest in this. 

You're in for a treat here.


Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice

April 8, 2016

[SOM #152]

We start off with my initial thoughts on coming back from the cinema. The first 16 minutes is relatively spoiler-free and Sharon asks me the following questions. Then we get to the rotten meat of the whole bloody affair. 

Then there’s a considerably more positive ten minute piece from Eric Jones 

Then we hit the main event and Bob Chipman joins myself, Sharon Shaw and Jerome McIntosh to discuss the film in a more meta context, including what DC Warner’s options are, moving forward. 

00.00.30: First Impressions
00.40.00: A More Positive Response
00.56.00: The Main Event


April 1, 2016

[SOM #151]

We're back talking about Disney and we've jumped from their 21st animated classic all the way to the 55th.
Dan was not available this time round but when we reach this movie in our list of films we're going through naturally anyway we can get his take on it for an epilogue. 

This was a movie that kind of came out of nowhere and delighted pretty much everyone by having a lot more going on below the surface than your average animated animal adventure. At the very least it's a major new find for the furry community as our guests Lorin Grieve from A Year of Steam and Matt Wardle and Laureta Sela of New Century can attest. As well as this there is a multi-layered and infinitely applicable series of social commentaries on everyday prejudices. This downright demanded discussion so we pulled out all the stops to deliver you a packed two hour show. 

Folks on the patreon at the $5 per month support level can, this week, get their paws on an additional 90 minutes of rambling tangents which also took place during recording and while fascinating in places, strayed far from the movie itself. If you love these shows there are far worse things you could do with five bucks every thirty days which DON'T get you access to exclusive content. 

Daredevil: Season 2

April 1, 2016

Because you asked for it, here's what we think of the second season of the Netflix Daredevil series. 

Matt Murdoch's dual life as a lawyer and a vigilante becomes more complicated when The Punisher walks into Hell's Kitchen and starts butchering criminals. Matt is forced to confront the possibility that there is not much difference between his ideology and the application of his form of justice and the lethal force of Frank Castle.

To make things even worse for Matt, Elektra, an awful old girlfriend shows up and starts acting like a total psychopath, behaviour he finds incredibly alluring, especially when held in comparison to Karen Page, his shoulder-angel whose Sandra Dee persona is held in sharp contrast with the sadistic, lunatic Elektra. 

Many lengthy and identical fights with hoods and ninjas are had in almost pitch blackness. The locations range from warehouses to storage facilities to dockyards and industrial waste ground. The Punisher talks about his dead family with palpable agony and is definitely the most well-rounded manifestation from the rich and textured screen history of this wonderful character. 

Did I mention ninjas, because there are a lot of ninjas, and we all know that a lot of ninjas is way better than one ninja. It never ever results in a dilution of impact. 

You may like to listen to our Zootopia podcast which we're also releasing this week.