May 19, 2017
This is our first Wes Anderson film and we explore what makes his worlds and characters distinctive. It was commissioned by Tylor Long and Harrison Brockwell.
You should definitely see the film first. Funny, quirky, rude, unpredictable, sweet, sad, clever and uplifting. It's magnificent. Do not miss this one. It's one of our most personal shows.
Next week: Guardians of the Galaxy 2.
May 12, 2017
This is a Vertigo comics series which ran for 60 issues from 1997 to 2002, written by Warren Ellis and drawn by Darick Robertson.
It is set in a non-specified future where cities stretch out across the planet, filled with bored tech-fetishists all looking for the next distraction. Spider Jerusalem is an infamous gonzo journalist who returns to the otherwise unnamed "The City" to write some books and newspaper columns after years of hiding in a log cabin up a mountain.
This is a book that was hugely influential on me, and while the retro-future it predicted was off the mark in many cases, some of it is so sharp that it's going to hurt to listen. There's blasphemous and depraved content within so you have been warned.
Alasdair Stuart of The Escape Artists joins us to talk about all things Spider in this commissioned show courtesy of Ciaran Dachtler.
NEXT WEEK: Pick up and watch The Grand Budapest Hotel before listening to our show. It's a rich, visually detailed film and you will enjoy it so much more not knowing what's going to happen, and enjoy our show so much more having seen the film.
May 5, 2017
A mystical return to the Marvel Cinematic Universe we love so very much. This one took us a while to get our heads around. On walking out of the cinema Sharon declared it as possibly her favourite of the MCU entries, which, if you know her, is saying something.
Alex on the other hand had doubts about why it failed to make such a huge impact on him, and they took several months of mulling over and three viewings on blu ray to really nail this one down.
Joshua Garrity of Cane and Rinse
And Neil Taylor of TheKidDogg
New Century on Bandcamp
Next Week: Transmetropolitan. Get hold of Book 1: Back on the Street.
April 28, 2017
This is another commissioned show, and you have Jason Ronson to thank, because we wouldn't have done this movie for a long time, and when we did we would have spent half the time we did, delving beneath the surface. We felt, since we always like to give you guys value for money, that we would go all-out.
And it's not a movie we love, in fact there are elements of it that drive one or both of us up the wall, and we make no bones about its issues. But we also look for what they were attempting, and the reasons why this failed to wrangle a suitable audience upon theatrical release.
Book fans, we have you covered, and Alex Maskill joins us to fact-check the details of the six volumes.
This is also the podcast where I finally explain the "No Anime" rule. If anyone asks for anime in future, this will be the show I point them to.
The Cornetto trilogy will eventually happen. One of them is a little bit patchy for us, but gets better with repeat viewings, kind of like Scott Pilgrim, the other two are among the most perfectly crafted comedies ever made.
And the book to track down and read for the episode we're doing in two weeks is called Transmetropoiltan, Vol. 2: Lust for Life, by Warren Ellis.
April 21, 2017
In another commissioned show this week we cover the 2002 Chinese blockbuster from the director of The Great Wall.
Loosely (and as we find out that means REALLY loosely) based on a real life assassination attempt on the first emperor of China, this is one of Jet Li's most prestigious appearances. Featuring a trio of assassins played by Tony Leung, Maggie Cheung, and the amazing Donnie Yen, this blends serious, historical drama with stunningly photographed, excellently choreographed martial arts.
It's immense in scale, breathtaking in beauty and thought-provoking in story. It's also one of the Zhang Ziyi trilogy of period-set martial arts spectaculars, the other two being House of Flying Daggers by the same director as Hero, Zhang Yimou, and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon directed by Ang Li. All three are absolutely worth your viewing time, especially on blu ray.
April 14, 2017
This one is pretty special. You will laugh, you will facepalm, your jaw will hit the floor.
The Thief and the Cobbler, or Arabian Knight, or The Princess and the Cobbler, or Once, OR The Amazing Nasrudin is, to date, the animated movie with the longest production run in history. It was begun in 1964 and released (after a fashion) in 1993... and then again in 1995.
A cautionary tale for studios and a treasure trove of interest to animation experts, the story within the film itself pales in comparison, in terms of fascination, to its dreadfully staggered road of creation.
This is the story of one unusual man who dreamed of making the finest animated film the world has ever seen, and what happened when that dream came up against reality.
If you would like to see more about this film (once you've seen the film, because I'm betting you hadn't even heard of it until today) you might want to catch this in-depth documentary *Persistence of Vision*, which features an array of animators and others involved with the making, and in which they are far more complimentary of the film than we are.
April 7, 2017
This episode would never have happened without a commission from Jamas Enright who effectively made me go back to a movie I had previously dismissed as an impenetrable mess.
Terry Gilliam's 1985 dystopia, intended as a satirical black mirror held up against the bureaucracy that had driven him crazy was a box office flop, and if you've seen it you'll understand why. If you haven't you will get a lot more out of it from listening to our show first.
March 31, 2017
We've had several requests over the course of our show to cover THE ENTIRETY of Doctor Who, or even just "Everything since 2005". Eventually one commissioning Whovian named Andy Nattan came around with a suggestion that would neatly incorporate our knowledge of the Doctor into a discussion about one fairly hilariously bad TV movie made in 1996. It also constitutes (almost) the entire onscreen appearance of the Eighth Doctor, Paul McGann, who was rather good (when he stopped SCREAMING).
So whether you love Who, like it or think it's a load of old toss you'll almost certainly enjoy listening to us talk with long-time Seventh Doctor fan Neil Taylor about this failed pilot, starring Eric Roberts as The Terminator, featuring a really REALLY accurate clock, a wibbly window and a jizz-snake.
March 24, 2017
In 2013 a brand new Marvel character was introduced to the world, one who is very reminiscent of classic Peter Parker, a goofy, hapless, sweet-natured teenager who just wants to help people. She's also the world's premier, headlining Muslim superhero, and very much due a movie or TV series to bring her to mass popularity like those who came before her.
In tonight's episode we are joined by Alasdair Stuart, owner of Escape Artists and longtime comic-book expert, to enthusiastically discuss why the younger generations are already loving Kamala Khan, and why she's so important in the grand scheme.
You don't have to have read any of her comics, but by the end of this you will want to.
This was a commissioned show, and we kick off with some important (and good news) about future commissions.