In the most recent Geeks Guide to the Galaxy, I join Andrea Kail, Thomas Gerencer, and host David Barr Kirtley to discuss the mid-90s sci-fi anime series Aeon Flux.
Forget the crappy live-action film, the animated series took risks and tackled deep science fictional concepts that were way ahead of its time. From creeping fascism, to thought control, to genetic experimentation, Aeon Flux has it all. If you’ve never seen the series, I highly recommend it.
BUCK ROGERS IN THE 25TH CENTURY (1979)
FLASH GORDON (1980)
THE ADVENTURES OF BUCKAROO BANZAI (1984)
THE ICE PIRATES (1984)
Do I need to say that Flash Gordon is my favorite of the above? “Flying blind on a rocket cycle? I’ll send you a homing beam!”
Here’s a little taste of what I say on the podcast:
“There’s always that danger when you go back and rewatch something that you loved as a kid, and that you haven’t seen it a couple decades or more,” Kressel says in Episode 378 of the Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy podcast. “You go back and you’re like, ‘I’m going to love this, I’m going to love this,’ and then you’re like, ‘Oh. Oh no.’”
Hope you and yours had a happy New Year’s! We spent ours with close friends, ringing in the new year with much cheer and cheese. (And perhaps it was the cheese that prevented me from having too bad of a hangover the next morning.)
If you were busy over the holiday break, you might have missed the Geeks Guide to the Galaxy episode I participated in, reviewing the SyFy TV series Nightflyers, based on the George R.R. Martin novella of the same name. Erin Lindsey, Andrea Kail, myself, and host David Barr Kirtley discuss the show. And needless to say, we have opinions.
Here’s a quote from yours truly:
“The only way they can communicate with the [aliens] is by bringing along a psychic, which sounds perfectly reasonable, except the psychic is literally a psychopath—at least that’s how they present him from the get-go. And I’m like, ‘Why would they bring this completely unstable psychopath with them on this journey which is the last best hope of humanity? Can’t they find a more stable psychic?’ I didn’t quite get that. And then they bring him on board in this giant cage, and he looks through the window and messes with someone’s brain, so it’s like, ‘Well, what’s the point of the cage then?’ I don’t understand why they’re even locking him away if he can literally just ‘think outside the box’ and fry someone’s brain.”
My horror / dark-fantasy story “The Words That Maketh Murder” * has been released as a podcast over at Tales to Terrify, narrated by Maurine McLean. The podcast also includes the story “Real People” by T. R. North.
Kimmy, a former software developer for government black ops weapons projects, moves into a Queens, New York neighborhood and begins hearing strange voices coming from the old train yard behind her apartment. Parts of my story are true, and I’ll leave it to the listener to decide which!
Scott Edelman has released Episode 70 of Eating the Fantastic, in which he grills interviews me at Pittsburgh’s famous Pork & Beans restaurant. I talk with him about my journey toward writing, what the Altered Fluid writing group has taught me, why I ended up writing science fiction, how I ended up co-host of the Fantastic Fiction at KGB series, and many other things. I’ve done lots of interviews, and I have to say that Scott’s questions were among the most researched and thorough I’ve encountered.
The other news is that my Nebula-nominated story “The Last Novelist (or a Dead Lizard in the Yard)” has been translated into Romanian by Alexandru Maniu and appears in this month’s Helion SF online magazine. For my Romanian-speaking friends, the link is here.
In the latest episode of the venerable Geeks Guide to the Galaxy podcast, I join Rajan Khanna, Erin Lindsey, and host David Barr Kirtley to discuss Solo: A Star Wars Story.
The new Star Wars movie Solo is an enjoyable action-comedy, but it fails in one important area: really exploring how Han Solo developed his cynical, jaded attitude. The movie also mostly skips over Han’s time as an Imperial soldier, which fantasy author Erin Lindsey feels is a big mistake.
“I wanted to see Han learning to become a pilot, going up against the norms and expectations of the military, deciding it wasn’t for him—or it deciding he was not for them,” Lindsey says in Episode 312 of the Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy podcast.
Science fiction author Matthew Kressel agrees, noting that a brief sequence of trench warfare is one of the movie’s most interesting set pieces. “We could show Han in the trenches,” he says, “seeing how ugly war is, and maybe coming out of that a little bit darker, a little bit world-weary.”
Matthew Kressel is a three-time Nebula Award finalist, a World Fantasy Award finalist, and a Eugie Award Finalist. He has written dozens of short stories, a few novels, and is the co-host of the Fantastic Fiction at KGB reading series in Manhattan. He is also the creator of the Moksha submissions system.