Thursday, November 30, 2006

Teen Titans, Go! Here

Ran into this site while surfing around tonight. As a fan of the show and the comic, it gave me a few moments of reading pleasure.



Friday, November 24, 2006

Thinking About Blankets

Yeah, so I just finished reading Craig Thompson's critically acclaimed graphic novel, Blankets. I had heard so many good things about it I thought I would give it a try when I saw it during one of my library trips early in the week. Also, I knew it was autobiographical, somewhat sentimental and dealt with Thompson's first love so I was pretty sure I was going to like it. There are a few things that, when combined, make a story that will capture my undivided attention and those are three good ones right there.

Anyway, after setting the book down I think I can say the story was just as good as I'd heard. It was more than I expected, really. I was happy with how Thompson managed to keep things very subdued and very real, yet maintain a lyrical quality to the storytelling. The imagery and his art style probably had a lot to do with that, but considering it is a graphic novel written and drawn by the same guy, it's all the same thing.

Often in autobiographies I find that characters who are meant to be drawn from real life tend to be a bit too functional. Rather than seeming like a real person drifting through the narrative, these people appear and serve their purpose to drive the plot forward. Normally, this wouldn't be a problem, but when you know that these people are supposed to be real, it can grow tiresome to see. In Blankets Thompson's cast of characters had a warmth and reality to them. I never really felt like they served in that overly functional capacity. They came into the story and drifted out of the story as they were required and their actions all had an impact on Craig's life in varying degrees. This is what life is really like. That Thompson can weave them all in and out like that without exposing his narrative intent is a tribute to his skill as a storyteller.

I also didn't feel like he went out of his way to romanticize his past like many others writers do. His recollections of events/feelings never seemed to cross any lines that challenged my suspension of disbelief. They came across as honest and genuine. I don't know how much of it is fiction and how much is totally real, but I believed the story and in what the characters were going through.

All in all, I think I'm going to go out and buy this one sometime. I definitely would like to have this one in my personal library to look at whenever I choose and I'm pretty sure that, like Brooklyn Dreams, Blankets will be a perennial favourite that I return to with some regularity.


Thursday, November 23, 2006

A Baby for Scully and This One's Not Mulder's

Pulled this off of SciFi Wire:

Former The X-Files star Gillian Anderson gave birth to a baby boy, Oscar Griffiths, on Nov. 1 in London, her second child and her first with boyfriend businessman Mark Griffiths, People magazine reported.

Congrats to Gillian, Mark and little Piper.



Friday, November 17, 2006

The Great Pumpkins Return

Both the CD players in the home and in the vehicle have been playing a pretty steady stream of the Smashing Pumkins' seminal album, 'Siamese Dream'. I think it is pretty much my favourite album from the band, and likely one of my top 10 of, at the very least, the last 25 or 30 years. Something about the richness and texture of the music just grabs hold of me and doesn't let go. Maybe that's what 40 layers of guitar tracks in one song do to a receptive ear and mind, I don't know.

In fact, when I got my new demo this weekend, it didn't feel exactly right until my brother and I got in it and blasted some 'Siamese Dream' - a little "Mayonaise", a little "Rocket" and a little "Hummer" did the trick just fine.

Anyway, all this Pumpkins listening and christening got me to do an internet search (I think I was looking for a remastered version of 'Siamese Dream' or something) and I stumbled across this. I never would have imagined that the four original members would be getting back together anytime soon, but it looks like there is a new album forthcoming. They're working on it probably as I'm writing this post.

There's not much up on the webpage right now other than an e-mail newsletter sign up field, but you can get more info and blog entries by band guitarist, James Iha, at their myspace account.

Now I have to go and let my brother in on it.



Thursday, November 16, 2006

"This town needs an enema!"

A little while ago I managed to snag a copy of Batman Returns for less than $5. It was the new 2-Disc edition with the commentary and features and what-not so naturally I was excited. I'd been waiting many years for a commentary on this film or its predecessor, Batman, so I got it home, tore it out of its case and plugged her into the ol' DVD player post haste.

A couple of days ago I found the first Batman film for the same price and went through pretty much the same process. The only real complaint I have with either release is that Burton's commentary is kind of so-so and not terribly informative. He repeats a lot of things about three or four times over the course of the film and doesn't really talk about the movie in a very retrospective way. Lots of reminding the viewer/listener about the psychological profiles they made for the characters but not too much else.

I was hoping for something a little more interesting based on how decent his commentaries on Big Fish, Planet of the Apes and others were. I guess it's nice to have anything, but it would have been cool to hear something from Keaton (who was great in the documentaries) or Sam Hamm on the first one or Keaton and Daniel Waters on the second. Even some producer commentary would have shaken it up a bit.

Ah, well.

I'm going back to watch the Legend of the Dark Knight documentary.



Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Bouncing Around

I can't seem to keep my interest in any one thing for very long these days. A week and a bit ago I was totally immersed in the David Simon book, Homicide, which was followed shortly afterwards by a desire to watch some original Trek. That preceded the urge to read some classic Batman strips and a Gerard Jones interview I heard a little bit ago planted a seed to hear some Shadow radio episodes or to possibly pick up some issues of The Shadow Strikes!. Anytime I try and actually focus on something there's always something else that sneaks up and undermines the one for the other.

It's not really a big deal or anything, but it is occasionally disorienting when I'm trying to figure out what to do with myself in the evenings before bed. What to watch, what to read, what to listen to...yeah, my problems are overwhelming.

On another note entirely, I watched a double feature of Nacho Libre and Napoleon Dynamite with my brother last night and it was a pretty entertaining evening filled with a few belly laughs and guffawing. It should be no surprise that the two movies work pretty well together, although I will say that my preference will always lean more towards Nacho over Napoleon. I just find it more funny. It's fan-TAST-ic.

Nothing else is coming to me at the moment so I'll take my leave for now and go back to being the faux receptionist here at Saturn.

I'll leave you with this clip from a new show which other bloggers have been talking about but I cannot watch because it is not available in Canada yet...



Saturday, November 11, 2006

Back Online!

Well, back online for a while, anyway. I got my internet problems sorted out and I am once again jacked in to the information superhighway. That means some more non-work blogging which, in turn, means more frequent updates. It also means that a little project I was working on may still get off the ground since it was internet dependent.

I don't have a lot of time right now to post but I'll definitely be back later tonight or tomorrow for sure.



Tuesday, November 07, 2006

'I'm a Blogger! I'm a Blogger!'

Having never been formally trained as a journalist/interviewer, yet spending almost a decade dabbling in such activities and occasionally identifying myself as an entertainment journalist, I found this article kind of interesting.

Now, I'm sure there is a line somewhere in the argument over when blogging becomes journalism, but I'd say it's a very grey one. We've all seen blogs that deliver better news than the established outlets but there are just as many, if not more, that are just rubbish. And it's also pretty clear that those that cover more serious news/issues face considerably more scrutiny than those that cover gossip, film, music or comics.

I know I'm not introducing anything new to anyone who visits and reads the blog here, I just thought it was an interesting piece to mull over and I'm curious to see where the courts rule on this topic.

Back to work, now.