Better later than never, I say, and so shall you when you watch the this episode in our vidcast wherein I recap my Magic: the GatheringDominaria prerelease experience and ask the question: When is a troll actually a troll?
In the effort to both be able to play video games while churning out columns, I’ve combined my Sunday Twitch streams and some of my old columns into something entirely new. I can’t call this a pilot because I have at least 15 audio-only Geekly Speaking About… episodes which I hope I’ll have the time to convert to a new embedding format, but I hope you enjoy this new column which was supposed to go up last Thursday but I ran out of time. (Thank goodness for the ability to change publishing and posting dates.)
Before I dig into this retro (!) review, let me first explain something. See, back when I was in my early 20s in New York City, I had a day job where I entered DVD and VHS release information into a database that then got sold to companies who needed databases of information like this, like Tower Records. You remember record stores… right?
Anyway, naturally, this meant that the company I was working for had a pretty close relationship with both the major and the minor video distributors and studios. This also means that from time to time, they would send us screener copies of movies that are about to come out on DVD and/or VHS. These copies got passed around the office and housed somewhere until the day someone got sick of seeing them in their cubicle and put them in the breakroom for anyone to take. That’s how I got a hold of a review copy of Tadpoleand that’s when I decided to write a DVD review. I’ve cleaned it up since then, but for the most part, I have not looked at this since I first wrote it in 2004. Continue reading “It Came from the Bargain Bin: Tadpole“→
I’ve been watching the Rivals of Ixalan Pre-Pre-Release replay first on Twitch and later on YouTube over and over and I think that this is the best kind of marketing event for Magic: the Gathering that Wizards of the Coast ever fell backwards into. Why?
1. The people at Loading Ready Run who are hosting and producing these events have at least a decade of experience in being funny and entertaining while being professional. (Special kudos to James Turner, whose idea this all was, I think.)
2. Their online chat mods do not tolerate trolls. At all.
3. Their online chat community also does not tolerate trolls. At all.
4. The focus on the event is having fun and learning what the cards do, as all non-moneyed competitive events should do. (Note: Winning packs as prizes doesn’t count as money. No matter how much you try, you cannot buy groceries with packs of Magic cards.)
5. The guests they invite can be a diverse bunch of folks who are also entertaining, engaging, and friendly. Two of my favorites have been former Magic pro and current Wizards employee Melissa DeTora and Jimmy Wong from the Command Zone podcast. (Special hat-tip to Reuben Bresler of the Magic Mics podcast, whose Facebook post recap inspired this post.)
It’s these last two parts that are perhaps the most important key to drawing new players into the game or convincing lapsed players that they should head back into their Local Gaming Store to attend the set’s actual pre-release and perhaps start playing Magic again. I know that’s how I felt back when LRR debuted this show starting with the Shadows of Innistrad Pre-Pre-Release. I went to my LGS the following Saturday and went 0-4 in back-to-back events. By watching the show, I could not only see some of the cards that were released in the visual spoiler, but I could get a sense of how to actually play with them in a live situation.
Perhaps the biggest barrier for someone who’s on the fence on whether or not they’ll want to spend their money on a new game they haven’t seen is wanting to actually see what it’s like; the PPRs are perfect for that kind of demonstration, more so than Wizards‘ own Magic tournament streams. Because it’s partially produced by the company, there’s some sort of quality control. However, because LRR was first and foremost a sketch comedy troupe, it’s going to be entertaining. Best of all, because they actually play the game themselves, the way they speak and interact with the game is completely natural and not something that you’d get from any mainstream video content producer or marketing company.
It’s a bit too late for me now to attend the Rivals prerelease because it’s happening this weekend. However, with the return to the game’s initial starting plane Dominaria this April, I may decide to dust off my card sleeves and see if I can actually win a round this time.
Created by Cheo Hodari Coker
Directed by Paul McGuigan (Eps. 1 & 2), Guillermo Navarro (Ep. 3)
Written by Cheo Hodari Coker (Eps. 1 & 2), Matt Owens (Ep. 3)
Starring Mike Colter, Simone Missick, Mahershala Ali, Alfre Woodard
Also Starring and/or Featuring Theo Rossi, Frank Whaley, Jade Wu, Frankie Faison
If there’s something I know about myself it’s that if I am really hooked into a show, I am not going to let anything silly like self-imposed deadlines and restraints keep me from watching as much or as little of it as I like. This explains why I watched all of the excellent and riveting first season of Jessica Jones series almost straight through and then took forever to finish the second season of Daredevil, finally throwing in the towel 26 minutes into the last episode because the story and all the characters annoyed me so much.
My friend Kara Dennison likes to give everything she watches three episodes to capture her eye. I decided to do the same with the latest entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Marvel’s Luke Cage; judging from my reaction to the last bit of “Who’s Going to Take the Weight?”, I think I’m going to have to plow right through the rest of the episodes today and tomorrow. Note: Oh yes, there will be spoilers for these first three episodes. Continue reading “Trisha’s Take: Marvel’s Luke Cage“→
As a geek, fewer things make my heart sing more than going to a convention. Ever since my very first San Diego Comic Con back in 1996 where we got up at the crack of dawn to drive down from Orange County to San Diego just to be there for one day, I’ve always loved the feeling I get from being around my fellow geeks and nerds, talking about and enjoying a thing we all love together. I’ve covered them for amateurpublications, been paid staff for some of the Wizard World conventions, worked my way towards being a senior staff member at a convention, and just plain been an attendee at a convention. I’ve seen them from all sides, and the charged up feeling of preparing for my very first day at this year’s science fiction/fantasy convention known as CONvergence here in Bloomington, Minn. is no different.
Night Vale Presents: “Welcome to Night Vale – Ghost Stories”
Performance Date: April 16, 2016
Location: State Theater in Minneapolis, MN
Created By: Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor
Starring: Cecil Baldwin and Meg Bashwinner
Guest Starring: Symphony Sanders and Molly Quinn
Musical Guest Starring: Danny Schmidt and Carrie Elkin
Coming as late as I did to the “Welcome to Night Vale” party train, a solid year or so of binge-listening has made me a fervent fan. Described by many as “The Prairie Home Companion” crossed with “The Twilight Zone,” the twice-monthly podcast added a live show element a year after its debut. I had never had the chance to see one of the live shows before, but even without that extra preparation I was super-excited to see the show last night at the State Theater in Minneapolis, Minn.
After a bit of a real life invasion and the fourth episode of “Jessica Jones” as an appetizer, I’m ready to settle in for my next episode of “Daredevil,” and judging from the preview image of Punisher chatting with a bound Daredevil alone, I hope I’m in for a real treat.
As a further bit of an appetizer, the thought that Marvel Studios is co-opting the “superhero team-up” name which is normally reserved for times when Batman meets Superman (and some of these are also available on Netflix) fills me with a bit of glee. I can only hope that this is as well scripted as the DCU animated adventures were.
Interesting insight as to what Daredevil dreams about and his super-hearing is on the fritz, where someone pouring water out of a thermos is likened to nuns wringing out a towel.
Also, yay for Claire! Dare I hope for a Claire/Foggy team-up?
Also, yay for Matt using his brain and not his fists!
What’s this new thing that Claire helped with? I’m assuming it’s something in a Jessica Jones episode, but I’m afraid to spoil myself and check. <checks anyway> Okay, nine episodes until I get to see her in JJ. I can wait.
You’d think I’d have more to say about Daredevil and Frank’s conversation, but I’m feeling very underwhelmed by it.
Daaaaang. That nameless poor D.A. is good. But nameless. Blake Tower (and your actor, Stephen Rider) you deserve better than that. (And I think I inadvertently spoiled myself on your story arc, too.)
I kinda want a Foggy spin-off now where he gets to be all awesome and lay the verbal smackdowns. But I think that this spin-off would only be for people like me who enjoy it when lawyers kick verbal ass.
Also, Karen? One moment of horror, and then she gets to work? Yeah, all the non-powered folks are really hitting my competency porn buttons.
Okay, so this hallway/stairwell fight is hitting my competency porn buttons, too.
Big talking heads scenes aside, I really don’t think that a lot changed for Matt in this episode. It doesn’t feel like he’s any closer to clarifying his stances as a hero and/or how that’s going to define his life and his friendships. Also, whatever inheritance he got from his father isn’t going to last forever, so he does need to get back to being an attorney and rustle up some real paying clients.
Sometimes I feel like there are two shows in this one, the superhero beat-em up that one half of my brain likes and the really intelligent law procedural that I enjoy as well. Let’s hope that my entire brain will be happy once I’m done watching this series.
I know I skipped a day yesterday, but after the long day at the office, the last thing I wanted to do was to turn on a computer so that I could blog about a Netflix show. Perhaps this could be the only downside to not binge-watching a series, but hey! some of us nerds and geeks have day jobs now… Continue reading “13 Days of Daredevil: “Dogs to a Gunfight” (spoilers!)”→
As every Marvel Cinematic Universe fan knows, the second season of Daredevil hit Netflix on Friday, driving many superhero fans indoors over the weekend. I really enjoyed watching the first season at a clip of one episode a day, so rather than binge-watching like many of my friends have decided to do, I’m going to go through these episodes one at a time and let you know my thoughts. And yes, there will definitely be spoilers, but there will also be some caveats as well.
Given that I still haven’t seen “Marvel’s Jessica Jones,” Season 3 of “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D” or either season of “Marvel’s Agent Carter,” I’d appreciate it if any responses to rhetorical questions I have that can be answered by those shows be limited to a simple, “That’s answered elsewhere.” I am caught up on all the Marvel movies, but I haven’t read any of the corresponding comic books; same deal applies.