Episode 205: Two Hundred and Five Shades of Grey

April 9, 2015

205

Kathie (what came back from Chad and made us watch the Fifty Shades of Grey movie, apparently) joins Jakob and Mandi to talk about the Fifty Shades of Grey movie.

 

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Episode 201: Five Armies, One Hobbit

December 23, 2014

Battle of the five armies podcast

Riddles in the dark

Question: What comes at the end but sits in the middle, is the last of six but only the third?

Answer: It’s The Hobbit: Battle of The Five Armies, of course. Even Gollum could get that.

We mentioned the viner named Red 6 on the episode. Here’s a supercut of his vines. In some cases the joke is in the title of the vine, which is naturally missing, but still some good gags.


Episode 194: The Edge of Groundhog Day

July 9, 2014

194

Tom Cruise is back to join the Starship Troopers and help Incept Groundhog Day against Aliens in Edge of Tomorrow.

Okay, the above snarky, reductive synopsis makes Edge of Tomorrow sound like a crappy knock-off, it’s best bits cannibalized from of a handful of better films. Though you could argue that is technically accurate, it’s a description which doesn’t do the film justice—a film which is probably the last, best original science fiction film we’re going to get for a decade.

I do say “original” because though it borrows elements from other films, such as the rag-tag band of marines from Aliens, remember that the rag-tag band of marines from Aliens were an homage to classic war films like The Dirty Dozen. The seemingly unbeatable alien invaders in Starship Troopers weren’t a new concept when the book was written and absolutely old hat when the film was made. If there was an element of deja vu in Groundhog Day it was partially that the gimmick of time-loops was already an old standbyIf there are any wholly original concepts left in sci-fi, they haven’t cropped up in the past four or five decades so we shouldn’t criticize a film too harshly for not offering one up now.

And I say Edge of Tomorrow is the “last, best” sci-fi film we’ll see because, judging by the dismal box-office reports of Edge of Tomorrow‘s opening weekend, audiences have guaranteed we’ll only see reboots and superhero movies until people stop going to see those too. Eventually it will probably find a word-of-mouth audience on Netflix (which I imagine is of little interest to the studios) and in time will become a sort of sci-fi action classic alongside AliensThe Matrix, District 9 and Inception—but without making the studios the kind of bank those films did. For now it’s being painted as the biggest genre bomb since Waterworld.

Which is too bad since it’s the antithesis of Waterworld—a true turkey which bombed because it was an actively, aggressively, unapologetically terrible film. Something audiences don’t seem to care about as long as the words “Star Trek” or “Marvel” or “DC” are attached to the title.

So when I call it the last, best original science fiction film, it’s being measured by a bar set dishearteningly low.


Episode #51 – Tech Gadgets

February 5, 2010

Last week Apple introduced the world to the iPad. The world nodded politely and carried on talking to more interesting people at the party. Mandi and I sat in a corner and talked about the iPad behind its back.

If we’d listened to this episode of Or Do You Think That’s Just Bollocks beforehand, we’d have known about a few of the features we claimed the iPad doesn’t have. Such as, though it doesn’t have any USB ports, you can apparently buy a USB adaptor for the docking port. Which still sounds kind of bullshit to me.

But then, I don’t own a cell phone or any Bluetooth devices so what do I know about tech gadgets? Absolutely nothing. Mandi seems to be a  bit more savvy, but mostly I think she just wants an iPhone app that tracks me and my vital signs via the GPS/diagnostic chip she tagged me with in my sleep.

Anyway, we thought the iPad looked stupid. So did Hitler.

This week we develop a greater respect for the acting ability of Tricia Helfer (Caprica Six), though not enough to Google her name until just now, and Dualla (not Diwali)’s breasts.

We also talk about how the writing of season 2.5 was clearly hijacked by children who’d never seen an episode of Battlestar Galactica in their lives. In the podcast, I go so far as to make the bold claim that even Season 2 of TNG didn’t have episodes as bad as “Sacrifice” or, as Mandi re-titles it, “Billy, Don’t Be a Hero“. Spoiler: Billy be’s a hero.

Of course, the day after recording this episode, we watched “Shades of Gray” and I realized there’s never been TV as bad as Season 2 of TNG. A whole fracking episode of Riker flashbacks. And they’re not even interesting Riker flashbacks (though any pairing of the words “interesting” and “Riker” is an oxymoron). Out of the entire history of hastily slapped together flashback episodes, it might be the single worst thing I’ve ever seen. I came down with a cold shortly after watching this episode and I blame it. What a way to close out a season.

At least season 2.5 of BSG ends on a high note.


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