Click above to download the grinding halt of our journey into one of the most celebrated sci-fi television shows of all time. But don’t despair, if you want more take a listen to our BSG: Razor special with Ro Karen of Starbase 66 from back in May of 2010. (NOTE: The Razor Special isn’t currently available… soon, soon… er, promise).
People often ask us when we’re going to do a BSG episode, forgetting that we did about a dozen. When we tell them about our Project GalacTALKa segments, instead of seeking them out they ask us when we’re going to put out a compilation of all our BSG bits. Well, since Battlestar Galactica: Blood and Chrome recently hit the YouTubes, we figured this is as good a time as any.
So here is part 1 of 3 of our journey into one of the most celebrated sci-fi televisions shows of all time.
It’s quite easy to understand why a lot of people don’t like Star Trek. Even at its best it’s kind of cheesy. There’s spaceships, robots, green-painted women and a noticeable lack of contractions in speech. But part of the reason so many people dislike it is simply the law of averages—absolutely everyone has seen it.
Everyone, that is, except Victoria (aka Bella Fox).
Well, her and a few other people. But she’s the only one we know who’s actively into a plethora of really nerdy things and yet hadn’t sought it out. Impressively, she managed to avoid it during its near 24/7 syndication reign in the late 1990s and early 2000s. A near impossible feat regardless of whether you wanted to watch the show or not.
So, feeling her nerd cred was suffering, she asked us to help her (and Måthìaş who had seen a little Star Trek 15 years ago) boldly go where so many people have gone before…
Episodes watched: “The Pegasus” and “Homeward” from season 7 of The Next Generation.
If your wish is to lead a happy, fulfilled existence, then a Taoist master might instruct you to live without expectation. It’s certainly an endeavor worth attempting so long as you don’t expect to feel happy or fulfilled. But at the very least you won’t be quite so baffled by how a great percentage of the population seems to believe The Godfather is the best movie ever made.
Perhaps it’s not truly the worst film ever made, but by the time Mandi and I got around to watching Coppola‘s gangland classic, there wasn’t even the glimmer of a chance it could live up to the hype. Our preconceptions indelibly coloured our viewing experience.
The Godfather didn’t just have to live up to the hyperbolic praise of its fans, it had to live up to our own deeply personal and unique judgements of what an “unsurpassed masterpiece” is (or just what a good mobster movie might be). Inevitably, it didn’t score well on either of our subconscious checklists. Because of the hype, it’s a film I find I’m personally incapable of judging on its own merits. I can’t be objective. The hype, in this case, is insurmountable.
Similarly, I suspect that if I’d somehow never heard of The Dark Knight and rented it on a whim one night, I’d have probably thought it was pretty good. A bit hokey and maybe Heath Ledger‘s performance is a little too absurdly over-the-top… but hey, it’s a goddamn Batman movie. That’s all completely to be expected. I’d probably have enjoyed it instead of being deeply irritated by the mediocrity of the “best film ever.”
I don’t think it’s hyperbole to say we’ve all had a viewing or reading experience ruined by hype a few times in our lives. Plenty of terrific (or at least perfectly decent) films, books and television shows just don’t have a chance living up to our expectations—including, not un-ironically, Great Expectations.
Luckily, no one over-hypes Nerd Hurdles.
THE NERDS KNOW: For those of you hoping we’d talk about Star Trek more, we spend most of the episode responding to Chris Lockhart‘s email regarding our Voyager episode. Send in your feedback and questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Travel and Vacation: two very different things. Or, sometimes, exactly the same thing. Leigh joins Jakob, Mandi and Kathie to discuss the various hurdles travelers run into.
Is it exploitative to go to resorts in third world countries, or are you supporting one of their only thriving industries? Does volunteering in poverty-stricken countries (voluntourism) help solve or perpetuate their problems? What’s the best Disney park? Is Jakob a shut-in? Let us know what you think.
Jakob, Mandi and Kathie discuss the Bane, the Bat and the Cat.
Since recording this episode, I’ve perused a few Internet forum threads regarding The Dark Knight Rises. They’re pretty very similar to the threads about the previous film, The Dark Knight.
They usually start with a few dozen variations on:
“OMG guys! It’s like the best movie EVAR. Nolan is a GOD.”
Then someone has the audacity to write something like:
“Honestly, I wasn’t that impressed. There were a lot of things that didn’t make sense. Like how did Bane’s mask stop his pain? What was that about?”
And then people reply things like:
“It was awesome. End of story.”
“Maybe you should go back to watching Avengers, asshole.”
And my favourite dismissal:
“Some people just like to go against the herd. This troll is just looking for attention.”
And then the guy says:
“No, seriously. I just want to know what why Bane had constant agonizing pain from being beaten up. I’ve never heard of that kind of injury before. And then why would a claw mask make that better? Did they explain that? Did I miss it.”
“You can’t expect everything to be explained. The movie was already three hours long.”
“Fair enough. But they explained what the Blank Slate was in detail. Actually Batman explains it to Cat Woman even though she obviously knows exactly what it is since it’s what she’s after. And every knows what it is just from the name Blank Slate. It was the worst clunky, expository dialogue I’ve seen in years. So, if they’re willing to over-explain something that’s more or less explained by its very name, why couldn’t they spend two lines explaining Bane’s mask?”
“Hey asshole, no one cares what you think.”
“Whoa, chill. I’m just asking questions. Like if the whole plot is a suicide pact to avenge Ra’s al Ghul’s death, how is it going to benefit the League of Shadows if they’re all dead?”
“I hope your mother gets raped with a hacksaw”
“Hey, guys. This guy’s clearly an idiot. Don’t feed the troll.”
“Yeah, guys don’t get the threat locked”
“I don’t understand why you’re so upset. Okay, riddle me this. How did the secret agent guys not figure out the ginormous guy in the hood was Bane?”
“Because he hadn’t talked yet. Duh!”
“Uh, okay. Well, thank you for not threatening to rape my mother. I just really want to understand this movie you guys all like so much. Okay, so then why were the prisoners even wearing hoods? So they couldn’t see they were in the middle of absolutely nowhere? And why wouldn’t the secret agent guys take their hoods off before they took off? Wouldn’t that be procedure? Or just natural human curiosity to see who they’d just taken possession of?”
“Because that was Bane’s plan to kidnap the scientist.”
“Yeah, I got that was how Bane planned it. But that plan is way to contingent on the government agents not taking his hood off as soon as they got in the plane or before. And why was Bane’s plan to kidnap the scientist in mid-air and not on the ground when it’d be much safer?”
“He needed to fake his death.Weren’t you even paying attention?”
“But why did he need to fake his death? How would the government knowing Bane kidnapped this guy change Bane’s ultimate plans anyway? The fact he’s thought to be dead doesn’t really come into play in any significant manner. And if Bane was worried about the governemtn lookign for him, apparently he’d just have to stick a black hood on him and they’d never bother looking under it.”
“Hey fucknuts, we were playing nice. If you’re just coming here to shit on Nolan’s masterpiece and the memory of Heath Ledger, you can go stick a shotgun up your ass.”
“Huh? I’m not shitting on anything. I’m just asking questions. Like why does Batman refuse to use guns by outfits all his vehicles with massive amounts of weaponry?”
“Mods, can you block this guy?”
“Why does Miranda Tate seduce Bruce Wayne? What was her goal there? So she loathes Bruce Wayne enough to blow up a whole city and also, what, get him off a few times first? For no real reason? He already gave her the reactor. She didn’t need to trick him into revealing its location or anything.”
“Spoilers dude. Not cool. You’ve got to STFU. Block this guy, mods.”
“Block me for what? I haven’t said anything offensive or insulted anyone. Less than this movie insulted my intelligence. Which obviously none of you have any of. And why didn’t Bruce Wayne say hello to Alfred in the last scene. He’s just that much of an asshole? Half a sideways glance his all he can spare for the man who raised him and thinks he’s dead? Why did he even need to fake his death when he has the Blank Slate?
And now that I think about it, how does the Blank Slate erase from existence things like every single copy of your high school yearbook or the hard copy of your birth certificate that the government keeps on file? Or newspaper clippings or little league team photos. Or even just peoples memories of you? Like Selina Kyle and Bruce Wayne can cease to exist on record but Alfred’s still going to recognize them in Venice. Can any of you brain surgeons explain that to me?“
“Hey guys. Joker69 here. Sorry I was away for a few days and couldn’t moderate. Don’t worry I blocked that troll and deleted his account. He won’t be bothering us anymore. Remember, don’t feed the trolls.
ImTheBatFan emailed me and asked me to lock the thread and next time I will. TDK fans have gotten bad rep lately since Colorado, so play nice. When in doubt, ask yourself: What Would Adam West Do?“
“Adam West would do Robin in the ass.”
This episode is a little of the ol’ rough and tumble through the pages of fanfic turned “mommy porn” sensation, Fifty Shades of Grey, with fan-favourite co-host, Kathie (What Introduced Mandi to Fanfic, Apparently). She’s back and ready to dominate us as we delve into fifty shades of tangents while putting our hard limits to the test. All without agreeing on a safe word before hand, mind you.
Unless you’ve been under a rock for six months, you will have noticed a lot of chatter on the interwebs about a Twilight fanfic turned international best-seller. Some call it sexually liberating, some call it misogynistic drivel. Most just make reference to the tampon scene. (Of course, there’s a long history of menstrual sexiness. The fanfic writes itself in these ads from the 1950’s).
As with any book that so divides public opinion, there must be something to it, right? Well… there’s certainly a lot of ellipses. We were actually a little surprised to discover how little there was to get upset about. In some ways, less then in Twilight. Sure, it’s the old girl meets boy, girl is emotionally controlled by boy, girl decided she can change boy story. But there’s a distinct lack of substance. It’s sort of like getting angry with marshmallows for lacking nutrition.
If you still don’t know what all the fuss is about, this tells you pretty much all you need to know.
And if you like the sounds of this…
…then you’re going to want to stick around for the easter egg where we’ve uncovered the encrypted holodeck logs of a certain Starfleet Captain.
And before you ask, no, we didn’t know about this video before naming the episode.
Squeezed in a bit of a fail episode about the Toronto Ribfest before Mandi went on vacation. We quickly realize there’s not as much to say about carnies on the BBQ ribs circuit than you’d think. Mostly we complain about the lack of tents to shelter us from the sun. A lack for which which we were apparently lucky.
THE NERDS KNOW: Questions from GAB and Ava. “What store would you live in?” and “What were your biggestchildhood disappointments?”
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