Or – “Poochie Is Proactive. He’s In Your FACE. He Doesn’t Just Get Busy; He Gets “Biz-zay”!”
Back in the day, my friend Karl and I used to say that there’s a fine line between “high concept” and “dumb joke.” Any idea, story, or setup can be boiled down to a three-sentence marketing pitch (“How ’bout this: Snakes. On a PLANE!”) but the real test is in what you DO with your concepts once that pitch has been approved. A prime example would be Howard The Duck: “Outsider trapped in a world he never made” created great satire and deep emotions when Steve Gerber did it in comic book form (you should really go get the Essential Howard collection, by the way.) But, when translated by other minds into a film, it’s become shorthand for “box office flop.”
Anyone who has seen a movie trailer or read the Previews Catalogue in the last ten years knows that many of the comic books and movies that make it through to final execution do so solely on how pithy the concept is (“Man wakes up from coma after zombie plague occurs,” or “Woman falls in love with undead emo kid”) but the REAL test comes in the EXECUTION of the idea…
Or – “April Showers Bring May Flowers, But Mayflowers Only Bring Religious Dissidents…”
Man, it has been a LOOOONG month of May. The comics industry seems intent on moving to $3.99 price points, The Eleventh Doctor got hit on, and Scarlett Johanssen looks great in skintight stretch fabrics. In any case, since another month has come and gone, and it’s a three-day weekend for many in the United States we’ve got time to look at a couple dozen things that have come out in recent weeks, Rapid-Fire Style!
Or – “I’m The Doctor, My Dear… Whether You Like It Or Not.”
There’s a very large problem when you’re telling stories about a time traveller. It’s not always easy to tell what ORDER the tales go from the traveller’s perspective. Witness the quandary of Legion of Super-Heroes fans when their stories seem to imply that Braniac 5 joined the Legion before Superboy, which means that Supergirl (who joined at the same time as Brainy) actually joined the team earlier in their personal timeline than her cousin who joined in the team’s first (chronologica)l appearance. Also worth noting are these by necessity retroactive adventures of the Time Lord called the Doctor in his Tenth incarnation, being told only after the adventures of the Eleventh Doctor start to come to light. Still, if you’re not worried about continuity (or willing to crack the head of a patient cat against a concrete bathroom wall, to use a metaphor coined by a wiser man than I) these tales sometimes end up being your favorites…
I’m still quite a few weeks behind in my Doctor Who viewing this season, but the more trailers I see coming out of BBC One, still has me wishing we were getting the new episodes the same weekend as the rest of the world.
Or – “Named For The Roman God Martius, God Of War…”
Not to be confused with famed Martian general Marvin, whose computers are so complex and naughty… Traditionally, this month has signaled the beginning of the season of military campaigns, and also the time when college basketball generals lead their troops unto the field of battle. For me, working in small-market TV for as long as I did, it’s a month which signals mighty pains in the butt, which explains why this is technically the FEBRUARY edition of RFR. We apologize for the inconvenience… Better to just press on.
For those who were hoping that BBC America would get the brand new Doctor Who series just days after airing on British TV, are going to have to wait a while longer, as BBC America has announced Matt Smith’s first episode will air on April 17, 2010 – two weeks after our friends across the pond.
Travelling both through time and space, the new series has the mysterious Doctor and Amy Pond together exploring sixteenth century Venice, France during the 1890s and the United Kingdom in the far future, now an entire nation floating in space. The first three episodes of the 13-episode series have been confirmed as The Eleventh Hour, written by Steven Moffat, The Beast Below, also by Moffat and Victory of the Daleks by Mark Gatiss.
If you can’t wait two weeks, there’s always YouTube which featured Waters of Mars the day after it aired in the U.K. So, circle your calendars for April 4th?
Calling all comic book loving Torchwood fans, aliens have landedâ€¦
Pontyvale Golf Clubâ€™s post-Christmas reopening hasnâ€™t gone well thanks to some grisly killingsâ€¦ The site has been closed off, and Torchwoodâ€™s Captain Jack, Gwen and Lanto investigate. But they soon come face to face with the cause of the killings â€“ and itâ€™s not pretty!
Watch has teamed up with Titan comics, producers of the regular Torchwood strip in the official Torchwood magazine and created a must see for all true fans. Celebrated comic artist Brian Williamson (Marvel, Dark Horse, 2000AD, Titan & Tundra) and Doctor Who story writer Oli Smith (2010 Doctor Who Storybook) join forces to save the day and the result is an exclusive and explosive Torchwood strip.
If you have several thousand dollars lying around and you A) feel pretty comfortable with your money situation in this economy, B) have already donated a sizable chunk to Major Spoilers, and C) loves you some Doctor Who, then you might want to drop $10 grand or more on some of the props and costumes used in the Doctor Who series.Â Bonhams is putting a whole lot of cool stuff on the auction block come February 24, 2010, and looking through the online catalog, everything from Daleks to Cybermen and a whole lotta costumes are going to go to someone.
I’ve got my eye on at least one of the Cybermen costumes, and if there is a generous patron out there who would like to get it and send it to us for our growing comic book and pop culture cavern, I know I’d be giddy.