Gobbledygeek episode 337, “A Wrinkle in Time: The Gift of Your Faults,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Time, she has been wrinkled. Tesser on over as Paul and Arlo discuss Ava DuVernay’s big screen adaptation of Madeleine L’Engle’s beloved science-fantasy classic A Wrinkle in Time. The boys discuss how the film differs from the novel, for both better and worse; what a strong find Storm Reid is in the lead role; how the film is admirable for willing to be absolutely ridiculous; why it’s so important DuVernay is in the director’s chair; and whether or not the film actually manages to be as inspiring as it wants to be. Plus, the boys pay tribute to Stephen Hawking and discuss the current state of Stan Lee; Paul reads comics; and Arlo continues his Disney journey.
Next: it’s that time again. Wesley “Wezzo” Mead stops by to once again discuss Chris Carter’s seminal sci-fi series The X-Files. This time, the gang will discuss season 8, the last pre-revival season to feature David Duchovny as a (semi-)regular.
(Show notes for “The Gift of Your Faults.”)
Gobbledygeek episode 336, “The Young Girls of Rochefort / The Pirate Movie: Killer Booboos and Cartoon Octopi,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Ahoy and salut! Kicking off a series of occasional musical episodes–as in episodes about musicals; nobody wants to hear our boys sing–inspired by Paul’s love of The Greatest Showman, he and Arlo gear up for a tuneful Geek Challenge. They are both intensely on brand: Arlo challenges Paul to Jacques Demy’s deceptively candy-colored 1967 classic The Young Girls of Rochefort, while Paul forces Arlo to endure Ken Annakin’s inexplicable 1982 swashbuckler The Pirate Movie. They’re surprised to discover that these incredibly different films, besides both being musicals, have some connective tissue: the use of fantasy to escape cruel reality, metatextual references to themselves and other movies, and…well, okay, after that, they’re almost completely different, but come on! Wouldn’t it be cool if Catherine Deneuve danced with a cartoon octopus? Plus, Paul has thoughts on the Star Wars Rebels finale and Arlo has been taking a trip through classic Disney.
Next: Kronos must have forgotten to fold his sheets, because there is now A Wrinkle in Time. I’m sorry. I’m so, so sorry.
(Show notes for “Killer Booboos and Cartoon Octopi.”)
Gobbledygeek episode 335, “Annihilation: For Those That Follow,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Self-destruction. Division. Separation. Annihilation. These are the frivolous, lighthearted concerns of Alex Garland’s latest film, a mind-expanding sci-fi trip that finds Natalie Portman, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Tessa Thompson, Gina Rodriguez, and Tuva Novotny exploring “Area X,” a mutated piece of land encompassed by the full-on-double-rainbow-all-the-way that is the Shimmer. What’s going on here? What’s causing it? Does an answer even matter? Paul and Arlo dig into Annihilation’s writhing, metastasizing guts to discuss the beautiful, macabre work of production designer Matt Digby; the organic/electronic discomfit of Geoff Barrow and Ben Salisbury’s score; how Garland’s approach intentionally places the viewer at a distance; and that goddamn bear. Plus, Paul watched something called the Olympics; Arlo wants to help The Breadwinner make some dough; and Paul gives Arlo shit, what else is new.
Next: the episode we teased last week! For a musical Geek Challenge, Arlo must watch Kenn Anakin’s 1982 “classic” The Pirate Movie and Paul must endure Jacques Demy’s 1967 classic (no quotation marks necessary) The Young Girls of Rochefort.
(Show notes for “For Those That Follow.”)
Gobbledygeek episode 334, “Black Panther: Hail to the King, Baby! (feat. Phaicia McBride),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
First-time guest Phaicia “Fe” McBride joins Paul and Arlo as they take a direct flight to the African utopia of Wakanda, courtesy of Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther. King T’Challa’s first feature film marks the 18th entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe; it also marks a long overdue watershed moment for mainstream black culture. The gang discusses why Black Panther is so important and exciting; how the film takes the MCU in exciting new directions, particularly with its nuanced villain; how rare and wonderful it is to see so many female characters with agency, skill, and personality; why Ludwig Goransson’s score (and Kendrick Lamar’s soundtrack, at least according to Arlo) is a true sonic statement; and how some of the fight sequences bring to mind Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man. Plus, Arlo’s obsessed with a bizarre lo-fi mobile game called InstLife; and Paul goes full steampunk ahead with Batman: Gotham by Gaslight.
Next: despite what they say at the end of the episode, Paul and Arlo are actually getting ready for Annihilation.
(Show notes for “Hail to the King, Baby!”)
Gobbledygeek episode 332, “The Greatest Showman: The Noblest Art (feat. Nate Curtiss),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Come one, come all to The Greatest Showman, Michael Gracey’s musical retelling (or is that reshaping?) of the life of circus impresario P.T. Barnum. Paul and Arlo are joined by first-time guest Nate Curtiss, whose obsession with the film rivals Paul’s well-documented mania. The gang discusses the film’s message of tolerance and inclusion, why it’s a better musical than La La Land, and if it’s a problem that the filmmakers have refashioned Barnum as a beacon of progressivism. Plus, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are back (did they ever leave?), which is making some fans unhappy (aren’t they always?); and The Cloverfield Paradox was a surprise post-Super Bowl release on Netflix.
Next: last year’s Four-Color Flashback finally comes to a close, as Kenn Edwards joins us to discuss Y: The Last Man – Vol. 10: Whys and Wherefores.
(Show notes for “The Noblest Art.”)
Art from ‘Avatar: The Last Airbender – Vol. 5: North and South’ by Gurihiru.
The Avatar Returns episode 47 is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
We’re baaaaack. But there’s no cause for celebration as we’re forced to bid a sad farewell to our beloved comics creative team. One last time writer Gene Luen Yang and art duo Gurihiru spin a tale of Team Avatar for the official tie-in graphic novel series from Dark Horse Comics. Vol. 5: North and South sees Sokka and Katara return home to the Southern Water Tribe for the first time since setting off with Aang to end the Hundred Years War. But what they find may not be the quaint, egalitarian village they remember. As each volume before it, North and South explores issues of modernization, nationalism, societal and technological development. But for the first time our hosts don’t all necessarily agree on the quality of the story and/or art. One of them may or may not spend much of the podcast talking about loving the book while consistently nitpicking practically everything about it. Which one of them is being an Arlo? Press play and find out!
Also, there’s talk of “therapybending,” David Lynch’s inevitable contribution to the World of Avatar, spoilers for Lion King(?!?), and Tattoo Watch is officially over as someone earns their ink.
Next: there’s a change coming as the boys talk about how to continue the podcast in light of the glacial pace of new comics being released. There’s quite a bit of discussion at the end of the episode about what to do about that, but I’ll go ahead and spoil some of it for you now and let you know the next thing we’ll be discussing will be the first individual volume of the Legend of Korra graphic novel series Turf War. Date TBD.
(Show notes for The Avatar Returns episode 47.)
The final episode of The Avatar Returns is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Goodbyes are hard. That’s why we drink. In this episode your sad hosts are sad. In the absence of new Avatar: The Last Airbender or The Legend of Korra chapters to discuss, we get slightly inebriated and try to make it a party. There’s trivia, “Who Said It” challenges, lists (because everyone loves lists), and lots of self-indulgence and time-wasting. We really do go out on the top of our game.
In all seriousness, we have had a tremendous time sharing this journey with each other and with all of our listeners. No one could have predicted how important this silly little project would become for all of us, and so reaching the end and having to step away is truly bittersweet. We’re all proud of what we’ve done, but we’re going to miss coming together every week to have these discussions. We will of course return from time to time with new episodes as the graphic novel series collected editions come out, so this isn’t goodbye forever.
Thanks to each and every one of you who has joined us along the way. It’s been an honor and a pleasure.
“The greatest illusion of this world is the illusion of separation.”
(Show notes for The Avatar Returns episode 46.)