Art from ‘Y: The Last Man – Vol. 7: Paper Dolls’ by Pia Guerra, Jose Marzan Jr., and Zylonol.
Gobbledygeek episode 321, “Y: The Last Man – Vol. 7: Paper Dolls (feat. Ensley F. Guffey),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Appropriately, this month’s Four-Color Flashback entry is riddled with flashbacks, as Y: The Last Man – Vol. 7: Paper Dolls takes a look at Agent 355 and Ampersand’s pasts to give us a taste of what must be going through their heads in the present. Ensley F. Guffey, co-author of Wanna Cook? The Complete, Unofficial Companion to Breaking Bad, joins Paul and Arlo to continue their exploration of Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra’s acclaimed Vertigo series. The gang discusses how this volume shows society’s evolution post-gendercide, puzzles over Yorick’s motivations (what else is new?), and asks Ensley to be smart for them. Plus, Paul got his ass kicked by Atomic Blonde, and Ensley has a few choice words about Nazi Captain America.
Next: Greg Sahadachny of The Debatable Podcast returns to Gobbledygeek to discuss Paul Thomas Anderson’s There Will Be Blood ten years on.
(Show notes for “Y: The Last Man – Vol. 7: Paper Dolls.”)
Gobbledygeek episode 290, “If You Must Blink, Do It Now,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Laika, the studio behind Coraline, ParaNorman, and The Boxtrolls, has gifted us with a new film: Kubo and the Two Strings, wherein a young one-eyed Japanese boy plays his magical shamisen and pals around with a Monkey and a Beetle while evading the evil grandfather looking to steal his other eye. As one does. Paul and Arlo get in tune with Kubo, digging into the film’s symbolism, its unusual (for a mainstream animated film) themes of grief and impermanence, and how it perfects the nearly dead artform that is stop-motion animation. Is it suitable for kids? What does its underwhelming box office performance say about what audiences expect from animated films? And what does that polarizing ending mean? All this and more, plus Arlo saw an actual Beatle.
Next: for another great story that deserves a wider audience, Paul and Arlo continue their year-long Four-Color Flashback exploration of Matt Wagner’s Grendel with “God and the Devil, Part 1,” collected in Grendel Omnibus: Vol. 3, pp. 115-270.
(Show notes for “If You Must Blink, Do It Now.”)
Gobbledygeek episode 232, “Fists of Furiosa (feat. Mere Smith),” is available for listening or download right here, and on iTunes here.
Our names are Paul and AJ. Our world is fire and blood. Once, we were Gobbledygeek. A podcast searching for a pop cultural cause. Here to give us that cause is none other than Im-Mere-ator Furiosa herself, Mere Smith, author of Cowface and Other Hilarious Stories About Death and writer for such fine television programs as Angel and Rome. Mere schools the boys on the feminism of Mad Max: Fury Road, the three of them discussing the film’s gender politics, its beautifully choreographed action, how the hell George Miller got this movie made, and why Mere cried during the end credits. Oh, what a lovely day.
Next: for a comic book-y Geek Challenge, Paul must read Matt Fraction and Chip Zdarsky’s Sex Criminals, while AJ must read Rick Remender and Wes Craig’s Deadly Class.
(Show notes for “Fists of Furiosa.”)
Ridley Scott’s Prometheus has an early shot which undeniably quotes 2001: A Space Odyssey, a beautiful image of a planet ringed with light. There’s some more striking imagery, of an unidentified landscape. A humanoid being removes his cloak and ingests some form of liquid which quickly begins killing him. He sacrificially gives himself to the river, where he falls apart piece by piece, his body possibly giving birth to life as we know it. That’s a provocative beginning for a big-budget science fiction film, one that clearly announces its intentions to be a thoughtful exploration of the creation and destruction of life. As they say, the road to hell is paved with good intentions.
After the cryptic prologue, things get off to a very good start. The crew of the good ship Prometheus–which looks like a jumbo Serenity, but maybe that’s just me–is awakened from cryogenic sleep after two years by the android David (Michael Fassbender). Scientists Elizabeth Shaw (Noomi Rapace) and Charlie Holloway (Logan Marshall-Green) have discovered cave paintings from around the world, all of which depict images of a figure gesturing toward the same star pattern. They’ve followed that pattern all the way out to the middle of space, hoping to find the meaning of life, the universe, and everything. There are some big ideas at play here, and in the early going, there are conversations about whether the existence of supposed humanity-creating beings (Engineers, they’re called) negates or supports the existence of God. Holloway posits that because they now know the Engineers exist, the cross Shaw wears around her neck is meaningless. Shaw, with a wink in her eye, then asks where the Engineers came from.
I am not the half of Gobbledygeek who loathes the Oscars; in fact, they’re an annual tradition in my house. This year, we even ponied up for chocolate Oscar statuettes powdered with gold. We don’t mess around. Amazingly, I even liked seven of this year’s nine Best Picture nominees (the odd ones out being War Horse and, ugh, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close). At the same time, I realize that the Academy often fails to recognize some truly brilliant films, and in the interest of counter-programming, I thought I’d point out some of the ones it missed this year.
These films didn’t garner a single Oscar nod this year (if it wasn’t for Sound Editing, Drive would be all up in here), and were actually eligible by Academy rules (otherwise, I would have spotlighted The Sunset Limited yet again, alongside the hilarious concert film Louis C.K.: Live at the Beacon Theater).
We’ve got 11 great movies here, divided up into three categories. To get us started…
Gobbledygeek episode 80, “The Young Adult with the Dragon Tattoo,” is available for listening or download right here.
Your worst nightmares have been realized: Paul and AJ are back with another season of Gobbledygeek! To kick things off, the boys discuss two films released late last year. Though they are both very different, they’re both about damaged women: Young Adult, the very un-Juno-like reteaming of Jason Reitman and Diablo Cody, starring Charlize Theron as a self-obsessed YA author; and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, David Fincher’s adaptation of the first book in Stieg Larsson’s blockbuster Millennium series, starring Rooney Mara as fierce hacker/investigator Lisbeth Salander. They clash over Young Adult‘s polarizing conclusion, and come together in defense of Mara’s Salander, who has not been softened or overly sexualized, thank you very much.
Next: the future, according to pop culture.
(Show notes for “The Young Adult with the Dragon Tattoo.”)