Listen to ‘Gobbledygeek’ Episode 340, “Batman: A Death in the Family (feat. Kenn Edwards)”

Gobbledygeek episode 340, “Batman: A Death in the Family (feat. Kenn Edwards),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.

For the (belated) inaugural installment of Four-Color Flashback 2018, wherein Paul and Arlo will be discussing a different classic superhero story each month, they’ve recruited their old pal Kenn Edwards to help them discuss Batman: A Death in the Family by writer Jim Starlin and artist Jim Aparo. Kenn knows a thing or two about the Caped Crusader, having been part of the Batman Immortal fan film project. However, he’s never read this particular story, in which the Joker savagely beats Robin to death. That puts him on equal footing with our hosts: it’s one of Arlo’s blind spots and Paul hasn’t read it since it was published in 1988. They’re all a little shocked by how anachronistic its goofy plotting and dialogue seem given its release in a post-Dark Knight Returns landscape. Superhero comics were starting to mature, and this one feels like it may have gotten left behind. The gang discusses the impact of Robin’s death; whether Bruce’s hypocrisy is a bug or a feature; the ludicrous political implications of the Joker’s scheme; and why the follow-up story A Lonely Place of Dying is much better. Plus, Arlo is still watching Disney cartoons.

Next: be vewwy, vewwy quiet. The boys and their pal Nate Curtiss are hunting Krasinskis for a discussion of A Quiet Place.

(Show notes for “Batman: A Death in the Family.”)

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Listen to ‘Gobbledygeek’ Episode 309, “Y: The Last Man – Vol. 4: Safeword (feat. Chance Mazzia)”

Art from ‘Y: The Last Man – Vol. 4: Safeword’ by Pia Guerra, José Marzan, Jr., and Zylonol.

Gobbledygeek episode 309, “Y: The Last Man – Vol. 4: Safeword (feat. Chance Mazzia),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.

Slip on your shiniest boots of leather and grab those whips, it’s Four-Color Flashback time! Professional Grendel podcaster Chance Mazzia joins Paul and Arlo for their year-long exploration of Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra’s Y: The Last Man for Vol. 4: Safeword, wherein things get a little kinky. When the gang stops at a remote cabin in the woods (never a good sign), Yorick is in for a femdom fiesta complete with chains, ropes, and soul-searching. The boys discuss how the series subverts conventional ideas of masculinity; what Yorick’s sexual history tells us about him; and how the story functions in a post-9/11, circa Trump world. Plus, Chance wants you to know The Name of the Wind, and Arlo furthers the kink with Park Chan-Wook’s The Handmaiden.

Next: it’s been more than a decade since Alfonso Cuarón’s Children of Men hit theaters. Paul and Arlo examine how the film’s dark and despairing future reflects our dark and despairing present.

(Show notes for “Y: The Last Man – Vol. 4: Safeword.”)

Listen to ‘Gobbledygeek’ Episode 304, “Oh Hi, Superman”

Gobbledygeek episode 304, “Oh Hi, Superman,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.

If only these walls could talk, the secrets they could tell. Among them: murder, betrayal, lies, infidelity, and how in the hell Tommy Wiseau made a movie. It’s time for another Geek Challenge, and Arlo has seized the opportunity to finally force Paul into watching Wiseau’s 2003 cult classic The Room. In turn, Paul has challenged Arlo to Sidney Lumet’s much more dignified 1982 crime comedy Deathtrap. The boys discuss the advantages of stage over screen, and vice versa; questionable acting, be it Dyan Cannon or Greg Sestero; homoerotic subtext (or maybe it’s just text); and, yet again, Arlo’s fascination with epically bad filmmaking. Plus, Paul got his ears blown out by the Alabama Symphony’s Led Zeppelin performance.

Next: Kenn Edwards joins Paul and Arlo for the next installment of their year-long Four-Color Flashback discussion of Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra’s Y: The Last Man. This time, the gang will talk Vol. 3: One Small Step.

(Show notes for “Oh Hi, Superman.”)

Listen to Our ‘Zootopia’ Bonus Episode, “Don’t Call Me Cute”

The Zootopia bonus episode of Gobbledygeek, “Don’t Call Me Cute,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.

It’s happened again. Paul has become obsessed with another movie, necessitating a bonus episode that simply couldn’t fit in the regular Gobbledygeek schedule. This time, Paul is wild about Disney’s Zootopia, which tells the story of bunny cop Judy Hopps and con fox Nick Wilde, who team up on a case that goes to surprising lengths in uncovering systemic oppression in the animal kingdom. Paul and Arlo discuss the film’s take on racism and sexism, debate its effectiveness in shedding light on those subjects, and discover some truly hideous “fan art.”

(Show notes for “Don’t Call Me Cute.”)

Listen to ‘Gobbledygeek’ Episode 270, “Grendel: Part 1 – Devil by the Deed”

Art from 'Grendel Omnibus: Volume One - Hunter Rose' by Matt Wagner and Rich Rankin.

Art from ‘Grendel Omnibus: Volume One – Hunter Rose’ by Matt Wagner and Rich Rankin.

Gobbledygeek episode 270, “Grendel: Part 1 – Devil by the Deed,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.

Spring has sprung, which means it’s time for another Four-Color Flashback! In years past, Paul and Arlo have explored the dream worlds of Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman and the cartoonish fantasy of Jeff Smith’s Bone. They’ll be devoting 2016 to Matt Wagner’s magnum opus Grendel. There’s a wealth of material out there, but the boys will attempt to stick to the original series, which has been collected in various formats. For this introductory episode, they turn to the first Grendel story, “Devil by the Deed,” which can be found in Grendel Omnibus: Volume One – Hunter Rose, pp. 7-45. What’s it about? Good question! You see, there’s this wealthy playboy named Hunter Rose who writes bestselling novels while also masquerading as Grendel, who seeks control of the mob underworld. In his downtime, he fights an Algonquin werewolf called Argent. Paul recalls what initially drew him to Grendel, while first-time reader Arlo finds it…interesting. The boys discuss Wagner’s manga-meets-Art Deco style, his experimental storytelling, and how he inverts the whole hero/villain thing. Plus, there’s talk of Daredevil season 2.

Next: after a week off, it’s Paul v Arlo: Dawn of Kenn.

(Show notes for “Grendel: Part 1 – Devil by the Deed.”)

Listen to ‘Gobbledygeek’ Episode 257, “Five Bucks to See the Dancing Freak”

darkman

Gobbledygeek episode 257, “Five Bucks to See the Dancing Freak,” is available for listening or download right here, and on iTunes here.

Why talk about a mega-blockbuster sure to be seen by every casual movie fan on the planet when you can talk about a Sam Raimi deep cut from a quarter-century ago? In belated celebration of the 25th anniversary of Raimi’s first superhero movie, 1990’s Liam Neeson-starring Darkman, Paul and AJ take the fucking elephant, getting down and dirty with the film’s idiosyncrasies. Including the question: what draws AJ to those idiosyncrasies, and what keeps Paul at arm’s length? The boys discuss auteurism, artifice, a superhero’s moral code, and much more.

Next: a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, Kenn Edwards and Andrew Allen join us to discuss the Star Wars saga.

(Show notes for “Five Bucks to See the Dancing Freak.”)

‘Bernie’ Review: But He’s So Nice!

“What you’re fixin’ to see is a true story.” So says the title card at the very start of Richard Linklater’s Bernie, and it tells you everything you need to know about the movie. A lot of unbelievable things happen, but they closely follow events that actually took place in Carthage, Texas, in 1996, and Linklater tells the tale with genial down-home charm. Making a black comedy out of a real-life murder is tricky business, but Linklater pulls it off.

16 years ago, Bernie Tiede (Jack Black) shot Marjorie Nugent (Shirley MacLaine) in the back four times, killing her. Bernie was known around town as an eccentric but lovable guy; a funeral director who also directed and starred in musicals at the local theater, who wore Hawaiian shirts on his days off and gave generously to various charities. Marjorie, on the other hand, was regarded as the meanest, nastiest, and wealthiest piece of work in all Carthage. We see her whack a gardener with a broom and fire a black employee for stealing her car because he took it in for repairs. Nobody in town wanted to be in the same room with Marjorie, which is why it’s so interesting that Bernie essentially became her live-in servant.

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