Gobbledygeek episode 315, “The Assassination of Jesse James: Don’t That Podcast Look Dusty?”, is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
135 years ago, Robert Ford put a bullet in the back of Jesse James’ head. 34 years ago, Ron Hansen put pen to paper for a literary retelling of this slaying, calling it The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford. 10 years ago, Australian writer-director Andrew Dominik put to film his version of this novel. What gets lost over time and through multiple translations? What aspects of the legend become amplified, and what diminished? These are appropriately heady questions, as Dominik’s film tackles the very concepts of celebrity, idolatry, memory, and myth. The movie, met with decent reviews and zero fanfare upon release, seems like a classic in 2017. Paul and Arlo rave about the film, including Roger Deakins’ once-in-a-lifetime stellar cinematography, the spellbinding score by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis, and the haunting performances from Casey Affleck and Brad Pitt. They also discuss who’s the real coward, who really killed whom, and what the film has to say about masculinity and the Old West. Plus, that new Spider-Man game for the PS4 looks baller.
Next: the boys’ year-long Four-Color Flashback exploration of Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra’s Y: The Last Man continues with Vol. 6: Girl on Girl.
(Show notes for “The Assassination of Jesse James: Don’t That Podcast Look Dusty?”)
Gobbledygeek episode 314, “Wonder Woman: Amazon Prime (feat. Hallie Prime),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
This week, the lasso of truth compels Paul and Arlo to tell you all about their thoughts on Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman, the fourth film in the DC Extended Universe and the first major female-led superhero movie since freaking Elektra. Joining them on this Themysciran horseback ride is friend of the show Hallie Prime. The gang discusses Gal Gadot’s note-perfect performance, Chris Pine’s frighteningly large eyebrows, whether or not the film’s villains live up to its hero, and if there’s still hope for the DCEU yet. Plus, Arlo gets all evangelical about The Leftovers.
Next: after a week off, Paul and Arlo will take a look at The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford ten years on.
(Show notes for “Wonder Woman: Amazon Prime.”)
Gobbledygeek episode 307, “Oh, the Sci-Fi Horror! (feat. Jess Byard),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Aliens dripping their acidic psychosexual horrors all over you. Artificial intelligence becoming real, seeing and hearing and controlling all you do. Your friends’ flesh peeling back to reveal their true inhuman visage. These are the nightmares conjured by such sci-fi horror classics as Alien, The Terminator, and The Thing, but you may not have seen their likes in recent years. Blumhouse and Birth. Movies. Death. writer Jess Byard joins Paul and Arlo to ask, “Where have all the good sci-fi horror movies gone?” The gang discusses why the genre reached its apex in the ’80s; why it’s so much more difficult to produce (or even conceptualize of) good sci-fi horror these days; and how TV may be picking up the slack. In the middle of all this, technology literally revolts against our hosts. Plus, Paul and Arlo come from the land of the ice and snow to geek out over the giddy Thor: Ragnarok teaser.
Next: a podcast about a podcast. Paul’s better half, Pam Smith, joins the boys to discuss the beautiful, stunning S-Town.
(Show notes for “Oh, the Sci-Fi Horror!”)
Gobbledygeek episode 306, “Unmaking Soup,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
This week, Paul and Arlo turn on and tune into the wonders and terrors of the superhuman mind by taking a gander at the first season of Legion. The FX series, developed by Fargo‘s Noah Hawley and theoretically set in the X-Men universe, is unlike most other superheroic media. David Haller is either schizophrenic, an extremely powerful telepathic/telekinetic mutant, or both. Witnessed through his eyes, the world is fractured, bizarre, disturbing, and a tad surreal. As such, the typical X-Men plot–David is rescued from a mutant-hunting government organization known as D3 by a group of rebels with a Magneto-esque leader–is given a swift kick in the pants. The boys discuss this inventive telling of a simple story, the show’s many visual flourishes, why it’s a powerful exploration of mental health, and Aubrey Plaza’s revelatory turn as a 50-year-old man. Plus, a surprise Rick and Morty pre-empts Samurai Jack, overjoying one of our hosts and causing considerable frustration in the other; and the boys rave about the fifth season of another brilliant FX drama, The Americans.
Next: film critic and horror expert Jess Byard joins Paul and Arlo to ask, “Where has all the good sci-fi horror gone?”
(Show notes for “Unmaking Soup.”)
Gobbledygeek episode 303, “Don’t Be What They Made You,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
People get old. Claws get rusty. Movie franchises get tired. After 17 years of real-world time and 150+ fictional years, the time has come for James “Logan” Howlett AKA Wolverine to take a bow. In Logan, the final film featuring Hugh Jackman in his iconic star-making role, we’re introduced to a near-future bereft of mutants and full of sorrow. Logan’s mind is a potent cocktail of regret, pain, and futility. When a young girl named Laura throws him back into action, he takes the nonagenarian Professor X on the road for one last adventure. Though “adventure” is not a word one would use to describe this brutal, melancholy film, about as far in tone as you could get from any of the nine previous installments in the X-Men series. Paul and Arlo discuss the film’s worthiness as a swan song for Canada’s most violent, how it fits perfectly alongside Cop Land in director James Mangold’s canon, whether or not the very R-rated violence is gratuitous, and if in a perfect world this should be the end of the X-Men’s silver screen career.
Next: Paul and Arlo will be subjecting each other to yet another Geek Challenge. Paul must finally watch Tommy Wiseau’s infamous 2003 cult classic The Room, while Arlo is tasked with Sidney Lumet’s 1982 crime comedy Deathtrap.
(Show notes for “Don’t Be What They Made You.”)
Gobbledygeek episode 301, “The X-Files: Season 4 (feat. Wesley Mead),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Just in time for everyone’s distrust in government to be at an all-time high, Wesley “Wezzo” Mead joins Paul and Arlo once again to discuss Chris Carter’s seminal sci-fi series The X-Files. This time, the gang sets their sights on season 4, and opinion seems to be divided on just how well the season holds together. Is this where the mythology stuff starts to really go off the rails? Does Scully’s cancer make for a compelling dramatic throughline? And most importantly of all, is there an obvious heir to Darin Morgan’s throne (a couple suggestions are thrown out)? Plus, Wezzo laments the progression of Brexit, while Paul and Arlo sift through the Trump Administration’s mounting atrocities; and on a happier, sillier note, the gang has a blast with The Lego Batman Movie.
Next: this year’s Four-Color Flashback exploration of Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra’s Y: The Last Man continues. Jeff Bridges poet Donora Rihn joins Paul and Arlo to discuss Vol. 2: Cycles.
(Show notes for “The X-Files: Season 4.”)
Gobbledygeek episode 296, “Swing Away (feat. Kenn Edwards),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Armed only with a glass of water and his trusty baseball bat, Kenn Edwards of So Let’s Get to the Point invades the podcast this week to help Paul and Arlo kick off Gobbledyween 2016. This year’s month-long horror-fest gets off to a miraculous start with a discussion of M. Night Shyamalan’s sci-fi thriller Signs. After the runaway success of The Sixth Sense and the lukewarm contemporary response to Unbreakable, Signs is often considered the last film Shyamalan made before a precipitous decline; that is, when it’s considered at all. The gang gets to the core of what makes Signs a worthwhile film, including a question you may hear repeated about the other movies on this year’s slate: Is it a horror film at all? The boys also delve into Shyamalan’s exploration of faith, how the film functions as a response to 9/11, whether or not it’s okay to still enjoy a Mel Gibson performance, and more. Plus, Paul violently shames Arlo for not watching Luke Cage, and the mythical episode 300 is teased.
Next: Gobbledyween 2016 grows fangs for Kathryn Bigelow’s 1987 vampiric neo-Western Near Dark.
(Show notes for “Swing Away.”)