Listen to ‘The Avatar Returns’ Episode 47

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.)

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Listen to ‘Gobbledygeek’ Episode 313, “The X-Files: Season 5 (feat. Wesley Mead)”

Gobbledygeek episode 313, “The X-Files: Season 5 (feat. Wesley Mead),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.

Once again, Paul and Arlo’s most British friend Wesley “Wezzo” Mead is abducted from the U.K. to discuss Chris Carter’s seminal sci-fi series The X-Files. The gang has reached the show’s fifth season; for a while now, Paul and Wezzo have been warning neophyte X-Phile Arlo that things would go downhill, and we may have reached that point. They discuss why season 5 doesn’t work quite as well as previous seasons; the big celebrity guest writers (Stephen King! William Gibson!); if the mytharc stuff makes any sense at this point; whether or not Scully has been completely robbed of agency; and the series’ first feature film, Fight the Future. Plus, there’s despairing political talk as always, and Arlo revisited every single David Lynch movie.

Next: the lasso of truth compels Paul and Arlo to give you their thoughts on Patty Jenkins’ big-screen Wonder Woman.

(Show notes for “The X-Files: Season 5.”)

Follow-Up: It Was Called THE KILLING, What Did *I* Expect?

So THAT happened.

I came out early on this blog to defend AMC’s latest drama The Killing, an Americanization of the Danish “Nordic Noir” series Forbrydelsen, from claims that it was too slow, too bleak, too maudlin. I expressed a desire to see a story like this played out at a slower pace than your typical TV procedural. I have always enjoyed deliberate pacing, particularly when combined with darker, more atmospheric stories. And there’s no denying that “atmosphere” was a major component, practically a top-billed character, of the series. So allegations of it being slow I understand, but that never bothers me. Bleak, or as I called it, “atmospheric,” I also get. But again, it was part of the charm of the series for me. I’m originally from Seattle, so I’m drawn to stories set in those environs. And I’m a diehard Twin Peaks fan, and The Killing is, if not a spriritual brother to that kitschy 90’s classic, certainly a distant cousin.

As for maudlin? Well yeah. It’s called The Killing, so what exactly did people expect? However, in the wake of the season finale this past week, having experienced the story as a complete narrative (only not really, am I right?), and feeling my own frustration and disappointment with the show, I have to ask myself the same question…

It was called The Killing, what did *I* expect?

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It’s Called THE KILLING, What Did You Expect?

AMC’s new crime drama The Killing premiered tonight with the first two episodes played back-to-back. That was probably a smart decision considering the pace this series seems set to follow. Adapted from the “Nordic noir” Danish series Forbrydelsen, the show tells the story of the murder of a young girl in Seattle through the eyes of the investigating detectives, the girl’s grieving parents, and the suspects. Season One is slated to run thirteen hour-long episodes, each one covering roughly one day.

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Top 100 Characters in Modern Pop Culture: #40-31

On last night’s show, Paul and I continued our countdown of the Top 100 Characters in Modern Pop Culture with #s 40-31. Be sure to listen to the show for our full run-downs, but here are some choice excerpts:

#40

PAUL: Jesse Custer (Preacher)

He’s a good ol’ Southern boy, with a hard-drinking work ethic and a code of honor that he follows to an almost fundamentalist extreme.

AJ: The Joker (DC Comics)

Though the Joker is frightening on his own, as has been explored in many comics and filmic adaptations, he would mean nothing without the Batman. He is Batman reflected through a funhouse mirror, living to terrorize and provoke Gotham City as much as Batman exists solely to protect it and keep watch over it.

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