Gobbledygeek episode 423, “Geek Challenge: Thunderheart vs. Dead Man,” is available for listening or download right here and on Apple Podcasts here.
Because our mascot is a turkey, and because we generally frown upon genocide, Paul and Arlo are spending Thanksgiving weekend discussing films with ties to Native American culture. For this Geek Challenge, Paul urges Arlo to watch Michael Apted’s 1992 conspiracy thriller Thunderheart, starring Val Kilmer as an FBI agent who grows to embrace his Sioux heritage. In turn, Arlo makes Paul watch Jim Jarmusch’s 1995 psychedelic Western Dead Man, wherein Johnny Depp’s iteration of William Blake takes an offbeat journey to the next life. The boys address the major caveat of both films starring white men, as well as their own lily whiteness; determine that Graham Greene and Gary Farmer walk away with their respective movies; and discuss how both films explore spiritual death and rebirth. With a bonus discussion of Apted’s documentary Incident at Oglala!
NEXT: Arlo’s having a baby. We’re going on hiatus with hopes of returning in mid-to-late January. We wish everyone a happy and, more importantly, safe holiday season. We love you.
Avocado Uterus would be a great name for a noise rock band.
Gobbledygeek episode 415, “A Butter Tree Grows in Utero,” is available for listening or download right here and on Apple Podcasts here.
For all you kids at home with a copy of Webster’s New Universal Unabridged Dictionary Deluxe Second Edition taking pride of place on your bookshelf–boy, do we have a treat for you! Paul and Arlo are back on their bullshit, running at the mouth about anything they damn well please. This week’s subjects include: the extreme metal-ness of childbirth, Spider-Man: Miles Morales swinging onto the brand spankin’ new PS5, covert earbuds, Infinity Train heading to the station on HBO Max, a treatise on The Searchers and Apocalypse Now, and so much more.
NEXT: Zorro, the Gay Blade spends a day in The Double Life of Veronique for a doppelganger-centric Geek Challenge.
Bill Paxton in Kathryn Bigelow’s ‘Near Dark’ (1987).
Gobbledygeek episode 387, “Gobbledyween: Near Dark (feat. Joseph Lewis),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
It finally happened. After three long years of behind-the-scenes turmoil, Near Dark has made its way to Gobbledyween. A/V writer-director Joseph Lewis joins Paul and Arlo to discuss Kathryn Bigelow’s 1987 vampiric Western, which reimagined the creatures of the night as filthy, lowdown rednecks. The gang discusses the influence Near Dark has had on vampire fiction, the late great Bill Paxton’s immortal performance as Severen, the film’s surprisingly conservative stance on biological family, and how surprisingly difficult it is to get ahold of the movie these days.
Next: Gobbledyween lives in a society. Greg Sahadachny joins us to talk Brian Yuzna’s 1989 satire Society.
Total Run Time: 01:33:05
00:00:45 – Intro
00:03:44 – Near Dark
01:24:22 – Outro / Next
“Fever” by The Cramps, Songs the Lord Taught Us (1980)
“The Cowboy Rides Away” by George Strait, Does Fort Worth Ever Cross Your Mind (1984)
Gobbledygeek episode 358, “The Brunette Wore Mauve,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Jazz hands, everyone! It’s time for a new episode of the new era of Gobbledygeek, which is either painfully self-indulgent or–well, there is no other option, BUT. Paul and Arlo freestyle about why they’re freestyling, discuss how perspectives on art change, extoll the complicated virtues of Miles Davis and Queen, and become flummoxed at the hyper-realistic minutiae of Red Dead Redemption 2.
Next: back to your regularly scheduled podcast with a Four-Color Flashback discussion of Green Arrow: The Longbow Hunters.
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.
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.
Gobbledygeek episode 262, “The Somewhat Disgruntled Four (feat. Ensley F. Guffey & Joseph Lewis),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Don your dead general’s coat and strap on those snowshoes; for the Gobbledygeek season 7 premiere, we’re taking the last stage to Red Rock for a discussion of Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight. Bringing Paul and AJ up to a Somewhat Disgruntled Four are Wanna Cook? author Ensley F. Guffey and A/V writer-director Joseph Lewis. Ensley, a bonafide historian, teaches us how Tarantino plays with historical symbolism; while Joe, a die-hard Tarantino fan, tells us of the religiosity of his Hateful Eight 70mm experience. The gang also discusses the film’s handling of race and misogyny, how Tarantino borrows from The Thing, whether or not the film is a convincing mystery, and more. Plus, the boys pay tribute to the icons 2016 has already stolen from us.
Next: break out your scones, guv’nor. It’s time once more for the delightfully British Wesley “Wezzo” Mead to make his journey across the pond.
Art from ‘Bone: Vol. VIII – Treasure Hunters’ by Jeff Smith and Steve Hamaker.
Gobbledygeek episode 256, “Bone: Vol VIII – Treasure Hunters (feat. Greg Sahadachny),” is available for listening or download right here, and on iTunes here.
Penultimate installments are tricky. They need to deliver on longstanding character arcs and plot threads while at the same time ensuring everything is in place for the finale just so. As tricky a balance as the one between life and death, one might say. Is it possible that Paul, AJ, and The Debatable Podcast‘s Greg Sahadachny manage that balance with the penultimate installment of their Four-Color Flashback series discussing Jeff Smith’s Bone better than Smith himself does with Vol. VIII: Treasure Hunters? Maybe so. The boys discuss their weariness of the series’ ever-expanding mythology and continuous infodumps, while debating whether or not anything of note actually occurs in this volume. They try and say some kind things, too. Plus, even more boning with a discussion of the Kurt Russell Western Bone Tomahawk.
Next: Paul and AJ throw a belated celebration for the 25th anniversary of Sam Raimi’s first superhero film, Darkman.
Gobbledygeek episode 207, “Magic, Mountains, Monsters, and Mario,” is available for listening or download right here, and on iTunes here.
For the first Geek Challenge in many months, Paul has challenged AJ to John Carpenter’s 1986 fantasy/martial arts/neo-Western cult classic Big Trouble in Little China. In turn, AJ has challenged Paul to Henri-Georges Clouzot’s 1953 “anti-everything” thriller The Wages of Fear. What, pray tell, is the common denominator? They’re, uh, they’re both about truckers. Tenuous connections are what Geek Challenges thrive on, and this one at least provides some sobering realizations for the boys. What do Paul’s reactions to some ’50s movies and AJ’s reactions to some ’80s movies say about them as people and that pesky generational gap? There may be actual answers. Plus, more surprising reactions, this time about Taylor Swift’s 1989; and AJ springs #AlexFromTarget on Paul.
Next: in two weeks, the boys will be back discussing two more very different movies, Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar and the Disney/Marvel animated film Big Hero 6.
Last week, we brought you our favorite movies of last year (finally saw Inside Llewyn Davis, by the way, and yes, it would have made the cut). This week, we change channels to focus on TV. We’re doing things a little differently this time out, with separate top 10 lists for new shows and returning favorites. Though there were a lot of new shows I enjoyed over the past year, I’ll admit I couldn’t stretch them to 10; instead, I’ve got 8, while Paul’s just crazy enough to have a full 10.
As always, there are shows we couldn’t get around to: I haven’t seen Rectify, Top of the Lake, Broadchurch, or The Wrong Mans, all of which I’d hoped to see in time for this list. Oh, and to absolve him of all guilt, I should mention that Paul has never seen Breaking Bad. Wait, I don’t think that absolves him.
PAUL: 10. HANNIBAL (NBC)
I wasn’t particularly interested in a television adaptation of the Thomas Harris characters. But names like Hugh Dancy, Mads Mikkelsen, and Bryan Fuller pulled me in. It’s one of the most visually stunning and hauntingly…haunting shows ever to make it to network television. It’s also one of the most shockingly violent and grotesque. All positives in my book. But I can’t put it any higher on my list because it’s crushingly depressing.