Showing posts from October, 2013

Halloween Radio Theater - "The War of the Worlds"

Since I will be smack in the middle of Cambridge tonight, doing the adult equivalent of trick-or-treating -- that is, I'll be at Club Oberon, drinking and watching Cirque of the Dead -- and unable to do my musing in real-time, I shall leave you with this, the original Orson Welles radio adaptation of H. G. Wells' "The War of the Worlds", first broadcast on Halloween night, 1938:

MP3 download version
Streaming version (YouTube)
The script for the 1938 adaptation
The original novel by H. G. Wells [HTML | epub | mobi | print]
Wikipedia article

Although there wasn't really widespread chaos and panic as the legend would have you believe, the framing device of a newscast breaking in on what would have sounded just like an ordinary music program was novel at the time. Epistolary novels like Dracula were well-known, but using metatextual devices in radio was not. Audio dramas were traditionally presented to the audience like plays in a theater, a neat little story that staye…
Collins is still piqued over the Destiel kerfuffle on Twitter.

Gif'ed version with subtitles on tumblr, if you're on a thing that hates Flash.

[Otherwise irrelevant note: "Миша" is how you spell Misha in Cyrillic. Just in case you ever need that.]

He's past being pissed off, and has progressed into exasperated. He's been doing this for a few months now, sitting up there on a stage with a microphone and saying, "Well, this here is what I'm doing with this character," and apparently there are still people going, "No, you aren't!" He can't be doing that badly -- five kabillion people on tumblr have noticed, and getting a coherent argument out of that lot is like herding a load of schizophrenic tweaker cats. There are only so many ways you can debate with someone who keeps telling you what your own opinion is, and refuses to listen to what you actually say.

On a psycholinguistic note, Collins specifically says 'whether it will e…

Weekend Radio Theater - "Five-Minute Mysteries"

Before I go on with any more of the SPN stuff, I should probably do the whole listing-of-ye-biases and meta-commentary thing. This is 145% opinion, speculation, and personal orneriness, and should not be taken as the basis of anything.

I was sort of aware of Supernatural before I started watching it. I hang out on the internets, after all. I had been told that Dean/Cas was a thing, although I had no idea who the hell they were at the time and I'd heard much more about the infamous "Wincest" people -- that happens to hit one of my personal squick buttons, and I was told it was prevalent, so I read no fanfic before I started prodding Netflix for episodes. I watched the first couple of season 1, then skipped to season 4, since I'd been specifically asked about Misha Collins.

I've been a fanficker for a long, long time. I write it (no, you can't see it), I read it (don't ask me for recs unless you want things that are slashy or interesting), and I study it (b…
Ohhhh, I almost missed a train wreck on the internet.

Supernatural season nine started a few weeks ago. It's airing on Tuesdays now. I dunno who capped it, so I dunno in what time zone it was 11:35p when this happened, but sometime that evening, someone named Chad Kennedy tweeted this, evidently in a response to an @mention:
I would love to link you to the original, but the account has since been closed, for reasons that will become abundantly clear in a moment.

The fanbase, as you would expect, immediately exploded. Someone with an IQ asked the obvious question, which was 'does this dude actually have anything to do with the show?'

This is as far as I got before I had to go out and do actual work for a while. I dunno who Guy Norman Bee is; the internet tells me he is indeed on the show. People who do have some idea evidently accept his word on Mr. Kennedy up there. This answer, to be honest, actually tweaked my antennae a bit -- he vouches for Kennedy's ID, but not for…
Got back some of the proofs from the Salem shoot! Hooray. This one was cosplay; I have the Black Widow outfit now, and sooner or later I'll get the ones I did in the Poison Ivy costume.

All by Matthew Phillion of 16 Degrees Photography.

I look like I come out ridiculously well in photographs mainly because you're not seeing all of them. Depictions of photoshoots in the media are hilariously inaccurate -- in the movies, the photographer goes snap! snap! snap! a dozen times, and gets a dozen photos to run in the magazine. In reality, there are multiple rounds of multiple people being incredibly fussy before anything is released into the wild.

It really goes something like this:

I show up to the shoot. After getting my styling done -- which is a process in and of itself -- and the photographer taking a bunch of test shots and adjusting the lights, we get down to business. The number of proofs (original camera exposures, before any cropping or editing) I get back varies by photogra…
One of the things I'm working on now for Circlet Press: 
Ahoy, loyal readers!
Got opinions? Wanna share? Join our Review-of-the-Month Club!
It goes like this:
Pick a book from our catalog. We've got something for everyone. We've probably got stuff you haven't even imagined yet. We tend to run on Rule 34.Email a request to with the words REVIEW REQUEST in the subject line, tellin' me -- your faithful marketroid -- which book you want, and in what format. (Ebooks only, please! If you need actual pages to turn, you'll have to buy 'em yourself.)Receive your selected book! Enjoy the experience. It's not every day someone sends you erotica for free.Sometime in the next 30 days, read it, post a review, and send us a link to where it went up. Amazon, Goodreads, tumblr, your own blog, doesn't matter. As long as it's freely accessible to anyone who stumbles in from a search engine, it's all good.Return to Step 1. That'…
One of my readers thoughtfully sent me a copy of "Mastermind: How To Think Like Sherlock Holmes" a while back (in Kindle format, so I will never have to load it into a box and drag it to another apartment, THANK YOU). I reserve comment on the content until I've finished the entire thing, which I haven't yet, but after maybe a dozen pages I can already make at least one interesting observation:  English is not the first language of the author, and possibly not the first language of the book, either. Specifically, even the introduction sounds extremely Russian.

I have a lot less trouble spotting these things than I do articulating them. I'm extensively and sometimes weirdly cross-wired, so the amorphous patterns of different languages bring up a lot of synaesthetic comparisons that are awkward to explain to other people. Russian has a very distinct one, common also to authors like Vladimir Nabokov, which persists even when they're writing in French or English. …
Still not dead. I have a shoot today, and when I get home and chip the makeup off, I swear to GOD I am going to finish all kabillion of the drafts I have lying around in this thing. Expect photos, publishing news, pharmacology, steganography, old radio shows, some body language analysis, and Misha Collins, who has actually got me poking around on tumblr, where I never go because frankly the fan-people there tend to scare me.

But right now, I have to sleep. Because photoshoot. Best if I don't go stagger up with a superhero costume looking already half dead.

Weekend Radio Theater - "Five-Minute Mysteries"

Weekend Radio Theater - "Five-Minute Mysteries"

So apparently Misha Collins has a really interesting idea of personal space. Moggie tripped over that one on YouTube a while back and ended up laughing so hard she forgot about air and started making the kinds of noises one might expect to get out of an emotionally-distressed pterodactyl. This is not particularly uncommon when he does panels, and most of the cast let him get away with it all. the. time. It is widely agreed to be charming and hilarious, and makes it well worth turning up to basically any event where they let him talk to other people.

There's another one where someone asks him if he and Castiel have any character traits in common, and he decides to give her a demonstration of Cas' total obliviousness when it comes to interpersonal distance by getting within about a foot of her while waffling on. I don't think this is the only version of this you can find online, but nobody's got a particularly good vantage point on the other side of the auditorium, where…
Been poking around on TV Tropes again. That thing will eat your brain, I swear. Misha Collins has a Creator page, for obvious reasons -- writers/actors who have a huge online following tend to get them first -- but it unfortunately makes him look rather more bonkers than he actually is. Which is saying something.

The problem with TV Tropes is that, since the thing is done in a bullet-point format that requires parsimony in examples, you lose a lot of context. Sometimes the intro block puts it back; Noel Fielding's page makes it a point to note that, while he's weird as hell and best known for playing a flashy idiot, he personally is quite bright and knows exactly what he's doing. Collins' page doesn't. It appears to be filled in mainly by the tumblr/Twitter crowd, which means that the writer(s) assume you know which parts are snark and which aren't.

The page is generally accurate, plus or minus things that are a matter of opinion, but a lot of them lack clarifi…
Another thing that keeps making my brain jerk to a halt and turn around to see what exactly that was while I watch Supernatural is the language. I have no idea how they are getting away with this. Did they get the network censors drunk one night and take incriminating photos? Do they keep sending over gift baskets with hookers attached? All I can think is that no one from Standards & Practices is watching this show. Seriously.

If you're not in the US, you may be surprised about how touchy our Federal Communications Commission can get about salty language on open-air broadcast systems. One of George Carlin's more famous pieces is on the 7 Words You Can Never Say On TV. (Not work-safe for obvious reasons, unless you have a workplace like Moggie's, where if she had a photo of Jensen Ackles losing his jeans and an aircraft engine losing its cowling, her coworkers would be more likely to pick on her for the Pratt & Whitney.)  Technically, you can opt to broadcast them a…
I continue to plow through Supernatural. This is not nearly so crazy as the reputation of the fans would have me believe. Wacky, yes -- as would be expected from anything involving Ben Edlund, who prior to this was known mainly for creating The Tick. (If you've never run into those, the main thing you take away from them is that Edlund has a corkscrew brain and a genius for parody on a par with Warren Ellis, except Edlund has outside hobbies other than hating himself and the entire rest of the human race.) A lot of the plots are affectionate send-ups of various monster and horror clichés, and not just the crew but also some of the characters count as Dangerously Genre Savvy. I watched the first episode, skipped past a couple of seasons to the point where the Winchesters had grown up enough to not pour all of their energy into being total cocks to each other whenever they're stuck in a car together, and picked up at the start of season 4, because Moggie had been prodding me abo…
The New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - "The Scarlet Worm"

The Adventures of Sam Spade - "The Red Star Caper"

Box 13 - "Round Robin"
Normally, when I do profiles, I keep my nose the fuck out of everyone's love lives. The farthest I'll go is generally, "They got married, I've seen pictures, they look happy," or "She shares custody with her first husband, she talks about it in this interview, they sound pretty amicable." I consider it very much none of my business, to the point where I get rather uncomfortable reading through trash-mag accounts of who is dating whom and how much of a train wreck they are together. There are a few couples I'll point out on a casual basis, just because they're very public and I think they're wonderfully hilarious together, but by and large it makes me squirmy in the same way paparazzi photos do.

On the other hand, sometimes one of them writes a book about it.

Mrs. Misha Collins -- Vickie -- is actually Dr. Victoria Vantoch, PhD, University of Southern California. She's a sex and gender historian, and I don't know why I haven't hea…