September 2006 Archives

September 29, 2006

Test

Just upgraded to MT3.3.
Is everything still working? I was getting cross-site scripting attacks, which is bad.

ITV to remake Frankenstein

ITV announces a Frankenstein remake. It will be set in the 21st century. "The monster, created as a result of genetic engineering, will be played by an actor but the performance will be enhanced by special effects."

Could go either way.

FPI talks to John Wagner

The Forbidden Planet International Blog talks to John Wagner about Judge Dredd Origins. Wagner was, of course, one of the creators of Judge Dredd. Nice interview...

FPI: If Hollywood were to announce a ‘proper’ Judge Dredd movie would you be interested in collaborating on that.

John: Sure, if they had a change of attitude and decided to pay me for it. Can’t see that happening though.

FPI: Do you think he could be successfully transplanted to film?

John: Without a doubt.


Torchwood air date rumours

Torchwood.TV has news that Torchwood's air date is likely to be Sunday 22nd October, BBC3 at 9PM.

That's not far away. Interesting choice of day a Sunday, not much to rival it in its genre on the other BBC channels. Might work well.

September 28, 2006

Tricia Sullivan has a blog

Tricia Sullivan has a blog, smokin tundra. Her book Dreaming Smoke has possibly the best first paragraph I have ever read. You should read it too. (It won the Arthur C. Clarke Award in 1999).

Starburst magazine

I haven't looked at Starburst Magazine for a while, SFX seemed to steal its market (and its shelf space). However in Tescos the other day Starburst had one of those special "stand out in front of the rest" rack thingies that you presumably have to pay for. So I had a flick through, despite the cover being about Star Trek getting old. Anyway, it looks good now, a real competitor to SFX (perhaps it always has been?) with films, tv and book reviews, plus the current issue has lots of sexy Battlestar Galactica pictures and some interviews. Nice.

The webiste isn't up to much at the moment though.

New Internet Review of Science Fiction issue online

The "September" issue of the The Internet Review of Science Fiction is online.

Mavis in Doctor Who!

The BBC Doctor Who site says:

"Thelma Barlow, perhaps best known to viewers as Mavis from Coronation Street, will be guest starring in an episode of series three of Doctor Who."

Cue the impressions of Les Dennis doing an impression of Mavis...

September 25, 2006

Does Stargate really beat Who as longest running show?

Ha, this made me laugh. The BBC Doctor Who news site, argues that the Guinness Book of World Records has got it wrong. It states that Stargate SG-1 has the record with 203 episodes. However Doctor Who had a new series of episodes every year without fail between 1963 and 1989, a grand total of 695 episodes. Which will take some beating.

Amazon sending me relevant marketing emails, shock

From Amazon, by email.....

We've noticed that customers who have expressed interest in Singularity Sky by Charles Stross have also ordered The Mammoth Book of Best New Science Fiction: v. 19 by Gardner Dozois. For this reason, you might like to know that this book will be released on 28 September 2006. You can pre-order your copy for just £9.99

Which is actually useful and relevant!
Might put that on my wish list.

Ursula K Le Guin reviews Margaret Atwood's Moral Disorder in the Guardian

Ursula K Le Guin reviews Margaret Atwood's collection of short stories, Moral Disorder in the Guardian.


"There really is nobody like her."

Another of their great writer reviewing writer reviews.
[Via Locus]

September 21, 2006

JJA reviews Heroes

John Joseph Adams reviews the new NBC show Heroes in Intergalactic Medicine Show:

"Heroes isn't complete rubbish, and it seems like there's a lot of room for improvement after this very shaky start, but as it is now there's very little to recommend it. If you really want a superhero fix, go read some comics instead."

The Lost ARG game ends this Sunday

SCI FI Wire has news that the Lost Alternative Reality Game ends this Sunday and will reveal the truth behind the actions of the Hanso Foundation. As usual, for those of us with lives, let other people solve all the puzzles and then just read about it / listen to it / watch it. The wonders of internet collaboration.

As for the new series of Lost, it starts on the 4th of October. Can't wait.

September 20, 2006

Sci Fi Weekly interviews Cory Doctorow

Sci Fi Weekly interviews Cory Doctorow. His new book sounds awesome:


"I just finished a YA novel called Little Brother, about hackers who declare war on the Department of Homeland Security. Every chapter has got a real-world how-to about why homeland security does not work, and how you can defeat it. And it talks about the math and computer science and information science behind the war on terrorism, the junk science behind the war on terrorism. But it's also meant to be an instruction kit for teaching kids to be culture jammers and technology jammers."

Why does no one get the Star Wars prequel trilogy?

Cinematical has a post,Mark Beall's Geek Beat: Star Wars Musings, talking about the Star Wars prequel trilogy, how he doesn't care as much about it, how they could have been better, and generally having a moan.

I'm so sick of this. No one seems to understand. Let me spell it out (hopefully for the last time).

When you saw the original Star Wars films you were a child. Children love the new Star Wars films. Your expectations of the prequel films are not that of a child.

Get over it.

A Mammoth SFSignal book review

I have to mention John's review of The Space Opera Renaissance edited by David G. Hartwell & Kathryn Cramer on SFSignal, because (a) He read it and it's very long, (b) He wrote it up as a huuuge review. Surely beyond the call of duty!

The Fake Torchwood trailer

I'm bored of waiting for the real Torchwood trailer, and any news of when it will air. You to? Watch The fake Torchwood trailer.

Battlestar Galactica: The Resistance - Webisode 5

On YouTube here. This time it took a few more seconds of searching to find it, but it's still there.

This is the episode with an angry man in it. And er, that's all.

More I Am Legend updates

Cinematical has some I Am Legend updates. Including no Johnny Depp and no Ben Cortman. What? And "Richardson will play Smith's wife Ginny, while Braga will take on a character named Anna, one of the last human survivors on Earth". What?!

Either the rumours have got out of hand or the film is going to be a mess.

September 18, 2006

Jon Courtenay Grimwood now has a blog

Jon Courtenay Grimwood now has a blog,End of the World Blues. Hurrah. [Via The Alien Online]

September 17, 2006

Judge Dredd Origins begins

Forbidden Planet have news that the Judge Dredd - Origins storyline begins this week in 2000AD (they have some artwork posted as well). Hmm, tempting to start buying comics again and try and keep up!

Talking of 2000AD, here's a site decicated to reviewing each issue.

September 16, 2006

The Stormtrooper Effect

The Wikipedia entry for the Stormtrooper effect explains everything.

"The Stormtrooper effect, also called Stormtrooper syndrome, is a cliché phenomenon in works of fiction where minor characters (cannon fodder) are unrealistically ineffective in combat against more important characters."

September 15, 2006

All the Lost Season 3 promos

Somebody has very nicely stitched all the Lost season 3 promos together and put them on YouTube.
Which is nice.

Lost Answers

Want to know what the DHARMA Initiative is?

Watch this. All revealed via the Lost ARG that ran this summer.

WHOAH! How very cool. Still think that Lost isn't SF?!

[Via SciFi Wire]

Battlestar Galactica Webisode 4

Hurrah, beside looking cool, something actually happened in Battlestar Galactica: The Resistance - Webisode 4.

Lots of religious stuff going on so far, more overt than on the ship in the last seasons. Interesting.

September 14, 2006

Plausible plots in SF

genre-commentary.com has a nice article entitled The Implausibility Problem: Comparisons from RED DWARF, BLAKE’S 7, and DOCTOR WHO which discusses the need for pausible plots in SF TV.

No K9 in The Sarah Jane Adventures

I was just perusing the BBC Press Office site looking for Torchwood info (where's the trailer?!) when I found the entry about The Sarah Jane Adventures. At the bottom it says..

"K-9, the faithful robot dog and Sarah Jane's goodbye present from The Doctor, makes an appearance in the special but will not appear in the series."

Oh.

September 13, 2006

Banned SF Books

Googles banned books page, Google Book Search: Celebrate Your Freedom to Read includes a few SF books:


  • 1984 by George Orwell

  • Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

  • A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess

  • Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut

  • Cat's Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut

Presumably these books were banned or attempted to be banned in the US, rather than anywhere else in the world. A UK version would be interesting to see if we're more or less tolerant.

September 11, 2006

More JCG reviews in The Guardian

Jon Courtenay Grimwood reviews Emperor by Stephen Baxter, The Forever War by Joe Haldeman, Temeraire: Throne of Jade by Naomi Novik and Bloodsucking Fiends by Christopher Moore in The Guardian.

The BDO review : The Forever War is brilliant, haven't read the others.

Star Trek gets old

Apparently Star Trek is really old. I missed it's birthday. Oh well, never mind.

Emerald City has left the building

Heroes on Channel 4?

Joe@ForbiddenPlanet ,emtions that the new series Heroes will have webcomics for each episode, which is very cool. The main website for the show is nice and slick too.

My question is: will Channel 4 buy this series? They seem to buy most the other hit US series. Or has Lost blown their budget? My preference would of course be the BBC, because I hate adverts, but I don't think there's any chance of that. Oher stations that have also been buying hit US shows recently, are Five and ITV2. So who's got the dosh?

Doctor Who casting update

Lots of casting news for Doctor Who. Firstly Martha Jones's family has been cast, implying a similar set-up to Rose's family. The actors are Trevor Laird, who will play dad Clive, Adjoa Andoh as mum Francine, and Gugu Mbatha-Raw as sister Tish. And also Reggie Yates as he brother Leo! Reggie was a kids TV presenter and also presented TOTP (RIP), no idea if he can act.

Also cast is Dean Lennox Kelly has been cast as William Shakespeare, he's best known as Kev in Shameless.

Slowly they're working through all the UK TV actors!

September's Ansible is online

September 8, 2006

The second Battlestar Galactica webisode is online

I watched it at a generic video sharing web site.

Short, but cool. Tigh has gone all mean and moody.

The trailer for season 3 is good as well. I'm getting excited.

September 7, 2006

SF in ancient Rome?

TV Squad is reporting on a rumoured, new SF tv show.


"HBO has been working on a new series called The Centurion, which takes place during the peak of the Roman Empire. Now, you're saying, they already have a show like that called Rome. Well, the premise of this series is that aliens regularly visited the famous city to encourage its citizens to aspire to greater heights."

Hmm, sounds like it could be truly awful.

M. John Harrison reviews J. G. Ballard's Kingdom Come

Via Locus, isn't great when one great writer reviews another. (That's a statement, not a question). In the Times Literary Supplement M. John Harrison reviews J. G. Ballard's new book Kingdom Come.

Michael Marshall Smith film adaptation gets green light

The Alien Online has news of a feature film adaptation of Michael Marshall Smith's 1996 short story 'Hell Hath Enlarged Herself'. Sounds interesting.

I haven't read that story, but liked his book Spares, quite unusual. Nowadays he seems to be marketed as "mainstream" scary thrillers (which is fine by me if he sells more books), and I keep meaning to check them out. (Add to the infinitly long TOREAD list).

September 6, 2006

Google News Archive

Another day, another Google service, another place to search for "Science Fiction". The earliest reference seems to be around 1898. It's a bit tricky because there's lots of entries for "science, fiction".

Problems watching BSG webisodes in the UK

For some reason the Battlestar Galactica webisode doesn't load for me. It could be my mac, my ADSl connection or may it's one of those rubbish ip checks. I could find a proxy and pretend I'm the US, but why bother when it's On YouTube!

YouTube we love you.

Oh, and the first webisode is rather good.

SciFi Ranter Girl now has a podcast

SciFi Ranter Girl: I'm a Podcaster!!!

Get it on iTunes. I'm going to listen to it now.

September 5, 2006

Too. Much. Interweb.

I've finally caught up with my SF feeds after a week away from a computer. I achieved this by mainly ignoring everything that happened in the last two weeks. This included WorldCon, but that was really far away, so I guess that's okay.

I think I need to prune my feeds.

Real World SF Settings

Meme Therapy asks "Is there a place in the real world that gave you the impression that it was ripped out of the pages of a Science Fiction or Fantasy story?"

Yes, Death Valley (California). We stopped the car by one of the old Bauxite mines and wondered up a little ravine in the 48C heat and hairdryer hot wind. I let my mates wander around the corner and then stood on my own, surveying the desert and pretending I was Luke Skywalker.

The Top 10 Most Annoying SF Robots

Solar Flare has The Most Annoying Robots In Sci-Fi, which made me laugh.

I think my top two would be the same, but R2D2 annoying? He's to cool to be annoying.

John Jarrold responsible for River Of Gods?!

John Jarrold seems to get everywhere. In a Locus interview Ian McDonald says he was at lunch "with my agent John Parker and my editor John Jarrold in 1999" and was saying, 'Why has nobody ever done a science-fictional equivalent of Kim, a wide-scale book set in India?' and John Jarrold said, 'Well, I think it's your job to do it then!'

Easy when you say it like that.

28 Weeks Later

Don't do it! 28 Days Later was wonderful, we don't need a sequel. Capitalism is rubbish.

I'm already too late, 28 Weeks Later is on its way next year.

"Six months later the Americans arrive to reboot it [Britain] back up again."

Great. Cue US soldiers shooting at double decker buses and saying how quaint things are. Even if they all get killed by infected zombies I bet I won't like it. It sounds like the perfect recipe for how to make British fans of the first film hate the sequel.

About the Star Trek CGI update

Why bother?

Battlestar Galactica Webisode online today

The first Battlestar Galactica is online today here. But not yet. Available at midnight Extra Terrestrial time apparently.

Then they're available every Tuesday and Thursday, ten of them up to when the new series starts. Coooooool.

SFX love the latest John Courtenay Grimwood novel

SFX give JCG's latest novel End of the World Blues 5 out of 5. Sounds cool (but can't afford the hardback, hence it's being added to my Christmas list, only 100 shopping days now etc.)

Doctor Who wins more awards

Doctor Who has won some more populist TV awards.

Doctor Who lands three TV awards

"Cult BBC sci-fi series Doctor Who won best-loved drama award, with its stars David Tennant and Billie Piper taking best actor and actress."

Not sure how a show that's on at a prime time with more than 8 million viewers can be cult, but there you go.

September 4, 2006

Which is the best Star Trek?

The BBC is running a Star Trek poll, Which is the definitive Star Trek?, including comments from readers on all of the shows. No surprise that Enterprise is losing.

My vote goes to the original series, because it's funny.

William Gibson talks about Molly's eyes

William Gibson posts a fascinating insight into Molly Million's famous (iconic?) eyes and mirroshades. Revealing. It's all a facade!

September 2, 2006

The Hugos 2006

Only a week late with some comment, but I'm pretty happy with the results of the Hugo and Campbell Awards (announced at L.A. Con IV, the 64th World Science Fiction Convention in Anaheim, California).

As usual (unfortunately) I haven't read any of the fiction that won...

NOVEL
# Spin, Robert Charles Wilson (Tor)

NOVELLA
# "Inside Job", Connie Willis (Asimov's Jan 2005)

NOVELETTE
# "Two Hearts", Peter S. Beagle (F&SF Oct/Nov 2005)

SHORT STORY
# "Tk'tk'tk", David D. Levine (Asimov's Mar 2005)

But I'm very happy with the film and tv wins! Couldn't have been better...

DRAMATIC PRESENTATION: LONG FORM
# Serenity (Universal Pictures/Mutant Enemy, Inc.; Written & Directed by Joss Whedon)

DRAMATIC PRESENTATION: SHORT FORM
# Doctor Who: "The Empty Child" & "The Doctor Dances" (BBC Wales/BBC1; Directed by James Hawes; Written by Steven Moffat)

All the other categories I don't really have much of an opinion on, but well done everybody.

The vote breakdown is an interesting read.

September 1, 2006

Hero Machine

Create your own superhero with heromachine, then print it out.
Hours of fun.

[Via Cool Stuff and Movies]

StarShipSofa podcast

StarShipSofa is a new UK based podcast about SF. Episodes so far are about Alfred Bester, John Brunner, Algis Budrys, Cordwainer Smith, Stanislaw Lem and Dark Star. Cool. Nice to see a UK based Sf podcast. You can subscribe to it at iTunes here

Solar Flare SciFi Carnival

Solar Flare is going to run A Sci-Fi Carnival every week, where the carnival is an aggregation of posts about SciFi (not just from SF blogs). Should be interesting, the first is due today,