POST-APOCALYPSE NOW: After D. Bethel talks a bit about the California fires (he’s safe albeit drenched in smoke from the Camp Fire––please donate money over supplies to help most during this time of containment and rebuilding), Andrew discusses his hour or so playing Fallout 76.
#IRONSHITES: Richard Meyer and the ComicsGate controversy has been covered many times before on the show, and the latest installment has Richard Meyer aka “Comics & Diversity” putting his money where his mouth is. His 120-page graphic novel, Iron Sights, (written by Meyer, art by Ibai Canales) has been released (it cost $20 for a copy of the book if you contributed to its Indiegogo campaign) was summarily criticized by Twitter user, Jafleece, in a spectacular and validating fashion. The 60+ thread starts here:
Andrew and D. discuss not only what they saw from the thread, but what this says about the claims Meyer and ComicsGate have been levying toward the industry for awhile now.
END BITS: Also, they spend some time at the end to discuss the death of Stan Lee, below is the clip that D. mentioned was his favorite Stan Lee cameo, from this year’s Marvel’s Spider-Man by Insomniac Games.
And, for good measure, the Pokémon: Detective Pikachu tralier:
Shortcast 49 – The Sweet Beats (30 Mar. 2018): Where Andrew and D. Bethel talk about Fallout 4, also the RELATED EPISODES of the notes contain a comprehensive list of the other times Fallout 4 was discussed on the show.
OPPORTUNITY DIABLOWN: At the end of the keynote presentation for this year’s BlizzCon––a convention devoted to game developer, Blizzard, created by game developer, Blizzard––the wildly successful PC developer announced a new entry into its long-running and beloved Diablo franchise: Diablo: Immortal. While ostensibly a new Diablo game, Diablo: Immortal is a phone game made not by Blizzard but by Chinese mobile developer, NetEase, and it was decidedly not the game fans wanted news about: Diablo IV. In a backlash of epic proportions, Blizzard has tried to course-correct which only dug them in deeper, D. Bethel and Andrew investigate the aloofness of Blizzard, the entitlement of fandom, and the hazy trouble in-between.
Bethel, D. “The Week – 26 October 2018.” Long John. ––Where D. Bethel wrote about people judging texts based on news, images, previews without actually seeing the final content.
WEEK IN GEEK: This week, Andrew starts things off by falling in love with the crafty goodness of using paper mini-figures for tabletop gaming. D. Bethel dives back into consuming the written word (about video games) with Boss Fight Books’ Shovel Knight by David L. Craddock. Andrew wraps back around to dish a little about Stardew Valley on iOS and how its able to manage saves between platforms.
WEEK IN GEEK: Andrew gets impressed with The Bard’s Tale Trilogy remastered collection on Steam while D. Bethel watches Venom and, even though he enjoyed it, wonders why it’s hitting such a strong chord with viewers.
DOCTOR BOO!: With Spookytober drawing to a close, Andrew and D. couldn’t not talk about Doctor Who, so they dove into the archive to talk about what they argue may be one of the series’ scariest episodes yet, series 4’s “Midnight.”
WEEK IN GEEK: This week, it’s a dive into the Fall tv shows that both our hosts were excited to see as Andrew watches the first episode of Alton Brown’s Good Eats: Reloaded while D. Bethel reacts to the first three episodes of the second season of The Gifted.
GAMES WORKERS UNITE: In the wake of massive layoffs by developers like Telltale Games and Riot Games, The Vulture published an article under the auspice of being a “behind the scenes” look at Red Dead Redemption 2‘s development at Rockstar Games. The article sparked a lot of controversy, specifically around the (walked back) claim of the team working 100-hour weeks multiple times during 2018 to make sure this game is top of the line in terms of quality. These incidents bring again a highlight to the labor practices of game development, through which D. and Andrew try to wade.
HALLOWED HALLOWEEN: The Spookytober topic for this week is the forty-years later direct sequel to John Carpenter’s breakthrough––and culturally important––hit, Halloween. This new movie, Halloween, sees the return of Jamie Lee Curtis to her role as Laurie Strode but instead of being the prey of Michael Meyers, it is he who becomes the hunted. Andrew and D. Bethel discuss the series and what they’re expecting/hoping from this new movie.
WEEK IN GEEK: Andrew gets his Metroidvania on with Chucklefish’s Timespinner and how eerily Castlevania: Symphony of the Night it seems to be at times while D. Bethel becomes enthralled with the first five episodes of the podcast audio drama produced by a collaboration between Marvel Comics and Stitcher (the podcast streaming website), Wolverine: The Long Night.
MEYERED IN CONTROVERSY: Richard Meyer and his “Diversity and Comics” YouTube Channel have been no stranger on this podcast with his leading the charge of the abhorrent ComicsGate dissention among comic book fandom. After gaining notoriety with his “Dark Roast” YouTube video (since deleted) that accused various popular industry creatives of committing sexual, devious, and illegal acts to get their way to the top, Mark Waid––among others––reached out to Antarctic Press to voice concerns with their decision to publish Meyer’s comic, JAWBREAKERS. After hearing those concerns, Antarctic Press terminated their contract with Meyer and went to the internet to spew bile in response. At the end of September, Meyer sued Waid for “tortious interference with contract” and “defamation.” D. Bethel and resident nerd lawyer, Andrew Asplund, dive back into this cesspool to navigate what exactly is going on throughout this new development.
NOTE: No comment made by Andrew during this episode constitutes legal advice or establishes client-lawyer relations.
TWILIGHT RETURNS: It was recently announced that the previously announced Jordan Peele-produced reboot of The Twilight Zone will actually star Mr. Peele himself as the host for the digital-only streaming service CBS All-Access. Andrew and D. talk about their excitement––and fears! (to make it spooky for Spookytober)––for the upcoming show.
WEEK IN GEEK: It’s a week of adventure as Andrew literally leaves the state while D. Bethel brings a journey to a close. Along the way, Andrew talks about playing Final Fantasy V on iOS while also dipping his toe into the meta-craziness that is The Stanley Parable while D. Bethel is actually having fun (?!) with season 2 of Netflix & Marvel’s Jessica Jones.
In the final episode of this initial experimental run of Con Artists, the second and final day of StocktonCon has come to a close and rather than have an exhausted (which they were) drive home, Kyrun Silva of Taurus Comics and D. Bethel again probe into different aspects of reading, making, and selling comics. They probe the circumstances that would have to occur to go pro, the processes of writing and editing comics, the different facets of indie comics, and dive deep into nostalgia to close out the weekend.
Creating this podcast ended up being a very enlightening process, shining light on angles of creativity previously hidden by ignorance, willful or otherwise. We hope you’ve enjoyed Con Artists and, with luck, there will be more in the future!
Con Artists #01 – StocktonCon, pt. 1 : The drive home from the first day of the show. Kyrun and D. discuss making sales, confidence, and the comics they grew up reading and enjoying.
Con Artists #02 – StocktonCon, pt. 2 : The drive to StocktonCon to start Day 2 of the show. They discuss the importance of continuity, the level of fan engagement and ownership over continuity, and Dan’s strange reading habits growing up.
Kyrun’s favorite cover from his favorite run of Darkhawk:
D. Bethel’s favorite cover from his favorite run of X-Men:
Special thanks to Kyrun Silva for agreeing to this experiment (and for driving us to and from the convention). Thanks to Ben Schwartz of Empire’s Comics Vault for hosting the table.
FALL (TV IS) BACK: With the summer doldrums of tv coming to a close, Andrew and D. Bethel discuss the Fall tv they’re looking forward to, including the debut of a new Doctor (and production team) with series 11 of Doctor Who, Andrew’s circumspect approach to the reboot Magnum and quizzical anticipation for Alton Brown’s Good Eats Reloaded, D. Bethel’s blind eagerness for the new season of The Gifted and Outlander, and both hosts’ skepticism of the new Riggs-less third season Lethal Weapon. It’s nerdy Fall tv front to back.