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Doctor Ennui

Doctor Ennui

ALREADY OBSOLETE: This is a short episode––you could even call it a “shortcast”, but why would you––because Dan had to have a little procedure that knocked him out a bit. However, they don’t leave you hanging as they talk about things that have drawn their attention this week. D. Bethel is impressed with the first two episodes of David E. Kelley’s new show, Big Sky, while Andrew dives deep in to the Zyuranger pool.

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • The Space Dog and Bacchus Show” (21 August 2014): Where Andrew talks to Kai, game designer and apparent Kamen Rider aficionado.
  • Dulce Et Utile” (12 June 2020): Where Dan previously talked about this artistic concept.
  • Films in Quarries” (18 June 2021): Where Andrew first mentions his perusal into the world of The Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers/Zyurangers.

RELEVANT LINKS:

  • The trailer for Spider-Man: No Way Home:

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FEATURED MUSIC:

Public Iteration

Public Iteration

THE SUICIDE SQUAD: With Warner Bros./DC Comics’ release last week of James Gunn’s new film, The Suicide Squad, we bring on our on-the-ground-DC-correspondent, Taylor Katcher, to discuss how this movie completely saves this DC franchise after its much less successful (critically) Suicide Squad from 2015. Even Andrew liked it!

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • Almost an Andrew Sandwich” (27 January 2017): Where D. Bethel shares his thoughts about the first Suicide Squad film.
  • Close the Loop” (11 January 2019): Where D. Bethel talks about the movie, Bumblebee, and gives a few thoughts as to John Cena’s performance in it.
  • The Nature of the Gutter” (12 March 2021): Where we last had Taylor on to discuss the first Marvel-based Disney+ show, WandaVision.

RELEVANT LINKS:

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FEATURED MUSIC:

Books For Days

Books For Days

CAP PUNCHED FIRST: Another day, another attack on fictional characters as a cable news segment pilloried Marvel Comics for making Captain America “woke” in a recent issue, seemingly forgetting that Cap has been punching literal Nazis in his comics since his first issue. Andrew and D. Bethel explore this while also examining the variety of ways texts (movies, comics, books, music, tv shows, etc.) can be read.

PRINT ON DEMAND: After buying some RPG books through DriveThruRPG, Andrew becomes fascinated by the idea––and future applicability––of print on demand services, where a book isn’t printed until a customer orders it. D. Bethel brings his creator experience with POD services to the conversation as well.

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • Slapcast” (02 July 2021): Where Andrew gave us the run down of the strange TSR Twitter fight.

RELEVANT LINKS:

  • The video Dan referred to with Stan Lee talking about the creation of the X-Men, though it’s one of many similar and slightly different creation stories he has told over the years:

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The Call Boss

The Call Boss

THE TAYLOR CUT: With the Snyder cut of Justice League now upon us, co-host Andrew and friend-of-the-show, Taylor Katcher, approached the 4-hour opus with hesitation and excitement, respectively. With the Snyderverse fully complete (at this point), Andrew, D. Bethel, and Taylor gather ’round the microphones to talk about Zack Snyder’s Justice League and all the fervor around it. Prepare for hot takes!

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • Episode 149 – We Are Not Here” (08 December 2017): Where D. Bethel talked about his experiencing watching Joss Whedon’s version of Justice League.
  • Episode 152 – My Own Finger” (05 January 2018): Where Taylor talked to Andrew and D. Bethel about the 2018 state of the DC-union.
  • A Casualty of the Rhyme” (22 May 2020): Where Andrew, D. Bethel, and Taylor discuss the news of the Snyder Cut becoming reality.
  • Auteur Manager” (12 February 2021): Where D. Bethel and Andrew discuss the news of the abhorrent treatment Ray Fisher alleges having experienced on the set of Joss Whedon’s Justice League and how much of Hollywood came out to support him, revealing an even darker truth about the once fan-favorite writer.

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The Nature of the Gutter

The Nature of the Gutter

TAYLORVISION: [SPOILER WARNING] With the divisive (but generally well-received) season of the Disney+ original, WandaVision, all wrapped up, D. Bethel brings friend-of-the-show and on-the-ground DC correspondent, Taylor Katcher, on to talk with Andrew about the twists and turns of this wonderfully unique entry into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Spoilers about WandaVision are talked about consistently and thoroughly throughout the episode. You have been warned.

RELEVANT LINKS:

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Too Many Johnnies

Too Many Johnnies

BETTER THAN IT SHOULD BE: After a lot of build up and expectation, Andrew and D. Bethel finally get together to record an episode about former YouTube/current Netflix show, Cobra Kai.

RELEVANT LINKS:

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • Shortcast 54 – Cameo Train” (11 May 2018): Included for no reason except for the fact that the phrase “cameo train” was used in this episode.
  • Dad Talk” (18 September 2020): Where Andrew first talked about watching Cobra Kai and watching the first The Karate Kid film.
  • Chekhov’s Honk” (22 January 2021): Where Andrew and D. Bethel discuss the original The Karate Kid trilogy of films and how they influence Cobra Kai, briefly.

INFO:

FEATURED MUSIC:

  • “Nerd Law” by D. Bethel

Surviving 2020: Kyrun Silva

Surviving 2020: Kyrun Silva

2020 was a year that upended all expectations. Though the threats that 2020 brought affected people in a variety of ways, for most it became a year of simple survival. For nerds, of course, we turn to the things that occupy our attention, inspire our imagination, or generate conversation. This year, we are looking at the things that helped us survive 2020. Today, Kyrun Silva––creator at Taurus Comics and co-host of the Con Artists podcast on this very website––shares what kept his spirits up this year.


Okay, let’s get this out of the way: 2020 sucked for most of us. For me it sucked a lot. No comic book conventions, no family gatherings, no martial arts training (which also meant I didn’t get my black belt this year, maybe next year; who knows?), and so many other things. 2020 will be a year that remembered forever, but even through all this turmoil Some things still brought joy to my life. A few of those joys were geeky things. While my family’s love (and the sheer variety) of anime––a mainstay of my 2019––allowed us to explore all of the feelings that came with the pandemic, there was one thing in particular that––aside from annoying my wife for half the year––really hit me hard.

HAMILTON

I have to admit, ever since July happened my family hasn’t been the same.

July 3rd, 2020 was the exact day. It was a warm evening. Dinner had been consumed, and we sat down to relax. Instead of watching more anime, I suggested we watch Hamilton, which had just been released on Disney+.

I heard about Hamilton over the years. I even watched a couple of YouTube videos showing clips of the original cast performing on stage, off stage, and in the White House. For years, my wife and I tried to get tickets to see it live. When news got out that Disney had bought the rights to stream it, I knew I had to watch it. From the opening couple of notes I was hooked. The music, the voices, the pageantry, the dances, I loved every minute of Hamilton. Maybe a little too much.

Source: Disney

The entire musical is three hours long with an intermission in the middle. For my wife it probably felt like an eternity. The problem is, after my first viewing, my love for Hamilton didn’t end. One viewing turned into two, then three, and soon became double digits.

I quickly found the soundtrack and lyrics online and soon began singing the entire musical all day every day. My enthusiasm for this phenomenon spread to my oldest son, who quickly joined me in my madness. He and I started taking different parts of the show––he, as Alexander Hamilton; me, as Aaron Burr. Then my two youngest joined us.

My wife was not amused. She said I was a grifter1 of sorts, tricking them into liking the show. I say they just have good taste.

Presumably, this is Kyrun and his son at least twice a day. At least. Source: Disney

I became a Hamilton zealot, searching from anything I could get my hands on about the musical. My browser history became filled with searches of the cast and crew. Even to the point where I started watching the show Station 19 because Okieriete Onaodowan, an actor from the musical, was now on the show. Side note: I already watched all the episodes of Black-ish that featured another Hamilton cast member in Daveed Diggs.

Hamilton is still played at least once a week in my household. Yes, the enthusiasm may have died off a little, but the love is there.


2020 was a crazy year. Though I wasn’t able to consume my geekdom in ways I had been accustomed to in the past, I found alternatives that filled that void and helped bring my family together. We’ve created new memories together that will strengthen my family’s ties and give us something to look back on years down the line.

U3DS

U3DS

WEEK IN GEEK: This week, Andrew enthusiastically plays the 2nd edition of Pathfinder, despite not fully enjoying the first edition, while D. Bethel gets really excited to play an adventure game based on one of his favorite comics, Blacksad, but gets horribly disappointed by Blacksad: Under the Skin.

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • The Volumometer Incident” (10 July 2014): Where Andrew shares his experience playing the Pathfinder card game.
  • Starting By Starting” (03 January 2020): Where D. Bethel discusses the noir adventure game inspired by H. P. Lovecraft, Frogwares’ The Sinking City.
  • Nature’s Velcro” (03 July 2020): Where Andrew plays the computer RPG, Pathfinder: Kingmaker.

RELEVANT LINKS:

  • Here’s D. Bethel’s fan art of Blacksad.

INFO:

FEATURED MUSIC:

Pandemic Birthday

Pandemic Birthday

DC DECONSTRUCTED: News of a major restructuring of DC Comics by WarnerMedia last week set the comics world ablaze with speculation and worry. D. Bethel and Andrew try to parse the information and speculate on what it could mean not only for DC Comics but for comics in general.

LOWER THE SHIELD: Over seven seasons, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. comes to a close. Our hosts’ appreciation for the show––especially this final season––has not been a secret. Now that is has ended, they finally––finally––talk about the final season and the show it brought to a close. SPOILERS ABOUND for the final season, especially the two-part finale.

The caricatures Dan drew back around 2000-2001, of Andrew and his roommates. The drawing that the SHIELD villain reminded Andrew of is on the bottom right. D. Bethel is in the bottom middle with Andrew at the top left.

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It Has Full Body

It Has Full Body

WEEK IN GEEK: As is often the case with our hosts: everything old is new again. Andrew plans to take on the psychological strangeness of Atlus’ Catherine in the recently released “definitive” version of the 2011 game called Catherine: Full Body. D. Bethel actually steps outside the realm of Xavier’s School for the Gifted to try out a different Marvel hero, The Silver Surfer, in the 2019 limited series, Silver Surfer: Black, by Donny Cates, Tradd Moore, and Dave Stewart.

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