Monthly Archives: May 2009

Wheely Good Fun

I’ve spent the past week sub-editing on Procycling Magazine, which is somewhat ironic when you consider the fact that I haven’t ridden a bike since I was eight years old and didn’t even know what Lance Armstrong looked like until seven days ago. Now, however, I know what a peloton is, which team Armstrong rides for and, most importantly of all, that looking at pictures of fit guys in tight Lycra all day is something I rather enjoy.

Ah, life is good.

On Thursday I’m heading off to Birmingham for Asylum, so I’ll be spending the weekend surrounded by a few thousand Supernatural fans and having heated discussions on topics such as “Will Lucifer destroy the Earth?”, “How many miles can a ’67 Impala travel on one tank of gas?” and “Holy crap, why are there no male Supernatural fans in this hotel?”

If you’re going to the convention, please say hello if you see me – I may even interview you for a feature. (No, really. I’ll take a picture and everything. It’s not a wind-up.) If you’re not going to the convention, have a nice weekend. Why not go cycling if the weather’s nice? You could even form a peloton!



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Quick note: I succumbed to pressure and joined Twitter. Find me here:  I really don’t like Twitter – it’s ugly, it’s clunky, it keeps saying “Too Many Tweets!” and breaking, but what the hell. If Stephen Fry, Neil Gaiman and the frankly bloody hilarious Misha Collins are all there, I might as well join the party.

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Terminator Salvation


I love that rattly-clangy metallic bashing noise that makes up the music of Terminator. I saw Terminator Salvation last night and every time it popped up – which wasn’t often, mind you, only in moments of great impact – all the hairs on my neck stood on end. That “ba-da, da BA-DA!” sound makes me want to whoop and holler; frankly it’s a miracle I didn’t actually jump up and yell “Yee-haw!” halfway through the movie.

(However, at one point I did say “Dude!” rather more loudly than I intended to after Sam Worthington’s character kicked some ass. Almost as bad…)

Anyway, the verdict: I loved it, although Salvation has its problems, not least with Christian Bale. I can’t believe I’m saying this but he’s actually the least interesting thing about the film; he’s outclassed by Worthington (to the nth degree; can’t wait to see him in Avatar and Clash of the Titans, too), Moon Bloodgood (who’s excellent, and I’m happy to see her doing so well after sullying her career with the dreadful Pathfinder – the same goes for her Pathfinder co-star Karl Urban and his resurgence in Star Trek) and Anton Yelchin as Kyle Reese, who somehow manages not to look wimpy and Chekov-like and instead gets a bit of a Michael Biehn vibe on. (Except, oddly, he looks more like The Sarah Connor Chronicles’ Thomas Dekker at times, which is a pleasing coincidence seeing as he’s effectively playing his dad.)

So John Connor’s a bit growly and dull – picture Connor spending the entire film as the sweary Bale caught on tape during filming, only with less profanity – but it doesn’t matter, because the FX are what makes Salvation so much fun. McG can really handle action: from one superb opening scene involving a helicopter crash to the tense final battle, this is brilliantly directed. And the sound design may even rival Star Trek’s – those creaking, groaning Terminators are truly the stuff of nightmares, as long as you view them in a cinema which is happy to crank up the volume and make your seat rumble.

It’s not the most cheerful of films, true, but then again, it’s set post-apocalypse, so if you go into it expecting witty fun and frolics you’re in the wrong place. And it does end rather suddenly, leaving you aching to watch the sequel. But there are so many nods to the original Terminator movies (famous quotes, the tattered picture of Linda Hamilton’s Sarah Connor looking wistful) that it more than rewards you for sitting through the gloom.

And hey, there’s always that music. Altogether now: “Ba-da, da BA-DA! Da-da, da BA-DA!”

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Hey now, little mouse…

I’m addicted to The Ridiculant website, an internet round-up of all the cool/silly/scary stuff currently going down a storm on this big giant thing we call the interweb. They’re sarcastic, they’re funny and they have great taste, unlike so many of us (sigh).

Their latest post is this curious remix song – courtesy of an artist named Matt Brown – of the TV show Look Around You. For anyone who’s never heard of it, Look Around You was a spoof science programme parodying the dreadfully beige and dull educational shows that used to air for kids in the ’70s. It ran from 2002-2005, starred Peter Serafinowicz and Robert Popper and featured lots of very bad hair.

I didn’t watch it, but I know people who loved it. They tell me Look Around You was funny. This remix, however, is genius.

Look around it.

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Fade To White…

[No spoilers here, peeps!]

This is the most stressful fortnight of my year.

Not because I’ve been sub-editing on two different magazines. Not because I have to write a 3,000 word, research-heavy feature for Total Film by Monday morning (I should be doing that now, actually… oops). Not because I have no food in the house and no time to go shopping. Not because I need to spring-clean my flat, or do my ironing, or get a haircut, or pay some bills or transcribe three different interviews or even re-pot a houseful of plants (some of whom are starting to suffer, bless their petals).

No, this is the most stressful fortnight of my year because it’s finale time. In the last few days I’ve had to lose everything from Chuck to Medium to House to Dollhouse (which I even started enjoying towards the end, much to my amazement).

Today it was the turn of Lost, which packed everything up for the summer with a two-hour thriller that reinforced the fact that this is one of the bravest shows on TV – as though you hadn’t already figured that out from the time-travel storyline they’ve been working this year. As bored as I am by Jack and Kate and Sayid, I love Hurley and Locke and Ben and am a firm admirer of Richard Alpert’s guy-liner (even though I think I read somewere that Nestor Carbonell insists he doesn’t wear any). I love the big giant foot statue, the way nobody ever burns themselves on those flaming torches they’re always carrying through the jungle (seriously, would they even work without some kind of lighter fluid?) and the swoosh-noise that pops up whenever there’s a flashback or flash-forward.

Lost hasn’t lost it, and I’m very grateful for the fact. But I’m annoyed I have to wait months to find out what happened after everything went white in the finale…

…which is exactly how Supernatural ended, too, so white-outs seem to be all the rage this year. Although I certainly didn’t scream the freakin’ house down when Lost faded to white, and I did for Supernatural. Jesus, and I thought last year’s cliffhanger was bad!

It’s going to be a long summer. Oh well, at least I’ll have time to re-pot those plants now.


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Popular With Google, Apparently

The cool thing about WordPress is that it lets you know how people have stumbled onto your blog via internet searches and suchlike.

Because of this, I know that yesterday 30 people Googled “Wolverine” and ended up here.

Eleven people searched for “George Clooney” and found me. Similarly, two people Googled “George Clooney bum” and arrived here, too.

Other recent searches have included “Castiel”, “Bruce Greenwood”, “Misha Collins” and “How to be Wolverine?”

I really don’t know what to think about the fact that – with the exception of my own name – pretty much everybody who ends up here after an internet search has done it after looking for the name of a good-looking guy. Or his bum.

Maybe I should talk about something else for a change?

(And during the entire duration of this blog precisely 69 people have searched for “facehugger” and found me. Interesting…)


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Talking Over The Asylum

I spent most of yesterday sitting at a table in a bar in central London and discussing Supernatural with a (thankfully) lovely bunch of ladies from the SFX forum, who I’ll be seeing again in a couple of weeks at the Asylum convention in Birmingham.

We didn’t know each other beforehand and there was a faint ‘blind date’ aspect to our meeting, up until somebody propped a picture of Jensen Ackles against a wine bottle so that new arrivals would spot it and know who we were. (And the waiter, too, who informed us that his ex-girlfriend loved the show, but neglected to mention whether he liked it himself.) Much wine was consumed (I’m tee-total, so I got hyper on coffee instead), many theories were aired (Ruby – good/bad?), spoilers were avoided and much glee was expressed at the prospect of getting together again for Asylum.

And, just in case a group of Supernatural fangirls taking over a corner of the building wasn’t curious enough, during the course of the day we were slowly surrounded by a parade of fellow punters who included a Geri Halliwell lookalike, an Amy Winehouse lookalike, three Mr Ts from The A-Team and an entire contigent of men dressed in classic Star Trek uniforms (some of them, may I say, had the bums to wear a Trek miniskirt, while some of them had more boobs under their tight Lycra tops than even Shatner could manage).

I have no idea what was going on in Leicester Square yesterday – a Britain’s Got Talent audition, perhaps? – but when six tipsy women loudly discussing whether Lucifer is going to escape from Hell and run riot across the Earth while the angels chase him down ISN’T the weirdest thing going on in a room, you know reality is getting a little warped…

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