Sunday, January 31, 2010

Proof Of Goodness In The World Vol. 10!

Elvis Costello's "Live At Hollywood High" on CD! Second in the on-going series of live concert releases from the fine folks at Hip-O Select. Bits and pieces of this June 4, 1978 concert have been officially released before, most notably on a 7" vinyl single that came with the first pressing of his "Armed Forces" album, but this is finally the entire show in great sound. That said, I eagerly await future volumes in this series, which promise to get around to some shows that haven't been so widely available...

Torpedo Vol. 1! A nifty hardcover collecting the first Torpedo comic book stories by Sanchez Abuli and Jordi Bernet (with a brief appearance by legendary artist Alex Toth). This series was always a favorite of mine. We're talking about hardboiled gangster/hitman stories that makes "Goodfellas" look squishy sentimental. The protagonist, Luca, is a cold-hearted brutal hit-man who treats the entire world with contempt. There's is no attempt to sugar-coat this world, or to make Luca likable in the least. I love it! And the best part, Vol. 2 is out soon!

Ugly Things #29. Magazines are failing left and right, so the continued existence of amazing mags like "Ugly Things" makes this poor reader grateful. Dedicated to the heroes of 60's/70's rock, this massive issue (224 pages!) features articles and lengthy interviews with bands like The Masters Apprentices, Sky Saxon, The West Coast Consortium and many, many more. And all for $8.95?! Skip a latte and support these guys!

More goodness soon!!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Caprica: Rebirth. SyFy Channel This Week!

The first regular series episode of Caprica debuts this week on the SyFy Channel, and I'll be just as curious as anyone to see it. And my name is on this episode as writer! I wrote my draft of "Rebirth" way back in the Fall of 2008, before the series itself had been picked up, to give the fine folks at SyFy an idea where the story could go after the pilot.

Production on Caprica didn't start until mid-2009 and I'm guessing there were the usual revisions made before this one hit the stage. But I don't really know. So it goes in the wonderful world of television!

Anyhow, regardless of the authorship, Caprica is one of those rare beasts, a truly original science fiction show, and it deserves to be supported, so check it out. SyFy is running the sprockets off the these babies, but the premiere is Friday night at 10:00PM on the SyFy channel!

Steve Ditko Is Out There...

Steve Ditko, the amazing comic book artist who co-created Spider-Man and the inimitable Mister A, is suddenly getting the deluxe reprint treatment from a variety of publishers. Virtually all of his silver age Marvel material has been in print for years, and now his earlier, 50's work for Charlton and a host of other smaller publishers is being reissued.

But Ditko himself, at 82, is still producing new work, and that deserves to be supported as well. His later, personal art is wildly idiosyncratic and difficult to describe... so just buy some! His publisher Robin Snyder has a whole stack of Ditko comics and collections, including several released in 2009. I have most of the earlier (90's/early 2000's) books and I just sent him a check to catch up with the rest. You can see the entire library at:

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Futon Critic Gives BSG "The Oath" #22!

No, #22 isn't a sexual position (actually, it probably is, "but I digress"), but the fine folks at Futon Critic have listed their top 50 TV episodes of 2009, and my final BSG ep "The Oath" came in at #22.

Virtuality, from Ron Moore and Michael Taylor, came in at #15, and the David Weddle/Bradley Thompson written, Michael Nankin directed episode of CSI came in at #36. The tendrils continue to spread...

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Economic Indicator...

This seems about as likely as anything else these days...

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

What's Coming Up...

A new decade (semantics about whether '10 or '11 are actually the "new decade" aside) and some new challenges ahead, but here are two goodies from from yours truly coming in a couple of weeks.

On January 25, NBC will air "my" last episode of Heroes season four, "The Art Of Deception." Co-written with Misha Green, directed by S.J. Clarkson, this one notches the intensity level up by several degrees. There are guns, there is evil, and there are bricks. Lots and lots of bricks. (You'll see.)

On January 29, the first regular season episode of Caprica, "Rebirth", airs on the SyFy channel. I wrote the first pass at this episode way back in 2008 and I suspect it's changed dramatically since. I haven't seen the final shooting script or the episode itself, so I'll be just was intrigued as you by the end result... except my name will be on it! (It is strange, sometimes, how this business works.) What I knew about the project way back when was certainly way-intriguing...

Ressurection Blues

My pal Ernest Troost, composer of the score for the movie Tremors, Emmy winner for the score to The Canterville Ghost, and now 2009 Kerrville Folk Festival winner, has a new CD out and you need to get it RIGHT NOW. Resurrection Blues is another classy set of beautifully produced folk/blues, and it's available both as Mp3 and CD from the fine folks at CD Baby. Check it out!

Monday, January 11, 2010

HEROES Tonight... 9:00PM! Monday! NBC!

If it's Monday, it's time for Heroes... tonight's episode:

H.R.G. EXPOSES SAMUEL'S GREATEST WEAKNESS IN AN EFFORT TO STOP HIM - LISA LACKEY, DAWN OLIVIERI AND ELISABETH ROHM GUEST STAR - H.R.G. (Jack Coleman) recruits Matt (Greg Grunberg) to help him take down Samuel (Robert Knepper), as they use his long-lost love, Vanessa (guest star Kate Vernon), to lure him to them, but Samuel has his own plans for Vanessa in the works. Meanwhile, Hiro (Masi Oka) and Ando (James Kyson Lee) go to extreme lengths to save Dr. Suresh (Sendhil Ramamurthy). Elsewhere, Peter's (Milo Ventimiglia) introduction of Emma (guest star Deanne Bray) to his mother (Cristine Rose) brings forth visions of a very grim future. Hayden Panettiere also stars. Posted on Todd Stashwick and Sasha Pieterse also guest star.

The season four wrap party was held Sunday night and it was a raucous event, held at a swanky Hollywood bowling alley/bar. Emphasis on "bar." Now comes recovery!

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Top 100 Power Pop CDs of 2009

I know, it's hard to believe there WERE 100 power pop CDs in 2009, but according to those fellow, here are the best. He's also got the 15 top EPs. This is a great site for keeping up on this very specific genre...

Saturday, January 02, 2010

If You Live Long Enough...

A very nice reviewer checks back on my "lost" Superman comic book series. I'm a little surprised that books less than five years old are considered "lost", but hey, I'll take a compliment anywhere I can find it.

These stories were collected in a trade paperback edition called "The Journey", still available at Amazon. But for some reason Amazon includes reviews of a bunch of other books under the listing for "The Journey."

New HEROES 1/4/10!

Lest we forget... Heroes returns Monday with a two hour rock 'em sock 'em adventure. And once again the fine folks at NBC describe the goings-on with remarkable brevity! That's MONDAY on NBC!

becomes immersed into the world of the Carnival, she becomes increasingly suspicious of Samuels (Robert Knepper) motives. Hiro (Masi Oka) is on a mission to rescue one of his own, but has difficulty communicating his intentions to Ando (James Kyson Lee). Samuel has his sight set on Emma (guest star Deanne Bray) and her ability to complete his master plan. Meanwhile, Sylar (Zachary Quinto) returns to the Carnival in search of answers and Peter (Milo Ventimiglia) continues to struggle with the loss of his brother. Elsewhere, H.R.G. (Jack Coleman) sets his plan in motion to take down the carnival. Cristine Rose also stars. Posted on Todd Stashwick, Saemi Nakamura, Sasha Pieterse and Dawn Lyen Gardner also guest star.

Top TV Of The Decade!

Since everyone else is posting their lists, might as well toss my own two cents into the arena.

First off, clearly the finest television programs of this decade are, in no particular order, Smallville, Heroes and Battlestar Galactica. Because all had the good sense to employ, *ahem*, me. However, in the interest of objectivity, I'll leave them off the list.

Second, because I've been, well, busy the last ten years, I've missed some programming that I've heard was, well, pretty good. These MIA's include The Wire and Lost, both of which are sitting in pretty boxed DVD collections next to the television, waiting to be perused.

So here were the shows that piqued my interest in the 00's...

1) Deadwood. Easily my favorite show of the last ten years, profane and brilliant and a Western, too!

2) Sopranos. When the show was hitting the mark (which was frequently), there was nothing better on TV.

3) The Office (US version). I find the British version almost too uncomfortable to watch, but the U.S. edition manages to balance the really squirmy stuff with genuine goofball slapstick.

4) West Wing. Fast talking politics. Topical issues. Loved it.

5) 24. There have been good seasons and less good seasons, but like the Sopranos, when this show works, it's great. I'm looking forward to this season's change-up.

6) House. Sometimes I think I'll weary of House's cranky attitude, but it hasn't happened yet. This is an incredibly well written show, and Hugh Laurie somehow manages to find new angles on playing drag-addled misanthropy.

7) Law and Order C.I. Jeff Goldblum is fun, but the now departed Vincent D'Onofrio was ridiculously interesting as the obsessive Detective Goran.

8) Law and Order SVU. A little more meat and potatoes than C.I., but always well written and great performances across the board.

Honorable mentions: Bones (great chemistry between the leads), Criminal Minds (the most grisly crime show on network television!), Spectacle (Elvis Costello's interview show on the Sundance channel)...

I reserve the right to add more when my memory is jogged...