Forty: You Too Could Be a Legendary Listener

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Episode Forty-You too could be a Legendary Listener.

Recorded August 23, 2015

Discussion:

The new trailer for “The Martian“. We are very excited for this movie. Our discussion covers Ridley Scott, his long, uneven, but legendary career, the magnificent cast for this film and stellar novel the movie is based upon.

We discuss an online quiz that tests your geek movie cred. We really can’t dispute the films included.http://www.listchallenges.com/100-basic-training-movies-at-the-nerd-academy

Take if for yourself and let us know your score!

Seen:

Unseen: “Fantastic Four” We might see it to have a more informed opinion

Christopher continues with “Dark Matter”. The first season is coming to a close and it’s been solid entertainment. He took his youngest daughter, Keira, to seen “Ant Man“, she loved it. Movie is surprisingly effective in emotionally connecting the viewer to the ants.

Andrew saw “Hitman: Agent 47“ and not it’s as bad as he thought it would be. Most of it doesn’t make a lot of sense though.

Patrick watched “Sinister Part 1“. Scary, like poop scared out of you scary.

Patrick watched “What We Do In the Shadows”. New Zealand brand of humor.

Read:

Andrew finishes “Leviathan Wakes” Spoilers abound! Come back in Five minutes!

Patrick purchased “Caliban’s War” on Audible, the Second book of The Expanse series, he hadn’t listened to any of it yet, but was enjoying “Ready Player One” again.

Christopher is deep in “The Player of Games”. As a gamer himself, he wishes the book was a little more detailed on how the games the main character is a master of actually work.

Played:

Andrew and Christopher play “Destiny“ and they purchase the most coveted weapon in the game, the Gjallarhorn, so fun but insanely over powered. The weapon doesn’t take a lot of skill to be good with it.

Christopher works to unlock flying in the land of Draenor in “World of Warcraft”. And of course, “Rocket League”!

Patrick plays “Castle Panic“. He feels like he has mastered the mechanics of the game after just a couple sessions, fun, but not top tier as far as table top games go.

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Thirty Nine: We turn our Star Wars up to 11.

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Episode Thirty Nine: We turn our Star Wars up to 11.

Recorded 8-13-2015

Discussion:

New photos of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” released in Entertainment Weekly prompt an enthusiastic discussion. It may not be possible for us to be more excited for this movie.

 

Seen:

Christopher is enjoying “Dark Matter”. Solid Sci-Fi on the SyFy Channel.

“True Detective” Season 2 wraps up and is quite disappointing. Season 1 is far more effective.

All have seen “Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation”. All find it well made action movie fun.. Andrew and Christopher are particularly impressed with Rebecca Ferguson‘s Ilsa Faust. She every bit an equal to Tom Cruise’s Ethan Hunt.

Patrick saw “Terminator Genisys”.  It is so so so bad.   Patrick doesn’t want any more Terminator movies with this cast.

Read:

Patrick has listened to Book 2 of “the Dresden Files”  He blasted through it in 3 days!  Jim Butcher writes very well. All agree to pick up his new “Steam Punk” series starting up in a few weeks.

Andrew is deep in “Leviathan Wakes”. He just reached a massively important part of the novel and he felt something pop in his brain.

Chris reads lots of things, as is his way. In particular, he recommends “The Player of Games” by Ian M. Banks

Played:

Chris plays “Rocket League” The new DLC appears to only add to the fun. He is playing multiple matches in multiple game modes.

Andrew reports on the changes coming to “Destiny” with the DLC “The Taken King”. The leveling system is dramatically changing and we all start yelling at each other. Mostly Andrew yells at Patrick. It’s a good honest, heated discussion. It’s what we are all about.

Trivia:

Star Wars hype continues.

How many horns are on Darth Maul’s head? It’s a truly obscure question and the Boys react accordingly.

H.S.F.

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Thirty Eight: LIVE! San Diego and Moving Weekend Hype!

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Episode Thirty Eight: Live! San Diego Comic Con and Moving Weekend Hype!

recorded July 19th, 2015.
We record at Christopher’s house in Phoenix. AZ.  Patrick is in town as we help our parents move out of our childhood home.

Discussed: Christopher and Andrew report on San Diego Comic Con 2015.  We detail our favorite moments from SDCC.  The madness of Hall H is real.  The hidden gems of the Comic Con experience and we made some friends!  Shout to the VT Ladies, Brooke, Megan and Jordon!

Seen: We all saw “Ant-Man” on July 17th.  We are all pleasantly surprised at how much fun the movie turned out to be.  It is a superhero heist movie that plays to the strengths of it’s comedic actor lead, Paul Rudd.  It very nicely sets up Phase 3 movies to come. Patrick finished “Penny Dreadful” Season 2 and he is terrified like the rest of us.  The highlight of this season is Billie Piper’s character’s transformation.  Just watch.

Read: Andrew is engrossed in James S.A. Covey’s “Leviathan Wakes”  The Brothers will undertake to read the new DC Comics weekly, “Batman and Robin: Eternal” when it launches in October.  Patrick firsts needs to finish “Batman: Eternal”.

Played: All played “Rocket League”.  It’s soccer with remote control cars.  It’s frenetic and fun and has perfect controls.  Christopher has played many many hours.  Even watching matches is fun.  We all watched Patrick play an online match and were cheering and getting truly obnoxious.  Real Hooliganism!  Andrew reports on big changes to “Destiny” coming in September.  Hopefully, it will re-balance the game play in the best ways possible.

Andrew FAILS.  NO. NEW. TRIVIA.

Chris saves the day though.

H.S.F.

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Thirty Seven: ” Shut Up, I’m Han Solo”

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Episode Thirty Seven: “Shut Up, I’m Han Solo.”

recorded July 5th, 2015 (we have major technical issues but we get it done)
Discussed:

Plans for San Diego Comic Con are forming.  Chris and Andrew detail their strategy to guarantee admission to Hall H on Friday July 10th.
Seen:
Christopher wants to love “Terminator: Genisys” but he doesn’t.  He continues to enjoy “Dark Matter’ on the SyFy channel.
Andrew can’t wait for the season finale of “Penny Dreadful” and he showers love on Billie Piper.  Her character has become truly terrifying this season.  Chris concurs, Patrick will get caught up.
Patrick watches the Netflix anime “Knights of Sidonia”.  It has some common sci-fi troupes.  He also watches “Inside Out” and recommends it for all.

Read:
Christopher has begun the 4th book in the “Expanse” series “Cibola Burn” so far it is not as compelling as the first 3 books.
Andrew finishes “Dune”, erudite discussion ensues.  All have read “Rat Queens” vol.1., literally so good.  Go read it.
Patrick is listening to a full cast reading of Neil Gaiman’s “American Gods” and as a film geek he is bettering himself reading, “The Camera Assistant’s Manual.”

Played:
Christopher dives back into “World of Warcraft” with its newest patch. He details the nautical fun he is having.
Andrew reports on “Destiny” news.  Bungie hasn’t had it easy for the past few weeks.
Patrick describes a “Fallout Shelter” disastrous rad roach infestation. He has learned from his mistakes and it will Never. Happen. Again.
Trivia: Name 5 of the Top Ten games on Twitch at the moment of the question.   The Boys come close.

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Thirty Six: You’re My Father! – Luke Skywalker (super whiny voice)

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Recorded June 21st 2015

Father’s Day Hype!  We thank our father for beginning our long strange road of geekery.

We discuss E3 and the games we are excited to play in the coming months.

Seen:

“GAME OF THRONES” FINALE SPOILERS!  YOU ARE FORE-WARNED!    THE FINALE IS GREAT. ****Spoilers start at 21:00 and end at 31:30***

“Jurassic World” is seen by all.  It’s the most popular movie in the world and pure popcorn summer movie goodness.  Hashtag Raptor Squad!  Bryce Dallas Howard gets the Not Ugly award this episode.

Christopher is excited for a new show on SyFy called “Dark Matter”.  It stars Canadian actors you may have seen on other SyFy and CW shows.

Read:  All make the commitment to read “Rat Queens” vol. 1 and 2 by the next show.

Andrew continues his months long slog through “Dune”.  He doesn’t love it but he knows how important it is to finish this book.

Christopher continues with “The Expanse” series by James S.A. Covey.

Played:

Andrew and Christopher play “Destiny” expansion PvE arena Prison of Elders.  Andrew gets the guts to play with randoms via matchmaking.  He also has taken to watching Twitch and has subscribed to “Destiny” streamer Professor Broman.

Patrick is the busiest geek in the world with school and an internship but plays mobile game “Fallout Shelter”.  It satiates his resource management gamer geek appetite.

Christopher plays “The Witcher 3”.  The game is deep and rich and he wishes he could play all the time.  But you know, life.

Trivia:

Second Weekend of Release Movie box office themed.  The Boys come close.

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Thirty Five: Our War Party Soundtrack is Taylor Swift’s Early Work

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recorded May 31st, 2015

Discussion: Chris and Andrew attend Phoenix Comicon. Chris reports on an impressive panelist.  We both sing the praises of the convention authority for solving logistical traffic issues.  They learned from last year’s disaster.

Seen: All have seen “Mad Max: Fury Road” at least once.  It amazes on multiple levels.  The film is a prime example of the writer’s maxim, “show don’t tell.”  The “Flash” finale is sublime.  The “Arrow” finale disappoints.  We agree the “Ras Al Ghul” storyline was a poor choice this season.
Read: “Rat Queens Volume 1” and “Thor” comics are entertaining, both Chris and Andrew are enjoying female centric comic books right now.  Patrick fails once again to finish “Batman: Eternal”.  Appropriate levels of shit are given.
Played:  Andrew and Christopher play the “Destiny House of Wolves” expansion. It’s the best expansion so far.  Prison of Elders is the endgame experience the Brothers Geek Fireteam has been waiting for. Chris loves “The Witcher 3” so so much.  He has barely scratched the surface of all the content.  Patrick recommends “Marvel: Future Fight” for mobile gaming.

Trivia:

“Game of Thrones” themed:  Name the seven aspects of the one God of the Faith of the Seven?

Both Brothers Win!

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Thoughts on Ex Machina

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Thoughts on Ex Machina

By Christopher Schmaltz

The robot is hot…until she puts on her short-haired wig. This was one of my thoughts after seeing Ex Machina. See, I’m generally not a short hair fan on women. And exactly therein lies the triumph of Ex Machina.

Ex Machina adds significantly to the genre in movies and literature of the human pursuit of artificial intelligence (A.I.).  It is at the same time cerebral and visceral. Cerebral in that it is a close scientific examination of the attempt to create A.I. – one that is indistinguishable from human intelligence and consciousness. The movie explores one man’s creation, and another man’s testing of that creation. Why it works so well is that it hits the tester (and movie viewer) in both the mind, and even more importantly, in the viscera. The tested program is in a futuristic, elegantly designed female robot form. A form that is very clearly a robot, and yet, has all the visual cues intended to target the id of the tester (and movie viewer).

The film is a surface examination of the attempt at A.I., and a far more incisive exploration of humanity and the combination of intellect and emotion in humans. It’s a fascinating look at how emotion affects judgment, and how it is so difficult to distinguish actual emotion from the appearance of emotion. What I find exhilarating is its central storytelling that explores how emotion can override logic in a conscious being. (That sentence is carefully constructed so as to avoid any and all spoilers.☺)

To me, the movie asks a key question – if humans are fallible in this way, often subservient to emotional reactions from a primordial place in our brain, how can our creations not be influenced by this conception of what we think it means to be a conscious being? And as so influenced, will the A.I. we attempt to create be “flawed” in the same way, or be missing a key ingredient that is impossible to quantify or “create?”

As successful as the A.I. may or may not have appeared to the tester of the A.I., a similar suspension of disbelief happens to the viewer. My reaction, the robot is hotuntil…, is a testament to the art of the film and its insightful exploration of the human experience. Ex Machina is worth your time and thought.

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Thirty Four: The Physics are Weird

“May the Fourth be with you”.

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Discussed:We reflect on a year of recording the podcast.  It’s schmaltzy, which is appropriate.

Seen:

We all saw “Avengers: Age of Ultron” at least once.  A spirited discussion ensues.  We try and avoid hurting each others feelings.

Read Patrick’s Review http://www.judgmentcloud.com/reviews/avengers-age-of-ultron-review/

Chris and Andrew remind Patrick that “Penny Dreadful” has begun season 2

Read:

Andrew reads “Dune”; it’s a slog right now but admits Herbert’s artistry is unquestionable.

Patrick falls short on completing “Batman: Eternal”.  He re-commits. Again.

Christopher sings an aria about “Rat Queens”, a brilliant new comic book, recommended by our friends at Samurai Comics.  He convinces us all to read it.

Played:

Christopher downloads “Hearthstone” for the Galaxy Note and continues to play a seasonal character on “Diablo”. His monk is leveled to 69 and has done so slowly.

Andrew has a new Iphone6 and now can download mobile games again.  He plays “Fruit Ninja”. So simple and so satisfying.

Patrick recommends “Galaxy of Fire 2” as a mobile game.

Patrick plays Movie Trivia at Hollywood Theater in Portland. He placed 5th as a team of 1 out of hundreds of people who attended.  He also played “House on the Hill” with his Partners in Crime.  It continues to be fun and engaging.

Trivia:

Name the titles of the six Star Wars feature films, the years they were released, and the directors of each film.

The Boys get partial achievements. Chris is aged enough to recall the original triologies release years.

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Thirty Three: McConaughey is not the only one who cried

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Episode Thirty Three “McConaughey isn’t the only one who cried

Recorded April 19th 2015

Watch it and you’ll understand

Discussion:

Trailer’s Galore!

We dissect, discuss, examine, hammer and bludgeon four different newly released trailers. “Terminator Genisys”, “Ant Man” “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” and “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”

Seen:

Christopher and Andrew are current with “Arrow” and “The Flash”. “The Flash” continues to impress. “Arrow” needs to be a superhero show again.

Christopher and Andrew insist Patrick binge-watch “Daredevil” on Netflix. It is pitch perfect. Andrew says that a lot

Patrick is in full Trek mode. He has finished “Star Trek: Voyager” and has moved onto “Star Trek: Enterprise” He prefers the latter. Jolene Blalock gets special recognition this week.

Read:

Patrick finishes “Leviathan Wakes” and has restarted “Ready Player One“, he promises to finish “Batman Eternal”

Christopher has started “Caliban’s War“, calls it outstanding. He further asserts “Darth Vader” is best of Star Wars comics Marvel has released.

Andrew and Christopher have both finished “Batman Eternal”. Andrew is current with “Thor” and is enamored with the book on multiple levels. He doesn’t even care who the female Thor will turn out to be.

Played:

Andrew talks “Destiny” and the announcement of House of Wolves expansion dropping on 5/19/15.

Christopher and Diablo III continue their love affair.

Patrick has started up “Dragon Age Inquisition” once again and he is now playing a Ranger. It scratches his RPG itch. He continues his table top mission and plays the card game “Smash Up“. It allows for Ninja Unicorns. Christopher and Andrew give their nods of approval.

Trivia:

Boys are challenged to guess the total number of pages in “A Song of Ice and Fire” One of them actually comes close. The number is huge.

 

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Thirty Two: The Truth is in This Episode

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recorded 3/29/2015

****SPECIAL WARNING****

from 41:35 to 46:35, We spoilerize “A Dance With Dragons” If you don’t want to know where A Song of Ice and Fire is headed, avoid those five minutes!

Discussion:

Fox announced a limited series of ” The X-Files” We all reminisce our fondest memories of the show’s original run.

Seen:

Andrew watches the Season 2 finale of “Black Sails”. He calls it one the best sophomore to freshman seasons of TV ever. Also he is re-watching “From the Earth to The Moon”

Patrick watches the independent film “Spring” and it‘s terrifying. Patrick may give up on “Agents of SHIELD” if season 2 doesn’t pay off big time.

Christopher finishes season 3 of “House of Cards” and watches “John Wick”,  it’s just a very simple, well made revenge flick, immensely satisfying.

Read:

Andrew and Christopher both loving “Batman:Eternal”. The last panel of issue 51 was bonkers awesome.

Andrew read “Invincible #118” and encourages all to pick up the issue, it’s the perfect place to jump in. And just 25 cents!

Patrick finishes “A Dance with Dragons“. He freaks the F*ck out about the ending! And he has started “Leviathan Wakes” on Chris’s recommendation.

Played:

Christopher continues “Ori and the Blind Forest” The game is hard as hell and strikingly beautiful.

Andrew plays “Destiny” some more. He is working his first Exotic Weapon Bounty.

Patrick pulls an “Andrew” and has nothing to report. Andrew is pissed at the reference.

Trivia:

Who has hosted the most episodes of “Saturday Night Live”?

One of the Boys gets the achievement!

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