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New Podcast! Enterprising Individuals – “More Mooney, More Problems”

I am always thrilled to get a chance to talk about Star Trek with other fans, so I was thrilled at the invitation to join the wonderful Aaron Coker on Enterprising Individuals to talk about The Immunity Syndrome. The bulk of the episode came out last week, and is well worth your time if you’re specifically interested in discussing that individual episode.

However, the initial recording session was actually much longer than the version that appeared last week. It was a more casual and free-form conversation, covering everything from the state of the modern franchise to Doctor Who and plenty of stuff beyond. It’s a bit unfocused and wild, but I really enjoyed chatting with Aaron on such a wide range of topics.

You can listen to the episode here, back episodes of the podcast here, click the link below or even listen directly.

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New Podcast! The Escapist Movie Podcast – “Was Mortal Kombat a Video Game Movie Klassic?”

The Escapist have launched a movie podcast, and I was thrilled to join Jack Packard and KC Nwosu for the seventh episode of the year.We talk about the various permutations of Mortal Kombat and the Netflix movie Space Sweeper.

You can listen to back episodes of the podcast here, click the link below or even listen directly.

New Escapist Video! On the Multiverse is the Way of the Future…

So, as I have mentioned before, I am launching a new video series as a companion piece to In the Frame at The Escapist. The video will typically launch with the Monday article, and be released on the magazine’s YouTube channel the following week. This is kinda cool, because we’re helping relaunch the magazine’s film channel – so if you can throw a subscription our way, it would mean a lot.

This week, we took a look at the emergence of the multiverse, which appears to be the future of various shared cinematic and television universe. Why is this idea suddenly so popular? What does it mean? What does it hold for the future?

New Escapist Column! On “Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country”, and Saying Goodbye to Old Friends…

I published a new In the Frame piece at The Escapist this evening. With the passing of Christopher Plummer recently, and with the film celebrating its thirtieth anniversary this year, I thought it might be worth taking a look at Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country.

The Undiscovered Country was the last Star Trek film to focus on the entire cast of the original show. However, it is not an entirely celebratory farewell. Instead, it’s a movie that makes a valid and convincing argument for the need to move on, for characters like Kirk and Spock to get out of history’s way and to surrender the stage to Star Trek: The Next Generation. It’s an introspective (and occasionally even acerbic) rejection of nostalgia that is particularly hard to imagine today, particularly in the era of films like Star Wars: Episode IX – The Rise of Skywalker.

You can read the piece here, or click the picture below.

New Escapist Video! “A Marvelous Escape” – Agnes is More…

With a slew of Marvel Studios productions coming to Disney+ over the next six months, The Escapist has launched a weekly show discussing these series. I’ll be joining the wonderful Jack Packard and the fantastic KC Nwosu to break down WandaVision, Falcon and the Winter Soldier and Loki as they come out.

This week, we take a look at the seventh episode of WandaVision, with a large focus on the reveal towards the end of the episode and how that changes the nature of the story being told, arguably transforming it into something a lot less interesting.

New Escapist Column! On the Appeal of Paul W.S. Anderson’s “Mortal Kombat”…

I published a new column at The Escapist yesterday. With the new trailer for the rebooted Mortal Kombat, it felt like the perfect opportunity to take a look back at Paul W.S. Anderson’s 1995 original.

Recent years have seen a reassessment of Anderson as a director, frequently celebrating his understanding of the field in which he operates. Anderson’s Mortal Kombat is unapologetic pulp, and pitches itself perfectly at that level. Anderson understands that the key to faithfully adapting Mortal Kombat is not fidelity to continuity, but instead an appreciation of what audience and players actually love about the series. It exists in marked contrast to the version that Mortal Kombat suggested by the new trailer.

You can read the piece here, or click the picture below.

223. 365 Dni (365 Days) – Valentine’s Day 2020 (-#42)

Hosted by Andrew Quinn and Darren Mooney, and this week with special guest Grace Duffy, The 250 is a weekly trip through some of the best (and worst) movies ever made, as voted for by Internet Movie Database Users. New episodes are released Saturdays at 6pm GMT.

So this week, Barbara Bialowas and Tomasz Mandes’ 365 Dni.

A young sales director named Laura finds herself abducted by a Sicilian mafia don named Massimo. Massimo has decided that he loves Laura, and vows to make her love him as well. There is just one catch: if Massimo cannot make Laura fall in love with him within the next 365 days, he will set her free.

At time of recording, it was ranked 42nd on the list of the worst movies of all time on the Internet Movie Database.

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New Escapist Column! On Critics as Curators in the Era of Peak Content…

I published a new In the Frame piece at The Escapist this evening. Given Martin Scorsese’s recent comments about the reduction of film and television to “content”, it seemed like an opportunity to reflect on the challenges of navigating this new era – and the increased relevance of critics in this context.

There is a lot of entertainment out there. Despite the explosion in streaming services, a lot of it is harder to access – or at least harder to stumble across unless an audience member is actively looking for it. Film criticism seems to be stuck in a constant crisis of purpose and identity, but the truth is that critics are arguably more important now than ever. In an era with so much media out there, it is useful to have critics who understand the medium, its history and the breadth of possibilities that it offers.

You can read the piece here, or click the picture below.

 

New Podcast! The X-Cast – Season 6, Episode 11 (“Two Fathers”)

Coinciding with The X-Files‘ move from Vancouver to Los Angeles, there has also been a shift at The X-Cast. Tony Black is no longer running the show, but it is instead now being run by Sarah Blair, Kurt North and Carl Sweeney. I was thrilled to join Carl to talk about one of the most important episodes in the show’s history: Two Fathers.

Following the release of The X-Files: Fight the Future over the summer, and with the move to California, the show was in a clear state of transition. There was a strong sense that things were winding down; even with David Duchovny’s contract extension, the expectation was that the show would be wrapping up in its seventh season. As a result, there was a clear desire to begin wrapping up story threads. Two Fathers was something of a television event, promising to bring the show’s internal mythology to a satisfying conclusion. The results were more complicated.

You can listen to the episode here, or click the link below.

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New Escapist Video! Wanda to the Maximoff…

With a slew of Marvel Studios productions coming to Disney+ over the next six months, The Escapist has launched a weekly show discussing these series. I’ll be joining the wonderful Jack Packard and the fantastic KC Nwosu to break down WandaVision, Falcon and the Winter Soldier and Loki as they come out.

This week, we take a look at the sixth episode of WandaVision, which is mostly about how much we love Malcolm in the Middle, whether the series has the courage to hold Wanda to account for her transgressions, and the level of meta-awareness playing over the story.