Wednesday, December 17, 2014

061: Constantine 1x08 "The Saint of Last Resorts" - Praising the Flesh Tree

Click to view full size image

Well, that was...unexpected.

SPOILERS UP TO (and including) CONSTANTINE 1x08. Additional spoilers for Serenity (2005) and Red Dragon (2002).

In this episode:
  • Fio has returned to discuss Constantine 1x08 "The Saint of Last Resorts," including the exploration of Zed's backstory, the Rising Darkness reveal(?), and TREE MADE OF FLEEEEEEEEESSSSHHHHH \m/ .
  • Subbing Zed into the series in the repilot had its problems, and in hindsight the cracks are really easy to spot.
  • The source of the Rising Darkness™ is revealed!'s not as effective as it should be.
  • Locke & Key Digression (because Fio will always go out of his way to namecheck Ksenia Solo)
  • Fio and Ian will be accepting applications and donations to their new organization, People for a Better Usage of Chas Chandler. (Only joking. Please don't send us applications.)
  • Also, what we plan to do (or not do, as it were) over the break. While we're at it: when does Constantine come back?
  • Happy holidays!
  • Highlights from Fio's timestamps:
    • The fact that we don’t really have a face to pin the rising darkness on is an issue for this show. This danger is being caused by a shadowy cabal, however they don’t feel oppressive or powerful enough to be a real threat, given that Constantine seems to solve all of the problems caused by the rising darkness tidily within nice 45 minute chunks.
    • As I was typing that you said “General spooky shit is happening. Why? Who knows.” Which sums up the philosophy of this show pretty well.
    • I get really uncomfortably excited about that skin tree.
  • Intro music: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
  • Outro music: "Raining Blood" - Slayer | YouTube | iTunes |

(Header image taken from

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

060: Constantine 1x07 "Blessed are the Damned" - Goosing the Tension

Constantine (2014) Screencap

SPOILERS UP TO (and including) CONSTANTINE 1x07

In this episode:
  • Vic returns to join Ian in discussing Constantine 1x07 "Blessed are the Damned," including the preacher, the angels, the skeptic, and--wait, is this a folk song?
  • We thought the preacher was handled well in this episode--although we were a bit confused about who the woman with him was for a while.
  • Also, we were fans of the ghouls, although neither of us recalled that was what Constantine called them while we were recording.
  • Throughout the episode, we hit several topics about the series overall: how to do adaptations, wardrobe selections, and utilizing characters to their fullest extent.
  • Also-also, Vic points out how this episode works as great metacommentary for the writing on the show.
  • Hey, we're on time this week!
  • Thanks again to Vic for filling in.
  • I'm just gonna go straight to the highlights from Fio's timestamps:
    • An easy excuse for genre shows, making up reasons that one character can’t solve the problem. Like, what was up with that necromancer in the Hobbit that meant that Gandalf couldn’t just snap his fingers and fix 90% of the problems?
    • Vic is referring to Metron, one of Jack Kirby’s new gods, not the Metatron
    • Don’t we get enough stuff about fallen angels with the goth dark angel oc everyone made when they were 13? Or was that just me?
  • Intro music: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
  • Outro music: "Evil Angel" - Breaking Benjamin | YouTube | iTunes |

(Header image taken from

Thursday, December 4, 2014

059: Constantine 1x06 "Rage of Caliban" - This Angel Character

Constantine (2014) Screencap
C'mon, NBC. You know you ship it.

SPOILERS UP TO (and including) CONSTANTINE 1x06

In this episode:
  • Christina joins us once again!
  • Discussion of Constantine 1x06 "Rage of Caliban," including its original placement as episode two and how the move affected the episode and the season up until this point, John and Chas getting some bonding time, Manny and his obnoxiously cryptic ways, and the Creepy Kid Checklist™.
  • We spend a good amount of time just talking about the series as a whole before getting into the specifics of this episode.
  • We're really interested in seeing how next episode goes, especially when it comes to exploring Manny's character.
  • Please give us the Newcastle incident. PLEASE.
  • Also, we would really appreciate it if Constantine was portrayed as bi. For a variety of reasons.
  • This episode basically handed an easy parallel to the writers between the case of the week and Constantine, but the writers really failed to capitalize on it.
  • We also make several digressions while making comparisons, including ones into FOX's Gotham and--of course--NBC's Hannibal.
  • Once again: apologies for the lateness.
  • Intro music: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
  • Outro music: "Cherub Rock" - Smashing Pumpkins | YouTube | iTunes |

(Header image taken from I'm sorry; I was originally just looking for a good picture of John taking the sword away from Chas so I could make a joke about backing away from character development, and then I saw this one.)

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

058: Constantine 1x05 "Danse Vaudou" - The Rising Darkness

Constantine (2014) Screencap

SPOILERS UP TO (and including) CONSTANTINE 1x05

In this episode:
  • Discussion of Constantine 1x05 "Danse Vaudou," including the introduction of Jim Corrigan, Chas and Zed getting to do stuff, and ALL THE PLOT POINTS.
  • And...uh...yeah, that's about it. There's a lot happening on the surface this episode, but it doesn't really present many opportunities to dig deeper.
  • We briefly discuss Constantine's future, and who we think could appear.
  • This week's Deadshirt Is Watching... , featuring Julian Ames' review of "Danse Vaudou."
  • Yeah, so this was a short one. Enjoy my own riff on the whole "rising darkness" theme this season--it's a work in progress, but I felt like tacking it on since this episode was so short.
  • Podcast buddies Anglo-Filles have just released an episode discussing fall TV, including their own thoughts on Constantine.
  • Friend of the podcast Cleolinda Jones and Emily Whitten (foresthouse) have inherited a podcast! We wish them happy podcasting, and may the avocado be ever in their favor.
  • Happy Thanksgiving, to those celebrating it! To those not celebrating it: Happy Thursday! 
  • EDIT: Tumblr user and long-time listener fool-errant provided some background on voodoo as it was portrayed in this episode. Thanks!
  • Intro music: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
  • Outro music: "The Rising Darkness (Acoustic Demo)" - original song, music & lyrics by Ian. Work in progress; more on this as it develops.

(Header image taken from

Thursday, November 20, 2014

057: Constantine 1x04 "A Feast of Friends" - The Sacrifice, Father?

Winner of the contest for "Least Effective Golden Corral Commercial"

SPOILERS UP TO (and including) CONSTANTINE 1x04 and SLEEPY HOLLOW 2x07

In this episode:
  • Discussion of Constantine 1x04 "A Feast of Friends," the turn towards gray morality this episode seems to promise, the expanded universe of Constantine's aforementioned magical friends, and the show's continuing attempts (both effective and not) to carve out a distinctive presence in the subgenre of the Supernatural Procecdural.
  • We cover the differences between the first issue of HellBlazer (upon which this particular episode is based) and the episode itself and discuss what we think the writing staff intended by the changes they made to the end of the story in particular.
  • Ian's dad references the story of Abraham and Isaac. It's a pretty deep cut.
  • Chas and Zed still haven't really been given a chance to spread their wings. Neither has Manny for that matter, and he's the one with actual wings.
    • Look, all of the interaction with our guest-compatriot Gary this week was really solid, but if you want us to feel for the actual recurring characters on this show you're gonna need to give us more to work with, guys.
  • The hunger demon was a really unique monster-of-the-week and we hope to see more like it in the future if the show really wants to make its mark, though it seems like some of the effects were a bit clean and there were some opportunities that were missed. 

  • Again sorry for the lateness of this particular episode. Fio has some life-things going on at the moment and time is in a bit of a crunch.
  • Here's a link to the Escapist review Ian was talking about.

  • Intro music: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
  • Outro music: "Maneater" - Hall & Oates | YouTube | iTunes |

(Header image taken from

Thursday, November 13, 2014

056: Constantine 1x03 "The Devil's Vinyl" - Captain Research

Constantine (2014) Screencap
How could this show be anything but delightful.

SPOILERS UP TO (and including) CONSTANTINE 1x03

In this episode:
  • Discussion of Constantine 1x03 "The Devil's Vinyl," including plottiness, the introduction of Papa Midnite, serialization vs. villain of the week, and what we want to see more of.
  • We also have several digressions where we talk about the way other shows (including The Flash, Sleepy Hollow, and Doctor Who) handle storytelling, but it's all relevant. Really. We swear.
  • Ian's still not sure about Matt Ryan's acting, but it may be more of a problem with the writing.
  • What do the writers hope to accomplish with the storytelling in this series? (Spoiler alert: It's probably something to do with making money.)
  • How can they earn the narration that they're including at the end of each episode? Should they just chuck it altogether?
  • They're starting to show some cinematic flair. MOAR.

  • Apologies once again for the lateness of this episode. We'll do our best to keep you apprised on Tumblr and Twitter if it happens again.
  • Once again, here's a link to the Halloween-themed episode of Lag Time Podcast. We discussed gameinformer's Top 25 Horror Games of All Time, I retold my P.T. story, and much fun was had. Also, MAJOR SPOILERS FOR AMNESIA: THE DARK DESCENT.
  • I wanted to use "Money, Money, Money" by ABBA for the outro, but I couldn't find our copy of ABBA's Greatest Hits. Woe.

  • Intro music: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
  • Outro music: "Money" - Pink Floyd | YouTube | iTunes |

(Header image taken from

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

055: Constantine 1x02 "The Darkness Beneath" - The G-Word

Constantine (2014) Screencap

SPOILERS UP TO (and including) CONSTANTINE 1x02

In this episode:
  • Discussion of Constantine 1x02 "The Darkness Beneath," including racism, shirtless Matt Ryan, and ethics in gaming journalism storytelling.
  • Yeah, we weren't happy with the portrayal of a Romani woman, the use of the G-word, and everything wrapped up in that. To say the least.
  • We liked Zed, though!
  • Urban fantasy and supernatural dramas on TV
    • If NBC's Constantine hopes to last in the modern market, they're going to need to figure out how to set themselves apart.
  • Constantine, Supernatural, Sherlock Holmes, and tracing the effects and responsibilities of adaptation
  • Between both of us being sick, me having a cough, the episode's problematic material getting in the way of the plot, Fio's computer crashing, Fio's microphone giving him issues, and (most heinous of all) the recorder cutting off our goodbye's at the end, I completely forgot to mention that I was on another podcast last week!
  • Some of you may recall Kenny from our Horror in RPGs episode. I had the pleasure of joining him and his co-hosts on the Halloween-themed episode of their podcast, Lag Time. We discussed gameinformer's Top 25 Horror Games of All Time, I retold my P.T. story, and much fun was had. Also, MAJOR SPOILERS FOR AMNESIA: THE DARK DESCENT.
    • Also-also, I wrote the music for their intro and outro, the latter of which can be found as a full-length song here on iTunes.
  • From Fio's timestamps/notes: "I’m talking about miner ghosts, how did we not mention Scooby Doo? That sounds exactly like a Scooby Doo episode."
    • Intro music: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
    • Outro music: "Ballad of the Beaconsfield Miners" - Foo Fighters | YouTube | iTunes |

    (Header image taken from

    Thursday, October 30, 2014

    054: Constantine 1x01 "Non Est Asylum" - Pilot Problems


    In this episode:
    • The premier of NBC's Constantine has come and gone. What are the particular successes and failures of this adaptation and what does that mean for whatever the rest of the series has in store?
    • Long story mercifully short, the pilot has the same kind of problems that plague pilots periodically. That's not an excuse, but it's not exactly a surprise.
      • Of course, you'll have to listen to the podcast to find out what those problems are. That's how we get ya.
    • At the end of the pilot, Liv is no longer an active participant in the events of the series (I'd mark this with spoilers, but it's been all over media news so if you're interested in the show you've probably heard about it). How they handled her departure was... not awesome. Hamhanded, sure, but at least they weren't horrifically awful about it.
    • We discuss the taxonomy of horror fiction and where Constantine seems to see itself on that spectrum.
    • Intro music: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
    • Outro music: "Ring of Fire" - Social Distortion | YouTube | iTunes |

    Sunday, October 26, 2014

    B06: It's Cold In This House, Pt. IV

    In this episode:
    • The fourth of four installments of "It's Cold In This House," a short story Ian wrote back in high school.
    • Sixteen-year-old Erica and her parents are staying in the home of her childhood friend Kurt while they move into a new house. When Kurt and Erica investigate an open window in the middle of the night, neither of them are prepared for what follows.
    • Written, performed, and music by Ian Doherty.
    • The whole story:
    • Sorry this is so late. Didn't really get a chance to work on it until later Sunday night, and then there was The Walking Dead and such, so. Yeah. ^^;
    • We hope that if you've enjoyed this, you'll check out our regular podcast episodes as well! (If you weren't already listening to those.) The next one will be up this Thursday on this very feed, and we'll be discussing the first episode of NBC's Constantine.
    • Happy Halloween! :)

    Sunday, October 19, 2014

    B05: It's Cold In This House, Pt. III

    In this episode:
    • The third of four installments of "It's Cold In This House," a short story Ian wrote back in high school.
    • Sixteen-year-old Erica and her parents are staying in the home of her childhood friend Kurt while they move into a new house. When Kurt and Erica investigate an open window in the middle of the night, neither of them are prepared for what follows.
    • Written, performed, and music by Ian Doherty.
    • The whole story:
    • Apparently I was really a fan of the word "abyss" when I wrote this story.

    Wednesday, October 15, 2014

    053: Constantine and His Magical Friends


    In this episode:
    • Friend of the show Christina joins us as we do our best to give you an overview of what makes Constantine so awesome and why we're so excited / worried about this adaptation.
      • Christina actually got to see an advance screening of the pilot at NYCC. Her verdict is mostly positive.
        • Pros? Matt Ryan seems to have a good handle on the character and some of the scenes have a definite X-Files vibe going for them
        • Cons? Pacing issues (which are pretty much par for the course as far as pilots are concerned) and some of the characters are still struggling to find their voices. The effects are also a little hit and miss.
    • Let's address the elephant(s) in the room: Constantine (2005) is a decent supernatural thriller but we can't in good conscience call it a Constantine movie. The New52 Constantine just doesn't feel like a good fit when it comes to his place in the wider DCU and he seems hamstringed (hamstrung?) by the rating of the mainstream DC books.
      • We also gripe about the New52 and our issues with DC's "House Style."
      • Actually, there's a lot of pissing and moaning about comics in this one. Fair warning.
        • Part of that is the assertion that DarknGritty seem to be uttered in the same breath when it comes to the direction to take stories in recent years, but they're really two different concepts that don't necessarily have to go hand in hand.
    • Christina regales us with stories of early HellBlazer, especially the way in which it grapples with social issues of the time.
      • Comics are inherently political media. That's not really part of the podcast, I'm just soap-boxing at this point.
    • We speculate on the state of the universe this adaptation is going to take place in. We already know from the presence of Dr. Fate's helmet in the trailer that there's a wider magical universe out there, but what exactly is the composition of that universe?
      • Most importantly, how close will this adaptation cleave to Judeo-Christian Mythology and the Good / Evil binary that have been nearly ubiquitous in network supernatural TV series thus far.
      • Also importantly, are we going to see Zatanna or Swamp Thing at any point during this adaptation?
    • Christina recently launched a podcast called Bond Girls located over at You can find it here and here.
    • As far as further reading to catch you up to speed on exactly who Constantine is before the show begins, Christina recommends the HellBlazer trades Original Sins and Dangerous Habits.
    • We get into a lot of asides during this recording. They don't really venture into super spoiler-y territory, but in case you're worried, they cover Twin Peaks, Sleepy Hollow, Ghostbusters 3 Rumors, The Walking Dead, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Gotham, Supernatural, DC's New52, Marvel's Ultimate Universe, Bones, and Leverage.
    • Intro music: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
    • Outro music: "Don't Fear the Reaper" - Blue Oyster Cult | YouTube | iTunes |

    Sunday, October 12, 2014

    B04: It's Cold In This House, Pt. II

    In this episode:
    • The second of four installments of "It's Cold In This House," a short story Ian wrote back in high school.
    • Sixteen-year-old Erica and her parents are staying in the home of her childhood friend Kurt while they move into a new house. When Kurt and Erica investigate an open window in the middle of the night, neither of them are prepared for what follows.
    • Written, performed, and music by Ian Doherty.
    • The whole story:
    • Yeah, these are probably going to be a Sunday thing from now on.
    • In case you didn't see it: Last post Fio was quick to inform me that I was not the only person dressed in Halloween-appropriate garb (as depicted in the header image). My apologies.

    Sunday, October 5, 2014

    B03: It's Cold In This House, Pt. I

    In this episode:
    • The first of four installments of "It's Cold In This House," a short story Ian wrote back in high school.
    • Sixteen-year-old Erica and her parents are staying in the home of her childhood friend Kurt while they move into a new house. When Kurt and Erica investigate an open window in the middle of the night, neither of them are prepared for what follows.
    • Written, performed, and music by Ian Doherty.
    • The whole story:
    • Sorry this is so late. Originally there wasn't going to be music, but my brain won't let me half-ass anything, so once I was like "Hey! I could do music for this!", I couldn't not. I think it was worth it, but who am I to judge? 
    • Holy flashbacks, Batman.
    (Header image: Me, freshman year of college, done up very simply as a character from this story. It was Halloween, and our writing club decided we should dress up as characters from our own fiction. I'm proud to say that, IIRC, I was the only person whose costume was particularly Halloween appropriate.)

    Wednesday, October 1, 2014

    052: Sexy Mummies

    Mild spoilers for Season 3 of The Walking Dead

    In this episode:
    • Tonight: Horror Literature. *chamber music starts playing*
    • But before that, Ian talks a little bit about his experience at Scare-a-Con. In short: it was fun!
    • Fio and Ian take on the gigantic topic of horror literature, its origins, and where it has gone in the past three hundred years or so.
    • ...and show very quickly that they have done none of the research omg.
    • Alternate title for this episode: Vaguely Remembering Books We Read in High School.
    • The Dead Authors Podcast
    • Ian teases a special addition to the podcast for the month of October, in celebration of Halloween coming up!
    • Correction: The podcast adaptation of Dracula written by MST3K's Frank Conniff is titled "Dracula Has Risen in the Polls."
    • I worded it weirdly on the podcast, but what I meant to say was, Jeffrey Combs recommended I watch the DVD version of Re-Animator because it includes stuff that is not in the version on Netflix.
    • Also, I can't believe we didn't mention this on the podcast, but if you aren't watching Frankenstein, MD, you really should be (thanks for the reminder, Alina!). Attempts to describe it at the moment are failing me, so just watch it; it's friggin' awesome.
    • Again, neither of us were in top form for this podcast, so rest assured, it's likely we'll be touching on at least some of the topics or books mentioned on this episode again in more detail in the future.
    • I'll link it here once I have a post of the pictures from Scare-a-Con put together. Watch Tumblr for it.
    (Header image from

    Wednesday, September 17, 2014

    051: Pantsless Chaos


    In this episode:
    • Ian's friend Kenny joins us for our discussion of Horror in tabletop RPGs! (NOTE: We do our best to limit or explain jargon for non-players.)
    • Before that, though, Ian talks about his experience playing P. T., the PS4-exclusive playable teaser for the upcoming Silent Hill game "Silent Hills" helmed by Hideo Kojima and Guillermo del Toro. In short: AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHH.
    • If you want to skip the P. T. discussion, our short discussion of the two cons Fio and I attended/would be attending begins at 18:00, and our Horror in RPGs discussion begins shortly after.
    • Ian, Fio, and Kenny retell their experiences running horror-themed Dungeons & Dragons adventures and the difficulties and successes they ran into.
    • We also talk a little bit about non-D&D tabletop RPGs, including an old Starcraft tabletop game, Call of Cthulhu, CthulhuTech, and the Buffy tabletop RPG.
    • We wrap things up with some unsolicited advice on running adventures.
    • Kenny joins us from Lag Time Podcast, a podcast dedicated to gaming discussion and local brews. Subscribe on iTunes here, and follow them on Facebook here!
    • Also, here's a link to the original Kickstarter for Toe Tag Riot, the comic Fio mentions early on, and how to pre-order the comic.
    • I mention on the podcast how I was going to be at Scare-a-Con "this weekend," but it was the weekend after we recorded, and we recorded last Tuesday, so...yeah. Apologies for issuing the invite to talk to me there, after it's already happened. Rest assured, I will be talking about it next episode.
    • I still have not played Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm, so I could not nerd out about it with Fio and Kenny. *hangs head in shame*
    • Intro: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
    • Outro:"In the Garage" - Weezer | YouTube | iTunes |
    (Header image taken from

    Wednesday, September 3, 2014


    I don't care who you are; that's fucking terrifying.


    In this episode:
    • It's our 50th episode! We...didn't plan anything particularly special.
    • Join us as we venture into the realm of children's horror and a discussion of its importance.
    • ...which lasts a few minutes or so, and then we just start listing off our favorite Courage the Cowardly Dog and Are You Afraid of the Dark? episodes.
    • We take a quick detour into the land of Tim Burton--specifically, his use of a lot of horror aesthetics without actually making "horror movies," per se.
    • Children's horror covered in this episode:
      • The Beetlejuice cartoon
      • Gravity Falls
      • Courage the Cowardly Dog
      • Are You Afraid of the Dark?
      • Aaahh!!! Real Monsters
      • Nickelodeon's Halloween specials
      • Batman: The Animated Series
      • Neil Gaiman's Coraline
      • Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark
      • The Goosebumps books and TV series
      • Hocus Pocus
    • They got away with so much shit in the 90s. Like, seriously.
    • I couldn't find a particular quote with Neil Gaiman talking about the importance of children's horror, but here's the comment on his journal about whether or not Coraline is appropriate for young children, and how children and adults receive the story.
    • Here's the Gammell illustration for Scary Stories that I always think of.
    • We hit Twitter at the end of the episode to see what others recalled from their childhoods. Thanks for the responses!
    • I couldn't find a clip to link to for where I got the title of this episode from, so here's a screenshot of the moment. (In all honesty, when is there going to be a better time for me to make this reference?)
    • Fio pointed out that when I said "Tia and Tamara Madly," I meant "Tia and Tamara Mowry." The brain does funny things with memory.
    • From Fio: If any of our listeners could explain exactly what the fuck was going on in Aaahh!!! Real Monsters, that would just be splendid.
    • Also from Fio: Okay, so the JtHM comic comment was a bit of an exaggeration, I think they might have decided to give him the cartoon in the middle of Squee!, so after JtHM.
    • More from Fio's timemarks:
      • 7:12 - You pronounce “neither” like “naayther” here. So. ‘Sup with that?
      • 1:03:00 - Part of the AMoT Drinking Game should be “Take a drink every time Fio goes out of his way to mention Mia Kirshner, Neve Campbell, or Winona Ryder”
      • 1:24:10 - I wasn’t quite sure about the timeline here, but there’s definitely a big gap where I wasn’t really reading any horror between Goosebumps and King. I’m pretty sure all of fourth and fifth grade for me were just nothing but Harry Potter.
      • Comparing Twilight Zone to Are You Afraid of the Dark I’m stumbling around a lot, I think when it comes down to it my point is that one of these shows has Rod Serling and the other one doesn’t.
      • Hocus Pocus. That is all.
    • Intro: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
    • Outro: "Dreaming" - Bruno Coulais, Coraline Original Motion Picture Soundtrack | YouTube | iTunes |
    (Header image from

      Wednesday, August 20, 2014

      049: Prometheus (2012) - The Tragedy of Meredith Vickers, Princess of Weyland Corp.

      SPOILERS FOR ALIEN (1979), ALIENS (1986), ALIEN3 (1992), ALIEN: RESURRECTION (1997), and PROMETHEUS (2012)

      In this episode:
      • Cleolinda Jones joins us once again!
      • And she's going to be at Dragon Con this year! She'll be on or at several panels, including the Hannibal Fannibals pannibal (say that three times fast) at 1PM on Saturday, August 30th and the Dream Logic and Murder Wizardry panel at 10PM on Sunday, August 1st. And she'll be giving away some awesome stuff--listen for more details!
      • Fio and I will also be attending a few upcoming conventions, although in much less professional capacity. Fio will be at Baltimore Comic-Con the weekend of September 6th, and I'll be at Scare-a-Con 2014 on Saturday, September 12th!
      • Discussion of the 2012 Ridley Scott film Prometheus, including the good ideas, the bad ideas, the utterly nonsensical ideas, and the all-around wackadoo nature of the film.
      • The writer of this movie seemed to be more interested in writing David than anything else, but we all would've liked to see more of the Shaw/David relationship explored.
      • For some reason Ridley Scott thinks leaving things out makes more sense.
        • Alright, to be perfectly fair, Blade Runner is a million times better without the narration. Did that change burn Ridley so bad that he just wants to make the rest of his movies incomprehensible?
      • Pacing. It's a thing.
      • Here are links to the deleted scenes Cleo mentioned:
      • This brings us to the end of our 2014 Summer Movie Series! Let us know in the comments here or on Tumblr what you'd like to hear us discuss next.
      • As of the writing of this post, I am 99% sure I'll be at Scare-a-Con. I waffled a bit on the podcast, but now I'm pretty certain. 
      • Wolven's Tumblr is, as in "Wolven's not here," not "Wolven's not there," as we say on the podcast. Knot naut naught knawt.
      • RE: the comments on how Marc Streitenfeld wrote the music for Prometheus backwards and then reversed the recording: It wasn't the main melodic theme he did that with (which, as it happens, seems to have been written by Harry Gregson-Williams)--I think it was just the score in general, and you can definitely hear it in the moodier music on the soundtrack album. Here's the section of the Wikipedia article on it.
      • Opening: Prometheus Trailer
      • Intro: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
      • Outro: "Life" - Harry Gregson-Williams, Prometheus Original Soundtrack | YouTube | iTunes |
      (Header image taken from

          Wednesday, August 6, 2014

          048: Alien: Resurrection (1997) - The Research Song

           We've all been there...right?

          SPOILERS FOR ALIEN (1979), ALIENS (1986), ALIEN3 (1992), ALIEN: RESURRECTION (1997), SILENT HILL (2006), FIREFLY 1x05, Starcraft, X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST (2014), and WORLD WAR Z (book and 2013 film).

          In this episode:
          • Fio's friend Joe joins us for our discussion!
          • Discussion of Alien: Resurrection (1997), including Joss Whedon's writing, the interesting (but not altogether well-executed) ideas in the script, weird acting/writing choices, and where this movie rates in our heads against the previous movies.
          • Joe sheds light on some of the Alien comics that may have influenced the screenplay for Alien: Resurrection.
          • What themes are present in the script? Could they really decide which they wanted to focus on?
          • Human vs. construct--was this explored to its fullest extent?
          • How 90s is this movie, really?
          • Interpretations of how the Alien Queen ended up with a womb in this film and why the Humalien Hybrid kills the queen. The fact that we have to spend a decent chunk of this podcast debating our interpretations of this sequence of events is evidence enough that this film is just really not clear.
          • After Joe leaves, Ian gives his non-spoilery thoughts on The Strain, Guillermo del Toro's vampire/epidemic horror TV series currently airing on FX. In short: It's cool! ...But kind of uneven. Also: body horror.
          • At some point, we're going to devote an episode or two of the podcast to the Silent Hill movie(s). I mean, if we have to. *heavy breathing*
          • Next time: Cleolinda joins us once again for the final movie in our Summer Movie series: Prometheus!
          • Joe had to leave somewhere around the 1 hour mark, but we don't really give any indication for the listener's benefit that he's left at that point. Apologies.
          • I think at some point (when we're trying to figure out how long after Alien3 this movie was) I accidentally said Alien3 came out in '93 instead of '92. My mistake.
          • Compare Fio's Research song to Data's Scanning for Lifeforms song
          • Highlights from Fio's timestamps:
            • 6:09 - Based on our sample size thus far, 100% of the people who have seen the Alien movies were too young to see the Alien movies.
            • 1:32:22 - “We’ve pretty much exhausted our topics” Oh have we, Fio? Have we? Because there are twENTY FUCKING MINUTES LEFT.
            • Anybody who figured we were going to spend a good portion of this Podcast talking about Firefly, Starcraft, X-Men: Days of Future Past, World War Z, a huge diversion on The Strain, and giving a random shout-out to Apt Pupil, you deserve a cookie.
            • So I’m getting the feeling that we think Call is the most interesting character in this movie. I don’t think I’m wrong in this. IAN: Definitely the most interesting new character, at the very least. Alien!Ripley's pretty interesting, if written a little vaguely.

          • Intro: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
          • Outro: "Human" - The Killers | YouTube | iTunes |
          (Screencap taken from

          Wednesday, July 23, 2014

          047: Alien3 (1992) - The Ungainly, the Underwhelming, and the Ugly

          SPOILERS FOR ALIEN (1979), ALIENS (1986), ALIEN (1992), ALIEN: RESURRECTION (1997), and Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.

          In this episode:
          • A Matter of Taste recommends that everyone take a deep breath and find a strong drink before pursuing the ill-advised course of watching this movie.
          • That's right, we're talking Alien3. 
          • Spoiler alert, in case you didn't see this one coming, the special effects do not hold up so well.
          • The set design, however? Pretty solid.
          • We discuss the various follies that resulted in this film.
            • Most of them can be laid at the feet of a script passed around between a cavalcade of screenwriters and one dude who apparently just hated fun.
          • Ripley's characterization: where is it in this movie? Did it escape when the pod crashed? What happened?
          • This is the first time we see an Alien's form altered by the host it impregnated, so that's kind-of cool at least.
            • The concept moreso than the execution.
          • We address the elephant in the room, namely why Newt and Hicks don't survive the first scene.
            • There's really no good reason.
            • None at all.
            • Okay, there are a few reasons we can come up with, but no good ones.
            • I don't know what you want from me, it was a bad choice.
          • Because of the magnitude of this betrayal, it becomes difficult to get invested in any of the other characters in the film because the screenwriters have already broken the audience's trust for no discernible reason, we touch on this a bit in the 'cast.
          • We do get around to talking about stuff other than how upset we are at the murder of Newt and Hicks. I think.

          • Double-Y chromosomes are a thing, but not the thing that the movie wanted them to be.
          • UPDATE: Tumblr user eriksmaugcanton informs us about the comic book series Fio recalled but couldn't remember the name of.
          • Highlights from Ian's Timestamps:
            • 9:52 - I honestly did not register the mugs looking weird. I think this is another Dolarhyde’s chairs situation. XP
            • 11:52 - See, my brain immediately went to Doctor Hugh and started making House jokes.
            • 13:30 - Did I just call it a “spacehugger”? ahahahahahahaha. Futuristic environmentalists ftw. “HUG THE VACUUM! PROTECT THE EMPTINESS OF SPACE!”
            • 16:11 - “I don’t know how to judge that part [killing off Newt and Hicks] of the movie…” Oh, don’t worry, former Ian. You’ll know by the end of the podcast.
            • 53:35 - And boom goes the dynamite. :P “BULLSHIT,” FIO. YOU MADE ME USE A SWEAR OTHER THAN “FUCK.”
          • Intro: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
          • Outro: "The Great Disappointment" - AFI | YouTube | iTunes |
          (Screencap taken from

          Wednesday, July 9, 2014

          046: Aliens (1986) - They Mostly Podcast At Night. Mostly.

          SPOILERS FOR ALIEN (1979), ALIENS (1986), ALIEN 3 (1992), ALIEN: RESURRECTION (1997), PROMETHEUS (2012), and ANIMORPHS #53: THE DECISION (are you even surprised?).

          In this episode:
          • Cleolinda Jones joins us once again for one of her (and our) favorite movies!
          • Discussion of Aliens (1986), including our first exposures to the film, the theme of family throughout the film, the differences between the theatrical and Special Edition cuts, and our favorite moments and lines.
          • Why does this movie speak to so many people? We theorize.
          • Ian pulls in references to Captain Underpants and Animorphs, because of course he does.
          • We need a bingo card for frequent podcast occurrences. Any takers?
          • The morality of Carter Burke
          • Cleo shows us why Aliens really is It Gets Worse: The Movie.
          • We discuss the xenomorph lifecycle as a dark reflection of human reproduction, this movie especially emphasizing parenthood.
          • Ian regales all with excerpts from the Aliens novelization.
          • Bishop and androids in the Alien movies.
          • We talk a little bit more about the upcoming Alien: Isolation video game, which just had a pretty awesome announcement.

          • I am aware the line is "You've blown a trans-axle," not "busted." For the longest time I remembered it as "busted" (and also as "ease off" instead of "ease down"). It's close enough that I didn't feel like re-recording it once I realized the error. FORGIVE ME, INTERNETS.
          • According to Wikipedia, it was 17,372 Yeerks that Jake ordered Ax to flush. Of course, it also says he did it "Hoping to distract Visser One and Tom long enough to save Rachel's life," which is a complete and utter lie.
          • In a rare moment of clarity while listening back to the podcast, I remembered where Cleo must have gotten "158" for the colony's population.
          • Highlights from Fio's timestamps:
            • 4:00 - 5:10 - And a phone is ringing. That no one can hear but you, Ian. There was no phone. There was no phone, was there Ian? Was there?
            • 16:41 - I said Lurkers when I meant Licker. I’m a bad Resi fan.
            • 26:51 - I know you said “thirty-thousand, or…” here, but it sounds like you said “thirty-thousander” and it made me giggle.
            • The betrayal and disappointment of Alien3. WE’RE NOT EVEN THERE YET. WHY ARE WE TALKING ABOUT THIS ALREADY? DON’T MAKE IT HURT ANYMORE, IAN.
          • Opening: "Ripley's Rescue" - James Horner, Aliens: The Deluxe Edition (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) | YouTube | iTunes
          • Intro: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
          • Outro: "Killer Queen" - Queen | YouTube | iTunes |
          (Header image taken from

          Wednesday, June 25, 2014

          045: Alien (1979) - I Sing the Nostromo Electric

          SPOILERS AHEAD FOR ALIEN (1979), ALIENS (1986), ALIEN 3 (1992), PROMETHEUS (2012), Starcraft, Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm, and JASON X (2001) (no, really).

          In this episode:
          • Well, we're talking about Alien, so clearly there's only one way to begin:
            • A loooooong-ass digression on 2001: A Space Odyssey, that's how!
          • We discuss the movie Alien, its impact on the horror genre, specifically talking about Sci-Fi horror and the evolution of Monster-based horror away from the campier radioactive terror flicks of the previous decades.
          • Retro-futurism, more specifically whether or not we would consider Alien to be intentionally retro-futuristic, or if that's a layer added by the temporal distance between the film's creation and our discussion of it.
            • It's actually pretty wonky when you think about it, we get into it a little deeper on the 'cast.
          • The Chestburster scene, how it's a masterpiece, and our initial experiences with the Alien franchise as children.
            • Yes, children. People with glass parenting skills shouldn't throw stones.
          • Where exactly does the term Xenomorph come from, how is it applied in the films, and what is it with toy companies in the 80s making (admittedly awesome) action figures (that were marketed to children) for films waaaaaaaaay outside their target demo?
          • The way Alien has a habit of drawing you into the perspective of the characters so that you experience the film alongside them.
            • We get a little bit into writing strategies and how they could have achieved that, but really not much more than that. This is something we've both agreed we'd like to mine out some more before approaching the subject in a later podcast.
          • Always Reblog Ripley
            • Always.
              • Seriously, though, we get into Sigourney Weaver's immense performance and her equally immense impact on the sci-fi genre, how she navigates the "final girl" trope in the film, and the legacy she's left in her wake.
          • The possibility of perfection and the horror of actually attaining it.
          • We dance around different definitions of Body Horror and what it means to us.
          • Finally, if you were having trouble finding the podcast on, we've navigate that treacherous crossing ourselves.
          • If it wasn't blisteringly obvious, the title of this podcast is Ian's and the header image is Fio's
          • Highlights from Ian's Timestamps:
            • 1:15 - 1:30 - *sung a la Dave Matthews* The space betweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeen, the podcast paaaaaaaaarts…
            • 26:58 - Have you heard my new band, Jungian Osmosis?
            • 52:41 - “The cat is an ill omen in this movie!” File this under: Sentences I’m glad exist.
            • 1:00:31 - “When Ripley goes into that...I dunno, control panel room, if that’s what you want to call it…” Oh, I don’t know, Ian--maybe you could call it a CONTROL ROOM? *facepalm*
            • 1:01:07 - p, and “It was so much computer.” Another sentence I’m glad exists.
            • 1:12:10 - P and what the fuck do we talk about for the next 40 minutes, damn
            • 1:15:47 - If only I had had the presence of mind to say, “Yeah… yeah, that’s right.”
            • 1:40:20 - It was all I could do here to keep from bringing up the uncanny valley again--at this point it’s almost a given when discussing horror monster design.
            • Intro: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
            • Outro: "I Sing the Body Electric" - Me First and the Gimme Gimmes | YouTube | iTunes |


            Wednesday, June 11, 2014

            044: The Video Game Episode or I Knew it was Going to Happen, You #@$%ing Criminals

            Minor spoilers for Bioshock; Dead Space 1 & 2; Half-Life 2; Portal 1 & 2; Oddworld 1 & 2; Silent Hill 1, 2, & Shattered Memories; The Evil Within; Amnesia: The Dark Descent; Batman: Arkham Asylum; Folklore. MAJOR SPOILERS FOR MASS EFFECT 2 “OVERLORD: ATLAS STATION,” THE LAST OF US, ODDWORLD, and HANNIBAL SEASONS 1 & 2.

            In this episode:
            • Our dear friend Vic joins us for a few hours of revelry
            • As you may or may not have gleaned from the spoiler warnings, this episode we're discussing horror in the realm of video games. The Ole' Interactive Electronic Hickory Spookshow, as no one has ever called it in history ever.
            • So of course we're going to talk about our personal experiences with horror games, because none of us did the reading.
              • Consummate professionals.
            • We discuss how the player's agency in the narrative changes the different tactics the producers of the game need to utilize in order to maintain the horror atmosphere.
              • By that token, we also get into the influence that horror movies have (some might argue obviously had on the horror game genre).
            • We address the concept of Aggressive vs Defensive gaming in regards to Action Horror vs Survival Horror.
              • Going off of that concept, we also look into what purists might argue are "true" horror games vs games that are not by their nature horror, but employ a horror-themed aesthetic.
            • There's, like, a whole lot about lighting in here. Ian's got a serious jones for lighting, if you guise weren't aware.
            • We get into how far logic can be bent in the medium of the game vs a non-interactive medium (Say, Hannibal, perhaps?)
              • Opening: Clip from Resident Evil (Linked is your best bet of getting a new, physical copy of the first game at this point)
              • Intro: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
              • Outro: "Want You Gone" - Jonathan Coulton | YouTube | iTunes |
              (Header image taken from this post:


              Wednesday, May 28, 2014

              043: Hannibal 2x13 "Mizumono" - It Was Weirdly Upsetting


              In this episode:
              • Cleolinda Jones returns!
              • we can all sob together.
              • Discussion of Hannibal 2x13 "Mizumono," including why, God, why.
              • From Fio: "So much of this episode is just us commiserating via emotional vomit cleansing."
              • Blood. So much blood.
              • srsly why.
              • what's even the point of description bullets.
              • Life advice: If you hear the theremin, just stay downstairs.
              • The AV Club Interview with Bryan Fuller for "Mizumono" 
              • This is My Design eyeshadow collection from Aromaleigh
              • As we said on the episode: Between now and the fall, we'll be covering general horror topics (and possibly more movies!). Let us know here or through one of the ways listed in our sidebar if there's anything in particular you want us to discuss.  
              • You can expect the next episode of A Matter of Taste in two weeks' time on Thursday, June 12. Prospective topic: Horror video games.
              • The song from Inception is "Non, je ne regrette rien" by Édith Piaf
              • "Dear Sister," the SNL (Lonely Island) sketch I reference which features "Hide and Seek" by Imogen Heap
              • Despite us backtracking through the episode several times, we managed to completely gloss over the scene between Bella and Hannibal this episode where they talk about forgiveness. Will you forgive us?
              • Highlights from Fio's timestamps:
                • 19:46 - “At the Breakfast Dinner Table” is like a lighthearted palate cleanser version of our podcast
                • 46:26 - Price and Zeller’s Bed and Breakfast spin off is my dearest dream and I refuse to let it die.
                • 48:03 - Hah hah. Yes, fifteen other serial killers living in Baltimore who are not me, not at all even a little bit in any way shape or form. Hah hah. Cleo, you kidder, you slay me, which is entirely different from the way that I, a normal human creature, interact with other people. Hah.
                • Opening: "Sirens - Air Raid Siren - CU - Rise, Steady, Fall"-
                • Intro: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
                • Outro: "Mosquito Song" - Queens of the Stone Age | YouTube | iTunes |
                (Header image taken from this post:


                Wednesday, May 21, 2014

                042: Hannibal 2x12 "Tome-Wan" - A Matter of Interpretation

                SPOILERS UP TO (and including) HANNIBAL 2x12, as well as MAJOR SPOILERS for the Hannibal novel/movie.

                In this episode:
                • Discussion of Hannibal 2x12 "Tome-Wan," including the most horrific thing we've ever seen, ever, Hannibal's amazing reaction to Mason trouncing around his office with an utter lack of respect, the plot points and details cherry-picked from Thomas Harris' Hannibal, Bedelia's return, and where we think things might go in the finale. 
                • We dive right into the super-upsettingness of the Mason scene, the uncanny valley (drink) nature of his mask, and how we can see the Vergers featuring into the rest of the series.
                • How much of the books/movies the show is burning this early in its run, so where do we go from here? (drink)
                • Who will live? Who will die? How fucked up will it really be?
                • If you're trying to minimize your spoilers for future storylines, the biggest spoilers for the Hannibal novel/movie begin around the 54:00 mark.
                • Next week: A special guest will be joining us for the finale! Hint: It's Cleo. ...I may not entirely understand the whole concept of "hints."
                • Made it through the whole episode without making a Hitchhiker's Guide reference. I'm...slightly disappointed in ourselves.
                • Bryan Fuller's AV Club interview on this episode. Just as fair warning: He makes a few vague comments about the season finale near the end. 
                • The Wikipedia article for the novel Bedelia by Vera Caspary 
                • The point I think I was trying to make RE: Bedelia and Hannibal's role reversal as patient and psychiatrist, and what Fio basically comes to on the podcast: The way she characterizes her relationship with Hannibal draws connections to Randall Tier, Margot Verger, and of course Will, and back to the major themes of Shiizakana in general. That's where I'm getting this whole "teacher/acolyte" idea from. Bedelia, like Randall, Margot, and Will seems to have at one time been one of Hannibal's "students"--a "student of predators," as Will comments about Randall. Interestingly, it also possibly casts Will's bringing up Bedelia in the whole "How many are there?" conversation in Shiizakana in an entirely new light.
                • You in danger, girl. (As if anyone who's spent a modicum of time on the Interwebs needs a link.)
                • The production still of Bedelia from the season finale that I bring up. EDIT: As an anonymous Tumblr user brought up, the post actually says 113, not 213, meaning it's from Savoureux, not Mizumono. Doesn't mean she can't be in the finale, but yeah. My mistake, and my most sincere apologies.
                • Highlights from Fio's timestamps:
                  • 9:55 - I’m stumbling over my words a lot around here, care to clean this up and make me not sound like an idiot? I know it’s a tall order, but I trust you, Ian. I trust your judgement. I trust your ability to judge the heat and texture of a poorly cooked ravioli and I trust that you would stop a well meaning manticore from losing an argument with a storm drain.
                  • 17:22 - I’m pretty sure that with that Gaiman quote it’s originally used to reference retellings and I’m just bogarting it to talk about adaptations. But I guess you could make a very reasoned argument that adaptations are just retellings with a bit of a medium shift. Blah.
                  • 31:51 - Mason whips out... test the meat... heyoooooooooo
                  • 46:10 - A Matter of Interpretation is our spinoff podcast where we’re even more obtuse and pedantic
                • Intro: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
                • Outro: "March of the Pigs" - Nine Inch Nails | YouTube | iTunes |
                (Header image taken from this post:


                Wednesday, May 14, 2014

                041: Hannibal 2x11 "Ko No Mono" - Useless Prognostication


Bless you 

                SPOILERS UP TO (and including) HANNIBAL 2x11, as well as mild spoilers for the novel Hannibal.

                In this episode:
                • Discussion of Hannibal 2x11 "Ko No Mono," including the fate of Freddie Lounds, religious symbolism, how Hannibal perceives the people around him, the Vergers, and Alana's journey this episode and beyond
                • What does all of this mean for Will's slide into darkness?
                • Hannibal as manipulator vs Hannibal as lifetroll. Ian concludes: Hannibal, you fucker.
                • Also according to Ian: Bryan Fuller is basically Hannibal. Minus the cannibalism and the murder and all that jazz, but you catch my drift.
                • Lots of religious symbolism.
                • We talk about how serialized this season has been, and the way the writing reflects elements of Red Dragon and Silence of the Lambs.
                • Who's in on what? What's the end game?
                • There's definitely a bunch of stuff we didn't dig deep into here--feel free to bring things up in the comments.
                • Highlights from Fio's timestamps:
                  • 33:08 - Does anyone want to join my Nerdcore Shoegaze band Useless Prognostication?
                  • 39:37 - So we’re talking about Hannibal’s religious beliefs here, but quick aside. A Gay Christian and a Straight Atheist debate horror movies. You realize this is a sitcom, right? We live in a sitcom right now and it’s all our fault.
                  • How sincere is Hannibal? Like, at any point in time? Ever?
                • "Previously On" clips taken from AMOT 012 & 013
                • Intro: "This is My Design" - original song, music by Ian. More on this as it develops.
                • Outro: "I Want to Conquer the World" by Bad Religion | YouTube | iTunes |
                 (Header image taken from