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Returning to the Fold: Thoughts on the Ixalan Release

20 Sep

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By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

As the release of Wizards of the Coast’s Magic the Gathering Ixalan nears and the spoiler card information is fully released, everything I’m discovering about it is hardly exciting. Set one offers a bit of cool narrative, but I’m still not entirely sold in this mixed genre realm. Plus, the news on the incentive promotion cards for Friday Night Magic changing to token cards next month is more of a deterring factor. Because these participation bonuses are not shiny, I’m not as inclined to participate.

The Davy Jones in me thinks the plunder is slim. The last set drained my funds so I can pick up duplicates of certain cards. Ixalan offers very little I truly want to play with. While Sorcerous Spyglass and Revel in Riches are two nice cards, the appeal of fighting dinosaurs is not all that hot. I still feel going Land of the Lost should be its own entity. I do not mind the vampire pirates as much (I was hoping for a few zombies inspired from Pirates of the Caribbean), but I have a burning question: just how much sunblock are they wearing to in order to cross the sea to arrive at a new world? The folklorist in me is appalled by the fact these members of the undead can cross water. This fact goes against tradition.

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The Rocky Road to Star Trek: Discovery

18 Sep

By Shawn Trommeshauser
(Dreaming in Digital)

Debuting Sept 24, 2017 on CBS (USA), Space (Canada) and Netflix (other countries).

I hope Star Trek: Discovery is great! I honestly do! This series needed a revitalisation ever since Enterprise ended after only four seasons back in 2005. Even though the reboot series of films has kept the series in the public eye, they clearly traded an exploration of science and the human condition for flashy effects, and intense battles.

The ‘Kelvin’ universe movies, as they’ve come to be known as, are fun, humorous adventures, but they are not very good at doing what makes Star Trek special. They certainly lost something along the way in the transition into full-fledged action movies and most people I’ve spoken to agree.

The reboot films have to be given some slack because it’s impossible to build up and maintain the kind of lore and character comradery that the Star Trek TV series offer when you’re limited to a single story every couple of years. And in today’s environment, it would be much more feasible convincing a movie studio to fund a rollercoaster of an action film would be much more feasible than something more along the lines of “Inner Light,” easily one of the best episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation — a much more cerebral story where Captain Picard learns of the culture and fate of an alien civilization when a probe makes him live out a lifetime inside his own mind.

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2017 Vancouver Fringe Festival Interstellar Elder, A Review

12 Sep

Waterfront Theatre
1412 Cartwright St
Vancouver, BC

Wed, Sept 13 — 5:00pm
Thu, Sept 14 — 10:30pm
Fri, Sept 15 — 6:40pm
Sat, Sept 16 — 12:30pm
Sun, Sept 17 — 5:15pm

The Vancouver Fringe Festival is in full swing and one show I heartily recommend is SNAFU Dance Theatre‘s Interstellar Elder. This physical performance comedy has been touring the Canadian Fringe scene and I have hopes for it to continue touring in the States next. The joy needs to spread, much like how anyone can trace the International Space Station across the night sky from anywhere around the world. This presentation brings moments from PIXAR’s Wall*E to life and the pathos from the movie Passengers into a live show. Kitt (Ingrid Hansen) is the spaceship’s “sleep custodian” and she is a geriatric which adds to the irony of who is taking care of whom. Is it the spaceship or her? She did not wake up by accident.

Somebody has to maintain the systems of this cryogenic spaceship waiting for the Earth to become habitable again. Sort of like the computer animated film, humanity made a mess of things; centuries will have to pass before the planet can be repopulated. At least thirty human generations will have to pass and to see how Kitt deals with this fact drives this show. At the same time, she also carries on as best she can and weighs in on the consequences of waking up a fellow passenger to take the loneliness away.

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There’s a Full Moon Coming to … or Howling at Toronto!

31 Aug

By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

Anyone looking for a howling good time with a highly anticipated cult movie sequel can see Another Wolfcop on Saturday, September 2 at the Scotiabank Theatre in Toronto, Ontario. This carnage comes courtesy of The Coup Company working with Fan Expo Canada and its multiple sponsors. This movie has screened at a few festivals with nothing but praise. Interestingly, no announcements were made if it will screen at the Toronto International Film Festival which is take place in this city a week later. Some nerds get all the luck instead of cinephiles.

People missing out may get another chance with Fan Expo Vancouver coming in November 10-12. No official word has been made yet, but for this fan, I’m hoping!

A limited number tickets will most likely be available during the Toronto show, and at the venue. For more information, please visit www.wolfcop.com

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