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Reflections on Fan Expo Vancouver 2017

16 Nov

215d2-fanexpovancouverBy Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

The variety of nerdy interests represented at Fan Expo Vancouver every year will differ. They have certainly become the crossroads of where all kinds of pop culture can converge, hence the X in their #FXV hashtag. While previous shows may feel more jam-packed than recent, this year’s event only affirms what I suspected from 2016 — this local event is getting connected with various television productions which film around the Lower Mainland of British Columbia. This event is settling into a groove most will approve and I can only imagine it will get better. Although years away, I’m sure the organizers will have something grand planned when year ten hits. But that’s four years away.

This festival moved from April to November two years ago, making the expense of staying at hotels a touch better during the offseason and offering to both exhibitors and fans a chance to rest before setting up for the next show. Epic Photo Ops deserves special mention for effectively managing the lineups for those seeking a memento with their favourite group of (or with a particular) performer.

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Grant Gustin does not appear at many conventions so those hoping to meet him will have to do so at this show. As The Flash in The CW‘s flagship show, I can imagine he’s not easy to meet. To see both him and the entire STAR labs team (minus Jesse L. Martin) on stage is usually a San Diego Comic Con Hall H scale event, and fans of the show got it at Fan Expo in Vancouver, BC Canada! This panel was packed, and anyone there saw the sweet chemistry he has with Candice Patton in real life too. The star of this panel, however, was Zoe Patton, a cute canine which no doubt won many hearts. Viewers who saw this week’s episode, “When Harry met Harry,” got to understand what the Council of Wells was about, and Tom Cavanagh talked about how this segment was pieced together.

When considering the number of television and film productions going on in this corner of the world, folks hoping for a celebrity sighting will find attending this event better than to wait during a film/television shoot. A chance to interact with a star is never guaranteed when the set is a workplace. From the massive list of CW comic book based shows (Riverdale, Arrow, The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow, Supergirl and iZombie) to movies like Deadpool 2 — which ended production the month before — just who will attend are decided months before. Attendees will have to hope there are no sudden changes the week before due to work (or family, like Stephen Amell had) obligations coming up last-minute. I’m sure there were attendees hoping to spot Ryan Reynolds or Kevin Smith (who did appear in 2016).

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Disney’s New Ducktales, Early Impressions

8 Oct

By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

Even after watching five episodes of Disney’s new Ducktales (2017), the character designs in this reboot of Carl Barks product will take some time to get used to. They are not as cute as his designs and with the much beloved cartoon from the late 80’s / early 90’s. The duck family are fine, but the Bugle Boys, I’m sorry but they just too pug-like. My other issue is in replacing the voice of Launchpad McQuack. Terry McGovern is the one and only. Nobody can replace him and the jovial candor he imbued into the character.

McGovern wished the new cast all the best, but he did begin by saying to press, “I am heartsick.”

When news first broke about this remake, I was hesitant. Yes, I wanted to see new adventures. At the same time, I wondered who has the vocal talent needed to succeed in being the next Scrooge McDuck? I grew up admiring Alan Young. This actor provided decades of quality entertainment over the 70 years of being in this entertainment industry. He is the definitive Scrooge, and when he passed away in 2016, I wondered if he ever expressed his opinion on this revival. I’m sure that if he was still alive and saw the finished product, he would give his seal of approval to David Tennant. This natural talent burst into the pop culture scene with Doctor Who and since then, his enthusiasm can be seen in many a product. I particularly loved his work as Fujitoid in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and he’s the perfect choice to continue the Scrooge McDuck legacy.

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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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Video

My Hopes for Stargate: Origins, an Editorial

5 Aug

By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

The news arrived a few weeks ago during San Diego Comic-con (SDCC) about a prequel series for the Stargate franchise. Afterwards, I had to rewatch the movie, read the novels, see the entire television series to find clues to answer myself about what I loved from the franchise which defines the experience and maybe answer where Origins may go.

In the episode “Torment of Tantalus,” Catherine Langford (Elizabeth Hoffman) revealed how the science team managed to activate the wormhole transportation tube. She lost her fiancée, Ernest Littlefield (Paul McGillion) in those early experiments and I can see how the 10 episode series can expand on this central plot. No details were offered at SDCC other than Mark Ilvedson and Justin Michael Terry are attached to writing this pilot season. The only detail revealed is that it will revolve around the daughter of archaeologist Paul Langford (who discovered the mysterious metallic ring). The timeline is tight. Filming is supposedly starting in August.

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