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By Crom! Conan the Barbarian’s Ride Past, Present and Future

14 Jan

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

The rights to who can publish illustrated stories featuring Conan the Barbarian is back in the hands of Marvel Comics. I have no problem with that and found they released issue #1 of all new adventures to ring in the New Year. My first exposure to this Cimmerian’s adventures was with this publisher before the movies. I took a time out, but always kept an eye on releases and bought adaptations of Robert E. Howard’s works (or all new tales) which interested me the most. His use of the supernatural and how he incorporated the Ancient Egyptian mythos was key.

One of my favourite villains is Thoth-Amon. Although he was referenced once in Howard’s writings, in “The Phoenix on the Sword,” he was a recurring villain in Marvel’s early Conan books. It is well known that he made up part of the makeup of the cinema villain Thulsa Doom. As for whether this mad wizard will appear in the new works depends on what this company has planned. As soon as he becomes a major figure, I will be buying these new works.

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Thoughts on Reboot: The Guardian Code 20 Episodes & On The Great Escape

20 Dec

Surprisingly, the second half (season) of Reboot: The Guardian Code (RtGC) is a vast improvement over its weak start. The narrative takes an air of an espionage thriller and a binge watch of all twenty episodes show a grand design which I am enjoying. Canadian broadcaster YTV aired all the episodes and is still airing them, while on Netflix, two seasons exist. Shades of Disney’s TRON colour the digital landscape, and that’s only because this film introduced me to the idea of becoming part of the digital universe is possible; the spirit of the user remains in every bit of code they create. Those pulses of energy within the machine is life too.

Throughout other shows, these ghosts in the machine are real. In cyberpunk literature, this idea is nothing new. When considering RtGC has three agencies interested in acquiring this technology–the Sourcerer, Megabyte and the Department of Internet Security–their interests are not for the greater good. They are not out to mend or defend.

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Takeaways from Doctor Who Series 11

18 Dec

The latest season of Doctor Who being led by a new showrunner and after a  massive binge-watch and rewatch, I found the season has its specific hits and misses. Chris Chibnall is at the helm of the series now and he is best known for developing BBC’s Broadchurch. Instead of intense drama, five episodes of the ten-episode run plays with the concepts traditional in many a tale of terror. The two most prominent were “Arachnids in the UK” and “The Witchfinders.”

Jodie Whittaker is very likable as the new Doctor. She gives the character an erratic quality similar to David Tennant’s time in the role and has the tendency to be scattered. As the later episodes show, there’s an energy that’s undeniable. She’s more empathetic to others, and this can make for interesting contrasts to previous incarnations.

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Fact or Fiction: The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina the Teenage Witch

10 Nov

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Binge watching the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina on Netflix made the day transition to night quick. On Halloween, it was the perfect show to get into the festive mood. The live-action adaptation of a nearly 50-year-old franchise and the comic book of the same name was perfect. This darker version is a departure of the light-hearted material from years past and has an odd Harry Potter style vibe to it.

The world of the mortals and “immortals” (magic users have longer lives) were once at odds centuries ago. The latter were hunted down and the mythos point to thirteen witches who took the fall so the rest may live.

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