TV REVIEW: Tales From the Loop Season 1

written by David Steffen Tales From the Loop is a science fiction series with a montage cast that premiered on Amazon Prime in April 2020, based on illustrations from the narrative art book of the same name by Simon Stalenhag. Underneath a small coastal town scientists have built The Loop, an experimental facility intended to … Continue reading TV REVIEW: Tales From the Loop Season 1

The Lodge and Seven Contrivances: How Contrivance Affects Horror Plots

written by John Wiswell Most Horror stories are built on contrivance. In Jaws, a shark that absolutely isn’t native to that region attacks swimmers. How did it get there and why is it behaving this way? Neither Benchley’s novel nor Spielberg’s film cares. Little more effort is put into justifying the mayor and business owners … Continue reading The Lodge and Seven Contrivances: How Contrivance Affects Horror Plots

TV REVIEW: Miracle Workers Season 2: Dark Ages

written by David Steffen Dark Ages is the second season of TBS comedy series Miracles Workers. I use the term “series” very loosely here, because there is no plot continuity whatsoever between the two seasons–if they didn’t actually have the same name I wouldn’t call it a series. Besides the name, they do have a … Continue reading TV REVIEW: Miracle Workers Season 2: Dark Ages

MUSIC VIDEO DRILLDOWN #7: Foil by Weird Al Yankovic

written by David Steffen This is one of a series of articles wherein I examine a music video as a short film, focusing on the story rather than the music, trying to identify the story arcs and characters motivations, and consider the larger implication of events. The film this week is Foil by Weird Al … Continue reading MUSIC VIDEO DRILLDOWN #7: Foil by Weird Al Yankovic

Diabolical Plots Submission Window Postponed

written by David Steffen Hello everyone! Greetings and I hope that you and your family and friends are well, or as well as can be expected. For the last several years, Diabolical Plots has opened for a regular submission window every July. I’ve found that having a single month every year helps me to compartmentalize … Continue reading Diabolical Plots Submission Window Postponed

TV REVIEW: Miracle Workers Season 1

written by David Steffen Miracle Workers is a TBS dark comedy series which, so far, has completely different topics and focus each season. Season 1 aired from February-March 2019, and is centered around the bureaucracy of heaven which is not as heavenly as we would like to believe, and is based on the novel What … Continue reading TV REVIEW: Miracle Workers Season 1

TABLETOP GAME REVIEW: Skip-Bo

written by David Steffen Skip-Bo is a card game created by Minnie Hazel “Skip” Bowman in 1967, that has since been sold to Mattel. The object of the game is to completely empty your stock pile of cards, which in the standard rules starts with 30 cards (rules recommend changing this to 10 for a … Continue reading TABLETOP GAME REVIEW: Skip-Bo

DP FICTION #63B: “Synner and the Rise of the Rebel Queen” by Phoebe Wagner

The Greyhood Gang created the boards to escape the guards. The Gallows Hand Gang modified the design with runes, potion washes, and badass art. The last gang, the Blacksmith Bitches, put the boards to their true purpose: rooftop raids on the rich. It went like this. Rich folks live at the highest points in the … Continue reading DP FICTION #63B: “Synner and the Rise of the Rebel Queen” by Phoebe Wagner

MOVIE REVIEW: Alvin and the Chipmunks Meet Frankenstein

written by David Steffen Alvin and the Chipmunks meet Frankenstein is a 1999 straight-to-video cartoon film distributed by Universal Studios revising the version of the title characters from the 1983-1990 TV show. Three child-sized anthromorphic chipmunks Alvin (Ross Bagdasarian Jr) , Simon (Ross Bagdasarian Jr), and Theodore (Janice Karman), live with their adopted dad/manager Dave … Continue reading MOVIE REVIEW: Alvin and the Chipmunks Meet Frankenstein

TABLETOP GAME REVIEW: Bears Vs Babies

written by David Steffen Bears Vs Babies is a tabletop/card game from the makers of Exploding Kittens and The Oatmeal, wherein you build fearsome Frankensteinian monstrosities to defeat and eat armies of vicious babies. Each turn you have several moves (how many depends on how many players) to stitch together your monstrous armies, attaching heads … Continue reading TABLETOP GAME REVIEW: Bears Vs Babies