ESSAY: Tadashi Hamada’s Legacy

written by David Steffen This is an essay contemplating the Marvel/Disney movie Big Hero 6 (reviewed here), an excellent animated superhero mystery comedy with one of my favorite characters of all time: Baymax, the inflatable healthcare companion android who gets (improbably) recruited to be part of a superhero team by teenage genius Hiro Hamada. I … Continue reading ESSAY: Tadashi Hamada’s Legacy

Is Baymax Really Compassionate?

written by David Steffen Note before you read any further that this article will definitely include spoilers for the Marvel/Disney movie Big Hero 6, so stop now if you don’t want it spoiled. If you haven’t seen the movie, I would recommend it! (it was reviewed here previously) It is one of my favorites–fun, funny, … Continue reading Is Baymax Really Compassionate?

MOVIE REVIEW: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

written by David Steffen Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is a 2018 animated superhero movie from Marvel Studios. Miles Morales (Shameik Moore) looks up to Spider-Man even though his policeman father (Brian Tyree Henry) hates him. His uncle Aaron (Mahershala Ali) takes him to an abandoned subway station to make some graffiti, and he’s bitten by a radioactive spider … Continue reading MOVIE REVIEW: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

MOVIE REVIEW: Ant-Man and the Wasp

Ant-Man and the Wasp is a 2018 superhero movie based on the Marvel comics characters of the same names, and is a sequel to the 2015 movie Ant-Man, and also sort of a sequel to the 2016 movie Captain America: Civil War.  After the events of Captain America: Civil War Scott Lang aka Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) was put on house arrest for…something he did in that movie which this movie does not exactly make clear (and I haven’t seen Civil War, so, go look it up yourself if you want to know).  His daughter from his previous marriage can visit him there, so he spends most of his time making new games to play with her.

At the end of the Ant-Man movie, Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) as Ant-Man succeeded in shrinking down to the quantum realm and returning, which the inventor of the shrinking suit Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) had thought impossible. 

Ray Bradbury Finalists Review 2017

The Ray Bradbury Award is given out every year with the Nebula Awards but is not a Nebula Award in itself.  Like the Nebula Awards, the final ballot and the eventual winner are decided by votes from members of SFWA, the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (which despite the name has an international membership).

I like to use the award every year as a sampler of well-loved science fiction and fantasy movies from the previous year.  I have been very happy with this tactic, and this year is no exception.

Not included in this review is a nominated episode of The Good Place, because I don’t seek out individual episodes of TV shows for these reviews.

Hugo Review: Graphic Story Finalists

The final category I’m reviewing in the Hugo Award review series for this year, this is for the graphic story category. I like graphic stories, but I tend to not do a very good job keeping up with them, so I use this category as a chance to get a sampling from some popular stories.

Interview: Jonathan Maberry

Ghost-Road-Blues-by-Jonathan-Maberry-300-dpi1-621x1024EDITJONATHAN MABERRY is one of the most versatile and prolific writers in the speculative fiction. His specialty is horror, but he also writes fantasy and science fiction, as well as mystery, thriller, western, and humor. He has 5 wins and many nominations for the Bram Stoker Award, wins/nominations for other genres and encyclopedic nonfiction, and recognition from writer and librarian associations. His first novel was in competition with one of Stephen King’s novels for the Bram Stoker Award. Several of his projects are in development with Hollywood. He has worked with Marvel and other major comic book companies. He has consulted/hosted for Disney, ABC, and The History Channel. He has written several series, most notably the Joe Ledger international thriller sci fi series and the Rot & Ruin young adult horror series. His has edited several anthologies, most notably an X-Files series. He has participated in a multitude of writer conferences and workshops, most notably Write Your Novel in Nine Months, Act Like a Writer, and Revise & Sell. He writes/speaks as an expert on the cannonal background and cultural phenomenon of the horror genre. He is a member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers Association, Horror Writers Association, International Thriller Writers, Mystery Writers Association, International Association of Media Tie-In Writers, and Society of Children’s Writers and Illustrators . He is a contributing editor of the ITW’s The Big Chill newsletter. He is a cofounder of The Liars Club writer network. His novelization of the Wolfman film – starring Anthony Hopkins, Hugo Weaving, Emily Blunt, and Benicio del Toro – reached #35 on the New York Times bestseller list. Not surprisingly, Publishers Weekly featured him on the cover.

Review of Hugo Best Dramatic Presentation Long Form 2015

written by David Steffen All of the nominees for this Hugo category this year were also nominees for the Ray Bradbury Award that goes with the Nebulas, which I reviewed over here.  At the time, Interstellar wasn’t available to rent yet, so I didn’t review that.  So, these are all repeats of that previous set … Continue reading Review of Hugo Best Dramatic Presentation Long Form 2015

Ray Bradbury Award Nominees 2015

The Ray Bradbury Award is not a Nebula, but nominations and voting and announcement are all tied up with the Nebula Awards, so its easy to bundle it in. The Ray Bradbury award is for science fiction and fantasy movies and is voted on by the members of SFWA, the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. There is often some overlap with the Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form but because of the difference in the voting groups this one seems to veer a bit more toward movies that are heavy on craft while the Hugo tends to lean toward fun popcorn movies.
I tried to watch all the movies before the Nebula voting deadline on end of day March 31st, but I acquire them by renting from Redbox and the release date on Redbox for one of the nominees (Interstellar) isn’t until March 31st. So that’s not enough time in my schedule to rent the movie and watch it. I’ll watch that movie later and give it a separate review.

We Are Multiple Man

What superpower would you choose?  Most classical superpowers are awesome for combat, but not all that practical in day-to-day activities.  Super strength?  Guess who’s going to get asked to help everyone move.  Fireballs–handy in limited context, maybe, but modern life doesn’t require a lot of fire-lighting on a day to day basis.  Metal claws–wouldn’t need to hold pocket knives but you could never get through airport security.

For my everyday life, I would definitely pick the power of Jamie Madsen, aka Multiple Man.  Jamie has the ability to create perfect duplicates of himself, each of which is intelligent and has free will.  There’s some limit to the amount of how much he can split, but the limit is quite high–something like 50 when he was in X-Factor and more as he masters his power.