Each year, the winter holidays bring with them countless traditions and customs that help to make the season more memorable and festive. Likewise, the formation of new traditions can make the holidays that much brighter for generations to come. One such tradition that should find its way into your holiday activities is to attend the annual performances of Theatre Unleashed’s A Very Die Hard Christmas and It’s a Wonderful Life: The Radio Play. The North Hollywood-based theatre company’s dynamic productions offer a wide range of raucous, good cheer and sincere warmheartedness, ensuring that there will surely be something for everyone to enjoy.
Tall tales and tall deeds.
When I was a kid, I loved the Jim Henson's Storyteller series. I didn’t quite know what it was. I only caught a few episodes, and it never quite entered my consciousness as to who Jim Henson was, though I loved watching The Muppet Show on summer mornings after Gomer Pyle and F Troop. (I have since continued my eclectic taste for programing from multiple decades, but that’s a tale for another time.) The Storyteller was pitched a little above my age group, but it was one of those shows that stayed with me, resonating without me realizing why. When I came back upon it on DVD eight years ago, I was enraptured. It was somehow nostalgic and yet completely new, as I had not seen the majority of the episodes. The series found the magic of myth and storytelling in a perfect mix that managed to invoke something primal in my consciousness, a forgotten time where stories were told over many days by an elder around a fire, when stories were something more than just an entertainment. They had a life all their own.
John Allison does it again. He instantly grabs the reader’s attention in Giant Days #21 with smart, funny dialogue between his dynamic trio - Daisy, Esther, and Susan. These women are not only witty, but completely relatable when you take into consideration their idiosyncrasies that make them fantastic to follow page after page.
There are a few questions fans ask about Star Trek repeatedly. “Who’s the best captain?” “Why do some Klingons look like Eurasian stereotypes and others have a ton of ridges on their foreheads?” “Why would you ever build a holodeck that could, in theory, kill someone?” These questions are timeless. “What would Captain Kirk’s Iron Man cosplay look like?” is not one of these questions for most people, but if you are one of the happy few, New Visions has you covered.
Okay, at this point you HAVE to know there are going to be spoilers here. It’s unavoidable. Like, even here, in this spoiler alert, I’m just going to throw out that the chick in The Crying Game is really a dude, and that Rosebud was Citizen Kane’s sled (and, apparently, William Randolph Hearst’s nickname for his mistress'…know what? Let’s not go there.) The point is: There be spoilers here! You have been warned. No refunds past this point.
For those not inclined to classical music, “The Well-Tempered Clavier” was written by Johann Sebastian Bach in two books, each consisting of a prelude and fugue in each of the 24 major and minor keys in chromatic order from C major to B minor. The “well-tempered” of the title refers to a type of tuning in which the keys will be in tune with one another. An interesting choice of title for an episode that also shows off intricate patterns, fugues, and characters coming in tune with each other. The entire episode is a bravura score, touching on all the keys of the show. Plus, it’s really hard to play.
The “Imperial Phase” is in full swing, as the second issue of the newest Wic/Div arc arrives. Self-described by writer Keiron Gillen as “the self-indulgence phase” of their musically adjacent series, this arc sees our lovely lead Persephone emerging as the driving force of the book once again. In her previous form as fangirl Laura, she was the audience's way into the complex and otherworldly lives of the resurrected Gods. Now, as one, she doesn't give us that same glimpse into the world, but we know the world a bit better by now, and her presence as the aggressive and fearless rebel of the New Gods is beginning to complicate things. The hedonism of the Gods knows no bounds, but their experiences come from years of knowing what they're doing, and whom, and why. With Persephone being more of a baby God, her actions are already beginning to get on the nerves of some of the Gods, especially since most of her action revolve around sleeping with people, despite her ongoing relationship with Baal.
I find comedy sometimes hard to write about. It’s difficult to explain why something did or did not make you laugh. I like to think of myself as at least a somewhat cultured person with a sense of humor to match, but I have been known to laugh hysterically at internet fail videos which teach the valuable lesson that overweight people should never go anywhere near rope swings or trampolines.
“The point is, I wasn’t special. I was a no one.
But it’s all my fault.
This place in the mountains.
The way things are.
All of it.
Because I stole the wrong thing.”
What if you were being chased by skeletal ghosts? What if they were reaching for you and some of them had weapons, without any intention other than to take your life? What if you were severely wounded - grabbing at your wound, bleeding, and grimacing in pain? And what if your slow path forward, away from these menacing ghosts, was somewhat blocked by a yellow feline that looks mortified as blood drips down onto it?