Doctor Who: In A Word

Do you know Keith Kelly Topping? We here at TVWriter™ firmly believe you should. He’s the UK’s Munchman – except that Keith very likely was first and definitely is more prolific.

In other words, we’re talking about one of our absolute favorite bloggers, a master of all he discusses…which is pretty much everything related to showbiz and politics in the UK. What we love about Keith most, though, is the way his blog, From the North, unabashedly proclaims his unqualified, overwhelming love for a little series you may have heard of called Doctor Who.

How much does he love Doctor Who? We would be glad to count the ways, but King Keith already has done so. Literally. Like so:

Doctor Who: In A Word (Parts One To Ninety One)
by Keith Tell Topping

Between now and Christmas (or, whenever this blogger finish, anyway) yer actual Keith Telly Topping his very self shall be reviewing every single Doctor Who story – all two hundred and seventy five(ish) of them – using just one appropriate adjective for each. Or one verb if Keith Telly Topping can’t think of an adjective. Or, one noun if Keith Telly Topping can’t think of a verb. You feel me? So, without further ado, dear blog readers …

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See the rest of this, the first batch of “Doctor Who: In A Word” on Keith Telly Toppings’ From the North blog HERE

Diana Vacc sees ‘The Gifted’ Opening Episode ‘eXposed’

by Diana Vaccarelli

—SPOILER ALERT—SPOILER ALERT—SPOILER ALERT—

Monday October 2, 2017, Fox premiered the new series The Gifted. The series takes place after the X-Men film Days of Future Past. It tells the story as a “What if the X-Men didn’t succeed in defeating the Sentinel Program?” adventure.

Basically, the show addresses the issue of, given their failure, what happens to the X-Men next? The main focus of the series is that mutants are on the run from a government agency tasked with imprisoning them.

THE GOOD:

  • Over the years, what fans call the “X-Men saga” has always done one thing very well: It shines a bright light on bigotry and on how we need to learn to accept one another and embrace each other’s differences.
  • This theme continues in The Gifted. One scene particularly effective in making the point is when Andy Strucker (Percy Hynes White) is pulled into the school showers by bullies and tortured with blasts of both hot and cold water. Through his terror he triggers mutant abilities that nearly tear the school down.
  • That storyline continues as we follow the very normal Reed Stucker (Stephen Moyer) searching for entree into the secret mutant underground in order to get help for his children their mutant natures become clear. I loved the way we could see his desperation, even though previously he had been instrumental in hunting mutants down.

THE BAD:

  • The performances in general aren’t exactly the best. The actors seemed strangely (unprofessionally?) uneasy in their roles.

THE REST:

The acting problems aren’t stopping me from wanting to see more episodes of The Gifted, and as an X-Men saga fan I’m hopeful that the performances will improve as the cast gets more into the storylines and writing in general.

If Marvel superheroes, and the X-Men in particular, are your kind of thing, then I believe you should give this series a try. It’s no Legion – not by a longshot – but over time it evolve into something interesting…and besides, it’s always fun to watch mutants kick the butts of biased abusers.


Diana Vaccarelli is TVWriter™’s Critic-at-Large and a student in the TVWriter™ Online Workshop. Find out more about her HERE

This Podcast Network May Have What It Takes To Compete With Hollywood

Have you ever said to yourself, “What the world needs now is a professional, commercial podcast network?” Neither has this TVWriter™ minion. But now that I think about it, what a great idea! (Provided that don’t bar the door to newbies, like everything else calls itself a network seems to do.)

The pic is the network. Here’s the podcast: https://soundcloud.com/deadlymanners/deadly-manners-trailer

by KC Ifeanyi

Podcast dramas have bubbled in the recent past as a modern resurgence of the radio serials of yesteryear. Shows like Homecoming and Welcome to Night Vale became must-listens more so because it was a welcomed breeze in the sometimes stale landscape of topical or non-fiction podcasts  in general. However, as novel as audio dramas may seem, it hasn’t necessarily translated into an abundance of advertisers–a familiar plight of podcasts at large. But Alex Aldea is set on changing that.

Aldea is the founder of the podcast network The Paragon Collective, home of the Reddit-born anthology series NoSleepDarkest Night, and its most recent entry in the audio drama space Deadly Manners, a whodunnit murder mystery starring Kristen Bell, Anna Chlumsky, RuPaul, Denis O’Hare, and narrated by LeVar Burton.

“I think it’s a really cool a growing medium,” Aldea says. “I started Paragon about three and a half years ago and there’s been a big shift with me of trying to find a place where I felt I belonged. And the second we started working with NoSleep and getting into the fiction space, it just kind of clicked–and there’s really a hardcore fan base out there.”

Deadly Manners started as a pitch from TV writer Ali Garfinkel (Burn NoticeHand of God) who had previously written two episodes of Darkest Night. Tonally speaking, Garfinkel says she wanted to make a show that would live somewhere between the 1992 black comedy Death Becomes Her and Clue–the challenge being that she couldn’t write Deadly Manners in the vein of either of her inspirations.

“I’m a TV writer so I’m very used to just writing for visuals. And so writing for an audio podcast, there’s no subtlety. You can’t have a scene with a bunch of actors looking at one another and sharing feelings with a glance–you have to describe everything because people are just listening,” Garfinkel says. “The thing about audio drama is that it seems like it would be less immersive than a TV show or movie, but when it’s recorded the way that Alex does it with the binaural headphones, you’re literally surrounded by sound and it’s a 3D experience. And I think for some people it has more of an impact than just watching a video.”

Creating that immersive experience is what Aldea hopes will pull in listeners beyond the fanbases his podcast network of shows has already accrued. And Aldea’s attention to production detail in order to execute his creative vision is something he’s not willing to shortchange–even if that means driving for hours just to use one microphone….

Read it all at Fast Company

Cargo 3120 ‘Ties that Bind: Part 2’ is on Smashwords!

EDITOR’S NOTE: What is Cargo 3120? Getting down to the nitty gritty, it’s a science fiction (ooh, outer space) adventure that began life as a series of original, scripted episodes in our Beloved Leader LB’s Master Class, then transformed into a web comic strip, and now is a prose serial novel that writer/co-creator (with Daymond Roman) Aaron Walker Sr. and Crew are doing their best to get it the way to your favorite TV-watching media ASAP.

We’ve written about this project many times over the past couple of years, but the best place to go to understand what Aaron Walker Sr. and his crew are up to is HERE.

And now that that’s settled:


by Aaron Walker Sr.

CLICK on the pic above to see CARGO 3120 on Smashwords!

You heard it right. The 2nd installment of our ongoing Sci-Fi Novella series: Cargo 3120 Ties that Bind is now available on Smashwords for only .99 cents!

Why Smashwords?

You’ll recall in our previous post during our free giveaway for book two, we talked about the benefits of distributing through Smashwords. There are two main benefits of making this move:

Read on more devices than just the Kindle: Through Smashwords, you have access to more formats than just MOBI (the ebook format used by Kindle). In fact, you have access to formats such as EPUB, PDP, PDF and more! In the end, more formats mean more devices. If your e-reader supports one of the formats available through Smashwords, then you can use whatever e-reader you want!

More places to find our book:  Because our book is part Smashword’s Premium Catalog, you can get the book through the following distributors: Barnes & Noble (which means you can read on the Nook!), Kobo, Apple (iBooks), Baker & Taylor Blio, Baker-Taylor Axis360, OverDrive, Scribd and more!

What’s up with Book 3?

Glad you asked. Here’s the sitrep:

Cargo 3120 Ties that Bind: Part 3 is set to release on November 1st, 2017!

The book is finished, and all that remains is the ebook formatting and cover art!

We are so proud of how Part 3 came out and can’t wait to share the latest installment of our exciting Sci-Fi Novella series!

Book 4 (which will conclude the Ties that Bind story arc) is in production as we speak. Writing has begun, and I’m shooting for a December 2017 release (January 2018 at the latest). I’ll keep you posted on the progress.

That’s all for now, folks. Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more updates.

Larry Brody’s Poetry: ‘The Scientific Method’

Ah, the wonders of quantum mechanics! Gotta love entanglement theory, amiright?

NOTE FROM LB

Recently someone asked me about my wife. He wanted to know “what kind of person” she was. For me, being a writer means – among other things – always trying to use the fewest possible words, so my reply was brief. “Her hobby is quantum  mechanics.” Which immediately brought to mind this related contemplation:


The Scientific Method
by Larry Brody

“The observation of a phenomenon

Alters that phenomenon,” so say the

Ph.D.s. “Anything that can

Happen, will. Light behaves like a wave,

Or a particle, or neither, or both, and

Life flows, or spurts, or neither, or all.”

To those who say you can be all you want,

Benevolent laws of nature say, “Amen.”

To those who say to abandon all hope,

Malignant orders say, “You bet!”

In a time—all times and none—and a

Place—all places and nowhere at all—with

Nothing—and everything, lest we forget

—To believe, I find strange comfort

In this new truth: I am at the mercy of the atom.

Quantum physics reigns.

###


Larry Brody is the head dood at TVWriter™. He is posting at least one poem a week here at TVWriter™ because, as the Navajo Dog herself once pointed out, “Art has to be free. If you create it for money, you lose your vision, and yourself.” She said it shorter, though, with just a snort.

TVWriter™ Don’t-Miss Posts of the Week – October 16, 2017

Good morning! Time for TVWriter™’s  Monday look at our most popular blog posts of the week ending yesterday. They are, in order:

Peggy Bechko Goes Web Surfing with the Writers

Looking for TV Pilot Scripts?

The #1 Skill You Need To Write For TV (Besides Fantastic Writing)

Kelly Jo Brick: The Write Path With SUPERNATURAL’S Davy Perez, Part 2

11 TV Writing DON’Ts!

And our most visited permanent resource pages are, also in order:

Writing the Dreaded Outline

PEOPLE’S PILOT 2017 Writing Contest

The Logline

THE PEOPLE’S PILOT: Rules

THE PEOPLE’S PILOT: Enter

Major thanks to everyone for making this another great week at TVWriter™. Don’t forget to click above and read what you missed and re-read what you loved!

John Ostrander: The Ultimate Illegal Alien

by John Ostrander

I’m indebted to Fox News anchor (and blogger) Todd Starnes. About three weeks ago – okay, I’m late to the party again – he posted a commentary entitled “Superman defends illegals against angry American.”

In his complaint, Starnes gripes about a scene in the most recent Action Comics where “Superman comes to the rescue of a group of illegal aliens – under attack from a white guy wearing an American flag bandana and waving around a machine gun… Instead of rounding up the illegals and flying them back to where they came from, the Man of Steel snatches the white guy and with a menacing look snarls, ‘The only person responsible for the blackness smothering your soul – is you.’”

This upset Mr. Starnes no end and has provided me with grist for this week’s column.

I could start by pointing out that the incident is fiction (or fake news) and that Superman is not real but I’ll give Mr. Starnes the benefit of the doubt and assume he already knows that. Although the guy is the host of Fox News and Commentary so maybe one shouldn’t assume. But we will.

 

Superman stops the assailant from killing these people (the alleged illegals). And this is a bad thing – because? Maybe Mr. Starnes is conflating the First and Second Amendments in the Bill of Rights and suggesting that the use of the machine gun on illegals is an expression of free speech.

Okay, I’m joking. Sorta.

This is what Superman does. This is what Superman is supposed to do. Defend people (and they are people) like these. Would it be better if he let them die at the hands of this asshole no matter how good of a reason he thinks he has? That is Superman’s job. Deporting them afterward? He’s not I.C.E. – that’s not his job. He has no legal status to do that any more than I do or Mr. Starnes has.

What I’m really indebted to Mr. Starnes for is his observation “Clark Kent is technically an illegal alien – a native of Krypton.” (Okay, technically Kal-El is the illegal alien.) Supes came to this planet, this country, in a rocket and was found by the Kents in a field who then adopted him. No border guards or checkpoints. No visa. No green card.

Who better to symbolize what an immigrant, legal or otherwise, brings to this country? Kal-El’s strengths, his abilities, his character has immeasurably aided his adopted country. He represents Truth, Justice, and the American Way in all the best senses. He is not a rapist or a drug dealer or a terrorist as some would have us believe. Superman represents the best of immigrants, legal or illegal – and us.

So, thank you, Mr. Starnes, for this timely reminder. The Man of Steel is indeed an illegal alien. We should try to make him the face of the illegals and remember not just his powers and abilities but the fact that he also from small-town America and that Superman is a good man.


John Ostrander is one of LB’s favorite writers in any medium. Don’t forget to read his most excellent blog at ComicMix, where this piece first appeared. You can learn more about John and his masterworks HERE