Wednesday, October 21, 2009

October Christian Science Fiction & Fantasy Blog Tour

This month's tour features Eric Wilson's Haunt of Jackals. Wilson's website is here and his book trilogy website is here. Check out the tour here:

Brandon Barr
Wayne Thomas Batson
Jennifer Bogart
Justin Boyer
Keanan Brand
Amy Browning
Karri Compton
Amy Cruson
CSFF Blog Tour
Stacey Dale
D. G. D. Davidson
Jeff Draper
April Erwin
Karina Fabian
Beth Goddard
Todd Michael Greene
Timothy Hicks
Becky Jesse
Cris Jesse
Julie
Carol Keen
Dawn King
Rebecca LuElla Miller
Mirtika
Nissa
John W. Otte
James Somers
Speculative Faith
Rachel Starr Thomson
Robert Treskillard
Steve Trower
Fred Warren
Phyllis Wheeler
Jill Williamson
KM Wilsher

Sunday, October 11, 2009

A Groaner

The philosopher Rene Descartes moved to Sweden in 1649 to tutor Queen Christina. Descartes was a lazy man used to sleeping late, and he was now grieving over the recent destruction of the robot he had built to replace his dead daughter (the robot having been tossed off a ship by ignorant and fearful sailors), so he was irritated to find he was expected to lecture to the queen every morning at five.

One morning, however, the queen did not send for Descartes. Though he was at first inclined to take advantage of the situation and remain in bed, his curiosity was aroused, and so he arose, dressed, and found the chamberlain. When he did so, he asked, "Why has the queen not sent for me?"

The chamberlain replied, "Monsieur, Her Highness find this morning that she has quite lost her voice, so she simply cannot see you."

Descartes thought about this for a moment. "She's not ill, then? Surely she doesn't need her voice to hear me lecture."

The chamberlain answered, "Ah, Monsieur, perhaps this is true where you come from. But here in Sweden we know it is unwise to put Descartes before the hoarse."

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Best Web Original Ever?

Yes, I haven't exactly been posting at a regular clip lately, for what I assume are obvious reasons...

But a friend sends this along, a bizarre little three-part short film by Joss Whedon, and I must pass it on to you, since it is approximately the best thing ever, or possibly the worst thing ever, or possibly the so-bad-it's-goodest thing ever:

Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog

I should probably warn of a little unfortunate raunchy humor in the third part, but I think the merits outweigh the demerits here. This little three-part show uses a lot of schlock to build up to something unexpectedly moving. The finale had me almost in tears and emotionally affected for quite some time after I saw it. It's weird how cheesy stuff can work that way.

(Okay, as someone pointed out, this has been on the Internet for over a year, but it's new to me, and it's probably new to some of you, so I'm blogging about it now. Got it? And as for keeping current--forget it. I'm not keeping current with anything right now, though I am managing to squeeze in time for some Wright novels.)

Arguably, this little three-part short film has a flaw; the transition from humorous to dead serious has only a little build-up, so it might leave some viewers cold, though I happen not to be such a viewer, having a fondness, for whatever reason, for funny things that turn unexpectedly serious, which is why I enjoy such works as Bone, Into the Woods, and Fong Sai-Yuk. The trick, I think, is to make at least one character likable enough that the audience can continue to care when his situation goes from funny to unfunny. In this case, I could certainly empathize with Dr. Horrible's hackneyed but hilarious situation: A geek falls for a girl and then fumbles around before she's stolen away by a hunk--as far as I'm concerned, that never gets old no matter how many times it's played, so I can follow him when his disappointments tempt him to the dark side.

On top of that, Dr Horrible has a fine little moral at the end: it is no good to gain the world at the price of your soul.