August 31, 2012

Lend me thine ears

Dear readers:

Thanks for reading along. I've been blogging here for almost three years now, and I appreciate you coming back and keeping up with all my random geek flails and rants and such. I plan to keep up posts here for as long as you'll have me. You can expect more Clone Wars coverage soon, some comics stuff, more fantasy food recipes (just waiting for the weather to cool down so that the thought of turning on the oven doesn't make me cry), some fun lists, interviews, a few craft how-tos, and whatever fun stuff I come across on the internet. I try to keep my calendar as full of ideas as I can.

But while I'm thinking about the future, I figured it would be smart to ask you guys if there's anything in particular you'd like to see more of. If there are types of posts you really like, feel free to tell me, and I'll keep it in mind. 

Thanks again! And keep your eyes peeled for a giveaway sometime in the next few weeks. I have some toys and posters that need good homes.

Finally, whenever I read or type the phrase "lend me your ears," I think of this disgusting scene from Robin Hood Men In Tights (yes, I like that movie, shush):

Five Captain America sketches

I've started a couple of sketchbooks, but it took me until last year to realize I wanted a consistent theme. This was inspired by seeing Cat Staggs' amazing Batgirl sketchbook a while ago - mine isn't as cool as hers. Her book has more of a Grail Diary epic quality whereas mine is right off the shelf, but hey, you have to start somewhere. Being that I'd recently fallen for my first superhero comic character, Captain America, he seemed like a natural focus for my sketchbook.

And in case you don't know what I mean by sketchbook, I mean literally a book that you ask or commission artists to draw in at conventions - this is instead of them doing it on their own paper. For someone who's running out of wall space for art (I bet I'm not alone in that), a sketchbook is a great way to collect more art in less space. Plus it makes a really great keepsake to flip through and maybe even pass down one day.

I've built up my book slowly, and I think I'm almost at ten sketches so far. Here are five* of them:

Since Cat Staggs was the reason I started this sketchbook, it seemed only appropriate that she drew the first art in it.
Alas, poor Red Skull - by Thom Zahler
by Jeremy Dale
by Bobby Timony
by Lora Innes (and in this style because I love her webcomic The Dreamer)

The sketches look better when not photographed with an iPhone. I hope to get a couple more at Baltimore Comic Con in a week.

Do any of you have a sketchbook? Is it themed?

*Why five? Because I'm going to try a Friday Five thing and see how it sticks.

August 30, 2012

Living the Pond Life


When BBC first announced Pond Life, I was excited. Don't get me wrong, I'm still happy about them, I just didn't realize that BBC wasn't kidding around when they called them mini webisodes. The shorts clock in at about one minute each and are just fast, monthly check-ins with Amy and Rory. We definitely get a feel for how the Doctor affects their everyday lives even when he's not traveling him with him, and there have been some memorable moments (Ood in the bathroom, for example). I just want more. I'm greedy like that.







Visit BBC for new episodes!

Star Wars Celebration Round Up

My new pal. He's half a friend.
Let's be honest. I could talk about Star Wars Celebration VI and everything I saw there for a couple more weeks. Easily. But since I should shut up about it at some point and go on to other topics, I figured it was time to round up all my coverage and move along. I covered several events for the Official Star Wars Blog, and I posted a few things for Nerd Approved and Fashionably Geek. Here we go:

SWCVI: An Hour With Ian McDiarmid - Listening to the Emperor talk was definitely one of my convention highlights.

SWCVI: Star Wars: The Clone Wars Season Five Premiere - This show continues to knock my socks off. The end.

SWCVI: The Second Session of the Super Secret Panel - Remember that time George Lucas crashed the panel about Star Wars Detours and made comments about Seth Green's height? No. Well, you can read about it at the link.

SWCVI: The Future of Star Wars in 3D - The process for converting the Star Wars films to 3D has changed and it looks way more amazing. I definitely learned a lot from this panel.

SWCVI: James Arnold Taylor’s Talking To Myself - James Arnold Taylor's one man show was my favorite part of Celebration VI. He is an incredibly talented guy with an inspiring story. Truly.

SWCVI: A Date With a Princess - Carrie Fisher is hilarious. The end.

SWCVI: The Maul Within - Sam Witwer is a huge Star Wars fan, and it really comes through any time he talks about portraying Maul. Read what he had to say about bring the Sith back to life.

Star Wars: Detours Animated Comedy Series Announced [SWCVI] - Read more about the upcoming Star Wars Detours!

Star Wars Episodes II and III Are Coming To 3D Next Year - If you didn't hear, episodes II and III will be released in 3D back to back in 2013!

The 501st Legion Helped Bring The Star Wars Movies To Life At Celebration VI - Thank you, 501st Legion, for being awesome and helping to make my CVI experience extra amazing.

My 5 Favorite Star Wars Custom Helmets For The Make-A-Wish Auction [SWCVI] - There were so many creative helmet designs to drool over!

Check out all my photos from Celebration VI here.

August 29, 2012

The Clone Wars Season Five Trailer!

The trailer for season five of Star Wars: The Clone Wars has hit the web, and I am awed by how they keep raising the bar. When I watch these new trailers for each season I think to myself: "How are they ever going to top this?" But then, they do. Every time.

I encourage you to watch this twice to absorb everything:



Death Watch, Onderon, a new female character named Stila (Steela?), Bo-Katan, Maul and Savage partnering with the Death Watch, a Republic Commando, and Palpatine appearing as Sidious and wielding two lightsabers against Maul and Savage. Wow. I got to see this trailer at the end of the season five premiere at Star Wars Celebration VI, and I loved that the crowd flipped out equally over the Republic Commando and seeing Darth Sidious.

I also attended the panel for The Clone Wars on Saturday morning. We saw a few clips of what's to come, and there's a lot to be excited about. TheForce.net has a detailed recap of the panel. I live-tweeted some highlights, so without further adieu (just remember to read from the bottom up on each image to get the tweets in order):





August 28, 2012

SWCVI: Carrie Fisher Is Hilarious


Carrie Fisher attended Star Wars Celebration VI, and she was hilarious. Seriously. She was candid, charming, crass in the good way, and I now know to never miss seeing her live if I can help it. She was a good sport too - she even sang part of the Life Day song from the Holiday Special. Yes, she remembered the words. To my surprise, they even showed the clip. I did write about the panel for the StarWars.com blog, but I couldn't include the parts about her calling the Sarlacc Pit a "lethal sand genital." Thusly, I've included my tweets from the night below. Be sure to check out the final picture - she ended the evening by spanking host James Arnold Taylor.

My write-up at the official Star Wars blog!

Read my tweets from the bottom up:



And then she spanked Taylor:
Photo by @attractions

August 25, 2012

SWCVI: Season Five Premiere of The Clone Wars


Check out my coverage of the season five premiere of Star Wars: The Clone Wars over at the StarWars.com blog!

I spoke to some of the cast on the red carpet, too so hopefully I'll be following up with another post with fun stories and some insight into the next season soon.

Star Wars Celebration VI, Day Two

On day two of Star Wars Celebration VI:

  • I fed a life-size rancor a snack (thanks 501st Legion!)
  • I drooled over some Genndy Clone Wars figures (I think I'm getting them today).
  • I attended a cupcake party held by Her Universe featuring cupcakes from Cupcake Wars. YUM.
  • I ran into friends and met some lovely folks from Twitter (yeah, that's hopefully going to be an every day theme).
  • I met a wampa, saw a set from the Mos Eisley Cantina, and tons of awesomely decorated helmets for the Make-A-Wish foundation project.
  • I made a wampa puppet friend and am taking him home.
  • I covered the red carpet for the premiere of season five of the Clone Wars and got to talk to some awesome people:
  • I then watched the season five premiere, and it was amazing. I can't say enough good things about this series.
  • I saw a lot of cosplayers with impressive outfits, including an amazing Mon Mothma.
See all my pics from yesterday and the entire convention here! I'll be uploading throughout the day!


August 24, 2012

Hint at Star Wars Detours?

Seth Green and Matthew Senreich are hosting their Super Secret Star Wars panel today which means we'll have the skinny on Star Wars Detours in no time. Until then... well, I noticed the bathrooms are marked with images featuring silhouettes I've never seen before:

Then Matt Senreich tweeted about them.

Uh-huh.

Also, there is now a Star Wars Detours page on Facebook. Go give it a like now. I bet there will be interesting things popping up in just a few hours.

SWCVI: Ian McDiarmid Panel (with my tweets from the event)



As I mentioned yesterday, I covered the Ian McDiarmid panel for the Official Star Wars.com blog! McDiarmid was candid and charming and dropped some great anecdotes. He discussed everything from Force lightning and how it wasn't fair that Christopher Lee also got to use, how he thinks Hayden Christensen's performance was underrated, and how theater is a dying art. I think between my article at StarWars.com and my live tweets that night I grabbed the highlights.

Read the write-up at the Official Star Wars Blog!

And check out my tweets from the event (you'll some retweets from others in attendance too) - just remember to read each image from the bottom up so that they're in sequence:




Star Wars Celebration VI, Day One

Today at Star Wars Celebration VI:

  • I saw two Mara Jades as Arica, at least five Mara Jades in the catsuit, around eight Padmes, and two ladies dressed like Boushh. I didn't see a ton of Slave Leias. 
  • I got Luke in Bacta Tank pens.
  • I saw more toys than my brain could process.
  • I looked at cozy Boba Fett, Chewbacca, and R2-D2 robes.
  • I drooled over a Maul motorcycle jacket from UD replicas.
  • I saw a life-size rancor.
  • I ran into friends and met some lovely folks from Twitter.
  • I saw a person walking around in a Gonk costume.
  • I went to a Dark Horse Comics panel and learned there will be a new Jedi Dark Times series and maybe something new in the Star Wars Legacy department (Randy Stradley said to keep eyes open).
  • I got a customized Star Tours name tag (that's Amy in Aurebesh and I decided to be from Hoth):
  • I attended the conversation with Ian McDiarmid and listened to him talk in depth about Palpatine and his many facets. My write-up will be up at StarWars.com soon. At the end of the panel he pretended to lay on the Force lightning to James Arnold Taylor:
  • There was also this little mouse droid:


My photos are being uploaded throughout each day of the convention over at Nerd Approved!

August 22, 2012

The shirtless Wookiee


I love that so many of my favorite Star Wars actors, crew, etc are on Twitter (actually, Club Jade even has a convenient list of of those on Twitter along with links). They talk about special events, their current projects and charity efforts, appearances, and so much more. It's also a cool way to interact with the people you admire - hopefully in a respectful, not creepy way.

It also leads to bizarre and wonderful things like shirtless of pictures of Chewbacca - well, Peter Mayhew.

I say wonderful because it tickles me and makes me so happy to see Peter Mayhew using Twitter. It's Chewbacca. On social media. He tweets about his foundation, appearances, and more. I admire the heck out of that guy. Go follow him and keep up with this very nice and talented guy.


Getting crafty in the galaxy far, far away (my favorite Star Wars crafters)

When it comes to crafting I usually have the eyes bigger than my stomach syndrome. Er, fabric bigger than my sewing machine. Hm. You get the idea. I'm overly ambitious. I'll visit the craft store with determination, gather my supplies, and then let them get dusty in the corner for a few months. It's one reason why the geek girl craft days have been good. It forces me to get out the hot glue gun.

It shouldn't surprise any of you that my favorite geek themed crafts to make are Star Wars related. Since I'm gearing up to head to Celebration VI later tonight, I figured it's a good time as any to tell you the folks I look to for Star Wars (and general) craft inspiration.

Bonnie Burton
In case you somehow don't know, Bonnie released a fantastic book full of Star Wars crafts last year: The Star Wars Craft Book. There are instructions there for all levels of projects from felt puppets to a duct tape AT-AT planter to Admiral Sackbar. She has creative ways of using everyday craft supplies and objects to make awesome stuff. And bonus, she has a Geek DIY craft show on Stan Lee's YouTube channel. She made a steampunk ray gun with Eliot Sirota in the latest episode:



Jennifer Landa
Every time I see Jeni she has a new piece of Star Wars jewelry that I covet. My favorites are her LEGO minifig earrings. They're stylish, geektastic, and light enough that they don't make your ears hurt. She also taught me how to decoupage, the craft skill that just keeps on giving. She paints TOMS, makes awesome Jabba headbands, and you know what else? She's super nice. Check out her Twitter to keep up with her latest projects and subscribe to her YouTube channel. And watch and learn how to make a Star Wars shadowbox:



Amanda Camarillo
One of the first times I saw Amanda, she was wearing an X-Wing dress. Yeah, she's got skills. I've only run into her a few times at conventions, but she constantly has cute new accessories, t-shirt dresses, etc. Luckily for us, she recently started posting Star Wars craft videos on her YouTube channel in preparation for Celebration. They cover how to make pillows, headbands, crayons, the aforementioned t-shirt dresses, and so much more. She explains the steps very clearly, and her recent videos finally got me off my butt and to the sewing supply store to get bobbins for the tiny sewing machine someone recently gave me. We'll see what happens. Check out the t-shirt dress video!



Which geeky crafters do you keep up with?

August 21, 2012

My nerdy office

I have a few weaknesses. One is Star Wars, and one is art. When those two are combined I end up with more art than I have wall space for! Over the past year I've been slowly finding the perfect places in my house for my Star Wars toys and art. It seemed like a natural solution to transform my spare room into an office covered in Star Wars. Actually, I'm amazed my whole house isn't covered in Star Wars. I have toys and items everywhere but not nearly to the point of concentration in my office.
I patiently waited (I don't often use those words in the same sentence) for a local picture frame chain to have their amazing buy one frame, get one for a penny sale - yes, it is awesome - and I stocked up. Before the sale I went through all my carefully stored, unframed art and measured everything and made a spreadsheet listing the sizes and ranking them in order of priority. It's what I do. I spent a solid afternoon framing and hanging the art.


Once it was all up, I just had to add finishing touches. A Star Wars clock from my sister, some Clone Trooper curtains I found on sale at Amazon, and an R2-D2 rug from Pottery Barn that I couldn't resist. I added some of my bigger Star Wars toys to the bookshelves and a Star Wars flag thing I got in Little Toyko, and tada! I think it's nice and geeky but also not overdone? Not that I mind overdone and I might get to that point, but I'm happy with this more subtle (sort of) look. 


Please share your nerd decor photos with me!

The Avengers gag reel will make your morning better



Edit: The gag reel is being removed by Disney left and right. If you didn't see it, well, there are probably copies going around the internet. Until the DVD comes out on 9/25, enjoy the above image.

.................................................................................................................................................
Four minutes of superhero hilarity is all a Tuesday morning needs:

August 20, 2012

Handmade ParaNorman stuff and scents from Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab

As you might have guessed from my review earlier today, I thought ParaNorman was pretty darn great. I'm already looking forward to having a Coraline and ParaNorman movie night with friends (oh yes, there will be themed snacks). It's enough that the movie was lovely, but there are a couple of things I want to call attention to. The marketing team has done a fantastic job getting the word out about this film, and they've employed some unique methods in doing so. Here are two of my favorites: handmade ParaNorman items from artists on Etsy and a collection of movie inspired scents from Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab. 

Heck yes.

Over at Etsy, LAIKA  reached out to artists for lots of cool stuff!
LAIKA is committed to the handmade art of stop-motion animation. To help celebrate this love of craft, LAIKA asked artists in the Etsy community to offer their take on ParaNorman with their own handmade objects. We're adding more items soon!
By LadyBeta
You can find a wool felted doll of Norman, zombie hand necklaces, adorable cross-stitch patterns like the one pictured above, glasses, and there is even more to come. Go drool over stuff! Bookmark it and check back often. I bet more and more items will be added as more people see the movie.

After you've bought some cool crafts, you can support another small company and smell like scents inspired by the movie! If you're not familiar with Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab, they are worth checking out (and I will not be responsible for the damage done to your wallet). You may as well start by looking over the scents for ParaNorman. Here are a few examples of the concoctions they've created:
NORMAN 
Hoodie cotton and milk-splashed denim with a hint of pine needles and ectoplasm.
THE BOOK 
Old, yellowed parchment paper, tattered leather bindings. There’s a distinct warmth to the scent, though it is ancient and brittle.
MR. PRENDERGHAST 
Sweet cigar smoke, brown wool, Old Furry Touk accord, and a little bit of coffee.
You can bet the labels will be fantastic, too. (Also, they have Coraline inspired scents too, just sayin).

It is beyond classy that LAIKA and Focus Features and whoever else made the big decisions chose to work with artisans and small businesses in this way. This kind of support is something the movie industry could stand to have a metric ton more of. And you know what? These types of marketing methods stick with the casual bystander, too! I don't remember a damn thing about advertising for The Avengers, but I'll remember all of this.

Spoiler free review: ParaNorman - Fun, Gross, Scary, & Beautiful All at the Same Time

ParaNorman took me by surprise. Much like Brave the core of the plot wasn't given away in trailers. I expected it to be humorous, occasionally icky because that usually accompanies any zombie story, and I knew the art, character designs, and sets would be beautiful. I mean, it's LAIKA. You've seen Coraline, right? (If not, please go do so). ParaNorman delivered on all those counts, but it also brought more to the table and hit some deep morals and themes.

The story about an underdog coming out on top has a lot of appeal to me. Anyone who wasn't one of the "cool kids" in school can relate - and it's amazing that even though school is a such a small portion of your life, those memories of being on the fringes stick with you. Those are formative years, and Norman has to get through them and see and talk to dead people at the same time. And as you can imagine, no one believes him. His older sister is a tool about it, and as for his parents, well - his mom tries to understand and his dad doesn't get it. At all.

I could see some saying the parents are too mean - especially the dad - and yeah, the archetypes may be over emphasized, but I don't see it being that far off from how parents would really react to that news. I'm from a rural town/village. If I told grown-ups I talked to dead people and animals, they'd probably exile me... and something similar - but worse - happens in this movie.

Norman manages to bring everyone around by the end of the movie, but it takes a lot of crazy stuff happening to get people to believe in him. He becomes a stronger, more confident person along the way. He goes from being resigned to being bullied at the beginning of the movie to a take charge kind of guy at the end. I loved seeing him figure things out, and I liked how the people around him changed in tandem.

In between solid character development, there's tons to absorb and look at. There are some hilarious one liners, some moments that made me get all teary-eyed, and some moments that made me glad I hadn't eaten a large meal before I sat down to watch the movie. I feel like the film had many parts that were general homages to some of the ridiculous but wonderful tropes from horror flicks. Norman also has to solve a problem to make the zombies go away, and that story is brutal and pretty dark. I was not expecting it. At all.
Beyond that? The backgrounds, scenery, assets, characters, etc were all so darn lovely. Especially the part at the end where things happen that I can't tell you about without spoiling it! The attention to detail boggles the mind. When I watch stop motion films I can't help but let the back of my mind think about how much time every little action takes. That talented artists can put so many hours of work into building everything without the quality lacking... I just don't know how they do it. The artistry of ParaNorman is not to be underrated.

As I don't have any, I'm a bad judge at telling what's good for children and what's not but - this movie is a little scary in parts. There are some moments in the cemetery, with the zombies, and with a witch that might be a little much for younger kids. I saw the movie with a friend and her youngest son made the switch to his mom's lap a few times. Those moments are more than overtaken by the humorous and warm and fuzzy moments in the movie so I don't think the scary parts will stick and cause bad dreams later, but it's worth mentioning.
Overall, I think this movie will appeal to a huge range of people. If you were an outcast, if you were ever bullied, if you were ever a weird kid (raises hand!), if you love stop motion, if you like lovely set and character designs, if you like zombies, if you like spooky stories, if you had an annoying younger sibling, if you like underdog stories... see where I'm going? I know it's an overused cliche, but I think this film has a little bit of something for a lot of people.

And you can bet I kept an eye out for the props I received in my Blithe Hollow Cemetery box. I spotted the place where this certificate was used and I noticed tombstones like the one I got, too. It was a blast to see them on screen.

Let me know your thoughts about the film! Just please keep it spoiler-free!

August 17, 2012

Moves Like Jabba

I don't listen to much popular radio. At all. I've heard the song "Moves Like Jagger" a couple of times and mostly only caught the chorus. It sounded a LOT like "Moves Like Jabba" to me even though that didn't make a lot of sense.

So, of course MadTV has a parody about it:

Hanging Out at Disney's Mad T Party

Disney California Adventure tried out this seemingly bizarre thing when Tron: Legacy was released a couple of years ago: they transformed one corner of the park into a night club. It was a touch Disneyified, but it had the club vibe nonetheless. You'd walk from a relatively quiet street into Hollywood studios where there was loud music, pulsing lights, dancers on pedestals, glowing mixed drinks, and Flynn's Arcade. The arcade was stocked with 80s games and 80s music emanated from the speakers inside. elecTRONica was only supposed to be around for a limited time, but it was insanely popular. Everyone from kids to teenagers in raver clothing crowded the party area, and the closing date just kept getting pushed further and further out.

Eventually though, the park had to move away from Tron and onto something new. The premise drew in too many people; it had to be repeated. Even annual passholders, who traditionally don't spend money in the park, probably threw down for the expensive drinks. That's where Alice in Wonderland comes in. The trippy characters, the bright costumes and colors - it's a fantastical story waiting to be translated into a neon party event. Thusly, you can experience the Mad T Party nightly at DCA.

My sister loves Alice in Wonderland (and has the tattoo to prove it) so I knew stopping by the T party was a must on our recent visit. We had no idea what to expect. We wandered into the party around dusk and right into the middle of one of many concerts performed by a bizarre band: the Mad Hatter and and Alice were on vocals, a very Billy Idol-esque Dormouse was on guitar, and the Cheshire Cat played the drums. Their setlist matched the oddness - but in a good way! Every performer rocked out, and the crowd was eating it all up. The girls seemed to be going crazy over the Mad Hatter.
We strolled through and decided to come back later when it was completely dark. The area only got more crowded! We caught part of another set, and my sister got some sort drink in a glass that glowed. It might have been the Croque-tini. It was crazy strong; I was not expecting a Disney park to have such generous bartenders. We chilled out on a couple of the colorful and perfect plastic chairs arranged throughout the area and took in the scene. The music blared and as I surveyed the surrounding crowd I quietly applauded the brains who came up with this idea. Children ran around watching street performers (some operated tall birds), older kids and teens hugged the stages and danced along to the music - a couple of guys even had a impromptu dance-off, twenty somethings smiled happily over bright drinks, and I even saw a few people well past their 50s standing around and bobbing their heads to the music.

All ages indeed.
For our final trick, we wandered into what used to be Flynn's Arcade. I suck the most at arcade games, but even so, it was my favorite part of elecTRONica. I was as giddy as a school girl to see it was transformed to match the Alice theme. The arcade games were all in universe, for crying out loud! Once I noticed that I quickly transformed a couple of bucks into tokens (instead of saying "Flynn's," they have a giant fancy "T" and a hat - see this pic) and played Whac-a-Hat, Bandersnatch Ball, and a Queen of Hearts version of skee ball with a clever name I can't remember. It was the most fun.

Since I like Alice more than Tron, the theme really won me over and as I witnessed, it's fun for the whole family.

August 16, 2012

Star Wars Celebration VI Coverage!


Holy ewoks! I can't believe Star Wars Celebration VI is almost here! This is just my second Celebration and the first time I'll be attending all four days. In 2010 I arrived super early Saturday morning after taking a red-eye (I still feel guilty about falling asleep in a collector's panel that afternoon) and left Sunday right after the convention ended. This time around, I'm arriving super early Thursday. And drinking way more caffeine.

I've been drooling over the recently released schedule and picked what feels like a million panels to check out. Seriously, it looks like I could easily never step foot into the exhibit hall because there's so much going on. I wouldn't dare miss the chance to see exclusive art, toys, and all the loot in the dealer's room though. I'm especially looking forward to checking out the art show, the Rancho Obi-Wan experience (yeah, even though I've been), Her Universe's booth, and that just scratches the surface. We're not going to discuss how much show exclusive merchandise is going to be stuffed into my suitcase - I mean, there are Luke Bacta Tank pens for crying out loud!!

I'm very excited to see that Star Wars: The Clone Wars has a forceful (snicker) presence at the convention. The season five premiere is happening Friday night, and I wouldn't miss it. I'll be there to cover the red carpet, premiere, and press conference after and I'll sharing what I hear! And let me say, if you like the series, you'll be blown away by how it looks on the big screen. There are also panels for the voice talent, the tech behind the show, and on and on. I want to visit Kamino so I can make a clone of myself to attend all the panels happening at the same time.

Regardless of what I choose to see and do, I will definitely be trying my best to bring my experiences to those of you who can't attend. Sometimes my plans for coverage during conventions is ambitious. I have to take care of work for other sites first and if I can manage it, I'll post here too. Sometimes it has to wait until after the convention. That said, I hope to post some updates here - maybe even daily diaries from the convention (hopefully). We'll see. If all else fails, you can bet I'll be tweeting up a storm. Lots of quotes from panels, photos, pictures from the exhibit hall, costumes, you name it. I expect to kill my iPhone's battery every day, even with using my Mophie.

You'll be able to keep up with other convention coverage from me at The Official Star Wars Blog (I'll be covering several panels and the Clone Wars premiere for them), and I'll have a steady stream of photos going to Nerd Approved.

If you're attending, I hope to see you there!

The most comfortable Death Star ever


Yes, that is a Death Star bean bag chair. It gets better. The other side features the Millennium Falcon. I spotted this in the Lucasfilm Pavilion at Comic-Con - I believe it was priced at around $99.
I really wanted to test it out and sit on it, but I got the vibe the staff didn't want any butt prints on it (they were super nice though). It should be a Celebration, and I'll try to take it for a test... sit. Yeah.

August 15, 2012

The troll conundrum (and not the kind that live under bridges)

Update - 8/15
Please check out the comment below from a staff writer for the site on which the comic is found. He's assured me the piece was meant as satire and that they are not a site of trolls. The nature of that webcomic is like the tone of The Onion. It's meant to be over-the-top. So, while I'll still say that the particular strip about GeekGirlCon was not for me and rubbed me the wrong way, there are other things on the site (podcasts, comics, etc) created by other people that I shouldn't have wrapped up into a blanket statement.

If you've been around the internet for a while, something's probably pissed you off. Maybe things, plural. It's so easy to let articles or comments or tweets or general dbag-ness (yeah, I like making up words) get under your skin. The best course of action is usually not to react. I know this. Very little is worth getting your knickers in a twist. But I can't always help myself. I've written a couple of rants here. Two that come to mind are my responses to the New York Times Game of Thrones reviews. They were sexist, misguided, and crappy. And I had a few points to make. The downside is that I had to mention their reviews, pull quotes, and link to them... so ultimately, I was giving them traffic.

Linkbait is a tricky thing. So are trolls who want attention and hits (the clicky sort not punches in the face).

This is on my mind today because of a comic I saw about GeekGirlCon. The comic from "This Just In" mentions the convention and then talks about women being on their periods, maxi pads, and ice cream. It was tasteless and lazy. I mean, it doesn't work as a comic because it's not original. It doesn't work as satire because it's not funny. And beyond all that, it's just frakking sexist and rude.

It especially got under my skin because in a small way, comics like this are why the convention exists. This sentiment, these stereotypes, this singular way of thinking - it's just the antithesis of what GeekGirlCon is about. No, I've never been, but I've heard amazing stories from friends and read inspiring posts about the convention. That someone would dare to defile it this way, well, it makes me angry. And that feeling leads to some strong knee jerk reactions.

I posted about the comic on Twitter with a link. I know it sends traffic to their site, and I know that's what they want... but that doesn't mean such a piece of crap should be ignored. Hence my conundrum. Notice how I'm not linking to it now. If you really want to see it, you can check out a clip of it posted here (not the website for the comic).

After looking a little more closely at "This Just In," it seems that being tools is their modus operandi. They offend, people are enraged, everyone clicks over to see the horrible thing for themselves. Many of the jokes on the other comic strips are just as trite. They utilize stereotypes and call it humor. I don't want to feed the trolls and fuel traffic to their website that ultimately could lead to ad revenue for them... but how do you just not speak about something like that? I think we have to call people out.

Yeah, I gave them traffic. That part blows. But because I posted about it, some people know to avoid that site now. I'll be staying away in the future. And The One True B!x made a really good point:
I don't think I gave them a full meal. I guess I could have posted a clip of the comic here or uploaded it an image hosting site in order to not deliver traffic to them (and I'll remember that for the future), but I didn't go to their site or page and comment and get involved in a futile argument.

Yeah, I'm giving them a little attention, but it's to let people know they suck. In the long run it might mean that less people will visit their site. I think that it's important and okay to show the world when someone's being an insensitive idgit. It's sort of a public service. Point out the trolls, don't give them dinner.

How do you handle situations like these?
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