Blog Archives


Gaming (DVS Press): Maybe you’ve heard of cultural ground zero: 1997.  Now let’s talk games, because unlike other institutions of culture, the games industry kept on growing and innovating for another 10 years. Then 2007 happened, and as far as the bigger publishers are concerned, games reached their peak and no more change or risk […]

Comic Books (Walker’s Retreat): Diamond Distribution not only had–had–a monopoly on comic book distribution in the United States, but also dominated distribution of tabletop games. Especially now, it is common for comic shops to sell card and tabletop games on the side or vice-versa, especially if they also furnish space for play in-house- something very […]

Writing (Wasteland & Sky): The strangest aspect of entertainment today is how absolutely slow it has gotten. This isn’t a new problem, but an old error that always returns during times of decadence and bloated egos seizing control of the arts. On Cannon Cruisers we constantly use the term “1970s pacing” to refer to movies […]

Weapons & Science Fiction (Dirk Bruere): We have all seen it — soldiers in the scifi future carrying their phasers, lasers, disruptors, blasters and so on, yet failing to hit their targets as the hero does cartwheels and back-flips to dodge the fire. The stormtroopers in Star Wars are notoriously bad shots, for example. In […]

Fiction (Classic Horror): For centuries Ireland has fostered a culture swarming in mystery, magic, and the macabre: it gave us Samhain and jack-o-lanterns, Dracula and Carmilla, headless horsemen and banshees, and a rambling host of masterful literary minds whose supernatural fiction is still celebrated for being wildly imaginative and unsettling. Ireland has arguably contributed more […]

Fiction (Rough Edges): Years ago, I read several novels in the long-running BattleTech science fiction series, tales about a galaxy-spanning conflict between rival clans, fought mostly by giant robots piloted by humans who controlled them from a cockpit within the robot’s body. Kind of like giant tanks that could run around and punch each other […]

Fiction (Ken Lizzi): I think a brief reminder is all that is needed here: Lin Carter was a gifted and prolific editor. One of the volumes he put together for The Adult Fantasy series was a book titled Golden Cities, Far. The introduction is one of his better efforts, and seems to have been exhaustively […]

Fiction (Ken Lizzi): Swords & Sorcery is L. Sprague de Camp’s first entry in his four-volume series that spanned seven years. His introduction — an early sample of the short essay he’d return to with variations on the theme often enough — is a decent explication concerning what heroic fantasy consists of. (I found myself […]

Robert E. Howard (Adventures Fantastic): Robert E. Howard’s final Conan story, “Red Nails”, relates how Conan and his fellow adventurer Valeria come upon a giant, totally enclosed city, Xuchotl, where the inhabitants have divided up into two factions and are in a deadly war to wipe each other out. As is well known, Howard used […]

Cinema-Comic Books-Pulp (Slashfilm): Hollywood is about to see double with Buck Rogers. The pulp hero, who is already getting a TV reboot starring George Clooney from Legendary Pictures, is also getting a new movie, this one from Skydance and backed by the estate of author Philip Francis Nowlan. And while competing projects about a single […]

Robert E. Howard (Adventures Fantastic): The opening is one of Howard’s best. A Roman governor, Titus Sulla, is showing a Pictish ambassador Roman justice by executing a Pict by crucifixion. The ambassador watches stoically without saying anything. The ambassador is of course the Pictish king Bran Mak Morn in disguise.The dying man provokes one of […]

Fiction (DMR Books): For today’s birthday tribute to Merritt, I thought that I’d focus on that classic novel, which was originally serialized in Argosy All-Story Weekly between November 8, 1924 and December 13, 1924, prior to being published in hardcover by G. P. Putnam’s Sons in 1926. Following that, it was reprinted many times, including […]