#5FandomFriday: Real Life Geeks That Inspire Me

Welcome to my attempt at 5 Fandom Friday, where I try to contribute to a weekly meme but usually forget. This fun weekly postathon is hosted by The Nerdy Girlie and Super Space Chick. If you’re interested in joining up, check out future posting topics here.

For some reason everyone that came to mind initially (besides Misha Collins) were all television and pop culture critics who have podcasts or blogs that I really enjoy. But does writing about pop culture actually make you a geek? So I dug a little more and found a more diverse list of awesome geeks who I really would love to have lunch with one day. We’d have lots to talk about!

I know a lot of people this week are posting people they know in real life or are other bloggers that write about geeky things. Unfortunately I am terrible at making friends, whether it’s online or off, so I’m sticking to more public figures.

Misha Collins, Master of World Domination

I have done ridiculous things for this man. My entire immediate family attempted to fly a Christmas tree using only helium balloons during the Thanksgiving holiday during the first GISHWHES event. I’ve met geeks from around the world through his annual scavenger hunt and become closer to local friends by joining forces for this madness. He’s the best kind of nerd, who loves everything and everyone. His kindness and support of fans is thoroughly noted, and I wish I could be a little more like him in day-to-day life.

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Joanna Robinson, writer for Vanity Fair and podcaster

I suppose it depends if you think being a cultural critic is criteria enough to be considered a geek. Joanna is a writer for Vanity Fair online, but she’s also the co-host of a podcast called The Thought Bubble, where she discusses comic books and comics with Dave Gonzales. What I love about this podcast is that Joanna is more of a novice to comics like I am, so she makes the show really relatable for me. She also does some Game of Thrones podcasts too, which I don’t listen to, but Fernando loves. She just seems really relatable and she responds to my tweets, so she’s obvious a super cool person.

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Kevin Porter and Demi Adejuyigbe from Gilmore Guys podcast

I have become addicted to this podcast over the last month, starting from episode one and listening to a little bit each day. I’m still way behind where they currently are (somewhere at the beginning of season 5, whereas I’m mid-season 2), but their thorough analysis of each episode, guest hosts, songs, bits and craziness are a welcome listen during my long work days. I can’t count the number of times I’ve had to stifle giggles at work because of their iTune review raps or their obsession with Ms. Patty. Gilmore Girls is better watched with friends and I feel like Kevin and Demi have become two of my favorite viewing partners.

Noelle Stevenson, author and artist of Noelle and Lumberjanes

She started off her career by doing fan art for Lord of the Rings, so I’m assuming she’s a nerd. She also did fanart for Supernatural, which I have, Sherlock, Doctor Who and much more. I wish I could be her because she seems so very cool despite her young age. I love her humor, her ability to deal with haters, and her ability to just be all around incredibly awesome. I’m intimated by her, so I’ve never taken the chance at Comic Con to meet her, but maybe one day I’ll get the courage to approach her. She’ll probably be too famous by then, but whatevs…

Zachary Levi, actor and Prince of Comic Con

I will adore him for the rest of time because of Chuck, but he’s amazed me even more through all that he’s done in the nerd community. Nerd HQ raises thousands of dollars for charity each year at Comic Con, and he’s one of the celebrities that seems to truly care about each of his fans. He wants them to be happy and enjoy his events. He’s also just a huge nerd with passion for videogames, comics, movies and film. Hopefully the Heroes reboot will be worthy of his immense talent and bring him onto my television on a more regular basis.


So which real life geeks have inspired you or just give you happiness on a regular basis? Share in the comments!

Review: Lumberjanes Volume 1 by Noelle Stevenson, Grace Ellis & Brooke A Allen

Lumberjanes Volume 1
Noelle Stevenson, Grace Ellis & Brooke A. Allen

BOOM! Studios
Published April 7, 2015
126 pages
Comics / All Ages / Fantasy / Adventure

Find it on Goodreads

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Indie Bound

FRIENDSHIP TO THE MAX!
At Miss Qiunzilla Thiskwin Penniquiqul Thistle Crumpet's camp for hard-core lady-types, things are not what they seem. Three-eyed foxes. Secret caves. Anagrams. Luckily, Jo, April, Mal, Molly, and Ripley are five rad, butt-kicking best pals determined to have an awesome summer together... And they're not gonna let a magical quest or an array of supernatural critters get in their way! The mystery keeps getting bigger, and it all begins here.
Collects Lumberjanes #1-4.

I really wanted to love Lumberjanes. I mean, it’s one of Noelle Stevenson’s (aka Gingerhaze) first original creations and I adore her. It’s an all-ages comic with a diverse group of female characters. It’s about adventures and empowerment and taking chances as long as you have friends to back you up. It has mystery and monsters and wackiness around every corner. On the surface it should have hooked me from the very beginning and not let me go.

And yet it didn’t. By the time I finished volume 1, I was starting to get interested, but unfortunately it ends after four issues of mystery after mystery with no hint of an answer or explanation. It took a while for it to start gelling well for me and when it started feeling coherent, it was over. And there weren’t any other volumes to read yet, so I just kind of left feeling disappointed.

Lumberjanes is extremely charming and fun and adorable. I could see that from the beginning. If I were 10, I would probably love this from page 1, but being much older than ten, I guess I was looking for a look more coherency from the beginning. Lumberjanes starts five awesome lady types who are at a sleep away camp where weirdness is hiding behind the surface of just about everything. The problem is these girls seem to be the only ones who keep finding it and therefore getting themselves into trouble. There are canoe trips with sea monsters, boy campers that turn into wolf creatures, odd monsters in the forest and much more in just four issues.

The girls themselves are really awesome. Ripley, who appears to be the youngest, was my favorite because she likes to randomly shout things and literally sprint into trouble. The other four tiptoed out of stereotype territory towards the end, but I couldn’t really remember which names went with which girl. There are two that seem to have an unrequited romance angle going on, which was really refreshing to see in a book for all ages. And this is truly an all ages book. The epithets are all made up phrases that reminded me of the whole “Holy –Insert Random Thing- Batman!” exclamations from the 1960s Batman television show.

The camp’s head mistress reminded me of a female Ron Swanson from the very first moment she appears, which cracked me up. Meanwhile the girls’ cabin counselor never really sees any of the crazy things the girls see and thinks they’re all a bunch of screw-ups. The dynamics that start to form because of these different female authority figures are barely formed by the end of this first volume, but there’s a lot of potential for how these two characters can fit into the larger, weirder world of the Lumberjanes.

So while I didn’t love this book from page one, I really saw the potential of the story and how I might come to love it with volume 2. The art is fun and verging on goofy in a very comic strip style way. It’s stylistic without making everything impossible to understand, which is nice. It’s like a gimmicky cartoon on the Cartoon Network that hipsters would love just in panel format. I love that it’s a story about adventures for young girls and I can’t wait to share it with my niece when she gets to the right age. It encourages exploration and precociousness that I haven’t seen in any comics or books aimed at the demographic, so it’s a win just for that.

Lumberjanes volume 1 is an introduction that doesn’t feel like much more than that. It left me wanting more just so it could make sense, but it did give me enough of a feel for the characters and the world to know that this is a place filled with people that I look forward to spending more time with. Just don’t expect to get a full story with explanations and answers in this book alone.

WFTM Episode 7: Ant Man, Sense8, Ms Marvel, Lumberjanes & More

This week's WFTM podcast is a day early, but it's full of comic book fun as Leslie and Fernando talk Marvel's Ant Man movie (spoilers start at 18:00 and last through 31:53), the first volumes of Ms Marvel and Lumberjanes, along with reviews of the first 6 episodes of Sense8, Lia Habel's Familiar Things, Xena reboot news, Emmy noms, and much more. We also start off our very first contest to win loads of Comic Con goodies.

Download it from the iTunes store here!

We’re now on Stitcher as well!! If Stitcher is your chosen app of podcasting choice, listen to the Working for the Mandroid podcast here.

So what’s in Episode 7?

News:

First look at David Tennant’s Fugitoid robot character in Ninja Turtles cartoon

BC is rebooting Xena: Warrior Princess with Sam Rami producing

This season's Sleepy Hollow will include a crossover with Bones, which doesn't make sense to us

Emmy Nomination - Orphan Black, GoT, Netflix!

What We're Watching

Ant Man Review

Sense8 Review - first 6 episodes

What We're Reading

Lumberjanes by Noelle Stevenson, Grace Ellis & Brooke A. Allen

Familiar Things by Lia Habel

Ms Marvel: No Normal by G. Willow Wilson and Adrian Alphona

Our Very First WFTM Podcast Contest!

Follow us on Twitter @WorkforMandroid and @fernborrego

Email your questions, concerns, thoughts and comments to WorkingfortheMandroid@gmail.com

Intro & Outro Music is “Robot Army” by Quiet Music for Tiny Robots, provided via freemusicarchive.org through a Creative Commons License

WFTM Podcast Episode 5: Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na... Comics!

In episode 5, Fernando and Leslie talk about a lot of comics, including The Dark Knight Returns, The Long Halloween and Gail Simone’s Batgirl. They also talk about the new Guardians of the Galaxy cartoon on Disney XD, Robopocalypse concept art, What’s Happening with Noelle Stevenson This Week, how bad Terminator: Genisys is and more.

Download it from the iTunes store here!

What We’re Watching:

Terminator: Genisys

What Leslie’s Reading:

I Am Princess X by Cherie Priest

Batgirl Volumes 4 & 5 by Gail Simone

The Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller

The Long Halloween by Jeph Loeb & Tim Sale

What’s Making Us Happy:

Fernando: Women’s World Cup Soccer

Leslie: Rocket Podcast

 

Follow us on Twitter @WorkforMandroid and @fernborrego

Email your questions, concerns, thoughts and comments to WorkingfortheMandroid@gmail.com

 

Intro & Outro Music is “Robot Army” by Quiet Music for Tiny Robots, provided via freemusicarchive.org through a Creative Commons License

 

Random Tuesday: Happy 200th Sam & Dean! Sci Fi Book Things! Amazon Pilots! More!

It is cold and I am grumpy. I really shouldn't be because we got Comic Con tickets on Saturday and then we saw Big Hero 6, which was all kinds of lovely. But it's cold now and I hate the cold. I can't feel my toes. Let's find some random things to distract me.

This guy named Scott Park made a post with all these awesome female characters from great genre films and television. It's called Hall of Heroes and you can buy a copy of it at his Society 6 store if you love it as much as I do.

io9 has an exclusive look at Scott Westerfeld's upcoming post-apocalypse graphic novel, The Spill Zone. It includes an essay that Westerfield wrote and some sneak peeks at artwork from the book. The Spill Zone will be released by First Second at some indeterminate point in the future.

Continuing on the trend of science fiction books and io9, those awesome people have compilled a great list of awesome opening sentences in scifi books. Are there any ones missing?

Tonight is the 200th episode of Supernatural, which is insane to think about considering I've seen most episodes more than once and all of the first five seasons more times than I can honestly comprehend. EW asked 10 of the cast members which episode is their personal favorite. Of course Jared likes a silly one and Jensen liked a sad one.

Amazon has announced the 7 pilots for their 2015 "pilot season". The only one that jumps out to me is the adaptation of The Man in the High Castle, but perhaps someone out there might be interested in the other six that could be coming to an Amazon Prime account near you.

DC Comics announced some massive multi-verse crossing event called Convergence written by the guy behind White Collar (don't even ask me how that happened). I yawned. Then I heard about the Nightwing/Oracle part and now I'm all:

My fangirl shipper heart has grown three times and I'm very excited!

Speaking of being excited, Ms. Gingerhaze - Noelle Stevenson - is going to be writing her very first comic for the big 2 with a story in Marvel's Thor Annual. It will come out in February and you should buy it. Congrats to her and all her amazing, well-deserved success!

That's it from me this week. If you haven't seen Big Hero 6 yet, go see it. It's awesome.

Random Tuesday: New Lunar Chronicle Book, Strong Female Characters, Wonder Woman & Other Randomosity

First of all, just a reminder, we're giving away a copy of Geek Dad Awesomely Geeky Projects and Activities for Dads and Kids to Share by Ken Denmead. Submissions are being accepted until 12:01AM on Monday, June 23. You should definitely go over there and enter.

With the World Cup keeping my other half distracted for long stretches of time, I've recently rediscovered Twitter and have been spending far too much time over there discussing Game of Thrones, geek things and what television shows Joe Hill should introduce to his kids. I'm always looking for new people to chat about random things (even when it's not Tuesday), so tweet me something silly and random.

Now to random things!

Bookish people and nerdish people are always talking about Strong Female Characters(TM). The Dissolve (a site introduced to me on Twitter) has an article about Strong Female Characters quickly being taken over by Trinity Syndrome. It's an interesting read and another POV in the whole SFC discussion.

Simon & Schuster has announced the first round of releases from SAGA, their new genre imprint. It includes a couple of new books and some re-releases that come out early next year. io9 has all the pretty covers over here.

I hate Mondays, but this news about a secret prequal to Marissa Meyer's Lunar Chronicles series tiding us over until the release of the final book in November 2015 made yesterday a really good day. The cover is a bit more ostentatious than the rest in the series, but considering it's about crazy Queen Lavana, I suppose it makes sense. Can't wait to add it to my collection next January.

Many channels save all their scifi and fantasy programming until the summer. Here are a ton of shows starting or returning over the next few months. (from io9)

HBO lost the rights to adapt Neil Gaiman's American Gods. The president of programming finally came out and said why they never made it into a series. (from The Mary Sue)

I can't fathom that this list of release dates for DC Comics big screen adaptations has much truth to it, but if it does, Shazam is a strange choice to do before Wonder Woman. (from io9)

A mother discusses her young daughter's lack of interest in Wonder Woman and what that says about the state of the currrent state of comicbook media. (from Comic Book Resource)

It makes my heart incredibly happy to see all the success Noelle Stevenson aka Gingerhaze is experiencing lately. I've never met her and yet I'm oddly proud of this stranger whose work I'm very fond of. So have a Gingerhaze She Hulk.

And finally, to be truly random, have some adorable pictures of a stray cat wandering into a lynx enclosure in a Russian zoo.

 

What random things have you come across lately? Any awesome television you're looking forward to watching this summer?

Random Tuesday Returns and Everything Is Awesome (Except for Mean Comic Book Workers)

Is it possible? Has Random Tuesday finally returned? Are you about to get a face full of random things? Why, yes, you are. But first, have an ear worm.

You're welcome.

Noelle Stevenson, aka Gingerhaze, is one of my favorite fan artists, except now she's not just a fan artist, but a real comic creator. She created a short comic yesterday about her time visiting a comic book store that didn't go so well. Luckily we're priviledged to have Austin Books & Comics within a short drive, a comic book store staffed with incredibly generous and knowledgable staff of men and women. I have, however, had less pleasant experiences at other shops in the area, occassionally feeling like I was an alien that had stumbled upon a hidden secret planet where I DID NOT BELONG.

Of course said comic then led to some priviledged asshats coming out of the dark cobwebbed areas of the internet to be even more priviledged and more asshatty (totally a word). The formatting on that Tumblr post is a little messed up, so it's difficult to find where the writer changes, but it doesn't really matter.

So yes, drama on the internet. That's new. If you're looking for a female-friendly comic book store in your area, this Tumblr called Hater Free Wednesdays has a list of shops to check out.

But this isn't random enough. We NEED MORE RANDOM!

io9 has a sneak peak of a Game of Thrones art show that's going to be in Seattle in March. You can several of the GOT inspired pieces here.

Speaking of GOT exhibits, there is a HBO sponsored exhibit of pieces from the show going to several places around the global, including our hometown of Austin. Fernando is excited, but I have no idea how this is going to work with South by Southwest happening at the same time. Bets on if Ned's head will be included?

Between his Facebook and Twitter, Stephen Amell is quickly becoming my new favorite celebrity. I mean, seriously, this guy...

 

 

 

Marissa Meyer released a short story based on The Little Mermaid to celebrate the release of Cress, her third book in the Lunar Chronicles series. If you haven't read these books yet, stop what you're doing and go get them.

Lots of people are getting cast for the Flash pilot. I can't even begin to explain how excited about this series and have all my fingers and toes crossed that it happens. (found via TheMarySue.com)

Speaking of possible new television series, a lot of people are getting cast for Gotham as well. I have no idea how this is going to be a television show, but I'm game. (found via EW.com)

And finally, have steampunk Batgirl by Mahmud Asrar. You can find more of his work at his Deviant Art profile.