Welcome one and all- Please leave sanity at the door

A Teenage boy with a passion for all things nerdy! Expect a lot of Doctor Who, Cult/Horror Movies, Literature and Novels, History, Comic Books and random thoughts. Posts published weekly on a Friday evening. DISCLAIMER: I do not own any of the items reviewed on this site and i also do not own of the pictures (unless stated so). If you own one of the photos and wish for it to be removed contact me at this adress: Super.pig@live.co.uk. However all of the written work is my own and is protected under copyright law.

Friday, 30 August 2013

Doctor Who at 50: The Harvest of Time by Alastair Reynolds

Now when most people think of Doctor Who they think exclusively of its history on television but Doctor Who also has a long history in various forms of ‘Spin-Off Media’. Of the three main strands that make up the main crux of this Spin-Off Media, Audio’s, Comics and Novels, the novels are undoubtedly my favourite. Doctor Who has indeed had a long relationship with prose, Target novelised the majority of the series during its original run and even then there was the odd original piece of original fiction that cropped up now and then. It wasn’t until 1991 however with the Virgin New Adventures that original Doctor Who Fiction really found its feet, this series and its follow ups (The Virgin Missing Adventures, the BBC Eighth Doctor Adventures and the Past Doctor Adventures) we’re different to the TV novelizations in that they we’re written specifically with an adult audience in mind. This meant that unlike the TV show their plots could revolve around darker themes, could contain a great deal more violence and in some cases they even expanded the sex-lives of The Doctor and his Companions. Indeed this is why I enjoy them, their Doctor Who with the breaks off so to speak. For example, a personal favourite of mine ‘Shadow in the Glass’ written by Justin Richards and Stephen Cole is a brilliant novel that concerns the Sixth Doctor meeting Adolf Hitler. Unlike the TV story ‘Lets Kill Hitler’, this story is dark and gritty and the Furher is presented as a monster, not played for laughs. The novels did things the TV series never good, they took Doctor Who to dark places that the TV show simply could not and I adore them for that. Some we’re too much, appearing to be Horror Novels or Hardcore Science fiction novels with the Doctor and his crew slotted in, others didn’t do it enough, appearing as simplistic children’s novels. Some however got it just right adding much needed character and darker themes, creating Doctor Who stories for adults only. Then in 2005 with the TV series returning the Classic Series Novels were discontinued and replaced by a series of books based on the BBC-Wales series and written with a teen audience in mind. They weren’t bad, but they weren’t the same. However last year saw the return of Classic- Series based original fiction with ‘The Wheel of Ice’ by Stephen Baxter. This was part of a new series of novels written by already established authors but for reasons unknown it sort of passed over my head. Then however in June this year to coincide with the 50th anniversary, ‘The Harvest of Time’ was released, featuring my all time favourite Doctor Jon Pertwee and my all time favourite Master, Roger Delgado. To say I was overjoyed was an understatement.

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Batman #1: The First Appearance of The Joker

I think it’s safe to say that a lot of Comic Books are known as much for their Villains as they are for their Heroes and when one discusses some of the greatest comic book villains of all time then the Joker is one of the first to come to mind. The Joker has become a symbol, a force of chaos, he has no definitive origin story, he’s a psycho-killer who does things for reasons that only he understands and he is Batman’s greatest foe. Now I should warn you that perhaps more so than reviewing this particular issue I’m going to be discussing the Jokers character and what it is that makes him so great. The reason for this is simple, everybody with a slight knowledge of comics knows this issue, it’s the Jokers first appearance and is undeniably a classic. Now don’t mistake me to a modern audience it can have its faults, like The Amazing Spiderman #17 that I looked at a few weeks ago, it can seem quite dated but I was surprised how much closer this version of the joker was to the version seen today than the Prankster which actually appeared later in the 1950’s and 60’s. Personally I always assumed that the campy Joker (brilliantly portrayed by Cesar Romero in the 1966 Adam West TV Show) was the version that came first, so this was a nice surprise.

Sunday, 18 August 2013

My Soul to Take (2010)

Firstly, I must apologise for this post being a few days late. I got my A Level Results last week and the usual time I would devote to writing reviews had to be diverted. Anyway! I have to admit this was not what I was expecting when I sat down to watch My Soul to Take. I knew very little about it other than its positively dire reputation, one it admittedly deserves, but I was not expecting a plotless, senseless movie with shameless rehashing of the best bits from Cravens superior works. It’s not all bad, the lead character Bug was played expertly by Max Theriot and the sections spent examining his “sanity” were interesting and well done. However aside from rehashing other more well known Craven films, My Soul to Take also doesn’t know how to balance its mood correctly and has a plot that makes very little sense and the parts that do are just ridiculous. It’s a shame really to think this was made by one of horrors ‘Masters’.

Friday, 9 August 2013

A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan-Doyle

Considering that last week I took a look at the Sherlock inspired Doctor Who story, Talons of Weng-Chiang, I could not resist this week discussing the first Conan-Doyle Holmes adventure, A Study in Scarlet, which I recently read. Sherlock Holmes is perhaps the most famous British Character of all, but this original Holmes has many differences to the one more commonly known by the public today. Indeed Wikipedia states that it was the second book, The Sign of Four, that ‘Humanizes him in a way that had not been seen in a Study in Scarlet’. None the less this is the original Holmes story, and considering I have never read any others, I must confess I found it extremely enjoyable. Conan Doyle is without doubt a national treasure and I have previously enjoyed his other works such as the professor Challenger tales The Lost World and The Poison Belt, and some of his ‘Tales of Terror’ and the same relentless pacing and power to grip his readers attention is evident in all.

Friday, 2 August 2013

Doctor Who at 50: The Talons of Weng-Chiang

So far on these ‘Doctor Who at 50’ posts, I have tried to somehow keep them linked to the fact that I am trying to celebrate 50 years of the show. My first post looked at Galaxy 4 and, more importantly, the newly found episode which was released on DVD this year. The second looked at The Massacre of St Bartholomew’s Eve and the pure historical format from the shows early years, a format which is no longer used and so was a nice trip back to the beginnings of the show. The third looked at the return of the Great Intelligence for the 50th and discussed bringing villains from the classic series into the post 2005 series. As of yet though I haven’t really discussed one of the ‘greats’ and I feel that considering this is my 4th ‘Doctor Who at 50’ post I really should. Admittedly the story I am discussing today, The Talons of Weng-Chiang, is my third favourite Doctor Who story ever (I’m not in a position to reveal the other two yet!) and it’s not just me either! In the 2009 Doctor Who Magazine poll it was voted the 4th best and in 2003 in a similar poll it was voted the best story ever. Quite simply, it’s a cracker from start to finish.