Jan 2013 11

A.J. Focht

A new batch of photos from Star Trek: Into Darkness have been released. While we’ll all have to wait until May 15 to see the full movie, in a heartwarming act of compassion, J.J. Abrams and Paramount arranged for Star Trek fan Dan Craft, who served as the director of the New York Asian Film Festival and was dying of cancer, to see the film on his deathbed. He had a expressed a desire to see the nine minute Star Trek preview, but instead he was allowed to watch a rough cut of the entire movie on DVD. Craft passed away earlier this week, his final words were: “I’m going… into the future.”

This year is the Doctor Who 50th anniversary bash. The BBC has announced that as part of the celebration they will be releasing eleven short stories written by beloved children’s authors set in the Doctor Who universe. No authors are confirmed, yet, but at the top of the assumed list is J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series. Each of the eleven authors will write one story about one of the eleven Doctors. The first short story will be out at the end of the month, and the book will be available in November.

Joss Whedon is back behind the camera and filming the pilot for the S.H.I.E.L.D. television series for ABC. Whedon is currently working on both the pilot and the sequel to the Avengers movie. He mentioned that he wants to spend as much time on the show as possible, but he needs to maintain balance between the projects. While the Avengers sequel is his number one priority, Whedon is confident that he has enough people he trusts to take care of the S.H.I.E.L.D. show. There is not a set release date for the pilot, but you can count on seeing it sometime next fall.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier will be coming out on April 4, 2014, but not everyone is returning. Hayley Atwell played Peggy Carter in the first Captain America, but she confirmed she will not be in the sequel. Winter Soldier will take place in the present day so her character would be older, if in the movie at all. This also means we shouldn’t expect to see her in flashbacks, unless they were directly from the first movie. It is likely that the character Sharon Carter will replace Peggy Carter as the love interest in the upcoming film.

Possible character details from the 2015 Justice League movie have been released. If an inside source is correct, the movie will follow Gerry Conway’s 1980 Justice League of America story arc from issues 183-185. The main team will consist of: Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman, Flash, Green Lantern, Martian Manhunter, and Aquaman. Both Alfred Pennyworth and Lois Lane are listed as having cameos. While the notes don’t mention if Batman will be linked to the Dark Knight series, most sources believe not. The source does mention Superman is being written like the incarnation in Man of Steel, with a little help from Zack Snyder who is consulting. It looks like Green Lantern will be Ryan Reynold’s character, with a complete revamp. Also, the Wonder Woman script is in development currently as well, and will be set before the Justice League movie. Assuming this information is correct, the Justice League film will not only be more tied in to past DC movie continuity than previously expected, but it will also be a very elaborate venture requiring several rewrites to tie in anticipated sequels.

Universal Studios first added the Wonderful World of Harry Potter, and now Universal and Tolkien Estate are planning a Middle Earth theme park. For everyone who can’t afford to fly out to New Zealand in order to experience a Hobbit-like landscape, there is a chance a little slice of Middle Earth will be coming to the US.

Jan 2013 10

by Nicole Powers

“Scholarship is inherently not a market activity.”
– Cory Doctorow

Cory Doctorow has made me wait almost a year to read Homeland, the much-anticipated sequel to Little Brother, his opus on civil rights and protest in the digital age. With not one but two Doctorow novels, Pirate Cinema and Rapture of the Nerds (which was co-authored with Charles Stross), already on the release schedule for 2012, Homeland has had to loiter in the wings for a 2013 publication date. But the wait has been well worth it. Homeland is a beyond worthy successor to Little Brother.

The highly prophetic novel, which was first published in 2007, is now regarded as a contemporary classic. As such, Little Brother is required reading in many of our more progressive schools, and has even been turned into a “must see” stage play –– hence Homeland has quite a legacy to live up to.

When I last sat down with Doctorow –– for an interview specifically about Little Brother –– on January 4th, 2012, Obama had just signed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2012 into law. With the stroke of our President’s pen, yet another of the central themes of Little Brother –– unlimited military detention without trial –– had become fact rather than fiction.

In Homeland (which Doctorow had finished writing a few days prior to our first meeting), we return to the Little Brother universe a year and a half after the last novel left off. In the intervening months, austerity has choked the life and soul out of America, and our hacktivist hero Marcus Yallow has quit his studies, having been forced out of university by financial pressures and burgeoning student debt.

The action kicks off at Burning Man, where Marcus has an unexpected encounter with his sometime ally Masha, and their nemesis Carrie Johnstone. Masha, who is on the run from just about every law enforcement agency you can name (and a few that you can’t), hands Marcus an insurance policy in the form of a key to an encrypted torrent file which contains a treasure drove of highly sensitive data. Her subsequent disappearance prompts Marcus to set up a WikiLeaks-like site, an endeavor which is made all the more complicated by conflicts of interests that arise from his new job as a tech guru for an independent political candidate.

Meanwhile Johnstone has given up her position in the military for a lucrative job in the private sector with a Halliburton type entity that has tentacles embedded in the government, military, and the increasingly lucrative (and corrupt) student loan market. It’s therefore no surprise that Johnstone and her corporation, Zyz, are the subject of much of Masha’s leaked data, and a cat & mouse game ensues involving lawful interception, rootkits, and drones. It’s not all doom and gloom though, and at one point during the breakneck-paced plot, Marcus (and Doctorow vicariously through him) gets to sit down and have a Mini Dungeon adventure with Electronic Frontier Foundation founders John Perry Barlow, John Gilmore and Mitch Kapor, with uber geek Wil Wheaton acting as Dungeon Master.

Having read an advance copy of Homeland, I met up with Doctorow at his North London workspace to question him about it. As I make myself comfortable on his couch and set up my digital recorder on the coffee table next to his well-thumbed copy of the RAND Corporation’s 1955 book A Million Random Digits with 100,000 Normal Deviates, the Canadian-born writer and Boing Boing editor does something quintessentially English by offering me a cup of tea. Normally this would be more than acceptable, but having been tempted by the delights of cold-brew coffee –– Marcus’ hi-octane beverage of choice which fuels much of Homeland –– I can’t help feeling a little disappointed that Doctorow didn’t have a batch on the go…

Read our interview with Cory Doctorow on

Jan 2013 08

by Alexander Hinkley for Examiner

[Bounty in Streamlined]

This week’s SuicideGirl gamer of the week is the stunningly beautiful Bounty Suicide. She loves music, video games, and music in video games.

What made you choose the SG name “Bounty?”

Honestly, I wanted something easy to remember. But I also liked what the word bounty meant.

Your tattoos are pretty freakin’ cool. Is there any symbolism behind them?

All of my tattoos are based on religion, aside from Paul McCartney’s portrait. Then again, some might say that I obsess over The Beatles religiously hahaha.

What was the first tattoo you ever got?

The first tattoo I ever got is an anchor on my right foot that reads, “Anchored in Christ.”

What do you like to do for fun?

Some things I like to do for fun outside of modeling include traveling and going to shows! I’m a total music junkie!

What kind of music do you listen to?

I listen to all types of music, from The Beatles to Marilyn Manson. Different styles of music mesh well with different types of moods.

Do you like music-based video games?

I love Rock Band and Guitar Hero. The Beatles: Rock Band is definitely my favorite, though.

Which is your favorite Rock Band instrument?

My favorite Rock Band instrument would have to be the drums. I think I was meant to actually be a drummer. It holds my attention well. Haha.

You mentioned you liked going to shows. What was the last concert you attended?

The last concert I attended was a local acoustic show. I could listen to acoustic all day.

Name your top three favorite video games of all-time.

My top three favorite video games of all-time would have to be Super Mario World (for Super Nintendo), F3AR, and ATV Offroad Fury 2. The last one is kind of random, considering that I’m really into games where I’m able to slaughter the undead, etc., but the soundtrack is so legit.

What is the best zombie game, in your opinion?

I really used to love the Resident Evil games, but they’re just too easy to beat. Left4Dead is probably my favorite now.

What is your stance on sex in video games?

Sex in video games? Well, it’s the best! My Sims were like rabbits. Perhaps that’s how I broke my PlaysStation. Too much virtual intercourse. The prostitutes in Grand Theft Auto are pretty cool too.

What would you say to a girl (or guy) that says playing video games is “too nerdy”?

I would tell them that their opinion is irrelevant to my life, and challenge them to verse me in Tekken.

Where can fans find more of you?

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Dec 2012 12

A.J. Focht

It’s been a big week for Trekkies. The first teaser trailer for J.J. Abrams Star Trek: Into Darkness has been released. The explosive trailer was just one of several announcements since the start of the month. The new movie website has released the new poster as well as the movie plot. Keep your eye out for more Star Trek news as Into Darkness launches into theaters on May 17, 2013.

There are a lot of questions floating around about the upcoming Star Wars movies. A few actors have spoken up about returning to the film. Samuel L. Jackson wants to work on the movie in some way. Since his character died, he said he’d be happy returning as a hologram. Ewan McGreggor also spoke up saying he’d return if needed. It looks like the only person not getting in on the project is George Lucas. Lucas described his hands off consulting role as being something of a Star Wars encyclopedia.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey comes out this Friday, but some lucky folks in New Zealand have already had the chance to enjoy it. However, there are complaints that the innovative 48fps format that Jackson used is causing nausea for some. Jackson fought to bring 48fps to theaters, so we’ll have to wait until The Hobbit is released worldwide to know the extent of problems the high frame rate will cause. While the first Hobbit film isn’t out just yet, the first still from the second movie The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug was release via EW.

Man of Steel is already being called one of the most disappointing movies of 2012. This is a bit confusing as Zack Snyder’s Superman movie doesn’t release till June 14, 2013. Yahoo! writer Jonathon Crow hasn’t even seen the film yet. He was disappointed enough that the movie wasn’t released in 2012 to take umbrage, and was further perturbed by the fact that Snyder was throwing tradition away with his superhero’s red underwear. However, the comics have had Superman out of the red briefs for some time now. Don’t take these early negative critiques seriously, Christopher Nolan has put his full support behind the film. A new trailer, the second, has just been released for the film – see above.

Back in September, the CW announced they were going to film a Wonder Woman pilot. An in depth character bio has been released. Despite Wonder Woman being referred to as Iris, pilot script writer Allan Heinberg tweeted it was just a code name. There have been a few failed attempts at bringing the Amazonian Princess back to TV. Let’s hope the CW do as well with Wonder Woman as they did with Smallville and Arrow.

The Justice League movie isn’t set to hit theaters until 2015, but reports that Darkseid will be the major movie villain have ht the internet. Thanos was the hand controlling Loki throughout the Avengers, so it’s fitting that the Justice League would face off against what could considered DC’s counterpart to Thanos. Whether Darkseid will battle the JSA on his own or be using pawns is still unknown.

Joss Whedon has handed in his outline for Avengers 2. Marvel’s Phase 2 will officially begin in 2013. If everything goes right, the S.H.I.E.L.D. series will premier next year. ABC President Paul Lee is excited about the series. He said, “It’s very Joss Whedon,” which should only be taken as a good thing.

The hunt for Harry Osborne is over. Chronicle star Dane DeHaan will be playing the part in the Amazing Spider-Man 2. Many expect he will be the villain in the sequel, although he may be fitted for the best friend role in this outing before becoming a villain in a subsequent one. The movie is set to start production in early 2013 for a May 2, 2014 release date.

Some huge news for X-Men fans. The sequel to X-Men: First Class has two new cast members: both Sir Patrick Stewart and Sir Ian McKellen will be in the movie. Michael Fassbender and James McAvoy have also signed up. They may need them for a classic X-Men time travel story or perhaps a snapshot of the future.

It’s a sad week for Batgirl fans. Long time DC writer Gail Simone has been fired from the Batgirl book – via email! Simone wrote Batgirl for the New 52 after lengthy runs on Birds of Prey, Secret Six, and Wonder Woman. The graphic novel of her first story arc, which brought back Barbara Gordon as Batgirl, landed at No. 4 on the New York Times graphic books bestsellers list. Simone pushed boundaries with her characters, and had plans for a new transgender character that are now being scrapped. This upsetting news came just a week after Karen Berger stepped down as Executive Editor of DC’s Vertigo brand.

It’s that time of year, everyone is releasing their Best of 2012 lists. Spike TV hosted their Video Game Awards last week. While they certainly aren’t the Oscars, they’re the biggest name in video game awards right now. Out of the winners, there were some upsets. Borderlands 2 took Best Shooter and Call of Duty: Black Ops II didn’t win anything. The Walking Dead took the Game of the Year title. NerdBastards did an excellent job assembling all the amazing trailers from the show.

Kevin Smith announced he was leaving the movie game with his film, Hit Somebody. Well it turns out that might not be the case. The film was originally one movie, then two movies, and now it is back to one movie or perhaps a miniseries. That being the case, Smith is looking at leaving the movie business the way he came into it. He is now just waiting on Jeff Anderson to sign on so he can make his last cinematic creation, Clerks III.

The market for digital movies has grown a lot in recent years. While there are several choices for getting your films online, most of them seem to be equivalent to each other. That is until Netflix signed an exclusive deal to stream Disney. It means you will soon find all your childhood favorites on Netflix. Some movies have already been uploaded including Alice in Wonderland and Nightmare Before Christmas.

Dec 2012 11

by Alexander Hinkley for Examiner

[Fraise in La Isla Bonita]

Fraise is this week’s SuicideGirl gamer of the week. She is a girl gamer from Germany who loves open world games and fighters. Fraise teaches us how to sound cool talking trash over Xbox LIVE in German and talks about how gamers in Germany actually get some games before the United States!

What is the meaning behind your SuicideGirls nickname, “Fraise”?

Fraise is French for strawberry. Actually, I wanted another name. My first choice was the name of my grandma’s cat, Misha. My second choice was Cerise, that’s French for cherry and I seriously love cherries a lot. But there is already another Suicide Girl with the name Cerise. You have to give three different names when you apply and I had no third name. I thought strawberries are awesome, too. Everybody loves them. And everything sounds better in French so why not go with Fraise. Why I did not get my first choice, I don’t know, but Fraise is totally fine with me. It was a one-minute decision that stuck with me for five years now. That’s how it can go!

French huh? Are you fluent in French?

Lets put it like this: my French is far better than my Spanish and my Spanish is better than my Swahili. I had French at school for five or six years, but to be honest, I sucked. The fact that I have never really traveled to France (I have been to Paris one time, but that’s it) did not make it better. Surprisingly, I remembered a lot when I started to learn Spanish. I was able to answer every question my teacher asked in perfect French! At university, I took Swahili for one year. The only sentence I remember is “mtu anasoma kitabu.” If you can get it translated, you will see how helpful that one is!

How does living in Germany affect your gaming habits? Do you get games later than people in the U.S.?

Actually there are no negative effects at all. Sometimes we even get the games a little bit earlier. The restriction laws are sharper, as I see it, but it’s no problem to get the version you want. You have to buy the Austrian version in shops or order from Austria.

How do you say “get owned, noob” in German?

I can’t really think of a fitting phrase, probably because the standard language online is English. It would probably be safe to translate “get owned“ with “friss scheiße!“ Then “noob“ would be a “neuling” or “neuer” which is far too long and does not have the effortless sound that this cool internet language has.

What is your favorite genre of video games?

I love open world games like Grand Theft Auto and Red Dead Redemption!

What did you think of the ending of Red Dead?

A lot a people complained about the end but I had no problem with it at all and I think it’s a perfectly fine ending. I have to admit that it took me a while to figure out that, as the son, I had to go and get my final revenge on the cop.

Anyways, Red Dead Redemption was great. I spend hours riding around, catching horses, and just enjoying the landscape. Seriously, the horses were amazing. The Four Horses of the Apocalypse in Undead Nightmare were even cooler. Demon horses! A burning demon horse! Can it get any better?

What are you looking forward to most about GTA V?

GTA is one of my favorite games ever and I’m bursting with excitement. It’s always amazing to see how games evolve that you knew from the beginning (besides Tekken, that just makes me cry). First of all, it goes back to fake California which is cool. I loved San Andreas. Second, a bigger map. The biggest map ever! Sounds pretty good. I’m not 100 percent sure about switching characters during the game, but most likely I will find it convenient when I play it. There is one thing though; I really hoped for a female character. To be honest, I counted on it and it’s sad that it’s not happening. I hope they at least give me horses and some animal interaction like in Assasin’s Creed 3.

The last thing I have to say about GTA V is that it can be released now. I’m ready. Thanks.

Do you do much gaming online?

Actually no. I’m more of a loner when it comes to gaming. I like to lock myself up in my room, all by myself and without any interaction with other people.

Xbox 360 or PS3?

For me it went like this: PlayStation, PlayStation 2, Xbox 360. I don’t know if the PS3 would be a better choice. Probably not, but I don’t know for sure. How could I if I don’t have one? Actually, a girl should have both.

In your opinion, who is the coolest video game character ever?

What kind of question is this? Are you kidding?! You know it’s impossible to answer this one, right? There are way too many options. But there is a character that has a lot of emotional value for me: Nina Williams from Tekken. She’s a blond girl like I am and I have known her from the beginning. Even though she has no sense of style whatsoever, we became very close. I remember the first time when my nagging was finally successful and the boys handed over the controller to let me try, my first pick was Nina and we clicked right from the start. Ever since, we’ve made a perfect team and after years of training you can’t win against us. A long time ago I went to the Manga and Anime Con in Kassel, where the PS2 was presented. I kicked a lot of nerdy butt that day and it still makes me proud.

If I think about it, I’m quite sure that the coolest character is a Pokemon, but I don’t know which one. My favorite is the Evoli (Eevee) because it’s so unspecific.

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Dec 2012 07

by Nahp

A column which highlights Suicide Girls and their fave groups.

[Apollo Suicide in Arboretum]

This week Apollo tells us why she love Musicians.

Members: 3,119 / Comments: 6,722

WHY DO YOU LOVE IT?: I love it because I am completely obsessed with making music. Playing music, for me, is about 1,000 times more revealing than modeling naked. It takes a special person to put themselves out there and reveal their inner most thoughts with their music and I really appreciate that. I can’t help but go weak in the knees for an amazing musician.

DISCUSSION TIP: Don’t spam, and don’t be an ass. Constructive criticism is great. Tell someone if you enjoy what you hear! If not, keep it to yourself or at least say something constructive!

MOST HEATED DISCUSSION THREAD: I can’t say that there really is one! This is a great group! I believe musicians are just passionate people in general.


WHO’S WELCOME TO JOIN?: EVERYBODY! Come join! I mean, come on, who doesn’t like musicians?!


Dec 2012 03

A.J. Focht

Paramount has just released a poster for the much anticipated new Star Trek film, Into Darkness. Cast members reprising roles from the 2009 J.J. Abrams-helmed Enterprise voyage include Chris Pine (Kirk), Zachary Quinto (Spock), Karl Urban (Bones), Simon Pegg (Scotty), John Cho (Sulu), and Zoe Saldana (Uhura). The most notable newcomer seems to be Benedict Cumberbatch, from the critically acclaimed UK TV series Sherlock, who is rumored to be playing Khan, a role that was originally played by Ricardo Montalbán in the ’60s TV series and Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan film. The Enterprise will head Into Darkness in theaters on May 17, 2013.

Many Marvel movie fans will be pleased to hear the Marvel Cinematic Universe: Phase One – Avengers Assembled box set has received a new release date. Marvel ran into a problem with the original suitcase the set comes in when a German manufacturer filed a suit. Those who have waited despite the delay will be rewarded with first look teaser material for Iron Man 3, Thor: The Dark World, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and Guardians of the Galaxy. The box set is now releasing on April 2, 2013.

Despite all the rumors to the contrary, director James Mangold has revealed there will be no trailers for The Wolverine before The Hobbit. The first trailers for the movie won’t be until early 2013. The Wolverine will be coming to theaters July 26, 2013.

The CW’s new show Arrow adds yet another member from the DC comic family to the series this week. The Huntress, Helena Bertinelli, will make her debut this Wednesday. So far, there have been appearances by Deadshot, Deathstroke, and the Royal Flush Gang. It looks like Huntress will be the first hero to join the crew, although she will likely start off as an anti-hero/villain.

Peter Parker has been Spider-Man since his first appearance in Amazing Fantasy #15. While Miles Morales took over in Marvel’s Ultimate Spider-Man, Peter Parker has remained Spider-Man in the Amazing Spider-Man series. That might all be coming to an end. (Spoilers ahead, if you need to catch up on the comics skip down.) In the final issues leading up to the release of Marvel Now’s Superior Spider-Man #1, Doc Ock has taken over Peter’s mind and body. Amazing Spider-Man #698 sold out and has gone to second printing. In a tweet from writer Dan Slott (supposedly meant to be a direct message), it may have been revealed that Miguel O’Hara, Spider-Man from Spider-Man 2099 will be taking over in Marvel Now’s Superior Spider-Man. Some are calling the tweet a red herring meant to mislead fans. What do you think? Is it time for Peter Parker to step down or will he always be Spider-Man?

There is more news from a galaxy far far away inside a Disney castle near you. Michael Arndt might be working on the script for the first movie in the new Star Wars series, but it looks like Disney is calling in the veterans to help. Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg have been approached by Disney to work on the later installments. Kasdan penned two of the original Star Wars scripts: The Empire Strikes Back and The Return of the Jedi.

In case you missed out on reading the book growing up or just want to check to make sure the film story lives up to it, the synopsis for the Ender’s Game film has been released. For those who have been worried about the project, the synopsis is dead on. Ender’s Game releases in theaters on November 1, 2013.