Toxic Masuclinity Ruined BLACK PANTHER

   Thursday, February 22, 2018 at 2PM

Black Panther was a solid movie. Maybe the best of the Marvel Studios films. But it wasn't a GREAT movie. Ultimately, it was let down by the same tired trope that most superhero films fall victim to: An ending that, um... Oh.

There may be some spoilers in your future.

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41LT: That's, Like, Your Opinion

   Friday, February 9, 2018 at 8AM

I have been telling people they're wrong on the internet for over 20 years. At a certain point, you find that you're repeating yourself. In the interest of saving myself some time and frustration, I will sometimes put together my thoughts on a topic here, in a recurring feature I call "For One Last Time."

Today we're going to talk about people who go online and insist that the latest well-reviewed, well-received, high-grossing movie is THE WORST THING EVER.

SPOILERS: It's possible we may be talking about The Last Jedi.

Let's do this.

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The Best Defense?

   Monday, February 5, 2018 at 12PM

They say that the best defense is a good offense.

They are dumb. Probably. Probably it's them and not me.

Look, I understand the principle. Sometimes the best way to defend yourself is to go on the attack. Okay, maybe. That's not my problem.

My problem is this:

The BEST defense is a GOOD offense.

No way. Let's take a look at some charts.

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On Self-Publishing

   Wednesday, January 31, 2018 at 9AM

[Apologies in advance. This one's going to be a long walk.]

Comics wrecked me. That's a good, all-purpose truism. Before there was Dungeons & Dragons for me, before there was Star Wars or Star Trek or Doctor Who or The Chronicles of Narnia (sorry, Susan) of The Prydain Chronicles, there were these funny little sheets of newsprint, folded over and stapled and sold on racks at newsstands and bookstores and, closest to home, at a dark and mysterious back alley establishment called "The Pipe Shoppe." They taped their comics shut so you couldn't browse. That's how I knew evil.

And then there were comic book stores. This was the early 80s, so the whole concept was pretty new. We had one comic book store in walking distance very briefly: "Comics Universe." A whole UNIVERSE of comics! But they shuttered pretty quickly, and after that comic book stores were always like Oz for me. The end of a hard fought quest.

(Here "quest" basically just means "bus ride," plus talking somebody into taking you. And maybe McDonald's after.)

All of this is just a preamble so that I can say this: In the 1980s, in the comics industry, the cool kids self-published.

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Look Before You Leap?

   Saturday, January 20, 2018 at 4PM

Look before you leap.

Also, while leaping. That makes landing easier. It would be profoundly weird if you looked, leapt, and then closed your eyes mid-leap, never to open them again.

Which brings us to landing. When you land, keep looking.

Basically, whenever possible, look. Look before you leap. Look while leaping. Look after leaping. Always look.

If you can. If you are blind or otherwise CAN'T look (say, if you are asleep or you have been blindfolded) then you shouldn't look. Because if you can't look and yet you somehow still look, you have created some kind of logical impossibility and possibly a rift in space and time through which other people might fall.

You know, if they're not looking.

Rather than specifying when one SHOULD look, it might be simpler to point out the times one shouldn't.

For instance, when counting to 100 at the beginning of a game of hide-and-go-seek.

When your bride is sneaking into the room to grab her shoes the morning of the wedding.

At an eclipse.

When your grandmother is coming out of the shower and her towel slips.

At Medusa.

If I might suggest a better saying, and this will be by no means perfect or comprehensive, then perhaps:

    Look before you leap and during and after and at all other times except when logically impossible or when counting to 100 during hide-and-go-seek or brides or towels or eclipses or Medusa.

Shove that in your Bartlett's.


The Fun Killers

   Friday, January 19, 2018 at 12PM

There are two kinds of conflicts in fiction. (Which is to say that there are an infinity of conflicts, which I will now divide cleanly in two.)

In one, our hero triumphs by virtue of his/her awesomeness. This is fun for us, the reader or viewer, because awesomeness is awesome.

In the other, our hero is trying super hard to be awesome, but someone or something JUST. WON'T. LET. THEM. Booooo to that person, persons, or inanimate force. Why do they hate awesomeness? Why are they trying to kill our fun?

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41LT: Diversity in Superhero Comics

   Thursday, January 11, 2018 at 7PM

I have been telling people they're wrong on the internet for over 20 years. At a certain point, you find that you're repeating yourself. In the interest of saving myself some time and frustration, I will sometimes put together my thoughts on a topic here, in a recurring feature I call "For One Last Time."

And then, I don't know. I can link to it or whatnot.

Today, diversity in superhero comics.

KEEP READING "41LT: Diversity in Superhero Comics"


Quantum Leap and Non-Productive Non-Productivity

   Thursday, January 4, 2018 at 8AM

In the old days, before cellphones, people had nothing to do while standing in bank lines or walking into oncoming traffic. We only had two options, "paying attention" or "day dreaming," both of which are essential skills for a writer, although I have always been partial to the latter.

A normally-wired human might see these as the "productive" and "non-productive" choices (where "productive" equals "not run over by a car") but a writer knows better. A writer weaponizes "non-productivity" to generate food and shelter and hate mail. There is an awful lot of brainstorming, writing, and revising that can happen in one's head. This is what we call "productive non-productivity."

But if there is "productive non-productivity," there must also be "non-productive non-productivity," and I enjoy this too. Daydreaming too much about stories that aren't going to go anywhere. That are never going to pay your rent or buy you a cheeseburger. But maybe, maybe, maybe this kind of daydreaming can be turned to productive ends too. "Productive non-productive non-productivity."

That is today's rabbit hole. And/or an excuse to talk about the TV show Quantum Leap and reboots in this era of peak TV. Let's jump in.

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Hello, 2018

   Monday, January 1, 2018 at 12PM

Happy New Year, everybody, and welcome back to!(And/or its syndicated blog feed!)

This year I'm thrilled to announce that I'll be releasing a new novel, Percival Gynt and the Conspiracy of Days. It's a sci-fi/fantasy/horror/comedy/mystery/adventure story. Basically everything I love about genre fiction squished between two covers.

More details to come, including when precisely you can buy a copy, where, and how much it will cost you. Keep coming back here to (and/or its syndicated blog feed!) for all of that, plus behind the scenes looks into publishing a novel and assorted musings on life, politics, pop culture, and pre-Raphaelite stone masonry. (At least one of those is probably not a thing.)

In the meantime, here are some places that you can find/like/follow me across the web:


Batman, LEGO BATMAN, and a Child's Justice

   Tuesday, November 28, 2017 at 11AM

Finally had the chance to sit down and watch the Lego Batman movie this past weekend, and now I have bat-thoughts (nana-nana-nana-nana BAT-THOUGHTS!) that I need to share. This will be a little bit of a review, but mostly Drew pontificating on the nature of Batman. (An event more commonly known as "Tuesday.")

As a side note: I once sat down to play a Batman video game without realizing (until it was later pointed out to me) that it was Batman Day and that I was wearing a Batman T-shirt. I am just that Batmany.

Since the movie came out way back in February, I'm not going to be precious about spoilers. So if you REALLY don't want to know who Batman is beneath the mask, turn back now!

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Site Tech

   Monday, November 13, 2017 at 10AM

For those curious, I've dusted off an ollld version of the Movable Type blogging software to power this site and, because it's so old that I couldn't figure out how to get the site search to work properly, I plugged in the Fluid Dynamics Search Engine.

Also fundamental to the site's design: this handful of toothpicks and this wad of chewing gum.

My recollection of the story of the three little pigs is that the straw house was the most awesome house. That's right, right?


Just Checking

   Wednesday, November 1, 2017 at 4PM

No, this doesn't mean anything either.

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No, You Didn't Miss Anything

   Tuesday, October 31, 2017 at 4PM

Working on overhauling website. (Again.) You will notice many, many broken links and things announced which have not yet happened. Please ignore.