The Booket List Episode 1 – “All the Birds in the Sky” by Charlie Jane Anders

Sup Peeps!

Welcome to the first week of The Booket List. We are so very excited for you all to be listening to podcast and reading our blogs! We can’t wait to meet and interact with new people as the podcast grows.  In this week’s podcast we talk about our reasons behind starting The Booket List, and what our visions for it are. After that we dive right into last month’s Book, which was All the Birds in the Sky, by Charlie Jane Anders.  Word of caution, if you are planning on reading this book do not listen to the discussion in the podcast, it is far too ridden with spoilers. Instead go check out Chris’ SPOILER FREE REVIEW. We hope you enjoy the conversation. Feel free to voice your own opinion by commenting on the Podcast! If you have and questions or comments feel free to contact us at k.workman@kuteradio.org or c.swensen@kuteradio.org.

Till next week!

  • Kimmy and Chris

 

The Geekwave Episode 30: Cory Doctorow on the Reality of Science Fiction

“Stories can change world politics by describing a path.”

Solar and Ollie had a chance to sit down with Cory Doctorow, science fiction author, activist, journalist, blogger, member of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and co-founder the UK Open Rights Group. He’ll be speaking in the Marriott Library Gould Auditorium tomorrow, April 5th, at 6:30pm. Tickets are sold out for the event, but spare seats will be given away at the door once the lecture has started. More details right here.

While his talk tomorrow will be on Privacy and Surveillance, we wanted to talk to him a little bit about storytelling. And we were not disappointed, Doctorow had a wealth of knowledge to share about the way that science fiction describes possible futures, the way it models repeating history, and how even more fantastical stories like zombie thrillers are related to our current social conditions. “Predicting the future is boring, inspiring the future is interesting” he says.

We also delve a little bit into his opinions on gaming, and how much of modern free-to-play gaming has lost the benefits that playing games should be providing. Doctorow describes the Zynga-era of games as the “Empty Calories Version” of video games, “compelling without being satisfying”.

You can follow Cory Doctorow on Twitter, or check out his website craphound.com.

Review – The Martian

As Matt Damon looks into the web camera and announces one of the many hilarious phrases that added comedy to a very intense and fantastic movie, the audience roared with laughter. This was not a response that I assumed would be consistent in this movie or even present at all. Instead, The Martian offered an intense story with occasional break for comedy, which is good because Matt Damon’s situation was pretty dire throughout. He started out a on six person mission on Mars, but when everything goes wrong he is left stranded on the red planet to fend for himself. So, the Martian did what I think anyone could reason living on Mars would be like…by yourself.  It was a good movie that kept me wanting Matt Damon to survive and had me laughing out loud at some of the hilarious breaks of comedy the movie takes. Unfortunately, I found myself a little drawn out of the experience with the long scenic views of Matt Damon driving his rover over the harsh landscape.

The cinema is very good with many large pans of Martian landscape all the way to repeated use of a webcam to create interesting dialogue for the audience. Matt Damon has to do a lot of driving in this movie, which is okay because there is some beautiful Martian Landscape to view. Well, maybe that is not quite right. The major downside to the whole movie is how much time we spent looking at Martian landscape. It is for sure breath taking, but it is at these points when the action really slows and some may lose interest. On the other hand, the close quarter camera angles of the webcam/video diaries and close up angles from in the rover make so you really understand Matt Damon. You see how difficult his life has become and understand the struggle he faces. It is also great for creating dialogue, because Matt Damon has no one to talk to; they are quite literally 4 years away by space travel. So instead he talks to the webcam and outlines what he is doing, how he won’t give up and the occasional funny punchline. It is really a good time! Additionally, the action sequences and CGI look beautiful and do in fact put you on the edge of you seat. In fact, I actually wish there were more action sequences because the one’s we saw were really good!

The action was epic, but I wish there could have been more. Without mentioning spoilers it is hard to talk about the action, which is why I will be brief, similar to how it was in the movie. The times when everything goes wrong for Matt Damon and we have epic scenes of destruction, is the movie at its finest, sadly these are only at a few points. Much of the movie is like watching Matt Damon be in a survival video game which is still very cool but made me want to play. Still, there are some great explosions!

Now to ask if anyone else should have been The Martian, is foolish. Matt Damon is perfect for this role. The whole movie blended comedy and action for a really nice experience and very few people could have done it like him. The acting was on point, and I always felt sympathy for him. And he helped to make the long rover drives more interesting with his indulgent comedy.

Without further ado The Martian gets The Geekwave stamp of approval. It is an epic journey that makes you love Matt Damon and wish for him the best experience. The action sequences measure up to space travel destruction and the comedic punchlines created a well-blended experience. This is one not to miss!