Wed, 26 March 2014
It's been a good week for comic books: Hellboy turned 20, and Neil Gaiman's latest Sandman story is out -- making it 25 years with still the occasional Morpheus story. It also marked the week when we thought, "How the hell did we get to 59 episodes and not talk about comic books?!"
We couldn't go another week without fixing that problem.
We kick off the episode talking about why comic book properties are so valuable in recent years before moving on to talking about why one comic book movie (Avengers) made more than the entire comic book industry in a year. With comic book characters becoming more mainstream, we harken back to the days when many hid their comic book fandom...or kept it secret in the hope it never blew up to something popular. Then we step even further back and talk about the first comic books we remember reading.
While in the past, we devote a bit of time to the first characters or series we really got into. After that, we talk about well done comic book adaptations to other media...and not-so-well done adaptations.
Want to know our favorite series and character of all time? Listen in (Christopher couldn't limit it to just one...and he cheats and adds something he forgot before this podcast even begins!) Next, we talk about certain pop-culture icons and their love of comics...to the point of even working in the industry (Kevin Smith writing Green Arrow, for example). Does that help or hurt the industry? Was Maus the point where comic books stopped being "just for kids"...or was it sooner or later -- and what do we feel signaled the change? When comics were mainly aimed at kids, what were the silliest story lines out there?
Find out where in their history we feel our favorite characters were tops...as well as the most underused character in comics. (We call this section, "An Ode to the Awesomeness that is Solomon Grundy." And some others, because -- again -- Christopher couldn't pick just one...)
We close the episode with two questions:
Wed, 19 March 2014
We've mentioned several times on the show how we were both afraid of everything as kids. But were we ever brave? Bravery and courage are this week's topics, beginning with our definitions or bravery and courage (i.e. are they the same thing?). From there, we move on to our first acts of bravery and courage.
But it's not all about us: we spend some time discussing why society seems to admire bravery so much before asking if we're a braver society now than our grandparents' generation? How about the generation coming up -- are we braver/more courageous than them?
Say "bravery" and so many people envision a soldier. Are soldiers brave by nature -- find out what we think. Say "bravery" to others, and it evokes an image of a guy saying "Hold my beer," before another trip to the emergency room. At what point does bravery cross the line into stupidity? Is there anything wrong with not being brave and opting for safety?
Near the end, it's back to us: find out the most courageous and then the bravest things we've ever done. We close the episode out with this question: "Do you think society will become more brave or less brave in the future?"
As always, we'd love it if you were brave enough to comment...or even leave a rating of review for Men in Gorilla Suits on iTunes or Stitcher.
Wed, 12 March 2014
You may have noticed that the entertainment industry kind of likes remaking things. Stuck for an idea -- why not reboot an existing property? It's been going on for longer than you probably think. Hell, many of Shakespeare's works were remakes!
We start off the episode talking about the first remakes we remember seeing. From there, we move on to discussing why we think movies and TV executives are quick to reboot old shows and remake the same movie over and over. Many remakes don't make their money back...so why do they keep coming back?
Next, we discuss the gritty reboot (think Cabbage Patch Kids done by Tarantino). What do we think about this kind of reboot -- and what are the best (and worst) gritty reboots we've ever seen? Find out what existing property we could not believe was made into a movie or TV show. Listen, and find out what existing property we would like to see remade.
The Internet is full of people coming unhinged when something they cherish is remade (Where the Red Fern Grows: The Revenge of Old Dan and Little Ann, Part VII!). But for all the whining, do reboots and remakes take something away from the original? ("The Ghost of Matlock and Indiana Jones team up with Shaggy and Scoob and solve mysteries. Corey Feldman is attached!")
Note about the sound: We had to record the last two episodes through Skype, so the quality is a bit lacking, but...sometimes that's what it takes to get a show out weekly. (Who knew we'd have an ice storm the day after it was 85 degrees one Saturday?) We might have to do one more Skype show before getting back to in-person with better sound...thanks for listening!
Wed, 5 March 2014
Wall Street and big bankers...power-hungry politicians...people all but rioting for big sales items in stores during the holiday season -- it seems like greed has reached new heights, but has it? Find out in this week's episode.
We begin with two questions:
After that, we discuss scams. Movies would have us believe that a big part of a scam is the challenge, but is that the case in the real world?
Greed manifests in ways some people don't consider. Jealousy is a kind of greed; we take a few moments to make our case for this and then discuss if we're the jealous types.
Greed has destroyed lives and toppled societies, but at what point in everyday life does greed become a destructive force? Can greed ever be a good thing?
Many say America as we know it was founded on greed -- is this the case? If so, just how intertwined is America's relationship with greed? Should we actually feel pity for greedy individuals, as though it were an addiction? And is it greedy to put one's needs before others?
Each year, many people read and watch versions of that Dickens classic, A Christmas Carol. Is Ebenezer Scrooge's epiphany realistic? Why has the story endured for such a long time?
We wrap up this episode discussing types of greed many might not consider greedy, before closing with this question: Is greed something that needs to be fixed...and if so, how do we fix it?
We're not greedy about letting you have your say -- feel free to share your thoughts about greed in the comments.