Boom, new header is up

And it looks pretty good and I didn't have to alter it in any way. It's the Orion, an Ancient warship (designated Aurora-class by the Atlantis Expedition) from Stargate: Atlantis. The picture depicts the Orion about to enter hyperspace. Sadly, the Orion was destroyed while trying to stop two Wraith (primary antagonist race of the series. Basically, space vampires) Hiveships from reaching Earth. The Orion managed to destroy one of the ships with a massive barrage of Drones (uber-advanced missile thingies that can plow through a ship over and over and over again), but was destroyed in turn by the other Hiveship because the Orion's crew had to sacrifice its shields to power the weapons. The Orion wasn't exactly a brand new ship and the Ancient's technology would make the Federation from Star Trek look downright primitive.

Here's the runner up that I almost chose:

I might use this at Giant-Size Nerd-Thing!, it's just too sexy not to use.

Hat tip to Laughing Ferret for his suggestion which I almost went with right off the bat. I plan on switching headers again later this year and it'll be in the finals for sure.

Time for a new header

And I'm not really sure what to replace the current one with. I found an image tonight that would be nice:

It's the cover art for the September 1949 issue of Super Science Stories. Here's the cover:

Lines on Paper.
The only thing that nags me is this thought that the first picture is a reproduction of the second created by the person who posted it on their LiveJournal. I might just go ahead and disregard that picture and look elsewhere for a new header. If I had even minor skill with image manipulation, I'd create a nice one, but eh, I'll just stick with what works: Taking a cool picture and adding the blog's name to it in GIMP. In the words of the immortal Rick Hunter: "Works for me."

Anybody have any suggestions?

And we're back

Okay, so it wasn't two weeks, but I got itchy to post here again!


Another companion gone: RIP Mary Tamm (Romana from Doctor Who)

Not much I can say, since she's from the Classic Who era and I've never had the chance to watch any of those episodes. Tamm played the first incarnation of Romana, the only one of the Doctor's companions to be a Time Lord (well, Time Lady) like him, during Tom Baker's term as the Fourth Doctor. She left after a year because her character had become the standard "companion that gets in trouble and needs rescuing by the Doctor", as opposed to one who could hold her own. She died of cancer today at age 62.

There's something about her death that bothers me greatly. Mary Tamm is the fourth actor from Doctor Who to die from cancer in about a year and a half. Nicholas Courtney, who played Brigadier Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart, died back in February of last year. Elisabeth Sladen, who played Sarah Jane, died last year as well, while Caroline Jane and now Mary Tamm have both died a month apart. The fact that they all died of cancer makes it hard to believe that this is mere coincidence. I know that last sentence probably comes off as conspiratorial, which is unintended. The idea that keeps bopping around in my head is that maybe it was environmental. Maybe there was some kind of chemical or material they used during filming of the old Doctor Who series that was carcinogenic. I don't know, it just seems hard to believe that four people who worked on the same TV show would ultimately die from cancer and it's all just coincidental.

Picture via the TARDIS Index File.



Going on shore leave

I've decided to take a short vacation from the blog in order to focus some more attention on my other two blogs. As much as I love Rayguns, I've been neglecting the other two and plus, I want to get some writing for this blog done. Maybe find a new banner too. So, see you in about two weeks!


Silver Surfer

Francesco Francavilla.
(via Comic Twart)

Allen Steele's Coyote

So, I finally got around to writing this thing. Hum! This won’t be a real review, more of a thought and criticism of something in the book. I already covered the plot of the book here, but in essence, the book is about a group of dissidents from a future America that’s been taken over by far-right politicians and turned into a police state, who steal the starship built by the latter, and head off to colonize the moon (Coyote) of a gas giant in another star system. Hit the jump to read my main problem with the colony.


Okay, so Cumberbatch isn't playing Gary Mitchell in Star Trek 2

And I am getting frustrated by this cat and mouse bullshit. I agree with Rob Bricken from Topless Robot: Just frakking tell us who he's playing already. Cripes, we're going to find out when they start promoting the movie, so it's not some kind of goddamn state secret. It's a role, not the codes to the nuclear frakking arsenal.


And 1632 is finished

Excellent, excellent. There won't be a detailed review, since I suck at writing them, but suffice to say, it was a really good book. I was bothered by how well both the population of Grantville and everyone in the 17th century seemingly adjusted and came to terms with the situation, but that's the only problem I had with the book and even then, that was a moderate gripe at best.



Currently reading: 1632

And more than halfway through it. I admit, though, that I cheated. I had read part of the book last year, but stopped - as I sometimes do, even if the book is good - until I decided, on a whim, while at the local library to pick the book up again, and simply picked up where I left off (roughly).


Holy fudge monkeys, Batman! Benedict Cumberbatch's Star Trek 2 character finally revealed

Gary Mitchell, Kirk's broheim from Starfleet Academy. Mitchell appeared in only one episode of Star Trek, Where No Man Has Gone Before. In it, he gains god-like powers after the Enterprise passes through the galactic barrier. Basically, J. J. Abrams is adapting an entire episode from The Original Series into a movie.

Big credit goes to Karl Urban (Leonard McCoy) for accidentally revealing this during an interview with SFX Magazine. I have no problem whatsoever with Abrams adapting more TOS episodes to the big screen. Keep going.

h/t Topless Robot.


Oh my glob, you guys, there's going to be a new Old Man's War novel: The Human Division

My reaction can best be summed up in two gifs and a picture:

If you can't tell, I am a big fan of John Scalzi's Old Man's War series. Now on to the details. According to Scalzi, The Human Division won't be "strictly a novel", but rather thirteen episodic stories that if read together, tells a story arc. Essentially, it's going to be akin to a thirteen episode season of a TV show, but in written form. Interesting, especially if this idea is successful enough to warrant further seasons. Hey, it worked for Joss Whedon and his Buffy the Vampire Slayer comic series, which acts as a "virtual" eighth and ninth season of the show.

I'm certainly excited and can't wait until it comes out!


Finished: Coyote

Another book down. I'll write a review (still need to start on the other one...) soon. It was good. Not great, but good enough that I want to read the rest of the series.


What were you thinking, Independent Health!?

Via Whatever.

"Turn her into the wave!"

I survived stormageddon 2012 (that, or fucking Praxis exploded again!) and a heatwave and all I got was this stupid t-shirt. That was certainly an interesting experience. Not one I'd ever want to repeat, however. For the non-Americans, several states got hit by a sudden windstorm and thunderstorms that caught us completely off guard. About two million people from the mid-Atlantic region to the Midwest lost power and unfortunately, at least 17 lost their lives. We were already in the midst of a heatwave when it happened and most of us had to suffer through the weekend without air conditioning or any form of cooling for that matter. It was rough, especially for the old couple that lives next door. The lady had to come over Saturday afternoon and ask for help because her husband - already in declining health and not being helped by the heat - fell and she needed help getting him up. I was half-asleep at the time, but as soon as I heard, I was out the door and hauling ass over there before my dad had even gotten his shoes on.

When it hit my area, the wind blew all the wind chimes off our porch (and really, just blew everything around), tore down tree limbs (knocking out the power) and even uprooted trees. Apparently the wind was blocked at 90 miles per hour in some areas. According to Wikipedia, this type of windstorm is called a derecho. Power wasn't restored until about six this morning.

Thank the Machine God for electricity.
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