Friday, May 20, 2011

The End of an Era and an Animated Gift

Tomorrow, May 21, 2011 A.D., will be the end of an era.

Tomorrow, things will change forever.

Tomorrow I graduate.

...oh, and apparently it's the Rapture, too.

Anyway, since I'll be using my amazing new powers as a Bachelor of Arts to fight off the apocalypse,* I will not be writing a normal post this weekend.  So, to celebrate my graduating, here are some links for watching free and legal anime!  Sadly, I can't guarantee that these links will work outside of the U.S., but if I find any I'll do my best to post them.

Funimation: Full episodes of anime licensed by Funimation; I think most of the videos are dubbed in English, but there are also some in Japanese with English subtitles.

Viz Anime: Full episodes of anime licensed by Viz; also a mix of subtitled and dubbed videos.  I recommend Cross Game, if you don't mind something a little slower than most licensed anime.

Crunchyroll: Full episodes of a variety of shows, mostly in Japanese with English subtitles, but with some English dubbing as well.  They also have some Korean live-action dramas, if your into that.

And, because I'm feeling so generous:

Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes episodes 1 -19 at!  Yes, I know this isn't an anime, but it is a fun show about superheroes that you can watch the first nineteen episodes of legally and for free.  That just needs to be shared.

*Undergraduate degrees totally work like that.  So do apocalypses.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

The Fantastic Adventures of H.G. Wells: A Warehouse 13 Spin Off in the Works

This past week marked the end of an era.  Stargate, the science fiction franchise that began as a spin-off to a movie and spawned North America's longest running science fiction television series came to an end on Monday with the last episode of Stargate Universe, the franchise' third live-action series.  While there will be no more Stargate in the foreseeable future (and the release of the Series 5 SG-1 action figures is even less likely now), there may still be some ray of joy in the the dark, Stargate-less future:

On Thursday, The Hollywood Reporter published an exclusive made of flowers, puppies, and steampunk Tesla guns.  While the franchise of my favorite live-action series of all time has ended, there's a chance that one of my favorite currently airing shows will get a spin off of its own and be the start of a quirky, steam-and-Tesla-powered franchise.  Not only that, but this spin-off would be centered around the amazing and complex character of H.G. Wells (portrayed by Jaime Murray), a morally ambiguous time-traveling, inventor-super-agent.  Who is a woman.

She's the one with the gun.  Note the lack of mustache.

In case you're wondering: yes, she is that H.G. Wells, but the "H" stands for Helena instead of Herbert and she leads an active life-style of inventing and crime-fighting.  No, really.  In the wonderfully wacky world of Warehouse, H.G. Wells' stories are written by her brother but based on her life and inventions.

The spin-off would follow Helena's crime-fighting adventures in the 1890's.  According to the article:
"In this incarnation, she would enlist the help of a mechanical engineer and utilize her relationship with the police commissioner to solve what appear to be unsolvable cases. Both the skills and style she employs will become the framework for the well-known stories of H.G. Wells, as written by her brother."
 I love this idea.  Last season, H.G.'s complexity, intelligence, back story, style, moral ambiguity, and jet-pack (as well as Murray's fantastic acting) made her one of my favorite characters in the series (I have twitter proof).  She was a good character, whose motivations you could never be completely sure you understood until the end.  She kept you guessing and was just fun to watch.

While this announcement about the development of a new series is more detailed than many initial press releases (Buffy, Spidey, I'm looking at you), that doesn't prevent me from speculating about it.  So, because I love bullet points, here's a list of questions about the spin-off:

WARNING: There may be spoilers about the second season of Warehouse 13, so you should go watch all of it now.  This post won't go anywhere.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Interview: Josh Uitvlugt of Just Add Water, Part 2 of 2

Previously on Ryorin's Ramblings, I talked to my friend and fellow student Josh Uitvlugt, creator of the science fiction webcomic Just Add Water (updating Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays) about  the creation of the comic, the characters, the many uses of paperclips, coffee versus tea, the evil mechanisms of squirrels, and his own thoughts on how science and science fiction should interact.

Josh was kind enough to provide a self-introduction:

"My name is Josh Uitvlugt, and I am the author of a webcomic called 'Just Add Water'.  I am having a lot of fun doing the comic, and it acts as a great outlet for the creativity that I am proud to have.  I am an engineer, and while that may conjure up ideas about people with a rigid application of rules and mathematics, engineering requires more creative input than almost any other occupation.  Creative problem solving is the very basis of engineering, and it is what defines me as a person.  I like to feel that the insight that I have to offer contributes to the world around me, and I hope that this interview will convince you that I can be an interesting person."

In this installment, Josh discusses time travel, Star Trek, his characters, superpowers, webcomics in general, webcomic-drama in specific, and the creation of his comic.
And now for the exciting conclusion!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Old Poll, New Poll, and May the Fourth

First off: Happy May Fourth, Day of Bad Star Wars puns!  Which is to say that has announced it "Star Wars Day" and is releasing information about the Star Wars Blu-ray set.  Because it's May the Fourth.  If you can't/don't want to dig through the official sight, Club Jade posted much of the info here.

My last poll asked which of this year's superhero movies you were most looking forward to, and the results were three votes for Captain America, one vote for Thor, and both Green Lantern and Green Hornet were unloved with zero votes.  I personally was most looking forward to Cap's movie, but I have to admit, I'm getting pretty excited about Thor coming out later this week.

The new poll asks your favorite "Star" franchises.  You may select more than one because, hey, I don't think I could choose between my favorite two.  Let me know which are your favorites in the comments or, if your favorites aren't listed, let me know what they are, why you love them, and why you consider them a "Star" franchise.  Just because I only listed science fiction franchises starting with "Star" doesn't there aren't others with legitimate claim to the designation.