Podcast Things

No, it’s not the Doctor Who post in a vaguely timely fashion. I shall get to that about two hours beofre tomorrow’s ep, probably. Still, I’ve now at least seen last week’s ep. (One and five sixths thumbs up.)

But, anyway, here are some VAGUELY RECENT podcast things I have been doing that I record here for, uh, posterity…no, that’s not right. Let me think about this.

1 – Eurovision Song Contest 2017 Pre-Show Glitterball Special! – A special edition of Unjustly Maligned on this year’s entries to the Eurovision song contest. This was the most homework I’ve ever done for a podcast, and it was awesome. Anyway, if you be a fan of the Eurovision, we had a fab discussion with much flail and glitter.

2 – Inconceivable! – I’m on the latest ep of this marvellously geeky gameshow that I wish had a new ep for me to listen to every week; the only bad thing about being on it is I don’t get to listen to an ep FOREVER, and it is everything I ever wanted from a quiz show.

3 – Reality Bomb – Spoiler Cops are back, hurrah! Is it wrong to be emotionally attached to characters in a Doctor Who podcast comedy skit? Ahem. But, yes, anyway, there is INTRIGUE as well as LOLARIOUS JOKES. Also, like, the whole rest of the podcast, which is QUITE GOOD.

4 – And Verity!, course, where I mostly flailed about Knock, Knock and Oxygen.


Friday Flail of Yay

I am sleeping so badly this week. And I know part of it’s down to ridic anxiety with the world at large. Not even mental health related anxiety, since I really don’t think it’s irrational to be anxious given the daily news of what’s going on. As my dear friend Deb Stanish put it on the Twitters “… And yes, it’s a cliche, but it’s the biggest truth I know: Be a light in the darkness. So have a piece of #%@&^ pie.” I assume she means fucking pie and not shit pie, cause no-one wants shit pie. And also the pie is pecan or cherry or even apple and not bloody pumpkin pie, the monster of pies. Not the good sort of monster. The bad sort. ANYWAY, in that spirit, I’m going to try and do a regular blog post on Fridays of Yayful Things I’ve done or seen during the previous week.

1)  My YouTube gaming channel – I started making gaming vids. For it is most yayful and fun and I love talking about gaming but don’t really get a chance to do it all that much. My gaming friends are people what I game with and only game with, and that’s less about gaming chat and more about loot and killing stuff to get more loot. So, yes, this is me nattering away as I play some games. At the moment it’s a playthrough of Skyrim Special Edition, Dota 2 games where I’m trying to improve (I suck, but so much less than I used to; I now feel merely medicorely bad rather than stupendously bad), and classic DOS games from my childhood (also taking requests!). Please do take a look and subscribe if that’s your sort of thing!

2) Verity! talks animated Power of the Daleks – This week’s Verity! is a discussion of the brand new Power animation, and it was awesomely fun, and gosh, I bloody love Power of the Daleks. It’s such a good story. Top quality Who, and I hope more people get the chance to enjoy it now as the animated version is vastly more accessible than the audio or the recon.

3) Michelle Yeoh is a new Trek captain – So, despite not being a Trek fan, ahem, I am quite looking forward to the new Trek show. I’m not sold on the new movies, and having grown up in the Golden Age of Star Trek, I really miss having it on the telly. And the first bit of casting news out of the box is AMAZING. Michelle Yeoh. And then it turns out she’s playing a captain in the new show. I’ve also read that the star isn’t the captain this time but another character (who’s also a woman) which is fine. I care not. Michelle Yeoh. Who is AMAZING. Who is far, far better than we deserve tbh, and she’s going to be there, captaining. And don’t forget female captains are still relatively rare in the Trekverse. There’s only ever been a handful onscreen. And this is sufficiently good casting news that no matter what other nonsense comes out before we get to see the actual show, I am going to be totally rooting for it. Michelle Yeoh, people.

4) Margaret Hamilton, she who led the team that coded the software that got Apollo 11 to the Moon, has been awarded the USA’s Presidential Medal of Freedon.

5) This picture (it’s actually a few weeks old, but it is my favourite one I’ve taken of my local loch…those are starlings, I *think*):


Despite it being actually freezing, I’m still going out running. Yesterday the loch was frozen over, and the poor local birdlife seemed rather put out at their home being suddenly solid. Also robins have arrived! From somewhere! I hadn’t seen any until this week, and now it’s impossible not to spot a few every day. If pretty rural Scottish scenery and swans, so many swans, are your thing, that’s what my Instagram is entirely composed of.

6) We’ve recorded new Down and Safe! So if you’re missing your fix of tasteful Blake’s 7 commentary a new episode will be with you this Thursday coming.

7) My sister, niece and nephew are doing a Jingle Jog for Parkinson’s UK. Nephew is but a year old so Quite The Challenge for him, but I’ve been assured he will be walking the whole way. If you can spare a pound or two for a good cause, please do consider sponsoring her.

8) There’s been a stupendous archeological discovery in Egypt, a new city! Over 5000 years old! Amazing stuff.

9) Though not QUITE as amazing as the NASA report released about the electromagnetic propulsion drive, which could be capable of taking us to Mars within 70 days. To sum up “it works, but it shouldn’t”. Which is awesome. And totally not giving me Event Horizon vibes. If I was in charge of stuff, we would be building a GIANT ONE anyway, and seeing what happens. Nothing could possibly go wrong. Probably.

10) I’m trying to talk myself out of buying this even though it would clearly be a very sensible practical purchase.

Ten is a very good round number. I shall stop there, and wish ye all a happy weekend!


Face the Ravenclaw

This week’s Verity! is out. I have not heard it yet, but I ASSUME they are all very excellent and correct about how great Face the Raven was. If not, I shake my head in fannish sadness at em.

Also, the first special ep of Down and Safe arrived safely on Monday. It’s almost two hours long, features LISTS of our favourite Blake’s 7 season 1 episodes, and is all totally, completely relevant. Sort of.

I’ve finished watching Jessica Jones, which was AMAZING. It’s so nice when I feel like I’m being pandered to, and that was one well of a pandering to me and my interests show, despite surface-wise seeming not my thing what with the detective-noir. I wish to write tons more about it, but for now I will say, give the first episode a try, and if you like it, and it wasn’t too dark for you then it only gets more and more awesome; and while horrid stuff happens, if you’re okay with ep 1, you should be okay with the rest of it.

Damn, it’s just so good to have a show where women are allowed to be pissed off and angry and virtually every conversation has at least one woman in it. It FEELS so good, like, watching it, I feel…I don’t know quite what the right word is…validated? Uplifted? Refreshed? All those things but more somehow.

Anyway…I’m giving The Flash a shot now, and I NAIVELY asked a comic book question or two on the Twitters and have got the exact response that I deserve. YARG.

Mondays: now 500% faster

I assume they’re faster anyway. This is because I had my first podcast recordings yesterday since I had NEW INTERNET installed. And it was amazing. Uploading, instead of taking a seriously cantakerous hour, was over in 3 mins, and that was for two podcasts, *and* the Skype call didn’t even lag. It was ridiculously awesome. I may have cried a little. (I didn’t.)

One of the things I talked about, and which I may have mentioned slightly on Twitter is this interview, which I think every Doctor Who fan should watch:

It’s my very favourite Capaldi interview, for the old skool fanboyishness he’s trying so hard and totally failing to hide with the yay and the smiles and just sheer joy of talking about Axons and Frontier in Space and Troughton, and such a fine Web Planet defense too! As I was listening I could feel my defensiveness regarding the Zarbi and Menoptra increasing. Ahem. (And I’m now highly suspicious of those Menoptra I met at the Gallifrey convention this year….was one of them SECRET CAPALDI??)

For anyone reading unfamiliar with The Web Planet – a none too popular Doctor Who story from the show’s second season – and it’s somewhat maligned aliens, here are some illuminating pics:


The Menoptra! They also dance while flying, not kidding, no.


Zarbi! Not yet an action figure with exciting Zarbi sound, alas. 😦

I wasn’t allowed to talk about this on Verity! (I totally got in a mention, but still) due to our remit being Doctor Who, and any connection I could make between Doctor Who and a Star Trek vid to Shatner’s Common People would be Highly Dubious. Thus, I leave it here. It is MAGNIFICENT. And I unironically adore Shatner’s version of the song.

My love for this one, however, is purely ironic. Listen to it often enough (ahem…) and you may find your opening conversational gambit becoming “Why is he climbing a mountain??”

Also on this week’s Verity! recording this essay came up: Finding Hope in a TARDIS: Violence, Racism, and Headline Fatigue. It’s a great piece, and for me, the beauty of it was having the TARDIS, which I’ve always viewed as a symbol of escape, recontextualised into a symbol of connection, and of hope. Much recommended!

I think I can blame this on ComicCon

I was flicking through lists of San Diego ComicCon panels on the YouTubes looking for anything of interest to me that wasn’t Doctor Who, and I failed really quite badly. (The two Doctor Who panels are however excellent and I’m totally not saying this just cause three-quarters of both panels were Scottish. And that Moffat’s west coast accent is definitely more noticeable since Capaldi started.)

Anyway, thanks to that I thought “oh, no! I am out of touch with POPULAR CULTURE! I should probably not have spent the last three weeks watching The Avengers (the proper one, obv)!” So I decided to pick up one of these Cool Current Shows more or less at random. By which I mean, could I Netflix it? I chose Hannibal (beloved by many of ye friends of taste what I trust) and managed about, um, twenty-two minutes before I switched it off. Which, in fairness, is over EIGHTEEN more minutes than I managed last time. I’m so sorry, but as soon as I hit play big neon lights start flashing in the mind’s eye and they read PEOPLE EATING, EATING PEOPLE, and it’s a bit distracting.

Then I tried The Walking Dead, which I gave up on one episode into the second season some years ago cause I was bored and there was some dreadful gender essentialism, and also I was bored and there were zombies, and I was bored. With zombies happening. And, yes, they are also eating people, but no-one here is pretending that’s not gross with their pretty cinematography ways, so the neon lights are off.

And I’m very behind but definitely watching The Walking Dead now. Spoiler me not or I shall be more sad.

There’ve been quite a few podcasts I’ve done since the last update. Not just the usual Verity!, and the now usual Down and Safe (we meet Servalan in the latest ep!), but an episode of Random Trek, where I’m mostly apologetic about how much I don’t like The Visitor even though I think it’s very good; another ep of The Inconcievable, where I’m foolishly asked a Doctor Who question; and Unjustly Maligned, where I explain why I love Dragon Age II and cheerfully dismiss all criticisms of it that don’t involve those bloody repetitive dungeon maps.

I can now look at my podcast oeuvre and totally pretend to be a well-rounded person with many and varying interests, hurrah!

I’m also a terrible person because my least favourite on Walking Dead just got eaten and I loled. It’s okay, kids, it’s fictional; you’re allowed to laugh.

Cranky Ladies of History, ahoy!

As we all know from, um, watching movies and stuff, timeliness is for losers. Thus, despite being released on International Women’s Day, it’s only now that I write this blog post on the ridiculously gorgeous anthology Cranky Ladies of History edited by Tansy Rayner Roberts and Tehani Wessely, in which I have a story, ‘Little Battles’, concerning a kidnapping incident towards the end of Eleanor of Aquitaine’s epic life.


If you can tear your eyes away from the cover (it’s even better in person; I keep stroking the pretty art and cooing at it in a totally normal and sensible way), within you’ll find over twenty stories concerning various historical peoples who challenged the conventional attitudes of their societies, written by all sorts of exciting writers including Kirstyn McDermott, Garth Nix, and Nisi Shawl.

There’s a smashing Big Idea post Tansy and Tehani have up on Scalzi’s blog, which explains rather well the instant “omg, yes” feeling so many people got about this book’s concept. Personally, I was Quite Intrigued at the words “cranky ladies” but then when you add “of history” it’s an instant yes.

Over on Fablecroft, you can read about some of the cranky ladies featured in the anthology under the cranky ladies of history tag, and see the launch report, which I would totally love to have attended, if it weren’t for all those thousands of miles getting in the way, dammit.

The anthology is available direct from Fablecroft, and at Amazon.

Lovely things from elsewhere

This week’s Verity! podcast concerns the new Doctor Who comics from Titan, and there’s some sort of giveaway we;re having where you can win a $25 gift certificate for Comixology. Free comics!

– And I’ve been so neglectful of blogging this week, there’s also last week’s Verity! where they’re discussing the more intellectual companions. I haven’t listened yet, but I can only assume they’ve all come to the sensible conclusion that Liz Shaw and Romana are best, after Babs, obviously.

– I just got back into Skyrim a few days ago, and have been busy updating my mods (chicken follower!). And this came up on my Twitter feed today: a touching Skyrim mod memorial for a player who’s passed away.

ChicagoTARDIS 2013

I’m heading off down to London tomorrow, then planing off across the Atlantic to the Americas where I’ll be going to the smashing ChicagoTARDIS for Thanksgiving weekend.

If you happen to be going to this lovely event and, goodness knows why, wish to see my, er, very informed and eloquent flailing in person, I’m on a fair few panels (my descriptions of these panels is based on stuff I read some months ago and may not be entirely accurate, ahem):

A Question of History (Friday 10am, Lilac A-C) – Where we’ll be discussing history in Who. Y’know, the historical stuff. The awesome bits, the dodgy bits, bemoaning the absence of Eleanor of Aquitaine and Tamar of Georgia from Who canon. That sort of thing.

The Troughton Era Revisited (Friday 3pm, Cypress) – There are shiny new Troughtons now! How does this effect our view of the Troughton era? Is it possible to love Troughton more than you already do? Are there *still* people who don’t think he’s the best?

Big Finish 101 (Friday 4pm, Cypress) – There’s an awful lot of Big Finish nowadays, so what’s the really good stuff? Where do you start? In no way will I be using this panel to attempt to start a protest re departure of Beloved Erimem.

Underrated/Overrated (Saturday 12am, Lilac A-C) – There are some Doctor Who stories that are vastly underrated (The Dominators, The Time Monsters, Timelash), there are some which are terribly overrated (Carnival of Monsters, Pyramids of Bars, Bloody Talons). This is where we discuss the why and whatfor and such. (Panelist opinions on what constitutes over/underrated may differ.)

Anticipating Capaldi  – (Saturday 1pm, Cypress) This is on at the same time as the ‘Fangirls Are Real Fans Too, Dammit!’ panel, which is rather nice, as it means you can listen to the theory or see the practical and witness the APPALLING and TERRIBLE things that these awful FAKE GEEK FANGIRLS do as I delight in finally getting to fancy one of these New Who Doctors.

Verity! Live(Sunday 1pm, Lilac A-C) Erika, Lynne and I will be recording an episode of Verity! live before an audience. I am vaguely terrified, but am hoping a glass or two of wine sorts that right out. Come along and see us, ah, energetically discuss Who in person! It’ll be great! Nothing could possibly go wrong!

And that’s the lot!

Hope to see some of you lovely people soon! Farewell!