Star Trek at the Ranch

Last night I saw the best Star Trek movie in the series at the best theatre on the planet with the most amazing woman I've ever met, thanks to the best job I've ever had (so far).

Star Trek was nearly perfect! I couldn't imagine how they could possibly pull off a series relaunch without pissing off the hard core fans, alienating the newcomers, or both. But, as the 98% rating on Rotten Tomatoes indicates, they did it brilliantly!

Do not wait for the DVD, folks. Or even second weekend. This is one to see opening night, in a theatre full of excited fans. You will not regret it.

Dr Horrible Release Plan

Joss has posted information on the release plans for Dr Horrible's Sing-Along Blog. For those of you who don't have time to read the full post:

  • 15 July - Act One will be released on the web

  • 17 July - Act Two will be released on the web

  • 19 July - Act Three will be released on the web

  • 20 July - All three will be removed from the web.

  • Soon after, they will be made available for download for a nominal fee (no details yet).

  • Somewhat after that, it will be released on DVD with "the finest and bravest extras in all the land." Details will be shared at ComicCon, but no word on whether or not the DVDs will be ready by then.

For those of you in the Napster/YouTube crowd, I'm curious to hear what your thoughts are on this.

  • Will you honor the content owner's wishes and download the legally purchasable copy after the 20th?

  • Or will you instead go to the illegally copied versions that will no doubt be available on YouTube, etc?

  • Does it make a difference to you that this is a self-financed project rather than a studio project? Would your answer be different if episodes of Dollhouse were released in the same manner?

Update: In his follow-up post, Joss points out that there will indeed be a soundtrack, t-shirts and other schwag.

Felicia Day’s “The Guild” is made of awesome

If you play Warcraft, you need to watch this. If you mock those who play Warcraft, you need to watch this. If you know anyone who plays Warcraft or mocks those who do, they need to watch this.

Episode 1: Wake Up Call

Not only is this hilarious, it's a great testament to what you can do with a video camera and a very low budget. This baby is higher quality humor than most of the mainstream sitcom fare, and hits its target market square in the jaw.

PS: For those of you asking "Who's Felicia Day?" she played one of the potential slayers in season seven of Buffy. But she's better known locally as "that gorgeous redhead from the Mutant Enemy strike."

Princess Bride: 20th Anniversary Edition

Scott just pointed out that there's going to be a new Princess Bride: 20th Anniversary Edition DVD coming out in November, just in time for Shopping Day. No, it doesn't have two different covers. That's the same cover, cleverly designed to make "princess bride" read the same backward and forward. And the artwork is gorgeous!

Even if it didn't have any additional special features, I'd still buy it just for that cover. Art is worth spending on, right? But it does have a few new features (nothing earth shaking, but interesting enough). And it's only $14. So that's pretty much a no-brainer. Now I just need to decide who to pass my Dread Pirate edition on to.

Princess Bride - 20th Anniversary Edition


StardustStardust isn't just an amazing movie. It's this generation's Princess Bride.

True love, sword fights, chases, steampunk-ish flying pirates, witches, magic, kidnapped princesses, unlikely heroes, humor, excitement, and a delightful quest. This movie has it all, and if the kind of movie you're going to watch over and over again on DVD.

I've been hearing good things about the book by Neil Gaiman for quite some time, but haven't had a chance to read it yet. And I'd heard tons of great reviews, including from people who loved the book, so I was expecting a great movie. But Stardust still managed to blow away my expectations. I loved it!

Noble Collection or our friends at QMX had damned well be paying attention to this one. There are so many props from this movie that I'd love to be able to buy.

Return of Pink Five

If you haven't experienced Pink Five before, now is your chance. Imagine a valley girl X-Wing pilot on the death star run, on Dagobah, and infiltrating Jabba's palace. It's brilliant! And if you're already a fan, a new episode has just come out. Well worth the wait, and I love that it's just volume 1.

Melissa, if you're still looking for cosplay ideas for ComicCon, look no further. From the pink lightsaber to the X-Wing up on blocks, you were born to play Stacey. Particularly in the third film. :)

Joss Whedon’s Equality Now speech

Yes, Joss Whedon has created some great shows, like Firefly, Serenity and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. For that, we thank him. But it's the inspiration behind why he does what he does that makes us love him - and his creations. If you have any doubt of this, take a listen to his acceptance speech for his award from Equality Now.

Joss Whedon's Equality Now speech

"When you're asked something 500 times, you really start to think about the answer."

Ask a Ninja

Every single one of you should go watch Ask a Ninja. Those of you with iTunes should subscribe to the video podcast (no, you don't need a video iPod for that - just search for "ask a ninja" in the iTunes Music Store). It's particularly funny for me because the dude keeps reminding me of Joe (Shawna's husband).

"You don't hire a ninja for everyone you need to kill. I mean, if it's a regular Joe Schmoe, that's what Italians are for."

Serenity Countdown Message from Joss

Joss posted this to the SoCal board. Thought I'd repost it here, for those of you who aren't on that board.

We few, we happy few...
27 Sep 2005 2:22 pm

Well boys and girls and boys dressed as girls and girls dressed as Kaylee, the time is almost upon us. This Friday we take that old rust-bucket out of the shipyard and see if she can breach atmo. It's been a long (to paraphrase a band I like) strange trip, and it'll be nice finally to show everybody what it is we've been tinkering with all this time.

You already know you have my thanks, from the hardcore fans to the softcore... fans.... let me try that again. From the people manning the booths, buying DVD sets for their friends, getting banners seen everywhere on Australian TV, raffling artwork for ticketholders (Adam Hughes, take a bow), to the most casual fan who just wants to see the flick and won't ever even read this. You guys are the fuel in the engine, the Fire in the Fly, the weird green stuff coming out of Serenity's butt. (Hmmm. Forget that last one. I'm a little bit out of control here.)

Everyone needs something to keep them going. Mal has his ship. Zoe has her integrity. Jayne has Vera. And I've got you guys.

So what now? There have been so many posts about seeing it, seeing it again, the first weekend, the second weekend, being enthusiastic without being obnoxious (and yes, it IS hard to see over the pom-pom of a Jayne hat), buying tickets in advance, making a noise...

I honestly wouldn't know what to add. I can tell you this: the movie will play in about 2200 hundred theaters, which is a good number. Too many, and you get empty theaters with no energy -- not enough, and you get, well, not enough. It may be hard to find in some areas but it'll be out there. Leave no multiplex unturned! This is going to be a ground war, peeps -- we have to hold the valley for a long while. However it opens, it needs to HOLD. Instead of the Alliance we'll be fighting viewer apathy, fear of something new, the urge to wait for DVD, and Jessica Alba in a bikini. (Although I have it on good authority that she spends 90% of the film in a huge wooly parka. Make sure that gets out.)

The day this puppy opens, I'll be seeing it with my family (don't worry, there's a lot of them, and they're all paying) and then I'm off to Europe to learn the word 'Browncoats' in nine different languages -- 'cause like I said, it's all about holding. I'll never be far from a computer, though, so I can check in with y'all. Thanks for every damn thing.

And remember, amidst all the urgency to make this an event, all the work and the worry, to take two hours and just enjoy yourself. That is, after all, what all this fighting's about.


Why I miss TV

Yes, 95% of television programming is pure crap. But that other 5% is just brilliant! One of the shows I really miss is the Daily Show, with Jon Stewart. If you're not familiar with the show, this commencement speech that he recently gave to the 2004 graduating class of his alma mater will give you a decent taste:

(See the link below)

The other thing I miss about TV is that I usually just recorded everything I wanted to watch, and then had a bunch of people over one night a week to watch the good stuff. I really loved having my friends over on a regular basis, so we could be social while getting our TV fix. But most of those people are in SF or Berkeley these days, and not likely to drive all the way down to Campbell for TV night.

So what do you think, south bay folks? Are you up for helping me revive an old tradition? I'm a bit out of the look as to what's worth watching these days. But I have (or will soon be replacing) a bunch of great stuff on DVD and VHS that we could start in on, if nothing else (Babylon 5, My So Called Life, Dead Like Me, Robotech, Coupling, Clone High, etc). Or we could even do movies if here's nothing worthy on TV anymore. It's really more about the company than what you're watching.

Who's in?

Jon Stewart's 1984 Commencement Address to William & Mary Graduates