January 22, 2019: The latest online musings and breaking news!

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Guys, please!  This is important!

Ooookay.  Major script rewrites on deck.  No more than 9 or 10.  See you in June!

My Top 10 Favorite George Perez Covers!

Revered comic book artist George Perez announced his retirement yesterday.  Looking back over his voluminous body of work, I realize how his art was such an inspiration to me growing up as a young creator of fiction.

George Perez illustrated a lot of fantastic comic book covers over the course of his illustrious career.  These were my favorites…

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#10. Crisis on Multiple Earths, vol. 5

Solemn and foreboding.

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#9. The New Teen Titans, vol. 1, #71

I love this one because it looks like a hungover Nightwing is left to clean up after a particularly raucous party.

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#8. The New Teen Titans, vol. 1, #39

Sure, the abandoned foreground costumes have become a bit of a chestnut, but back then it was shocking and new.  Love the little touch of having some of the pieces hanging off the Titans logo.

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#7. Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds, vol. 1

This team-up with Dave McCaig featuring one of comicdom’s most woefully under-appreciated members of a woefully under-appreciated team.

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#6. The New Teen Titans, vol. 1, #13

Shockingly eerie.

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#5. Avengers, vol. 1, #166

THE run that first introduced me to the wonder of comic books.

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#4. The New Teen Titans, vol. 1, #36

For a series that centered on teenagers, Titans could get incredibly dark – and this cover does a great job of reflecting the title’s more adult tone.

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#3. The Infinity Gauntlet #1

Thanos has never looked so formidable.

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#2. The Korvac Saga

When ten year old me first read this arc, it blew my mind.

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#1. Crisis on Infinite Earths, vol. 1, #7

Boy, no comic book cover has ever equaled the emotional impact of seeing a weeping Superman holding a lifeless Supergirl in his arms.

Hey, George, thanks for the memories!

Recommended Read: Recursion by Blake Crouch

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The king of high-concept sci-fi returns with a mind-bending thriller that questions the very notion of reality – or what we perceive as such. Across the globe, individuals are falling victim to a terrifying virus called FMS, False Memory Syndrome. Those afflicted claim to possess impossibly detailed memories of alternate lives lived – experiences and relationships that do not exist yet feel real and, in some cases, preferable to their present existence. Many bemoan the loss of loved ones, wives, even children they once had that have seemingly disappeared in a blink.

For Detective Barry Sutton who investigates one such case, it’s the opposite. He has never gotten over the loss of his young daughter, killed by a hit and run driver so many years ago. So when he is struck by FMS and seemingly returns to that tragic night, can he change what happened and craft a new reality? And what would be the results?

Meanwhile, we are offered insight into the origins of FMS through flashbacks focused on neuroscientist Helena Smith who takes up an offer from a mysterious benefactor to pursue research that could help those afflicted with dementia (including her long-suffering mother).

The timelines – two at first, then multifarious – cross and converge, dissipate and reform, stutter, stop, and restart in a challenging, occasionally convoluted, story about humanity’s ability to shape its reality. The plot may seem fantastic and far-fetched, but its theoretical grounding makes Recursion truly thought-provoking. And, yes, while it does get damned confusing at times, the pacing never flags and the book is a rewarding read.

Release date: June 11, 2019

January 17, 2019: Blog Entry 4470! Feels like 1253!

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Pizza Party!  Pizza Party!  Today, Akemi and I met up with our friends Mean Jean and Rowena for a pizza throw down to end all pizza throw downs.  Between the four of us, we sampled not one, or two, or three, or four, or five, but SIX – no, wait!  SEVEN!  SEVEN different pizzas at General Assembly Pizza in downtown Toronto.  The ladies loved the Margherita and the King Shroom ( mozzarella, gorgonzola, grans, cremini, garlic, white balsamic and black pepper) while I favored the sole meat option we ordered: Sweet Heat (tomato, mozzarella, hot salami, chili, honey, and basil).

Once we were absolutely stuffed and could eat no more, we headed over to Soma Chocolates for (what else?) chocolates – and a hot chocolate.

Looking forward to reuniting with Mean Jean on my next production which should kick off anywhere between this Monday and July!

Came across these behind the scenes from our last day on the set of Stargate: Atlantis.  Looking back now, I’m amazed at scope of the production.  All those stages!

Also, found this twitter thread chock full o’ awkwardness:

People list anecdotes from past Q&A’s that have resulted in some pretty memorable moments.  Like, say, this one –

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I haven’t attended enough cons to have experienced any truly weird incidents, but perhaps one or two of you may have some interesting anecdotes to share…

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Rejoice!  Poop emoji soft serve is finally a thing!

Finally, a serious question for those in the knows.  What is Nashville hot chicken?  And what makes it so special?

January 16, 2019: This Week’s Best Comic Book Covers!

These were my favorites…

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Agent 47: Birth of the Hitman vol. 1 (cover art by Jonathan Lau)

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Fantastic Four #6 (cover art by Esad Ribic)

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Gideon Falls #6 (cover art by Andrea Sorrentino)

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Penny Dreadful: The Awaking: Artist’s Edition (cover art by Jesus Hervas)

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Transformers: Historia (cover art by Sara Pitre-Durocher)

So, which were your favorites?

January 15, 2019: About to have that wafer thin mint…

 

The following gifs neatly encapsulate how I’ve been feeling over the past couple of days…

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And –

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And finally –

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Still, I did find the time to slow down and really enjoy the good things in life – like, for instance, today’s dentist appointment.  While in for my bi-annual scraping, I was informed I grind my teeth at night and would benefit from a mouth guard.  Although hesitant at first – and put off by the expense – the dentist eventually convinced me that it was money well-spent for the sake of my teeth.  And so, I went ahead and purchased one.  Still –

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112k feels pretty steep for a glorified retainer.

Not enough Mysterio.

January 14, 2019: Flashback Monday!

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Lunch date today with Zoie Palmer (aka Dark Matter‘s Android).  You wouldn’t believe how much she ordered.  I mean, I could barely keep up!

Great to hear she had a crazy-busy 2018 – and is looking ahead to an even crazier and busier 2019!

Came across some behind the scenes pics from the Dark Matter days…

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Early call times and low blood sugar often resulted in lunchtime chaos.

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Director/Sunt Coordinator John Stead demonstrates proper braining technique.

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That episode where Android ate all the churros!

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Director Peter DeLuise has a vision for this Anthony Lemke scene.

Also, from back in the Stargate days…

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Warning!  This strange individual has been spotted in the building.  If seen, do not approach!  Immediately alert the authorities!

January 12, 2019: Acquire your super persona with this personalized quiz!

Just answer each of the following questions and leave your responses in the comments section.  I’ll tell you which super persona you’ll be.

1 – Good Guy, Bad Guy, or Free Agent?

2 – Past, Present, or Future?

3 – Cape or not?

4 – Would you like to accessorize?

5 – Tragic past or happy upbringing?

6 – Powers: genetic, science-based, supernatural, tech-assisted, or other?

7 – Sidekick: Yes, No?

8 – Colorful costume?

I, for instance, chose Bad Guy from the Future with a happy upbringing but no cape, accessories or sidekick yet a colorful costume.  My powers are genetically-based.  Thus, I am….

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NEMESIS KID!

January 11, 2019: Comic books, Vietnamese egg coffee, and Suji art!

Today was an extremely big reading day.  Still, I did find time to get out for some fresh (incredibly cold) air.  Akemi and I grabbed some delicious lunch bao’s at Banh Mi Boys – tofu for her and, of course, fried chicken for me – then walked up to College Street and checked out a coffee shop that specializes in Vietnamese coffee and snacks.  Dak Lak not only offers traditional Vietnamese sandwiches and coffees, but also do something called a Vietnamese Egg Coffee, a regional specialty originating near Hanoi.

They also do a Vietnamese Egg Matcha as well.  On this day, I couldn’t decide, so I elected to get both and share with Akemi who usually isn’t a big fan of the sweeter coffee preparations.  Unfortunately for me on this day, she WAS a fan.  Of both drinks.  And so was I.

It was while we were posting our photos on instagram that Akemi noticed ANOTHER interesting coffee shop located just one block over.  Since we were full, we were decided we’d just stop in and take a peek at the recently opened Answer Tea.  Just looking.  That was the plan.  Until we noticed they do custom photo realistic art on their drinks.  Then, we HAD to have one of their milk teas topped with Suji’s face.

Neither Akemi nor I could bring ourselves to sip her face.  Finally, I caved –

Apparently, the reason the place is called Answer Tea is because, with every order, you get to write a question on your cup that will magically answered by the shop’s computer once your order has been filled.  Next time!

Dak Lak profiled on BlogTO

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Despite the outing, I’m bleary-eyed and exhausted.  I’m going to take a break from all that comic book reading by reading one of the half dozen books on digital loan from my local library.  Decisions, decision.

Speaking of which – major decisions coming down the pipe next week.  Will be interesting to see how things pan out.

 

 

January 10, 2019: Back in my old stomping grounds!

A bittersweet trip back to the site of my previous series, Dark Matter, today as we start early prep on this new show.  I have, to the best of my ability, sought to reassemble the same behind-the-scenes team that made DM such a great experience.  If all goes as planned, I’ll be moving back into my old office and those 65+ bottles of whiskey will be adorning the shelves once again.  But FIRST – we have a lot of work to do.  9 of the first season’s 10 scripts are in play (Yours truly will be doing the honors on the finale, but only after those first nine are in solid shape), and all of the pieces of the production puzzle are slowly coming together.

On this day, we did a walk-thru of the stages with Production Designer Ian Brock and Rick Fernandez, Construction…

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 Awww.   I missed these three: Production Manager Kathy Lang, Rick, and Ian.

These phone and lamp collections have coming along nicely since we vacated the offices.

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Happy memories.

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Hard to believe this space once held the infirmary, mess hall, and training room.

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Production Designer Ian Brock has a plan.

This area feels so cavernous and empty without The Raza.

I had very mixed feelings about this visit.  It’ll be nice to be back in production with familiar faces and on familiar ground, but I won’t be satisfied until we return to shoot that proper Dark Matter finale.

January 9, 2019: Week’s Best Comic Book Covers!

These were my favorites…

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Blackbird #4 (cover art by Jen Bartel)

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Miles Morales: Spider-Man #2 (cover art by Marco D’Alfonso)

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Self/Made #2 (cover art by Marcelo Costa, Eduardo Ferigato)

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Star Wars: Age of the Republic – Jango Fett #1 (cover art by Paolo Rivera)

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Star Wars: Doctor Aphra, vol. 4 – The Catastrophe Con (cover art by Ashley Witter)

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The Dreaming #5 (cover art by June Chung, Jae Lee)

So, which were YOUR favorites?

Finally, check out the premiere of Robert C. Cooper’s Unspeakable (starring Michael Shanks) tonight at 9 p.m. on CBC –

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https://www.tv-eh.com/2019/01/08/unspeakable-cbc-miniseries-revisits-canadas-tainted-blood-scandal/

 

January Recommended Read: The Dreamers by Karen Thompson Walker

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A mysterious outbreak strikes a college community, its victims falling into a deep, unyielding slumber. The contagion spreads, the town is quarantined, and those still awake scramble for answers – and survival.

My first great read of 2019!

Beautifully written with a style that embodies an almost dreamlike quality, The Dreamers is part suspense thriller, part contemporary sci-fi, but overwhelmingly a character-driven exploration of how our experiences may or may not shape us, and our reality. Walker tackles some lofty philosophical themes in a provocative, compelling, and incredibly entertaining manner. The spread of the contagion and struggles of the various survivors makes for a fast-paced, mesmeric read, but its when the story shifts to the victims, their bizarre dreams, and what they portend that this novel really transcends expectations.

What happened to these dreamers? What was the meaning behind their varied dreams? I have a theory but, in the interests of keeping this review spoiler free, I’ll hold off on discussing for now.

Lots of wonderful little surprises throughout, with more than a few narrative twists and authorial sleights of hand I never saw coming.

Highly recommended.

Release Date: January 15, 2019.

If you and when you do pick up a copy and read it, swing back here and post your thoughts in the comments section.  Would love to discuss.