Hey, look who it is!

It’s former Stargate writer/producer Alan McCullough, fresh from his modeling tour of Milan!

No, no.  Just kidding.  The modeling tour will have to wait until next year.  Alan has his hands full on Sanctuary where he has just finished scripting this season’s big season finale.  With only a week to go before he packs up his tent and heads back east, he suggested we get together for one last Vancouver meal before he hits the road.  I told him he could select the restaurant.  He chose Refuel –

I had the chanterelle mushroom soup to start. He went with the beetroot salad. Note - it got a thumbs up.
His main - Pork tenderloin with sungold tomatoes, chanterelle mushrooms, and parsley sauce. Great. Loved the mushrooms!
My main - scallops with butternut squash ravioli, brown butter, and lemon.










And a little something extra…

A little sneak taste at tonight's Whole Hog Dinner.

Which I had completely forgotten about!  For those of you not-in-the-know, the Whole Hog Dinner is…well…my buddy Andrew Morrison explains it best:

“If you’ve never heard of a Vancouver restaurant taking in a whole animal to create a menu that is the sum of its parts, I can assure you it does happen, if only rarely. The only local establishment I know of that does this is Kitsilano’s Refuel, which hosts a “Whole Hog” dinner in late fall, where every part of the pig is plated, from stuffed trotter and smoked-lard ravioli with fried brain, to slow-roasted shoulder and bacon ice cream (watch for a Fresh Sheet update on this in November).”


Mmmm.  Smoked-lard ravioli with fried brain.  It reminds me of last Sunday’s episode of The Amazing Race in which two of the contestants are challenged to eat a roasted sheep’s head.  As I watched them struggle, washing down each mouthful with a gulp of water, I couldn’t help but imagine the short work Marty G. and I would have made of the challenge.  Hell, we probably would’ve asked for seconds.

Anyway, full report tonight.  I hope they do the crispy ear with the salsa verde.

This weekend, I started work on that comic book project, carefully translating the pilot script to comic script format.  It’s been a bit of a challenge so far, but I’ve got fourteen pages done with another eight to go.  The first issue will cover the tease and first two acts, the second issue acts three, four, and five culminating in the BIG REVEAL.  Issues three and four will conclude the opening story arc (and form the second part of the two hour premiere.  Unless, of course, we end up going the feature route which has been suggested – although I think it would work infinitely better as an ongoing series).  The pacing has been a bit of a challenge, trying to line up those next page reveals and keeping the panel per page count manageable.  I’d like to script both issues #1 and #2 before sending them to my editor – hopefully in a couple of weeks.  At which point, I’m sure he’ll have a list of artists he is considering for the project.

A couple of other intriguing projects found their way to my inbox this weekend – one courtesy of an actor Paul and I worked with years ago, another created by a writer I greatly admire.  Will be dusting off the reading glasses Friday night.

In the latest MindMeld entry, SFSignal’s John Denardo asks: Which anime titles are underrated and deserve more attention?

My response: http://www.sfsignal.com/archives/2010/10/mind-meld-underrated-anime-with-videos/index.html

47 thoughts on “October 27, 2010: Alan McCullough! Going Whole Hog! That comic book project starts taking shape!

  1. Hello Joe

    Just heard the very annoying news that Caprica has been canceled and it’s remaining episodes pulled. SGU’s worst episode this year has still been better than what Caprica has managed, but SGU’s ratings are still less than I’d hoped for. Do you think the remaining 15 episodes will be allowed to air? They won’t shut down production before you finish the finale will they?

  2. Joey, just one li’l question…

    When you’re out on one of these romantic dinners for two, how in the world do you keep yourself from just grabbing Alan by the collar, and kissing him full on the lips??


  3. Ratings for Cloverdale: 1 million?!?

    The chances of SGU getting a third season don’t look too good, so I hope the season-ending will be satisfying.

    Unfortunately it would probably take a drastic rewrite and reshoot, to move the plot forward AND tie everything up in the last couple of episodes.

    But here’s an idea! On how to end it with a bang!

    In episode 17 we start off with Telford in the cockpit of one of a 302, waking up from a strange dream about being stuck on an ancient spaceship called Destiny… It turns out that we’re back right before Lucian Alliance’s initial attack against the Icarus planet.

    What follows next, is the most awesome spacebattle in the history of mankind, sci-fi and television…

    (Figure it’ll start about 3 mins into episode 17, and end half an hour into episode 20!)

    We’re talking EEEEEPIC here! Because right when it seems that we have won, a wraith fleet show up! And evil Asgards! And ancients!

    The mother of all battles, in other words…

    Telford survives, but towards the end of episode 20, it’s revealed that the Icarus base collapsed, along with most people inside AND the gate. Unfortunately, it seems SGC will never find out, what was hidden behind that 9th chevron.

    A 145 min long spacebattle is bound to be pure awesomeness, hmm? AND it would be faster to reshoot, since most of it would be VFX!

    Not to mention, completely pulling the carpet out from under all of season one and two like that will assure your place in TV-history! Not to mention that SGU will live on for all eternity as a major cult classic!

  4. Sad news about Caprica. @Les — Caprica had completed production quite awhile ago. Syfy chose to wait a VERY long time between the 10/10 split to show the second half, which we now have to wait until next year to finish seeing. I’m having “Defying Gravity” letdown all over again. In the US, the show was pulled and we never got to see the rest of the show, which included the Patrick Gilmore guest spot. I’m going to have to rent it.

    Since Caprica is now off the air on Tuesdays as of next week, Syfy should take SGU and put it back on Fridays with Sanctuary. Give us back our sci-fi Fridays.

    The scallops & ravioli looks delicious, especially considering my dinner right now is minestrone casserole (started out as a soup, but I left it too long on the slow cooker).

  5. Elminster: micro nanobots? Cool idea!!

    Das: too funny!

    The soup and the scallops look awesome!

  6. Why do you Vancouver writers spend so much time in the office?

    Do you have on-line collaboration tools for writing?

  7. Azumanga Diaoh is indeed underrated.
    Its also one of the few Anime I watched the english dub of, cause the english dub is awesome.

  8. oh underrated Anime titles, let me see…hmm…

    speedgrapher, ergo proxy, nerima daikon brothers, im at a loss now

  9. Oh boyyyyyy your scallop/ravioli main looks unbelievably gooooood.

    *wipes away drool*


    (I’d pass on the brain, thank you very much!! *shudder*)

  10. Joe, are you able to share the comic book publisher yet, or not until the book is ready to go to press?

    Any particular artist you’d like to work with (even if it’s unlikely they’ll be on the list)?

    Intriguing projects? Will you be able to share, or is it lips sealed until the deal is done? (Which I do understand, since these things may never pan out.)

    Sounds like you’re looking for new adventures. Getting restless in your old age? 😉 Would you like to continue writing (scripts, comics, prose, etc.), producing, or are you looking for something completely different?

    Have a good evening, sir!


  11. Just heard about Caprica. Very sad that Syfy pulled the plug. I’m beginning to think that the scheduling department is being run by interns. On the other hand, if they can replace Caprica with a highly rated show, then SGU could benefit. If it’s wrestling, you’re doomed.

    I’m loving Canada! But I’m not loving Canadian birds. Everywhere I go, birds keep pooping on my car. And I’m not talking sparrows. I feel like I’m the victim of fly-by-poops. Otherwise, I’m having a great time. Snow capped mountains were beautiful today!

  12. From Hulu on SGU:

    “Five episodes are available at a time.
    The first 3 episodes of the new season will be available the day after their original airdates.
    Subsequent episodes will become available 30 days after their original airdates. ”

    Now we get to wait a month…joy…

    I’d appreciate it if from now on you could warn of potential spoilers from any season 2 episode just to be safe.

    On a side note they’ve just made it about 10 times more tempting to do the easiest thing and just illegally download it. Anyone with basic computer knowledge could find and download it in 30mins, which is far quicker than any of Hulu’s silly delays. I don’t know what NBC has against the fans who are honestly trying to support the show.

    Maybe I’ll just get a DVR (in reality a $50 card for an old computer) , record it, and watch SGU without any commercials. Because that would be totally different than downloading it, especially since I’ve never even seen a Nielson box in my life.
    (/end rant)

  13. All the Refuel pics look delicious; mushrooms! Gotta rememeber to get some at the market. I had a beautiful plantain saved up that was not quite ripe yet, so when I roasted it with potatoes and mini steaks I ended up with dried out chewy plantain medallions instead of golden, juicy sweet morsels.

    The comic book sounds very intriguing. And the talk of sheep’s faces makes me wonder when we’ll see team Mallozzie & Marty G. compete in the Amazing Race. That sheep challenge is the reason why I haven’t bothered to apply; I could do everything but eat weird food, yeeesh.

  14. @pg15(from yesterday’s posts)…Wray was in the episode. She was briefly in the crowd at the wedding at the end of the episode. A blink and you miss it moment.

  15. No way to edit…but apparently it is just SyFy and not NBC overall that is hating on the Hulu users.

    Sorry if it sounded like an entitlement rant btw, but I have night classes and can’t watch SGU (or Sanctuary) when it is aired…so if they are going to make things difficult it’ll only force me into things that provide the show to less support, or the annoyance of waiting 30 days and avoiding spoilers for the exact same amount of support. It is pretty senseless in my opinion.

    Btw, none of this rant stuff is directed at you since you have nothing to do with this, I’m just confused and annoyed at SyFy right now. It’s like they don’t understand the internet.

  16. Hi Mr M!!

    Delighted you like the cufflinks! I dropped by the blog yesterday, but wanted to avoid spoilers, so held off on commenting for today.

    My girls helped me pack the ‘links and all three put the packet in the post to joemallozzi….your name is all one word to them!!

    They were absolutely thrilled to see the photo on your blog.

    As I mentioned in my card, when I saw the cufflinks it ticked all the Joe Mallozzi boxes:

    Comic Book Related
    Super Hero
    Down right cool

    (I lifted that straight from you CV by the way)

    In any case, am delighted you like ’em.

    On other news, I have another appearance on National Radio tomorrow. My article (which you kindly linked here some days back) has generated a lot of media attention and by conincidence (!?!?!) the Dept of Health has entered talks with the profession just this week…..Hmmmm….article appears on Joe’s Blog…..Irish Health Officials start talking…..The POWER OF THE BLOG!

    That aside, I am still taking time to explore other options as I safely wind down my practice.

    Throughout all, I have at least one hour of captivating television guaranteed : SGU!

    Best to all at The Bridge


    PS: Between Paul Mullie, myself and the late great Paul the Octopus….that’s a lot of Pauls in one blog entry!!!

  17. Nummy num nums. I don’t know which is yummier, Alan or the beautiful food.

  18. @Das: Cute picture.

    @Shirt-n-Tie: That’s fantastic. I hope you get some positive resolution to the issue. It was very interesting to read. It’s great when you advocate for something and you finally reach someone who will listen and try to do something about it. I’ll keep good thoughts for you and the profession as a whole.

  19. Hey Joe,

    Okay…so Alan did make me smile…even if Caprica is gone. I thought cancelled meant…at the end of the season. Oye…this is SOOO “Defying Gravity” all over again. *sad face* It is so difficult to invest yourself in a show…then have it yanked. I guess we can always hope it will make it to DVD like DG did. geeze Syfy…

    GREAT show-n-tell pictures…it might be hard to beat the one of Alan in future blogs…maybe you could just dig this one up and post it every now and again. *okay…smiling again*

    Best to you Joe,
    Cheryl 🙂

  20. Hi Joe,
    Have you seen this? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eRsGyueVLvQ

    It’s Sintel, a 15min short using open source 3D animation software (Blender). It is completely beautiful and made me cry. And I’m not usually the sooky-lala kind.

    in other news, I’m still loving sgu, I want to marry sanctuary and Alan McCullough is still hot.

    Hugs to the puppies.

  21. @Les Ferris

    SGUs worst episode? How so? Ratings wise? Because virtually every episode besides Pathogen have been pretty good this year.

    @My thoughts in general.

    Caprica like SGU really needed a highly rated lead in show, if SGU goes too, I blame the network more than anything. You can’t just keep airing a show struggling for viewers and expect a miracle. They really needed to shuffle things around to try and get both shows extra eyes.

    Anyway I think I’m just, like not going to mention ratings again. Kinda depressing stuff lol

    Caprica has taken its place alongside Legend of the Seeker in the list of decent shows that were unfairly cancelled before their time.

    Thats all.

  22. Just checked out the Under rated anime list you posted Joe.

    I disagree with quite a few especially. To name 3.

    – Gurren Lagann
    – Black Lagoon
    – Crest/Banner of the Stars.

    Someone mentioned Gurren Lagann on that website link and I couldn’t disagree more.

    It’s one of the most popular/highly rated anime shows to come out in recent years. Just frequent some anime websites/forums and virtually everyone has watched/loves the show.

    I know you mentioned Black Lagoon Joe. And I kinda disagree there because virtually everyone was talking about the Black Lagoon Robertas Blood Trail OVA when it was released. Guessing this was probably one of the most downloaded anime shows of the year to some people.

    Lastly Crest/Banner of the stars does have a fan following just they havent touched this series in recent years except for the third OVA that came out many moons ago. The internet would speak about it if they adapted more of the novels.

    When I was scrolling down the website I was half expecting something like Gundam to pop up. Japan loves Gundam its like part of Japans culture as they had that huge Gundam statue put up. No idea if its still there.

    Just some thoughts from me 🙂

  23. are you worried about SGU? the ratings, what is syfy saying? I think they know SGU is a valuable show and wouldnt dare to cancel it. unless they want to focus their attention on blood & chrome. have they asked Brad for another stargate to replace SGU? that didnt go well with the fans last time but i wonder how many will protest. definitely me, SGU is great. if only the first half of season 1 kept the momentum going from the pilot.

  24. What a nice picture to wake up to this morning, thanks Joe. and the food looks good also.(passing on the whole-hog thing-meh)
    -Sorry to hear about Caprica, but I never got interested in it. I am hoping your Tues slot for SGU bodes well. I am watching,,why is not everyone else…
    Reading glasses, we have a picture of that somewhere on here. Good thoughts with the comic book stuff. I know that has been a hobby/passion for you for some time, can’t wait to see it in print. I know I have some old Spiderman or Superman comics here somewhere, will be a nice new collection to start.
    How is Jelly baby doing? Any news of Brie?
    Soon will be Tokyo, before you know it. countdown…

  25. Cloverdale was fun, and such that I really want to go back and watch Pathogen first, and then Cloverdale immediately afterward to get a little deeper into the symbolism.

    I have resorted to buying the eps on ITunes, which I hate, since Hulu won’t have them for 30 days. THIRTY DAYS?!!!!! Sheesh!!!!!
    It is nice to see it without commercials, though.


    What was up with Eli and Chloe? Could it be possible he was still holding out hope that she would choose him over Matt eventually? From the look on his face as he was headed for the gate, it seemed as if he decided he was done pining over her.

  26. ALAN!!! Does that guy EVER take a bad photo? The food looked awesome too…no pix of you?

    I’m intrigued by the process of turning your script into a comic book. I always imagined writers just wrote straight into comic book format. *blush*

    Questions for mailbag Joe:

    1. What was your fave show as a kid? Have we talked about this before?

    2. How did the Snow Monkeys go? I bombed out again and I’m now 2-5. 🙁 There’s a guy in our league who is 7-0

    3. Do you like horse racing? Ever go to the races? We have the Melbourne Cup next Tuesday. That’s my fave public holiday of all. I won’t be attending but I do have tickets to Derby Day. Gonna be awesome, altho’ the weather forecast is shocking – lots of rain….

    4. Did you see the Tiger video I sent?

    5. Would you ever go on The Amazing Race yourself? When I was watching I thought of the ultimate team..if they had foursomes….you to do the food challenges, BamBam to do the crazy physical challenges and the driving, Ivon to ask for directions/help/general schmoozing (especially at the airport to get us awesome seats) and do any drinking challenges and me to do puzzle challenges, plot against the other teams and research each leg…lol

    6. Did everyone have the choice to inform their loved ones about Destiny and some chose not to? I’m wondering why Eli never told his Mum, why he always kept pretending he was passing on messages, in comparison to Camille who told Sharon.

    7. What period of time on Earth has passed since the start of the show? When will the SGC give them up as missing?

    8. Why wasn’t Telford mentoned in Pathogen? I know he hasn’t been on the ship long, but surely someone other than me cares.

    9. How do you choose the writers for the movies? Like if they go with SGU movies in the future, how do you choose the writer? Would you all pitch ideas or would Brad and Rob have a long term plan of the story arc that would be covered in Season 3, 4 etc or movies?

    10. How’s your Japanese progressing compared to last trip? Akemi surely must have helped, you must miss her. 🙁 When is she returning? We miss her too.

    Cheers, Chev

  27. @whoops – a 145 min long VFX spacebattle – yeah that wouldn’t be expensive at all would it Joe? *smirk*

    Plus you need to break away from the space battle every now and again to build the drama.

    Cheers, Chev

  28. I agree that you Joe should drop a word or million on several ears that SGU needs to go back to Fridays. If nothing else, to put it back together with Sanctuary, both shows have common audiences, in an attempt to save both.

  29. @ PBMom – At least I’m giving Alan ideas for what he can dress up as this weekend! 🙂 My only problem with Alan’s ‘Elric’ is that I’m not used to that broody ol’ albino having such a big, cheerful smile on his face, not unless he’s hell-deep in battle lust, splattered with guts and gore, wielding a throbbing, soul-gorged black blade over his head.

    Hmmm…I wonder if Alan would mind slapping a white wig on his head and acting that all out for me… 😀




    @ Joey – Please tell me that Alan doesn’t read this blog. I’ve always posted under the assumption that he does not. (Unlike Carl, the sneaky li’l lurker.)



  30. Did you hear about the time traveler spotted in a 1928 Chaplin film? An extra walked through the scene holding broccoflower to her face. The catch? Broccoflower didn’t exist in 1928!

    More so, it was the Romanesco variety. Are the time travelers sending us a message about fractal patterns or vegetables? Only time will tell.

  31. >”Black Lagoon – If Tarantino did anime, this is the anime he’d do.”

    Disagree, Baccano is Tarantino put into anime.

    Baccano is more Tarantino than Black Lagoon (which is more similar to those old hong kong gunfight movies) ever will be.

    Baccano has got everything that Tarantino has: A quirky cast of characters, no main character, lots of blood, an anachronic time-line and occasionally even those moments where characters talk about completely mundane things while doing something hardcore.

    It’s really as if Tarantino had written it. It’s also very good, so I recommend it to everyone. The English dub is absolutely excellent, too.

  32. Never mind about that Chaplin time traveler stuff. It’s been debunked as a PR stunt by the descendants of the Back to the Future franchise. I hate being played like that.

  33. Shirt’n’Tie: I hope your appearance goes well today! Just wanted to add that the “ladies” did a great job picking out those cufflinks.

  34. well Joe… hope gauntlet is a good script… and that you were able to finish it and all the issues got worked out.. I would hate to have a rushed SGU series finale too. :p haha the ratings dont look good. 🙁

  35. hey joe,soory to botter,but again how can I call the blueberry aliens in spanish language,because alienigenas mora azul,is a too silly name in spanish-

    Twin Destinies will involve time travel with stargates,as in Time,or the future Rush will get there thanks to a time machine of some source?

    I am writing a story/comic called Terra,I hope to finished it,at leats some chapters,and I hope you can read it and give me your opinion? It is about a project led by Earth lead scientists ,constructing 13 space colonies,in a to get humans aboard,due to Earths inminent destruction,on the year 2020,however the project called Project Venture,started just too late,and only six colonies managed to flee into the depts of space,but luckily the seventh colony called Terra,launched itself just in time into the sky and entered hyperspace before the explotion of Earth could wiped it……………my first chapters are called:
    Volume 1 (Uprising)
    -Chain of command
    -Seeds of change………….writing more

    Hey Joseph,Im writing a fanon comic about Stargate,it is about a new ”series” for Stargate,what anem do you like? Stargate Venture, or Stargate Sagas? please answer……………..thanks.

  36. hey Joseph.i want to know,please what criteria does the SGC Command and the Atlantis expeition use to designate a planet’s code name………P87-977,that stuff?

    I want to know why Milky way planet’s name started witha P,and the Pegasus planet’s name started with an M?

  37. Alan is sooo pretty he should be in front of the camera, not behind the scenes. How come nobody ever gave him a role or some lines? A star is born…

  38. Hi Joe,

    Hope this isn’t too late for your next, or an upcoming, mailbag. I’m curious about the writing of SG episodes and how they’re credited. I see that a specific name or names is/are listed for having written each episode, though I think that I remember seeing mention (perhaps in a past blog entry of yours) that more of the writing staff is involved in the writing process.

    Is the person who is credited as having written an episode the main person who did the writing (most of the writing), even if others have participated in rewrites, or is the credited name chosen in a different fashion?

    Is the person credited with writing the episode the one who initially came up with the story idea (or the broad scope of the actual story) for that specific episode?

    Thanks! 🙂

    Sean D.

  39. Hey, if you were filming in 1928 and all the extras on the lot that day were men, would you have one of the men dress as a woman and walk through the scene with something obscuring his face?

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