Friday May 17th, 2013
Weeksauce brings you all the news in geekery, genre fiction, and nerdy celebrities you may have missed this week while you were slaving away in the spice mines of Kessel. With a huge heaping dose of snark and more than a little yellow journalism, Weeksauce is here to educate/patronize you and the things you love.
No Power in the Twitterverse:
Director / Nerd-Deity Joss Whedon has finally joined twitter, which means there is just one more category where Joss is doing something way better than you. Tweet subjects include drinking adult refreshments with the cast of the new “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” TV show, shellfish versus Amy Ackermonster, and why there should be less action heroes named “Jack.” So, to Jack Reacher, Jack Skellington, and Jack Kennedy: “F*@K You,” courtesy of Joss the Boss. Tweetings can be found at @JossActual, and declarations of hot man love can be directed at same.
Set Phasers to Aww:
John Cho, Korean actor best know for being the “Harold” half of the “Harold + Kumar” equation, and for being New-Sulu (Newlu) in the Star Trek reboot franchise, was on L.A. radio show Kevin and Bean Thursday morning. While he was there, trying to tell Kevin and Bean apart (seriously, their voices are identical), he said that he and J.J. Abrams want “Star Trek: Into Darkness” to be the first “Star Trek” film they show their young sons. He insisted that the new film, opening nowish, demonstrates the themes of growing into leadership, maturing into adulthood, and learning to be a man. It probably also means that there’s a strong father-son vibe to the story, likely because Benedict Cumberbatch plays Kirk’s son from the future. SPOILERS!!! Actually I don’t know if that’s true, I haven’t seen it yet.
Doctor OH SHIT
Proving once again that Britain is a churning cauldron of slavering psychopaths (what), violence erupted between rival nerd factions at the University of East Anglia. The battle erupted between Sharks-and-Jetsian rivals, the Norwich Sci-Fi Club and the Norwich Star Wars club. Witness reports have been sketchy as to whether or not jazz dancing was involved.
The Norwich Sci-Fi Club, stalwart Doctor Who fans, have had a long running rivalry with the Star Wars-loving Norwich Star Wars club. They’ve crashed each others parties, initiated late-night commando panty raids against one another, and basically missed the point about being a sci-fi geek in general. During the convention at the University of East Anglia, they were forced to keep apart by the police, who feared a sudden outbreak of “who-would-win-in-a-fight” talk that might end with a slender British man dressed like C3PO tearing out another man’s throat with his teeth.
The whole story fizzled, however, when police reviewed CCTV security tapes and realized that no one had actually assaulted anyone else. It turns out that though the story seemed interesting, nothing actually happened, much like an episode of Doctor Who.
Kidding! Kidding guys. Just kidding. Great show.
Supernatural Season 8 Ends With “Sacrifice”
The epic ballad of the Winchester brothers came to the end of its eighth season Thursday night, even if you didn’t realize it was actually still on the air. The season finale, “Sacrifice,” pits startlingly handsome Dean and startlingly tall Sam against The Demon King in a dangerous game of evil-cat and handsome/tall mouse. Crowley machinates some wicked shit, Kevin shows up to cut some of the sexual tension between the brothers, and Castiel proves himself to still be the best part of the show as he and the Metatron (unfortunately NOT played by Alan Rickman) team up to kick Heaven right in its Heaven-pants.
Arrow Season 1 Ends with “Sacrifice”
The surprisingly good, and surprisingly Justin Hartley-less Green Arrow TV show “Arrow” ended its first season Wednesday night. And yes, Arrow ALSO ended with an episode named “Sacrifice,” and YES, it really is on the same network as Supernatural.
“Hey left hand, whatcha doin’ over there? Yeah, this is right hand! Coke? Wow. Neat.”
The episode features the Dark Archer himself, Merlyn, matching wits and ability to shoot archaic weaponry against Oliver Queen, who STILL doesn’t have anything approaching a goatee on his face. Add in some Roy-in-Distress, Oliver getting trapped on ANOTHER island (seriously dude, GPS), and a pretty subtle “Green Lantern” reference, and you’ve got a recipe for goodness. The show’s been renewed for a second season, so get ready for more Wikipedia searches to figure out which obscure DC character just appeared on screen.
Community Finale Reminds Us that Less Is More
The Community season-three finale ended last week, which technically breaks the rules of Weeksauce, but I caught it on Hulu THIS week and I make the rules anyway so I can do whatever I want. With another ill-fated dice roll that causes a violent incursion from the Darkest Timeline, the Green Dale seven are thrust into an epic adventure to round out the season.
Season 4, the first season without showrunner and beard enthusiast Dan Harmon at the helm, has met with mixed reviews. Though I’ve mostly enjoyed this season, there’s no doubt that the tone of the show has shifted slightly away from meta-commentary and more towards character-work. The Season 4 finale, titled “Sacrifice,” features the fan-favorite Evil versions of the study group and paintball guns, which some believe is proof-positive that the show is shooting for fan service in an effort to turn the crowd their way. This Snark Knight enjoyed the episode, even if some of the paintball stuff felt largely unnecessary.
Community has been renewed for a shortened fifth season, which is sort of like being told you’re getting a steak for dinner and then being served a sirloin. It’s good but . . . it ain’t no ribeye.
Astronaut Chris Hadfield Returns to Earth, Increasing Canadian Awesomeness by 12,000 Percent
In an effort to make up for Justin Beiber, Canada has given us Chris Hadfield, the superstar astronaut with over a million twitter followers. Hadfield has spent the last four months on the international space station, raising space-awareness through YouTube videos, twitter, and ROCKING OUT. No seriously, Chris recorded the first music video in space EVER, which can be viewed here in all its Bowie-osity.
Chris returned to Earth this week, and shared some of his experiences during a recent press conference. Apparently four months in space is not great for the meat-bagginess of our pitiful human forms. He and his fellow awesome space travelers are having a rough time back on Earth – they’ve been in zero-gravity for so long that even basic things like talking have to be retrained to account for the pull of gravity. Chris said he’s having trouble standing in the shower without fainting, and that he has to wear a g-suit under his clothes to keep his blood circulating correctly.
So, basically, Wall-E was a fairly accurate representation of our future in space.
Researchers in Oregon Figure Out How to Clone Organ, Miss Humorous Connotation
Embryonic stem cells have been successfully cloned, this week at the Oregon Health and Science University, using SCIENCE MAGIC. Utilizing techniques similar to the ones used to clone that weird sheep over fifteen years ago, Shoukhrat Mitalipov (who is not a necromancer, despite the name) and his team managed to insert human skin cells into unfertilized human eggs just to see if the two would get along. Turns out they did, because after a caffeine bath and a bit of electricity (my morning routine, too), the cells began to divide, they started filling out the colony, buying Red Solo cups, listening to Dave Matthews and generally making a nuisance of themselves.
In theory, this technique may be used to clone organs for patients, replace heart tissue, and create replicants whose only crime is wanting to LIVE.
Kepler Telescope Begins Failing, No Funny Headline Inbound
In a heartbreaking turn of events, the Kepler telescope has finally stopped responding to Earth-based control attempts. Like a Kentucky “Pray Away the Gay” group, they can no longer control its orientation. Though they’ve managed to put Kepler into a Safe Mode while they attempt to figure out a solution, the outlook is grim.
NASA believes an in-orbit repair solution is untenable, and that in all likelihood will not even be attempted. Kepler, famous for its incredible accuracy, and for the hundreds of exoplanets it found in distant systems, actually reached the end of its three-and-a-half year mission last November. The likelihood of it still being in operation today was low, so the failure is not unexpected, not unlike a DVD player the month after its warranty expires.
With Kepler’s help, NASA has been able to estimate the possible existence of over 17 BILLION Earth-sized planets in the Milky Way Galaxy.
Though Kepler may be near the end of its life, I’m sure the space program has enough funding and public attention to create another one . . . oh.
Oh that’s right. Our space program barely exists.
We’re probably going to die of overpopulation or a rogue asteroid. Our entire civilization destroyed because of its lack of vision.