Weeksauce Geek News: Strange, Walkers, and Wet Planets

September 25th through October 2nd, 2014. Weeksauce brings you all the news in geekery, genre fiction, and nerdy celebrities you may have missed this week while you were ducking a long-term commitment with Crazy-Eyes in the Litchfield Correctional Facility. 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.

Movies

Hawke

Hawke Overtakes Phoenix for Strange

Not only is that my favorite headline I just made up about a mystical bird fight, but it also applies right here. Rumors of Joaquin Phoenix being too gun-shy to take the part of “Doctor Stephen Strange” in the future Marvel blockbuster have been filtering in, which means the Sorcerer Supreme seems to be back on the operating table. Get it, he was a surgeon? GET IT?!

Anyway, Ethan Hawke became connected to this hullaballoo because he starred in “Sinister,” which was directed by Scott Derrickson, who is also directing the Doc Strange movie. When asked if he was into the role, Hawke said “screeeeEEEEE!” Actually, he’s not really a bird, so he said this: “I’ll take it (the role) from him, sure.”

Not exactly concrete evidence, but this intrepid reporter is all for the Hawkemeister taking up the Eye of Agamotto and the big stupid cape and going hog wild.

Video Games

2016

Walking Dead First-Person Shooter Coming Out in 2016, But Not That Bad One That Already Came Out

Just like a zombie with a tiny head, you can’t put the Walking Dead franchise down. According to sources like Robert Kirkman, the goddamn sexy bearded creator of the Walking Dead, a brand chomping new first-person shooter is being developed by Overkill, the makers of Payday 2. Set in the popular face-biting universe, the game will include “elements of action, role-playing, survival horror, and stealth” and should be spinning in your console of choice by 2016. The physical setting will be Washington, but whether that’s DC or State wasn’t made quite clear. I’m hoping for D.C., because I’d like to defend the Lincoln Memorial from shambling corpses FOR FREEDOM.

No word yet on whether or not there will be a button on the controller that makes your character shout “Cooorrrrraaallll!” Anywho, here’s a weird teaser trailer for the game.

Tabletop

D&D Monsters Manual

Monsters Manual Proves Death Is In the Eye of the Beholder

5th Edition (or “D&D Next” or “D&D and the Order of the Phoenix”) finally released the “Monsters Manual,” the second core book of the traditional holy trio. Many people (including this nerdporter) thought it was bullshit of the highest degree that Wizards of the Coast staggered the release of the three necessary books, leaving gamers without monsters to swing their bastard swords at.

Well, if you haven’t picked it up yet, a nice fellow on YouTube made a video where he leafs through the book and gives it a general review. It looks pretty badass, with dynamic art, a good layout for seeing which monster is which (something 3rd edition failed miserably at), and a whole host of new lore and mechanics. The “legendary monsters” like beholders and dragons seem to have extra abilities that actually break the rules of the game a little to create massive “boss-fight” style encounters that seem a lot more interesting than just five players ganging up on one poor creature.

Anyway, it looks rad, so check it out. 

Television

Howard Stark

D-Coops Returning as Howard Stark in Marvel’s “Agent Carter”

Dominic Cooper is back to play the dashing father of Tony Stark, which is great news for Marvelites and also just ladies who have eyeballs. Or dudes who like dudes. Or straight guys who maybe just appreciate a charming and handsome fellow no judgement. Anyway.

With Marvel’s “Agents of SHIELD” enjoying an incredible uptick in quality, there’s a much higher chance that Agent Carter is going to be good. Reason 1) It’s a period super-hero show, essentially Mad Men with lasers and shit and Reason 2) It still has trouser-shredder Hayley Atwell playing complete badass Agent Carter. Done and done.

Science!

NORMANDY

 

Water Found on Smallest Exo-Planet To Date

Start packing your things, future humans, because the Neptune-sized planet with the badass name of “HAT-P-11B” has been found to have water in its atmosphere. At four times the width of Earth, that still makes it the smallest planet outside of the solar system that’s been found to have water on it. It took the combined juice of the Kepler, Hubble, and Spitzer telescopes to make the discovery, plus the brainy gals and dudes over at the University of Maryland in College Park.

Well, to be honest, it’s probably not so much a site for future humanity – for one, it’s ridiculously hot, something like hell combined with Indio in the dead of summer. HAT-P-11B is a bit out of our reach at the moment, too – at something like 122-light-years away (in the Cygnus Constellation), it would take the fastest Federation ship going Warp 9.975 a month to get there. At our current technology level (lame speed-of-a-rocket), that’s like, an infinite amount of time. Still, it bodes well for our techniques that we’ve managed to find water on such a small planet, meaning that our ability to find potentially habitable planets is looking pretty swell.

Pluto is Back, Bitches

PLUTO

According to a debate-and-poll over at Harvard, Pluto is back and swinging, like Rocky in Rocky II, IV, and V, maybe. The Harvard chair of the IAU planet definition committee, Owen Gingerich, believes Pluto is still a planet, and had a forum and debate with Gareth Williams, the AD of the IAU’s Minor Planet Center, who believed the opposite (like a horrible, horrible person would).

Anyway, their debate had an audience of teachers, science types, and regular joes in attendance, and after the debate the audience got to vote on who they believed had made their case. According to the vote, Pluto is indeed a planet, and Neptune is kind of dumb and has terrible choice in men. Mars was also voted to be “rad, obviously.” While this debate wasn’t any kind of official classificiation magilla, it does make Pluto’s future a little brighter. Not a lot brighter, though, because Pluto is like, really far from the sun.

About Bobby Johnson

Part-time swashbuckler and professional writer, Agent Bobby lives in Southern California and goes by the names "B.C. Johnson," "Banjo Bob," and "The Amazing Spider-Man." His "Deadgirl" book series (think Buffy meets Stephen King) is available for Kindle, Nook, and even old dusty paperback and can be found at bc-johnson.com. When he's not writing or playing video games, he can be found writing about playing video games and occasionally sleeping.