Michael from My Comic Relief and I have been good friends for years now, as we both started blogging within a few months of each other and discovered each other’s blogs early on. I even had the pleasure of meeting him during a family vacation, as my family and I arranged to meet up for lunch with him and Kalie, who writes Just Dread-Full. For awhile we have good-naturedly pushed the other to start watching our favorite fandoms – which for Michael is Doctor Who and for me Star Trek, specifically The Next Generation. What is amazing about both our series is that they both began in the 1960s, had a few speedbumps to overcome, but then were re-tooled for the better in recent years. So we both choose eight episodes to best represent our favorite fandom and had the other watch them, after giving each other some introductory comments.
Friendship is wonderful, isn’t it? It can lead you to do all sorts of things you’d never do on your own. I’d start listing examples but, c’mon, then we’d be off on a tangent (a beautiful, nourishing, and entertaining tangent to be sure!) which could fill pages. Let’s cut to the chase! My friendship with Nancy of Graphic Novelty2 – my oldest, longest, and dearest blogging friend – has led to an historic first. I, Michael John Miller, author and operator of the blog My Comic Relief, am writing about Star Trek for the very first time. You see, Nancy loves Star Trek and I’d never seen a single episode of Star Trek (only the JJ Abrams films). I love Doctor Who and Nancy had only seen a few episodes in passing. So, in the name of friendship, AMAZING THINGS, and blog content, we did our first ever Fandom Swap! Eagerly sharing what we love with the other, Nancy chose eight episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation (her favorite iteration of the show) for me to watch and I gave Nancy eight episodes of Doctor Who.
Once upon a time, I didn’t watch Doctor Who. I didn’t know why the blue phonebooth was important and I didn’t know if that garbage can thing with the whisk and plunger was a good guy or a bad guy. Once upon a time, I was too intimidated to even think about watching Doctor Who. Then I started a new job and met Theresa! We became fast friends and the only way I survived my first year teaching was because of her friendship and guidance. Theresa’s the best. One of the many things we bonded over was our shared love of Marvel, Star Wars, and all those nerdy corners of pop culture fun. But I couldn’t discuss one of Theresa’s favorite shows/characters/universes with her – Doctor Who. Eventually, trusting Theresa and her taste, I jumped into the world of Doctor Who and my life has become better in every way for it! But you may not know Theresa. Maybe that’s why you’re here. Maybe you’re curious if you should watch Doctor Who and/or how you even begin watching Doctor Who but you don’t have Theresa there to help you. Well, that’s why I’m here. I hope this short piece helps answer your questions, calm your concerns, and ignites your excitement for Doctor Who in the way being friends with Theresa did for me :D.
A little while ago I read a piece Kiri wrote on Star Wars Anonymous entitled, “The Mandalorian: Chapter One.” As the name implies (and as those of you who are big on inferring from context clues may’ve guessed), it was a reflection on the first episode of the new Disney+ show The Mandalorian. While I’ve yet to watch the show for myself (or get Disney+), I found her piece interesting. I appreciated her take on the first episode and I was also struck by something Kiri wrote in the beginning of her piece. She outlined what she, as a Star Wars fan, looks for in any Star Wars story she watches/reads. And that left me puzzling over exactly what I look for in the Star Wars stories I watch/read. I finally figured it out! Now you can know my criteria too and, I’m sure, sleep easier at night because if it. Continue reading
The other day I stumbled upon this article on ComicBook.com about how Kevin Feige has said the upcoming MCU shows on Disney’s new streaming service Disney+ will fit in with the movies. As I read it, I found this li’l post developing in my head. Sometimes I like/need to just react to something as soon as I hear it. That’s how this sporadic “…..really??” series works. Sometimes my fears/feelings end up being validated (like how “Marvel Legacy” was a boring reset) and sometimes I couldn’t be more wrong (like when I decried the “Hydra Cap” reveal). But this time it’s Feige and the next phase of stories in the Marvel Cinematic Universe I want to talk about. Continue reading
In the weeks leading up to Avengers: Endgame, I did what any conscientious fan has to do now – I got off social media, stopped reading any and all articles online, and stopped viewing video clips and interviews with the cast and the Russos. I didn’t want the conclusion of a story I’ve watched unfold for a decade inadvertently spoiled for me. In the days leading up to the film and the days following its release, the hashtag #DontSpoilTheEndgame began to trend as the stars of the film and the Marvel Studios/Disney marketing machine urged people not to ruin anything for the fans who hadn’t seen it yet. Of course people still did. Then Marvel Studios/Disney did. Apparently the whole “don’t spoil it” thing’s cutoff is two weekends. Then the spoilers came fast and they were BIG. It leaves me asking, what is wrong with people?? Why must we publicly discuss twists/the end at all? Continue reading
I watch Doctor Who now. If I’m being honest, I watch Doctor Who a lot. If I’m being really honest, I am absolutely in love with this show (and I may have developed a bit of a binge-watching problem). I began watching it at the start of the school year and fell in love immediately. Soon words like “TARDIS,” “Time Lord,” “sonic screwdriver,” “psychic paper,” “Daleks,” and “Cybermen” had become a regular part of my vocabulary. However, this isn’t a piece about Doctor Who so much as it’s a reflection on falling in love with a show in isolation, completely removed from whatever fandom exists for the brilliant, beautiful world of the Doctor. Continue reading
No spoilers here my friends, don’t worry – not yet. This isn’t even about The Last Jedi‘s plot. Rather, this is all about our hopes and dreams going into the film. Hyperspace PodBlast’s Bryan and Shelby spent opening day talking to people in line at Maya Cinemas in Bakersfield, CA while Hannah and I interviewed people at Tinseltown in Erie, PA. You heard that right folks – I’m a STAR WARS REPORTER now!!! Yay for team work!! It was incredible and we had sooooo much fun doing these interviews. So we owe a big THANK YOU to Hyperspace PodBlast for having us be your Senior East Coast Correspondents and a big THANK YOU to everyone who chatted with us all day too. Continue reading
We, as fans, can be passionate about what we love. We, as fans, should be passionate about what we love. What’s love without passion?! However, there’s a fine line between passionate love and destructive possession. If romantic love turns possessive we recognize it as an abusive relationship. This same sort of destructive possession exists in fandoms. The Ghostbusters are girls! Princess Leia isn’t being recast for Episode IX! Harry should have been with Hermione! Steve Rogers is Hydra! George Lucas made Prequels! Riri Williams is Iron Man! SOMETHING IS NOT HOW I WANT IT TO BE!!! We’re all welcome to our own opinions. We all have the right to not read/watch something we don’t like. But we have no right to spew toxicity all over the internet/real life when something upsets us. This morning I read an article illustrating this problem of the ownership we presume to have, as fans, over what we love in a saddening new light. As such, I felt compelled to write this post. Continue reading
Last week Jeff wrote a post titled “Your Snoke Theory Doesn’t Suck.” I read it. I appreciated it. I felt it was something that needed to be said. I thought nothing else of it…then the internet exploded. Well, exploded is a strong word but it certainly elicited some surprisingly strong reactions. As I’ve followed some of the Twitter firestorm, it started to bother me. So here we are. I could be grading but my conscience was urging me to write instead. I guess I’ll just be up late finishing those papers! Let me say clearly, whoever you are, wherever you are out there in Star Wars land, I’m reaffirming what Jeff’s already said – really, your Snoke Theory doesn’t suck. Continue reading