science meets entertainment

This article caught my eye in USA Today this morning – partly because my educational background is in science, and partly because in the print version of the article, there are side-by-side photographs of Spock from Star Trek and Temperance Brennan from Bones.  Um, okay, interesting juxtaposition.

The article is about the increasing emphasis on accurate portrayals of science and scientists in the media – it mentions Doctor Manhattan’s quantum physics in Watchmen, the antimatter bomb in Angels and Demons, etc.  It’s an interesting read, but in annoyed me a bit because it seems to be dissing Spock, my favorite-ever fictional character.  Someone is quoted as saying, “The scientists you see today are not Mr. Spock, they’re human, and that’s a real change.  Even if they’re depicted as über-geeks, they are still interesting people you’d probably like.”  Excuse me?  Are you implying that Spock is not an interesting person I’d probably like?  What universe’s version of Star Trek have you been watching?

what makes star trek, star trek?

According to this article from, the writers of the new Star Trek movie have promised that we will see all of the following in the film at some point.

  • McCoy saying “Damnit, Jim, I’m a doctor, not a [whatever]!”
  • Scotty having an “I’m giving it all I’ve got, Cap’n!” moment
  • Kirk cheating on the Kobayashi Maru test
  • A bitch fight (okay, the phrase they used was “insult fight”) between Spock and McCoy

This list pretty much proves to me that these guys do “get” Star Trek.  I’m so excited to see this movie.  Quinto’s Spock and Urban’s McCoy in a TOS-style battle of the wits!  That’s going to be a joy to watch.

top ten trailer recuts

Of all the entertaining crack to be found on YouTube, some of my favorites are fan-made versions of movie trailers.  Here are ten of the best ones.  Don’t start watching one while drinking soda unless you want it to come spurting out of your nose!

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if you need a giggle…

Any time I’m feeling a little blah and want something to make me laugh, I go see what Wil Wheaton and Brent Spiner have been posting on their Twitter pages recently.  (Or should that be “what they’ve been tweeting”?  Whatever.)

Recent case in point: “What do you call a man who is sick and tired of working in a pickle factory?  …Spent Briner.”

movie preview

There are several movies coming later this year that I’m reeeeeeaaallly looking forward to… and some that, to my own surprise, I’m kinda not.

  • Star Trek, May 8: I have been following the development of this baby ever since its existence was first announced a couple years ago.  I’ve been there as the casting of each major character was announced, as the first teaser images and grainy photos from the set emerged, as the fandom nearly wanked itself to death over and over.  I mourned with everyone else when its release date was moved from Christmas back to May.  And now, in less than two months, it’s finally going to be here.  Be still my heart.
  • Sherlock Holmes, December 25: after the pure enjoyment that was Iron Man, I think I’d be willing to sit through almost anything starring Robert Downey Jr., but it was actually the casting of Jude Law as Dr. Watson that really got my psyched for this movie.  Too often Watson is portrayed in adaptations as a bumbling old fool.  But actually, the Watson of the original stories is ex-military, a bit of a ladies’ man, and (though he of course lacks Holmes’s scientific training and brilliant analytical mind) no idiot.  And to those complaining about the idea of an “action movie” version of Holmes, please remember that in the original stories, Holmes could box and fence.  I’m so excited for this film.
  • Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, July 17: this is actually the one that falls under the “meh” category.  I’ve been to midnight showings of the last two Harry Potter movies, but at this point, I’m so over the film franchise.  I will always love the book series (my friends and I still regularly reference it in everyday conversation) but now that it’s over I’m realizing that for me, the movies were only ever a way to tide myself over until the next book release.  And while Dan Rad is amazing and it’ll be fun to see what else he does with his career, he’s getting a bit old to play Harry.  Sorry, Warner Brothers.

which is geekier…

…The fact that someone took the time to write a history of Star Trek title fonts, complete with screencaps and video, or the fact that I actually read it?  I tell you, sometimes I shake my head at my own dorkiness.

Edited to add: just in case any truly rabid Trekkies happen to read this, please believe that I write it with love; I’m one of you, after all.

i watched the watchmen last night

[Note: a proper review will be up sometime later today or tonight, but for now, this is just my experience of seeing the movie.]

There are some movies that need to be experienced at midnight, in a theater full of geeks.  Watchmen is one of those movies.  If you’re a geek and you didn’t have your butt in a movie theater chair at 12:00 AM this morning, you missed out.

We arrived at the theater about an hour and a half early, picked up our tickets, and then headed over to the comic book store next door, which was staying open late to cater to all the Watchmen fans.  I was mildly disappointed that they were sold out of the Star Trek prequel comics, but it was fun just looking around and chatting with the guys that worked there.  Roomie and I were the only girls in the store.

Finally we went back to the theater to buy some snacks and stake out our seats.  I was actually really disappointed with the lack of people in costume – there was just one guy who came as Dr. Manhattan, with this really odd-looking blue bald cap.  So even though I’d brought my camera I didn’t end up taking any photos.  We kept running into people we knew, though.  The local geek community was out in force.

Finally it was trailer time… yay!  Can you guess which one I was super super excited about?  It was fun to hear everyone in the theater calling out their judgements of the movies being advertised.  Angels and Demons?  “Lame!”  Knowing, that Nicholas Cage movie?  “Lame!”  Star Trek?  “Not lame!” someone shouted.  Glad to hear my baby getting that vote of approval from the crowd.  I actually like this Star Trek trailer a lot better than the first one – you can see it here.

And then the screen turned that distinctive Watchmen yellow.

Almost three hours later, the lights came up and we all made our way back out through the lobby to the car, listening to all the animated conversations about this bit and that bit.  One of my friends wondered if we should wait, just in case there was a surprise scene after the credits.  No, I told him.  That was the end.  You can’t add an extra scene to Watchmen.

It was 4 AM by the time I got to bed, but it was totally worth it.  And so far, I haven’t been stricken with boils or turned into a toad, so maybe Alan Moore didn’t put a curse on everyone who went to see the movie (as we’d halfway feared).  Life is good.  And I’m already trying to figure out when I’ll have time to see it a second time.