Tag Archives: Much Ado About Nothing

Therefore I Geek Podcast Episode 17, Comic Book Round Up Rides Again

 

**** SPOILER ALERT *****

This podcast will be discussing plot points which may be considered spoilers. Consider yourselves warned.

death of wolverine

In which, Andrew has a conversation with Santana Perez and Andrew Piovane about the hottest comics on the shelves this fall.  Of course, Death of Wolverine is the big one, but there is a lot that is happening in the comic book world.  There is also a discussion of up-coming comic book movies–especially Marvel’s Age of Ultron.  As always, hilarity ensues.  Continue reading

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Filed under Comics, Podcast

Valentine’s Day Giveaway

With Valentine’s Day less than twenty-four hours away, we here at Therefore I Geek have decided that we should help spread the love with a truely romantic giveaway. None of that commercial crap like flowers or candy mind you, but true, geeky love as only Joss Whedon can provide. That’s why we’re giving away a copy of Much Ado About Nothing on Blu-ray (or DVD if you prefer). This great movie combines Shakespeare’s classic tale with several of your favorite Joss Whedon alumni and it’s a great addition to any collection. Our winner will be chosen at random and announced on Saturday, February 15, 2014. All you have to do to enter is comment on this post (See below for specific rules). Contest ends Midnight on February 14, 2014.

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RULES: Please read the rules for entry carefully.

1)      Entry is easy:  simply comment on this post! Comments must be of some substance. This means no one word posts or gibberish.

2)      Unfortunately, entries can only be accepted from persons living in the United States.

3)      The winner will be chosen at random from all eligible entries and announced on February 15, 2014. Every effort will be made to contact the winning party before the public announcement. The winner will need to provide an address where the prize can be shipped. (However, this should not be included in the comment.)

4)      If it is determined that the winner is ineligible (not living in the United States, etc) then a new winner will be chosen at random, and contacted.

5)      Failure to comply with the rules listed will result in an ineligible entry.

6)      Final determination of eligibility will be made solely by the staff of Therefore I Geek.

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Filed under Geek Life, Giveaway

Review: Much Ado About Nothing

Much_Ado_About_Nothing_one_sheet

We all know I’m a comic geek.  In addition to this however, I’m also a fan of Shakespeare.  I started reading the Bard’s works in fifth grade starting with Hamlet and Macbeth.  As I’ve gotten older, I’ve also come to really love modern interpretations of the plays.  Among my favorites are Scotland, PA and 10 Things I Hate About You, and now I’m quite happy to add Joss Whedon’s Much Ado About Nothing to that list.

Probably the most distinctive thing about a Joss Whedon movie is the script.  Anyone who is at all familiar with his work knows that his writing has a very specific feel that is immediately identifiable.  Joss’s choice to use the traditional Shakespearean script instantly removes his most notable trademark and raises a self-imposed challenge —one that Joss hurdles almost effortlessly.  Instead of adding his quirky sense of humor to the back and forth banter of the characters, Whedon leaves dialogue to the master and inserts himself into the direction of characters and the addition of small, non-speaking scenes.

It is obvious in several scenes that Whedon is providing very specific physical directions to actors to make best use of the existing dialogue and to enhance the scene through their performance.  Although I find Shakespearean comedies funny on their own, these new directions that Joss provides take this to a whole new level.

During one particular scene Benedick is listening in on a conversation between several other characters.  While it would be simple enough to have him hide behind a bush or something similar, Joss instead has Benedick doing all kinds of ridiculous things to hide including lying flat on his stomach in the grass while trying to use a rather inadequate tree branch as cover for his face. The other characters are obviously aware of what is going on, but ignore him and continue with their conversation. I have no idea how any of these actors were able to keep a straight face while these crazy antics were going on just behind them.

One of the non-speaking scenes that added to the film takes place between two of the security guards. Thanks to the many conversations we’ve witnessed between them, we are already well aware that they are not overly gifted in matters of the mind, however to further reinforce this impression, this little scene shows the two of them searching for their keys, only to realize they locked them in the car.  This scene is completely unnecessary but it adds so much to the characters. It allows for the quick glance deeper that Whedon is known for, without saying a word.

security

Nathan Fillion would like it known that he is an ass.

I would be remiss if I failed to mention the casting of this film.  Made up of many Whedon alumni, the cast works just as it should.  Unlike Shakespearean tragedies, the comedies feel more like an ensemble.  Despite having plenty of recognizable faces in the cast, there are no divas, and no true standouts.  This is not to say that none of the cast stood out, but more to say that the cast as a whole was amazing.  While I have no doubts there were several outtakes due to dialogue, I can’t remember any points in the film where the sometimes difficult Shakespearean English tripped up the actors.  It was all delivered cleanly and in a manner which helped make the often muddy much clearer.

I think the most telling thing for me is that I have almost nothing negative to say about this film.  Although I did have a moment of trepidation at the very beginning due to the seemingly stereotypical “indie film” opening scene, this was cleared up within another minute.  There were one or two times that I didn’t care much for the way a particular camera angle was used or that the music may have been a bit too menacing, but this was all so minor that it didn’t take away from the film as a whole.  Let’s be honest, if all I can find to complain about is a couple of camera shots and a minute or so of music, this is definitely a home run and damn near a grand slam.  Whether you are a fan of the Bard, of Mr. Whedon, or both, this film is definitely worth checking out. I already have plans to add it to my Blu-Ray collection.

5/5 Death Stars

5/5 Death Stars

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Filed under Andrew Hales, Movie Reviews, Movies

Editorial | What Doesn’t Kill You: socializing with other geeks can make you a better geek

At a recent gathering of geeks—too small to be a convention, and too large to be a D&D adventure—I had the opportunity to see Joss Whedon fans in the wild.  This is a rare occurrence, as these creatures spend most of their time hiding under the covers and sobbing into their pillows.  It was so nice to see others with similar interests and to interact in a large group, although it felt oddly surreal to be seated near a pair of Klingons with their infant son.

Spending time with someone other than a plastic Marvel (or DC) action figure collection will allow an expansion of horizons, both within the realms already known and loved, and in worlds beyond.

For instance, I adore all projects Joss Whedon, but recently, when several of my friends pointed out plot points, nuances, and an entire free, web mini-series that I had missed (Dr. Horrible’s Sing-A-Long Blog, in case there is anyone still uninitiated into that little piece of genius), I realized that I am not quite as knowledgeable as I had once thought.  It was a little bit of a shock, but the conversations I now have are on a completely different level.

muchadomovie.com

Whedon’s new film “Much Ado About Nothing”

It’s also nice to be introduced to new areas of geekdom by those already well-versed in it.  Instead of being overwhelming and intimidating (perhaps to the point that interest is lost), these new spheres of interest are easily explored with the help of a guide.  I have many such experiences with this—especially since it can be daunting to get into such things as Manga, or even the wild, tangled world of comic books, thanks to their snarl of alternate storylines (Spiderman, anyone?).  Several years ago I was introduced to the wonderful world of Japanese anime by my friend Elaina.*  My first experience was a positive one thanks to her direction.  First she had me check out Studio Ghibli, and then the character Yomiko Readman (Agent Paper) in the popular manga/novel series and animated film Read or Die.  I’m nobody’s anime buff—not even close—but I can now speak with some small knowledge on the subject thanks to Elaina.

A healthy brain is one that is regularly challenged to work hard, and an easy way to challenge it is to hang around other intelligent people.  I found this out the hard way a few years ago when I looked up from my full-time job in retail to realize that I didn’t know anyone smarter than I.  It might sound like an opportunity to show off, or even a chance to be promoted rapidly, but in reality it was just boring and frustrating.  Since then I’ve cultivated friendships with some brilliant people around my own age that not only keep me humble but actually stretch my cognitive powers and force me to learn and remember to my full potential.  The challenge is exciting and keeps me hungry for information.

Spending time reveling in one’s own creative genius has the tendency to give an inflated view of one’s own cleverness, but there is always someone more intelligent.  This was illustrated beautifully in The Big Bang Theory’s character Sheldon Cooper.  The character is a brilliant, but narcissistic physicist who is ridiculously arrogant about his own cerebral abilities.  Not until Stephen Hawking points out an elementary, mathematical mistake in his paper on the Higgs-Boson particle does Sheldon realize he is as human as the friends he insults on a daily basis.

It may sound difficult to seek out people of similar brain capacity—society frowns upon those who ask for Mensa scores immediately after an introduction—but they can often be found in these very gatherings.  It’s no happenstance that some of the brightest minds of our time are self-proclaimed geeks, so there is no better way to find some of them than in a meeting of geek minds.

Jayne Cobb hat

“Man wears a hat like that, people know he ain’t afraid of anything.”

Lastly, spending time in the company of other geeks fosters a sense of cultural identity.  It is proof that no geek is alone, and validates his passions.  There is nothing quite like the feeling of acceptance that comes from seeing another Browncoat in a Jayne hat.  Here, not only are those things that make a geek so painfully awkward at times in the outside world not awkward, they are normal!

The wisest man in the world lived about three thousand years before the term “geek” was coined, but his thirst for knowledge made him one all the same; and he said, “Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.”  Come to think of it, my authentic replica Medieval battle axe could use a whetstone.  Maybe it’s time to get some friends together for a little LARPing and some good, old-fashioned, geek socializing.

*name changed

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Filed under Editorial, Tracy Gronewold