This Summer Has Actually Restored My Faith In Pop Culture

The love of pop culture is tumutulous and unpredictable, full of sudden letdowns and unepected thrills. And sometimes, it's easy to get pessimistic. But just when you think you're burning out on TV, movies and comics, they can surprise you. And this summer has done quite a bit to restore my faith in pop culture. » 7/07/14 1:07pm Monday 1:07pm

What Happens When Indie Directors Take on Big Franchises in Hollywood?

Suddenly, all the giant Hollywood franchises are being driven by alternative filmmakers. The latest news is that Rian Johnson, director of indies Looper and Brick, will direct Star Wars VIII. Can a quirky visionary really change a pop culture behemoth? Here's what happened to other indies in the franchise machine. » 7/03/14 4:17pm 7/03/14 4:17pm

Is It Time To Retire The Word "Epic"?

You'll see lots of rants on the internet claiming the word "epic" is overused. It's become a blanket synonym for "fun," and people say "I had an epic bath" with zero irony. But maybe this is just a symptom of a larger problem. Maybe the word "epic" in general has lost all meaning, including when we talk about fantasy. » 7/03/14 12:37pm 7/03/14 12:37pm

Stunt Casting That Actually Made Everything Better

Stunt casting is a long tradition in science fiction and fantasy, but it's only gotten more common lately. Films and TV shows will cast a famous actor — or someone who used to be in a Joss Whedon show — to spark interest. Sometimes, it's just unnecessary. But here are a bunch of cases where it was the perfect casting. » 6/05/14 9:00am 6/05/14 9:00am

Would Marvel Really Cancel Its Fantastic Four Comics To Hurt The Movie?

As you may have heard, there are rumors going around that Marvel, pissed off at Fox Studios, will be canceling both its Fantastic Four and Ultimate Fantastic Four comics in order to deny support for Fox's upcoming FF movie. It's completely insane and totally implausible... and yet it might be true. » 6/03/14 9:00am 6/03/14 9:00am

This Is Why Adapting Cartoons To Live-Action Is So Damn Hard

Why is it that, whenever someone announces a live-action adaptation of a previously animated story, I feel a nervous knot in the pit of my stomach? This question raised its ugly head with my realization that Disney's Descendants — a Disney Channel original movie that sees the kids of all Disney's heroes and villains… » 5/08/14 5:58pm 5/08/14 5:58pm

We Need A New Literary Movement With A Slightly Ludicrous Name

When I first obsessed about the idea of being a science-fiction writer, I was captivated by the Slipstream movement, which aimed to bust genre boundaries and shatter expectations. And reading about 1975's science fiction boom makes you realize how great the New Wave was. So maybe it's time for a new movement with a… » 5/08/14 1:27pm 5/08/14 1:27pm