This Comic Teaches You How To Read Russian Words In Just 15 Minutes

No, this comic by cartoonist Ryan Estrada and writer Peter Starr Northrop won't have you magically understanding the Russian language, but if you've ever stared at Russian words in Cyrillic script and wondered just how the hell you pronounce them, this will get you started. » 9/17/14 12:20pm 9/17/14 12:20pm

These Medieval-Style Tolkien Illustrations Are Like Nothing We've Seen

At first glance, these may look like Russian Orthodox iconography from the Middle ages. But they are actually striking illustrations of the works of J.R.R. Tolkien by Ukrainian artist Sergei Iukhimov. » 6/03/14 1:00pm 6/03/14 1:00pm

The Soviet Edition of The Hobbit Has the Best Gollum

It's almost tragic that Peter Jackson didn't go with this design for Gollum. However, it's completely understandable why the adorable Smaug didn't take off. » 3/19/14 12:37pm 3/19/14 12:37pm

The Oddest Soviet Ads From The Late 19th And Early 20th Century

Mad Men reintroduced us to the American advertising aesthetic of the 1960s, but they don't hold a candle to the visual wonder (and occasional oddity) of early Soviet and pre-Soviet print ads. Here are a few of our favorite ways advertisers peddled soap, tobacco, gunpowder, and more. » 4/20/13 2:00pm 4/20/13 2:00pm

Behold the dark beauty of Russia's 1968 Little Mermaid cartoon

Disney's The Little Mermaid may be the best-known animated film based on Hans Christian Andersen's short story, but it was by no means the first. This Russian film, directed by Ivan Aksenchuk in 1968, uses a variety of animation styles to capture the sad tone of the tragic fairy tale, from the horrors of the… » 4/08/12 3:30pm 4/08/12 3:30pm

Will People On Long Space Missions Inevitably Kill Each Other?

For 105 days, 4 Russians and 2 Europeans holed up in isolation in Moscow, to see if they could survive a mission to Mars without killing one another in frustration, while American scientists watched. Tomorrow, they'll be freed. » 7/13/09 5:19pm 7/13/09 5:19pm

Kazakhstan's Cosmodrome Prepares for the Conquest of Space

It's amazing how sleek and old-school the Soyuz rocket looks, preparing to blast off from Kazakhstan's Baikonur Cosmodrome to the International Space Station. Especially surrounded by Soviet-looking guards. More Cosmodrome porn is below. » 3/25/09 11:05am 3/25/09 11:05am

Final Proof That Communism Breaks Your Brain

Two regular guys fall into an alien teleportation device and find themselves on a planet of crazy people in Kin-Dza-Dza!, a 1986 Russian movie that satirizes the declining USSR by having people act very very silly for 135 minutes. It's basically like the longest Monty Python sketch in history: the Plukanians only… » 6/10/08 8:30pm 6/10/08 8:30pm

The Tomorrow War Looks Good Today

One of the best parts of video-game classic Mass Effect was the ability to take your ship to different planets throughout the galaxy, and actually touch down, get out and explore the places. A new game, The Tomorrow War, takes that concept and expands on it exponentially, giving you a virtual sandbox of systems and… » 3/25/08 12:00pm 3/25/08 12:00pm

Your Favorite Scifi Films As Russian Woodcuts

As Chancellor Gorkon from Star Trek VI would say, "You have not experienced Shakespeare until you have read him in the original Klingon." We'd reply by telling him that unless he'd seen Star Wars in the original Russian folk art version, he was a pansy. Russian artist Andrey Kuznetsov has created some pretty… » 2/19/08 1:30pm 2/19/08 1:30pm

Russian Space Pirates Melt Your Synapses With Rock

Russian translation circuits: inoperable. We may not know what this band from the motherland is singing about in this science fiction-themed music video, but we do know that a band of crazy space pirates are invading a fleet of women clad in silver jumpsuits. Everybody parades around and sings the chorus of the song… » 2/08/08 3:30pm 2/08/08 3:30pm

Russian Space Rocket Looks Totally Old-School

The Soyuz-FG launcher sticks to a 1950s snub-nosed aesthetic, even though it was built in 2001. The Soyuz is preparing to launch Dec. 14 from Kazakhstan's Baikonur cosmodrome. Image by STR/AFP/Getty Images. » 12/13/07 1:00pm 12/13/07 1:00pm