December 31, 2013

There is no Fighting It

The inexorable advance of time will catch you.

...and it can be mean.

Happy 2014 everybody.

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Outbreak Company Ends

While I was initially impressed with its characterizations and how well this show handled its ridiculous fanboy affirmation premise, after the unmitigated disaster that was episode 5, I had thrown in the towel. However, a couple of weeks later, I did watch the next episode and it was substantially better, much more in keeping with the tone of the earlier episodes. In it, our hero, who follows sports manga but not actual sports decided that the best way to defuse the growing racial and ethnic tensions between the elves and the dwarves in his class was to have them have a soccer tournament against each other...It goes about as well as one would expect.

After that, the show continued its uneven shuffle towards the end, never quite gelling but every episode had at least some intriguing or at least amusing tangents.

For a show that is supposed to revolve around evangelizing fandom, it can be pretty straightforward in its exploration of that cultures pathologies and dysfunctions.

The show takes a rather different tack in the last two episodes and while it had been telegraphed for quite a while it still feels rather jarring. The ending only partially resolves the various plot threads but I found it more satisfying than it normally would be due to the fact that there was some genuine character development in a couple of characters over the course of the series.

Wildly uneven, Outbreak Company is never great, and the occasional idiocy of the protagonists can be infuriating, but it is often cute, funny and even interesting. It seems to be set up for a second season, and in the unlikely event that transpires, I'll probably at least give it a try.

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December 30, 2013

This "Space Dandy" Thing Looks Like it Could be Offensive

Gloriously so.

More importantly it seems to have considerable potential to be fun...and possibly even good.

The ad is RETRO-RIFFIC...

...beyond that, here is not much to go on, other than reports that the show concerns a bounty hunter in the far future. However, Soul Eater, Full Metal Alchemist, Cowboy Beebop and Samurai a pretty impressive pedigree.

 It certainly looks to be one to watch. It's premiering on Toonami this Saturday, January 4th

Text below this line does not exist
Friday or Saturday (Toonami says Saturday, January 4th. But Saturday is the 5th).

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December 29, 2013

Cruise Ship Trapped in Pack Ice

A Russian research/cruise ship Akademik Shokalskiy. has been overwhelmed by a summer blizzard off Antarctica and has become trapped in thickening ice. The Chinese icebreaker  Xue Long, unable to deal with the thickness of ice around the ship has retreated to open water leaving the cruise ship's only hope the Australian icebreaker Aurora Austrialis which is moving to assist. .

Akademik Shokalskiy stuck fast. Pic via USA Today

UPDATE: It looks like Aurora Australis is also being forced off by the abominable conditions.
This is getting serious.
Two top of the line icebreakers have found conditions too dangerous to proceed. The weather has deteriorated to the point that helicopter rescue is currently unsafe. If the ice is really over 4 meters thick, the cruise ship (which draws 4.5m) is not really floating any more. There is the very real possibility that the ship might be crushed. Complicating matters is the fact that the 'expedition' is a political stunt and PR is everything for the expedition leaders. Reports from the Akademik Shokalski indicate that those being interviewed are in denial of the gravity of their situation.The optics of this incident as well as the political and financial implications for the members of the voyage, may well be influencing them to deny the inevitable until lives are at risk.
Irony is a dish best served cold.

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December 28, 2013

OK Guys

We need to ponder some important matters...
Who are the villainous vehicular vixens we are looking at here in this frame grab?

We've got Baron Ashler, Garada K-7, Doubilus M2...and that, um, scissorheaded thing that sinks boats...Any ideas on the others?

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Well This Looks Sketchy

Work, school and family matters have meant that I've not been minding my E-mails like I should for nearly a month. I'm on several mailing lists that are concerned with news, science, defense analysis, politics, and frothing fanboy recidivism. So first day really OFF in a long while. I started to slog through nearly 400 E-mails.

Among them were, to my great astonishment a handful of E-mails from actual human beings with whom I have spoken...offline even.... as well as a couple that


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December 27, 2013



My childhood has just been molested...but in a completely different way than usual.

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Just South of Europa, it Gets Kind of Humid

One of the Brickmuppet's Crack Team of Science Babes seems a bit excited about a recent discovery by NASA.

"It's just a water vapor cloud..BUT IT'S IN SPAAACE!!!"

While examining an aurora near Europa's  south pole, astronomers using the Hubble Space Telescope discovered that it is associated with a faint cloud of water vapor, presumably venting from cryo-volcanoes on Europa that have plumes 201 kilometers high.

It seems likely that the 'cloud' deposits snow on Europa's south pole. NASA scientists take the plumes as further evidence that Europa is home to a vast subterranean ocean.

via NBF

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December 25, 2013

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Merry Christmas!

Fate Stay Night's Rin and Saber by Megumi Ishihara

For those of you who prefer to celebrate X-mas...

Everyone have a wonderful Holiday!

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