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58 minutes | 24 days ago
Hate Web: A Valentine’s Day Special
Welcome to the Star Crossed Lovers episode. EJ researched to find out what *really* qualifies as star-crossed-lovers and Em just winged it (which is pretty obvious because at least one of her picks barely counts). The phrase comes directly from Shakespeare and the ladies discuss the classic trope—which brings EJ to her first pick for the podcast: SAGA. Saga is a loose interpretation of Romeo and Juliet set in the realm of a futuristic space opera. This comic is one of EJ’s favorites.Em’s first contribution is dark and sad (perfect for a Valentine’s Day special, no?). Her pick is the movie NEVER LET ME GO. The movie is based on Kazuo Ishiguro's bestselling, Booker Prize short listed novel with the same name. Em hasn’t watched in a while and thinks it warrants a rewatch. She had no idea what she was getting into the first time. Listener, you won’t either!EJ and Em muse how this year’s picks are so much darker, even though Em’s pick last year *was* a BLACK MIRROR episode (San Junipero).EJ’s next pick is the THREE DARK CROWNS series by Kendra Blake. This YA fantasy novel focuses on triplet Princess’s who are to be the next generation of Queens. HOWEVER they don’t all become Queen. In fact, they don’t all get to live. They spend their lives studying magic to prepare for a deathly duel. There is a lusty, dark relationship that can go nowhere good. Except, listener, it is so so so good. Check it out! Em chats about how, while researching, several movies from childhood came up. A few titles that kept popping up were Enemy Mine (who doesn’t love a good self-reproducing, bipedal, reptilian-humanoid?) and EDWARD SCISSORHANDS.Em’s next real pick is SONG OF ACHILLES (bc of course it is). Em is obsessed with Madeline Miller’s take on this myth, which is evidenced by the long, long explanation she gives.EJ mentions THE NIGHT CIRCUS. Marco and Celia *are* the definition of star-crossed-lovers. Em has a hot take that may not be super popular about Marco, but the hosts agree that the book is beautiful and one of the best written pieces of literature they’ve read.A title that EJ kept coming across was WUTHERING HEIGHTS. EJ vehemently disagrees that Heathcliff and Kathy are star-crossed. They are simply terrible people. This is the twisted book of Em’s heart. Em would love to do a modern retelling but there is no way—these characters are so toxic. If a better writer does it—she’d love to read it (hint hint). Around the 23 minute mark, Em gives a very long, rough retelling of the story and pretty much ruins it—but she can’t help it. She loves it. (Correction: Em says that Heathcliff marries and that isn’t true. He impregnates a woman and refuses to marry her thus ruining her in society in the book.)Em’s next pick is (surprise surprise) DOCTOR WHO: River Song and The Doctor. Everyone’s favorite Time Lord and River Song are in love—but they have different timeline’s as they travel through time and space. What are lovers coming from different timey-wimey directions to do? Keep a journal and don’t give spoilers, of course! This is Em’s favorite story arc. The story begins in Silence at the Library (which is an episode with Doctor 10).EJ is reminded of THE TIME TRAVELER'S WIFE. (Correction: Em says that this is her friend Rhonda's absolute favorite book, but that may not be true). The women discuss how involuntary and compulsory time travel creates star-crossed-lovers.EJ’s next pic is LEGEND by Marie Lu. This book is YA Sci-fi at its best. The book features the haves and the have-nots. June is a prodigy whose entire life goal is to catch this most-wanted criminal who is seen as uncatchable. Day…is that criminal. They fall in love without realizing who it is they are falling for. Em’s final pick is THE REINCARNATION BLUES by Michael Poore. In this book, Milo, is trying to live a life worth reincarnating to the next level of existence. Every time he dies, he meets death (literally meets them). Spoiler: They fall in love. What can you do when the person you love is death?EJ’s number one pick is none other than THE HUNGER GAMES. Does it even get more star-crossed than Katniss and Peta? You tell us!Shop the list of recommendations from this miniseries at BookShop.org★ Support this podcast on Patreon ★
71 minutes | a month ago
The Year Hell Froze Over
* This episode was recording in the days following the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. * 2020. It's over, and good riddance. But one silver lining to a tumultuous, bizarro year? There were some damn good books, shows and movies. Em and EJ discuss their highlights, what they're looking forward to most in 2021, and the importance of story amid a deeply divided world.
57 minutes | 4 months ago
NanoGatorsGiving: A Very Speculative Thanksgiving Episode
We’re in the home stretch of 2020, ya’ll. Em and EJ embrace the spirit of Thanksgiving with a look at their favorite themed speculative fiction and pop culture (or the next closest thing). They also share about their NaNoWriMo goals and experiences. Also some alligators, just for fun.
67 minutes | 5 months ago
Not Your Scream Queen #5: A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night
In this final episode of our female-driven horror miniseries, Em and EJ take a stroll through Bad City and weigh the pros and cons of befriending a vampire.
49 minutes | 5 months ago
Not Your Scream Queen #4: The Babadook
The BabadookEm and EJ talk about the monstrosity of grief, the dark side of motherhood, and what frightens us most with guest host Erica Waters, author of Ghost Wood Song.
64 minutes | 5 months ago
Not Your Scream Queen #3: Ma
Em and EJ explore more female-driven horror with Ma, starring Octavia Spencer in a wildly unhinged and out-of-character role. Claustrophobic small towns, dumb teenagers and a few seriously inappropriate laughs ahead.
47 minutes | 5 months ago
Not Your Scream Queen #2: He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not
Not Your Scream QueenEpisode 2: HE LOVES ME HE LOVES ME NOT We are back with our mini series featuring women in horror aptly titled NOT YOUR SCREAM QUEEN.. Your two ADHD diagnosed hosts agree that this is the most focused mini-series they’ve accomplished yet, and they are feeling pretty proud of it. Of course that might be because the “work” involved has been a delight! Em has loved the research for this series. Watching horror movies? Who wouldn’t love it? Em doesn’t typically take a deep dive into horror—she takes them at face value. This exercise has made her think about them a little differently. In college, EJ took a class where she’d actually have a “lab” that was watching a film, and then the class would be dissecting and discussing the movie. Pretty awesome. The women discuss how there is a literary equivalent in some films and EJ suggest (rightfully) that we have reached a point as a society where we should discuss films and their artistic merit the same way we discuss novels. Em admits her absolute love of movies. All movies. Artistic and terrible—her early video store days left a huge impression on her. They jump right into today’s episode: He Loves Me He Loves Me Not. EJ first watched HE LOVES ME HE LOVES ME NOT during her college days, around the early 2000s. EJ was wandering the aisles of Block Buster with college friends. They were looking for something to new to watch and had liked Amalie. The friend group recognized the leading actress from Amalie and decided to give this one a shot…they had no idea what they were getting in to. The geeks give a run-down of the plot of He Loves Me He Loves Me Not. The movie is split in two parts: HER point of view and HIS point of view. EJ and Em dissect how this works in the film. Emily is so enthusiastic that she basically interrupts EJ every five minutes (lol). She has no regrets. :P They discuss Erotomania—a real diagnosable mental illness that inspired this movie. It is a rare diagnosis. EJ discusses problematic tropes that this movie brings to mind. EJ compares the film to the show Crazy Ex Girlfriend and how it calls out common, problematic tropes. The medical student that is in love with Angelique during the entire movie has his own problems. EJ and Em chat about how he thought it was fully okay to steal a human heart for Angelique. What?!? They discuss why the mental illness aspect of the movie didn’t feel wrong. What would happen if the movie was gender flipped? Is this movie a horror flick or a Psychological Thriller? EJ thinks that it is nudged into the horror category because of the human heart and the creepy murals. They agree that the movie definitely walks the line between the two. The consensus is that you could be COMPLETELY fooled into thinking this is a rom com from the opening scene. The movie is not without its problems—it is twenty years old—but EJ and Em agree that it is entertaining and they’d suggest to friends. EJ finished Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng and enjoyed it, and is now beginning the Hulu show. She thinks it is a pretty solid read and show adaptation (so far). Gareth Frank (a DC author) is in a writing group with EJ, and his book THE MOMENT BETWEEN—a psychological and metaphysical thriller recently released. EJ was an early beta for a draft and enjoys having the finished product in her hands. The pressure of the Libby list is REAL—EJ warned Em—but she didn’t realize. Now, Em is reading against the clock. Em is reading a book called CONURE WOMEN by Afia Atakora. Em fell in love with the beautiful cover and chose it to read without even reading the back blurb. The book is very literary and takes place in the years before and after slavery. Em is very much digging the writing style, as well as the story of intelligent women and their story of survival. Next up on Em’s list is THE YEAR OF THE WITCHING by Alexis Henderson. She’s excited about it. Who doesn’t love a good witch story? Don’t forget about our bookshop on bookshop.org. Link to the Fantasy + Girl Bookshop: https://bookshop.org/shop/SFFGirlPodcast Stay tuned for the next episode where the girls chat about the movie MA. ★ Support this podcast on Patreon ★
56 minutes | 5 months ago
Not Your Scream Queen #1: Jennifer's Body
Right from the get-go, Em and EJ agree there’s an important topic that, coming out of the My Favorite Apocalypse series, we have not touched on enough: Cannibalism. It only comes up a few times every episode, we promise to do better. Which brings us to JENNIFER’S BODY, our first pick for the miniseries. But put a pin in that, Em has some ideas: Since we’ve decided to focus this new miniseries on women of horror--writers, directors, actors, and more--she suggests calling it Not Your Scream Queen. That or Spooky Girls. EJ is ready to roll but has no clue what movies these are--because they’re not. They’re title ideas for the series. Hello. Not Your Scream Queen hits instant icon status. The full series will feature a close-up assessment of five different horror films. They don’t necessarily have feminist themes, but they’re all told by women to varying degrees. Which is perhaps somewhat feminist in itself? Horror tropes have become so misogynistic within pop culture (not by genre!) that anything that deviates from that misogyny feels like it is inherently making a statement. Em notes that growing up, if there was a girl in a horror film, by the end she was sure to be covered in blood and half naked. And those films aren’t always trash, but when that’s all that ever happens, come on. EJ adds that if you’re not even playing with your tropes, and merely rehashing, where’s even the fun in that? In this series, Em and EJ are here to examine this issue and have some good spooky fun. The films chosen for this series are female-written, directed, led, produced, or touch on “female” themes (or at least themes broadly considered female). We aimed for two of three of these for all films included. And, most of them, we’re going in blind--including our first pick for today’s episode, Jennifer’s Body, starring Megan Fox and Amanda Seyfried. Em remembers in the early 2000s when Megan Fox spoke out about her mistreatment during filming and auditioning for TRANSFORMERS by Michael Bay, and how she got blown off for it. She had to wash his car in a bikini for the audition. So cringey. Now with #MeToo and the evolution of the conversation of women’s equal treatment, this would never be acceptable, but then, no one wanted to hear it. We all owe Megan Fox an apology. And, we like to believe, we’ve come a long way since this film released in 2007--not so very long ago! So let’s start with a synopsis: we snagged ours from Wikipedia. First of all, this film had an incredible cast! Not just Fox and Seyfried, but also with appearances from a pre-fame Chris Pratt, JK Simmons (and out of typecasting to boot), Amy Sedaris, everywhere you turn there was a big name. Even most of the guys who play Jennifer’s victims were very familiar looking. Not to mention, writers and director Diablo Cody--indie queen of JUNO, YOUNG ADULT, TULLY … a brilliant lady. And of course, the film has earned a cult following since its original flop release. For Em, there were a few reactions, and one was a hard cringe at the accuracy of this film’s reflection of being a teen in the 2000s -- the hair, the styles, the slang…. save us from our former selves. The other big takeaway: In what universe is Amanda Seyfriend the “plain” best friend? They at least tried with the classic 90s trick of giving the gorgeous actor glasses to make them a nerd. Em observes the film starts with Seyfriend’s character, Needy, in jail after the events of the movie--she’s a kicker. Okay. But that line never circled back to any bigger meaning. Was it because she’d always been the sidekick? She offed the person she was sidekick too? And let’s not forget The Kiss. A kiss between Jennifer and Needy was prominently featured in the film’s trailers, and it was a clear effort to pander to the teen guy horror cliche crowd. But in the context of the film, and per Cody’s commentary, Needy was written to be a little in love with Jennifer from the start. Maybe romantically, but also could be taken to be that complicated way teen girls relate to each other--there’s always that one girl everyone seems to adore, or perhaps want to trade places with. There was an obsession between Needy and Jennifer, and a codependency that was very complicated and twisted. It says a lot about female friendship, about high school dynamics, about developing our own identities. Em suggests the film is a portrait of a toxic friendship. Even though Needy was second fiddle, but still Jennifer won’t do anything without Needy. There clear rules to their dynamic, including what to wear and how to look, to ensure those dynamics stay in place. EJ calls out that we’ve all been there. We’ve all internalized these kinds of unspoken rules to social dynamics, especially in high school. The film is set in the small town Devil’s Kettle, where there is a waterfall with a whirlpool that sucks things in, and no one knows where the things that fall into it end up. At the start of the film, Jennifer drags Needy along to a bar to see a band playing there. Early 2000s setting, so it’s emo rock, naturally. Jennifer’s flirting with the band, and Needy hears the band talking about Jennifer while she’s getting a drink, calling her a virgin tease who won’t put out. Needy tries to defend her friend by telling them she is a virgin and you should be ashamed of yourselves. EJ says as soon as the band leader opened his mouth, all she could hear was “Rape, rape, rape,” from his first words. There’s a fire in the bar, and in the chaos after, Jennifer gets in the band’s van with them and drives away, despite Needy’s warnings and begging. And for most of the movie, viewers don’t know what happened to Jennifer that night. But she returns as essentially a succubus, possessed by a demon. Spoiler alert: The band tries to sacrifice a virgin to satan because that’s the only way to get ahead in the music business. And Jennifer was not, in fact, a virgin, so everything went awry. Apparently in which case, you are embodied by a demon. Em really wishes the film had gone a different way. Really, a demon? Versus being killed? If she had then turned that demonic force against the band itself in a true revenge, Em would have been all about it. But instead, she ends up preying on relatively innocent teen boys who had nothing to do with it through the rest of the film. EJ wrestled with it too, but landed on the idea that trauma passes forward. The film goes out of its way to make it clear the guys Jennifer murders in her warpath are not, themselves, evil, as the band members were. If you looked at the story without the horror elements, it boils down to a woman who suffers a major trauma, and then takes it out on all men, and her friend’s efforts to stop it, tears them apart. It’s notable that despite everything that happens over the film, Needy is still driven to vindicate her friend in the end, and finally turns the revenge on the band in the end. But let’s talk about Jennifer as a character. EJ loves a character who sucks as a human, so she was here for Jennifer and her shitty ways. And she likes that both the hero (Needy) and the villain, or at least the literal monster of the horror arc (Jennifer) were both women -- rare for a horror film! She also appreciated that Jennifer and her return by demon possession upended the trope of the hypersexual female who is the first to die. Instead, she is victimized, but then becomes the victimizer -- and is the most powerful character in the film. And really, Em points out, Jennifer starts as a shitty character, but her behaviors are not out of scope--she’s acting like a typical teenage girl in a lot of ways. An immature and toxic one, but a teenage girl. And, once Jennifer is turned inhabited by the demon, if she doesn’t kill and consume, she won’t survive. So she enjoys it, sure, but she doesn’t have a choice. EJ adds that she even seems to try to put it off as much as she can, to the point that dark circles form under her eyes and her hair starts to fall out. We all agree the point at which Jennifer crosses the line is when she eats her best friend’s boyfriend. Shit move, Jennifer. Pause -- EJ didn’t understand why Chip and Needy had to break up for them not to go to the dance together, but for some reason in the plot they were one and the same. Jennifer had threatened even before becoming possessed that she might steal Chip away from Needy and couldn’t cope with even one person preferring Needy to her. It seems this is just the plot point the movie needed. Just like when Needy so easily found the book about demon possession in the school library’s occult section. To be fair, it was a very small section. There were some really fantastic tongue-in-cheek moments throughout this film. Ultimately, Jennifer wanted Needy all to herself. Em thinks the examination of friendship in the film is really interesting--it goes all the way back to when they were little and playing in the sandbox, and their promise to never tell on each other. “Sandbox love is real.” But then at the end Needy calls out Jennifer for being a bad friend all the way back then, too. So we got heavy, now let’s have some fun. Favorite parts? EJ had two favorite moments that were super campy… First, the zingers! When Jennifer is hovering over the pool as she tries to kill Needy’s boyfriend, and he exclaims “She can fly?!” and Needy cuts back, “It’s really more like hovering.” It’s not flying, it’s not that big of a deal. Em had a hard time with the made up slang. It worked when Cody did it in Juno, but it didn’t work the same way in this one -- maybe it’s the quirk factor of Juno? But “salty” wasn’t flying for us. EJ also enjoyed the terrible effects, once she observed that the film was in on the joke of how awful they were. Em agrees--the film had self awareness, but it just didn’t transfer to the marketing. In addition to being a kicker, Needy got fanmail in jail. We don’t know who from, but hey, it’s a thing that happens. Back to the trauma--because it doesn’t end with Jennifer even after Needy kills her. Because Jennifer bites her, Needy now has some of Jennifer’s powers. Honestly we need details on what this means. Maybe a sequel. What powers did Needy inherit, or not? Does she have to feed to survive now? We need answers. Em’s favorite line came at the end when Needy is hitchhiking after escaping the jail “I’m following a rock band!” Then the credits show Needy attacking and murdering the band in their hotel room in a series of bloody still shots with the band’s very emo rock blasting. But ... was she eating them after? Unclear. At least in the end we find out where all those lost things in the whirlpool come out -- along the highway. Like couldn’t they have dropped in something with a GPS? They were just messing around with tennis balls. There’s a folk song about such a waterfall that inspired this quirk in the town. Jennifer was very clearly the last person seen with many of the guys killed, but the police never questioned her or anything. There’s even text trails. Of course, the cops here were not top notch. It was dopy small town Chris Pratt cops, who were head over heels for Jennifer from the start. They actually never had any chance of ever considering her a murderer. She did say she had the cops in her pocket. Em wishes she had deeper thoughts on this movie. She felt there was a lot of potential there. Looking at it now, we’re inevitable using a different lens. EJ likes the styling of it because it was cheeky and kind of winking at the tropes even as they destroyed them. And that worked for her even if the characters were flat. But you don’t see many stories with a teen girl with that kind of power -- maybe CARRIE, Em suggests. EJ goes on her Stephen King rant--she’d have to read that again to weigh in in this context. Stephen King just isn’t EJ’s jam, but the nail in the coffin was the pre-teen gang bang at the end of IT. She sees a coming-of-age attempt in it, but can’t go there. She’s tried reading other titles from King, but the style just doesn’t do it for her. However, EJ has a lot of love for King’s son Joe Hill and his novel HORNS. Em’s seen some Stephen King films but not read the novels. She’s not too hung up on “the book is always better.” Sometimes she doesn’t read the book and goes straight to the movie. But she did read PET SEMATARY and thought it was pretty good, and at her library she found a horror anthology on the children’s shelf that was not for children and started reading it, and that had a Stephen King story that really scared her, from the SALEM’S LOT universe. She never stopped thinking about it and finally found an out-of-print copy -- it’s called YOUNG MONSTERS. Em is really excited for this whole miniseries! We’re both in that weird horror vibe lately -- EJ has been really digging Hannibal; Em has been going deep into VIVARIUM (on Hulu). Recommends, it’s so weird. Em is still not sure what the movie is about. EJ suggests another future miniseries theme: nutso movies that just don’t make any sense. And she already has a rec for it: KABOOM. EJ asks Em if the problem with Jennifer’s Body was … a marketing problem? A treatment problem? A timing problem? Em sees what the film was trying to be, and loves what it’s trying to be. She loves the kitchiness and the aesthetic with the really bad special effects. But she also sees why that didn’t click for a lot of people, especially the way it was marketed. If you took Cody and had her rewrite it now, Em can see it being so much more. She wants to love it. She loves a monstrous woman at the center of a story, she loves a story about female friendships, this film checks all her boxes but leaves her feeling flat. Em says she thinks it’s marketing -- it’s all just about Megan Fox looking sexy. EJ says the poster looks like BAD TEACHER, a comedy with Cameron Diaz. There’s nothing to indicate what the film is really going to be, could be comedy, could be horror, who knows. Cody has said she has no interest in a sequel, but would be into the idea of a TV show. Em and EJ are into it and Em could see a really good SABRINA-style treatment for it. EJ doesn’t want Netflix to get it though because she’s into the new Sabrina concept but didn’t like the execution past season one. Em never finished Sabrina--the last she saw she remembers the aunt’s quote, “It’s been so long since I’ve had long pig!” Aaaaaaand we’re back to cannibalism. Long pig is human. EJ contends the film would fare much better now. The world wasn’t ready for it and that’s why the marketing was a fail. Jordan Peele’s GET OUT and other recent horrors have proven we’re ready for a more sophisticated kind of horror story, whereas when the film released horror was really dumbed down and weren’t even taking themselves seriously. EJ remembers watching FREDDY 9 or something with college buddies and at that point it was just a ridiculous spoof of itself, but that’s where horror was at that time. So while Jennifer’s Body isn’t as sophisticated by today’s standards, audiences would be ready for it now. Em wants more digging into the Needy/Jennifer relationship. If they explored that more now, that would make the movie. Another film from the time: THE CRAFT -- and it works because of the relationships between the women. Jennifer’s Body’s 2009 release wasn’t so long ago, but there’s been a major culture shift for what women are allowed to be. Ultimately, you could watch this film just for the surface entertainment and it will deliver. Em thinks it’s icky that they were selling a premise of grown men watching the film for sexy high school girl entertainment … but then we start to realize most of the slasher films were supposed to be high school. Another thing to be unpacked, especially the way sex is entangled into this kind of horror violence. But of course, high school is horrific. And there were probably sophisticated horror writers in those times, who just couldn’t get their foot in the door. EJ shouts out a great article she found listing the top women horror films of all time. What was number one? We don’t know, EJ didn’t actually read it yet. Okay okay, one more point EJ wants to discuss: Medusa. If you don’t know the origin story of Medusa, she was coveted by Poseidon while living on an island with her sisters. Poseidon rapes Medusa in Aphrodite’s temple, and then out of jealousy, Aphrodite punishes the victim, Medusa, with her signature snake hair and glare to turn people into stone. Leaving Medusa to isolate herself, and then someone (Jason? Orpheus?) finally comes and kills her. Edit note: It was Perseus. We’ll work on our mythology. EJ felt it was a very similar chain of violence in Jennifer’s Body. Em points out there’s one difference in that Medusa chose to isolate herself rather than run around murdering men with her glare power, while Jennifer went on a man-eating rampage. But other than that, a lot of parallels, something about that cycle of violence. And we’re Medusa fangilrs around her. Em wants Madeline Miller, author of CIRCE and ACHILLES, to write a Medusa book. And to write a Medusa book herself. Hey, we dove deeper than we thought we would. Cool. Leave us reviews! Follow us on Twitter and Facebook! And keep following the Not Your Scream Queen series -- in the next episode, we discuss HE LOVES ME, HE LOVES ME NOT. Shop the list of recommendations from this miniseries at BookShop.org★ Support this podcast on Patreon ★
47 minutes | 7 months ago
My Favorite Apocalypse #4: The Apocalypse Goes Goth
FANTASY+GIRLSMy Favorite Apocalypse Ep 4: The Apocalypse Goes Goth EJ and Em have been gone…for a while. It is now July—months away from when they began the series in April EJ and Em talk about how things have changed since the miniseries began. EJ and Em discuss the Black Lives Matter movement, how it is necessary, and how it is changing publishing. The hosts discuss easy ways that you can support Black authors and creators. Em and EJ discuss the twitter hashtag #publishingpaidme on twitter and how it revealed the pay gap between white authors and everyone else, especially Black authors in the same genres. Em says it is imperative that the SFF genre embrace diversity so that we can experience weird and wonderful stories. EJ explains how this benefits readers and consumers—how everyone benefits when there are more seats at the table filled by diverse authors. Em gives credit to the creator of the #publishingpaidme twitter hashtag, author L.L. McKinney. EJ loves all things Alice in Wonderland, and the hosts chat about how good L.L. McKinney’s a new series based on the classic novel, A BLADE SO BLACK, looks. EJ asks readers to check out #OwnVoices books and explains exactly what that means and why that is important. EJ suggests listeners check out BlackAndBookish.com EJ suggests DREAD NATION by author Justina Ireland. The historical fantasy/horror is a fresh take on zombies/zombie hunters. The book manages to be a zombie book that also examines the historic time period and slavery, but is also accessible and modern. EJ’s second books suggestion is THE POPPY WAR. The hosts take a tangent down Libby lane. They adore Libby—who wouldn’t? It’s amazing. The Libby app will cause you to read faster because it is a race to read the book before the library takes the book back off of your device. EJ has checked out the POPPY WAR three times because Libby keeps taking it. Em says she has been making a cognizant decision to read even more diversely. She is about to give her book picks, but takes a very on-brand detour to say she has been working on a darker work of fiction herself, as well as watching darker shows and even reading darker fiction. EJ jumps on board and says her current show is HANNIBAL.. Em says that since she has been writing such a dark book, she has been trying to read some fluffy, fun reads to keep her mind right. Em explains she is also currently reading five books at one time (ADHD has perks). Her current read is I WANNA BE WHERE YOU ARE by Kristina Forest. EJ just finished THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE. Em suggests taking a Shirley Jackson deep dive. Em explains that she knows she is supposed to be talking about the apocalypse, but her current reads have been all over the place. Recently, she has finished CIRCE by Madeline Miller (which is Em’s favorite book of the year so far). Then she read a vampire book. Then a DEXTER book. Then a horror book titled, THE RETURN by Rachel Harrison. Em read MY LOVELY WIFE. EJ asks Em if she has heard the buzz about MEXICAN GOTHIC by Silvia Moreno-Garcia. EJ has FOMO. She wants to read it so bad. Em wants all the gothic stories forever and ever. Em has a MEXICAN GOTHIC story. Em has been anticipated this book for months and months. She is about to start the audiobook. EJ is super excited about the book CATHERINE HOUSE by Elisabeth Thomas. Em loves the comps—NEVER LET ME GO is amazing. Em is ready to dig into MEM by Bethany C. Morrow. WESTWORLD SPOILERS AROUND THE 25 MINUTE MARK. Em confesses that she thought she would thrive in the current environment, but now knows she would actually die pretty quickly in a real apocalypse. Em’s next book recommendation is FRANKENSTEIN IN BAGHDAD by Ahmed Saadawi. EJ says how many people have retreated from the current world into romance novels, however she has fallen into dark, thriller, horror genre novels/shows. Em commiserates that she often falls down the dark-fic rabbit hole. Sometimes after a binge, she thinks you need to almost read or watch something light to shake off the morbidity of darker books. Full circle to Hannibal. EJ loves it—though it is admittedly gruesome. HANNIBAL SPOILERS AROUND THE 28:20 MARK. EJ tells a gruesome Hannibal plot point that has Em unable to cope. The take another (on-brand) detour to Hannibal. Why are our hosts still talking about cannibalism? Who knows? Em has watched every WUTHERING HEIGHTS adaptation available to stream. She knows she shouldn’t, but there is something about the toxic/terrible relationship between Heathcliff and Catherine. EJ points out that JANE EYRE is in many ways the opposite of Wuthering Heights. Wuthering Heights is no restraint or boundaries—basically two codependent people being terrible to each other, while Jane Eyre is all restraint (but still a terrible relationship—if you can even use the term relationship). Em says they got a message on Facebook asking for an episode on BATTLESTAR GALACTICA and CONTINUUM. EJ burst Em’s bubble about how we are two seconds from not having new television. The hosts take a quick detour to discuss all of the television shows they have watched, want to watch, and must watch. The show ends abruptly—but it was a lot of fun! Goodbye and KEEP YOUR ZOMBIES. Shop the list of recommendations from this miniseries at BookShop.org★ Support this podcast on Patreon ★
47 minutes | 8 months ago
My Favorite Apocalpyse #3: And We're All Out of Bubble Gum
FANTASY+GIRLSMy Favorite Apocalypse Ep. 3: And We’re All Out of Bubble GumNote: This episode was recorded in April, before the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor at the hands of police, and the subsequent protests. When Em and EJ talk about the current state of the world, they are referring to the very beginning of quarantine. FANTASY+GIRL Podcast stands behind Black Lives Matter. For our full Black Lives Matter statement, commentary on its impact on publishing, and how to support black authors, see the opening of episode 4 in this miniseries.It is about to get really wacky on here! Picture this: it’s the ’80s. Perms. Bleached mullets. Bruce Willis still had hair and your favorite hosts were only babies! There’s all kinds of movie goodness that came out during this time. But what she chose is C movie deliciousness that has somehow achieved cult status online. Em discovered this movie during a Halloween parade and has wanted to watch it ever since and she finally had an excuse (as if she needed one!). Em sets the scene: Imagine your mullet is blowing in the wind. You mosey into town in your acid washed jeans…also you’re a dude. You roll up to a homeless camp that somehow has an outdoor television with cable. But every so often there is static as something breaks illegally into the signal to proclaim, “They are among us and we are only safe because we don’t know about them! Wake up! They live!” Em is talking about the cult classic THEY LIVE! The main character of the movie refuses to believe in the scrambled random cable messages until one day when he picks up a random pair of sunglasses and suddenly he can see the truth! They live among us! Aliens disguised as humans! Ah! With these random tech sunglasses you can read all of the subliminal messages that surround you in daily advertising. This is the movie that gave us the one liners “You look like last week’s cheese dip!” and “I came here to kick ass and chew bubble gum…and I’m all out of bubble gum!” and “Mama don’t like no tattle tales!” and “Life’s a bitch and she’s in heat.” There’s no explanation of why the aliens are here, or why we care the aliens are here. The movie definitely isn’t plot heavy and if you love plot holes and senseless action scenes and a definite ’80s aesthetic, this might be for you! Just…don’t overthink it. It’s pretty terrible in a drinking game kind of way. Em admits that it is more pre-apocalypse than true apocalypse. And it definitely isn’t post-apocalypse. Em says the movie has quite the online following once she began digging into it. EJ’s pick is also pre-apocalypse. She asks Em if she is familiar with INVADER ZIM. EJ was obsessed with Invader Zim in college. It was her first binge watch—before binge watching was a thing. EJ lets Em know she can still find Invader Zim online on youtube. EJ gives us the premise: there are aliens who are planning to execute Operation Impending Doom 2 (bc Operation Impending Doom 1 failed). Their entire hierarchy of alien power is based on height. We meet our invader, Zim, who is the reason the first Operation Impending Doom failed. Invader Zim gets sent to Earth (just so his leaders can get rid of him…although he thinks he is on an important mission.) Every episode is about taking over the world. EJ proclaims that it has one of the best soundtracks of any animated show. EJ says the show has a very PINKY AND THE BRAIN feel. Em is here for it—she loves Pinky and the Brain. Em asks EJ if she saw the animated movie Home because the people who wrote it must have been fans of Invader Zim. Em asks how could they forget HITCHHIKER’S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY by Douglas Adams? EJ says it’s one of the few stories that begins with a true apocalypse—the destruction of the Earth. If Em remembers correctly, the world was destroyed to make room for an interstellar highway and Earth forgot to file paperwork to avoid being destroyed. However, the dolphins knew what was up! Em talks about how people are still super fans of this series and you can still spot stickers on people’s cars that say, “So long and thanks for all the fish,” and, “Don’t panic!” It makes Em super happy and EJ interjects that it’s always relevant. Em admits that all of the episodes are running together and she wonders if they were supposed to research sweet apocoli. Who knows? Em brings up for LOOKING FOR A FRIEND AT THE END OF THE WORLD with Steve Carrell and Kiera Knightly. EJ brings up the heaviest, artsy, moodiest apocalypse movie: MELANCHOLIA. Melancholia is dark the entire time, however it was visually beautiful. EJ says that the movie was more about beautiful scenes than plot. Em still struggles saying Apocalyptic. Can she even talk? Quarantine brain! Omaha comes up again! This time because of their amazing nonprofit movie theatre. The movie theatre focuses on film education and offers talks with directors and info sheets. This theatre meant a lot to EJ (as does Omaha in general). Em takes a trip down memory lane to the early 2000s and the awesome cartoons that debuted. Her favorite was THE GRIMM ADVENTURES OF BILLY AND MANDY, about a goofy sibling duo where the sister, Mandy, is best friends with the Grimm Reaper. It was amazing. EJ asks Em if she remembers HOMESTAR RUNNER and Em decides that EJ and her little sister are basically the same person. The hosts talk about their real-life apocalypse. Em mentions that her kids are on spring break but that means absolutely nothing during quarantine. EJ talks about how she and her hubs structured their entire lives about living outside of their studio apartment, so learning to exist inside the space 24/7 has been interesting (but also good). Quarantine has definitely shifted how people view their lives. Em tells a funny story that is probably TMI about her husband and a video conference. It could have ended badly…thank goodness for good luck! Things take a serious turn. EJ mentions knowing people who have been very negatively impacted by COVID. Em says that they are joking around to help others relax and smile, but the show is in no way making light of the actual situation—they’d never discount the trauma some people are facing. EJ is happily surprised at how creators are getting creative to help entertain people and lift spirits (specifically online sing-alongs and the Disney sing-along on television). The girls talk about finding the balance of staying positive and protecting your mental health, but also not living in bubble of denial. EJ mentions BookShop.Org. BookShop is a sort of non-profit where you can buy books and designate a bookshop in your community to receive the funds from your purchase. The shopping experience is amazing—so much better than Amazon. EJ vetted BookShop.org for an article and it is legit. There are amazing curated lists of books based on many different things. The mood is very similar to walking into a real bookshop. It wasn’t created specifically for quarantine—but came out just in time. Em cannot wait until she can go and eat some Indian food and walk around a bookstore. She misses normalcy. EJ suggests curating lists for the podcast for Bookshop.org. It is a great idea and will happen! Hit us up with your favorite apocalypse! Leave us a review! Until next time! Shop the list of recommendations from this miniseries at BookShop.org★ Support this podcast on Patreon ★
37 minutes | 8 months ago
My Favorite Apocalypse #2: Radioactive Carrots
FANTASY+GIRLSMy Favorite Apocalypse Ep. 2: Radioactive CarrotsNote: This episode was recorded in April, before the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor at the hands of police, and the subsequent protests. When Em and EJ talk about the current state of the world, they are referring to the very beginning of quarantine. FANTASY+GIRL Podcast stands behind Black Lives Matter. For our full Black Lives Matter statement, commentary on its impact on publishing, and how to support black authors, see the opening of episode 4 in this miniseries.What is the plural of apocalypse, anyway? Signed and approved—the plural of apocalypse is apocolypti. And can it be bad if there are chicken enchiladas involved? There are still no zombies—which is kind of disappointing but probably a good thing. Em chats about the movie version of I AM LEGEND and how fun it was. It was loosely based on the story (novella?) I AM LEGEND by Richard Matheson. Em re-reads it every few years. It was the first book that Em read in the apocalyptic genre that made her go, “huh?” She talks about the difference between the movie and the book and explains the monsters from the book to EJ and how the title makes so much more sense in the book. EJ wonders, as an author, how it would feel if Hollywood takes your story and completely changes it. Em thinks that even though the book was written long ago, that the book and the movie evoke the same feeling. There were a lot of similarities with a majorly different ending. It reminds EJ of the TWILIGHT ZONE episode where the woman is having her face done (episode: EYE OF THE BEHOLDER. Original: 1959. Remake: 2002)…except if they ended the episode before the big twist. EJ says it’s like the entire point is gone. Em is a Twilight Zone super fan. EJ, too. The girls geek out about it for a moment and discuss the Twilight Zone episode TO SERVE MAN. EJ watched it in grade school, which led to a Twilight Zone club at school where kids gathered to watch episodes at lunch. Em would have killed for geek friends. She tried to explain it to her jock friends, “You don’t understand! They were serving man! It was a cookbook!” only to be looked at as if she were bananas. Em circles back to THE SOYLENT GREEN IS PEOPLE bc it reminds her of IT’S A COOKBOOK! EJ points out that maybe Em has a thing for cannibal tales (as a joke!). The girls crack themselves up. They begin chatting about THE WALKING DEAD. EJ thinks Em should give it another shot. Em loved the zombies but bailed when it got to the season where survivors were trapping and cooking each other. She noped right on out. Em tells a story about her dad letting her watch whatever she wanted when her mom was working nights as a nurse. She recalls watching TOTAL RECALL(the original) and her dad pausing it and making her cover her eyes every so often. But she peeked and was mesmerized (scarred?) by the three boobed alien. Pros and cons of three boobs? There are many! EJ’s take on the apocalypse is RESIDENT EVIL. They have the BEST monsters. Resident Evil released in 2002, but seems very 90s. EJ was never a gamer so she wasn’t familiar with the content. EJ says it is so campy and over the top, but the monsters are truly terrible. She would never survive in that particular apocalypse. Em says no one would bc the monsters are constantly evolving. Em tells the story of watching the last installment at the theatre with her sisters at a midnight showing. They were the only ones in the theatre and were so loud and obnoxious—it was great! EJ wants to be Alice. EJ says she could survive the Walking Dead apocalypse. Em says that she thinks that she could—but isn’t sure she would. After a year of zombies, no electricity, no toilets, or antibiotics, she isn’t sure she’d want to keep playing. Em asks EJ if she ever read LILITH’S BROOD by Octavia Butler. (Possibly disused during the Halloween episode). Em hasn’t re-read it probably in ten years, but she can still remember so much of it because it is THAT GOOD. Mankind has ended, but survivors wake up on a spaceship manned by a nomadic alien race called the Oankali. Em says it is the most bizarre thing she’s ever read but also the most interesting. The way the Oankali survive is by inter-breeding with new species. They are peaceful and do not force themselves or take over—but they offer their way as an alternative to Earth’s dying planet. Em says she is making the plot sound campy, but truthfully it is a heartfelt, strange book. It is the kind of book that makes you really want to meet the author because it is so involved that you know the person who came up with the world has a lot of going on with their imagination. EJ brings up COWBOYS VS. ALIENS. EJ says it is TOO MUCH but also SO GREAT. Em is always down for a Weird Western. The movie is ridiculous and you either lean into the weirdness or you get out. Em brings up the campy comedy show, THE LAST MAN ON EARCH. Em binged the entire thing—she says it isn’t the best show ever, but is highly entertaining. The episodes are only about twenty minutes long and they don’t require much thought. They are dumb and the characters are all morally gray, but it works. If you are looking for something to make you laugh, check it out. However, it does end on a cliffhanger. Em says it doesn’t require being very engaged to watch. EJ says SANTA CLARITA DIET also ended on a cliffhanger and that she will never get over it. Things take a turn as the girls bring up GILLIGAN’S ISLAND. EJ loves Gilligan’s Island. EJ was obsessed with Land of the Lost. Em asks if there was a remake with Will Ferrell in the early 2000s? EJ has blocked it from her memory. EJ’s most vivid memory of LAND OF THE LOST is an episode where the family was being haunted by the spirit of their dead mother. It was strange and possibly scarred EJ (lol). EJ doesn’t do scary. BACK TO GILLIGAN’S ISLAND. Your hosts think that HBO should make a Gilligan’s Island remake, but make it gritty. Instead of a movie star—make her a porn star. The Howells would either be Silicon Valley, or disgusting Trump types. Or the complete other direction and have a characters based on Beyoncé and Jay Z. The girls would totally watch it. Em wonders why such a random group of characters were all on the same boat? Why would millionaires like the Howells ever pay for a three hour tour on Gilligan’s boat? IT MAKES NO SENSE. EJ tells Em not to overthink it but Em insists it’s weird—they had coconut phones but no toilet paper! EJ asks if Em remembers the episode where they ate the radioactive carrots. EJ tells how the Gilligan crew ate radioactive carrots they find on the island for no reason. Em says that maybe their favorite apocalypse is Gilligan’s Island. EJ explains the episode while Em cracks up. Em wonders which apocalypse really would be her favorite—but she has nothing. She has major quarantine brain. EJ explains the difference between post-apocalypse and apocalypse. Em brings up GOOD OMENS. EJ says it is the first one they’ve talked about where there is actually the apocalypse. Em blanks out bc all she can now think about is David Tenant. (Understandable!) EJ mentions how PREACHER begins with an asteroid that is supposed to hit the earth. Em says that it has been on her watch-list forever. EJ says she has mixed feelings about the show because the comics are so much better. She says the show explains too much and slows down the plot. The comics are bonkers, dark, and strange—which makes it awesome. Although the show IS dark in its own right. Em asks if she hasn’t read the books, will she like the show since she doesn’t have a reference point. EJ says it’s a little slow, but give it a chance. All the characters are assholes, which makes them a lot of fun. Em circles back to BLACK MIRROR. Em’s second favorite episode is about a group of survivors trying to steal supplies from a warehouse while fleeing robotic killer dogs. Nothing is ever fully explained, which is what makes it amazing. (The episode is named METALHEAD. Em can’t remember during the podcast). Em admits that bleak worlds where you just survive for now is one of her favorite themes/tropes in fiction. Em brings up a book—but can’t remember the name of it. The hosts figure out it is STATION ELEVEN by Emily St. John Mandel. Em hasn’t read it, but it kept popping up in her research and now it is a definite must read for her. EJ read it first on audiobook and made it almost to the end, but then the library reclaimed it on her Libby app, so she still has twenty minutes and she is dying to FINALLY finish it, lol. Em brings up BIRD BOX and the amazing memes it gave us. She says she really liked it, despite the fact that it kind of became cool to hate on it. She agrees that the ending is cheesy—but when you write in that genre it has to be hard to find a good ending. Bird box is based on a book—Em is talking about the movie. EJ makes the comparison to FARENHEIT 451 (the HBO reimagining). Em admits that she is not the movie critic. She loves movies and a movie has to be really terrible for her to actively dislike it. There are movies she doesn’t care for—but usually she can still find something amazing about it. EJ says she likes to take the Roger Ebert approach to movie critiques, which is judge each movie against what it is trying to be. The girls covered some good ground! They have enjoyed diving into apocalyptic fiction while living through a pandemic. EJ and Em decide to try and find the weirdest apocalypse they can and also the most utopian apocalypse. (SPOILER ALERT: They totally forget to do this). Last minute- Em brings up her favorite part of BRAVE NEW WORLD, though she wonders if the book is problematic by today’s standards in its description of some people. She thinks so, but it has been years and years since she has read. She vows to revisit it and see. That’s a wrap! Shop the list of recommendations from this miniseries at BookShop.org★ Support this podcast on Patreon ★
37 minutes | 8 months ago
My Favorite Apocalypse #1: Don't Eat the Soylent Green
FANTASY+GIRLSMy Favorite Apocalypse Ep. 1: Don’t Eat the Soylent Green Show NotesNote: This episode was recorded in April, before the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor at the hands of police, and the subsequent protests. When Em and EJ talk about the current state of the world, they are referring to the very beginning of quarantine. FANTASY+GIRL Podcast stands behind Black Lives Matter. For our full Black Livse Matter statement, our commentary on its impact on publishing, and how to support black authors, see the opening of episode 4 in this miniseries.The world is ending and the girls are wondering: Is this how you pictured the apocalypse? Em wonders why our current situation isn’t more Mad Max and less yoga pants. Beyond Thunder Dome scarred her and that is where her mind goes when you say apocalypse. EJ admits to only seeing the Fury Road, but Em says she has no idea if the originals are good or not, bc she was a kid when she watched them. EJ and Em admit that they have quarantine brain. How do you even podcast? The theme of the new series is MY FAVORITE APOCALYPSE. Em goes first. She says her pick isn’t her favorite—but it is one of the more interesting. She says her husband’s fav is ZOMBIELAND. This takes a quick tangent into zombies. Em doesn’t think she would last long. She is more of a SHAWN OF THE DEAD girl. The zombies are slower so she would stand a chance. EJ says fast zombies would be how she died—she doesn’t belong in that world. Em mentions the book THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH by Carrie Ryan and the interesting way that slow and fast zombies are explained in the book. Surprise—it has nothing to do with decay. Your hosts commiserate about what exactly the current apocalypse means and how slowing down isn’t terrible, though they feel guilty saying that since so many people are sick. Em’s apocalyptic pick is SOYLENT GREEN. She sets the scene for the movie that is from the 1970s but takes place in futuristic New York after a climate catastrophe and overpopulation. She first saw the movie in a seventh grade science class when her teacher just showed scifi all day and didn’t teach. EJ is understandably jealous—she had to actually learn at school! No spoilers in the notes for SOYLENT GREEN—but Em recaps the movie and the big plot twist at the end (okay one spoiler: THE SOYLENT GREEN IS PEOPLE! THE SOYLENT GREEN IS PEOPLE!) Em tells a Facebook story from a few years ago. She accepted a request from a guy from high school—but she moved 13 times between fifth grade and senior year so she admits to not always remembering everyone. EJ wonders how Em learned anything. Em says she didn’t, lol. The guy ended up being a huge conspiracy theorist, and so Em commented THE SOYLENT GREEN IS PEOPLE on one of his especially outlandish theories and he got mad and unfriended her, but she was just glad someone got the obscure movie reference. Em admits, that if she lived in a post-apocalyptic world and the government was offering weird—but free and nutritious—food, she’d probably just eat it and not ask questions. She asks, Do you wanna know what is in your hot dog? EJ doesn’t! They move on from cannibalism references because the joke doesn’t land, lol. EJ’s turn! She brings it with the book: SUPER SAD TRUE LOVE STORY by Gary Shteyngart. EJ sets the scene by filling Em in on the novel’s setting: a world where society and country are deeply entangled with corporations. She explains that it is similar to when church and state were the same, except instead of church, it is private corporations. Plastic surgery and medical tech can help you to look and live however you want as long as you can pay for it, which has created an even bigger socioeconomic gap. At the core of the plot between the main characters is a love story. The protagonic works at a medical tech company that is super popular—EJ compares it to the Apple of the future except the accessories are for your own body. The protagonist is jaded and doesn’t buy into the culture of maxing out your own body which makes him relatable to the reader, but a complete loser in his fictional world. The protagonist falls in love with a woman within his company. Much of the book is told through emails. While the romance is happening, the world in the background is super unsettling. EJ compares it to our current situation and how we are all plugged in all the time. In the book, she explains, you have a pendant and whenever you go anywhere—like a bar—you are logged in and geo-located. Everyone else can see who you are and where you are and what you are about, then rank you as a human. Em says it gives her a Black Mirror vibe. EJ agrees. This futuristic world is overrun with clickbait…which is kind of what we are living with now. EJ gives spoilers for SUPER SAD LOVE STORY. Em brings up MINORITY REPORT and the retina scans that were a prominent plot device of the movie. EJ jokes that we are two seconds away from that. The hosts realize that many of their favorite media and stories are apocalypse themed. EJ brings up BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER and the constant Save the World plot. Buffy is so campy and kitschy but eventually you will love it, they agree. Em asks EJ about the transition in Buffy from the movie to the series. EJ asks Em is she knows about SCOTT PILGRIM’S PRECIOUS LITTLE LIFE and Em says she is familiar but not fluent. EJ tells of how Scott Pilgrim inspired her love for comics. It all started in Omaha… (Because of course it did!) The co-workers who introduced EJ to comics were not your snotty, comic mean-geek-boys, but were very nice. One of the guys owned every single Scott Pilgrim issue and loaned them to EJ. She’s been hooked on comics ever since. Em asks how the Scott Pilgrim movie holds up to the comics. EJ says it is enjoyable but it is heavily stylized—so you have to be into that. BRAIN FART! EJ tries to remember the name of a particular anime. [Note from post-recording: It was SUCKER PUNCH.] Em mentions how apocalyptic fiction was very popular for a hot minute and she was here for it…but as much as she loved it—a lot of it runs together for her now. Em describes the book LIFE AS WE KNEW IT by Susan Beth Pfeffer, though she can’t remember the name of it on the episode. EJ mentions another comic she loves by the same author as Scott Pilgrim (Brian Lee O’Malley). It is called SECONDS. Both Seconds and Scott Pilgrim are coming of age tales, though at different points in the differing protagonists’ lives. (Scott Pilgrim is in his 20s while the protagonist of Seconds is in her 30s). Seconds is a graphic novel about a woman and a house elf. Em asks EJ if she remembers the old PLANET OF THE APES. Em grew up watching them becaus her dad owned a video store (shout out to Crosby World Video Rental & Book Exchange!). Em says she doesn’t suggest the old Planet of the Apes. She suggests the remakes. She had fond memories of the old movies but did a re-watch several years ago and the first one was fine, but then they got really weird about atomic bombs and underground societies wearing fake-face masks. She remembered (from childhood) as a comedy. It definitely is not a comedy. EJ asks if Em remember when Rodriguez and Tarantino did a double feature in the early 2000s. Rodriguez did PLANET TERROR. It features Rose McGowan as the main character in a zombie film. McGowan’s character has a leg as a machine gun. Em excitedly remembers the promotion for it and EJ is still here for it. Em never saw the movie but remembers the character (she got a promo sticker at a Blockbuster or something.) Tarantino’s offering was DEATH PROOF. It was a little darker and grittier and a revenge story. It was good but no machine gun leg. Em asks EJ if she has anything on her TBR or to-be-watched list specifically for quarantine. EJ admits her normal list is backed up and she can’t really add to it. Em agrees. No time for pandemic-themed reads. Em doesn’t want to read virus themed books. She even cleaned her bookshelf and got rid of a book called VIRUS about a mutated form of Ebola. EJ says she and her hubs went straight from SCHITT’S CREEK (which is perfection) to BETTER CALL SAUL. Now she is on to 30ROCK. EJ is also watching HUNTERS on Amazon. None are apocalypse-themed but all are pretty good. Your hosts realize that they didn’t exactly give you a list of their concise favorites…but more of a random lists of pretty good content! Em makes empty promises including apocalyptic outfits (spoiler alert: doesn’t happen!) If you have seen Soylent Green, Em wants to know! EJ makes an accidental pun about cannibalism and the girls crack up. On that note—see ya in the apocalypse! Shop the list of recommendations from this miniseries at BookShop.org★ Support this podcast on Patreon ★
39 minutes | a year ago
Hearts & Spaceships: A Very SFF Valentine's Day
Love through space and time! For Valentine's Day, Em and EJ talk their favorite science fiction and fantasy couples, and what makes them so special, including the final word in Vampire Bill vs. Eric, a deep dive into the nuances of Black Mirror, and a Game of Thrones fan fiction dream couple.
48 minutes | a year ago
Reading Goals & Related Anxieties
What's your 2020 vision for reading? Reading anxiety is real! EJ and Em talk about their plans to tackle their reading goals (or lack thereof) in 2020. And what's with all these carefully cultivated reading lists anyway? Are they helpful? Annoying? Both? Probably.
44 minutes | a year ago
The Decade's Greatest Characters, Ranked (or Not) - New Decade Kickoff Series
The past decade has brought a slew of new and important conversations to the surface, and with it, we've seen female and nonbinary characters unlike any we've encountered before. Em and EJ call out some of the highlights.
44 minutes | a year ago
Back to the Future with 2020 TBRs - New Decade Kickoff Series
2020 is here and its going to bring more great new books, movies and shows than you could ever consume. Em and EJ chat about the titles they're most excited for and totally ruin their TBR lists with all the new adds.
50 minutes | a year ago
New Year, Same Old Unicorns - New Decade Kickoff Series
2019 in review! Em and EJ look back at their years, call out their fave SFF things and a few they could maybe have done without (looking at you, Joker). Also some light dabbling in how our experience of time has changed over the 2010s. The reading list for this one is MASSIVE so have a pen ready and let's go. (Or join the Unicorn Army on Patreon for lists and links for this and every episode.)
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