Hasslein Blog: September 2014


Hasslein Blog

Monday, September 29, 2014

Red Shirt Diaries

Have you been watching the humorous webseries The Red Shirt Diaries? If you haven't been, you've been missing out.

The Red Shirt Diaries parody introduces Ensign Williams, a low-ranking security officer, and follows her through the first 10 episodes of Star Trek: The Original Series. Williams soon learns that she may well be the only sane person on board. Violent alien plants, overly friendly superior officers and the "Naked Time" plague wide-eyed Ensign Williams as she struggles to follow Starfleet protocol and make it alive to the end of the episode.

Watch Ensign Williams record her mission logs that both celebrate and illuminate the weird, wonderful details of Star Trek: The Original Series. Writer-producer-actress Ashley Victoria Robinson (Asmodeus, Hotel Secrets & Legends) stars as Ensign Williams, and she describes The Red Shirt Diaries as "my love letter to the original series."

The ensemble cast also includes Carshenah Jefferson (Boomerang Kids, Shameless), as Lieutenant Uhura, Jason Inman of the Youtube channel JAWIIN (The Walking Dead Christmas Special) as Captain Kirk, comic book writer Sterling Gates as Doctor McCoy and Geek & Sundry’s 2 Broke Geeks (Omar Najam and Mia Resella) as fellow red shirts. The Red Shirt Diaries is written and produced by Ashley Victoria Robinson and 2013 Geekie Award Winner for Best Parody Jason Inman, who also directs all the episodes. The series premiered in early September on Youtube, and has been quite popular among Trek fans ever since.

This week's episode, "The Enemy Within," is now available, and you can view it here. You'll be glad you did. And be sure to catch up on the previous episodes, some of which are laugh-out-loud funny. The team's companion web comic, A Night in the Enterprise, can be read here.

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Friday, September 26, 2014

Disney and Lucasfilm Present... Aladdin II: Space Ali

Star Wars: Rebels officially starts in one week, but you can watch the first episode online now. If the previews look somewhat familiar to you, there may be a reason why...

"Space Ali"
Based on lyrics by Howard Ashman

(Play this video for background musical accompaniment!)

Make way for Prinze, Freddie
Say "Hey! It's Prinze, Freddie!"

Hey, clear the way
In the network slot
A new Star Wars show
That is what we've got
Oh, come be the first on your block
To buy a toy
He's cool!
He's a thief!
He gives Rebels grief!
I already hate this boy

Space Ali
Rebel is he
How does that grab ya'
Done before
Intended for younger than me
They canceled Clone Wars for this
Don't care enough to be pissed
But still I'm not blown away
By what I see

Space Ali
Owned by Disney
Looks kind of drab, yeah,
Eyes of blue
Aladdin II
Disappoints me
They sent Ahsoka away
No word if she is OK
Who's in her place now today?
Why, Space Ali

He's a 14-year-old quintessential
(Ain't he a cutie, girls?)
Midi-chlorians, he's got fifty-three
(Fabulous, darling, they'll love the eyebrows.)
When it comes to new figure potential
This kid's gonna sell
Extremely well
Though he's dressed like Mace Towani

Space Ali
Don't impress me
Just a cash grab, yeah
Freddie Prinze
Not many wins
But get on out in those stores
Make rich the merchandise whores
Forget about the Clone Wars
It's Space Ali

He can outrun a Rebel or Jedi
(He rides a speeder! It's a one-seater!)
Such a pilot—he's just like Ani
(Force-sensitive! So sensitive!)
Fighting Stormtroopers, he is a deadeye
(Girls will swoon for him!)
Well, I'm kind of bored
I think I've snored
Every time it's been on TV
Don't mind me…
Gotta peeeeeeeee….

Spaaaaace... Aaaaaliiiiii....
Made for kiddies
Fluffied-up flab, yeah
But at least
They're bringing back
Ol' Billy Dee
And that's the sole reason why
I'm gonna give it a try

Hey, look, a character's
From Mandalore
A pink Boba Fett
Will sell toys for sure
A Twi'lek hottie
They'll showcase her body
Inquisitor looks so Sith-y
Make way…
For Space Aliiiiiii!

                                                                --Rich Handley

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Thursday, September 25, 2014

Listen to Rich Handley on the Latest Scifi Pulse Podcast

By Rich Handley

This past week, I was privileged to sit down with Ian M. Cullen of Scifi Pulse to discuss the grass-roots effort to get the British Star Trek newspaper strips reprinted. Give it a listen!

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Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Doctor Who Retro Review: Serial 037—The Evil of the Daleks

By T. Scott Edwards

The Evil of the Daleks is widely considered one of the best serials ever made during the classic run. According to Wikipedia, it was voted the best ever serial in a poll held by Dreamwatch for the 30th anniversary. But why? What is it about this particular story that makes it so good? Bear in mind that in 1993, when the poll was held, the episode had not existed in any visual format for years. Indeed, only one episode from this serial exists now, discovered in 1987, 6 years before the 30th anniversary. The originals had been wiped in the late 60s, meaning that unless you saw it on original broadcast, chances were you'd missed it. The novelisation was released in 1993, not long after the vote, and was in fact the very last serial to be novelised, with the exceptions of the Adams stories, such as City of Death.

So what is it, then, that makes this such a popular serial? It has everything we'd want from an outstanding story; Daleks? Check. New companion? Check. A race through time and space? Check. Genetic testing? Check. But all of these are not what makes The Evil of the Daleks such a phenomenal serial. No, that honour solely comes down to Troughton – here, we finally can see the Doctor is back on form. Rather than winning by chance, or coming to some final negotiations to prevent a war, or having to be saved by the proactive nature of his companions, here he is the Timelord Victorious that we have come to expect. He is forward thinking, proactive, dynamic, funny, warm, compassionate, and, most of all, brave. This serial comes at the end of the fourth season, which has seen Hartnell leave, the last vestiges of his tenure have finally been shaken off with the departure of Ben and Polly in the last episode, and the TARDIS team are now finally free to reinvent themselves.

Read more »

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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

When Comic Books Attack!

By Rich Handley

For the heck of it, I decided to take a photo of my comic book shelves today. My comics collection is getting out of control, and I'm about to run out of room, as you can see in the image below. It comes down to a choice of either binding them, selling them or adding another shelf.

:::mumble grumble rassn frassn first-world problems:::

I obtained these printing-shop shelves years ago and discovered that they were the perfect height for comic books (except, oddly, for the third row from the bottom, which is why those comics are slightly tilted). Before I found them, I used to keep the comics in cardboard boxes, like most people, but I enjoy having them all handy, without having to pull out a box every time I want to re-read something (which I do often).

The shelves go floor to ceiling, so they hold a lot. But after thirty years of collecting, I'm nearing the point at which they'll soon no longer fit. (The problem is that although there's extra space on some shelves, each shelf contains a different collection, and my OCD won't allow me to mix 'em in order to tighten up the available space.)

Left shelves:
Top four rows: Star Trek 
Bottom two rows: Planet of the Apes, Battlestar Galactica, Babylon 5, Preacher

Right shelves:
Top three rows: Swamp Thing and Hellblazer (sans "New 52")
Bottom three rows: Star Wars

As you can see, I am a very picky and specific collector; although I own a lot of comics, they're really only in a small handful of categories. I do have some other comics as well, but those I don't bother keeping on display since I don't re-read them.

How has my wife not yet left me?

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Friday, September 12, 2014

More About the British Star Trek Strips

John Freeman, over at DowntheTubes.net, wrote up a news story about our call to arms to get the British Star Trek strips reprinted (see John's article). This is a great piece, and it's much, much appreciated.


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Help Get the British Star Trek Comic Strips Reprinted

By Rich Handley

Star Trek comic fans: It's time for a grass-roots campaign. Over the past couple of years, IDW's Library of American Comics (LOAC) imprint reprinted the hard-to-find L.A. Times Star Trek newspaper strips as a pair of beautifully made hardcover books, making the strips available to readers for the first time since the early '80s. The results were spectacular, with the strips looking better than they ever had before.

At the time, there were tentative plans to give the same treatment to the even-harder-to-find British strips (from the pages of Joe 90: Top Secret, TV21, Valiant and Mighty TV Comic). So far, however, nothing has materialized.

Just to be clear: These are not reprints of Gold Key's Star Trek comics—they're completely original material, published only in the United Kingdom, and they've never been made available to U.S. readers. Here are some sample strips:

Read more »

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Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Coming Soon: Ape Planet Magazine

A new Planet of the Apes magazine has begun publication, and it looks like it'll be a great addition to POTA fandom. The title? Ape Planet Magazine. The first issue will be made available in February 2015.

Here's the lineup for issue #1:

Conquest of the Planet of the Apes

From the Desk of Otto Hasslein

The Sacred Scrolls

The Mego Apes
The Collectible Checklist (Part I: Action Figures)

Conquest of the Planet of the Apes

Facebook Ape Groups

Working With Prosthetics

Cosplayer of the Quarter

The Great Ape Conservation Fund

For submissions information, click here. Those interested in advertising should visit here. Editor Steve Kimball also maintains a blog, though there's not much posted to it yet since the first issue isn't out yet. For more information, be sure to like the group's Facebook page: facebook.com/groups/ApePlanet.



A Letter from Charlton Heston

Given his work with the National Rifle Association, as well as the types of characters he often portrayed onscreen, Charlton Heston has often been portrayed as a hard-as-nails type of guy. But it turns out he had a softer side as well. Reader R.W. Martin sent us the following letter he received almost twenty years ago from Mr. Heston, after writing to him to seek advice about becoming an actor. It's a charming letter, and it's gratifying to see that Colonel Taylor really did care about people after all.

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Monday, September 8, 2014

Sculpting the Planet of the Apes, Part Two

Posted by Rich Handley

Recently, we showcased the work of Planet of the Apes fan Michael Kostka, who created a series of custom-made figures based on BOOM! Studios' Apes comics. Today, we present more of Michael's collection, this time based on the 1974 Planet of the Apes TV series. Michael has done a fantastic job of capturing the likenesses and outfits of the farming family from "The Good Seeds" (Polar and Zantes, and their children, Anto, Jillia and Remus) as well as Galen's mother Ann, from "The Interrogation," and Prefect Barlow, from "The Gladiators" and "The Horse Race." Well done!

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