Black Ops Episode 10 – Meet Your Parents. Make Money. Kill Hitler. [CLIP]

In our latest episode, exclusive to our Patreon supporters, a trip to a computer museum prompts a mind-breaking discussion about the mechanics of time travel in the Back to the Future movies.

When we return to a present that we’ve created by altering the past, are we killing our alternate selves and inserting ourselves into their lives? Was the elderly Biff Tannen’s master plan with the sports almanac actually pretty stupid? And is Biff in the new timeline George McFly’s “Reek”? What about how time travel works in Looper, Star Trek, Lost or in Marvel Comics?

All this and Mike tries to explain the chronology of the X-Men character Cable to Casey. Deep breaths, everyone!

To unlock this episode in its entirety — and many episodes more! — just support us on Patreon with at least one measly dollar a month!

Join us!

Join Us for the Third Annual Captain Picard Day Celebration!

It’s Back! So Tug down your on shirts and put your party shoes on!

Join Mike and Casey for our third annual Holiday Season gathering!

We’ll be at the Poodle Dog restaurant in Fife, in their Board Room for good food, good conversation, general cheer, and nerdity.

Where: Poodle Dog Restaurant in the “Board Room”
1522 54th Ave E, Fife, WA 98424

When: Saturday, December 15th, 2018 from 5:00pm to 9:30pm..or whenever!

Be There and Be Square!

Episode 36 – Uzumaki by Junji Ito

“Spirals…This town is contaminated with Spirals…”

In our latest Single Serving Selection, we descend into a mind-bending and stomach-churning modern classic of Japanese manga horror with librarian and friend of the show, Kit DeForge, but perhaps you’ll wish we hadn’t. Because this month, we’re descending into madness and body horror with Junji Ito’s Uzumaki.

What begins as a series of episodic tales of a small seaside town being driven to death and insanity by ubiquitous spiral shapes soon becomes a tidal wave of ancient apocalyptic destruction, lunacy, and unavoidable doom.

Apologies for the inevitable nightmares.

Fun Size Episode 31 – Beauty and Meaning in the Wreckage of Late Stage Capitalism

We sit down with Tom Satwicz to muse on how various fictional interpretations of New York City and New Yorkers have shaped our perceptions of the place and its people. And does Detroit get a bad rap in fiction, or is Michigan part of the Mad Max universe?

We all but plead with you to watch AMC’s Lodge 49,  the greatest television show you’re not watching. How can it be about so many heartbreaking things, and still make you feel better for watching it?

Casey gives his highest possible recommendation to Nicolas Cage’s new bonkers revenge movie, Mandy, that miraculously marries a low brow to high art.

NOTE: Due to a scheduling issue, we’re reversing the release order of our main episode and Fun Size episode this month! Worry not! It’s still on the way!

Mike Makes a Guest Appearance on the Gimme That Star Trek Podcast!

Pop the cork on a nice bottle of kanar and bring plenty of yamok sauce, because Mike makes an appearance on Michel “Siskoid” Albert‘s Gimme That Star Trek podcast, to talk about his favorite Trek alien species: the Cardassians!

From their first appearance in the fourth season of Star Trek: the Next Generation to their ongoing role as one of the chief antagonists of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, we dive into the characters and stories that made the Cardassians the most interesting and nuanced villains the franchise ever had.

Check it out!

Fun Size Episode 30 – That’s My Kind of Garbage!

We’re back to dive into an overstuffed grab bag of off-topic nonsense with Roz Townsend, and we grapple with the important questions that keep us up at night.

Is Colonel Sanders the closest thing we have to an American Time Lord? What are our favorite fictional restaurants? Are self-published fan zines a lost art? Are skunks a form of Pokémon? Did Freddie Mercury go super saiyan in the ’80s? Are modern video game mechanics inaccessible to people who didn’t grow up with them?

Plus, Casey becomes annoyed at a group of small children not being as entranced by My Neighbor Totoro as he is, and we all betray our socialist leanings.

Podcasta la Vista, Baby! Episode 16 – Last Action Hero

This isn’t the movies anymore.

We’re back. This time we’re traveling to the world behind the silver screen with artist Roz Townsend to dissect the meta-fictional cult action/comedy movie that many at the time considered Arnold’s first box office flop, Last Action Hero.

Teenager Danny Madigan is the world’s biggest fan of the Schwarzenegger-helmed Jack Slater series of action movies. When a magic ticket literally transports him into Slater’s cinematic universe, he finds himself in an over-the-top world where a combination of bad puns and giant explosions can always save the day. But when one of the movie’s villains steals the ticket and discovers his own nature as a fictional character, Danny and Jack must follow him back into the real world, a place where, suddenly, the bad guys can win.

Fun Size Episode 29 – Fighting the Adam West Fight

We jump back into the fray with Greg Hatcher, to talk debate the merits of Star Trek Discovery, the future of the franchise and what we want from a Trek property.

We also look at the trailer for the new streaming Titans series, and wonder why such a fun property would want to be dour and overserious. Why do so many fans –and even creators — just miss the point?

Episode 35 – Highlander

“There can be only one.”

This month, we feel an irresistible pull towards a far away land to test our blades against those of Atomic Junk Shop‘s Greg Hatcher and David “Ace” Gutiérrez of Emmys.com. The field of battle, the Highlander franchise. It started as a 1986 cult fantasy film starring Christopher Lambert and Sean Connery, about a small group of sword-wielding Immortals, living in secret and battling each other across the centuries until only one remains to claim a vaguely-defined “Prize.”

It blossomed — or some say, decayed — into four critically-panned movie sequels, a long-running television show, an animated series, and even an anime film. We dig into topics of whether every film truly should be made into a franchise? Should there have, indeed, been only one?

We face these questions with…heart, faith and steel.

Music: 
“A Kind of Magic”  from Highlander (1986) by Queen

Black Ops Episode 9 – You Are Not a Mistake

In what is an ultra-MEGA-sized two-and-a-half hour episode, exclusive to our Patreon supporters, we really run the gamut.

First, we talk about  popular culture we loved as kids, but are afraid to revisit, because we fear it won’t survive adult scrutiny. In Mike’s case that means a series of epic fantasy novels that he suspects both really hold up in some way, and really really really don’t in other.

We then talk about the evolving nature of stand-up comedy and the divergent attitudes of comics like Jerry Seinfeld, and Hannah Gadsby — and how many older comedians seem to desire to be “above” politics or social commentary. Is that even possible or desirable?

Do genre stories like science fiction and superheroes have a responsibility to touch on questions of social and cultural importance? Why do the calls for political neutrality usually seem to mask a right-wing agenda?

We get into bad movie theater experiences that stretches Mike’s aversion to confrontation to the breaking point, and dive into the thorny issues of intellectual property and online piracy.

And finally, things get a bit emotional when we talk about how profoundly powerful and deeply intimate the new documentary about Mister Rogers is.

To hear this episode — and many more! — just support us on Patreon with at least one measly dollar a month!

Join us!

Mike Is on the First Episode of Cheers Cast!

Mike make an appearance on the pilot episode of Ryan Daly‘s podcast tribute to the classic 1980s sitcom, Cheers Cast!

We look at the 1982 pilot of the show, set in a downtown Boston bar, that would become a television juggernaut. Mike sits down with Ryan and fellow guests Rob Kelly and Omar Uddin to dig in and talk about a piece of TV history.

Does the show hold up? Does it hit the ground running in the pilot? Is it really funny? Not to be a total spoiler, but yes, yes and yes.

Check it out!

Fun Size Episode 28 – The Wilhelm Scream of Star Wars Movies

We continue our chat with Patrick Johnson, and finally give our mixed opinions on the latest Disney opus, Solo: A Star Wars Story. We go over the promise and the pitfalls of the prequel concept and ask ourselves what we really wanted from this movie.

We talk about a recent internet rabbit hole: a legendary and notorious New Jersey water park that many have called the most dangerous amusement park ever: Action Park. It had a cascade of bloody noses, a lax policy of selling alcohol to minors and a confirmed body count. So why do many of the people who grew up going there as kids, both openly admit its dangers while remembering it with such warm affection?

And what stupid thrills will a human being subject themselves to in the cause of ending boredom?

Plus, we can’t recommend the horror movie, A Quiet Place, more highly. Seriously, it’s really good.

Episode 34 – American Movie

“There’s no excuses, Paul. No one has ever, ever paid admission to see an excuse. No one has ever faced a black screen that says: “Well, if we had these set of circumstances, we would’ve shot this scene… so please forgive us and use your imagination.”

In another of our Single Serving Selections, we’re going somewhere that the show has never gone before: non-fiction! It’s time to max out our credit cards and hassle our moms until they agree to play extras in our movie, because we’re being joined by Patrick Johnson for a discussion of the 1999 documentary, American Movie.

Telling the story of an aspiring filmmaker’s quest to create his dream project — by first completing the low budget horror movie that he had abandoned years earlier. Now, he struggles against a lack of funds, the hapless ineptitude of his friends and family, a burgeoning alcoholism, a lack of talent, and his own self-destructive personality to make something great.

But don’t worry. It’s alright, it’s okay, there’s something to live for. Jesus told me so!

PATREON EXCLUSIVE: Vote for the First Panel Episode Topic of 2019!

On our current episode schedule, we produce two full panel episodes of Radio vs. the Martians! every year. Casey moderates one of these discussions, and Mike moderates the other.

In April, Mike moderated a talk about the manga epic, Akira. Later this year, Casey will do the same for another topic to be announced soon!

For our first panel episode of 2019, Mike will be moderating again. And we’re letting our supporters on Patreon choose what we’re going to talk about!

 

Our patrons will be able to choose from:

 

SPIDER-MAN – Marvel’s classic web-slinging superhero in all of his incarnations, including comic books, animation and six feature films! Angst, superheroics and plenty of quips!

 


 

FRIDAY THE 13TH – The iconic 1980s slasher film series about Jason Voorhees, everyone’s favorite machete-wielding maniac, terrorizing the residents of Crystal Lake, Manhattan and even outer space! Novelty deaths, boobs and plenty of blood!


 

HARRY POTTER – J.K. Rowling’s extremely popular fantasy series about a British boy wizard who discovers his destiny at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, and in battling a long-thought dead evil wizard who murdered his parents.


 

JOE DANTE – The director of such cinematic classics as Gremlins (and its sequel, Gremlins 2: the New Batch), The ‘Burbs, Matinee, Explorers, Innerspace, and the Howling!

 


 

THE LORD OF THE RINGS – J.R.R. Tolkien’s classic fantasy novels about hobbits, wizards, rangers and an evil magical ring — and the movies that they inspired!

 


 

PREACHER – The 1990s DC/Vertigo comic book series by Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon about a West Texas preacher, his assassin ex-girlfriend, and an Irish vampire on a literal roadtrip to find God hiding on Earth. Full of graphic violence, blasphemy and dark humor.


 

JOHN WOO – The legendary Hong Kong action director famous for his extremely fluid and over-the-top visual style, who brought us the Killer, Hard Boiled, Face/Off, Hard Target and Broken Arrow. Expect plenty of people wielding two guns at once, doves, and explosions!


It’s not too late to become one of our Patreon patrons and get in on this action! Join us! Even just a buck a month makes you eligible to vote!

Fun Size Episode 27 – Not My Luke Skywalker!

Who truly owns a piece of art, a character or a media franchise? The artist, or the audience? We sit down with Sean Duncan to seek the answer to that and many other questions.

We (finally) talk about Star Wars: the Last Jedi and the tug-of-war between fans who want the familiar comfort of wish fulfillment and fan service, and those who want to see the series take some serious risks, even if it alienates some of the fans.

We look at how the real world and the context of our own experiences color and supplement the way we receive and interpret art. Plus, is it time to retire the old ways of counting audience figures, when there are so many ways to watch, read, and play these days? Uh, yes.