Fun Size Episode 72 – Highway to Heaven, Except He Breaks Peoples’ Fingers [CLIP]

We’re back with a second Fun Size episode this month, exclusive for our Patreon supporters!

This time, we’re talking about our undying love for the Denzel Washington Equalizer movies, and how they can be a strangely bloody salve for our woes in these trying times.

We dive into the often-morally iffy world of middle-aged action revenge fantasies, and what the targets of those films’ righteous violence says about the people who make them. What separates a justified cathartic experience from right-wing reactionary paranoia?

Plus, we explore the messy, contradictory, and morally confused Black Adam, and try to figure out who the hell that movie wants us to root for.

Also: come out to our special movie screening on December 8th in Seattle and support the PNW Starbucks Workers United labor union relief fund!

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!

Fun Size Episode 71 – That’s Capitalism, Baby! [CLIP]

We’re back with another new Fun Size episode, exclusive for our Patreon supporters!

This month, we’re chatting about the wonder of the public domain and open source software, and how it helps make our show possible and helps create community — and how capitalism puts up walls and exploits them to seek rent.

We talk a bit about how the world’s richest douchebag tech bro finally gave us the nudge to get our show off of Twitter, just in time to watch him burn it to the ground. A billionaire narcissist and the internet’s favorite hellscape: those crazy kids deserve each other!

Who ever said that capitalism was a meritocracy? Spoiler: it’s billionaires.

Also: come out to our special movie screening on December 8th in Seattle and support the PNW Starbucks Workers United labor union relief fund!

P.S. – Mike doesn’t actually smoke. He wanted to be clear about that.

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!

We’re Hosting a Movie Screening to Benefit PNW Starbucks Workers United!

This December, we are proud to announce that Radio vs. the Martians! is going to be sponsoring a theatrical screening of the craziest, bloodiest martial arts film of all time, Riki-Oh: the Story of Ricky, to benefit the Pacific Northwest Starbucks Workers United relief fund.

When: Thursday, December 8th @ 7:30 pm

Where:  The Beacon Cinema at 4405 Rainier Ave S., Seattle, WA 98118

Cost:   Tickets at $12.50 each, with all admissions for PNW Starbucks Workers United

You can buy tickets now, but seats are limited!


RADIO VS. THE MARTIANS! PRESENTS…. RIKI-OH: THE STORY OF RICKY!

You’d be hard pressed to find a movie as strange, bloody, absurd, or thrilling to watch as RIKI-OH: THE STORY OF RICKY, but this 1991 Hong Kong martial arts splatterfest is truly something special.

Directed by Shaw Brothers veteran cinematographer Lam Ngai Kai and headlined by a then-18 year old Fan Siu-wong as kung fu Hercules and flautist, Ricky Ho, this crowd-pleasing cult film really tests the limits of good taste and how many ways one can creatively destroy a human dummy on film.

In the far future year of 2001, all prisons have been privatized into for-profit businesses (can you even imagine?). The latest inmate is the eponymous Ricky, convicted of manslaughter for avenging his girlfriend’s murder with his inexplicable superhuman strength and mastery of Qigong.

What follows is structured much like a video game, as Ricky battles a super-powered menagerie of increasingly bizarre and gimmicky convicts deputized by the prison’s evil Warden and his hook-handed Assistant Warden (played with a cartoonish glee by Siu-wong’s own father, Fan Mei-sheng), whose glass eye bafflingly doubles as a mint dispenser. Just go with it.

As Ricky is elevated to an almost Christ-like champion of the facility’s abused and oppressed prisoners, he literally destroys his opponents with his bare hands, impressive fight choreography and some charmingly hilarious special effects.

This screening is sponsored by the RADIO VS. THE MARTIANS! podcast as a benefit for the PACIFIC NORTHWEST STARBUCKS WORKERS UNITED labor union, and 100% of the admissions will be donated to their Relief Fund.

Fun Size Episode 70 – Selling Diet Pills on Instagram [CLIP]

We’re back in the studio with a new Fun Size episode, now a monthly exclusive for our Patreon supporters! This month, we’re continuing our talk with Kirby Green, for a chat about reality television and the “Am I the Asshole?” sub-reddit.

So, reality television isn’t real. I mean, duh. Or is it sometimes? And does it actually matter? Aren’t we – like most scripted programs on TV – just agreeing to believe the reality we’re given for the sake of a story?

And Mike remembers The Joe Schmo Show, an accidentally wholesome faux-reality show from the ugliest decade (the aughts) on the douchiest network (Spike TV). Producers decide to play a prank on a real guy on a fake reality show, only to have to haphazardly change their mean-spirited plans when their subject turns out to be a lovably kind doofus.

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!

Episode 54 – Shiver: Selected Stories by Junji Ito

“I am a horror maniac who prefers to say at home.”

This Halloween, we’re chugging down salad oil and hiding from our balloon dopplegangers with returning friend of the show, Kirby Green, and see if our sanity can can survive the brain-melting onslaught of Junji Ito’s collection of his shorter manga works, in Shiver: Selected Stories!

In this anthology of the legendary manga artist’s favorite short stories, we get just a little bit closer to stomach-turning madness. A rare vinyl record claims the hearts and minds of all who listen to it, driving some to theft and even murder. A mysterious jade idol inflicts a curse on those to keep it, boring countless holes into their bodies — bringing a deadly chill and becoming irresistible to burrowing insects. A hospital patient reports that the subjective length of their dreams is getting longer and longer, triggering a startling transformation in their mind — and their body. In these stories and more, we remind ourselves of the Ito’s uncanny ability to permanently stamp our brains with the most disturbing and visually stunning weirdness.

Fun Size Episode 69 – Two Degrees From Luke Skywalker [CLIP]

We’re back with a new Fun Size podcast, now a monthly exclusive for our Patreon supporters! This month, we’re back with Sam Mulvey to get nerdier than we have for a while.

Mike takes the rough draft of his new “Bechdel Test”-esque thought experiment about media worldbuilding for a spin and tries to punch holes in it.  Are our large shared universe worlds really as large and expansive as they appear to be, or is that just an illusion to hide something much smaller and more insular?

And in probably more depth and exhaustive detail than necessary, Mike talks about his love and fascination with J.R.R. Tolkien and his Middle-earth legendarium, and Sam gets the opportunity to talk more about Frank Herbert’s Dune than he’s ever done before on the show.

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!

Episode 53 – The Blues Brothers

“It’s 106 miles to Chicago, we’ve got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it’s dark, and we’re wearing sunglasses.”

This month, we’re getting the band back together with the Station Manager of KTQA 95.3 FM in Tacoma (and former Illinois resident) Sam Mulvey. We’re on a mission from God to drive our car through John Landis’ anarchic car chase musical guest-starring a Mt. Rushmore of classic R&B/soul artists from Aretha Franklin to James Brown: The Blues Brothers!

Released from a 3-year prison sentence, “Joilet” Jake Blues is reunited with his brother Elwood and learn that the Catholic orphanage they grew up in is about to be shuttered unless it can pay an outstanding $5,000 property tax bill in the next eleven days. Now on a mission from God, the Blue Brothers must reunite their ne’er-do-well rhythm and blues band to put on a big show, no matter how many shopping malls they have to drive through. But first they must outrun a rival country western band, a gang of neo-Nazis, a heavily armed mystery woman, and seemingly every cop in the state of Illinois.

Fun Size Episode 68 – Nobody Gives a Fuck About Rutherford B. Hayes

We’re continuing our chat with Joe Preti, for a deep dive into the topics that really matter.

We perhaps spend too much time, dissecting the many pathological lies and shitty behavior of 90s action star Steven Seagal, and we explore the two qualities a person can have in combination that can precipitate a downfall (or at least make you wish that it had). We explore the new Elvis Presley biopic, and the fleeting myth of cultural immortality. Do some things and people just deserve to be forgotten? And do only the truly worst people in the world achieve true notoriety? And isn’t being totally forgotten in a way… kind of liberating?

And we share a special announcement about the future of Fun Size episodes!

Podcasta la Vista, Baby! Episode 27 – Raw Deal

The system gave him a raw deal. Nobody gives him a raw deal.

We’re back! This month, we’re slicking back our hair and dodging cakes with Joe Preti, and infiltrating the inner circle of the mostly-forgotten organized crime action flick: Raw Deal!

Disgraced ex-FBI agent Mark Kaminsky is living in exile as a small town sheriff when he’s contacted by an old mentor from the bureau. Thirsty for revenge after his son was killed protecting a witness in the Luigi Patrovita mob trial, he sends Kaminsky deep undercover — and off the books — into the Patrovita inner circle. Now this one-man wrecking crew must enact bloody revenge and perhaps earn his job back in the FBI.

Fun Size Episode 67 – When Did I Become an Old Man?

We’re back with Dave Brouillette to speak in defense of cinema’s great unsung wet blankets. The long-suffering adults left to pick up the pieces when the reckless hot shot protagonist with a disregard for human life blows up half of downtown or nearly starts World War III while they were saving the day or just looking cool.

Is there an age where your empathy naturally starts to gravitate to these people over the bad boy hero?

We also dig into the complicated emotions of watching popular media with jingoistic or reactionary politics — from Top Gun to 24 to Death Wish — both overt and implicit. Even the stuff we like can be a bit harrowing to watch at times.

Mike Returns to Cheers Cast!

Mike returns to Ryan Daly‘s Cheers Cast, for a chat about the eleventh episode of Cheers‘ fifth season, The Book of Samuel.”

When Sam goes on vacation, Woody is chosen to manage the bar in his absence. But he’s floored when he receives a letter from his old girlfriend in Indiana, announcing that she’s now engaged to someone else…and will be coming to Cheers to give him the news in person. Seeing that Woody is afraid to look pathetic in front of his ex and her new fiancee, Diane lies and says that Woody has been dating someone too. Now roped into a double date, Woody turns to Sam’s little black book for a fake girlfriend.  Only too late  does he realize– that he’s on a date with Sam’s cleaning lady.

Check it out!

Podcasta la Vista, Baby! Episode 26 – Pumping Iron

“Blood is rushing into your muscles and that’s what we call The Pump. Your muscles get a really tight feeling, like your skin is going to explode any minute, and it’s really tight – it’s like somebody blowing air into it, into your muscle. It just blows up, and it feels really different. It feels fantastic.”

This month, we’re hitting the weights and getting a good pump with Dave Brouillette, as we bench press the 1977 bodybuilding docudrama that got Arnold noticed in Hollywood: Pumping Iron!

Cameras document – or is it dramatize? – the lives of the world’s leading bodybuilders as they prepare to compete for their sport’s top 1975 amateur and professional championships. One is junior high school teacher, Mike Katz, who aspires to the title of Mr. Universe. Another is shy underdog, Lou Ferrigno, who hopes to flex his way to the title of Mr. Olympia. But to do that, he must topple the reigning five-time returning champion, a certain popular and charismatic Austrian, just a couple years away from Hollywood superstardom.

Fun Size Episode 66 – The Word for That Is “Extortion”

We continue our chat with Michael Warbington and dig into a rich vein we usually leave unmined: video games.

With different levels of skill, engagement and knowledge, we look at the experience of gaming in 2022, the intersection of art and commerce, the prevalence of in-game microtransactions, getting mercilessly griefed by racist swearing twelve year-olds, and a game’s replayability. What do we want out of the gaming experience?

Episode 52 – Django (1966)

He killed for gold… He killed for his woman… He killed for himself!

After a month off, we’re back! And this time, we’re dragging a coffin through the desert with the Camp Director and President of Camp Quest NorthWest, Michael Warbington, and diving into the notoriously violent 1966 spaghetti western by director Sergio Corbucci, Django!

When a mysterious gunslinger named Django drags a coffin into a tiny border town caught in the middle of a bloody war between Mexican paramilitary bandits and a Klan of hooded racist Southerners, he sets off a bloody chain of death, vengeance, robbery, and even more death. But is Django here to save this town, or will he just bury it under corpses in his quest for revenge?

Fun Size Episode 65 – From Sublime to Disgusting (And Everything in Between)

We’re back with Kirby Green and talking about the strange and surprising wholesomeness of Jackass Forever, the history of “caught-on-video” media, and the opportunistic moral panics they often inspire.

While we talk about how a franchise famous for dangerous stunts and painful assaults on the testicles has become one of the few things in America that we can all agree on, and how it might just be a model for body positivity. And we look at its far more morally reprehensible and shamelessly exploitative media ancestors like Faces of Death, Bumfights, Girls Gone Wild, COPS, and whatever weird VHS tapes that scary kid from middle school with the shuriken in his pocket was bragging about watching.