The (new) Star Wars Canon guide

2015-01-28 by . 1 comments

Over the years, there have been 1366 Star Wars tagged questions on SFF:SE. These have attracted some great answers from a wide variety of sources including the Star Wars films, comics, games, TV shows, novels, art-books and RPGs. The number one response asked in comments is always “how canon is that source?“.

With the purchase of LucasFilm by Disney there have been some recent changes to the way in which Star Wars licensed properties are managed. I thought that now would be a good time to provide the definitive guide (I wish) to the New Star Wars Canon.


Canonicity in the Star Wars universe is, as of April 2014 determined by a working group comprised of representatives of Disney and LucasFilm known as the Lucasfilm Story Group.

The primary change made is that the old canon system (G-Canon, T-Canon, etc) has been nuked from orbit and only the original six feature films (the Original Trilogy and the Prequel trilogy), Clone Wars TV show, Clone Wars film and Star Wars : Rebels TV shows are considered to be part of the official Star Wars film canon.

All other properties (with a few small exceptions) are now lumped together under a single banner known as Star Wars : Legends. Those exceptions seem to include the film’s novelisations (where they elaborate on things seen on screen), the official StarWars.com Data Bank (which replaces the old Data Bank website) and elements of the Jedi Path Manual.

“While Lucasfilm always strived to keep the stories created for the EU consistent with our film and television content as well as internally consistent, Lucas always made it clear that he was not beholden to the EU. He set the films he created as the canon. This includes the six Star Wars episodes, and the many hours of content he developed and produced in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. These stories are the immovable objects of Star Wars history, the characters and events to which all other tales must align.”
LucasFilm Statement – Apr 2014

Those other film and TV properties that were originally deemed to be G-Canon and T-Canon (the Star Wars Radio Dramatisations, Star Wars Holiday Special, Ewoks films, Star Wars : DroidsTV show and Star Wars: Ewoks TV show) are now all considered to be Legends properties.


Moving forward, all future properties (films, books, comics and games) will be licensed and fully compliant with the Star Wars Story Group’s rules regarding canon status, unless explicitly stated. Excluding the exceptions listed above, the full list of canon works (past, present and near future) now stands as follows:

  • (Film) Episode I: The Phantom Menace (and the novelisation by Terry Brooks)

  • (Film) Episode II: Attack of the Clones (and the novelisation by R. A. Salvatore)

  • (Film) The Clone Wars (and the novelisation by Karen Traviss)

  • (TV Show) The Clone Wars: Season 1-5

  • (TV Show) The Clone Wars: The Lost Missions

  • (Comic) Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir by Jeremy Barlow

  • (Novel) Dark Disciple by Christie Golden (not yet released)

  • (Comic) Kanan: The Last Padawan by Greg Weisman (not yet released)

  • (Film) Episode III: Revenge of the Sith (and the novelisation by Matthew W. Stover)

  • (Novel) Lords of the Sith by Paul S. Kemp (not yet released)

  • (Novel) Tarkin by James Luceno

  • (Novel) A New Dawn by John Jackson Miller

  • (Novel) Servants of the Empire: Edge of the Galaxy by Jason C. Fry

  • (Novel) Ezra’s Gamble by Ryder Windham

  • (TV Show) Star Wars Rebels: Spark of Rebellion

  • (TV Show) Star Wars Rebels: Season 1

  • (Film) Episode IV: A New Hope (and the novelisation by Alan Dean Foster)

  • (Comic) Star Wars by Jason Aaron

  • (Comic) Star Wars: Darth Vader by Kieron Gillen (not yet released)

  • (Comic) Star Wars: Princess Leia by Mark Waid (not yet released)

  • (Short Story) One Thousand Levels Down Alexander Freed

  • (Novel) Heir to the Jedi by Kevin Hearne (not yet released)

  • (Film) Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back (and the novelisation by Donald F. Glut)

  • (Film) Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (and the novelisation by James Kahn)

  • (Short Story) Blade Squadron by David J. Williams

  • (Film) Episode VII: The Force Awakens (and the novelisation). (not yet released)

Original answer to the question How is canonicity of derivative works determined for Star Wars?

Filed under Question of the Week

Agent Carter – Pilot Episode

2015-01-07 by . 3 comments

This mini-series begins with some of the final scenes from Captain America: The First Avenger. With Steve Rogers piloting the large ship into the ocean and Peggy Carter on the radio.

The year is 1946, and Peggy Carter is still heartbroken over the loss. She lives in a small single room apartment which she shares with another girl. The apartment only has one bed, with they apparently share. Not in a scandalous kind of way, but rather in a way that depicts real life living in New York. She works for the telephone company, but when she arrives is led into a secret area which is the base of operations for the Strategic Scientific Reserve.

Agent Carter

Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) is a strong willed, independent woman in a (presumably) man’s job, where the men don’t really want her around. She is frequently asked to fetch coffee, file reports, answer the phones, and otherwise be a glorified secretary who happens to carry a gun.

Dominic Cooper reprises his role as the young Howard Stark. It seems a number of his more dangerous inventions have suddenly turned up on the black market and are being sold to enemies of the United States. He is subject to congressional hearings on the matter and no doubt is being investigated by the real FBI, but SSR makes finding him and his inventions a top priority. Stark seeks the help of Agent Carter to clear his name and find his inventions. Agent Carter must do this behind her superiors’ backs, because Stark is assumed guilty until proven innocent, and she is too much of a dame for important work. Stark lends her the assistance of his butler and confidant Edwin Jarvis.

Agent Carter is picking up right where Captain America ended (if you don’t watch the final scene where he is in modern day New York). Captain America the person is still a part of 1940s pop-culture. He has a radio program, to which poor Peggy (and the watching audience) must hear everywhere she goes. He’s still being mentioned in the newspaper, and no doubt his famous trading cards are in circulation.

I’m not exactly sure what the SSR’s mission is now that the war is over. Where as before they were a function of the military, with Colonel Chester Phillips acting as the leader, now it appears to just be some g-men bureaucrats. Furthermore, I’m not sure what jurisdiction the SSR has. Apparently they can interrogate people and do company wide inspections personnel.

The Marvel Movie Wiki has this to say:

The S.S.R. continued for a short time after the war, taking on cases such as the Zodiac, but was disbanded in 1946 and its former membership absorbed into a new agency, S.H.I.E.L.D.

Given that Agent Carter takes place in 1946, and a short run mini-series with 8 episodes, I’m guessing this series will end with the creation of S.H.I.E.L.D. Last night was a 2 hour premiere, with two 1 hour episodes back to back, which I guess means there will only be 6 more airings.

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Highlights from 2014 – 4th Quarter

2015-01-06 by . 2 comments

Top Stats

Highest Voted Question: Where does the stereotypicial image of the ‘Grey’ alien come from? asked by raki. The runner up question (by 2 votes) was What did Padmé die of? asked by Richard.

The question with the most views, 21517, and a score of 1 (not a typo), was In which order should I watch the X-Men movies to know Wolverine’s full sequential story? asked by parto. The runner up, with 16978 views and a score of 19, was Who exactly constructed the tesseract room in Interstellar? asked by Jason Sebring.

The question with the highest voted answer was Where did King Arthur get his sword, Excalibur? asked by Christofian and answered by Brouellette.

Top User Picks

Darth Satan liked the question Is a lightsaber’s hilt resizeable?

An awful, awful, awful, awful question that prompted an excellent answer

Richard liked several.

Why is Wednesday Addams named … Wednesday?

I thought I’d found the definitive answer, only to discover that there was an even stronger one waiting in the wings.

He greatly enjoyed Thaddeus‘s answer to What’s under the crystal bridge in Asgard?

I especially enjoyed the maps and pictures

And, pinnacle of humility that he is, he also enjoyed his answer to the question In “The Matrix”, why are there no animals?

Shevliaskovic liked the question Unknown feature on Middle Earth’s map? and his subsequent answer.

I..liked my answer there because I found some interesting discussions.

The user Null liked the question Why didn’t Qui-Gon Jinn use his Jedi mind tricks to exchange his Republic credits?

It exposed what nearly amounts to a plot hole, as demonstrated by the poor answer (as noted in the comments, I think the answer was poor because of the filmmakers, not @Richard).

Filed under Question of the Week

Technologies We Should Have In 2015

2014-12-31 by . 4 comments

2015 should be a big year in technology, if the movies are any indication. There are some of the things we are either supposed or have, or are woefully missing out on.

I personally don’t see the appeal of bringing a pet back to life but that is the initial premise of The 6th Day. Here are the technologies

  • Cloning of pets
  • Cloning of humans, with memory transplant
  • Jet Copters
  • Virtual Prostitutes

The present is made significantly more disappointing if you consider how much we were promised from Back to the Future 2

  • Mr. Fusion
  • Power Laces
  • Self Adjusting/Drying Clothing
  • Robot Gas Stations
  • Holographic Movies
  • News Camera Drones
  • Robot Trashcans
  • All things Hover (cars, boards, belts)
  • Exceptional Weather Service
  • Food Hydrators

The movie Memory Run (or Synapse, depending on who you ask) seems to offer only a couple of things

  • The ability to move a consciousness into another body
  • The ability to monitor and control someone based on their behavior (violence = bad)

 

Filed under Review

Jack’s Bad Movies – AE: Apocalypse Earth

2014-12-29 by . 1 comments

IMDB’s description

A group of refugees from Earth work to survive on a hostile alien planet.

If Predator, Star Trek TNG, Planet of the Apes, and Ewoks: The Battle for Endor had a love child abomination, it would be AE: Apocalypse Earth.

The movie opens with Earth under attack from a hostile alien force. It doesn’t look good for humanity, as several ships are attempting to leave and make interstellar journeys in the hopes of colonizing new worlds. Everyone else is left to their fate. Lt. Frank Baum (Adrian Paul, best known for the Highlander TV Series) and his squad are attempting to get a group of refuges to the safety of a starship. They get everyone on-board and the ship takes off, taking Baum and his squad for the ride. Baum gets very upset about this because he wants to go back to Earth to defend it. The captain (Richard Grieco) says this isn’t possible, and that Baum should just buckle down in cryo-sleep for the long ride to wherever. There is some discussion on how some of the passengers were chosen because of their critical skills, and others won a lottery. This all becomes moot when the Baum wakes up from cryo-sleep to find the ship is crash-landing on a green planet. Nearly all of the passengers and crew are killed. So all that talk about how people were selected was just wasted air time.

Baum wakes up to a chaotic scene in which passengers from the ship, albino humans, and nearly invisible cloaked beings (Predator style) are running all around the wreckage. The cloaked beings, called Chameleons, are killing humans and albinos alike, so Baum finds a completely functional and loaded machine gun in the wreckage and begins killing them. He gathers up a few survivors, including the injured Captain, and runs randomly into the jungle. Within the jungle they round up a few more survivors and eventually encounter a group of humans in orange jump suits who are not from their ship. These jumpsuit people were on another ship which had left Earth a month before, but they crash landed on this planet 2 years ago! How could this be? We’ll just hand wave special relativity and move forward. Turns out they have been prisoners of the Chameleons all this time living in a kind of zoo, and their captors have been trying to see if they can breed with the local Albino population. The ship crash landed on the zoo, and that subsequently freed some of the captives.

This group of now a dozen or so people now have a dilemma, what to do? Baum, the unofficial but also official leader, still wants to return to Earth (because… reasons!). The annoying short guy, who you feel like is going to get a lot of people killed because of his stupidity, says ‘why are you in charge’ to which the reply is ‘because I have the gun.’ I guess he isn’t happy with this answer, because he continues to ask this question and sow seeds of discontent with the survivors. There is also an android named TIM (aka Lt. Cmdr. DATA). They kill a lot of Chameleons, which carry these energy guns which on the surface seem pretty effective, until you remember Baum kills like 6 of them just with his knife. Only one guy ever thinks to pick up one of the alien guns, even though they are don’t have enough weapons to go around.

Eventually the party gets ambushed by giant scorpion things and a woman with camouflage skin shows up to help. Amazingly this woman speaks English, which she learned by overhearing the prisoners in the zoo. She also comes from an albino clan, which live in caves, but because she was different she was exiled to the surface. Online comments say she is the highlight of the movie on account of her bikini outfit, but I think the real gem here is her apparent super intelligence. Just by observing the prisoners in the zoo, she picks up broken English. When she gets to a point in a conversation where she can’t explain something and says so, someone will just supply an English word to her, without additional context or explanation, and she says ‘yes’ or nods her head that this word, which she had never heard before, is indeed the correct word for what she was trying to explain her point. It is amazing.

Now it is just a series of jungle fights, jungle runs, and sexy times in the river, and then the group finds an old human spacecraft. Everything is in perfect working order, except the power-cell, which should last 1000 years, is somehow dead. No worries (or even questions) about that though, because they can use the one from their crashed ship.

They don’t have the man power to get the power-cell, so they team up with camouflage girl’s old tribe. Turns out, they have crate-loads of human made guns in perfect working order in storage. So without any training or planning, everyone grabs a gun and heads off to get that power source. Did I say everyone? I meant, everyone except the two trained military soldiers grab guns. Those two guys get comically childish bows and arrows, which clearly do not work. I appreciate the movie keeping it real by showing how this absurd distribution of weapons results in nearly everyone getting killed during the assault.

Anyways, they finally get the power source and get back to the ship they found. The short idiot tries to leverage this so that they don’t have to flee the planet, but instead he dies as he lived, a traitor. They take off from the planet, easily dispatching a Chameleon spaceship and an orbital defense platform. By this time the group has been whittled down to Baum, camouflage girl, the captain, and TIM the now damaged android. But no worries, they can finally go back to their beloved Earth, which as far as they know, is still being ravaged by an alien race.

This all leads up to the big surprise reveal, it was Earth all along! Actually, no one was surprised. The telltale signs being, the other albino humans and the camouflage girl are obviously humans who have just adapted to the planet. The ship they found, while inexplicably in perfect working order despite many years in the jungle, was obviously human made (it had English signs on the door). This planet has lots of Earth plants and animals. The crash-landed humans were able to breed with the indigenous albinos. I could go on, but those are the only examples I remember.

TIM the android explains that he piloted the ship to several star systems, but didn’t any habitable worlds. With only 100 years of cryo-sleep available to the crew he ultimately decided to head back to Earth and see if things had improved since the aliens conquered it. Thanks to relativity, this was roughly 25,000 years after their initial departure. I guess whoever was piloting the other ship which had arrived at the planet 2 years previous had the same idea. Also, I guess the captain gave full executive decision making to TIM? Otherwise, that android is kind of a jerk. Anyways, the Chameleons have terraformed Earth to turn it into one giant jungle. Probably a downer for the few survivors trying to flee this hellish planet in order to get back to a war-torn Earth only to discover they were one and the same place.

One wonders how Earth lost the initial war, given the ease in which Baum is able to kill numerous Chameleons. Maybe he could have single-handedly won the war had he not been trapped on the colony ship. Fortunately, we will never know the truth.

The acting is very poor, with the line delivery being painful at times. A few of the special effects actually look decent, but then in the next scene are so comically bad you wonder how many different people worked on them.

And that, people, is AE: Apocalypse Earth, currently available on Netflix Instant.

Filed under Bad-Movies, Review

Doom Star Series (books)

2014-12-02 by . 0 comments

Back in August I saw a promotion for some free Kindle books and I decided to grab a copy of one titled Star Soldier (Doom Star #1) by Vaughn Heppner. I had never heard of the author or the series, I just wanted a free book. I knew the promotion was designed to get me reading the first book, and then purchase the remaining 5, and being an unknown author/title, I wasn’t sure it was what I was looking for. Obviously I decided to give it a chance (otherwise this article wouldn’t exist).

doomstar1 doomstar2 doomstar3 doomstar4 doomstar5 doomstar6

The series focuses on the main character Martin Kluge. The son of dissidents, he lives under the thumb of Social Unity, a communist regimen that controls the inner planets (Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars). Martin wants to be free, to be able to have his own thoughts and live his own life. His thoughts and temper get him in trouble with the Policial Harmony Corp, and he is sentenced to forced labor deep underground in Australia. Meanwhile, the genetically engineered super-soldiers, created by Social Unity, have decided they are superior and they should be the masters of homo-sapiens. Renaming themselves as Highborn, they start an interplanetary war against Social Unity. This conflict eventually spills into the outer planets, as a third threat arises and the whole solar system jockeys for power.

The series reminds me of Starship Troopers, with their battle suits and extreme ideologies, along with the training and space battles of Ender’s Game and the Eugenics Wars of Star Trek. There is a line taken straight from Space Seed, when one of the Social Unity generals is referring to the super-soldiers “superior ability breeds superior ambition.”

These books include, but are not limited to, the following tropes:

I was taken in by the first book and subsequently purchased the eBooks for the remainder of the series. The adventures of Martin Kluge and others were interesting. The second and third books suffered from repeating information from the first book. I know why authors do this, but I find it irritating, particularly when I’m reading the books back to back. Once you get to book four recapping reduces to the minimum so the story can progress.

Filed under Review

Detective Comics #27 – Introduction of the Batman

2014-11-10 by . 3 comments

Detective Comics #27 (Introducting the Batman) is available for free in your favorite eBook form. This issue is a 6-page story featuring the one and only Batman.

We know that the Batman has evolved over the years, and is typically retconned every decade or so. So how far as Batman come from his first iteration? Here are a list of things that strike me as very strange in that first appearance of my favorite character.

  • They can’t decide if he is Batman (cover), Bat-man (spoken), or “Bat-man” (narrative).
  • Bruce Wayne and Commissioner Gordon are close friends, so much so that Bruce Wayne is often hanging out at Gordon’s house.
  • Despite the size of Gotham City, Commissioner Gordon is routinely called on to investigate single homicides. Ɨ
  • Gordon decides to invite Bruce Wayne to visit a fresh murder scene with him.
  • Gordon rides in Bruce Wayne’s car to the crime scene (red car, Gordon arrives at a location later in a green car, stated to be his car).
  • Batman’s chest symbol was originally just a black bat, no yellow circle.
  • Batman drives Bruce Wayne’s ordinary red car around while dressed as Batman.
  • At one point Batman ‘speeds his car forward to an unknown destination.’ Presumably this destination is known to Batman, just not us. Because in the next page Batman arrives at the correct place.
  • Throughout this episode, Batman is operating during the day time.
  • There is a lot of action narration that today’s comics omit. Batman picks up a wrench, jumps into the glass chamber, and smashes it with the wrench. In today’s comics, all of that would be derived from the art, and probably not stated.
  • Batman punches the murderer, who then crashes through a railing, and falls into a vat of acid. He’s dead. To this Batman says ‘a fitting end to his kind.’ The next day Bruce Wayne describes this story as ‘a very lovely fairy-tale.’ Bruce Wayne is a sociopath.

And here are the most glaring differences between original and modern Batman.

  • Batman considers Gordon to be a close friend, but Bruce Wayne is just something of an acquaintance to Gordon.
  • Batman prefers to work at night.
  • Batman wisely decides that driving around in his alter-ego’s car is a bad idea, and builds his own unique ride.
  • Gordon may still be a detective who holds the title of Commissioner, but at least he isn’t inviting rich kids to tag along and gawk at bodies.
  • Batman still kills, but he does it in a ‘I don’t have to save you’ kind of way, instead of ‘I’m punching you into a vat of acid’ way.

Ɨ To be fair, they didn’t actually name a city, but the only cities that bother to have commissioners are large ones, with thousands of police officers under the administrative guide of the commissioner.

Filed under Review

Science Fiction Technologies that People are Hoping for in Their Lifetime

2014-11-01 by . 1 comments

I asked people from Facebook, reddit, and the meta.scifi.stackexchange.com what science fiction technologies they really wanted to see within their lifetime that they believed were achievable. Immediately some people forgot about that last little requirement, but that is okay. The few who gave estimates were in the 25-50 years time-frame. Few people explained why they wanted a certain technology, so I had to infer their intentions using wit and cynicism.

Space Travel – We gotta get off this rock.

  • Mars Mission / Colony – You’d think 45 years after landing on the moon we’d already be permanently stationed there and going to Mars. What happened to our future?
  • Cheap Access to Space – Why only rape the Earth of its natural resources? There is a whole Solar System out there, people.
  • Asteroid Mining – I’m looking to get my hands on the literal Silicon Valley.
  • Space Elevator – It’s what Michael Scott called ‘the big ride’ in The Office (S1:E3)
  • Anti-Gravity – America’s solution to morbid obesity.
  • Interstellar Spaceflight – Once the Solar System is ours, the whole universe will be ours.
  • Worm Hole Generator – Find out just how terrible living in the movie The Event Horizon would really be.
The thing I like about space travel is most of this stuff doesn’t sound like science fiction, it is just a matter of investing billions (or trillions) and hoping it pays off.

Advanced Computers – Life is too boring.

  • Artificial Intelligence – The supporters were keen to mention it would be a ‘friendly’ A.I.
  • Iron Man’s (or Mass Effect’s) Holographic Computer Interfaces – I hate physical contact with everything, even computers.
  • Virtual reality – Finally, the ability to commit murder using all 5 senses instead of the 2 you get from today’s limiting video games.
  • Artificial Artist – I’m not really sure what this is, but I guess we could finally free up all those starving artists out there so they can do something they truly love.
  • Sex Bots – I have nothing to say.
We can put a man on the moon, but we can’t make killer robot police? – Dave Barry. Don’t worry Dave, we are totally going to make them friendly.

Healthcare – What I like to call ‘fear of death.’

  • Starship Trooper’s Full Integrated Prognostics – Cyborgs of the future unite.
  • Full Body Regeneration – The K12 from Better Off Dead just made my bucket list.
  • Star Trek Medical Tricorder – This device can tell you when you are going to die, but modern science can’t do anything about it.
  • Elysium’s Health Care – All conditions can be diagnosed and treated; eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow you will be cured.
  • Mind Uploading – Transcendence and Lawn Mower Man are apparently not cautionary tales.
Death isn’t so scary if you believe we’ll have technology to talk to the dead later (see The Insane).

Transportation – When I travel, I want it to be exciting.

  • Back to the Future 2′s Hoverboard – Because skateboards need to be more dangerous.
  • Jet Pack – I’m pretty sure Budget has already mastered this.
  • Flying Car – Because everyone is good enough to become ace pilots.
  • Self Driving Car – I promise not to crash if you wash me regularly.
There are two kinds of people, those who believe traveling is too dangerous, and those who believe it isn’t dangerous enough.

Manufacturing – We hate blue collar jobs.

  • Replicators – Say goodbye to even the premise of a healthy diet.
  • Nano Tech – Big projects just need lots of little solutions.

Energy – Save the planet.

  • Back to the Future 2′s Mr. Fusion
Only one person mentioned cheap clean energy. Personally, I see that as the technology that allows for all the other stuff. A new abundant energy source means we can finally build autonomous robots, and then we can upload our brains into them and live forever. With everlasting life, traditional space travel just becomes an exercise in not being bored, cue the virtual reality (which will be easy, since we are robots). Everything falls into place when we get a Mr. Fusion or a Tony Stark miniaturized Arc Reactor.

The Insane

  • Talking to the Dead – That’s a technology? Okay.
  • Pleasure Gun – I have nothing to say.
  • Bender Robots – I guess a robot would have to be crazy to wanna be a folk singer…

Filed under News

Favorite Questions and Answers of All Time

2014-10-15 by . 0 comments

It was suggested we do a favorite questions and answers post, so here it is.

Beofett suggested the answer to Are all Stormtroopers as poor soldiers as the ones in the movies?, which was answered by Jeff.

This is my single favorite answer on the entire website. It’s one of those answers that just shattered my preconceived notions about one of my favorite titles in a way that makes me enjoy the movies more than I had originally.

Mooz’s favorite question is What is the song of ice and fire? asked by Shevliaskovic

A Pretty underrated question. It’s one of those funny ones where you see it and you’re like “why didn’t I think of that?”. The entire story hinges around this one simple line, and none of us questioned what exactly is the “song of ice and fire”…

His favorite answer is by Thaddeus to the question Is Thor the only Avenger that can’t die?

Thaddeus always takes the time to give us well-researched and wonderfully formatted answers, he even gives us a nice tl;dr for all of his answers. This one stands out for me as I really enjoyed the subject matter and all of the links and extra reading linked in the answer.

Slytherincess has exactly 3 questions favorited.

Why didn’t Fidelius charm on Shell Cottage stop the heroes from apparating there from Malfoy Manor? asked by jogabonito. Why did the Fidelius Charm on the Potters’ house break? asked byKevin. And the infamous Is Santa Claus a Time Lord? asked by Tango

She asked How Was the Sound of the Nazgûl Composed? and received an answer from Gabe Willar.

Gabe Willard’s answer was absolutely the most surprising and unexpected one I could have imagined! The question is just okay, but the answer is unbelievable.

Darth Satan has a favorite answer, his own. To the question Word for female dunedain asked by Envite.

At the risk of a (probably fair) accusation of self-promotion, I was very happy with the detective work I got to do for my answer to “Word for female dunedain”. I understand why it only got +8 rather than the obvious +several billion it undoubtedly deserves (smiley goes here) since it was a farly niche-interest question, but it’s still amazing what one can dig up in obscure footnotes and side-references.

Richard liked the question Who, or what, are the human characters in the original 1977 Hildebrandt Star Wars poster? asked by Major Stackings.

It took me a while to puzzle out why the poster (drawn after the film had been made) looked like it had completely different actors on it.

SQB says What is the origin of the phrase “on the gripping hand?” asked by Bill the Lizard and answered by Gilles.

…because I learned something that I didn’t even know I could learn.

DVK has a number of favorite questions, of which he predominately answered.

The top 4 favorite questions on the site are:

Filed under Question of the Week

The Flash – Pilot Episode

2014-10-08 by . 6 comments

The show opens with an 11 year old Barry Allen coming downstairs to see a swirling yellow and red thing encircling his mother. Suddenly he is teleported a few blocks away from his house. By the time he makes it back home, his mother is dead from this mysterious presence.

The Flash

Flash (pun intended) forward to a now 20-something Barry Allen. He is a junior forensics analyst for the Central City police. He’s a scientist (Batman’s a scientist!) and he is excited for the opening of a Star Labs in his town with a new particle accelerator. He ends up missing the opening day and returning to his lab only to see an explosion in the distance (the particle accelerator) and an energy wave pass through the city. Some of the energy collects above his lab and he is struck by lightning, and then rushed to the hospital (who knew to call an ambulance for him? He was alone).

At the same time his adoptive father is running down a lead on a couple of bank robbers who drive a Mustang (product placement). The perps manage to escape in a plane, but not before the same energy wave hits their plane, destroying it and leaving the two presumed dead.

Barry Allen awakens from a coma nine months later and has the abilities of The Flash (i.e. super speed and super reaction time). He works with a few people from the now defunct Star Labs (the explosion really spooked the investors) and not only starts to learn his own abilities, but also learns of the existence of other meta-humans that were created as a result of the particle accelerator gone bad.

When a man who can control the weather starts robbing banks (you might say he is something of a wizard at it) Barry has to decide if he is going to use his newly found powers for good. He has a short conversation with Arrow about it, and ultimately decides to go all super hero and become a vigilante.

Overall I thought it was a pretty decent pilot episode. I’m much more of a Batman fan, but I enjoyed The Flash pilot a lot more than I enjoyed the Gotham pilot. Gotham is apparently all about silly cameos and corrupt cops, while The Flash has a lightheartedness to it that makes it fun. I couldn’t really get into Arrow, but I’m definitely going to be following this sister-series.

Things I noted;

  • The mysterious death of Barry’s mother is obviously going to be a major plot point. Particularly since it makes a viewer think that Barry himself could potentially be responsible.
  • Barry has already revealed his secret identity to five people. This means he tells his secret faster than Batman. I wonder if that will become an issue down the road…
  • We’ve already seen a major antagonist of The Flash perish. Comic Tv shows and movies seem to hate recurring villains, I guess that is why they die so often.
  • The explosion, which potentially affected lots of people, opens the path for many meta-humans to appear in The Flash and in Arrow.
  • We see a news article 10 years in the future which says that The Flash mysteriously vanished during a crisis. Is this the kind of crisis that could span infinite Earths?

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