(1) EXTERMINATE REPAIRS! We know what to look for next season: “Daleks spotted on Bristol’s Clifton Suspension Bridge ‘closed for inspection'”.
Daleks have been spotted on Bristol’s Clifton Suspension Bridge ahead of a new Doctor Who TV series.
The bridge website had published an advanced closure notice saying it would shut overnight on Tuesday for an inspection of the chain anchorages.
But photos of Doctor Who’s nemeses with production crew on the structure have been widely shared by fans online.
A spokeswoman for the BBC programme refused to say why they were on the bridge but said: “Watch this space”.
(2) DANGER TOY. When it goes up for auction next month, “Rare, ‘holy grail’ Star Wars toy could be worth $500G”.
The “Boba Fett J-slot rocket-firing prototype” was never produced because of safety concerns from the shooting mechanism, SWNS reports. However, between 80 and 100 of them were made for testing, but only 24 of them are believed to have survived, adding to the collectible’s scarcity value.
(3) WHEEL OF TIME JEWELRY DEADLINE. Badali Jewelry makes officially licensed jewelry for fantasy authors — Jim Butcher, Pierce Brown, Naomi Novik among others — however this is the last weekend they can sell their Wheel of Time jewelry before the license ends because of the new TV show. October 28 is the last day. Badali’s designs were approved personally by Robert Jordan. They are a family-owned business and everything is hand-crafted.
(4) BEZOS THE TREKKER. A profile of Jeff Bezos by Franklin Foer in the November Atlantic: “Jeff Bezos’s Master Plan”.
Before Bezos settled on Amazon.com, he toyed with naming his unlaunched store MakeItSo.com. He entertained using the phrase because he couldn’t contain a long-standing enthusiasm. The rejected moniker was a favored utterance of a man Bezos idolizes: the captain of the starship USS Enterprise-D, Jean-Luc Picard.
Bezos is unabashed in his fanaticism for -Star Trek- and its many spin-offs. He has a holding company called Zefram, which honors the character who invented warp drive. He persuaded the makers of the film Star Trek Beyond to give him a cameo as a Starfleet official. He named his dog Kamala, after a woman who appears in an episode as Picard’s ‘perfect’ but unattainable mate. As time has passes, Bezos and Picard have physically converged. Like the interstellar explorer, played by Patrick Stewart, Bezos shaved he remnant strands on his high-gloss pate and acquired a cast-iron physique. A friend once said that Bezos adopted his strenuous fitness regime in anticipation of the day that he, too, would journey to the heavens.
(5) WAITING FOR THE LIGHT TO TURN GREEN. Kevin Polowy, in the Yahoo Entertainment story “‘Deadpool 3’ is ‘still in the works’: Writers give us MCU update, envision ‘Pool opposite Peter Parker” has an interview with Deadpool screenwriters Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick (who also wrote Zombieland: Double Tap) who say that Deadpool 3 has not been greenlit but they have hopes of working within the MCU eventually.
“It still is,” Reese, who with his writing partner has another new sequel, Zombieland: Double Tap, currently in theaters. “We sat with [Marvel Chief Creative Officer] Kevin Feige before the merger and we’re not allowed to talk to him about it. I think Ryan sat down with him more recently. But it’s still in the works. … They’re trying to work something out and then hopefully we can come through with something cool.”
“I think the promise is that Deadpool will live in his R-rated universe that he was living in at Fox,” Wernick added. “And then over time hopefully we can play with some of those MCU toys in the sandbox, and bring that into his world and have him brought into their world. So we’ll see, it’s a fun, exciting time.”
(6) ATTENTION FUTURE ASTRONOMERS. The Planetary Society is encouraging people to support the Kickstarter for The Search for Planet X game. The makers have reached their funding goal but there are fun stretch goals and rewards in store (especially for Society members). The campaign ends on 30 October.
Inspired by Mike Brown and Konstantin Batygin’s “Planet Nine” hypothesis, Foxtrot Games has created a game capturing the thrill of discovery and the puzzling process of astronomical investigation.
You’ll play the role of an astronomer making observations and using deduction to determine the location of a hypothetical planet. The board game uses a companion app to randomly determine the location of the objects each game, and players interact with the app during the game to conduct their research.
Our partners at Foxtrot Games are committed to providing engaging, interpersonal experiences through beautiful and approachable tabletop games that celebrate what’s good in the world(s).
(7) TODAY IN HISTORY.
- October 24, 1997 — Gattaca premiered. Starring Ethan Hawke and Uma Thurman, it was written, directed and co-produced by Andrew Niccol who did the same for The Truman Show save directing it. It did exceptionally well with audiences and reviewers rating 82% at Rotten Tomatoes. It lost to Contact in the Best Dramatic Presentation Award at the 1998 Hugo Awards given out at BucConeer.
(8) TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS.
[Compiled by Cat Eldridge.]
- Born October 24, 1915 — Bob Kane. Writer and artist co-creator with Bill Finger of Batman. Member of both the Jack Kirby Hall of Fame and the Will Eisner Comic Book Hall of Fame. (Died 1998.)
- Born October 24, 1939 — F. Murray Abraham, 80. Setting aside Star Trek: Insurrection which you know he’s been in, he’s had a fair amount of other work as well appearing in Slipstream, Beyond the Stars, Last Action Hero, Mimic, Muppets from Space, The All New Adventures of Laurel & Hardy in For Love or Mummy, Thirteen Ghosts and Robin Hood.
- Born October 24, 1952 — ?David Weber, 67. Without doubt, best known for the Honor Harrington series which is most excellent. I really can’t say I’m familiar with his other work, so do chime in and tell what I’ve been missing.
- Born October 24, 1955 — ?Jack Skillingstead, 64. Husband of Nancy Kress, he’s had three excellent novels (Harbinger, Life on the Preservation and The Chaos Function) in just a decade. I’ve not read the new one yet but I’ve no reason not to assume that it’s not as good as his first two works. He’s due for another story collections as his only one, Are You There and Other Stories, is a decade old.
- Born October 24, 1958 — Liz Mortensen, 61. An LA con-runner fan. Chair of Loscon XXV. She’s been involved in many LA area conventions. She’s a member of LASFS and SCIFI. She was one of the organizers of the Roswell in 2002 hoax Worldcon bid. LASFS awarded her the Evans-Freehafer Trophy in 1998 and she was the Artist Guest of Honor at, and I kid you not, Fa-La-La-La-La-La-La-La Con, #7, a relaxacon.
- Born October 24, 1971 — ?Dervla Kirwan, 48. Miss Hartigan in “The Next Doctor”, a Tenth Doctor story. She’s Maeve Sullivan in the Shades series, and she played Petra Williams in the “Painkillers” episode of Randall & Hopkirk (Deceased).
- Born October 24, 1971 — Sofia Samatar, 48. She’s the author of the novels A Stranger in Olondria, winner of William L. Crawford Award, British Fantasy Award and the World Fantasy Award, and The Winged Histories, Tender (short stories)and Monster Portraits, a collaboration with her brother, the artist Del Samatar.
- Born October 24, 1972 — Raelee Hill, 47. Sikozu Svala Shanti Sugaysi Shanu (called Sikozu) on Farscape. Genre wise, she’s also been on The Lost World series, Superman Returns, BeastMaster and Event Zero.
(9) COMICS SECTION.
- The Lone Ranger and Tonto have an unexpected conversation in Bizarro.
(10) DRAWN THAT WAY. SYFY Wire tries to untangle “The complicated legacy of Batman co-creator Bob Kane”.
Should October 24 be a day of celebration in the comics world?
That happens to be the birthday of Bob Kane, the co-creator of Batman. Kane, who died in 1998, helped bring to life one of the most popular characters in popular culture. That type of achievement should merit an annual parade being thrown in one’s honor.
Except that according to nearly all accounts, the man who reaped the greatest rewards for the creation of the Dark Knight did so at the expense of others. To say Kane’s legacy is complicated is to massively understate things.
…Kane’s early vision of the character included red tights and a winged costume. It was Bill Finger, who worked at Kane’s studio as a ghostwriter, who would help create the visual aesthetic that would define Batman for all time. The cowl, the cape, and the darker color scheme for the costume all came from Finger. He came up with Gotham City, the Batcave, and the Batmobile, as well as Robin, Catwoman, and Commissioner Gordon. Finger even came up with the origin story of Bruce Wayne.
You tell me: Remove all those elements, and is the Bat-Man still Batman? …
(11) HOW DO YOU GET THIS OUT OF SECOND GEAR? Connor Hoffman, in “Porsche ad Star Wars Teaming To Build Taycan-Inspired Starship” in Car and Driver says that Porsche engineers are teaming with Star Wars to come up with a Porsche-inspired starship that will both be in The Rise of Skywalker and a subtle product placement for the Porsche Taycan, an electric sedan.
Lucasfilm creative director Doug Chiang says that the design will be a recipe featuring ingredients from the X-wing, Y-wing, and U-wing starships from the Star Wars movies, combined with pieces of Taycan design. The designers were given specific instructions: there must be two front entries, a large rear cargo door, and room for two pilots and a maximum of five crew members. It also needs to have a minimum of two and a maximum of four engines, the company said.
The spaceship will be shown off at the Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker premiere in December alongside Porsche’s very own spaceship: the 2020 Taycan.
(12) READ IT BEFORE IT FADES AWAY. Fanac.org has started uploading issues of my ancient genzine Prehensile. Say, Issue 9 has some awfully funny bits! And plenty of other bits! Read at your own peril, especially “Dark Alleys of Fanhistory” by Dan Goodman.
(13) LAST NIGHT ON JEOPARDY! Andrew Porter tuned into Jeopardy! yesterday in time to watch the contestants bomb again.
Final Jeopardy: 1930s Novel Characters.
Answer: Prior to a murder in a 1934 book, he says he hasn’t been a detective since 1927 & that his wife inherited a lumber mill.
Wrong questions: “Who is Sam Spade?” and “Who is Dick Tracy?”
No one got it right: “Who is Nick Charles?”
(14) ALL TOGETHER NOW. “Bezos floats ‘national team’ to build Moon lander”.
Jeff Bezos has announced the formation of a “national team” that will aim to build the lander that will take astronauts back to the Moon in 2024.
Bezos’ space company Blue Origin has teamed up with aerospace giants Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and Draper to bid for the landing system.
The White House has set the ambitious goal of sending a man and a woman to the lunar South Pole within five years.
Bezos outlined the plan at a meeting in Washington DC.
The Amazon founder called the partnership “a national team for a national priority”.
Nasa had originally planned to mount the Moon return mission in 2028. But earlier this year, Vice President Mike Pence announced the administration’s plan to accelerate that timeline by four years.
(15) GOING DARK. “BBC News launches ‘dark web’ Tor mirror”.
The BBC has made its international news website available via the Tor network, in a bid to thwart censorship attempts.
The Tor browser is privacy-focused software used to access the dark web.
The browser can obscure who is using it and what data is being accessed, which can help people avoid government surveillance and censorship.
Countries including China, Iran and Vietnam are among those who have tried to block access to the BBC News website or programmes.
(16) 007 LICENSE TO DRIVE. The annual Nieman Marcus fantasy catalog offers seven Aston Martin DBS Superleggeras each personally designed by Daniel Craig, each for $700,007. But with the car you get an edition of an Omega Seamaster limited to seven copies with 007 stuff on the watch case, two tickets to the premiere of No Time To Die in London along with airfare and hotel, and airfare (and nothing else).
[Thanks to Martin Morse Wooster, Chip Hitchcock, Contrarius, Cat Eldridge, JJ, John King Tarpinian, Mike Kennedy, and Andrew Porter for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day Andrew.]