Pixel Scroll 7/6/18 I Picked A Hell Of A Day To Quit Scrolling

(1) CRUSHING IT. We may have missed the anniversary of Jaws’ release (June 20) but Narragansett Beer will still sell you the gear.

(2) ELVISH INVENTIVENESS. Middle-earth Reflections celebrates its second birthday with a recollection of “Fëanor the skilful.” (Yes, but was his beer any good?)

It is very often that Fëanor is remembered for grievous deeds and worst manifestations of his complex, albeit fascinating, character. However, being a gifted and skilful Noldo, he contributed a lot to Elvish craftsmanship, culture and traditions. His works were meant to be useful, unique and long-lasting, with some things surviving well into the Third Age and remaining long after Fëanor himself was no more…

(3) ON STAGE. Chicago’s sff-themed Otherworld Theatre will celebrate its opening on July 14:

Join us as we officially open the world’s only venue dedicated to Science Fiction + Fantasy performance – Otherworld Theatre Company!

Enjoy food + drinks, entertainment, and be the first to hear our 2018/2019 Season announcement! Attendees will be the first to be able to reserve tickets to our shows!

(4) FIGHTING PAIR. Stay tuned for Marvel Comics hype!

Deadpool has gone up against almost everyone in the Marvel Universe…and now, that roster includes the legendary Black Panther in BLACK PANTHER VS. DEADPOOL, a new story from Lockjaw and The Late Show with Stephen Colbert writer Daniel Kibblesmith and artist Ricardo Lopez Ortiz (Hit-Girl, Civil War II: Kingpin).

For a reason he’d rather not disclose (because, well, it makes him look bad!) Deadpool needs a piece of Vibranium…and the only way to get Vibranium is to go through the Black Panther himself! But Deadpool soon learns that his unconventional methods don’t exactly work against the king of the most technologically advanced country on the planet…

(5) THE LOCAL ANIME SCENE. Martin Morse Wooster hates that I have deprived you of news about a big event that’s happening in my own backyard. Let the Los Angeles Times’ famed Charles Solomon remedy my oversight: “Anime Expo 2018 returns to L.A. with ‘My Hero Academia: Two Heroes’ premiere”.

More than 100,000 otaku (fans of Japanese animation and manga) are expected to attend the annual Expo, which runs July 5-8. The attractions include themed cosplay pageants, maid and butler cafes, karaoke contests, workshops, concerts, screenings and guest appearances by artists and voice actors. Panel discussions will a focus on favorite series and features, from Makoto Shinkai’s record-breaking “Your Name” to “Cardcaptor Sakura.”

As the Expo has grown more popular since the early ’90s, it’s also grown more diverse. It began as a convention primarily attended by young white and Asian American fanboys; now it’s thronged with people of all races, genders and ages. The communal atmosphere fostered by the Expo remains intact; anyone who loves “Fullmetal Alchemist,” “Princess Jellyfish” or “Attack on Titan” will find new friends eager to discuss the show. People in costumes — whether elaborate, revealing or cross-gender — will happily pose for pictures.

One of the most eagerly anticipated events at this year’s Expo is the world premiere Thursday of “My Hero Academia: Two Heroes,” the first theatrical feature based on the hit adventure-comedy. The filmmakers had to rush to prepare a subtitled version in time for the event.

The premiere will include guest appearances by Daiki Yamashita and Justin Briner, the Japanese and English voices of Deku, the main character, and ADR director and actor Colleen Clinkenbeard. The first trailer for the English dub — which will be released here in the fall — will screen, and there’ll be giveaways of posters and other swag….

(6) STAN LEE. Variety reports “Judge Grants Second Restraining Order to Protect Stan Lee”.

A judge on Friday granted a restraining order to protect Marvel’s Stan Lee and his family from a memorabilia collector who allegedly embezzled assets worth more than $5 million.

The collector, Keya Morgan, is accused of isolating Lee from his daughter, J.C. Lee, and others, in an effort to assert control over Lee’s business affairs.

Earlier in the day, Judge Pro Tem Ruth Kleman dismissed another restraining order, which was filed last month on Lee’s behalf by attorney Tom Lallas. The judge found that Lallas, who was fired in February, does not represent Lee.

The new restraining order was filed Thursday by attorney Stephen Crump. In the application, Crump alleges that Morgan made malicious and false remarks about his daughter to Lee, and prevented Lee’s financial advisers from seeing him. The order bars Morgan from coming within 100 yards of Lee, his daughter, or his brother, Larry Lieber….

(7) HIGHLIGHTS. Adsoftheworld covers the Stabilo Boss advertising campaign:

Everyone knows the phrase “Behind every great man is a great woman.” But what does it mean? That the man is always the hero and the woman his sidekick? The truth is, all too often women were upstaged, and their actions and successes not mentioned. 2018 is the year to rewrite history: with Stabilo Boss.

By highlighting remarkable women and their stories.

Print advertisement created by DDB, Germany for Stabilo Boss, within the category: Office Equipment.


Highlight the remarkable. Lise Meitner.
Discoverer of nuclear fission who male partner was awarded with the Nobel Prize.


(8) TOXIC FANDOM. Cnet spreads the word: “James Gunn: Toxic Star Wars haters should ‘go to therapy'”.

Star Wars fans can be a little touchy when the latest film doesn’t live up to their expectations.

Sometimes that feeling can bubble over into real-life toxic actions. Actress Kelly Marie Tran recently deleted her Instagram posts, with many speculating that it was because of online harassment due to her role in Star Wars: The Last Jedi. And actor Ahmed Best, who played the controversial character Jar Jar Binks in 1999’s Star Wars: The Phantom Menace, revealed on July 3 that the reaction to his role almost drove him to suicide.

Gunn later responded to the reaction his tweet received, writing, “People responding to this post saying, “Yeah, it wasn’t the actor’s fault! It was the writer’s!” are missing the point. Critique it. Don’t like it. But spewing hate and bile at individuals just doing their best to tell a story, even if the story sucks, is lame. Don’t watch it!”

(9) DITKO OBIT. Spider-Man co-creator Steve Ditko was discovered dead in his apartment on June 29. The Hollywood Reporter has a profile.

…The New York Police Department confirmed his death to The Hollywood Reporter. No cause of death was announced. Ditko was found dead in his apartment on June 29 and it is believed he died about two days earlier.

In 1961, Ditko and Lee created Spider-Man. Lee, the editor-in-chief at Marvel Comics, gave Ditko the assignment after he wasn’t satisfied with Jack Kirby’s take on the idea of a teen superhero with spider powers. The look of Spider-Man — the costume, the web shooters, the red and blue design — all came from Ditko. Spider-Man first appeared in Amazing Fantasy No. 15. The comic was an unexpected hit and the character was spun off into The Amazing Spider-Man. Ditko helped create such classic Spider-Man characters as Doctor Octopus, Sandman, the Lizard, and Green Goblin. Starting with issue No. 25 Ditko received a plot credit in addition to his artist credit. Ditko’s run ended with issue No. 38.

In 1963, Ditko created the surreal and psychedelic hero Doctor Strange. The character debuted in Strange Tales No. 110 and Ditko continued on the comic through issue No. 146, cover dated July 1966.

After that Ditko, left Marvel Comics over a fight with Lee, the causes of which have always remained murky….

(10) O’CONNOR OBIT. The New York Times reports: “Derrick O’Connor, Irish Actor on Stage and Screens, Dies at 77”.

Derrick O’Connor, a versatile Irish character actor who appeared in three Terry Gilliam films and played a memorable villain in “Lethal Weapon 2,” died on June 29 in Santa Barbara, Calif. He was 77.

The cause was pneumonia, said a spokeswoman, Jane Ayer.

Mr. O’Connor had roles in Mr. Gilliam’s “Jabberwocky” (1977), “Time Bandits” (1981) and “Brazil” (1985). Perhaps his best-known role was Pieter Vorstedt, a murderous South African security official, in Richard Donner’s “Lethal Weapon 2” (1989), the second film in the action franchise starring Mel Gibson and Danny Glover.

Among his many other films were John Boorman’s “Hope and Glory” (1987) and Gore Verbinski’s “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest” (2006)….


Mike Kennedy sends a pair to draw to:

(12) SUPERANATOMY. A first look at DC Comics new book Anatomy of a Metahuman (which has a September 18 release date) is available on io9 (“This Book About the Anatomy of DC Heroes and Villains Looks Absolutely Gorgeous”). In it, you’ll see such things as cutaway views of Superman’s face and eye (with “explanations” of his various forms of super vision) and Cheetah’s musculoskeletal structure. Illustrator Ming Doyle has tweeted samples of the pages that she says she “spent a year illustrating […] from Bruce Wayne’s POV.” That’s right, the book is written in universe and represents Batman (or Bruce Wayne if you prefer) keeping close tabs on not only his enemies but also his allies. That sounds like a very Batman thing to do. The book is available for pre-order on Amazon (where it’s tagged at the #1 best seller in “Educational & Nonfiction Graphic Novels”), on the Barnes & Noble website, and doubtless at many of your local bookstores.

(13) HERE’S MY NUMBER AND A DIME. Craig Miller told Facebook readers there’s still a place you can phone to hear the series of telephone messages he created to promote the 1980 release of The Empire Strikes Back.

Back in my days at Lucasfilm, I wrote and produced a series of telephone messages. In the months preceding the release of “The Empire Strikes Back”, you’d call (800) 521-1980 (the date Empire was coming out) and you’d hear a message from one of the characters, telling you about the film….

…Someone saw them written up in a magazine back in 2010, found the recordings on line, and set up a phone line. You could call the phone number and hear one of the messages at random on the phone (their were five in all: Luke, Leia, Han, C-3PO, and Darth Vader), the way they were meant to be heard.

And what surprised me is that the number still works. Out of curiosity, I called it. Eight years later, you still get the messages.

The phone number isn’t a toll-free 800 line like the one we set up. But if you have free long distance on your phone, it doesn’t matter.

The number is (714) 643-2997.

(14) MARRIAGE BRINGS US TOGETHER. Nick Romano, in “‘Steven Universe’ Shows a Ground breaking Same-Sex Marriage Proposal” at Entertainment Weekly, says that creator Rebecca Sugar is promoting this week’s episodes of her show Steven Universe on the Cartoon Network as being the first cartoon to have a same-sex marriage proposal in it.

Steven Universe creator Rebecca Sugar has long used her Cartoon Network series as a means of supporting more inclusive storytelling, and she did it again Wednesday night with the July 4th episode. Capping off a five-episode Heart of the Crystal Gems story arc, “The Question” commenced with a same-sex marriage proposal between Ruby and Sapphire.

(15) STAR VEHICLE. Here’s the trailer for the Gillian Anderson movie UFO.

[Thanks to Steven H Silver, Hampus Eckerman, ULTRAGOTHA, Martin Morse Wooster, Mike Kennedy, John King Tarpinian, JJ, Cat Eldridge, Chip Hitchcock, Carl Slaughter, and Andrew Porter for some of these stories. Title credit belongs to File 770 contributing editor of the day Brian Z.]

41 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 7/6/18 I Picked A Hell Of A Day To Quit Scrolling

  1. It hit 118 degrees here today and it’s still 114 right now. I’m lucky the Scroll didn’t melt!

  2. (1) Show me the way to pixel scroll
    I’m tired and I want to scroll to bed
    I had a pixel scroll about an hour ago
    And it went right to my head.

    Hope you chill soon, Mike! Wish I could FedEx you some fog!

  3. Rain fell! Temperature dropped!

    And in Saturday afternoon, I finally get my BiPAP macine!

    Unless there’s some other wrinkle and I don’t, of course.

    But maybe?

  4. Mike, that’s way too hot! (It only got to 110 or 111 in my area. It was 104 at 10am.)

  5. It is a sunny 12 (54 for you Fahrenheit Filistines) Down Under with a souwester blowing across the Southern Ocean from Antarctica. I do so love the wintertime!

    In current reading, I enjoyed ‘Dark State’ and was a litle disappointed by ‘River of Teeth’. ‘Space Opera’ and ‘Provenance’ on reserve at the library, but sadly I don’t think I’ll get them before leaving for Europe in 3 weeks.

  6. 6) That’s sad. Not the restraining order, which is good, but the need for it. He deserves peace in his final days.

    9) Condolences to his family, friends, and fans. He had a good long run.

    15) Too much woo for me, alas.

  7. Wow, Mike, that’s unreal. When the heat dome was over Baltimore, we only officially got to 99. (Is this the only weather event that moves east to west?)

    I used to be able the shrug off the heat, but I can’t any more. We live in a 1920s row house, and when we all had tar roofs (there’s a reflective compound now), one scientist from out of town who came here to study the houses in the summer said, “They’re living in ovens!” David Bratman visited one year in our near-100-degree temperature and near-100% humidity period, and said, “How can you live like this?” We shrugged and said, “It doesn’t last.” We may have only had fans then, but we did eventually add window air conditioners, first in our bedroom, and a few years later downstairs. Last fall we had central air installed, and this summer we’re patting ourselves on the back for finally making the house livable (we’ve only been here since 1974).

    We went to a baseball game last week during the heat wave, hardly for the first time. We’ve been to lots of games over the years where the stadium sets up free ice stations. I was trained by my mother to never leave early, always to stay until the final out, even if we were losing 11-1, even if the game took 17 innings and it was 2 am on a work night. This game I got lightheaded and woozy, and staff saw me and put me in a wheelchair and took me down to the first aid facility. (Never been there before. Expected something like a school nurse’s office, not a mini ER.) They checked me over to make sure it wasn’t anything other than the heat, and sent me home. It wasn’t until a day or two later that I realized I hadn’t even protested that I couldn’t leave early; it hadn’t even occurred to me.

    I just can’t do it any more. 118? Wow. Good luck, guys.

  8. (8) Y’know, I’ve noticed something about multiple fandoms. Star Wars certainly qualifies, but Doctor Who’s actually quantified it to some degree. There, it’s tied to the actor who portrays the Doctor, but you can see the same pattern play out in terms of other significant franchise figures, like the showrunner.

    Inevitably, when one Doctor’s departure is announced, the fandom cries out in betrayal as they come to terms with the departure of the Best Doctor Ever. There’s some speculation about who’d be a good replacement, but when the new actor is announced, there’s always a great wailing and gnashing of teeth about what a horrible choice this is, and how they’ll never be able to hold a candle to the departing Doctor. The franchise is doomed!

    Eventually, the regeneration takes place and the new actor takes the role. The fandom is super-critical of the first few episodes, until most of the fans get accustomed to the new Doctor. Then, a few years later, they announce their departure, and cue the outrage…

    I’ve seen Star Wars follow the same path. The same fans who are howling about the discarding of the old canon were outraged when its story group dropped a moon on Chewbacca to prove that nobody was safe. The people who groaned the most theatrically about the prequels now whine about there not being enough connections to them. TFA was too much like the original movies, but TLJ’s too different and how dare they fail to deliver on the plot points they rolled their eyes at in TFA, that shining beacon of old-fashioned back-to-roots classic Star Wars filmmaking?

    I’ve come to the conclusion that this segment of fandom is conservative. Not in the political sense, but in the sense that they like things as they are (however that may be at the moment) and are slow to accept changes to that status quo. What presents as outrage is more properly understood as a shock to the system, a panicked reaction to sudden change that fades as they get used to the new status quo.

    In the most recent cycles of both Star Wars and Doctor Who, political dogma has certainly played a part in aggravating and extending the upheaval period, but it’s nothing fundamentally new. By the time the next iteration comes out, the current one will be a beloved classic and the new change will be a rank betrayal. Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose…

  9. 9) As much as I love Kirby, Spiderman wouldn’t have been right without Ditko. I remember how much his DC stuff stood out from the rest. The design of The Creeper is over the top in just the right way–really beautiful. And the pseudo-organic look of Ditko’s mystical worlds is the equal of Kirby crackle and massive machinery.

    It’d be a lesser world without all that. I’m glad he had a good long run. I hope he died at his desk.

  10. @ Rev. Bob: That’s not a bad analysis, and I wouldn’t have any problem with the cycle as you describe it if all they did was wail and gnash their teeth. The problem comes in when they viciously attack actors and other fans and, well, basically anybody who has the temerity to disagree with them or to be part of the Thing That Changed.

    There’s an old short story (I think by Asimov?) about a guy who commits financial fraud, using computers, in a society much like ours only with no cash at all — everything is done with the equivalent of debit cards and Apple Pay. His sentence is to be completely cut off from that system; he won’t die, because it’s also a post-scarcity society and he’s entitled to free food and necessities just by virtue of being alive. But he can’t do anything that requires access to the financial system — the sentence is basically “you abuse it, you lose it”. I wish there were some similar way to cut off abusive trolls from online access for anything.

  11. (14) Not only the first proposal, but as of today’s episode gur svefg fnzr-frk jrqqvat, pbzcyrgr jvgu gur oevqr xvffvat gur oevqr. (Naq gura shfvat vagb n fvatyr trz naq svtugvat fbzr Qvnzbaqf, orpnhfr guvf vf Fgrira Havirefr naq bs pbhefr gur jrqqvat erprcgvba tbg penfurq.)

  12. @Anne Goldsmith Yes! Naq V jnf rfcrpvnyyl cyrnfrq gurl fhoiregrq gur traqre ebyrf crbcyr bsgra nffvta gb Ehol naq Fnccuver ol univat gur Ehol va n qerff, jnyxvat hc gur nvfyr gb jurer Fnccuver vf jnvgvat va n fhvg. Gur ertvbany prafbef ner tbvat gb unir n wbo ba gurve unaqf trggvat nyy gur tnl bhg bs GUNG frnfba svanyr…

  13. @Arifel Lrf, V yvxr gung, gbb. Naq Fnccuver ybbxrq fb phgr va ure ghk!

    I feel like we are now well past the point where de-gaying Steven Universe is possible, at least without hacking out parts of the plot.

  14. @Anne Goldsmith: “I feel like we are now well past the point where de-gaying Steven Universe is possible”

    Is that a practical concern? I don’t keep up with it as well as I’d like to (I’ve seen the end of the current arc, but not its start, because the kid was super anxious to see it after we went to a party on the Fourth), but from the very first episode I saw, the show felt queer. I saw a rot-13’d mention of “regional censors”*, though, so there’s something I don’t know.

    *Spoiler: It turns out the internet doesn’t always route around censorship.

  15. @OGH: aauugghh! I don’t think it was that hot even at the infamous 1978 Worldcon (at least not officially — the Anvil of God could easily have been hotter than wherever the reported temperature was measured). And that was “dry heat”, which I bet wasn’t as true of your area.

  16. @John A Arkansawyer Yes, edits to the queer content have been attempted by various regional networks, notably the UK broadcast of “We Need To Talk” (which has a *slightly* ambiguous same-sex kiss at the end of a an unambiguous but harmless dance). The network then gave a lame “but our content has to be suitable for children!!1!” excuse, as if panic over kids’ exposure to same-sex relationships were still a thing a network ostensibly committed to diversity (as their statement also asserted) should be pandering to in the 21st century.

    As you point out, it’s a losing battle, and one that the showrunners are determined to make as difficult as possible for those attempting it. For which I am very grateful!

  17. @Chip Hitchcock
    Yesterday evening, the humidity at Van Nuys airport was 7% and the dew point was -11F. It’s dry heat.

  18. 5) Not that Mike can doing anything about it, but the Los Angeles Times is one of the US websites which blocks all EU IP addresses because of the GDPR regulation, which is becoming an increasing nuissance.

    7) I love those Stabilo Boss ads. The Lise Meitner one is a personal favourite, because I used to teach at a school named after her. They also have one featuring Katherine Johnson and Edith Wilson.

  19. Live from the Westercon 71 Business Meeting: Seattle bid wins Westercon 2020

  20. I feel compelled to rant re Star Wars and politics, sorry. I spent a large chunk of the GWB presidency hiding from reality in Star Wars Galaxies, a very early MMO.

    It had a huge passionate following of Star Wars fans (most of us very literate and very engaged with player forums) and we used the unrealness of it to conduct some intense political arguments, because arguing about the Empire’s actions was less likely to bring up partisan hatred than arguing about what the USA was doing. Because of that unreality filter, we were able to harmonize better in game, and I was in one guild that had co-leaders including a Texan republican soldier and a Swedish communist strawberry farmer. (It was an Imperial guild full of dark jedi, bounty hunters and stormtroopers. We were hideously outnumbered by hordes of lightside jedi that would hang around outside spaceports talking smack.)

    During the time of Phantom Menace there was plenty of liberal fan meanness, such as to Ahmed Best for playing Jar Jar as something which was felt to be a clownish, Stepin-Fetchit type character. The game gave fanservice to players inclined that way by giving them villages of harmless gungans to slaughter, which led to the uncomfortable situation of liberals protesting (perceived) racism with (simulated) genocide. There was a lot of almost dada/situationist league surrealism going on in that game.

    From several, uh, years of immersion in SWG I can state I found the playerbase to be pretty politically diverse, similar to the playerbase in WoW and not nearly as conservative as, e.g., Call of Duty. There is definitely a portion of the playerbase made of up of assholes with anger management issues, and arguing about what to do with them was a constant topic. During that time I was also criticized by liberals who felt that any/all games were conservative, especially if they included fighting. For those reasons I hesitate to accept generalized bias against entire fandoms. It seems to be more complex than that.

  21. It hit 118 degrees here today and it’s still 114 right now. I’m lucky the Scroll didn’t melt!

    Woodland Hills was specifically mentioned at the beginning of the article in this morning’s (Portland) Oregonian on the high heat in Southern California.

    Here in Portland, it will be hot next week–“hot”, in this case, is 90+. (Our record high is 107.)

    We finally broke down and bought an air conditioner two years ago (it’s a small house, we only need one for the most part). Until then, we just suffered during hot spells, and sat around saying “we should buy an air conditioner”.

  22. I love how the Polish guy just tries valiantly to carry on with the interview despite his credential’s interference.

  23. As much as I love Kirby, Spiderman wouldn’t have been right without Ditko.

    Well, he’d have been a very different character without Ditko, at least. Different costume, different context, different villains, different stories.

    But considering those stories might have* been largely plotted and drawn by Jack Kirby, who was at the time beginning a rise to one of his multiple career peaks, I bet that whatever we got would have been good stuff, and we might be sitting here now thinking, “Spider-Man? By Steve Ditko? Man, that’d have been so weird, I bet it wouldn’t have worked.”

    *assuming Kirby stuck around on the series, which might have cost us his run on THOR.

    And we’d be all enraptured with the power and inventiveness of Kirby’s Spider-Man, the romantic power and majesty of Gene Colan’s Thor and the funky action (and great villains) of Ditko’s Daredevil.

    But we wouldn’t know what we missed out on if we’d never seen it…

  24. @Arkansawyer: I wonder if the kid in your first link learned anything from that experience?

    @Lee: that’s one nervy cat to pull that stunt on what I’m assuming is a stranger — or did the cop just happen to pull over that driver onto the cop’s property?

  25. @Chip, I hope the parents learned something from that. Don’t let the kid torture the cat! Grrr

    On the second, I gotta assume the cat knew the cop somehow. Neither seemed surprised.

  26. Lenore Jones / jonesnori: I hope the parents learned something from that. Don’t let the kid torture the cat! Grrr

    Yes, you can see adults standing around in the background not doing anything. WTF were they thinking? “Oh, how cute that the kid is going to throw the cat in the water!”??? They, and the child, are lucky that the child wasn’t shredded bloody by the cat’s claws while it was trying to get away.

  27. @JJ, indeed. And I assume the kid got rescued from the water. I sure don’t blame the cat.

    I have similar feelings about a lot of “funny” videos.

  28. @ Chip / Lenore / JJ: Fourthed. My first thought was, “Well, that’ll teach him not to abuse the cat!” At least, one would hope so.

  29. Lee: My first thought was, “Well, that’ll teach him not to abuse the cat!” At least, one would hope so.

    They’re lucky that I wasn’t there. Because I would have been the one saying very loudly, “NO!”, taking the cat away from the child, and giving whoever was supposed to be watching the kid a cold look and saying, “What in the WORLD is wrong with you???” 😐

  30. If the cat went into the water, that wouldn’t be funny. It’d be even less funny if the kid got clawed. And JJ is right that adults behaved badly to let this happen in the first place.

    All that said, it still makes me laugh, every time that kid goes in. And I feel no guilt.

Comments are closed.