Interview: Raina Telgemeier

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SmileI got the chance to record a quick interview with Raina Telgemeier, Eisner award-winning creator of the all-ages graphic novels Smile, Sisters, and Drama, as well as the the Babysitters Club graphic novel adaptations, at the Alaska Robotics Mini-Con in Juneau this April. Listen to us discuss webcomics, birds, and the wonderfulness of Rey.

You can find Raina Telgemeier at her website here and on twitter as @goraina. Her next graphic novel, Ghosts, will be available for purchase September 13 wherever fine books are sold.

Interview: Pat Race


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comic-bearWhen I was at the Alaska Robotics Mini-Con this past April I got the chance to sit down and interview Pat Race, the organizer of the con and one of the people behind Alaska Robotics (note: there are no robots are involved in Alaska Robotics. OR ARE THERE???). Listen to us discuss Alaska, conventions, robots, Alaskan conventions as robots, the feeling of neglect that comes with not being from the Core Worl–er, the largest community in the area, the Alaska Robotics artist camp, Kowakian monkey-lizards, and more!

You can find Pat Race at the Alaska Robotics website or on twitter as @alaskarobotics.

Fun Times in Space Land

I have a lot of hopes for The Force Awakens, as I imagine all of us do. I hope that the characters are done justice by the script, I hope that listening to the soundtrack will bring me to tears, I hope that BB-8 (oh, BB-8, rolly droid of my heart) is on screen for a significant portion of the film. But my biggest hope for TFA is quite simple.

I hope that The Force Awakens is fun.

Really, really fun.

As it is, I’m so hyped up for TFA that even if our worst nightmares come to pass and it is terrible (God forbid), I probably won’t notice for at least two months. I want The Force Awakens to be a movie I associate with the word “fun” long after the initial glow of “hooray a new Star Wars movie” fades.

Now, fun certainly isn’t necessary for a movie to be good or even enjoyable. The Hunger Games movies are good but not what I’d call a fun time. Grave of the Fireflies is brilliant but in many ways it is the opposite of a fun movie. I don’t want The Force Awakens to be a good, serious movie.

I want it to be a ridiculously fun space opera that makes me smile, even if some plot points are eye-rollingly silly, or if some lines are very easy to mock, or if it mixes up units of distance with units of time. I want to have a blast watching this movie again and again and again, for decades to come.

Star Wars has always been fun and I don’t want that to stop being the case.

Go/No-Go – Star Wars Rebels: Servants of the Empire book series

nasa-mission-control-3Welcome back to Go/No-Go, Tosche Station’s regular feature where we offer our spoiler-free opinion as to whether or not you should spend your hard-earned money on a book, film, or other entertainment. Today on the launch pad: the Star Wars Rebels: Servants of the Empire book series by Jason C. Fry. This four-book tie-in to Star Wars Rebels is made up of Edge of the Galaxy, Rebel in the Ranks, Imperial Justice, and The Secret Academy, each of which Nanci has discussed individually. But now that the last book is out, how do we feel about the series as a whole? To mission control for the verdict! Continue reading

All-Ages Comics With Queer Representation, Part 3: Revenge of the Recommendations

Character and/or relationship spoilers for several comics lay below. Be warned.

Several months have passed since my last list of excellent comics with excellent queer major characters for excellent younger folk and it seems long over to revisit the topic with three more recommendations! This time, by sheer coincidence, all three comics feature queer women of color.

To the comics! Continue reading

Moff Mors and the Importance of First Impressions

Lords of the SithApril 28 saw the release of Paul S. Kemp’s Lords of the Sith, the fourth novel in the new story-group approved canon, of which you can read our spoiler-free reviews here and Brian’s more in-depth review here. Along with being the first of the new books to focus on Darth Vader, Lords of the Sith holds the distinction of introducing the new canon’s first LGBTQIA+ character, Moff Delian Mors.

I found Moff Mors to be an interesting character and a welcome addition to the Galaxy Far, Far Away. Unfortunately, her introduction is handled with far less care than one would hope. Continue reading

The Clone Wars “Bad Batch” Story Reels are Now Online For Your Viewing Pleasure

The-Clone-Wars-Logos-ACWIA13131L-4Attendees at Star Wars Celebration Anaheim had the opportunity to watch unaired story reels from the unfinished “Bad Batch” arc of The Clone Wars and now those who were not fortunate enough to attend that panel can watch it as well. Earlier today the official site posted the story reels, giving us twenty-two and a half minutes of what could have been. You can view the story reels here and you can also watch the panel discussing the arc here. Enjoy!

All-Ages Comics With Queer Representation, Part 2: More Recommendations

Character and/or relationship spoilers for several comics lay below. Be warned.

A few months ago I shared a few all-ages comics I enjoy that include prominent characters that fall outside of the heterosexual cisgender mold. The list of excellent all-ages media with queer content, while still much shorter than one would hope, continues to grow, and thus I happily find myself writing a part 2 to that recommendation post! Without further ado, here are a few more fun all-ages comics with queer representation.

Continue reading

2015 Hugo Nominees Announced

hugo-award-logoIt’s that time of year again– the time when my reading list suddenly gets a lot longer. That’s right, this year’s Hugo Award nominees have been announced!

Included in their ranks is The Dark Between the Stars by Star Wars book alum Kevin J. Anderson, up for the Best Novel award, as is Ancillary Sword by Ann Leckie, the sequel to last year’s category winner Ancillary Justice, and Skin Game, the newest entry in Jim Butcher’s best selling urban fantasy series The Dresden Files.  Ms. Marvel volume 1: No Normal, introducing the Pakistani-American teenage superhero Kamala Khan to the Marvel universe and written by G. Willow Wilson and illustrated by Adrian Alphona and Jake Wyatt, has made the list of Best Graphic Story nominees, joining Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples’ space opera Saga, which won the category’s award in 2013, and the first volume of Matt Fraction and Chip Zdarsky’s Sex Criminals.

In the Dramatic Presentation categories, it’s a good year for superheroes, with both Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Guardians of the Galaxy making the Long Form list and the pilot episode of the CW’s The Flash making the Short Form list. Also making the Long Form list are is The Lego Movie and making the Short Form list is the season 2 finale of Orphan Black, “By Means Which Have Never Yet Been Tried.”

This year was a record year for nomination participation according to the Hugo Awards’ official website, with 2122 ballots cast. You can read the full list of nominees here. The winners of each category will be voted on by the members of Worldcon 2015 and announced at the Hugo Awards Ceremony this August 22 at Sasquan in Spokane, Washington.

20 New Star Wars Books and Comics to Fill in Gap Between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens

Star_Wars_logoThose of you thirsty for some information of the state of the Galaxy Far Far Away leading up to The Force Awakens are in luck. According to an exclusive report at Entertainment Weekly, there are at least twenty new Star Wars books and comics to be released later this year fleshing out the thirty-two years between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens, ranging all different publishers and target age demographics in a series called Journey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Content under that title will be released by various Disney imprints as well as at least seven outside companies and is confirmed to include adult novels, young adult novels, sticker books, and comics.

Details on most of the books involved are still under wraps and many of the books are still being worked on, but we do know some about of the upcoming material:

A few titles we can confirm are Del Rey’s Star Wars: Aftermath, which sounds like it may serve as an epilogue to the original trilogy – and perhaps a prologue to the new one. Meanwhile, Marvel Comics will put out one prequel called Star Wars: Journey to the Force Awakens and another preview story told from C-3PO’s perspective. For vehicle enthusiasts, Studio Fun International will print Star Wars: Ships of the Galaxy.

The report also let’s us know some of the authors involved for a series of young adult novels focusing on the characters of original trilogy, to be released by Disney-Lucasfilm Press:

Cecil Castellucci (author of Tin Star) will write Moving Target, an adventure following Princess Leia; Jason Fry, who earlier wrote Darth Maul: Shadow Conspiracy, will be the author of The Weapon of a Jedi, about Luke Skywalker; Claudia Gray, author of the Evernight series of fantasy books, will write a book titled Lost Stars; and Greg Rucka, a comic book scribe and writer of the Atticus Kodiak novels, will pen Smuggler’s Run, a Han Solo tale.

There will also be a new series of novels retelling the original trilogy from various perspectives, though there’s no word yet on whose points of view we’ll see.