Friday, July 26, 2013

HEP - 46 - On Revengence

On this week's show Al and Tony break down the bizarre South Korean revenge movie Oldboy. They also break down the new 3D printing boom, and seek out the connections between Napoleon Dynamite and The Prestige. Stay tuned after the sponsors for a nerd out on the film Pacific Rim.


Live octopus eating video from Oldboy.
Star Trek (2009) teaser with welding
3D printed space stations
Robotic hand that can feel
Napoleon Dynamite tether ball incident
Oldboy hallway scene
The Duck of Doom

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

TDS Thoughts - 1 - Alone

I want you to imagine that we are alone.

That on the biological spaceship we call earth, we drift through the void as a ship would upon quiet seas. On all horizons, there are no shores to be seen. In the deepest night, only the stars shine to share the lonely burden.

In our own sea, the solar system, we have found isles, but no refuge. Some planets seem suitable at a distance, but are toxic underfoot. Others, volcanic and turbulent, devoid of life. Some are even devoid of surface.

So we look outward, out to that currently insurmountable ocean. Centauri beckons. A mere 4.27 light years. An instant to the cosmic scale, or 165,000 years in our most advanced space vehicle. There is a chance of an exoplanet here. A planet that humans could call home. A place where the skies are blue and the soil rich. Where the only major difference is that the familiar night sky gives way to new stars and constellations. Where our own home star is just a glinting mote in a crystalline sky.

But only a chance.

What if we reach this world and still find ourselves as the only intelligent being in the universe? Do we look outward to our galaxy? There are an estimated 10 billion earth like planets in The Milky Way. Are we so lucky that only Earth had the chemical composition to spawn life? That we are 1 in 10 billion? Do we push this further and consider the quintillions of star systems in the known universe?

Is it empty?

Are we alone?

Are we the only instance of the biological epoch? Are we the only sets of atoms that are even aware of atoms?

Our vessel drifts through infinite black, embraced only by the mass of a finite thrashing from the basest elements in our star.

Yet we are one of billions in our own cosmic neighborhood. One of billions of trillions on far off shores in galaxies further than comprehension. Less than a single grain of sand in a great desert, or a piece of spittle falling into an ocean.

Does this make us more important? Or less? Are we simply a temporary anomaly so far beset in the depths of the void that it will never matter, or are we the only matter that matters because we understand ourselves to be matter? Or is our consciousness just the conduit for our delusions of grandeur?

Is it blind arrogance to think that with all that is, only we exist to understand it? That our one rock is somehow the center of all. That we do not share this common cosmos with a single other microbe or form of life, except for what is on our little blue ball. That an entire universe is dead except for us, who are to this planet little more than bacteria.

It cannot yet be said for certain, but smart money disagrees. Life thrives in every nook and cranny on this world, often in places said to be near impossible. If we can go 1 for 8 plus a Plutoid on our own block, then what’s to say that the same vitality doesn’t grip the rest of the universe? Even if the odds are 1 in 100, 1 in 10,000, hell, one in 10 billion for a heavenly body to contain life, that still makes for a staggering amount over the course of an entire universe.

Do I believe we are alone? Not a chance.

Friday, July 19, 2013

HEP - 45 - Dude, it's Like, Medical

In this episode, Al and Tony dig into the documentary Dark Days, and discuss the manifold problems of homelessness, and tenacity of the human spirit. They also discuss medical nonsense and Albert is outed as a Sharknado hipster.

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Texas legislature bans tampons
Pacific Rim
"The Wreck of the Charles Dexter Ward"

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Albert vs. Movies - 1 - House Hunting

Albert flies it solo suffering his way through the real-estate themed horror film House Hunting with a full-length commentary. Check out the movie on Netflix and watch along he encounters monsters with goofy hats, annoying antagonists, and a twist ending that makes not the slightest bit of sense.

In Space No One Can See You Sparkle

In this month's flash fiction challenge we're taking mythological creatures from mankind's dark past, and asking what would happen if they inhabited the darkness between the stars. It's vampires...IN SPACE.

What we're looking for is a story of a thousand words or fewer that puts everyone's favourite bloodsuckers in a place you'd never expect to find them: outer space. As always we're looking for something that takes us by surprise, something that makes us think, something that makes our blood run cold. So grab your wooden stakes and take a stab at it.

The deadline for submission is August 16, 2013. Send your entries to Happy writing!

The winner will get $10 through paypal.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

HEP - Short Echoes 5 - Hard Time by B.T. Joy

Hard Time 

by B.T. Joy

He closes his eyes. The light flashes. 

Somewhere west. Wyoming. Montana. Little Hallmark across the street. Hanging lilacs. Next door along. A picture house showing the matinees. His eyes, getting old, can’t see the listings. 

May as well cross. Look what’s on. Halfway over. An Asian guy in an immaculate suit passes. He feels the familiar repulsive burn of electric between them. The Asian guy thinks they’ve brushed bodies and makes something of it. 

“Hey fella! Watch where you’re going, huh!?”

He doesn’t respond. 

You’re wondering how he can be so calm? It wasn’t always that way. Not always that way at all. 
His shuddering feet reach the other curb like tiny boats coming into shore and he shuffles to the doors of the picture house. He doesn’t have time to watch the movies. He’ll never have time to watch a full movie again. But sometimes he likes to read the advertisements. 

Schindler’s List. Jurassic Park. Sleepless in Seattle.

Must be the early 90s now. Christ the world was getting old. 

He closes his eyes. The light flashes. 

Sidewalk bench. Sitting. Early morning and no folk around. The Deep South by the look of the trees all shining in the muggy wind and the French Colonial facades, blue and peach, that line the good-sides of the streets like Hollywood sets of pinewood and plaster. 1970, by the cars.  

But what were you asking? Oh, yes, so calm. 

He wasn’t always so calm. It wasn’t always that way. For the first ten years he’d run around from place to place- from time to time- like a devil on speed. Trying to grab at people. Shouting. Screaming his name. 

Saying he was lost and he wanted to go home now. 

Nothing ever changed. He couldn’t make anything change at any rate.   

Nothing ever stayed the same long enough for anyone to understand. 

He looks down at his hands. Resting on his legs that rest on that little sky-blue bench in Louisiana or Mississippi; or wherever the fuck he is. Old hands. With delves deep as canyons and the little lilac rivers of veins rushing everywhere; eroding the skin. 

So old. Getting so... so... old. 

He closes his eyes. The light flashes.

Chase Field. On the grass. Fuck. Chase Field again. On the grass. Strewn with shirtless bodies, old and young. Brown porpoises lolling in the Phoenix summer. Pittsburgh Pirates win. Arizona Diamondbacks lose. Ten runs to three. 

He sits on the wall. The lawn is emptying. Gingham. Striped. Checker. Tartan. Calico. White. The blankets are being skinned from the lawn. Folded between semi-naked bodies glossed with sweat. The grass is littered with cartons and discarded chili-dogs. The march is being played. 

Not again. Not again with the fucking march. Must times be recycled. Isn’t it bad enough. Isn’t it torture enough. Isn’t it hell enough. 

The march. The march. The triumphant peppy march. Pittsburgh Pirates win. Arizona Diamondbacks lose. Ten runs to three.

The people are swarming like a chain of coffee-coloured ants. They bear insufferably close. The repulsive electric stabs at him. A thousand stinging tentacles. 

He falls off the wall and wails when he hits the earth. Mothers pull their children into shawls of towels and blankets. 

“Just a drunk.” They whisper to each other. 

From the flat of his back he stares up at the painful Arizona sun. 

He closes his eyes. The light flashes.

Dark place. Perhaps by the sea. Because he can hear it lolling on the shore. Cooler night. Still on his back. Faint wisps of air up there. In all that blackness. Faint green. Radiation green. Perhaps it’s thicker than it looks because there are no stars. 

But the sea. The sea out there. In the dark. Still lolling on the shore. 

What were you asking? 



Calm now. Calm now. Like the sea. Like the sea. Out there. In the dark. Still lolling on the shore. 
Not always like this. Not at all always like this. Ran frantic once. Devil on speed. Grab people. Shout. Scream name. 

Lost. Lost. Lost.  

Want to go home!  

Want to go home!

Sea now. Dark. Lolling on shore. 

What were you asking? 


Does he remember? 

Of course he remembers. 

Who could forget? Done with her. Blood on privates. Hers. His. Jimmy’s. Jimmy’s knife. Pulled it out. No. Put it back. Pulled it out. More blood. Throat this time. Not from below. Not from where they’d forced themselves inside. 

Throat this time. Welling up. Red. Like the sea. In the dark. Lolling on the shore. Tongue lolling. On the grass. Sea on the shore. Tongue on the grass. Lolling. Lolling. 

He closes his eyes. The light flashes.

Chase Field. On the grass. Fuck. Chase Field again. On the grass. Old and young. Brown porpoises. Lolling. Lolling. Lolling. Pittsburgh Pirates win. Arizona Diamondbacks lose. Ten runs to three. 

He sits on the wall. Gingham. Striped. Checker. Tartan. Calico. White. Red. Like the sea. Welling up. Lolling. Lolling. Blankets. Skinned from the lawn. Not again. Not again. Fucking march. Recycled. Bad enough. Torture enough. Hell enough. 

The march. The march. Pittsburgh Pirates. Arizona Diamondbacks. Ten runs to three.

Swarming ants. Insufferably close. The repulsive electric.

He falls. 

Mothers pull children. 

“Just a drunk.”

“Just a drunk.”  

  Painful Arizona sun.

He closes his eyes. The light flashes. 

No. No. 

Interstate 44. Lebanon. Missouri. June 14th. Cover of cypress trees. Old Harley store closed for business. Almost transparent moon. Dark clouds and gold-dust of dawn. 

No. No. No.  

He looks to the trees. To the murmuring sounds not leaves but men are making under the anonymity of shade. No. Old now. Weak now. No. 

In the dark a hand. His hand. Her mouth. His jeans. Her blood. Jimmy puts back his cock. Pulls out his knife. 

She dies. And here, they didn’t know, they knew too well, folk are placed in pods of iron; and fed to eternity. 

He closes is eyes. The light flashes. 


B.T. Joy is a Glaswegian poet who currently lives in Bridge of Weir, Renfrewshire, where he teaches High School English. Between 2006 and 2009 he lived in London where he studied and mentored at London Metropolitan University; gaining a First Class Honours degree in Creative Writing and Film Studies. Since then he has had poetry and fiction published in American, Australian, Irish, Japanese, Hongkongese and British magazines, journals and anthologies. In 2012 he was nominated for The Ravenglass Poetry Press Competition; judged by the Dundonian poet Don Paterson. B.T. Joy's website can be accessed via the following link: 

Friday, July 5, 2013

HEP - 43 - The Secret Society of Forgotten Arts

In this episode Tony and Al take a ride with Rubber, a movie about a cold-hearted serial killer named Robert who goes around exploding people's heads with his psychokinetic powers; also he is a tire. Later the joys of bad movies are extolled, and the tragic wonder of technological progress is examined.

Download it.

Atantic Rim
Phil Hornshaw 
So You Created a Wormhole
Upstream Color
Joyland by Stephen King
Linotype: the Film
John Titor
David Icke
Bohemian Grove
Coral Castle
Bishop Castle

"Linotype: The Film" Official Trailer from Linotype: The Film on Vimeo.