Witches, White Lighters, and a Time Lord…the Daemons don’t stand a chance.
Back in 1965, Gerry and Sylvia Anderson created the British television series, “The Thunderbirds.” It followed a secretive organizaton, International Rescue who, with their ultra high tech vehicles, would save people from disasters around the world and in space. Now, fifty years later, Wetta, the company behind the special effects in the “Lord of the Rings” movies, has relaunched the series.
Unlike the original, which used “Supermarianation” puppetry, this series uses a combination of miniatures, special effects and CGI. It is an unusual but very effective method. The miniature sets are build and shot on a sound stage, then the characters are added in later with CGI. To see how this works, check out the behind-the-scenes documentary, “Reggie & Thunderbirds: No Strings Attached.”
The documentary includes a walk-through of the Wetta offices, which are full of models from the original series, as well as props and prosthetics from the various movies Wetta has helped to create. Founder and president of Wetta, Sir Richard Taylor, was a big fan of the original Thunderbirds and the show was a big inspiration that led him into getting into the special effects industry.
The ships as well as the characters have been updated, but still have the same flavor of the original, with the ships even having some new abilities.
Even Thunderbird 5, which in the original was just a monitoring space station, plays a part in a rescue in the first episode. Plus, some of the characters even have some secrets we have yet to learn about!
There are two members of the voice cast worth noting. Fifty years after the debut of the original series, David Graham returns to voice Parker, Lady Penelope’s butler/chauffeur. Plus, in one episode, co-creator Sylvia Anderson, who originally voiced Lady Penelope, returns to voice lady Penelope’s grand aunt.
As of this writing, thirteen episodes have aired, but only in the United Kingdom and New Zealand. Reading through the “Thunderbirds Are Go” Facebook page, most reviews are positive and the show is trying to get air dates in the United States. Their YouTube channel does have some videos, but half of them you can’t see in the States. After a lot of research, the Second Geekhood IT Department (TimeSiren) did find a link where you can view the first episode. Other episodes are noted in the sidebar at this location. Episode one is actually one and two. So if you want to see more, go to episode three. The video is a bit pixelated and the channel does have the tendency to drop commercials in when you don’t expect it, but the episodes are still worth a view.
I guess the lesson here is that if you’re in danger, International Rescue is on the way!…unless you’re in the United States, then you’re screwed.
-The AFOL Husband
Are you lucky to enough to be engaged or married to a Geek? I was – 26 years ago May 21st.
It was the happiest day of my life, because when I was a newly-minted Star Wars fan back in 1977, the boy fans around me were zit-ridden and not interested in me. Sure, they were fans, but we were all too young to seriously think about settling down yet. I mean, c’mon, I was 14 when the bloody thing came out!
Luckily, Geek attracts Geek, and so when my wonderful AFOL Husband, Dennis Amador Cherry, wandered into my roommate’s home to scout out my friend Glen’s place for a shoot for his USC Cinema Television project, I looked out the window and saw his Ford Pinto. It was painted up like the the U.S.S. Enterprise and had the license plate, “ENPRISE”.
It would have been better if he had worn a geek T-Shirt, but this was 26 years ago and they were still scarce in those days. He took being on location very seriously, sporting a tie and jacket – a little worrying back then, but I soon had him out of his clothes…
…er I MEAN, he came to our first date more appropriately attired. We hit Farrell’s Ice Cream Parlor and caught the midnight showing of The Rocky Horror Picture Show. I was the LOUDEST heckler in the room, screaming “NAKED!” during strategic times during “Damn It, Janet.” By the time he drove me home, I was utterly mortified that I had gotten so into the movie and showed off the insanely funny new heckles I had learned watching it in Berkeley, CA (Or Bezerkely, as the locals call it).
As we said goodnight, I knew that was it, game over, man. I had cluster-f*cked up this date on an epic scale…and then a miracle happened.
He came back for a second date.
I tried to play it a little more low-key, exposing him to Weird Al Yankovic’s song, “Another One Rides the Bus”. I was on the floor laughing – making a fool of myself, yet again, but again, it didn’t scare him off. Why? Because he had been out with the mundane – dated the Tupperware and Avon ladies and they were, in his words, “boring!”
So, he came into my life and I introduced Dennis to my new, nicer, but just as demented friends in a local Star Trek fan club. The fans came and went, but we still dated and eventually one of those Trekkies/Trekkers became a guest at our wedding and is still local, alive and a friend we see at the Gallifrey One convention every year – Jennifer Cole.
So to all the Geek Girls out there…stick with your own kind. Fans breeding with other fans will results in the best outcome: more little fans!
In this one, I wondered what Star Trek would be like if it were made in the UK. I though it would be comical to make Rowan Atkinson “aka” Mr. Bean as Captain Kirk with first officer Teddy.
And Up for court-martial after accidentally destroying Starfleet Academy.
As a kid, one of my favorite comics was the Justice League. And my favorite issue has to be #5, the Showdown between Batman & Guy Gardner. At Justice League headquarters, Gardner confronts Batman again about giving leadership of the team over to Gardner. Batman provokes Gardner to fight him. Gardner removes his power ring, lunges at Batman, and is knocked out by a single punch from the Dark Knight. With Gardner sleeping on the floor and out of the way, they attempt to commence with their meeting.
Back in February of 2013, while searching for images of my All-Time favorite Green Lantern G’nort (in re-enactment picture), I found this picture of a Cosplay reenactment of the One Punch Knock-Out of Guy Gardner by Batman!
This is how Howard The Duck #3 starts out: Aunt May holding up a tattoo parlor at gunpoint. And yes, that is Peter Parker’s Aunt May. Don’t believe me?
So who’s behind this foul act? The Ringmaster, a nemesis of Howard’s from back in HTD #1, Vol #25. I love how they keep his history, but I won’t spoil it for you. Go get your own copy.
While I’m enjoying this new reincarnation of Howard, I do miss a few things. I still miss his old look, which was more cartoony. He’s a bit more mellow, but I guess he has grow accustomed to this world he never made. And I miss the cigar…but I guess he can’t smoke like he did in the 80’s.
I also really miss his best human friend, Beverly Switzler. I hope we find out what happened to her!
In the meantime, here’s some music to read Howard by.
The AFOL Husband.