As part of our new episode format, we’re pairing up our Frankenstein episode with one about Jurassic Park. Kyle begins with a comparison of the characters in the movies versus the novels. He then goes on to describe the ways that scientists have manipulated life for the past two hundred years regardless of initial taboos. Claire starts her segment with a look at Michael Crichton’s evolution into a writer and how his early career as a doctor affected his work. She then explains how the special effects used for the original Jurassic Park changed movie making forever. Our hosts conclude with a discussion of common themes and their thoughts on the films and books.
This week Kyle and Claire get to discuss a foundational work of science fiction. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. Joining them are Jen and Meg from the podcast, The Indoorswomen! Courtesy of our guests, we kick the episode off with a delightful segment called “What Are We Drinking?” and follow it up with a game of “TV Trope Roulette”. Next, it’s time for a bit of history and production. Claire explains why Frankenstein is considered the original work of science fiction and how the genre’s existence is rooted in major movements of ideas and technology. Kyle details the life of Mary Shelley and the unusual circumstances and company that led to her story’s creation. Afterwards we enjoy a group discussion of monster tropes derived from Frankenstein, notable adaptations of the classic work, and our thoughts on the original.
Claire and Kyle are tired, sweaty, and full of bittersweet elation as they return from 3 days of New York City Comic Con and all of its wonders. It is with a heavy heart (and light wallet) that they recap some of the wonderful panels and discussions that they witnessed while attending America’s largest comic convention in this unconventional DSRA episode. Claire talks about the panel for Netflix’s The Dragon Prince a future DSRA topic, and the buzz surrounding the show and her love of its creator’s former work. Kyle goes into the joy of seeing the creators of The Venture Bros. and the life lessons imparted on him from there. The two hosts also discuss the upcoming Amazon show (and future DSRA topic), Good Omens, the satirical novel written by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett that will be the coming to Amazon Prime in 2019. And if that’s not nerdy enough for you, they also attended a panel on Critical Role, a show which consists of voice actors sitting around a table playing Dungeons & Dragons (another future episode topic). The hosts round out their discussion of NYCC by relating their experience at multiple different SciFi/Fantasy book panels helmed by the movers and shakers in the field today. Their fears, anxieties, what they are trying to accomplish as they make their mark on an ever changing genre.
But wait, there’s more! Claire and Kyle end the episode with an announcement on their future plans for the podcast and how it will soon evolve. Oh yes, change is in the air…
Street Fighter is arguably the most influential fighting game of all time. Capcom just released it’s 30th Anniversary Collection which gives DSRA the perfect excuse to explore an old favorite. We are also absolutely thrilled to be collaborating with Monica Delmonico at Popcorner Reviews for this episode. You can check out her wonderful DIY pop-up cards that she made for our colab here. She didn’t even need a hadouken to blow us away. In the episode Claire explains what exactly defines a fighting game and examines the pivotal games in the genre that came before Street Fighter. Kyle is out ‘living his best life’ in Maine so James breaks down the eccentric team that created Street Fighter II and how their attention to detail made it so special. Our hosts conclude with their thoughts on fighting games, the Street Fighter series, and their first experiences with it.
On this episode, the hosts dive into the pivitol animated film from 1997. Claire is out for this one, so the wonderful (and nefarious) James Fouhey handles the History segment. Mr. Fouhey starts with an explanation of the Muromachi Period of Japan, the setting of the fictional film, and why director Hayao Miyazaki thought it was the perfect back drop to tell his complicated tale. Kyle delves into the past life and work of Hayao Miyazaki and the origin of some of the most common asthethics of his movies. Kyle also describes the complicated and grueling process of making this film, and it’s distribution in America. The hosts finish up with a discussion of Miyazaki’s work, how they discovered it, and some of Miyazaki’s thoughts on the nature of film and art.
Furyborn, book one of The Empirium Trilogy, is the latest YA fantasy novel from Claire Legrand. It is a tale of elemental magic, a prophecy of two queens, and two young women who live a thousand years apart. Claire and Kyle are happy to dive in after hearing it recommended so strongly by the Unassigned Reading podcast. Kyle begins by discussing the western origins of fantasy literature and how the genre’s stories became so male dominated, before telling his own tale of two mighty queens: Ireland’s Grace O’Malley and England’s Elizabeth I. Claire then talks about Legrand’s inspiration for writing the story, her motivation for writing “unlikable” female heroes, and what Legrand hopes people take away from her book. Kyle and Claire conclude with their thoughts on the book, who would like it, and what about it makes it so YA.