G & T Show 42 – Avengers, Laminated Lists, & Star Trek Doctors is now available for downloading. Check it out here. This week Nick, Teri, and Mike are back with a new episode. They’ve got a new Ask Dayton, Star Trek Las Vegas Update, Star Trek 12 Movie News, Teri’s Voyager Watch, an interesting discussion of Star Trek’s Doctors and so much more. Later Dayton joins us in the chat room and Dion joins them in the studio.
They begin with this week’s show with Nick explaining that Teri shouldn’t call Mike very happy right now, since she wasn’t present at his recent contract negotiations with Mike’s agent, Scott Boras. They’re playing hard ball now. It prompts Teri to start off this week’s show with a plea. Red Alert! We need help. They’re putting out a call for volunteers to help with our website, and other aspects of the G & T Show. Specifically, they’re looking for a writer to assist with our post-show notes, which reiterates what happens on the show for those members of our audience who may be hearing impaired and are unable to listen but are still interested in the topics we discuss. They’re looking for someone with the patience to listen to their show (over and over). Although, it’s a volunteer position, there are perks. Nick offers the fact that Mike is their booth babe for STLV as an example of the perks involved. Mike adds that they get to hang out with us. Anyone interested is encouraged to email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Teri explains why they’re looking for help. Mike is buried beyond words, the show is becoming more and more successful and they don’t want to lose steam. Lanny in the chat room offered his assistance. Nick would like to see a revolving group of people so that no one will get over whelmed with the task. He goes on to say that is why they thank Mike so often on the show for all of his effort. He enjoys reading the recap even before listening to the show. Mike adds that there are a lot of people in the STO community that have hearing impairments that miss out on the interviews and podcasts because they don’t include detailed show notes. Nick says that he didn’t even consider that this was an issue until Mike’s email broached the topic. He realized that it was very IDIC and Trek that their show strives to reach everyone, which may explain the numbers that they have. Teri thanks him again, while Mike replies that he does what he can. They’re trying to keep him from pulling his hair out. Nick asks Teri if she had told Mike about the dinner she had set up for him with Chase Masterson for Star Trek Las Vegas. Mike was caught by surprise. They shared a laugh about how awesome that would be if it were true. Teri wouldn’t mind doing that either.
Teri moves us along and tells us that since the rebirth of her Trek Super Fandom five years ago, she had been hearing about Free Comic Book Day. She had no idea what it was about, but recalls watching Felcia Day’s, BonnieGirl’s, or Televixen’s tweets, while StarFleetMom would share photos. When she heard that it was Free Comic Book Day, Teri and Allen went to the new comic book store in her area called KABOOM Test Labs. She tells us about her experiences there. With a Chick-fil-A booth and a replica 1960’s Batmobile parked out front, the place was packed with a line out the door. A handful of comic book artists were doing sketches; give-a-ways, and the massive table filled with free comic books.
She had a great time. Not only was it her first time in a comic book store. She was looking for Mouse Guard, but they had sold out. However, she did pick up a Serenity comic book. They didn’t have a lot of Star Trek stuff, but she did pick up Obsessed with Star Trek. Nick says that he got that too. 2500 questions with a little computer in the corner. Teri Squees! Mike suggests that they may now have activities for their journey to Vegas. Nick asks if Mike’s going to be making the trip with them to Vegas, but then remembers that his contract is still waiting to be signed.
Nick was tweeting and posting photos while he was visiting his comic book store. He got a 33 RPM album of the Two Sides of Leonard Nimoy. Mike doesn’t have a comic book store in his area. Teri and Nick both picked something up for Star Trek Las Vegas. Nick picked up an action figure of Captain Benjamin Sisko in the DS9 Dominion War-Era uniform complete with phaser rifle, phaser, baseball, cap, and PADD for Avery Brooks to sign at the convention. He also picked up Keith R. A. DeCandido’s The Captain’s Log comic book anthology featuring Captains Pike, Sulu, Harriman, and Jellico. He got a great deal on it.
The comic book store he visited also had a handful of comic book artists, the Roy Rogers restaurant next door had a guy with a guitar singing, while they passed out chicken strips. It was also packed. He was pleased to see a lot of parents there with their kids, spending money. He was also surprised by the amount of young die-hard fan-girls that were present. Teri shared that she is a die-hard fan-girl for Aquaman. She was disappointed to learn that they had sold out. Nick was surprised to hear that they couldn’t keep it them on the shelf. He didn’t understand people fascination with Aquaman. Nick asks what does he really do? Teri refers to a comic strip on her Tumblr that portrays Aquaman controlling Cthulhu.
Teri shares that another thing that they couldn’t keep in the store, but chases a Disney toy squirrel. Especially with the Avengers out right now, their toys are out in full force. Mike mentions that Disney understands action figures, while Teri explains that they know merchandising and is not afraid to throw it all out there. Sometimes, she wishes Disney owned Star Trek. Mike tries to imagine a Star Trek exhibit at Disneyworld. Teri agrees and goes on to say that it’s a much better property for Disney than Star Trek because it fits in with their stance towards peace, love, and happiness better than with Star Wars. Before Teri gets us back on topic, Mike thought that they would probably build the Enterprise hotel we discussed a few weeks ago. Continuing, she tells us that she really likes Thor and was interested in getting a Thor plush doll. They had all of them except for Thor, which had sold out on the first day.
Speaking of the Avengers, Nick confirms that Teri had not seen it yet, while he and Mike both had. Nick went to the midnight screening, where his local theater had it showing on four sold-out screens. He was surprised at the amount of COSplay that he encountered. With Robert Downey Jr. and Chris Hemsworth, he wasn’t surprised by the number of young teenage girls that were there. Teri wasn’t surprised, because there was a lot for a woman or a gay man to like in this film. Nick adds that there is a lot for a straight man who’s comfortable with his sexuality to like about it as well. He had seen girls cosplaying as the Wasp among others.
Nick recommends that Teri watch it. Scarlett Johansson in black leather pants was as close to perfection as it gets speaking from a guy’s point of view.Teri has been a fan of Scarlett since she first saw her in Lost In Translation. Nick had only seen that film once, when he had returned from a trip to Japan, which had put him into the right state of mind for the movie. Teri explained that she does a lot of business travel which provided her with a different perspective. People that don’t travel a lot don’t understand how you can meet strangers, and realize that they are not really strangers. Nick mentions Joss Whedon before asking Mike if he noticed that despite the large cast, Scarlett Johansson got as much screen time as anyone else. She certainly doesn’t get lost in the shuffle. Mike agrees and even says that it seems that she gets a disproportionate amount of screen time over the rest of the individual guys. Nick says that she was one of the common threads that ran through the other films. He even mentions that Hawkeye was briefly seen in Thor. He goes on to explain that the disparity could be attributed to bring his character out into the open. Mike agrees and doesn’t mind seeing so much of her in the film.
Nick mentions Joss Whedon’s decision to have Black Widow face off against the Hulk and making it work. He tells Teri that it is Whedon-tastic in its humor. Nick mentions that at the end of Marvel movies, they drop a teaser for the next film that they will release. In the Avengers, there were two such teasers. The first appears at the end of the movie, while the second appear after the credits completed and it had Nick laughing so hard when he saw it. Mike had missed it. Nick says that it was filmed a few weeks prior to the movie’s release and features Mark Ruffalo in it. Teri is looking forward to seeing it, because it shows what a good director can do with unbelievable material and real emotion. Everyone that she’s talked to that has seen the movie has praised it for the acting. Nick mentions how much Robert Downey Jr. shines in the film. Although Captain America is the leader of the Avengers, Downey is the leader of the actors.
Gwyneth Paltrow was only in a small portion of the film. Mike thought she had done a fantastic job. Nick continues that Joss had pulled some humor out of her and mentions that he could watch an entire movie based on the 12 percent. He states that once she watches the movie, she will understand what he means. Teri explains why she likes Joss Whedon so much. He can take these outrageous characters that would never exist in the real world, (such as Thor), and bring out the best from the talented actors playing those roles. She goes on to say that a halfway decent script, directed by an actor’s director, such as Whedon, and they will overcome the silliness of the plot and make it the grandiose mythos that makes super hero movies so much fun. Nick says that Teri hurt Paul’s feelings when she had said that Captain America wasn’t real. It solicits a laugh, before they say that she had been talking about Thor.
Nick suggests that JJ Abrams should watch the Avengers, notice the mixing of action, and pay attention to Jon Favreau’s direction in Iron Man and Iron Man 2. Nick says that the first film was a superior to Iron Man 2, but he doesn’t view it as such a letdown that many other fans had. He uses Mickey Rourke’s role in Iron Man 2 as an example of a fleshed out character. It’s also illustrates how the story guides the action. Nick wants JJ to take a look at the movies. Teri explains that it’s not just JJ, but also his writing team. Nick agrees with that. She goes on to say that by writing for character and then action, you get a more successful movie. Nick points to Christopher Nolan and asks JJ to take a look.
Nick takes us into this week’s Star Trek 12 Movie News by bring up the recent rumors that have surfaced about it. Several websites have confirmed that Cumberbatch will be playing the role of Khan in the upcoming movie. Nick was disappointed about it. They missed an opportunity to come up with something new and original. With the appearance of Khan in it, they completely missed the mark, regardless of how good the movie may be, especially with an entire universe at their disposal. For Nick, the new movie will never be able to compete with Nicholas Meyer’s The Wrath of Khan. He goes on to say that regardless of how well, Cumberbatch does, he won’t be able to replace Ricardo Montalban. Because of Montalban’s work with the character, Khan obtained a life of its own. Nick says that we could have come up with an original villain for the movie.
Teri mentions something she had said when they first mentioned that the movie was going to be made. She had wondered if they would have dared to spit on the memory of Montalban by recasting Khan with a white British actor. Nick mentions that Khan was supposed to be Sikh. Teri continues by stating that they had begged him not to use Khan. They had created an alternate universe by destroying a large and popular portion of the prime universe (specifically Vulcan, Romulus, and Remus) in order to tell new tales. Yet they (Abrams, Orci, Lindelof, and Kurtzman) decided that it was easier to rehash Trek that’s already been done. Teri thought that it was just lazy.
Nick plays devil’s advocate by describing a situation where Khan begins as an enemy, but over the course of the movie they take his character in a different direction. Teri says that it’s still Khan. They have this whole universe where Vulcan is gone and they couldn’t come up with a new bad guy or species. Mike even suggests the idea of an evil Vulcan, which prompts Nick to mention one of his twitter friends, EvilVulcanChick. Teri continues with new Trekkies or new people drawn to the movie won’t know any better about who the enemy is. It’s an opportunity to do something new and interesting without walking all over what has already been done. Instead, they’re dragging Leonard Nimoy into it. Nick says that Nimoy is being coy about it. Nick said that he had not seen that he was being filmed. He found Nimoy’s tweets that stated that he’s in talks, and hasn’t confirmed that he will be appearing in the new film. Teri says that he’s helping to build the hype. Nick and Teri both are hoping that this is just part of JJ’s marketing. Teri takes it a step further and hopes that Khan is just a red herring. She doubts it, because the information is coming from sources that surprise her. If it’s Khan, she’s probably not going to go see the movie just to witness another failure in script writing. She knows that they won’t miss her money, since they will make it up with some 12 year old’s who will probably watch it (post-production) 3D.
Nick talked about how the writers are looking to build a new Trek franchise by examining Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight Series and how they brought back the Joker. Nick explains that the difference is that the Joker is a staple that has been around forever. Mike states that he gets reinvented each time he appears. Nick continues that he’s the main antagonist for Batman and that Kirk does not need Khan to be his main antagonist. It’s not about the crew and the villain of the crew; it’s about the relationship between the characters. He thinks that Star Trek VI was a good example of it because it dealt with casting aside prejudices and preconceptions. Teri says that it’s about real human problems rather than having some kind of arch nemesis. Kirk is not a super hero. If anything he may be the penultimate representation of humanity. Instead, they’re trying to make him this bigger than life figure that came from a broken home. Teri wondered what happened to a good person coming from a solid family.
Nick mentions that he had been battling some personal demons. With the hopes of venting some of his rage, he took the time to watch Star Trek V with the commentary turned on. It featured Shatner and his daughter. She remembers more about the film that he does and often corrects him. In it they had talked about the scene on the observation deck where Sybok took Spock’s and McCoy’s pain. Shatner had said that he thought he had done a good job writing and directing that scene, and Nick agrees and appreciates the use of theater tricks with lighting to create mood for it. At the end of the scene, Shatner had to fight to get the line about God residing within the human heart into the scene. As Nick watched and listened, he found that he was more accepting of some scenes that he had previously hated, like the camping scene and some of the things he was trying to do with it. He also talked about the problems with the budget, including the actor’s salaries going up with each film that detracted from their ability to deliver in other areas, like the rock monster that would have appeared at the end of the film. Nick recommends our listeners to watch the DVD or the blu-ray with the audio commentary turned on. The entire experience almost made him enjoy the movie.
Teri shares that she had watched it a short while ago when a movie channel had shown a different Star Trek movie every night starting with The Motion Picture and running through Nemesis. She says that script had a lot of potential. It just needed a script doctor and a better budget. Nick thinks the budget was the biggest issue. Teri disagreed and says that they should have had Carrie Fisher script doctor it. She’s one of the best script doctors in Hollywood right now. She can gut a script and make it much better. She wouldn’t have changed it all that much. She just would have tweaked it in such a way that would have made it a much more meaningful film, and probably with a smaller budget. Nick would have like it if Nick Meyer had been involved, because he would have gotten to the heart of it. Teri disagreed, but Nick continued that Meyer was able to do things in Wrath of Khan that still make it such a great film even by today’s standards. Teri is disappointed at the fact that JJ has a budget of over $150 million.
JJ and company have their work cut out for them. Their movie is coming out next year in the same time slot as the Avengers, which did even better than the Harry Potter film. On its opening night, it had brought in over $88 million. She can’t wait to see the movie’s numbers after its opening weekend. While Nick says that it was amazing, Mike states that he’s going to watch the Avengers again. Teri explains that is the key of what a successful blockbuster movie should do, bring people back to see it in the same weekend. Thinking back on the movie, Nick says that he had missed big chunks of the dialog because of people laughing or reacting to what they had seen on the screen, especially in the final epic battle. He illustrates the point by describing the reaction in the theater when a character had stated that he’s always angry. Nick had been in the back of the theater at the time. The cheers began in the front of the theater and grew into a physical presence. The line stating that he’s adopted spurred laughter that resulted in him being unable to hear what was said afterwards. Teri says that is the type of crowd you want to be in and the movie you want to see when you’re sitting in a theater with a live audience. Those types of movies rarely exist today.
She said that she saw some of it in JJ’s 2009 Star Trek film, but not to the degree that she heard that the Avengers had produced. Nick agrees that JJ’s Trek didn’t have the emotional release. Teri said that there had been laughter from Trekkies that understood the brilliant inside jokes placed strategically throughout it. She even laughed out loud several times, but never would have cheered at the fact that Kirk had let Nero die. Lanny in chat had mentioned a scene that caused Nick to applaud. Mike says that it had been some time since he had a legitimate movie going experience, which is what the Avengers brought about. It’s a form of community with strangers with something that was bigger and greater than them. They both agreed. Nick goes on to say that the anticipation from fans was so high that it would have been so easy to be disappointed by the movie. He shares that the theater he was in was packed with a lot of teenage women, and the two guys that sat next to him were from Nigeria and they thoroughly enjoyed it. Teri explains that they had found enough of a connection with the movie’s characters to care about what happens to them. Mike agrees and states that he’s not a fan of Marvel superheroes. He prefers DC. Teri uses it to illustrate that it’s a result of the quality of the writing and acting in the film.
Nick gives us his of impressions of the preceding Marvel films. He enjoyed Thor; Hulk wasn’t all that good but there was a new actor playing him; he liked Captain America although he found the acting a little wooden; but it was his man-crush for Robert Downey Jr. that really lured him to it. He wanted to see what happened to him in the Avengers. However, after sitting through the film, he had gained a much greater appreciation for all of the characters in the film. He even points to Samuel L. Jackson’s role as Nick Fury who seemed to have a sadness or a sort of resignation to his character throughout the entire film. Teri states that is the way it should be for his character, since they were combating a real evil. Nick compares his performance to that of Bruce Greenwood as Pike. Fury was trying to find ways to get all of these personalities to blend together, which is what we should have seen in Star Trek 2009. Nick adds that what ended up bringing them all together caught him completely off guard. He actually gasped when he say it.
Before moving us along, Teri says that we all know the experiences we’ve gotten from Bad Robot writers, with the exception of Lindelof who does write original stuff. However, Lindelof tends to write mystery for mystery sake and doesn’t know how to write a through plot line. He had written for Lost. Nick says that he can write the set up very well, but fails to deliver the pay off. Teri says that he can’t finish the job. The others only have experience writing for other people’s Intellectual Property or Franchise, such as Mission Impossible or Transformers. Nick says that Joss Whedon was perfect for this movie, because we already know about the original stories and characters that he’s written, including Buffy, Firefly, and Dollhouse.
Teri said that Firefly and Dollhouse were original properties for him, however Buffy was not. Mike adds that the Buffy movie came first. Nick and Teri disagree about who wrote the Buffy movie. Teri said that he was involved in the series, but not the movie, which allows the studio to do whatever they want with it. While Nick looks it up, he says that the movie was his but the studio changed it. Teri explains that he doesn’t own it, which is why the studio is going to remake Buffy. Finding the information, Nick shares that Joss Whedon was the writer for the Buffy film, but he was not the director. Nick had meant that Buffy was his character. Teri adds that he doesn’t own Buffy, but Firefly is his. Nick suggests moving on from Firefly or he’ll get wistful. That was why she had gotten the Serenity comic.
Mike doesn’t think Whedon can do wrong. Teri says that he’s got a different understanding of what makes a story interesting. It’s the characters, not the action. The action sequences that he uses are organic to the story; whereas, in Abrams’ films they are not. She asks if anyone really cares about the characters in Transformers. Nick replies that he has never been a fan of the Transformers. She, then, poses the question, how many of us actually care about Tom Cruise’s character in Mission: Impossible? Nick agrees, while Mike adds that he does love Dr. Horrible. Teri explains that Ethan Hunt is not a hero that she would go back to see. With the Avengers, she cares about Thor and Iron Man and wants to know what happens to these characters. She’s attached to these characters because of what they are going through. If there is a connection to these characters, it will drive people to go back to see what happens to them.
Nick explains that it’s the story telling that drives people to go see this movie. Although there is an enormous amount of action, every character has growth throughout the film. He cites Tony Stark coming out at the end, Captain America taking on the role as leader, and the relationship between Black Widow and Hawkeye, and even Nick Fury. They all have grown during the course of the film. Teri hasn’t seen it yet, but has talked to a lot of people who have and all of them spoke about the characters when they come out of the film and not the action. At the end of the JJ movie, it was all about the lens flares and the scene where a person gets blown out into space and there was no sound. It wasn’t about the characters; it was about the action.
Nick explains that the only character that he had talked about was Bruce Greenwood as Pike. Teri said that Pike and McCoy were the exceptions, because they were compelling characters with outstanding actors that actually had something interesting to do. The biggest thing that Nick had to say about Star Trek 2009 after seeing it was how could they blow up Vulcan and Romulus? That’s when Nick realized that JJ was anti-pointy ears. Teri wondered how the best of humanity (Kirk) and the best of the UFP (Spock) could just stand there and let Nero die. It would have been similar to someone at the end of Star Wars saying that the Force doesn’t matter. Nick states that it’s the opposite of what Kirk had done at the end of Star Trek III, where he had tried to save Kruge from falling off the cliff. Teri says that Kirk was never a douche bag, while Archer was a compelling one. Once more, Nick mentions that JJ is anti-pointy ears for blowing up Romulus and Vulcan. Teri states that JJ is anti- a lot of stuff.
Several weeks ago Nick and Teri had mentioned that they were going to discuss their laminated lists with us during a future show. With his upcoming surgery approaching, he decided to tell us about his list. It’s been updated. While Mike said that he’ll have to come up with a new theme song for the list, Teri explains what the laminated lists are. Essentially, it’s the list of people that you would sleep with regardless of who you’re with or married to. Teri says that everyone has one, although they may deny it, but it’s true. Nick goes first and ranked them from five to one. When Nick mentioned Karen Gillan, he explained that some may not know who she was, but those that do would understand. She played Amy Pond from Doctor Who. Mike agreed. His next choice was Kate Middleton. He said that she was hot. Teri made it clear that he didn’t have to ask her permission to continue. He was hoping to get a reaction from her. Next, he faked us out by mentioning CancerGirl as his third choice, before he revealed that it was actually Jennifer Lawrence who played Mystique in X-Men First Class and played the lead in The Hunger Games. Next was Sophia Vergara who played Ed O’Neill’s wife on Modern Family. Mike loves her accent. Rounding out his top five was Emma Stone from Easy A. He had no desire to see The Amazing Spider-Man until he saw her as a blonde in the trailer. He loves Emma Stone. Cancergirl in the chat room said that Sophia is also a young thyroid cancer survivor. They found that interesting. Nick adds that Katee Sackhoff is as well.
Nick’s Laminated List
- Emma Stone
- Sophia Vergara
- Jennifer Lawrence
- Kate Middleton
- Karen Gillan
Teri starts her list off by mentioning that her list is a little bit different. Nick hoped so, while Mike stated that there was different equipment involved. She continued by saying that she didn’t have it in any particular order. It was simply her Yes List. Nick asked if Allen had his. Teri said that he does, and it features women that are just a bit older than Nick’s list. Nick explained that he did take Bea Arthur off his list. Teri said that they do tell each other when the list changes. Nick admits that he struggled with the decision to remove Jennifer Aniston from his list. Teri says that she doesn’t remove anyone from her list, it just keeps getting longer. The first person that she names from her list is Faran Tahir. Nick admits that he was on his list as well. Hugh Jackman and Bruce Greenwood were next on her list. She dreams about Greenwood often. Nick mentions that they will be at the cabana. She goes on to say that Hugh Jackman with a beard would get two spots and adds anyone with a nice beard. Nick states that Jason Alexander currently has a beard. Nick mentions that Paul (CaptPFDennis) who’s in the chat room, has a beard. They talk to him for a moment. Paul shares that he had shaved it off. Mike said that it’s Mirror Universe Paul that has the beard. Nick thinks he’s going to grow a beard for the convention. Mike says that he’s not going to shave his off. Teri will be squee-tastic, as long as it’s well trimmed.
Teri’s Laminated List
- Faran Tahir
- Hugh Jackman
- Bruce Greenwood
- Hugh Jackman with a beard
- Anyone with a nice beard
Moving along, Nick says that Paul shaving his beard reminded him of something that he wanted to share, but decided to wait for the end of the show. Teri said that it should probably be shared off the air. Nick disagreed. Teri is eager to get to this week’s discussion, so she moves us along to this week’s Ask Dayton #27 – It’s all Fan Fiction. Before getting to this week’s question, Nick points out that this is episode 42 of our show and the 27th installment of Ask Dayton. 42 is current age, and that the 27th is the day he was born in October. It all matches up for him. They move on to this week’s question concerning when a Foundry mission becomes Fan Fiction and how Dayton became a Star Trek author. The question was posed by Bob from All Things Trek. Dayton’s reply was a lengthy one.
The remainder of the show notes will be posted as soon as I am able to finish writing them up. Sadly I have run out of time, but plan to get back to them as soon as possible.