For the night is bright and full of beauty. @ io9

For the night is bright and full of beauty. Amateur photo of M42, the Orion Nebula, taken by photographer Andrew Kirk. See more of his astrophotos here.


New Science Magazine Is All About The World's Coasts And Their Residents @ io9

Hakai Magazine is a newly launched science publication that will report on science, society, and the environment along the world’s coastlines, which are home not only to nearly half of the planet’s human population, but countless other species of plants and animals.


Breaking Bad Creator Turns To Fantasy For A Jack And The Beanstalk Flick @ io9

Now this is an interesting meshing of creator and fable. Disney has purchased Vince Gilligan’s (showrunner for Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul) new Jack and the Beanstalk story. *Insert Jack selling meth to the giant jokes here.*


Phil Isn't The Only Crazy Person On Last Man On Earth Anymore @ io9

One of the premises of The Last Man on Earth is that Phil is not his best self when you start throwing other people into the mix. But the latest addition to the cul-de-sac hasn’t just disrupted Phil’s life. It has also sent another survivor spiraling out of control.


A Magical War Begins In Full Trailer For Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell @ io9

Susanna Clarke’s magical alternate history Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell comes to television soon, and this trailer gives us a hint of what the return of English magic will look like. Meet Gilbert Norrell, Jonathan Strange, the Gentleman with the Thistle-Down Hair, and all the people in their magical orbit.


People Used To Work Inside Hamster Wheels @ io9

Perhaps the better way to phrase this is, “Hamsters now work inside person wheels,” because the person wheel definitely came first. These comic-looking but useful devices helped build many of the landmarks we now cherish.


The Most Terrifying Fish Dishes Ever Served @ io9

We all love seafood — but the ocean can be a terrifying place. The ocean depths are home to some deadly and poisonous creatures... so of course, people always try to eat them. Here are the scariest fish dishes you could possibly eat.


Why Was Carl Sagan Blackballed from the National Academy of Sciences? @ io9

If you’re ever feeling crappy about not getting recognition for your work, just remember that even Carl Sagan got negs from his scientific colleagues. In fact, he was never allowed into the National Academy of Sciences, despite all he did to popularize the scientific worldview.


The US Movie Adaptation Of Horror Manga Death Note Lands A Director @ io9

Another beloved manga is apparently getting a US makeover. This time it’s Death Note, Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata’s comic about an ambitious young man who receives a mystical killer notebook. You’re Next and The Guest director Adam Wingard has signed on to direct the US feature version.


This Hybrid "Knork" Utensil Was Also An Important Medical Invention @ io9

Knife, fork, spoon: This is the holy trinity of silverware and (while the occasional spork may jostle for inclusion), in general, these are all you’re likely to see. There is, however, another hybrid utensil you may not know: The Knork. And its creation owes as much to modern medicine as to dining habits.


Which Movie Would Be Better If It Was More Kid-Friendly? @ io9

Movie buffs tend to equate an R-rating with realness — if a movie is too violent or sexed-up for kids, then that proves the film-makers are keeping it real. A “hard R” equals a real edge. But sometimes, focusing on all the splatter and nudity can just get in the way of the story. Which movie would be better if it was PG, or PG-13?


German actor Daniel Bruhl confirms his evil role in Captain America: Civil War @ Blastr

Months after his casting was announced, Daniel Bruhl (Rush) has revealed which Marvel supervillain he's going to play in Cap's next adventure.

As previously speculated shortly after he was signed for Captain America: Civil War, it's Baron Helmut Zemo, whose father -- top Nazi scientist Heinrich Zemo -- was killed in a battle against Captain America back in World War II. Bruhl told the Independent, "I think I can tell you that without being thrown into Marvel prison," adding, "For the first few days I’ll walk around like a little boy. ... It’s such a huge project. We could do 20 films with the budget.”

The original Baron Zemo, Heinrich, made his debut in The Avengers #4 all the way back in March 1964, while sonny boy entered the scene in Captain America #168 (December 1973). If Helmut's history in the movie loosely follows that of the comics, he'll be out to seek revenge on Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) for causing his dad's death during Big Two.

What's interesting about Helmut Zemo is that, as Slashfilm reminds us, he played both sides off each other in the comics' Civil War storyline, aiding both Iron Man and Captain America at different points in the saga. Whether he takes the same path in the movie remains to be seen, but he'll be one of a trio of villains that also includes Crossbones (Frank Grillo) and probably the Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan) as well.

Evans, Bruhl, Grillo and Stan will be in the thick of a major MCU event that will also feature Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man, Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, Elizabeth Olsen as Scarlet Witch, Anthony Mackie as Falcon, Chadwick Boseman as Black Panther, Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye and a new young actor as Spider-Man. No wonder insiders are calling this thing Avengers 2.5.

Filming reportedly gets underway today, with Captain America: Civil War set for release on May 6, 2016. Are you glad to see Baron Zemo making his debut in the MCU?

Check out the International Space Station's radical new roll-up HD viewscreen @ Blastr

Nothing spruces up a room like a sparkling-clear HD TV screen, and if your home happens to be the International Space Station, the addition is a serious upgrade from the usual 13-inch laptop displays. 

Delivered by SpaceX on April 14 and developed for NASA by Austin-based Screen Innovations, the astronauts' latest toy and tool (besides the new espresso machine) is a 1080p digital projector and futuristic 65-inch Slate screen that can be rolled, transported and deployed flat under nearly any zero-gravity conditions, even the harsh environment of airlocks.  The technology used by Screen Innovations will allow the viewscreen to operate for 30,000 continuous hours, or 3.4 years, and its picture remains ultra-bright due to an ambient-light rejection projection system, which is handy since the interior lights of the ISS never go dark.  So, whether hosting a marathon Leave It to Beaver session or chatting with loved ones back on Earth, rest assured, the astronauts will be streaming in style.  Over the weekend, Gravity was chosen as their first orbital movie night, sans popcorn.

Here's a product video from Screen Innovations detailing the amazing device:

What would your ultimate double feature in space be?

(Via io9)

Medieval Combat Has Been Turned Into An International Sport @ io9

For the past five years, medieval combat enthusiasts have gathered together for the Battle of Nations — a for-real, full contact competition with actual weapons, metal armor, and a standardized set of rules. It’s an effort to turn medieval combat into an actual sport.


TV THIS WEEK: Penny Dreadful returns, Last Man on Earth's finale, and more! @ Blastr

We still haven't seen the full force of the spring and summer series premiering, but we keep getting an intruiging trickle, and this week that trickle brings back Penny Dreadful. Plus, The Last Man on Earth gets it season finale, a look at Orphan Black's early season-three ratings, and more.

Check out the week in TV below. What's on your watchlist? 

Highlights of the Week

Powers (PSN) Monday, Streaming - "F@#k the Big Chiller"

Season finale! - It takes quite a while for many TV series to make it to the screen, but Powers had a particularly hard road. It switched networks, went through plenty of rewrites that didn't actually led to production, and waited years to see the light of day. This year, the show based on the comic by Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming finally made it to the screen, though, and it did so in a somewhat historic way. Powers is the first original series to be broadcast on the PlayStation Network, streaming to subscribers every week, and like Netflix and other streaming services, PSN doesn't really gives us a week-to-week breakdown of how well the show is doing. So we're still waiting for word on just how successful the show was, and how viable PSN is as a venue for feature streaming content. For the moment, though, we can celebrate that this series -- which often felt like it would never really happen -- finally got a full season. 

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC) Tuesday, 8 p.m. - "The Dirty Half Dozen"

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is in a very interesting place right now when you look at the overall Marvel Studios series landscape. Even as the show enters into the final episodes of its second season, rumors of a spinoff series are swirling, and many fans are more concerned about the future of Agent Carter than they are about the future of this show. On top of that, Marvel's relationship with Netflix just got a big boost with the news that, in addition to the four other shows the studio is develping with the streaming service, their inaugural partnership, Daredevil, will continue for a second season. Then there are all the movies, which only seem to be increasing in frequency. With all that in mind, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. seems less and less relevant, but if you're a fan of the show, have no fear. Live ratings have slipped a bit (again) in recent weeks, but the show remains a strong DVR contender, packing one of the biggest Live+7 gains on TV. Plus, this week the show offers a bit of a tie-in to Avengers: Age of Ultron. Check out a preview below.

Orphan Black (BBC) Saturday, 9 p.m. - "Formalized, Complex, and Costly"

The third season of Orphan Black is well underway now, so we thought we'd take a moment to look back at how it launched. This year, things went a little differently with the Orphan Black season premiere. Instead of just airing on BBC America, the episode was broadcast on sister networks AMC, IFC, WEtv and Sundance TV. If you look at just the BBC America numbers, the show dropped significantly, earning an audience 13 percent smaller than last season's premiere. If you look at the whole picture, though, things look great for Orphan Black. The show drew a total of 1.27 million live viewers across all of those networks, nearly double the best live premiere audience the show's ever had. So, for the moment, it seems the cross-network scheme worked its magic. Now we just have to see how many of those viewers will keep watching.

The Last Man on Earth (FOX) Sunday, 9:30 p.m. - "Screw the Moon"

Season finale! - You may remember that, when The Last Man on Earth premiered, I wondered if the show's premised could sustain itself as a long-term TV prospect. I wondered if things would get dull or if we'd grow tired of the characters. Well, we still might, but for the moment Last Man is going strong. FOX has already renewed the post-apocalyptic series about a man and his few survivor friends trying to make life out of what's left of the world for a second season, and after viewing most of the first, it's easy to see why. Last Man expertly takes the end-of-the-world dynamic of the series and mingles it with classic sitcom tropes, and so far the formula has worked. Now we just have to see where we'll be left while waiting for season two.

Penny Dreadful (SHO) Sunday, 10 p.m. - "Fresh Hell"

Season premiere! - Last year, as both Penny Dreadful and Salem debuted, I wondered whether there was an appetite among viewers for this many horror-inspired shows, especially when you consider other cable series like American Horror StoryThe StrainBates Motel and perennial powerhouse The Walking Dead. Clearly, though, audiences want more, because all of the shows I just named live on, including Penny Dreadful, which got a renewal for a second season a little more than a month after its debut. The Showtime series, which blends known Victorian horror characters with new ones, thrives on offering something other series of its genre don't, and we're hoping for even more of that in season two. Check out a trailer below.

Monday, April 27

Gotham (FOX) 8 p.m. - "The Anvil or the Hammer"

Gordon and Bullock track the Ogre, who manages to break down Barbara's emotions; Penguin leads a massacre that kick-starts an epic war; Bruce learns the truth about Wayne Enterprises; and Nygma deals with his recent actions.

The Originals (CW) 8 p.m. - "City Beneath the Sea"

Dahlia reveals to Klaus some startling details about baby Hope and makes him an enticing proposition. Meanwhile, Elijah and Freya come up with opposing ideas on how to handle Dahlia's looming deadline; Vincent approaches Davina with an intriguing offer; and Hayley makes a difficult decision about her and Hope's future.

The Returned (A&E) 10 p.m. - "Claire"

Claire's secret is revealed; Lena returns home; police arrest the suspected killer who makes a full confession; Victor goes to extreme lengths to protect Julie; Camille learns the horrifying consequences of her attempt to help.

Tuesday, April 28

Community (Yahoo! Screen) Streaming - "Intro to Recycled Cinema"

Chang leaves Greendale to pursue fame in Hollywood. Abed agrees to complete his unfinished film with the support of Frankie, her movie producer friend Maury and Jeff. 

Powers (PSN) Streaming - F@#k the Big Chiller"

Read more in our Highlights section above.

The Flash (CW) 8 p.m. - "The Trap"

Barry, Caitlin, Cisco and Joe set a trap for Wells, but it puts Cisco in grave danger. Meanwhile, Eddie makes a decision regarding Iris, which unsettles Joe.

iZombie (CW) 9 p.m. - "Maternity Liv"

A pregnant woman is murdered but her baby survives. After Liv consumes the victim's brain, a fierce maternal instinct kicks in. Meanwhile, Major makes a shocking discovery.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC) 9 p.m. - "The Dirty Half Dozen"

Read more in our Highlights section above.

Person of Interest (CBS) 10 p.m. - "Asylum"

Reese and Fusco are caught in the war between crime lords Elias and Dominic; a clue to Shaw's whereabouts leads Finch and Root into a possible trap; and Control goes rogue to learn the truth about the Samaritan program.

Wednesday, April 29

Arrow (CW) 8 p.m. - "Ah Sah-Him"

Oliver goes through a rigorous transformation. Meanwhile, the League of Assassins come after Nyssa and she arms herself to face them alone, but Laurel asks Felicity and Diggle to help protect her.

Supernatural (CW) 9 p.m. - "Angel Heart"

Castiel tries to help Claire Novak find her mom who has been missing for years. He feels guilty for what he did to the Novak family and wants to make amends by reuniting Claire with her mother.

CSI: Cyber (CBS) 10 p.m. - "L0M1S"

Nine planes that departed from the same airport face a coordinated Wi-Fi attack while in flight.

Thursday, April 30

Steven Universe (TOON) 5:30 p.m. - "Reformed"

The gang chase a monster that's loose in the Temple.

Teen Titans Go! (TOON) 6 p.m. - "Kicking a Ball and Pretending to be Hurt"

The magic of soccer is discovered by the Titans.

Adventure Time (TOON) 7:30 p.m. - "Chips & Ice Cream"

The tree house has new tenants.

The Vampire Diaries (CW) 8 p.m. - "I'd Leave My Happy Home For You"

Alaric and Jo reluctantly participate in their bachelor and bachelorette parties. Meanwhile, Elena turns to Bonnie and Jo for advice over Damon's impulsive offer; Enzo asks Stefan to help Lily who is on a dangerous downward spiral; and Matt gets fed up with the supernatural threats that plague the town and takes his frustration out on Tyler.

Elementary (CBS) 10 p.m. - "The Best Way Out Is Always Through"

Holmes and Watson embark on an interstate search for an escaped convict who may have murdered a judge. Meanwhile, Bell's new relationship hits a rough patch when Sherlock applies his deductive reasoning to it.

Olympus (Syfy) 10 p.m. - "Blood Brothers"

Hero makes his way to Athens to confront King Aegeus, only to be arrested and turned over to Prince Lykos, who has discovered Hero's identity and is out for blood. Back at the Minoan camp, Daedalus unveils his plans for the ultimate war machine.

Dig (USA) 10 p.m. - "Jehoshaphat"

An ancient religious sect is ready to enact its plan; Peter partners with unlikely allies; Lynn realizes the depth of the conspiracy while investigating Ridell; Golan tries to crack more clues from the Donaldson case; and Avram moves to protect his valuable asset.

Friday, May 1

Animation Domination High-Def (FXX) 12 a.m. 

New episodes of Major Lazer and Axe Cop are included. 

Grimm (NBC) 8 p.m. - "You Don't Know Jack"

A string of homicides create a fear that a Jack the Ripper copycat has arrived in Portland. As Nick and Hank investigate, they must also respond to an unexpected situation; at the same time, Adalind and Rosalee must work together on a last-ditch attempt to fix Juliette's condition; and Juliette decides to help her new ally, even if it means hurting those around her.

Bitten (Syfy) 9 p.m. - "Dead Meat"

Elena finds herself the subject of painful tests in an off-the-grid compound run by a maniacal and powerful cult leader. Back at Stonehaven, the witches resort to dark magic in hopes of locating their missing members.

Lost Girl (Syfy) 10 p.m. - "Big In Japan"

Lauren deals with threats against her life; at the same time, Bo and Tamsin protect a Japanese warrior with a hit on his head.

Saturday, May 2

Orphan Black (BBC) 9 p.m. - "Formalized, Complex, and Costly"

Read more in our Highlights section above.

Outlander (Starz) 9 p.m. - "The Watch"

Problems arise with the return of a redcoat deserter from Jamie's past, and Jamie and Ian join The Watch, while Claire tends to Jenny.

Sunday, May 3

Once Upon a Time (ABC) 8 p.m. - "Mother"

No synopsis available. 

Game of Thrones (HBO) 9 p.m. - "The Sons of the Harpy"

Jaime and Bronn sneak into Dorne by sea, but their arrival isn't the secret they'd hoped it would be. Meanwhile, Sansa discusses her future with Littlefinger; Jon is tempted by Melisandre; and Tyrion has a new traveling companion on his way to Meereen.

The Last Man on Earth (FOX) 9:30 p.m. - "Screw the Moon"

Read more in our Highlights section above.

Penny Dreadful (Showtime) 10 p.m. - "Fresh Hell"

Read more in our Highlights section above.

Salem (WGN) 10 p.m. - "The Wine Dark Sea"

Mary comes face-to-face with her tormentor Countess Marburg.

(Episode synopses via TV Guide)

10 Of The Coolest Star Wars Products Fanboys Need To Have @ Omni Reboot


True fan boys need to have these 10 Star Wars items in their collection.

Written By


Andrew is a self-diagnosed sci-fi fanatic. He and his Dad watched late night reruns of Star Trek. An avid model builder, his Enterprise model adorning his dresser is stained from Earl Grey Tea. He studied creative writing at the University of Michigan. Andrew hopes to write a science fiction novel.

Any die hard sci-fi film fan has ultimately seen the the trailer for Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens by now. Star Wars: The Force Awakens is an upcoming American epic space opera film directed by J. J. Abrams. The seventh installment in the Star Wars film series (excluding spin-offs), it stars John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, and Max von Sydow, with Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew, and Kenny Baker reprising roles from previous films. The story is set approximately 30 years after the events of Return of the Jedi. The Force Awakens will be the first film in the planned third Star Wars trilogy announced after The Walt Disney Company's acquisition of Lucas film in October 2012. With many fans eagerly awaiting for this movie to premiere, these ten items might help hold over even the most enthusiastic fan.

10. Death Star Silicone Ice Ball Tray

Come to the Dark Side,they have the coldest beverages. These ice cube trays are miniature replicas of the Death Star, the most feared battle station to ever enter your drink. This Superior BPA Free food grade silicone ice ball maker makes a large ball of ice decorated in the shape of the first Death Star based on its appearance in Star Wars: A New Hope. Perfect for making a treat for your family or spicing up a Star Wars themed party, this sturdy tray lets you capture a variety of foods or drinks in the familiar shape. Create your own ice, chocolate, or candy in the shape of the Death Star!

Star Wars: The Complete Saga

Star Wars: The Complete Blu-ray Saga will feature all six live-action Star Wars feature films utilizing the highest possible picture and audio presentation.

9. Han Solo Carbonite iPhone Case

Everyone wants a bit of Han Solo in their life because the adventure he brings is so much fun and his story has spanned across generations. But sometimes he just can't sit still, and it's hard to catch up with him. Thank the Force that someone froze his butt (and the rest of him) in carbonite. Now, Han has all day to listen to our stories and dreams and poetry and for when we do have to leave home, a little version was created of him: the Han in Carbonite iPhone case. Each Han in Carbonite iPhone 5S Case wraps your iPhone in a single piece design that is made to go easy on and come off. That's right, this isn't just a printed image of the extra-chilly Han, it's actually molded. So you can run your fingers over his face and hands, and wonder if there's a Princess Leia case just waiting to find him and thaw him.

8. Jedi Dressing Gowns

Star Wars fans rejoice! The Jedi Dressing Gowns are here! What could be better way to spend your evening than strutting around in your Jedi robe? The Jedi Dressing Gown is made of soft 100% cotton velour and has a Jedi logo embroidered on the front. The bath robe's large hood, sash belt, and wide sleeves are classic features of a Jedi robe. Will you be seduced by the dark side or will you fight for justice? Either way, these make great gifts for Star Wars fans. If the force is strong with them then why not treat them to a Star Wars Bath Robe? Ideal gifts for birthdays, father's day, Christmas, or just as gifts for those who have everything, the Jedi Dressing Gown will easily replace that old scruffy bath robe you bought a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away

7. The Star Wars Cook Book

Boba Fett-Uccine and Princess Leia Danish Dos are just the beginning when the Force is with you in the kitchen. The Star Wars Cook Book: Wookiee Cookies and Other Galactic Recipes is your invitation to fine culinary experiences in the Star Wars frame of mind. From C-3PO Pancakes to Jedi Juice Bars, this intergalactic Star Wars cookbook features healthy snacks, delicious dishes, sweet treats, and easy main courses no Rebel can resist. With hilarious photos and safety tips for cooking on Earth as well as in most space stations, Wookiee Cookies even includes a sheet of shiny Star Wars stickers. Age is no issue when it comes to Star Wars cuisine-kids as well as adults will have a great time with this book. Whether you drove to your first Star Wars flick or just had your fifth birthday, there's no reason you can't whip up some Crazy Cantina Chili at near light speed.


6. LEGO Lightsaber Earrings

Use the Force to look more fashionable than ever by accessorizing with the Star Wars lighsaber earrings. Two of the best franchises, Star Wars and LEGO, have collided and created these unique earrings that are sure to please any fashionable Jedi. Each earring is made with a small colored LEGO piece that creates the illusion you’ve got two small lightsabers hanging on your earlobes. From far away these look like little colorful dangling sticks but up close, their true colors shine forth. Customers have the choice of choosing what color they would like their lightsaber to be based upon their favorite characters. No matter what color you chose, these earrings will help you to be one of the most attractive Jedi in the whole galaxy.

5. R2-D2 Novelty Thermos

This is the droid you are looking for. This R2-D2 Novelty Thermos is 100 percent pvc free with peva lining and features superior quality closed cell polyethylene foam insulation. Although many of us wish we were flying through the galaxy in an X-Wing, alas we're stuck here in our normal Earth lives, so we'll have to carry this lunch bag instead. the R2-D2 lunch bag is nearly a foot tall and the foam insulation will keep your food fresh from morning packing until lunch time, when you'll want to push the button and show off the lights and sounds for all your friends.

4. Star Wars Death Star Cookie Jar

Measuring approximately 12" x 12", the Death Star Cookie Jar is composed of polyresin, and features a counter-friendly flat base. If left to its own devices, the Death Star Cookie Jar will kill any other cookie jar in its immediate vicinity and you will enter the kitchen to find the floor covered in shattered bits and smoldering crumbs. Among the most terrifying weapons in the Imperial arsenal, the hypermatter reactor-powered Death Star is equipped with myriad tractor beam emplacements, lasers, turbolasers batteries, and heavy turbo lasers, and is capable, via superlaser, of destroying an entire planet with a single blast. Although the original Death Star was destroyed during the Battle of Yavin, and the second one was destroyed later during the Battle of Endor, this cookie jar is built to survive even the biggest cookies.

3. R2-D2 USB Car Charger

R2 units: is there anything those little guys can't do? While we don't yet have the technology in this quadrant of the galaxy for fully-automated repair droids like the R2 units from Star Wars, we can get a portion of the R2's versatility into something small enough to sit in your vehicle's cupholder. You see, it makes the R2-D2 USB Car Charger whistle sadly when he sees a device that's run out of power. Make him bloop and bleep happily again by letting him use your vehicle's power to recharge your devices. With him plugged into your 12V vehicle power adapter (cigarette lighter), you can get 2.1 Amps through each of his USB charging ports, which is enough to charge two tablets or smartphones or, well, pretty much anything that charges via USB. What's that, little guy? He says, "Bloop bloop bleep," which we think means "Yay!"

2. LEGO Star Wars Stormtrooper Alarm Clock

If you're a fan of Star Wars, this LEGO Star Wars Stormtrooper Alarm Clock is another great item to decorate your home. This mini figure digital alarm clock has moveable arms and legs, allowing you to make it sit or stand. The clock lights up with a red glow when you push down on Storm Troopers head, whether you are making the alarm snooze for just five more minutes or trying to check the time. Throughout the galaxy, Stormtroopers are distinguished by their white armour, and are a constant reminder of the far reaching power of the Galactic Empire. As a Stormtrooper, it is their duty is to enforce the rule of Emperor Palpatine and maintain order so when you wake up to this alarm, it will start any day the Empire way.

1. Chewbacca/Han Solo Hooded Sweatshirt

Follow the fashion sense of two popular Star Wars characters while only taking up space in your closet with one item when you grab the Star Wars Chewbacca Han Solo Reversible Hoodie like the Death Star tractor beam locking on to the Millennium Falcon. There’s some great news for Star Wars fans that have a special fondness for Han Solo and Chewbacca because this unique hoodie lets you dress like both characters. The Chewbacca side is completely covered in faux fur with an embroidered bandolier across the furry chest, and flipping the hoodie inside-out reveals a second design modeled after the jacket that Solo wears on Hoth in The Empire Strikes Back.

The post 10 Of The Coolest Star Wars Products Fanboys Need To Have appeared first on OMNI Reboot.

After 15 years, Naruto finally reveals Kakashi Hatake's full face @ Blastr

For 15 years, fans of Masashi Kishimoto's Naruto have never seen the full face of Kakashi Hatake, the leader and teacher of Team 7. And when the long-running hit manga series came to a close, fans were gutted to have been denied a peek at what he actually, fully looks like beneath the ninja mask covering half his face. Until now.

Naruto creator Masashi Kishimoto recently opened a Naruto exhibit in Japan, where he finally revealed Copy Ninja Kakashi's face. Anime News Network attended the exhibit this weekend and nabbed the free Official Guestbook Shinden Fū no Sho book for those in attendance, and they’ve published pics revealing Kakashi’s face. Check it out:

ANN also say that in the manga included with the book, Naruto, Sakura and Sasuke talk about the best way to uncover Kakashi’s face. They meet with a photographer named Sukea, who wants to snap a pic of Kakashi’s face because MAJOR SCOOP. After a failed attempt, our three ninjas go home, only to have it revealed that Sukea is actually Kakashi in disguise, and he reveals his face before taking a shower. At the end of the story, he says he plans to play a bit more with Team 7 about what’s hiding under his mask. 

What do you think of the reveal of Kakashi Hatake’s full face? Are you excited to finally see what lay hidden behind the fan-favorite character's mask all these years? Was it worth the wait, or are you ultimately disappointed?

(via ANN)

Watch these tiny, gecko-inspired robots pull up to 2,000 times their own weight @ Blastr

Robots already have a bit of a physical edge, thanks to the fact that they’re not made of flesh and gooey stuff, but this tiny tech could give them another leg up in the eventual battle for mankind’s existence.

A team of engineers at Stanford University have managed to leverage techniques inspired by both geckos and inchworms to create tiny robots that can potentially pull objects 2,000 times their own weight. For perspective, as noted by an engineer working the project: That’s the equivalent of a human dragging a blue whale. Whoa.

So, how does it work? Basically by mimicking a gecko’s natural skills, as the team put tiny rubber spikes on the ‘bots' feet that will bend when pressure is applied (which increases the surface area). But the spikes straighten out when the foot is lifted, allowing the tiny, future killing machine to drag the weight forward.

There are a few varieties of the robots already, with the biggest model weighing in at just 12 grams and capable of pulling objects 2,000 heavier than itself. A tiny, 20-milligram model can carry 25 times its own weight. Plus, a special 9-gram design inspired by inchworms can pull up to one kilogram up a vertical surface. That basically equates to a human dragging an elephant straight up a building. 

Check out the tiny robots in action below and let us know what you think:

The engineers behind the project believe the tech could have a wide range of usability (outside of Skynet’s plans for world domination). Potential applications include moving extremely large and heavy objects for construction, emergencies, etc.

(Via The Verge)

Scientists can tell identical twins apart by melting their DNA @ Blastr

Evil twins are so common in the media, we're surprised that mothers don't automatically kill one of their two infants to prevent the evil from spreading. But in reality, twins commit crimes as infrequently as the rest of the us. And now, like the rest of us, they can be identified by their DNA.

After genetic material (such as blood and semen) is collected from a crime scene, technicians isolate the DNA and copy it using PCR (polymerase chain reaction). They then study the subject's STR markers and compare it to the known suspect and/or population database. If the DNA matches a known person, we have a winner (who is also a loser) ... except in the case of identical twins.

In the few cases in which a twin (or worse, both twins) is suspected of a crime, investigators can only determine whodunit by sequencing their entire genome. However, it's an expensive procedure. 

According to New ScientistGraham Williams at the University of Huddersfield, UK, reasoned that although the twins may have the same genetic material, they also have unique experiences and lifestyles. Enter epigenetics.

New Scientist writes, "[E]pigenetic changes occur when a chemical group known as a methyl group attaches to a gene and modifies the way it is expressed. This happens as a body is influenced by a person's environment, lifestyle and disease."

In other words, Orphan Black's former hard-partier Sarah would have a different methyl group than binge-eating, binge-killing Helena.

With that in mind, Williams' team extracted DNA from five pairs of twins and "used a chemical to target parts of the DNA that did not have methyl groups attached, and change the number of hydrogen bonds at these points. Any difference in the number of hydrogen bonds should change the melting point of a compound."

The two different samples now melt at different temperatures. Voila, instant identification.

Beware, evildoing twins. Your days of hiding behind your DNA are officially over.

(Via NewScientist)

Gawker Northwest Baltimore Erupts as Protestors, Cops Clash; 7 Officers Injured | Jalopnik Jackass U @ io9

Men Quake In Peril As Hasbro Debuts All-Female Transformers Team @ io9

Women. These nefarious creature have come for our videogames, they’ve come for our comic books, and now they’re coming for the Transformers. An entire team of six new female Transformers debut in the IDW Combiner Hunters comic and then be released as toys later on.


Thousands Of Chickens Once Wore Glasses To Stop Them Killing Each Other @ io9

“Eyeglasses” for chickens were once sold in the thousands — and they weren’t decorative. Rather, they were the only way to stop chickens from murdering each other. Learn why these lenses stopped chickens from killing, and see old film footage of hen specs.


The Complete History Of The Joker's Many, Many Incarnations @ io9

Jared Leto’s prison-tattooed version of the Joker made a big splash the other day — but a radically transformed Joker is nothing new. Batman’s most iconic foe has undergone many revamps, reimaginings, updates and interpretations over the past 75 years. Here’s the complete history of the ever-changing face of the Joker.


21-year-old inventor uses half a million LEGOs to build a working car @ Blastr

We've seen some amazing LEGO designs: A puzzle-solving LEGO diorama; a LEGO-based version of Jurassic Park; and a freakin' full-scale X-Wing. But nothing is more awesome than this air-powered car.

21-year-old Raul Oaida, a self-described "kid from a poor family in Eastern Europe," has the mind of an engineer and the building blocks of $20,000 worth of LEGOs (his business partner, Steve Sammartino, raised the money while Oaida did the legwork — or is that LEGOwork?).

His remarkable vehicle runs solely on compressed air. As Oaida says in the video below, "The engine is an air-powered piston driven contraption that has 256 cylinders and roughly 100,000 parts."

Oaida built his vehicle to bring attention to air-powered cars, like the kind that auto maker Peugeot is developing. But while Peugeot is creating a hybrid car that uses air instead of batteries, Oaida's vehicle uses compressed air alone.

The LEGO car charges within seconds and in tests has driven 20 kilometers. It also drops pieces every time Oaida takes it out for a spin.

Although this car will never be street legal, it's proof that anyone with brains and determination can build anything out of LEGO.

When he's not building cars, Oaida is building jet engines and strapping them on to bicycles, as well as planning to build a spaceship. We have little doubt he'll eventually be waving hello to us from his own private LEGO-based moon base.

Johnny Depp Makes For A Terrifying Dinner Guest In Black Mass Trailer @ io9

Johnny Depp has played Dillinger and Donnie Brasco, and this fall he’ll take on another famous gangster, Whitey Bulger. The trailer for Black Mass suggests the action will take place during Bulger’s 1970s heyday, but his tale has a contemporary hook: he was captured just four years ago after 16 on the lam.


New official Fantastic Four character bios reveal intriguing info about Mr. Fantastic's powers @ Blastr

The Official website for director Josh Trank's upcoming Fantastic Four movie has been updated, revealing a boatload of new information concerning Marvel's First Family.

If you click on each of the four superheroes on the main page, you'll get an expanded character bio for each of 'em. Those descriptions are also accompanied by a bit of audio commentary read by Dr. Franklin Storm (Reg E. Cathey). Those are interesting descriptions on their own and are clearly based on Marvel's Ultimate Fantastic Four comics by Mike Millar and Brian Bendis, but what really caught our eye is what they reveal about Reed Richards' powers. They say that Reed appears to stretch his body. Yep. So, without further ado:





Check out the gallery below, and let us know what you think. Is there any one particular thing that stands out for you? Make sure to head to the official site to hear Dr. Storm's voice-overs, and take a look at the cool, "under-the-microscope" videos for a further in-depth look.

Fantastic Four, a contemporary re-imagining of Marvel's original and longest-running superhero team, centers on four young outsiders who teleport to an alternate and dangerous universe, which alters their physical form in shocking ways. Their lives irrevocably upended, the team must learn to harness their daunting new abilities and work together to save Earth from a former friend turned enemy.

Starring Miles Teller as Reed Richards/Mr. Fantastic, Kate Mara as Sue Storm/The Invisible Woman, Michael B. Jordan as Johnny Storm/The Human Torch, Jamie Bell as Ben Grimm/The Thing and Toby Kebbell as Victor Domashev/Dr. Doom, Fantastic Four is set to hit theaters on Aug. 7, 2015.

(via Fantastic Four)

Five Things That Autonomous Cars Will Change In TV And Movies @ io9

Technology has a way of screwing up entertainment from the past . How many Seinfeld episodes would have been four minutes long is everyone had cell phones? Hell, almost any plot that revolved around missing someone or a wrong bit of information would be obsolete today. So what will autonomous cars do?


Death Race 2000 at 40: Roger Corman's sci-fi satire zooms into cult classic history @ Blastr

Forty years ago, 1975 brought the arrival of a number of sci-fi, horror and fantasy films that made an impact on their genres -- some good, some not so good, but all interesting and all remembered even to this day. We continue our look back at each of those films on the anniversary of its release and where it stands four decades later with this exploitation classic ...

Title: Death Race 2000

Release date: April 27, 1975

Cast: David Carradine, Sylvester Stallone, Simone Griffeth

Director: Paul Bartel

Plot: After energy shortages have led to the toppling of the U.S. government in favor of a dictatorship, the masses are distracted every year by the annual Trans-Continental Death Race, in which participants earn points by running down innocent civilians. As the 20th edition of the race kicks off with top contenders Frankenstein (Carradine) -- so named because he's allegedly had so many body parts replaced due to accidents -- and the sadistic Machine Gun Joe (Stallone in an early role), a resistance plans to stop the race.

Why it's significant: As was often the case with movies produced by B-movie exploitation king Roger Corman, Death Race 2000 started out as a cash grab and became something else entirely. Corman originally wanted to steal some of the publicity surrounding the impending release of Rollerball -- another dystopian tale about a brutal, bloodthirsty "sport" -- and his initial treatment for Death Race 2000 was a dark affair. But Corman realized it might work better as a black comedy, so he changed it -- and created a cult classic.

Directed by Paul Bartel (who later made another cult gem, Eating Raoul), Death Race 2000 is crudely made and, with the exception of Carradine, too broadly acted for its own good by most of the cast. But its themes and humor, rough as it is, are right on target: Corman, Bartel and screenwriters Robert Thom and Charles Griffith took satiric aim at the use of sports and gratuitous violence as means to distract the populace from the descent of their society into totalitarianism. Death Race 2000 doesn't get too heavy on this; there is plenty of grim hilarity to watching hospital staff line up patients outside to get run down or seeing one of the drivers kill his own crew to earn a few quick points, while a lapdog media breathlessly reports it all from the sidelines.

Death Race 2000 not only holds up as entertaining, fast-moving and weirdly funny schlock, but its basic concept is still in use by movies today -- most notably in the blockbuster franchise The Hunger Games, in which a nationally televised, hyper-violent battle to the death is used as both distraction and instrument of fear by an oppressive, post-apocalyptic dictatorship. The Hunger Games takes itself very seriously -- and not necessarily to its detriment -- but there is something to be said for the gleefully nihilistic and raunchier angle that Death Race 2000 employs. Sometimes it's better to laugh at these nightmare scenarios before they come true.

Other entries in this series:


From Hank of Hydra to Howard the Human, Marvel announces 8 new comics @ Blastr

With Marvel's ambitious Secret Wars event almost upon us, the comic company has announced seven more new books that'll be hitting shelves as part of the shakeup — and a few sound surprisingly weird and fun.

The publisher has revealed series featuring a few well-known properties, long-lost projects, quirky spinoffs and some books aimed to fill the gaps during the Secret Wars insanity. The new additions include Ant-Man: Last Days, Miracleman, S.H.I.E.L.D.: 50th Anniversary Specials, Drax, Howard the Human, Hank Johnson: Agent of Hydra, Captain America: White and Secret Wars: Secret Love

Check out some creative details and art for each new book below and let us know which comics you'll be checking out.

(Via IGN)

Magicians manifest mayhem in new trailer for BBC's Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell @ Blastr

Susanna Clarke's long and lush best-selling novel, Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, is being manifested as a seven-part prestige series for BBC One this summer.  Here's the newly released full trailer, with 19th-century magicians forming an uneasy alliance to place the fine art of magic back into the heart of England.  Directed by Toby Haynes (Doctor Who, Being Human) and adapted by Peter Harness (Wallander, Doctor Who), this extended preview introduces the pair of prestidigitators performing extraordinary feats of legerdemain in dark private places and for astonished Londoners, including a raising of the dead, a stampede of sand stallions and an angry storm of black crows. 

Here's the official synopsis:

Set at the beginning of the 19th century, England no longer believes in practical magic. The reclusive Mr Norrell (Eddie Marsan) of Hurtfew Abbey stuns the city of York when he causes the statues of York Cathedral to speak and move. With a little persuasion and help from his man of business, Childermass (Enzo Cilenti), he goes to London to help the government in the war against Napoleon. It is there Norrell summons a fairy (Marc Warren) to bring Lady Pole (Alice Englert) back from the dead, opening a whole can of worms…

Jonathan Strange (Bertie Carvel) is charming, rich, and arrogant. While trying to secure his beloved Arabella’s (Charlotte Riley) hand in marriage, he meets the magician of Threadneedle Street, Vinculus (Paul Kaye), who tells him he is destined to be a great magician. A shaken and disturbed Strange initially dismisses the claims, but intrigue overcomes; and in an attempt to find his occupation, he tries to practice magic…

Fans of Doctor Who, Harry Potter and Penny Dreadful should flock to this faithful adaptation of Clarke's popular novel, expounding on the intriguing history of magic and magicians during the Age of Napoleon.   Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell premieres on BBC America this summer. 

Does this fresh trailer spark your interest?

(Via Dread Central)

A new study published in BMC Evolutionary Biology shows that lower back pain is more frequent in peo @ io9

A new study published in BMC Evolutionary Biology shows that lower back pain is more frequent in people whose spines are similar in shape to those of chimpanzees. “[Our] study suggests that the pathological vertebrae of some people may be less well adapted for walking upright,” noted lead researcher Kimberly Plomp.


If Outlander's MacKenzies Fought Game Of Thrones' Starks, Who Would Win? @ io9

We drank Scotch with Outlander’s most complicated character Dougal MacKenzie, played by the delightful (and quite tall) Graham McTavish. And while we had him on the couch imbibing the good stuff, we couldn’t help but ask who would win in a fight against Dougal? He answered.


So, will Suicide Squad's Joker really have those tattoos? @ Blastr

The Joker is a perfectly weird counterpoint to the serious Dark Knight. With humor that is designed to incense and provoke, he tends to have the last laugh, and the joke is on Batman. We know from the newly released image that Jared Leto plans to play him in the upcoming Suicide Squad as in-your-face as he can get while remaining on a screen. Except ...

Except the image looks like it could be merely a promotional still for the Joker's 75th annivesary, and not representative of how he'll look in the film. According to NerdReactor, the Joker may actually be plain-faced, yet pallid.

The evidence: In the picture below, set photos show that the Joker has no tattoos. And while most of the tattoos in the official image can be covered by the Joker's outerwear, the one on his face (a dagger? a teardrop?) would still have remained. 

Perhaps Leto's pale face may only be a palate for future digital effects, but it's unlikely, given that the Joker's power is crazy mania and not a Rorschach shifting-inkblot face.  

Heath Ledger's Joker was maniacal yet introspective. From the image, Leto's version seems like he's barely keeping his psychosis in check. What do you think of the pale-faced, less XXXtreme version of Leto's Joker? Let us know in the comments.

Via NerdReactor.

How I Forgot My Email Password In A Dream @ io9

If you think dreams can’t actually hurt you, then this might make you reconsider. Last night, I dreamed that I forgot my password. When I woke up, I had actually forgotten my password.


Insanity Defense Will Be The Focus Of James Holmes' Mass Murder Trial @ io9

Opening arguments in the trial of James Holmes, accused of killing 12 and injuring dozens more during a 2012 screening of The Dark Knight Rises, began today in Centennial, Colorado. Holmes has pled not guilty by reason of insanity, but prosecutors say tests have shown he is sane.


2015 ESFS Awards Winners @ Locus Online

The European Science Fiction Society (ESFS) Hall of Fame Awards and Spirit of Dedication Awards winners were announced at the 37th Eurocon, April 26, 2015 in St. Petersburg, Russia.

Eugene Lukin was named European Grandmaster. Other winners and nominees are below.


Awarded to people who have an impact beyond their own country.

Best Author:

  • China Miéville (United Kingdom)
  • John Connolly (Ireland)
  • Philippe Curval (France)
  • Andreas Eschbach, (Germany)
  • Vilma Kadlečková (Czech Republic)
  • Lights amidst Shadows (Bulgaria)
  • Sviatoslav Loginov (Russia)
  • Michael Marcus Thurner (Austria)
  • Dario Tonani (Italy)
  • Danut Ungureanu (Romania)
  • Aleksandar Žiljak (Croatia)

Best Translator:

  • Ekaterina Dobrohotova-Majkova (Russia)
  • Patrick Couton (France)
  • Silviu Genescu (Romania)
  • Jan Kanturek (Czech Republic)
  • Kalin M. Nenov (Bulgaria)
  • Gabriel Rosenstock (Ireland)

Best Promoter:

  • Mihaela Marika Perkovic (Croatia)
  • The Human Library team (Bulgaria)
  • Toni Jerrman (Finland)
  • Jean-Luc Rivera (France)
  • Franz Rottensteiner (Austria)
  • Marian Truta (Romania)
  • Worldcon Exhibits Team (United Kingdom)
  • Dmitrij Zlotnitsky (Russia)

Best Magazine:

  • Fantastica Almanac (Bulgaria)
  • Exodus (Germany)
  • Fantastica (Romania)
  • Fiction (France)
  • Mlechnyj Put’ (Milky way) (Russia/Israel: Russian-language magazine published in Israel)
  • Sirius B (Croatia)
  • Visionarium (Austria)

Best Publisher:

  •  Gollancz (United Kingdom)
  • Argo (Czech Republic)
  • Delos Digital (Italy)
  • Fantastika Book Club (Russia)
  • Finfar (Finland)
  • Hangar 7 (Croatia)
  • The Human Library (Bulgaria)
  • L’Atalante (France)
  • Paladin (Romania)
  • Septime (Austria)
  • Swan River Press (Ireland)

Best Artist:

  •  Manchu (France)
  • Lothar Bauer (Germany)
  • Pavel Cech (Czech Republic)
  • Katerina Danailova (Bulgaria)
  • Ivana Guljaševic (Croatia)
  • Johann Peterka (Austria)
  • Declan Shalvey (Ireland)
  • Sergey Shikin (Russia)

Spirit of Dedication Award:

These awards are given for works and performances produced since the prior Eurocon.


  • Serhiy Krykun (Ukraine)
  • Didier Cottier (France)
  • Igor Savin (Russia)

Best Fanzine:

  • Pritiazhenie (Russia)
  • Gazeta SF (Romania)
  • Journey Planet (Ireland)
  • Présences d’esprits (France)
  • ShadowDance (Bulgaria)
  • Usva (Finland)

Best Website:

Best Performance:

  • Song of the Sea (Ireland)
  • Astra LARP (Croatia)
  • Aurelion: Eternal Balance, episode 2 (Bulgaria)
  • Fantastica (Romania)
  • Geek Picnic (Russia)

Best Creator of Children’s SF or Fantasy Books (tie):

  • Anton Lomaev (Russia)
  • Ruth F. Long (Ireland)
  • Vesela Flamburari (Bulgaria)
  • Joëlle Wintrebert (France)

Encouragement Awards:

These awards are granted to a young writer or artist from each European country, according to suggestions from National Delegates.

  • Martin D. Antonin (Czech Republic)
  • Liz Bourke (Ireland)
  • Luis Corredoura (Portugal)
  • David Kelecic (Croatia)
  • Victor Kolyuzhniak (Russia)
  • Jana Paluchová (Slovakia)
  • Georgiana Vladulescu (Romania)
  • Micheal Wozoning (Austria)
  • Kaloyan Zahariev (Bulgaria)

For more, see the ESFS website.

Robin and Nightwing return in final Batman: Arkham Knight trailer @ Blastr

Rocksteady has finally unleashed the last glorious trailer for Batman: Arkham Knight, the third and final chapter in its hit videogame Arkham series. The new trailer features our beloved Caped Crusader fighting alongside Robin, his former sidekick Nightwing and Catwoman.

Batman: Arkham Knight wraps up the Batman: Arkham trilogy that was begun with Arkham Asylum in 2009. The hit game was quickly followed by Arkham City in 2011. Check out the new trailer highlighting Batman: Arkham Knight’s new dual play feature, and watch Batman kick some serious ... um ... you know:

For the first time ever, watch Batman: Arkham Knight’s exciting new “Dual Play” mechanic in action as you switch seamlessly between The Dark Knight and his allies including Robin, Nightwing, and Catwoman in free-flow combat.

With his back against the wall, Batman turns to his closest allies to help him save Gotham City from the clutches of Scarecrow and the Arkham Knight’s army. A familiar face also returns to give The Dark Knight a message he cannot ignore…

Batman: Arkham Knight will arrive in stores on June 23, 2015. What did you think of the final trailer, and will you be picking this one up? Are you sad to see Rocksteady's popular Batman: Arkham franchise come to an end?

Watch Omni Slo-Mo: Breaking Things Impact Analysis @ Omni Reboot

OMNI Slo MoSlow motion technology has allowed the OMNI Reboot video algorithmic team to graphically interface mathematically and scientifically derived data directly into the visual action, providing an impact analysis for viewers. Advances in camera technology reveals the delicate nature of objects as we watch breaking things in slo-mo. No ordinary camera could hope to capture the explosive shot of an arrow or the crashing of a lightbulb as it breaks. Cell phones would only show a blur and the glass shattering as it hit the floor. Typically, the amazing footage can only be captured with an extremely powerful, and pricey, camera able to capture around 18000 frames per second. For reference, the human eye can interpret up to 1000 frames per second, but on average most people can only register 150 frames per second, but most video games properly optimized display 60 frames per second. Thanks to advances in camera technology people can enjoy experiences which were previously only a dizzying blur of high-speed motion.

The post Watch Omni Slo-Mo: Breaking Things Impact Analysis appeared first on OMNI Reboot.

Has Guillermo del Toro's Silent Hills been cancelled? @ Blastr

It’s as we all feared: It looks like director Guillermo del Toro’s planned survival horror game Silent Hills is dead as a doornail. Del Toro revealed that the new entry in Konami’s hit Silent Hill videogame franchise, starring Walking Dead fan fave Norman Reedus, won’t go ahead, and is quoted by entertainment journalist Matt Hackney, who attended the geek favorite's Q&A at Castro Theater over the weekend, as saying, "It's not gonna happen, and that breaks my greasy heart."

You can also listen to Guillermo del Toro announcing the death of Silent Hills:

The sad news comes on the heels of Hideo Kojima's recently announced (and shocking) plans to leave Konami. Kojima, who was set to helm Silent Hills, will leave after Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain is released this upcoming September. Konami had assured its fans that Kojima’s departure would not affect the future of the Metal Gear Solid franchise, but they didn’t promise anything of the sort for the Silent Hill one.

With Silent Hills canceled, what'll happen to the beloved horror survival game now? What do you think? Are you bummed out by the news, or were you expecting it?

(via Comic Book)

This is when the fate of Marvel's Agent Carter will be decided (and it looks good) @ Blastr

While actress Hayley Atwell (Captain America: The Winter Soldier) was attending Chicago's C2E2 over the weekend (Saturday, most specifically), there was a message for fans concerning the fate of Marvel’s Agent Carter. The message was attached to Atwell’s autograph stand ('cause she must be asked that question a bazillion times, and they probably wanted to spare Atwell from having to answer that question over and over again), and it read: "We will know in 3 weeks if Agent Carter is renewed for another season. But it looks good given the fan response."

Now, that sounds like sweet music to my ears, seeing as I absolutely LOVED Agent Carter. The series finished its fantastic eight-episode run back in February, acting as a bridge between the fall finale and winter premiere of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., and we’ve all been holding our collective breath ever since to hear that Marvel and ABC are greenlighting the series for a second season.

Despite the fact that they’re working on a S.H.I.E.L.D. spinoff and a rumored Ms. Marvel TV series, it looks like we’re about to get our cake and eat it, too. Still, fingers crossed. What do you think? Are you eager for a second season of Marvel's Agent Carter? Do you think it looks good that it'll be picked up?

(via Comic Book)

Bamf! Bryan Singer teleports our first official look at Nightcrawler in X-Men: Apocalypse @ Blastr

Bryan Singer has unveiled our first official look at Kodi Smit-McPhee as Nightcrawler in X-Men: Apocalypse. So, how does he look? 

(Now, click here to see the cool video Singer posted of our favorite "fuzzy elf" over on Twitter.)

Smit-McPhee plays Kurt Wagner, aka the blue-skinned teleporting mutant Nightcrawler, in X-Men: Apocalypse, which started production in Montreal today. In a recent interview with Den of Geek, the young actor revealed that it would not be the same Nightcrawler we saw portrayed by Alan Cumming in 2003’s X2, but one that is much closer to the comics:

"I think I’m really going to make it my own because it is kind of going back and its seeing the younger character," Smit-McPhee said. "I realize the Nightcrawler that is portrayed in X2 is one that has been through quite a bit more and has really embraced the superhero part of him—a kind of violent part. Whereas I think what they’re trying to show here is the more vulnerable Nightcrawler and the one we all kind of related to in the comics. It’s really the fun, happy, swashbuckling Nightcrawler that we all love, so I really can’t wait to portray that. He’s just very vulnerable and truthful, and grounded in his faith. I think it’s something new though that we’ll see. But as I said, all of the traditional things that we want in it—it’s still there. Hint, hint."

Does this mean that this Nightcrawler will be Mystique’s (Jennifer Lawrence) son in Bryan Singer’s upcoming movie? I certainly hope so. What do you think? Are you looking forward to see Kodi Smit-McPhee in the role? X-Men: Apocalypse will teleport in movie theaters on May 27, 2016.

(via Comic Book Movie, Den of Geek)

Nance Tries To Turn Avenger, But Nobody Can Outwit Lizzie On Chronicles @ io9

A lot of people kick the bucket on this week’s Lizzie Borden Chronicles episode, “Welcome to Maplecroft,” and shockingly — shockingly! — not all of them are done in by the divine Miss B. Our pint-sized psychopath does get the most creative kill, however, in yet another ep that mixes gore with arch, arch dialogue.


Google Attempts to Fight Patent Trolls with a Pretty Dubious Strategy @ io9

Google’s legal team has just announced that they’ll be buying as many patents as possible in order to “remove friction from the patent market” and defeat patent trolls, companies that buy patents just to sue people on bogus charges of infringement. But there’s a big problem with this strategy.


2015 Prometheus Award Finalists @ Locus Online

The Libertarian Futurist Society has released the finalists for the Prometheus Award, honoring pro-freedom works published in 2014.

Best Novel Award

  • The Three-Body Problem, Liu Cixin (Tor)
  • Raising Steam, Terry Pratchett (Doubleday)
  • A Better World, Marcus Sakey (Thomas & Mercer)
  • Influx, Daniel Suarez (Dutton)

All members of the Libertarian Futurist Society are eligible to vote. The award will be presented in a ceremony during the Sasquan, the 73rd Worldcon, to be held August 19-23, 2015 in Spokane WA.

U.S. Air Force preparing to send its classified, high-tech space plane back into orbit @ Blastr

The U.S. Air Force’s mysterious, classified space plane returned to Earth last year after spending a record 22 months in orbit doing ... something. Now it’s headed back to space. 

It’s been revealed the unmanned ship will launch on its fourth mission next month, though we don’t actually know what it'll be doing. That fits the status quo, since the military has not revealed any of the mission goals or objectives for the X-37B project in recent years. Best guess? They’re testing out new tech and equipment for space travel, but that’s about all we know. Second-best guess? Aliens.

Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office director Randy Walden noted that the first three missions were a huge success (accomplishing whatever it was doing), and now they plan to shift the focus from “initial checkouts of the vehicle to testing of experimental payloads.” According to Space, the upcoming mission will be trying out an “experimental propulsion system.” We’re hoping this is Warp 1, but hey, we like to dream big. They’ll also be taking other equipment up to test its viability in space.

The solar-powered X-37B was built by Boeing’s Phantom Works division and measures 29 feet long by 9.5 feet tall. It’s similar in design to the space shuttle. No word on how long this mission will last, but considering the last one pushed the limit at almost two years, there’s no telling when we’ll see the X-37B again.

What do you think the Air Force is doing up there?

(Via Space)

2 new Avengers: Age of Ultron clips all about Cap, Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch @ Blastr

At this point, it seems like we’ve seen about half of Avengers: Age of Ultron, thanks to the marketing onslaught — and now the studio has dropped two more action-packed clips.

The film follows Earth’s Mightiest Heroes reassembled and tasked with taking on an enemy of their own creation — Ultron, an artificial intelligence robot army originally built as a peacekeeping force. Which was a great idea by Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), until the robot realizes that the never-ending problem with humanity is humans. Oops.

These new clips offer us a look at the alliance among Quicksilver (Aaron Taylor-Johnson), Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) and Ultron (James Spader), as the Twins seem to be a bit confused in regard to who is in the right in this battle. The second clip shows Captain America (Chris Evans) getting in on the action, saving a bystander and taking on some robot drones.

We're honestly a bit mixed on the big push to release 5,000 clips before a film actually opens, but hey, it's the world we live in. Check out the new footage below and let us know what you think:

Avengers: Age of Ultron opens May 1 in the U.S.

(Via Comic Book Movie)

Chris Pratt on Jurassic World's bigger scarier dinos and meddling with science @ Blastr

Chris Pratt recently sat down with Movie Magic magazine and chatted up his thoughts on his main role in June's Jurassic World and how the climate of this sequel differs from previous entries in the franchise.  As the trailers have revealed, Jurassic World is a thriving theme park experiencing a few growing pains as visitors to the primeval playground have grown bored by the captive dinosaur inhabitants and park operators are seeking a more visceral experience for its high-paying guests. 

Here's an excerpt from Movie Magic's latest issue, with Pratt chiming in on the legacy of Jurassic Park, society's demand for threshold escapism and the perils of interfering with nature for profit:

MOVIE MAGIC: When you're talking about a fourth film in this series, the question is whether or not it will be different from what's come before.

CHRIS PRATT: It's been 22 years since the events of Jurassic Park took place. The main thing that I think is different is we're exploring a different society now. Thematically we're talking about a generation of people whose relationship to cutting edge, mind-blowing science is different. Since the park has opened, there are 20,000 people a day visiting, but they're just bored with dinosuars. Dinosaurs are not enough.

MOVIE MAGIC: They've grown apathetic to the concept.

CHRIS PRATT: Exactly. They've been around for 20 years. They're not new and exciting the way they would have been back then. They're just another thing that you can see if you want. The executives of Jurassic World are dealing with the financial loss of attendance falling off. They've introduced this newer, bigger, scarier thing to get the kids involved. Of course, that's what they're doing. They're meddling with nature now in a way to generate profit. It's a parable about the classic ethical tale of man meddling with the natural order of things for his own entertainment. Like the first one, but this one has a new theme which is kind of shining a mirror to society that's a little disenfranchised with the wonderment around them. It's definitely a whole new take...a very relevant, topical take on the franchise.

Bored with Jurassic World's mediocre menagerie of resurrected monsters?  Nothing an enraged, rampaging Indominus Rex meat eater won't cure!

Directed by Colin Trevorrow and starring Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard and Vincent D'Onofrio, Jurassic World stomps into theaters on June 12, 2015.

(Via Comic Book Movie)

Image of the Day: Yoda found in 14 century illuminated manuscript @ Blastr

There have been some eye-catching images found in medieval manuscripts. Known as "illumination," these images range from saints doing saintly deeds to ... um, a nun picking penises from a penis tree. (Seriously.) Now a no-less-bizarre image has been found: Yoda.

According to BoingBoing, "Historians Damien Kempf and Maria L. Gilbert, whose new book Medieval Monsters collects illustrations from bestiaries, travel books, maps, bibles, and other medieval documents, spotted Yoda in a 14th century manuscript called the Smithfield Decretals."

Take a gander. Yup, it's the Jedi Master, all right—with one exception. Here the Yoda clone isn't green but brown.

May we suggest that the image isn't Yoda but a fellow member of his unnamed species

(Via BoingBoing)

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