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"Goodbye, Jean-Luc, I'm gonna miss you. You had such potential. But then again, all good things must come to an end."
- Q, Star Trek: TNG

Film & TV

Deep Rising: Cyclopean tentacles vs High Tech Cruise Ship

by Ken Newquist / July 28, 2010

 Deep RisingDeep Rising is one of my favorite monster movies, and there's one reason why -- it's the perfect RPG adventure. We've got our hardcore mercenaries hired to hit a cruise ship, a ragtag team of freelancers in over their heads, and a tentacled deep sea horror that intends to devour them all.

Far better than the twin late-1980s deep see flicks Deep Star Six and Leviathan, this film takes place above the ocean, but has similar nautical challenges. To begin, the setting is a huge, ultra-modern cruise ship packed with monster snacks, err, passangers. When our heroes arrive they find all but a handful of people (including the ship's owner, the captain, and a beautiful thief in a red dress).

Predator: 1980s military adventurism meets alien horror

by Ken Newquist / July 27, 2010

 PredatorPredator starts off as a standard 1980s-style military adventure film, not unlike Swartzenager's own Commando. It's got the bad-ass elite soliders (led by Arnold's own Dutch), a bombastic soundtrack, and a pitched firefight with guerillas.

But in between the bouts of testosterone, there's tension. Our troops realize something isn't quite right -- but is it in the mission (fouled by their CIA contact) or something else?

Of course, we know it's something else ... something extraterrestrial, given that an alien spacecraft was dropped to earth by an alien starship just before the opening credits. But as to the nature of their alien adversary, that's a mystery that's revealed ever so slowly.

Slither: Gore and Slime Combine for Fun B Movie Horror

by Ken Newquist / July 26, 2010

 SlitherSome days, all you want is a good ol'fashioned monster movie, one in which the critters are from outer space, the townspeople are unsuspecting, and the slime flows like an insidious, revolting river. Slither provides all this and more, combining the B movie horrors of the 1980s with a sense of humor seldom found in its gory predecessors.

The movie opens with the prerequisite rock from outer space crashing to Earth in the woods outside of Wheelsy, South Carolina. Keeping with the horror theme that the sexually frustrated (be they virgins or not) are the first to die, Slithers sees its soon-to-be villain Grant crawling bars after his wife decides she'd rather sleep than fool around. He finds an old flame willing to become a new one, and together they head off into the woods, where Grant has an attack of conscious and breaks off his would-be fling. Unfortunately for him, he stumbles across a pulsating organic orb along the forest path, and as he pokes it with a stick, it pokes back, shooting a barb deep into his chest.

Jaws: The prototypical modern monster movie

by Ken Newquist / July 25, 2010

 JawsJaws is the definitive monster movie of the modern era. While there were all manner of creature features before it, Jaws did what films about vampires, werewolves and other supernatural spawn couldn't: it made millions afraid of the water.

It was the first modern blockbuster, and established a pattern for releasing summer movies that Hollywood held to for decades. For geeks, it did something more important: it established the rules of the genre.

Monster Week 2010

by Ken Newquist / June 29, 2010

Check the batteries in your motion trackers, refuel your flamethrowers, lock and load your shotgun, and make sure you've everything you need to make a few dozen pipe bombs.

Monster Week is here.

The week-long celebration of speculative fiction's monster movies is running July 25-31 at Nuketown. It focuses on "creature features", movies like Aliens, Predator and The Thing that pit humanity against overwhelming horrors. It will include movie reviews, audio commentary, game reviews and RPG reviews and anything else we can shove out the airlock.

Veritech Fighters Available for Pre-order at

by Ken Newquist / May 26, 2010

One of the defining moments of my own personal geekdom was discovering Robotech the summer before my freshman year of high school. The series had everything: grand, multi-generational space opera storylines, immense space battles, great characters and, of course, starfighters that turned into battle-mechs.

For years I've had a Jetfire transformer sitting in guardian mode on my desk (Jetfire being a clear knockoff of the veritech) but I've often wanted to upgrade to a full VF model. Now I can --'s offering three new Veritech fighter models on pre-order:

Open Polling for Nuketown's Monster Week

by Ken Newquist / April 11, 2010

The Discovery Channel has Shark Week. That's all well and good -- sharks are equal parts terrifying and fascinating -- but why limit yourself to one species? This summer Nuketown is launching Monster Week -- one full week dedicated to the best in cinematic horror. We're going to have movie reviews, soundtrack reviews, blog and game posts inspired by said movies, and -- if I can swing it -- feature length audio commentary for a film.