May 11th, 2017

Porsupah by Potato Otter

Tandoori chicken

As you know, I don't tend to watch very much TV these days - currently, I only make sure I keep up with MasterChef (now in its finals week, and we sadly saw the end of Lindsay's journey in the competition on Monday last week), Doctor Who, and MLP:FiM. But, I do have a substantial pile of TV and film I'd like to catch up with, and I finally got around to all of Steven Universe recently - and I'm delighted I did. ^_^ I think, at its core, it's its emotional richness that appeals, alongside its remarkable use of music, both in incidental work, with some occasional chiptune sensibilities, and even a few (all too infrequent!) musical numbers, such as Stronger Than You, which begins somehow hip-hop before gliding into a more funky style, or the broody, melancholic It's Over, Isn't It? - even the first ending theme, the gently beautiful Love Like You they eked out over the course of a couple seasons, giving subtly different versions each time; someone's kindly edited it all together into a complete piece here. (And it's the show's creator playing the piano and providing vocals!) Its positivity toward love, regardless of gender, is a delightful aspect; it's quite open that Pearl was very much in love with Rose - indeed, It's Over is a poignant tribute to that. If you'd like to give it a try, it's probably all on YouTube, but I found it more convenient to snag it from Yay Steven; the torrents seem to be quite well seeded, thankfully.

On rather a different TV note, the gigantic news has to be that Dredd is coming to TV: Rebellion's announced they're developing a Megacity One TV series. =:D They have writers lined up (what an opportunity!), but casting's yet to be completed. Obviously, I'd love to see Karl Urban return to the role, but he may be too expensive - but who knows? Maybe it's a role he'd take for the fun of it. I wonder how it'll wind up being distributed - Netflix, maybe? Much as I'd love to see the BBC pick it up, they really don't seem positively inclined toward sci-fi, and only slightly more toward fantasy, with Doctor Who being about the only exception that comes immediately to mind.

So, we just saw these folk play: 3 Daft Monkeys. Ye gods, such energy! I'd see them again immediately if that were an option, but they're touring around, departing immediately. As the venue's blurb put it: "With their quirky and original approach to music, and their passion, intensity and sheer joy of life, 3 Daft Monkeys have gained themselves a large and loyal cult following. Their music is hard to pigeon-hole, mixing and crossing many musical genres from Celtic, Klezmer, Gypsy, Balkan, Latin, Ska, Dub Reggae, Indie, Rock and even a hint of Shostakovich."

With finances dwindling, and the roomie taking up the hobby again, I've joined him in home brewing. ^_^ The first is a cider; it's intended to go to 5%, but with the intent of nudging it more toward 7-8%, I bumped the sugar up from 1.5kg to 3kg. The OG's 1.071 - if the yeast offers maybe 70% completion, that ought to land it about where I'm hoping. I've no idea how it'll turn out, but way back when, I managed to obtain entirely decent results from a few beer kits, as well as some wild fruit and flower wines. I may well have to play with the flavor profile a bit, as I tend to enjoy a tart edge in cider - I've got some citric acid ready, and tannin, which might well be joined by malic acid, a key element in cider apples. Anyway, we shall see! It got underway on May 10, so fermentation should be done within a fortnight (and it seems pleasantly frothy on top, yay!), plus at least a week or so to settle, once it's been decanted into 2l bottles. (This is fun!)

If you're a big fan of Okami, how about a life-size bust of Amaterasu?

Sadly, it's only a two minute trailer, for a show pitch that apparently hasn't gone anywhere yet, but it's huge fun regardless: Super Turbo Atomic Ninja Rabbit.

On board Japan's new luxury train, running between Tokyo and Hokkaido, with space for 34 passengers between the ten cars. Food is, of course, prepared by Michelin-starred chefs, and delivered by uniformed butlers. With tickets ranging from $2860 to around $10k, it's fully booked until March 2018.

Reaction Engines has begun construction of their test facility, with the first SABRE core testing scheduled for 2020. I seriously want to be there to witness that first test, one way or another. SpaceX is doing very good work, but the tech is essentially purely evolutionary - SABRE has the potential to open up new frontiers of both hypersonic passenger travel and space launches.

Behold: one of the greatest musical and cultural meldings ever attempted, and attained - Princess Leia's Stolen Death Star Plans. I've used images rather than YouTube embeds, as those seem quite demanding on lower powered devices.

And I notice that Midnites for Maniacs is running a rather cool double bill on Saturday, May 27 2017, leading with a 20th anniversary screening of The Fifth Element, in a newly restored 4K DCP presentation, followed by Lola Rennt. And to mark the occasion, they'll be offering a bespoke poster. Wonderfully stylish, although personally, I think I'd have aimed for a more playful feel. I'd still happily snap up a copy if I were in the area, though. ^_^

Tracks 1 & 2:
Princess Leia's Stolen Death Star Plans/With Illicit Help From Your Friends
Track 3:
Luke is in the Desert
Track 4:
Never Better
Track 5:
Imperial Holes
Track 6:
He's Leaving Home
Track 7:
Being From the Spaceport of Mos Eisley
Track 8:
The Force Within You
Track 9:
AA Twenty-Three
Track 10:
Track 11:
Keep Moving Keep Moving
Track 12 & 13:
Reprise/A Day in the Life of Red Five