GIVEAWAY WINNERS: I Am Legend Tickets, A Winner Is You!

We now have our two winners for the I Am Legend premiere tickets for Tuesday evening. They are:

Andrew W.

Joshua L.

Congratulations guys, your tickets should be winging their way to you very shortly. Have fun at the premiere and if you take pictures, let us know where they are so we can all oogle them.

I want to thank everyone who participated. Hopefully we’ll have more of this sort of thing in the future.

Filed under: Contest

[via SciFi Scanner]

Filed under: HumorStar Wars

SF Tidbits for 12/07/07

Filed under: Tidbits

Tube Bits For 12/07/2007

  • Apparently, the Sci Fi Channel has green lit a new ‘reality’ series called Run For Money. Here is the description: “Based on a successful Japanese format from Fuji Television, the action takes place over 60 minutes of real time in various landmark locations. As the clock winds down, the competition gets harder as more hunters appear on the streets, the game perimeter gets smaller, and tasks are assigned that test fraying nerves. Contestants earn money for every second they “stay alive” and may opt out at their choosing.” Sadly, no word on whether Richard Dawson will be the host, and no live ammunition will be used. Arnie won’t be happy.
  • Trashonistas has posted an interview with writer/producer Jane Espenson (Buffy, Firefly) on the occasion of the release of Serenity Found, more essays about Firefly, which Jane edited. For a show that lasted less than one season, its amazing that more has been written about Firefly than was actually written for the show.
  • Variety reviews the ratings for recent genre shows on TV. Tin Man averaged an amazing 5.3 million viewers, with a 50/50 split between male and female. I’m not surprised. Any show that gets my wife to ask me to record it is on to something. The season finale of Heroes declined a bit to a 5 rating, which is still higher than earlier episodes, but a far cry for the highs of last year.
  • USA Today has a first look on the upcoming live-action remake of Speed Racer. We’ve seen the Mach 5 before (and it still looks sweet), but USA Today has a few more pictures from the set. The costumes look dead on and the film will try to mimic the look of the animation, only in live action format. There will also be something called ‘car-fu’, that, of course, will have to use CGI to accomplish. I’m still interested, even if it it ends up being cheesy. Heck, the anime was kinda cheesy anyway. And with a G rating, I can take my kids to see it.

Filed under: FireflyTube Bits

GIVEAWAY: Reminder, Not Much Time Left!

Our contest to giveaway tickets to the premiere (for you, John) of Will Smith’s I Am Legend is going strong. But time is running out. If you want to win tickets, follow the instructions in our original post and good luck!

If you don’t win, and for those of us not lucky enough to live around NYC, Gabriel Mckee has an interesting look at I Am Legend and The Omega Man on his blog. It’s called SF Gospel: I Am Legend and The Omega Man: Realized eschatology in the kingdom of the vampires, and its an interesting read. Thanks to Gabriel for pointing this out.

Filed under: Contest

Heroes Continues Online

I know that many fans, and most of us here, were disappointed with the second season of Heroes. However, I continue to be impressed with the way NBC is using the internet to continue to generate interest in Heroes. Of course they have the nice online comics

that give more depth to the stories, and the are continuing to add to the Create Your Hero section. And now they are delving into Alternate Reality Gaming (ARG) as well with their Heroes Evolutions game.

Evolutions is the story of Hana Gitelman’s attempt to track down the mysterious Richard Drucker. ‘Hana’ has her own blog where she leaves clues for people to decipher. And Primatech Paper has it’s own website, with views from its security cameras for all to see.

I’m not big on ARGs myself as I’m not much of a puzzle guy, but LOST ran a successful one a year ago and now Heroes is following suit. If this is your thing, or if you want to learn more of the Heroes story, you should check it out.

Filed under: HeroesTV

GIVEAWAY: Win Tickets To The I Am Legend NY City Premier

If you’ve been wanting to see, or are on the fence, I Am Legend, we have the opportunity to give away 2 sets of tickets (each set has 2 tickets, 1 for the winner and 1 for a guest) to two lucky readers who can be in New York City for the premier of I Am Legend. (You must provide your own transportation.) The movie will be shown on Dec. 11th at 7pm Eastern Time at Madison Square Garden.

Even if you’re undecided about the movie, the cost to you is free, which is a good thing. Unless, of course, you don’t live anywhere near NYC. So, any of our readers who would like to go to the premier, send us an email with your name and mailing address so we can send the tickets out to you. The bad news is we were notified late last night about the availability, so the contest has to be short and quick. The deadline is tomorrow (Friday 12/7) at 10:30 am Central Time. You have just over 24 hours to get send in your information.

Send the email with name and address to: legend (at) sfsignal dot com.

We’ll randomly select two names to receive tickets which will be sent to the winners overnight. Then you’ll be on your way to rubbing shoulders with Will Smith and the rest of the cast and making the rest of us green with envy. So send in your emails!

Filed under: Contest

SF Tidbits for 12/06/07

  • Bob Eggleton continues his renditions of the classics with this awesome cover art for Heinlein’s The Man Who Sold The Moon.
  • Over at UKSF Book News, Andy Remic talks about the…unbelievable…process of writing his novel War Machine.
  • New free fiction at “A Martian Odyssey” by Stanley G. Weinbaum.
  • Karen Miller interviews Trudi Canavan, author of The Black Magician trilogy and the Age of the Five trilogy. “There has been this chunky mega-book series phenomenon, which I don’t like as a reader. I prefer to wait until the last book of a series is available before I start reading the first one, and I must admit my interest in the Jordan and Martin mega-epics has waned from waiting so long to start them.” [via Eos Book Blog]
  • Author Bruce McAllister writes in to tell us that his first novel, Humanity Prime, is being reissued by Wildside Press. Originally published in 1971–and based on McAllister’s first published story, “The Faces Outside”– Humanity Prime is the story of a telepathic aquatic race of humans faced with annihilation on a distant planet thousands of years from now.
  • From a press release: “A signed copy of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and a rare hand-numbered signed limited edition of Margaret Atwood’s poetry collection, The Door, will be the eye-catching headline items in an’s online charity auction taking place between December 6 and 11.”
  • Here’s the trailer for Prince Caspian, the second installment of The Chronicles of Narnia. [via SciFi Chick]
  • Drivers and Sundry collates a bunch of genre-related short films.
  • Good news…I think…Riff Trax is doing the Star Wars Holiday Special. [via E.E. Knight]
  • Warning to expectant fathers: The purchase of the book Baby Sci-Fi Names will be something she’ll bring up for years to come. “From Anakin to Zardoz” indeed…

Filed under: Tidbits

Tube Bits For 12/06/2007

  • If you need a limo, if no one else can help, and if you can find them, maybe you can hire The A Team Limo! Now you can be chauffeured around in your very own replica A Team van for your next night on the town. Although I’m not sure Hannibal would approve of the 6 plasma TV’s or full bar. Being drunk makes it hard for a plan to come together. Then again, that may explain Murdock’s behavior. Can anyone explain to me why this service is in England? Was the A Team a big hit over there? Oh, and I want one. Oh again. If you’re wondering why this is on a science fiction blog, I defy you to come up with a rational explanation for why case loads of ammunition could be discharged each episode, and no one got hit.
  • IGN sits down with Futurama writer/producer David Cohen and talk about Bender’s Big Score. They cover the differences between the movie and TV episodes, taking SF seriously in a comedy show, and a bunch of other stuff. I’m going to have to buy me some Bender’s Big Score. And remember, Everybody loves Hypnotoad!
  • Chalk up another independent SF series that is on the internet. Out Of Darkness is a SF cop drama that is trying to move into the broadcast space by seeking a recognizable face for it’s lead character. Currently, the show airs on DirecTV and Time Warner, and you can see some of their output on YouTube. It’s billed as being in the vein of The X-Files. I haven’t really watched any of it, I was more interested in how technology and the internet are making things like this easier for people to put together and promote.
  • Sadly, not all Cylons look like Tricia Helfer or Grace Park (sorry Tim!). So how can you tell when the person you are dealing with is a Cylon? Why with Forbidden Planet’s How to spot a Cylon poster of course! And while you’re there, check out the Blue Sun Travel posters for places from around the ‘Verse.
  • Now you can win fabulous prizes for supporting the writers during the writers’ strike. Ron Moore is offering a chance to win prizes to those who donate at Pencils2MediaMoguls. If you send pencils to the moguls running the big media companies, you could win: a night at a hockey game with Chief Tyrol, a phone call from Mary McDonnell, Tricia Helfer (Hellooooo nurse!), or Michael Trucco, or, the grand prize, one of three towels actually worn by Jamie Bamber on set. Moore also hints that other fabulous prizes are may appear in the future.

Filed under: Tube Bits

Tom Doherty Talks about Mass-Market Paperbacks

Tom Doherty,President and Publisher of Tor Books, talks about the business behind mass-market paperbacks:

Trade paper has never done better for us. It’s been growing steadily for years and it’s certainly nice to see two of our books on nationally respected trade paperback bestseller lists in any one week, but I am worried about mass market. So much of mass market is impulse and impulse is so important to the creation of new readers. The person buying a book from a wire revolving rack in a drugstore as he waits for a prescription, the person who buys a book from an attractive in-line display in a supermarket, in a shop in the hotel lobby, or at a newsstand in an airport or a train station is not necessarily a committed and regular reader. But numerous surveys have shown that if you please them often enough in impulse situations a meaningful number will be converted. These impulse sales are an important part of our outreach and we need to be sure there is a selection which will tempt that consumer. Nielsen surveys have shown science fiction and fantasy as high as 12.4% of fiction sales. If no science fiction is displayed a significant number of potential customers may not be tempted, the same is true of many other categories and in each case new readers will be lost.

[via Irene Gallo]

Filed under: Books

Wednesday YouTube: Papal Ceremony Star Wars Mashup

[via Miniature Brainwave]

Filed under: HumorStar Wars

SF Tidbits for 12/05/07

  • Holy Dark Knight teaser poster, Batman!
  • Apparently, the ending of I am Legend, based on the totally awesome Richard Matheson book, needed to be changed. Sigh…
  • Physics World interviews sf author (and former physicist) Alastair Reynolds. “I think the most important attribute for a science-fiction writer is to be fascinated by science – in all its manifestations. It’s not necessary to be able to understand all the details, but just to be inspired and stimulated.”
  • Amazon Blog interviews Steven Erikson, author of the Malazan series. “There is something mercenary in writers, something that others might view with faint disgust, and that is the terrible desire to feed off one’s own circumstances, using genuine emotions (including suffering) to infuse a fictional tale that is, at its core, meaningless.”
  • At SciFi Wire, John Joseph Adams profiles Matthew Hughes, author of The Commons, and Cherie Priest, author of Not Flesh Nor Feathers (read the first chapter!).
  • Artists Bob Eggleton shows us some artwork for Stanislaw Lem’s Solaris.
  • SFF Audio reports that Michael Enright of CBC Radio One did a revealing half-hour special on the life and work of C.S. Lewis. (Podcast link.)
  • Free audio fiction: The Time Traveler Show podcast #21 features readings of three stories: “Prone” by Mack Reynolds, “An Incident on Route 12″ by James H. Schmitz, and “Will You Wait?: by Alfred Bester.
  • Which Geek are you? A Trek Geek? A Jedi Geek? Pick from this Flickr photo set of 56 Geeks.
  • Are you reading Brewster Rockit: Space Guy yet? The latest strip shows the ultimate usage of the TARDIS.

Filed under: Tidbits

Thoughts on the Heroes Mid-Season Finale

Last night was the writers’ strike-imposed mid-season finale of Heroes. And I have to say…meh.

I still maintain that, overall, Heroes season 2 has sucked. There was one shining moments two weeks ago (with the episode “Cautionary Tales”) where it looked like there might have been a turnaround since some moments recaptured all that was good about season one. But that turned out to be an exception, because last week’s episode (“Truth & Consequences”) was just as bad, with characters doing things that made no sense other tan being shortcuts to move the plot to here the writers wanted to go.

Here are some ***spoilery*** thoughts on last night’s mid-season finale episode, “Powerless”:

Read the rest of this entry

Filed under: HeroesTV

Tube Bits For 12/04/2007

  • The Mercury News reviews Tin Man and says it’s ‘more dour than dark, lacking the sense of humor and witty references to the original that are part of both versions of “Wicked.”’ They also criticize the mis-casting of the actors. I’m not sure I necessarily agree. I’m not sure what they were expecting, but I was pleasantly surprised with Tin Man (after only seeing Sunday’s part). Great SF it isn’t, but it didn’t reach the depths of lameness that Flash Gordon does so I’ll keep watching. Faint praise perhaps, but praise nonetheless. Oh, and The Mercury News loves Torchwood, so make of that what you will.
  • Speaking of Tin Man, did you know it has an online comic? Apparently, now you need a comic to help flesh the story out. Tin Man‘s focuses on Azkadelia’s assumption of power over Central City, so you get some more backstory that isn’t necessarily in the show. Sadly, the comic version of Azka-D isn’t as….alluring as Kathleen Robertson. Flying Batmonkey tattoos FTW!
  • Michael Emerson, who plays one of the best/creepiest villains ever on TV as Ben Linus on LOST, speaks to Buddy TV about Season 4 (no worries, very mild spoilers at best). It seems there will be a lot of blood and violence in the opener as both the Others’ and the Losties’ camps are in disarray. Also, it seems that past characters will play a large role in this season. Does this mean that Charlie will make more appearances? February can’t get here fast enough.
  • Dynamic Subspace has an in-depth look at the classic British TV series, Blake’s 7. I’m sad to say I’ve never seen Blake’s 7, but I’ve hear a lot of good things about it. If you’ve seen it, what do you think about it? How does it compare to the new British SF show Hyperdrive?

Filed under: Tube Bits

Who’s the Best Joker?

In this week’s blue scifi babe poll, some have already requested a little sci-fi beefcake. Perhaps I could interest you in some fruit cake?

Pictures are starting to emerge from the filming of The Dark Knight, in which our caped crusading hero fights the clown prince of crime, The Joker, played by Heath Ledger.

Here’s a quick glimpse at some of the more famous Jokers:

Who’s your favorite…Cesar Romero, Jack Nicholson, Mark Hamill or Heath Ledger?

Filed under: MoviesTV

Longtime science fiction fans remember the Ace Doubles books that included two stories in one mass-market paperback binding. Decades later, Tor had a series of Tor Doubles that included two award-winning novellas in the same format. More recently, Gollancz published something similar under the Millennium imprint and called the books Binary and, like the Ace Doubles, each title is flipped 180 degrees, so you get what appear to be two books slapped together with no back cover.

Binary 2 includes two stories: “The Vaccinator” by Michael Marshall Smith and “Andy Warhol’s Dracula” by Kim Newman.

Reviews after the jump…

Read the rest of this entry

Filed under: Book Review

SF Tidbits for 12/04/07

  • The latest Tor newsletter features the story behind Philip K. Dick’s previously unpublished novel, Voices From the Street, by the book’s Editor, David G. Hartwell, who says: “Over the next two decades, the posthumous film career of Philip K. Dick really took off and is still flying. And Vintage published everything, in the end, but the mainstream novels. So I have been able to fulfill one of my last personal goals by publishing trade editions of some of the mainstream novels at Tor, and indeed bringing the last unpublished one, Voices from the Street, out for the first time ever.” (Tor has an book excerpt.)
  • The Tor newsletter also interviews Richard Matheson, author of I Am Legend. “Yes, Stephen King has said that I Am Legend was one of his main influences – it got him thinking the way he does…”
  • Green Man Review looks back at 20 years of The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror anthology.
  • Solaris publishing sent a press release announcing publication of a new anthology from Nick Gevers: Extraordinary Engines: The Definitive Steampunk Anthology.
  • In a new ShatnerVision video, William Shatner talks about his writing, specifically his Star Trek: Academy book series he co-wrote with Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens. [via Trek Today]
  • IllusionTV interviews Laurell K. Hamilton, author of the Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter series.
  • New at “The Circle of Zero” by Stanley G. Weinbaum, “Summit” by D.M. Reynolds, and “Old Man” by Daniel Keys Moran.
  • Matthew Jarpe talks about sequelitis and how, no, Radio Freefall won’t have a sequel despite its ending.
  • Remember those old science fiction books that had cigarette advertisements in them? Here’s a New York Times article that talks about them. [via BookNinja]
  • Blog@Nesarama has video of Al Roker visiting the set of The Dark Knight and interviewinmg stars Christian Bale (Batman/Bruce Wayne), Aaron Eckhart (Harvey Dent/Two Face) and Director Christopher Nolan.
  • SciFi Catholic rounds up a bushel of Golden Compass links.
  • SFX interviews George Takei (Star Trek, Heroes). “[Gene Rodenberry’s] philosophy was that television is a rich, wonderful medium that was being wasted. It can be certainly entertaining but it can also be informative.”
  • Cynical-C points us to this damn, dirty Planet of the Apes Timeline.

Filed under: Tidbits

Monday YouTube Bonus: Star Wars Help Desk

This somehow seems fitting today, seeing as how it’s my first day in a cube.

[via Beam me Up]

Filed under: HumorStar Wars

SF Tidbits for 12/03/07

Filed under: Tidbits

Monday YouTube: The Real Voice of Darth Vader

From the Star Wars documentary available on the DVD box set.

[via Cynical-C]

Filed under: Star Wars

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