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Amy: This episode wrapped its themes around itself so tightly the drama could have suffocated, but in the end it never got so arch that it failed to pack a punch even though as a construction it was pretty close to immaculate and, so, highly conspicuous.

Ad: Absolutely. It was testimony to the fact that Mad Men is only superficially realistic – realism is never so overtly self-conscious of its themes, or given to blurring the lines between dream and reality, for that matter.

Amy: It’s enjoyable to watch Weiner and co unpacking the theme of change in all these different ways, isn’t it? In Mystery Date it was all about the intrusion of an unknown element into the characters’ lives – a date with someone they didn’t know, a situation they couldn’t plan for. Basically they’re all Cinderella in Michael’s commercial, aren’t they, turning round to confront the stranger? We could break it down every which way, but that’s just a bit too anal for me. I think we should just play it by ear and discuss the threads we liked most.

Your date with mysterious mindlesses continues after this jump

The Faceless Mindless Collective are back and this time Patrick Meaney, film-maker and director of Grant Morrison: Talking With Gods, is in reach of their terrible teeth in their terrible jaws.

Patrick’s new documentary, Warren Ellis: Captured Ghosts, focusses on the life and works of pop-comics very own futurologist, ‘Internet Messiah’, hard man auteur, and features extensive interviews with the man himself and a great many of his friends and collaborators. It’s well worth a watch even if you have only a passing interest in the guy behind Planetary, Transmetropolitan and the Authority.

Ellis turns out to be not just a true original, and maybe slightly scary, but also hugely loveable. Who knew?

We get stuck into it (Patrick, with our blunt fingernails) after the jump

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Note 2 – Uno Moralez

November 18th, 2011

Night. A boy lies slumped on the pavement.

notes from the borderland

A car pulls up, the door opens and a red woman calls him over.

He gets in.

Uno Moralez’s pixel art has an infernal heat.


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Wotcha reckon?

Huge spoilers from the start

I struggled with this one for all of five seconds until I remembered that my favourite TV series ends as it began, with the threat of many more bodies wrapped in plastic

The battle between BOB, the evil spirit that haunts the woods surrounding Twin Peaks, and Special Agent Dale Cooper, is nothing less than a Manichean struggle between good and evil. BOB is the home invader, the predatory paedophile, the serial killer. He’s every tabloid nightmare made fantasmal flesh. Worse, he’s the madness that made the good man Leland Palmer rape and kill his daughter, Laura, wrap her corpse in plastic and throw it in the river. Dale Cooper on the other hand is the answer to the question, what if Buddha were a policeman? In constant communication via dictaphone with his forever absent personal assistant cum spirit guide, Diane, Cooper’s a coffee loving, pastry chomping saint with a badge. The kindly face of authority come to rescue us from All Bad Men, and guess what? He fails, and he fails catastrophically.

Fire walks with you after the jump

Rogue’s Review: Cybermen

September 9th, 2011

A woman’s fingers erupting from a robot’s wrist, a wet brain punctured by wires and encased in metal, animal hair sprouting behind a cyborg faceplate, emotions crushed beneath inhibitor technology.

Cybermen? It could be argued.

Body horror and cyber-strangeness after the cut

A reminder that Comics & Conflicts is going ahead at the Imperial War Museum, London, Friday August 19th and Saturday August 20th, and it’s jam packed with interesting stuff.

Guests include Garth Ennis, Pat Mills, David Collier, Mikkel Sommer, Sean Duffield, Dave Turbitt & Adrian Searle, Eileen and Francesca Cassavetti. Last-minute extras David Blandy and Inko, creators of the anime-collage autobio-documentary and manga-inspired comic CHILD OF THE ATOM

The event also features a full-day academic conference, talks and panels, a comics workshop, free film screenings from 4.30pm on the Saturday of the documentary Comics Go To War

Plus art exhibits of Joe Colquhoun’s originals from Charley’s War and more.

Alex Fitch is hosting a special Comics & Conflicts preview broadcast from 8-9pm Tuesday 16th on Resonance FM.

Full details and links to book are here

A feature article on the main guest creators is here