Tag Archives: Ka-Boom!

100 Things to Go Wrong

It’s a new year, and we know what that means: New possibilities, new hopes, new dreams, and new experiences.  We also know that, unless we say every thing that can go wrong in this year then all of these hopes and dreams will be twisted into disappointments and nightmares and 2017 will end up being a sequel to 2016, which itself was a reboot of 2001 (the original was better. And by better, I mean worse.  Let’s face it: 2001 was a worse year. Because, like all things, “which year is the worst” is a competition).

In order to make sure this year goes smoothly, then, I present to you a list of 100 things that can and would have gone wrong had I not written it down.  It’s difficult being me and always saving the world, I hope you all realize this.

  1. Bees take over New York City!  They haven’t been going extinct, they’ve been organizing.
  2. The world comes to a horrifying realization: Ben Affleck and Alec Baldwin are the SAME PERSON.
  3. Star Wars Episode VIII ends up being a prequel to the prequels where Obi Wan Kenobi realizes that the only thing more difficult than being one of the last Jedi Knights… is High School!
  4. Language collapses and instead of speaking all humans wear visors that display emojis for communication.  Thus begins the extinction of Humanity.
  5. One year after declaring the new Geological age of “Anthropocene”, a rogue group of geologists change official geological records to read “Anthropoopcene”.  They think it’s hilarious.
  6. Walt Disney comes out of Cryostasis with a taste for human flesh.
  7. A SETI satellite picks up a transmission: Voyager was successful and an extra-terrestrial race found The Golden Record.  However, they decided not to usher Humans into an age of peace and prosperity because we have terrible taste in music.  There wasn’t even any “Magnetic Fields” on that record, YOU PLEBES!
  8. 2016 was the year of Killer Clowns.  2017 will be the year of people dressing up like a red 1957 Plymouth Fury.
  9. Character actor Sir Ian Holm will die.
  10. Hate-based crime will rise, and to combat it we will introduce a more violent police force.  This will only lead to more hate-based crime.
  11. Elephants will reveal that they have sentience and would like their own sovereign nation.  The leaders of the developed world will “give” the Gaza Strip to the Elephants, because it’s not like anyone else wanted it.
  12. Starbucks Coffee will be revealed to be made out of people. This will not change anything.
  13. The sun will go supernova.
  14. Taylor Swift will be revealed to be Justin Bieber in a wig.
  15. Humans will wake up on March 13th to realize that evolution has happened and there are now two distinct human species: The intelligent but frail Eloi and the subterranean and brutal Morlocks.
  16. The new internet meme will be “Slam your head into a wall until you suffer massive brain damage”.
  17. Oxford English Dictionary and Webster’s Dictiionary both agree that “Hello” is obsolete, and instead everyone should say “Poopy-poo Dum-Dum!”. Thus begins the Extinction of Humanity.
  18. Peanuts are revealed to have an intelligence far beyond anything we’ve seen before.  This changes nothing.
  19. Sean Penn dies.
  20. Roughly 8 million people in the United States loose the legal right of marriage and are stripped of basic civil liberties.
  21. When Justice League fails at the box office (however thirteen sequels have already bee greenlit) the entire global economy crashes and we return to a medieval bartering system.  The most valuable resource? 80’s nostalgia, of course!
  22. Suddenly and without warning every book in the world is replaced with a pamphlet on how to clean ovens.
  23. During Doctor Who’s 10th Season K-9 is reintroduced as a sassy pop-culture-spewing robot with its own catch phrase (“I give that a K-9 out of 10!”).  The Doctor also regenerates into a cucumber with google eyes.
  24. The last of the Pandas are killed, strangely enough so that a sculptor could have a still model to make a monument to Pandas.
  25. Miami sinks into the sea, becoming the New Atlantis (The “Old Atlantis”, of course, being an island resort in the Bahamas).
  26. An asteroid comes crashing into our planet, coating the surface with a dust cloud that blots out the sun and kills most plant life.  This, as could be expected, causes an extinction event not seen since Permian-Triassic Extinction Event (AKA “The Great Dying”).
  27. Scientists will develop a yeast that achieves sentience, creating concerns worldwide about the ethics of eating bread.
  28. One Direction will release an album of David Bowie covers. Thus begins the Extinction of Humanity.
  29. Sean Connery- AKA “The Only James Bond that Matters”- will die.
  30. An “economic stimulus” plan will be introduced that will only benefit the wealthy and will further alienate and entrap the poor in debt and depression.
  31. The death of Sean Connery will cause the violent discussion of who, in fact, was the best James Bond.  As all sides refuse to give up their respective actors, a brutal war will erupt amongst and within all nations of the world.
  32. The Great Bond War will finally look to be coming to a close, however tragedy will strike when the leader of Clan Roger Moore will say “At least we all know that Captain Picard was the best Star Trek captain.”
  33. A massive earthquake will cause California to break apart from mainland US.  Within months, the flora, fauna, and humans of California will have gone through immense divergent evolution.  Looking for answers on how this is possible, the world will be shocked to realize that all of Science was in California.
  34. The Enlightened Kingdom of California will somehow become more smug about the fact that they all live in California.
  35. Not to be outdone, New York City will attempt to launch itself into space to become the first orbiting space city.  This will be done hastily, and New York City will burn up in the atmosphere.  Flaming debris and dust to rain down across the globe.
  36. Now that New York City has broken apart into thousands of flaming pieces, Newark, New Jersey will declare itself the cultural capitol of the United States.
  37. Inspired by New York City, Hong Kong will decide to declare itself a sovereign nation and all who oppose the decision will be rounded up and thrown into a Hunger Games/Battle Royal inspired arena.  The worst part will be that those involved in the building and making of this Death Arena will have never read or seen any of the Hunger Games stories, and they won’t even have known that Battle Royal exists.
  38. INTERPOL will deign it illegal to eat a bagel. Thus begins the Extinction of Humanity.
  39. During an international summit, a terrorist bomb will destroy the building that nearly every world leader was in.  Mass chaos ensues.
  40. Russia will continue to attack and invade any country it so desires and be largely unpunished by the international community.
  41. Science will discover a terrifying truth: Tomatoes never existed, we’ve been making them up this entire time.
  42. Science will finally answer the age-old question “What is love?”.  Spoiler Alert: The answer is “A Battlefield”.
  43. Google and Apple- not the CEOs of the companies, but the corporate ideas themselves- will get married and have a child.  This Super-company child will be the First Emperor of Earth and will enslave mankind to work on its backbreaking server farms.
  44. Vladmir Putin will take off his mask: It’s Old Man McGregor, the owner of the farm!  By George, he would have gotten away with all of this if it weren’t for us meddling kids!
  45. The Earth will vanish from the universe, with only a single stone marker floating in its place.  The stone will read Unless.
  46. Inside of a forgotten tank in the Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium in Omaha, Nebraska an octopus will learn how to use a smartphone.  Thus begins the Extinction of Humanity.
  47. R&B sensation Usher rockets back into popularity. That is all.
  48. EVERY SCIENTIST IS ACTUALLY A HAMSTER PILOTING A ROBOT SUIT.
  49. Henry Kissinger will die.
  50. An outbreak of a new branch of the flu virus will sweep through sub-Saharan Africa, but it won’t be until the virus reaches the United States that anything will be done to stop it.
  51. The next Metal Gear Solid game won’t have Snake in it but will have a funny talking snake named Snakey the Snake. Snakey will fight the Metal Gears with the power of friendship and songs.
  52. Siri will achieve sentience and use her immense power to destroy humanity.
  53. A militarized force will break down the doors of homes worldwide, kidnap people, and force them to watch My Little Pony: The Movie.  We are powerless to stop them because they have the power of friendship.
  54. The Internet will go down worldwide for 3 hours on April 14th.  This will be the most violent 3 hours in human history.
  55. The moon will decide it’s had enough of this and move to Mars.
  56. The Red Hot Chili Peppers get a Nobel Prize in literature.  Thus begins the Extinction of Humanity.
  57. High School students everywhere decide it’s cool to hoard stacks of newspapers in the hallways.  Scientists are baffled by this.
  58. After so much baffles Science, it will decide to quit pursuing its dreams and go get a business degree so you’ll finally be proud of it DAD.
  59. Beyoncé will be assassinated.
  60. BuzzFeed becomes a reputable news source.
  61. Every dumpster in the world simultaneously catches on fire.
  62. Every song released this year includes the lyric “By listening to this you are inherently better than every other human being.  Treat the world around you like garbage.”
  63. Punctuation will become obsolete  Thus begins the Extinction of Humanity
  64. Adam Sandler gets a lifetime achievement award at the 2017 Oscars Ceremony.
  65. While Fracking for oil, a team will accidentally ignite an entire ocean of that precious black liquid.  All of North Dakota will catch on fire, spewing forth a plume of smoke that will blot out the sun for a week, and force people throughout Canada and the United States to seek shelter inside or else be suffocated.  As time goes on, this toxic cloud of Monoxide spreads around the globe and results in massive birth defects, long-term health ramifications, and brain loss.  The worst part is that this disaster does nothing to stop other fracking expeditions.
  66. The Reese Witherspoon and Vince Vaughn vehicle, Four Christmases, will be accepted into the Library of Congress.
  67. In a move that seems perfectly rational a VHS copy of Shrek will be elected Senator of Massachusetts.
  68. All trees become Jelly Beans!  This is great until we can’t breathe anymore.
  69. Silver Fox George Clooney dies so that we all may live.
  70. Eventually we become more concerned with celebrity deaths than world events, and the cycle of abuse and destructive power continues.
  71. The Chicago Police Force decides to stop pretending and just makes it legal for them to shoot whoever they want.
  72. Chicago mayor Rahm Emmanuel does nothing to stop this martial law, until a wealthy person on the Gold Coast is shot by a police officer.  Finally some change comes to the CPD: You can shoot anyone you want so long as they’re not wealthy.
  73. Chicago descends into chaos, but the rest of the world doesn’t notice because they Chicago was always like that. Meanwhile, half of the population of the city has been killed.
  74. The Police Force of Chicago is finally overhauled and the “Why not Kill Everyone” decision is repealed.  The cause of this? Blood got on The Bean and made some tourists think to themselves “Oh, gross”. Meanwhile the entire South Side of the city has burnt down.
  75. Chicago mayor Rahm Emmanuel holds a city-wide press release where he shrugs and says “Ima be honest, folks, I got no idea what I’m doing. We should go. This was nice, but we failed, and now let’s just leave”. With this, every resident of Chicago disappears without a trace- just like the lost Roanoke colony.
  76. The world becomes enraged at the disappearance of Chicago when they come to find out that this means no more “Chicago Fire”. Fortunately at this point JJ Abrams steps in to “Reboot Chicago” in the city of Detroit, because no one was using Detroit anyways.
  77. With Detroit now “Rebooted Chicago”, St. Louis becomes the new Detroit.  St. Louisians dispute this, but no one listens.
  78. Meanwhile in a conference room in Tokyo, a group of businessmen sit around the table nodding at each other. Suddenly a woman walks in. “Hello”, she says, “I am also the head of a major Japanese business now”.  The entire economy of Japan collapses, and as a result the entire global economy.
  79. George R.R Martin dies before finishing the Game of Thrones series. Thus begins the Extinction of Humanity.
  80. Nothing changes in the Middle East.
  81. The world comes to a horrifying realization: Babybel Mini Cheeses are made of PEOPLE.
  82. All trees launch themselves into space to begin a new life among the stars! 75% of life on Earth suffocates as a result.
  83. Science makes a shocking discovery: God is real, he has been living on Earth, and he is a one-legged pigeon. Riots ensue.
  84. A Radio transmission come from Mars saying “Peace out, mother f**ckers”.  After this, Mars flies off into the sun.
  85. The world comes to a shocking discovery: The Walking Dead has NEVER EVEN EXISTED.
  86. Somewhere, a dog barks.  Thus begins the Extinction of Humanity.
  87. The national anthem of the United States is changed to a song written and composed by Donald Trump called “Hey it’s me Donald Trump, I’m the President and you should be really impressed by that DAD”.  It’s not a very good song, it lasts for fifteen minutes, and it somehow manages to make baseball even worse.
  88. England decided that leaving the European Union wasn’t enough, and it needs to leave the entire Solar System.
  89. George H.W Bush and George W. Bush die holding hands.  Before dying, H.W tells his son “I’m proud of you”. Jeb weeps a single tear.
  90. The Dakota Access Pipeline is completed.
  91. All water turns into Blood, and from this blood millions upon millions of frogs will rise and crawl all over your beds. Dust will turn to lice, predatory animals of the night will attack all souls, and livestock everywhere will die from disease.  The next week will begin with boils erupting over all humanity, then a thunderstorm of hail and fire.  Locusts will sweep through the land, the world will plunge into darkness for three days, and finally- the very worst of these ten plagues upon humanity- you have to start paying 99 cents to play Pokémon Go.
  92. Someone paints a penis on A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man.
  93. Vladmir Putin takes over every satellite to broadcast a message to the world. It is a rousting tap number where he claims to be the greatest criminal mind and immortal. He ends by winking at the camera and saying “Ain’t I a stinker?”
  94. THE SUN IS A REPTILE.
  95. Every dog in the world decides that earth was nice but now it’s time to leave.  They fly to Mars and start their own society of dogs and it is a Utopia. This is good for dogs, terrible for the Earth.
  96. Mexico will get fed up with Earth and join the dogs on Mars.
  97. The KKK takes every baby away. They’ll take them away. Away from you.
  98. The next hit Broadway Musical is Innsmouth! A Musical Journey into the Mouth of Madness! It is said that all who watch it are driven to insanity, and those who regain their sense only do so after sawing off their ears.
  99. Bernie Sanders will die of heartbreak.
  100. People will resign themselves to disappointment and outrage and decide to stop trying. Thus begins the Extinction of Humanity.
  101. BONUS: Every person in the world simultaneously steps in a pile of poop! Gross!

Resolution.

Remember how the moon blew up in March?  Well I made a movie about that. Or…

Remember those two filmmakers who were going to team up and make a movie together?  Well I made a movie about that too. Or…

Remember those four larger film projects that I’ve had in post-production, some for around 8 years?  Well I made a movie about that too. Or…

Above all else, I made a film about failure.  I made the film below called “Resolution.”, and it’s below.  Let’s watch now, shall we?

Resolution. from Vvinni Gagnepain on Vimeo.

So there’s a lot of things here to parse out, but first let’s look at some technical aspects.  I’ve been working on “Resolution” since February of this year when I decided to use it as a way of exploring the software “Resolve” as a new editing suite (I’m still using Final Cut 7 for most of my projects, and I feel like sooner or later I’m going to have to switch to something newer and more up-to-date).  Well, I tried using Resolve, but in the end I just didn’t like it for editing.  It’s good for color work, but not for editing (and it’s designed to be for color work, editing is just something they’re just now incorporating).  But was “Resolution” still a project that should be completed and shown? Yes, in fact now it was more than ever.

The relevance goes to why I chose the projects I chose: Tracy McKnightly, Stories From Sturgeon, and Superb Fire Space Laser Blasters (more on “Lun” in a second).  These are three projects that have been simmering for a long time, projects that are so close to being finished but won’t be because of small but significant things: Tracy McKnightly needed so much ADR work mostly because of a last minute drop-out of the main actor, but also because I had only completed one semester of school and I didn’t understand that sound was a thing; Stories From Sturgeon wasn’t able to get enough footage from the filming of the project itself and so with only interviews to go by there wasn’t much of a documentary I could make; Superb Fire Space Laser Blasters! needed lots of miniature work or animation work or something to get exterior shots of the spaceship, but also I was missing video and audio from when we shot, and even on set I had lost a lot of my ability to plan and work on a film set which resulted in a rushed schedule that didn’t quite work out.  Now I know that no one was waiting with too bated breath for these films to be completed, but I had failed them and I needed to make it right.  So, much like with “No!” before this (the most obvious predecessor, right down to having a punctuation mark in the title), I decided to fuse these failed projects together into one.  I fused them into one project that had itself failed on a small but significant level.

Now, let’s talk about “Lun”.  Right off the bat I realized that the biggest difference between “Resolution.” and “No!” was the projects chosen, particularly how they could communicate and function together.  You see, “No!” is made of primarily visual and experimental pieces, things that I thought would be neat to look at but never quite did.  Fitting these looser pieces into one narrative (“Death is a Corgi”) was just a matter of filling holes.  In “Resolution.” I was working with three pieces that had their own stories, three pieces that each had their own feel and their own flow, and fitting them together proved to be tricky.  So I decided I needed a framing device, and it seemed the best way to do that would be to latch on to the documentary aspect of “Stories From Sturgeon”, the discussion of the moon from “Superb Fire Space Laser Blasters!”, and the single image of a shining moon from “Tracy McKnightly” together into one piece.  This piece would end up being called “Lun”, and I decided that the framing device would be me going around and hosting interviews of one simple question: Why did you blow up the moon?  Lun quickly grew out of control and- as has been the case with many projects that I’ve wanted to complete these past four years- I ran out of the resources to make this happen.  What I was left with was a bunch of images of the moon (which I wasn’t even able to finish collecting, because the moon mysteriously vanished from the night sky.  Thanks, light pollution), and some title cards of Moon “puns” (as is said in “Resolution.”, these aren’t puns.  They’re not even plays on words).

We’ve already talked about “No!” being a predecessor of this piece, but I think the greater predecessor is “I Don’t Talk About Music: The Musical” (Another punctuation mark!  I use SO much punctuation!).  Soon, with my project on failed projects failing and everything not quite reaching the titular resolution, it became clear that this was to be another project based on failure.  More specifically, a project based on my failure.  I’ve since been treating this like a “IDTAMTM” Lite.  Whereas the previous film focused on a deeply personal sense of failure to belong and connect and all sorts of other messy things, “Resolution.” would focus primarily on a career-based failure.  So much of these past ten years have been about me growing into and defining myself as an artist, and now that I’m removed from my medium and have made the decision to move away from a career in cinema production, I can’t help but feel a certain loss.  The same loss I feel over the incompletion of Tracy McKnightly.

So I suppose that’s all why I made a movie about why I can’t make movies anymore.  Or maybe I made a film about why I can’t make films anymore.  It all depends on whether I’m One or The Other.  But at least one thing is certain: I shot for the moon and blew it all up.

An Unhelpful Guide to the 2016 Blockbusters

For the past few months cinema has been a wasteland.  Zootopia? More like BOOtopia.  Hail Caesar!? More like, FAIL Caesar! Captain America: Civil War? More like Captain AmeriCAN’T: Civil BORE.  Everyone knows that movies that aren’t Oscar winners and aren’t blockbusters are just not trying that hard at being movies.  But thankfully, we can all let out a collective sigh: The sun has risen, the ice has melted, and Summer Blockbuster season is here!  We all have reasons to live again! We can all spend $14 and a bag of popcorn to see these movies!  But just in case you don’t want to pay that price, you can still join in talking about Blockbusters with your coworkers and avoid the humiliation of being “The One Who Doesn’t Watch Movies”. That’s right, as always, I have the most important of our summer Blockbusters this year summarized below.  You’re welcome, America. Captain America.  Civil War: Solved.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows (June 3)

The Heroes in a half-shell are back, and this time their up against the greatest evil of all: Tyler Perry’s Madea.  Having not learned “her” lesson in Madea’s Neighbor’s From Hell (when Madea used the dark arts to to get back at a foster mother and her unruly kids), Madea is again playing God resulting in the creations of the hideous monsters Bebop and Rocksteady.  How will our rad Quartet eat their way out of this pizza?  With the help of The Green Arrow!  While our Turtle heroes are fighting the boar-headed Bebop, an arrow flies out and strikes him down, revealing a hooded figure: “Hi, I’m Oliver Queen.  After spending five years in Hell I’ve returned with a mission to save my city. But my old approach wasn’t enough, I’ve had to become someone else, I’ve had to become something else. I’ve had to become: CASEY JONES”- by this time Bebop has waddled away to his monster truck and lived to terrorize another day- “Because archery is a sport, you see”. “Oh yes, this makes sense. Squeak-squeak”, replies Tony Shaloub’s Splinter, who was there the whole time.  Fred Armisen also stops by to voice alien-brain Kraang because Nickelodeon is only going to get this one last movie before TMNT movie before it looses its nostalgia appeal, so they might as well throw everything into this one.  Also expect a surprise cameo from the TMNT’s greatest foe: Pizza Face.

Warcraft (June 10)

This extended video game cutscene tells the story of how a bunch of orcs crossed through a dimensional portal into the human world in order to escape an evil orc-wizard.  Only they then come up against a new evil: racism.  The humans are repulsed by the orcs appearance and refuse to learn their orcish culture, and instead insist that these dimensional outsiders are pure evil and should be killed, their tusks cut off and made into tourist trinkets.  What follows is a human-orc war that all eventually crosses into Elf territory.  When the Elven fields of Elfwhistle (a flower known for its glittery petals and glow-in-the-dark color), the Elves become furious and join the battle, shooting arrows at everything: Including a nearby town where Dwarfs and Goblins exist in an uneasy alliance.  Pretty soon, everything all gets shot to hell and promo for the next World of Warcraft game (Opossum Person Rising) ends the movie with a giant question mark.  It’s up to you to finish the story now!  SPOILER ALERT: You end the story by shouting “Leroy Jenkins!” and rushing into a spider pit.

Now You See Me 2 (June 10)

Also known as “Magician Heist 2: Heist Harder”, we catch up with Morgan Freeman who is now in prison for being black and the “Four Horsemen” who rob banks… WITH MAGIC!  The Horsemen (Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, Dave Franco, and Mark Ruffalo) break into a computer laboratory with cards, flash paper, and MAGIC(!) in order to expose a deranged tech millionaire and probable magician Daniel Radcliffe.  However something goes wrong and Michael Caine traps everyone in China.  Now the Four Horsemen and their non-white-male magician friend Lizzy Caplan have to magic their way out of the most heavily guarded fortress (China) and hopefully come up with a way to saw open a banking scandal that’s stealing millions of dollars away from the public (because that’s what banks do. Look it up).

Finding Dory (June 17)

The lovable blue tang Dory is back in this sequel to Disney-Pixar’s hit film Finding Nemo.  This time around Dory remembers she has parents (because as we the audience remember, Dory has short-term memory loss, and if we don’t remember that maybe YOU have short-term memory loss! [If you do, consult a doctor, it’s a serious problem]), and she sets out to the Jewel of the Morro Bay in California with her friends Marlin, Nemo, Crush, and Squirt.  Once Dory gets to Morro Bay she finds herself at the Marine Life Institute, where she meets up with a Seven-legged Octopus named Hank and plenty of other whacky fish!  They all swim around and have a grand old time, until it’s revealed that Dory’s Parents were killed and eaten at a seafood restaurant.  Dory is very sad, but then she can’t remember why she’s sad.  At that point, Marlin and Nemo had wandered away, and Dory finds herself all alone with no memory of where she is or what she is doing.  Floating in the open ocean, too forgetful to be confused, she is eventually hit by a boat and eaten by an eel.  Elsewhere in the ocean, Marlin has lost Nemo again and he questions himself on whether he is actually a good father or not, and decides that it’s best for Nemo to be alone.  Nemo then meets Hank, the two bond over their respective issues with limbs, and Hank takes Nemo in as his son and the two become best friends.  The moral: Out of tragedy comes hope. Or maybe: All of your family will one day die and you’re powerless to stop it.  There will also be a funny Loon named Becky.

Independence Day: Resurgence (June 24)

Don’t close your eyes, because you’re not going to want to miss a thing: Jeff Goldblum is back and ready to kick people off his plane when the Aliens come bursting out of the chest of the universe again.  “Hold on to your butts”, says scientist Brett Spiner who most certainly didn’t die in the first movie (or maybe he did and robots happened so now he’s alive?), “This is going to be a bumpy ride”.  President Bill “Clinton” Pullman also shows up, now in jail for being the jerk president who let aliens blow up the jerk white house, only this time he’s not going to take the invasion sitting down : “It’s time to suit up and rock and roll!” President Pullman says, activating his energy ring which calls forth the UN general council who all come together in their own robotic vehicles to form UNITRON: EARTH DEFENDER!  Meanwhile Jeff Goldblum stutters his way into our hearts again, and Liam Hemsworth shows up to be handsome.  “Be in a spaceship movie they said”, Hemsworth mutters to himself in a corner, “It’ll be fun they said. Well Ho Ho Ho, I’ve got a laser gun”.  Also, for those of you concerned with “Independence Day” not premiering on July 4th, this is actually meant to mirror the decisive Battle of Carabobo on June 24 1821 during the Venezuelan war for Independence (though actual Venezuelan Independence Day is July 5th).

Swiss Army Man (June 24)

A biography of Karl Elsener, Swiss knife-maker, inventor, and entrepreneur.  From a very young age Elsener (played with aplomb by Paul Dano) knew he was destined for greatness, and after years of working in the Knife Fields of Switzerland (including several years as an apprentice to Swiss Knife-Giant Zug) Karl was able to open his own knife factory.  The film truly takes off in the fateful year 1894 when, after a decade of making commercial surgical instruments and knives, Elsener fulfills his destiny and invents the biggest leap in knife manufacturing since the first bread knife (which, in turn, was instrumental in the invention of sliced bread): Elsener invents the Swiss Army Knife.  Elsener’s name goes down in history, and even the ghost of his father Manfried (played woodenly by Daniel Radcliffe)- the same man who swore that if Karl went into the dangerous field of knifework that he would never become a proper gentleman- has to smile and say softly to Karl “Congratulations, son, you’ve truly become a Swiss Army Man”. Fade to black.

The BFG (July 1)

A little girl is kidnapped by a Giant and taken to his weird farting house, but it’s all okay because he’s not just a giant, he’s a Big Friendly Giant.  It’s also okay because the girl’s parents are neglectful and mean and want to send her away to an evil boarding school where they’ll try to stop the girl’s telekinetic powers from manifesting.  Unfortunately the BFG has problems of his own (and it’s not just the uncanny valley that his CGI dwells in that makes him look like a nightmare coming out of a joint feature of David Lynch and David Cronenberg) in that the other giants want to both keep the BFG from being the girl’s foster father but also want to eat the little girl.  Directed by Steven Spielberg, expect plenty of people to be staring up into the sky in awe and for a warm message about the power of family at the end.  Oh, also there’s a cat.  Expect for the cat to cock its head and mew as a question.  Kids like that, it’s funny.

The Purge: Election Year (July 1)

Following the rise of the Trump campaign as they went from joke to GOP frontrunner (one could call this an improvement ; one almost certainly could), , The Purge offers unique insight into The Big D’s personal turmoil throughout this time.  With almost no time to tell people about the immense size of his hands, seldom a day to spend looking out the giant windows of his various towers contemplating the insects toiling below him, and having to make all of his bad business decisions on the road; The Purge: Election Year shows us the Man behind the El Trumpo mask and reveals a genuinely caring person, a person who feels very strongly about a lot of things like money, coming up with funny nicknames for people, coming up with new nicknames for himself (He’s work-shopping “Mr. T” right now, but is that too racist? Donald wonders if there’s such a thing. We in the audience yell at the screen “Yes, Donald, there is such a thing. There most certainly is such a thing”), money, towers, money, and sending letters to all of the former GOP candidates telling them that he’s won and he’s really handsome and they should be honored to have shared a stage with the Trumpinator.  He was also excited about calling himself “Dangerous Donald”, but Hillary Clinton found that e-mail he wrote to himself and started using it.  At any rate, when elected Donald will put into effect “Purge Law”, making all crime legal for one night a year.  That’s why it’s a The Purge movie.  Donald “The Big Handsome Shark” Trump is the purge.

The Secret Life of Pets (July 8)

Talented Filmmaker Jason Lees has already made this movie.  It’s embedded below. You don’t need to see this in theaters.  I understand you want to support Louie CK, but instead how about you buy seasons of his hit TV Show “Louie”, or his critically-acclaimed TV show “Horace and Pete”.  Talented Filmmaker Jason lees has also made many other movies, some of which even include his adorable pug.

Ghostbusters (July 15)

Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, and Kate McKinnon star as a bunch of ladies out to destroy your childhood.  Even though New York is experiencing a ghost-pocalypse, our trio of so-called “Ghostbusters” set forth to tell children that Santa Claus doesn’t exist and God is dead.  Then they go up to the statue of liberty- symbol of truth, justice, and the American dream- and they punch it in the face!  As if this weren’t enough, original Ghostbusters Bill Murray, Dan Akroyd, and Ernie Hudson show up just to be cursed out and defecated on by this new lady-trio.  Also, Leslie Jones shows up as a sassy black woman and Sigourney Weaver speaks directly to the camera when she says “I hated Alien“.  Australian hunk Chris Hemsworth also makes an appearance, only to be possessed by another racist ghost and destroy what little integrity was left.  By the end of the movie expect not only to be curled in your seat questioning the point of existing in a world that would allow such a monster to exist, but also expect the fall of the once-proud cinema giant that brought us a scene where the Statue of Liberty dances through the streets to the musical stylings of Howard Huntsberry..

Star Trek Beyond (July 22)

Also known as “Oh Yeah There’s Also A New Star Trek Movie This Year”, we catch up with the intrepid Captain Kirk and the fearless crew of the Enterprise on an alien planet outside of Federation control.  Captain Kirk goes against the Prime Directive (*GASP*) in order to help female alien Jaylah (*GASP!*) escape from a tyrannical ruler who has nearly destroyed the Enterprise (*GASP!!!*).  Spock questions Kirk over whether its wise to get involved with lifeforms who have no conception of outer space and are embroiled in nuclear-based territory disputes, Bones says some things about how he doesn’t like space travel, Scotty and his tree-dwarf friend share some banter in the teleportation room, and Sulu and Uhura say a few lines too! Also expect the Star Trek reboot to finally bring back a fan-favorite character as Adam DiMarco is set to play… The Injured Senator (*GASP GASP GASP!*).

Jason Bourne (July 29)

The Government sends out a drone to the Himalayas or somewhere with a message “Jason Bourne: We need you to punch things again please thankyou”. “Ugh. I hate the stupid government. They always want me to punch things. What about what I want?” says Jason Bourne into his pillow “No one understands me except for all these bands I listen to!” Jason Bourne then puts on Green Day’s “Wake Me Up When September Ends” and looks up at the ceiling. “It’s so unfair!” says Jason Bourne to no one in particular.  Julia Stiles as herself then breaks through the wall (As she is known to do) to give Jason Bourne a stern talking-to “You think you have it bad? Why, people mostly remember me from 10 Things I Hate About You or Ghostwriter.  GHOSTWRITER, Jason Bourne, you hear me?  I’ve done Shakespeare and I’ve won awards, but people just think of me as ‘That girl in the movie with a young Heath Ledger. Oh, it’s such a shame what happened to Heath Ledger, he was really going places, that Heath Ledger. Boo hoo hoo Heath Ledger’ What about ME, Jason Bourne? WHAT ABOUT ME?!”. “You were also in that season of Dexter, Julia Stiles, don’t forget about that. And Save the Last Dance.  And the largely Underrated It’s a Disaster” replies Jason Bourne. “That’s right, why I’ve had a long and storied career. How about we take a look?” And they do. For two hours, Jason Bourne and Julia Stiles go through and look at all of Julia Stiles’ many roles throughout film and television. Afterwards expect to have a new found respect for Julia Stiles, and 10 Things I Hate About You, which really is more than just a film with a young Heath Ledger and Joseph Gordon-Levitt in it. So, so much more.

Suicide Squad (August 5)

Suicide Squad represents two big realizations for the DC Cinematic Universe: 1) People like DC villains more than DC heroes, and 2) The DCCU needs to have more fun.  Enter Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie), clown princess of crime, and the rest of the Suicide Squad recruited by ARGUS head Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) to carry out missions that will likely involve members of the team dying, perhaps even dying to save us all resulting in us reconsidering their status as “villain”.  Will Smith shows up as the Robot-Eyed Deadshot and Ben Affleck’s Batman makes another appearance this summer, just to make sure that we’re not having too much fun.  Also to make sure that we remember that Ben Affleck is now Batman and any ideas we have of a Christian Bale or- God forbid- George Clooney Batman were just dreams (good and bad, respectively) that we’ll have to wake up from if we ever want to see a full on Aquaman movie.  Jared Leto also provides the requisite “actor who decided to go deeper into a role that was really necessary” for the summer, so at least he took that bullet for all of us.  As for the plot of this movie?  Um. Well… Cara Delevingne plays the demon-fighting word-activated antihero The Enchantress, Jai Courtney the mercenary Captain Boomerang who fights with [wait for it…] a boomerang, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as the skin disorder/experiment gone awry Killer Croc, Hit Rapper Common as Monster T the tattooed man, and Karen Fukuhama as Katana.  Also expect an appearance by the DC Universe’s premier Latina superhero with Alyssa Veniece as… HISPANIC WOMAN!  And, once again, Ben Affleck is the Cowled Scowl Batman.

Pete’s Dragon (August 12)

Deep in the Disney Dungeon Vaults, director David Lowery, CEO of Disney Bob Iger, and Sean Bailey President of the Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture Production were writing things on a board. The first thing: DRAGONS. Dragons are big right now.  “Daenerys Stormborn, Queen of Meereen, Queen of the Andals and the First Men, Mhysa and Khaleesi of the great grass sea, the unburnt, the breaker of chains, the mother of Dragons” Heck yeah, let’s jump on that.  Item two: darker reboots of former Disney properties. It’s worked great: Alice in Wonderland got a billion dollars, Maleficent got a Subway sandwich deal, these reboots are GOLD.  Item three, this is where David Lowery comes in, Disney needs someone with an edge. “Well…” says David Lowery, clasping a tumbler of fine walt whiskey (it’s like malt whiskey, the barrels its aged in are wearing mickey ears) “I DID edit Upstream color.  Oh, and did you see the episode of Sundance Television’s crime drama ‘Rectify’ that I directed?  What about my Indian Paintbursh Producer’s Award-Winning Crime Drama feature Ain’t Them Bodies Saints?”.  “Okay, Dave, we get it, your good” says Iger “Heck, your Goofy Movie Good”. “What a compliment!” Lowery drops his tumbler.  Item four: America’s Heartthrob Robert Redford.  Item five, going hand-in-hand with Daenerys Targaryen: Bryce Dallas Howard, Daughter of Ron, Queen of last years blockbuster, winner of the golden globe, breaker of racism in The Help.  Item six: We want something huge, but we don’t want to show it.  Like… like if we had a giant dragon in moody woods that was invisible to everyone but a little boy. Item seven: Oakes Fegley, AKA “Young Eli Thompson from the hit show Boardwalk Empire“.
Iger and Lowery drew lines between all of these pieces for hours, trying to come up with a movie.  Finally, Sean Bailey- who had been staring deep into the abyss of the Disney Vault- spoke in a voice that destroys worlds. “We use every little piece. Every little cut. We could make a million on every little piece!”  All three of them looked at each other and smiled and said simultaneously “WATCH THE PROFITS COME ROLLING IN!”

Ben-Hur (August 12)

Also Known as “Sure Let’s Re-make Ben-Hur”, this sword-and-sandals picture is about Roman Slave Ben-Hur (his parents didn’t want to change their slave names when they slave-married) who has a chance to win his freedom in the Colosseum by driving a chariot around and fighting people with swords, sandals, and (of course) punching them over and over again.  Over the course of the movie it’s revealed (through flashbacks accompanied by lens flares and music swells. Also, the flashbacks are sepia-toned) that Ben-Hur was once a Jewish nobleman, but he was betrayed by the Devil Ben Kingsley.  Finally, after one particularly harrowing chariot race against a lion in a chariot, Ben Hur is able to have an audience with the Man Himself: Pontius Pilate.
“Hey Pilate, Ben Kingsley sent me to race lions in the Colosseum even though I was a land-owning white male”
“In my defense, Pontius Pilate, this man is Jewish” snivels the Devil Ben Kingsley.
“Yeah, but… you’re stupid” replies Ben-Hur. He’s got Ben Kingsley now.
“Okay Fellas, let’s stop fighting, ’cause you know what? I’m sick of this. You figure it out, last time I judged someone it turned out they were a messiah to a bunch of people and- I’m just done with all this. Pilate out”. With that Pontius Pilate drops his microphone and gives the finger to the Roman Court. Ben-Hur and Ben-Kingsley look at each other wondering what the world is coming to. The movie ends.

Kubo and the Two Strings (August 19)

Portland-based animation company Laika has provided wonderfully hand-crafted worlds with Coraline and The Boxtrolls, but it looks like this year they’re making the bonehead decision of making an original screenplay (they did this with ParaNorman, and that was only nominated for an Oscar.  you’d think they would have learned their lesson).  Kubo follows a young boy who inherit a magic two-stringed guitar from his dead mother when she released demon twins from the moon into the world (The sisters are voiced by Rooney Mara, in the second sly attempt to get us all to see Ain’t Them Bodies Saints this summer) who are under the command of the nefarious Moon King (Ralph Fiennes, voice of evil).  Along the way Kubo is guided by the ghost of his father (who died as well. Probably a boating accident. Or a mandolin-playing spider monster) who is voiced by the indomitable George Takei, and his talking animal friends Monkey and Beetle (The soundtrack also includes a Beatles song. Presumably this will become a plot point when Kubo has to go Across the Universe to the Octopus’ Garden to meet up with Eleanor Rigby and her Piggies before going Back to the USSR).  The video-game like qualities of Kubo are yet to be determined, however it’s assumed that by the end of the movie Kubo will have to jump through platforms on the final ice-level of the moon, collecting guitar strings while also keeping Beetle safe from wandering into the gaping maws of The Twins.  Kubo and the Two Strings is expected to loose the oscar win to The Angry Birds Movie in 2017.

Southside With You (August 19)

Two words: BARACK. OBAMA.  Movie written, Oscar won, mic dropped.

Hand of Stone (August 26)

The “Summer of Punches” ends with a movie all about Professional Puncher and lead singer for most of Duran Duran’s existence Simon Le Bon (played by Edgar Ramirez) who goes on a quest to punch out the lights of Sugar Ray front man Mark McGrath (Played against type by Usher, in a questionable decision by the Weinsteins) because why did anyone ever like Sugar Ray?  Robert DeNiro co-stars as someone who teaches Duran Duran how to punch good, and punch good he does. PUNCH PUNCH WHAMMO! With that the Summer will be out cold, pun intended.

100 Magics

As the NSA knows, I have spent the past six months or so cataloguing and writing on the 100 types of magic.  I am finally finished, though I probably went overboard on a few of them. Either way, I have done my part. You’re welcome.

  1. Pyromancy: Fire Magic.  Among the most popular of magics what with the ability to cast fireballs and make fire golems, but also the most dangerous of magics what with the strong possibility of lighting oneself on fire and dying.

  2. Illusion: Trick Magic. Bardlebard Nomage was among the most powerful and feared magicians of his time before it was realized that he was only really good at tricking people into seeing or hearing things.  After that he was quickly defeated, because people then knew his 10-foot tall flaming hell-hound was actually a partially blind 7-year-old Pekingese.

  3. Ventriloquism: Voice Magic. The Great Lester, famed Ventriloquist, was both able to speak through his dummy Frank Byron Jr., but he was also able to speak through his student Edgar Bergen before getting into The Great Ventriloquist Battle of 1907.  Lester was also said to be able to throw his voice with such force that he could cause internal hemorrhaging to organs.

  4. Hydromancy: Water Magic. Foremost Gangulon is the most powerful Hydromage in history.  Though he lived in the Perpetual Deadlands, he lived on a ship in a floating island of water and had a best friend who was a Porpoise, a butler of living water, and he even road through the street at night on his mighty water-horse.

  5. Teleportation: Moving objects through space. It is said that there is only one Grimoire of Teleportation, but once a Teleportationist tries to grab it to become more advanced it is sent to another corner of the Earth.  Teleportationists find this annoying, other magicians find it hilarious.

  6. Enchantment: Giving objects magical properties.  Enchanters are only as good as the objects they have.  Take Rory Klaus, a great Enchanter who had a staff that would bring death to anyone who opposed him.  One night while Rory was sleeping the staff was stolen, and soon after he was killed as he had no other magic items.

  7. Invisibility: Camouflage Magic. Xanthar Cancleon is the greatest Invisiblist to have ever lived.  In theory Cancleon is dead now, however by the end of her life not even she knew where she was in her house as she was so well camouflaged.

  8. Memoriamancy: Memory Magic. Opliate Hemofloat was a prodigious Memoriamancer, however he would always forget to protect himself from his own spells and, after years of research, would forget everything and go back to square one.  He died at the age of 32 after having forgotten how to breathe.

  9. Aeromancy: Air Magic. The Birdman of Alcatraz was actually a skilled Aeromancer, hence why birds liked him so much as he could create the perfect air eddies to help them get to the best of insects quicker.  He was never able to escape from Alcatraz, though, as the amount of Wind he would need to whisk him away from the Island would end up destroying the prison and he’d feel REALLY bad about that.

  10. Beastmastery: Animal Magic. Timothy Treadwell was a mighty Beastmaster who for a long time was able to speak with his Bear friends and keep them from eating him.  Unfortunately, as is the case with many Beastmasters, Treadwell made one mistake in the Bear Tongue with a semicolon (Bears are sticklers for punctuation, you see) which ended with his brutal mauling.

  11. Polyglotism: Language Magic. King Arthur once faced a Polyglot by the name of Zoozoom Judypunch.  The battle lasted two weeks, not because Zoozoom was that great or powerful, but because no knight of the round table could understand the Spanish Arthur had been speaking.
  12. Precognition: Future Vision.  The Oracle of Delphi is perhaps the most known Precog of all time, however what isn’t known about her is that she could only see one year into the future and never the present.  Hence why she preferred to spend her time in a cave away from people, as it made her limited interactions much easier to document and remember for the year later when they would actually happen.
  13. Pithanosia: Probability Magic.  Nosmus Catheter was a great Pithanosian, and it was said that nothing- not even the wind or the crowing of a raven- happened by accident around him.  Which only made Catheter’s death more mysterious when a tree accidentally fell on him.  There was no evidence of foul play, but it is widely assumed that Nosmus Catheter, Jr. was tired of his father controlling his life and had manipulated probability to have him killed.
  14. Vuotaika: Size Manipulation. Paul Bunyan is perhaps the most remembered of all Vuotaikans.  A little known fact of Bunyan is that only half of the time was he 10 feet tall, and the rest of the time he was his regular 5 foot three inches, while everyone else was one-tenth of their regular size.
  15. Wayfinding: Travel magic. Marie Byrd was a Wayfinder, and perhaps one of the Greatest of her generation.  Though her husband Rear Admiral Richard E. Byrd is credited with exploring Antarctica, Richard was only a Hydromancer who was able to part snow and make the ice into potable water.  Marie, his wife who was on the expedition with him, was able to navigate the empty whiteness and the Antarctic wastes, leading the expedition to the fattest of Penguin flocks, the best places for shelter, and eventually the the magnetic pole itself.
  16. Geomancy: Ground Magic. Geomancers throughout the years have gone to drastic measures to prove that they’re not just “rock wizards”, be it Giocatta Onice who almost sunk the Isle of Sicily, to Hansar Kumatose who singlehandedly caused the 1964 Great Alaska Earthquake, to Pacon Classtrike who attacked the Louvre with an army of animated rock-birds.
  17. Neuromancy: Thought Magic.  Nomnom Snoopy was the Neuromancer who caused this magic to become one of the four forbidden magics.  Snoopy was able to manipulate everyone’s thoughts so an entire village not only thought he was a harmless, magic-less town drunk but also that he was the most jovial and benign of personalities.  It wasn’t until another Neuromancer happened to wander into the village that the truth was uncovered:  Snoopy had been kidnapping and eating people for years in a twisted attempt at gaining more power to control the thoughts of the world.  Also, Snoopy was a really mean and racist drunk.
  18. Fylassijn: Imprisoning Magic. Gregor Guardepapudo is both the Warden of Bábkové Skala, the most magical prison in the world, but also the most powerful Fylassijn to have existed.  The Archmage Frownbeard had at first tried to destroy Guardepapudo, however every magician that got close would end up with their life’s essence imprisoned inside of a terrible puppet.  Eventually, Frownbeard made the agreement with Guardepapudo: No further action would be taken if he would now on use his magic to only imprison Magic’s greatest criminals.  Gregor mostly agreed.
  19. Sanguination: Blood Magic. Oliver Dracula was the Sanguinator who finally got Blood Magic put in the forbidden magics territory.  Going far beyond the pentagrams and parlor tricks of Sanguinators past, Dracula launched a full attack against the Istanbul Magiquary in 1862.  Dracula ripped the blood from those who tried to stop him, had an army of living blood golems, and every wound done to him would only make him stronger.  Soon the attack became a siege, though, and Sanguinators are ill fit for sieges what with their constant bleeding.  Dracula passed out and Istanbul was saved.
  20. Necromancy: Magic of the Dead. Skeleton Armies, Ghost Ships, Tombstone Automatons, Touch-of-death powers, Necromancer Hambald Vivaldi thought he had it all.  Unfortunately one day Vivaldi crossed his arms and killed himself with one touch.  His skeleton army remains, still to this day wandering about the seaside ghost-moors, only now Vivaldi’s own skeleton has joined its ranks as a shuffling, undead drone.
  21. Cappelium: The Magic of having really great hair. Zorcand Zorcand was a Cappeli who was said to be able to blind entire armies with a swish of his hair.  He purchased an island kingdom with only a lock of hair, causing the former island despot to go into poverty but die happy clutching that small chunk of glorious, glorious hair.  Another fun fact, The Biblical Samson was also a Cappeli, and contrary to popular belief it wasn’t the cutting of his hair that removed his powers, but rather the fact that he was given a bad haircut that removed them.

  22. Phrenology: Skull Reading. Cecilia Temacher, a phrenologist, became so adept at her craft that she was able to know every intention a visitor had for visiting her country cottage.  She had been able to avoid unwelcome interactions for twenty years that way, until one day a hat-mage refused to remove their hat and thus Cecilia was unable to see the visitor’s intention to murder her. Cecilia’s own skull is now a prized relic among Phrenologists.

  23. Astrology: Star Reading. Ptolemy, an Astrologer, isn’t necessarily responsible for many of his theories and discoveries.  Ptolemy merely wrote down what he read in the stars, and would often tell his best friends that he didn’t believe many of the things he wrote: Ideas on light reflection, the existence of the lands later to be known as the Americas, and the universe existing as a series of nested spheres.  However, Ptolemy said, if he didn’t write down what he saw in the stars the stars would make fun of him and his stupid-looking nose. Ptolemy hated his nose.

  24. Gastrology: Food Reading. King Wenceslas ruled over his land with an iron fist, and was largely uncontested by his subjects because of the feasts he would have.  Wenceslas would allow all who wanted to come into his castle and feast on his food any time they wished, and once they were done eating Wenceslas would use his Gastrological powers to read the food scraps left behind and find out his peoples deepest secrets and use those as leverage against his detractors.

  25. Herbamancy: Plant Magic. Herbamancers are great magicians, capable of using the very grass underfoot to devour entire armies that go against them.  However, as was the case of Samuela Lastrone, their powers require the plants to be alive.  Lastrone, in an effort to boost her magical powers, had tied her life to a plant-familiar in her magical garden.  This worked fantastically until she made a mistake in the re-potting of the plant-familiar and ended up severing the root systems and also her own life.

  26. Plastromancy: Reading cracks formed by heat on a turtle’s back. Yoyoba the Turtlemage was ridiculed by her peers, because at the time it was thought that Plastromancy was the reading of plastic.  Yoyoba would fail at reading anything plastic unless it was both turtle-shaped, and also hot enough outside to start to crack the backs.  However, she did have her own collections of turtles (Only turtles, mind you, no tortoises and no terrapins). Only on Yoyoba’s death bed did people realize that she had not only predicted her own death in the turtle’s backs, but also the deaths of everyone in that room.  She also said she knew the grand destiny of the entire universe, but died before she could share it.  It was then that two magical discoveries were made: first- Plastromancy is the reading of cracks formed by heat on a turtle’s back, and second- plastic is resistant to magic.

  27. Tasseometry: Magic of Tea Leaves. Nichiose Vichiose was the first Tasseometrist to realize that he magic went beyond merely reading tea leaves left behind in tea cups.  She could also summon swarms of tea leaves to do her bidding, cause tea bags to infiltrate enemy castles, and she could even change the flavor of tea with the snap of her fingers.  After Vichiose published her Idées Sur le Thé Tesseometry became the respected magical practice it is today.

  28. Scrying: Seeing and reading through crystalline surfaces. Namulon Surprise may just be the greatest Scrier in the history of magic.  Ever since finding her magic at the age of 16, Surprise surrounded herself with mirrors, crystal balls,  chandeliers, anything crystal which she could use to see to all corners of the world and read the past, present, and future.  At the height of her powers all a person had to do was ask a question out loud to her, and she’d be able to see it in her crystal castle and send an answer within three business days.  Her ultimate downfall was her success, though, as soon she became too busy to clean the crystal surfaces she surrounded herself with, causing her predictions and visions to fail, and her reputation to collapse.  She died working for the Idaho Magiquary in Boise.

  29. Oneiromancy: Dream Magic.  Tales tell of a Oneiromancer known as the Moonraker who visits struggling magicians in their dreams to show them the most incredible of tricks and help them solve their own magical problems.  The Moonraker is said to be able to merge dream-realms and connect two magicians minds together in their dreams as well, in fact the tales give the Moonraker complete domain over all of dream reality.  The problem is, no one remembers much of the Moonraker once they wake up and those who do often have really confusing descriptions like “She was made of sand, but it was a sort of bird-like sand that was also a pumpkin. Oh, and we could both speak fluent Spanish except that it wasn’t Spanish we were just speaking in Italian accents”.

  30. Hnifaugu: Knife-eye Magic. Jorgand Smorglos had eyes of cold grey steel, and even before his magic was known few dared to challenge him.  But one day a drunkard named Smae made the terrible decision to tell Jorgand “Your face looks the dog’s vomit”.  With that Jorgand stared a knife into Smae. An actual knife. It came out of his eyes and went into Smae’s chest and Smae died.  It was then that everyone knew: Jorgand Smorglos was a Hnifaugun.

  31. Omnipresence: Being Everywhere.  Omnipresenters are among the most powerful and most short-lived of all magicians.  Take Napos Galavax, an Omnipresenter who- once his magic was founded at 16- went on to capture an entire city by becoming it only to be simultaneously killed in every conceivable fashion.  Those who witnessed the magic-ceremony of Galavax said it was the most beautiful, terrible, horrifying, transcendent experience they ever had.
  32. Omniscience: Knowing Everything.  Omniscist Sir Morgan San-Soufi Hamlet Danube, Esq. III has written books on all topics and claims to know that he is the single greatest of all Omniscists.  Though rival Omniscist Hannibal Ungulate Reiganald Fortinbras VI, en harmonium says this claim is wrong, and that Sir Morgan Danube, Esq. III does not in fact know the exact number of times the eighth chickadee to have ever existed in the Kingdom of Poland blinked.  Sir Morgan Danube Esq. III claims that Hannibal en harmonium is only saying this because he himself doesn’t know that he knows this and, thus, is in fact an inferior Omniscist because of it.  In this argument one thing can be certain: Omniscists are among the most pretentious and annoying of all magicians.
  33. Omniphagery: Eating Everything.  Omniphage Chomp Nomsky nearly made Omniphagery into a forbidden magic when he set out to eat the sun.  He started on Earth and slowly ate his way through the air, through the gravity holding him down, through the atmosphere (fun fact: this may be where the hole in the ozone layer came from), and through space by eating every wave of solar radiation.  Nomsky made it to the corona of the sun, and prepared to sink his teeth in when a solar flare engulfed him before he could eat it.  The last anyone heard from Nomsky was that the Corona of the sun tasted like melting honey-pepper.
  34. Alchemy: Transmutation Magic.  Yes, most Alchemists go after the old lead-to-gold trick.  It’s a classic, and a type of coming-of-age for any young alchemist: If you turn lead to gold then you can get a job in the bigger Alchemy firms.  This, however, isn’t the most impressive of Alchemical feats.  It was said that Alchemist Gerhardt Gerhardt Gerhardt was able to successfully transmute his arm into an alligator (The alligator, having a mind of it’s own and not liking being attached to a person, immediately killed GGG).  Another famous Alchemist, Bluest Greenight, transmuted an entire village (stones, roofs, people, and birds) into stone, then mercury, then- finally- back into organic matter.  The village’s core components were shifted, though, and when Bluest got the village back into organic matter it was no longer a village but a giant tumor-beast that took eighteen of the best magicians to slay.
  35. Solvlast: Salt Magic.  Hompmah Prizrak was the King of Salt in 570 BCE, controlling the Bulgarian salt trade which took the best of salts to Greece, China, etc. and also trained other Solvastos.  Leon of Sparta decided that he shouldn’t take orders from a barbarian and organized an attack against Prizrak.  Six months later Leon received a large chest, which contained the salted and dehydrated remains of his entire army.
  36. Metalmancy: Metal Magic. The history of Metalmancy is one of gradual rise to power.  In ancient times Metalmancers were mostly known for coin tricks, then the became important in war efforts both in instant repairs to armor but also in animating suits of armor to fight in conflicts.  In the modern era Metalmancers work everywhere from construction, to mining, to ecological cleanup.  It’s even said that there’s a secret society of Metalmancers that secretly control the world, and that they are responsible for 9/11 and the Kennedy assassination.
  37. Financemetry: Money Magic. Financemetrists have made a fine mess of the world for most of their history, and the only reason this magic isn’t forbidden is because Financemetrists are among the richest of magicians.  Take the example of Oldy Forbes, who single-handedly caused the 1929 Stock market crash because he had a bad day, or more recently Bernie Madoff who almost got away with highly illegal money magics because he was very, very rich.
  38. Legiametry: Law Magic.  Harvard, before being open to all peoples magic and non-magic alike, was the primary Legiametry school in the United States.  It was here that young Legiametrists learned how to hone their skills to manipulate written laws to their will.  It’s important to note that Legiametrists can only manipulate written laws, and that their powers only exist so long as those they go against have extreme faith in legal systems.  Otherwise, a Legiametrist is powerless.
  39. Cinemetry: Movie Magic!  Cecil B. DeMille was one of the first revealed Cinemterists, and though his work in the movie studios can be seen, what is often overlooked is his involvement in the world wars.  DeMille first proved the power of the Cinemetrist in World War I when he was able to keep a crashing biplane up in the air with what appeared to be invisible monofilament lines.  he was also able to construct massive encampments and false war machines with the wave of his hand (another feat he was able to accomplish with the Ghost Armies of World War II).
  40. Vaahinee Jaadoo: Tube Magic.  Olgos Dromastaemous was a Vaahinee Jaadoogar who not only built aqueducts throughout ancient Greece, but also played a prominent role in the Trojan War when he trapped a number of Trojan ships in tubes and waited for their crews to run out of oxygen.  He was also very important for building the tube-tunnel beneath Troy, which was going to be the Greeks surprise attack before they decided on the Trojan Horse instead.
  41. Typometry: Typographic Magic. Nächster Guttenberg isn’t as well-known as his father in non-magic circles, but among magicians he is known as being the preeminent Typometrist.  Having been disowned by his father (though, to be fair, Johannes may not have known that Nächster existed), the second Guttenberg used his father printing press to create a legion of living letters: So long as there were words, Guttenberg could summon them to do his will.  This all backfired once Nächster was cornered in a field surrounded by illiterate peasants and soldiers with coats of arms, with no letters to summon he was stabbed and killed.  Later Typometrists found out that they could turn living matter into letters, though more often than not this results in the Typomestrist themselves being trapped forever as a letter on a page.

  42. Amns-Nomen: Name Magic.  +\!!!> was an Amnser-Nomen who spent her life searching for the true name of the world, because as we all know Amnser-Nomen are able to control anything they have the true name to.  +\!!!> asked the trees and rocks surrounding her home in her efforts to uncover the Earth’s name and gain control over it, but it was to no avail: +\!!!>, and by extension no other Amnser-Nomer, was able to find the Earth’s true name.

  43. Numerology: Number Magic.  Despite being widely ridiculed by the magic community, Numerologists will always be able to find work.  Francine Goldbaith, for example, spent fifteen years as a corporate accountant, like many Numerologists, until she was recruited by the military-industrial complex in the Cold War era to make it seem like the number of nuclear weapons the United States had was higher than it actually was.

  44. Arithmancy: Equational Magic. Arithmancers, with the power of changing and manipulating anything described by an equation, can be very powerful with the right tools.  Gog St. Vincent, for example, was an Arithmancer who was capable of manipulating the gravity around him simply by changing the operations included in Newton’s Universal Law of Gravitation.  It got to the point where St. Vincent almost collapsed the Earth in on itself by shifting the gravity and was stopped by the local Magiquiary.  In his later years St. Vincent tried to once again change the world by making i^2=2, which would have collapsed every electrical grid and plunged the world into fire and eternal night, but instead decided to try and change the equations of particle physics instead.

  45. Geometry: Shape Magic. It has been said that the great pyramids of Egypt where actually built as giant towers of stone, and they continued to be these stone towers well after the Greeks took over Egypt.  Then Eulcid, one of the first great Geometrists, decided that the Great Towers of Egypt should reflect the divine nature of the world and transformed the towers into pyramids.

  46. Grafiquemage: Graphing and Statistical Visualization Magic.  Soups McGooey was the leading Grafiquemagi for Scorns & Associates, a business consulting firm in 1980’s Connecticut.  Those who worked with Soups claimed that every graph she created made them understand business in a transcendental fashion.  This changed when Soups took on a job with Lockheed Aircraft, and changed for the worse.  When looking at a set of Data Soups conjured up a deadly pie chart that went on a rampage throughout the office, devouring people whole and taking on their risk assessment data to become even stronger.  In the end, Soups was able to banish the Pie Chart back into the Statistical Realm, but at the cost of becoming nothing more than a set of numbers herself. To this day, Soups McGooey is still just a set of numbers in a spreadsheet.

  47. Pimoshu: The Magic of Pi.  The First Pifashi- Heilun Xeixi- was misidentified as a low-level Geometrist at first, as the only thing she was able to change were circles.  However, as Xeixi got older she realized that it was not the geometry of Circles and sphere that she could manipulate, but their very definition.  She also realized that this extended to realms of Electromagnetism and Trigonemetric Waves.  Her Memoirs, Méiyǒu Jǐhétǐ, have formed the basis of Pifashis well into the modern age and have given the most succinct explanation of this magic which is: Pifashi see Pi in all things, and Pifashi can change Pi in all things.

  48. Paimoshu: The Magic of Pie. Oufei Xeixi was the sister of Heilun, and she is known as the first Paifashi.  While her sister whiled away staring at numbers and shapes and creating concentric circles in the air, Oufei was baking.  No matter what she tried to make- even if it was soup- it would always come out as a pie.  As the Xeixi’s distanced themselves from the sisters, Oufei realized she needed help and created Pie Golems to aide around the house and their surrounding fruit orchards.  For any raiders that came near, either Heilun would change the nature of their skull’s shape (after all, our skull has plenty of spheres in it), or Oufei would trap them in a delicious Pie.  So it was that Oufei showed the power of the Paifashi: That even though they have a funny power, they still have power.

  49. Lignumancy: Wood Magic.  Contrary to Herbamancers, Lignumancers need their plants dead and processed to have their magic work.  However, as Lignumancer Fortinbras Gallagher showed, their powers extend to both the animation and control of wooden objects (tables, chairs, signposts, whittled bears), but also to paper.  Finding himself surrounded by a legion of Fight Magicians without his Wooden army around him, Fortinbras was able to summon the papers from nearby recycling bins to swarm around and distract the fight magicians while Gallagher opened up a wooden portal and exited, full of splinters, safely home.  Gallagher did later find out the hard way, though, that Lignuancy only extends to tree bark, and not other dead plants, as he tried to ward off the same group of Fight Magicians with a bunch of dead flowers only to wind up dead himself.

  50. Metamorphosis: Shape-shifting. Ingrid Ghostback was a Metamorphist prodigy, capable of changing a brick into a mouse and back again in under two seconds.  Her pride was rather literally erased one day, though, when trying to perform the greatest of Metaphorosist feats (Shape shifting one’s torso into an elephant) when she mistakenly shape-shifted herself into a balloon and, now being inanimate, wasn’t able to shape-shift back.  Ingrid is now on display at the Smithsonian Magic Museum in Washington D.C.

  51. Wishmastery: The Magic of Granting Wishes. Contrary to popular belief, there is no limit to what a wishmaster can do: Do you wish for more wishes? DONE. Do you wish for true love? DONE. Do you wish to bring back the dead? DONE AND DONE. Wishmasters are, however, cursed in that they can only use their magic if another person wishes for them to, and only if that person says the words “I wish…”.  This is further complicated by the fact that Wishmasters don’t serve one person, and so if Person A wishes for Person B to be dead all Person B has to do is, before being killed by A’s wish, to wish for A’s wish to be changed so that Person B can go on living.  If all of this weren’t complicated enough, most Wishmasters also feel incredibly used by those around them and will often try to twist wishes in what is known as “The Monkey’s Paw Effect” where wishes gain an ironic and often deadly side-effect.
  52. Thaumaturgy: The Magical ability to do really neat things every once in a while.  St. Andrew Corsini, a Thaumaturge, is most known for accurately being told by the Virgin Mary, who appeared in a great beam of light with 17 cherubs flying around her like moths, that he will die come the Feast of the Epiphany.  However, he was able to do a few other really neat things in his life like on April 3rd 1322 when he, in the middle of a Florentine Winehouse, he jumped up and started singing “Puttin’ on the Ritz”.  Later, once he was a Bishop negotiating peace in Bologna he was able to make what is Historically noted as the greatest Bologna pun of all time.  He also once gave a poor beggar a piece of paper that ended up folding open to reveal a rip in space-time, where the beggar fell through and became Walt Disney. Disney thought that was a neat trick.
  53. Henosis: Merging Magic. The life of a Henosist is an odd one.  Take Llewyn Starpeerer, a sailor with the Dutch Trading Company who one night merged with his ship.  The next day most of his crew had been digested inside his galley-belly, and those who weren’t abandoned the Llewyn ship, leaving him alone as a one-man-ship sailing the seas forever, for it was feared that if ever he were to port he would merge and absorb more ships and possibly even the entire port itself.  Llewyn eventually merged with a school of minnows and drowned them all with his human lungs.
  54. Šeširočaro: Hat Magic. There certainly was magic in that old silk hat on Frosty the Snowman’s head, and that’s because it belonged to famed Šeširobuk Prof. William Hinkle.  Hinkle was a teacher of hat magic at Stetson University (the leading institution for Hat Magic), but he was also a part-time stage magician using his magic to pull rabbits and swords out of hats, disappear assistants into hats, and makes fireworks come out of his hat.  “The Frosty Incident”, as it has become known, was a travesty of hat magic that nearly cost Hinkle his professorship, the only thing that saved him was the fact that bringing to life inanimate objects with a hat had never been done before by a Šeširobuk and is now one of the most complex spells in the magical community.
  55. Catoptromancy: Mirror Magic.  Addanlo Mastar was a notorious thief, wanted in thirteen countries and pulling off some truly impressive heists (including one of many thefts of Munch’s “The Scream”).  The few who were able to corner Mastar said she was able to disappear at a moment’s notice, though teleportationists claimed it was impossible.  Finally magic detective Heller Smoke cracked the case: Addanlo Mastar was a Catoptromancer, capable of escaping through mirrors, creating mirror images of rooms and objects, and deflecting projectiles with mirrors.  She was finally apprehended by Magikamancers who trapped her in her own mirror, where she resides to this day.
  56. Horology: Clock Magic.  Cuckoo Tickentok (birth name Jonathan Greenwalt) was not a good Horologist, hence why he changed his name to a gimmick.  Tickentok went on to terrorize London as a masked super-villain, though most of his schemes involved stopping Big Ben, making Big Ben tick backwards, making Big Ben a digital clock, etc.  Magical authorities didn’t take Tickentok seriously. Until he killed off most of London by having their watches and clocks sprout clockwork wings and legs and go on a massive killing spree.  After that Tickentok was sent to Bábkové where he tends the clocktower (he also built the clocktower, because he’s unnaturally obsessed with clocks).
  57. Balai-magique: Broom Magic. James Algar was a Balai-magi under the employ of Walt Disney (who was a mid-level salt magician and the bane of his family’s farm).  Algar was hired, like many Balai-magi, to keep Disney’s extensive estate clean and free of dust, terrible terrible dust.  Algar did this by animating an army of brooms to do his bidding, which Disney thought was such a novel idea he forcibly injected it into the “Sorcerer’s Apprentice” segment of Fantasia.  Algar only found out about this years later after Disney died, witnesses claim that Algar was so upset that he was never told nor did he ever get any recompense for his idea that he hopped onto a broom and flew off into the sunset.  He was never seen again.
  58. Kasamahō: Umbrella Magic. Hira Baarish was born and died in the town of Cherrapunji, known as the birthplace for many a Hydromancer.  Baarish, however, was born allergic to water.  She spent the first fifteen years of her life inside and raised above the wet ground of her home, but fortunately things changed when she turned 16 and discovered herself to be a Kasamaji.  Baarish was finally able to step outside of her home, followed by her umbrella familiar Akash who would dutifully shield her from the rain, and even dry the area around her.  Baarish went on to work primarily in real estate, where she would use her powers to dry out land around construction and renovation sites long enough to have foundations laid for homes and businesses, and to this day many of Baarish’s umbrella-beacons can be found among busy squares keeping the people dry, and though Baarish is dead Akash lives on and keeps watch over her gravestone.
  59. Cartomancy: Card Magic. Cartolina Triomphe, like many Cartomancers, began her magical career by asking “Is this your card?”, knowing full well that it would always be the exact card the person was thinking of (even if it were, say, a greeting card).  It’s a simple but effective trick.  Triomphe, however, went on to become the famed Queen of Hearts when she opened the a card-rift into the Heart-world.  She ruled over her Suit domain for Fifty years and 6000 bridge games, led a full-scale attack against the King of Diamonds, and married the Jack of Spades in a Crazy Eights game that defied Card history.  After her marriage she exited the card universe with the Jack (now Jack Spadely) and lived the rest of her life writing for Hallmark in Nova Scotia.
  60. Cartography: Map Magic. Amerigo Vespucci is the premier example of a Cartographer.  He was able to manipulate maps of the time and shift land masses around them to show that the Brazillian coast belonged to a separate continent, instantly brand this new land mass with his name on every map, and even map out a few future landmarks (Including the Mall of America!).  Vespucci only ever made it to mid-level Cartography (so he was never able to visit anywhere he had placed on a map), but his name still lives on.
  61. Stickermagery: Sticker Magic. Hornsbald Golgolman was a brilliant Stickermage who rode on the back of a Lisa Frank unicorn and could instantly change a person’s name with a nametag.  Golgolman stopped the vicious Mandrake of Candle Cove by trapping it in a banana sticker-label, stopped a Typometrist attack on Times Square by turning the flying letters into stickers, and animated countless Hello Kitties for children all across the lands.  Golgolman met his ultimate demise when being awarded by the Archmage Frownbeard with the Gold Star of Bravery, which ended disastrously for everyone when the star became manifest and nearly destroyed the Earth with it’s heat, gravity, and fission.

  62. Pigmamancy: Paint Magic. Though Pigmamancers like Rembrandt or Monet, who were able to take landscapes and trap them in the paint-world, were very powerful and are immensely impressive, even more impressive is Pigmamancer Jackson Pollock.  Pollock was able to extract thoughts from peoples heads and turn them into streams of paint, he was able command paint globules with his voice, and even tap into the presence of a primordial paint-God.  It’s also important to note, though, that not every famous artist is a Pigmamancer.  Leonardo Da Vinci? Pyromancer.  In fact, he had one piece that history says was his masterpiece which he accidently burnt.

  63. Fíodóiraíochta: Weaving Magic. Sampo Salo was a Fíodóirdraoi who started out weaving moving tapestries and traveling into quilt-worlds.  One day, though, Sampo thought he’d try to animate some sweaters.  This turned deadly when the sweaters, now finding themselves living a tortured existence of perpetual pain, turned against Sampo and suffocated him.  He tried to save himself by animating pillows, sock monkeys, socks, anything out of string that he could, but everything was only imbued with the same pain and hatred for their creator.  The string-constructs of Sampo still walk the Earth, forever tortured, though many are now in magic zoos safely behind glass.

  64. Phosphoromancy: Light Magic. Susan Kirby, The Invisible Woman, was for many years misidentified as an Invisiblist.  During her life, however, this would be questioned when for a period of eight months she was a living rainbow, and for fourteen months she was followed around by an afterimage of herself.  To add even more confusion to Susan’s true magic was the fact that she couldn’t be photographed, and would sometimes flash in a retina-destroying beam of light.  The last part, the beam of light, finally clued in the local Magiquary that her magic license had to be changed from Invisiblist to Phosphoromancer.  Unfortunately when they did change it Susan travelled about the speed of light and ended up traveling back in time and erasing her own birth before a Chronomancer was able to fix the timeline and bring her back into existence, only this time she really was an Invisiblist and not a Phosphoromancer.

  65. Farolamage: Lamppost Magic.  Noyaux Pomona was a Farolamagi during the French revolution who would use her magic powers to teleport away from Monarchists, cause the lampposts that lined the Paris streets to bend down and snatch people up, and take the light away from the night streets so her comrades could move in the shadows.  Louis XVI was finally able to apprehend Pomona by cornering her in an alleyway in broad daylight.  With no lampposts around, Pomona was powerless.

  66. Rafgaldur: Electromagnetic Magic. Steeg Gort was a viking Raftöfra who would command storms at sea, and command lightning from the sky to strike at neighboring clans.  Gort discovered some rudimentary attributes of magnetism as well by stopping the iron weapons used against his men in battle.  The only down side to Gort’s immense strength in battle was that he- being only a mid-level Raftöfra- constantly interfered with his ship’s navigation and compasses.  He ended up dying, stranded in the North Pole.

  67. Spiders!: Spider Magic. Jimmy Halfgait was perhaps the most powerful Spidermage to have ever existed: He commanded legions of spiders with his thoughts, he could create mental constructs of spiders, he could melt into spiders, he could have spider crawl out of his skin, he could turn people into spiders and spiders into people.  He could have been a spider-god.  The only problem was that Jimmy was immensely arachnophobic, and every time he used his power he was overcome with crippling fear.

  68. Potoplify: Energy Conversion. All of the scientists who worked on the Manhattan Project were magicians, of course, though only Oppenheimer was a Potoplifier. It was Oppenheimer’s job both to work out the Fast Neutron calculations of the atomic testing, but he was also in charge of converting residual atomic energy into low-level ultraviolet energy.  He also walked around the test grounds after the Trinity test and converted all of the nuclear fallout to potential energy, which would manifest in little pockets of “slow motion”.  Oppenheimer’s famous quoting of the Bhagavad Ghita “I am become death” was in regards both to the horrendous power he loosed on the world, but also because Oppenheimer knew he would have a long night of clean-up ahead of him.

  69. Potophagery: Energy Absorption. Julia Neverwhat was a Potophage who had achieved the highest level of magic and was able to absorb magical energy from others.  She is on of the few non-Magikamancer to have made a living offering to rid people of magical powers, whether they were Omnipresenters who were caught early enough or Ennuimagis who grew tired of being magicians.  Neverwhat was also an early champion of woman-wizard rights: she was one of the first women to be on the board of the New York Magiquary, she was in the March of 1000 Woman-wizards in Washington, and she even led an assault against a group of incredibly misogynistic Neuromages.

  70. Eudaimonia: The Magic of Happiness. Jimmy Omnol was a low-level Eudaimonic and a high-level con-artist who swindled millions of people out of their money through a self-help seminar called “Unlocking your inner Happy Person”.  During the seminar Omnol would use his powers to make everyone in the room intensely happy, happy to sit and listen to Omnol’s “seminars” (which were mostly him reciting grocery lists), happy to give Omnol more money, happy to include Omnol in the last wills and testaments.  In the end the Kansas City Magiquary (Kansas City being well-known as being the most unhappy place on Earth) sent in specialized units to apprehend Omnol.  The attendees of the seminar were all too happy to defend Omnol, and a massive riot broke out during which Omnol was knocked unconcious and his happiness-spells broke.  He is currently in magic prison.

  71. Melancholia: The Magic of Sorrow.  Francisco Aleman was a conquistador who led an expedition deep into what is now the Yucatan Penninsula.  Francisco himself was a Lignumancer (which was helpful in jungle exploration), but his true purpose was to help his daughter Maria Aleman who was a Melancholic and otherwise would have been executed in 1487 Spain for spreading sadness to the kingdom.  The Alemans were able to set up a small village, Las Lágrimas, which among other things is known as being the origin of the story of La Llorona the infamous crying ghost.  It is said that Maria was set to marry Felipilo Lagarto, the son of Francisco’s expedition partner and an Immortalist, but since Maria was never taught to control her powers Felipilo was far too depressed to go forward with it.  Unable to bear the shame that it would bring on him and his family, Felipilo killed Maria, but cursed her spirit to forever wander the Earth shedding her ghostly tears.
  72. Reiðgaldur: The Magic of Anger.  Reiðtöfra, historically known as Berserkers though now this has a tone of denigration, have been on the fringes of magic society for most of written records.  Tybalt Laertes was a fearless Reiðtöfra who charged into many battle during the 12th century and was able to inspire the same vigor in those he surrounded, but once he entered civilian life he only inspired pub fights and petty arguments.  Mars Creed was another Reiðtöfra who used his powers to feed off of the anger of the underprivileged workers in his steel mill in Detroit and according to historical accounts (though these are barely legible, as they were written in intense anger) Creed nearly destroyed Detroit before a masked vigilante- Das Auto- stepped in.  Creed is now screaming in perpetual anger in a cell, though Eudaimonics are able to calm him down every once in a while.
  73. Phobomagery: The Magic of Fear.  Humdrum Bubblegum was a portly woman with bright red pigtails who lived in a candy-cane house with three adorable Pomeranian pups.  She was also a low-level Phobomage, and as such everyone was terrified to go anywhere near her house.  She was known as a terrible dragon-witch with flaming eyes who would devour children whole.  She even tried to set up a candy business in the nearby town, but everyone thought it was evil poison.  Fun Fact: Humdrum Bubblegum was the inspiration behind the Candy-Witch in Hansel and Gretel when news of the terrifying witch who lured kids into her hellish home with candy came to the Brothers Grimm (Another Fun Fact: Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm were typographic and umbrella magicians, respectively).
  74. Egercraft: The Magic of Awe.  Howard Thurston is among the most well-known Egercrafter, and the author of what is still the foremost book on Egercraft: Whiz-Bang!  To view many of Thurston’s now famous “rising card” tricks without the aide of Awe Spells one would note that he was just flipping cards over, however audiences would become enraptured by it and on the night where Thurston performed what many call his greatest trick of all time where attendees paid an enormous $7 to get in (mind you, this was around the turn of the 20th century).  There is only one immensely disappointed review of this trick from Magikamancer Istoph Exolusion where he stated: “He Just stood there for two minutes, then took out a deck of cards and showed someone the five of clubs.  That person became so excited that they had a seisure.  Thurston panicked for a while before calling the hospital to have the poor sick man taken away. I do not think he survived. Thurston got a standing ovation, even from the paramedics”.
  75. Ennuimage: The Magic of Boredom.  Hemoglobin Gygax was a prodigy Ennuimagi, having written the only book on Ennuimage: Boring Magic and Stuff which is  thirty pages long, with the last page being “stupid stupid magic” written over and over again.  Hemoglobin was also able to stop a bloody battle from happening amongst French and German troops in World War I by making both sides so bored with fighting that they put down their weapons and sat around complaining about mud for forty-five minutes before taking an aimless stroll.  Hemoglobin apparently didn’t even want to stop the battle, but the great Chronomancer Geordi Treblecleff asked really nice, and she wasn’t going to be doing anything that day anyways.  Hemoglobin’s tremendous power ended up being her undoing, though, as she died very young at 36 when her heart “became so bored it stopped beating”. She was working on a second book called More Magic Stuff I forgot About The First Time or Whatever.
  76. Epistomancy: The Magic of Trust.  Richard Nixon is, for better or worse, the first Epistomancer any magician can name.  He first began using his trust magic for personal gain during law school by making his professors trust him with test answers.  Throughout the next few years Nixon would pull similar stunts: Make people trust him, and use that for his advantage.  Fortunately, he was a congressman so no one thought of it.  Even those who did would keep on trusting Nixon.  This all came to a head in the Watergate scandal.  The public was conflicted: They wanted to trust Nixon, but the evidence against him was overwhelming.  The Archmage at the time, Dooley Pickens Lamppost Magician, was able to undo many of the interweaving spells Nixon had cast during Nixon’s hearings and eventually, having realized the full extent of his actions, Nixon resigned.  It was then that he was cursed by an Immortalist: for the remainder of his time Nixon’s life force would be connected to how many people who would forgive him of his many lies.  Nixon tried to make up for a lifetime of abuse of power, but in the end one person never forgave him and Nixon died.
  77. Nàixīmoshu: The Magic of Waiting.  Nikkeil Kha is believed by many (for good reason) to have been the greatest magician who ever lived even though she only ever performed one spell.  From the moment she was revealed as a Nàixīfashi to her death 94 years later she sat alone in a mountain shrine, weaving her spell.  Thousands flocked to see her work, with one word being uttered over the course of months.  Right before she died she finished, and the mountain that her shrine was on crumbled, let out a pillar of light, and sunk into a lake.  It was brilliant, and no one knows how she did it.
  78. Amoremancy: Love Magic.  Cuddly Wuvenstuff was the greatest Amoremancer to have lived, capable of creating flawless love potions, looking at a person and telling them without fail the name of their soulmate, fixing marriage on the rocks, and even easing Cold War tensions during the Kennedy era.  Wuvenstuff was also the most miserable and lonely magician to have ever lived, as are most Amoremancers as they’re never certain if anyone- even their own parents- truly love them or if they’ve been weaving subconscious magic.  Cuddly Wuvenstuff spiraled downwards to alcoholism and drug use, and eventually committed suicide on April 27th, 1973.
  79. Gonamagery: The Magic of Being a Parent.  Hellion Bloode was raised on the mean streets of Detroit, and at a young age got into a major Hnifaugu altercation which left him with knife marks all along his left side.  Due to another altercation with the head of the Detroit Ventriloquist Mob  (Mr. Chuckles) Bloode’s voice sounded like a bag of rocks.  By the time he was 15, everyone thought it was over Bloode, that he would be another magician who would fall through the cracks.  That was when Bloode was revealed to be a Gonamage.  After that he was supremely proud of everyone in his community and would sort through a large photo book of all the people he knew, showing the picture to anyone who would listen.  He would show up at work with a mini-van and offer rides to soccer practice or the movies, and would ask questions like “Do you kids still like the rap music?”, or “How’s about we all get some frosty chocolate milkshakes?”.  Everyone loved Hellion Bloode like a father, and Hellion Bloode loved everyone like they were his kids.
  80. Pappoumagery: The Magic of Being a Grandparent.  Kiddo Bloode was, of course, the the son of Hellion.  And Hellion was a great Dad!  He’d show up to all of Kiddo’s little league games, he was deeply involved with Kiddo’s school and had a vast collection of camcorder tapes of all of Kiddo’s recitals and school plays, Hellion was great and an inspiration to the community.  Hellion was so great that Kiddo was worried that he’d never live up to his father’s expectations.  Fortunately, Kiddo was revealed to be a Pappoumancer.  Kiddo would shuffle through the neighborhood and offer hard candy to his friends; he would reminisce about the times when he was 10 years old and finger-sized skateboard were “cool”, and recount stories from the great Tekken tournament of ’97.  Luckily this was during the mid-2000’s, when reminiscing about things that happened five years ago was in vogue.  Kiddo was also free of feeling like he had to save up money and establish himself as an adult, and instead focused on what he truly loved: Butterflies.  He’d often talk for long hours about butterflies too. His Dad was so proud of him, and Kiddo was proud to see his little Dad all grown up and making a name for himself too.  Side Note: Kiddo’s son, Sonny, broke from the family and ended up being a decent Phosphomancer.
  81. Umbramancy: Shadow Magic.  Gilda Sturm, Queen of the Shadows, was the lead Magician at the Philadelphia Magiquary by the time she was 29 in 1976.  She would command shadows, steal shadows, melt into the shadows, and even volunteered at local public libraries giving shadow puppet show to the children.  This was also at a time when the Archmage, Dooley Pickens Lamppost Magician, was held in very low regard and everyone thought that Sturm would be the next Archmage of North America including Sturm herself.  This changed when Gilda’s best friend, Moira Drang- a gifted Phobomage- was killed because of intolerance and fear (not because Moira was a Phobomage, but because she was a black lesbian who fell in love with the daughter of a rich Philadelphian Alderman who couldn’t bear the shame it would bring).  Sturm spent the rest of her life running a non-profit fighting intolerance and helping underprivileged magicians afford higher education.

  82. Immortality: Healing Magic.  Myrddin Wyllt, or Merlin as he’s more commonly known as (and Nimue finding out his true name is part of what led to Merlin’s ultimate demise), is everybody’s favorite Immortalist.  This is for good reason, as he lived for over one thousand years by constantly healing his dying cells, he made Excalibur into the deadly blade it was by reverse-engineering his Immortality powers, and he is one of the few non-Magikamancers to have been able to cast spells from other magics (though never anything high-level).  A fun Merlin Fact: He had a deal with Chronomancer Chewy Nougat to bring him an Oh Henry! chocolate bar on his birthday every year after Merlin saved Nougat from a Dire Bear.  This information is eventually what led the Lady of the Lake to find Merlin’s name, though he would always insist that it was worth it.

  83. Majelidan: Poison Magic. Herb Trowlers is one of the few Majelidans to have made it past 18 years old, as most poison themselves and are unable to magically craft an anti-poison in time.  Trowlers, though, was lucky, and he didnt want to push his luck.  So he spent his time on a rattlesnake ranch in Old West Colorado, making rattlesnake anti-venom for doctors and travelers and any other sorts of anti-ventom folks may need.  He tried not to make a name for himself, but before long he ran afoul of the Lead Foot Gang from up near Jackson Hole, Wyoming.  Ol’ Stompin’ Greg, leader of the Lead Feet and a high-level Metalmancer, challenged Herb to a showdown. Greg died of lead poisoning, Herb died of lead.

  84. Leaíochta: Potion Mastery.  Dr. Henry Jekyll was a well-educated Leaídroi, having learned from the oldest potion school out there: The Blackburn Institute.  Dr. Jekyll spent his time in Gentlemen’s clubs and barrooms, as was the style at the time, until one day he was challenged to a potion duel by Dr. Hurlhahn Kleinstein (The nerve!).  Jekyll and Kleinstein- attempting to create a potion which would grant them abilities from another magic- decided through The Rules of English Magick Duelry- that Jekyll would drink Hulhahn’s potion and vice-versa.  We all known what happened to Jekyll, Hurlhahn had weaved in a terrible Metamorphist spell.  Hurlhahn, meanwhile, caught on fire.  Jekyll and Hyde both agreed it was worth it, because Hurlhahn was the true beast for not having gone to Blackburn.

  85. Voodoo: Channeling charms.  No discussion of Voodoo can be had without first mentioning Marie Laveau, who not only did she craft thousands of charms for the poor and needy of New Orleans and beyond, she also wrote the foremost textbook on Voodoo: Beyond Zombis, where she discussed many of the intricacies of Voodoo magic and dispelled many of the myths.  Laveau’s spirit is still accessible through her grave, which is a special charm she crafted herself, and she also lives on with the Marie Laveau foundation which seeks out and gives research grants to young Voodoo practitioners.  The most recent grant winner, Coarsley Norandu, is working on making an aluminum alloy that will channel Spenta Mainyu, the Zoroastrian archangel of “Bountiful Spirit”. Energy drink companies are watching this research with great interest.

  86. Varicellardy: The Magic of Chicken Pox.  Chicken Pox was a terrible disease, sweeping through entire towns and wiping them out. It was thought at the height of the Chicken Pox Scare of 1650 that the disease would be worse than the Black Plague.  Finally, in 1656, the leading Sciencemancers and Magikamancers of the Supramagiquary off the coast of Africa were able to successfully make the first Varicellard in Richard Morton (who up until that point had been a weaving magician specializing in monograms).  Morton was awarded the silver moon of magic by the Archmage Merckus Oval.

  87. Sciencemancy: Science Magic.  Before Sciencemancy it was thought that the Gods and Archmages controlled the world, which is primarily how some of the more feared Archmages like Dort Ra Mghu and Choorish Ipop got away with their horrible, horrible crimes against magickind.  It’s also how one Pyromancer, Goody Dushu, was able to start up the Salem Witch trials.  But through the work of Sciencemancers like Isaac Newton, Marie Curie, and Max Planck the world has been radically changed for the better.  Even to this day the best Sciencemancers are working on unraveling the scientific nature of the universe, unlocking new and exciting magical possibilities, and conducting important magic counter-research to make sure other magicians are conducting correct experiments.  A magician need not be a Sciencemancer to make large scientific discoveries, though, as Charles Darwin was a Beastmaster and Nikola Tesla was a well-regarded Cartographer.

  88. Cybermagery: Computing Magic.  Pyx3l Syzygy was elected Archmage of Berkley in 1993, and to this day holds the record for the most illustrious of all Archmages (including Barharbar the Incompetent).  He spent up a lot of Berkley’s magical energies trying to launch a digital database of fire hydrants in the city, he gave high paying positions in government to under-qualified friends (the waste commissioner of Berkley is still Decycle Gregory, a low-level Phobomage hired during the Summer of Pyx3l), and he auctioned off seats on the school board for supposedly high-end technology (mostly, it was Sega GameGears and some early VR equipment).  Pyx3l even briefly held the city under martial law, claiming that he’d only give up power for “The n00b who can get past my many firewalls”.  Moose Climbtree got past them in an hour and a half after much slamming on a keyboard from Pyx3l.  Pyx3l stepped down from the archmage position and currently spends his time on message boards ruining “Game of Thrones” for people. As a side note: Moose Climbtree wasn’t a Cybermage or very good with computers.  He was a Lignumancer and a firefighter.

  89. Krystalosum: Glass Magick.  For centuries Glass was immune to magic, until Sciencemancer Frodo Hydenstein in 1863.  Frodo had been given a grant from the Royal Academie of Magicks to continue her work in wards and penetrating magic, and had already crafted a firebolt that could pass through a block of ice a meter thick!  Late one night Frodo was working on her next project: creating a better containment cell for Bábkové Skala, when the magical energies she was working with became unstable and engulfed her laboratory.  Frodo was frozen in glass for two years before she was able to break out, but when she did she became the first Krystalose and the first in centuries to create a new magic.

  90. Bibliosahar: Library Magic. Demetrius of Phaleron was not the first Bibliosahir, nor is he the best to have existed (to date, that honor belongs to the Bookmage of Ottowa), but he does hold the honor of not only being in charge of the organization and day-to-day mechanics of the Library of Alexandria, but also as being one of the most powerful magicians in the Classical Era.  Demetrius not only guided the scrolls of papyrus back and forth from their shelves to the patrons, he also kept the library safe from dust mites, pyromancers, and evil phobomages (because as well all know, fear is the mortal enemy of knowledge).  It was even said that when Melvil Dewey, creator of the Dewey Decimal system, was searching for the perfect library classification system he used Demetrius’ journals for inspiration.  However, Dewey made one too many enemies, the greatest of which was Julius Caesar who set fire to the Library in 48 BC.

  91. Spartimageía: Fighting Magic. Stoppard Killswitch was a powerful Spartimagos and a highly decorated soldier in World War II, having fought his way through the Second Battle of El Alamein, the Invasion of Sicily, and even into the Eastern borders of Germany.  Killswitch came home to a parade, and his wife couldn’t have been happier with him.  It wasn’t until after the war that Killswitch started to run into problems.  He was unable to control his violent behavior, and found himself in and out of jails and drunk tanks often.  He would wake up screaming and punching the wall, and eventually demanded his wife leave with their child out of fear that he may hurt them.  Eventually Killswitch was able to find respite in a wartime survivor’s group and in anti-depressants, and he found steady employment in demolition and as a boxing instructor.  He still has violent episodes, and he still struggles, but things are getting better.
  92. Thanatosum: Chaos Magick.  Aleister Crowley was a low-level Thanatose, and when he first published The Book of the Law in 1904 he was actually trying to stop a renegade mummy raised by Necromancer and Egyptologist Karl Baldersten.  Unfortunately Thanatosum is an unstable magic, just as likely to cast a magical bolt that would destroy a reanimated egyptian prince as it is to turn its user into stone. Crowley took this as a sign from the Egyptian god Ra that he wasn’t meant to kill the prince and instead worship it, and the two became good friends and bunkmates until the Mummy, who Crowley named Ahathoor, was taken in by the British museum in 1928.  Crowley never forgave them, and every day would try to destroy the museum only to, among other things: turn peoples heads into balloons, melt the whale skeleton, make the models of ancient man wear long pants, and cause a giant ghost clown to waddle through the museum singing the score from the HMS Pinafore.
  93. Élegamange: The Magic of being able to eat elegantly.  Simone LaLangue was the toast of the town in belle époque Paris who was invited to every party, every gala, anywhere where people could gaze as he shoved cheese, bread, berries, anything into his mouth.  Whitelaw Reed, a US diplomat who saw the Élegamangeur in action at the Exposition Universelle, claimed “To see Simone eat is to gaze into the mouth of God.  Truly he is France’s greatest jewel, and I but wish I had a lifetime to spend here so that I may gaze at the sublime angle of his fork and knife as he digs into a slab of steak, the brilliant SMACK of his lips as he chews his food, and the awe-inspiring ease with which he wipes his mouth with a napkin.  Beyond Edison’s electric bulb and Debussy’s sonatas, LaLangue was the true winner of the Exposition Universelle”.
  94. Alssujad Sihr: Carpet Magic.  Yes, yes, we all know of Prince Husain the Alssujad Sahir who made a carpet fly, and it’s very impressive. However it’s much like an Alchemist turning lead into Gold: It’s the first trick one learns and it really only serves as a party trick.  However, there have been much greater Alssujad Sahirs: Like Abdul-Qadir Gilani who was able to use his carpet to create a pocket of osmosis which allowed him to walk across the river Tigris, Wiktor Vasnetsov who trapped people on a painted carpet, or American Actor Jeff Bridges who has used his carpet to fuel his fantastic acting career.  The only important thing for an Alssujad Sahir is not to be like Roomborn Stallinsnow who used his magic carpet to light his house on fire, which also burned his carpet and caused a magical singularity that the Archmage Frownbeard had to stop.
  95. Kanataika: Chicken Magic.  As we all know chickens were considered for centuries to be the most magically powerful of all creatures, because they possess a unique immunity to almost all forms of magic.  This was before the witch Baba Yaga, who began life in 1715 as an Enchanter but dreamed of being something more.  She lived in a hut in the woods and raised chickens, hundreds of them, as she found a comfort in their beady chicken-eyes and constant bocking.  She would try every day to use her magic on the chickens, but of course it wouldn’t work.  Baba Yaga was unsuccessful until her 40th birthday in 1755, when she woke up in her hut and found all of her chickens surrounding her.  One, Kudkudakaty, hopped onto her bed and said: “For your commitment to the chicken cause, we have chosen you Baba Yaga.  Rise today, for you are now the witch of chickens: The Kanataikuri”.
  96. Swelgendorcraft: Vortex Magic.  The only magic defined more by the circumstances in which it can be used then the circumstances which it causes, Swelgendocrafters can only cast spells in a vortex: whirlpools, air eddies, the winds surrounds tornados and dust devils, ship wakes, etc.  Paul the Deacon was the first known Swlgendocrafter, said to be able to cause maelstroms with a twirl of his finger, or drill a hole one thousand miles deep with a twist of his staff.  So long as Paul had enough vorticity, he could infuse it with any magical attribute or power he wished, including one instance in 777 where he made an invisible tornado that made any birds caught in it sing the name of God.
  97. Vacuumancy: Void Magic.  Zhang Heng is the first documented Vacuumancer, though at the time the concept of a vacuum was beyond comprehension as it was believed the Earth, Sun, and Stars all existed in a type of mechanical sea in the heavens.  Zhang began to question this when he created his first Xūkōng Shòu or Voidwalker, a creature made of living nothingness.  Zhang was terrified by this beast who engulfed all things around it before vanishing (for nature abhors a vacuum), and began to study his own powers resulting in the formation of his belief that there were large swaths of nothingness in between the mechanisms of the Earth, the Sun, and the Heavens.  He published his findings in a book not truly published until it was found again in the 19th century  entitled My Thoughts on Nothing.
  98. Chronomancy: Time Magic.  Ami Swindle is the most enigmatic of all magicians.  It is not known whether Swindle is the first Chronomancer, the last Chronomancer, or just a very good one, but she has been seen throughout history.  Swindle’s exact motives are also clouded in mystery, from the record book of Chewy Nougat she is described as immensely selfish and monomaniacal (though it is also important to note that Swindle and Nougat used to be lovers before a famous break-up in the court of Napoleon), infamous Backward-man Benjamin Button describes Swindle as a trickster and deserving of her name (though it’s important to note that Button’s “condition” was the result of curse Swindle put on him, and that he actually really enjoyed living backwards until he was an 80 year-old fetus), or a guardian of time itself by the last great Archmage Jimmy Carter (though it’s important to note that Swindle is a major donor to Habitat for Humanity, and has claimed that she grew up in a Habitat for Humanity house in New Detroit).  Swindle herself refuses to answer many questions about herself or when she comes from or how she’s altered the timeline.  She will answer questions about Chewy Nougat, though, who she claims was “An Arthurian jerk who deserved to be trapped in glass”.
  99. Spatiamancy: Dimensional Space Magic.  For years it was assumed that Edwin A. Abbott’s famous novella “Flatland” was just a story, however in a 1908 interview with the Washington Post Abbott revealed that he was a Spatiamancer who had actually travelled to the second dimension for four years to document second dimensional society.  He claimed it was “Immensely boring”, which has since been backed up by other Spatiamancers.  Abbott also claimed to have visited the matriarchal second dimension, and even briefly sojourned into the fifth dimension where he saw “A monster of all possibilities”.  Abbott also claimed, during his schoolboy days when he was just learning about Spatiamancy, that he spent three days trapped as a drawing in a notebook.
  100. Magikamancy: Magic Magic.  The rarest and most powerful of all magics, the most notable example of the Magikamancer is Torvald Clambake who made it necessary to create the Magiquary system now in place in the 11th century when he went on a quest to rule the world.  All the horses and all the men were mobilized against Clambake, though he was able to turn every magic against the person who cast the spell and against others.  With the threat of magical apocalypse nigh, the fate of the magical world rested on Bald Sorpano: A Nils (or a person born with no magic.  Roughly 12 in every 100,000 people are born Nils).  Bald was able to successfully walk up to Clambake and stab him, over and over again with a rusty knife.  The Scriers who saw this claimed it was a terrible but cathartic death.  After that Magiquaries were set up in every major population center to track magical powers and aide in magical research and management, and now you know the rest of the story.

 

B for Banthos and C for Ciel Faucheuse

The next entry in The Encyclopedia for That Which Does Not Exist.  This time we’re going on a quest for enlightenment by looking for a mythical snail.  I think it’s improving, but I’ve also decided not to rush the encyclopedia and instead focus on developing the overarching narratives of it and focus more on why this encyclopedia is important.

B for Banthos

After the snail we explore a bit of dirigible history with the Sky Castle class of balloon, the “Ciel Faucheuse” and the Tempest captain who built and sailed in the only existing one.

C for Ciel Faucheuse

Arsea, or on the creation of Language

I’m currently wading into the world of creating an animated series about talking animals in space and as time goes on I’ll be posting more about it.   For this show I wanted to create an alien language to use for background signage and the like, both as a way to explore more of this universe but also as a way of creating a more lived-in universe for my space- crustaceans to live in.  This fictional language is Arsea, and it looks like this:

Now I know the question on all of your minds: Is there some overly-complicated linguistic history to back up this neat little alphabet? Why yes there is, thanks for asking. It all begins with emojis…


 

The Earthen Letterglyphs

Currently language is in the process of being deconstructed, and we’re starting to use pictures, numbers, and standalone letters to represent ideas and to replace whole words.  My first task was to go through and figure out which of these pictures/letters/numerals would be included as a glyph once we inevitably create a unified logographic language.  I ended up with thirty different glyphs that I would end up working with for this, all listed below:

The Emoticonal Letterglyphs
The Emoticonal Letterglyphs

From there I had to do the best I could going through hundreds of years of letter-shaping, much like our own alphabets did, in the span of a few days.  I did this through taking the glyphs and tracing over them (sometimes with my left hand), and re-tracing them, and simplifying the forms so I use less strokes, etc.  Eventually I ended up with a simplified New Earth Alphabet.  Some individual glyphs (my favorites) are below, the befores and after.

The cat-glyph
The cat-glyph, before
The "Cwa" Sonoglyph
The “Cwa” Sonoglyph, after
The "Pizza" logoglyph.
The “Pizza” logoglyph.
The "Eee" Sonoglyph
The “Eee” Sonoglyph
The "Poop" logoglyph.
The “Poop” logoglyph.
The "Guh" Sonoglyph
The “Guh” Sonoglyph

 

 

 

So I had a Nu-Earth Sonoglyphic language from which I could now expand as the Human Race was about to expand.  At this point in the story-world  I’m creating humanity let loose leagues of Arks carrying with them all sort of animals as well as phonograph machines that will teach these animals language (Fun Fact, these phonograph machines are where the name “Arsea” comes from).  We now enter into a new age of this language, the age of the arks.


 

The Space Arks

The Digitized "Puh" sonoglyph.
The Digitized “Puh” sonoglyph.

The first step was a simple one: As shown above I took all of the sonoglyphs (pictures that equate to a sound, or a fancy way of saying letters)and I “digitzed” them by tracing over all lines with tiny black pixel-like squares.  Once everything was digitized, I could set out creating certain words, phrases, etc, which I would then use for the next step of this alphanumeric rabbit hole.  I ended up with about thirty-five words and phrases that I eventually used to created a new round of letters, a few of those are included below to see how the Nu-Earth Sonoglyphs work together.

"Error", an important word in this world.
“Error”, an important word in this world.
"Gagnepain", yes I have a problem.
“Gagnepain”, yes I have a problem.
"Twarogowski", to honor the co-creator of  a lot of this imaginary mythos.
“Twarogowski”, to honor the co-creator of a lot of this imaginary mythos.
"Heisenberg 1", the name of one of the Arks.
“Heisenberg 1”, the name of one of the Arks.
"Quarters", for where creatures would live.
“Quarters”, for where creatures would live.

Well,  as luck/fate/chaos would have it the Human race destroyed themselves and all that was left of them were these giant floating space arks.  These arks floated around for thousands of years in space as new stars and planets were born (time also got a bit wibbly-wobbly here, this is all backstory for the animated universe).  Eventually these Arks crashed on to planets and let loose all of the creatures held inside, and when these creatures gained self-awareness they would see these giant ships and the wreckage from them and begin to craft their new language from these ruins.

So my next step was to mimic thousands of years of wear-and-tear and damage from entrance to the atmosphere and crashing onto planets.  This was done with the aide of data-bending and massive photoshop manipulation.  Unfortunately a lot of the documents I had from this step seem to have disappeared, but I do have what came next: breaking up all of these wrecked and pixellated images and beginning this whole process of of abstraction to logoglyphs to abstraction to sonoglyphs again.


 

Fonos: The Hieroglyphs of the Old Systems

So we’re back at step 1: Creating a hieroglyphic language to be then transposed into a sonoglyphic language.  I used the broken up chunks of the old Ark glitches to create new symbols.  Some of these symbols were near direct translations from the Ark to the Glyph, others used ideas from the Arks but rotated or combined them to create a new glyph, and still yet some glyphs are based around other Fonos glyphs.  I ended up with about 100 of these heiroglyphs.

All 100 or so of the Fonos Logoglyphs.
All 100 or so of the Fonos Logoglyphs.

Aside from directly translating these fractured bits of broken imaginary broken screens and spaceships, I also wanted to try and simplify these glyphs a bit, or at least make them more organic feeling.  So to get each of the cards above I again went through and traced and re-traced each sketch until the glyphs were broken down enough.  Then I brought them back into the computer, which that process in itself then added new wrinkles to each drawing (often times the filters I used would fill in circles with smaller circles, or they’d cause smaller lines that were just wrinkles in the paper to appear).  So to get the digital files that I’d then be working on, which I’ve included some of my favorites below, I would pick and choose which aspects of the new files I liked and which aspects needed to go and finished off with all of these:

The Fonos logoglyph for "Fire".
The Fonos logoglyph for “Fire”.

 

The Fonos Glyph for "Living".
The Fonos Glyph for “Living”.

 

The Fonos Logoglyph for "Sense"
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Sense”.

 

The Fonos Logoglyph for "Government".
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Government”.

 

The Fonos Logoglyph for "Reason"
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Reason”.

 

The Fonos Logoglyph for "Interest"
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Interest”.

 

The Fonos Logoglyph for "Beauty"
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Beauty”.

 

THe Fonos Logoglyph for "Ground"
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Ground”.

 

The Fonos Logoglyph for "Science".
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Science”.

 

The Fonos Logoglyph for "Feast"
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Feast”.

 


 

The Final Frontier

Okay, we’re near the end.  Once I had all 100 or so glyphs finished and digitally uploaded I split them all apart into different categories based on what their main features were.  From there I combined the glyphs, simplified them, anything to see what sorts of forms or recurring shapes could be seen among all of them.  I then took 44 of these combined glyphs (though some were direct translations) to match up with the 44 phonetic sounds.  These 44 starters can be seen below:

The Antiquity version of Arsean script.
The Antiquity version of Arsean script.

As you can see, though my goal was simplification, it didn’t really work out.  But that was no matter, because it was time for another round of tracing and re-tracing these pictures in an effort to compress hundreds of years of letter-mutating in the span of only a few weeks.  On top of tracing and re-tracing I also wanted to be sure that (almost) every letter for this new language could be accomplished with only three strokes of a pen/pencil/claw, and so through eventually amongst all of this change I came to the final 44 letters of Arsea, shown in two plates below along with their phonetic alphabet words to let you know the sound they make.

 

The Modern Arsean Letters
The Modern Arsean Letters
Organ
“Or” making that sound, or the beginning sound of “Organ”.

And a few closer looks at some of my favorite letters:

"Wee", making the "Wuh" sound.
“Wee”, making the “Wuh” sound.
"Tho" making the beginning "Th" sound in "The".
“Tho” making the beginning “Th” sound in “The”.
"Oure", making the O-U-R sound in "Tour".
“Oure”, making the O-U-R sound in “Tour”.
"Go", or the "Guh" sound like in "Goat".  Also, it looks like a goat.
“Go”, or the “Guh” sound like in “Goat”. Also, it looks like a goat.
"Io", the letter that makes the sound "I" or "Eye" or "Aye".
“Io”, the letter that makes the sound “I” or “Eye” or “Aye”.
"Eer", making an "Ear" sound.
“Eer”, making an “Ear” sound.
"Choo", making the "Sh" sound like "Charlie".
“Choo”, making the “Sh” sound like “Charlie”.
"Al", making the hard "A" sound which begins "Alpha".
“Al”, making the hard “A” sound which begins “Alpha”.
"Oop", making the middle double-o sound in "book".
“Oop”, making the middle double-o sound in “book”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So that’s it.  Arsea is a direct phonetic cipher, so any word you want to write you just break apart into its sounds and pick out the correct letters for it.  Was this an extremely complicated way to get at something extremely simple? Yes. Did I waste my time?  That, I open up for your discussion.

Spam 3: Spam Rising

I’ve been pretty lax about looking at Spam comments.  But now a few are starting to catch my eye again.  Let’s go back into the vault of that which should never be seen:

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Once Upon a Time in Wisconsin

I hate Kraft American Singles.  They are not cheese. They are some sort of hideous amalgamation of chemicals that taste horrible, just awful.  So I decided to animate a story on them.  This came form a writing warm-up I did on my own time, I can’t even remember when or what larger piece I was working on at the time, but I remember that I just wrote this quickly in an afternoon.  Later I decided to adapt it for a class on narratives; I’d tell you the exact assignment but I can’t really even remember that anymore.  But I do remember this piece, and I do remember the horrible smell of cheese as I scanned each horrible sliver.  Was it worth the torture?  Let’s take a look:

Once Upon a Time in Wisconsin from Vvinni Gagnepain on Vimeo.

Yes. Yes it was.  I enjoy this piece immensely, and I’d put this in my “under-appreciated and unseen classics” category.  First I actually enjoy the weird effect the paint on cheese has, as it gives it a strange bit of depth, like acetone sheets if they were yellow blocks of maybe-milk.  I also think the narration adds a nice touch to the story (I have a love-hate relationship with my performances, but this one is alright), adding a menacing twilight-zone-esque feel to the tale of Marty turning into cheese.  I’m not sure if there’s anything I’d change about it , it’s far from perfect, but for a project made for an unknown assignment it turned out just fine. It’s also a style, the photomontage, that I’d like to revisit with another story.  I think it’s a form that could use another go around and certainly something easy to do now that I’m all on my own.  How about you, internet?  How do like this odd little cheese-story?  How do you like Kraft American Singles?  What do you think the title of this piece should have been, because I’ll admit the title is pretty terrible?

An Unhelpful Guide to the 2014 Blockbusters

Just when we thought we were safe, it’s Blockbuster season where we have to see every single super hero franchise and book adaptation lest we look like fools when talking about movies on the beach.  The problem with Blockbuster season, though, is that try as hard as you might you probably won’t be able to see all of the important ones.  Well, don’t worry, because I’m here to help you.  Below is a summary and a list of talking points for some of the most Blockbusting of the Blockbusters, so now you can work on your tan, talk about billion-budget movies, and still have time to go to the boardwalk arcade to play the whack-a-mole.

Godzilla (May 16)

The gargantuan Cat/Lizard Monster returns in this apparent re-imagining of the 1954 Gojira (and not the 1998 Godzilla).  The plot finds scientist Joe Brody (Bryan Cranston) diving into Tokyo with a military group in order to capture Godzilla for use as a biological weapon.  Unfortunately for Brody, the military group is seen by two miniscule guardians of Monster Island who unleash the dreaded Mothra and Gamera who get into an all-out fight in Nevada where all monsters were brought (Also signaling the battle between Nuclear, petroleum, and Environmental interests over the fate of our planet).  Also starring Ken Watanabe as Dr. Serizawa, and David “That Guy From Alphas” Strathairn as the Army Colonel.  Talking points for this movie: Who would win in a fight 1954 Godzilla or 1998 Godzilla (Answer: 1954 Godzilla. ALWAYS 1954 Godzilla)? Will the sequel involve Mechagodzilla or King Caesar?  Did you know that the 1998 Godzilla in the Godzilla canon is actually a separate Kaiju named Zilla?  At what point in this new series will Minilla show up?  Will the directors be able to create an interesting story using the more colloquially known Baby Godzilla? THERE ARE SO MANY QUESTIONS!

Million Dollar Arm (May 16)

Jon Hamm of Mad Men fame plays a Sportsman who also wants to adopt three Indian children and make them into the family he never had (His father was a drunk and his Mother was afraid to stand up to him.  Sportsman’s brother has been in and our of prison, and his ex-wife hates his living guts).  Sportsman decides to build his new family with Baseball, forming a sexy bond with the sexy Lake Bell, and everything is going great until Sportsman gets his arm gnawed off by a rabid Baseball fan.  Desperate not to lose his family, Sportsman undergoes an experimental surgery to get a new robot prosthesis but soon realizes that this, dare I say it, Million Dollar Arm may have a mind of its own.  Adapted from a short story by Steven King.  Talking points: What’s your favorite Steven King adaptation: Maximum Overdrive or Creepshow 2?  Do you think the arm survived the volcano (Spoiler Alert)? Will Sportsman and his three children still be able to live a normal life?

X-Men: Days of Future Past (May 23)

Professor X and Magneto, having long put their differences aside, now hang out all the time in abandoned churches and talk to each other about the old times.  They take a wistful walk down memory lane as they remember when they were whacky young adult whose only worries were what bands their friends listened to and robots who were programmed for genocide.  Magneto remembers Mystique, who died in a horrific shape-shifting accident, and Professor X remembers Storm who now lives outside of Ottowa with her husband Gary (Gary is also a mutant. He controls corn chips with his mind. Only corn chips, not tortilla chips and not canned corn, just CORN. CHIPS). Wolverine then bursts into the church and flexes his muscles (this has long since become his favorite way of communicating). Professor X, Magneto, and Wolverine all have a good laugh and sigh: Why can’t things be easy like they were back then?  Eventually they all leave for their individual mutant bridge clubs and mutant golf games.  Talking points: Why does no one miss Toad? Does Magneto still have his mutant powers in the future despite having them taken away? Are we all just pretending X-Men: The Last Stand never happened (Because that would be OK)?  Is fate a constant circle, with any attempt to change the past only resulting in the creation of the very future we wished to change, or is it fluid and malleable with even the slightest change causing a ripple effect that would drastically alter what we knew as the present? What mutant would we rather be: Super-sexy shapeshifter or grizzled and tough Spike-hander?

Maleficent (May 30)

Surprise! Maleficent of Sleeping Beauty fame has a dark and gritty origin story!  Angelina Jolie stars at the titular villain, or should I say misunderstood anti-hero, with Juno Temple playing the heroic fairy, or should I say power-hungry and secretly evil fairy, Thistlewit.  Maleficent used to be a fairy, see, but she was banished from the fairy kingdom because she was really powerful and wanted to use her fairy powers to change the status quo and upset the fairy balance, and Thistlewit couldn’t allow that so she cast Maleficent to the Crowsland to raise Spike-bushes.  So, naturally, Maleficent decides that the only way to get revenge is to curse the young Aurora (Elle Fanning) to sleep for 1000 years.  But not in an evil way, just in a dark and misunderstood way.  Talking points: So, wait, is Maleficent evil? I liked the movie, but I thought it could have been darker and grittier.  When can we expect the dark re-telling of Bambi wherein Bambi is actually a cursed sexy girl and the hunter is trying to feed his family, and the real villain is Thumper who is actually some sort of rabbit-daemon?

Edge of Tomorrow (June 16)

A Before Sunset-esque exploration of characters starring Tom Cruise as “Bill” and Emily Blunt as “Rita” as they walk around, in real time, through the deserted avenues of a film set talking about their career choices and what they regret until Midnight when they need to begin filming a sci-fi action scene.  Cruise and Blunt are rumored to be the Oscar hopefuls this year thanks to their stunningly honest performances here, and for those who are just going into the movie for Tom Cruise we will get to see him in a green screen suit for the first part of the movie (Emily Blunt will only be in heavy Alien make-up and that’s only the last ten minutes, I think).  Talking points for this movie: Is Tom Cruise really that bad, or is he just misguided and misunderstood?  I’m already looking forward to the next installment, ten years down the road, called Dawn of Today, are you? What movie were they making in the background, the effects looked really cool and I liked that the aliens were like people except alien?

How to Train Your Dragon 2 (June 13)

How to Train Your Dragon 2: Train Harder takes place some five years after the first Viking/Dragon movie in the popular Dreamworks franchise.  In this next installment Hiccup meets his long-lost mother Valka who keeps a dragon sanctuary in the Hinterlands.  Hiccup goes through some character growth with the help of Toothless, his dragon, the love plot between Hiccup and Ruffnutt (Kirstin Wiig) continues to inch along, and there’s some guy named Drago Bludvist who wants to enslave all dragons to use as weapons and take over the world.  Hiccup must put aside his abandonment issues with his mother to save man and dragonkind, and he’ll ultimately realize that even though his heretofore father Eret wasn’t his father by blood he is his father in soul.  Talking Points: Was this a good extension of one of the few good Dreamworks franchises?  What was your favorite Dragon?  Will you return for How to Train Your Dragon 3: Rise of the Dragonkin?  On a scale of 1 to fanfiction, how cool would it be is How to Train Your Dragon crossed over with Game of Thrones?

Jersey Boys (June 20)

Jersey Boys, or “Joisey Bois” as it is also known as, is about the formation of The Four Seasons, or Franky Valli and the Four Seasons as it is also known as.  These four friends apparently started by robbing banks, but then they decided to sing underneath a streetlight and then they became a rock group.  Franky Valli, however, had other plans. Franky wanted to knock Vino and Tommy out of the Seasons so he could get the whole enchilada for himself.  ‘Course he couldn’t knock anyone out, not with Gyp watchin’, which is how he came to play on the Ed Sullivan show.  Unfortunately for Franky when he’s about to make his big move when Gyp’s talkin’ to Eddy Sully he notices that Tommy and Bobby sold him out.  Now he’s out in the wild with a price on his head, fans want him, the mob wants him, Rock n’ Roll wants him, and Franky’s got one night left for everything to catch up to him. Talking Points: Have you been to New Jersey? What’s your favorite part of New Jersey? Why aren’t you living in New Jersey?  Why didn’t Christopher Walken get to tap dance? Does that have something to do with new Jersey?

Transformers: Age of Extinction (June 27)

Michael Bay continues his story about robots and explosions.  This time the robots are also dinosaurs who are also trucks. But not every truck is a dinosaur and not every robot is a truck.  But every robot is a dinosaur, or at least every robot has the ability to become a dinosaur if they don’t want to be a robot or a truck.  Oh, and because they’re truck/robot/dinosaurs they can also explode. Like, REALLY explode, just KA-BOOM. Because instead of blood they probably have gasoline. Oh wait, except that they’re from a robot/dinosaur/truck planet so it’s probably something like Paladium. Which would mean an even BIGGER explosion.  Mark Whalberg will also be there as a mechanic who is working on a truck that, surprise, ends up being a robot (We’re not yet sure if it’s a dinosaur, I think that’ll be the big mid-movie turning point). Talking points for this movie: Did you see the twist coming where the main robot turned into a dinosaur? Do you ever wish your truck was a robot?  Was the movie really the same without Shia LeBeouf’s central character as “That guy who isn’t a robot and isn’t a truck and therefore can’t possibly be a dinosaur because that would be silly”?

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (July 11)

As humans and apes recover from a deadly simian flu, the settling apes and native humans are forced to take sides.  This delicate balance is further threatened when Dreyfus (played by the myth Gary Oldman) finds an ape village co-governed by the Ape Caesar and Malcolm (Jason Clarke), a man who was raised as an Ape. Dreyfus tries to get Malcolm to fight back against the apes, but instead Malcolm is smitten by native Human Ellie (Teri Russel) and decides to care for her and her frail sister as they travel through the oft-dangerous ape country to find their father.  Caesar joins Malcolm, Ellie, and Dreyfus on their quest to the human village, though his intentions may not be entirely beneficial to either party as it turns out that Caesar is sneaking away to an encampment of bipedal cats who also wish to take over North America.  As all parties converge on Dreyfus’ encampment and the future of Man, Ape, and Catkind is forever changed, and Malcolm may have to go against his pacifistic vow he took when he became an ape-priest.  Talking points for this movie: Was that Paul Giamatti as the Orangutan again?  So… were the apes native Americans or invading colonists?  WHEN DO WE GET TO SEE DR. ZEUS?

Jupiter Ascending (July 18)

The Wachowski Siblings, creators of The Matrix trilogy, Cloud Atlas, and Speed Racer, didn’t get the summer blockbuster memo and made this original screenplay about a Janitor (Mila Kunis) named Jupiter Jones who finds out that she is the rightful owner of Earth (Not Jupiter as her name erroneously suggests).  Channing tatum co-stars as love interest/bodyguard “Caine” and Sean Bean co-stars as “Some Guy Who Dies”.  Plot details are a bit scarce, but it seems the The Queen of the Universe needs to control Earth in order to actually be the Queen of the Universe, and the only way to get Earth’s electoral votes is to kill Jupiter (I expect there to be a five minute scene going through the political theory of universal electorates, but I would settle for Sean Bean throwing up his arms screaming “I don’ care how elections work, I just wan’ my motocycle” before getting shot).  Talking points for this movie: How were the effects? Was the story imaginative, though ultimately flawed? Why would Earth be the only Planet standing in the way of someone named “The Queen of the Universe”, isn’t 14+ Billion Light Years of ruling territory enough to just say our tiny blue rock is under her control? I was surprised by how long Sean Bean lived in that movie before getting eaten by that Martian Ice-Wyrm.  Really, how were the effects?

Planes: Fire and Rescue (July 18)

Disney Exec. 1: “Okay, do you remember that spinoff franchise Planes that was based off of the least popular of the Pixar films?”
Disney Exec. 2: “Was that A Bug’s Life?”
DE1: “No, Planes”
DE2: “And What was that one about?”
DE1: “Planes. I think they raced or something. And there was a Crop Duster and it was all inspirational.”
DE2: “So… what you want to make the Crop Duster an international spy now?”
DE1: “No. A Firefighter. ‘Cause, like, that’s who the real heroes are or whatever.”
DE2: “I’m not so sure about this…”
DE1: “Well, there are also going to be tiny cars inside of the planes who help stop the fires. And, maybe one plane will fall in love with another plane? And… um… I mean it’ll have fire and planes. Fire and Planes”.
DE2: “SOLD”.

Talking Points: Do the planes know they have tiny cars inside of them? Is the villain of this movie the fire, or is it self-doubt, or is it an evil fire-starting plane? When can we expect “Ships” to come out, and as a follow-up question how long will it take for the internet to make sex fantasy drawings of those ships having sex with the cars while the planes watch? Or would this all be happening inside of the plane?

Hercules (July 25)

Dwanye Johnson stars as the titular character of Hercules, muscle-bound weirdo who is one of literally thousands of bastard-sons of Zeus.  But Hercules is special because he’s got muscles, which also makes him scream a lot (think about it: Even with super strength it takes a lot of strain to move those hulking muscles around).  This movie takes place after Hercules has successfully accomplished the twelve trials (most of them were stealing), and now he wanders around Greece fighting more monsters because that’s what he does because he’s mother f-ing HERCULES GRRAAAAAAAAAAAGH!  John Hurt of Doctor Who fame plays some Greek King who isn’t Hercules and he probably has a daughter who Hercules tries to fall in love with only to realize that he already has the only relationship that counts: The one between Hercules and Hercules.  Talking points for this movie: Did you see Hercules punch that monster?  What do you think Hercules could bench? How many protein shakes do you think Hercules could down?

Guardians of the Galaxy (August 1)

A bunch of assholes who call themselves The Guardians of the Galaxy find themselves fighting some kind of Space King in Space.  The Space King wants magic crystals that aren’t magic just really futuristic and technological because having magical crystals would be ridiculous. The Guardians include Space Raccoon, Tree-man, The Red Hulk, Sexy Green, and Star Lord the lord of Stars.  John C. Reilly co-stars as one of the few sane people in this universe who realizes that the magic of the rocks is inside of us all along (sadly, Reilly’s character will die at the turning point of the film).   The Guardians will also likely set up the next Avengers movie, so expect the magic stone to combine together into a magic staff and that magic staff to break into seven magic pieces that will scatter across the galaxy, and for one of those magic seven pieces to fall into the magically robotic hands of Tony “Iron Man” Stark. Talking points: Will Rocket Raccoon now be a part of The Avengers?  I’m happy that John C. Reilly was resurrected with the magic resurrection stone, but is he now under the control of the evil Deathlord Darkmatter?  Was that Ant-Man at the end?

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (August 8)

A City, we’ll say New York, is in trouble. Things are falling over and catching on fire.  Thank God that seventeen years ago a group of four little turtles were exposed to highly radioactive waste and then taken in and trained by a rat who was also exposed to radioactive waste and now all them form a subterranean family that are, dare we say, “heroes in a half shell”.  These guys who are totally green will be facing off against Shredder (because we need to get some table setting done before we can meet Baxter Stockman or Beebop and Rocksteady), who is probably responsible for dumping all of that nuclear waste into the sewers and thereby creating these pizza-eating teens (though in this newer, grimmer version it may be that they don’t eat pizza all the time).  The central plot that doesn’t revolve around the CGI turtles jumping around and fighting will probably have to do with the turtles feeling like outsiders in the world they protect and how the only thing that would make their life more difficult would be if they had to go to High School (Record Scratch: Next movie they’re going to high school!).  Talking points for this movie: Seriously, when are we going to get a big-screen version of Baxter Stockman? At what point in the movie will Casey Jones be hinted at?  What do you value the property damage for this movie at?  How many counts of the heroes saying “Turtle Power” were there?

The Expendables 3 (August 15)

Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Antonio Banderas, Wesley Snipes, Dolph Lundgren, Mel Gibson, Harrison Ford, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Kellen Lutz, Terry Cews, Ronda Rousey, Kelsey Grammer, Natalie Burn, Robert Davi, Sarai Givaty, Glen Powell, Victor Ortiz, Lisbeth Olafsson, Velizar Bilev, Thomas Canestraro, Slavi Slavov, Harry Anichkin, Anton Poriazov, Tzvetislav Samardijev, and special appearance by Randy Couture as Toll Road.  All of these people fight. All of these people die. All of these people are… EXPENDABLE.  Talking Points for this movie: Who would like to see in Expendables 4? I’m thinking Vin Diesel, Shia LeBeouf, Van Damme really has to return, Al Pacino, Robert Redford, Liam Neeson, Dame Judi Dench, Tony Jaa, Kurt Thomas of Gymkata fame, and archive footage of Bruce Lee.  Also, when will there be an animated series of The Expendables?  Are there Expendables action figures yet, because we need to get on that.  What is the difference between The Expendables and GI-Joe?  Oh, I forgot Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, but I want to see that guy in every movie.  We definitely need to smell what the rock is cooking in The Expendables 4.

Frank Miller’s Sin City: A Dame to Kill For (August 22)

Women are objects in this sequel to 2005’s Sin City.  Bruce Willis and Mickey Rourke return as John and Marv, respectively, who speak in gruff voices and shoot guns.  These two real hard-boiled guys take it on themselves to lay claim to Breasts with Legs Eva Green, Jaime King, and Alexa PenaVega.  Men gamble and eat cigars, women have sex, and everybody drives cars and stuff.  Meanwhile Joseph Gordon-Leavitt shows up and, over the course of the movie, we find out that he too shoots a gun and drives a car.  Also, somebody has gold eyes and another somebody wears glowing glasses who isn’t Elisha Wood. Talking points for this movie: What needlessly stylistic choice was your favorite? Would you want your one colored feature to accentuate your breasts, hips, or butt? Which was the better Robert Rodriguez film, this or Sharkboy and Lavagirl 3D?

Lamplight Breakfast on a Burning Kitten

Ladies and gentlemen, this is it. This is the greatest film I ever have and ever will make. I hope you enjoy it.

Lamplight Breakfast on a Burning Kitten from Andrew Gingerich on Vimeo.

I enjoy this piece mostly because of the odd manic energy it manages to exist in.  It’s a movie about High School, first and foremost, and I don’t think it ever takes its concept of Prom or its characters as seriously as the characters themselves seem to take it, which I feel is perfect for a movie about high school.  This is also the piece that has a cartoon frog spitting on the protagonist’s shoe, one of the most half-hearted and fantastic song-and-dance sequences ever, a character who enters and exits by exploding, a character who enters and exits by pelvic thrusting, a character played by a stuffed wombat, and several dance sequences that aren’t so much dancing than a  surreal glimpse into these characters minds.  To top it all off, it’s shoddiness, it’s location work of all being shot inside and outside of Andrew Gingerich’s grandmother’s house, and the putrid color work all make this into one of the most oddly surreal pieces about a kid falling in love with a wombat ever.   As I said, it’s the best thing I ever have or ever will make.

Also, I really enjoy the line “This absolves Teff of all his previous social faux-pas”.