Blog Archives

Liz Tells Frank What Happened In “Spaceballs”

Dear Frank,

Spaceballs_DVD_coverIf I ever have kids, I’m not too worried about them being exposed to graphic media. I mean, I’m going to keep them away from the really violent stuff as long as humanly possible, and yeah, maybe I’ll try to keep a lid on the swears.

But when it comes to comedy, I’m pretty confident that if my kids hear a dirty joke, they won’t be terribly scarred for life — because they just won’t get them. How do I know this? Well, growing up, one of my all time favorite movies was the Mel Brooks Star Wars parody Spaceballs.

Here is how much my brother and I watched Spaceballs growing up — the VHS cassette case BROKE, and my mother (whose excellent qualities include a MacGuyver-ish ability to fix stuff) had to transplant the physical tape into a new case. Here is how many of the really dirty references we got: Pretty much zero. Here is how many times I’ve seen Spaceballs as an adult: Maybe one, and years ago. (You might have seen it as well — but I’m certain not recently. We’re both in the same boat here.)

However, the film is available on Netflix, and I’m a sucker for anything set in space. So, Frank, let’s revisit this classic! Read the rest of this entry

Liz Tells Frank What Happened In “Space: Above and Beyond”

Dear Frank,

space above and beyond posterEvery once in a while, there’s the occasional question of how much longer the LTFWHI project can be sustained — we’re coming up on three years now, Frank, and well over 150 entries. (Not to mention two books!) That’s an awful lot of telling, right there.

But before this blog ever turns in its gun and badge, there are certain frontiers we have yet to explore. Certain things I have promised to tell you about that you should never be denied. Space: Above and Beyond is one of them.

Frank, as we’ve long since established, if you were a science fiction show made in the 1990s, I at least watched one or two episodes of you. And if you aired on Fox, I probably watched the full damn season you were allowed to air before getting canceled.

Pile on top of all that the fact that Space: Above and Beyond was created by X-Files producers Glen Morgan and James Wong, and I was SIGNED UP. Attractive young space marines dogfighting aliens in space? SOUNDS GOOD TO ME. Read the rest of this entry

“Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” Season 2: The Skip It/Watch It Guide

star-trek-deep-space-nine-season-2So after we did the first season of “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine,” I’ve been asked by people about the possibility of doing the rest of the series. These people underestimate my laziness! However, vunderbar married people Sam and Terri just so happen to be watching the series from the beginning, and have graciously offered their individual perspectives on the second season. Take it away, guys!

Sam: For the past 9 years, I’ve been trying to convince Terri that Deep Space Nine is the best of all Star Treks. When Liz released Andreanna Ditton’s Farscape guide, I started thinking we could probably come up with a Season Two guide ourselves, with opinions from a longtime fan and a newcomer to balance things out.

Deep Space Nine is somewhat of a strange beast, especially two decades later when the special effects look wonky and the acting can get cringey, but it’s also a precursor to serial, huge-ass-arc storytelling in sci-fi (as well as television altogether). It’s Star Trek with deeply flawed characters that change over time. It’s Star Trek with villains that make you stare evil right in the face without being half as formidable as, say, the Borg.

What I’m getting at here is that as the show progresses, you’ll see the line between “good guys” and “bad guys” get blurrier as the characters fall deeper and deeper into chaos and despair and their victories become exponentially more hollow. Enjoy! Read the rest of this entry

Liz Tells Frank Stuff She Forgot About “Firefly”

Dear Frank,

firefly-poster1It is weird, being here in the year 2013, and seeing what’s happened to Joss Whedon — see a man whose name was synonymous with “cult not-really-a-hit” no less than three years ago play puppet master with one of Hollywood’s biggest, most profitable franchises.

The Whedon-directed Avengers grossed all those billions! ABC picked up the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D TV show he’s executive producing! He signed up for Twitter and got over 100,000 followers in like no time! Frank, Joss Whedon is en fuego!

Which is why it’s fun to look back at Whedon during his slightly more humble days — you know, when he had only three shows on television at one time–

Hmmm. It’s fascinating, isn’t it Frank, how Joss Whedon always seems like an underdog? Even when he’s doing insane things like making millions of dollars off a web series?

Read the rest of this entry

Liz Tells Frank What Happened In “John Carter”

Dear Frank,

john-carter-poster-red-marsAbout a year or so ago, you may recall, I told you about the John Carter of Mars trailer, because (like many things I tell you about here) I thought it was pretty stupid. But for some reason I was cautiously optimistic about the film itself, based entirely on the fact that writer/director Andrew Stanton had made some pretty good movies already, and he seemed likely to keep a good thing going — especially because he was such a passionate fanboy about the source material.

Then, of course, the movie actually came out, and the reaction was literally mixed — to the point where I couldn’t really get excited. It has taken me WEEKS, Frank, to get through this movie and figure out what the hell it was about, and I wish I could tell you why that was the case. It just boggled me, you know? Boggled.

First realization, as I sit down to watch: It feels like it’s been a long long time since I’ve seen a movie with only one company in the pre-title sequence. Like, everything has like at least two production companies behind it these days — five, if you’re from Europe. But Disney’s the only company behind this movie. Which explains why they took such a bath on it. Read the rest of this entry

Liz Tells Frank What Happened In “Defying Gravity”

Dear Frank,

This weekend, I was going through the ol’ LTF archives, and you would not believe what I found: A half-written entry from 2009 about the short-lived series Defying Gravity, better known as the very-diverse-and-weird-Canadian-Grey’s Anatomy-in-space! Here is literally how my post began:

Defying Gravity is a tricky show, because you look at how four entire episodes of this wacky soap opera set in space have already aired, and you’re like, oh, COME ON, no way this show has really lasted that long on a major network (ABC, if you’re curious). But they are sort of cheating, because the first two episodes aired together as an uber-pilot, meaning that it’s survived three whole weeks in the deadest time of year, and looks likely to at least make it to week 5…

It actually made it to Episode 8. Which, Frank, is kind of in-fucking-credible. The more I describe this show, the more you’ll agree. Read the rest of this entry

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