Friday, June 23, 2017

Podcast #5- BikeCon & Wiscon

In Episode 5, we recount some of our thoughts ad adventures cycling to Madison for Wiscon 41.




Find out more about Wiscon!

Bikecon was formed out of Think Galactic--though we're hoping to have more members next year.

Big thanks to Amal El-Mohtar and C.S.E. Cooney for graciously allowing us to use some recording of their works.

Our music is provided by Pelafina. Check them out on Facebook and Bandcamp!

Hope you like the show! Questions, comments? Sound off in the comments, or drop us a line at positronchicago@gmail.com.

Friday, June 2, 2017

Classic Sci-Fi- Stations of the Tide

For the June Classic Sci-Fi Meetup, we discussed Stations of the Tide (1991) by Michael Swanwick.

The Nebula-award winning novel is a bit difficult to categorize: set on a planet about inundated by massive floods, it follows a nameless bureaucrat as he attempts to recover some stolen technology. There's lots of magic (maybe), as well as chemically/spiritually/virtually altered reality, AI questions, and shape-shifting aliens.

This is a novel that is near and dear to my heart, and I always jump at the chance to hear what people think about it. At Classic, we had decidedly mixed feelings, some really liking it, others really not connecting with it—we generally agreed that it's both really quite weird and extremely well-written, however. Brief notes below!

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Podcast #4- The Hugo Novels

Our new podcast is live, just in time for us to load our bikes up and head to Wiscon! This episode, we talk about some more science fiction & fantasy theater in Chicago, then launch into a brief discussion of all 6 Hugo novels on the 2017 shortlist.


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  • 0- Introduction & What We've Been Reading (Hugo Nominations & C.J. Cherryh's Rimrunners)
  • 4:00- Upcoming Events
  • 6:18- What we're looking forward to at Wiscon & BikeCon
  • 10:55- Theatrical Discussion: Lifeline's A Wrinkle in Time, Edge of Orion's Illyria, and a bit more discussion of New Millennium's The Incredible Hank and Otherworld's The Rogue Aviator
  • 16:27- Hugo overview & voting mechanics
  • 20:51- Novel discussion!
    • Ada Palmer's Too Like The Lightning
    • N.K. Jemisin's The Obelisk Gate
    • Cixin Liu's Death's End
    • Charlie Jane Ander's All the Birds in the Sky
    • Becky Chamber's A Closed and Common Orbit
    • Yoon Ha Lee's Ninefox Gambit
  • 43:51- Overall Hugo thoughts
  • 53:52- Credits
(Extended show notes after we return from Wiscon!)

Thanks to our events reader this episode, Chelsea Fiddyment from Unreal.

Our music is provided by Pelafina. Check them out on Facebook and Bandcamp!

Hope you like the show! Questions, comments? Sound off in the comments, or drop us a line at positronchicago@gmail.com.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Otherworld's "The Rogue Aviator"

This weekend I saw the opening night of The Rogue Aviator, the newest production from Otherworld Theatre. Written by Nick Izzo and directed by Tiffany Keane-Schaefer, the play brings a tale of dieselpunk aerial adventures to the stage.

Set in an alt-history version of the 1920s, the story revolves around the flying city of Olympus, a supposed techno-utopia threatened by sky pirates and its own descent into an oppressive military tyranny. The eponymous Rogue Aviator is Ellie McCloud (Moira Begale), a nobly-motivated bounty hunter with ties on both side of the conflict.

I'm continually impressed by Otherworld's project of bringing complex science fiction and fantasy stories to the medium of theater, and this was a fun show. Brief thoughts below:

New Millennium Theatre's "The Incredible Hank"

The New Millennium Theatre Company focuses on "new or non-traditional" plays with an eye towards bringing in new audiences; previous endeavors have included Tolkien/action movie mashup Old Hobbits Die Hard and recurring Christmas special Silent Night of the Living Dead, if that gives you any idea.

Their newest production is The Incredible Hank, a farcical super-hero tale written & directed by Alex B. Reynolds. Set in a super-hero saturated metropolis, it follows a file clerk (Mike Movido) with incredible strength who is drawn, against his will, into the world of super-crime and vigilante justice.

A fast, loud show with broad humor, The Incredible Hank had the audience erupting in laughter at every other line. Some quick thoughts below:

Friday, May 19, 2017

Think Galactic- Kelly Sue DeConnick & Amal El-Mohtar

For the May meeting of Think Galactic, we read selections from the Guests of Honor at the upcoming Wiscon: Kelly Sue DeConnick and Amal El-Mohtar. For DeConnick, we read Bitch Planet, and for El-Mohtar we read a selection of short stories and poems.

Think Galactic's original formation was inspired by Wiscon, and there's usually a good number of us in attendance, and these two creators have a lot of interesting work.

Brief notes and discussion below: