Remember that feeling of dislocation and anticipation while you watched with no clue as to what was going to come next, but knew it was going to be either strange or awesome or horrible or some combination of all three? Well, MTV has been quietly reviving it's Liquid Television brand over the past few years, essentially as an online destination for new "awesome" animation. Tonight, 9/9/13, five all-new episodes of Liquid Television will finally be released - on Hulu, iTunes, MTV Geek, Amazon, Xbox and Playstation. The network is still hoping to schedule a broadcast time slot for the revived series sometime in the remaining months in 2013, and there may be an announcement about that soon. [more inside]
The Vampires, a secret federation of thieves and killers, rule the Paris underworld through intimidation, murder, and a certain diabolic je ne sais quoi. After the headless body of the police inspector in charge of the Vampire investigation turns up in a swamp, dauntless reporter Philipe Guérande steps up his efforts to bring the gang to justice. But is he equal to the schemes of the protean Grand Vampire and his lieutenant, the cat burglar, assassin, and sometime torch singer called Irma Vep? And can anyone hope to prevail against the rogue criminal Moréno and the unearthly power of his gaze?Les Vampires (1915-1916), Louis Feuillade's six and a half hour film serial, still communicates the nerve, pace, and delirium that inspired Lang, Hitchcock, Assayas and Maddin. Here are all ten episodes of this "supreme delight of cinema." Three more of Feuillade's best serials wait below the cut. [more inside]
ABC cancels “All My Children” and “One Life to Live.” Thanks to the slow decline of soap operas -- and the coming signoff of cable's SOAPnet, two more daytime series will end decades-long runs. The replacements are a food show called The Chew and a lifestyle show tentatively titled The Revolution. AMC ends in September and OLTL in December; SOAPnet goes dark in January, 2012 [more inside]
Libraries and commercial publishers have struggled with each other over the skyrocketing costs of academic journals for years. As costs have increased more rapidly than library budgets, the libraries have had to cut journal subscriptions and other acquisitions. The recent recession has necessitated further cuts. Against this backdrop, Nature Publishing Group told the University of California that next year subscription prices would increase 400 percent, with the average annual cost of a journal increasing to $17,479. UC Libraries fought back with a combative letter to UC faculty suggesting that faculty should consider boycotting the journals, and cease submitting or reviewing articles for these journals. NPG responds, saying that UC currently pays unfairly low rates, and that "individual scientists, both within and outside of California are already suffering as a result of [UC]'s unwarranted actions."
Cliffhangers "In Focus" is an entertaining, well-written overview of the rise and decline of action serial movies of the 1930s and 40s. It also includes rundowns of many major serial films of the time. Several of these serials are now available online. Links to them are inside. [more inside]
Five Chapters. Weekly, serialized short fiction edited by David Daley, the man behind McSweeney's 20-Minute Stories Contest. Some contributors so far: Vendela Vida, Arthur Phillips, Sam Lipsyte, Anthony Swofford, Jess Walter, Stewart O'Nan.
Who knows the evil that lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow knows. Radio serials and dramas take me back to driving along with my grandfather, listening to tapes he made of his favorite programs growing up. It's still a nice way to wile away some time.