Welcome to the Playpen, our space for ferrety banter and whimsical snippets of things that aren't quite long enough for articles (although they might be) but that caught your eye anyway.

at 09:12 on 22-02-2012, Wardog
That is awful... awful! I can't believe he thought that was a reasonable analogy...

You know that it’s going to be like? It’s going to be like wandering onto an internet porn site and seeing a video of a girl I had a crush on in high school. You probably knew someone like her. The smart girl. The shy girl. The one who wore glasses and was a little socially awkward. The one who screwed up the curve in chemistry so you got an A- instead of an A.

God, girls are so shit. First they won't sleep with you, then they suck at chemistry, and then they have sex with people not you. It must be so hard being Patrick Rothfuss...

Sorry I don't mean to randomly bitch at the guy but siiiiiigh.
at 06:16 on 22-02-2012, Kellicat
If anyone here ever wanted to know if Patrick Rothfuss had creepy ideas about women in real life, here's your chance to see it for yourself.

(He manages to invoke the madonna/whore stereotype when talking about movie adaptations of the Hobbit of all things.)
at 18:38 on 21-02-2012, Ibmiller
Oh, Meg Cabot. I was introduced to her work through Insatiable, which I thought was a hilarious parody of the Twilight and True Blood phenomenon. Sadly, the follow-up lost nearly all the intelligence, humor, and basic premise.

What exactly is she doing writing introductions to Pride and Prejudice, anyway?
at 18:14 on 21-02-2012, Wardog
I was messing around the other day on Iplayer while I was doing my virtual filing (that's not a euphemism) and I ran across Dara O'Brian doing a stand-up segment on video games which I absolutely adored. It's just really nice to see mainstream observational comedy about video games... Also he clearly does love video games (and plays them like I do...)
at 18:05 on 21-02-2012, Michal
From Meg Cabot's durr-worthy introduction to Pride and Prejudice:

OK, so I'll admit it: I saw the movie first... But, as I had discovered from reading Peter Benchley's book Jaws, sometimes there are scenes in the book that aren't in the movie... The movies always leave something out. Which is what makes Pride and Prejudice such a joy to read over and over. Because you can make up your own movie about it -- in your head.

(I can't stop laughing at this)
at 13:34 on 21-02-2012, Arthur B
The Composites, characters from literature sketched using police composite sketch software. Includes Text Factor heroes Sam Spade and Kevin.
at 22:35 on 20-02-2012, Arthur B
They're hanging with the Tau these days and calling themselves the Demiurg.

The filthy treacherous xenos.
at 20:18 on 20-02-2012, valse de la lune
Yes, but what about the Squats.
at 18:53 on 20-02-2012, Arthur B
Strapline for the movie? I think it should be the strapline for the franchise. "In the grim darkness of the far future there is only Chaos Marines and... stuff."
at 18:01 on 20-02-2012, Dan H
I don't remember much about the plot now except that there wasn't much of one, but they were on this planet to do... stuff and there are Chaos Marines and... stuff

That should totally be the strapline for the movie.

Ultramarine: There Are Chaos Marines and Stuff
at 17:14 on 20-02-2012, valse de la lune
Cheers, no hard feelings.
at 17:04 on 20-02-2012, Alasdair Czyrnyj
And now, slightly happier things.

The movie Beyond the Black Rainbow, a movie I have been very interested in, has finally got itself an American distributor, though there's still no word on if/when/where it will appear in theaters (or if it will ever appear in Canada). There is a new trailer, though.

This movie is so Seventies they had to make it in 2010 because the Seventies couldn't contain it.
at 16:57 on 20-02-2012, Alasdair Czyrnyj
valse, I would like to apologize to you for that post I made yesterday. We may have fundamental disagreements in worldview, but there was no excuse for writing what I did. It was a crude insult written out of anger and frustration at the tone of the conversation, and I am sorry that I wrote it.
at 05:20 on 20-02-2012, valse de la lune
@Shimmin: It looks, to be uncharitable, low-budget. It's also fairly nonsensical. I don't remember much about the plot now except that there wasn't much of one, but they were on this planet to do... stuff and there are Chaos Marines and... stuff. Actually if you watch it and can explain the plot to me that'd be neat.
at 23:18 on 19-02-2012, James D
Yep, the choice of maps is fantastic.

I was especially pleased (and surprised) to see the map from The Phantom Tollbooth featured so prominently, I spent a lot of time as a kid studying that map. It's still one of my favorite children's books, and still stands up today.
at 23:00 on 19-02-2012, Michal
I have started reading the cartography article, but am intimidated by the literarytheoriness of it and keep giving up.

Aw, the literarytheoriness was one reason I liked the article so much.

I have a passing interest in the history of cartography, and I am (like Nicholas) surprised that no one's done a full scholarly monograph on the fictional maps. I really love the idea of maps in fantasy novels that somehow reflect the culture that may have produced them. That ties right into the Yggdrasil point, too, in that fantasy maps need not conform to our own expectation of what a map "is", and can be read as their own texts (what's emphasized? What's not? And All That) beyond their function as representing the geography of some imaginary place.

I just didn't have any responses to it beyond "buh pretty pictures".

Yep, the choice of maps is fantastic. (There are some terribly bad fantasy maps out there, after all, that fail at both an artistic and practical level)
at 21:45 on 19-02-2012, Arthur B
@Michal: I thought the article was great, I just didn't have any responses to it beyond "buh pretty pictures".
at 21:44 on 19-02-2012, James D
The Yggdrasil point I also thought was very sound.

Yes, I liked that part too. Gene Wolfe's Wizard Knight series has that sort of 'cosmology map' at the beginning, and coincidentally enough those books draw heavily on Norse mythology.
at 21:08 on 19-02-2012, Shimmin
@Kyra: it's on LoveFILM, I'm happy to take you up on that.

@Valse: I'm intrigued. Could you expand on that, or is it just Generically Bad?
at 20:59 on 19-02-2012, Shimmin
@Michal: Okay, so I think I agree with the bits that I understand. Also there are lots of pretty maps.

In fairness I think the point about ambiguity slash room for interpretation is a very strong one that's undervalued. Maps can tend to constrain your imagination in terms of the book, and reduce the sense of being limited to the characters' knowledge, and they do increase the likelihood of plot holes. Also they tend to make geographers cry. The Yggdrasil point I also thought was very sound.
at 20:34 on 19-02-2012, valse de la lune
I watched the Ultramarine mini-film. It's... it's so very, very bad. I tried so hard to like it, I wanted to be charitable--Dan Abnett wrote the script!--but no. No. It didn't want me to like it.
at 20:28 on 19-02-2012, Shimmin
@Michal: I have started reading the cartography article, but am intimidated by the literarytheoriness of it and keep giving up. But I will try again.
at 20:28 on 19-02-2012, Wardog
OMG! Ferretbrain movie evening and podcast! And I know fuck-all about 40k :P
at 20:26 on 19-02-2012, Shimmin
I just remembered about the Ultramarines film they were making, which is now apparently out on DVD. Must find, watch.