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What happens on the fourth day?


  • Zombie Month: Death Troopers

    deathtroopers (image credit - anythinghorror.com)This October is Zombie Month at Fourth-day Universe.  Each day, we’ll bring you a new example of these mostly creepy, sometimes charming creatures.  The third week is Alien Zombies, and wouldn’t you know it, we’re doing Star Trek and Star Wars in the same week.  Today’s zombies are from the Expanded Universe novel by Joe Schreiber, Death Troopers.

     

    If Disney ever wants to produce a horror movie as one of their standalone Star Wars films, then they’d do well to adapt Death Troopers.  Set before the events of A New Hope, the book tells of a zombie plague from onboard an Imperial Star Destroyer.  A prison barge named Purge finds the derelict Destroyer Vector and decides to send a crew aboard for spare parts.  Only half of the boarding party makes it back, though, and they bring the plague with them.  The book has plenty of zombie tropes in it, though the zombies themselves are distinct enough.  There’s a prequel called Red Harvest which explores the origins of the “outbreak”, there are enough surprises to keep you guessing, and DT even has a couple of characters that any Star Wars fan would recognize.

     

    Stephen Monteith spent most of his teen years reading Star Wars novels, though his progress has slowed in recent years.  You can read his own original fiction at Lulu.com.


  • Jena Malone Is Playing Harley Quinn!

    sucker-punch-rocket-jena-malone (image credit - turntherightcorner.com)So, I read an article yesterday by a writer/filmmaker who’s just a little annoyed by the overly-repetitious rumors about who “may” have been cast in upcoming comic book movies.  He certainly has a point.  I mean, I’ve seen rumors about Inception star Tom Hardy being cast as Doctor Strange, the X-Men villain Apocalypse, and a member of the Suicide Squad.  For those keeping score at home, that would have him working for three rival comic book movie studios.  All we need now is for a rumor to start about him being cast as Doc Ock, and we’ll have us a hambone (four strikes in a row, for those who don’t bowl).

     

    But, that’s not the rumor we’re here to discuss.  It’s this rumor that Sucker Punch actress Jena Malone has been cast as Harley Quinn, the Joker’s on again, off again henchman/girlfriend and sometime Suicide Squad member.  (Her affiliations are as erratic as her laughter, these days.)  Now, it’s confirmed that Malone will have a “mystery role” in 2016’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.  The prevailing theory is she’s playing Carrie Kelley, the “female Robin” from the graphic novel The Dark Knight Returns, on which BvS is said to be mainly based.  Well, we’ve gone over that, and while I stand by my theory that she’ll be Barbara Gordon, aka Batgirl/Oracle, I wrote that before Warner Bros. “big plan” was unveiled.  And I simply can’t ignore the “evidence” this rumor presents.
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  • Zombie Month: The Waters of Mars

    pp31497-eudoctor-who-affichesThis October is Zombie Month at Fourth-day Universe.  Each day, we’ll bring you a new example of these mostly creepy, sometimes charming creatures.  The third week is Alien Zombies, whether they’re risen by aliens or aliens have taken the body over from the inside, as is the case in one of the creepiest Doctor Who stories yet:  The Waters of Mars.

     

    We’re well into Peter Capaldi’s tenure as the time traveling alien who regenerates into a new form when he dies, known simply as the Doctor.  A couple of faces ago, he was played by David Tennant, one of the most beloved regenerations of the Doctor, certainly in the renewed series.  And one of his adventures took him to Mars at the sunset of a failed human attempt at colonization of the Red Planet.  You see, just because we can’t see any water on the surface doesn’t mean there aren’t large frozen reservoirs deep beneath the surface, and lying dormant in that frozen hell is life just waiting to burst forth once again.

     

    And boy, did it wake up cranky.

    And boy, did it wake up cranky.

     

    Upon encountering humans, the watery virus takes over their bodies, hoping to ride them off their dead rock and back to Earth, which is about 70% water.  There, it would be virtually impossible to keep it from hiding, spreading, and eventually conquering every living thing.  It’s an actual zombie apocalypse, though more of the alien invasion variety (but, we’re already counting that kind).  The Doctor warns the stranded astronauts that just one drop could mean disaster.

     

    Water-Sodium

     

    Stephen Monteith has come close to cosplaying as the Tenth Doctor at conventions twice now, but he can never find the right suit.  Help fund his search by buying his original fiction at Lulu.com.


  • Zombie Month: Plan 9 from Outer Space

    This October is Zombie Month at Fourth-day Universe.  Each day, we’ll bring you a new example of these mostly creepy, sometimes charming creatures.  The third week is Alien Zombies, which aliens may create to conquer the Earth or, in this case, to stop the Earth from destroying the universe.  Yes, friends, todays zombies come from the infamous Ed Wood film Plan 9 from Outer Space.

     

    TOP_Plan-9-From-Outer-Space

     

    This film is a testament to how screwed up humanity is, and I say that with as much affection for my fellow human beings as I can.  From its inception, the very people who worked on the film wanted nothing to do with it.  For decades, it languished in Z-movie obscurity until one film critic uttered the magical incantation for raising a film out of obscurity.  Once Michael Medved called it “the worst film ever made”, those impossible-to-ignore words guaranteed that it would forever dwell in the hearts and minds of those who seek out the worst films of all time.  The Room, Manos: The Hands of Fate, Batman & Robin; it’s as if being considered the worst is just as good as being considered the best.

     

    Transformers-4-Age-of-Extinction-Optimus-Prime-Poster (image credit - redcarpetrefs.com)

    Which would explain why these movies keep making so much money.

     

    But, I digress.  Plan 9 is about a world, supposedly our world, that is so jaded and unfazed by the site of flying saucers that it takes zombies to get our attention.  Aliens want to stop us from “stumbling” onto a bomb so powerful it could destroy the universe, but apparently no one on Earth is at all interested in hearing anything these aliens have to say, or even in acknowledging their existence.  So, they decide to bring the dead back to life to conquer the Earth and stop us from destroying the universe. (*sighs* Wow.  Just typing all that really wore me out.) This movie is profoundly stupid, and I don’t say that lightly.  I can’t even bear the thought of watching it without the RiffTrax commentary to ease the pain.  And, again, it’s because my fellow humans seek out awfulness that awfulness continues to be made.  It’s actually okay to be an Ed Wood or an Uwe Boll or a Michael Bay in this world, because their films are just as sought after as anything by Christopher Nolan or Stanley Kubrick or Darren Aronofsky.

     

    But, I digress again.  There are zombies in this movie, they’re brought back from the dead by alien technology, and that makes them “Science Zombies”, but only as long as the electrode gun is in good working order.  And, since the aliens apparently gave up after one try, it never became a full-on zombie apocalypse.  Who knows?  Maybe in that world, humanity did stumble onto the dreaded universe-destroying bomb and every stupid person living in that universe was wiped out in fiery vengeance for being so stupid.

     

    Stephen Monteith is a firm proponent of the Don’t Feed the Bears philosophy of watching movies, and never watches “so bad it’s good” movies (unless there’s an accompanying RiffTrax).  You can buy his original fiction at Lulu.com.


  • New Episodes – 10/18/2014 (Transformers 4, The Walking Dead, RiffTrax Live and More)

    I always suspected that Michael Bay’s fourth foray into the Transformers franchise would be the worst; and now, with the help of CinemaSins, I have quantifiable evidence.  We also have another “recap” of The Walking Dead, from the Fine Bros. this time, new offerings from the Bad Movie Gods (that is, the Riffers at RiffTrax), and a whole lot more.  Grab your cereal bowls and prepare for milk to squirt out of your noses:

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  • Zombie Month: Slither

    This October is Zombie Month at Fourth-day Universe.  Each day, we’ll bring you a new example of these mostly creepy, sometimes charming creatures.  The third week is Alien Zombies, the ones that put the grossest kind of voodoo there is on you.  Don’t believe me?  Take a gander at a relatively unknown horror project from about eight years ago called Slither.

     

    Theirs was not exactly a true love.

    Theirs was not exactly a true love.

     

    Directed by James Gunn (yes, that James Gunn) and starring Firefly‘s Nathan Fillion and The Walking Dead‘s Michael Rooker, this is the story of a small town where an invasion by alien slugs turns everyone into zombies; and freakishly mutated ones, at that.  Rooker’s character becomes patient zero, his mind taken over by the slugs and spreading the disease, while his wife, played by Elizabeth Banks, and Fillion try to stop them.  It’s a nod to the B-movie monsters of yesteryear, particularly George Romero’s zombies and The Blob.

     

    Yes, that one.

    Yes, that one.

     

    “Blob” is the operative word, here.  One character swells up to immense proportions.  Rooker and company get sort of…mushed all together at one point?  The movie itself is very hard to describe, other than dark comedy mixed with B-movie horror and guts.  It’s not for the weak of stomach, because at times, you’ll be laughing, and others, you’ll want to hurl.  But, the acting and directing are still enjoyable.

     

    Stephen Monteith is still catching up on his B-horror movies, and The Blob is definitely on the list.  You can read his original fiction at Lulu.com.


  • Warner Bros’ Big Plan

    justice-league-warner-bros-feature (image credit - hypable.com)

     

    So, we finally know what the next six years of comic book movies will be like for Warner Bros…probably.  Despite unending speculation and more than one schedule change, we now know when we can expect to see Wonder Woman, Aquaman, a new Flash, and even a new Green Lantern (possibly) make it to the big screen.  We also know that the Justice League movie will in fact be a two-parter, which will give plenty of characters time to develop independently; again, despite expectations.

     

    I don’t want to say I don’t have faith in WB CEO Kevin Tsujihara’s announcement at Time Warner Investor Day this week about their planned slate of superhero and fantasy movies.  In fact, I’d very much like for the movies to appear as they’re laid out in his presentation.  But, the presentation itself leaves a couple of unanswered questions, and the entire plan is predicated on 2016’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice exceeding expectations with both audiences and critics.  Last year’s Man of Steel more than made back its investment, but it also carries quite a bit of criticism that, unfairly or not, the entire slate of DC movies will also bear, unless BvS can answer them.  Keep reading to see the full schedule and my concerns about it.

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  • Zombie Month: Black Oil

    Black_oilThis October is Zombie Month at Fourth-day Universe.  Each day, we’ll bring you a new example of these mostly creepy, sometimes charming creatures.  The third week is Alien Zombies, which usually take the form of an alien controlling a human’s body from the inside.  Some don’t stop at the human race, as this next type of zombie is out to conquer the universe:  the Black Oil, from The X-Files.

     

    The X-Files is a science fiction show that ran for 9 seasons in the 90s and early 2000s.  FBI special agents Fox Mulder (David Duchovny) and Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) would investigate paranormal cases, involving werewolves, vampires, haunted houses, reincarnation, and, especially, alien abduction.  It was a trailblazer in the use of season-long and even series-long story arcs, with some individual episodes handling things like the Jersey Devil and the Chupacabra, while others were devoted to the larger story of a shadowy Syndicate that may or may not be working to facilitate an alien takeover of the entire planet.

     

    The Black Oil, officially known as “Purity”, is a form of alien virus capable of taking over humanoids from the inside.  The Syndicate, comprised of powerful men from across the globe, having been helping the aliens find ways to spread the virus throughout the populace.  The aliens want to enslave the human race, obviously, while the Syndicate hopes that having access to the virus will help them develop a vaccine.

     

    Stephen Monteith has been a fan of The X-Files for as long as it’s been around.  You can read his original fiction at Lulu.com.


  • Zombies: Magic VS Science

    We’re halfway through Zombie Month at Fourth-day, which is probably farther than we’d get through a zombie apocalypse.  So far, we’ve spotlighted zombies created through magic (be it voodoo, witchcraft, or other means), zombies created through science (mainly viruses), and even one that kind of straddled the line.  We still have alien zombies to cover this week, and then we’ll discuss revenants, the zombies that are strictly in it for revenge.

     

    Which Zombie Are You

     

    Though our other poll is still up for this month, we’re adding a new one today:  which type of zombie is your favorite?  With all the different types out there, we’re wondering which ones you prefer; and you can vote for more than one.

     

     

    Share both our polls with your friends, and don’t forget to fund Stephen Monteith’s fight against the undead hordes by buying his original fiction at Lulu.com.


  • Zombie Month: The Borg

    1888186-borg_cube (image credit - comicvine.com)This October is Zombie Month at Fourth-day Universe.  Each day, we’ll bring you a new example of these mostly creepy, sometimes charming creatures.  The third week is Alien Zombies, whether its the ones who hijack your body, or give you an alien disease, or, in this case, assimilate you into their horde.  I’m talking, of course, about the Borg from Star Trek.

     

    Star Trek is a true science fiction phenomenon.  We even dedicated an entire Genre Spotlight to it.  There have been episodes of the various Trek series dedicated to zombie-esque storylines, and the Borg could be said to be their own special brand of space zombies, “infecting” you with their cybernetic plague and assimilating you into the Borg Collective.  They even throw in a bit of “voodoo zombie” flavor by erasing your personality, making you a drone, a slave to their will.

     

    BorgQueen2373 (image credit - en.memory-alpha.org)Rather, a slave to her will.  The Borg have a Queen, who fills the role of zombie master/mistress as they spread across the galaxy.  The Queen first made her appearance in the movie Star Trek: First Contact, and then became a recurring character on the series Star Trek: Voyager.  The Borg themselves were originally introduced to the crew of Star Trek: The Next Generation in one of the most frightening episodes of the new series.  The United Federation of Planets has never faced a greater foe, and the galaxy has never known a greater threat.

     

    Not everyone who becomes a Borg stays a Borg.  At least two long-time members of the Collective have “come back”.  Hugh, aka Third of Five (Jonathan Del Arco) was the first (that we know of) in the classic TNG episode “I, Borg”.  And, of course, Voyager featured Seven of Nine (Jeri Ryan), the most popular (former) Borg ever.  As for short-term assimilatees, no one can forget the TNG two-parter that kept Trekkies on the edges of hysteria the entire summer between seasons 3 and 4.  “The Best of Both Worlds” saw a major conflict between Starfleet and the Borg, with Patrick Stewart, Captain Jean-Luc Picard himself, assimilated at the end of the season 3 finale.  Shows today wish they could create cliffhangers that intense.

     

    Stephen Monteith is a lifelong Trekkie and hopes desperately that the Borg don’t show up in the third “New Trek” movie.  You can read his original fiction at Lulu.com.



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