Interzone 115 – January 1997


The Black Book of the Dead – Brian Stableford

Its part one of the story here and its reasonably long for a magazine piece like this, birth together they will form a good novella.

The story concerns a mix of historical and fictional characters in much the same style as Kim Newman does so well. Its a sequel to ” The Hunger and Ecstasy of Vampires”, also a novella. One character is recounting his usage of drugs to form a ” time shadow”, to essentially travel in time to a point where the world has been abandoned by the vampires of the earlier story.

It’s all good stuff written from the viewpoint of Oscar Wilde, although I can’t say if the writing style accurately reflects Wilde’s having never read any if his work, but it certainly feels right. This part ends on a proper B-movie cliffhanger as well, which made me want to pick up the next Interzone, but I’ve managed to constrain myself to finishing this issue first.

Save As – Michael Marshall Smith

There is a good interview with MMS just before this, quite interesting given that it was just after Spares had come out, to see the direction his career has taken since. Oh and the fact they talk about the Hollywood optioning of Spares (which the Island bears a striking similarity to). The story is a short one about backing up your mind and the fragility of it with a possible hint of a form of time travel. I’m sure I’ve read this in a compilation, possibly one if the Dark Terrors ones. As usual from MMS it’s very good.

Turnover – Geoffrey A. Lewis

Interesting little (very short this one) about a couple of geologists on the surface of Venus. Its mildly comedic and I quite enjoyed it.

Nanunculus – Ian Watson

Nano computers in someone’s brain are attempting to peel back the layers of his psychological history, in an effort to stop him from committing suicide.

The Inauguration – Peter T. Garratt

The new vice-president thinks he is seeing aliens and believes that they are the devils work. Although it’s more likely they are just aliens.


I’ve got a huge pile of Interzone magazines that have either been half read or never read at all, so in between reading books, I’m going back and reading them.

It’s not from the very start of the ones I have, I flushed through them until I couldn’t remember reading the main story in a particular issue and gone from there.

I’ll gleefully remember to write it on here when I finish an issue and put the stories and authors on as well and if I’m feeling particularly clever I might try and add a picture of the cover.


Watched the Avengers at the cinema a couple of nights ago (or Avengers Assemble as we seem to be calling it here, as we were all SO confused with the old tv show weren’t we?), saw it in 3D on the IMAX screen as well, not sure the 3D added too much but the the scale of the whole thing certainly benefited having the IMAX screen. Anyway it was a great film and some of the comic timing was fantastic, mostly these involved the Hulk, although Tony Stark obviously gets a few in as well.

What seeing the film has done is make me go back and read some of the comics, currently I’m reading the “Ultimates” sequence by Millar, Hitch and Currie. Very good take on the whole Avengers thing (so far anyway), I’ve only read the first three issues but we’ve already had the death and return of Captain America, bit of Bruce Banner, Henry Pym becoming the Giant Man and Tony Stark being himself.

I think I could read a few each lunchtime, so hopefully more tomorrow.

The Ides of March

The Ides of March

I love a good political thriller and this was nearly one of those, but in the end turned out to be pretty good anyway.

Clooneys part as the politician is excellently played, although it couldn’t have been that hard to direct himself could it. Ryan Gosling is the star here and plays his part of the naive but ambitious aid really well.

Philip Seymour Hoffman and Paul Giamatti also play their relatively small parts very well, both of them being pretty ruthless without coming across as utter bastards. Well not too much anyway.

Definite recommendation for anyone who likes a film you have to think a bit in, but not too taxing for the brain of an evening spent on the sofa staring at a glowing box.

Rating: ★★★½☆ 


I watched this ages ago and absolutely adored it. It’s directed by Moss from the IT Crowd and given that I was expecting something else entirely.

Instead what I got was a beautiful tragi-comic coming of age drama that looks back at the 80′s with some obvious nostalgia without being schmaltzy and without using the obvious prompting of songs of the day. In fact even better than those songs which are actually better in my memory than in reality, we get a soundtrack by Alex Turner of the Arctic Monkeys fame, and bloody good it is too.

All of the actors deserve some serious amounts of credit too, not sure that I’d seen any of them before — other than Paddy Considine as a quite amusing ex-flame — but you’d think they were all seasoned pros.

I can’t say enough good things about this film. I really don’t like discussing plots in my shitty little reviews here, as that information is all over the internet should you want, it’s more what I felt about a film and here I felt pure joy at the entertainment on show, obviously there are a few bits that are sad and I wasn’t smiling then (I’m not a monster), in fact I may have had to wip away a tear on occasion, but overall I was enormously pleased that I had watched this. I’m sure a lot of people will read what it’s about, not recognising the names or whatever and skip on by to some mainstream shite, but they really shouldn’t, as it is almost perfect.

Rating: ★★★★★ 


I was going to call this The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo but I’ve obviously already got that as the book and I want to do the new film on here soon as well (already seen it), so it get’s the Millenium name. In case you haven’t read the books or seen the films then the title is the name of the magazine that lies at the center of the books (and I believe a spin off tv show in Sweden).

I was already amused to see that when they replaced Noomi Rapace from the original Swedish films she then went on to be in in big budget Hollywood fare, and bizarrely was in SHerlock Holmes: Game of Shadows which I saw a week before the remake of her earlier film.

So I was more surprised when I noticed that the other big film of the Christmas period, Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol has Michael Nyqvist as the main villain, the man who was replaced as Blomqvist in Dragon Tattoo. When I saw the new one at the cinema the wife of a colleague told me that she felt let down by the earlier films as she didn’t see Nyqvist as being the sex symbol that the character was meant to be, although she did suggest that Daniel Craig certainly did fill the role, before apologising to her husband, not that there is much he could do about Daniel Craig being attractive to ladies though is there?

Pointless little scribble this but I thought that was quite interesting, almost some sort of synchronicity with all three films coming out within a fortnight of each other.

New Years Resolutions

Everyone has them, but I thought if I put them on here I might actually stick to them a bit more.

Ok simple and obvious to begin with:

  • Cut out the fizzy drinks (at least the high sugar, high calorie ones), keep the beer flavoured occasional ones though ;-)
  • Cut out ALL chocolate
  • More Tae Kwon Do lessons each week, a minimum of the new Attleborough class and the Hethersett training, also try and get to the Hewitt School one.

A bit more specific:

  • Get below 100kg for the first time in God knows how long. (currently 108.4kg)
  • Take it even further and get down to 90kg.
  • 100 pushups a day
  • 100 situps (crunches) a day
  • At least 5 Parkruns over the course of the year, preferrably 10.
  • 5k time under 30 minutes, I know that sounds poor, but I am quite shit at it currently.

I might update this some more over the next week, but I might not.

update: Just realised that if I get to 90kg then I will also be below 200lbs. Probably be a bit skinny too.



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Really quite liked this, though the ending was a major headfuck, I thought I got it at the time, but the more I thought about it and tried to align it all in my head the more maddening it all was.

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Crazy, Stupid, Love

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Two women in the house last night, neither would watc any horror or anything remotely thrillerish, so we watched this, a light romantic comedy with just a touch of drama.

Steve Carell plays his usual self, I’ve seen him do this in several movies now, Julianne Moore is hardly used at at all, Ryan Gosling gets sidetracked from his serious films for a bit so he can show off his pecs and there is a lot of quite predictable accidents.

It was mildly enjoyable, but it really does not show women in a very good light, especially during the early “training” sessions where Gosling beds god knows how many women, but it was alright I suppose.

Rating: ★★★☆☆