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Moderate Fantasy Violence #4 - Having Your Kids And Eating Them

Unusually, I kept to my goal of writing a whole blog post between this podcast episode and the last one! It was a thirty-second birthday post and you can go read it if you haven't already!

Fortunate really, as I don't have time to write much now. The fourth episode of MFV is up, you can see more details on the all-new official podcast website! Or I'll paste the blurb and an embed player below too.

After last week's superhero-free effort, it's time for the opposite! Nick and Alastair have seen Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, and one of them disliked it more than the other! Find out which is which (plus the repeated futility of Doomsday and what Nick has in common with Wonder Woman), then witness our discussion of Daredevil season 2 (plus the weakness of the Kingpin and exactly when it's time for the plebs).

We finally move away from capes in our climactic recommendation section, with Nick watching Ari Folman's sad animated documentary Waltz With Bashir at Alastair's behest. But don't worry, superpeople might make a last-minute comeback.

Thirty-Second Birthday V Hobson & Choi 4: Dawn of Moderate Fantasy Violence


Since I keep saying I should do a blog here without a podcast attached, I thought I'd slide a quick one out today - because it is my thirty-second birthday! And I always seem to blog on this day, for whatever reason. I've got to go out for my celebratory activity quite soon - more on that later - but here is some stuff. It's been a while since the last substantial Hobson & Choi update, so let's start there...

H&C4 - Coming To The Airwaves!

Yes, I have a complete not-shit draft of Hobson & Choi Case Four! Almost time to send it to the external editor, get some informed feedback and then take a big swing to try and make it publication-ready.

First, however, I have to read the whole text out loud to myself. I inflict this upon all my fiction-prose work before releasing it to an external audience, because I find it really helps with the flow of the writing. However, it is boring as shit, and no amount of knowledge that it's useful seems to change that.

I did a whole blog post on this task a while back if you're interested in more, but the current-upshot is: H&C4 is coming along, it should be with you... if I had to guess, I'd say around the third quarter of 2016. I am hopeful that it won't slip into the fourth, but no promises.

Weirdly, looking back on my thirty-first birthday post, this is almost exactly where I was with H&C3 at the same time last year. However, I'm hoping it won't take until October to get this one out, as I don't have the distraction of moving across London this time.

So anyway, it's coming soon. If you want to check out any of the first three, you should absolutely do that. The first case remains free on digital. All links and info on the main H&C page.

Moderate Fantasy Violence website and the Birthday Activity

My pop-culture-chat podcast Moderate Fantasy Violence, the focus of every other post on this blog so far in 2016, continues apace. For my birthday activity, we're going to see the widely-criticised film Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice. Then we'll record our fourth episode tomorrow and see if we can add anything to the critical conversation.

Yes, the film's reviews are bad, but it sounds like it might be an Interesting Failure, and those are absolute catnip to story-talky-people like myself, so I'm still excited.

In other MFV news, we now have a proper separate website at where you can see and listen to all the podcast stuff so far. Kudos to my co-host Alastair JR Ball for doing most of the hard work setting that up, it looks great. I'll continue posting here when a new ep comes out, but the new site is now the main hub. As well as the main episodes that I've been posting here, you can hear some deleted tangent-conversations that were cut to get the shows under an hour. Check that out, and if you fancy subscribing to or reviewing us on iTunes, even better.

So how are you in yourself, Nick?


Kinda struggling to get another writing project going thanks to ideas not quite coming together or seeming as beautiful on the page as they do in my head. Once H&C4 is off to an editor, I'm going to take another swing at that. I think I've probably become a bit complacent thanks to spending so long working almost exclusively on Hobson & Choi, which is a world I love, know and can write easily. Maybe a short story or something to make it less intimidating?

And outside that, the new flat in Lewisham seems to be working out, realising my long-held dream of doing a podcast is a lot of fun and I don't even mind turning 32 because it seems a lot like 31. So cool. Good work. See you back here next year, I suppose?

(I will attempt to blog at some stage before my thirty-third birthday.)

Moderate Fantasy Violence #3 - Alastair Isn't Dead

So, that blog post to break up the podcast episodes still hasn't happened, but at least I'm getting work done on Hobson & Choi Case Four.

For now, though, here's the third pod, as myself and Alastair try to do one without superheroes. If you miss them, don't worry, the next episode will likely cover Batman V Superman and Daredevil.

As ever, subscribe on iTunes here, download the file here or listen on the Soudcloud player just below this official blurb...

It's time for a no-superheroes episode! Eschewing all cultural trends, Nick and Alastair take a look at social satire movie High Rise (plus the difficulty of adapting books and vertical living returning to London), new podcast Alice Isn't Dead (plus methods of audio advertising and whether this very show has a secret purpose) and the latest Coen brothers comedy Hail, Ceasar! (plus the life and death of old movie genres).

Lastly, in our stubbornly unnamed recommendations feature, Alastair reads his first comic in years: The Manhattan Projects by Jonathan Hickman & Nick Pitarra. Is this the beginning of a deep love for graphic storytelling as a medium? Or is it... The End?

Moderate Fantasy Violence #2 - Better Call Bob Messiah


The second episode of Moderate Fantasy Violence, my new geek-stuff podcast with Alastair JR Ball, is upon you. I did kinda mean to do an actual blog post in the intervening fortnight so this blog doesn't just end up being a long string of podcasts, but there you go. You can hear the podcast in the embedded player below, or subscribe on iTunes or just right click here and download the MP3 file.

And what's in it? Well:

In a not-that-difficult second episode, Nick and Alastair look at the return of Better Call Saul (plus Gotham's prequel problems and the terrible omen of Bryan Cranston), the upcoming DC Comics Rebirth (plus how superhero comics are morphing into Doctor Who and the recent Iron Fist casting controversy) and the possibility of more adult-rated superhero movies after the success of Deadpool (plus eternal hope for sexy Gambit and Wolverine's stabby vendetta against walls and robots).

And then it's our still-nameless recommendations feature! Nick reports back on quietly squelchy crime series Messiah II, then recommends Alastair his first comic book in years. What will it be?

Oh, and if you enjoy it, I'm posting a few of the tangential discussions cut for time to the show's Soundcloud page under the name Excessive Fantasy Violence. The ones from #2 will start going up next week.