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Jul 2

Charts – 28 June 2015

Posted on Thursday, July 2, 2015 by Paul in Music

The reign of Jason Derulo is over!  It only took four weeks!  And the end is nigh in another respect – this is the penultimate Sunday chart.  Next week is the last one before we jump to Fridays with the “Global Release Date”.

32.  Duke Dumont – “The Giver”


Jun 27

Uncanny Avengers vol 1 – “Counter-Evolutionary”

Posted on Saturday, June 27, 2015 by Paul in x-axis

First of all, no, that’s not a typo.  This is volume 1 – the second volume 1, even though it features a creative team that worked on the previous run.  And if everything is getting a fresh #1 after Secret Wars, it will presumably be the only volume 1 of the second run, to be followed promptly by a third volume 1.  This is confusing.  I was tempted to call it volume 6 but (a) that’s not the title, and (b) volume 6 should logically be Axis, which wasn’t billed as an Uncanny Avengers collection at all.

Oh well.  Bitching about the numbering helps me get through a paragraph before turning my attention to the more important point, which is that this book completely lost my attention somewhere along the line.


Jun 27

Chikara 15.3: “Out on a Limb”

Posted on Saturday, June 27, 2015 by Paul in Wrestling

Preamble: Three shows into the year, Chikara gets back to its regular schedule of running multiple shows over one weekend per month.  Between shows, they’ve also announced “Challenge Of The Immortals”, a tournament which will run for the rest of the year.

There are a lot of COTI matches coming up in future shows – a lot – so let’s run down the rules:

  • There are ten teams of four.  Director of Fun Mike Quackenbush (the GM) appointed the team captains, who then took turns to draft members from the roster, followed by a brief window for trades.
  • It’s a double round robin – every team faces every other team twice.
  • Each match can be a singles, tag, trios or atomicos (8-man tag) match.  The team captains are supposed to decide between them.  The same two teams can’t meet in the same type of match on both occasions.  (Singles and tag matches don’t count towards title contention.)
  • A team gets one point for every match it wins.  The team with the most points at the end of the day is the winner.
  • Everyone on the winning team gets a vaguely-defined “Golden Opportunity”, which is effectively a money in the bank title shot, though you could use it for something else if you really wanted.


Jun 24

Charts – 21 June 2015

Posted on Wednesday, June 24, 2015 by Paul in Music

Next week… next week looks set to be pretty busy at the top of the chart.  This week, yeah, not so much.

38.  Kygo featuring Parson James – “Stole The Show”


Jun 21

Magneto vol 3

Posted on Sunday, June 21, 2015 by Paul in x-axis

This one rather slipped by me – we’re actually two issues into volume 4 by now, which is a “Last Days” Secret Wars tie-in.  But let’s go back to volume 3 before it slips from mind entirely.

It is the fate of the lower-selling Marvel comic to spend a lot of its time doing crossovers, which is why Magneto has wound up doing both Axis and Secret Wars.  But that means joining in large-scale high-stakes adventure with big name characters and mainstream Marvel Universe concepts floating around, all of which was quite at odds with the tone established by the early issues of the series.  They went for Magneto as a small-scale, largely de-powered vigilante still hanging in there despite being a shadow of the man he once was.


Jun 20

Chikara 15.2 – “National Pro Wrestling Day 2015″

Posted on Saturday, June 20, 2015 by Paul in Wrestling

Preamble: Well, I did say these would be erratic.

National Pro Wrestling Day is Chikara’s annual free charity show, which basically means they run the live show for donations, and there are regular exhortations to donate to the year’s selected charity.  It’s notionally also a celebration of pro wrestling generally.  This is the third one.  The first two were (in storyline) not Chikara shows – this was terribly useful because it meant there was an actual show where they could pay off the shutdown angle in 2014.  This year it’s an official Chikara show, and pretty much a regular one with a couple of outsiders and not much in the way of explicit angles (though some stuff is set up for the future).  Anyone with a complicated story pretty much skips this show entirely.


Jun 17

Charts – 14 June 2015

Posted on Wednesday, June 17, 2015 by Paul in Uncategorized

Look, Britain, it was nice when you gave Jason Derulo a second week at number 1, because it kept up this year’s trend for a slow turnover at the top.  But three, Britain?  Really?

34.  Ed Sheeran – “Photograph”


Jun 14

Wolverines vol 4: “Destiny”

Posted on Sunday, June 14, 2015 by Paul in x-axis

The fourth and final collection of Wolverines is a very, very strange comic.  Granted, “final” in that sentence should come with an asterisk, for reasons I’ll get to, but Charles Soule and Ray Fawkes’ story winds up building to a bizarre anticlimax that makes the book read like an exercise in trolling the readers.

Not that trolling the readers is necessarily a bad thing, mind you.  X-Statix did it all the time.  But in this case, it winds up with a comic which leaves us with the intriguing puzzle of trying to distil it down to the key elements that presumably looked promising at the pitch stage.  After all, Soule clearly knows how to put a story together; if he produces something as odd as this, it’s presumably by design.  A misconceived design, possibly, but still a design.


Jun 10

Charts – 7 June 2015

Posted on Wednesday, June 10, 2015 by Paul in Music

A busy week on the album chart; another largely dead one for the singles.  The addition of streaming data really seems to be helping to slow down the charts, for better or worse – probably better, actually.  We’ll come to an example of why in a bit.  First…

30.  The Weeknd – “The Hills”


Jun 7

House to Astonish Episode 133

Posted on Sunday, June 7, 2015 by Al in Podcast

A busy little week of news for you, with chat about the Wicked and the Divine heading to TV, Tilda Swinton potentially joining the cast of Doctor Strange, the Lumberjanes movie landing at Fox, Stephen Amell’s dalliance with WWE, Mark Paniccia’s step up to X-Men senior group editor, the post-Secret Wars Marvel teasers, Brian Bendis and David Marquez’s Invincible Iron Man and DC’s half-page ads. We’ve also got reviews of The Covenant, Bizarro and Airboy, and the Official Handbook of the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe is what it eats. All this plus Gary Oldman Logan, Rage Twix and Fear Twix, and Formula One’s legendary piranha pit crews.

The podcast is here, or here on Mixcloud, or available via the embedded player below. Let us know what you think in the comments below, on Twitter, via email, or on our Facebook fan page. Don’t forget that if you want to look amazing and help keep us in Jaffa Cakes, our wonderfully affordable shirts are available at our Redbubble store.