May 19, 2017


Part of the Fox Kids television block's splashy debut in the early 1990s, The Pirates of Dark Water is a showcase for the artists, animators, and linguists of Hanna-Barbera. Fearsome creatures and nonsense phrases abound in this high seas fantasy that draws from a variety of global maritime traditions. The result is a truly expansive alien world that's especially appealing to fans of horrifically transmogrified beasts.

Yet like many a swashbuckler, this aesthetically daring series was cut down in its prime. Join us as we examine our enduring fascination with buccaneers, while diving into Dark Water's mythology and imagining if the show had been given the opportunity to reach its natural conclusion.

The Pirates of Dark Water (1991-1993)
Created by David Kirschner
Starring George Newbern, Brock Peters, Roddy McDowall, Frank Welker, Jodi Benson, Tim Curry, and H├ęctor Elizondo

Episodes featured in this podcast:
"The Quest" (aired 2/25/1991)
"The Game Players of Undaar" (aired 11/29/1992)
"The Living Treasure" (aired 5/23/1993)

May 4, 2017


Priming the public for the return of Star Wars in its special edition and prequel forms, George Lucas cranked up the old hype machine for Shadows of the Empire, an ambitious storytelling experience spread out across multiple media platforms. The project encapsulated all the promise and pitfalls of the creative potential embedded in the so-called "expanded universe," leaning heavily on the film trilogy's distinct atmosphere and iconography to peddle franchise arcana.

We depart from our typical format in this very special episode, as guest hosts Brian Rudloff and Sam Stovold help us divide and conquer a book, a graphic novel, a video game, and a soundtrack that (theoretically) combine to create a single Star Wars story.

Shadows of the Empire (1996)
Novel written by Steve Perry
Graphic novel written by John Wagner and illustrated by Kilian Plunkett
Video game produced by LucasArts and directed by Mark Haigh-Hutchinson
Soundtrack composed by Joel McNeely

A bonus panel of swoop gang leader Gizman aka 'Big Gizz' from the Shadows comic book:

Swoop! (There It Is)

Check out the rest of our series on the Star Wars saga:
Episode I: The Phantom Menace
Episode II: Attack of the Clones
Episode III: Revenge of the Sith
Episode IV: A New Hope
Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back
Episode VI: Return of the Jedi
Episode VII: The Force Awakens
Episode VIII: The Last Jedi

Solo: A Star Wars Story
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Star Wars: Clone Wars
Star Wars Holiday Special
Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire
Caravan of Courage: An Ewok Adventure