Archive for February, 2011

Mesmerized”

A collection of three romantic short stories involving hypnosis published by Ellora’s Cave publishing. Each of the three have a lovely, lonely lady paired with a seductive, sexy man though some use of hypnosis, whether it be a stage hypnosis show, a demonstration of mesmerism or in pursuit of a notorious criminal.

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This Week in Comics — 2011/02/22

Astonishing X‑Men” #36

Mentallo is back. The long-time psychic-for-hire (he dates back to the early days of Nick Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. and his working relationship with the Fixer) is now working for Roxon, one of the major (and malevolent) corporate players in the Marvel Universe. He’s on a ship bound for one of those places you don’t want to go, the appropriately named Monster Island. Roxon paid big bucks to Japan for the drilling rights to the island and apparently Mentallo is their key to pacifying the natives. Natives that stand over a hundred feet tall and breathe fire, or resemble prehistoric dinosaurs with radioactive shells.

Except he doesn’t see it that way and he doesn’t care anything about the others. (He seems a little off his game, possibly even depressed. Not a good thing for one of the most powerful psychics on the planet.) With the monsters under his mental control, he can do about anything, and that includes sending a couple to stomp Tokyo, and no one can stop him.

Well, except maybe the X‑Men, several of whom just happen to be in Tokyo at the time.

Note: Gotta check the last page: the real monster is pictured next to a billboard advertising a Godzilla movie.

A Mesmer Update — GuildWars

ArenaNet, the company behind GuildWars, has been working on a followup game entitled GuildWars 2. It has been an open question whether one of the original professions, Mesmers, (the one I like the best and the one most relevant to this blog) would be carried over to GuildWars 2. To this date, four  original professions (Warrior, Ranger, Elementalist and Necromancer) have been announced, as has one new profession (Guardian) but no official word on the Mesmer profession so far.

But although it may not be officially confirmed by ArenaNet but a number of clues have emerged to suggest that this will, indeed be the case. And I am a happy puppy to hear it.

TalkTyria, a GW and GW2 fansite, has a new article entitled ‘Hypnotized, Mesmerized … By What the Fans Believe’ that presents a number of facts to support this suggestion. They include the fact that the first GW2 novel, “Ghosts of Ascalon” by Jeff Grubb and Matt Forbeck, and the second novel, “Edge of Destiny” by J. Robert King, both mention Mesmers; that a major character in the game storyline, Queen Jennah of the human realm of Ascalon, is a Mesmer (pretty handy for a Queen to be able to manipulate the minds and will of her subjects) and that Jeff Grubb himself has stated that:

People will, who play a ritualist or a mesmer or a necromancer or any of the old, old characters, will feel like they have a home somewhere in Guild Wars 2.

Another fan site, GuildWars2Guru, also has a post which collects information about the Mesmer profession, here. It does into much more detail from the second novel about how Queen Jennah uses her Mesmer abilities. Now I realize that what literary characters can do and what the player characters will be able to do are not likely to be the same, but just the fact that she that she is a Mesmer is a welcome sign.

So I am now looking forward to GW2 and exploring the abilities of another Mesmer character, probably a Sylvari (a new race that was born from plants) just because I think they look cool. And, of course, Mesmers are always cool.

Addenda: I don’t know what his exact title is, but Jeff Grubb is also the head person directing the plot development for GuildWars 2. Jeff used to be with TSR (the people who published Dungeons & Dragons) and was the line editor for their immensely popular Dragonlance series and also worked on the (also) immensely popular Forgotten Realms product line. And he was one of Dungeon Masters I ran with back in my days at Purdue.

They Live” — An Update

Even though I mentioned it in the original posting, I wanted to add that the website Io9 has a new review of the book, “They Live” by Jonathan Lethem, here, a critical examination of the 1988 John Carpenter movie of the same name that I wrote about here. I didn’t examine the book in that posting, but I’ve learned some things about it that I want to bring to my readers’ attention.

⇒ Continue reading “They Live” — An Update”

The Talons of Weng-Chiang’ — “Doctor Who”

~ Terror in the Fog ~

In ‘The Talons of Weng-Chiang’, the Fourth Doctor and Leela encounter a mystery with extraordinary proportions in Victorian London, involving missing women, a stage magician and his malevolent dummy assistant, Chinese tongs, a mysterious Oriental cabinet, a crippled war criminal from the future and a giant rat.

⇒ Continue reading “The Talons of Weng-Chiang’ — “Doctor Who””

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