Cheeseburger Gothic

Grab an advance copy of Butte Crack

Posted January 4 into The Dave by John Birmingham

I haven't settled on the final copy yet, but this is pretty close. I'd like to,send it out tomorrow. If you have a story in there, give it the once over for any howling errors that might have crept in.

Copy available here.

Or just cut and paste this link:

http://dl.bookfunnel.com/xvn69bofer

It took a lot longer than I'd hoped because of formatting issues. Looking at you, Sparty. I also disinterred a bunch of fan fic from the blog which I was tempted to run, but didn't. Maybe a second volume.

I'd like to do more of these in future, now that I know what's involved.

Anyway, if the contributors have changes, let me know below.

15 Responses to ‘Grab an advance copy of Butte Crack’

Sparty2 mutters...

Posted January 4
Bows head in shame.
Spotted some mistakes (mine ) I'll send on asap.

MUST focus on work (and not goofing off to read this ) -the entire book looks really good - really pleased to see it up!

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted January 5
Loving it. The world of "the Dave" expanding outward.

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sparty2 puts forth...

Posted January 5
Great story Boylan- this constant reader enjoyed it

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted January 5
Thank you. I had significant help.

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jason ducks in to say...

Posted January 5
Looks like my afternoon suddenly became booked out.

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Jevon Kasitch mutters...

Posted January 5
Not sure if they count as typos, but in your own story you use British-isms to describe the car parts 'tyre' 'bonnet' 'boot'. For story set in the US with US characters they seem a touch jarring. My apologies if this was intended.

John Birmingham has opinions thus...

Posted January 5
No, it's not. What are the US terms? Wheel, hood and trunk?

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Jevon Kasitch has opinions thus...

Posted January 5
Tyre = Tire if you just mean the rubber part. Wheel for general coverage of the Rubber and metal rim together.

Bonnet = Hood

Boot = Trunk

John Birmingham asserts...

Posted January 5
Cheers.

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insomniac ducks in to say...

Posted January 5
I've got a double "enough" in my story somewhere.

Given I dashed these off basically as a first draft I now see the great value in a second rewrite and editing. Thanks for adding a few deft touches to my story.

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Surtac mumbles...

Posted January 5
Ok, just checked my contribution. It's a little different in some places to what I submitted but not substantially so and I think I can understand why the editorial changes were made (happy to discuss John if you have a spare five minutes sometime).

I note the Firefly reference came out, but the Neal Asher one is still there. :)

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan asserts...

Posted January 5
Serious fun, dudes and mates. I am honored to be included in such a talented crowd.

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Rob asserts...

Posted January 5
awesome. I knew the ending wouldn't stand as originally written. Otherwise the continuity of the Dave would be wrecked.

There is a typo. "lotto panel damage' should be 'lots of panel damage? '

That story was bought to by the Tasmanian Government, sponsors of wannabe artists pretending to work (but really writing short stories and dicking around on the internet)

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ShaneAlpha is gonna tell you...

Posted January 5
JB's magic blue pencil excised some utter crap from one of mine (thank god.) Ended better and also removed a whopper of a mistake that I didn't pick up on until I read the published version today.

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"SEAGULLS! (Stop It Now)" -- A Bad Lip Reading of The Empire Strikes Back

Posted January 3 into Funny by John Birmingham

This may be their finest work yet.

5 Responses to ‘"SEAGULLS! (Stop It Now)" -- A Bad Lip Reading of The Empire Strikes Back’

Rob asserts...

Posted January 3
how good are puppets? so good. CGI just isn't the same.

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan reckons...

Posted January 4
Damn, haven't laughed like that since Trump won. Thank you, John.

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pedrogb has opinions thus...

Posted January 14
I was introduced to this on Boxing Day by friends in Sydney. My kids watched it over and over. They now like to sing it in the car. Hilarious.

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DNA Dunc has opinions thus...

Posted January 15
Seems like some people have too much free time on their hands - which is just as well, or we wouldn't have class nuggets like this. Brilliant. Laughed like a drain

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted January 15
These brilliant artists are doing this for profit.

Take a look at "Bushes of Love" by the same blokes.

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2017

Posted January 3 into Blunty by John Birmingham

First Blunty.

So far 2017 is off to a cracking start. It hasn't killed any meme-worthy celebrities. Donald Trump isn't president. And I'm not even scrambling through a post apocalyptic wasteland fighting for rat meat and potable water. So, yeah. Good times. This is a great year so far.

I was going to do piece on this Centrelink datamatching fiasco, but the more I looked into it, the more I needed to look into it. So I might do that in a week or two.

Today's column was a simple and silly return to the keyboard while I sort out my shit for the year. There is a lot of shit to sort.

4 Responses to ‘2017’

Quokka swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 3
Happy new year JB, & the rest of you lot.

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ShaneAlpha puts forth...

Posted January 3
Another book project there for you JB.

JB's Rat Du Jur, 25 fabulous recipes for cooking in a post-apocalyptic Trumpenesque wasteland.

Surtac swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 3
As long as it includes the delicacy Rat-onna-stick.

Happy New Year to all!

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Don Bagert would have you know...

Posted January 3
JB, I wonder if you've noticed that Trump is scheduled to still be President (although a possibly lame-duck one) on January 15, 2021 - the AoT date of the Transition.

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NYT on bringing Peter Cushing back for Rogue 1

Posted December 29 into Movies by John Birmingham

SPOILER WARNING. Seriously. Stop now if you haven't seen the film yet.

I heard Cushing had been digitally reborn for R1 just before I saw the film. I wish I hadn't. I couldn't help but watch his scenes with a hypercritical eye, looking for the contours of the uncanny valley. I don't know that I'd have noticed much if I hadn't already known.

The New York Times has an interesting piece about the process of bringing Grand Moff Tarkon back to life. As the producers point out, it wasn't something they could avoid. “If he’s not in the movie, we’re going to have to explain why he’s not in the movie,” said Kiri Hart, a Lucasfilm story development executive and “Rogue One” co-producer. “This is kind of his thing.”

From NYT:

In striving for a balance between a digital figure who seemed real and one who looked precisely like Cushing, the “Rogue One” creators said seemingly minor tweaks could make significant differences — and these details were tinkered with constantly.
For example, the original “Star Wars” film (also known as “A New Hope”) was lit differently than “Rogue One,” raising questions of how to adjust the lighting on the character.
Hal Hickel, an Industrial Light & Magic animation supervisor, said that lighting him “the way he was in ‘A New Hope’ improved his likeness as Tarkin, but it worsened the sense of him being real because then he didn’t look like any of the actors in the scene.”

13 Responses to ‘NYT on bringing Peter Cushing back for Rogue 1’

insomniac reckons...

Posted December 29
I don't see what would have been wrong with digging up Cushing's corpse and draping it over some sort of robotic skeleton.

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan puts forth...

Posted December 29
I didn't know in advance and I thought it looked amazing. Sure, if you look close enough you can tell Cushing was CGI, but the uncanny valley has narrowed significantly.

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Murphy_of_Missouri mumbles...

Posted December 29
What I noted, after playing both the original and CGI on YouTube after I saw Rogue One, was that they did pretty good with the face. However, Guy Henry's voice is just a notch off. Henry's voice has a bit of crackle in it, especially when he says he want to speak with Lord Vader.


Cushing's voice always rolls, and sounds as smooth as silk, even when he is menacing.


But that wasn't enough to wreck the moment, anymore than the CGI did. However, Princess Leia looked downright creepy. Her skin too flawless, too translucent and milky. Carrie Fisher does, if you look, have some texture to her even at 19.

FormerlyKnownAsSimon asserts...

Posted January 4
With you on that synopsis Murph. I was pretty impressed with the job they did on Cushing - not so on Leia. I had to google to see if they just got some look-a-like for her role and mashed the makeup on good and proper.

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MordWa ducks in to say...

Posted December 29
Peter Cushing was always sufficiently creepy - odd even, in the way Hammer Horror icons always seemed to be - that having him as CGI didn't bother me. I'm not sure it would work for anyone else; with the obvious exception that Yoda has of course been CGI for 20 years, and no one seemed to care...

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w from brisbane swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted December 29
I haven't seen the movie yet, but regarding the Peter Cushing CGI and prejudicial judgements etc, I read an interview with the Australian actor Anthony LaPaglia. He moved to America and worked hard on the audition circuit but struggled to be cast. He presented as an Australian but was sure his American accent was spot on. The casting people would say, we like you but we don't think your American accent is quite right. To overcome this, he decided to tell them he was American and all problems with his accent disappeared. He ended up with seven years as the lead actor in the very successful TV show, 'Without a Trace'.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan asserts...

Posted December 30
That is the exact reason why I've stopped telling people that I can read their minds.

Oldy swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted December 31
Well of course I knew you were going to say that

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan mutters...

Posted December 31
You are totally creeping me out, dude.

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McGuffin reckons...

Posted January 1
I suspect much of the uncanny valley effect has to do with fore-knowledge. My wife and a couple of other people I've talked to weren't especially aware of Peter Cushing, or the fact that he's dead, and didn't notice he was a digital creation.

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Don Bagert puts forth...

Posted January 2
It really was good to see the lengths they went to make this movie "Star Wars, Episode 3.9" (or is that III.IX lol) - they wanted to make it reasonable for future generations to watch "Rogue One" followed by "A New Hope" with as few differences as possible.

Now, it's good that Carrie Fisher has already filmed her scenes for Episode VIII - I hope that they can write around her death so they don't have to CGI Leia again for Episode IX :P

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Rob puts forth...

Posted January 2
I think I'll wait till the dvd to see it. My star wars fandom has lost its shine (and you should see my toy collection) , plus my TV is great as is my new stereo. I'm pretty sure there is nothing that is going to spoil it for me.

I got bored with reading the Star wars novels because they essentially just rehashed the first 3 movies in each novel. Yet another Death Star/suncrusher/darksabre and not enough R2D2.

The young Han Solo novels were Ok and gave him some extra depth. What we really need is a return of Jaxxon the Rabbit, now that's a character!

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Aaron ducks in to say...

Posted January 3
I could tell there was some sort of effect but didn't really care, they are trying to tell a story and the original actor is gone. I would prefer they cast real actors with make up or something. They did a fantastic job I felt like I was watching a movie not a prequel.

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She is one with the Force

Posted December 28 into Movies by John Birmingham

By sad, unplanned coincidence we chose A New Hope as our first pick of the front yard outdoor cinema season last night. I wasn't thinking of Carrie Fisher when we settled on that. I just thought it'd be cool to revisit the story after Rogue 1.

However, watching it a few hours before the news that Fisher had passed away, I was struck by how much agency her character enjoyed, and how well she played a 1930s Saturday matinee tough grrl, updated for the 1970s. Other things occured to me as well, including how much the film owes the classic war movies of the 1950s and 60s. But Carrie Fisher's Princess Leia stood out.

I'd say she was an amazing character for that time. But given the way things have gone, she'd be pretty fucking amazing if she turned up for the first time tomorrow.

I might go read her books.

6 Responses to ‘She is one with the Force’

she_jedi would have you know...

Posted December 28
This one has hit me hard, I think because I refused to believe she could succumb to that heart attack. Princess Leia was an incredible character for any era, andCarrie Fisher was simply incredible. I definitely think I need to read her books and find out about all the wit and wisdom that has just returned to the Force. Vale Carrie :(

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w from brisbane swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted December 28
Princess Leia is a great character partly because Carrie Fisher brought more to it than was on the page. Nice to hear that Carrie was a joy to be around. It is a special person to 'have personsl issues' but still be consistently great and nourishing company.

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WarDog is gonna tell you...

Posted December 28
She wrote one of my favourite movies "Postcards from the Edge". Vale

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Rob reckons...

Posted December 28
Carrie Fisher and Gary the Dog used to like my tweets. Top chick.

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan would have you know...

Posted December 29
Personal sadness on a surprisingly profound level. She stood for, represented so much more than I realized until I learned that she died.

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Quokka reckons...

Posted December 29
And there goes her mum to join her. Vale Debbie Reynolds.
:(
The Force must be FKN superpowered by now after all those who've returned to it in the last year.

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Merry Christmas and a better new year

Posted December 26 by John Birmingham

Delayed season's greetings to you all, excpet for those of you trapped in the past by a cruel and unforgiving international date line. For you, I'm right on time.

Spent the day slowly bloating with alcohol and roast goose.

Will spend today recovering.

9 Responses to ‘Merry Christmas and a better new year’

jl asserts...

Posted December 26
Being on the other side of said date line, still coming to terms with a delicious Christmas meal and. Ah, prime rib roast and Merlot. Amazing. And I still had some time and sobriety left over to do a little writing on the latest and check in here. Happy holidays to everyone here at the 'burger.

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she_jedi has opinions thus...

Posted December 26
Merry Christmas JB, and to all the other burgerers. Hope you're all recovering nicely from Christmas indulgences, or for those on the wrong side of the dateline, I hope you're in the middle of epic Christmas indulgences from which you will need to recover :)

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Oldy mutters...

Posted December 26
Merry Christmas JB, hope your 2017 is packed full of win

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jason mumbles...

Posted December 26
I am currently enjoying the best day of the year, Boxing Day. Family commitments all over, cricket on the telly, plenty of leftovers to eat at my whim and the nap window is open all day. May even indulge in a quiet one or three tonight. Batteries fully recharging for my tilt at world domination next year. It doesn't get much better in my world.

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insomniac would have you know...

Posted December 26
What Jason said, and Merry Christmas to all

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Dave W mumbles...

Posted December 27
All the best to everyone, and thank you John.

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NBlob puts forth...

Posted December 27
Peace. Such a little word. A single syllable with syllabance and a plosives bow. Yet it features in every tradition, Buddhist to Orthodox Judaism, at a Catholic Mass one shakes the hand of the stranger beside you and wish them peace. If there is anything we need at this time of year it's peace. The peace of reconnecting with family over shared table and traditions. The peace of taking time to think of those who we've lost.
I wish you a peaceful season.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan ducks in to say...

Posted December 29
The cynicism I've learned over the years tells me that peace is an illusion at best and a condition imposed upon those vanquished for reasons of realpolitik. But the optimistic idealism programmed into me sincerely thanks you for your wish and remembers Robert Browning's beautiful resolution of cynicism and idealism when he wrote "a man's reach should exceed his grasp, or what's a Heaven for?"

Peace to the World, goodwill towards all.

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MickH mumbles...

Posted December 30
Merry Christmas & a happy new year JB
I hope this is a successful one for us

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