22 March 2010

In Memoriam: Bill Livingston

According to sources online, prolific MSTer Bill Livingston passed away last week at the age of 45. (Obituary here) Both Megane 6.7 and I wish to offer our sympathies to Bill's family and our appreciation to Bill, who wrote some terrific stuff. Bill only dabbled into anime MSTings occasionally but he also has a large catalog of spam MSTings as well as Star Trek MSTings. I've read quite a bit of his work, and sincerely enjoy it.

Bill was able to take some extremely long 'fics and had the patience and enjoyment of writing to be able to riff them with his friends. The finished pieces are extremely good, and here are some links below for those who want to check them out.

My favorite of the bunch: "The Misery Senshi Neo-Zero Double Blitzkrieg Dilemma". Warning, this *text file* is over 1MB large. The riffing was terrific, the story was amazingly... well, amazing in and of itself, and the host segments were plentiful and funny. I've never been able to read it all in one sitting... but that's a good thing, because that way there's more riffs waiting for you for next time too.

The MSTing Mine also has Bill's work here. Curiously, I needed to link Misery Senshi above as it seems that it may not have been posted on Usenet before.

Thanks, Bill, for your wit and humor, and we'll miss you.

In Memoriam:
William "Bill" F. Livingston
2 January 1965 - 14 March 2010.

11 March 2010

Yeah, yeah, more stuff... Anime Central 2010

I realize that I'm double-posting in one day, but I neglected to mention something with the last post and didn't want to edit it. I will be attending Anime Central in Chicago this year, from 14 May through 16 May. I will also be attending the fanfiction panel at ACen, where I am fairly sure that I will be on the panel itself. If anyone is in the neighborhood in Chicago, come on by! Any small show of support for MSTing at the fanfiction panel is appreciated, especially since mostly everywhere else online it's pretty much a dead topic.

I won't be doing a live-action MSTing like we attempted the last time I attended ACen, which was... ACen 2001. Wow, nine years ago. Anyway, I don't have a 'fic picked out. Of course, doing it now (with a laptop) would be so much easier than printed sheets and longhand, and it would be enough time for me to find something, but there's absolutely no way that I want to be the only goofball riffing while an anime convention is raging around me. However, popular acclaim and emailed/replied notes of interest may sway me to a different direction...

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Cinematic Titanic Review: "Alien Factor"

Another Cinematic Titanic offering! Today is "Alien Factor", a pretty crummy late-70s low-budget alien movie. It was almost like rewatching "The Giant Spider Invasion", except the riffers' voices were completely different.

The riffing was pretty solid through the movie, and I enjoyed it. At one point though, the riffers even acknowledged that the movie was difficult in spots to riff, as Josh broke what little of the fourth wall existed to state, "This is why riffing is hard!" while one of the characters was involved in an oft-seen repetitive action. There were a few spots where I was just begging for a riff to be said, but unfortunately there were no callbacks this time. (Dangit, "This is where the fish lives!" C'mon, Mary Jo, you watched that heap of parrot droppings!)

The live audience still does terrifically in helping the mood along, and there were a couple of riffs (one by Trace, and one by Frank with comments by Trace) that got the crowd going. I also enjoyed that the riffers broke out laughing over both the movie itself as well as a couple of the riffs that were happening. I suppose that one of the disappointments with MST3k is that the riffers sometimes seemed as if they were just tossing jokes and there was really no interaction between the jokes and human reaction, as if there was a mandate that they had to be silent. Well, this is definitely a strength of the Cinematic Titanic franchise, especially apparent in the live episodes.

Last note; I saw the trailer preview they did for East Meets Watts. I feel completely vindicated when I noticed that they ended the trailer on Josh's Journey riff. There were a couple other spots in the movie that they could have shown, but that Journey riff was the culmination of some good riffing, just like a big guitar hit and the final chorus.

Minor mainentance note: Blogger is discontinuing FTP publishing. This pretty much means that the blog itself has to be hosted outside the www.nabiki.com/mst domain, and if anyone has bookmarked this page (?, yeah right...) they will need to adjust their bookmarks once I finish transitioning to a Blogger-approved domain. I will post more details when they come available, and my deadline for this is 1 May 2010.