Tag: Science Fiction (page 1 of 13)

The Lazarus Gate!

Lazarus Gate_cvr

An Atomic Moo Book Review of Mark Latham’s New Novel!

The Lazarus Gate is probably one of the best pieces of science fiction literature to come out this year. A bold statement sure, but (in my humble/right opinion) also true. Written by Mark A. Latham, and described as “victorian science fiction,” the Lazarus Gate is an introduction to a dark world of parallel worlds, secret agents, and addiction all set in a grimy 1890’s London. The story begins with Captain John Hardwick’s release from the army shortly after being freed from a Burmese prison. Upon his arrival in London, Hardwick is quickly recruited into the Apollo Lycea, a secretive gentlemen’s club that works to protect England. His first assignment is to investigate a series of mysterious explosions all across London, set by would be anarchist. However, as Hardwick investigates the crimes he is soon pulled into a dangerous world of weird science, psychic mysticism, and his own past. Although the while fighting a dangerous opium addiction forced on him by his Burmese captors.

Though I’ve always enjoyed steampunk and Victorian adventure stories (like the Sherlock Holmes adventures), The Lazarus Gate is a rather unique paranormal mystery. Latham does a brilliant job of describing 1890’s London, and of creating all the weird happenings that drive this story forward. He added just the right mix of mystery and sinister villains to create a fun, if not dark, story of parallel universes on the brink of war. Also, I felt that in John Hardwick Latham gave us a fantastic new anti-hero through which to experience the dangers of a hidden (and weird) world. As of this story, Hardwick isn’t the jaded sort of protagonist we’ve seen in other stories, but he does have serious problems that effect him through out the novel. All in all, an excellent adventure story with a lot of charm.

Check out the official synopsis for the Lazarus Gate below, but also go and get a copy for yourself at Titanbooks.com!

London, 1890. Captain John Hardwick, an embittered army veteran and opium addict, is released from captivity in Burma and returns home, only to be recruited by a mysterious gentlemen’s club to combat a supernatural threat to the British Empire.

This is the tale of a secret war between parallel universes, between reality and the supernatural; a war waged relentlessly by an elite group of agents; unsung heroes, whose efforts can never be acknowledged, but by whose sacrifice we are all kept safe.

The Atomic Moocast #110!


Bigfoot Returns!

Finally! We’re back El Moochadores and we’ve got a damn fine episode for you! For episode #110 we’re joined by comic creator Josh Henaman! Josh is the creator of Bigfoot: Sword of the Earthman!Bigfoot and he’s back on the show with some big news about his comic. Huge! Sword of the Earthman (as if you already didn’t know) is the epic saga of a lone Sasquatch who travels to a distant and barbarian world to find the forces of evil! Bigfoot, sword fights, and the forces of evil! What else could you want from a comic!?

So, let us not squander valuable seconds that could otherwise be spent Moocasting, folks! Now’s the time to plug in, relax and enjoy! Hurry up and get yourself a cool fizzy soda! Hurry (now!) and find that comfy chair. Then relax your ear wholes for the warm audio oozings of the best damn podcast your friends don’t know about!


Free music used by the Atomic Moo cast is royalty free and was created and composed by Kevin MacLeod and can be found at Incompetech.com. Please support this site!

Songs used:

  • Funk Game Loop
  • As I Figure
  • Who Likes to Party
  • Fast Talkin

Show Notes and Links

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The Spice of Life!


Or, Parody, Where is thy Sting?

An Atomic Moo Book Review of the Ellis Weiner Classic!

Dune (Frank Herbert, 1965) is hardly a gripping yarn. It’s a slow plod through a bizarre, techno-baroque landscape. The language is florid and strange. The characters mumble, misunderstand one another and say things that no ordinary person would ever say, such as “My son is human“, or “Mood’s a thing for making love! Now defend yourself for truth!” I appreciated it chiefly as an adventure novel and an allegory on oil politics, with the hero as a T. E. Lawrence figure.

Dune is always walking the thin line between serious and silly. Prophecies and poison and knife fights determine the fate of the universe. The hero rides a giant sandworm through the desert with his overbearing mother in tow. 4d8b72d9383c8 Everything is ponderous and severe, with no levity at all. This is one of the most popular science fiction novels of all time!

Naturally, a book so puffed-up with self importance needs deflating, so Thank The Maker for Doon (Ellis Weiner, 1984), a parody novel in the tradition of Bored of the Rings. Doon is less a parody of Dune than an improvement. It’s half as long, but all the key scenes are there, and the plot is easier to follow. The jokes are fired off at machine-gun speed, aiming high, middle and low, so even if a few of them miss there’s a laugh on every page. No, I’m not going to spoil them.

Let me not leave the wrong impression: Herbert’s Dune is brilliant! It takes genius to make something worth making fun of! Doon is such a spot-on parody that the author obviously loves the original, and knows it well enough to really skewer it good! There’s nothing mean-spirited about Doon at all. You’ll never feel bad for laughing, except at the part where the fetus asks its mother for more beer.

Doon has been out of print for decades. Happy hunting!

Neko_Bijin is Atomic Moo’s chief historian in charge of out of print, rare & unknown, fiction and fantasy.
Check out more of Neko_Bijin’s reviews and musing on his website, Neko_Bijin’s Serious Blog! This article was re-posted here with permission.

And More Star Wars Art!


Fantastic BB-8 Art from Sarah Wilkinson!

Okay El Moochadores, the plague has passed, and Chudd and I are both on the mend. Now that my fever has broke, and my body temperature is back to a normal 72 degrees (…wait, that can’t be right. Damn thermometer must be broke), I can start posting regular articles again. First up is a very cool piece of Star Wars’s BB-8 art by professional illustrator Sarah Wilkinson. That little ball of droid never looked better. Anyways, you can find this piece, and more like it, on Sarah’s Facebook or go and check out her vast (VAST) portfolio available at her website. Just for fun I posted a few other examples of her work below (all Star Wars, because… Star Wars), but she has way more! Hit the link above to check her out. I mean, check her work out. Maybe the thermometer is working. huh.


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The Future Is Disgusting!


An Atomic Moo Book Review of TJ Bass’s Half Past Human!

Original Review by Neko-Bijin!

“So Neko, do you ever review a book that’s still in print?”

Yes, smartypants, I do! It so happens that T J Bass’ Half Past Human (1970) was reprinted last year, and I’m giving it a thumbs-up. Bass saw the future, and it was disgusting! Overcrowding and poor nutrition created a human race of stunted dwarfs living underground among rats (which are hunted for food). Also hunted are the handful of wild humans living outdoors.20101110halfpasthuman If you’ve read The Machine Stops (1909) or Brave New World, or seen THX 1138 or Logan’s Run, you know that the story will be driven by a handful of mavericks who forsake the Human Hive to live free in the dangerous wild. But somewhere around page 150 the book takes a left turn into Biblical metaphor, complete with a Cosmic Benevolence and a New Zion.

The science fiction of the 1970s was about constraints. Limits on populations size, energy use, and radiation tolerance drove the speculation. There are plenty of strange science fiction books dealing with Biological Determinism, ecological degradation, human evolution and the Noble Savage, but Half Past Human isn’t satire. The author appears earnestly to believe in his vision of the future, and he fills it with enough unsettling detail to make This Reader believe also, if only for a while. The best science fiction transports you, and then doesn’t bring you all the way back.

Moral problems are proposed and immediately disposed; infanticide, cannibalism, hypnotic conditioning, etc, simply don’t matter much weighed against the teeming mass of 3 trillion hungry stomachs.

T J Bass was a medical doctor who also wrote The Godwhale200px-TheGodwhale(1stEd) (1974) which is less a sequel than a rewrite of Half Past Human with a more humorous air. The books are peppered with medical in-jokes that leaven the seriousness of the prose (e.g., A character called Hip is mocked as the Ass at Tabulum, a pun on acetabulum). To follow everything in the story you’ll need a medical dictionary handy. So don’t plan on catching everything, just read and enjoy. They don’t make ’em like this anymore. They never did.

This review was originally posted on Neko_Bijin’s Serious Blog and was re-posted here with permission. Check out more of Neko’s reviews on his blog!

A Long Time Ago – The vehicles of Star Wars!


Awesome New Star Wars Print by Scott Park!

STAR WARS!!! STAR WARS SPACESHIPS!!! Okay, I feel like I was just hit with a visual sugar rush, but c’mon! This is awesome! It’s a new poster from illustrator/designer Scott Park featuring the vehicles from the original Star Wars trilogy. About the poster, Scott Park had this to say:

While I have ample room in my heart for all sorts of geeky wonders,25219242_1960319_pm it’s no secret that Star Wars will always be my first love. So after much delaying (it’s weirdly daunting to tackle something you adore so much), I finally turned my attention to the vehicles of the Holy Trinity. So I am amazingly excited to show off A Long Time Ago – The vehicles of Star Wars. (Almost) Every identifiable vehicle from the Episodes 4, 5 and 6, lovingly illustrated and shown in order of their appearance in the films. I’ve done one poster with the Complete Series, featuring the vehicles from all three movies, and then separate posters for each film.

It’s been a passion project for a couple of months (space ships are time consuming!)

He even made the Ronto and the Dewback! Currently the prints are for sale (along with many other fine Scott Park prints) on Society 6 where you can get framed and canvas prints. Check out a preview of the art work below. Also, check out our interview with Scott on Atomic Moocast #94! Good stuff.


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Gestapo Mars: A Carter Sloan Novel!


An Atomic Moo Book Review of Victor Gischler’s New Novel

I’m having a tough time writing this review, and where normally I would write a draft or two before posting, I think I’m just going to go off the top of my head with this one. The thing is… this was a really weird one.

Gestapo Mars is a balanced blend of pulp noir, science fiction, with a healthy dose of pardoy… and Nazis. Yeah, figuratively (or is it literal in this context?) the worst group of dudes ever! They’re your cast of characters in this sex, and action, packed adventure from Victor Gischler and Titan Books. In fact, the protagnist is a Nazi spy. A really good one too. I can’t believe I just said that.

In Gestapo Mars, agent Carter Sloan is pulled out of a 258 year long cryogenic sleep for a mission to assassinate the Reich’s most wanted enemy: the Daughter of the Brass Dragon! So, like any good agent, Sloan starts off by having sex with every beautiful woman (or droid) that crosses his path, and doing as much damage to any one unfortunate enough to get in his way. From there the whole book is a non stop (and fast) romp of action, sex, and funny parody, set in a galaxy that is completely mis-managed by its goose stepping government. Oh, and it’s also about to be invaded by hostile blobs of green snot. I almost forgot about those guys.

It’s not that Nazis can’t be made funny. Hell, look at the great work done by Mel Brooks or the Three Stooges. They made some funny nazis. However, it always seemed to me like they were either trying to protest, or at least take the piss out of, a really bad group of guys, but in Gestapo Mars that line of “good guy”, “bad guy”, and “fucking nazi” seemed a little blurred. I totally got that this was supposed to be a peice of science fictio pulp-parody, and for the most part it was a really fun read with laugh out loud humor, but I also kept coming back to the fact that almost every character is a nazi and they’re doing a terrible job of running the galaxy! Which, yeah was kind of funny, but they’re stil nazis!

I don’t know. Maybe this is a brilliant book and I’m just a few points too short on the IQ score to fully appreciate it. I kind of imagine groups of coffee chugging hipsters and design majors blogging about what a brilliant read this was, where as I was left thinking, “what the fuck was that?” Part of me feels like I should love this book. The humor was brilliant, and since the moment of his revival, Sloan’s life was a crashing avalanche of one disaster rolling into the next. But on the other side; they’re all Nazis! Yeah, ‘beating a dead horse and all that, but I kind of feel that should be important. Anyways, I am kind of hoping there will be more Carter Sloan novels, and in each one he’ll awake to a future that is being run by a different awful government (ie: Stalinism, theocracies, or another Bush administration), but we’ll just have to wait for Gischler’s next novel

Check out the official synopsis below. Gestapo Mars is now available in all major book store or online at Titanbooks.com.

Carter Sloan is a trained asssassin – The best there is, pulled out of cryogenic sleep whenever an assignement demands his skills. So when he’s woken up, only to discover that he’s been in deep freeze for 258 years, he’s seriously pissed off.

Yet his government needs him to hunt down the enemy known as the Daughter of the Brass Dragon. The future of the galaxy-spanning Reich depends on it, so Sloan is off — screwing, swearing, and shooting his way across interstellar space.

The Appex Effect : A prologue to Chaos Theory


New Kickstarter for a Epic New Science Fiction Comic!

Hello El Moochadores! I want to point you all in the direction of new comic book looking for funding through Kickstarter. This project is for issue #1 of The Apex Effect, a prologue story to another comic series called Chaos Theory. Its some pretty deep science fiction right out of the year 4262 (wait, isn’t that when the apes are supposed to take over? heh.) Anyways, here’s the synopsis from the kickstarter page:photo-original (1)

The story is set in a fictional world, a couple of months after the 3rd temporal war. This war was fought through time with the objective of eradicating the human race. After three years of conflict, the war resulted in several temporal distortions across space time called time worms. After the war millions of human temporal agents were sent across time to recover the remnants and fragments from the war, and to initiate something called the ascension program.

They had me at 3rd temporal war… The entire series was written by Joseph Falade and when finished will feature cover art by Fionn Lee (aka: Scarsaw on the Deviant Art) and many other contributing artist. I’ve posted some of the sample covers and concept art below, but for more information on the comic, and overall project, hit the kickstarter link above.

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Epic New York Comic Con 2015!


Cool Cosplay Videos From Beat Down Boogie!

Beat Down Boogie has a new video out from their trip to New York Comic Con. Like always, they brought back a great video and tons of images. Check out their video coverage below (NYCC Cosplay Spotlight and The NYCC Experience) along with a few images I pulled from the Beat Down Boogie Facebook page.


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Happy Back to the Future Day!


Yeah, we only recognize a few “holidays” around here, and the best ones are the ones that exist for just one day – ever. So, happy Back to the Future Day, folks! This being the day shown on the Delorean dashboard as the future!maxresdefault Well, a future according to Back to the Future: Part II. There’s all sorts of cool stuff on the web about what the movie got right or wrong, but mostly I hope everyone just remembers what a fun movie it was. A fun movie that might be playing today only at a theater near you. Check your local listings. Anyways, I’ve posted a few videos below and now I’m going to spend the rest of my day wishing I had a pink Mattel hover board and a retro 80’s diner to hang out in. Why don’t we actually have at least one of those!?


11 Things Back to the Future Part II Gave Us Before 2015 – Fan-Angry Movies

From a year ago, check out what BFP II got right!

Back to the Future II 2 : Hoverboard Scene

Yeah, this scene!

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