‘Batman and Harley Quinn’ (review) at Forces of Geek


In a world without Mr. J, Harley Quinn has teamed up with Batman and Nightwing in the latest animated DC movie. Confirmed by writer and producer Bruce Timm as part of the DC Animated Universe aka Timmverse,Batman and Harley Quinn is the first PG-13 installment in the universe.

Cussin’, fartin’, raunchy boudoir humor and a bizarre Batusi musical segment complete with a 70s rarity “Don’t Pull Your Love” followed by Harley Quinn blasting out Blondie’s “Hanging on the Telephone” puts a little spike in the punch of your typical Batman: The Animated Series adventure. Batman & Harley face off against Poison Ivy and Jason Woodrue a.k.a. The Floronic Man. Batman Kevin Conroy and Nightwing Loren Lester reprise their roles from the original series with Melissa Rauch voicing Harley. Even Mr. Timm gets in an off-camera cameo as Booster Gold!

Those familiar with recent New 52 lore will recognize the force of The Green as the supernatural swamp energy running the world. Poison Ivy and Plant Master are going all in to combat the destruction of the Earth and The Green by putting a plan in to place that will turn all living creatures into plants. An Inconvenient Truthindeed! In order to sway Pam from making this green-thumbed gaffe, Nightwing and Batman track down Harley who has gone off the grid for a bit. Not only that, but also in line with current DC continuity, she has gone straight. I mean, Joker’s dead, right?



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‘Superheroes Decoded’ (review) at Forces of Geek


Superheroes Decoded is a two-part documentary about the history of superheroes and comic books. Piggybacking on Brad Meltzer’s Decoded series title, this is in-depth look in to how American comic books and heroes have developed into a major money-maker for studios but also a reflection of over seventy-five years of pop culture.

Capped on each end by the creation of Superman by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster and the invention of a Pakistani Ms. Marvel in 2013 the just under three hour documentary has a lot packed in.

Interviews with creators Stan Lee, Iron Man director Jon Favreau, creators Brad Meltzer, Joe Quesada, Mark Waid, Dan DiDio, Nicola Scott, G. Willow Wilson, Sana Amanat are poised against non-comics people and celebrities George R.R. Martin, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Clark Gregg, Anthony Mackie, T.J. Miller and many more to paint a historical perspective on comics and heroes.



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5 or so More Questions with Ryan Miller of Guster at Do617. We headed to a VIP celebration of both Paradise Rock Club and Guster last night. Our interviewer really needs a tripod and a microphone but his arm remained (mostly) steady to hear Ryan talk about coffee, Boston and the music industry! Thanks, Ryan for coming correct!


FOG! Chats With DC Comics’ Team Arrow, Benjamin Percy, Juan Ferreyra & Nate Piekos at FORCES OF GEEK



With CW’s Arrow going into it’s fifth season and 100 episodes (how did that happen?) spawning a superhero revolution on TV with the Arrowverse, a new spike has been given to the Emerald Archer’s popularity.

DC’s Comics recent Rebirth initiative made comic stores great again and writer Benjamin Percy was able to give Ollie back his goatee and reunites castaway with Black Canary along with selling a ton of Green Arrow Rebirth #1s.

We talked pre-Rebirth and post-Rebirth with Ben and Rebirth #1 cover artist and co-writer Juan Ferreyra at the DC Comics booth at New York Comic Con last week as Mr. Queen and Black Canary face the Island Of Scars.



FOG!: Hey guys, it’s an honor to talk with you, I’m a big Green Arrow fan, and I’ve been reading what you’ve been doing since before Rebirth. My first question is, did you feel like Rebirth was a good opportunity to revisit some things, or did you feel like you weren’t done telling part of your (New 52) story?

Ben Percy: When I jumped into the New 52, and first pitched Green Arrow, I wanted to write Black Canary into it, I was told, “You can’t do that”. I said, “He’s gotta have a goatee,” and I couldn’t do that.

I was also trying to do the novelist thing, which is playing the long game, which you should never do in comics! Because, I could have been kicked out after a few issues. But early on, I was keeping Ollie away from his costume, away from his bow and arrow in an effort to really get to know him as a person. It felt kid of schizophrenic prior to that in the New 52.

I really wanted to build up the character, and I had in my mind a Rebirth revitalization of the character, anyway. I was going to move towards that moment when he truly became Green Arrow. It just got sped up a bit for me.

I did have another storyline involving The Outsiders that I was working towards. There were a lot of hints in there, about that, but its fine. We got rid of that, we just jumped right into the new era.







Doomed planet. 

Desperate scientists. 

Last hope. 

Kindly couple. 


— Grant Morrison, All-Star Superman

Grant Morrison is most certainly capable of distilling Superman down into a few words, especially when introducing what has since become considered one of the greatest stories of all time of the iconic character.

Another master of the DC Universe  is Bruce Timm, the mastermind behind Batman: The Animated Series, Superman: The Animated Series, Justice League and Batman Beyond (to name a few).

Timm is back in with his latest project,  an alternate reality version of Justice League with Justice League: Gods and Monsters, which debuted on Machinima last month with three shorts and has been released this week as a feature length animated movie.

These new interpretations include Superman / Hernan Guerra (Benjamin Bratt, 24, Modern Family), the spawn of General Zod and Lara Lor Van’s DNA (in vitro, you pervs) raised by a Mexican farming family.

Batman is the creature of the night we know in our world as Man-Bat, Kurt Langstrom (Michael C. Hall, Dexter).

Rounding out the un-holy trinity is Bekka, granddaughter of Highfather from New Genesis aka Wonder Woman (Tamara Taylor, Bones, Lost).

With a reimagined DC Universe including dozens of Easter Eggs and a President Amanda Waller calling the shots, Alan Burnett (Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, Batman Beyond) and Timm’s PG-13 alternate reality gets a little racier thanThe Animated Series ever could. A member of the new guard for DCAU Sam Liu (Batman: Year One, All-Star Superman) directs.




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Murdock St. Fire Coverage


Thanks for your support in our crowdfunding.

I’m OK. 

Moving my office and living space (with Stacey) to a loft in Charlestown after the fire that made us homeless on August 21.

Read more here.



YOUCARING (donation site)

I’m at a loss for words about how much this means to me. Wishing Kyle (and Cajun) and Michelle (and Bronson) and my Neighbors at 105 Christian, Max, Colin and Rose can find a place to live soon.

I love you all.





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Review by Clay N Ferno
Produced by Broderick Johnson, Andrew A. Kosorve, 
Kate Cohen, Marisa Polvino, Annie Marter, 
David Valdes, Aaron Ryder
Written by Jack Paglen
Directed by Wally Pfister
Starring Johnny Depp, Morgan Freeman, 
Rebecca Hall, Kate Mara, Cillian Murphy, 
Cole Hauser, Paul Bettany

Johnny Depp stars as Dr. Will Caster in Transcendence, a look at the singularity whereby artificial intelligence progresses to beyond human intelligence.

A self-replicating computer (Depp) attempts to right the wrongs in the world via technological intervention as Evelyn Caster (Rebecca Hall) is caught between helping her husband’s dream come true and her own humanity.  Anti-tech rebel Bree (Kate Mera) enlists the help of former Caster colleagues Joseph Tagger (Morgan Freeman) and Max Waters (Paul Bettany) and FBI Agent Buchanan (Cillian Murphy) to shut this whole thing down.

We’re introduced to the Caster couple as they are ready to give a symposium on the benefits of artificial intelligence to a sold out auditorium. A member of the anti-tech contingent, RIFT attempts to assassinate Dr. Caster shortly after the presentation. He is not killed, but poisoned by an isotope that infected his blood stream with radiation poisoning. 




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Review by Clay N Ferno


Produced by Kevin Feige
Written by Christopher Markus, Stephen McFeely
Based on Captain America by Joe Simon and Jack Kirby
Directed by Anthony Russo and Joe Russo
Starring Chris EvansScarlett Johansson, Sebastian Stan, Anthony Mackie, 
Cobie Smulders, Frank Grillo, Emily VanCamp, Hayley Atwell,
Toby Jones, Maximiliano Hernández, Garry Shandling, 
Robert Redford, and Samuel L. Jackson

The First Avenger is back in his blockbuster sequel, joining Iron Man and Thor for in-between The Avengers movies solo ventures.  Chris Evans is back as Captain America Steve Rogers, and in contrast to the introduction of the character, the movie is set in present day, after the events in New York in The Avengers.

Flashbacks occur to move the story along, and are welcome callbacks to the WWII story of Cap and Bucky vs. Hydra, but there is much more going on with Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders) and introducing Sam Wilson as Falcon (Anthony Mackie) as the Scooby Gang of espionage S.H.I.E.L.D. is on watch.

Former Community/Arrested Development producer and director team Anthony and Joe Russo add humor to the mix in a subtle way, but more importantly pack so much action and tension into this chapter of the Marvel Cinematic Universe that we hope to see more from them with Cap 3.

While closest to Iron Man conceptually, the flavor of this Marvel Movie is all espionage Cap and Secret Avengers—a combination sure to make comics fans as well as Avengers fans excited, intrigued and headed to the theatre more than once for a taste of this non-stop action.

This is certainly the most meaty of stories and filled with the most Avengers since the franchise took off.

Nick Fury and Black Widow have a lot of screen time, and introduction of Stan Lee and Gene Colan’s Falcon as Captain America’s wingman makes for a great team. While this is still a superhero movie, we are taken to the world that Ed Brubaker established in his run on Cap. Throw in the main, practically unavoidable spoiler that Winter Soldier is in fact Cap’s erstwhile partner in justice Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) and you have a complicated past mixed with a technologically advanced future. 


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Ramping up for the big Cap movie this weekend got us all excited, preened and pumped for some small screen Marvel action, NOW!

The weekend brought us to the store for a DVD copy of Thor: The Dark World and a stranger, peculiar animated relative (second cousin?) Avengers Confidential: Black Widow & Punisher.

Mixing Anime and the Marvel Cinematic Universe (I think) made for a great sequel to the Madhouse produced Marvel Anime series, but underserved as a rally cry for this weekend’s live-action Winter Soldier. The Cosmic Treadmill ran with this on the HUD, and here’s what worked and what didn’t! 

The Punisher, for better or for worse, has always been a favorite Marvel character. I grew up with his War Journals, his Armory, his War Zone and throughout the ‘80s. Artists like Jim Lee Mike Zeck drawing Frank Castle and his family’s murder was my raison d’être! One day, I thought, I’d be rich and sexy enough to buy Amazing Spider-Man #129. I thought wrong!

As for Black Widow, co-star of this movie and The Avengers, I’ve only been interested since Iron Man 2. ScarJo’s stoic yet sexy expressions and her trickery over Loki in The Avengers certainly puts her in the front lines of the squad, but ‘back in my day’ Black Widow was second string. I have more Mockingbird comics in my long boxes than Natasha Romanoff!

Either way, story wise, this is a great pairing. You know what you are going to get with Frank Castle. He’s the opposite of Batman—killer, judge, jury, executioner. Black Widow, a former Russian spy, now S.H.I.E.L.D. spy under the thumb of Director Nick Fury (Cinematic, Samuel L. Jackson version) is one who must answer to military protocol and her higher ups.


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NOW JUST $30! - choose MMMAVEN current student or alumni rate - everyone eligible.


I’m teaching my first class at MMMMAVEN in March. FRI 3.21 at 6pm. $50.

Stacey made the cool animation!



Join Clay Fernald (@ClayNFerno) for an intensive first level course in using social media for DJs, producers and bands. 

Designed from the insider’s view of the music industry, this class will teach the basics of setting up profiles, checkins, username claiming and more for all of the major social media apps and platforms. The class will prepare you to use your phone, computer or tablet to generate buzz about your latest release, your next event, or strengthen your relationship with your established fans by creating a conversation that goes both ways. Are you a Boston band that’s been around forever but doesn’t have a twitter? This class is also for you. Recommended for musicians of all types, no genre or labels allowed! The class will be structured for beginning to intermediate understanding of Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, but more concepts will be introduced in the short class, allowing some time at the end for student questions.


Clay landed on the cover of The Boston Phoenix in 2005 for being the ‘Most Popular Man in Boston’ — according to social networking site MySpace. He has since made a career making social connections online and off by following marketing trends and staying ahead of them. By establishing best practices at Middle East Nightclub (@MidEastClub — verified) for social media, he has set an example there for other businesses, venues and independent promoters in town.

When not working in various roles for popular Boston bands, Clay also runs social media for band clients and fine artists. You may find his comic book and pop culture news columns on local and national websites. When comic book conventions roll into town, Clay is asked to moderate panels of top industry talent or can be found scouring the quarter bins for lost comic book gems.




614 Massachusetts Avenue, Suite #203Cambridge, MA 02139 | 617.849.9321 | [email protected]


CAITY LOTZ on the Stunning Developments on ‘Arrow’ Tonight! (BIG SPOILERS!) - at 13th Dimension

OK, have you watched ARROW tonight? Holeeeeeee … As promised, here’s CAITY LOTZ with her take on everything that happened!

Yesterday, Lotz spoke to our Clay N. Ferno (I spoke to Stephen Amell last week) about her thoughts ahead of tonight’s “Heir to the Demon.” Now, here’s her take on the aftermath … and Sara’s big smooch with Ollie!

Uh, oh Olicity ‘shippers … Team Sara is in the lead!

Caity Lotz as Canary -- Photo: Cate Cameron/The CW

Caity Lotz as Canary — Photo: Cate Cameron/The CW

Clay N. Ferno: This season, fans have been debating who Ollie should be with: Sara, Laurel or Felicity. Now we see Sara and Ollie in a passionate embrace. What effect will that have on all of these relationships going into the second half of the season. How will Felicity and Laurel take this?

Caity Lotz: There’s some fun stuff planned with Felicity’s character. I think it is a bit of a transition for Felicity to have Sara being in Ollie’s life and Ollie having “this girl.” It changes the dynamic between Oliver and Sara because they finally have someone that really understands what they’ve been through together. But there is still a lot of external things that make that difficult.

With Laurel, it is a little messed up — you can only imagine how difficult that would be to see that happen. And I understand how she would be not so happy about it.

At the same time, for Oliver and Sara, they have been denied so much happiness in their life and have given up so much for everyone else. They’ve never really been able to have love. I think for them to get this kind of chance, both characters really do deserve it. Even with all the drama it might bring.


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MIGHTY Q&A: Caity Lotz Talks Canary’s Turning Point in Wednesday’s ‘Arrow’ Episode, Heir of the Demon - 13th Dimension

No spoilers, but the actress who plays Sara Lance has a lot to say about her character’s future in anticipation of Wednesday night’s major episode of “Arrow.”

Caity Lotz as Canary in "Heir to the Demon" Photo: Cate Cameron/The CW

Caity Lotz as Canary in “Heir to the Demon” Photo: Cate Cameron/The CW

Last week, we gave you Stephen Amell, this week it’s Caity Lotz, who plays “Arrow’s” version of Black Canary. Tomorrow night’s episode (the last new one for several weeks because of the Olympics) promises a major turning point for the troubled heroine, and Lotz was very candid when talking with our Clay N. Ferno today about Sara’s place in Starling City — and Oliver’s personal life.

But that’s not all! We’ll have a post-mortem with Lotz right after the credits roll on “Heir to the Demon,” so and make sure you see what she has to say then. Because you dare not miss it!

Katrina Law as Nyssa al Ghul and Caity Lotz as Canary. Photo: Cate Cameron/The CW

Katrina Law as Nyssa al Ghul and Caity Lotz as Canary. Photo: Cate Cameron/The CW

Clay N. Ferno: There’s a lot of buzz that tomorrow night’s episode will have some major developments for the show. Without giving anything specific away, what can viewers expect?

Caity Lotz: They can expect that Sara’s past is going to come back again. This time it is the real depth of it, the emotional core of her past is coming back. She’s going to have to come to a place where she feels like she has no options. I think it’s really about this big, gray area. It’s not figuring out what to do, and how to handle the situation, there’s a lot of emotions with it.

Another part of the episode, which is really cool, is we get some Lance family flashbacks. We get to see a little bit of the story of what their family was like before all the drama and everything that happened, before all the death. You’ll see the lightness that they had, which is a really cool thing to do, we had fun shooting it. It’s a cool thing to watch on screen.

[READ MORE at 13th]

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THE MIGHTY Q&A: Ben McCool - 13th Dimension


British comic creator Ben McCool has a string of indie Image Comics books you’d be familiar with from the racks (Pigs, Choker, Memoir) as well as more mainstream titles such as Justice League Unlimited. He also has the honor of being the only comic creator who lives in New York that I’ve done any barhopping with, including a stop at Fenway Park’s Bleacher Bar.

In November, Ben and Valiant Comics released a new type of digital comic combining the best parts of digital native storytelling with 8-bit video games of our youth. I quite literally bought an iPad days later. Here at the Mighty Q &A, Ben tells us about Valiant 8-Bit Adventure: Unity.

photo 1

Thanks for joining us, Ben! Writing Valiant 8-Bit Adventure, a prelude to Unity, must have been different for you. Did you work with the artist Donovan Santiago on the pacing and animations?

My pleasure, good sir! And for sure, the Valiant 8-bit Adventure was a break from the norm for me. In the best possible sense, though! It’s also the first project I’ve written for Valiant, and it appeared to go down very well with fans.

Donovan Santiago was brilliant to work with — the guy’s skills are off the charts, especially as he’s producing such unique and imaginative art. My script was put together in a format I’d never really used before, mainly due to the “motion” effects that incorporate two, three, sometimes even four different images within a single (oversized) panel. And Donovan was certainly a big help in me figuring that out, along with our top-notch editor, Josh Johns. But once I’d got the hang of it the transition was pretty straightforward, not least because the story was so much fun!


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DC Comics released Necessary Evil: Super-Villains of DC Comics, a sleeper study of the anatomy of a villain, on DVD/Blu-Ray and Digital Video in October. Necessary Evil: Super-Villains of DC Comics features everyone from Andrea Romano and Neal Adams to Zack Snyder and Len Wein as the ensemble cast of interviews and video clips going deep into the minds of Luthor, Riddler, Bane, and Reverse Flash. If you still have a comics fan on your holiday gift list this is a great pick. Dracula Christopher Lee narrates.

The New 52 was taken over by the baddies in September in a company-wide event called Villain’s Month, coinciding with the limited series Forever Evil storyline written by DC Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns. The comics, with special lenticular (plastic, 3D) varied in quality and interrupted the flow of the monthly titles, but as an experiment was not all bad. Joker took over Batman #23.1, written by Andy Kubert and drawn by Andy Clarke.

Count Vertigo - Green Arrow 23.1 - Cover by:  Andrea Sorrentino

Count Vertigo – Green Arrow 23.1 – Cover by: Andrea Sorrentino

Pointing the spotlight on the villains, in what seem to be increasingly darker themes in our entertainment these days (see our Man of Steel review) makes sense.

Besides, aren’t we all rooting for the bad guy in the movies? I mean, how cool was Bane?


This four-color exploration into what makes a villain want to subvert our favorite heroes gets into the armchair psychology of the thing with interviews from new and classic Batman writers, top DC executives, and even Zack Snyder—director of this year’s aforementioned Zod movie!

Some extreme fans like myself like to hear ’70s Batman artist Neal Adams go on about Ra’s al Ghul and get the latest from the mouths and twitter feeds of Aquaman’s Geoff Johns and current Batman writer Scott Snyder. For the more casual fan this video takes a look at scoundrels of all kinds, and at points clinical psychology researcher Andrea Letamendi, PhD. offers her expert opinions as to how singular events (like being dropped into a vat at ACE Chemical) can or would affect someone’s development.





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This past Saturday, The Legend of Zelda came alive on the stage at the Citi Wang Theatrein Boston with The Rhode Island Philharmonic and full choir, led by Zelda Symphony leader Jeron Moore. Fans of the long-running video game franchise, some in costume, brought their Nintendo 3DS’s out to play and enjoy the celebration of
Link, The Tri-Force, Zelda, and The Goddesses.


This was truly a unique experience for all involved. The tour came through for its second season,The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses, Second Quest. Fans of the game, parents, and those like myself that have fallen out of practice with video games in recent years gathered at The Wang Theatre for pre-recorded gameplay accompanied by a full orchestra and choir in two movements, and four acts.

After the Overture, Producer & Lead Creative Director Jeron Moore introduced himself to the crowd. This year marks the 20th Anniversary of The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening which takes place not on Hyrule but on Koholint Island. This music lead us all into the theme of another handheld Zelda game, Spirit Tracks, a bizarre and underrated game where Link drives a train!

Jeron has re-presented these musical themes, with all new arrangements with the blessing of franchise producer Eiji Aonuma and Nintendo composer and sound director Koji Kondo (Super Mario Bros., The Legend of Zelda).

If you’re head is literally not in the game, it certainly doesn’t matter. Hearing an orchestra play, while watching someone else play through difficult levels of Zelda you may or may not have heard of is at once impressive as it is meditative. And did we mention dynamic? The roar of excitement you feel from the music see Link defeat Ganon might make it seem like a smaller victory at home on your system.

At points, all I could think of, especially while watching a difficult section of Link’s Awakening was, “That looks hard.”


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Super Knocked Up Season 2

Last year we spoke with creator Jeff Burns of the webseries Super Knocked Up about super villain Darkstar bringing a child into the world after a one night stand with super hero Captain Amazing. Season 2 is a big hit and winning awards, so we check in with Jeff and the stars of the show as everyone ramps up for San Diego Comic-Con.


DIGBOSTON: Thanks for taking the time today, Jeff! First off congratulations on The Geekie Awards for Most Original Web Series. Things are going well?
JEFF BURNS: Things are going amazingly well!  We just won The Geekie Award for Most Original Web Series and swept all four categories in last week’s We Love Soaps poll (week of June 16—22).  We won Favorite Web Series, Favorite Couple for Jessica and Michael (Darkstar and Captain Amazing, Favorite Actress for Jourdan Gibson, and Favorite Actor for Mark Pezzula.


Super Knocked Up also screened at LA WebFest, where we won a Visual Effects Award for the awesome work of our Visual Effects Artists Daniel DeFabio and Christopher Vincelette. And we’re official selections at Marseille WebFest and Melbourne Web Fest.

Creator Jeff Burns and Jourdan Gibson (Jessica James/Darkstar) of Super Knocked Up

The most exciting news of all is that Jourdan and I got invited to be on a web series panel at San Diego Comic Con.  I’ve always wanted to go and to get to be on a panel there is a dream come true! It’s called Web Series Creators Assemble! and will take place Thurs. July 18 at 7:30 p.m. in Room 24ABC.  Katrina Hill and Alex Langely (Geeks and Gamers Anonymous) did an amazing job organizing the panel and they’ll be on it with us along with Jane Espenson (Buffy, Once Upon a Time, Husbands), Brad Bell (Husbands), Sandeep Parikh (Save the Supers, The Guild), and Tara Platt and Stephanie Thorpe (Shelf Life).

Besides YouTube, obviously, where else are you able to screen the show?
Outside of our own YouTube Channel, Super Knocked up is part of the online networks and  And we can be seen on the very popular MovieManiacs YouTube Channel.

There’s been a casting change for Darkstar – Jourdan Gibson now in the starring role as the new Mom. Were there any fan reactions to the switch?
I’ve been thrilled to see that the fan reaction to Jourdan taking over as Darkstar has been overwhelmingly positive. They really love her in the role and love the amazing chemistry she and Mark have together on screen. But we did a few things to really help the fans accept her and introduce her to them. I had her do VLOGs called Super Jourdy! after she was first cast to show her super-goofy and fun personality to the fans. And a couple of months before Season 2 premiered we started doing live Google Hangout shows called Super Geeked Up where Jourdan, Mark, and I talk about geeky stuff, answer fan questions, and have a guest from the web series world on each week. These live shows really let the fans see how amazing and personable Jourdan is and I think many of them fell in love with her before they even saw her in Season 2. And then even more so when they actually go to see her kick ass in the episodes. So doing all this stuff and gradually introducing the fans to Jourdan over time I think was really key.

It was much more effective than if we had just said, “Hey everyone here’s Season 2 and oh by the way here’s a new actress playing Darkstar.”

That would have been a lot harder to sell. So I’m really proud of the way we handled it. But a huge factor is just that Jourdan knocked it out of the park with her performance. She kicks ass as Darkstar!




Season 1 interview here!


The family dynamic is explored in depth on the latest episode of Mad Men.

Now that Don (Jon Hamm) has more time to focus on his work and relationships, will he drown in a sea of margarine, or stay afloat on his bourbon ice cube?

Who will Joan (Christina Hendricks) trust to be the father figure to Kevin?

It’s not that smiley Bob Benson (James Wolk) is it?

Roger (John Slattery) has difficulty connecting with the children in his life, but Don and Betty (January Jones) re-connect at Bobby Draper’s (Mason Vale Cotton) upstate summer camp.

We open on Don and Ted (Kevin Rahm) arguing over the price of margarine, or rather the strategy to woo the Fleishman’s Margarine account.


Pete (Vincent Kartheiser) , Harry (Rich Sommer) and Peggy (Elisabeth Moss) try to stay neutral, but Don’s insistent on Peggy’s input. She doesn’t relent, as she is loyal to both men and the company itself. In fact, her loyalty to Ted may be romantic. The two have feelings for each other, but Ted does not want to have an office romance (though his feelings for her are strong).

Harry recommends Pete see a headhunter, a familiar face, Duck (Mark Moses) from Season 2. The men are weigh their options on leaving the firm with no name but Pete’s not worth much to the market these days, he’s not a partner.

On the set of Megan’s (Jessica Paré) soap, we find Megan in a blonde wig, playing double duty as Collette, her character Marie’s twin. Megan opens up to Don about work drama over a drink, as we hear the din of sirens in the city as the ‘60s youth revolts and a crime wave hits Manhattan.

Don hits the road for the weekend to visit Bobby at summer camp. Along the way, he runs into a slim Betty at the gas station. The two make love at the Motel and talk about Don’s relationship to Megan and his disconnectedness to the act of sex. Betty has a line that steals the episode, “That poor girl, she doesn’t know that loving you…is the worst way to get to you”. Betty admits that she’s forgotten about how upset she was with Don over the events of the last episode, leaving his kids alone in the apartment as it was robbed.

Megan invites fellow actress Arlene (Joanna Going) over to talk about the acting craft, but Arlene is more interested in making more passes at Megan, which Megan denies. Arlene’s husband, also a swinger is Megan’s boss, so she fears recourse. In the end, there are no hard feelings as Arlene leaves to walk back home.

Uptown, Peggy and Abe (Charlie Hofheimer) are feeling unsafe. Abe has been stabbed and mugged, but refuses to tell the cops what the race of the perps were. Peggy feels uneasy in her new home, and Abe stays on the side of the oppressed.

Peggy sleeps with a homemade harpoon by her bed with a knife attached to a broomstick. A smash and grab outside startles her from bed, armed with the harpoon. Abe is there to ask what is up, and Peggy ends up stabbing her boyfriend…with a harpoon! This unexpected violent act was comic relief for many, I’m sure.

On the way to the hospital, Abe breaks up with Peggy. He does so not because his girlfriend stabbed her, but because he sees her as part of the establishment, and he is a cutting edge journalist. They simply cannot exist in the same world. Peggy is left alone at the end of this chapter, as Ted pushes her away when she confides in him of the breakup. Poor Peggy, but we’ve seen her on the prowl as of late, she will bounce back.

Hey, how about that Bob Benson? He’s swell and certainly has found himself at Joan’s apartment for a trip to the beach! As Joan (elegantly) is packing beach blankets for the trip with Bob and baby Kevin to the beach, Roger pops in with Lincoln Logs for the little tyke (Roger is Kevin’s biological Dad). Roger doesn’t recognize the brownnose Bob from the office, and feels awkward coming by unannounced. Joan flawlessly conducts Roger’s exit and makes Bob feel at home. Oh Joan, you are so independent and wonderful. And a supermom at that! Yay Joan!

Poor Roger, this is his second failing with kids this week. His daughter Margaret (Elizabeth Rice) wasn’t happy with Roger taking 4 year-old grandson to Planet of the Apes. Maybe 4 years old is a bit young for that movie, but that’s when I saw it…and I’m obviously perfectly fine!

When Don returns home to Megan, they talk about their relationship.

Don promises to be more present, though we will have to see if anything else distracts him. Let us not forget, the main motivation to having this talk with Megan was an affair he had with his ex-wife.

This episode explored how close we can get to people in our lives, and once again we see how being close to people makes it easier to hurt them. Quite literally in the case of Peggy and Abe! Pete searches for something, we don’t know what, but Bob Benson has come to Pete’s rescue with a nurse recommendation for Pete’s senile mother. Don and Megan have some issues to work out, and both seem willing.

On the next Mad Men puzzle game we hear Ted talking about “kissing the ring”, perhaps Don’s ego is pushing his business acumen from the subtle to the blunt. Ginsberg talks of body bags from the war and Roger calls a partner’s meeting. Let’s hope Peggy gives up her dream to be a whaler and concentrates on what she does best, writing copy and breaking hearts.