Fangasm is a SyFy reality show which employs the standard “bunch of strangers forced to live in a house for a few weeks” format. It’s produced by 495 Productions, the creators of MTV's exploitation hit Jersey Shore, but instead of “guidos” Fangasm is about “geeks” -- which is to say in the simplest way possible, passionate individuals drawn to a deeper understanding of creative works like comic books, video games, science fiction, fantasy and related genre entertainment. The six-part series has been hyped by the network and its associated principals as this really real... thing about geeks and our culture.
In reality (no pun intended), what we casually refer to as "geek culture" has in the last 10+ years ascended from a derided subculture to a massive consumer class actively serviced by virtually every commercial sector in America, a fact that's put an existential challenge to the nature of "geekdom," particularly its claim to underdog status. That Fangasm exists at all speaks to this notion of cultural currency, but unfortunately it's the literal currency that is the most basic and base element of the entire Fangasm enterprise, which we discover is even faker than the kinds of series -- to use the reality show parlance -- it throws under the bus.
However, it is through Fangasm's breathtakingly brazen expression of unreality and exploitation that we ultimately see the truth of how geek culture is understood by those to whom geeks pledge their once hard-earned allegiance, and perhaps by a generation of geeks themselves.
Spider-Man fans know Flash Thompson as Peter Parker's high-school nemesis and Spider-Man's biggest fan, later turned war hero, later turned Venom.
But did you know that the star quarterback had a reputation as a lothario a full eight months before he appeared in Amazing Fantasy #15? On his Tumblr, comics writer Tom Peyer posted a panel from January 1962's Teen-age Romance #85 that mentions Thompson.
In what may be the last volley in what's been a confusing and lengthy legal battle, U.S. District Court Judge William J. Martinez has dismissed Stan Lee Media's lawsuit against Disney, in which the company named for, but which no longer has any association with, the co-creator of many Marvel Comics characters claimed copyrights to those properties.
Stan Lee has been the face of the Marvel Universe for... well, forever, really, and in recent years, that's taken the form of small but memorable cameos in most of the Marvel movies and their many video game tie-ins (even becoming playable in The Amazing Spider-Man). This week, however, the World of Heroes YouTube channel has shown us what would happen if those Smilin' Stan cameos were extended to classic games.
If you've ever wanted to see what would happen if Stan Lee was the star of Donkey Kong -- and if you have, please let me know, as I am really curious about how someone would arrive at that desire -- check out the video below!
A few weeks back, in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Andrew Garfield -- who plays Peter Parker/Spider-Man in the current Amazing Spider-Man film franchise -- recounted a conversation he had with a producer, in which he wondered out loud why Spider-Man couldn't be gay or bisexual. When this quote was mentioned to Stan Lee over the weekend at Fandomfest in Louisville, Kentucky, the 90-year-old co-creator of Spider-Man made an awkward attempt at a humorous response: "I figure one sex is enough for anybody."
One can only imagine the mixture of ingredients that went into Stan Lee's new Signature Cologne. I'd suspect it includes hints of mustache, sunglasses, bombast, alliteration and a sprinkling of emotional strain with Jack Kirby. The 90-year-old Lee teamed with scentmaker JADS International, the same company that made last year's series of Avengers colognes, to develop a fresh scent that actually includes "bergamot, ginger, white pepper, basil and violet, and features layers of cedar, vetiver and musk accords."
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