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Orphan-Black1   orphan-black-issue-1-cover-2

Fans of the BBC America’s Orphan Black just can’t get enough of one of the best science fiction series around.  Tatiana Maslany, the series star who plays every variant of the show’s clones, has the toughest job on television, playing in nearly every scene of its first two seasons.  The “Clone Club”–the name of the show’s fans–has cheered the series into its third season, returning to TV this April.  Tomorrow, the Clone Club gets to pursue the further adventures of Sarah, Alison, Cosima, Helena and all the rest as Orphan Black, a new monthly comic book series, begins.

We’re read a review copy of Issue #1 and writers and show creators Graeme Manson and John Fawcett with Jody Houser have matched the voice of Sarah perfectly with Maslany’s character on TV.  In fact Issue #1 is a recap of sorts, an introduction to the characters and world of Orphan Black for those new to the series that made borg.com‘s Best of lists for 2013 and 2014.

OrphanBlack_01-pr_Page_1   orphan-black-issue-1-cover

Szymon Kudranski serves as series artist.  His style is very simple, yet his take on the characters easily evokes the images of the actors behind the roles.  As for variant covers, look for at least a dozen variants coming your way.

After the break, check out a preview of Issue #1, courtesy of IDW Publishing:

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Feast Oscar winner Disney Osborne

Strange how you can be completely in sync each year with the supporting acting categories and the “other” categories at the annual Academy Awards ceremony, and walk away from the Oscars scratching your head over the rest of the wins.  Highlights of the night were those TV-actors-turned-movie-actors-turned-Oscar-winners J.K. Simmons (Skoda!  Chief Pope!) and Patricia Arquette (Alison Dubois!) getting their wins, long-time working actors who have paid their dues and finally got recognized for it.  And I admit I love not being in sync with the Academy each year, and never as much so to their selection of Birdman as winner for this year’s Best Picture, a positively abysmal, unwatchable flick that rested on the acting of Michael Keaton, who the Academy snubbed.  Go figure.  But Hollywood likes to pat itself on the back for its own idiosyncracies so it’s no surprise they did it again (full disclosure: I hated A Chorus Line, too).  You can see how I really feel in my earlier review at borg.com here.

It was another ceremony of young presenters you’ve never heard of all showing their deer-in-the-headlights inexperience with public speaking, making you wonder just how many takes directors had to slog through this year to get anything out of them worth putting onscreen.  (More polished presenters next year like Zoe Saldana, Dwayne Johnson, and Eddie Murphy, please).  When was the last good year of Oscars anyway?  2013.  Contrast this year’s films with the films of 2012 and the corresponding winners at the 2013 Oscars ceremony (Argo, Brave, Skyfall, Django Unchained, Les Miserables all took home at least one statue) and this year seemed pretty shabby by comparison.

Feast poster 2015 Disney

But all is not lost.  Take a look at the winner for Best Animated Short Film, Feast.  It’s from Disney, which can be good or bad, but this time their short film harkened back to some of the best of the classic cartoons produced by the studio.  It’s a love triangle about a little dog, his love of food, and his owner.  It’s full of solid artistry, great animation, humor, action, and best of all–heart.  And you can (and should) watch it now via Amazon Prime or the link below, after the break, via YouTube (a deal at only $1.99).

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PKD cover art

Have you ever tried to track down a specific edition of your favorite book, or wanted to remember a great cover from a book you no longer have?  If you’re a fan of the works of Philip K. Dick, you now again may be able to find any classic cover image from his short story compilations and novels.  That’s when a great online archive of hundreds of covers of Philip K. Dick artwork vanished from the Internet, presumably through the cancellation of the web domain kept by the archivist.

Several Philip K. Dick fans on message boards have searched for the old links and website, and why it is gone, to no avail.  We thought it was a shame that this scholarly information was not readily accessible.  Thanks to the Internet’s Wayback Machine (that’s Wayback, not WABAC, Mr. Peabody fans) and a heads-up from borg.com writer Jason McClain, we were able to not only capture the links to each photo preserved in the Wayback Machine, but also clean up lost references that were not visible to viewers on the old website or via the Wayback Machine.

So after the break, here it is, for your research or art-admiring pleasure, an archive of links to hundreds of U.S. and international images of the covers of the books of Philip K. Dick, searchable by title and country.  If you notice any broken links, please let us know in the comments and we’ll try to update them here (but obviously not on the source site).  And if you find any of the handful of missing images noted below, let us know as well.  The original archive has not been updated in two to five years (at least), so more recent covers are not included below.  And one more note: If the Wayback Machine is under maintenance these links will not work.

Happy viewing!

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Mulligan and friend in Far from the Madding Crowd

If you haven’t yet seen Carey Mulligan as Sally Sparrow in the David Tennant era Doctor Who episode “Blink,” then you haven’t seen one of the top episodes of television from any genre.  We placed it in our Best of the Best category here at borg.com back in 2012.  Mulligan went on to star in another critically acclaimed genre film, Never Let Me Go, where she played one of several clones created solely to serve as a supply of replacement organs should the original person ever need them.  It’s a must see if you’re a fan of Gattaca or The Handmaid’s Tale.  She’s also starred in Inside Llewyn Davis with Star Wars Episode VII star Oscar Isaac, and was nominated for an Academy Award for her performance in An Education.

Mulligan has taken on plenty of historical costume drama films, and adaptations of classic novels in particular, including Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey, Charles Dickens’ Bleak House, and F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby.  This year Mulligan adds Thomas Hardy to her repertoire with the big-screen adaptation of his 1874 novel Far from the Madding Crowd.

far-from-the-madding-crowd

Check out this first trailer for Far from the Madding Crowd, after the break:

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Mia Crimson Peak

Victorian gothic romance directed by Guillermo del Toro with ghosts?  Yes, please.

But unlike previous Gothic haunts like Rebecca, Jane Eyre, Watcher in the Woods, The Others, or Wolfman, genre favorite director del Toro is amping up the gore and violence in Crimson Peak, his latest and–reportedly–the greatest of his trademark visually spectacular fantasies so far.

And it adds another movie to that sub-genre of horror we keep talking about featuring creepy little girls.

Chastain Crimson Peak

Not for the faint of heart, check out this trailer for Crimson Peak, after the break:

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Star Wars Hokkaido snow festival c 2015 Lucasfilm Ltd Disney

In the spirit of those temporary art forms like sand castles, sidewalk art, and urban graffiti, discussed before at borg.com (including here), we bring you sci-fi and fantasy of the monumental variety.  Lucasfilm and Disney teamed up with Japan’s 11th Brigade of the Ground Self-Defense Forces to create a new view of Darth Vader and his own troops in an unusual medium.  At a Hokkaido Snow Festival in Sapporo, Japan held earlier this month, the Japanese army orchestrated the Imperial version of Mt. Rushmore in snow, public art that was only intended to survive for a few weeks.

Giant cranes packed 3,500 tons of snow into three stormtroopers, TIE fighters, the Death Star, and Darth Vader himself, all to the awe of millions of attendees to the 66th annual festival full of giant sculptures in snow.

Lucasfilm time lapse Hokkaido snow festival 2015

“Snow Star Wars” was built over a span of three weeks in Hokkaido.

The result is pretty amazing.

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Terminator 2 Sarah Connor ReAction action figure Funko  Arrow Oliver Queen Funk ReAction

This weekend we revealed the latest in Funko’s more than 20 licensed films and TV series in its 2015 ReAction action figure line first discussed at borg.com here and here, and now we have images of the carded figures and sculpts for most of the new figures.  We also have links to allow readers to be among the first to pre-order them all from online collectibles store Entertainment Earth.  We’re still waiting for final images for Jaws, Gremlins, Fight Club, and CW’s The Flash, but we have pre-order information for all of those plus images and links to pre-order the new ReAction line for CW’s Arrow, The Fifth Element, Terminator 2, The Boondock Saints, Taxi Driver, and Breaking Bad.  We shared links for the first figures in the new Star Trek original series line last week here.

Click on the images below to see full-sized images of figures and cards and to pre-order each from Entertainment Earth.

Breaking Bad Heisenberg  Fifth Element Diva Funko ReAction

And after the break check out an exclusive new Predator figure.

Still yet to be revealed are figures from The Dark Crystal, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, The Big Lebowski, Scarface (although Al Pacino’s figure was previewed this weekend on the showroom floor at Toy Fair 2015), V for Vendetta, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, E.T., the Extra-Terrestrial, The A-Team, The Munsters, Tomorrowland (also previewed at Toy Fair), and Aliens.

CW’s Arrow

Arrow Green Arrow ReAction 3 3/4-Inch Retro Action Figure Arrow Dark Archer ReAction 3 3/4-Inch Retro Action Figure Arrow Black Canary ReAction 3 3/4-Inch Retro Action Figure Arrow Deathstroke ReAction 3 3/4-Inch Retro Action Figure

Terminator 2

Terminator 2 Sarah Connor ReAction Action Figure Terminator 2 Terminator ReAction Action Figure Terminator 2 John Connor ReAction Action Figure Terminator 2 T-1000 ReAction 3 3/4-Inch Retro Action Figure

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Big Game president capsule lifepod

The President of the United States is forced to jettison from Air Force One when it is under attack.  An unlikely hero comes to his rescue.

Sound familiar?

It’s actually not a remake of Escape from New York, but you couldn’t find a film that pulled a plot so clearly from another.  But don’t expect to see star Samuel L. Jackson don his Nick Fury eye patch to play Snake Plissken.

Big Game theatrical poster

Samuel L. Jackson is starring as the American President in Big Game, a new film coming this year to U.S. theaters from Finnish director Jalmari Helander.  Unlike Jackson’s doomed from the get-go man on a plane action vehicle Snakes on a Plane, this movie actually looks like it could be fun.  Take a look for yourself below, after the break.  The movie arrives in theaters in Finland next month, but does not yet have a U.S. release date.

Jackson’s President is shot down and he climbs into an on-board escape lifepod just as Donald Pleasance’s President did in John Carpenter’s sci-fi classic.  But the replacement for Kurt Russell’s Snake Plissken is no tough-as-nails ex-war hero turned criminal.  It’s young actor Onni Tommila, who plays a young teen in the European wilderness fulfilling his own coming-of-age ritual journey in search of a trophy to take back to his people, to prove his readiness to become a man.  And he’s had no reason to know or care about the President of the United States.

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Walking Dead Toy Fair B 2015

Fans of The Walking Dead will soon be making fans of all other genre franchises jealous.  McFarlane Toys released photos this weekend reminiscent of the old Marx Toys historical battle playsets of the 1960s and 1970s or the 1980s Star Wars “Micro Collection” playsets.  It’s an entire line of interlocking playsets for your favorite zombie fan.

Walking Dead Toy Fair camper A 2015

Re-enact your favorite scenes from The Walking Dead or Trapper John, M.D.

Retailing for between $10 and $65 per set, you can re-create the hospital door from the opening credits (above), hang with friends in your Winnebago, the prison the survivors lived in, or escape in your favorite jeep (the Woodbury Assault vehicle below).

Walking Dead interlocking playsets 2015 Toy Fair

Lower and upper cell and stairwell section will be sold separately.

These make you wish for similar playsets for Star Trek, Harry Potter, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly, The Lord of the Rings/The Hobbit, DC and Marvel characters, and Universal Studios monsters.

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Flash Gordon 1980

Too much fun.  Yesterday we showed some previews of several new action figures being revealed by Funko at Toy Fair 2015 in New York City.  They’re all of the 3 3/4 retro Kenner-style, and we have another set of figures from the show but these are from toy company Bif Bang Pow!  This is the company that created The Twilight Zone retro action figures previewed here at borg.com earlier last week.

Those new figures hail from the 1980 fan favorite flick Flash Gordon.  The new line of figures includes nice sculpts of Sam Jones’s Flash, Timothy Dalton’s Prince Barin, Ornella Muti’s Princess Aura, Brian Blessed’s Prince Vultan, and Max Von Sydow’s Emperor Ming.  No Dale Arden figure has been revealed yet.

Bif Bang Pow Flash Gordon retro Kenner style line 2015 Toy Fair

Admit it, you’re singing the Queen Flash Gordon theme now, right?

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