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Fiction: Morning Announcements

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“Attention Colony Citizens: We regret to inform you that the book signing scheduled for today at ten-hundred hours in Book Depot C, Helmets Off: What Colony Administration Doesn’t Want You To Know About The Great Brain Parasite Hoax by Clint Voss has been cancelled due to an unforeseen schedule conflict. We would like to apologize to Mr. Voss’s readers, and will announce a new date as soon as possible. Thank you, and have a wonderful day.”
“In an unrelated matter, would the Brain Parasite Decontamination Team please report to the C-Block Staging Center immediately for a routine meeting?”

This story originally appeared in Everyday Drabbles, a daily free fiction project on Wattpad. Visit the link for more free stories. And if you enjoyed this story, why not support my work by buying me a coffee?
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Fiction: Cold War Summit

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The peace conference was held in Jotunheim.
Eager to impress, the Frost Giants set up the table in their most picturesque snow-covered forest. They filled it with ice crystal chandeliers and a thousand candles. Then the guests arrived.
The Elves complained that the site was too cold. The Humans that it was too cramped, and the Dwarves that it was too bright.
This is historically known as the beginning of the Great Alliance. History also records the deaths of the lead ambassadors, and the newborn alliance’s war against the Giants.
In Jotunheim, it’s called “The Meeting of the Whiners.”

This story originally appeared in Everyday Drabbles, a daily free fiction project on Wattpad. Visit the link for more free stories. And if you enjoyed this story, why not support my work by buying me a coffee?
Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

Podcast: CCR54 – The Ballad of Andy Crocker (1964)

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Tonight your hosts, Hugh, Rich the Time Traveler, Opopanax, and Jurd, are exposed to some made-for-TV Vietnam War trauma

Click HERE to listen to the podcast

And click HERE to watch the movie on Youtube!

Chrononaut Cinema Reviews is presented by http://skinner.fm and http://hughjodonnell.com, and is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 Unported License.

This podcast originally appeared at Skinner.FM on Tuesday, February 19, 2019.

Thanks for listening!
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Hugh Likes Video Games: Super Smash Bros Ultimate

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Super Smash Bros Ultimate
Published by Nintendo
Played on Nintendo Switch

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The Skinny: The venerable nostalgia-fighter returns with a massive entry on the Switch

It’s no secret that I love me some Smash Bros. My first Hugh Likes Video Games review was for the last iteration of the series, specifically the 3DS version. And this version has, well just more of everything I love about the concept, with a giant roster of returning characters and stages, and lots of brand-new content as well. I actually hesitated getting this version, but I think Ultimate might actually live up to its title.
Ultimate does a lot of things right. The roster is particularly large, and the new additions, from Castlevania protagonist Simon Belmont to Animal Crossing’s helpful assistant Isabelle are a delight to play. While there aren’t a whole lot of brand-new stages, we get nearly all of the returning stages, with multiple layouts, so there is sure to be someplace to pick. Smash mode is easy to get into, and takes full advantage of the Switch’s joycon pairing capabilities to get a large group of players in quickly.
Classic mode returns with a twist. Each character has their own finely tuned campaign to maximize their nostalgic hit. For example, Ryu fights in a series Street Fighter-like stamina battles, while Richter only fights other Echo Fighters.
As clever and nostalgic as Classic Mode is, Spirits is where the game really stretches. Building on modes in previous versions of the game, Spirits turns Smash Bros into a giant nostalgia-fueled Action RPG. Traveling around a huge map, the player fights ‘spirits,’ essentially Nintendo characters that didn’t make the cut, in the guise of tweaked battles with specialized conditions. Winning the battle nets you that character’s ‘spirit,’ which you can equip and level up in a bunch of different ways in order to take on more powerful fights. These take the place of collecting trophies or stickers in past games, and they’re neat, but the game doesn’t give you as much information about these collectables as in past installments, which is a shame.
Overall, Super Smash Bros Ultimate is another entry in the series that won’t change the minds of non-fans, but is full to the brim with attention to detail and affection for the source material. I haven’t ventured into the dark woods of online multiplayer yet, but so far couch battles have been chaotic but a heck of a lot of fun.
You can download the game yourself from the Nintendo eshop, or find a physical copy at the usual suspects of video game retailers.
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Podcast: NP33 – Conquer Luxembourg!

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Welcome to Nostalgia Pilots! Tonight, Jason, Jurd, Hugh and Spence discuss Gundam Wing episode 33: The Lonely Battlefield!

Click HERE to download the podcast or listen online!

This week: Heero just wants to read his book, Zechs is over-levelled, and Howard wears his sunglasses in space, where it’s always night! Plus, Relena wins at diplomacy on a technicality and the Romefeller Org chart is all over the place.

This episode’s promo is for Nutty Bites!

Thanks for listening!
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Hugh Likes Comics: Wonder Twins

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Wonder Twins #1
Written by Mark Russell
Art by Stephen Byrne
Published by DC Comics

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The Skinny: DC revives two Saturday Morning Cartoon c-listers for a funny and heartwarming YA series.

High School is difficult. Especially when you’re a transfer student from another planet. DC has revived 70’s and 80’s cartoon sidekicks the Wonder Twins in a lighthearted new monthly book as a part of their Wonder Comics imprint, and the first issue is utterly delightful.
At a time when DC’s books feel like they are at their darkest and most complicated, this feels like a breath of fresh air. Russell delivers a fast moving and engaging script that gives readers that weren’t alive during the Raegan administration everything they need to know. These new versions of Zan and Jayna are well realized and interesting. The humor is always rooted in their characters and never relies on them being z-list sidekicks from the silver age. And they actually land quite well. Skilled but self-conscious Jayna dresses like a young Clark Kent, and awkward but overconfident Zan gets into all kinds of trouble. I won’t spoil any of the really good gags in the issue, but we also learn Batman and Superman’s most embarrassing high school moments, and that Diana is the mean girl of the Super Friends.
Byrne’s art is colorful and engaging, and makes the issue a joy to read. The whole package feels like DC finally has an answer to Marvel’s Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, a charming, comedic book that dusts off some young, goofy characters for light-hearted superheroic hi-jinx. This book isn’t going to reshape the multiverse, but it’s a welcome relief from DC’s latest crisis. You can find it online through Comixology, or in print at your local comics shop!
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Fiction: Last Wish

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“You buried him with the keys?” Susan asked, stunned.
“It was his dying wish,” Frank said. “He started the store, and it seemed right to bury him with the keys in his pocket.” She just stared at him, her tear-stained face hardened into something cold rage. After a moment, she excused herself and stomped out of the room.
“You have the spares, right?” Naomi asked. Frank grinned sheepishly at her. “Jesus Christ, Frank.”
Susan returned, a phone in one hand and a shovel in the other.
“We’re reopening on Monday. You can either call a locksmith, or get digging.

This story originally appeared in Everyday Drabbles, a daily fiction project on Wattpad. Click the link for more free hundred-word short stories. And if you enjoyed it, why not buy me a coffee?
Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

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