Binary System Podcast

Formerly known as The Night Vale Recap, we now present The Binary System Podcast. Twins Kathryn Adams and Elizabeth Wallace bring you recaps of Welcome To Night Vale, and geek out about any shiny thing that distracts them.

Review: Motor Girl – Real Life

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Review: Motor Girl – Real Life

Samantha Locklear is dealing with things as best as she can. And she does have a lot of things to deal with. A former marine who served three tours of duty, she’s suffering from PTSD and multiple medical problems after being held as a POW for almost a year. And then there’s the mysterious lights in the sky, and a businessman who has an obsession with those lights and who’s looking to buy up all the property in the area, whether the owners want to sell or not.

Fortunately Sam’s got a job she’s very good at (mechanic in a desert scrapyard), and a very understanding boss who’s not at all intimidated by pushy businessmen. Oh, and there’s also Sam’s best friend in the world, a 600-pound talking gorilla named Mike.

Mike, as you’ve probably guessed, is completely imaginary. What’s interesting is that Sam knows this.

Even more interesting? I’m pretty sure Mike knows it too.

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Binary System Podcast #81 – WTNV #107 “The Missing Sky”

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Binary System Podcast #81 – WTNV #107 “The Missing Sky”

You know how we always open the podcast by saying you should listen to the Welcome To Night Vale episode first? Well this week you REALLY NEED TO LISTEN TO THE EPISODE FIRST. This was one of those episodes that’s surreal and disjointed and hard to understand and then when you get to the end you realize they were giving you clues about what was really going on THE ENTIRE TIME.

There’s also some stuff about Peaky Blinders and M. Night Shyamalan, Transformers Combiner Wars, and the new Transformers Earth Wars game that Kathryn hasn’t been able to put down yet.

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Review: The Refrigerator Monologues

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Review: The Refrigerator Monologues

Bad things happen to bad people. Bad things happen to good people. Bad things happen to okay people. Bad things happen to everyone. Good things happen to…well, somebody, probably. Somebody somewhere else.

Being a superhero causes a lot of collateral damage, and we’re not just talking about crossover events that level a city block. Start dating a guy who has a superpower and/or a secret identity and suddenly you’ve got a target on your back with a sign reading “FOR CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT, SHOOT HERE”.

Ever wonder what those hapless wives and girlfriends of superheroes think about this trend? Imagine knowing that your ex gets a dramatic pose and a lost love to avenge, while you get a cosmic prison, a room in an insane asylum, or an eternity wearing the godawful clothes someone picked for you to wear in your casket. (Really, these shoes with that dress? Come on now…)

Catherynne Valente’s latest book The Refrigerator Monologues (due out this June) is a collection of six stories told from the point of view of women who have been “refrigerated”: stripped of their powers, driven insane, strangled and stuffed in a fridge, basically removed from the stage in order to move the “real” hero’s story forward. Written in Valente’s delightfully off-kilter style and with illustrations by Hawkeye‘s Annie Wu, the women of the Hell Hath Club swap tales while hanging out at the Lethe Cafe in Deadtown, the city where the fictional go when they die.

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Binary System Podcast #80 – Alice Isn’t Dead Part 2 Episode 2 “The Mouth of the Water”

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Binary System Podcast #80 – Alice Isn’t Dead Part 2 Episode 2 “The Mouth of the Water”

It’s our 80th episode, woo hoo! Enjoy this…completely regular episode. You thought we’d have a plan? Have you met us?

Anyway, we recap the latest Alice Isn’t Dead episode and wander off into weird tangents like Salt Water Taffy vs. Tangy Taffy vs. Laffy Taffy vs. Pixie Sticks vs. Fun Dip vs. Tang (we have opinions) and the movie version of Stephen King’s 1408 (not great, except for this one scene…)

Then we figure out whether or not the second season of Broadchurch is going to be worth the inevitable heartbreak and..look, we know we said we weren’t going to talk about Iron Fist, but we’ve got thoughts about Iron Fist, because we totally see what they were going for but man did they miss the mark.

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Review: The Fifth Season

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Review: The Fifth Season

On the ironically-named world of Stillness, where earthquakes and volcanoes are treated like particularly bad weather, something happens to break the planet open much, much worse than it’s ever been broken before.

A mother leaves her village, her own world having ended just slightly before the rest of the world did.

A little girl discovers a new talent and is exiled from her family for it. She’s soon taken away to begin training in her new life as an orogene.

And in the glittering city of Yumenes, a talented young woman is rising through the ranks of orogenes, clawing her way towards, if not freedom, then at least a little privacy and the right to say “no” every once in a while. She’s sent on an assignment with one of the most powerful orogenes in existence, and gradually finds out how much that power is worth.

N.K. Jemisin’s 2015 novel The Fifth Season is the first book in what I hope is a very long series. It’s science fiction (with some horror) in a fantasy setting. It’s an epic adventure with a tiny bit of romance, lots of tragedy, and the story starts with the end of the world. This is the kind of book you fall into and then stumble out of days later, wondering what the hell just happened and when can you have some more.

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Binary System Podcast #79 – WTNV Episode 106 “Filings”

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Binary System Podcast #79 – WTNV Episode 106 “Filings”

In Night Vale it’s illegal to acknowledge the existence of angels, so they’re out to change that, and you know what that means: PAPERWORK. Also minor riots, dragons, and rifts in the space-time continuum. It IS Night Vale we’re talking about.

After the twins recap the episode they also get into Mystery Science Theater 3000: the Return (and how delightfully creepy Felicia Day can be), the new Beauty and the Beast movie (and how it’s okay if you make a movie that’s only for Disney Fans because that’s a hell of an army to contend with), the new Iron Fist (about which we’ll say very little) and the Hugo Award nominations (about some of which we’ll say nothing at all…)

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2017 Hugo Awards – The Finalists

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2017 Hugo Awards – The Finalists

The finalists for the 2017 Hugo Awards have been announced, and it’s quite a list. Between best short fiction, best novel, best series, best editor, best fanzine, and everything else, there are 108 entrants battling it out. And I’ve read…six of them. Granted, those six were all pretty amazing, but I feel like I’m missing out.

This year I’d like to try something similar to Pixelated Geek’s coverage of the 2017 Oscars. Between now and when the winners are announced at the 75th Worldcon in Helsinki, we’ll be posting the occasional review of any of the finalists’ works that we can get our hands on. For each item on the list we’ll also post links to Pixelated Geek reviews (if they have one) and places where each of these are available for you to read (either free or for purchase) so we can battle it out in the comments about which one deserves to win their category.

Click the jump for a full list of the finalists.

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Binary System Podcast #78 – Season Premiere of Alice Isn’t Dead, Season Finale of The Walking Dead

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Binary System Podcast #78 – Season Premiere of Alice Isn’t Dead, Season Finale of The Walking Dead

After eight months it’s finally back: this week brought the season premiere of Alice Isn’t Dead, and we’ve got the recap but what we REALLY WANT TO TALK ABOUT is the season finale of The Walking Dead. Because priorities. So listen in for a quick recap of Keisha’s adventure’s in the desert and then a spoileriffic recap of Sasha’s adventures in a pine box.

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Review: The Clockwork Dynasty

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Review: The Clockwork Dynasty

For the first time I see what must be my own hand. An economy of brass struts wrapped in supple leather. And now I truly begin to understand that I am also a thing in this world. Not like the doll who is writing a few feet away with all the mindfulness of water choosing a path downhill. Something more.

Daniel H. Wilson, author of the popular Robopocalypse series, has a book coming out this August about a completely different type of robot: a sentient race of clockwork beings who have kept their existence a secret from humanity for centuries. Until now.

In 1709 Russia, a creature of clockwork and leather opens its eyes to see the delicate porcelain face of a doll that’s been cleverly made to write. In present day Oregon, June Stefanov examines a centuries-old writing doll, trying to record everything she can before it’s inevitably lost to whoever it is that’s been destroying clockwork rarities. June carries a strange relic passed on by her grandfather, and before the end of the day she’ll be running for her life from a monster who’s trying to steal the relic and then silence June before she can pass along the word she learned from the doll: avtomat.

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Binary System Podcast #77 – WTNV episode 105 “What Happened at the Smithwick House”

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Binary System Podcast #77 – WTNV episode 105 “What Happened at the Smithwick House”

This week’s Welcome To Night Vale episode offers up a short story. It’s a tale about a family, and a house, and a hole in the nursery wall. Cecil refuses to learn anything from the story, and we’re not entirely sure if there’s anything to learn from it. But it’s deliciously creepy, and the music by Disparition adds just the right touch.

But it’s not just a WTNV recap this week, oh no. WonderCon was last weekend, and Elizabeth’s got the scoop and the pretty pretty pictures of all the talented cosplayers. She also went to see a live show, nothing too big, she just got to see and get re-tweeted by Neil frikking Gaiman, and he’s exactly as awesome to hear as he is to watch.

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