Sharknado & Syfy Original Movies: Panel with Syfy Executive VP, Tom Vitale

Category : Arisia, Conventions, E-vents, Entertain Me, Featured, Movies, Television

It takes a certain kind of fan to enjoy Syfy Original Movies. The appeal of these films vary from person to person; whether it stems from an appreciation of the tongue-in-cheek nature these films embrace, to fans supporting actors they enjoy, to people who enjoy sharing these movies with a group of friends in a viewing party. Certainly, a major attribute to their success is the professionalism and earnestness each member of the cast and crew brings to each film. It is the ability to sell the story and action which allows these films to capture the magic of the B movie genre.


I am a self-professed fan of the Syfy Original Movie. Those readers among you who have seen me at a convention, know I can often be found behind the panelist table discussing these movies. My time at Arisia this year was no different when I had the opportunity to sit alongside Tom Vitale, Executive Vice President of Programming  & Original Movies for Syfy and Chiller. Along with my fellow panelists Randee Dawn, Bob “MovieBob” Chipman and Michael McAfee, we discussed the origin of Syfy original movies, the productions and the future of these films.


Syfy original movies take approximately 14 months to produce, from concept to wrap. In most instances, Syfy assumes about half of the production costs, splitting them with the production studio. While in their heyday, Syfy was producing two movies per month, audiences have no doubt noticed a decline in new titles. The network feels the market has become over-saturated, leading to the decision to cut back on production. The next original movie is slated to air in April. The schedule will then return with some regularity. Last year, Syfy made the decision to move original movies from their long held Saturday night time slot to Thursday night. This move seems to work in their favor and will likely remain the time slot for the foreseeable future. However, with the lack of fierce programming competition in the summer, Syfy may take advantage with marathons of previously aired original movies.


After-market distribution of original movies is one aspect where consistency is elusive. Licensing can be convoluted and governed by producing rights, filming location, as well as international sales and DVD release windows. This explains why some movies do not make it to DVD or will not be available through streaming sources, such as Syfy’s website, Netflix, Hulu or Amazon.


Sharknado has been the greatest success Syfy has experienced with an original movie. The title was able to capitalize on it’s success with a theatrical release when Fathom Events approached the network to create a special one-night only midnight screening across the country. Syfy does field requests for original movie screenings for film festivals and large fan events, recognizing these films are often better viewed with a crowd.


With regard to the types of films represented in the stable of original movies, there is an inherent pull towards creature features. Whether it is a romantic nostalgia for the Creature Double Feature many fans remember, or the idea of facing an uncontrollable beast of nature is unknown. Undoubtedly, every sub-genre gets its day, depending on the mood of audiences – initially it may have been aliens or natural disasters, tomorrow it may be robotic animals. The interests of the audience dictate which foes will see the small screen.


Which Syfy Original Movies have you enjoyed? What about these films paying homage to the B movie genre appeals to you?

Good To Be A Gamer Podcast – E3 2013 Wrap Up

Category : Conventions, E-vents, E3, Featured, Game On, Good To Be A Gamer

Jessa Phillips is joined again by Chad Julian as they discuss the next generation of consoles, new games and what they are looking forward to from the E3 Expo!


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That’s Entertainment – locations in Worcester, MA & Fitchburg, MA

If you have difficulty using the player, click the link below for the direct download:
Good To Be A Gamer – E3 2013 Wrap Up



Questions? Comments? We want to hear from you! Feel free to post a comment on the podcast entry at, or email us at You can also email David at dlucier[at], email Jessa at jphillips[at]

Special thanks to Sterling for the use of his music in the podcast. Be sure to check out his Magnatune profile page to learn more about him and discover more of his music.

Good To Be A Gamer is sponsored by Good To Be A Geek – let your geek run wild! Opinions expressed on Good To Be A Gamer are those of the hosts and/or guests and do not necessarily represent those of Good To Be A Geek.

 Good To Be A Geek is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License

At The Con – PAX East 2013 with Nicole Wakelin


Category : Conventions, E-vents, Featured, Game On, Geek Out, Good To Be A Gamer, PAX East

PAX East is the second largest consumer gaming convention in the United States. We are blessed that this event takes place nearby GTBAG HQ. Jessa Phillips and Dave Lucier were on hand to play games, attend panels and rock out at the concerts. As we like to do, we are reporting back with all of the convention goodness for those of you who couldn’t join us or those who want to relive the good times.

In this bonus episode, Jessa Phillips sits down with our friend, Total Fan Girl, Nicole Wakelin to discuss their experiences at PAX East. They discuss the games demonstrated on the show floor, panels they participated in or attended, rage quit Facebook games and embrace video games used for education.

Find more of Nicole Wakelin’s work at Total Fan Girl, Geek Mom & Nerd Approved! Also, follow her on Twitter @NicoleWakelin!


If you have trouble with the player, click the link below for the direct download:


Questions? Comments? We want to hear from you! Feel free to post a comment on the podcast entry at, or email us at You can also email David at dlucier[at], email Jessa at jphillips[at]

Special thanks to Sterling for the use of his music in the podcast. Be sure to check out his Magnatune profile page to learn more about him and discover more of his music.

Good To Be A Gamer is sponsored by Good To Be A Geek – let your geek run wild! Opinions expressed on Good To Be A Gamer are those of the hosts and/or guests and do not necessarily represent those of Good To Be A Geek.

Good To Be A Geek is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License


PAX East 2013 – Marvel Heroes MMO

Category : Conventions, E-vents, Featured, Game On, PAX East, PC

Gazillion Entertainment took the opportunity at PAX East to show off their new Free-to-Play Massively Multiplayer Online (MMO) title, Marvel Heroes. The game was playable on the show floor and gamers with early access can expect to play as one of the Marvel heroes starting May 28th, 2013.

Courtesy of Gazillion Entertainment

Courtesy of Gazzillion Entertainment

At launch, players will select 1 of 5 playable heroes. More heroes will be added to the game, with 25 playable heroes planned so far. If you are looking to let loose your nefarious side in game, none of the villains will be playable options…yet. Developers also let on there will be more playable heroes to come, with the first 5 available in the first downloadable content (DLC) package to include Emma Frost.

Courtesy of Gazillion Entertainment

Courtesy of Gazillion Entertainment

If you simply cannot wait for the DLC to play your favorite character, you can buy heroes through Founders Program packs. These early access packs offer three purchase options: the Individual pack ($19.99)  includes an individual hero with a bonus costume; the Premier pack ($59.99) includes a team of 4 heroes with bonus costumes; and the Ultimate pack ($199.99) includes all of the heroes available at launch, along with all of the launch costumes for each hero, as well as 4 Ultimate costumes. Each hero will have up to 5 costume variations at launch. Each of these Founder Program packs also includes in game currency and early game access, escalating depending on the pack price.

Courtesy of Gazillion Entertainment

Courtesy of Gazillion Entertainment

Marvel Heroes is free-to-play, so if you miss the Founder Program packs, you may still earn your desired hero in game as a loot drop. Alternately, some in-game items for purchase will be bundles with a guaranteed hero token; though there is no guarantee as to which hero you will receive. The game does account for instances where you get a guaranteed hero which matches a hero already in your lineup. Should this occur, the token levels up your hero to Ultimate Power.

The most exciting news is the talent behind Marvel Heroes. Heading story development as lead writer is Brian Michael Bendis, well known for his work on Ultimate Spider-Man. Marvel Heroes is bringing recognizable talent to voice acting as well with Drake Bell recurring his role from the Ultimate Spider-Man television series to voice of Spider-Man in game. Brian Bloom reprises his role as Steve Rogers/Captain America from The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes television series and Keith David (The Cape, ER, Chronicles of Riddick) lends his voice to Nick Fury.

Founders Program gamers get ready to play the hero May 28th, 2013!

Portlandia Spies on Hannah and Lucy: WonderCon 2K13


Category : Conventions, Entertain Me, Featured, Geek Out, Television, Watching the Web, WonderCon

I think we are being spied upon, as of late. As Dr. Lucy and I prepare for WonderCon (Anaheim Convention Center March 29-31, 2013), it appears the bonkers-brilliant minds behind Portlandia have clearly been engaged in careful examination of our cosplay methods. We mistakenly thought our crossed fingers to be our little secret. (Uninitiated to the wonky randomness of Portlandia? Read a wee review by my pally, Jennifer Susannah Devore.) Yes, I imagine our short sojourn at the Anaheim Hilton and WonderCon shall prove raw-ther similar to Portlandia’s spot-on effort: Steampunk Convention.

Perhaps our own Ellen from Earth shall prove more useful. Nevertheless … huzzah, Captain D.D. Cumulus and Lady Nightstream! Rose City Steampunks, do hold the ascending-room doors for Dr. Lucia Devereaux and yours truly, Miss Hannah Hart, ghostdame of the Hotel del Coronado! Check back here après-WonderCon for a wrap of the show, à la my SDCC 2K12 coverage, and another one of Lucy’s fab slideshows: cosplay goodies, booths, artwork, celebrity sightings and even the Saturday Night Masquerade. (Unfamiliar with her work? Peruse Lucy’s SDCC 2K12 snaps.)

To boot, we shall be attending, and covering for you, the Geeks Get Published – and Paid! panel, moderated by Jenna Busch (Fanhattan): featuring S. G. Browne (Breathers: A Zombie’s Lament), Katrina Hill (Action Movie Freak), Alan Kistler (Doctor Who: A History), Alex Langley (The Geek Handbook), and Dr. Travis Langley (Batman and Psychology: A Dark and Stormy Knight). You know, Jennifer Susannah Devore, is a geek who got published (Savannah of Williamsburg) and I do believe she shall be attending WC this year, dressed as Bellatrix Lestrange. Maybe she and her wand can work their Dark Arts and find her an elusive literary agent. Wish her luck! Better yet, if you know an agent, send them along to JennyPop.Net!

WonderCon Steampunk 2K13

BTW, Lucy and I shall be interviewing, one-on-one, Katrina Hill (MTVGeek, Action Flick Chick) and Leah Cevoli (Deadwood, Robot Chicken) whilst at the Con. We’ll also be covering Ms. Cevoli’s own panel All Shapes and Sizes Welcome: featuring Miracle Laurie (Dollhouse), Adrianne Curry (Adrianne Curry’s SuperFans), Helenna Santos Levy (founder,, Amber Krzys (founder, and Lynn Chen (founder, Have anything you’d like us to ask these geek girls extraordinaire?  Leave us a comment below or simply Tweet us on the con floor @JennyPopNet!

Abyssinia, cats!


Hannah’s other fave places to haunt online? and

Good To Be A Gamer Podcast – Week of 2/3/2013


Category : Featured, Good To Be A Gamer

Recorded 2/6/2013
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Robin Sachs passes away at 61 [GameSpot]

Game Tax Proposed by CT Lawmaker [GameSpy]

Sony’s Bullet Run shutting down after just 7 months live [Bullet Run Site]

Zynga loses $209 Million in 2012 [GameSpot]

Related: Zynga to Close Cityville 2 as it shows no mercy for weak games [Venture Beat]

Sony Replaces “Kevin Butler” Ad Agency with “Axe Astronaut” Firm [Joystiq]

EA Tops Metacritics best publishers [GameSpot]

WiiU-exclusive Ninja Gaiden 3:Razor’s Edge to go Multiplatform [Eurogamer]

Xbox Live Sees First Film Premiere [Games Industry International]

FOX Reloading “Hitman” with Paul Walker as Bald Barcoded Assassin Agent 47 [Deadline]

J.J. Abrams and Valve “In Talks” for Collaboration [Computer and Video Games]


Defiance: The MMO vs The TV Show – Fight! [GameSpy]

Everything I Needed to Know About Love I Learned from Playing Chrono Trigger [Bygone Bureau]

DICE Summit
February 5-8, 2013
Hard Rock Hotel
Las Vegas, NV

Total Confusion
February 21-24, 2013
Mansfield, MA

PAX East
March 22-24 3-Day passes already sold out, individual days still available for Friday and Sunday only.

WonderCon Anaheim
3/29/13 – 3/31/13
Anaheim Convention Center – Anaheim, CA

Questions? Comments? We want to hear from you! Feel free to post a comment on the podcast entry at, or email us at You can also email David at dlucier[at], email Jessa at jphillips[at]

Special thanks to Sterling for the use of his music in the podcast. Be sure to check out his Magnatune profile page to learn more about him and discover more of his music.

Good To Be A Gamer is sponsored by Good To Be A Geek – let your geek run wild! Opinions expressed on Good To Be A Gamer are those of the hosts and/or guests and do not necessarily represent those of Good To Be A Geek. Good To Be A Geek is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License

Good To Be A Gamer Podcast Update


Category : Conventions, E-vents, Featured, Game On, PAX East, TempleCon


Good To Be A Gamer is Available on iTunes!
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Westin Boston Waterfront – Boston, MA
1/18/13 -1/21/13

Jessa will be a panelist on 2 panels in the Gaming Track:
Gender & Gaming – Saturday, 1/19 @ 11:30am
Gaming Year in Review – Sunday, 1/20 @ 2:30pm


Crown Plaza – Warwick, RI
2/1/13 – 2/3/13


DICE Summit
Hard Rock Hotel – Las Vegas, NV
2/5/13 – 2/8/13


Total Confusion
Holiday Inn – Mansfield, MA
2/21/13 – 2/24/13


PAX East
BCEC – Boston, MA
3/22/13 – 3/24/13


WonderCon Anaheim
Anaheim Convention Center – Anaheim, CA
3/29/13 – 3/31/13



Questions? Comments? We want to hear from you! Feel free to post a comment on the podcast entry at, or email us at You can also email David at dlucier[at], email Jessa at jphillips[at]


Special thanks to Sterling for the use of his music in the podcast. Be sure to check out his Magnatune profile page ( to learn more about him and discover more of his music.


Good To Be A Gamer is sponsored by Good To Be A Geek – let your geek run wild! Opinions expressed on Good To Be A Gamer are those of the hosts and/or guests and do not necessarily represent those of Good To Be A Geek. Good To Be A Geek is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.


Meet & Geek: Good To Be A Geek At Dragon*Con 2012


Category : Conventions, DragonCon, E-vents, Featured, Geek Out, Guest Appearances

Courtesy of Dragon*Con


Every Labor Day weekend I migrate south, to the city of Atlanta, GA. It is my annual pilgrimage home. Once there, I congregate with thousands of other geeks from all walks of life, hobnob with celebrities and hang out with friends, old and new. This year is a bit of a working vacation, since I will be speaking on a slew of panels.


If you find yourself in the geek mecca of the south, feel free to find me at Dragon*Con. Below, is a list of the panels I will be on, with times and descriptions. The better to stalk find me. Don’t be afraid to come up and say “hello.” I am friendly, I promise.



1:00 PM – Confessions of B-Movie Fanatics [American Sci-Fi Classics]
Marriott Atrium: Room A703
B-movies are not a guilty pleasure. They’re just a pleasure. Revel in 1950′s atomic horror, Corman classics and more!

5:30 PM – 8-Bits of Awesome: Classic 80′s Video Games [American Sci-Fi Classics]
Marriott Atrium: Room A703
A loving look back at arcades, the home system wars and how Pac-Man Fever drove us out of our minds.

10:00 PM – Farscape Fan Forum [American Sci-Fi Classics]
Marriott Atrium: Room A703
Scapers gather to gush and/or discuss the show from humans to Hynerian donkeys.

10:00 AM – Saturday Morning Sci-Fi TV: From D&D to Demon Dogs [American Sci-Fi Classics]
Marriott Atrium: Room A703
Discuss — and watch! — some of the most excellent action and superhero cartoons.

5:30 PM – Truly Outrageous: Girl Heroes of the 1970′s & 1980′s [American Sci-Fi Classics]
Marriott Atrium: Room A703
Geeky ladies take a look at the girl-centric TV shows of the 70′s & 80′s, with Erin Gray (Buck Rogers in the 25th Century) & Jenna Busch, Geek Writer & Host Extraordinaire.

10:00 AM – Seeing Red: 1980′s Soviet Movie & TV Villains [American Sci-Fi Classics]
Marriott Atrium: Room A703
In Mother Russia, classic 1980′s villains from Red Dawn and Hunt for Red October discuss YOU.

11:30 AM – Syfy Movies: The Good, the Bad & 5 Things You Never Knew [American Sci-Fi & Fantasy Media]
Marriott Atrium: Room A704
Learn about the infamous Syfy Movies. Some folks love these cheesy movies and some…not. Some of them are actually worth watching, believe it or not!

8:30 PM – Game Show of Thrones [American Sci-Fi & Fantasy Media]
Marriott Atrium: Room A704
Bring your teams of 4 and be ready for trivia and silliness! This is only for the show, so don’t worry if you haven’t read the books.

11:30 AM – Web Series You Should Be Watching [American Sci-Fi & Fantasy Media]
Marriott Atrium: Room A704
This year’s update on what’s good to watch on the web! It’s a new world out there with big companies developing their own content.

2:30 PM – Game of Thrones: The Gray Scale [American Sci-Fi & Fantasy Media]
Marriott Atrium: Room A704
With no hero and no villain, some folks don’t like this story. There are costs and benefits for the characters and the story for going the middle road.

Kickstart It! – Z*Con the Movie Produced by Big Damn Films


Category : Entertain Me, Featured, Kickstart It!, Movies

What happens when you set out to make a fan film to share your passion for a canceled television show and it morphs into a business model to support charity? You establish Big Damn Films.

Graphic Credit: Big Damn Films

There is a lot to say for passion, determination and an intense work ethic when applied to a project. Mike Dougherty, one of the founders of Big Damn Films, is a prime example. Big Damn Films is a production company out to prove quality independent films can be made and give back to charity.

Their first foray into the film space was the fan film Browncoats: Redemption. Taken by an intense passion for the Joss Whedon created television series, Firefly, the project quickly developed into a non-profit business. Browncoats: Redemption raised over $117,000 in one year, when many expected the project would never even get off the ground. While the business spawned out of a necessity to do business with companies like Universal and Fox, it has provided an outlet to continue the good works of creating entertainment and supporting worthy causes.

Graphic Credit: Big Damn Films

Firefly may have been a driving force behind the initial flood of support for Big Damn Films. Then people began to recognize the company, Dougherty in particular with his immense level of personal involvement, was treating the property with respect. Now, people have become enraptured with the idea that Big Damn Films is doing something worthwhile for the right reasons – encouraging inspiration to spur creative innovation and supporting others. Community is a key component in the success of Big Damn Films. A fact Dougherty is keenly aware of, stating

“I’m doing this because the community allows it to happen and it’s that community that keeps me moving forward.”

When the time came to consider producing another film, the company veered off the beaten path to choose an original film, Z*Con. The film follows teen podcasters on-site at a convention when they realize they are in the midst of a zombie apocalypse. The fact that Big Damn Films approached a couple of virologists to get scientific and medical background behind viral outbreaks speaks to the care and detail with which they approach their projects.

Proceeds from Z*Con will support 3 charities with 80% of the proceeds being equally distributed between Kids Need to Read, Red Cross, and a charity selected by the community, Baltimore Bully Crew. The remaining 20% of the proceeds will go to Big Damn Films to cover operating and production costs.

Producing a film seems an overwhelming process and one has to wonder, where do you start? Some story-writers begin with character sheets or plot outlines. Once the initial concept has been identified, Dougherty starts by getting down specific scenes and shots that are iconic images for the story he wants to tell. As the story unfolds with these scenes, deeper thematic lines become evident and expand the story. Open to discussion and constructive feedback, he periodically seeks opinions from experienced people, as well as prospective audience members.

At all times the audience is prevalent in his mind and he has an admirable level of respect for them. In fact, despite the success of Browncoats: Redemption and a certain level of notoriety, he remains quite humble, commenting,

“I still don’t have a concept of exactly how big this entire thing was, to this day I still don’t. I recognize we’ve shipped to every continent on the globe; that I have people all around the world that know who I am and know what we did and were a part of it, but I’m still the guy that has the apartment in the same neighborhood where I grew up.”

Dougherty is also committed to giving back by supporting others, and not just through the charities who receive donations from film sales. He also makes it a point to support the community that has helped him to succeed, by inspiring friends to pursue their aspirations and connecting them with other community members that may provide assistance, as well as speaking at events like Gnomedex.

Speaking about how he decided to pursue Big Damn Films, he says,

“It’s like life walked up to you and said ‘here’s an opportunity’ and you can either take it and change the course of the next four years of your life; or, you can continue to be that dork working at Starbucks on Fridays while you’re teleworking from your day job and I kind of went ‘I like the idea of change.’”

He admits the statement makes it sound simple; however, he acknowledges that without the support of friends, family and those who rally behind the projects, they would be much more difficult to complete.

You can support the latest film, Z*Con, by pledging to the Kickstarter campaign or purchasing a t-shirt. Be sure to follow them in the social space. For the creative spirits, feel free to apply your imagination and create web banners, postcards, YouTube videos and more to SPREAD THE INFECTION!

Support the Kickstarter Campaign and find yourself in good company. Best-selling author, Neil Gaiman offered his support through his personal Twitter account, highlighting one of the benefits when you donate through the Kickstarter campaign:


Visit the Official Z*Con Website –
Like Z*Con on Facebook –
Follow Z*Con on Twitter –

ReedPOP, A Small Group Of People That Have The Magical Ability To Summon All Of The Awesomeness We Can Handle!


Category : Candid Conversations, Conventions, Featured, Geek Out

I’ve attended more than my fair share of events and conventions.  I’ve been to horror conventions, fan expos, gaming cons, and thanks to my mother-in-law I’ve even been to a coin collecting convention.  Last, but certainly not least, I’ve been to a lot of comic cons.

Walking into a comic book convention is like stepping out of reality and stepping into a place between the TV channels, where the characters both real and cartoon alike all hang out with each other.  At any given comic con, it’s not uncommon to see Pikachu, Darth Vader, and Hellboy all in line waiting to meet Ash from Army of Darkness. There is absolutely no replacement for the way people feel when they’re in an atmosphere like this.  But how do these gatherings of nerd herds come to be?  Who would actually say, “Hey guys, let’s get, The Incredible Hulk, Jerry the King Lawler, Stan Lee, and Steve Buscemi in the same place and see who shows up?”  ReedPOP; that’s who.  Anyone who’s ever been to a ReedPOP event like the NEW YORK COMIC CON, C2E2 or Pax East, knows why they do it; because it’s mind blowing.

I recently had the opportunity to sit down with ReedPOP goddess, (she actually said she’s called the Lead Content and Talent Manager, but I knew what she meant,) Kim Mueller, to discuss more about what goes in to the process of creating an annual geek Mecca. 

TJ: Can you describe what the company ReedPOP is?

Kim: We are owned by a company called Reed Exhibitions, which is the largest tradeshow company in the world, with between 400 – 700 events worldwide.   It’s insane how large this company is.  ReedPOP is the consumer arm of the business.   It’s meant for fans.  It’s not just business to business.  It all started with NEW YORK COMIC CON, and now we have six to eight shows and we’re growing every year.  It’s actually a very small group of us that put on these insanely large events.  They’re all for passionate fans, but from several different walks of life.  We just launched a Fantasy Football Festival that will be later this year.  We work with LucasFilm to do the Official Star Wars Celebration event.  We also run the PAX (Penny Arcade Expo) events.  There are two of those each year and we now also have PAX Dev, which is mostly going toward developers.  Then we have C2E2, which is Chicago Comic and Entertainment Expo, which is NEW YORK COMIC CON’s little sister show in the Midwest.  It [C2E2] has already grown massively in three years, and this year we just had 41,000 fans at the show, so it’s kind of a whirlwind.  ReedPOP is only actually about 20 people that run all of these different shows.

TJ: I can’t even imagine what your daily agenda must be.

Kim: Yeah, it’s crazy, but we have a lot of help, and we work with a lot of partners.  NEW YORK COMIC CON for example.   We couldn’t do what we do without people like Marvel, DC and Top Cow.   All of these people they’re such a big part of it, and we need their support to be a good show.

TJ: On your resume, how would you list your job and what it is that you do?

Kim: That is tough; I do so many different things.  My technical title is Lead Content and Talent Manager.  We used to be called the Programing Department, but then people thought that we worked with computers, and I know nothing about computers.  So, we changed it to focus on two different parts of our job, one being  guests.   We have guest outreach where we have to decide who we want to invite to the show.   Then we have to find ways to get to them, and reach out t and invite them to the show.  We have to coordinate all of their travel and make sure they know where they are going, that they have schedules.  NEW YORK COMIC CON has over 350 panels, screenings, and special events throughout the four days, so we have to decide what we want to do with all of those events. We take in all of the requests, and then schedule everything and coordinate all of those times and rooms and all of that information.  We put together a program guide that expresses all of that, and it has to go on the website.  So there is a long list of things that we have to do.   One of the things I specifically focus on more is studio relationships, and trying to make sure that as many TV and movie studios come to the show as possible, because that’s a big part of why a lot of the fans come.  Building relationships and making new connections and partnerships is a huge part of what we do.

TJ: You do a fantastic job.  Your events are epic.

Kim: Thank you! Thank You! We try.   We try really hard.

TJ: If you were going to explain to a fan what it is that you do, how would you put that into fanboy/fangirl terms?

Kim: Basically, I would say, “What is the coolest stuff that is out there right now, this moment?”  I try to bring it to the show.  We’re always looking at what the coolest thing is, whether it’s the newest video game coming out, or how we could get the Avengers to the show.

TJ: Now that we know what it is that you do, what would an event be like if there was no Kim Mueller; if there was no Content and Talent Manager?

Kim: Yeah, basically what you would have is the show floor.  So you would have all of the booths and vendors that are selling cool things like T-shirts and plush toys and all of that kind of stuff.  All of that would still exist.  I don’t touch any of that.   So If I wasn’t there, that’s what we would have.  That would be it, the show floor.   All of the stages, all of the panels, all of the screenings, all of the autographing, all of the guests that are there, and also Artist Alley for sure, like at NEW YORK COMIC CON and C2E2, I do a lot of that as well.   Basically it would be a show floor with people selling merchandise.

TJ: So, no Bruce Campbell?

Kim: Nope.

TJ: No Seth Green?

Kim: Nope, he wouldn’t be there either.

TJ: Wow, that’s quite a difference between NEW YORK COMIC CON with Kim and NEW YORK COMIC CON without Kim.

Kim: (Haha) Definitely.  The nice thing, though, is that we do have exhibitors that work closely with us to bring in guests.  Someone like Dark Horse for example, will have a project that they’re working on, so they would try to bring creators that are working on that project.  So, to some extent there would be some guests there but the majority of the guests and all of the content and panels technically would not exist if there was no content and talent team.

TJ: Having said all of that, and having described the caliber of people that you strive to bring in,  who have you worked around that you’ve had a hard time keeping your cool with?  Have you ever been star-struck?

Kim: Umm…this will sort of answer the question.   I think one person I had a hard time figuring out what to do with was  in 2009 or 2010.  I went in the green room to get Seth Green for his Robot Chicken panel and MacCaulay Culkin was in the room.   I was just like, “Hi…ummm…” I definitely had a moment of, “Wait.  What’s going on here?”  I was very confused.  I guess they’re close friends, so he must have come to the show with him.  I generally know who is going to be there, so I don’t get to star-struck because I can kind of prepare myself.  When I knew Mark Ruffalo was coming to NEW YORK COMIC CON [last year] I was really excited, but I knew he was coming so I was able to tell myself, “When you meet him, act cool.  It’s okay.”  But with someone like [MacCaulay], and you don’t expect it, and you just kind of run into someone, you’re like, “Oh…hi…uh…what do I do?”

TJ: That’s funny, I actually got to sit in on that panel.

Kim: Oh, really?

TJ: Yeah, I was pretty surprised to see MacCaulay there too!

Kim: You know, I just always associate MacCaulay Culkin with Home Alone, and I watch that movie every Thanksgiving to kick off my holiday season.  I was star-struck, but I think it was because I wasn’t expecting to see him.  Normally, I’m pretty good at keeping my cool and being normal around people like that.

TJ: What a fun story!

Kim: Yeah, I think so.

TJ: Have you ever had a guest that you knew you just HAD to get for a show but had a really hard time getting to them?

Kim: Yeah, that pretty much happens every show.  There are a few people that we want every year, or we go back and forth with, and it’s either that we can’t make it work with timing or scheduling.  So it’s probably several people each show that that happens with.

TJ: Has there ever been anyone that you have invited to the show, and thought, “If I had that to do over, I don’t think that person would be getting the invite?”

Kim: Yeah, there is usually one at every show that I feel that way about.  We’ve definitely had people who are supposed to be there for the fans and they’re grumpy, or they just sit there on their cell phones, and they don’t want to interact.  That’s what always makes me regret reaching out to someone and inviting them to the show.  The last thing you want is for people to be standing in line and waiting to meet someone, and they’re disappointed when they meet them.  That breaks my heart.  Usually there’s one or two that.   I feel like I regret it in the sense that I’m not happy with how they treat the fans and I’m not happy how the handle themselves in front of people.

TJ: That’s a pretty noble complaint.  So it’s not so much a personal issue, but you don’t like how they’re treating your fans.

Kim: Yeah, exactly.  Obviously some people don’t know how to treat us, in the sense that they don’t really understand what our job is, or what our role is, and who we are.   Honestly, I don’t care how they treat me.  I just care how they treat the fans.  I don’t care that behind the scenes they may yell at me, as long as they’re nice to people who they’re signing autographs for, or who are asking them questions in a panel.  Then I don’t care.  You can yell at me until the cows come home.

TJ: Soooo, I can quote you and say that Kim Mueller doesn’t mind being yelled at?

Kim: (Haha.) Uh oh, I don’t know about that.

TJ: What would you consider your greatest achievement at ReedPOP?  

Kim: It’s been about four and a half years now that I’ve been on the team.  I don’t know if there is a specific moment that I feel like is my greatest achievement.  I feel like every time I go to one of our shows, and I see people who are so excited to see some one that they’re crying, or they’re just having the best time and they’re really enjoying themselves,   and they’re in a panel, and they’re applauding, and they’re cheering.  That’s when I feel like I’ve really accomplished something and I feel super successful.  It happens so much during our events, I can’t think of specific moments.  It actually happens quite frequently, and that’s the reason that I like my job so much.

TJ: When people log on to twitter and go to @NYCCKim and look at your profile picture, who will they see you standing there by?

Kim: Chris Hemsworth.

TJ: Oh, yeah?

Kim: Yeah, right now my profile picture on twitter is of me and Chris Hemsworth, who was the nicest guy in the world, that I instantly fell in love with him the second that I met him.  I was so upset the he was married and, you know, he was a faithful nice guy who didn’t do anything bad and I was like, “Oh my gosh, I love you.”

TJ: So it was pretty exciting to meet Thor?

Kim: Oh, yes.

TJ: This year NEW YORK COMIC CON is going to be October 11th through the 14th.

Kim: Yes, it’s the same weekend.  It’s always the weekend after Columbus Day.

TJ: You already have some pretty amazing guests lined up.   You’ve got the chief Creative Officer of DC, Geoff Johns

Co-Publisher of DC Entertainment, Jim Lee, Creator of Hellboy, Mike Mignola, and I saw that Josh Gates of Destination Truth has been added to the websites list of guests…

Kim: Yes, Josh Gates has been announced and we have also announced that three day tickets are now on sale.

TJ: What kinds of tickets can you buy to attend NEW YORK COMIC CON?

Kim: Four day tickets which have been available now for about a month, now we have three day tickets available, and later in the summer we’ll put single day tickets on sale as well.

TJ: Great.  I know that you already have a lot of great guests lined up that you haven’t announced yet, but I can only imagine that you have an amazing list tucked away somewhere.  Who else can we look for this year?

Kim: I can’t say anything yet, but one thing I can say is, in the next couple of weeks we will be announcing some Marvel [Publishing] names.  Right now, we have only announced a couple of DC guys, and Mike Mignola who is Dark Horse, so we’ll have some Marvel people coming very shortly that will be announced.  And we definitely have some really cool TV stuff that’s already official and lined up, so it’s just a matter of time before we can announce it.  I can guarantee that people will be very happy with it.

TJ:  I’m really excited to see the rest of the lineup this year! I check the site one or two times a day!

Kim: Yeah, that’s the place to go if you want to stay up to date and get the latest news.

TJ: Now, for a non-convention question.  What do you think about cats?

Kim: (Haha.) What do I think about cats?  (Haha.)

TJ: Yeah, everything that I’ve researched and have seen online always has Kim Mueller and cats in the same sentence.

Kim: (Haha) yeah, I love cats.  I have a cat who is the cutest wildest little creature ever.   I love cats but I feel like the people who I work with have actually made me seem like I’m a much crazier cat lady that I actually am.  I have one cat and I love him, but beyond that, people always buy me cat books and they put up cat things in my cube at work.  I have all kinds of cat stuff all around me, but I swear none of it is stuff that I bought myself.  I mean, I am obsessed with cats, but not the way people think I am.

TJ: Okay.  I’ll believe you.

Kim: Well, maybe I am, a little bit.

TJ: Is there anything else you would like to say about NEW YORK COMIC CON and ReedPOP?

Kim: I would say that if anyone is checking out this interview, and they have ideas for guests or what they would like to see, whether it’s something traditional or if it’s something that’s completely out there, we’re always looking for suggestions.  We always want to hear from the fans, and how things went for them in previous years, and what they want to see this year, so I would just say that all of our contact information is on our website, and also on the ReedPOP website, so anytime anyone has any feedback or questions, or concerns or suggestions, we’re here and we love talking to people, and hearing what matters to them.

TJ: Thank you so much Kim, it’s been great talking to you.

Kim: No problem.

The Geek Shall Inherit The Earth . . . Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope Movie Review


Category : Entertain Me, Featured, Movies, Reviews

As geeks and nerds, we are a passionate people. There are few more passionate than those who attend conventions. Each year, hundreds of thousands of us flock to convention centers, hotels, and college campuses around the world to surround ourselves with fellow geeks and nerds whose passion rivals our own. There are many that wonder why so many people attend pop culture conventions and why they have become so important.

The largest of these conventions, considered “geek mecca,” is San Diego Comic Con (SDCC) with more than 126,000 people in attendance in 2011 and badges for 2012 selling out within 90 minutes of registration’s opening. Morgan Spurlock (Director, Super Size Me, 30 Days), along with a dream team of geek media producers such as Stan Lee (Comic Creator, Spider-Man, Iron Man, X-men), Joss Whedon (Director, Avengers, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Serenity), Gill Champion (Executive Producer, POW!) and Harry Knowles (Head Geek, Ain’t It Cool News) combined forces to document the SDCC experience from the perspective of the geeks who live it, in an effort to find out what makes the con experience magical in the documentary, Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope.

Graphic Credit: Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope

 The documentary crew consisted of at least 15 camera crews, compiling more than 400 hours of video to tell the story of five people headed to SDCC 2010, each with a particular mission. Camera crews began filming the subjects at home as they prepare to make their trek to SDCC and follows their experience throughout the 4 days at SDCC.


Holly Conrad, a costume designer and cosplayer, sets off for SDCC with her friends hoping to turn heads in the Masquerade. Their entry is inspired by the popular video game Mass Effect and features highly detailed costumes. The Masquerade is not all fun and games. While it is an entertaining event for those attending SDCC, the Masquerade offers Holly the opportunity to showcase her talents before industry professionals. A good showing will get her one step closer to her dream job as a costume designer for films and television.

Chuck Rozanski owns Mile High Comics, one of the largest comics dealer in the United States. The past few years, the comics industry has seen a decline in traditional comic sales. SDCC has grown bigger and bigger every year, drawing in more of the popular culture fans, while the comics audience wanes. Chuck and his crew pack up their comic treasures and set up shop in the dealer’s hall. Their mission is to survive. Can they make enough money to justify the expense of a presence at SDCC? Will it be enough to keep Mile High Comics open for business?

Skip Harvey, is a life-long geek. He is a bartender at a geek themed bar, but his true ambition is illustration. He packs his dreams and his art into a portfolio and embarks on SDCC with hopes of impressing fellow artists and publishers. He yearns to break into comics. Does he have what it takes to be discovered?

James Darling and Se Young Kang are two geeks who fell in love. Their mutual nerdery has kept them together and happy. So happy in fact, James has decided to propose. What better backdrop for a proposal than the extravaganza that is SDCC? The film follows the couple as James attempts to make the arrangements, all while keeping it a surprise. Will he be able to pull off an epic proposal in front of thousands?

Eric Henson is a family man and member of the United States Air Force with a longstanding love of comics. Another illustrator who timidly makes his way among the horde and subjects himself and his art to industry portfolio reviews. The weekend has one purpose, to serve as job interviews. He seeks to meet with comics publishers, hoping to make an impression that will leave the pros seeing the next great illustrator in him.

Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope is a passion project from start to finish. I was lucky enough to attend a screening where Morgan Spurlock was in attendance. He spoke about meeting Stan Lee for the first time and how he himself was one of the geeks. While many of Spurlock’s other projects have been a bit more exposing and had many within the geek community worried, this documentary is all sentiment. In a way, the film is a love letter to geeks the world over … reassuring one another that there is a place for us all, where others understand the sometimes overwhelming fervor for nerd culture.

Woven among the story of the 5 attendees are “confessions” from other SDCC attendees. These are brief interviews with others, most in costume, talking about what is special about SDCC. Mixed in with the everyday folks are a few people you may have heard of, such as Kevin Smith, Eli Roth, Seth Rogan, and Olivia Wilde among other celebrities. There are several themes throughout these candid interviews: geeks have more power to influence than we think we do and Hollywood is growing wise which is why so many studios and corporations make it a point to have a presence at SDCC. Remember, “With great power comes great responsibility;” one of the major draws of SDCC is the sense of belonging it instills attendees with; and we are all fans.

There are a number of reviewers who have been giving Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope less than stellar reviews, accusing it of being too soft on any particular point to really find a following. As always, the mainstream media would paint the hardcore fans as freaks with little or no social skills. For my part, I believe one of the things this documentary does right is appeal to their targeted audience. Sure, the audience may be small in comparison to the number of “norms” that walk the earth. This film is not for everyone and it does not set itself up to be. It was not made to convert non-convention attendees or to convince anyone that cosplay is cool. It was made to salute those that fly their geek flag high and proud, even if we only get to do so for 4 days out of the year. In that respect, Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope is a success!

Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope is in select theaters now. Check your local theater for showtimes. The documentary is also available On Demand. For a listing of On Demand providers, visit the official website at Look for the film to be released on DVD around July, just in time for SDCC 2012.

At the Con Podcast: PAX East 2012


Category : Conventions, E-vents, Featured, Game On, Good To Be A Gamer, Guest Appearances, iOS, Mac, Nintendo, PAX East, PC, Product Announcements, PS3, Wii, Xbox

Recorded 04/08/2012



Jessa Phillips and David Lucier are together at last! Recording in the same room for this epic podcast episode, they are joined by special guest, Kat Lucier to talk about all the video games, cosplay, panels and more from on-site at PAX East 2012.

This episode is particularly lengthy and jam packed with goodness. For the ease and convenience of our listeners, we have included time stamps below for the topics we discussed.

In the interest of full disclosure, this episode contains adult language.

00:23 – Introductions
01:39 – General Impressions

10:40 – Lollipop Chainsaw
12:04 – Aliens: Colonial Marines
13:44 – Jack Lumber (Indie)
16:25 – Go Home Dinosaurs (Indie)
17:56 – Retrograde (Indie)
22:06 – Theatrythm: Final Fantasy
24:39 – Spelltower (Indie)
29:59 – Snapshot (Indie)
32:45 – Primal Carnage (Indie)
36:31 – Super Time Force (Indie)
40:06 – Vessel (Indie)
41:08 – Game Minder App
43:38 – Could Summer Become the Season for Indie Games?
48:34 – Kickstarter
49:01 – Miskatonic School for Girls
51:18 – Scallops
52:56 – Cards Against Humanity
53:53 – Win, Lose or Banana
54:21 – The Secret World
57:39 – Mark of the Ninja
1:01:10 – Firefall
1:07:14 – Far Cry 3
1:09:29 – Miniature Paint n’ Take

1:13:55 – The Entertainment Consumers’ Association (ECA)

1:15:08 – Cosplay
Portal 2 Atlas & P-Body [Kotaku]


1:19:16 – Selecting Save on the Games We Make
1:21:11 – How to Make an Arcade Stick
1:21:22 – XY: Transgender Issues in Gaming
1:21:45 – Chris Avellone of Obsidian talks Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic 2
1:24:50 – Balancing Gameplay & Plot
1:28:36 – Future of Dungeons & Dragons
1:31:51 – Stuff Your Criticism, I Want a Review
1:42:30 – Education & Gaming
1:46:00 – Future of Online Gaming
1:54:19 – DLC: Continuing the Story
1:56:48 – Dragon Age: Dawn of the Seeker
1:58:09 – Epic Games
1:58:58 – Legal Issues in Gaming
2:01:44 – Omegathon: Just Dance 2

2:05:02 – Final Thoughts

Good To Be A Gamer, Episode 115 – At The Con: TempleCon 2012

Category : Conventions, E-vents, Good To Be A Gamer, TempleCon


Good To Be A Gamer is Available on iTunes!

Good To Be A Gamer RSS Feed!
TempleCon 2012, the gaming convention with a retro-futurism theme celebrated it’s 7th year. Jessa Phillips was there. Nicole Wakelin joins her this week for a candid discussion about this quirky convention. Find out what you missed and make plans to join us next year!
Please check out Nicole Wakelin and support her many projects!

Total Fan Girl
The D6 Generation Podcast – Available on iTunes & RSS
          GeekMoms Podcast – Available in iTunes & RSS
Geek Girls Network
          Geek Girls Podcast – Available in iTunes & RSS
Sith Heads Podcast

You can also follow her on Twitter @NicoleWakelin


Privateer Press

Warhammer 40,000

Ay-leen The Peacemaker

Vader’s First 501st Legion

Rhode Island Science Fiction Club
YouTube Channel:

Persephone’s Jewels

PAX East
April 4-8, 2012

Questions? Comments? We want to hear from you! Feel free to post a comment on the podcast entry at, or email us at You can also email David at dlucier[at], email Jessa at jphillips[at]

Special thanks to Sterling for the use of his music in the podcast. Be sure to check out his Magnatune profile page to learn more about him and discover more of his music.

Good To Be A Gamer is sponsored by Good To Be A Geek – let your geek run wild! Opinions expressed on Good To Be A Gamer are those of the hosts and/or guests and do not necessarily represent those of Good To Be A Geek.

Good To Be A Geekis licensed under aCreative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License



Good To Be A Gamer Podcast, Episode 109 – Week of 01/01/2012


Category : Featured, Good To Be A Gamer

Recorded 01/08/2012


Good To Be A Gamer is Available on iTunes!

Good To Be A Gamer RSS Feed!


Dreamcast the Movie: Super Mario Bros. Results
Mario: James Gandolfini
Luigi: Will Arnett
Peach: Jayma Mays
Toad: Nick Frost
Yoshi: 3 way tie: Andy Serkis, Seth Rogan, Jonah Hill
Bowser: 3 way tie: John C. Reilly, Brendan Gleeson, Jack Nicholson
Wario: 2 way tie: Danny DeVito & John Noble
Director: Terry Gilliam


Dreamcast the Movie: Eternal Champions



-Microsoft Discusses Xbox Live Security Issues [IGN]

-Major Nelson reports the top Games Played on Xbox Live [Major Nelson Blog]

- Crysis 2, Super Mario Galaxy and Gears of Wars 3 Are Among the Most Pirated Games of 2011 [TorrentFreak]

-Finalists Announced for Game Developers Conference [GDC Site]

-Steam continues to Grow & Show No Signs of Stopping [GameSpy]

-Toxic Games Qube released on Steam [Qube Site]

-Asura’s Wrath Story Trailer [IGN Entertainment YouTube Channel]


January 13-16, 2012
Boston Westin Waterfront – Boston, MA


February 3-5, 2012
Crown Plaza – Warwick, RI


-Total Confusion
February 23-26, 2012
Holiday Inn – Mansfield, MA



Questions? Comments? We want to hear from you! Feel free to post a comment on the podcast entry at, or email us at You can also email David at dlucier[at], email Jessa at jphillips[at]

Special thanks to Sterling for the use of his music in the podcast. Be sure to check out his Magnatune profile page to learn more about him and discover more of his music.

Good To Be A Gamer is sponsored by Good To Be A Geek – let your geek run wild! Opinions expressed on Good To Be A Gamer are those of the hosts and/or guests and do not necessarily represent those of Good To Be A Geek.

Good To Be A Gamer Podcast by Good To Be A Geek is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License