guitarist > writer > coder

October 27, 2016
Comments Off on The Shining: Couldn’t agree more

The Shining: Couldn’t agree more

Love Stephen King, loved the novel, couldn’t wait to see the film as a kid, couldn’t have been more disappointed when I did.

“It promised to be the scariest film ever made.
Except it wasn’t. The first time we saw The Shining, it was a shattering disappointment. I’d never expected – nor wanted – a film adaptation that slavishly stuck to its source, but Kubrick had left out all the best bits. Where were the hedge animals? The roque mallet? The boiler? “The novel is by no means a serious literary work,” Kubrick told French film critic Michel Ciment, “but the plot is for the most part extremely worked out, and for a film that is often all that really matters.” Yet he and his co-writer, Diane Johnson, cavalierly junked the central dynamic of a parent struggling against his own dark urges and fear of harming those closest to him, and fans of the book were not pleased.” – The Shining has lost its shine – Kubrick was slumming it in a genre he despised

The Dead Zone, on the other hand, one of my favourite of Cronenberg’s and a good King adaptation.


October 17, 2015
Comments Off on The original Die Hard isn’t the origin story…

The original Die Hard isn’t the origin story…

The Detective starring Frank Sinatra, based on the novel by Roderick Thorp, is the origin story. Die Hard was based on the sequel Nothing Lasts Forever.


Contractual obligations meant that Frank Sinatra was offered the role of John McClane in Die Hard.


So Die Hard doubly doesn’t need an origin story.


July 6, 2014
Comments Off on Floyd Farland – Citizen of the Future

Floyd Farland – Citizen of the Future

Floyd Farland

Floyd Farland


My son reading Floyd Farland Citizen of the Future for the first time reminds me how much I loved this looping SF tale from Chris Ware. Not that I had connected it with Chris Ware of Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth, which I have but never got into. Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth isn’t my thing in story or looks.


Floyd Farland has a distinct style that works perfectly for the story, far far removed from Chris Ware’s current style. A stark simple black and white approach, like that of the look of Frank Miller’s Sin City. But Chris Ware began with this look and moved onto a cleaner colored “designed” far far removed from Floyd Farland’s, a change highlighted by Jon Adams re-imagining of the cover in Chris Ware’s current style…


Floyd Farland cover by Jon Adams

Floyd Farland cover by Jon Adams

I’m also surprised at how much copies of Floyd Farland Citizen of the Future are going for on Ebay – £30 – £40, or £175 for a mint copy!? But if stories of Chris Ware buying up and destroying all the copies he can find are true then I guess the price would be pushed up…


Kirk reading - Floyd Farland Citizen of the Future

Kirk reading Floyd Farland

Glad I still have my copy and glad it’s being read, even if it is no longer in mint condition (when I got my copy of Watchmen signed some years ago Dave Gibbons – and Frank Miller, who jokingly offered to sign it as well to piss off Alan Moore – were surprised at the state that was in. Not battered so much as read).


Update 2014-07-20:


“We, as fans, have developed an unhealthy attachment to the physical object of comics that is almost unique to this hobby. There is no more apt phrase than “fetishizing the physical” to describe this fixation on keeping the comic as pristine as possible. Even to the degree that some comics have come polybagged.

“Comic books began as a completely disposable medium, made on cheap newsprint and traded by fans until the books fell apart. They were rolled up in the back pocket of a kid in the city or tucked into the rucksack of a soldier heading to war. The obsession with making the disposable permanent is the key to where it all went wrong. The first time a comic was slipped into a plastic bag unread, the medium changed irrevocably. The story that came alive began to lose footing to the concern for marks around the staple.”
How The Comic Bag Destroyed Comics

c/o @PageFortyFive


June 26, 2014
Comments Off on The internet is boring…

The internet is boring…

Leila Johnston podcast with Warren Ellis in which he calls the internet boring:


“The internet is not what it was, its siloing out … I’ve no issue with walled gardens, per se. I think most internet users, given a choice, will choose a walled garden. But when content and services particularly start falling into hard walled silos where they can’t talk to each other and you can’t cross between them … it makes things duller”

And I tend to agree. The wild west feeling of ten, fifteen years ago, when you could stumble upon the weird and wonderful, such as J. R. “Bob” Dobbs and the Church of the SubGenius, or read a handful of blogs each talking about different things has faded, and its easy to get stuck being a member of the audience occasionally tweeting or blogging or facebooking the latest commercial drivel.


Well worth a listen.


Somewhat related, I’m not sure how I feel about Amber McNaught’s piece on On Brands and Blogging. While its great people are getting paid to write, it does capture the changes blogs have undergone.

c/o @ProhibitionPR (!)


A more positive outlook on creating things on the interweb: You Are Not Late


November 17, 2013
Comments Off on The Proust Questionnaire – Book Edition

The Proust Questionnaire – Book Edition

The Proust Questionnaire—Book Edition


1. Of these, your reading preference: fiction; nonfiction; poetry; drama:
2. Your favorite childhood book (or favorite childhood author):
Roald Dahl pre-teen, Stephen King in my teens.
3. Your favorite book character:
D.R. & Quinch
4. Your favorite book title (because you like the sound of it):
The Devil’s Alternative by Frederick Forsyth
5. A book you could never finish:
Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings
6. A book you will never start:
The Bible
7. If for some reason it turned out that you could save one and only one book from among those you own, which would it be:
By Reason of Insanity by Shane Stevens. Although it is back in print now, so..?
8. A book you should have read but haven’t:
The Tin Drum. I think I have two copies now.
9. The best “book as object” you own (how it looks over what it says):
Chip Kidd’s The Cheese Monkeys (although what is says is great too)
10. Your reading speed: very slow; slow; moderate; fast; very fast:
11. While you read, are you a note-taker? If yes, where do you record your notes:
Occasionally, margin.
12. Your most idiosyncratic reading habit:
Not being able to read a book I’ve been lent
13. The most expensive book you’ve ever bought (and, if you can remember, the price):
Probably a book on web development when I used to buy them (before Google)
14. If you could be any author:
A prolific one
15. If you are what you read, the book that best says who you are:
Hmm. In Milton Lumky Territory by PKD, or Neil Stephenson’s Cryptonomicon?
16. Your favorite writer of the gender opposite yours:
Patricia Cornwell
17. The last book you bought:
(Checks Kindle…) The Boys of ’67 by Andrew Weist
18. Your favorite place to purchase books:
Comic shop
19. The book you are currently reading:
11/22/63 by Stephen King
20. The book you will read next:
The Lone Survivor by Marcus Lutrell and Patrick Robinson
21. The current location of the book you will read next:
On my phone
22. Your favorite format for books: paper or pixels:
Paper for graphic novels, pixels for written word
23. If you could have written any book:
True Crime by Andrew Klaven
24. A book that was particularly meaningful to, or highly recommended by, an acquaintance of yours:
25. If you have the chance to plan it, the last book you’ll read:
101 Sexual Positions to Try Before You Die