Lise had to spend a week driving halfway across the country and back, so she and Andi decided to flash all the way back to the beginning of Lez Geek Out! Enjoy the inaugural episode featuring the movie D.E.B.S. and they’ll be back next time.
Andi and Lise discuss the 2021 Marvel blockbuster film Black Widow, starring Scarlett Johansson as Natasha Romanoff and Florence Pugh as Yelena Belova, Natasha’s sister. One of the overarching themes that Andi and Lise really enjoyed is the exploration of family – what it is, what makes it, and how it can create an infrastructure in your life whether you want it to or not. We love superhero movies fronted by women (passes the Bechdel test!) and we love them more when they explore the complicated nature of family dynamics. Great pacing and special effects, great interactions between characters.
Black Widow trailer
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Andi and Lise unpack the 2005 spy/assassin romance movie Mr. and Mrs. Smith, starring Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie and determine that it holds up in some ways but not in others, particularly with regard to gender roles. But on sheer character chemistry, Jolie and Pitt are an excellent action duo.
Original movie trailer HERE.
IMDB info HERE.
Shout-outs: Lise has been playing a lot of Mario Kart, and finds it’s an excellent mindless escape from…well, everything. Andi has been watching The Gilded Age on HBO Max, and notes that things really haven’t changed all the much in terms of the American racialized caste system, but following the individual characters navigating social and economic change is interesting.
Andi and Lise were joined by book reviewer and fellow podcaster Tara Scott (she/they) to chat about things they’re all looking forward to in 2022 despite the continuing pooshow that is the world.
On the TV:
Lise: animated series Legend of Vox Machina, Amazon Prime, based on “Critical Role,” a group of voice actors who have been playing D&D together for years.
Tara: RuPaul’s Drag Race: UK Vs. the World (BBCThree) – a global spinoff. She’s also looking forward to RuPaul’s Drag Race in general (various platforms) and the show We’re Here (HBO), which follows 3 drag queens bringing luv to small-town America.
Andi: John Scalzi, Kaiju Preservation Society and Tochi Onyebuchi, Goliath; also Janelle Monáe’s The Memory Librarian, short speculative fiction featuring Black women writers and Black nonbinary writers and creators
Lise: Starfield (Xbox)
Andi: still learning Switch, plays puzzle/mystery games but looking for a FPS for noobs on the Switch
Tara: not feeling movies, but recommends Mythic Quest on AppleTV, a comedy show about a fictional video game studio working on the fictional game Mythic Quest
Andi: Everything Everywhere All at Once, starring Michelle Yeoh as a woman who just wants to get her taxes paid but keeps getting sucked into the multiverse to save it.
Andi and Lise enthusiastically re-watched the sci fi dystopic action movie The Matrix (1999) to determine how well it holds up 21 years after its release. The movie became a sensation (still is) and they’ll tell you why it still holds up in most ways and things they noticed with their 2022 perceptions (as opposed to their 1999 perceptions) that they thought were problematic.
Shout-outs: Lise got a Nintendo Switch for Christmas and has been enjoying it immensely. Andi has been getting back into DIY stuff and discovered HGTV’s Home Town, where there’s a lot of community revitalization and restoration of historic homes going on in Laurel, Mississippi.
Link to the planner Lise and Andi talked about.
Andi and Lise revisit the 1987 cult classic The Princess Bride, a comedy/romance/ fantasy/adventure that incorporates the story-within-a-story narrative style, in which a contemporary boy (meaning 1987) is sick at home and his grandfather stops by to read him a story, which is a fairy tale that incorporates classic quest elements. Clever story, great characters, funny, and the shifting from the contemporary scene to the movie and back in parts of the film lend this film a lot of its appeal. However, there are some things that definitely don’t hold up, and that’s part of the discussion.
Shout-outs: Lise highly recommends the animated series Arcane on Netflix, based on the game League of Legends. Discord between cities Piltover and Zaun and two sisters fight on rival sides of a war. Andi is finally reading Seanan McGuire’s Ghost Road series, starting with Sparrow Hill Road, the first book in it. The main character is based on the urban legends surrounding the ghostly prom date on the side of the road; the woman in the diner; the hitchhiker. Absolutely incredible world-building.
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Andi and Lise discuss the 1988 Tim Burton film Beetlejuice, which has become somewhat of a cult [Halloween-ish] classic. They both agree that watching it again in current contexts made them re-think a few things and appreciate a few others, and both think this could be a candidate for a re-boot – as long as Tim Burton does it.
Shout-outs: Andi shouts out Lise for getting her writing projects done! YAY!
Happy early Halloween, all – Lise and Andi will not be live for the next show, but we’ll load up a Halloween show from the vault and be back in November with more happy fun times!
Andi and Lise discuss the 2021 Netflix movie Gunpowder Milkshake, a “neon noir” and cinematographically gorgeous stylized film with a great kickass female cast (including Karen Gilland, Lena Headey, Angela Bassett, Michelle Yeoh, Carla Gugino) in a female assassin plotline. However, it’s not without a few glitches and they’ll talk about those. Regardless, entertaining! Also, lots of stylized violence; we don’t recommend it for kids.
Shout-outs: Lise has been playing The Outer Worlds by Obsidian Games, a first-person shooter in which a colonist ship is lost in transit and then when it comes out of transit years later, facing a conspiracy that threatens to destroy the colony. Corporate apocalypse themes! Andi started reading the Lady Sherlock series, set in Victorian London and written by Sherry Thomas. In this incarnation of Holmes, Charlotte Holmes takes on the pseudonym Sherlock Holmes while navigating the social hang-ups of the Victorian classes.
Andi and Lise discuss the 1998 Disney animated film Mulan to determine whether it holds up after 23 years. They discuss its representation, gender, what it might have meant to different audiences, how it may have resonated with certain people, and the story it told.
Note: the story of Mulan is derived from a centuries-old Chinese poem/ballad created during the Wei Dynasty.
Shout-outs! Lise recommends the The Vault, which she watched on Netflix. It’s a heist movie (both Lise and Andi are huge fans of heist movies). In it, an engineer and his team are trying to crack an allegedly impenetrable safe beneath the Bank of Spain. Andi shouts out alcohol-free spirits! Get creative and enjoy a tasty and sober (and much lower calorie) happy hour. She’s also been bingeing the true crime podcast Park Predators, which deals with murders in national parks.
In the course of the discussion, Lise mentioned Kameron Hurley’s essay: “‘We Have Always Fought’: Challenging the ‘Women, Cattle, and Slaves’ Narrative”. The full text can be viewed at the link, and also in Hurley’s book of essays Geek Feminist Revolution, which Lise also highly recommends.