Topless Robot LIVE! Butts and Catfishing at SXSW, With Fred Topel and Jen Yamato

Friday, March 27, 2015 at 6:30 am


On this week's podcast, our special guests The Daily Beast's Jen Yamato and TR contributor Fred Topel return from the South-by-Southwest film festival with tales of John Cena's bare ass, Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart's Get Hard controversy, Ex Machina's Tinder robot and more! Also: Luke speaks way too soon about Comic-Con hotel rooms, Julia convinces Jen that Minions is a worthwhile franchise, Fred explains why sequels should never stop, and we discuss why that controversial Batgirl cover might be neither about sexism nor censorship.

As always, if you do iTunes, please subscribe and give us good reviews. Subscribers get new podcasts before they become available as embeds on the site.

New Comic Book Day: My Vod(ka), Why Have You Forsaken Me?

Wednesday, March 25, 2015 at 6:30 am

Dynamite Comics
The worst part about getting older is when hair of the dog stops working. I'm right now on the tail end of a crippling, wedding-related (not mine) two day hangover that, once upon a time, would have been halted in its tracks by a hearty, pork-heavy brunch and those 4 bloody marys that I did on Sunday. Instead, I'm slogging through forced human contact, trying toOH I bet it's only supposed to work in moderation. Dammit, this would have worked fine 3 years ago. DAMN YOU, WRONG SIDE OF 30.

Anyway, forming coherent thoughts makes my brain feel like it's crawling over muddy glass, so please forgive any brevity. With that in mind, this week's comics are very good, good, good, ridiculous, great, and hilarious.

WHAT DO YOU MEAN THAT'S NOT ENOUGH? Ok, first, one comic was very bad.

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Ask Luke's Mother-in-Law: A New Podcast Star Is Born

Thursday, March 19, 2015 at 6:30 am


Martha Boyd is former LAPD, a licensed property appraiser and a self-described crazy cat lady. None of which has prepared her for TR readers. All questions and answers are real.

Hi, and hope you all had a great St Patrick's Day. I made a trip to Los Angeles last weekend, as Julia was performing with Upright Citizens Brigade (UCB) and the show was on Sunday so I was able to make it. After the show we went over to Hollywood and Highland for a great lunch, and while we were there the UCLA band was doing a pep rally for March Madness. They were good, but we would rather have had USC. We also did a little shopping at Hot Topic, then back to the apartment and I got wrangled into a podcast; my very first for Topless Robot, so I hope you all enjoy. It is about 1.5 hrs long and I am the only guest. Had fun doing it.

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New Comic Book Day: Earth 3 Pinkwashing

Wednesday, March 18, 2015 at 6:30 am

DC, at the request of the creators, pulled their Joker-themed Batgirl variant cover this week, after people objecting to it (on the grounds that reminding people of a crazy bit of sexual violence in the character's past miiiiiiight not have been super representative of Cool Hipster Twentysomething Batgirl inside) were threatened for their sensible questioning. I have to be completely honest: while a Joker theme month for variant covers isn't inherently a bad idea, using The Killing Joke for the Batgirl cover was in as poor taste as a Childhood Vaccination Month Cable cover, a Senior Citizen STD Prevention Eternal Warrior variant, or a Crime Syndicate-Earth cover of NFL Superpro where his uniform was all pink for Mansogyny Awareness.

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TOPLESS ROBOT LIVE! "Sexism or Slander?" Feat. Ariel Schudson and Scott Mendelson

Friday, March 13, 2015 at 6:30 am


On the latest podcast, we discuss:

-Scott's history as a writer and box-office analyst, and how Ariel came to be a film archivist and scholar.

-How movie marketing today differs - or not - from the deceptive sales tactics of the '30s.

-What we all think of Chappie.

-That controversial article from last week about nerd culture taking a long hard look at itself (if that made you mad, and agreeing to disagree ain't your thing, beware!)

-How a second Ghostbusters reboot announcement does or doesn't already undermine the first.

-How likely you are to ever watch a film print of unaltered Star Wars again.

-All this and your questions too! If you do iTunes, please be sure to subscribe and leave a good rating if you like it. If not, you can listen below.

Ask Luke's Mother-in-Law: She's the Sheriff's Department

Thursday, March 12, 2015 at 8:00 am


Martha Boyd is former LAPD, a licensed property appraiser and a self-described crazy cat lady. None of which has prepared her for TR readers. All questions and answers are real.

Hello hello. Happy almost St. Patricks Day. I will be having some corned beef and cabbage next week for sure. I love boiled cabbage, potatoes and carrots in a good corned beef broth. Then served with lots of butter on the veg and a good mustard on the corned beef, yummy in the tummy. Followed up with a good Bailey's and coffee. We have no pubs out here so it will be served from my kitchen.

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New Comic Book Day: Bathroom Choreography

Wednesday, March 11, 2015 at 6:30 am

DC Comics
Last week, AMC & Regal announced that they'll be marathoning every Marvel movie in release order, leading up to the premiere of Age of Ultron. I am here to tell you that this is insane. Sitting in a movie theater for 27 straight hours for anything other than charity is nuts. How do you pick your bathroom spots? I know there are lulls in the movies, but that requires either wearing a diaper or meticulously choreographing every pee you take for more than a day. By the time AOU rolls around, I'd be exhausted just from the amount of focus it would take to plan that intricately. I would MUCH rather do like Mike Furth from The Comic Archive (confession: he's an IRL friend of mine) and have people over for a weekend-long chronological viewing. At least then I'd be able to use a comfortable-ish bathroom. Comfortable-ish because mine is SWELTERING right now. It smells like a haunted jungle bog.

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Next Podcast Guests: Scott Mendelson and Ariel Schudson

Monday, March 9, 2015 at 6:17 pm


Ariel Schudson is a professional media archivist and film preservation, serving as the Nancy Mysel Legacy Project recipient for the Film Noir Foundation, assisting them with their film restorations. She has recently been asked to join the Social Producers Team for this year's TCM Film Fest in order to showcase the "restorations and rarities" shown through social media. Ariel is also a seasoned writer and journalist, having worked extensively for CraveOnline, several classic film blogs and her own blog, and was a regular panelist at Comic Con San Diego for many years, presenting her academic work about the adaptations of comic books to cinema.

Scott Mendelson is a current box office analyst, entertainment editorial columnist and film critic for Forbes magazine. He has studied the film industry, both academically and informally, for 25 years and extensively written about it for the last five years. His outlets for film criticism, box office commentary, and film-skewing scholarship have included The Huffington Post, Salon, and Film Threat.

I know we'll have plenty to talk about - but if you have topics or questions on your mind, this is your space to suggest them.

Ask Luke's Mother-in-Law: Spock Thoughts and Raising a Stage Daughter

Thursday, March 5, 2015 at 1:00 pm


Luke's mother-in-law is former LAPD, a licensed property appraiser and a self-described crazy cat lady. None of which has prepared her for TR readers. All questions and answers are real.

Hi everyone! I got some good questions this week. The weather has taken a turn for the cold with a bit of rain. Last week was T-shirt weather, and this week it is back to the jacket. Still have not heard anything on the rest of the film fest showing that was canceled due to the projector being broken.

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New Comic Book Day: Jeff Lemire Week

Wednesday, March 4, 2015 at 6:30 am

Image Comics
What is it with writers loading up a bunch of books for the same week? We had a bunch of Cullen Bunn books a couple of weeks ago, and every other week seems like there are three Fred Van Lente books coming out. And this week we get two highly-anticipated debut issues from Jeff Lemire. God forbid any of these guys ever get their hooks into an X-crossover. We could end up seeing the whole thing published inside of three business days.

This week we've also got a man, a plan, a canal: a comic book; Heaven's Gate in the heavens; a couple of inappropriate nicknames for the avatar of the Green; a new series for Hawkdude; an imaginary friend who needs rehab; and the revenge of the 99 Pon-cent. Let's start with how Dustin Nguyen's spilling a bunch of water on a boy robot.

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