Miscellaneous, Nerdery, TV

Random Pimpage Trifecta: Nerd Burlesque, Smallville, Pop-Up Books


A motley crew, but bear with me.



? My pals at LA Weekly covered yet another nerd burlesque show by the Devil’s Playground girls; this one was just sci-fi, so you there’s Priss from Blade Runner, Ripley from Alien, the Alien from Alien, Barbarella, Maria from Metropolis, and more. Check out the gallery here.

? I know I said I was going to do another live-blog, but unfortunately things in my life have interfered, and I’m not going to be able to for the foreseeable future. My apologies. But do not despair; my pals Kiel Phegley and Ben Morse are reviewing this season of Smallville on Monday mornings, and they’re only a billion times more educated in DC comics and Superman than me, so you’re better off with them anyways. You can check out their season premiere review here, and watch their site The Cool Kids Table on Mondays for new episodes.

? Not too long ago, I had a pal whose 4-year-old was having a birthday, and Ms Robot and I got him the Star Wars: A Pop-Up Guide to the Galaxy book, because I wanted to make sure he grew up nerdy. Totally randomly, I got an email from Matt Reinhart, the author of the Star Wars Pop-up Book and the upcoming DC Superheroes Pop-up Book, who reads Topless Robot. I told him I’d actually bought one of his books, and he asked me if I’d actually read it. I said no. So he sent me both books.


This isn’t even a review, because I’m actually too impressed to be critical — these things are amazing. And I’m not talking about the electronics that are built in, so that lightsabers or the Bat-signal actually light up. I’m talking about the pop-ups themselves which are massive and impossibly complex, whether it’s a massive reproduction of the Mos Eisley cantina or a massive spread of DC’s heroes and villains in one mega-brawl. They even have incredibly subtle awesomeness, like Anakin’s face in the back as the Darth Vader helmet pops up over it And there’s not just one pop-up per page; there are several, and they’re equally impressive.

Look, maybe you don’t need to own pop-up books at your age, that’s your call. But I promise you this — if you have any kids, nieces, nephews, children in your life, you cannot possibly do better than getting them one of these books for a gift. Just make sure you open it and read it yourself first! You won’t regret it.

About Author

Robert Bricken is one of the original co-founders of the site formerly known as Topless Robot, and its first editor-in-chief, serving from 2008-12. He brought the site to prominence with “nerd news, humor and self-loathing” as its motto, raising it from total internet obscurity to a readership in the millions, with help from his savage “FAQ” movie reviews and Fan Fiction Fridays. Under his tenure Topless Robot was covered by Gawker, Wired, Defamer, New York magazine, ABC News, and others, and his articles have been praised by Roger Ebert, Avengers actor Clark Gregg, comedian and The Daily Show correspondent John Hodgman, the stars of Mystery Science Theater 3000 and Rifftrax, and others. He is currently the managing editor of io9.com. Despite decades as both an amateur and professional nerd, he continues to be completely unprepared for either the zombie apocalypse or the robot uprising.