Episode 101: Concave Punchable Face

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In this episode, we are still coming down off of the high and exhaustion from Ep 100 and we talk all the dirty details of how it happened, how it almost didn’t happen, last minute changes, and all of the other roadblocks what almost stopped a monumental milestone from appearing in your podcastaroonie feeds!

We start off talking about our recent reads of murder, dungeons, outside space wars, dragons, robuts, and the like as well as the big reactions to a review of a monstrous book what has us blowin’ up, as well as explaining a recent installment of The Nerd Blitz Question Of The Week…before it even happened!

DC Fan Dome happened and Fitz has all the dirty details from his day in the virtual con hall watching trailer after trailer, while Doom brings…snark, shitty comments, and rude noises for most of the topics brought up on that front, all that and more as promises are broken and announcements are made in this return to form for your favorite unknown jack assholes.

URL: Episode 101: Concave Punchable Face
Direct Download: tnb101.mp3

Episode 100: Brian Quinn Presents TNB’s 2 Part 100th Ep Spectacular: Who Wants To Die Today?!

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In this massive 2 part episode, we are celebrating not one BUT TWO gigantic milestones in this mega sized, extra long, earth shattering episode as our flagship show hits one hundred episodes (not counting point fives) and we hit two hundred free episodes total between The Nerd Blitz, The Nerd Blitz Book Club, and The Nerd Blitz Commentaries!

This near 8 hour long multi-chambered episode, designed for easy listening in chunks, starts off as a typical main show episode in which Doom tries jamming three things into one Pimp Spot, then we talk the return of Scooby-Doo And Guess Who and how, despite being glad to have it back, WB bungled it yet again, and good ol Fitty watches the latest iteration of a beloved franchise from his kidhood…to interesting result…

Also, we welcome back 2 guests to the show, 1st off we welcome back the (music) man, the myth, the Legend himself, J Sarge for 3 brand new installments of our long running Dungeons And Dragons game, and our 2nd guest is bestselling Dune, Star Wars, X-Files, & Dan Shamble, Zombie P.I. Author Kevin J. Anderson who drops by for a chat about 2 recently released projects as well as the plethora of others he has on the horizon, which leads us to taking a look at conspiracy theories, Star Wars, and more!

Then, as if all that wasn’t enough, we figured the overcompensation just wasn’t quite there yet and that we needed to dig even deeper, so we decided to stand up and pull a commentary for the first 2 episodes of Buffy The Vampire Slayer out of our asses, which leads to a long lost discovery from the depths of one of our computers.

Mando Emmys, Hobbit Movies, thank you’s, and some slight reminiscing are all among the topics discussed in this monumental milestone that puts a true jeanyus on full display, for better or worse, so whether you’ve been here from Episode 1 or this is your first go round with us, kick back and relax, Ye Fair Knights, as we celebrate all we have accomplished in these last 4+ years, gang!

Part 1:
*Episode Start – 0:00:00
*Dungeons & Dragons Part 1 – 1:42:46
*Kevin J. Anderson Interview – 2:32:00
*Dungeons & Dragons Part 2 – 3:16:50

Nerd Blitz · Episode 100: Brian Quinn Presents the TNB 100th Ep Spectacular: Who Wants To Die Today!? – Part 1

URL: Episode 100: Brian Quinn Presents TNB’s 100th Ep Spectacular: Who Wants To Die Today?! Part 1
Direct Download: tnb100-pt1.mp3

Part 2:
*The Nerd Blitz Commentaries, Buffy The Vampire Slayer Pilot – 0:00:00
*Dungeons & Dragons Part 3 – 2:26:10
*Outro – 3:15:07

Nerd Blitz · Episode 100: Brian Quinn Presents TNB’s 100th Ep Spectacular: Who Wants To Die Today?! – Part 2

URL: Episode 100: Brian Quinn Presents TNB’s 100th Ep Spectacular: Who Wants To Die Today?! Part 2
Direct Download: tnb100-pt2.mp3

Episode 092: 1ACX01, BABY, 1ACX01!

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In this episode, the fellers start by getting super dark and then slap on their deerstalkers and do some investimagationing in the most hardcore and nerdy way you can possibly imagine…like, seriously, they vigorously shake up the can and spray a thick layer of pussy repellent all over themselves!

As we do some intense time traveling, Fitz delivers a basement update that will leave you…mildly disturbed, Doom talks about a dead old lady and teases reading letters that illuminate an old Doom family battle, and then there’s hookers!

A old segment is officially given a title and an intro bump as Doom casts a Dan Shamble TV Show, and then they watch the first trailer for SCOOB! and do the deepest of deep dive investigative reports as they follow up on the production code story from last September’s Scooby-Doo 50th anniversary commentary, and then so much more, so strap in for what may be our nerdiest ep yet!

URL: Episode 092: 1ACX01, BABY, 1ACX01!
Direct Download: tnb092.mp3

Dan Shamble, Zombie P.I.: Hair Raising Review

I’m writing this with a sizable amount of sadness.
You may think I’m kidding, but I’m dead serious…no pun intended, but hopefully noted and appreciated nonetheless.
My sadness is prompted by this being the final Dan Shamble novel/story I have to review, for now, and it has been one hell of a journey so far.
This was also the first Shamble that I read way back in December 2016, this is what hooked me into the series.

So knowing in context, and knowing where it goes, the question that I’ve got to answer kind of needs to be “how does this stand up to the second go round, the test of time, and the rest of the series?”
Let’s try and find the answer to all that.

As always, gang, this is your standard issue ***SPOILER ALERT***

Dan, Robin, Sheyenne, McGoo, and all of the things that go bump in the night are back for more scary and extra hairy action.
An organ harvesting operation is killing vampires and other homeless monsters, a vindictive ex-wife is desperately trying to screw the zombified father of her son out of child support and visitation, a crematorium claiming to burn the remains of the recently departed…the only problem is that the recently departed are still physically around to prove they’re running a scam, an all out war is brewing between the full moon werewolves and the full timers, and a voodoo tattoo shop, a zombie mobster and his bad luck stricken harpy girlfriend are all among the cases we have the pleasure of watching unfold in this visit to the Unnatural Quarter.
With a case load that heavy, it’s a damn good thing zombies don’t need much sleep!

While you absolutely do not need to read these novels or stories in order, it does make it a far more enjoyable experience.
You get all the info you need, but if you have actually read what Dan is referencing then the tiny throw away mentions to continuity that seem like incidental jokes are exactly what nerd wet dreams are made of.
I think I’ve mentioned a few times in these reviews that Kevin J. Anderson is definitely one of us minutiae loving nerd types, and that alone proves it.

Another nerdery attribute that is a strength of KJA’s is the seemingly endless and effortless ability to not only juggle, but service, weave, and solve multiple storylines in logical and satisfying ways.
I mentioned a shit ton of the plot lines above in my summary, right?
Yeah, well, there are at least two or three more that I didn’t even mention, and not a one feels rushed or forgotten at any point.
The dude spins more story plates than a season of Game Of Thrones, and, if the outcry is any indication, to a far more satisfying conclusion as well.

This, if only for sentimentally sake, may be my favorite book in this series.
And the Scooby-Doo shout out has nothing to do with it.
Book 1 was a great introduction to the world, Book 2 expanded and made it bigger, Book 3 settles in and plays with what has been established in the best ways.
While this is only the third book, Anderson clearly understands this world and every aspect of the biases, histories, and lore of it.

I’ve long described this series as The Rockford Files meets The Munsters or The Addams Family, and that still rings true.
But I feel I have to add that it’s seasoned with a dash of Monk at the end to bring it all home and make it sing.
The attention to detail makes it perfect for us comic book fans, but again I need to stress that those references absolutely do not make this a difficult entry point for new readers.
It was mine, and I’m damn glad it was.
So if you’ve been waiting to check out this series but you haven’t been sure where to dive in at, take it from my first hand experience that this is as good a spot as any.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m gonna go try not to be all depressed and whatnot while I patiently await some of that sweet sweet Shamble news dropping like manna from above.

Let us what you think of this review in the comments below or share this post on Twitter with the Hashtag #TNBBookReview.

Special thanks go to @ACFerrell1976 for her continued editorial assistance.

Dan Shamble, Zombie P.I.: Unnatural Acts Review

Second books can be tough, they often make or break a series.
Obviously, Book One always has the tough task of setting up a world and its inhabitants.
But the second installment of a series should always expand and build on all the work that was put into that world during that first outing.
Yes, this is a review of a Dan Shamble book, so you know I like it.
But as I said last time, I’m trying to look at these with fresh eyes, and this is also my first chronological read through.
So does it do a good job expanding upon what the first book brought to the table?
Let’s find out!

As per usual, this is your requisite official ***SPOILER WARNING***
And I mean it this time!

Back in the Unnatural Quarter, things are moving along normally.
Businesses are thriving, including the local brothel.
Yes, you read that right, there are monster whores in this book.
Now if you read that particular sentence and it doesn’t cause you to buy this, pull the ripcord now, cause you clearly have no discernible sense of humor at all.
MONSTER WHORES, MAN!!!
Of all shapes, sizes, races, breeds, and levels of physical contact.
We have Zombies, and Ghosts, and Vampires (oh my!), Werewolves, Suscubuses (if you get that joke, 10 points to your house), and even a Mummy Cathouse wrangler.
Something so ridiculous and hilarious wouldn’t even cross my mind to think about, I’d figure werewolves would just rub their lipstick and move on.
But the fact that monster hookers are included in this would goes to show the depth of thought that KJA put into this.

The other new cases and concerns this go round include a clay golem fighting for emancipation, the ghost of a notorious bank robber that’s trying to figure out his after life, an unnatural hating senator with a deep secret, a long written off brother, a mixed monster couple fighting to move into the neighborhood they want, a mob like company taking over the Quarter bit by bit, and “Shakespeare’s” ghost’s acting troupe facing harassment.
To put it in more succinct terms, Dan & Co are swamped with way more problems and headaches than last time.

Probably the most interesting of these story lines for me would be the brother.
Sheyenne, Dan’s ghostly girlfriend, is confronted by her deadbeat brother, Travis, who comes to town and stirs up a shit storm and a half.
We all know somebody like this dillhole, the scumbag family member that gets mixed up in multiple shady schemes and somehow always comes out smelling like roses.
The dude that will sell out his sister just to get ahead, which is exactly what Travis does…twice!
Once when he sells the last family heirlooms that Sheyenne has to cover old debts and once when he goes to the Full Moon brothel and tries to get down with the resident succubus…then joins the crazy senator in his crusade against unnaturals.
It’s pretty heartbreaking for Spooky, and leaves her in an incredibly vulnerable spot, compounded by Dan having so many problems that cause him to head to Full Moon himself.

***HEADS UP, SKIP THIS PARAGRAPH TO AVOID SPOILING THE END OF THE BOOK***
And that breakdown in communication between Dan and Sheyenne leads to one of the most heart warming, yet disturbing and, some how, also hilarious things I have ever read in my entire life.
The closing pages of the book, after they mostly work things out and are back on more steady ground, sees Spooky trying to go the extra mile and do something special for Dan.
Being a ghost, they can’t do the horizontal hula because she can’t physically touch Dan.
But she can move inanimate objects.
So she gets Dan up to his (often unused or visited) apartment above the office, takes him to his bedroom, and, in an attempt to give him the entire experience of a fully functional romantic partnership, she dons a sex doll suit as a skin so they can re-engage the physical aspects of their relationship that were lost with her own death.
Gang, it is the most fucked up and romantic thing ever!
Also, it’s an utterly original concept!

In my introduction I asked a very specific question (again, we all know at this point if I’m talking about a Dan Shamble book I thoroughly enjoyed it), so does this expand on the first book?
Yes, it does.
The monster brothel isn’t the only critter run business we learn about, we hit up one of the most mundane types of businesses I can think of, a Pawn Shop.
But the twist here is this one is run by a goblin who tends to horde all of the stuff that comes in, especially if it’s shiny.
Something like this really goes to show how deep KJA gets this time, trying to expand and show that life really has gone back to normal and that monsters are fully integrated into society.
They own businesses, they engage in providing entertainment, they’ve made the Unnatural Quarter a tourist stop and lightning rod for controversy.

Without getting too deep on the controversy, I will say this: KJA is a prophet!
He totally called the era of politicians regularly vilifying people and trying to legislate against shit that they and their families have done or taken part in.
I remember when I first read this, I was stunned by the parallels to what was happening in the realm of politics at the time.
Here we see a senator who’s disgusted by the monsters who just want to live, work, and play without catching hell for, ya know, existing…kinda spooky, right?

To wrap up, one of my favorite things about this series is the continuity (and you can hear KJA bust my balls a bit about it in my interview with him from Book Club 5 Ep 2 HERE) and attention to detail that he painstakingly crafts.
Minor bit characters pass through, giving this world the depth we nerds CRAVE.
Reading in order makes this series feels like one of those fancy pants French meals you hear about that take hours to enjoy.
Book 1 was a great simple entree to get you warmed up, Book 2 feels like a 1st course with a few more complexities and flavors to keep you interested.
With that in mind, I can’t wait to revisit Book 3 and savory the experience.

Let us what you think in the comments or share this post on Twitter with the Hashtag #TNBBookReview.

Special thanks to @ACFerrell1976 for her editorial assistance.