Fugitives, Potter Books, and Sciences – Geekout 30

Well, these posts are coming along less-frequently, so I’ll try not to spend too much time on every topic in the post. I’ve been writing posts based on prompts in a page-a-day calendar I received last year. Each page has three geeky topics on it. Today I’ll be naming Two Characters that are Hunted by a Government Agency, Two Harry Potter Book Titles, and Six Types of Sciences.

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Here we go!

Two Characters that are Hunted by a Government Agency

This is a fun one! There are so many good choices here, but I doubt many of my regular readers will be surprised by my choices here!

River Tam

After listing River, I jokingly included “Simon Tam” as my second choice, however, that was just because my wife was watching me type this. I am not going to include him, and anyway, River is more important than Simon to them. They’re only after him to get River anyway. If you don’t know, River and Simon are siblings from Firefly.

Without getting too spoilery, River was extremely smart and experimented on by the Alliance government. After Simon managed to break her out of captivity, they’ve been on the run ever since. The government officials that are following River are quite scary.

Aeris Gainsborough

Everyone’s favorite Flower Girl from Final Fantasy VII, Aeris is hunted by the Turks. While we could get into a debate over the Turks, since Shinra is a corporation and not the “government”, I’m not going to fight too hard on that point. Anyone who has played the game and met the “mayor” of Midgar would likely let me slide on this one.

Two Harry Potter Book Titles

Now this is an easy one. At first seeing this prompt, my wife and I were suggesting that I should do all 7 book titles in order by the number of pages in the books. I’m not confident that I can get the ordering perfectly, and I also don’t feel like writing that much, so I’ll be naming two of the books that I like the best.

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Probably my favorite of the series, this book brings in plenty of great things expanding the world. Some of the best include the Marauders’ Map, which becomes very important in later books and facilities all kinds of hijinks.  It also introduces Sirius Black, the Prisoner of Azkaban in the title. Additionally, it’s one of the books featuring a secret mission for Dumbledore.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

The Order of the Phoenix was a very interesting novel in name at least. We knew the name well before the book was released, and I remember lots of discussions over what the title could meaning. Dolores Umbridge is introduced in this book, and she’s quite the monster. As always, the Defense Against the Dark Arts class needs a teacher, and she’s probably the worst choice. She’s in the pocket of a misguided government, and endangers the entire wizarding world through her actions. Makes for an interesting story though!

Six Types of Sciences

Not sure where to start here or how specific to get. Types? Physical Sciences, Earth Sciences, Life Sciences, Social Sciences, Applied Sciences, and Mathematical Sciences could be what they mean, but if we’re treating those as the “types” there aren’t enough for it to ask for six. I think it means more specific than that. Since I think we all know sciences well, I’m just going to list for this one.

  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Biology
  • Geology
  • Computer Science
  • Psychology

Wrap Up

Didn’t expect me to pull a Firefly character, did you? Anyway, the next one will be about Gaming, Comics, and Sci-Fi.

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Hellboy, Sci-Fi Captains, and Flying Creatures – Geekout 23

Are you as excited for this list as I am? Probably not, since I’ve seen the prompts. Let’s jump right into this one! Today I’m tasked with naming Two characters from Hellboy, Four Fictional Sci-Fi Captains, and Four Fantasy Creatures that Fly.

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Let’s put it all together!

Two characters from Hellboy

Nope. I wasn’t excited about this one. The extent of my Hellboy knowledge is that I’ve seen parts of the movie a couple of times, many years ago. I also can’t come close to naming two characters.

Hellboy

Yep. I’m cheating here probably. This is all I’ve got. I know there’s the blue fish-looking guy and some others, but this is the only name I can come up with.

Four Fictional Sci-Fi Captains

This is one of the ones I was excited about, since there are some great choices.

Malcolm Reynolds – Firefly/Serenity

Malcolm is the Captain of the Serenity, a Firefly-class transport vessel. I’m not going to sit here and try to sell you on the show, I’m sure I (and others) have done that before.

Jean-Luc Picard – Star Trek

An honorable member of Starfleet, Jean-Luc Picard captains the Enterprise in Star Trek: The Next Generation, but I’m betting most of you knew that already. He and Kirk are Star Trek’s best known, which makes sense having each captained Enterprises on television and movies. And if you want to bother him, just barge in and call him John Luck Pickerd.

James Holden – The Expanse

I originally watched this series, but started reading the books before finishing watching the first season of the show. Now I’m nearly done reading the sixth (the most recent) book in the series. Season two will be out soon. It should cover the events of the second half of the first book. I’m looking forward to it. James Holden is a good captain of the Rocinante.

Han Solo – Star Wars

Didn’t think I’d skip this one, did you? Go Han Solo! This scruffy-looking Captain of the Millennium Falcon joins up with the rebellion after agreeing to ferry Luke Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi. Have you really not seen Star Wars? If not, let me know. I’ve got recommendations for where to start!

Commander Shepard – Mass Effect

“I’m Commander Shepard and this is my favorite blog on the Internet.” – Commander Shepard

The protagonist of the Mass Effect series he/she captains the Normandy. I don’t want to get too into the details, since they’re pretty significant to the stories of the games. When playing the game, you decide whether Commander Shepard is male or female, so it’s hard to pronoun in this post.

Four Fantasy Creatures that Fly

One of the most useful abilities for a creature is flight. This level of mobility makes creatures useful in stories as hunters, mounts, and sometimes both!

Dragons

I’m not really sure what I need to say about Dragons as you should know of these already. There are plenty of types of dragons, and many of them are capable of flying. D&D players enjoy telling you the alignment of dragons based on the color of the dragon. It’s a thing.

Flying Bison – Avatar: The Last Airbender/Legend of Kora

In Avatar: The Last Airbender, Aang is often accompanied by his lifelong companion and friend, Appa. As a flying bison, Appa is able to carry Aang and his friends in their travels. Flying bison are very large creatures without wings, so how they manage to fly is quite mysterious. We know they’re using airbending (air magic from the show) somehow, but how they can keep such a heavy creature up is beyond me!

Griffin

Common in fantasy settings, griffins are mythical creatures composed of features of a lion and an eagle. They’ve got wings and talons from the eagle and have hind legs, bodies and tails of a lion. I think there’s some disagreement on the features of griffin heads, but I usually think of a lion head with a beak. Either way, they fly using those wings, so count for this list.

Interestingly, my character in the Solar Exalted game I’ve mentioned previously just finished taming a Griffin as a makeshift mount. Should be quite useful as I need to fly quite high very soon.

Thestral – Harry Potter Series

These creatures are visible only to those who’ve seen death, which means they’re invisible to many. They’re almost skeletal horses with bat-like wings and are how the carriages are pulled to Hogwarts Castle in the Harry Potter series.

Wrap Up

That’s all I’ve got for you today. Tune in next time for a post covering General Geekiness, Gaming, and Comics.

Comic Artists, Star Trek Characters, and Wands – Geekout 18

As I start the 18th of these posts, I’m looking at the page from this calendar, and I don’t think it read my saying that I don’t know people’s names. My next failing day is here! Today I’m supposed to name Two Comic Book Artists, Four Characters from the Star Trek Universe, and Six Films or Television Shows in which Characters Use Wands.

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As you may have guessed from my not knowing people’s names, I’ll be failing that first prompt. Let’s get to it.

Two Comic Book Artists

Probably my area of least expertise for this stuff is comic books, so it’s no surprise that I barely know the names of the authors of comics. I can’t name one comic book artist, and I’ve been trying to think of one since this morning. Sorry, artists. I appreciate your work, but I’m failing you here.

Four Characters from the Star Trek Universe

To start this one, I was thinking about restricting myself here. At first I was thinking of naming only characters whose names start with “Q”. Other options are just Ferengi, Vulcans, or Klingons. The latter options are still easy, so I think I’ll name doctors, since that sounds fun.

Beverly Crusher

My personal favorite of the Next Generation medical officers. Am I remembering correctly that she only missed one season, not being aboard the Enterprise? It’s no secret that I’m not a fan of her son, Wesley.

Doctor Phlox

One of the stranger medical officers on the show, Doctor Phlox had all kinds of interesting creatures to help with things. The only alien I’m including in this list, his medical knowledge was quite varied, learning things from various cultures. It always made him a little fun.

“The Doctor” – Emergency Medical Hologram

It’s interesting how this medical hologram was able to grow so much during the show. His being active too long let them learn just how advanced his program really was. He learned and became so much more than just a hologram. His growth reminds me of Data’s in some ways. One might overlook the needs of a hologram, but what is sentience and intelligence anyway?

Julian Bashir

Spoiler alert! I warned you! As it turns out, in a way, the only normal human on my list was Doctor Crusher. Julian is an Augment, which is the Star Trek term for the genetically enhanced humans. This is why Julian is as smart as he is, and it’s a secret he needs to keep (this is frowned upon). If you’ve forgotten what an Augment is, think Khan.

Six Films or Television Shows in which Characters Use Wands

Six is a large number of distinct movies and films to name! We’ll see if I succeed here! I’m thinking “wand” means I cannot include magical staves or scepters. I won’t do this, but I just realized I could name all 8 Harry Potter movies and be done. I’ll not do that though, since that’s boring.

Harry Potter Series

A bit obvious, the witches and wizards in this series wield wands to focus their magical powers.

Cinderella

The Fairy Godmother in the Cinderella cartoon uses a wand to cast her spells that set Cinderella up for a fun night at the ball.

Fantasia

I believe that Mickey uses a want to start some of the “fun” in this one. Am I wrong about that?

The Wizard of Oz

I seem to recall at leas the good witch using a wand in this. The fireball from the wicked witch was thrown by hand, right? Wow it’s been a while since I’ve seen this. I should watch it again, since I’m having trouble remembering.

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

I think the White Witch uses a wand to cast her spells. Might be a scepter, but I think it’s a wand. Now I’ll need to grab the book later and check. Yes, it will be the book I check rather than the film.

Fairly Odd Parents

Wand wielders in this! Spent about a half hour coming up with a TV show, since the prompt allowed for them.

Wrap Up

I spent way too much time coming up with Wand stuff. I went through all kinds of options. I was thinking of shows that had a D&D style episode like Monsters and Mazes from Dexter’s Lab, Bender’s Game from Futurama, and the D&D game in Reboot. Couldn’t remember if any of them actually had a wand though.

I don’t feel too bad about missing one of the three prompts today, since I felt good about the next two.

Anyway, tomorrow I’ll be back with General Geekiness, Gaming, and Comics.

Witches, South Park, and Cthulhu – Geekout 17

When I decided to start this, I figured this would be one of the best ways to encourage myself to start writing on this blog. I’d left this place stale for quite a while, having only posted a few things when I felt like it. A personal blog isn’t something I’d really taken on before. Either way, I’ve been successful so far with this Geekout challenges from the page-a-day calendar I received for Christmas.

Today I’ll be writing about Four Named Witches, Six Characters from South Park, and Two Games in which Cthulhu appears.

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An interesting set of topics here. Let’s get diggin’!

Four Named Witches

I’m not sure “named” needed to be said here, but still fairly easy to handle. What defines a “witch” seems to depend on the source material, so if they’re calling someone a witch, I’ll count it!

Hermione Granger – Harry Potter Series

In the story’s world, magic users are referred to as “wizards” if they’re males and “witches” if they’re females. I kind of wanted to pick a less-significant character to the stories, but I thought people would have me strung up for skipping her. Can’t keep writing these if I’m dead now can I?

Written as a very smart witch, Hermione seems to know just about everything that’s readily available to someone of her age (and some things that aren’t as well)!

Samantha Stephens – Bewitched

A classic television show here, Samantha marries Darrin Stephens, a non-magical man who’s in for more than he bargained for. Choosing to marry him rather than a warlock, she tries to not use her powers, but that’s often difficult. Her mother is often around causing mischief and trying to separate them. It’s always fun watching her struggle with trying to not use her powers. She and her mother are both witches, and I’m sure others were on the show, but I’d not come up with a name for them.

Morrigan – Dragon Age Series

She and her mother are referred to as witches of the wilds in Dragon Age, so I’d say they nicely qualify as witches. She’s a shapeshifter, which is an interesting power.

Sabrina – Sabrina, The Teenage Witch

As another television show character, she’s also on the cornier side of things. She’s a teenager who finds out she’s a witch. Her aunts are around teaching her the ways of witchcraft and such. I don’t remember the show too well, but I recall it essentially being a sitcom where the main character has some magical powers. Sounds fun to me!

Six Characters from South Park

I remember when this show came out. I wasn’t very old at the time, but it was pervasive even among children too young for its material. I’ve not really kept up on the show at all, but I knew it long ago. I’ll get the basics here.

Kenny

I’ll start here, so I can reference him more easily below. Starting from the beginning there was a running gag about Kenny dying. I recall seeing Kenny with his hood off in their movie, but before that his face was mostly covered by his hood. He’s always wearing the bright orange winter coat with the hood covering most of his face.

Stan

He is another one of the main characters of the show. Stan’s most known line must be about how one or more people or things just killed Kenny.

Kyle

Also a main character, I seem to recall Kyle also exclaiming about Kenny being killed. It’s been too long to remember much there. I do remember that Kyle is the Jewish one, and considering the show, that’s going to be brought up often.

Cartman

Likely the least mature of the four main characters I’ve just mentioned, Cartman is also the show’s source of fat jokes. He’s the overweight, spoiled kid and is genuinely not nice to people (normal for most of the show’s characters).

Chef

As his name implies, Chef is the school’s cafeteria worker. To be honest, I’m not sure if he has another name; I didn’t watch enough of the show to know for certain if it’s a convenient name or a nickname. The main characters often get advice from Chef.

Butters

Like Chef, Butters is also a very prominent character in the series. The main thing I remember about Butters is his obsession with Bennigan’s. Don’t know if that was actually prominent or not, but I remember it.

Two Games in which Cthulhu appears

For those of you who don’t know, Cthulhu is a fictional being created by H. P. Lovecraft, an author who wrote plenty of weird stories about powerful, strange magical creatures, events, etc. Cthulhu is generally depicted as a giant humanoid creature with dragon-like wings and an octopus for a head.

Arkham Horror

A game that a really enjoy, Arkham Horror is a sometimes long game where the players work together to stabilize the world before a powerful, Great Old One arrives. Cthulhu is one of the ones that can be on his way. The players are trying to stop him (or another) from showing up, but also need to be prepared to fight the being should it arrive anyway!

Call of Cthulhu

This is a role-playing game that I’ve not played, but I do know people who play it. Fairly certain Cthulhu must have some kind of representation in the game. Don’t know what it is here, since I don’t know the game that well. I couldn’t exactly leave this one off of the list though.

Wrap Up

Tomorrow we’ll be discussing Comics, Sci-Fi, and Fantasy. I hope you make it back tomorrow!

Conventions, Races, and Slytherin – Geekout 3

On this third day of the year, I’m feeling great! I got some good work done, and I’m ready to tackle this geekout challenge. It looks like I’ll need to list: Two U.S. Comic Book Conventions, Four Races from the Star Wars Universe, and Two Characters from the House of Slytherin in Harry Potter.

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Maybe January is the warmup round for this, because these could use larger numbers to be challenging! Looks like our categories today are Comics, Sci-fi, and Fantasy.

Two U.S. Comic Book Conventions

There are so many small ones all throughout the US. It’s sad that the question limits on that even, since there are so many great ones outside of the US. I think I’ll go a bit obvious here!

Comic Con International – Various

The most attended of these must be the San Diego one, but there are others as well. This is a crowded event that I doubt I’ll ever attend, if only due to the number of people. Cosplay is likely what these are best known for, but there’s much more than that at comic book conventions.

Wizard World – Various

Again I’m going with another group of conventions. Wizard World conventions are all over the country, so you can go to one that’s somewhat local. The local ones will be much lower-key, but can still be a blast. You can look online to see which celebrities will make appearances at them as well.

Four Races from the Star Wars Universe

If there’s one thing your sci-fi needs, it’s aliens. OK, that’s not really true, but Star Wars certainly shows that you can include plenty of aliens without getting too crazy (all that often).

Cathar

Considering that I’ve named one of my cats after Juhani, the Cathar in Knights of the Old Republic, I had to include the Cathar first. It also doesn’t hurt that I’m also a big fan of Aric Jorgan, a Cathar companion in The Old Republic and a character voiced by one of my favorite actors.

Chiss

Anyone who’s read any of the books now considered legends should have read about a Chiss named Grand Admiral Thrawn. He’s been added into the cartoons, so he’s no longer just a “legend” character. He’s canon now.

This Chiss are blue-skinned, red-eyed humanoids that have been part of the empire in all of the non-movie sources.

Twi’lek

Having such interesting and often vibrant skin colors, the Twi’lek are best identified by the lekku that extend from the back of their heads. They’re the big tenatacle-headed, colorful aliens.

Jawa

While we don’t see them too well in the series, these aliens are quite interesting. Somewhat mysterious under their cloaks, these junk-loving aliens will try to push R2 units with bad motivators on you if you’re not careful!

Two Characters from the House of Slytherin in Harry Potter

The house of cunning, ambitious, resourceful people is my house. No, we’re not all evil!

Horace Slughorn

Harry’s potions teacher in his sixth year at Hogwarts was none other than Horace Slughorn! We don’t know much about him, but we assume he was a member of the Slytherin house as a student based on his being the Head of Slytherin house. I don’t remember it being said explicitly that he was in the house, but I’d think you would have to have been in order to head a house!

Regulus A. Black

At the end of reading the sixth book in the series, we all remembered the brother of Sirius Black. We all assumed that the R.A.B. carved into the locket must have been someone we already knew, and this is the character who fit the bill.

He was one of the first fighting the battle that Harry fights in book 7, so we must have some respect for this man.

Wrap Up

Wondering if there’ll be a gaming convention question along the same lines as this comic book convention question. We’ll see what we get!