After a six year war, Arstotzka has reopened its border with Kolechia, and you are an immigration official inside a crossing checkpoint. This unenviable job is the basis for Lucas Pope’s new game, where you check visas and stamp passports. A growing influx of people are trying to resume their lives, but the political climate […]
The Public Domain review is an outstanding resource, collecting some of the most fascinating and entertaining pieces of art that have fallen out of copyright’s legal restrictions. This website is full of treasures. One of my personal favorites is this children’s book by Charles Bennett, where a cat exhausts his nine lives. It is charming […]
Clearly Stated, a project of Ian Aleksander Adams and Josué Rivera, is both a literary publication and a collaborative game for the contributors. It’s like a word version of ‘exquisite corpse': the first writer blindly hands over a block of text which omits all formatting (punctuation, line breaks, capital letters) for a second writer to […]
Rafman’s collection of found images, culled from Google Street View, has been on-going for some time and has grown into an astonishing collection. Certainly the tech giant gets credit for snapping the photos, but Rafman has some keen sense of how to sift through all that information and edit down to a collection of poignant […]
The Bogus Opus, a comic I began writing around April, feels like the first time that the animals and beasts who populate work can have voices. I like to create small worlds of meticulous detail and I fixate on the creatures in such detail that they develop personalities. These short stories are something like a […]
If you waste enough of your life sifting through the media ocean that is the Wikimedia Commons, you occasionally find illuminating gems like Fridges Damaged by Hurricane Katrina: ‘Many refrigerators, even those that did not suffer from flood or wind damage, had to be discarded due to the effects of having food rotting in them (with infestations first of maggots, then of toxic mold) for 6+ weeks with no electricity in the hot southern summer. These were hauled out to the curb for eventual pick-up; often their owners decorated them with slogans or folk art. The first Halloween after the storm, some people costumed as such refrigerators’.
Ready for a bit of the old ultra-violence? Equal parts puzzle game and lightning fast twitch shooter, Hotline Miami is stylish, hallucinatory nightmare of a 1980’s crime paradise. At the behest of possibly imagined voices on an answering machine, our masked antihero goes on a Taxi Driver-style killing spree through drug dens and nightclubs.
This documentary could not have a stronger catch: a box of documents found in a Montana meth house, detailing the opaque inner workings of a new big money unleashed by the Citizen’s United decision. Frontline, PBS’s premier investigative journalism show, is never one to pull punches, but this week’s episode was a barn burner. Measured yet gravely urgent, Big Sky, Big Money details how the geography of American democracy is facing seismic change by very deliberate forces with very little public oversight. [watch the video below]
Halloween is the best time of year, so why not theme a band around it. The Marshmallow Ghosts strike the perfect tone without cliche or straining to be morbid. Their style is, in fact, the opposite: energetic and poppy, capturing more the excitement of fall than a chainsaw massacre. It’s a project of Ryan Graveface, owner of Graveface Records and Black Moth Super Rainbow member, which pulls talent from the rest of the label’s bands. The past four years they’ve put out an album for Halloween, with a Dreamend (another Ryan Graveface venture) split due this October.
Mac Demarco sings in this deep, breathy voice that sounds like he pulls words from the bottom of his throat. And he coos with such enthusiasm about ladies in hot pants and nightclubs. The man sounds goddamn sleazy. There’s obviously a kind of persona being fostered here; his album Rock and Roll Night Club is […]
Mattias Adolfsson is an illustrator who fills his small sketchbooks front to back, top to bottom with the density and life of a small world. His work is fastidiously detailed and populated by bulbous humans, clumsy good-natured creatures, and futuristic robots of twisty old machinery. On his Facebook you can see near daily progress shots as he pours down detail between faint pencil holding lines.
The elegant, gloriously nerdy FTL: Faster Than Light has you managing a starship through the roughest of times. The rules are simple enough to be understood quickly, yet complicated in play so that it’ll never cease taxing your brain. It’s also a lovely new take on the old genre of rouge-likes, where the fun isn’t in winning but in how long you can elude death against random encounters and increasingly unfair odds.
Curiosity is diligently trucking away on Mars, and NASA kindly posts all the raw images sent back to Earth online. I am enthralled by the gallery. Some are of Curiosity inspecting itself, but it’s mostly high resolution pictures of the dirt and pebbles of an alien world. It makes Mars feel familiar and tangible, and makes the distance from here to there seem all that greater. Stay tuned, more pictures are being radioed back from 154 million miles away.
Study Group Comic Books is an independent publisher that’s gathered together some remarkable sequential artists. While they put out a printed anthology, all of the work is made freely available to read, most updated page by page on a weekly basis. Among my favorites are Levon Jihanian’s stylish fantasy adventure Danger County, Adian Koch’s ephemeral and gorgeously sparse The Blonde Woman, and Julia Gfrörer’s dark tale of a man lost at sea, Black is the Color.
I started illustrating the alphabet on a whim, just to see how much narrative I could wrangle out of a single letter. Sometimes it’s easier to be creative in restraints and the project has had momentum that’s carried it to the letter P. Since “A,” it’s kind of morphed into a transgressive children’s book. The world is full of beasts and grisly things, but I like keeping the whimsy about it.