John Wick: Chapter 3—Parabellum Gets More Bloody, Absurd, and Gorgeous

During a brief lull in the frenzied and vicious violence splattering across the screen in John Wick: Chapter 3—Parabellum, one rival assassin (Mark Dacascos) who has been hunting our titular antihero takes a moment to gush that he’s a big fan. He remarks with glee how much a legend Wick is in his crusade to live and get revenge on the assassin society that has wronged him. There are others as well who have heard of the brutal and...

Top Ten Games You Can Play in Your Head by Yourself Is a Welcome Surprise for All Gamers

I’ve been playing games and sharing my opinions on them for many years. I’m almost always moving on to the next game system, the next adventure setting, the next optional rule book. I love to get my fingers on a new product, in part because I have the attention span of a young dalmatian in a shopping mall, but mostly because I just really love it when a game surprises me. That feeling of first-time wonder is outdone only...

Comics I’m Picking Up the Week of May 15, 2019

Here are some original graphic novels you can find now at many fine local comic shops and bookstores. On this light week for new series launches, I’d like to highlight some original graphic novels (OGNs) released in the last few months. In working his way through accreditation to become a school librarian, my husband took a class on the use of graphic novels in the classroom. This surprised me, because when I was taking English classes (in high school...

St. Paul Restaurant just/us Has Upended Its Business in Solidarity with Displaced Residents

St. Paul’s just/us, an American restaurant located in the Viking Apartments, has closed its doors. The closure on April 20, 2019, came less than a year and a half after owner Nathan Docken—who, full disclosure, is a D&D buddy of mine—had opened the doors in December 2017. Besides great food, just/us was also a home to the local arts community. The restaurant hosted an open-mic night every Tuesday. Nathan says, “Because we allow everybody to do whatever, we’ve become...

An Ode to Star Trek: Discovery’s Sylvia Tilly

Star Trek: Discovery has become a bit of a target in the culture wars of geekdom. And while I’m not here to debate whether or not it is worthy of the Star Trek name (it is) or worth its cost in subscription fees (again, it is), I am here to talk about something it contains that has meant a lot to me. I think in a lot of these debates, we forget the actual impact the media we’re discussing...

Game of Thrones and the Gamers Who Play It

As HBO’s Game of Thrones reaches its final episodes, with the series finale airing May 19, 2019, it’s a great time to appreciate how far the George R. R. Martin franchise has come from its humble beginnings. My first encounter with A Song of Ice and Fire, the book series on which the TV show is based, came about the same way as many of my favorite fandoms: through my love of gaming. In 2003, my friends had just...

This Week in Geek (5/13/2019–5/19/2019)

Welcome to This Week in Geek, your guide to events of interest to the Minnesota geek community for the week of Monday, May 13th to Sunday, May 19th. Monday Night Game Night What: Gaming When: Monday, May 13th at 5:00 p.m. Where: Level Up Games (South St. Paul) While it may be tough diving back into the workweek (at least for those of us with Monday-to-Friday jobs), this event seeks to add fun and levity to Mondays with games....

Cream & Amber Is Slinging Books, Beer, and Beans in Downtown Hopkins

The Twin Cities bookstore scene has gone through a lot of changes in the first part of 2019. St. Paul’s Sixth Chamber started selling off inventory in January ahead of closing its doors, followed by Micawber’s in March after owner Tom Bielenberg was injured in a fall. In nearby Stillwater, Loome Books has also closed. But there’s new life, too. The former Common Good Books has a new owner and a new name, Next Chapter Booksellers, and the metro...

3 Graphic Novels Celebrating Geeky Interests to Enjoy with Your Geekling

The end of the school year is almost upon us, and it’s been fun looking back and seeing how my geekling has grown since Labor Day. One of the ways she’s really bloomed this year is in her reading skills, and she’s a much more fluent and adventurous reader than she was in September. As a parent, this has made me about as excited as I was for that one moment with that one character on Game of Thrones...

The Brothers Paranormal Is a Thrilling and Multilayered Asian American Ghost Story

With their coproduction of Prince Gomolvilas’s The Brothers Paranormal, Theater Mu and Penumbra Theatre have brought a must-see performance that sets a high bar for intercultural speculative theater. Directed by Lou Bellamy and billed as a “darkly comic chiller,” the play goes far beyond that description as it unfolds into a stirring adventure involving two Thai American ghost-hunting brothers with dubious qualifications for their calling. At turns horrifying and moving, profound and endearing, it sees the titular Brothers Paranormal...
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