Weekly Wonderings – March 1, 2021

We start a brand-new month today, with February being another tumultuous one in the middle of this pandemic. As I posted late last week, we had to put our dog Clyde to sleep. This came just six months after our other dog, Lily suddenly passed away. We spent the last couple of weeks nursing Clyde, and he showed improvement but then would slip backward. It certainly tore us up at the moment the immediate days following, but I am starting to be honest with myself that he was given the relief he deserved. We have plenty of photos and videos of them both, so I plan on making sure those are backed up all over the internet, so we always have them to go to when we need them. They won’t be our last dogs, but it will be a little while before we’re ready to bring in a new family member. 

This week also saw me roll out a very simple PopCult Podcast. WordPress is partnered with Anchor, a site that lets you convert posts into computer-read segments. You can add backing music, transitions, etc. It’s free, and it is pretty cool that I can make my blog in an audio form for people that want to listen rather than read off the screen. I would like to explore podcasting this year, but I am definitely taking my time with it. My plan would be to have this computer-read weekly podcast and then, every couple of weeks, do something like PopCult Plus, which would be me on the mic, maybe doing some fiction readings, exclusive review content, eventually having guests maybe. Taking that slow, especially with a big move planned for some time this year, I don’t want to get too deep into the podcast world. Anchor just made it incredibly easy to lay a music track behind the audio, and that little touch makes things sound so much more professional, in my opinion. 

Here’s the weekly Spotify playlist for your listening pleasure.

March on the blog brings a look at selected films by director John Huston. In all, we’ll be reviewing The Maltese Falcon, Key Largo, The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, Asphalt Jungle, The African Queen, Fat City, The Misfits, The Man Who Would Be King, Annie, and Prizzi’s Honor.

I’ll also have series called Ozu’s Seasons that has some of the films by legendary Japanese director Yasujirō Ozu. This is a short series and includes the movies Early Spring, Late Spring, Early Summer, Autumn Afternoon, and Late Autumn. I have never seen a single Ozu picture, so I am looking forward to discovering this director and understanding why he has such acclaim.

If that wasn’t enough, I’m doing a second short series about the films of Alex Ross Perry with The Color Wheel, Listen Up Phillip, Queen of Earth, and Her Smell. I have never seen one of his movies, so I am interested in getting into his work and seeing what it is all about.

As far as other film reviews go, I will be watching and reviewing Saint Maud, The ABCs of Death 2, Cherry, Synonyms, and (because I hate myself or love you all way too much) Justice League: The Zack Snyder Cut. Please pray for me when it comes to that last one.

All month long, I will be posting my reviews of the Best of Seinfeld, composed of what keeps popping up on the top 20 lists I’ve seen across the internet. This was a show I watched religiously growing up while it aired and continuously in syndication. Wandavision wraps up this Friday, so look for my review this weekend. Two weeks later, The Falcon and Winter Soldier starts, and I’ll be doing week-by-week reviews for that show as well. I hope to fit in The Queen’s Gambit this month so look for a review near the end of March.

As far as comic books go, reviews are coming for Superman/Batman Generations Omnibus, Superman by Grant Morrison Omnibus, and Wonder Woman by Greg Rucka Volume 2. I also have superhero spotlights planned in March for Green Lantern (John Stewart), The Martian Manhunter, and The Doom Patrol. Of course, things get tweaked along the way with everything listed here, but this should be what March looks like.

If you want to jump on board and engage in making PopCult transform into something even better, consider joining our Patreon and helping to make that happen!

Focus Group is my basic tier that you can join for $3 a month. Joining that tier lets you vote in polls about what should be featured on the blog. Right now, I have a poll up about what I should do a TV Review Best of for in March. The choices are Tales from the Crypt, Cheers, and Seinfeld. Right now, Tales from the Crypt and Seinfeld are tied, so if you want a say in which one gets featured in March, join now and vote!

Writers’ Room is the next tier that is $5 a month. With this tier, you get the ability to vote in polls, plus Early Access to articles before they are published. Right now, I have my review of the recent Superman: Man of Steel Volume 1 up for reading. That won’t appear on the blog until Saturday, January 16th, but if you join at this tier, you can read it right away. There will be another Early Access article going up tomorrow, and so many more to come!

If you join at the $10 a month tier, that puts you in the Director’s Chair. This means you will get a monthly pick of one film for me to review. I’ve got one patron at this level right now who is figuring out what they’d like me to review. If you join at this level, there will be a specially labeled Patron’s Pick post made when I review the picture. You will get to share your thoughts on the film alongside mine and promote what you have going on (blog, website, podcast, etc.). Plus, you get everything from the tiers below!

Finally, with only five spots available, there is the $20 a month Executive Producer tier. As with the other levels, you get everything below, plus you will get to work with me to program a five-film series of your choice. We will connect via e-mail/messengers/text/etc. and talk about potential themes or topics and create that film series. This will be available to you quarterly, so if you join in January, you’ll get to plan a series with me for the Spring and then again for the Summer, on and on.

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