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Geek Culture

  • Last week in trailers: it’s Comic-Con Christmas, baby

    Some weeks, absolutely no interesting trailers get released and building this roundup feels futile. Other weeks, there are so many trailers I wonder if I'll even have time to watch them all (I'm kidding, I always do.) Comic-Con week is the latter, so let's jump straight in. Justice League Yes, they're still pretending Superman is dead. Yes, they did give Wonder Woman a big role in the trailer after her successful solo endeavour, and, yes, this is going to be so much fun. Justice League is out in South Africa 17 November. (As a side note: a 3-minute trailer for Avengers: Infinity War was leaked, but it's terrible...

  • Remember Amy Winehouse with this epic 46-track YouTube playlist

    Even if you weren't held by her eclectic charm, raspy voice and larger-than-life hairdos, there was probably an Amy Winehouse track that you've heard and hummed along to. 23 July marked six years since the English songstress died, and the world of music is still feeling her loss. And in a week that has seen two other great musicians part us -- South African jazz great Ray Phiri and Linkin Park's Chester Bennington -- it's only fitting to remember these greats for their influence. Thankfully, the internet has largely memorialised their works in glorious high-def video and audio. For Amy Winehouse, this means...

  • Linkin Park’s lead singer Chester Bennington commits suicide

    Chester Bennington, the lead singer of nu-metal band Linkin Park, has died in an apparent suicide at his home in Los Angeles. News broke Thursday evening SAST, just a few hours after Linkin Park's latest music video "Talking To Myself" debuted on YouTube. Bennington, who led Linkin Park's vocal ensemble for much of his career, helped the band to 70-million album sales and two Grammy Awards. He also formed the electronic rock ensemble Dead By Sunrise in 2005. Mike Shinoda, Linkin Park's chief songwriter, took to Twitter to confirm the news. Shocked and heartbroken, but it's true. An official statement will come out...

  • American Horror Story season seven now has a title

    Ryan Murphy has announced the title of the next American Horror Story season: Cult. AHS: CULT — Ryan Murphy (@MrRPMurphy) July 21, 2017 Murphy has kept relatively quiet about plot details, but mentioned in an interview February that the season was going to be about the 2016 US election. Ryan Murphy Reveals the Theme for Season 7 of American Horror Story pic.twitter.com/ZsGW0PmOql — AmericanHorrorStory (@AHS7CuIt) February 16, 2017 The title announcement also came with a website (only available to the US, or to those with sneaky VPNs), a teaser video and a release date: 5 September. American Horror Story: Cult Announcement! #AHS7pic.twitter.com/iWhXCaxJiZ — AmericanHorrorStory (@AHSFXCult) July 21, 2017 The video features...

  • Christopher Nolan labels Netflix ‘mindless’, the internet responds

    Christopher Nolan has come out in defense of theatrical distributions ahead of his latest film Dunkirk's release. In an interview with IndieWire, the director called Netflix's distribution policy "mindless" in that it requires content to be simultaneously released on digital and in theatres. "I think they're missing a huge opportunity," he said. "You can see that Amazon is very clearly happy to not make that same mistake. The theaters have a 90-day window. It’s a perfectly usable model. It’s terrific." Christopher Nolan had a few choice words about streaming service Netflix this week, calling it 'mindless' Nolan is famous for his determination to shoot on film, and works to optimise...

  • South Africa’s Box Office: Despicable Me 3 climbs over Spider-Man to first

    In the summer of blockbusters, you win or you die. And Spider-Man: Homecoming did not win. It was the move that shocked the nation: after allowing the Marvel film a week of glory, Despicable Me 3 rose from second to take back its rightful seat on the throne. Not only did the animation topple its biggest competition, but it also pulled in R10-million in its third weekend, furthering its lead as highest life-to-date grosser with just over R30.5-million in total sales. The move was likely aided by school holidays, but to say Spider-Man wouldn't benefit from that would be a lie -- so we offer nothing but...

  • Viral video: British Airways recruits celebs for its latest in-flight safety clip

    The safety demonstration video on flights is usually the most boring element of air travel, but what if said safety video included some of the world's most articulate celebrities? That's what British Airways believes will encourage people to strap in, and actually take heed during these important announcements. "We hope you enjoy our new safety video, which we’ve created in collaboration with Comic Relief and some famous faces you’ll probably recognise," British writes on the video's description. "Celebrities are seen auditioning in humorous sketches in front of comedian Asim Chaudhry, as Chabuddy G, for a coveted part in British Airways’ new safety...

  • MiniMeme Podcast #4: Internet privacy & what our phones reveal about us

    Julia Breakey welcomes Daniel Mpala to the MiniMeme podcast by inviting him to talk on what he is most passionate about: internet privacy. Daniel talks through the necessity of protecting your private information in the digital space -- and just how at risk we all are from losing it. Then, to get better acquainted, the two take part in a segment called Friendship APPtitude in which they go through their phones that reveal who they are as people. Finally, in their broke people form of a Rant Wheel, Daniel and Julia vent about everything from dumb tweets to WhatsApp broadcasts to Game...

  • Why don’t South Africans create their own GIFs for memes?

    Citizens of South Africa are no strangers to creating their own memes -- from cheeky hashtags to images that ire Police Minister Fikile Mbalula, they know how to start a trend. But despite the amount of original content, there is one thing South Africans do not have control over: the GIFs they use. Sure, GIFs are still a big part of South African Twitter, but they aren't locally made and often make use of American content. Hlaudi - "I don't want to respond to the wind." 😂😂💩#CountryDutypic.twitter.com/3CLTMqKstx — SnoopyBez (@SnoopyBez) July 18, 2017 There are few reasons why South Africa may still rely on internationally...

  • Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets review: empty, colourful fun

    Details around Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets have been kept so secretive you'd be mistaken for thinking it was the next Star Wars flick. When questioned about the quiet that surrounds this film, actress Cara Delevingne said simply: "This is gonna be the best movie of all time." Unfortunately, it isn't. Valerian is a colourful and refreshing addition to the sci-fi genre, but the story lacks the substance and development that the first of a franchise needs to keep momentum. The film offers several minutes of exposition for the City of a Thousand planets, the space station that houses...

  • Lots of people stopped watching porn for Game of Thrones’ season premiere

    Game of Thrones aired its season premiere Sunday night to a record 10.1-million viewers, stealing PornHub visitors away from their usual Sunday night me-time. The company reported that traffic was down 4.5% in the US during the live showing as opposed to a regular Sunday -- but this isn't even the most significant dip during an episode of HBO's hit show. Back in 2016, the season six finale robbed 5.2% of US viewers away from the popular pornography site. Another notable shift happened during the fourth episode of season six, in which Sansa Stark and Jon Snow reunited. Turns out family sometimes is more important. This may...

  • Video of snowfall on Table Mountain goes viral on YouTube

    It hardly ever snows on Cape Town's fabled Table Mountain, but when it does in the internet era, it's definitely going to get caught on tape. The courtesy comes from YouTuber Justin Hawthorne, who this past weekend experienced the fluffy precipitation from near the summit of the mesa. Snowfall began around midday on Sunday 16 July, and lasted for around two minutes, Hawthorne notes in a comment. The weekend cold front brought rain to Cape Town, but also a flurry of snow to Table Mountain "There had been a few lighter flurries over 15min or so prior. There were only a few spots on...

  • 50.1% of Netflix’s users are now beyond US borders

    Netflix has had a remarkable week, nay, a remarkable past three months. The company has unveiled its financial report for Q2 2017, and it's markedly better than analysts' forecasts. And that pushed the streaming firm's stock price up by 10.7% after hours. As for the hard numbers, the most positive gain can be seen in its increased user base. Netflix's streaming membership base now stands at 104-million, up from 99-million in the previous quarter. This is largely thanks to massive gains internationally. The company added 4.14-million subscribers in Q2 2017 beyond the United States' borders -- that's nearly double the estimates analysts provided...

  • How to survive Game of Thrones season as an ex-fan

    Back in 2011, Game of Thrones and I got on swimmingly. But as the seasons went on, we slowly drifted apart. I can't say if it was the unnecessary violence against women, the destruction of Sansa Stark's character or the heroisation of Tyrion Lannister -- but, as in many relationships, by the fifth year we were unrecognisable to each other. Our parting was not amicable. While I had turned my back on Thrones, though, my friends, family, and seemingly the entire world maintained their love for it. And so every year, for ten long weeks, I have to be reminded of the love I...

  • Twitter reacts to first female Doctor Who

    Jodie Whittaker has been named the first female Doctor in popular British series Doctor Who, and people have opinions about it. From "this alien can't possibly morph into anything but a white man" to "women will ruin everything you love," these opinions highlight the greater need for everyone to step away from their screens and go for a walk in the crisp winter air. Meet the Thirteenth Doctor #DoctorWho #Doctor13 pic.twitter.com/txHGz9tJEe — Doctor Who Official (@bbcdoctorwho) July 16, 2017 Many (male) fans were upset that the new series wouldn't represent them, despite having 36 seasons they can return to should they feel the need. Imagine one...