Taking Back Kickstarter

What’s that, bunky? You say you’re feeling tired, defeated even because media pros like Charlie Kaufman, David Lynch, Paul Schrader, and way too many others are monopolizing Kickstarter and getting the funding you know should have been earmarked for you?

You need to learn how to work it, dude. How to make Kickstarter your bitch. And Michael Cavna and Keith Knight are here to tell you just what to do:

HOW TO KICKSTARTER: Cartoonist Keith Knight’s 14 Tips for a More Successful Funding Campaign
by Michael Cavna

IT’S ONLY NOW, more than a month later, that Keith Knight fully realizes he didn’t quite know what he was doing.

“I went into it rather naive on what to do,” Knight tells Comic Riffs of his successful $40,000 Kickstarter funding campaign for his comic “I Was a Teenage Michael Jackson Impersonator.” Fortunately, “It was with the help of several readers who wrote and said: ‘I know you don’t wanna be rude bugging people about this, but [here’s] something you gotta do if you wanna make it happen…”

So that all fund-seeking creators and generous fans might benefit from his wisdom and missteps — from the finances to the psychology — here are Keith Knight’s 14 Tips for a More Successful Kickstarter:

1. I’D HAVE a countdown on my website saying, “10-9-8 [etc.] days till the launch of my Kickstarter Campaign!!”

2. A FEW FOLKS said I put the funding goal too high. They said the way to do it is to set it at the lowest level that you’d do it for, because it’ll definitely get reached, and most likely surpassed, and then people get all giddy and throw tons more money on top. People love a winner.

3. BE SURE that your campaign launches ends during the week, not the weekend. Weekends are where Kickstarter campaigns go to die.

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io9 Always Comes Through…

…With interesting and thought-provoking posts – even if you aren’t a science fiction fan. (See, it’s supposed to be an s-f site, and…)

Which new TV show will be your crack? Our First Impressions!
by Charlie Jane Anders

Every year, television offers you a herd of new shows. Some will become your new favorite series, while others will earn your everlasting hate. And our first clues as to which are which come from the pilots. Last night at San Diego Comic Con, we watched the pilots for five new TV shows — including Arrow and Eric Kripke’s Revolution.

Here’s our spoiler-lite round-up of our early reactions to five shows that are coming to your screens soon…The usual caveats apply — what we were shown last night were probably early cuts of these pilots, and they may change a lot before they air. And these are just our initial impressions.

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Are we hungover? Stoned? Still  asleep? All these shows sound great. Can it be that TV is finally understanding the genre? Or is Charlie Jane Anders simply the most wonderfully enthusiastic writer on the web since…since…hmm, don’t think we’ve ever read a “wonderfully enthusiastic writer on the web.”

For BREAKING BAD Fans

We know there are a few of you out there:

The 27 Best “Breaking Bad” Memes
by Dave Stopera

And 25 others!

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GOSSIP GIRL Won’t Tell If You Watch…

Gossip Girl – Season 5 Episode 1
by The Hudsonian 

**This episode originally aired in September 2011. If you are unfamiliar with the series, turn away to avoid spoilers, or bleeding corneas.**

Ah, now we see why this show is so popular

Rich kids and their lustrous lifestyles. How much drama could there possibly be?

You didn’t get the rhetoric in that question?

The episode begins with the cast each receiving their “save the dates” from Blair, where she’s set to become a princess of Monaco. Naturally, the audience would assume Dan and Chuck would take this news harder than most – both have done the dirty, dirty with Ms. Waldorf – but they hide their emotions well.

Sort of.

When approached about a story he wrote, Dan realizes it’s from the book he wrote, and that the book is missing. He points the finger at Vanessa (she ran off to Spain, or somewhere that’s not New York) and needs to track down the manuscript so the book doesn’t get published and expose Blair.

Serena adjusts to life in California on the set of the movie she helped get off the ground, only to be beaten down and prevented from rising by Marshall, who’s kind of her boss, and doesn’t like that the spoiled rich girl is better at his job than he is.

Chuck displays a new-found respect for life, and for the duration of the episode behaves like CW’s version of Jim Carrey’s “Yes Man,” a man-whore/thrill-seeker, but one who’s not funny. Nate works on adopting similar principals, but his prop-like character just takes up screen time for the “real” people of this show.

Blair  tries to deal with Louis’s mother in planning the wedding, but not only are there “family tradition” hurdles that must be cleared, there’s also the fact that Louis, her fiancee, constantly sides with his mother. Gee, seems that this kind of thing doesn’t go down well with someone who’s all about getting what she wants. Who’d have thought?

The episode ends with Serena tricked by Marshall into quitting her job but being brought back in by the lead producer; Dan getting Louis to help him thwart the printing of the book excerpt and incurring Blair’s wrath for it; Chuck suffering severe road rage in his attempt at living life, but brushing it off and forging on; and Nate finding that Chuck’s ‘Yes Man” attitude only gets him so far when he cons a day player into sleeping with him and feels horrible about lying to her.

I went into this series with a mostly unbiased mind, but its intriguing plot threads and timely humor pleasantly surprised me. If upscale, spoiled rich kid drama isn’t for you, you may be happy to know that the cinematography is very well orchestrated, almost making you feel that you are one with the cast.

Of course, I’d feel better about being caught up in Gossip Girl’s tangled web of high society living if I had even a fraction of her money.

Supernatural Season 1 Finale – Recap and Review

BY ANTHONY MEDINA

**This episode originally aired in May 2006. If you are unfamiliar with the series, be aware this review contains spoilers.**

 “I coulda killed you a hundred times today. But this, this was worth the wait.” John Winchester

I have to be honest, it wasn’t the easiest thing in the world sitting through this entire season. After the first few episodes I had basically given up on the show. It’s not that it was all together bad, I just wasn’t that interested in the “ghost of the week” angle. The only thing that kept me going was the hope that things might pick up if and when they found their father. And thankfully, it did. The back-half of this season really pushed the show to a new level and the finale “The Devil’s Trap”  sealed the deal.

When Sam (Jared Padalecki) and Dean (Jensen Ackles) finally catch up with their father, John Winchester (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), things take an interesting turn. They track down the Colt, a badass demon killing pistol built by Samuel Colt himself, and use it in the search for the Demon that killed their mother. John gets himself captured but Sam and Dean manage to rescue him. Unfortunately, it’s no longer John. Dean discovers his father is now possessed, by none other then the very Demon they’ve been hunting.

He starts using his demon magic to squeeze the life out of Dean, but Sam manages to grab the Colt and shoot John in the leg. It’s enough of a wound to expel the demon but not enough to kill him. However, John refuses to let the demon leave and demands that Sam kill them both to finally end their chase and exact revenge. Sam considers it but can’t bring himself to kill his own father. As a result the demon escapes and the three Winchester men leave injured and generally bummed out.

The season ends with a shocking and captivating cliffhanger. As they make their way to the hospital, an 18 wheeler unexpectedly crashes into the side of their car leaving all three bloody, unconscious, and completely at the mercy of the demon possessed man inside the truck.

I literally gasped watching that final scene. And how often do you get to legitimately gasp? Throughout season one they managed to provide enough depth and character development (a rarity for the CW) to make me really care about what was happening. This show has its hits and misses, and it certainly isn’t for everyone. But the last few episodes of the season really make for some exciting television.

So if there’s something strange in your neighborhood, who you gonna call?

Win-chesters!

(Sorry, I had too)

Season 1

Thinking Man Rating: 11 Thumbs Up

Finale

Thinking Man Rating: 15 Thumbs Up

**Be aware the Thinking Man rating system is based on awesomeness and should be disregarded if you are not now, or have never been, awesome.**