Diana Vacc sees “Inferno”

A perfect sample of the thrills, chills and excitement you'll see in Inferno
A perfect sample of the thrills, chills and excitement you’ll see in Inferno

by Diana Vaccarelli

*Be warned – this review may contain spoilers*

Tom Hanks reprises his role as our favorite religious conspiracy Professor Robert Langdon in Inferno. This time around he wakes up in an Italian hospital with no memory and has to team up with a Doctor to stop an evil plot that will threaten the world.


  • The production did a great job with locations. It was truly beautiful scenery. The way it was shot made you feel like you where in Italy with Tom Hanks.


  • Let’s start with the acting. To be blunt it’s was extremely cheesey.  Now, I love Tom Hanks – who doesn’t? But in this film there is only one word for the performance, and that is – oh, you guessed it (must’ve seen the film): CHEESEY!
  • Oh Boy! Talk about dull writing. The script can only be described as laborious and slooowww. There isn’t an exciting moment to be had.  Nothing about the story kept me from being fully engaged with only my popcorn.


  • I can’t in good conscience recommend this film to anybody for any reason. You are, of course, free to go to any theater that still is showing this dog and judge for yourself, but if I were the guaranteeing sort I would absolutely guarantee that you will wish you hadn’t.

Diana Vaccarelli is the TVWriter™ Critic-at-Large and, in case you haven’t noticed, a HUGE Outlander fan. Learn more about her HERE

Oh God – Another Writing Gig Being Offered on Craigslist


The headline of this ad we just spotted in the L.A. Craig’slist is “Seeking Writing Partner for gay-Themed Action/Thriller content TV/Film (Hollywood) so the good news is that the advertiser has the lingo down and is in the right location.

The bad news is the bit about the advertiser looking for “total collab with the right chemistry.” But that could just be this particular TVWriter™ minion’s personal quirk. I mean, “total collab” doesn’t have to mean “hookup,” does it?

Here’s the pitch:

I’m in the market for a new writing partner for gay themed thrillers sprinkled w/ comedy (TV series and/or film, possibly with comic series attached). The LGBTQI community is sorely underrepresented in this genre but action movies like Green Lantern, Deadpool, Huntsman, etc are edging on it. Not necessarily looking to do a comic but more of a Sucker Punch mind fuck adventure that takes the audience down an Inception narrative labrynth. So, quality plus unapologetic gay (and cys) sexuality. I have studied sketch & TV writing and have written 2 features, one in development. Must have a solid grasp of screenwriting structure, a great work ethic and a ton of ideas. Want to go all the way here with monetizing the fun! I’m an actor mainly but know how to write and create worlds. Hit me up either with writing samples or an explanation of experience. Looking to have 2x per week writing sessions. Total collab with the right chemistry.

I hope this is real and still available, and that’s a true fack. If you think it could be right for you, and you for it, the place to reply from is HERE

Let us know what happens, okay?

John Ostrander: Villain or Anti-Hero?

by John Ostrander

cumberbatch-hamletMy friend Brian Skelley recently e-mailed me a question that gave me some pause: what is the difference between an anti-hero and a villain? Having trafficked in anti-heroes for some time, you’d think I know but I had to parse it out.

As I postulated it to Brian the basic answer was that the anti-hero is the protagonist of a given story; the villain is often the antagonist which makes him a support character. The main purpose of any supporting character is to bring out some side or aspect of the main character, the protagonist. A villain can be the protagonist; I’ve written stories where the Joker is the main character, for example, or with Captain Boomerang, neither of whom could be called a hero in the conventional sense.

Whatever the anti-hero’s deficiencies, he or she are usually better than those surrounding him/her. Why are we rooting for the anti-hero to succeed? If we feel nothing for them, what is the point? At the very least, we need to be rooting for them to get away with whatever it is they are doing. We want Danny Ocean’s plan to rip off the casino to work, in part because (in the later movies) he’s played by George Clooney at his most charming.

For myself, I like working with anti-heroes more than the wastelandconventional heroes. I don’t know what it says about me to say that they seem to resonate more within me. I can more easily find something to identify with in the anti-hero than with the conventional hero. Writing Martian Manhunter was far more difficult for me than writing The Spectre. J’Onn J’Onzz was a far more decent being than Jim Corrigan. No doubt it points to some deficiency in me.

I guess I like my heroes more morally ambiguous. Certainly none of them have been more morally ambiguous than Amanda Waller not to mention the Squad as a concept. However, I’ve never considered Amanda to be an outright villain. Some folks who have written her took that tack, but I think she’s more interesting as an anti-hero. She has a conscience; she knows the difference between right and wrong. It doesn’t stop her from doing the bad things but she knows what she’s doing and does what she does deliberately. She hocks her soul for an ostensible greater good. What she does marks her as a villain; the reason she does it makes her a hero.

And then, of course, there’s Wasteland. Chock full of anti-heroes. We have a father who dissects his son’s biology teacher for traumatizing the boy. (Actually, by the end it’s a heart-warming tale… in a way.) I asked the reader to step inside the mind of a serial killer and, however briefly, identify with him. There have been occasions when I almost told a person, “You don’t want to mess with me. I wrote Wasteland.” That should scare most people.

Sometimes it scares me.

John Ostrander is one of LB’s favorite writers in any medium and the writing brain behind the most successful run of Suicide Squad in comics. Don’t forget to read his most excellent blog at ComicMix.

Rick and Morty’s Amaing Halloween Adventures

In all the excitement generated by the closing day of this year’s People’s Pilot, we totally forgot to run the following post about a genuine 3D CGI look at Halloween brought to the world by some of our favorite peeps – the creators of a modest little work of brilliance called Rick and Morty.

Now that we’re a bit less stressed and relatively more sane, here are the kinds of short, short videos that make us very, very glad indeed that the interwebs exist in all their, erm, sort-of glory:

So sorry we’re late!

WGA Screenplay Awards Reminder

A friendly reminder to our professional visitors: