The Cinematic Adaptation Of Annihilation

I felt obligated to see Annihilation in the cinema since it’s going straight to Netflix in most nations & is being overshadowed by Black Panther pandemonium.  It’s based on a book … I haven’t read yet. Sorry, I’m not gonna be much help with adaptation insights here. Why can’t Hollywood ever adapt something I’ve read? Well Peter Rabbit looks like a terrible Beatrix Potter adaptation, but part of me still wants to see General Hux on the receiving end of slapstick violence. Oh, Ready Player One is happening. I resent that its ads are ironically  co-opting “Pure Imagination!” Grodd damn it, monkey’s paw! It should’ve been Snowcrash or Neuromancer!

My theater was almost sold out, so I got stuck craning my neck in the front row. It was not an ideal situation. The cast often looked flattened & oddly proportioned as a result of my forced perspective. I’m unsure if this enhanced the body horror. Below begins the annihilation of your pre-spoilers existence.

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Westworld Isn’t The Best World

Bombogenesis is fun to say but not fun to experience! So I took a vacation to balmy Westworld. Was HBO’s remake of Westworld the best world? Drat, I really have to stop spoiling my reviews in their headlines. I’ll start by noting the music, production values, acting, & opening titles are fantastic now so I can concentrate on nitpicking. Perhaps I should’ve gone to Alton Towers for its Wicker Man roller coaster instead? At least its gift shop wouldn’t run out of Bort license plates. Hop on the very SPOILERY critique train below for my cold take!


Michael Crichton realized he could split one 1969 movie into two franchises.

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Fetch Me More Sharks That I Might Jump Them!

“Fetch me more sharks that I might jump them!” I’ve retroactively decided that was my motto whilst writing The Dolorous Adventure of Brother Banenose. In other words, I embraced absurdity like I was the novelty vacation magnet to its refrigerator. (Yes, there’s still a plot & emotional throughlines but we’ll get to them in another blog with less focus on wackiness.)

So I was a bit nervous when I received the edits back on the book. I didn’t personally know my editor, Majanka Verstraete, so she was under no social obligation to humor me about its quality. I was also concerned that there might be a language barrier between her & the jokes. Would ninety percent of the text be struck through in crimson with foreign expletives in the comment balloons?

So when I finally psyched myself up to read through the edits, I was pleasantly surprised to find her notes clear & helpful. There were no calls to massively overhaul the story. The most common revisions she suggested were to cut down on the adverbs & exclamation marks. I personally don’t understand the modern dislike for adverbs as the succinctly describe how actions are performed, but I’m not going to argue with someone who’s had more books published than me. Many of the gratuitous exclamation marks survived, however, as I come from a nation that undervalues subtlety! I also made a few superfluous adjustments like changing the occupations of background characters that nobody will care about besides me.

So it’s probably for the best that the major publishing houses didn’t return my calls. I would’ve most likely been assigned to an editor whose professional advice would be to gut the idiosyncrasy out of it, incinerate it, & scatter the remnants across the globe so it’d be even harder for them to reconstitute. I think there was a vampire metaphor at the end, but the hypothetical result would be to turn it into the book equivalent of a zombie, which has an even larger cultural cache than vampires so long as they’re completely removed from the original Haitian concept of zombies. Luckily Booktrope allowed me to pick an editor who let me me keep it kooky! Ms. Verstraete is my new favorite editor!

So you’re still getting a weird book! Hooray for you! Now let’s see if it survives proofreading…


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Killer Robots Made Me Late For A Very Important Date

Headlines be damned! It looks like plenty of people are interested in Jemmacide! Last week’s post cleared 100 views in under two days! That’s more than any other post on my humble blog so far. Then it kept getting more views. In less than a week, it’s cracked 300 views, making it over quadruple times more popular than the previous leading post. It’s even surpassed my home page in viewership. If the rest of my articles don’t pull in similar numbers I’m going to be so mad at them! Total viewership of the blog is now north of 1,000. The amount of unique international viewers who’ve visited my blog has just hit 700. So thank you very much to everyone who Shared, Favorited, Retweeted, Liked, or simply clicked on the link for breaking all of my meager records. A very special thanks to the mystery person who searched for “jemmacide marvel comics,” without whose curiosity that rant would’ve never been written.

After all that, I want to see Elizabeth Henstridge become Jemmacide on season three of Agents of SHIELD more than ever. Even if it does happen in some form, it’ll still probably be much less cool than I imagined. After all, I was so pumped when Raina underwent Terragenesis only to be so disappointed when she became even more sidelined than usual. Ruth Negga nabbing a lead in Preacher had better be worth Raina getting fridged. I demand a Marvel Legends Raina action figure with swappable heads in reparation! While I’m making outrageous demands I might as well also request Melinda May, Mockingbird, Sif (armored not incognito), Mr. Hyde, Jiaying, and Jemmacide to go with the Phil Coulson I already have. They’ve got better odds of being made now that Marvel is being so petty about not having the X-Men movie rights.

I’ve already alerted most of the pertinent Agents of SHIELD people about the essay on the Twitter, the preferred social platform for irritating celebrities. It was met with a deafening silence. So it’s either completely right but they can’t confirm it this early, so completely off base they won’t dignify it with a response, or not what they had in mind originally but now they’re scrapping the previous plans to make Jemmacide a reality & ninjas are en route to my home. Occam’s Razor says they just hate me & want to be left alone. It’s up to you to contact your Member of Parliament and demand Jemmacide. Just be absolutely certain you spell her name right. No autocorrect!

Oh, here’s what I was planning to write before I was completely sidetracked by Jemmacide:

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“Ugh, Stop Trying To Make ‘JEMMACIDE’ Happen!”

I hope you’ve seen Avengers: Age of Ultron & Agents of SHIELD’s second season finale because here be SPOILERS! (I know that you really wanted spoilers for The F-Lash season finale. Sorry.)


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Just Some FILLER!

“EH?* Two posts in as many days? But you promised you’d only post once a week! Why would you do this to me?”

Well dear hypothetical reader, it’s like how your doctor tells you to take a double dose of your medicine the first day just to get firmly on the road to recovery. Trying to build a following for a weekly blog is tricksy without enough content to convince visitors to return. So that’s why I’m doubling down on entries. Trust me, I’m a doctor.**

I need to post some substantive content to get you invested in the success of this fledgling blog. I don’t want to lead off with a repost of an article commissioned by another site. The Dolorous Adventure of Brother Banenose is not quite ready for human consumption yet. So my best option is to show you some FILLER!

Feast your eyes upon the award-winning*** short film FILLER! If you already know me then odds are I’ve already forced you to watch it. That’s why you need to forward this blog to people I don’t know so you can all commiserate in regional support groups.

I co-wrote FILLER! with Andrew Birchenough. He, Fred Henry III, Lindsay Tierstein, Kristin Allmer, Tony Lombardo, Mike Dilorenzo, Brenda Belohoubek, Korey Hughes, Jack Gattanella, Casey Walker, Christina Hoffman, Krystle Von Thaden, Matt Rosen, & I graciously agreed to star in for free. (Should I add tags for these fine thespians too?) I ended up directing it despite not being a film student. FILLER! has since gone on to be an incredibly minor Interwuzzle sensation, particularly in The NetherlandsIt even has an IMDb page where you can rate it ten stars.

I am inordinately pleased with how FILLER! turned out & the response it has received. There are many more anecdotes I can share about this project. Give me some feedback about what you’d like to know more about in the comments section below. Keep your eyes figuratively peeled for more on FILLER! whenever there’s a slow week. If you’d rather not see any more FILLER!, keep your eyes peeled literally.

*’Eh?’ is a registered trademark of The Commonwealth of Canada.

**Doctor of Jurisprudence. Matt The Catania & its author are not responsible for anyone foolish enough to use this blog as a medical resource.

*** First Prize in the Alternative Film Category at the 2008 William Paterson University Film Festival