The numbers are coming in, and the Scarlett Johannson headlined Ghost in the Shell live action film is taking a boot to the teeth.  While some critics have given it the inevitable puffy reviews that get splashed across advertisements for it, the majority who are in the know about the original property it was based on have panned it. So where did the film go wrong, and is the whitewashing controversy really the only reason this film lost on its opening weekend to a CGI animated talking baby? Read more
So, a few months back, I wrote about the unfolding Hugo Affair, an attempt by two groups (Sad Puppies and Rabid Puppies) to effectively hijack the awards nomination system and ensure that their rather narrow view of SF&F was the only one rewarded and encouraged.  That post was also the cause of my first twitter fight as I laid out why it was a bad idea and tried to explain the basics of racism and sexism to a somewhat less than open critic. As it stood leading into WonderCon, it was looking grim for the future integrity of the Hugo Awards.  Then, in a rare act of sensibility, things turned out for the better, with the slates of authors proposed by the Puppies groups being soundly defeated on almost every front. The voter turnout this year was apparently 65% higher than the largest previous turnout. 
Recently, the Hugo Awards have been in the media a lot more than they usually are, even though it’s coming close to the announcement period for the year’s winners in science fiction and fantasy.  Unfortunately, it’s for all the wrong reasons.  As io9 points out, the Hugo Awards have always been political, but now they will never be anything else. As seen on Slashdot, the current state of affairs has some very familiar roots and apologetics at work.  Now, I’ve talked about this sort of thing before, but this requires an examination, if for no other reason than the fact that its an international award system that is being perverted.  Read more
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