The Incomparable-logo

The Incomparable

Arts & Culture

The Incomparable is a weekly dive into geeky media we love, including movies, books, TV, comics, and more, featuring a rotating panel of guests and hosted by Jason Snell.

The Incomparable is a weekly dive into geeky media we love, including movies, books, TV, comics, and more, featuring a rotating panel of guests and hosted by Jason Snell.

Location:

Austin, TX

Description:

The Incomparable is a weekly dive into geeky media we love, including movies, books, TV, comics, and more, featuring a rotating panel of guests and hosted by Jason Snell.

Language:

English

Contact:

5by5 Broadcasting 5114 Balcones Woods Drive Suite 307-292 Austin, TX 78759-5273


Episodes

581: Bad Dad, Cellphone Dad

9/19/2021
Arr, matey! Not only be it days from the equinox, but it be International Talk Like a Pirate Day. What better time to wrap up the Summer of Spielberg with “Hook,” a (misguided?) Peter Pan sequel starring Robin Williams as Peter, Dustin Hoffman as Captain Hook, and Julia Roberts as Tinkerbell, all gallivanting around a very crowded and overlit stage-set version of Neverland. We discuss the movie’s appeal to early-nineties kids, Spielberg’s commercial sensibility as a director, and the film’s...

Duration:01:25:00

580: We're Gonna Be Good CEOs

9/12/2021
As we prepare to exit the Summer of Spielberg, things have taken a bit of a turn. We’ve taken out our surgical tools to diagnose just what went wrong with “Ready Player One,” in which a director who is much more interested in movies than video games and who himself deeply influenced 80s culture is put in charge of a too-faithful adaptation of a book about video games and 80s culture. We spent a lot of our time imagining a much better movie that could have been made instead of this one. Jason...

Duration:01:31:46

579: Bad Dad, Crane Dad

9/4/2021
Hop on your tripod killing machine and watch out for common cold viruses — if it’s New Jersey, it must be an alien invasion! We cover 2005’s “War of the Worlds,” starring Tom Cruise as a dad who just wants to protect his kids from the end of the world. Well, maybe one of his kids. Screaming! Explosions! Implausible plot points! Not enough Miranda Otto! Maybe too much Tim Robbins! The 9/11 influence is strong in this one. Jason Snell with Shelly Brisbin, Monty Ashley and Jean MacDonald.

Duration:01:21:54

578: Fish in the Milk

8/28/2021
Stand up and prepare to operate your computer by waving your hands! The Summer of Spielberg continues with 2002’s “Minority Report,” a sci-fi noirish murder mystery combined with a vision of the future and a dose of social commentary. We discuss the future’s retinal-scanning obsession, Tom Cruise’s security eyes, and the amazing precog named Agatha. Is it now? I’m tired of the future. Jason Snell with Erika Ensign, James Thomson, Monty Ashley and Annette Wierstra.

Duration:01:29:24

577: Robot Monster Truck Rally

8/21/2021
The Summer of Spielberg turns its eyes to “A.I. Artificial Intelligence,” a project begun by Stanley Kubrick and completed by Steven Spielberg. Whether it works for you may hinge entirely on if you consider it a science-fiction story or a fairy tale. We marvel at some great performances, are frustrated by some creative choices, and in the end find ourselves applauding the boldness of the ending. (Now pass us some tissues, we’re ugly crying.) Jason Snell with Erika Ensign, Cicero Holmes and...

Duration:01:21:57

576: Unlicensed Dinosaur Park

8/15/2021
The Summer of Spielberg continues with what was once the biggest movie of all time, “Jurassic Park.” And you know what? It holds up, though we have an awful lot of questions about John Hammond and his business choices. Unfortunately, we also watched the Spielberg-directed cash-grab sequel, “The Lost World: Jurassic Park.” Jason Snell with Cicero Holmes, Kathy Campbell, Tony Sindelar and Jean MacDonald.

Duration:01:28:12

575: You're Going to Your Sister's? I'm Going to Space!

8/8/2021
Prepare your mashed-potato sculpture and zip up your red jumpsuit, because we’re about to discuss the 1977 film classic “Close Encounters of the Third Kind.” We discuss why this film is Steven Spielberg’s tapas, French-American UFO projects, “American Graffiti” with flying saucers, and much more. Plus Dan reveals a most unusual location to watch this film for the first time. It’s shaping up to be a real Summer of Spielberg. Jason Snell with Cicero Holmes, Julia Skott, Annette Wierstra and...

Duration:01:17:00

574: Time Cop, Not a Time Cop

7/31/2021
Grab a TemPad and step through a Time Door, because we’re discussing “Loki”, Marvel’s Disney+ series about how the god of Mischief met his match and learned to love himself. Along the way we talk about the “Doctor Who” references, the deep-cut comics references, the mighty Richard E. Grant, and the spectacular look and sounds of this outstanding series. Jason Snell with Aleen Simms, Moisés Chiullan, Kathy Campbell and Nathan Alderman.

Duration:01:13:15

573: Evil Helicarrier

7/18/2021
Put on your catsuit and your tactical vest, because we’re about to talk about Marvel’s “Black Widow,” which some of us saw in theaters. (And some of us didn’t.) This is a movie delayed from pre-COVID times, it’s the first Marvel movie in the Disney+ era, and it’s set during 2016’s “Captain America: Civil War”—conveniently before the main character dies. With all that, it’s also a film that puts its title heroine at the center of a “Mission: Impossible” style story that’s also, strangely,...

Duration:01:21:43

572: Selfie in the Weed Room

7/4/2021
Get out your ice skates, baseball bats, kitchen knives, and samurai swords—pretty much any weapon at hand, because we’re watching 2011’s “Attack the Block”! While not officially part of the Cornetto Trilogy, this British alien-invasion film shares a lot of DNA with those movies, and it’s about as close an analog to “Shaun of the Dead” as you’ll find—but with the comedy dial turned down a bit. It features career-making performances by John Boyega and Jodie Whittaker, who went on to become the...

Duration:01:03:21

571: You Paint Mushrooms Beautifully

6/26/2021
Some people read with their eyeballs, and still others talk to their books—we do both! In part two of our three-part survey of novels shortlisted for 2021’s top SF and Fantasy awards, we’re discussing the magic and romance of “The Midnight Bargain” by C.L. Polk, the spooky “Mexican Gothic” by Silvia Moreno-Garcia, and the murderbotiness of “Network Effect” by Martha Wells. Plus, what else are we reading? Jason Snell with Erika Ensign, Scott McNulty and Aleen Simms.

Duration:01:14:37

570: Why Can't All Movies Be Muppet Movies?

6/20/2021
Look, we love the Muppets. But the franchise has been very quiet lately. It’s time to get Muppet movies back on the big screen! And so in this episode, all our panelists pitch new Muppet movies we’d like to see. And along the way they do a bunch of Muppet voices, too, because of course they do. Jason Snell with Philip Michaels, Stephen Hackett, Quinn Rose, Moisés Chiullan, Nathan Alderman, David J. Loehr, Monty Ashley and Kelly Guimont.

Duration:01:10:15

569: The Worst Way to Write a Book, Ever

6/5/2021
Back in 2014, we read Helene Wecker’s novel “The Golem and the Jinni,” and we liked it! Little did we know that she was listening to us… and that she would end up as an Incomparable panelist! Now a sequel, “The Hidden Palace: A Novel of the Golem and the Jinni” has arrived! In this special episode, Jason and Helene discuss the first novel, how real life can intrude on a publishing schedule, the value and temptation of research, and how “The Hidden Palace” ultimately came together. Jason...

Duration:01:32:15

568: Collateral Damage

5/30/2021
Put on your capes because we’re flying into superhero action with season one of Prime Video’s “Invincible,” based on Robert Kirkman’s long-running comic. Before the Spoiler Horn, we’ll tell you why this show is worth watching—and warn you about how it mixes its love of brightly colored superhero imagery and storylines with logical but unrestrained violence and gore. Then we break down some of this adaptation’s interesting story choices and ponder where it might be headed in season two and...

Duration:01:07:28

567: Summer of Man-Thing

5/23/2021
We know there are a lot of superhero movies out there. Sometimes it seems like there are so many, it’s as if a random-number generator just assigned pieces of intellectual property to film directors. But where some might despair at this situation, we looked at it as an opportunity to harness the terrible power of the random-number generator and use our own creativity to assign the right directors to the right comic-book film projects. Now listen to our choices and try to tell us that any...

Duration:01:19:43

566: Everyone Loves Metroman

5/15/2021
Olo! It’s time to discuss an underappreciated superhero movie that’s only become more relevant after a decade full of superhero movies. It’s 2010’s “Megamind,” which transcends being an extrusion from the Dreamworks animation factory (well, except for its pop-music soundtrack) to become something greater. With an all-star cast led by Will Ferrell and Tina Fey, this is a great riff on the Superman mythos and the true meaning of destiny and heroism. Code: It’s great. Jason Snell with Chip...

Duration:01:06:10

565: The Avengers of Cities

5/9/2021
Our Book Club returns with a new way to approach this year’s SF novel shortlist: we’re reading all the Hugo and Nebula novels in three batches. First up: “Black Sun,” “The City We Became,” and “Piranesi.” Plus: What are we reading? Jason Snell with Erika Ensign, Scott McNulty and Aleen Simms.

Duration:01:13:53

564: The Millennial Falcon

5/1/2021
Don your winged jetpack and strap on your cybernetic arm, because it’s time to fight over a shield. Marvel’s second Disney+ series, “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier” picks up the story of two of Captain America’s pals as they confront serious societal issues, the representation of America in the modern age, and a gaggle of super-powered foes. It’s a show that takes some big swings, even if it does get a bit muddled, and we discuss its ambitions, what it gets right, and where it misses the...

Duration:01:22:08

563: When Harry Met Sally (With Monsters)

4/23/2021
Drop the camcorder and whatever you do, don’t run toward the bridge! 2008’s “Cloverfield” mixes giant monsters, post-9/11 reactions to urban destruction, rom-com tropes, “Jaws” style monster hiding, and found footage shaky-cam into an incredibly intense movie experience. Does it matter that the main characters are generic, or does it actually help? Is this a slasher film or more of a smasher film? Why did it kick off a nonsensical franchise of unrelated movies? And if it was made today, how...

Duration:01:14:12

562: The Gentleness Axis

4/18/2021
We have reached the end (for now) of Miyazaki Club. So we gather back together to consider why we’re drawn to Hayao Miyazaki’s work, how we define the differences between films as different as “Ponyo” and “Spirited Away,” a list of the director’s favorite things, subs versus dubs, the music of Joe Hisaishi, and which of Miyazaki’s movies we all prefer. Jason Snell with John Siracusa, Aleen Simms and Steve Lutz.

Duration:01:34:55