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.

532

Most Crushable Crew

Launch the Photon Torpedoes! In this episode we’re drafting mostly obscure characters from all of Star Trek lore, and creating our own TV series pitches with the results. If you think our drafts have gone off the rails before, you haven’t seen anything yet!

Jason Snell with Jim Metzendorf, David J. Loehr, Moisés Chiullan, Cicero Holmes, Jean MacDonald, Brianna Wu and Scott McNulty


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Previous Episodes

531

Linda Hamilton Bicep Fan Club

Grab a shotgun, climb on a stolen motorcycle, and get out your 90s slang phrasebook, because it’s time to watch one of the definitive summer blockbusters, “Terminator 2: Judgment Day.” We marvel at Arnold Schwarzenegger’s perfectly robotic demeanor, Robert Patrick’s steely stare and creepy walk, and Linda Hamilton’s—well, pretty much everything. Hasta la vista, baby.

Jason Snell with Aleen Simms, Annette Wierstra, Brian Hamilton and Kelly Guimont


530

Let’s Talk About Turnips!

Video Game Club

Hop a flight piloted by a Dodo and leave behind the world you know! Animal Crossing: New Horizons is the perfect escape. Journey to a deserted island to do digital equivalents of chores you’re avoiding doing in the real world! One of the most subjective experiences in all of gaming turned out to be just what millions of us needed this summer. Guest host Moisés Chiullan and his six panelists are proof that “the friends you make along the way” really is the whole point after all. Well, that and draft-format podcasts.

Moisés Chiullan with Brian Hamilton, Tiffany Arment, Kathy Campbell, James Thomson, Allison Truj and Kelly Guimont


529

Ancient Goat Lettering

Grab a wad of counterfeit cash and get ready to swim up a waterfall! Our Miyazaki Club goes back to the beginning, to the great animation director’s first feature, “The Castle of Cagliostro.” It’s a franchise work-for-hire being executed by a budding genius, which is a fascinating combination. The film mixes cartoony action and heist-movie tropes with clouds and landscapes and flying machines that come straight from Miyazaki’s brain.

Jason Snell with John Siracusa, Monty Ashley, Aleen Simms, Tony Sindelar and Steve Lutz


528

To Quantity!

Ten years ago today, The Incomparable began. To celebrate a decade of whatever this is, Jason gathered a dozen of the podcast’s top panelists for a round of toasts.

Jason Snell with Dan Moren, David J. Loehr, John Siracusa, Steve Lutz, Scott McNulty, Erika Ensign, Monty Ashley, Glenn Fleishman, Serenity Caldwell, Moisés Chiullan, Tony Sindelar, Aleen Simms and Chip Sudderth


527

Quantum Physics Training Montage

Inflate your pool floaties, prepare a wedding speech, and whatever you do, don’t go in the glowing red cave, because we’re discussing the delightful film “Palm Springs,” starring Andy Samberg, Cristin Milioti, and J.K. Simmons, and currently available (to Americans, anyway) on Hulu. It’s the kind of movie we’ve seen before, but with so many interesting twists on the concept that it always feels fresh. In addition to pointing out what makes the movie work, we’ve got a bunch of nerdy questions about its premise, the multiverse, where you can find C4 and a policeman’s uniform on short notice, and the ultimate disposition of one very strange goat.

Andy Samberg in a pool floatie

A high five.

Jason Snell with Erika Ensign, Sage Young, Shelly Brisbin and James Thomson


526

The Years Have Pants

Comic Book Club

Want to pick up a comic book or graphic novel and don’t know where to start? Our panel has a bunch of very different ideas for you to choose from! We’ve made a list of nearly two dozen for you to try—all available in collections, all ready to pick up without knowing anything about history or backstory or continuity or anything.

Jason Snell with Chip Sudderth, David J. Loehr, Lisa Schmeiser, John McCoy and Nathan Alderman


525

Sorry, Ocean

Book Club

It’s our annual read of the annual science fiction and fantasy shortlist, the Hugo Awards nominees! Our panelists catch up on the three books that weren’t covered in our Nebula Awards episode, and then Jason and Erika spend a little time on the short fiction nominees. And the raging debate on whether a planet is space or not continues!

Jason Snell with Erika Ensign, Aleen Simms, Scott McNulty and Dan Moren


524

ASMR From Hell

Alex Garland has followed up his film “Ex Machina” with another philosophical drama about technology, the miniseries “Devs.” It’s unique, beautiful, thought provoking, and doesn’t remotely stick the landing. We spend a lengthy pre-Spoiler Horn slot discussing why you might want to watch it (and why you might not), and then we break down the strengths and weaknesses of the show overall and the final episode in particular.

Jason Snell with Aleen Simms, Brian Hamilton, James Thomson and Glenn Fleishman


523

Chekhov’s Land Mine

It’s time to take a trip back to Vietnam and discuss Spike Lee’s new film, “Da 5 Bloods”! We discuss Netflix’s decision to release the movie right now, the plot’s many twists and turns, and all of the ways Spike Lee incorporates references to other genres and directors. Plus, heaps and heaps of praise for the cast.

Cicero Holmes with Philip Michaels, Brian Hamilton, Moisés Chiullan and Shareef Jackson


522

Burning Man for Aliens

They should have sent a poet, but instead we sent ourselves to celebrate the 23rd (it’s a prime number, as any alien would know) anniversary of the Robert Zemeckis film “Contact”, starring Jodie Foster in an adaptation of the novel by Carl Sagan. How do we reconcile the film’s debate about science and religion? Is this really two movies in one? How showy are the film’s set pieces and special effects? We’re ok to go—otherwise this podcast would be an awful waste of space.

Jason Snell with John Siracusa, Jean MacDonald, Glenn Fleishman and David J. Loehr


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The Incomparable