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Doux News: September 14, 2014

This Week: Love and the Oxford Comma – What Is and What Will Never Be – Sleepy Hollow – Sesame Street Star Wars Parody – Noir Just Got Noir-er – Dick – Amber Benson – Vampire Discrimination – This Week in Cats, Or Is It?

Love and the Oxford Comma

Neil Patrick Harris married David Burtka, his partner of 10 years, this week after an 8-year engagement. Congratulations, Dr. Horrible Howser!

The engagement prompted this blurb from Salon:

According to a rep, the two were married in Italy “in an intimate ceremony surrounded by their close friends and family,” which included their two adorable twin sons, Elton John and “HIMYM” director Pam Fryman.

Let’s take a minute to look at the last half of that sentence: “which included their two adorable twin sons, Elton John and “HIMYM” director Pam Fryman.” Did anyone else think that their twin sons were Elton John and a HIMYM director?

That, my friends, is why we use the Oxford Comma. Without it, you turn a beautiful event into a grammatical disaster.

Sesame Street Star War Parody

It's as cute as it sounds:

What Is and What Will Never Be

Iron Man himself, Robert Downey Jr., went on record to state that “There isn’t one in the pipe. No, there’s no plan for a fourth Iron Man.”

HBO announced that it will not move forward with Open, the Ryan Murphy pilot about sex. The show was supposed to star Scott Speedman, Anna Torv, and Michelle Monaghan, which was the only reason I was excited about it.

Sleepy Hollow

Audible.com and Amazon.com are offering a free audio book of Sleepy Hollow star Tom Mison reading Washington Irving’s original short story. If you're unfamiliar with "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow", it's not actually source material for the series; only the character names and some extraneous details are the same. But the audio book does offer a chance to listen to Tom Mison speak beautifully for an hour, and that's no small thing.

Noir Just Got Noir-er

Indiewire reported this week that James Ellroy and David Fincher might collaborate on a noir-tinged 1950s show for HBO.

When? That’s uncertain. Fincher is a busy man: his adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl is coming out soon, and he’s on board to work with Flynn in a remake of the BBC series Utopia for HBO.

Ellroy, best known for the LA Quartet of novels that included The Black Dahlia (turned into a blah movie) and LA Confidential (turned into a fabulous movie), just put out the first of a new LA Quartet series, Perfida—which I won’t read, since it is apparently written in the bebop-on-crack style Ellroy developed in Blood’s A Rover.

Plus, HBO already has Nic Pizzolatto talking up the second season of True Detective, which will explore the west-coast “psychosphere” and might have something to do with “the secret occult history of the United States transportation system.” Can HBO really handle two noir-tinged California series at the same time?


Amazon is developing a pilot for The Man in the High Castle, based on Philip K. Dick’s alternate history of what happens after the Axis powers win World War II. The project has serious genre credibility: not only does it star Angel’s own Alexa Davalos, but Ridley Scott and Frank Spotnitz (The X-Files) will be an executive producers.

Fox (the network, not Fox Mulder) has given a put-pilot order to a sequel to Minority Report, the 2002 Tom Cruise film based on Dick’s short story of the same name. According to Deadline, the series is “set 10 years after the end of Precrime in DC. One of the three Precogs struggle to lead a ‘normal’ human life, but remains haunted by visions the future, when he meets a detective haunted by her past who just may help him find a purpose to his gift.” Aw.

In other Dick-related news, there’s a new trailer for the Dick Casablancas Veronica Mars meta-spinoff I first wrote about here. The show premieres on cwseed.com—the online seedling of The CW network tree—on September 16th.

Amber Benson

Amber Benson—holy moly, she is frakkin’ beautiful, just look at that picture up top—is offering two sections of a novel-writing class at Writing Pad East, a LA-based creative-writing school. The Buffy star has broadened her horizons of late, writing a five-book urban fantasy series published by Penguin; the newest book is The Witches of Echo Park, which comes out in January 2015.

Vampire Discrimination

In response to some sort of monkey-selfie-controversy back in 2011 that I thankfully missed hearing about, the US Copyright office has revised the guidelines for who, or what, can file a copyright claim. The results are a disturbing example of the constant discrimination faced by supernatural creatures subject to the human hegemony. (Thanks to tor.com for the pic.)

This Week in Cats, Or Is It?

From the YouTube channel “I Don’t Think It Means What You Think It Means”:

Josie Kafka finally finished reviewing Twin Peaks!


  1. Ah, the Oxford Comma. A source of constant debate in my admittedly ridiculously pedantic family, you have finally provided me with an unbeatable argument. For that, I thank you.

  2. Wow, some fantastically interesting news here, Josie! I don't know if HBO can handle two noir-tinged California series at the same time, but I certainly can. I'd love to see a good adaptation of Man In The High Castle, too. As for the Oxford comma, I normally detest it, but given that I was marvelling that Neil Patrick Harris and his husband could have named their child Elton John, I'll certainly give you this particular one.

  3. I also thought for a moment that they had a son named Elton John.

    I watched the cat video and I have to admit, I still don't understand quantum mechanics. I even tried a "quantum mechanics for dummies" sort of book once, and got about halfway through before giving up. There's something about it that just does not compute for me.

  4. Such fun Josie - thanks for many smiles while I prepare for my week at work - well maybe avoid preparing.

  5. Josie,
    Are you familiar with 'Grammar Girl' aka Mignon Fogarty? I feel confident you two would be fast friends IRL. :)

  6. Heather--yes, I am a fan of hers. The link to info about the Oxford comma is one of her pages.


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