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Episode 149 - LIVE July Hangout

Hey Everyone!

Here is our latest Google+ Hangout in both audio and video format. You can watch the video or listen to the episode here or on the YouTube page or Podbean feed.

Thanks so much to the handful of you who watched the July Hangout live. We had a full house on air and a great time chatting with each other. Unfortunately, I totally lost the notes from the show so I do not have links this time. You'll just have to watch and listen and let us know what references you need more information about. 

Our next Hangout is schedule for Sunday, August 9th at 2pm Pacific. 

See you then!

Until next time, game on!

Regina & Rhonda & Mark & Ryan & Isabela & Jerry & Sean

Episode 149


ConGregate 2015: Warrior Women

As I’m writing this, I’m sitting in my hotel room at the second annual ConGregate 2015: Scoundrels and Rogues. It’s the busiest day for me as a panelist. Some of the great discussions have been about fan expectations for film and TV adaptations, the essential superhero library, and how to do podcast interviews.

One of my favorite panels, though, was “Warrior Women:”

From Xena and Wonder Woman to Brienne of Tarth and Jane Yellowrock, warrior women can be very different. What defines them? What critical aspects of a character make them "warriors?"

When I contemplated what a warrior woman is, the results sounded like a superhero hero story. If writers are looking for a way to write a female protagonist, some of these thoughts might be helpful.


The agency of a warrior woman is very much the definition of a hero, super or not. From an amazon demi-god to a supernatural cheerleader, these five things explain who she is.

Initiative. She doesn’t wait for permission to make a difference; she just knows something needs to be done.

Conviction. She doesn’t fight simply for the sake of brutalizing people. Even if she sometimes struggles with the path she’s chosen, her convictions keep her steady.

Resolve. She accepts she will probably be alone in her struggle, that it may not yield immediate results, if ever, and she may not always know the right thing to do, but that is easier than doing nothing.

Inclusive. She’s not so arrogant as to think she is the sole solution to every problem. She will do it alone, but respects and welcomes others’ skills and contributions. But don’t drag your feet, there’s a job to do and she won’t wait long for others to get on board.

Prepared. She trains, learns, and equips for the task before her. Generally, she’s not reckless because playing smart gives her a slight advantage.


Is Willow Rosenberg a warrior woman? Do warriors have to carry a weapon? Maybe not a traditional weapon but you should be able to recognize her by these three things:

She has answered a call.

When someone says, “One person can’t make a difference,” in her core, she knows that’s not true and that it’s time to act.

She has a skill set.

At the birth of a calling a warrior woman may not know exactly how she can make a difference, only that she has to. Along the way she will learn how much she has to offer.

She is protective.

This comes in many forms and is not typically as straight forward as bandaging wounds and comforting victims. She can be the tank that takes all the hard hits.  


Against an unknown foe determined to kill everyone, Ellen Ripley survives because of her intuitive to take charge, solve the problem, and know when to take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

One of the earliest and most recognizable warriors is Wonder Woman. Her legacy has had ups and downs but her warrior agency is solid. She is a picture of conviction for justice and the protection of the innocent.  

Although The Lord of the Rings doesn’t have many female characters, sometimes it takes just one great act from one brave woman like Éowyn to change the tide of an apocalyptic war. She was resolved to go to war even though she had no idea what she really could contribute.

As troubled as Sarah Connor is, there’s no denying her nurturing and preparedness. She is our numbered and out gunned by nearly invincible Terminators but she’ll prepare anyway because she has to take care of the human race.

With the X-Files: Revival coming soon, I’ve been binge watching the original. I have so much more admiration for the character of Dana Scully than the first time I saw the series. She fits all the categories easily but inclusive may be her super power.

Scully has unwavering resolve and she’s teamed with someone equally resolved but whose convictions appear to be the opposite of her own. Without the willingness to be inclusive, she would have flipped on Mulder early on, gotten the X-files shutdown, and moved on to a partner and assignment with a less challenging path.

Day 2 and 3

I’m going to end my day at a midnight panel on good fictional book cover design. I have the whole day tomorrow to simply be a con attendee. I imagine myself digging through some comic book boxes in the dealer room. Then on Sunday I’ll be talking with others about how to promote your podcast and how to get more women in STEM fields.

I’ll Give You a Topic

What unconventional warrior women, like Dana Scully, can you think of?

Does “warrior” mean weapon?

Does this same definition apply to a warrior man? Are there differences?


July LIVE Hangout - Sunday, July 12th at 2pm Pacific

Hey Everyone!

We are getting together this Sunday, July 12th, at 2pm for our monthly hangout. Come join in the fun and chat with us about the latest and greatest geeky goings on. You can watch from YouTube and comment there or on our Game on Girl Twitter account. We would love to hear your questions or topics you'd like us to discuss. 

Until Sunday, game on! 



Famicom Females: A Brief Rundown of Minor Women in NES/Famicom Titles, 1983-1986

I've realized that, as this project has progressed, I've been mostly covering major characters in the gaming canon. Any damsel thus far has been in multiple titles (Peach, Pauline, Zelda), and there hasn't been a secondary character beyond Nana to discuss as of yet, and she was a fairly prominent milestone in Nintendo's exploration in gender. However, the Famicom is on the verge of exploding at this point in history and, in the very near future, a plethora of minor women will be making appearances in these games. Most of them are one-shots, but I have decided that I would like to at least touch on these characters and their roles in this series, and to start off, I'll be doing the first few years of the Famicom.

ha-castHogan's Alley - Nintendo, June 1984
Character - "Lady"

One of the innocent targets in the classic Zapper title Hogan's Alley is a woman in pink, carrying her wallet and looking generally surprised at the goings-on. She could be considered the beginning of a trend in light gun games, as women are commonly trotted out to serve as a form of penalty in several later titles in the genre.

Image source.

challenger-mariaChallenger - Hudson, October 1985
Character - Maria

Maria is the textbook definition of a damsel in this game. Her appearance is a lot like Princess Leia in the original Star Wars, at least in-game. She appears at the end of the stages, and cries for help.

So yeah, nothing really great here.

Image source.

mmcThe Mysterious Murasame Castle (Nazo no Murasame-Jou) - Nintendo, April 1986
Characters - Princesses

Hero Takamaru can save one princess per castle in this formerly Japan-only release. If he finds one of these damsels, he will gain an extra life, marking the first time a woman is essentially a power-up in a Nintendo title (that I'm aware of). Of course, not every princess is a legitimate one; some will reveal a demonic face and haunt Takamaru throughout the castle until defeated.

Once again, this is not the most progressive game out there.

Click to read more ...


Do You Want More X-Files? Of Course You Do 

Con*gregate, a sci-fi con in High Point, North Carolina, is coming up in two weeks. One of the panels I’ll be moderating is “Fan Expectations to Media Adaptations and Tie-ins,” i.e. do fans have the right, or just think they have the right, to vocalize their approval or disapproval? This panel is designed specifically for audience participation so I expect my moderating skills will be put to the test. Fans feel strongly about their treasured stories but are they (we) the custodians of the mythos?

This panel is made all the more interesting with the six-series return of The X-Files tentatively titled The X-Files Revival, due to premiere January 24, 2016 on Fox.

"The X-Files Revival," working title, Fox, 2016The X-Files ran for nine seasons, from 1993 to 2002, and achieved a phenomenal fan base. Toward the end, though, even the addition of Robert Patrick and more screen time for The Lone Gunman could not rescue the last two seasons, which seemed overwhelmed by its own mythos.

Not only will Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny reprise their roles as Dana Scully and Fox Mulder, but also Mitch Pileggi as Skinner and William B. Davis as the Smoking Man. The show also has most of the original producers, cinematographer, composer, and casting director. It’s like we all got abducted and returned to find the show is still running in its twenty-second season. (Seriously, how do we know we weren’t?)

So what are fan expectations when a beloved show returns with its lead characters and its lead creator, Chris Carter?

fan : noun : \’fan\ : 1. an enthusiastic devotee; 2. an ardent admirer or enthusiast.

Even with very little information about the new series, fans are already complaining. For instance, they say Anderson's hair isn't red enough for Scully. (This is a little fussy, but fans do have some rights.)

Media isn’t one-sided. The golden key for a creator is to tell a story that will create a fan base. It is a symbiotic relationship. The creator desires the fan and when Browncoats, Trekies, Carol Corps, or Whovians form, it is a sign the creator has succeeded. But woe, henceforth, the life of the creator is ever under the microscope as each subsequent creation will be judged harshly and the creator eviscerated if the fans are unhappy.

Why would the fan do this to the giver of future cosplay and fan-fiction?

Each fan has a unique experience with their mythos. It is defined by the when, where, what, why, and how of everything in that fan’s life at that exact moment. Neither the creator nor the fan have a hand in this because it is the organic substance that gives life to fandom. This also makes fandom emotional, which makes the mythos personal.

After thirteen years, only the most deeply emotional memories from the original series will bubble to the top for The X-Files fan base, and a lot of those from season one when the experience was new and unique. (For example, I remember how totally creeped out I was about the idea of a humanoid that could crawl through vents [“Squeeze,” Season 1, episode 3] in order to enter your home to kill you.) Compare fan comments about "Revival" to see where, in the original, the fan had seminal moments. Also, you might watch Carter's suggested episodes* before January 24. 

It's impossible to recreate that original experience so, even though we may want a season one we also want something new. Where have Mulder and Scully been and what have they been up to?

“Mulder’s not in a great place,” says Duchovny, looking shabby in gray tee, shoes without shoelaces, and much stubble. “He’s wearing bad jeans, so you can just extrapolate from my wardrobe. He’s in a dark, dark place.” – Jeff Jensen, “The X-Files returns: EW has the exclusive first look and stories from the set,” June 25, 2015, EW

Just like the gesture Netflix made giving us more Arrested Development, I hope X-Philes will appreciate that the creators of The X-Files are fans as well and it’s not their intention to ruin our best memories from the 90s.

“We’re not going to reboot any of the old favorites, although it was something we all thought about,” says Carter. “These are all brand new stories. We hope to scare you in brand new ways.” – Jeff Jensen, “The X-Files returns: EW has the exclusive first look and stories from the set,” June 25, 2015, EW

I'll Give You a Topic

What would you love to see in The X-Files Revival?

What is your most passionate fan memory?

Is it possible for that memory to be destroyed by new additions to the mythos?

*The entire series of The X-Files is available on Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon. 

Season 1, episode 1, "Pilot"
Season 1, episode 2, "Deep Throat"
Season 1, episode 13, "Beyond the Sea"
Season 1, episode 24, "The Erlenmeyer Flask"
Season 2, episode 2, "The Host"
Season 3, episode 4, "Clyde Bruckman's Final Repose"
Season 4, episode 14, "Memento Mori"
Season 5, episode 5, "The Post Modern Prometheus"
Season 5, episode 12, "Bad Blood"
Season 6, episode 18, "Milagro"

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