Missives from and to the internet, delivered by a series of tubes.
Welcome, dear readers, to our Thursday feature – a letter column of horrors culled from our inboxes. There will be things that are real and decidedly unreal – but hopefully all content presented here will be entertaining.
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Letters might be edited for space, but not for intent.
Thank you, internet.
Britany (@britl) asks: If your life had a soundtrack, what songs would be on it?
James: While posting a link to my guide to picking a new jam would likely suffice, I’ll also add that you could throw in any number of songs from that incredible run of albums Bruce Springsteen made from 1975 (Born to Run) to 1984 (Born in the USA), as well as any number of odd little bits, like some Wilco, Ryan Adams, Gram Parsons, Gillian Welch or Lady Gaga, depending on my mood. However, one song stands above pretty much all others in how I would describe myself, so it’s gotta be on the list:
Brandon: I’m partial to the soundtrack from The OC, because that show was amazing and delightful and such, but so much of those songs were so bright and “California” that I don’t quite think I could pull it off. Also, James and Scott are pretty much my conduits to music at the moment (almost far too much of my attention is squarely focused on comics and iCarly so… actually, that’s probably a good enough answer for now. My sound track would be the iSoundtracks to iCarly. Because why not.
Oh, and also this song would play at least once a week. You know why.
Red 5 Comics (@red5comics) asked, by way of Jay (@jayrunham): How many Atomic Robos does it take to change a lightbulb?
James: I’m not sure there’s a way to do a witty answer here, which is maybe the point of the question. My tendency when faced with explicit requests for jokes is to just be serious and straight-faced, because being asked for a joke is like being asked for a kiss: kinda creepy. Plus, what other answer is feasible? Robo would do it himself. He’s capable of it, he’s not lazy (like me, a dude who has literally had a burnt out lightbulb in the chandelier in his office for a year), he’d get it done.
Brandon: Only one, but while he does it, he’s using his other hand to flip off Edison. WITH SCIENCE.
Jay (@jayrunham) asks, all by himself: If you had to make a sequel to a major film franchise, and the film had to star Wil Wheaton, which franchise would it be?
Brandon: James Leask’s Sex Dungeon Too: This Time, It’s Ball Sacks.
Oh wait you said major film franchise and not “personal homemade collection”. Well in that case, I would say She’s The Man Again: No Seriously, This Time She Is. In which Wil Wheaton would play the titular character (because Amanda Bynes is gonna straight up go to the jails one of these days… (we’re worried about you, girl)) who is a man playing a girl pretending to be a man. Channing Tatum reprises his role as that one guy who put a tampon up his nose in the first movie, and there’s kissing.
James: I would also accept a sequel to What a Girl Wants, titled What a Girl Still Wants: The Star Trek: The Next Generation episode “The Game” Reenacted With Her Playing Ashley Judd’s Role. But no, let’s be serious here. There’s one movie franchise that we’re all begging for Wheaton to join, deep in our hearts and minds, and I’m just gonna lay it out for you:
Bad Boys III.
Ryan (@bakpakit) asks: Will either of you be going to see Magic Mike in theatres?
Brandon: Because I don’t generally get the televisions, I didn’t know what this was until watching Bunheads over at James’. (Seriously, you have no idea what is happening with movies if you don’t catch any commercials.) Anyway, colour me surprised that Matthew McConaughey is in a movie where he gets to “unsheathe the thunder” (which is a term I like to use to describe the act of McConaughey taking the fast train out of the sleepy hamlet called SHIRT TOWN). If he doesn’t make out with Channing Tatum a little in this movie, I will be livid.
Wait, I think I’m sensing some kind of theme here…
James: I’ll take that as a yes? We’re going to see Magic Mike because you want to see Vanilla Thunder and Vanilla Thunder 2 have smooches? I can live with that.
Cecelia (@sandozablue) asks: If you were somehow transported into a comic, which universe would you want to spend some time in?
Brandon: Marvel, probably. Well, minus all the fear and death. Mostly, I would just want to hang out with Spider-Man all the time, and stay away from bridges and burglars or something.
James: I would say Marvel (hang out with Spider-Man!), but the reality is that the Marvel Universe’s version of New York is not a place you probably want to live, because things are constantly going wrong. Because of that, I think the comic universe I’d most want to be transported to is the Mouse Guard universe. In part, this is because it’s a world of adventure, chivalry and tales of daring do. Mostly, however, it’s because the characters in it are tiny and I could rule over them like a king. Come to think about it, it’s a medieval setting. I could literally be the king of a world of adorable, sometimes murderous animals. All would bow! All would genuflect! Worship me as a god-king, mice of the realm!
Scott (@scottowilliams) asks: The other day you mentioned you were glad The Amazing Spider-Man star Andrew Garfield had a personal attachment to the character. Would you elaborate on the value of his status as a fan of the character to his casting?
James: Well, what I remember saying is that it’s “really cool” that Garfield has such an attachment to the character and is starring in the movie, and honestly, that has nothing to do with anything in the movie itself. The idea of someone being a giant fan of the superhero they’re playing can work out well (Christopher Reeve loved the hell out of Superman, though I can’t remember if he did as a kid), okay (Ben Affleck in Daredevil) or disastrously (the Nic Cage Superman movie that almost happened), but it’s not really a prerequisite for anything. You don’t need to have had Batman jammies to be a good Batman, and Garfield loving Spidey doesn’t mean anything for the movie itself if he doesn’t actually perform well or his “version” of the character isn’t one that works with the rest of the movie.
All that said, the reason I think it’s so cool that the guy playing Peter Parker is a giant fan of the character is because there’s a wonderful, feel-good story to it. The character means something to Garfield, and while that doesn’t mean anything for the movie, it’s awesome for him.
Whatever happens with the end result, making it was the dream experience for Andrew Garfield. He got to live out a childhood dream, and the romance of that speaks to the little kid in me who wanted to be Spider-Man when he was eight. I want Garfield to succeed because of this, and from what I’ve seen I’m optimistic he will, but that’s no guarantee.
Brandon: Whelp, I dunno. The dude really seems to be into Spidey, which can result in two very different reactions. The first is the reverent kind, the one that will ride along with changes and react within the bounds of reason when things happen to the character (whether those things are perceived as “good” or “bad”). The second is the kind that thinks they know everything about the character, and fuck you, don’t you know anything about Spider-Man, this is trash you should be shot with a dick gun. (Which is either a gun made of dicks, or a gun that shoots dicks. I can’t be bothered to choose right now.)
Anyway, from what I’ve seen, Garfield tends to be one of the reverent fans, and as such, has an understanding, without thinking himself more important than the story or the character, which will probably wield some great results. Also something something Mondays lasagna jokes.
Scott asks again, while holding his guts: Also how can I stop bleeding from every orifice?
James: So what you’re saying is… you’re asking for our… aids?
Brandon: You stepped into James’ stabbing zone. Normally, he’ll miss you, but the dude lacks depth perception. It’s a rookie mistake, and unfortunately, in the game of James Brandishes A Knife At You, rookie mistakes get you killed.
And you thought it would be the AIDS.
That’s it for the fourteenth installment of Um, Actually! Check in every Thursday for a new batch of questions. If you have anything you’d like answered, hit up our Contact page! If you submit anything via Twitter – to @blogaboutcomics, @leask or @soupytoasterson – remember to include the hashtag #UMACTUALLY so that we don’t lose it. Remember: you can ask us anything.