Welcome to 2007! We are halfway through the first month of the new year, and our writers are already rising to the challenge of making this year even better than last. Stick with us throughout as we continue to bring you the most interesting and varied collection of news, reviews, and opinions you're likely to read anywhere.
From Music Editor Connie Phillips:
DJRadiohead kicked off a new column honoring those who are nominated for 2007 Blues Music Awards. In this first installment he looks at Watermelon Slim & The Workers, giving readers an entertaining history lesson.
Joan Hunt also launched a blues-related column. In Diggin' The Blues: Bo Carter she uncovers and shines a light on this little known artist.
In Music Review: Chris Bell – I Am the Cosmos, Bryan Price takes an expansive look at both the artist and the album, sharing a wealth of knowledge in an engaging way.
From Books Editor Natalie Bennett:
How to get boys to read? That's a puzzle exercising many parents and teachers, but Mel Odom has an answer: great books. He writes entertainingly, but with passion, about Wiley And Grampa #4 Super Soccer Freak Show, which obviously fits that description.
By contrast, Richard Marcus's interview with Christopher Moore, author of You Suck, is definitely for adults, as are the books. Richard responds to his subject's light touch with some playful thoughts of his own, and the whole comes together beautifully.
From Asst. Books Editor Gordon Hauptfleisch:
Though not without its merits, C. Michael Bailey says, the bland Power Failure: The Inside Story of the Collapse of Enron falls short of conveying the Enron story as the "Everyman morality play" it essentially is, with "larger-than-life characters, lust, greed, gluttony, and all of the requisite waste and conspicuous consumption." C. Michael not only deftly articulates this deficiency , but he also puts the book in context with other books about Enron, providing a useful overview and more comprehensive picture.
It’s an idjication, I tells ya! Bill Sherman’s entertaining review of Popeye Vol. 1 – "I Yam What I Yam" is not only an enjoyable slice of Popeyeiana (if you will), it also gives us an idea of the bit-player origins of our spinach-scarfing seafarer in his comic-strip incarnation, and describes a scene in which “the dainty Miz Oyl hauls off on some uppity skirt who also has her eye on Popeye.” How romantical!
From TV Editor TV and Film Guy:
From the truly ridiculous notion of TV in a taxicab (Eric Friesen), to super-awesome helicopters in the desert (Matt Paprocki), Blogcritics TV section has it all. We have an argument against Disney's uber-popular High School Musical (Dante A. Ciampaglia). Take that, you dancing prom queens.
From Film Editor Lisa McKay:
"Why is a film about the most horrendous, terrifying, tragic situation a man might imagine so exhilarating, so stirring, so life-affirming?" he asks. Why indeed? Part personal memoir, part critical analysis, Duke de Mondo's review of United 93 is not to be missed.
From Culture Editor Diana Hartman:
From the perspective of the Australian educational system, Jonathan Scanlan writes poignantly and passionately about the importance of teaching history. His observations apply globally, and not just within the halls of academia, but throughout societies. ("First and foremost, history aids people with decision-making. Understanding the past provides us with context." – from History Only Appreciates In Value).
From Asst. Culture Editor Melita Teale:
The streets of Atlanta have been kept safe from Felipe Fernandez-Armesto. Howard Dratch tells us why in Oxford Historian Survives Attack by Atlanta Police.
And I was feeling sorry for myself because the Toronto Transit Commission is craptacular. Mayank Austen Soofi's interview with Manika Dhama will put things in perspective the next time I'm stuck using it.
From Politics Editor Dave Nalle:
Chávez to World: "I Am A Communist" by Clavos is an informative update in the latest follies of the man who would like to be a new Mussolini.
Canadian Politics: Canada's Drug Policy A Bust by Richard Marcus is a quick rundown to remind us that the war on drugs is ridiculous no matter which country it afflicts.
I Do Not Hate Iran, But I Fear Those Who Rule Iran by Bird of Paradise gives a nice, rational explanation of what is so fundamentally wrong with Iran and its relations with other nations.
From Sports Editor Matthew T. Sussman:
Alessandro Nicolo began the week with a rousing criticism of soccer shootouts. He lays out the argument pretty well, but… what's soccer?
If you have to ask someone else what Sal Marinello thinks of Barry Bonds reportedly testing positive for amphetamines, then welcome to Blogcritics!
Zach Baker, that observant fella, found a great link between the 20th anniversary of "The Drive" and Marty Schottenheimer's chance at NFL playoff redemption. Key word: "chance." He blew it yet again as the Chargers fell to the Patriots.
From Gaming Editor Ken Edwards:
Mac Game Review: SketchFighter 4000 Alpha by Cameron Graham. SketchFighter is a fun arcade game, and yet another solid release from Ambrosia Software.
BC Magazine 2006 Game of the Year by Ken Edwards. Fifteen of BC Magazine's gaming writers bring you the best games of 2006.
From Technology Editor Daniel Woolstencroft:
It's been a great few weeks in the SciTech section; we've enjoyed quite a bit of Digg success, the quality and rate of posts has picked up, and this week's editors pick has been the hardest yet! Thanks to all who contributed, and we look forward to many more to come.
Eric Berlin tries to keep his blogging focus, while Elvira Black hopes the whole thing isn't becoming obsolete.
No picks this week.