DNA Podcast 079 – Giant Robot Smackdown with Professor Otaku

Image result for g-fighter gundam ready go

In this episode, Don and Rob enter the arena of giant robot combat with blazing hearts to face off with Professor Otaku- mecha history expert extraordinaire! The three discuss why Japan is so darn fascinated by giant robots, super robots vs. real robots, and the nature of mecha anime characters. Then, for the main event, Don and Professor Otaku spar off against each other over the Professor’s scathing review of G-Fighter Gundam in a clash so powerful that we only have audio because the cameras all melted! All this, and a surprisingly deep discussion of racism, are waiting for you in this episode of The Department of Nerdly Affairs.

Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt

Things Discussed:

Professor Otaku’s YouTube Channel (D2)
Professor Otaku’s Review of G-Fighter Gundam
G-Gundam Visual List of Gundams by Country
Gundam Wing
History of Mecha
Gundam Retrospective
Gatchaman/Battle of the Planets
Star Blazers
Your Name (movie)
Aldonoah Zero
Darling in the Franxx
Chuck Wendig
Dan Abnett
Getta Robo
Yoshiyuki Tomino
Koji Kabuto
Mazinger Z
Cyborg 009
My Hero Academia
Sword Art Online
Panzer World Galient
SPT Layzner
Mobile Suit Gundam
Ronin Warriors
Combattler V
Fist of the North Star
Leiji Matsumoto
Blue Oyster Cult
Mobile Suit G-Fighter Gundam
The Thermian Argument
Galaxy Quest
The Tequila Gundam (Called the “Spike Gundam” in the dub)
Shogun Warriors
Mighty Orbots
Robot Jox
Bubblegum Crisis
Gunsmith Cats
Riding Bean
Kenichi Sonoda
Warhammer 40K

DNA Podcast 078 – We Robots with Jack Ward

Image result for historical robots

In this episode, Rob, Don, and their friend Jack Ward attempt to delve into robots in popular culture, but what was intended as a light jaunt into robots and their place in entertainment turns into a deep existential discussion about what it really means to be human. Along the way, the trio explore possible definitions of what a robot is, how robots might truly be the children of men, and questions of our relationship with the machines around us. All that, and naturally sex robots, are waiting for you in this episode of the Department of Nerdly Affairs.

Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt

Things Discussed:

Hero of Alexandria
The Turing Test
The Golem
George Carlin First Appearance on SNL
Bicentennial Man
A.I. by Speilberg
Ex Machina (movie)
Maria from Metropolis
Robby the Robot
The Three Laws of Robotics
Erewhon by Samuel Butler
A Mexican Mystery by W. Grove
Tetsuwan Atom/Astro Boy
The Questor Tapes
Lost in Space
Yokohama Kaidashi Kikō (this might be the one about the robot girl after the apocalypse, not sure)
The Uncanny Valley
Younger Dryas impact hypothesis (comet wipes out civilization)
The AD Police
Red Dwarf
Rick and Morty
D20 Gamma World
The Monkey Sphere
City Story by Clifford D. Samack
The Culture Series by Iain M. Banks

DNA Podcast 077 – Hub Comics with Tim Finn and Jesse Farrell

In this episode, Rob and Don team do an international team-up with Tim Finn and Jesse Farrell of Hub Comics of Somerville, Mass. to expose the true nature of owning a comic shop in this modern age. Thrill as the intrepid foursome discuss the perils of pissing off your comic reading audience. Gasp as Tim and Jesse expose the hidden side behind the counter at Hub Comics and what really goes on when the doors close. Shudder as the true reading habits of comic shop denizens are laid bare for your eyes to behold. All this, and more references to Persepolis than you can count, are waiting for you in this episode of The Department of Nerdly Affairs!

Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt

Things Discussed:

Hub Comics
DC INK line
DC Zoom line
Marvel Superhero Adventures
 Art School Confidential
Ghost World
Warriors Novels (fantasy cats)
Understanding Comics
Neil Gaiman
MICE: Mass. Independent Comics Expo
Fun Home
March by John Lewis
Toon Books


DNA Podcast 076 – American Superhero Comics

In this episode, Don and Rob delve deep into the history of American superhero comics. From their early murky and pulpy origins to the modern digital age, the pair explore the rocky history of superhero comics and how they reflect American society.  All this, and the Crimson Bee, is waiting for you in this episode of The Department of Nerdly Affairs.

Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt

Things Discussed:

Marvel Comics
DC Comics
A Brief History of American Comics
The Scarlett Pimpernel
The Grey Seal
Gregg Taylor Pulp DNA Episode
The Shadow
Superman Old Time Radio Show
The Shadow Old Time Radio Show
Captain Nazi (I was wrong, he’s a SHAZAM villain)
The Crimson Bee (actually the Red Bee, but I don’t think it matters….)
Lucy Meets Superman
Captain Comet
Adam Strange
Tommy Tomorrow
Gold Key Comics
Charlton Comics
Del Rey
Kid Colt
The Comix Book
Captain Canuck
Shogun Warriors
Atlas Comics
Morlock 2001
Devil Hunter (I kinda combined a few versions of the name)
Iron Jaw
Merry Marvel Marching Society
Amazing Heroes
Ty Templeton
Sho Kosugi
The Marvel New Universe
Yuusuke Murata Spiderverse Poster
Crisis on Infinite Earths

The Death of Superman
Marvel Mangaverse
Woman in the Fridge Trope
Marvel MAX
The Marvel Adventures Line
Marvel Unlimited
DC Universe


Next episode delayed until Oct 5th.

We’ll be releasing the next DNA episode, a monster 3 hour extravaganza about American Superhero Comics, on Oct. 5th.

Sorry for the delay.


DNA Podcast 074 – Toxic Fandom

Image result for toxic fandom

In this episode, Rob and Don delve into the weird and wacky world of fandom. They talk about their own fandom backgrounds, explore modern fandom’s roots, and talk about how it evolved. Along the way, they discuss fandom’s positive side, and try to define toxic fandom. All this, and why the My Little Pony RPG is D&D for kids, is waiting for you in this episode of the Department of Nerdly Affairs.

Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt

Things Discussed:

Anime London
Universal Monster Movies
Jeff Wood
Rowerbrazzle (Hey! I’m on the internets!)
Amateur Press Associations (APAs)
Dr. Who Preservation Society
Star Fleet/X-Bomber
Voltron Shiro Controversy
Rule 34
Pendant Productions
Star Trek: Axanar
Fake Geek Girls Ty Templeton Comic
Slash Fiction
Steven Universe Toxic Fandom
My Little Pony RPG
The Flumph
Cosmic Patrol RPG



DNA Podcast 073- UFOs in Popular Culture

In this episode, Don and Rob explore the place of UFOs in our popular culture with the help of Jack Ward. The trio explore the earliest UFO reports, talk about how UFOs have changed with the times, and what our ideas about aliens say about us. Along the way, Jack tells the story of his father’s UFO encounters, and they talk about their favorite alien-related movies. All this, and the 82 kinds of aliens, are waiting for you in this episode of the Department of Nerdly Affairs.

Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt

Things Discussed:

UFO on Wikipedia
In Search Of Remake (It’s down near the bottom)
Twilight Zone (Night of the Meek)
Chinese UFO Cave Paintings
Ancient Egyptian UFO Sightings
Project Blue Book TV Series
Ezekiel UFOs in the Bible
UFOs in Rennaisance Art
The Gospel According to Saint Thomas
The Vedas

Six Million Dollar Man Bigfoot
Airship Scares
The Tomato Man: (I may have mixed this with this)
The Nazi Bell
The Monsters are due on Maple Street
HG Welles’ War of the Worlds Movie 1953
Watch the Skies by Curtis Peebles
Close Encounters of the 3rd Kind
US Military Has Plans for UFO Invasion
Kenneth Arnold sees Flying Saucers
Maury Island Incident
UFOS by Leslie Kean
Project Disclosure Videos
Red Planet Mars
The Three Body Problem
Silver Screen Saucers
Mysterious Universe
The X-Files
Fire in the Sky
Betty and Barney Hill
Billy Meier
Traveller RPG
Rendezvous with Rama
Edgar Michelle NASA Astronaut
I Married a Monster from Outer Space
Night of the Blood Beast
Who Goes There by John W. Campbell (The Thing)
The Abyss
Project Serpo (it’s down a bit)
Dulce Base New Mexico
Outer Limits Episode “The Architects of Fear” 
The Five Kinds of UFO Encounters
DR and Quinch from 2000 AD
James Forrestal
Shag Harbour Incident
Phoenix Lights
District 9

The Abyss alternate end
Mars Attacks

The Arrival
It Came from Outer Space
Earth vs. The Flying Saucers
The Mysterians
Plan 9 From Outer Space
U.F.O. TV Series
They Live
The Girl with All the Gifts
The Powers of Matthew Starr
Mork and Mindy
The First Wave
Torchwood: Children of Earth
Dark Conspiracy RPG
The Eternals
ROM: Spaceknight
I Come in Peace (Movie)
Dark Skies
The Hidden
V: The Series


Jack’s UFO Notes:

Dr. Edgar Mitchell (who passed away in 2016) was a NASA astronaut who traveled to (and walked on) the moon as part of the Apollo 14 mission in 1971. A Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient, he once completed a record-breaking nine-hour, 24-minute EVA on the surface of the moon. In addition to his distinguished scientific career with NASA, he was a strong believer in metaphysical phenomena. He was a strong believer in the existence of intelligent extraterrestrial life and claimed Earth had frequently been visited by aliens. Among the many times he made these assertions was in a 2009 interview with the Guardian:

“We are being visited,” [Mitchell] said. “It is now time to put away this embargo of truth about the alien presence. I call upon our government to open up … and become a part of this planetary community that is now trying to take our proper role as a spacefaring civilisation.”

Leslie Kean- UFOs
Before writing UFOs, Kean co-founded the Coalition for Freedom of Information, an independent alliance advocating for greater government openness on information about UFOs. In this capacity, she was the plaintiff in a successful, five-year Freedom of Information Act federal lawsuit against NASA, which had withheld information concerning a crash of an object in Kecksburg, Pennsylvania in 1965. In 2007, Kean co-organized a landmark Washington DC international press conference on official UFO investigations, which received media coverage around the world. She was also a producer for the 2009 independent documentary I Know What I Saw directed by James Fox. She co-organized a 2013 international conference providing a platform for scientists, government officials and journalists studying UFOs to present data, and she lectured at American University in 2014.

Previously, Kean worked as a freelance writer and radio producer. In the 1990’s she was an on-air host for a daily investigative news program on KPFA radio, a Pacifica station in California. She contributed articles to dozens of publications here and abroad including the Boston Globe, Philadelphia Inquirer, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Providence Journal, International Herald Tribune, Globe and Mail, Sydney Morning Herald, The Nation, and Journal for Scientific Exploration.. Her stories were syndicated through Knight Ridder/Tribune, Scripps-Howard, New York Times wire service, Pacific News Service, and the National Publishers Association. While spending many years reporting on Burma, Kean coauthored Burma’s Revolution of the Spirit: The Struggle for Democratic Freedom and Dignity (Aperture, 1994). She contributed essays for a number of anthologies published between 1998 and 2009.

American Government (Pentagon) admits
The Pentagon has officially confirmed that there was, in fact, a $22 million government program to collect and analyze “anomalous aerospace threats” — government-speak for UFOs.


Lists of Governments investigating UFO’s


Silver Screen Saucers- Sorting Fact from Fantasy in Hollywood’s Movies


5 Most Credible Sightings

8 World’s Best Places to Search for ET’s

Alien visits? UFO survey says 1,101 sightings across Canada in 2017

Alien visits? UFO survey says 1,101 sightings across Canada in 2017

Falcon Lake incident is Canada’s ‘best-documented UFO case,’ even 50 years later

Phoenix Lights A Sleptic’s Discover That we are not alone

Rendlesham Forest Incident

Aliens Shutting Down Nuclear Sites

POP Culture
Of Course Spielburg Believes in UFO’s

– Spielberg partly based his idea on the research of Dr. J. Allen Hynek, a civilian scientific advisor to Project Blue Book who eventually admitted that 11 percent of the study’s findings about unidentified flying objects could not be explained using science. Hynek has a cameo
– Hynek, who also served as a technical advisor on the movie, makes an uncredited cameo in the final scene of the movie. You can spot him pretty easily—he’s the goateed man smoking a pipe and wearing a powder blue suit who pushes through the crowd of scientists to get a better look at the aliens.
-Spielberg approached French actors like Lino Ventura, Yves Montand, and Jean-Louis Trintignant to play Claude Lacombe—who was based on famous UFO researcher Jacques Vallée—before settling on director and sometimes-actor François Truffaut.
– Close Encounters was a forerunner for ET.
Puck would help inspire E.T. after Spielberg asked himself, “What if this little guy didn’t get back on the mothership?” Rambaldi would also go on to design the character of E.T.

The situation on U.S. Navy Flight 19, from which the airplanes that appear in the Mexican desert came, disappeared off Fort Lauderdale, Florida, in December 1945. No trace has ever been found of “the Lost Flight 19,” which left the Naval Air Station near there in 1945.


Rumours of dropping hints

Spielberg, Close Encounters, and Conspiracy Theories

Project Serpo—an alleged human/alien exchange program between US military personnel and a race of extraterrestrials from the Zeta Reticuli star system. The story goes that, in July of 1965, twelve astronauts were taken to the planet Serpo aboard an alien spaceship and remained there for thirteen years. In exchange, the aliens left one of their own in the custody of the US government. This story didn’t emerge until 2005 in the form of a string of anonymous emails that were sent to selected UFO researchers, including Project Camelot/Avalon’s Bill Ryan, who created a website dedicated to the “leaks.”



Don’t Forget UFOlogy: The Influence of UFO Lore in Pop Culture

Indeed, the first reports of flying saucers in the modern UFO era pre-date Hollywood’s first feature film about UFOs by three years. It was in 1947 that pilot Kenneth Arnold’s famous sighting gave rise to the “flying saucer” term, but it wasn’t until 1950 that Hollywood produced The Flying Saucer, a cheap attempt to cash-in on the UFO hysteria then sweeping America—a hysteria incited not by cinema, but by numerous reports nationwide of disc-shaped objects intruding upon America’s airspace.

Ever since 1950, the movie industry has been grabbing hold of UFOlogical concepts and popularizing them through the science-fiction genre: “Men in Black,” “Close Encounters of the Third Kind,” “The Fourth Kind,” “Area 51.” Hollywood didn’t create these terms, they were all part of the common language of UFOlogy decades before Hollywood lifted them. The same is true of the now-iconic image of the “Gray” alien—a form that has its roots in pre-existing UFO literature and which has since has found its way into some of the most popular science-fiction movies and TV shows of all time.

Travis Walton had described such entities as early as 1975. It wasn’t until two years later, in 1977, that Hollywood produced its first fully crystalized cinematic image of the Grays in Spielberg’s proudly UFOlogical Close Encounters of the Third Kind. The Grays in the movie were based directly on first-hand testimonies gathered by Spielberg’s production designer, Joe Alves.

Communion was adapted for Hollywood in 1989; its poster featured a full-face image of a Gray, staring hypnotically into the eyes of millions of creeped-out cinemagoers worldwide. Then followed Intruders (1992), a miniseries based directly on real-world descriptions of Grays as documented in abduction literature. More Grays would then appear in The X-Files (1993-), Babylon 5 (1994-1998), Dark Skies (1996-1997), and others. By the late-1990s, the image of the Gray had supplanted almost all other pre-existing cultural imaginings of what an alien might look like.

Jupiter Ascending esoteric meanings
The Esoteric and Extraterrestrial Meaning of Jupiter Ascending

11 Musicians who have seen UFO’s


Top Ten Songs about UFO’s

DON NOTE: They forgot a couple:


Best Movies about UFO’s

Best TV Shows about Aliens

Close Encounters
1st Kind- When a person sees a UFO within 150 metres
2nd Kind- Leaves evidence such as scorch marks
3rd Kind- Visible aliens in or out of craft
4th Kind- Taken and experimented on
5th Kind- Mutual Bilateral Communication

Dad’s experiences


James Forrestal’s Death

NASA Friend

UFO Themes
– Government Conspiracies
– Brother from another Planet
– Evil Aliens eat humans/ want resources
– Aliens from another universe
– Aliens are truly the Earth People
– Aliens think we’re unimportant
– Aliens are future humans
– Saviors/Heroes from the Stars
– Animal Experiments
– Alien Bases on Earth
– Breakaway Civilization
– Hybrids

Foo Fighters
Ghost Rockets

82 Aliens

The Girl with All the Gifts

DNA Podcast 072 – Time Travel in Popular Culture

In this week’s episode, Rob and Don sit down to talk about time travel! The pair discuss the past, present, and future of time travel stories, how time travel seems to have developed fictional “rules” that everyone agrees on (but have no basis in fact), and what some of their favorite time travel stories are.  All this, and a voice from the future drops by, in this episode of The Department of Nerdly Affairs.

Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt

Things Discussed:

BBC Online Time Travel Possible
Doctor Who
HG Wells: The Time Machine
Asmiov’s Three Rules of Robotics
Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure
Natsu no Arashi
Doctor Strange (Movie)
Memoires of the 20th Century
The Warp Drive
Star Trek
The Fey Folk
John Carter of Mars: A Princess of Mars
Ano 7603
Mysterious Universe Podcast
Jack Ward’s Borrowed Time Audio Drama
List of Time Travel Stories from Wikipedia
Edge of Tomorrow (movie)
Daylight TV Series (Day Break, actually.)
The Sound of Thunder
Lest Darkness Fall
The Door Into Summer
All You Zombies
Captain Z-Ro
Mr. Peabody and His Boy Sherman
Max the 2000 Year Old Mouse
The Ghost of Slumber Mountain
Once Upon a Time Man…
Steins Gate
The Time Traveller’s Wife
About Time
The Restaurant at the End of the Universe
Back to the Future
Somewhere in Time
Time Bandits
The Undead by Roger Corman
Journeyman TV Series
A Conneticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court
Unidentified Flying Oddball
The Shadow out of Time
12 Monkeys
Travellers TV Series
Quantum Leap
Legends of Tomorrow
Twilight Zone: Walking Distance
Twilight Zone: The Execution
Twilight Zone: The Incredible World of Horrace Ford

Next Episode August 17th

Due to life and other unfortunate circumstances, the next episode of The Department of Nerdly Affairs will be delayed until August 17th.

While you’re waiting, use the time to go check out the latest episode of the Sonic Society’s Summer Playhouse!


DNA Podcast 071 – Fake News

In this episode, Don and Rob discuss The News, exploring the past, present and future of our primary source of knowledge about the world around us. In the process, they discuss the relationship between the news makers and the audience, how the news has evolved to meet the needs of different eras, and how the democratic nature of the news actually works against itself. All this, and Ben Franklin’s tips on choosing a mistress, is waiting for you in this episode of the Department of Nerdly Affairs.

Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt

Things Discussed:

Steal this Book! (Still available on Amazon.)
Amusing Ourselves to Death
Benjamin Franklin
Advice to a Friend in Choosing a Mistress by Ben Franklin
The Golden Age of Cinema
Milton Berle
Texaco Star Theatre
Don Henley Dirty Laundry
Kennedy Nixon Debate
Vampire LARP
CNN First Broadcast
Culture War Profiteering Episode
Citizen Journalism 
NHK World