Tag: Discussion

DNA Podcast 084 – Food in Popular Culture

Ronald McDonald 1.0

In this episode, Rob and Don explore the weird relationship between food and popular culture. From C3POs to Mac Tonight, the pair discuss how food is both shunned and adored in popular culture, and how this relationship has changed over time. Along the way, they ask the big questions, like “Can you eat D&D Monsters?” and “Why are North American so afraid of food in their media?” All this, and the Creepy Burger King, are waiting for you in this episode of the Department of Nerdly Affairs.

Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt

Things Discussed:

Cerial Box Prizes
Tokyo Midnight Diner
Bartender Manga
The Stuff
Descent into the Depths of the Earth (D&D)
The Underdark
Delicious in the Dungeon
Reborn as a Vending Machine, I Now Wander the Dungeon
Restaurant in Another World
Nobunaga’s Chef
Isekai Izakaya “Nobu”
Dr. Stone
Iron Chef
Cutthroat Kitchen
Wok With Yan
Julia Child
Gordon Ramsey
Anthony Bordain
Alton Brown
Good Eats
NHK World
Aunt Jemima
Ronald McDonald
Ronald McDonald Dating
Mac Tonight
Wendy’s Twitter Feed
Burger King Bearskin Rug
The Burger King
Elias’s Big Boy
Petey Wheat (Scroll down….)
Volto From Mars
Folgers Coffee Romantic Commercials (Taster’s Choice actually….)
Long Long Man Japanese Commercial Series (HAW! Subtle!)
Messin With Sasquatch
Food Wars: Shokugeki no Soma

DNA Episode 083 – Warhammer with Professor Otaku

In this episode, Don and Rob are joined again by Professor Otaku to discuss the legendary tabletop miniatures game Warhammer. From the original Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay to the glory that is Warhammer 40k, the trio dive deep into the dark lore of the game which rules basement tables and hobby shops across the UK. Along the way, they discuss how the game has changed over the years, the things that make the Warhammer setting unique, and their own memories of playing the game. All this, and so much fun the inquisition would outlaw it, are waiting for you in this episode of the Department of Nerdly Affairs.

Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt

Things Discussed:

Games Workshop
White Dwarf
Citadel Miniatures
Warhammer RPG
Warhammer 40K
Rogue Trader
The Knight Sabres/Bubblegum Crisis
Age of Sigmar
Adeptus Titanicus
40K: The Dark Imperium Map
The Eldar
The Tau

DNA Podcast 082 – Character Progression and Gamerisms in Media

In this episode Don and Rob discuss Don’s view that tabletop RPGs and video games have influenced the way people write and consume stories. Delving deep into the topic, the pair discuss Kung Fu movies, westerns, Isekai stories and (naturally) litRPGs. All this and a deep discussion into where Dr. Who went wrong and how it’s connected to sitcoms, are waiting for you in this episode of The Department of Nerdly Affairs.

Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt

Things Discussed:

The Lester Dent Pulp Formula
Michael Moorcock’s How to Write a Book in Three Days
White Box Dungeons and Dragons
The Hero’s Journey
Commando (movie)
The Shaw Brothers (That’s all you need to know….)
Horse Operas
The Rebel: Johnny Yuma
Shout Factory TV
Go (the game)
Where Eagles Dare
Die Hard
Dragonball Z
“It’s over 9000!”
The Righteous Avenger Plot (from my blog)
Death Wish
WTF Happened to PG-13? (YouTube Video)
No Game No Life (Abridged Version)
Rocky (film)
All the Write Moves by R.A. Paterson
Wired for Story by Lisa Cron
The Kishotenketsu
Buffy The Vanpire Slayer
Hokuto no Ken (Fist of the North Star)
Two Broke Girls
How I Met Your Mother

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 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 67 – Intelligence in Popular Culture

In this episode, Don and Rob sit down with Jack Ward to discuss portrayals of Intelligence in popular culture. The three delve into the hows and whys of the way smart people are portrayed the way they are in the media, the difference between wisdom and intelligence, and how it’s all linked with the ways the human brain works. All this, and why Daniel Kahneman is the most important person you’ve never heard of, is waiting for you in this episode of the Department of Nerdly Affairs.

Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt

Things Discussed:

The Great Gazoo
Mr. Myxlpltzk
Professor Jordan Peterson
Marcus Brody (Indiana Jones)
Geeks vs Nerds Podcast
Andy Griffith
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
Reboot TV
Thinking Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman
Rabbit Brain – Tortoise Brain (actually called “Hare Brain Tortoise Mind.“)
Sliders TV
The Dark Web
Doogie Howser MD
Death Note
Being There (Movie)
John Grisham
Lee Child
DNA Nerd Episode
Kramer vs. Kramer
Glengary Glen Ross
The S.P.I.N.E. of a Good Story (from Rob’s blog)
Epic Rap Battles: Steven Spielberg vs Alfred Hitchcock
Invisible Ink by Brian MacDonald
Inciting Incident
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
Stephen Hawking
Dirty Harry
Charles Bronson

DNA Podcast 059 – Portrayals of Strength in the Media

In this episode, Don and Rob look at cultural views of strength in the media. The pair explore why lead characters being strong is so important to North American audiences, how views of strength have changed over time, and what a strong female fighter really means. All this, and how Free to Be You and Me destroyed a generation, is waiting for you in this episode of the Department of Nerdly Affairs.

Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt

Things Discussed

1950’s Education Films and PSAs
Bob Dobbs
Self Actulization
Free To Be You and Me
1970’s Exploitation Films
John Carpenter
Slasher Films
Texas Chainsaw Massacre
Mystery Science Theatre Industrial Arts Film
Dirty Harry
Charles Bronson
Adam 12
Death Wish
Cobra (Stallone)
The Hills Have Eyes
Silver Bullet
Spider Baby
Married with Children
Fight Club
1980’s Action Films
The Rock (movie)
Con Air (movie)
Hippy Movement
90s Milk Ads
Conan the Barbarian
Twin Peaks
Star Trek: Discovery
Surf Nazis Must Die

DNA Podcast 049 – Star Trekking with Jack Ward


In this episode, Don and Rob are joined by Jack Ward to go where no man has boldly gone before! The past and future collide as the three discuss the history of Trek and whether or not it’s still relevant in today’s world. All this, and Jack and Rob’s big throwdown on Star Trek Enterprise, is waiting for you in this episode of the Department of Nerdly Affairs.

    Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt 

Things Discussed:

Star Trek
Star Trek the Next Generation
Star Trek Deep Space Nine
Star Trek Voyager
Star Trek Enterprise
Star Trek Discovery
Gene Roddenberry
Gene Roddenberry Crashlands Plane
Lucille Ball Star Trek Pilot
Inside Star Trek The Real Story Herb Solo
Star Trek was first TV show that started in Colour
Nichelle Nicols meets Martin Luther King
Land of the Giants
Gene L. Coon
Gold Key Star Trek Comics
Leonard Nimoy Billboard Story (I can’t find the story, but I can find the ad)
Star Trek Phase II
Free Enterprise
Earth Final Conflict
In Defense of the Male Miniskirt Post on Rob’s Blog
Starlog Magazine
Babylon 5
The Origin of the BORG
Manny Coto
China Bans LGBT Content

DNA Podcast 48 – History of Manga (Part 2)

Dragonball Z

In this episode, Rob and Don finish their discussion of the History of Japanese Comics. Starting in the 1980’s, they discuss the rise and fall of Shonen Jump, how Dragonball changed everything, and how modern manga have been influenced by animation. All this, and Bakuman, in this episode of the Department of Nerdly Affairs.

    Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt 

Things Discussed:

Gung Ho (movie)
Shonen Jump
Go Nagai
Shameless School PTA
Young Sunday
Moto Haggio
The Group of 24
Japanese Garage Kits
The Japanese Manga Studio System
Journey to the West (The Monkey King)
Fist of the North Star (Hokuto no Ken)
Dr. Slump
Dragonball Z
Jojo’s Bizzare Adventure
Cyber Blue
Sakigake!! Otokojuku
City Hunter
Josei Manga
Mai the Psychic Girl
Slam Dunk
Sailor Moon
Magical Girl Genre
Shonen Jump Sales Chart
One Piece
Yu-yu Hakusho
Death Note
Hikaru no Go
Pokémon or if you prefer….
My Hero Academia
Robot x Lazerbeam
One Punch Man
Franken Fran
Boichi (this sums it up pretty well….)
Dr. Stone

DNA Podcast 044 – Musical Brains



In this episode, Don and Rob are joined by their friend Richard Moule to discuss music and how it affects us. The trio explore the physical processes behind our reactions and interactions with music and discuss how music and humans evolved together over time. The three also delve into music as soundtrack, and discuss the ways in which moviemakers use music to control and shape the emotions of the audience. All this, and  why John Williams owes Gustav Holst royalties is waiting for you in this episode of the Department of Nerdly Affairs.

    Closing Music:

Ode to Joy performed by Oliver Eckelt 

Things Discussed:

Dr. Daniel Levitan
Sylvanian Nose Flute (earliest musical instrument)
Yoruba Tribe Talking Drums
Edgar Varez (Experimental Composer)
Insane Clown Posse Fucking Magnets How Do they Work?
A History of Talkies and Silent Film
Holst’s The Planets
John Carpenter (composer)
Invisble Soundtrack Music
Thrill Jockey
Opening to JAWS
Tubular Bells (it’s a classic, but this is my fave take on it!)
Hans Zimmer
Midnight Express
The Revenant
You Could Be Mine
Blood Red Skies
Lalo Schifrin (Dirty Hairy Soundtrack)
John Barry
Barry Gray (actual composer of the Thunderbirds)
Saturday Night Fever
The Meteors
Music in Neo-Natal Wards
The Simpsons- Yvan Eht Nioj