Buffy audio play out next month

Exciting news for Scoobies! Prepare to venture back into the Buffyverse through a fresh and thrilling sequel story.

Audible has unveiled an exciting new audio project titled “Slayers: A Buffyverse Story,” featuring the triumphant return of several beloved cast members from the original series.

Among the stars making their way back to the Buffyverse are James Marsters, reprising his iconic role as Spike, Charisma Carpenter, making a comeback as Cordelia Chase, Anthony Head as the ever-wise Rupert Giles, Juliet Landau embracing her role as Drusilla, Emma Caulfield returning as the enigmatic Anya, Amber Benson as the beloved Tara Maclay, James C Leary in his lovable Clem persona, and Danny Strong embodying Jonathan Levinson once more. Joining this stellar ensemble is the talented new addition, Laya DeLeon Hayes.

The new installment is co-crafted by Benson in collaboration with the skilled writer Christopher Golden, the story will resume two-decades after the climactic conclusion of Buffy The Vampire Slayer. It will centre on Spike, who has surreptitiously immersed himself in the shadowy underbelly of Los Angeles, persuading the sinister forces that his malevolence has returned. However, his intricate cover is unexpectedly jeopardised when a sixteen-year-old named Indira Nunnally comes into the picture, thrusting him back into the role of overseeing young slayers, a duty he thought he’d left behind for good.

While he attempts to track down a watcher for Indira, their paths collide with the veteran Slayer of a parallel reality where Buffy Summers never existed and where Cordelia Chase is the one-and-only Slayer. She needs Spike’s help with stopping Drusilla, who is terrorising her world.

Marsters said: “I’m ecstatic to be back with my dear friends for this next chapter in the Buffyverse, as we take listeners on a familiar but unexpected journey chock full of horror, passion and mischief. I’m excited for old and new fans to experience this beloved world of vampire slaying like never before, brought to life through immersive audio storytelling.”

Meanwhile, Rachel Ghiazza, Chief Content Officer at Audible said: “Slayers: A Buffyverse Story offers a fresh, dynamic take on a cult-classic that takes listeners on a fun and nostalgic ride. The all-star cast reprising beloved roles, as well as newcomers, bring to life a storyline that will entertain fans of the original series and pull in first-time Sunnydale visitors.”

Slayers: A Buffyverse Story will be available on Audible beginning 12th October 2023.

Check out Bite Me: A Buffy Podcast.


Margot Robbie brings the iconic Barbie doll to life in the official trailer for Warner Bros.’ “Barbie”. The Oscar-nominated actress leads a star-studded cast that includes Ryan Gosling as Barbie’s love interest, Ken. But they’re not the only versions of the famous toy in the film – singer Dua Lipa appears as a mermaid Barbie, alongside upcoming Doctor Who, Ncuti Gatwa-alongside many other actors playing different iterations of the beloved doll.

While the first trailer teased a nod to Stanley Kubrick’s “2001: A Space Odyssey”, it didn’t reveal much about the plot or characters. However, we now know that Barbie and Ken find themselves in the real world, grappling with the challenges of being more than just plastic toys. The film promises to explore the complexities of their new reality, while still delivering the fun and glamour that Barbie is known for.

“Barbie” will make open in cinemas on July 21st. Watch the full trailer below.

5 reasons why Doctor Who fans should watch Torchwood

Doctor Who has been one of the most popular science fiction TV shows in the world for decades. With its time-traveling adventures and quirky characters, it has captured the hearts of fans of all ages. However, many fans of the Doctor may not be aware of another amazing show set in the same universe: Torchwood.

Torchwood is a spin-off from Doctor Who that first aired in 2006. The show takes place in Cardiff, Wales and follows a team of investigators who work for the Torchwood Institute, a secret organisation that investigates extraterrestrial phenomena and defends the Earth against alien threats. The team is led by Captain Jack Harkness, a charming and enigmatic time-traveler who first appeared in Doctor Who.

For Doctor Who fans who haven’t yet given Torchwood a chance, here are a few reasons why you should:

  1. Torchwood expands on the Doctor Who universe

One of the best things about Torchwood is that it explores the Doctor Who universe in more depth. While Doctor Who focuses on the adventures of the Doctor, Torchwood takes a closer look at the impact of the Doctor’s actions on the world around him. The show also introduces new creatures and technologies that haven’t been seen in Doctor Who before.

  1. Torchwood is more mature and darker than Doctor Who

Doctor Who is known for its family-friendly tone, but Torchwood takes a darker turn. The show tackles more mature themes like sex, death, and politics, making it more suitable for an older audience. Torchwood also isn’t afraid to take risks, with unexpected plot twists and character developments that will keep you on the edge of your seat.

  1. Torchwood has a diverse and dynamic cast

The Torchwood team is made up of a diverse group of characters, each with their own unique personalities and backgrounds. Captain Jack is a pansexual time-traveler who can’t die, while Gwen Cooper is a former police officer who becomes embroiled in the world of Torchwood. The team also includes Toshiko Sato, a brilliant scientist, and Ianto Jones, a former coffee boy who becomes an integral part of the team.

  1. Torchwood has some of the best writing and acting on TV

The writing, although there are some clunkers in series 1, and acting on Torchwood are mostly top-notch. The show’s writers weren’t afraid to tackle complex and controversial issues, and the actors bring their characters to life with nuance and depth. John Barrowman’s performance as Captain Jack is particularly noteworthy, as he brings a sense of humour, charm and a real darkness to the role while also portraying the character’s emotional depth.

In conclusion, Torchwood is a must-watch for any Doctor Who fan. The show expands on the Doctor Who universe, takes a darker and more mature tone, has a diverse and dynamic cast.

Here are some outstanding Torchwood episodes:

  1. “Countrycide” (Season 1, Episode 6) – The team investigates a series of brutal murders in a rural village and soon realises that the culprits are not human.
  2. “Children of Earth” (Season 3, Episodes 1-5) – In this five-part miniseries, an alien race demands that Earth gives them 10% of its children or face annihilation. The Torchwood team must make impossible choices to save the world.
  3. “Adrift” (Season 2, Episode 11) – Gwen investigates the disappearance of people who have been snatched by the Rift and discovers the heartbreaking truth about what happens to them.
  4. “Captain Jack Harkness” (Season 1, Episode 12) – Captain Jack and Tosh find themselves stranded in 1941 during the London Blitz and must find a way back to the present.
  5. “Exit Wounds” (Season 2, Episode 13) – The Torchwood team faces their deadliest enemy yet as Captain John Hart (played by James Marsters) returns with a plan to destroy the team and the entire city of Cardiff.

These episodes showcase the diverse themes and storytelling that make Torchwood such a standout series in the Doctor Who universe.

The Dark Knight’s Greatest Adventures: Exploring the Best Batman Comics of All Time

Batman is one of the most popular and enduring characters in the world of comic books. With a history that spans over 80 years, the Caped Crusader has become a cultural icon, inspiring countless adaptations in film, television, and video games. But at the heart of Batman’s popularity lies the source material: the comics. In this article, we’ll take a deep dive into the world of Batman comics and explore some of the best and most iconic stories ever written.

Batman: Year One

Frank Miller’s Batman: Year One is widely regarded as one of the greatest Batman stories ever written. The series tells the story of Bruce Wayne’s first year as Batman and Jim Gordon’s first year as a cop in Gotham. The story is a gritty, grounded take on Batman that shows how he first established himself as a force for justice in Gotham. The artwork by David Mazzucchelli is beautiful and captures the dark, moody atmosphere of Gotham perfectly.

One of the reasons Batman: Year One resonates so strongly with fans is its focus on character development. The series explores Bruce Wayne’s early struggles with his new identity as Batman, as well as Gordon’s fight against the rampant corruption in Gotham’s police department. The story is a nuanced, complex look at the early days of Batman’s crimefighting career and remains a fan favourite to this day.

Batman: The Long Halloween

Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale’s Batman: The Long Halloween is another fan favourite that has stood the test of time. The 13-issue miniseries tells the story of a serial killer known as Holiday, who strikes on major holidays throughout the year. The story is a murder mystery that features many of Batman’s most famous villains, including the Joker, Two-Face, and Catwoman.

One of the strengths of The Long Halloween is its exploration of the relationships between Batman, Harvey Dent, and Jim Gordon. The story shows how the events of the series shape these characters and ultimately lead to the creation of Two-Face. The artwork by Tim Sale is gorgeous and perfectly captures the noir atmosphere of Gotham.

Batman: The Dark Knight Returns

Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns is a landmark work that helped redefine the Batman character for a new generation. The series is set in a dystopian future where an ageing Bruce Wayne comes out of retirement to take on a new generation of criminals. The story is a gritty, mature take on Batman that explores themes of ageing, mortality, and the nature of heroism.

The Dark Knight Returns is a tour-de-force of storytelling, with Miller’s artwork and writing both at their best. The series is full of iconic moments, including Batman’s final confrontation with the Joker, and has had a lasting impact on the Batman mythos.

Batman: The Killing Joke

Written by Alan Moore and illustrated by Brian Bolland, Batman: The Killing Joke is a haunting and deeply unsettling story that explores the relationship between Batman and his arch-nemesis, the Joker. The story sees the Joker attempting to drive Commissioner Gordon insane, while also revealing a possible origin story for the Joker himself.

The Killing Joke is a powerful, thought-provoking story that asks important questions about the nature of madness and the fine line between heroism and villainy. The artwork by Brian Bolland is stunning and perfectly captures the twisted, nightmarish world of the Joker.

Batman: Hush

Jeph Loeb and Jim Lee’s Batman: Hush is a 12-issue miniseries that features many of Batman’s most famous villains, including the Joker, Poison Ivy, and Catwoman. The story introduces a new villain named Hush, who has a personal vendetta against Bruce Wayne.

One of the strengths of Batman: Hush is its exploration of the Bruce Wayne persona and his relationships with the other characters in the Batman universe. The story also features a number of unexpected twists and turns that keep readers on the edge of their seats.

Jim Lee’s artwork is also a major highlight of the series, with dynamic, cinematic panels that perfectly capture the action and drama of the story. Batman: Hush is a thrilling, action-packed story that delivers on all fronts, and is widely considered one of the best Batman stories of all time.

Batman: The Court of Owls

Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo’s Batman: The Court of Owls is a modern classic that explores a hidden society of powerful, influential figures who have controlled Gotham for centuries. The story sees Batman facing off against the Court of Owls and their deadly Talons, while also questioning his own place in Gotham’s history.

The Court of Owls is a masterful blend of horror and mystery, with Snyder’s writing and Capullo’s artwork combining to create a haunting, atmospheric tale. The story also features a number of memorable new characters, including the enigmatic Lincoln March, who adds a new layer of complexity to Batman’s history.

Batman: The Black Mirror

Scott Snyder’s Batman: The Black Mirror is a standalone story that takes place shortly after Dick Grayson takes on the mantle of Batman. The story sees Grayson investigating a series of murders in Gotham that lead him to confront his own dark past.

The Black Mirror is a dark, moody story that explores the nature of identity and the role of legacy in the Batman universe. The story also features some of the most memorable villains in recent Batman history, including James Gordon Jr. and the Mirror House Killer.

Batman: The Killing Time

Denny O’Neil and Dick Giordano’s Batman: The Killing Time is a lesser-known but highly underrated story that sees Batman facing off against a mysterious new villain known as the Timekeeper. The story is a high-concept tale that features time travel, alternate realities, and mind-bending plot twists.

What sets The Killing Time apart from other Batman stories is its focus on the philosophical implications of time travel and the nature of reality. The story is a thought-provoking exploration of what it means to be a hero in a world where time itself is malleable.

Batman: A Death in the Family

Jim Starlin and Jim Aparo’s Batman: A Death in the Family is a controversial but unforgettable story that sees Batman facing off against his arch-nemesis, the Joker, in a battle that leaves one of Batman’s closest allies dead.

The death of Jason Todd, the second Robin, is a defining moment in Batman’s history and has had a lasting impact on the character’s development. The story is a powerful exploration of loss and grief and shows how even the Dark Knight himself is not immune to the pain of tragedy.

Batman has been a staple of comic book culture for over eight decades, and his legacy is built on the incredible stories and characters that have populated his world. From the gritty realism of Frank Miller’s Year One to the mind-bending high concept of Denny O’Neil’s The Killing Time, there is a Batman story for every kind of fan.

Whether you’re a lifelong fan or just discovering the Dark Knight for the first time, these stories are a testament to the enduring power and appeal of one of the greatest comic book characters of all time.

Why Joey Couldn’t Live Up to ‘Friends’: Analysing the Flaws and Missteps of the Spin-Off Series

Joey, the spin-off to the beloved sitcom Friends, premiered to great anticipation in 2004. Fans of the original show were excited to see what was next for Joey Tribbiani, the lovable and charming ladies’ man played by Matt LeBlanc. However, despite the initial hype, Joey failed to capture the same magic as its predecessor and was ultimately cancelled after only two seasons. In this article, we’ll explore the reasons why Joey failed to live up to expectations and what spin-offs they should have made instead.

Lack of Chemistry

One of the main reasons why Friends was such a success was the chemistry between the actors. The six main cast members had a natural rapport that made their interactions feel authentic and unforced. Unfortunately, this chemistry was largely absent in Joey. While Matt LeBlanc was undoubtedly a talented actor, he simply didn’t have the same chemistry with the new cast members. The show’s attempts to introduce new love interests for Joey felt forced and lacked the spark that made his romances on Friends so memorable.

Different Tone

Another factor that contributed to Joey’s failure was its different tone compared to Friends. Friends was a sitcom that struck a balance between comedy and drama, with episodes that could make you laugh one minute and cry the next. Joey, on the other hand, leaned heavily into the comedy side of things and didn’t have the same emotional weight. This made it harder for viewers to invest in the characters and care about what happened to them.

Uninspired Storylines

Perhaps the biggest problem with Joey was the uninspired storylines. While Friends had storylines that were both funny and heartfelt, Joey’s storylines felt generic and forgettable. The show tried to capitalize on Matt LeBlanc’s comedic talents by giving him broad, slapstick-heavy material, but this just didn’t resonate with viewers. The show’s attempts to reference Friends felt forced and contrived, rather than natural and nostalgic.


Finally, it’s worth considering the timing of Joey’s premiere. Friends had ended its ten-season run only a year prior, and many fans were still mourning the loss of their favourite show. The introduction of Joey so soon after the end of Friends may have been too much, too soon for viewers. The show may have been better received if it had premiered a few years later after fans had had time to move on from Friends and were ready for something new.

What Spin-Offs Should They Have Made?

So, if Joey wasn’t the right spin-off for Friends, what would have been? Here are a few ideas that could have been successful:

  1. Phoebe & Mike – Phoebe Buffay, played by Lisa Kudrow, was one of the most beloved characters on Friends. Her quirky personality and offbeat sense of humour made her stand out from the rest of the cast. A spin-off focusing on Phoebe and Mike’s life in New York City could have been a great way to continue her story.
  2. Chandler and Monica’s Life in the Suburbs – One of the most heartwarming storylines in Friends was Chandler Bing and Monica Geller’s romance. After getting married, the two moved to the suburbs to start a family. A spin-off focusing on their life in the suburbs could have explored their struggles and triumphs as they navigated married life and parenthood.
  3. Ross and Rachel’s Life as Co-Parents – Ross and Rachel, played by David Schwimmer and Jennifer Aniston respectively, had a complicated romantic history on Friends. In the series finale, it was revealed that the two had reunited and were raising their daughter Emma together. A spin-off focusing on their life as co-parents could have explored their dynamic as they worked together to raise their daughter.
  4. The one with Carol & Susan. Two of the most regular characters in Friends were Ross’s ex-wife and her partner. A spin-off with them raising Ben could’ve worked.

Ultimately, the failure of “Joey” was likely due to a combination of factors, including poor writing, uninteresting storylines, and the absence of beloved “Friends” characters. It’s clear that spin-offs can be a risky business, and studios and networks need to carefully consider whether a particular show has the potential to stand on its own before committing to a spin-off series.

In conclusion, while “Friends” was a beloved and successful sitcom that remains popular with audiences today, its spin-off “Joey” failed to capture the same magic. Although there were several potential spin-offs that could have been successful, ultimately, the show’s failure demonstrates the difficulty of creating a successful spin-off series. It takes more than just a popular show and a beloved character to create a hit spin-off. It requires careful planning, strong writing, and the ability to capture the same magic that made the original series so beloved.

RIP Bill Tidy

Bill Tidy, the beloved cartoonist renowned for his quick-witted and masterful artistry on popular shows such as Countdown and Countryfile, has passed away at the age of 89.

His devoted family, including his children Sylvia and Rob, were by his side and paid tribute to their “most brilliant cartoonist and the very best dad”. Tidy’s lasting contributions to the art world include his celebrated works The Fosdyke Saga and The Cloggies, which captured the hearts of audiences throughout his illustrious career.

Sadly, Tidy’s health had been in decline in recent years after he suffered two serious strokes. Nonetheless, he continued to inspire and entertain, earning the admiration and respect of all those he encountered.

Born in Liverpool in 1933, Tidy did not have any formal artistic training but began his working life in the Royal Engineers branch of the Army. He sold his first sketch to a Japanese newspaper in 1955 and went on to publish cartoon strips in numerous national newspapers, including The Fosdyke Saga for the Daily Mirror and The Cloggies for Private Eye.

The Fosdyke Saga was such a success that it was eventually adapted into a 42-part radio series for the BBC in 1983. In addition to his newspaper work, Tidy appeared on many television shows, including Watercolour Challenge, Countdown, Blankety Blank, and Countryfile, and illustrated over 70 books.

Tidy’s contributions to journalism and the art world were recognized with an MBE in 2000, and he played a pivotal role in establishing the British Cartoonists’ Association. His passing is a great loss to his family, friends, and fans alike, and his legacy will undoubtedly endure for generations to come.

Batman: Caped Crusader finds home on Amazon Prime

Exciting news for Batman fans! The upcoming animated series Batman: Caped Crusader, from legendary creators Bruce Timm, JJ Abrams, and Matt Reeves, has been picked up by Amazon Prime. The series is set to be a nostalgic throwback to Timm’s iconic Batman: The Animated Series, which set the standard for the Dark Knight’s animated storytelling.

With a 10-episode first season, Caped Crusader promises to bring a fresh perspective to the beloved franchise, featuring a talented creative team led by comic book writer Ed Brubaker. The series is already one of the most highly-anticipated releases of the year, and its move to Amazon Prime is sure to draw even more attention.

This exciting development comes as part of Warner Bros. Discovery’s efforts to monetize content by selling projects to third-party buyers. Meanwhile, the team behind DC Studios is working on a 10-year plan to tell a cohesive story across various mediums, including film, TV, gaming, and animation. Although some projects will fall outside of this plan, such as Reeves’ The Batman Part II and HBO Max’s The Penguin spinoff series.

For Amazon Prime, Caped Crusader is a valuable addition to its impressive lineup of genre programming. The streaming service already controls the TV rights to the Lord of the Rings franchise, making it a powerhouse for blockbuster content. With the addition of Caped Crusader, Amazon Prime is sure to become an even more enticing destination for fans of epic franchises.

So mark your calendars and get ready to dive into the world of Batman once again with Caped Crusader, coming soon to Amazon Prime!

Film Review-Clerks III

Kevin Smith, the once-indie film-making prodigy, has made his name not just from the success of his debut film, Clerks, but also from the legendary tale of its creation. Back in 1993, Smith famously used multiple credit cards and raised $27,575 to produce a witty, dialogue-driven film in the off-hours of his day job at a New Jersey convenience store.

As a long-time fan of Clerks and its follow-up, Clerks II, I approached Smith’s latest film, Clerks III, with cautious optimism, hoping to witness a return to form. However, despite being marginally better than his previous outings such as Tusk and Yoga Hosers, it falls far short of expectations.

The film is a meta-comedy that heavily relies on references and recreations of scenes from the original, a hardly surprising fact. But the execution is lazy and uninspired, lacking the originality and charm of its predecessor. Instead of building upon the source material in any meaningful way, Smith seems content to rehash old gags and callbacks, a move that ultimately renders the film a lacklustre sequel.

It’s clear that Smith has made a deliberate decision to cater solely to his podcast subscribers, alienating everyone else in the process. The callbacks and references to the original may please hardcore fans, but the lack of fresh ideas makes the film feel like a missed opportunity.

While the original film was quotable and fresh, this one falls short in almost every way, failing to capture the magic of the original.


Doctor Who heading to Disney+ internationally

The BBC announced today, that all future series of Doctor Who will stream on Disney+ internationally. The exclusive deal will give Disney+ the rights to air the legendary sci-fi series outside of the U.K. and Ireland.

The show returns next year, with three 60th-anniversary specials featuring David Tennant and Catherine Tate. New Doctor Ncuti Gatwa will take over at Christmas 2023.

Returning showrunner Russell T Davies said: “I love this show, and this is the best of both worlds – with the vision and joy of the BBC and Disney+ together we can launch the Tardis all around the planet, reaching a new generation of fans while keeping our traditional home firmly on the BBC in the U.K.,”

Charlotte Moore, BBC’s chief content officer, added: “We are thrilled to announce this exciting global partnership with Disney who is the perfect partner to bring this very British show to the rest of the world. Russell T Davies’ vision for ‘Doctor Who’ has always been out of this world and we are committed to ensuring that audiences across the globe get the opportunity to enjoy the Doctor’s epic adventures with the scale and ambition that they deserve. Joining forces with Disney will elevate the show to even greater heights and reach new audiences so it’s an extremely exciting time for fans in the U.K. and across the world.”

Alisa Bowen, president of Disney+, added: “We’re excited by the opportunity to bring new seasons of this beloved franchise exclusively to Disney+ and introduce the show to the next generation of audiences in more than 150 markets around the world. The series is a perfect addition to our ever-growing catalogue of global content that continues to make Disney+ the home for exceptional storytelling.”

The streaming deal will not affect the release of DVD and Blu-Ray box sets.

Episode 267: Toby Hadoke

Martyn chats with writer, actor, comedian and podcaster Toby Hadoke about his life and career.

Toby has been nominated for various awards for his stand up comedy.

Visit Toby’s website for full details about his projects.

Check out XS Malarkey.

Follow Toby on Twitter.

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Our Doctor Who spin-off podcast, Running Down Corridors can be found here.

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