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Welcome to The Lunduke Journal of Nerdy Entertainment & Retro Delights! (N.E.R.D)
February 01, 2023
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The "Lunduke Journal of Nerdy Entertainment & Retro Delights" (or N.E.R.D.) is a publication and community entirely devoted to nerdy entertainment.

You know.  Science Fiction, Fantasy, and other distinctly nerdy genres and topics.

Across all manner of formats and mediums (Books, Movies, TV, and Comics) and all eras (from the dawn of time until today).

"The Chronicles of Narnia", "WarGames", "Batman", "2001", "The Goonies", "Fantastic Four", and everything in between.

By becoming a subscriber to N.E.R.D. you gain access to regular articles & podcast episodes -- as well as the ability to interact with the rest of the N.E.R.D. community (who can all post their own articles -- and social media style posts -- as well).

Rules of N.E.R.D.

The rules of N.E.R.D. are incredibly simple.

  1. No cursin', no swearin'.  (Keep things family friendly.)
  2. No politics.
  3. Be Excellent to Each Other.

Part of The Lunduke Journal Triforce of Nerdiness

N.E.R.D. is one of the three distinct, and incredibly nerdy, publications in The Lunduke Journal family -- also known as "The Lunduke Journal Triforce of Nerdiness".

  1. "The Lunduke Journal of Technology" - Computer history, news, opinion, & satire.  Covering everything form Linux & UNIX to Amiga & DOS.
  2. "The Lunduke Journal of Nerdy Entertainment & Retro Delights" - Nerdy entertainment, spanning all genres, mediums, and eras.
  3. "The Lunduke Journal of Conservative Nerdiness" - The only place in The Lunduke Journal world where politics are allowed.  Poltics... from a nerdy perspective.

You can subscribe to each individually, or you can get yourself a "Lunduke Journal Founding Member" yearly Subscription -- which will provide you with full access to all three for one year.

  1. Go to
  2. Select the "Card" and "Annual" options
  3. Enter $125 into the amount field

You will then be granted full access to all three Locals sites in "The Lunduke Journal Triforce of Nerdiness" for one full year.  (Part of the process is manual, so it may take a few hours for full access to be granted to all three sites.)

When you go to, you'll make it look something like this:



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February 24, 2023
Mack Murphy, P.I. - Episode 2 (2008)

As I went through writing, recording, and editing "Mack Murphy, P.I." -- which I created a total of 7 episodes for -- I realized (right from the very first episode) that I had no clear idea of what my "voice" was when creating a radio drama.

What did a "Lunduke Radio Drama" sound like? Who knows! That Lunduke fella never made one before!

This was decidedly new territory for me -- I was learning a handful of different skills (and trying to find my own style and voice) on the fly.

With that realization, I decided to allow myself the freedom to experiment. As you listen to each episode you'll find me playing around with different pacing, rhythms, voice acting styles, editing tricks, and story techniques.

In Episode 2, for example, I try a few different techniques. Some of which I am surprisingly happy with the results of... others were a swing and a miss. But I promised myself I would let myself be free to experiment... and experiment, I did!

Oh, and for those asking: Yes. All ...

February 23, 2023
Mack Murphy, P.I. - Episode 1 (2008)

I've always had a soft spot for radio dramas. The "I love a mystery" series (from the late 1930s and early 1940s) is a particular favorite. Adventure/mysteries that often took a funky, paranormal turn.

Light, fun, and extremely enjoyable.

Back in 2008, I decided to try my hand at making a short-form radio drama -- in large part because I wanted to see what the process would be like. I wanted that experience. Writing, editing, recording, coming up with the sound effects... all of it.

So I sat down and began writing a series of short episodes -- shooting for roughly 5 minutes each. My thinking being that 5 minutes of edited audio would be short enough that it would make the process doable for one man.

I took significant inspiration from "I love a mystery" and several other radio dramas of the 1930s and 40s. With a healthy dash of noir detective sprinkled over the the top. And with more than a little steam-punk sci-fi thrown in.

The setting was Seattle, WA. A place I knew well. In ...

February 20, 2023
Futureworld (1976)

This week's movie was the Sci-Fi adventure "Futureworld" from 1976.

I've filled this podcast episode with all of my thoughts on the film (which, despite being ridiculous in so many ways... I enjoyed!). Toss your thoughts in the comments!

Futureworld (1976)
February 14, 2023
The N.E.R.D. Podcast - Feb 14, 2023 - Weekly Movie: Futureworld (1976)

Let's start a nerdy movie club!

This week's movie: Futureworld (1976)

Here's how this will work:

  • Watch the movie over the course of the week (I will do the same).
  • Next Monday (Feb 20th) I will make a post (plus a podcast) with my thoughts on the film.
  • Then you can jump in and we can discuss it together!

Just don't post any spoilers until next Monday! Gotta give everyone a chance to watch it first. 😉

Listen to the podcast (attached) for all the details. Really looking forward to this!

You can watch the movie (for free, no login required) on Tubi:

The N.E.R.D. Podcast - Feb 14, 2023 - Weekly Movie: Futureworld (1976)
February 12, 2023
The N.E.R.D. Podcast - Feb 12, 2023 - The Wingfeather Saga

It's hard finding great, modern (as in: produced nowadays) fantasy that can be enjoyed by both adults and kids alike.

I've found just such a thing: The Wingfeather Saga. Books and TV show. And they are spectacular.

The N.E.R.D. Podcast - Feb 12, 2023 - The Wingfeather Saga

Jack Black's first acting gig:

A 1982 commercial for Pitfall for the Atari 2600.

Now he's the voice of Bowser. Wild.

Ok. I watched "Cocaine Bear".

I couldn't help it. The premise was just so ridiculous. And, I'll be honest, I do rather enjoy a good "Ridiculous Action B Movie" from time to time.

And, as expected, the movies was filled with naughty words. And blood. Definitely not ok to watch with kids around. So many naughty words!

And, for the most part, the acting was cheesy. And the dialog... weird.

But, you know what? It was pretty gosh darned engaging! It had some seriously funny moments. Some of the dialog and editing were just... perfect. Almost heart-warmingly bad. On purpose. In a charming way.

It's definitely one of those "lightning in a bottle" movies. Recommended. If you like B action movies. And are cool with swearing. And absolutely stupid blood and gore.

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The true origins of The Black Panther in the Marvel Comics (1966)

I love the classic Marvel comics.  Even some of the more semi-modern ones are pretty sweet (though increasingly less so over time).  And, while Black Panther (breifly also known as Black Leopard because of feared association with the "Black Panther Party"... though the Leopard name didn't stick) is not my favorite character from the comics... he is occasionally in some pretty fun story-lines.

Much more fun in the comics than in the recent MCU movies.

The first person to be the Black Panther (there have been a few... unfortunately...) appeared in Fantastic Four #52 (July of 1966).

The character was created by the legendary Jack Kirby (with some input from Stan Lee).  When Kriby was asked about the genesis of the character, he had this to say:

"I came up with the Black Panther because I realized I had no blacks in my strip. I'd never drawn a black. I needed a black."

Seriously.  Direct quote.

That was the entire purpose for the character.  To create some sort of powerful black man to include in story lines with the Fantastic Four.  They "needed a black".

That same issue (Fantastic Four #52) was also the first time we get introduced to the kingdom of Wakanda.  This is the very first image ever depicting it... and there, seated in the middle, is The Black Panther himself:

Wakanda was a pretty rad place.  The surface was depticted as a sterotypical African image of an African village.  One that would be immediately recognizable to Fantstic Four readers.

But, underneath "the dense foliage" there existed a weird -- and tube-heavy -- high tech city.

Large portions of the city were controlled by computer -- a pretty cool idea back in 1966 -- which was built into the base of a giant statue of a black cat.

Also note that the official name for the Black Panther outfit is the "Stalking Costume".  Which he would put on whenever he would stalk his prey.  Which, when he was introduced, was The Fantastic Four.

Yeah. The Black Panther was an absolute jerk.  He, literally, enjoys hunting humans for sport.

The Black Panther was... more than a little sadistic.  He derived joy from the fear of those he hunted... and he enjoyed a challenging hunt.  This is a theme that appears, again and again, throughout the comics.  Especially the earlier ones.

He wasn't all bad.  The Black Panther, more often than not, had good intentions.  He just had his own moral code and his own way of going about things.  Which usually meant sadistic hunting of human prey.

Eventually The Black Panther became, more or less, an ally of both the Fantastic Four... and then a member of the Avengers.  But he remained a bit twisted, in my view.

The Marvel MCU representation of The Black Panther retained some of this... but really cleaned it up in order to make him a character more designed to be praised and revered.  Which, in my opinion, was a great loss.  In large part as it made many of the best Black Panther stories no longer make any sense.

If you are looking to get a good primer on the origins of The Black Panther -- I recommend issues 52 through 54 of Fantastic Four.  That's where it all really starts.

And -- despite the weak points of that story line -- it's definitely a lot more fun than the recent "Black Panther: Wakanda Forever" film.  😎

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Lunduke's Review: "Rabbit / Hole" Season 1
(No spoilers)

I was a pretty big fan of "24".  At least some of the seasons.  It was a fun -- sometimes ridiculous -- serial adventure.  And a perfect vehicle for Keifer Sutherland.

Action.  Deception.  Conspiracies.  The underdog racing against the clock to save the day.  What's not to like?

Well... the technical accuracy.  That part of "24" wasn't so great.

Pretty much every time they needed to use a computer in "24" there were ridiculous examples of the writers clearly not understanding how computers work.  Either that or the writers were intentionally making poking fun at how horribly wrong most shows use garbeldy-gook computer lingo -- usually incorrectly -- as a plot crutch... but doing the same thing themselves.

Want to play a fun drinking game?  Every time someone in "24" is using a Palm Pilot without any sort of network connectivity hardware... and then talks about "opening a socket" to get some wireless information on to it... take a shot.  You'll be drunk in no time.

To this day "I need to open a socket" or "can you open a socket for me" gets used around the Lunduke home as a goofy shorthand for... just about anything related to a computer.

So when Keifer Sutherland's new "Rabbit / Hole" series made its debut -- with Internet security and privacy being a big part of the premise -- I assumed it would be yet another fun romp (like 24)... with abolutely absurd computer jargon thrown around as some sort of weak attempt at making a "computer-y" plot.

Boy, was I wrong.  Pleasantly so.

The core idea -- without giving too much away -- of "Rabbit / Hole" is this:

Big companies (and big governments) are collecting data on citizens -- and some are using that in less than kind ways... including to manipulate and control people.

Built on top of that general concept is a plot that is part mystery, part buddy heist movie, and part 24.  With several twists along the way.

One of the most surprising twists?  That the show gets the tech stuff right more often than it gets it wrong.

VPNs.  Multi-Factor Authentication.  Crypto Wallets.  TOR.

Seriously, all of those are critical pieces of the plot... and the show gets them right.  More or less.  The show does gloss over a few things, clearly in the interest of keeping the plot moving forward without getting bogged down in technical details.  But the big, high level stuff?  It almost always nails them.

In fact, multiple key computer topics hit on feel like they could have been ripped right out of the pages of The Lunduke Journal of Technology.

That said, the show is not without its faults.  The characters have some pretty serious potty mouths on them (occasionally to a ridiculous degree).  And there's just enough adult-only moments that you definitely don't want to watch this with kids around.

Likewise the show does suffer from some pacing issues here and there (both a bit too sluggish... and then a bit to frantic).  Not extreme... but you feel them.

My favorite part, favorite line, and favorite character... I can't even mention here.  There are so many twists and surprises in this show that mentioning any one of those parts would give too much away.  Suffice to say that most of my favorite bits all revolve around a single character.  And not one played by Keiffer Sutherland (though he was prety great too).

Overall, I'd say that "Rabbit / Hole" is definitely worth a watch.  It's a fun, espionage-y, computer-y adventure.  And, luckily, it looks like Season 2 is in the works.

Enjoyability  : 4.5 / 5
Family Friendliness : 0 / 5
Nerdiness : 4.5 / 5
Overall : 4 / 5

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The Super Mario Bros Move -- quite good!

I'll keep this short and sweet: The Super Mario Bros Movie is a ton of fun.

Currently, it looks like Mario Bros Movie has made a bunch of records -- including the biggest world-wide opening weekend for any animated film, the biggest openning weekend for a video game adaptation, and the biggest movie of the year (so far), and the 4th largest opening for ANY Universal movie.  Ever.  Wild.

And, honestly, it deserves it.  This is good family fun.  Something that Illumination and Dreamworks have been hitting it out of the park with lately (as they pick up the slack from a Disney that has so obviously forgotten how to make family movies).

No politics of any kind.  No weird content.  Nothing questionable or inappropriate.  I can't think of a single group of people that would be offended by this movie.  Good, simple, wholesome fun.

The voice acting is surprisingly good.  Chris Pratt as Mario?  Perfect.  I like Pratt, but I would never have guessed he would make a perfect Mario.  But he does.  By 10 minutes into the movie, it became hard to imagine any voice, other than Pratt, as Mario.  He absolutely nails it.

And Charlie Day as Luigi?  Perfection.  Again... had no idea Day could pull off a Luigi... but he does.

Jack Black as Bowser?  Almost too perfect for words.

The visuals of the movie were astoundingly faithful to the games.  It looked like a slightly spruced up, theatrical version of one of the more modern Mario games.  Which, honestly, was perfect.

The whole thing felt like a true passion project by someone who loves Mario.  All Mario, of all eras.

One example: The first time you really see Peach's castle... it looks very close to what we see in the opening of Mario 64.  Very, very close.  And -- what really made me smile -- the music of that moment in the movie, as we see the castle for the first time, used significant inspiration from the music of that exact same scene from the opening of Mario 64.

Little touches like that were everywhere.

Near the beginning of the movie, there is a scene with Mario and Luigi in the sewer.   With pipes and a dark color scheme similar to World 1, Level 2 of the original SMB game.  Aka level "1 - 2".  And, lo and behold, in the background of that scene you can see a sign that literally says "1 - 2".

The whole move is sprinkled with stuff like that.  Big, in your face stuff that is directly lifted from one Mario game or another... and little stuff, in the background, that you almost miss.

Each scene almost feels like a direct lift from a different game.  Multiple SMB games, Donkey Kong, a few versions of Mario Kart, Luigi's Mansion, Super Smash Bros... so many are included.  With fun references to Wrecking Crew, Baloon Fight, Kid Ikarus, and early Mario history throughout.  For an 80s kid or a Nintendo fan... there are roughly a thousand moments where you want to point at the screen and explain things to your kids.

The whole movie's plot is... terribly goofy.  Light and more than a little ridiculous.  Multiple points are a bit of a stretch (to put it mildly).  But that is kind of the charm of the film.  The plot feels very much like a Mario game plot.  And it works.

Highly, highly recommened.  Especially if you have kids.  Shoot.  I would have enjoyed it even if I had seen it by myself.

I took mine to see it last night (as a reward after they had an especially productive day of school).  We all had a blast.  Best movie experience in years.


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