Thursday, Dec 18, 2014
by Ned Wazowski
Who says that only kids get to have stories read to them?
I used to think that audio books were only for blind people or truck drivers. Once you’d graduated to reading on your own, I thought, story time was over. I’m so glad I finally saw – well, heard – the light.
One holiday many years ago, an audio book-loving friend gave me an audio book of a Christmas Carol, and although I’d never listened to audio books, I figured that it might be something to listen to while curled up in front of the fire or putting together puzzles after the presents had all been opened. And what a treat it turned out to be. I was hooked.
There are plenty of benefits to audio books. They free up your hands, and allow you to move around – maybe taking on household chores or completing a puzzle. They can be enjoyed by many people at the same time and audio books unplug everyone from staring at a screen – which we could all use more of.
Best of all though, audio books take you right back to childhood, with the comfort and...
Are you an official Space Cadet? For a period in the early 1960s, Spaceman Jax was part of a balanced...
Friday, Dec 12, 2014
by Ned Wazowski
Meeting with a species from another planet starts to get tricky when it’s time to synchronize your watches.
The dates in Spaceman Jax’s world are complicated and unwieldy. Spaceman Jax was born in 6324 1/2, Tarloc was born in 6298 3/5 and he started his first company in 6304 1/9… which I guess would be 20.3888888889 years before Jax was born? Putting the dates in fractions – and such ridiculous ones at that (a 17th of a year?) is pretty funny, but I certainly hope that once our society gets that far into the future, we’ll be using an easier form of timekeeping.
Science Fiction doesn’t seem to see it that way, though. Tales of other galaxies and inter-planetary communities are filled with Metric Time or Universal Universe Time or Megaseconds, which could really leave you hanging when someone tells you “just a second.” Men in Black uses a Galactic Standard Week, which is an hour of our time, and the Star Wars universe keeps time from the 368-day calendar of the planet Coruscant. Even Star Trek’s stardate system is pretty inconsistent – something to do with time dilation (or so Mr. Spock says). All of which starts to make Spaceman Jax’s Star Years (such as 6348 7/8, the year his home planet Tiberion 3 was destroyed) seem pretty standard, I guess.
Still, I hope we have something worked out by the time we get together with the Little Green Men of our own solar system. Considering that a day on Mercury is about 59 days on Earth, scheduling the committee meetings alone will be a mess.
Previously unpublished works by Clarence 'Otis' Dooley
It was easy to love Frank and his Friend, with its ice cream smudged logic and playful escapism. The characters charmed their way into our hearts and influenced countless cartoonists. These 52 never-before-seen images provide a glimpse into the development of one of the most enduring comics and allow us to meet Frank and his Friend all over again.
The images, dating from the comic’s early years, were lost after Dooley’s untimely death in 1984. These drawings and illustrations, seen for the first time in over 30 years, reveal much of the journey Dooley took in creating our favorite...
Oberpfaffendorfer made their special cocoa available only during the Christmas season. According to the company’s archives, distributors were required to send unsold packages back on December 26th. If there were any left that is. It’s easy to see how it...
Tuesday, Nov 18, 2014
by Ned Wazowski
What would the Spaceman Jax character be like done by a studio today?
If Spaceman Jax and the Galactic Adventures were back on TV today, I’d love to see a really faithful adaptation. Sure, they’d need to update the animation, and I could see Jax rendered in CG with flashy animation, but I’d hope that they’d keep the mood of the original and especially the personality of Jax. Because Spaceman...
The recipe for simulated gold flakes is about the best kept secret in soft drink history. Donald J. Prufrock, Jr., President of the Bunchy Bottling Company and son of the drink’s inventor, said the recipe was divided into three parts...
“There’s no time like the present,” goes the old expression. And with a time machine, all times can be the present! This instruction book, the Cudworth-Hooper Owner’s Manual: Operation and Maintenance for the Gadabout TM 1050, is truly one-of-a-kind. According...
This original production drawing by Jim Dewicky is from the episode “A Jax of All Trades” broadcast originally in 1962. This rare piece of production artwork is stamped with the PUD Film company logo and an archival number from the...