This Week in the Mercury

Blazin'

Music

Blazin'

Chastity Belt Gets "Ma-Toor"


White Like Me

Film

White Like Me

Aloha: Another Movie About a Sad White Guy



Ice and/or Fire

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

I'm Done Recapping Game of Thrones

Posted by Joe Streckert on Tue, May 19, 2015 at 10:14 AM

Like the title says, I'm not going to recap Game of Thrones anymore.

It's because of rape.

More after the jump.

Cmon, Ned. Lets get out of here.
  • C'mon, Ned. Let's get out of here.

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Monday, May 18, 2015

Game of Thrones Recap: Not This Again

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, May 18, 2015 at 10:14 AM

That loud noise you heard coming out of Southeast last night was me screaming at a television at the ending of last night’s Game of Thrones. The show is very good at some things. Depicting rape is not one of them.

An unpleasant discussion and spoilers after the jump.

A catacomb full of severed heads was not the most disturbing thing about last nights episode.
  • A catacomb full of severed heads was not the most disturbing thing about last night's episode.

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Monday, May 11, 2015

Game of Thrones Recap: King of Grammar Edition

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, May 11, 2015 at 10:29 AM

Every season of Game of Thrones has reserved the big, dramatic event for episode nine of each season. Ned got his head chopped off in episode nine of season one (um... spoilers I guess), the Battle of the Blackwater was in episode nine of season two, and the Red Wedding was episode nine of season three. In last night's episode we got a pretty good idea of what's going to go down in the penultimate episode of this season. It was foreshadowed all over the place, most especially in the image below.

Spoilers after the jump!

Ramsay and Roose having the worst board game night ever.
  • Ramsay and Roose having the worst board game night ever.

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Monday, May 4, 2015

Game of Thrones Recap: Westerosi Tea Party Edition

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, May 4, 2015 at 10:14 AM

Last night's Game of Thrones was all about the threats of populist uprisings. It was an episode about fanatical, violent people motivated by religion, tradition, and nationalism. Even when confronted by a literal king or queen, those movements don't back down. They have a life of their own that seems to embody and defy politics, and when allowed to run through the streets, those armed, right-wing popular movements leave a trail of bodies as they make their point.

Spoilers after the jump.

Fuck you, action figures!
  • Fuck you, action figures!

Continue reading »

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Thursday, April 30, 2015

Kristin Wiig May Not Know Very Much About Game of Thrones

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Thu, Apr 30, 2015 at 10:59 AM

Don't know much about Game of Thrones, and don't care to! However, in this Jimmy Fallon interview starring the wondrous Kristen Wiig as GoT's Daenerys Targaryen (AKA Khaleesi) she knows even less about the character than I do! But it's hilarious, and Kristen is adorable, so forgive her already, GoT freaks! (See also her hilarious "Michael Jordan" interview.)

Monday, April 27, 2015

Game of Thrones Recap: Margaery Tyrell, Queen of Everything Edition

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, Apr 27, 2015 at 11:29 AM

Last night’s episode of Game of Thrones was a bit long at 67 minutes, so after the jump there are way too many words about fake fantasy politics and Margaery Tyrell being amazing.

Spoilers after the jump!

<3 <3 <3 <3
  • <3 <3 <3 <3

Continue reading »

Monday, April 20, 2015

Game of Thrones Recap: "Dammit, Dany" Edition

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, Apr 20, 2015 at 10:28 AM

GUYS! Did you see the Star Wars trailer? What am I saying? Of course you did. You're reading a goddamn Game of Thrones recap. You like Star Wars. Well, according to totally unsubstantiated rumors from the Intenet that may or may not be true, Gwendoline Christie (Brienne of Tarth) might be playing the character in that sweet chrome stormtrooper armor. This rumor might be bullshit! Or it might be a thing! Who knows! Well, the people who are actually involved in making Star Wars. They know.

This is not germane to anything at all in this recap. I just kind of want that to be true.

Uh, anyway, there's a Game of Thrones recap after the jump.

The entirety of Game of Thrones has just been Doctor Bashir messing around in one of Deep Space Nines holo-suites.
  • The entirety of Game of Thrones has just been Doctor Bashir messing around in one of Deep Space Nine's holo-suites..

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Monday, April 13, 2015

Game of Thrones Recap: Professional Cuddles Edition

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, Apr 13, 2015 at 10:59 AM

It's time for another season of dragons, nudity, swords, and fake politics. Game of Thrones fifth season debuted last night, and the show is in an odd place right now. Earlier this year the showrunners and George R. R. Martin up and admitted that the show is going to pass up the books in terms of narrative, and that we're going to get a conclusion to all this mess on the screen far sooner than we're going to get it on the page. Martin also seems to be diverging with the show, and he's notably not writing an episode this season.

I'm fine with that. The show is a more coherent and interesting entity than the books are, and the last two title were not nearly as good as the first three books. I've compared the show to the books a good deal, and I'm going to try to stop doing that in these recaps, and take the show on its own terms. After all, that's what the people who are actually making the damn thing are doing.

Spoilers after the jump!

Looks like someone hasnt had their coffee yet!
  • Looks like someone hasn't had their coffee yet!

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Monday, June 16, 2014

Game of Thrones Recap: Father's Day Edition

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, Jun 16, 2014 at 10:14 AM

Game of Thrones' fourth season ended last night and, befitting for a finale that aired on Father's Day, it focused on the love and devotion that the Lannister kids have to their father Tywin, a man who doubtlessly owns several "WORLD'S GREATEST DAD" coffee mugs.

Also fighting happened. Spoilers after the jump!

Say whore again, I dare you.
  • "Say 'whore' again, I dare you."

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Monday, June 9, 2014

Game of Thrones Recap: Love is a Battlefield Edition

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, Jun 9, 2014 at 9:59 AM

Fighting! So much fighting. Fighting and ice and also giant mammoths. Game of Thrones has something of a tradition of putting all kinds of drama and blood into the penultimate episode of each season. Season two's ninth episode "Blackwater" was all about, well, The Battle of Blackwater. Last night's episode was in the same mold, focusing on the Night's Watch and their battle with the Wildlings at the Wall.

Arrows flew. Characters died. There were mammoths! Spoilers after the jump.

Im maybe 80 or 90% sure that you dont actually hold a sword like that. Probably.
  • I'm maybe 80 or 90% sure that you don't actually hold a sword like that. Probably.

Continue reading »

Monday, June 2, 2014

Game of Thrones Recap: Too Beautiful To Live Edition

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, Jun 2, 2014 at 12:29 PM

OH GOD.

I knew what was coming on last night's Game of Thrones, but a small part of me hoped that THAT PART wouldn't happen. But it did, and it was brutal. The story progresses, and there's nothing you can do about it. It was probably the most effective episode since the Red Wedding in terms of making the audience to "GAHH" because, if nothing else, this is a show that hates happiness.

Spoilers after the jump.

Spinny kicks! Stabbing! Taunts! HORRIBLE AND AWFUL VIOLENCE OH GOD DID YOU SEE THAT?!
  • Spinny kicks! Stabbing! Taunts! HORRIBLE AND AWFUL VIOLENCE OH GOD DID YOU SEE THAT?!

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Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Snoop and Seth Rogan Smoke Up; Recap Game of Thrones

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Tue, May 27, 2014 at 9:59 AM

If you missed this over the Memorial Day weekend, do not miss it now! Seth Rogan and Snoop smoke a mess of dope and discuss the past two seasons of Game of Thrones for Monsieur Dogg/Lion's web series Underground Heat. Let's see... audio is NSFW, there are spoilers aplenty, and probably a few trigger warnings as well. So... you know... ENJOY!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Game of Thrones Recap: I Believe I Can Fly Edition

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, May 19, 2014 at 11:44 AM

A Storm of Swords is a deceptive book. The Red Wedding happens right smack in the middle of it, and it immediately unbalances the reader. One wonders who the series is even about after that. The back end of A Storm of Swords, though, is filled with payoffs that go a long, long way to making up for the Red Wedding. There are multiple moments where nasty characters, often in dramatic ways, get their comeuppance.

Last night's episode ended with one of those moments. Spoilers after the jump.

Remember back in season one when you hated Sansa? She got put through wringer this episode. I hope youre happy, jerk.
  • Remember back in season one when you hated Sansa? She got put through wringer this episode. I hope you're happy, jerk.

Continue reading »

Monday, May 12, 2014

Game of Thrones Recap: Law and Order, Westeros Edition

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, May 12, 2014 at 10:44 AM

Tyrion Lannister is, understandably, everyone's favorite character on Game of Thrones. He's smart, he's charismatic, and everyone likes to root for an underdog. Last night, though, Tyrion kind of biffed it. He had an opportunity to get out of a bad situation and, well, he didn't take it. In the name of idealism and passion, everyone's number-one dwarf screwed himself over in last night's episode.

Fake politics! International loans! Goats! All of this and more after the jump.

Tyrions in trouble. If only Jaime could lend him a hand.
  • Tyrion's in trouble. If only Jaime could lend him a hand.

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Monday, May 5, 2014

Game of Thrones Recap: HODOR SMASH! Edition

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, May 5, 2014 at 10:44 AM

Last night's Game of Thrones featured exciting things like discussions of insurrections and national debt. The show, as is apparent to everyone who watches it, is very much committed to not being a standard fantasy story, and last night it bellowed that very loudly, affirming that even though it's all about dragons and swords, it's still utterly committed to the intricacies of fake politics.

Spoilers after the jump.

Not pictured AGAIN: Ser Pounce, for some reason.
  • Not pictured AGAIN: Ser Pounce, for some reason.

Continue reading »

Monday, April 28, 2014

Game of Thrones Recap: Ser Pounce Edition

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, Apr 28, 2014 at 10:29 AM

A bunch of things happened on Game of Thrones last night, but none of them were as momentous or memorable as the on-screen introduction of Ser* Pounce, Tommen Baratheon's cat.

More on the episode, and Tommen's pet kitty, after the jump!

Not pictured: Ser Pounce, for some reason.
  • Not pictured: Ser Pounce, for some reason.

*I love this series, but goddamn is "ser" a stupid word.

Continue reading »

Monday, April 21, 2014

Game of Thrones Recap: "Not Cool, HBO" Edition

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, Apr 21, 2014 at 11:14 AM

Game of Thrones pissed me off last night, and not in a “they killed a character I like” sort of way. I highly enjoy this show, but last night it crossed an unacceptable line. Ideally, these recaps would just be me bloviating about dragons and fake politics, and not musing about sexual assault.

There's a recap after the jump. There's also a long rant about rape.

Things are about to get heavy. To lighten the mood somewhat, heres a picture of Tormund Giantsbane running like a dork.
  • Things are about to get heavy. To lighten the mood somewhat, here's a picture of Tormund Giantsbane running like a dork.

Continue reading »

Monday, April 14, 2014

Game of Thrones Recap: Best Party Ever! Edition

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, Apr 14, 2014 at 10:59 AM

Crack out the Dornish red or raise a glass of Arbor Gold. Game of Thrones gave its audience something everyone’s wanted last night.

It was great. You know what I mean. Hit the jump for more.

Pictured: The fairy tale wedding of a beautiful princess and a dashing king.
  • Pictured: The fairy tale wedding of a beautiful princess and a dashing king.

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Monday, April 7, 2014

Game of Thrones Recap: Sexless in Westeros Edition

Posted by Joe Streckert on Mon, Apr 7, 2014 at 10:14 AM

Game of Thrones is back, and that means that for the duration of the season I’ll be polluting Blogtown with my opinions about swords. Last night’s episode was a season opener, so it was mostly catch-up. Characters did a lot of helpful exposition and explanation during the episode. Recappy speeches and dialogue were the order of the day, and, for the most part, it wasn’t too forced. People died. Nudity was seen. Things happened. Hit the jump for spoilers.

*SWOON!*
  • *SWOON!*

Continue reading »

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Thursday, April 3, 2014

When You Argue About Game of Thrones, You Win or You Die

Posted by Erik Henriksen on Thu, Apr 3, 2014 at 11:14 AM

Screen_Shot_2014-04-03_at_9.42.22_AM.png
  • ILLUSTRATION BY JEFF VERSOI

LET US DECIDE WHO SHALL LIVE AND WHO SHALL DIE.

In this week's Game of Thrones issue, Music Editor Ned Lannamann and News Reporter Dirk VanderHart locked themselves in horrible mortal combat, with Ned swinging his devastating war hammer and Dirk deftly wielding the sharpest of tridents. Look at the picture above, it's all right there.

The reason for their terrible and terrifying dispute: an argument about which is better, the Game of Thrones TV show or the book series the show's based on, George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire. Part of Dirk's argument:

By jamming only the bloodiest, most fantastical elements of the story into viewers' foam-flecked maws, the show neglects the vast reality to be found in Westeros and its surroundings. And that's a terrible shame.

See, the beating heart of Ice and Fire isn't dragons or White Walkers. It's got little to do with the (admittedly pressing) question of warg fealty. The key to Martin's series—the reason all of its drawn-out tortures are better than (most of) the fantasy genre's countless others—is that it's so deeply felt.

And a few words from Ned's opening volley:

The golden rule is this: Books are always better than the movies based on them.

Hogwash. Have you read Fight Club? It's dreadful. Mario Puzo's The Godfather isn't any great shakes, either. And don't get me started on Stephen King.

So the golden rule is bogus to begin with, but it shouldn't apply to Game of Thrones anyway—it's not a movie, it's a TV show. Some people (whose names rhyme with Shmirk Blanderfart) will insist that George R.R. Martin's long, dreary books are superior to the excellent, taut television program that the show's brilliant creators have extracted from them.

Hmm, very interesting, yes, yes, I see where both of them are coming from. BUT THERE ARE NO TIES IN WESTEROS, which means we must decide who has won this point/counterpoint! The loser will probably won't die as a result of this poll, but that does not negate its importance, as you can bet whichever one of these assholes wins won't shut up about it for the next six months. So go over and read the whole thing, then LET US DECIDE WHO IS CORRECT.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Behold! It's Our Game of Thrones Issue!

Posted by Erik Henriksen on Wed, Apr 2, 2014 at 2:11 PM

Game of Thrones' fourth season starts on Sunday, which means BOOM! It's time for our Game of Thrones issue, which features what might be my favorite Mercury cover ever, featuring design by Justin "Scrappers" Morrison and majestic art by the incomparable Boris Vallejo.

14.46-cover.jpg

The Mercury's Game of Thrones Issue, better known as what happens when my boss goes out of town and I get to loudly declare "WE'RE DOING A GAME OF THRONES ISSUE, LET'S HURRY UP AND PRINT IT BEFORE HE GETS BACK," kicks off with "A Note from the Editor" ("To all employees: Under no circumstances should you write a Game of Thrones issue while I'm gone"), and goes on to include so many excellent pieces of pure gold that even a Lannister would be embarrassed by the all the riches. They include:

• Marjorie's guide to the show's fourth season, in which she brazenly and unapologetically advocates drug use

• Alison's thoughts on Game of Thrones spoilers (settle down, you whiny little babies who can't be bothered to read the books, her thoughts are spoiler-free)

• Bobby's suggestions to Daenerys to gets some better dragons already, like maybe that one from the X-Men, but definitely not that one that talks like Sean Connery

• Ned and Dirk fighting TO THE DEATH about whether the books are better than the show (or vice versa); please note that whoever is declared the winner of this battle will be allowed required to MURDER the other

• Joe Streckert bringing you the very worst at George R.R. Martin's "anatomical, mechanical, and above all, gross" sex writing, in a piece that will either inexplicably arouse you or make you never want to have sex ever again

Unless Steve goes out of town next year—and unless his vacation is timed right around the time of GOT's fifth season premiere—this will probably be the last Game of Thrones issue we're ever allowed to do, so enjoy it while it lasts. It all starts right here.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Five Books, Only Three Seasons

Posted by Dirk VanderHart on Fri, Mar 28, 2014 at 11:59 AM

This is almost certainly fake, (then again, the BBC did include it in a news quiz and it's on this Belgian site, too) and I'm considering applying it to all aspects of life.

spoilers.jpg

Monday, January 20, 2014

Vindication for Dan Saltzman? Fire Bureau SUVs Helped Improve Response Times

Posted by Denis C. Theriault on Mon, Jan 20, 2014 at 12:59 PM

Years after Commissioner Dan Saltzman figured Portland's fire bureau do its business more quickly by letting fancy SUVs handle the medical calls that dominate its workload, the city finally gave the idea an earnest spin last year.

Saltzman and Mayor Charlie Hales worked out a budget deal with the fire bureau and Portland Firefighters Union sticking four of the light trucks (aka Rapid Response Vehicles, or RRVs) at four fire stations—with funding to run the things all day, every day. That agreement also required a six-month check-in with the city council meant to answer how the RRV program was working.

And the answer, according to a fire bureau report headed to council this week, is pretty good.

So far. In the most encouraging finding, the four stations hosting the RRVs have all seen significant increases in their overall response times. Saltzman, fire commissioner since this summer, had long argued that using RRVs for lower-priority medical calls would free up the bureau's more heavily staffed engines and ladder trucks for serious calls. The data seems to show he was right.

Screen_shot_2014-01-20_at_11.43.12_AM.png

The RRVs also saved the bureau some cash, albeit slightly. RRVs travel farther than the big rigs, but get five to six times as many miles per gallon as one of the bureau's larger rescue vehicles. The RRVs also spare the big vehicles—which cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to replace—unnecessary wear and tear.

Read the whole report here (pdf).

Monday, January 13, 2014

It's the First Trailer for Season Four of Game of Thrones

Posted by Erik Henriksen on Mon, Jan 13, 2014 at 9:59 AM

And hey, guess what looks fucking awesome?

After the events that took place in A Storm of Swords/at the end of the last season of Game of Thrones, it's tempting to think that George R.R. Martin's narrative has... well, "peaked" isn't the right word, but at least as far as the books go, book four is where things really slow down, with some of the series' least popular characters coming to the fore and the plot stretchinnnng oouuuut. That said—for better and worse—two problems that the TV show has never had are too-slow pacing and spending too much time with less-than-awesome characters. The show just burns through stuff, fast, and I'm guessing that will only help the show in its fourth season.

And besides, even though I've spent an embarrassing number of hours whining about book four, I can still think of two or three big things that happen in it I can't wait to see onscreen. In some ways, season four will be when we see what the show can really do; going forward, it's going to be harder and harder for them to stay true to the books. That'll be a challenge—but if they pull it off, I can't imagine the end result not being pretty great.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Fireworks Video Blockbuster: Boss Dance Tunes, Scorched Mannequins, a Burning Car, Sad Dogs... and a Sincere, Sober Message From Our Fire and Police Chiefs

Posted by Denis C. Theriault on Wed, Jun 26, 2013 at 2:14 PM

Hey! It's finally drunky-boomstick-meat-and-patriotism season in America! Check out the calendar!

For some people (mainly hillbillies and pyromaniacs), that means it's time for the annual pilgrimage to Vancouver and its plentiful pop-up fireworks emporiums, where arch-hillbillies huckster you to death on dirt roads and under dusty skies.

For everyone else, aside from the illicit joys of an illegal neighborhood light-and-sound show on the night of July 4 itself (and only that night), it's a recipe for weeks of noise and nuisance, especially for veterans and pet owners and parents of light-sleeping babies (same difference).

And, so, Portland's fire and police chiefs have drawn from the city's social-media budget to remind you that all the cool fireworks are illegal in Oregon and also to beg you not to buy them and/or light them on fire.

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