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Star Trek: The Original Series - Season 1 [DVD]
Star Trek: The Original Series - Season 1 [DVD]
Dvd ~ William Shatner
Price: £14.67

4.0 out of 5 stars Do you need a blinking Gorn, or does it not really matter?, 5 Dec. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Of course, you've probably seen all these episodes a million times by now, so you know if you'll like them.

What you might not have seen is the digital remastering and modernised effects. They range from stuff only die-hard fans would notice, to glaringly obvious "upgrades" on the original.

Purists may be horrified. Casual viewers largely won't notice. From time to time, you'll just go "whaat?" Which begs the question, why bother?

Still, it's good to get the whole series in one handy box. A few more extras would be nice. Was there really no-one around to do a commentary track on any of these? Is the extensive coverage of an old props auction really the most insightful docu they could find on Season One of Star Trek, arguably the most influential piece of sci fi tv ever made?

I bought this so I could sit and watch the classic episodes, and I can't really fault those, I'm not even a trekkie, but it remains very watchable, entertaining and often surprisingly prescient tv. How they've packaged those, I'm less bothered about, but I can well imagine serious fans would give this one a miss.


King of Thorns (The Broken Empire, Book 2)
King of Thorns (The Broken Empire, Book 2)
Price: £4.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Dark, bloody violence., 5 Dec. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The second part of Mark Lawrence's wonderfully dark trilogy sees Jorg plumb new depths in his bloody quest to take the imperial throne. Gripping story telling and lots of violence. He's about as unsympathetic an anti-hero as you could hope for, basically there are times when Jorg seems to be the villain of the piece, this could be the story of the rise of a monster, but Lawrence injects him with just enough humanity, and makes sure the odds are always just stacked heavily enough against him, that you find yourself rooting for the nasty vicious little brat. Mostly.

Turns many of the genre's conventions on their heads and has a lot of fun doing so.

If you enjoy the gore, guts and intruige of Game of Thrones, but want something with pace and moral ambiguity by the bucketload this is the series for you.


Sony Alpha SAL35F18 A-mount Wide Angle Lens (Black)
Sony Alpha SAL35F18 A-mount Wide Angle Lens (Black)
Price: £148.57

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential prime lens, 19 Dec. 2012
I love this lens. I bought one last year and it is now the lens I use for 90% of my photography.
It's plastic, which doesn't bother me as it probably shaves £100 or so off the price, and it's not like I'm playing football with the thing.

Fine details are rendered particularly nicely with this, the ability to focus so close means you can almost use it as a macro - but with the speed of a portrait lens.

If you haven't used a 35mm lens before, on most sony SLRs this is the closest equivalent to the old film standard 50mm - the "walk about" lens of choice back in the day.

The really impressive thing about this is the price - for optics of this quality you'd expect to pay twice as much. If you've got the money, and an Alpha system camera, then this is an essential buy in my book.


Sony SLTA37 16.1MP Translucent Mirror Technology Interchangeable Lens Camera with 18-55mm Lens - Black
Sony SLTA37 16.1MP Translucent Mirror Technology Interchangeable Lens Camera with 18-55mm Lens - Black

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent value for money camera, 7 Nov. 2012
Having used a Sony A200 for the last few years, I bit the bullet and upgraded to one of these SLTs.

It's still an entry level model, but the features and image quality are all vastly improved. The EVF viewfinder technology is clearly sill at an early stage, and it takes a little getting used to having an electronic screen rather than a mirror to look into, but the advantages this brings far outweigh the initial reservations I had. In low-light, the viewfinder will turn up the gain, giving you an image where previously you'd have just had a dark optical viewfinder. The image can be a bit grainy under these conditions (in good light it gives a very clear picture indeed) but it's obviously better than seeing nothing. Low-light also lets it show off its vastly improved handling of high ISO settings (far less image noise than the earlier generation at ISO 800+)

It has a full range of features and shooting modes - most clearly aimed at those point-and-shoot users who usually shoot in auto-jpg mode, but by going into one of the manual or part-manual mode and shooting RAW, you can really start to see some impressive results here.

The small size may not be to everyone's taste (I found it a lot easier to handle than I'd expected) so make sure you get hold of one before buying, if you can.


McDonagh Plays: 1: The Beauty Queen of Leenane; A Skull of Connemara; The Lonesome West: Beauty Queen of Leenane; a Skull of Connemara; the Lonesome West v. 1 (Contemporary Dramatists)
McDonagh Plays: 1: The Beauty Queen of Leenane; A Skull of Connemara; The Lonesome West: Beauty Queen of Leenane; a Skull of Connemara; the Lonesome West v. 1 (Contemporary Dramatists)
by Martin McDonagh
Edition: Paperback
Price: £14.39

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, 2 Sept. 2012
Martin McDonagh is undoubtedly one of the finest dramatists of his generation.
This collection brings together his early work, which while it doesn't quite reach the excellence of "The Pillowman" and "Lieutenant of Inishmore" is perfectly crafted and structured.

Hopefully McDonagh's burgeoning film career won't mean that he is lost to theatre, we simply don't have enough contemporary playwrights this good.


Epson Stylus SX125 All-in-One (Print, Scan, Copy) Printer
Epson Stylus SX125 All-in-One (Print, Scan, Copy) Printer

2.0 out of 5 stars Cheap rubbish, 2 Sept. 2012
I bought this printer because it was inexpensive. It's also quite useless.
Now and then it will surprise you and print a whole page correctly, but ask it to print a longer document and it has a little crisis, imagining paper jams (even when it is empty) and, my favourite of its party tricks, completely forgetting where it is up to in the document. The button you are told to press to resume printing actually seems to act as a reset, meaning you need to manually work out what page it is up to and then tell it to go from there. But since it has never, to my knowledge, managed to get through more than ten pages in a row without stopping dead, this takes it from irritating to virtually useless.
It chonks on coloured ink - even if you only ever use it for black and white text and refuses to print at all if a colour cartridge is removed - again even if you only use it for black and white text.
And about 1 page in three it just doesn't bother with at all, so again, for longer documents you need to sift through and remove all the blank pages.
Colour and photo performance might be excellent, but I wouldn't trust it enough to even try any of that.

It gets 2 stars because it is cheap, and the ink is cheap, but soon as I can afford better, I'm going to recreate that scene from Office Space with this thing.

Avoid.


MARK GATISS - Canvas Clock (LARGE A3 - Signed by the Artist) #js002
MARK GATISS - Canvas Clock (LARGE A3 - Signed by the Artist) #js002
Offered by Seasons Original Art
Price: £25.95

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Dorian Lazarus Experiment., 16 Sept. 2011
This is not just a timepiece, it is a time machine!

Inspired by Mark's Doctor Who Episode "The Lazarus Experiment" this clock actually shows Mark's face getting older as time passes until he is extremely old. It's a little bit like "Dorian Gray" as well, which I'm sure is deliberate as he's well into all that Victorian horror stuff. Mark has one of these himself, and he's put the battery in the wrong way round in the hope that as time unwinds he will get younger. Again, it's a bit like "The Lazarus Experiment" and "Dorian Gray".

NB - I am only all guessing this, I do not own this clock. But what else could it be for - it has no numbers. Spooky.


Who On Earth Is Tom Baker ? :
Who On Earth Is Tom Baker ? :
by Tom Baker
Edition: Hardcover

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Much more than just Doctor Who..., 26 Jan. 2006
If this book was written by anyone else, it would be regarded as one of the great media autobiographies. Because, however, the author was Tom Baker, it appeals mainly to Doctor Who fans, and on that score could be very disappointing.
If you want to know about Tom's time as the Doctor, there is very little for you here.
If, on the other hand, you want to read a book which is hilarious and tragic, terrifying and thought-provoking and paints a picture not only of the actor's London of the 60s & 70s, but also the vanished Liverpool of the post-war years, then find a copy of this and start reading. You are unlikely to stop until he has. Hopefully, with the recent interest in Doctor Who, and Tom's own higher profile thanks to Little Britain and Monarch of the Glen, this will soon be back in print. In the meantime, hunt it down!


Essential X-Men Volume 5 TPB: v. 5 (Essential (Marvel Comics))
Essential X-Men Volume 5 TPB: v. 5 (Essential (Marvel Comics))
by Chris Claremont
Edition: Paperback

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars At last! The return of Marvel's mutant soap, 17 Jun. 2004
After a wait of three years, Marvel have finally released the 5th of their low budget reprint volumes of the Claremont run on Uncanny X-Men.
The content is a bit of a mixed bag, while Claremont's writing continues to improve with every issue, there are a few too many cross-overs with titles that are now of little more than curiosity value. Few people now will be that excited by the prospect of Power Pack or Rom Spaceknight involving themselves in X-business. Even the appearances of the Avengers and Spider-Man have the feel of being tacked on by someone in the marketing department. Only the crosses with New Mutants really feel organic - and surely make a New Mutants collection, well, essential.
Interestingly, the four x-men from the films Jean, Cyclops, Wolverine and Storm are those we don't see that much giving the supporting players a real chance to shine.
There's some lovely character stuff between Colossus and Kitty, and Rogue begins to develop into a mnore rounded character. Meanwhile, when we do see what Storm is up to... let's just say this book finishes on one of the best x-men comics ever published and leave it at that.
The idea of X-Men aa a super-hero team is ended here as we follow the individuals much more than the 'team'. This is x-men as soap opera and lays the groundwork for many of the stories that led to the 7 million selling x-men 1 several years later.
Overall, not as tightly plotted as vol 4, but Life Death II is worth the price of admission alone.
Let's hope it isn't another 3 years before volume 6!


The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen
by Alan Moore
Edition: Paperback

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Extraordinary, and rather rum, 4 July 2003
What if you took some of those great heroes from Victorian fantasy literature and banded them together like super-heroes? Yes, in most hands you'd be left with a sticky derivative mess, but with the mastery of Moore on the case (not to mention the ever lively pen of Mr O'Neill) what you get is a charming little thriller, full of tension, drama and of course, bucketfuls of action.
Ridiculously well researched, but never overtly intellectual, this is one of the most fun books you'll read this year.


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