Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The Growing Influence of Geek Pop Culture and How to Profit from It


In the not so distance past, geeks were marginalised rejects of society for their interests in underground subcultures, aptitude in emerging technologies, or apparent social awkwardness. Now well into the 21st century, former subcultures like comic books and science fiction have since become mainstream pop culture whilst using the latest smart technologies at our literal fingertips is now seen to be cool. Geeks are no longer labels to be ashamed of and many are indeed pinnacles of modern society behind some of today's iconic brands. Many people now outwardly  profess themselves a Geek in celebration of their specialised interests or like-minded fandoms with fellow Geeks.

It's cool to be Geek!
Marvel's Avengers. Star Wars. Star Trek. Game of Thrones. Beginning as geeky subcultures, within a generation these franchises have since been elevated to mainstream pop culture with millions of fans worldwide. Therefore the industry of modern Geek Pop Culture is now worth billions and continues to grow.

Comic Fiesta, Malaysia's largest fan convention, is attended by upto 50,000 geeks & otakus annually.
In this conference, hear from the Geeks themselves what motivates their fandoms and what they want to spend their hard earned cash on. Then listen to industry panelists sharing ideas on how local businesses may leverage on their franchises to potentially profit from the fans of Geek Pop Culture. Corporate management & executives, SME owners, event organisers and entrepreneurs are invited to attend.

VENUE
Black Box theatre, MAPKL @ Publika Shopping Gallery
Level G2-01, Block A5, Solaris Dutamas,
No 1, Jalan Dutamas 1,
50480 Kuala Lumpur
MALAYSIA



DATE
Tuesday 14 November 2017


AGENDA

1.45pm Doors open to Black Box & Registration
2.15pm Welcome & opening remarks
2.30pm PANEL: What Geeks Want
3.30pm Coffee break
4.00pm PANEL: Leveraging from Geek Franchises
5.00pm Questions & Answers session
5.30pm End conference

7.30pm Geek Night Out Movie Screening: Man of Steel* (see below)


This conference and movie screening are organised by Outpost Productions as part of Publika's Comic Play, a week-long carnival from 14-19 November 2017 of hobby-centric activities by local special-interest communities. This shared platform brings together artists, performers, art galleries, and NGOs to update on the latest trends, exchange ideas, connect with each other. Comic Play will be staged at four locations within Publika: Boulevard (red & blue zones), The Square, Black Box and White Box. Each location will have its own designated activities that include Art Exhibitions, Mini Collectors Library, Movie Screening, Panel Talks, Bazaar, Stage performances, Retro Gaming Experience, Artists Alley, Cosplay Costume Contest, and Tabletop Games. Get the updates on these activities direct from the official Comic Play Facebook Event.



What Geeks Want

Now that geeks no longer feel the need to figuratively "hide in the closet", many geeks are indeed proud to express their fandoms as well as share their enthusiasm with the public. Whilst geeky merchandise often satisfies the immediate want to own a piece of their fandom, geeking-out also involves sharing such passions with fellow fans at events such as conventions like Comic Fiesta, Comiket and San Diego Comic-Con. Hear from these representatives of local fan communities on what motivates their love of geek pop culture and how they seek to engage with their fandoms.

Panelists:
    • Sanjiv Indran, Star Wars Malaysia Fan Club (SWMFC)

    An avid traveler, naturalist and Star Wars Geek, Sanjiv Indran channels his passion for Science Fiction into engineering simple, sustainable solutions at Engineers without Borders Malaysia, to help empower Humanity one underprivileged community at a time. Sanjiv holds position of Honarary Secretary for Star Wars Malaysia Fan Club (SWMFC), a nonprofit organization registered with the Malaysian Registrar of Societies run by fans for fellow fans.
    • Allen Yap, Pop Culture Fun - Malaysia

    Growing up in the 80s, Allen Yap was drawn to geeky pop culture through video games and comic books, closely following Transformers, G.I.Joe, The Punisher, Ghost Rider and Captain America from Marvel Comics. These fueled his interest in toy collecting which remains till this day. He started cosplaying in 2006 and founded the Heroes (TV series) Fan Community Malaysia with support from Star World. This series together with launch of the Marvel Cinematic Universe marked the rebirth of the Superhero narrative in mainstream entertainment media and reignited Allen's inner geek. He blogs & vlogs about toys, comic books, and video games on his Facebook channel Pop Culture Fun - Malaysia.
    • Hew Shin Chien, Comic Fiesta


    Comic Fiesta has been the heart of Malaysia's Animation, Comics and Games (ACG) community since 2002, most well-known for its trademark event every December in Klang Valley. Beyond being a convention for fans of the ACG culture, Comic Fiesta through its various activities spearheads the development of various creative-based areas, such as creative entrepreneurship, illustration, comic industry and cosplay in Malaysia. The most recent Comic Fiesta in 2016 gathered over 45,000+ youths and ACG enthusiasts together in one of the most happening festivals in Malaysia.


    Panel moderator: Umapagan Ampikaipakan, BFM89.9


    Listeners of BFM89.9 would be well acquianted with Umapagan Ampikaipakan. Uma (as he is fondly known) is a journalist and cultural commentator. From newsprint to the world wide web as well as radio & television, he contemplates everything from the idiosyncrasies of Malaysian politics to his unnatural obsession with the written word. His long running radio show, Bookmark on BFM89.9, is Malaysia's pre-eminent broadcast on all things book related. He is also a film critic with At the Movies and the co-host of BFM89.9's drive time radio show, The Evening Edition.



    Leveraging from Geek Franchises

    The boom in Geek Pop Culture over the last decade has offered numerous opportunities for corporates and entrepreneurs to cash-in on the billions of dollars spent by geeks on their fandoms. These include many local businesses that have leveraged off popular geek franchises like Transformers, Star Trek, Marvel's Avengers, etc. Representatives from the film entertainment industry will share ideas on creating new business opportunities associated to geek pop culture in Malaysia.

    Panelists:
      • Kara Lee, United International Pictures
      For over 15 years, Kara Lee has been responsible for marketing film products from Paramount Pictures and Universal Pictures. Mega-blockbusters under her helm include Malaysia's highest grossing titles from the Transformers and Fast & Furious franchises. She is directly involved in identifying, pitching and managing third-party brand and media partnerships, in addition to managing promotions and publicity for films released under both Studios.

      Kara is Marketing Director at United International Pictures, Malaysia.

      • James Andrew Chong, TGV Cinemas
      James Andrew Chong has been a fanboy for all things pop-culture, cult, sci-fi & everything “nerdy” for as long as he can remember. Citing Star Trek & sci-fi as his source of inspiration, he is basically a fan of everything “imaginative” from growing up with music, movies, comics and classic 80's TV shows. He has been in the cinema industry for the past 13 years working with both GSC & TGV and still never gets bored of sitting in the cinema auditorium watching & re-watching movies again & again on the BIG screen.

      James holds position of Manager - Content Strategy at TGV Cinemas.

      • Kelvin Loke, ShiokToys Collectibles
      A fanboy at heart, Kelvin Loke's indulges in his geek passion as an avid collector of premium pop culture collectibles. His hobby evolved into business when he took over the reins of Shioktoys Collectibles 7 years ago. Since then Shioktoys Collectibles has grown to be a leading distributior and retailer for premium pop culture memorabilia such as licensed statues and busts from renown brands like Sideshow Collectibles, Hot Toys, and XM Studio. Kelvin's business philosophy of "by collectors, for collectors" means clearly understanding what geeks want and how to cater to those needs in his niche market.


      Panel moderator: Richard Chua, Outpost Productions


      For the last 30 years, Richard Chua has been a sci-fi geek with interests in Star Trek, Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, etc. He also enjoys delving into superhero and fantasy genres from Marvel and Lord of the Rings respectively. His passion into geek pop culture is often reflected in his compulsion to collect memorabilia and interest in cosplay. Since 2015, he has been an avid explorer of major pop culture conventions like San Diego Comic-Con to meet his sci-fi idols. Richard's day-job involves geek consulting, entertainment marketing and event services.


      REGISTRATION

      Ticketed event by online registration only via our listing on Eventbrite:

      Eventbrite - The Growing Influence of Geek Pop Culture and How to Profit from It
      • Admission Fee, RM50 per pax
      • Early Bird 1-for-1 Offer (ends 31 October 2017), RM50 for 2 pax; BRING A FRIEND on us!
      Who should attend?
      Corporate management & executives, SME key decision-makers, event organisers & agencies, entrepreneurs, business media.

      Terms and Conditions for Registration:
      1. Admission to event is subject to completed registration and payment as registered attendees. Walk-in admission is subject to availability of seating.
      2. No refund will be given for no-show by registered attendees. However, registered attendees who are unable to attend may nominate a substitute by contacting organiser at crew@outpost.com.my before 12 November 2017.
      3. The organiser will take every reasonable effort to deliver the event agenda. However to to circumstances that may be beyond reasonable control, the organiser reserves the right to revise event agenda and/or panelists without penalty or refund to registered attendees.
      4. In the unlikely event of cancellation on the scheduled date by unforeseen circumstances, registered attendees will be first offerred the option to attend rescheduled event, or receive refund of admission fee.
      * Note: Geek Night Out Movie Screening for Man of Steel is FREE for all convention attendees and public but a separately ticketed event. Register in advance via Eventbrite as seating priority will be given to registered attendees.

      For inquiries, kindly email crew@outpost.com.my or send a direct message via our Facebook Page Outpost Productions.

      ABOUT THE ORGANISER

      Outpost Productions caters to a wide audience of Geek Pop Culture in Malaysia recognising that geeky fans are often passionate on not just one but multiple fandoms. In our ideal world, Star Wars fans and Trekkies peacefully co-exist. Same with comic book geeks who love both Marvel and DC. Our social media channels publish and share geeky content plus support local pop culture events with fan engagements and coverage.



      For corporate clientele, Outpost Productions offers Geek Consulting supported by on-ground events implementation. For over a decade we have provided solutions for thematic marketing and promotions aimed at retail customers. Our clients include leading brands in film distribution, cinemas, toys and entertainment services. 


      May The Force Be With You and Live Long & Prosper!


      Wednesday, October 4, 2017

      Blade Runner 2049 returns to debate Human or Replicant and what defines humanity


      It's been nearly 35 years since Blade Runner was released in 1982. Although under-performing at the box office, over time the movie became sci-fi cult classic through it's thought-provoking elements with visuals and graphics ahead of its time. The movie is also known for its controversial SEVEN different versions from the original theatrical release, Director's Cut (although unsanctioned by the director himself!), etc. until the Final Cut in 2007.

      Before delving further, let's first establish a couple of important definitions from this futuristic world :


      What is a Replicant?
      The major theme of the original film revolves around the human sub-species called Replicants, bio-engineered androids created by the Tyrell Corporation as a worker race for less desirable jobs to human, including wars. Replicants appear virtually indistinguishable from adult humans and may possess enhanced strength, speed, agility, resilience, or intelligence depending on the model. In the year 2019 when the movie takes place, the latest Replicant models are the Nexus-6. These models were created with a limited 4-year life span as a failsafe before they can develop advance emphatic cognition becoming more "human" and thereby harder to identify. Replicants are also called "skin-jobs".


      What is a Blade Runner?
      Blade Runners are considered to be a specialized police unit to track down Replicants on Earth and "retire" them (bluntly put, killing them off). Due an off-world mutiny by Nexus-6 Replicants, all replicants have been banned from Earth. Because replicants appear completely human, Blade Runners are trained to identify them through psychological methods like the Voight-Kampff test. Using a special device, a suspected replicant will be asked a series of questions whereby their responses will unmask their true identity.

      A Voight-Kampff machine for replicant testing. Photo source antonidepowski.com.

      The original scifi novel adapted to film as Blade Runner.

      The original Blade Runner was based on a novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K Dick which provided the basic of plot for the film. However in the novel, the motivation for Deckard being a Blade Runner is to earn enough money to purchase a real-life sheep to replace his robotic sheep. Yes, you read that correctly! In this post-apocalyptic future depicted in the novel, Earth went through a global war whereby dust-radiation fallout killed all animals. Therefore, owning a living animal is sort of a status symbol! The novel subsequently spin-off 3 more sequels: The Edge of Human, Replicant Night and Eye and Talon.


      In the 1982 movie adaptation re-titled Blade Runner directed by Ridley Scott, Deckard (played by Harrison Ford) is instead tasked to hunt down four Nexus-6 Replicants that have found their way on Earth. In the megatropolis of Los Angeles, Deckard eventually "retires" three out of four replicants but in the process also comes across a newer model replicant named Rachel (played by Sean Young) who did not know she is one. Deckard and Rachel form a relationship and by the end of the movie Deckard questions the ethics of his job and what it really means to be human.




      Due to nature of the ending in the Director's and Final Cuts, geeks have been debating for years on whether Deckard could be a Replicant as well due to his dream of a unicorn and his colleague Gaff (played by James Edward Olmos) leaving him a unicorn origami. On the assumption that Deckard would not have spoken about the unicorn to anyone, this suggests that the dream was implanted as per replicants like Rachel with her dream of spiders. Adding to the controversy, Harrison Ford has said he does not think Deckard is a replicant whilst Director Ridley Scott said that he is. If curious, read more about the debate at Quora.

      Replicant Roy Batty (Rutger Hauer) injured after a struggle with Deckard. Replicants are neither robots nor cyborgs. They are wholly organic and bleed when injured

      Film Intel: Much of Blade Runner was filmed in Los Angeles during the early 1980s redressed to depict Los Angeles of the future in 2019. One of the major sets placing J.F. Sebastian's apartment was shot in the historic Bradbury Building built in 1893. The Bradbury still remains standing today and restored as a functional office building. Our Outpost Commander had the opportunity to visit this film site a couple of years back and snapped these photos for comparison against the movie shots:

      Notice placed at the lobby of the Bradbury Building sharing its association with Blade Runner.


      The distinctive stairways used by Deckard in the movie.

      Photo source: maxpictures.com
      The skylight in the movie with added effects of an advertisement airship overhead.
      As mentioned earlier, there are seven versions of Blade Runner comprising:
      1. Workprint Prototype version (1982): Shown for test audience.
      2. San Diego Sneak Preview (1982): Shown once only which is identical to the US theatrical version with three additional scenes
      3. US Theatrical release (1982): Shown in America cinemas with Harrison Ford's voice over and a "happy ending" where Deckard and Rachel figuratively "drive off into the sunset".
      4. International Theatrical release (1982): Similar to the US Theatrical release with 3 more violent action scenes.
      5. US Broadcast version (1986): Toned down violence, profanity and nudity for television broadcast.
      6. The Director's Cut (1992): Although presented as a Director's Cut, Ridley Scott has publically stated he was not satisfied with this version. Major changes include removal of Harrison Ford's voice over and additional of the unicorn dream sequence, which fueled speculation of Deckard as a human or Replicant.
      7. The Final Cut (2007), or 25th Anniversary Edition: The only version that director Ridley Scott claimed he had full control over and cut to his satisfaction. For newbies, this may be the most suitable edition to watch before the sequel movie.

      For more insight into the original Blade Runner listen to the geeks on BFM's At the Movies.

      The world of Blade Runner 30 years later in 2049.

      Now in 2017 after 35 years, Blade Runner will finally release a long-awaited sequel. Blade Runner 2049 takes place 30 years later in the series timeline introducing a new Blade Runner named K played by Ryan Gosling.  Denis Villeneuve (Arrival) directs this sequel movie with Ridley Scott in the role of Executive Producer. Veteran actor Harrison Ford returns once again as Rick Deckard in a Blade Runner reluctant "buddy" team-up with Gosling's Officer K.

      Official Synopsis
      Officer K (Ryan Gosling), a new blade runner for the Los Angeles Police Department, unearths a long-buried secret that has the potential to plunge what's left of society into chaos. His discovery leads him on a quest to find Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford), a former blade runner who's been missing for 30 years.



      As setup for this sequel movie, director Denis Villeneuve commissioned three different shorts to "fill in the gaps" between 2019 to 2049. Two of these are live-action shorts directed by Luke Scott, son of Ridley Scott, while the third is an anime short directed by ShinichirĂ´ Watanabe (Cowboy Bebop). Here they are in chronological order:

      Year 2022: Black Out

      A major incident involving Nexus-8 Replicants leading to replicant prohibition. 


      Year 2036: Nexus Dawn

      Introducing the Nexus-9 Replicants, the "perfect" model, created by Niander Wallace played by Jared Leto (Suicide Squad).

      Year 2048: Nowhere to Run
       
      Leading up directly to events in the forthcoming movie by introducing Sapper played by Dave Bautista (Guardians of the Galaxy). 

      Not much more of the story is known so far but let us meet the characters who be involved with the new mystery:

      Officer K (Ryan Gosling): A new Blade Runner for the LAPD. He is about to uncover a secret that may lead humanity into chaos.

      Listen to BFM's At the Movies interview with Ryan Rosling recently in Los Angeles:



      Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford): The original Blade Runner from the first movie makes his return after being in hiding for more than 30 years. Will Blade Runner 2049 reveal the secret of Deckard is really a human or a replicant?

      Niander Wallace (Jared Leto): The blind CEO of Wallace Corporation. He tries to lift the ban of replicants by creating the latest Nexus-9 models, which he claimed they are fully obedient and will not hurt any humans at all.  

      Luv (Sylvia Hoeks): A new Nexus-9 replicant devoted to Niander.

      Joi (Ana De Armas): K's love interest and also confidante.

      Lieutenant Joshi (Robin Wright): K's superior and a lieutenant in the LAPD.

      Sapper Morton (Dave Bautista): A suspected replicant.

      Blade Runner 2049 will be opening in nationwide cinemas in Malaysia on 5 October 2017. Note the movie is rated 18+, so no children are allowed. Critics has been praising the film and some are calling it the best movie so far of 2017.

      Check out our Geek Recon movie review for Blade Runner 2049 byour resident Vulcan Mr. Smock and special guest Vincent Wong, an expert in the world of Blade Runner:


      For more local opinions, read this review by Star2.com.

      Thanks for Sony Pictures Malaysia, our Outpost Commander was able to attend the Malaysian Movie Premiere for Blade Runner 2049 at MBO Cinemas Sterling Mall. Specially built for this occasion was an event set piece inspired from the dark future of Blade Runner. Guests were treated to drinks and refreshments in a mock-up of Los Angeles. Check this walk-through below for a glimpse into this alternative future:


      A walk-through of Los Angeles in the dystopian future of Blade Runner.

      Enter the future of Los Angeles in the year 2049. Thankfully it's not raining!

      Thanks for pointing those out, but where's the Johnny Walker?

      Read more about the official partnership between Blade Runner and Johnny Walker from The Hyped Geek.
      OK found the Johnny Walker at this future food canteen.

      Fashion from the futuristic. Perhaps we will keep our fashion sense in the present for now.

      Event host offering Blade Runner movie merchandises to guests via trivia quiz.


      Collectors who feel the urge to bring home a piece of Blade Runner, sadly there isn't much movie merchandise available for Blade Runner. But the Outpost Movie Recon Team (M.R.T.) has managed to find some cutesy Funko POP figurine bobbleheads for Blade Runner 2049 (because Funko just about makes figurines for every existing geek property in existance!). The set of 6 figurines comprise of Officer K, (old) Deckard, Joi, Sapper, Luv and Wallace. You can try to contact local Funko distributor Sheldonet Toy Store Malaysia the availability of the figures.  

      Above from left to right: Officer K, Deckard and Joi
      Below from left to right: Sapper, Luv and Wallace


      As for contest giveaways, GSC customers stand a chance to win a Sony Playstation 4 Slim 500GB with a VR headset! Participate by purchasing two D-box Atmos tickets of Blade Runner 2049 to be in the running for this Grand Prize. Contest starts from 5th October until 19th October 2017. Get further information with terms and conditions at the GSC website here.


      Sony Pictures Malaysia also added an online competition via their Facebook Page soliciting the best answers to the quesion "Would you rather be a Blade Runner or a replicant?".  To participate, comment on their Facebook post here.



      Blade Runner 2049 is now in cinemas nationwide. Please note that this movie is rated for 18 and above only.


      Disclaimer: Blade Runner and other trademarks are copyright to Warner Bros Pictures and Columbia Pictures, referenced here for fan service announcements without intent to infringe.

      Wednesday, September 27, 2017

      Star Trek Discovery launches a new vision for the franchise that is familiar yet different


      Star Trek has been a huge impact to the scifi geek community worldwide. The franchise has spawned 5 television series, 13 movies and 1 animated series. Star Trek started out as a television series in 1966 for 3 seasons before being revived as a movie in 1979, thanks in no small part to the blockbuster success of Star Wars. More movies then followed together with multiple TV spin-offs: The Next Generation (TNG), Deep Space Nine (DS9), Voyager, Enterprise. The last series Enterprise ended in 2005, leaving fans devoid of Star Trek on TV for over a decade... until NOW. Star Trek fans, or Trekkies, of all generations can join on adventures where no one has gone before with the release of Star Trek Discovery early this week!



      Star Trek: Discovery is co-created by Bryan Fuller (Star Trek DS9 & Voyager) and Alex Kurtzman (Star Trek 2009 reboot & Into Darkness, Transformers) for CBS, a US media corporation currently custodian of the Star Trek franchise. The series lead goes to Sonequa Martin-Green (The Walking Dead) as Starfleet Commander Michael Burnham. The support cast includes Doug Jones (Hellboy) as Lt. Saru, Michelle Yeoh (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) as Captain Phillipa Georgiou, James Frain (The Lone Ranger) as Vulcan Ambassador Sarek, Shazad Latif (Spooks) as Lt. Ash Tyler, Anthony Rapp (A Beautiful Mind) as Lt. Paul Stamets, Jason Issacs (Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets) as Captain Gabriel Lorca, Mary Wiseman (Baskets) as Cadet Sylvia Tilly and Chris Obi (American Gods) as Klingon leader T'Kuvma. Since the departure of Bryan Fuller in November last year, Executive Producers Gretchen J. Berg and Aaron Harberts currently serve as showrunners for the series, i.e. the ones with overall creative authority and management authority, or figuratively the joint-Captains of Star Trek Discovery.


      Behind-the-scenes featurette.

      This new series is yet another prequel ("can we not finally move forward in the timeline?" - editor's rant) that takes place 10 years before Kirk and Spock begin their missions in The Original Series. It is is not affected by the reboot films (Star Trek, Into Darkness, Beyond) which have since been classified as the Kelvin timeline. Therefore taking place in the Prime timeline, the adventures of Discovery occur in the time-span between Enterprise concluding in the year 2161 and The Original Series commencing in 2266; let's not get into stardate namenclature, it's just confusing!

      Sonequa Martin-Green as Commander Michael Burnham (centre), Tan Sri Michelle Yeoh as Captain Philippa Georgiou (right) and Doug Jones as Lt. Saru on the bridge of the USS Shenzhou.
      The main protagonist Michael Burnham is a human black woman raised on Vulcan as a ward of Ambassador Sarek; yes Spock's father. Michael (show creator Bryan Fuller likes assigning female characters male names) has since joined Starfleet at the urging of her adoptive father and progressed to the position of First Officer of U.S.S. Shenzhou, serving under Captain Phillipa Georgiou for the last 7 years. So begins the pilot episode of the series "The Vulcan Hello".
      The opening title sequence of Star Trek Discovery is departure from the typical starship flybys of preceding series (Enterprise excepted).

      Introducing the Starfleet crew circa 2256:

      Senoque Martin Green as Commander Michael Burnham, First Officer of the U.S.S. Shenzhou.
      As a result of her Vulcan upbringing, she maintains an air of cool logic with emotions held in check yet not totally suppressing them unlike true Vulcans. Burnham is a Xenoanthropologist and inherently a first contact specialist.

      Malaysia's Tan Sri Michelle Yeoh as Captain Phillipa Georgiou of the U.S.S. Shenzhou.
      She is a veteran of war and Michael Burnham's Starfleet mentor.

      TV trivia: Most US TV productions task their cast to speak English in American accents. As a departure from this norm, Michelle Yeoh as Captain Georgiou retained her polished Chinese-Malaysian accent as a statement on global diversity in the hopeful future. Read more into this from an article on SyFyWhilst here in Malaysia we are much accustomed to this as her normal accent, Americans may be just tempted to flick on the English subs to catch every word!
      "Easter Egg" found! Captain Georgiou keeps a piece of asian culture in here ready room / office. Can you spot it? Read more about this at TheHypedGeek.com

      Doug Jones as Lt. Saru, Science Officer on the Shenzhou.
      Saru is a Kelpian, an alien species that has the ability to sense threats including rather pessimistic premonitions of death.


      Jason Isaacs as Captain Gabriel Lorca of the U.S.S. Discovery.
      A brilliant tactician with a decisive charisma but he hides some secrets.


      Anthony Rapp as Lt. Paul Stamets on the Discovery.
      An Astromycologist by training means Stamets specializes in space fungus ("seriously how useful is that going to be?" - editor's rant)


      Shazad Latiff as Lt. Ash Tyler, Security Officer of the U.S.S. Discovery.


      Mary Wiseman as Cadet Sylvia Tilly.
      A final year cadet of the Starfleet Academy working in Engineering of the Discovery.


      Listen directly from the Starfleet crew themselves as they introduce the mission of Star Trek Discovery.


      James Frain is Ambassador Sarek of Vulcan.
      Father to the soon to be infamous half-Vulcan Mr. Spock, and adoptive father to Michael Burnham.

      In every incarnation of Star Trek, the lead starship (or space station in case of DS9) is every bit a character by itself. The starship brings our Starfleet heroes to adventures where no one has gone before and often times is an adventure itself.


      U.S.S. Discovery NCC-1031.
      The lead starship of the namesake series is captained by Gabriel Lorca. Nothing much is known about this starship yet of its capabilities ("although it could be used as a giant space pizza cutter!" - editor's rant). Fan speculation suggests it is one of Starfleet's newer starships and conceivably fast with its lengthy warp nacelles. This speculative video by Hybrid Network might provide more insights:




      U.S.S. Shenzhou NCC-1227, Walker-class starship.
      The other major Starfleet vessel to feature in this series is the U.S.S. Shenzhou, commanded by Phillipa Georgiou. It is designated a Walker-class starship and apparently an older model, although how then its registration number of NCC-1227 exceeds that of the Discovery's NCC-1031 may indeed suggest otherwise. Unusually the bridge for this class of starship is located at the bottom of the saucer section.
      The Shenzhou in atmospheric flight.
      It's no spoiler that Klingons feature heavily in this series and looks to provide the over-arching plot. At the start of the serious, relations between The Federation and The Klingon Empire is icy, unlike most of the TNG era where both are staunch allies. There are 24 Great Houses in the empire and whereby a formidable leader T'kuvma steps forth attempting to unite them all against the Federation.

      Chris Obi is Klingon T'Kuvma.

      Outcast albino Klingon V'oq serves T'Kuvma as his devote right hand.
      What, those are Klingons? We have seen the smooth forehead Klingons from TOS evolve to their bumpy forehead versions in TNG, explained as side-effects of genetic engineering gone wrong in the Enterprise series. Then Klingons in the JJ Abrams Kelvin timeline sported another variant. Now here is yet another variant of Klingon in Star Trek Discovery looking even more alien. And not just in physical look but also dress (ouch, spikey!) and cultural look (organic ships?). No clues yet as to whether this will be explained over the course of the series in a logical explanation acceptable to fans. Read more about the new Klingon look in this article by USA today.

      REMAIN KLINGON: A cool Klingon trailer version for Star Trek Discovery as seen from their perspective!

      There are many more Klingon characters and look towards which ones to be the major antagonists as the series progresses. Oh, in Klingon scenes, our Klingons now fully speak Klingon! Worry not there are subtitles provided... in fact each episode contains Klingon subtitles for our English-speaking characters!


      Star Trek Discovery is now available to us here in Malaysia via Netflix. New episodes will be released on Mondays at approximately 3pm Malaysian time. There are 15 episodes for this season with the first 8 scheduled until 6 November 2017. After a mid-season break, the remaining episodes commence on January 2018.


      The first two episodes of the series has been released this Monday 25 September 2017. Here are initial reactions for episode 1 "The Vulcan Hello" & episode 2 "Battle at the Binary Stars" during a mini-viewing party for Malaysian Trekkies by Outpost (no spoilers):



      This two episodes can be seen as a pilot to the new series, introducing some key characters and the tone for the season. For a more in depth look into Star Trek Discovery, watch our video review hosted by Vulcan cultural officer Mr. Smock with local Trekkies Thomas Kuan and Chow F.C. aka Mr. Engineer:




      Here are snippets of what to look forward to in the coming episodes including the U.S.S. Discovery in action (beware MAJOR SPOILERS if not yet watched first 2 episodes):


      Now for some goodies to our valued readers!


      OUTPOST GIVEAWAY

      Thanks for Netflix, we have more GOODIES to GIVEAWAY! Up for grabs we have 3 complimentary 3-month subscriptions for Netflix so you Trekkies can watch Star Trek Discover legit. Also 1 lucky winner with receive a Netflix tote bag, notebook, lanyard, and pen.


      To stand a chance to win this Outpost Giveaway, just follow these few simple steps:
      • Like our Facebook Page Outpost Productions.
      • Like / Wow / Love this Facebook post.
      • Share the Facebook post to your timeline (set privacy to public) with reasons why your friends should watch Star Trek Discovery, .e.g. I want to watch Star Trek Discovery to see Michelle Yeoh as a Starfleet Captain.
      • Include in your shared post hashtags #StarTrekDiscovery #Netflix #OutpostGiveaway.
      • Join local Trekkies on Facebook Group Starbase MY - Star Trek Fans Malaysia
      • Fill in your details in the form below which include permalink to your shared post.
      This contest will be closing on Monday 2 October 2017, 11.59pm. winers will be notified. So make sure to follow us and stay tuned!



      Other Terms & Conditions:
      a. Participants must be resident in Malaysia.
      b. Giveaways comprise 1 tote bag with Netflix gift card (main prize), and 2 Netflix gift cards (consolation) for total 3 winners.
      c. Winner of tote bag must be able to arrange self-collection of prize within 2 weeks of notification. Collection point will be in Klang Valley.
      d. Only 1 entry per person.
      e. Submission to Join the Facebook Group Starbase MY - Star Trek Fans Malaysia must be received before closing deadline.
      f. Selection of winners are final
      g. We reserve the right to amend these terms and conditions without prior notice.

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