Sidetracks is a collaborative project featuring various essays, videos, reviews, or other Internet content that we want to share with each other. All past and current links for the Sidetracks project can be found in our Sidetracks tag. For more links and commentary you can follow us on Twitter, Tumblr. You can also support us on Patreon.
1. This Twitter thread by game developer Max Krieger on the design of DisneyQuest, the indoor interactive theme parks Disney debuted in 1998, is STUNNING. If you love dead malls, you’ll love this.
2. That thread lead me to this 1997 Atlantic interview with Kai Krause, an extremely influential software designer, that is just the epitome of kindly late nineties tech dudes in the best way.
3. Sarah Mirk and Isabella Rotman discuss Lara Croft’s character design and its challenges for female players in "Boob Raider," a nonfiction comic. I was particularly taken by the Anita Sarkeesian quote where she explains that by being invited to ogle and objectify a character, you’re invited to not identify directly with them.
4. Lin Manuel to star as Lee Scoresby in the new TV adaptation of His Dark Materials.
5. The Dark, the horror magazine edited by Silvia Moreno-Garcia, is currently running a Kickstarter to allow them to increase pay rates, and the amount of fiction they publish.
6. Reese Witherspoon and Kerri Washington will start in and produce a TV series based on Celeste Ng's Little Fires Everywhere.
7. Ta-Nehisi Coates and Jen Bartel are bringing out a new Storm solo series, and my excitement is off the charts for this one! Jen Bartel's art is so amazing.
8. Still time to vote for some cool books and covers in the Gemmel Awards. Voting closes on 30th March, and anyone can vote. The House of Binding Thorns, Jade City, and Under the Pendulum Sun are all among the nominees for various categories.
9. Sadly I couldn't add this cosplay triumph to Fanworks as I couldn't find any details of the ladies cosplaying but these three women cosplaying as the fairy godmothers from Disney's animated Sleeping Beauty needs sharing around nonetheless.
10. Terry Pratchett's Watch characters are being lined up for a TV adaptation. I remain really skeptical until I see this because I think the TV adaptations of Pratchett have been meh at best so far, but I would love to see the Watch on TV.
11. rachelmanja muses on ways to tell stories that don't involve much conflict. I definitely sympathize with her desire for more stories with cozy elements, in this case picnics.
12. Here's a totally charming interview with the Cosplay Parents, an older couple who dress up for conventions and trips to Disneyland. Wonderful pictures!
13. I also enjoyed this interview with Brad Kim, the long-time editor of Know Your Meme.
14. Preliminary results of a survey that asked people about their use of different fannish platforms over time, from 1990 through the present. I would say there are no real surprises here, but the discussion of trends is still interesting. I hope more detailed results come out at some point.
15. "I watched all 629 episodes of The Simpsons in a month. Here's what I learned": Long but thought-provoking report on this project, which started as an effort to explain why the show went downhill (the resulting theory is interesting, if incomplete in my opinion), then ended up being more of an examination of how poorly the narrative treats Lisa.
16. It's probably not news to anyone reading this that most readers/watchers/critics tend to be more dismissive of media featuring or created by women, and more generous toward male-centric media, but this essay by Lili Loofbourow is a particularly good examination of the phenomenon.
17. This post about the Royal Shakespeare Company integrating their BSL interpretor into the action on stage makes it sound amazing and contains links to other articles that might be of interest, such as this one from a cast member about the process! Apparently they had the interpretor following the actors around on stage so that the audience could look at the interpretor and the actor at the same time, instead of having to bounce between the two to try to follow, which sounds like such a good idea from an access point of view!
18. These reviews of Emily Wilson's new translation of The Odyssey delight me. My background is in Ancient History, for my sins, so seeing someone taking The Odyssey and doing something new and interesting and deliberate with it brings me so much joy. Word choice in translations affects so much, so the amount of thought she's evidently put into the words she uses and the version of the story that she's telling is wonderful.
19. The people who made Harvest Moon are making a game about running a dragon café and it looks so cute!