Month: March 2013

  • Lexx actors on twitter and facebook

    Not intending for my blog to become an update mecca for actor spotting, but I watch the con hashtags and happen to be following Bill Carr, so these things are happening lately. Thought I'd share if there are some hard core Lexx fans out there who'd like to know.

    You might remember Bill Carr as the other security guard (class 2) in my previous post at I Worship His Shadow- part 7- Termination.


    Bill has a twitter account at, in case you'd like to follow him. He's got a new project going, I'll paste the tweets here and if you are interested you can ask him directly about it.


    Ellen Dubin was recently at MegaCon in Orlando, and Gigi Edgely (Chiana from Farscape) shared a table with her and had some pictures going while the con was live.


    And Ellen (Gigerotta) has recently tweeted to check her facebook at for convention pictures. You can also follow her on twitter at UPDATE- Ellen Dubin's twitter is now

    If you are looking for other Lexx actors online-

    (Please bear in mind I have no idea if all of these are the real deal or not, but they seem like it. I'm not much of an actor stalker, I don't follow other people's real lives very well, so I typically don't friend on facebook much. Same goes for other social media.)

    Brian Downey

    Xeenia Seeberg

    Patricial Zentilli

    Tom Gallant

    Luise Wischermann

    Eva Habermann

    Bill Carr

    Nigel Bennett


  • Old Fashioned Chicken Stock

    I've seen several food shows that demonstrate how to make homemade chicken stock. While chicken stock has been a staple around the world for time out of mind, it's still not the easy breeze a 30 minute TV show can make it seem. I've been doing this for years, and I'd like to fill in a few holes for first timers. This is going to be a lengthy recipe post with 19 pictures, and some think "overkill" while others weep with relief. THIS is how you make a really good old fashioned chicken stock.
    Mine starts with a ceramic glazed cast iron stock pot that I ordered from Ginny's ®. (NOT being paid to link that. I just really like this pot.) Best pot ever for super slow simmering. The heat distributes well, and you don't get hot spots like you do with metal pots. If you prefer metal, try to use the thickest heaviest pot you can find so you can control the simmer not running away into a rolling boil on low heat over 2-3 hours.
    If this is your first time, the first thing you do is schedule this adventure for a day where you're not stressing against a time crunch. Do NOT plan the next meal around this, it's too much work until you get used to it. People in the old days didn't have technology and hectic lives, or this might never have been invented. I know, nothing like giving you a recipe that is arduous and time consuming, but it's THE BEST chicken stock you ever tasted in your life. All your other recipes using chicken stock will benefit.
    I like using Smart Chicken®.  It's a little more expensive, but looks and smells almost as fresh as a farm chicken I butchered myself and froze back. Whatever chicken you buy, make sure it fits into the pot comfortably. I've made mini versions of this with a cornish hen in a large saucepan, whatever takes your fancy. If you don't have a whole chicken, use a bunch of chicken pieces with the bones still in, wings and legs are good for this. Part of the flavor comes from the skin, fat, and bones, not just the meat.
    Rinse your chicken very thoroughly under lukewarm running water, inspecting it carefully for wax (looks yellow), pinfeathers, giblets and/or neck hidden in the inner cavity, etc. Be careful of broken rib and backbones if you reach inside. (If you do cut yourself on a bone, stop immediately and wash your hands with soap and water and cover the wound before you continue. Getting an infection in your skin from raw meat sucks, and getting your blood all over other people's food is gross.) I like to pull out the stringy goop and cut off the tail and the big wad of excess skin on both sides of the open cavity. After rinsing, place the chicken directly into the pot. Throw away all the extra stuff not going into the pot, and wash your hands and the sink with soap. I wash my hands a second time just to be sure. I grew up on a farm, and we didn't know back then about raw meats and cross contamination. I threw up a LOT. Be smart and save yourself a bad tummy ache later.

    After that is all cleaned up, it's time to prep veggies. Use a fresh knife, not the chicken knife. Make it a habit to use different utensils for meats and veggies, even if you know it will all be cooked together. Why? Because, in this instance, you only want half of a large onion and 2-3 stalks of celery. Don't contaminate what you don't use right away with a meat knife. You'll also want a couple of large carrots, peeled and cut in half. I like stuffing carrot and celery inside the chicken. Wash your hands immediately after touching the chicken again. Put the rest of the veggies into the pot.

    I use 9 flavoring ingredients in my stock-
    1 t. salt
    4-5 peppercorns
    1-2 bay leaf
    1 T each of rosemary, thyme, basil, parsley, and oregano
    1/2 t. garlic powder
    On TV shows they tie these up into sprigs and/or a little bag. Making chicken stock is a lot like making tea. Steeping the loose leaf herbs slowly with plenty of room for them to circulate and swell brings such a beautiful aroma and flavor that tying it all into a little bag seems like a crime. Doing that doesn't really save you any time or work later, because you still have to strain the stock when you're done anyway, right? May as well go for gold.

    When all your ingredients are assembled into the pot, pour water over it all up to 1-2 inches from the top. You want to leave some room in case you walk off and it boils, which I've done on more impatient days. You'll also need splash room, which I'll get to in a minute.

    Put the lid on and turn the burner on low. Trust me. If your chicken was already thawed, 3 hours will be about right on low. If it was frozen solid, give it 4-5 hours, but still keep it on low. If you are using chicken pieces instead of a whole chicken, or cooking a cornish hen in a smaller pot, maybe two hours is good. You'll get the hang of it.

    About halfway through the cooking time, one to one and a half hours for the big chicken, you'll want to turn it over. It will cook through just fine without turning it over if you leave the lid on, but turning it gives all the meat steeping time in the stock for flavor and juiciness. Some of my biggest messes have happened while I'm turning a hot chicken over in a scalding stock bath, so be careful about burns. If you do get scalded, immediately get ice or at least cold running water onto the burn before it blisters. Your skin will literally cook from that high temp, and you must cool it quickly so it will stop the cooking. Heat denatures protein, breaks the molecular bonds, and the ice or cold water will stop that process. Never ignore a burn, even if it doesn't hurt that bad. It will hurt bad later when your nerves recover from being cooked alive.
    Here's a good way to turn a chicken. Use a long handled heavy gauge slotted spoon and a very long fork, one in each hand. Guide the fork into the inner cavity while you brace the chicken with the spoon. When you have the fork inserted well enough to move the chicken, lift slightly (lifting higher creates a bigger splash if the chicken slips), and turn like a spit while you use the spoon to help maneuver it on over. Resist the urge to stand real close to the pot for better leverage or bracing or whatever, that is a mistake and you could wind up having to change your clothes and ice your chest and stomach. (Twenty years of experience...) Once the chicken is turned enough to go on over, use the spoon to ease it on down. Put the lid back on and walk away again.


    Your chicken will be cooked through soon after, but it's not 'done' until it easily comes apart when you press the spoon down into the mid back. When you've reached this stage, turn off the burner and let your stock rest with the lid on. You can take the chicken and veggies out now if you want, or you can let them cool a little in the stock. It will all stay hot for a good hour because the heavy pot is so efficient at holding the heat in.

    After an hour, you need to go ahead and get the chicken out onto a plate. It'll still be pretty warm, but you can cover it in plastic wrap at this point to hold in the moisture and cool on the counter for half an hour. Never put hot food into the refrigerator. Hot food can shatter glass shelves in the fridge, and can encourage mold growth in foods it touches or sits near, because they'll become less cool being next to something hot and can take too long to cool back down again. Since your chicken just came from a long simmer, it is sterile coming out of the pot and won't spoil while it's cooling down on the counter, but don't leave it out longer than a couple of hours. When it is cool enough to comfortably handle, I put the chicken into a gallon storage bag into the fridge to deal with later.
    Strain the veggies out of the stock into a bowl using a slotted spoon, and keep spooning through until you're pretty sure you've gotten the bay leaf and all the stray layers of onion that have floated off. Throw all that away. It might be tempting to think you can use it later somehow, but trust me, it's not worth it. The flavor and nutrition have steeped out of the veggies into the stock, they've done their duty. Throw them away.


    Straining stock isn't hard. Some recipes say to strain through cheesecloth, which is expensive and way messier than this needs to be. Unless you are hoping to make a clear consume or broth, you just don't need that extra stress. I use a large mesh strainer with a handle so it will sit over a bowl. I set the bowl in the sink so I don't have to clean up what I spill, and from there it's a matter of tipping the stock pot just right so all the liquid goes through the strainer. Then I carry the strainer to the trash, clap the crap out, and immediately wash it with soap so I don't have to mess with it later. The faster you get that strainer cleaned up, the less you'll hate straining stock. If you leave that strainer sitting around until the chicken fat hardens and the herbs dry, it will be impossible to clean and you'll never make chicken stock from scratch again.


    I really like using tupperware for that stock, put a lid right on it and set it into the fridge. You can leave it alone there up to 3 days, but after that you either need to cook with it or freeze it back. Stock spoils faster than just about any food on the planet. If you open it and it has spoiled, you can't salvage it. Throw it out because it will only poison you now, no matter what you do. You can kill germs with heat, but mold is a molecular structure that can survive heat and wreak havoc in your body. (Grain molds can cause brain damage if bread is made from moldy grain. Don't cook mold!!!!)
    All the fat in the stock floats to the top, and in the fridge it hardens into a skim on top, which is very easy to remove while it's still cold. Use a spoon to skim it off and throw it away. What's left is technically an aspic and wiggles like Jello. It melts right back into stock as soon as you heat it up, and it's now ready to go into your recipes. You can measure it out by the cup and freeze in ziplock bags. I froze this batch into a quart bag to use in stuffing next Thanksgiving.






    The rest of the herbs that got through the strainer all settle at the bottom of the aspic, and will stay there as long as you don't tip the bowl or disturb it as you ladle the stock into bags. When I get down to that stuff, I just pour the dregs down the sink and flush a little water after it. With the fat and other solids removed, this small amount won't cause a clog.


  • the making of Lexx

    :edit: 5-22-14 Another Xanga migration code integration update wiped all the videos out of my old posts. Fortunately, I had this post backed up. Enjoy.

    It's fun to see what goes into how a show is made. This is a collection of youtubes loaded by fans. If you love this kind of stuff and are interested in Lexx once again becoming a viable product, check out The Lexx Revival Project.

    Movie Television - "The Making of Lexx" - part 1
    Movie Television - "The Making of Lexx" - part 2
    Lexx-Extra Stuff(part1)
    Lexx-Extra Stuff(part2)
    Lexx-More Extra Stuff(part1)
    Lexx-More Extra Stuff(part2)
    Lexx-Even More Extra Stuff(part1)
    Lexx-Even More Extra Stuff(part2)
    making of Lexx season 3 part 1 of 2
    making of Lexx season 3 part 2 of 2
    Lexx season 4 wrap reel (Part 1/2)
    Lexx season 4 wrap reel (Part 2/2)


  • Why Lexx Is Personal

    Lexx means a lot of things to a lot of people. At first glance it's just another space show that's a little on the raunchy side, but viewers who get caught up enough in Lexx to see more than one season seem to develop much deeper feelings that border on fanaticism. Lexx has its own loyal cosplay fans and collectors, despite the lack of vendor support at conventions and the disappearance of distributor support for several years (thank goodness that last has changed).

    Someone on twitter asked me a few months ago which Lexx episode is my favorite, and after a little thought, this is what I wrote back.

    After that, I realized I have some pretty deep feelings associated with Lexx that I don't really talk about. I've been called a Lexx super nerd by a number of people and I've never said why I'm so attached to this show. So here it is, the way Lexx found and pushed all my buttons and why I think Lexx is good for the world. I don't like to talk about my 'stuff', and I'm sure I'll come across as a weirdo to some people when I say it. But fans of any show know that the characters and events that happen in a show can become symbolic of personal stuff, and as we displace our emotions into the stories, we unconsciously learn to deal with our own stuff. Stories give us situations to think about, characters give us relationships to relate to. As we become more involved in a show, we become more emotionally invested.

    The biggest obvious impact Lexx had on me was near the beginning of season two, during an episode called "Terminal". In this episode there was a terrible accident when Kai was incorrectly awakened and he automatically braced Stanley right through the heart. Kai and Zev got Stan into the cryopod to put him into stasis before he actually died and found doctors to fix him.

    I was completely stunned when that brace hit Stanley's heart, and very upset, almost wasn't able to continue with the show. I had been living with a heart condition called superventricular tachycardia since high school until well into my thirties, and by the time I saw this episode, a surgeon had been trying to talk me into surgery for nearly two years already because it was getting worse. My condition was becoming alarming, but I was terrified to have the surgery done since I was told I'd have a one in five chance of dying during surgery. Those are worse odds than Russian Roulette with a six shooter. A 20% chance might not sound like a big deal, but once it's your turn, that becomes 100%.

    As ridiculous as it sounds, just making it through that episode changed everything for me. I held my breath every time they showed Stanley wrapped in plastic, and I was so relieved when his heart got fixed and he was fine. But that wasn't the end of the show, not by a long shot. Although it was hilarious seeing 790 pilot Stan's hospital bed with Stan in his underwear, something else terrible was going on. Zev and Kai were taken prisoner for sinister medical experiments, and by the end of the episode Zev gave her life to save Kai and left me curled up bawling my eyes out.

    Within days I called my surgeon and set up the surgery. I faced the fact that this could be it and told all my family I love them. When I woke up, still very loopy from the anesthesia, I sang Kai's "I'm Alive" song to my daughter. I never would have done that if I'd been in my right mind, but drugs have a way of helping us express feelings more easily, and it was a very emotional moment for her, not even 20 years old yet, way too young to lose her mom.

    There are other things in Lexx that speak to me deeply every time I see them. In Supernova we learn that Zev was raised in a box by holograms and trained for the wife bank. How many women in Earth's history have gone through the humiliation and degradation of never being more than that? Or being sex trafficked into slavery? It still goes on, all over the world. Zev is the unloved child that parents gave away, the love slave who actually escaped and wound up with the key to the most powerful weapon of destruction in two universes. She could have run away with a doctor and become a queen of terror, but she chose love and loyalty to Stan and Kai, the first people who ever treated her with kindness, even if it wasn't perfect. As a person, Zev was pretty clearheaded about reality, where she fit into it, and what she wouldn't tolerate in an amoralistic society. She could be girly and still command respect.

    I grew up in an ultra conservative household where girls could never earn the status boys have just for being born boys. I was never given to feel worth my presence in this world no matter how hard I worked, nor forgiven for being born the way I was (I'm ASD). I grew up emotionally neglected and bizarrely treated, so when I saw Zev, it totally clicked. Many girls grow up feeling ugly or like they can't earn the love missing when their parents have their priorities mixed up, and then they feel pushed to perform 'wifely duties' and other behaviors attempting to earn that love. Growing up with a Mennonite father might be the same as growing up in any religiously repressed household where women have a 'place'. What very little we see of what happens to Zev in the first and second movies screams loads about third class citizens under the thumb of His Divine Shadow, and speaks loudly to repressed women watching the show. That so much could be implied in so little film time for her character is overwhelmingly poetic. All the sadness she grew up with, I have felt.

    I just got this tweet as I was finishing that sentence.

    I'm sitting in a public library bawling because of that. Was managing to hold it in till then. No idea if anyone is looking at me, staying focused on my writing.

    Moving on.

    It's not real often I run into a show where all the core characters have so much meaning for me. I'm not trying to hog the fan feels, in fact, I've kept all this in for many years. This is the first time in the years since Lexx first aired that I'm talking about this next bit to anyone in context of how it affects me personally.

    Everybody loves Kai. The girls, the boys, the robot heads- everybody either wants to love Kai or to be Kai. Kai is just that cool. My initial reaction to Kai was repulsion. I couldn't explain it, still can't. It has nothing to do with sex or looks or that he was a killer or that he's dead. None of that. I think it's his conundrum between being able to intellectually know something and being unable to emotionally feel it. While other fans mooned and anthropomorphized, I just very simply got it. I'm stuck, too. I've had a pretty big challenge most of my life making the leap from processing information to feeling something about it, especially to being aware of having feelings and what to do with them. Michael himself has talked about the mandatory autistic nature of his character in interviews, especially during one scene in season three where Kai tried to bury himself and Xev asked him what he's doing buried in the dirt. I've gone weeks and even months not contacting family and feeling very content just to be left alone. It doesn't mean I don't like people, I actually like people very much. But I suffer an emotional disconnect that I don't see demonstrated very well in fictional characters, and I guess this hit pretty close to home for me. So much of my life I have simply just not reacted to people or events happening around me, and I come across to others as strange, cold, or uncaring, when really everything is going through an intellectual filter first. Much of the reactions I've learned to mimic are contrived for the sake of not being willing to die alone. I've been working very hard on social interaction and communication skills for several years, and I'm getting better and better at it, but in an eyeblink I could just turn into a statue and stare if I weren't self monitoring. I do a lot of thinking during those moments. I've wondered a lot about the reanimated state of Kai's physical brain, how the protoblood affects his actual synaptic processes, the locality of the 'me' point of view still being present either by simple function or by intellectual reaction to self observation. I have a sociology degree and aced classes in social psyche and brain studies, so the whole Kai experience thing really intrigues me. While other fans shipped him into fanfictions, I tore every scrap of that character apart in my mind trying to figure out the meaning behind his being, if there is any, and whether that kind of existence is horrifying. To never be able to turn all your memories off, to know the horrors of your body being severed into pieces and put back together like toys, to live with the idea that your body was raked out and rebuilt with foreign parts- who would want to own that? Would coming back to life somehow bring unbearable pain to all that scar tissue? For the life of me, I could never figure out how in the world people couldn't see that he had to reach through all that maddening static to interact with the others. To keep it all together in a dead brain and still be a 'nice guy' of a sort is a real icon for living with depression, when everyone around you still gets to enjoy food, enjoy sex, enjoy anything. I wonder if that's why so many fans might be subconsciously attracted to Kai, because in spite of his whole world being utterly black, he still finds a way to make a choice (through others) to do the right thing. *wow* He's darker than Batman could ever hope to be.

    I love Stanley Tweedle. From the first time I saw him, I recognized the whole rebellious wimp thing as my favorite character type, because you never know what guys like that are going to do, and sometimes they pull through in ways you don't expect in the face of really big crap, and the way they do it may not always be cool, but it becomes cool. Stanley never gave up, even when everything sucked and everyone was against him, and that's what I'm like when everything sucks, I get cranky and rebellious and turn my crap day into something cool, because I want to. I hate depression. I've lived with ridiculous amounts of depression nearly my whole life, and as a way of life I like to twist it into a pretzel and throw it back at the universe. Stanley Tweedle is my all-time favorite scifi character because the twisted irony that swims through spacetime around that guy makes me laugh and want to hug people for all the suckiness they go through, even when I'm feeling crabby. If anyone could finger His Shadow, I'm really glad it was him, because he's like the rest of us, stumbling through our days and stubbornly hoping for the best even if the only way we can get it is to make it up.

    And what about the Lexx itself? It all started for me with the big bug on Showtime. I saw the interview promo about a spaceship designed like a bug, a biomechanoid that was genetically designed and then grown to a monstrous size. As a living ship this space bug could carry a city-sized amount of crew and materials and interact in a simple way to a commander who had direct control over it via a 'key'. This key was a bio coded interface program that enabled conversation between bug and captain, and that was the cutest thing I ever saw in a space show. I grew up disgusted with bugs but have come to see them differently since I first encountered Lexx. Now I see them as tiny little bio machines that follow simple genetic codes, with simple feelings and thoughts like Lexx had. I don't know whether that's true, but I think it's better than hating bugs just because they're bugs. Lexx is also terrified of spiders, like I am, but I seem to be dealing with my arachnophobia a little better since my view on bugs has changed.

     photo lexxinspace.jpg

    I could write a whole book on the characters and stories in Lexx, but this is already pretty long, and all that can go into more posts later. One last thought- Lexx has a real Don't Fear the Reaper feel to it, and I guess that's why I love it so much. No matter how awful everything gets, no matter how real and big and dark, the Lexx crew struggle with the real and big and dark and come through intact, themselves, knowing who they are and what they want.

    :edit: 5-23-14 Another code integration update during this lengthy Xanga migration to new servers wiped all my videos from my posts, and since I can't remember the one I had here, I'm replacing it with my two fave Zev/Xev vids. You're welcome. Carry on.

    Find Lexx.
    iTunes - TV Shows - Lexx, Season 1
    Watch Lexx Online | Netflix
    Watch Lexx on Hulu
    Watch Lexx Online -
    Echo Bridge Entertainment - Lexx lexx: Movies & TV
    U.S. Netflix Outside the U.S.

    :edit: Tuesday, April 2, 2013

    I found this saved on my private blog, must have double posted it. I originally had it posted on my old Lexx fan blog, all that stuff is gone now, including the Xenia picture I used, so it's now missing from this post. I can't find it online any more, but it's an almost identical picture. :edit: 6-26-13 You know what, I found that picture at, huzzah! laughing 

    Thursday, August 31, 2006

    I have my own little Xev.  She could care less about Lexx and thinks I'm crazy to watch it.  She has no idea who Xenia is.  Xenia has no idea who she is, either, so they're even.  I just ran into that Xenia picture down there.


    Ok, this is 2013 again, she's much older now. I wanted to add this to why Lexx is personal for me, because it's important.

    'Twink' (my online nickname for her, after she scolded Scott one day about something, saying before she was even a twinkle in his eye), is my step daughter. I met her before she turned two, married her dad a little before before she turned five, and have pretty much been full time parent for her nearly all her life. Any step parent will appreciate how stressful it got at times since we live next door to her gramma and had somewhat regular contact with her mom. I come from a very different lifestyle background and the first five years in this house were challenging. One of the key things I learned was 'child first', and I made it through some tough emotional roller coaster years because I firmly believe in that.

    A really eye-opening year was when the third season of Lexx aired. Both Xev and Twink had changed. Twink was just hitting her teens about the time Prince woke Xev up out of the cryopod, and the timing was so perfect for me. When an adolescent not of your own body lives in your house and you feel like the whole world is against you being the parent figure, a marriage can rock completely apart. Ours didn't. In fact, I suddenly felt a renewed compassion for my Twink, thanx to Xev that year. For one thing, Twink suddenly looked like one of my fave science fiction characters, a strong woman of misfortune, beautiful and committed to finding real love in her life. That character represented so many things I admire in strong women, like solid friendship through thick and thin, not being intimidated by what others think, knowing herself and sticking to her guns. I was able to transfer those feelings onto a step child who really needed a break. Life sucks when you first hit your teens, and you don't need other people's emotional baggage dragging you down. Because Xenia played Xev in the third season of Lexx, I was able to love a child through a very difficult year.

    I come from people who don't believe in putting ourselves into spotlights for attention, and think striving to be 'pretty' leads to being sinful. I don't agree with this. I think people need to feel pretty in many ways, because feeling pretty means feeling like someone likes and accepts us. 'Pretty' is a metaphor, the opposite of 'ugly'. We feel ugly when we feel unwanted. The prettiest person in the world feels ugly if something is wrong in their emotional life, and there is nothing you can say to convince them otherwise.

    My Twink is a very pretty person, especially on the inside, and I'm very proud of her. Be Lexxy with each other.

  • The Lexx Revival Project

    I've taken part in a few of the debates over whether there should be more Lexx. I think there should be, if for no other reason than to breathe life back into Lexx merchandising. I'd even be happy (there, I said it) if Disney paid Abrams to do it, and I'm not exactly his biggest fan.
    One of Lexx's biggest fans is uber geek Kirill Yarovoy of Russia, and he definitely thinks there should be more Lexx. In fact, Kirill has been conducting his own research into whether fans want more Lexx, and exactly what they'd like to see in more Lexx. Years of polls and forum debates point overwhelmingly to removing season four from canon and simply returning Lexx to its season one roots that started it all, along with creating spinoffs and prequels in similar fashion.
    This is nothing new among the Lexx fandom, but what is different when Kirill starts discussing Lexx is that he's dead serious. While a number of Lexx fans have created a variety of fan fictions, artwork, actual literature, comics, and even short film, Kirill has gone the next step trying to contact producers, studios, and investors, and he's done some impressive research into cost and hiring and what fans desire to see in more Lexx.
    So what is stopping him?
    Aside from needing to get licensed from the Lexx copyright holders, basically the only thing stopping this project is funding. It's easy to scoff at this point and blow the whole idea off, the big nail in many film project coffins, but Kirill has an idea, and surprisingly, that idea is actually working for other filmmakers. In fact, American fans might not quite appreciate how well this idea has been working for some time around the world.
    Crowdfunding is the new fan wave. We've all recently seen the wild success of The Veronica Mars Movie Project on Kickstarter. Basically, an account is set up for donations to a specified project, info and links are tweeted and posted around social networks like facebook and youtube, and, fans pretty much help filmmakers nickel and dime their way through production. A sweet reward for this fan loyalty is getting to see the production process as it happens, step by step through filming and editing, and then submitting to film festivals. I've been watching two projects in particular the last few months- "COLD" by Eoin Macken and Stolen Light by Andrew Lee Potts. Both filmmakers (we know them as actors in Merlin and Primeval, along with other shows they've been in or helped to create) use twitter to alert fans in real time to the daily work they put into their projects, supplementing with image and video media such as instagram and vimeo (for example), and they are very open with fan interaction, which is smart when they solicit fans for production funding.
    This gives fans much more access to the entire process than was available even just ten years ago. If fans want to see a project get done, they now have the power to help make that happen, which is so much more fulfilling than waiting for studios to find investors that often cancel the projects before they see completion. (So many shows I love have been canceled in the first or second season because an investor or studio deemed it not worth finishing, even though fans are very vocal about wanting to purchase a completed product.)
    Kirill recognizes that fans would like to have an impact on the outcome of the show they love, in this case, Lexx. Kirill set up a forum where fans could discuss the future of Lexx, and asked specifically what they'd like to see, what direction should Lexx go if there is more. He has years of documentation and discussion (mostly in Russian) under his belt and has spent considerable time and effort on trying to develop the idea of a centralized world fandom through "LexxTV", a site that could become a broadcasting fan forum (it's not developed yet due to licensing restrictions), strongly reminding me of a metacafe style website, akin to the original Babylon 5 dotcom, only bigger.
    This sounds cool, right? So why isn't it happening yet? Well, mostly because much of this process has been happening in Russia, and despite our wonderful technology, translator programs are still cumbersome and inaccurate enough to make a lot of work for non Russian fans to keep up. Also, international crowdfunding is limiting with U.S. and standard European tech and money exchange. But it certainly hasn't been for lack of trying.
    Kirill started with paypal a few years ago and received between $700-$800 in donations, but since that wasn't enough to get the project off the ground, he gave all the donations back. Kickstarter was only allowing U.S. funds, and Amazon required U.S. ID. In order to sell the idea (and this is how new projects generally get their start), Kirill needs to make a top-notch promo video with original cast and a lot of VFX to show to producers and studios. This is a delicate process before getting licensed, as fans who have already tried writing books and making videos have discovered. The main thing is to have an idea that a producer can show to the license holder that convinces them what you're doing is worth some money to them.
    I got a little tough on Kirill and asked a list of questions about cost, crew, and production, mostly to see if I could trip him up and discover whether this was all a big-worded dream. What I got back was an impressive mix of information, enthusiasm, and the kind of frustration that comes with hitting walls for a few years, and I believe if anybody outside the U.S. could actually get Lexx back into space, it would be Kirill.
    Along with a short lesson in budget issues and the substages of preproduction, Kirill has adjusted his cost estimate a couple of times based on production cost then and now. For example, a quote from his correspondence- "I can tell you about CGI production cost made about a year ago based on price of Toronto-based Spin-VFX Studio with which I have some contacts and plan to use for Lexx CGI (btw this studio has some former CORE digital employees, that was the studio which worked on CGI in the first season of Lexx). Since Lexx is CGI heavy, my estimated calculation was about $10 million U.S. dollars for CGI alone (minimum), but it's not a perfect calculation and a little old. After that I found out that the guys from Energia made great Iron Sky CGI for about $2 million, so I guess there is a chance that CGI could be cheaper in terms of production cost and very good in terms of quality."
    Kirill went on to say that the cost needed for a 20-25 episode season five would be $20-$25 million, with $1 million minimum per episode, but preferably having $2-$5 million available per episode, which is the standard price for most U.S. TV dramas these days, totaling anywhere from $40-$100 million for an entire season. He noted some episodes would naturally be less production heavy and therefore not as costly.
    But what Kirill is aiming for is at least one promotional episode that would not be directly aired, but shown to more producers and investors, kind of like Paul Donovan did in 1992. So that is where the fans come in, helping to get the initial project off the ground so bigger investors can be pitched. A good example of how this works is CGSociety - Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome.
    Kirill told me he has pitched a script synopsis to several producers and studios, and it sounded like a lot of work. He seems to be pretty familiar with the process, but thinks it's becoming outdated. "What I think is better about crowdfunding is the direct relationships between the people who make the product and the customers, so that customers pay directly to the team that makes the product, and get the products directly once they are made", and there is a refreshing paragraph on how he feels ratings let everyone down because they're inaccurate for today's tech access to the industry, which I agree with. Now that fans around the planet can live stream their favorite shows, regional broadcaster programming and scheduling may have to be dramatically revised if they are to thrive. But that's going off topic.
    This is a lot of stuff. There was quite a lot more. I mentioned to Kirill that some fans are confused about Lexx being an international production, and that Americans in particular don't understand (I've seen this) why Russian fans are interested in Lexx. Why is Lexx meaningful to YOU?
    Besides him comparing Putin to His Shadow, Kirill said Lexx was the challenge that started him thinking about society around him at the tender age of ten when Lexx premiered. He stopped taking things as they were for granted and started questioning everything from politics to education to social life. To quote in part-
    "Why is Lexx meaningful to me? It's really hard to tell, it's a love from first sight, I guess. Once I saw the opening of the first episode with that charming dark space ambience, the rotating legs of the Foreshadow with the purple nebula behind, that speech of Kai's, the last of the Brunnen-G, about a victory in the war against an Insect Civilization, and a Time Prophet who predicted he would be the one to destroy the Divine Order, and that someday this will happen, but not today as today is the day of his death, the day his story begins- I realized that I already loved it, and every next minute doubled my love. Soon after this episode I started to read everything about protein, DNA, amino acids and space, black holes, fractals, and so on. Lexx influenced me a lot and made me believe in science, instead of the god I was forced to believe before. I was so addicted to protein and gene themes after Lexx that I almost became a microbiologist. Also, the idea of time cycles swayed my philosophical views on the world, as did many other themes of Lexx. Despite it looking like a purely entertaining show, Lexx in fact is quite educational, and education with Lexx was real fun."
    And, again, there was much more. Kirill Yarovoy has a passion for Lexx that has already spanned twenty years and will undoubtedly span twenty more. He's been persistent and amazingly patient in his quest to keep Lexx growing. If you'd like to contact Kirill directly, he can be reached through a link on his site. Click this pic to go there.

    Want to know more about Lexx? You can find Kirill's Lexx blog at, and the links near the bottom of my own Lexx Index will take you to lots more sites about Lexx.
    Want to know more about what could go into more Lexx before you help fund the filming process? Kirill has put together a summary for me that he compiled from his research into what fans want. He would ultimately like to have the original producers and directors back, or at least to do a review of the script. He has spent the years since 2005 on development of the complex concept of the scripts for season 5 and three prequels about the Insect Wars. This is the summary, with a couple of things in parentheses added by me.
    1- carefully preserved style, atmoshpere and feel of old lexx, with a lot of dark satire and philoshopical themes about problems of modern society
    2- well-developed and finished plot that ties all seasons and prequels together with natural feel like everything was planned from beginning by supreme beans
    3- all plot holes of previous seasons patched, no new holes created... perhaps
    4- every old question answered and even more new brain-drilling questions asked
    5- possible production issues and workarounds taken into account
    6- well balanced compromise between the desires of all kinds of old Lexx fans and fans of other scifi series and movies
    7- very intriguing epic finale that will turn the entire Lexx story upside down and will leave you wondering "WHAT THE HELL THIS ALL SUPPOSE TO MEAN?" just like the David Lynch movies and Twin Peaks did
    8- and before its does, it will return LEXX to fan-favorite season 1 roots, which includes 2 hours episode format with more lexxploration of violent dark zone and enigmatic origin of Prince, less sex and more romantic dreaming with Eva Habermann as Zev and Michael McManus as ALIVE but still deadly Kai. But don't worry! Xenia Seeberg as Xev will not be replaced by Zev, and still present with Brian Downey as Stan and hopefully Jeff Hirshfield as 790, which wants to make love with 2 persons this time (Zev and Xev? intriguing), so you will still have your passion and sexual tension. Also you should not worry about the aging of actors, as with the magic of make-up and today's VFX you will barely notice the difference, however if you will do, even aging already explained by plot. (I would point to the movie Surrogates as a good example of the magic of makeup.)
    A crowdfunding account is still in process of being created that satisfies the exchange structure for a world fandom. I will edit here with a link as soon as that happens.
    Please share this article on facebook and twitter 
    :edit: 4-2-13
    Want to see how Lexx was made the first time? Click the button!


  • Lexx Twitter Challenge

    This happened on my twitter today.

    Here, let me make the pic attachment in that second tweet easier to see.


  • monthly update March 2013

    Aspie going through ASTYM in physical therapy this month, in case anyone is wondering why in the world I'm slacking off. I've been through a lot of stuff in my life, but have never gone through such thorough automatic shutdowns in my brain as with ASTYM. We are restructuring soft tissue scarring from an ancient nasty car accident, and every treatment covers most of the area from the bottom of my rips up to my skull and down my arms. I'm doing very well, but the sensation super overload keeps kicking my brain right out of my skull while I go through treatment and recovery every week. I'm refusing to feel guilty or depressed about my workload slowing down and piling up on me, but I do apologize to three particular people I volunteered to do work for this month. Hoping this tiny little post means my brain has managed to crawl back in and start running the gears again.
    Briefly in my own words, ASTYM treatments mainly scruff up the fascia (white fibrous tissue) covering the muscles, micro fissuring scar tissue and forcing it to rebuild correctly. I don't bruise easily, but I have experienced some discoloration and a little swelling, especially around my shoulder blades and backbone, along with some temporary nausea and pain increase. We are doing quite a large area on me, and anyone with Asperger's can probably imagine what this is doing to my overload tolerance. But this is supposed to be a permanent thing, and I'm already gaining in greater mobility and my overall daily pain levels going down. One positive thing I noticed right away was being able to sit in a dentist chair with my neck hyperextended without triggering a migraine, a sweet little change in my life.
    I'm actually still working, just need to polish before I post, hopefully very soon now. Thanx to everyone for being so patient.
    My theme song. Me and Jack go way back. 



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My first tracker was installed in 2004 and broke several times before moving to a new server, which lost a few months of stats, and then Xanga moved to new servers and I lost more stats for more months before the page came back up, so I've lost a total of about two years' worth of stats. The second was installed 2-22-14 and is considered very conservative by business owners who use analytics, which itself is very conservative, estimates being that roughly one third to one half of hits by real live people aren't even counted, most likely due to javascript discrepancies. Actual hits on several posts here are in the thousands now, and the Lexx Index in the ten thousands. I've got pingbacks turned off, so spam isn't counted at all within the Xanga internal tracker, and most direct post hits can be correlated to my real time linking activity on twitter and other social media. When I did Google Analytics beta testing I got to see how search engine performance compares to tracking. I believe live feed linking sources to various social medias are key to a future where search engines are more about performance than cataloging, which has been confirmed to me by coders who create bot algorithms as I was beta testing I've fought hard through redundant age-old stacks to make my way to the google front lines again, so my Lexx work shows up faster on Chrome searches now. This has been a really interesting ride. At any rate, my point is, I can still go back 6 years on my original tracker and I can still see that in 2013 just before the last big blog server move, I was getting traffic like this (and since then, the tracker may have been abandoned, we can't tell). Click the thumbnail to see full size.

My original tracker also still lets me see the latest 500 visitors on a map. I once counted over 80 countries among the total visits. You guys are not alone. Click the map to see it better.

Besides Lexx, the most common search phrases that bring new visitors here are variations on 'huge spaceship'. The most seen post from a phrase search is How Big is the Lexx? My biggest Lexx referrer is Lexx Domain. Most of page views per person count comes from the Lexx tag on Tumblr. Visitors who stay the longest come through URLOpener and are pinged through the Google translator server in Mountain View, CA.

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Everything I have in this blog


March 2013
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