At last, Colorado has transitioned from people complaining about cold weather to people complaining about hot weather. Geeks will have no reason to complain, though: The month of June is packed full of great geek activities, and nearly all of them are indoors in air-conditioned spaces. Better even than air conditioning, these ten great geek events bring us everything from up-and-coming science fiction authors to legends of television and film.
See also: The legacy of the Greatest Film Never Made: Director Frank Pavich on Jodorowsky's Dune
10) Acme Comics Redux The local comics scene has a storied history stretching back more than thirty years, and now one of our city's trailblazing comics collectives is back. Acme Comics Redux is the relaunch of the group, featuring three new books -- the sci-fi of Near to Now, the dark fantasy of Crimson Dreams and the catch-all Acme Comics -- and select prints from each of those books, plus you can meet some of the people who were doing comics locally back when comics weren't cool.
The opening reception is Friday, June 7 at Coffee at the Point. Admission is free, but comics aren't, so bring some cash. For more information about the history of Acme Comics, visit chief editor Dennis Pimple's website.
9) Cruel Summer: Lucio Fulci's Zombie Theresa Mercado's summer of the living dead continues with one of the best zombie movies of all time, Lucio Fulci's Zombie. On one level, it's a cheap cash-in on the popularity of George Romero's Dawn of the Dead in European, especially Italian, markets. On another level, it's a grisly, hypnotic piece of surreal filmmaking that works its way under your skin and refuses to leave. Also, a zombie fights a shark, so there's that. As always, Mercado will be providing handmade souvenirs to better remember your time in Fulci's sick, zombie-filled world.
8) Rock Comic Con Nerds like to rock just as much as anyone else, and they're going to get their chance at Denver's third annual Rock Comic Con. Coinciding with Denver Comic Con (more on that later in the list...), Rock Comic Con is the perfect afterhours complement to days spent cosplaying, panel-attending and getting Bruce Campbell to autograph your chin. Local and national nerd rockers including H2Awesome!, Total Ghost and Magic Cyclops will perform, plus there will be art, comedy and more surprises yet to be announced.
Rock out geek-style starting at 7 p.m. both Friday, June 13 and Saturday, June 14 at the Armoury. Tickets are $15 for a single night, or $25 for both nights. For tickets and more info, visit the Rock Comic Con website.
7) Daniel Wilson: Robogenesis The sequel to the New York Times bestseller Robopocalypse is here, picking up right where its predecessor left off. And if you can't guess by the titles, where it left off was after a bunch of robots kicked the crap out of humanity. Written by computer engineer and roboticist Daniel H. Wilson, the series is like a prequel to Terminator -- with a better basis in reality and way less Arnold Schwarzenegger, but with all the tension, excitement and killer robots.
Wilson will read from and sign Robogenesis at 7 p.m. Wednesday, June 11 at the Tattered Cover Colfax. Admission is free; the book is $26.95. For more information, visit the Robogenesis event page of the Tattered Cover website.6) Army of Darkness
All right, you primitive screwheads, listen up! Sam Raimi's classicArmy of Darkness
is showing for one night only to prepare us all for the awesomeness of star Bruce Campbell's appearance at Denver Comic Con. There's no way you want to miss this, whether you've seen the movie once, a hundred times or not at all (don't tell anyone if it's not at all, though). Endlessly rewatchable, tremendously entertaining and full of quotable lines,Army of Darkness
is a touchstone of geek culture, and now you get to see it on the big screen. Groovy.
See it at 9:30 p.m. Saturday, June 7 at the Sie FilmCenter. Tickets are $10, or $7 for Denver Film Society members. For tickets and more information, visit the Army of Darkness event page of the Denver Film Society website.
5) Clockette Nerdlesque: A Comic Striptease Geek culture and burlesque don't often cross over, so when they do, it's kind of a special occasion. In other words, absent a talented and very understanding/very geeky partner, this may be your best chance to see a well-choreographed, classy striptease by the Hulk. Just don't blame us if you can't ever look at the big green lunk the same way again afterward.
More than a decade before Christopher Nolan rebooted Batman as a dark, brooding figure of the night,Batman: Mask of the Phantasm
was hitting most of those same notes -- in an animated film aimed primarily at kids. With its tale of revenge, murdered mob figures and mistaken identity, this is anything but kid stuff, though. With a cast that includes Mark Hamill, Dana Delany, Abe Vigoda and Stacy Keach bringing gravitas to the whole affair,Batman: Mask of the Phantasm
is widely considered one of the best big-screen Batman adaptations ever made.
See Batman: Mask of the Phantasm at 10 p.m. Saturday, June 7 at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas. Tickets are $11. For tickets and more info, visit the Batman: Mask of the Phantasm event page on the Alamo Drafthouse website.3) Oh Heck Yeah
If you miss the thrill of pitting your skills against all comers at the arcade, head down to Champa Street for Oh Heck Yeah, a free street arcade aimed at bringing strangers together for fun times. Each block between 14th Street and the 16th Street Mall will feature a different, custom-designed multiplayer game, designed to be played by using your body as a controller. You can follow the characters on social media for bonus fun, and a series of complementary events, from street yoga to karaoke, will add to the fun all summer long.
The arcade opens at 7 p.m. Saturday, June 7 along Champa Street and runs through July 26. For more information, visit the Oh Heck Yeah website.2) Film on the Rocks: Labyrinth
If you like doing the occasional geek activity outside (crazy, I know), you could do a lot worse than the Film on the Rocks presentation ofLabyrinth
. It has lots of muppets, an impossibly young Jennifer Connelly and David Bowie at his most sexually ambiguous -- and it's even pretty entertaining. Throw in some live music from Grizfolk and Total Ghost to open the evening, and you've got the best excuse to get outside since sunlight was invented.
Denver Comic Con is in just its third year of existence, but it's already become the premiere geek event of the year. Tens of thousands of enthusiasts from every walk of geek will fill the Colorado Convention Center for three days of pop-culture revelry. Don't let the name fool you, either -- comics are just one of the many draws, and guests and activities will encompass the entire geekosystem, from film legends and authors like Bruce Campbell and Max Brooks to hardcore panels on the minutiae of your favorite fictional world.
The con starts at 10 a.m. Friday, June 13 and runs through Sunday, June 15 at the Colorado Convention Center. Day passes start at $30 for adults. For tickets and additional info visit the Denver Comic Con website.
Find me on Twitter, where I tweet about geeky stuff and waste an inordinate amount of time: @casciato.
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