Titbit: Twin Peaks on Blu-ray

According to the “Welcome to Twin Peaks” web site the Blu-ray version of the Twin Peaks is going to be released in the UK on the 24th of March, 2014. This will be 25 years after the meeting of Laura Palmer and Dale Cooper in the Red Room—where she said to him she would see him again in 25 years.

Blu-Ray Twin PeaksThere is not much more information at “Welcome to Twin Peaks” about the release of the Blu-ray edition. You can check the link yourself here.

However based on other information from around the web, assuming it can be trusted, the Blu-ray edition of Twin Peaks will contain both the complete TV series and the Twin Peaks movie “Fire Walk with Me” (FWWM).

The FWWM movie on the Blu-ray edition is also rumoured to contain about 11 minutes of footage never before seen, and three of the first year’s TV series episodes contain extra footage.

All I have to do now is hope that this is also going to be released in Australia.

Although the ‘purists’ probably hate the idea, and I am also sure David Lynch would never agree to it, I kind of would like the Blu-ray version to be in 16:9 aspect. But this would mean a LOT (months) of manual pan-and-scan work in order to do it properly and I doubt that that this will be done.

As the original series was shot entirely on film they should be able to make a pretty amazing Blu-ray edition in relation to resolution and clarity. Let’s hope so.

BarryMark

Twin Peaks theme entirely on Cello (by Max Lilja)

Just posted over at the “Welcome to Twin Peaks” site in the last few days is an ‘all cello’ version of the haunting and awesome theme to Twin Peaks. I just never tire of hearing this simple but hypnotic tune.

As a word of warning to Peakers (errr, Twin Peaks fans) the arrangement by Max Lilja is very different to the Angelo Badalamenti arrangement we are all used to. And it becomes obvious very quickly that Max Lilja—who I had never heard of before but I might look up some of his other works now—is not your average cello player. That is, not unless your average cello player now surrounds himself with some very high-tech loop sampling and mixing technology to augment his playing.

The first two following grabs from the video link to the page World Premier: Max Lilja’s All Cello Twin Peaks Theme at the “Welcome to Twin Peaks” Web site. From this page you can get to the main video and will find another video where Max talks about doing the cello version of the Twin Peaks theme. I recommend going via this page, and it will also get more unique hits for the site.

If you prefer to just go directly to the music then the third picture links to the video at YouTube.

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Please don’t listen to this music using your notebook, tablet, or smartphone speakers!

There is some very subtle stereo rolling going on in this track and, as you might imagine with a cello piece, the bass end is loaded with sound (which your notebook, tablet, or smartphone speakers will just not be able to reproduce). If you listen to this using a notebook, tablet, or smartphone then please use good quality headphones or ear-buds (which probably means they needed to have cost more than $50).

BarryMark

Titbit: Twin Peaks on Blu-ray

TPBluRayI don’t have a Blu-ray player—but I might have to get one soon.

As you would all probably be aware—being as how you are all probably seriously into Twin Peaks as much as I am—that there are very strong rumours that Twin Peaks is going to be released on Blu-ray.

Yep. I kid you not!

Check this out here on the “Welcome to Twin Peaks” site.

Not only is Twin Peaks coming out on Blu-ray but, if the rumours can be believed, it will be in 1080p high-definition—unlike many releases of other stuff on Blu-ray that are actually only 720p (or less).

Although I have to say that I am sceptical. How does one take a TV show shot in 1990 for 576i 4:3 TV and magically make it into 1080p quality? I am assuming, as Twin Peaks would have been shot on film, that they are able to enhance the film playback to 1080p quality.

And will it be 16:9? Hmmmmm. And if it is 16:9 is it intelligent pan’n’scan.

There are other rumours that the Blu-ray version will contain 45 minutes of additional viewing that was not shown on TV and is not contained on the DVD releases.

Man oh man! Just how exciting is this?

Maybe they can package a Blu-ray player with the box set? Players should be down to about $29.95 by now.

BarryMark

Will George R.R. Martin finish writing Ice and Fire (Game of Thrones)?

Anyone who searches around the Web for bits and pieces about ‘Game of Thrones’ (which is really called A Song of Ice and Fire) will know that there is growing concern that George R.R. Martin (GRRM) may not ever finish writing the books.

EC-GoTThe time it has taken GRRM to write each book has grown progressively longer with the fourth book taking four years to complete, and the fifth book taking five. Extrapolating this out then the forecast to complete book six is likely to be six years, and then seven years to complete the seventh—which should be the final book. But keep in mind that this was originally going to be a trilogy, which quickly became five books (whatever they call that), and is now to be seven books.

So one concern is that the HBO series could catch up before the sixth book and (almost) certainly the seventh book are completed—assuming that the TV series is not cancelled along the way.

Another grave and disturbing concern is the GRRM might leave this world before completing the books.

Such are the worries of life.

Oh, and for anyone who does not know who that picture is of, that is Emilia Clarke who (with a blonde wig) plays the Mother of Dragons in the Game of Thrones. This picture is from ‘The Chive’ web site. You can see more pictures of Emilia over at The Chive by clicking on her picture.

BarryMark

Harvey Norman has 4K TVs

Following on from a post I did just previous about 4K TVs (on the 30th June) I noticed that in the Harvey Normal advertising supplement in the Sunday Times this weekend that they are actually advertising a 4K TV on the front page.

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This is the first general advertisement I have seen for a 4K TV. You can expect to see many more as Christmas approaches and the stores start to try to convince you to upgrade your old 1080p High-definition sets to the ‘amazing’ quad density 4K super-crisp resolution TVs.

Not sure what a 4K TV is or why it is called 4K? Then read the post before this, which is about 4K TVs.

A word of warning. If you only use your TV for watching free-to-air broadcasts, Foxtel, or DVDs, or the current range of Blu-rays, then a 4K TV is not going to be much use to you as all of these sources are not 4K. DVDs, most free-to-air, and Foxtel is barely 1K most of the time. Some Blu-rays—but not all—are 2K (2K is basically true 1920x1080).

However if you use your TV as a computer screen and/or to connect to the Internet then you will probably get some benefit from the 4K resolution.

With the new Microsoft Xbox One some of the game are supposed to be coming out in 4K resolution—which, as you can see from the advert above, is 38401x2160 resolution.

BarryMark

Here come the ‘quad density’ TVs

It seems most vendors will have one or two quad density TVs out by Christmas. These TVs are sometimes referred to as 4K TVs.

What is a 4K TV?

A 4K TV has a horizontal pixel count of 3,840 pixels. This is double the horizontal pixel count of a 1080p HD TV, which is 1920 pixels.

Why are they called 4K or quad density TVs?

A quad density television has exactly 8,294,400 pixels (3,840 x 2,160) compared to your ‘standard’ full high definition TV which has 2,073,600 (1,920 x 1080). If you divide one by the other you get 4—hence ‘quad’ or 4K.

So why do we need quad density TVs?

Once a 1080 high definition TV screen gets much bigger than 120cm in the ‘average’ viewing room in the average home then it is technically TOO big. At this stage people with 20/20 vision will be able to see the pixels and the image on the TV will lose visual sharpness.

This loss of visual sharpness can be ‘fixed’ by moving further away from the TV. But there are two issues here. Firstly you need to get about five metres away from the screen to retain visual sharpness. In most average modern homes getting five metres back from the screen will be a challenge. Secondly, as you move further away the effective size of the screen reduces. This sort of negates the whole idea of buying that bigger screen.

So, to fix this problem you need to buy a higher density screen. Then you can sit closer to the screen and maintain visual sharpness of the picture.

Hence the introduction of 4K screens.

But then we have a whole other problem.

All broadcasters in the western world only broadcast 1K or 1080p as their highest quality transmissions. And in fact, about 50 percent of the time they actually broadcast 720p and your television up-scales it to 1080p for you.

Most DVDs are 576, which is about 0.5K. Most Blu-ray disks are 720 and some, not many, are full 1080. None are currently 2,160 or 4K.

So if you buy one of these new fangled 4K TVs for Christmas basically there is nothing much you can play on it that is actually 4K.

This are some reports that the new Microsoft Xbox One will have some games that can be played in 4K that will be released later in the year or early in 2014.

If you use your TV to connect to the Internet then this will work in 4K (assuming you buy the right TV).

But the bottom line right now is that there will be next to nothing in the way of TV programming or movies that you will be able to watch in 4K.

Want to read more about 4K TVs? Then try here for an item at Engadget, or here at the Sony site, or here at Tech Radar for “Everything you need to know”.

BarryMark

Titbit: NO episode of Game of Thrones this week!

Yep! That’s what the title said: No episode of Game of Thrones this week!

Seems there is some highly inconvenient public holiday happening in the USA and because of that they are not airing episode 9 of Game of Thrones until next week!

Memorial Day or some such like . . .

Seriously.

This is not a cruel joke.

And, we are told by the various blogs around the place, that episode 9 (called “The Rains of Castamere”) is huge. The best episode ever—’Will Blow The Top Of Your Head Off’ according to the actor that plays Davos Seaworth.

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On one site (HolidaysPress) they hint that episode 9 is sub-titled ‘Red Wedding’. For anyone who has read the books (I have ‘read’ up until the end of book 3) this could be hint as to what happens in episode 9. There are two big weddings in book 3 and one of those weddings has taken place. The other wedding is the ‘Red Wedding’.

But then the TV series is not following the books to the letter, and especially with season three where there have been a lot a changes compared to the book(s).

As a further hint I would point out that in season one it was in episode 9 that Edward Stark was beheaded. In season two in episode 9 is the Blackwater battle and the use of Wildfire to turn the seas into fire.

I guess, on the upside, if there is an upside, this means it will be one week later before we totally run out of the ten episodes of Season 3 of Game of Thrones.

BarryMark

GoT season 3 improves with episode 4

I have just finished watching Game of Thrones season 3 episode 4 and I was so relieved.

Previously I had watched episodes 1 through 3 and I must confess that I was getting a little concerned. Episodes 1 through 3 left me a little flat. They just did not have the power and punch that all of season one and season two managed to impart and maintain.

The settings are amazing. The costumes are superb. The acting is top class. But something was missing.

I was getting worried.

Had Game of Thrones lost its mojo?

Was it heading for the same end as Deadwood after its third season?

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Had David Benioff and D. B. Weiss lost their magic in transferring George R. R. Martin’s amazing books over to the visual medium of television?

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I have read the third book and it is riveting; and yet that was just not coming through in the first three episodes of this third season.

Well with episode four Game of Thrones gets much of its power and punch back. Now it feels more like the ‘old’ Game of Thrones from seasons 1 and 2 again.

I have high hopes now for episode five.

BarryMark

Hayden Panettiere ‘Chick of the Week’ on Chickipedia

I just happened to flick over the Chikipedia today and Hayden Panettiere is ‘Chick of the Week’.

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The only thing I have seen Hayden in is Heroes. Remember Heroes? It was just about the hottest thing on TV for about 18 months. And then it just sort of died.

A quick check of Wikipedia shows that Hayden has been in heaps of things including ‘Scream 4’ (makes note to watch Scream 4 sometime), ‘I Love You, Beth Cooper’ (in which she plays Beth Cooper), and about 45 other movies and TV shows going back to 1994 where she was in the daytime TV series ‘One Life to Live’.

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Lately there has been a lot of speculation that Hayden has had breast enhancing surgery. Going on the before and after pictures floating around the Web it certainly appears like she might have had her primaries ‘enhanced’, but then pictures on the Web can be deceiving.

How does that saying go? Something like: “Only believe half of what you read, a third of what you hear, and about a tenth of what you find on the Web”.

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I bet my pictures are better than anything you find at Chickipedia.

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Nobody puts the work in editing-up images before posting them that I do … well … okay maybe some people do—but not many.

BarryMark

Random Hot Chick Post: Jane Levy

Fans of Superior Pictures will be familiar with Emma Stone look-a-like Jane Levy. She has been 5th on the Top 5 for a number of weeks now.

If you have no idea what Jane Levy looks like then that’s her below.

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I have to confess I had never heard of her.

A check of ‘the book of knowledge’ (i.e., Wikipedia) tells us that her full name is Jane Colburn Levy and she was born in December 1989. She is an American actress and is best known for her role as Tessa in the ABC comedy series Suburgatory (makes note to watch a couple of episodes to see what it is like). Oh, and her natural hair colour is blonde—so she tells Allure Magazine anyway.

She has also been in two movies: Fun Size and Nobody Walks. I have to admit I have never heard of either of them.

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BarryMark