Totally Geeked is a monthly feature at Professional Geek Podcast's blog where you'll get an inside look at what our staff are geeking out about today.
Blaire Knight-Graves, Host & Executive Producer
This… is a strange blog for me to write, given everything I’m doing with my life right now. There are a lot of geeky things I’m obsessed with at the moment that I could write about, but lately I’ve honed in on nutrition and fitness. After going through a pretty bad bout of injuries (my joints are terrible) and poor eating decisions in the last two years, I’ve turned a new leaf and I'm already seeing results after almost a month of concentration. I feel like I’ve become a master meal prepper and I’m slowly starting to fully understand and reap the benefits of lifting weights. It’s good for your heart, good for your strength, and as long as your form is correct and you’re not maxing on weights, you can readily avoid injury--something I deeply need from my exercise. I’ve relied on cardio exercise as my primary form of activity in the past, but after shedding 7 pounds in one month from good diet and lifting, I’m starting to think this is the only routine I’ll ever need... Until I plateau, that is! I’ve definitely benefited from having a patient “bro” friend who’s been guiding me through the exercises, and I’ve been religiously watching the YouTube channel B.U.F.F. Dudes to practice my form at home. This isn’t the first time I’ve gone on a fitness journey that lead to weight loss and increased activity, but so far it’s been the most satisfying - especially because weightlifting can easily be gamified for those of us who like to feel like they’ve “leveled up” after a good bout of exercise.
Mark Beers, Host & Guest Manager
I’m writing this blog under protest. Zach is mean. I should be playing Mass Effect: Andromeda! This month, I am geeked about returning to my favorite video game universe. Mass Effect strives to combine the drama and intrigue of Star Trek’s political and social world with the action of Star Wars. It's one big space soap opera. Andromeda serves as a fresh start to the series, as it introduces us to our new lead character, a Pathfinder named Ryder (Mine is named June, because #femshep4lyfe). Ryder has just awakened with the rest of humanity as they arrive in the Andromeda galaxy after 600 years of hyper sleep. They are there to set up shop, and as the Pathfinder, it is your job to lead the the colonization efforts as humanity’s voice as you encounter new alien species and interact with others returning from the game’s first series who came along for the trip.
I am not far enough into the game to comment on the total quality of the game, (All Zach’s fault) so don't consider this a review. However, here are some first thoughts from a big fan of the series. If you are new to the series this will be a good jump-in point. I haven't encountered a lot that hinges on previous knowledge of the series. I am generally enjoying the time I have spent with the game, but it's a little flawed and not the series best example. While slick and engaging combat is great, I come to Mass Effect for the character interactions and role playing. In this regard the game falls terribly flat. It often struggles to feel current gen; some of the character animations are just downright terrifying. After the opening segment of the game and collecting the characters who will comprise my crew, there are a few I am excited to get to know. It is a shame, because the combat is pretty awesome. A rocket pack and jet thrust have added a fun sense of movement to what has historically been a hunker down third person cover shooter. The planets I have visited thus far have been suitably awe inspiring, and the series’s spirit of the excitement of exploration feels intact.
Zach Weiss, Blog Manager
One of my big surprises from 2016 was a 10 episode show on Netflix called Love. Created by Leslie Arfin and Paul Rust and produced by Judd Apatow, Love is a modern day, fairly realistic view of dating and mental health issues. Spring has sprung and with it comes a brand new season, with 2 bonus episodes! The show follows the beginning stages of the romance between soft spoken, shy Gus and bombastic, off the wall Mickey, played by Paul Rust and Gillian Jacobs. When we last saw them, Gus had just kissed Mickey after she admitted to being a drug and sex addict and that she wanted to take a year off dating.
I liked the first season of Love a lot, but the second season exceeded my expectations. The first season focused on the two main characters falling into common faux pas, like not knowing how to introduce someone you've just started having sex with to your friends, not knowing what to text after just meeting, and awkward first dates, but the second season focuses on Gus and Mickey's relationship (or, like, whatever it is they're doing.) Even though this is a comedy, we watch Mickey's personality disorder and sobriety attempts grind away at Gus, and Gus's people pleasing "fake-niceness" grind away at Mickey, and at times it’s a little hard to watch and very realistic for anyone who has met people like these two. This second season also has an awesome B plot centering on Mickey's roommate Bertie, the Australian transplant, played adorably by Claudia O'Doherty, and her somewhat loser boyfriend. Bertie is normally complacent, and watching her deal with a bit of existential panic near the end of the season is funny, sad, and touching all at once. The only thing that bothers me about season 2 is the cartoonish last few minutes of the last episode that manages to feel silly, while at the same time having terrifying implications. In a show that matches realistic levity with heartbreaking arguments, the back half of the last episode doesn't quite match the rest of the season. Oh, but I can't forget to mention a hilarious cameo by one Davis Spade!
Nobody is perfect, and in the second season of Love, everyone is defined by their imperfections. Mickey and Gus are just doing the best they can! The show can be too silly at times, but it never feels like it’s going out of it’s way to make the characters say stupid jokes like some other Apatow projects, and it never shames its characters for having mental health issues. March is going out like a lamb, and with it, Love is in the air… or at least on your Netflix!