In the first of our contributor profiles, we catch up with Vance--writer, musician and walking cult film encyclopedia. You can check out his band, Sci-Fi Romance here.
NAME: Vance Kotrla
SECRET UNDISCLOSED LOCATION: Los Angeles, on a hill between a 7-11 and a music store
NERD SPECIALIZATION(S): Cult movies, 50s sci-fi, horror
MY PET PEEVES IN NERD-DOM ARE: The weird beef between Star Wars and Star Trek fans. Can't we just all agree that Shatner's a blowhard and Lucas is nuts and enjoy our sci-fi together with locked arms and Cheetos-fingers?
VAMPIRES, WEREWOLVES, ZOMBIES, ALIENS OR ROBOTS: Jeez. Ten years ago, vampires. But if I had to face a plague of one of the above, give me zombies and a hammer.
RIGHT NOW I'M READING: Swann's Way (Proust), ESPN: Those Guys Have all the Fun (Miller & Shales)
...AND A COUPLE BOOKS I RECENTLY FINISHED ARE: The Monk (Matthew Lewis), Steel-Drivin' Man (Scott Reynolds Nelson)
NEXT TWO ON QUEUE ARE: The Crying of Lot 49 (Pynchon, re-read), Cat's Cradle (Vonnegut, re-read)
MY FAVORITE SUPERHERO AND SUPER-VILLAIN ARE: Batman, The Brain (lab mouse bent on world domination)
IF I WERE A SUPERHERO/VILLAIN, MY POWER WOULD BE: Unlimited financial resources, a company with defense contracts, and a lack of moral ambiguity. (see Batman, above)
THE BEST COMIC FILM OF THE PAST 6 YEARS IS: The Dark Knight
THE WORST COMIC FILM OF THE PAST 6 YEARS IS: Spider-Man 3
I JUST WATCHED [FILM X] AND IT WAS AWESOME: Galaxy Quest
I JUST WATCHED [FILM Y] AND IT WAS TERRIBLE: The Haunted Strangler
EVERYONE SHOULD SEE [FILM Z] BEFORE IT'S TOO LATE: Too late for what? Armageddon? Then THE THIRD MAN. Before it leaves theaters? Then, whatever. I have kids, movie theaters are now alien to me.
BEST SCIENCE/SPECULATIVE FICTION SHOW OF THE PAST 12 YEARS: Firefly
WORSE ENDING--LOST OR BATTLESTAR GALACTICA: I have kids, long-running, complex TV shows are alien to me.
THE OFFICE--BRITISH OR AMERICAN VERSION: American. I'm provincial.
GAME OF THRONES--LIKE OR DISLIKE DEVIATIONS FROM THE BOOKS: I have kids, HBO is alien to me.