Author Archives: Tabz

About Tabz

Tabz (aka Tabitha Grace Smith) is a omnivorous geek with a special love of television. She's a writer, social media strategist, and teacher. In her spare time she blogs over at Doctor Her (a Doctor Who blog) and runs Between the Lines Studios.

Snow Patrol Announce U.S. Fall Headline Tour

snow_patrolMulti-platinum Fiction/Polydor/Geffen recording artist Snow Patrol have announced dates for their upcoming headline tour of the U.S. The tour starts September 10th in St. Paul, MN, and will criss-cross the U.S. and Canada before finishing up in Los Angeles on October 20th. The band, led by frontman Gary Lightbody, has been keeping some high-profile company: They are currently on the road with pop megastars Coldplay and will also support fellow Irishmen U2 on their 360 Degree Tour this fall.

Snow Patrol are on the road in support of their current album A Hundred Million Suns, which was produced by Jacknife Lee (U2, R.E.M., Bloc Party). The follow-up to 2006’s worldwide smash Eyes Open, the album debuted at No. 2 in the UK, where it has been certified Platinum, and climbed to No. 9 on the Billboard album chart in the U.S. Praised by All Music Guide as “the group’s best work yet,” A Hundred Million Suns has also earned raves from The Daily Telegraph, which proclaimed it “an epic, widescreen, decidedly modern rock record.” In its grade-A review, The Onion declared “A Hundred Million Suns might just be Snow Patrol’s biggest, most genuine effort yet.”

A Hundred Millions Suns has spawned two No. 1 Triple A radio hit singles, “Take Back the City,” and “Crack The Shutters” and is on pace to become the band’s third multi-platinum-selling release in the UK, following 2003’s Final Straw and 2006’s Eyes Open, featuring the smash single “Chasing Cars,” which has sold 2.5 million downloads in the U.S. alone.

“There aren’t many songwriters who capture the vulnerability and humor of being stupid in love as masterfully as Snow Patrol singer and main songwriter Gary Lightbody.”

— The Los Angeles Times

DON’T MISS SNOW PATROL ON THE ROAD THIS FALL!

9/10 St. Paul, MN Myth (on-sale June 27)
9/12 Chicago, IL Soldier Field (with U2)
9/13 Chicago, IL Soldier Field (with U2)
9/14 Detroit, MI Fillmore (on-sale June 27)
9/16 Toronto, ON Rogers Centre (with U2)
9/17 Toronto, ON Rogers Centre (with U2)
9/18 Montreal, QC Metropolis (on-sale June 27)
9/20 Boston, MA Gillette Stadium (with U2)
9/21 Boston, MA Gillette Stadium (with U2)
9/22 New York, NY Beacon Theatre (on-sale June 27)
9/25 Washington, DC Constitution Hall (on-sale July 10)
9/26 Philadelphia, PA Tower Theatre (on-sale June 27)
9/27 Columbus, OH LC Pavilion (on-sale June 27)
9/29 Kansas City, MO Uptown Theater (July 11)
9/30 Indianapolis, IN Egyptian (on-sale June 26)
10/2 Nashville, TN Ryman Auditorium (on-sale now)
10/3 Atlanta, GA The Tabernacle (on-sale June 27)
10/5 Houston, TX Warehouse Live (on-sale June 27)
10/6 Austin, TX Stubb’s Bar-B-Que (on-sale June 27)
10/7 Dallas, TX Palladium Ballroom (on-sale June 27)
10/9 Denver, CO Fillmore Auditorium (on-sale June 27)
10/10 Salt Lake City, UT McKay Events Center (on-sale June 27)
10/11 Boise, ID Knitting Factory (on-sale June 26)
10/13 Portland, OR Schnitzer Concert Hall (on-sale June 27)
10/14 Seattle, WA Paramount Theater (on-sale June 27)
10/16 Oakland, CA Fox Theater (on-sale June 28)
10/17 San Diego, CA Open Air Theatre (on-sale June 27)
10/20 Los Angeles, CA Wiltern Theatre (on-sale June 27)

Apple Sells 1 Million iPhone 3GS

new_iphoneApple today announced that it has sold over one million iPhone 3GS models through Sunday, June 21, the third day after its launch. In addition, six million customers have downloaded the new iPhone 3.0 software in the first five days since its release.

“Customers are voting and the iPhone is winning,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “With over 50,000 applications available from Apple’s revolutionary App Store, iPhone momentum is stronger than ever.”

The new iPhone 3GS is the fastest, most powerful iPhone yet, packed with incredible new features including improved speed and performance — up to twice as fast as iPhone 3G — with longer battery life, a high-quality 3 megapixel autofocus camera, easy to use video recording and hands free voice control. iPhone 3GS includes the new iPhone OS 3.0, the world’s most advanced mobile operating system with over 100 new features such as Cut, Copy and Paste, MMS*, Spotlight(TM) Search, landscape keyboard and more. iPhone 3GS customers get access to more than 50,000 applications from Apple’s revolutionary App Store, the largest application store in the world where customers have already downloaded over one billion apps. iPhone 3GS offers twice the capacity for the same price with a 16GB model for just $199 and a new 32GB model for just $299.** And iPhone 3G is available at the breakthrough price of just $99 for the 8GB model — a huge milestone for the high end smartphone market.

*MMS messaging is available only on iPhone 3G or iPhone 3GS; fees may apply. MMS may not be available in all areas. MMS support from AT&T will be available in late summer.

**Qualified customers only. Requires a new two year AT&T rate plan, sold separately.

Book Review: Around the World in 80 Dates

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Buy Around the World in 80 Dates (Sydney Alexander Series, Book 1) on Amazon || Buy from NavPress.com

I’ll freely admit it. I was skeptical about this book. Recently I signed up for NavPress’ blogger review program and was checking out the books they had available for review and I thought, “a Christian chick-lit book? That must be awful.”

Now, you must understand something. I’ve been in the Christian culture since I was prenatal. I know how ridiculous items made in our culture can get (*coughLeftBehindFilmscough*). Though, do not go ragging on the Left Behind books since my uncle went to college with Jerry B. Jenkins at my alma mater.

But I digress.

Despite my reservations, I decided to give Around the World in 80 Dates a try. After all, the cover looked compelling and, as a Christian single girl, I felt I needed some feel-good chick-lit. If nothing else, I’d have something serious to say in my review about the lack of realism in Christian fiction.

Boy was I wrong. I picked the book up and two days later had the entire thing read (I would have had it done sooner, but I have a friend visiting). It’s been a long time since I consumed a book like I did Around the World in 80 Dates.

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Book Review: God’s Little Princess Devotional Bible

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Buy God’s Little Princess Devotional Bible: Bible Storybook on Amazon

What little girl doesn’t love being a princess? If your child enjoys the stories of Cinderella and Snow White, this is the devotional for her. Written with ages 4-7 in mind Shelia Walsh brings Bible stories to life — highlighting women of faith, virtue and character from the Bible and letting girls know that their worth is not in how they look on the outside, but who they are on the inside.

But there’s more than just Bible stories retold in ways that a child can understand. Shelia weaves in activities, songs, tiny skits and ethical lessons as the book progresses. Since kids learn best through using all of their senses, this is a huge plus for this book. I’ve read other devotionals aimed for kids and (to be honest) they were pretty bland. Especially for kids who grow up in a Christian home and know all of the stories by heart, but not so with Shelia’s delightful book.

My favorite part is the design. From the front cover (which features sparkly jewels for the tiara and glitter for the small heart and the word Bible) to the inside where each page is gorgeous decorated and colored with cute graphics and girl-friendly colors. This makes the book playful and fun to read.

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Comic-Con Collector’s Book Available for Pre-Sale

40th_ccibook A new hardbound collector’s book entitled Comic-Con: 40 Years of Artists, Writers, Fans and Friends is now available for pre-sale.

The massive 208-page, 9X12 full-color book features over 620 images from the 40-year history of Comic-Con. Most of the art has not been seen since its initial publication in Comic-Con’s program and souvenir books, and the majority of the photos have never been seen outside of the Comic-Con archives. And sprinkled throughout the book are quotes and observations from leading professionals in comics, movies, and television, commenting on their own experiences at the show.

The whole package is capped off with an amazing new full-color wraparound cover by one of Comic-Con’s favorite special guests: Sergio Aragones. Masterfully colored by Tom Luth!

Advance sale books are $31.99 and includes CA Sales tax, but are only available to those attending Comic-Con 2009 and must be picked up on site during the convention. Unfortunately at this time Comic-Con cannot ship the book. All orders for pick up must be received by Monday, July 13, 2009.

Books will also be for sale at Comic-Con (provided books are still available) for the cover price of $40.00 + CA Sales tax.

Complete information on how to order and where to pick up the Book at Comic-Con is available at http://www.comic-con.org/cci/cci_40th_book.php.

Comic-Con: 40 Years of Artists, Writers, Fans, and Friends was produced by Comic-Con and designed and published by Chronicle Books of San Francisco, one of the world’s leading publishers of pop culture and art and photography books.

Why You Should Watch Vengeance Unlimited (if you can)

vengenceunlimitedNot many people remember the short-lived TV series Vengeance Unlimited. It ran in 1998 to 1999 for one season and only had 16 episodes, having succumb to the overwhelming power of it’s rival for the time slot – Friends.

Michael Madsen plays the lead character, Mr. Chapel. You may know Madsen better from his tough guy roles in various films including his memorable character, “Mr. Blonde” in Quentin Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs. He brings the same flavor of tough guy, slightly crazy acting to his role as the mysterious Mr. Chapel and his performance in the role is one of the highlights of the series.

The show’s premise is Mr. Chapel’s line of work – Vengeance. Much like the A-Team if you have a problem and need help you can hire Mr. Chapel to exact revenge on those who have wronged you. Dishing out his special brand of justice isn’t for free of course: clients either pay $1 million dollars or promise to do Mr. Chapel a favor in the future. The favor of course can be anytime, anywhere, doing whatever Mr. Chapel requires. Sometimes this favor borders on the illegal and unethical and sometimes it’s the mundane. One of the longstanding jokes of the series is when Mr. Chapel cashes in the favor and it’s been paid he tells them they’re off the hook and the former client response “thank God!”

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Why You Should Be Watching Penny Dreadfuls

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Watch the episodes on Strike TV.

If twisted, gothic-style storytelling is your cup of tea (or if you enjoy stories like “A Series of Unfortunate Events” for the bad things that happen or Sweeny Todd for the killing rampage), you may enjoy the webseries: Penny Dreadfuls. Now, for those of you not up on the 18th century lingo, which I’m all to pieces over, penny dreadfuls was a term applied to cheap, sensational stories that came out as serials once a week. Along the same vein is this webseries, which is extremely twisted. Don’t get me wrong when I say they are – twisted. At the time of writing this review there are two episodes, both which left me with the desire to take a long hot shower and clean off the ick.

Despite their short length, the episodes tell amazingly rich stories (especially episode 1 “Feeding”). The actors are also a treat to watch, compared to other shows that just cast “pretty young things”. Produced, Directed and edited by James Arnall, the stories have amazing visuals and James seems to be able to use “unspoken” moments to get story ideas out. The second episode (“Sleeping Beauty”) features Michele Boyd, who you may know from Season 2 of the Guild.

I can’t wait to see more stories in the Penny Dreadfuls series. Especially since they’re so self-contained the stories can continue on for awhile without much effort (you know, beyond… actually making them). So the potential to horrify me via my computer screen is still huge.

CMT Backstage – Social Media Style from Nationwide

2009-cmt-music-awards-voting_300x250Hankering to get a taste of the behind-the-scenes of the CMT Music Awards? Nationwide Insurance is giving you a sneak-peek – Social Media style. Through Twitter, Facebook and Flickr, Nationwide will be showing fans tomorrow a view from behind the red curtain. If you’re interested in following all the action live head over to nationwide.com/cmtawards

Here’s the details from their press release:
When: Nationwide’s live behind–the-scenes coverage will begin Tuesday morning, June 16 and stretch through post-event celebrations.
The 2009 CMT Music Awards will air on CMT on Tuesday, June 16 at 8:00 p.m. EST.
Who: The top stars in country music.
Where: Visit nationwide.com/cmtawards to begin following the action from your home computer or mobile device.
Why: Nationwide is a proud sponsor of the CMT Music Awards. Tune into the show to see which up-and-coming artist will win a special Nationwide On Your Side® Award, based on fan voting at CMT.com. Nominated artists will perform on the Nationwide Insurance Performance Stage during the awards.

For more information about the CMT Music Awards, visit the show’s official web site: http://www.cmt.com/cmt-music-awards/

TV fans to raise $150,000 for Charity at the 4th Annual “Can’t Stop The Serenity” Worldwide Movie Screenings

cstsFrom May and September 2009, fans of popular cult television and film writer/director Joss Whedon, will gather worldwide to raise money for Equality Now, a charity dedicated to promoting the human rights of beleaguered women and girls.

For the fourth year in a row, thousands of people around the world will participate in “Can’t Stop the Serenity” fund-raising events to benefit Says Amanda Sullivan, director of Equality Now: “Amazing as it is, we are heading into our fourth season of CSTS global screenings! It is a difficult time for us and a difficult time for everyone right now. So it’s especially important for all of you to know how grateful all of us at Equality Now are, and will always be, for the commitment to gender equality the Browncoats have demonstrated through their hard work and generosity.” Browncoats, like many other television fans, are dedicated to their fandom. The story of Firefly and Serenity is an interesting case in popular culture. Firefly premiered on the Fox Network experiencing a short run from September to December of 2002, before being cancelled mid-season due to low ratings and artistic disagreements with its creator, Joss Whedon. Many fans believe the show was a victim of poor promotion coupled with a bad time slot. Not content with the show’s release on DVD in 2004, the Browncoats grew in number, thriving on any content related to Firefly and bolstering DVD sales enough to merit creation of a movie epilogue to the series in 2005: Serenity.

Most fan stories usually end there, but inspired by Whedon’s fiery post on Whedonesque.com in response to the senseless “honor killing” of young Du’a Khalil, his fans continue to go above and beyond to focus their enthusiasm and community into a force for good. He says, “…All I ask is this: Do something. Try something. Speaking out, showing up, writing a letter, a check, a strongly worded e-mail. Pick a cause – there are few unworthy ones…”

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