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DID YOU READ

Elite Game Nerds Team Up for Original Animated Project at Paramount

Elite Game Nerds Team Up for Original Animated Project at Paramount (photo)

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You’d have to be living under a rock to not notice that geek culture’s in its ascendancy. Superhero movies have become the new summer blockbuster staple, genre paradigms are engulfing television and literature and, as an industry, video games have out-earned feature films for years now.

06022011_Penny_Arcade_The_New_Kid_resize.jpgYet, there’s a special breed of nerd success that exceeds the box office triumph of “Thor” or the mere existence of “Batman: Arkham City.” That victory comes when you somehow inherently know that geek talent reaches the mainstream without losing essential elements of their DNA. “Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World,” while not a commercial success, shone brightly as a smart, attuned work of pop culture. The pairing of Edgar Wright with Bryan Lee O’Malley’s material created sparks and “SPvTW” will be a cult hit for years to come, adored for the respect it shows for its own integrity.

You could argue that “Penny Arcade” ‘s the same kind of production. Jerry Holkins and Mike Krahulik’s webcomic about two game-obsessed friends has grown into a cottage industry that includes bi-coastal fan expos, an online TV series and their own video games. The publishing industry came to them to collect the strip that’s been going for more than 12 years and the results have benefitted both parties. Gary Whitta‘s made-good story isn’t quite as huge, but it follows a similar arc. Whitta started off as a games journalist, eventually becoming editor of PC Gamer magazine. He’s done consulting work on various high profile games, including “Gears of War,” and has written comics and screenplays, too. His big splash came with the release of “The Book of Eli,” which delivered a clever, stylish post-apocalypse that bore a surprising amount of heart for an action flick.

So, news that Holkins, Krahulic and Whitta are collaborating on an CGI animated project for Paramount is almost like a perfect storm of nerd potential. Per the Hollywood Reporter, the trio will be working on “New Kid,” about a youngster adjusting to relocation to an extraterrestrial school where he’s the only human. Penny Arcade strips often go for the inside video game joke or the douchebag belly laugh, but they’re also capable of hitting unexpected moments of emotional poignancy in their work. Hopefully, they’ll be able to bring their visual stamp and sense of geek affect to bear on a film that’s going through the Hollywood studio system. Whitta brings along the same kind of nerd bonfides, beefed up with the clout of an actual successful feature. As you can see in the strip that inspired the deal, “The New Kid”‘s a springboard that can go any number of places, from ribald comedy to space epic to family drama. Here’s hoping that Whitta, Krahulic and Holkins get to take the project to whatever universe they want to.

Are you excited for “New Kid” as a feature film or worried about its journey through Hollywood? Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook or Twitter.

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Final Countdown

The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at IFC.com

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Rev Up

Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.



Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…