Saturday, April 09, 2005



NOW PLAYING issue #1 Posted by Hello

There's a new magazine called NOW PLAYING that's brightly written, and has lots of preview information. It's pop culture of interest to the gaming crowd -- Computer Games Magazine is its older brother.

The first issue features articles on anime and Asian "product," "rising stars," comic book conversions to movies, game conversions to movies, and previews of lots of things related to games, comics, anime, Star Wars, games, comics, movies, more games and more comics and more anime; plus a little bit of music.

The "Rising Stars" were the star and director of Napoleon Dynamite, and -- paired with this shy, nerdy character -- Sunny Mabrey, a blond action beauty type (with a lead role in XXX: State of the Union) that catches your eye placed on the cover.

(Unfortunately, the insipid interview with this starlet is the one piece of bad writing in the magazine.

Starlets can be very interesting: they have to work hard to look beautiful, to learn to act well enough to anchor a film, and to succeed in a very tough business with a lot of good looking people. The trick -- when writing about a starlet -- is to concentrate on the details of the experiences and the hard work; and avoid lines like... "but she also wants to do more than just act. 'I'm also really into music' she notes.")

Typical of the better writing in the magazine is this quote from the website (a very good website with news, reviews, and a lot of specific information about many films comics, games, and other things).

From a review of Sahara...

"Sahara is the type of movie that underneath the title card establishing the setting of its opening battle flashback sequence as “Richmond, Virginia, 1865,” also requires the explanatory text, 'the end of the Civil War.' "

The magazine is densely packed, and nicely art-directed. It's look is not as radical as the first issue of Wired, but it has personality.

There's a reasonable number of ads in the first issue, though mostly about games, comics, and films, and they probably stem from the brother publication. It would be nice to see this magazine establish a broader ad-base, in line with its pop-culture, rather than merely game-culture coverage.

Good luck, NOW !

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