Doctor Whooch // Episode 105 // Tell Us When Quill Is Back


In which we’re extremely late with this but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

On this episode, Danica and Brandon tackle “The Detained” – the 6th episode of Class. It involves truth rocks that’ll burn your brain and spill your teen feels all over the place. Which is bad, for a room filled with teen feels.

Outro music is “Detention” by School Gyrls.

Because why not.

Doctor Whooch // Episode 104 // Crazy Shadow Sex Knives

In which we try to make sense of Class and might fail in the process.

On this week’s show, Brandon and Danica take another spin at trying to explain what’s been happening on Class as they recap “Brave-Ish Heart” – the fifth episode in the first series. The results of which are very mixed, but hey, at least you get another one of Brandon’s surreal episode descriptions of bonkers plot points! Also on this episode: we still love Brooklyn 99, y’all! It’s amazing.

Outro music is “Fight Song” by Rachel Platten.

Doctor Whooch // Episode 103 // Trans-Dimensional Heart Sexting

In which Class goes sideways in a really weird way, but hey, we’re drunk, so whatever.

On this week’s show, we reach the midpoint of CLASS with episode four, “Co-Owner of a Lonely Heart” and things get really weird. Are you ready for crazy teen/shadow monster sex scene parallels? What about bouts of murder rage and existential crisis about a weapon filled with souls? If only our biggest problems were “my heart is connected to a shadow monster” and not “the real world is filled with garbage”. Is that where we’re at? WHO KNOWS!

Outro music is “Owner of a Lonely Heart” by Grizzly Bear.


NoNaNo 2016

So it’s November, and like every year, I really, really want to do the whole NaNoWriMo thing, but I know it would be a huge disaster. Case in point: it has taken me over an hour to write this many words.

My brain is actual garbage right now.


While every single synapse in my brain screams for the sweet release of death in the face of what my fingers are typing right now, I am making this challenge for myself official once more: while I won’t be writing 50,000 words of fiction, I will be trying to write 50,000 words this month in the form of posts here, at Comics Beat, and at Variant Edition. 

I’ve tried to do this before. I have failed, for obvious reasons.

We will see how long I last through this year’s challenge before retreating back into the world of picking around on social media.

Probably tomorrow.

Oh god, what have I done.

Doctor Whooch // Episode A Hundred // Sober Reflection

In which we celebrate good times. C’mon.

On what is almost definitely Doctor Whooch’s first and only A Hundredth episode, we have a couple of guests that have never been on the show before… sober Brandon and Danica! No lies, this one is weird. But if you ever wondered how much of the show comes about because we’re drunk, and how much of the show is just us, well… you’re going to get your answer.

Thank you to everyone who listens to the show – you mean a lot to us, and we’re pretty fond of you. Here’s to many more over the next few years.

Outro music is “Hang on to The Night” by Tegan and Sara

Always Forward

Life usually shifts in small, unnoticed ways.

This isn’t a new idea. There are reams of words written on slow shifts – how we often accept a norm without thought or make small compromises on our way towards our goals, and suddenly… things are different then they used to be. Life, is usually passive and requires our quiet consent. Sometimes, it doesn’t pay to be quiet.

On Sunday, I started the day with a panic attack. This tends to happen on occasions where I confront the idea of death. As it turns out, I’m not a fan of inevitabilities that are beyond my control and the idea of a stop, sudden or otherwise, fills my heart with dread and my lungs with poison. Danica calmed me down, as she always does, and I walked through the day with a brain filled with a dangerous electricity.

During these post-panic phases, I usually find myself reenergized. As ludicrous as this might sound, I repeat a mantra I discovered from comics – specifically an issue of Fantastic Four that was written by Matt Fraction a few years back. In the issue, Reed is confronting his own mortality in an overly bombastic super heroic way, and has left a message for his children. He speaks about not believing in an afterlife or a higher power, and notes that while some people find that possibility to be bleak, he derives power from it. He discards the idea that nothing matters if this is all there is. In fact, he states that if this is all there is, then everything we do now matters. How could it not? If this is it… if this is all we have… then it is only our actions now that have consequence.

I carry that idea with me. It is what fuelled me to start up a comic store with my wife, and it has been the fire behind the way we run our business, and the decisions that we have made for it. People often ask why we choose to be so outspoken about representation in pop culture as a business entity, when we could merely sell the product with greater ease by keeping our mouths shut. The reason? Our actions matter. Our inactions matter. It all matters.

In the past few months, there have been a lot of changes in my life – the most public of which was the moving of Variant Edition’s from Oliver, to the west end. This was a decision born from the idea that everything we do, matters. When it became obvious that the store’s original form wasn’t going to work with three different parties involved with very different ideas, we split, instead of letting things linger. Time, after all, is a limited quantity, and why waste what we have when we could all be sharper version of who we wanted to be. So, Danica and I moved Variant Edition’s out west, and took our ideas of what we’d like a comic store to be with us. It wasn’t the easiest path we could take… but it was, and is, the right one.

We are not content to let life slip by unnoticed. We want to do more, to be more, but… we also know our limitations. We’re just two people, with limited resources and circumstances. We can’t, won’t and shouldn’t speak for all – and we can’t, won’t and shouldn’t be everything to everyone.

What we can be, is the best version of ourselves, and of our store. We can put forward our ideas, and hope they are met with empathy and kindness. We can be a foundation… or at the very least, help build it, with your help.

The past couple of months have been hard… and while we would never change our decisions, we know that we would be in a far worse state if it weren’t for the community of people who have gathered around us. While our own insecurities cause us to scratch our heads in disbelief when others attempt to tell us about the good we do, we have appreciated all of the kind words, and all of the support that’s been provided to us over the past few months. Because of this… because of you, the store landed on its feet. We landed on our feet. We have the ability to move forward, and that’s saying something.

We are here, because of you. The people who see something in us that we can’t see ourselves. The people who believe in our vision. The people who arrived while, for a period of time, we let life shift around us and compromise where we wanted to go, and who we wanted to be.

Thank you for making us stronger, and for helping us get back to where we need to go.

We won’t let you down.


Doctor Whooch // Episode One Hundred // Boosh!

In which we celebrate our 100th episode for what is almost definitely the first time.

The alcohol flows freely on this week’s celebratory 100th episode, in with Danica and Brandon welcome special guest Chris Sikkenga (of Montreal Sauce and Film Frown) to the show! Chris (the scamp) chose the final episode of Series 1 to watch – The Parting of Ways – and the gang gets well and truly sauced and forgets to talk about the plot for much of the hour. Get ready for some McConaughey and try some of Jackie Tyler’s Space Jerky as we all talk about Daleks being stage divas, sex in the undernet, and Trevor. Also: Danica throws hands at T-Swift. All this, and a lot more!

Outro music is “I Really Like You” by Carly Rae Jepsen.

Doctor Whooch // Episode 100 // Welcome to the Hundo

In which we’re 100 episodes old. So that happened.

On this week’s show, we celebrate our First Hundo with special guest Jorts Bazingles – aka Superfan Josh Bazin. Listen as Brandon almost gets too drunk to function drinking a Delicious Concoction! Swoon at the insights of Jorts! Marvel at the patience of Danica! All while they attempt to explain the plot of “A Town Called Mercy” from the 7th Series to varying degrees of success.

Thanks again to Jorts for appearing on the program. You can find Jorts on Twitter at @joshYEG.

Doctor Whooch // Episode 099 // Call Me When You’re Old and Regretful

In which we are in fine form. FINE form.

On this week’s show: Danica and Brandon will babysit your kids! It could be the worst decision of your life. Also: they watch “Time Heist” from Series 8 and are… pleasantly surprised by how much they enjoyed it. Also also: they are pretty loopy tired from moving a whole comic store, so uh… strap in. It’s an interesting ride.

Outro music is “Rolling in the Deep” by Adele.

The Next Chapter

August was a whirlwind of work and stress. Every day was packed full with two days’ worth of tasks and preparation, and sleep totalled less and less each night.

I am not complaining.

This was absolutely a stressful month, but Brandon and I have come out the other side. We still have a ton of work to do, yes, but we got this far. We definitely wouldn’t have made it without the support of our friends, family, and customers – so thank you for that. There is a post going more in depth on the Variant Edition blog about store stuff specifically.

One week ago, my life was completely different. Amazing what can happen over 7 days. Frankly, I’m amazed at what we did over 2 days (Monday and Tuesday) to be ready enough for our soft open on Wednesday. Over the next few weeks/months/years, he and I will go through our project list and work on what we can at a more comfortable pace. I’m thankful for that.

In the midst of everything, the apartment has been ignored. There are piles of paper I will need to go through and file, cat fur that I have not had time to sweep up, and clothes I’d like to bag up for the clothing swap at the store on September 10th and 11th. The cats – not used to us rushing home, feeding them, giving them quick hugs and pettins, then leaving again – will need warm laps and brushing. I will work on getting the apartment back to “guest friendly”, which I know “doesn’t matter”, but trust me, it’s no good right now, friends. I want to have people over. I want to have the time and energy to have people over, damnit! I see friends at the store, but I miss holding the occasional potluck and movie night. I intend to do that more in the future(hold me to this, friends!).