Four fun things to do while you’re staying safe at home this week


To encourage social distancing during the spread of COVID-19, we are altering our regular “Event Horizon” section for the foreseeable future. While many local events have been canceled, we will clue you into at least one local experience — this week: Black Lives Create Fest and an exhibit of art by Gregg Deal and JayCee Beyale at The Modbo — and recommend some things you can do at home or safely out and about. Please continue to support local arts during this difficult time.



Nine Bar Blues

Music, magic, sci-fi and fantasy all coalesce in this collection of short stories by two-time World Fantasy Award-winner Sheree Renée Thomas. Thomas’ signature poignant and mystical style pays homage to the musical traditions from which she draws inspiration: genres home-grown on American soil, especially the blues. But the stories themselves are not all rooted in America. Thomas will take you from West Africa to America’s Deep South to unexplored alien worlds, all the while introducing you to characters you’ll love. The only problem? When they’re collected in short stories like this, you never want these journeys to end. Available from most book retailers.



In this engaging, dynamic, pixelated platformer, you play an oozing, yonic, tendrily monster a la John Carpenter’s The Thing, leaving a trail of blood as you crawl and swing through the halls of the top secret lab that — what? — Created you? Contained you? That’s a mystery you can discover for yourself as you munch on scientists and soldiers to regain health, smash up all sorts of machines, and slowly infect the whole compound with your uh... viscera. Get ready for some gore. Available on Nintendo Switch.


The Tick

Spearheaded by the only competent writer of the CW’s Supernatural, Ben Edlund, The Tick is a romp of a superhero show that many fans claim never got the respect it deserved. Described at turns as both “absurd” and “heartfelt,” The Tick follows an oddball blue superhero and his superpower-less sidekick as they work to take down a citywide criminal conspiracy. Yeah, the plot is your standard superhero fare, but the characters and delightful execution give the show a fresh feel. Available on Amazon Prime.



Some people only listen to scary stories during October, which is honestly just a waste of 11 whole months, when you could be consistently scared shirtless by good, terrifying tales. Spooked, a popular horror podcast, ups the fear ante with the assurance that every story you’ll hear is real, and shared by the very people who experienced it. Ghosts, demons, devils and all manner of occult oddity await you, and there’s a nice impressive backlog of episodes (five seasons!) if you feel inclined to binge. Available on most podcast

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