Ever wonder just how nerdy your pop culture opinions are?
In honor of Saturday’s Free Comic Book Day, I asked the trio that makes up The Fresnerd collective — Jaime, Carlos, and Julia — to weigh in on some very important nerd questions. (And being the nerd I am, I felt compelled to rate some of their answers.)
Compare your pop culture/nerd opinions to The Fresnerd, then check out their site, which is a place “for geeks in Fresno and around the world to nerd out about their favorite movies, books, and games.”
1. What do you do/what is your purpose?
We share a love of all the geeky parts of pop culture. Movies, comics, games, and more are all things we found we have a common passion for and we want to promote. These are things we are talking about and sharing all the time, so this site gave us another outlet to talk about this stuff we love, and as a bonus we get to share it with the world. Plus, we’re all transplants to the Fresno area and love the area, so we wanted to specifically help grow and promote this in our community.
2. How did you three find each other?
The Force moved through us and brought us from around the country and bound us to Fresno, where we all work together. We happened to find that we all share these common interests and bit-by-bit, The Fresnerd was born!
3. What’s the diff between a nerd and a geek?
Technically, a nerd is someone that enjoys learning and expanding their understanding of certain subjects or fields; while a geek is someone with a fascination in worlds of pop culture (typically those of sci fi and/or fantasy). In short, nerds are smart and geeks are awesomely weird. Why are these two categories at times interchangeable? Well, because they’re both so cool! Plus, we Fresnerds like to think that smart people recognize that being awesomely weird is the best of both worlds. [Ed. note: Yeah, I still don’t get it but okay.]
4. Name three graphic novels we should be reading right now.
“The Killing Joke” is a given, so we’ll skip that one for this list. A great classic is “The Dark Knight Returns.” A recently completed series that deserves your time is Marvel’s “Vision.” It’s a great exploration of fitting in and trying to find your place. And a currently running series that is nearing its end is “A.D. After Death” from Image Comics.
5. Could you beat Ben Wyatt in a game of Settlers of Catan?
I don’t think I could beat him in Settlers of Catan, I mean he’s nationally ranked after all, but I think I could win in a game of Cones of Dunshire. [Ed. note: Beat the Architect? Haha no.]
6. Is there such a thing as too much Star Wars? (Think very carefully about Disney’s ability to run things into the ground before you answer.)
In a word… no. The Star Wars universe has been treated really well by Disney, and any expansions to the series (animated or otherwise) have all been treated as canon so that the overall story wouldn’t be ruined. Without Disney, we probably would not have gotten the continuation of a very beloved series and I’m confident they don’t want to ruin it.
7. DC or Marvel?
Ah yes, DC or Marvel? Coke or Pepsi? Microsoft or Apple? STAR TREK OR STAR WARS?! The world is full of fun rivalries. We at the Fresnerd can’t say we love one superhero universe more than the other because both have their strengths. Both make great comics and TV shows, and while Marvel currently has a strong edge on making movies, DC is killing it with their animation. [Ed. note: Bipartisanship. How refreshing.]
8. Freddy or Jason?
Jason is the more badass villain, but the “Nightmare on Elm Street” movies are better.
9. Disney California Adventure’s Tower of Terror or Guardians of the Galaxy: Mission BREAKOUT!
Definitely Guardians! Recently getting the chance to visit Disneyland and see the redesigned Tower, I [Jaime] am super excited. While the original ride was a classic, this new ride really shows Disney using their Marvel rights in a fun way. It is said that the attraction will offer a similar ride experience, and to be honest, Disney already had a spooky themed ride with Haunted Mansion, so it’s nice to see something new. [Ed. note: Wrong.]
10. Pick a Netflix original: “Daredevil,” “Jessica Jones,” “Luke Cage,” or “Grace and Frankie.”
All great options; however, Netflix membership on the line, we all agree that we’d have to go with Daredevil. Marvel accomplished so much with this series (especially in season one). They took their successful and great storytelling from the epic and bright cinematic universe and applied it to the dark corners of Hell’s Kitchen. The series’ greatest strengths are its grounded and realistic action and characters.
11. Kevin Smith: Still cool or basically the worst?
Kevin Smith himself admits that his raunchy style and movies aren’t for everyone. However, we hope that those reading this who haven’t given his unique art a chance yet will do so. Plus, we must express our appreciation for this hilarious man being such a confident and optimistic champion of all things geeky. Whether through his own work (shoutout for AMC’s “Comic Book Men“), interviews, podcast, or stand-up shows, Kevin Smith always encourages proud geekdom. [Ed. note: Snooch to the nooch]
12. Is there anything you find frustrating about nerd culture, or the perception of nerd culture?
Most people trying to get into nerd culture for the first time can feel a little overwhelmed by the sheer amount of “stuff” there is. Be it a rack of comics to choose from, or a wall of board games, knowing where to start can be hard and often confusing.
The best way to combat this would be to “Just ask someone.”… right? In some situations, you might not have a nerdy friend who can introduce you to the subject, or feel too embarrassed to ask the person at the counter in fear of being considered a noob. These kinds of things can result in lots of people giving up on trying to get into nerd culture.
13. What are some local events all aspiring Fresnerds should attend?
Highlights include comic cons such as Zappcon (generally held in the fall) and FresCon (which just passed), Free Comic Book Day (May 6) at your local comic book store (we highly recommend Heroes and Legends, both in Fresno), game nights at your local comic book store or other venue (shoutout for Teazer’s Tuesday night gaming), and the annual Fresno Zombie Society’s Comic Pub Crawl in the Tower District (this year on May 13). Other organizations hold geeky events off and on. For such occasions, please visit the “Upcoming Events” section of our website for announcements.
14. Where in town are the best places to buy nerd gear (games, clothing, figures, costumes, etc.)
• Legends Comic and Games (Fashion Fair and Sierra Vista malls)
• Crazy Squirrel Game Store (on Fresno and Bullard)
• Your local Good Will (never know what you are going to find there)
• Halloween stores the day after Halloween (discount costumes)