Arts 253

Published on December 4th, 2008 | by Greg


TV, Manga, Blu-ray, Statistics

Guess which pair goes together? We’ll let you off the hook- this pair of geeky pursuits is split into Chuck, new on Blu-ray, and the No Starch Press Manga Guide to Statistics. Entertain, or educate- or both!

The No Starch Press Manga Guide to Statistics looks and feels Japanese- which makes sense, as it is written by Shin Takahashi, and is a (very good) translation. At first, the style and subject matter make for an odd combination, and take some getting used to. The book moves at an odd pace and can be frustrating in the things it moves between, skips over, or slows down to handle- but it’s hard to please everyone! The examples, art, and tone win you over pretty quickly though, and it’s a bit easier to remember things with something quirky connected.

It even has a plot, of sorts, mixed in among real-world examples. There’s also an appendix showing how to work things out in Excel. It might not be the best manga, or the best book on statistics, but it’s certainly the best combination of them both!

In much the same way, Chuck is one of the best combinations of geekiness and television. Recently released on DVD and Blu-ray, we’d recommend the Blu-ray version if you have the ability. It almost goes without saying, but the picture quality is superior, and mostly worth the difference in price (about $10, around $35 for high-definition and $25 for standard). It isn’t the best Blu-ray disk that we’ve seen, far from it as it is actually a bit grainy. The show itself though is great and the second season is mostly living up to the standards established in the first (fairly short) season.

For those who haven’t tuned in, it’s definitely a show with an audience in mind- older folks and teens or younger kids will miss some of the jokes even if they can easily enjoy the characters and the action/romance. Combining elements of serials and sitcoms, and with a diverse cast, strongly nerd-focused humor, Chuck consistently entertains. Watch it on NBC on Monday evenings, but check out the Blu-ray version of Season One if you need to catch up to Chuck’s ongoing CIA meet Buy More capers.

About the Author

Greg dreamed up the idea for the Truly Network while living in Hawaii, which began with a single site called TrulyObscure. In 2010, when advertisers and readers were requesting coverage beyond the scope of that site, TrulyNet was launched, reaching a broader audience over a variety of niche sites. Formerly the head technology correspondent for the Des Moines Register at age 16, he has since lived and worked in five states and two countries, helping a list of organizations and companies that includes the United States Census Bureau, TripAdvisor, Events Photo Group, Berlitz, and Computer Geeks. He also served as the Content Strategy Manager for HearPlanet, a multi-platform app that has reached over a million users and has been featured in the New York Times, Hemispheres Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, Fox Business News, PC Magazine, and even Apple’s own iPhone ads. Greg has written as a restaurant critic and feature journalist for a number of national and international publications, including City Weekend Magazine, Red Egg Magazine, the Newton Daily News, Capital Change Magazine, and an arm of China Daily, Beijing Weekend. In addition, he has served as a consulting editor for the Foreign Language Press of Beijing, as well as a writer and editor for the George Washington University Hatchet, the school newspaper of his alma mater. Originally from Iowa, Greg is currently living in the West Village of Manhattan.

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