Sunday, June 15, 2014

Updates and Links

It’s been a bit of a rough week. I sent out ten queries and so far have six rejections – which is only to be expected as it’s damn hard trying to get the attention of an agent via the slush pile, but I’m determined to keep trying and keep a record of every failure. There are probably thousands of other writers in the exact same position as me, so hopefully being upfront about how difficult and disheartening this whole process can be will hopefully help alleviate that sense of isolation.

But there’s plenty to keep me busy in the meantime.

You know what I like most about television as an entertainment medium? There’s always more of it. Every time a show or season wraps up, something else will inevitably rise up to replace it. Both Orphan Black and Game of Thrones have only one episode left to go, but to compensate we get the first trailer for The Legend of Korra and some promotional pictures for The Musketeers. It’s like watching a constantly revolving stage; when one play ends, another begins.

First things first, Colin Salmon (who I'm currently watching on Arrow) and Antonia Thomas are joining the cast of The Musketeers as guest stars. The show was quite good regarding its inclusion of POC in its first season, but this is the first time a WOC has been featured, and she looks fab!

Apparently they’re a father/daughter duo from Spain, though I’m struggling to decide what class they come from. He looks a bit like a monk, but she’s definitely decked out in jewellery.

And then there’s our first trailer for The Legend of Korra: Changes ...

Jeez. The animation looks as fantastic as ever, though things go by so fast that you have to watch at least ten times to get a clear look at everything.

It looks as though the show is expanding in regards to geography; instead of just staying in Republic City or a few select locations, there is a huge variety of terrains and locations featured here: a silver city, the desert, the air-bender temples, mountain regions and of course, the spirit world. It looks as though the gang will be dispersed throughout the world this time around, which feels like a wise decision. One of the best parts of the original series was the beauty and detail of the world-building, and the whole quest/training narrative made this possible.

From what I could gather, the villains of this season are going to be criminals of some kind. There are a few glimpses of characters in what look like prison cells, and given their designs and propensity to stand around in the shadows, they definitely have the appearance of enemies. Let’s see; a girl with an eye on her forehead (like Combustion Man), another woman water-bending (and who reminds me of Hama), tattooed man doing chin-ups, and a guy who can apparently lava-bend!

There are definitely more air-benders out there in the world. Not just acolytes, but actual air-benders. As well as that, there are a lot of reappearances from past organizations: air-bender acolytes, metal-bender cops, the White Lotis Society, and the Dai Li.

Blink and you’ll miss them, but Bumi and Kya are in there, as well as Jinora, Eska, Skoochy (that urchin from Book 1), Lin Be Fong, and the usual crowd: Mako, Bolin and Asami, the last of which gets one of the most interesting-looking scenes in the whole damn trailer:

And of course, the cameo that got everyone jumping out of their chairs: ZUKO! I’m embarrassed to say that I didn’t even realize it was him the first time around, but yup – there he is. Facial scar and all, still alive and kicking.

Apparently the woman below is the Earth Queen, which makes me wonder if we’re ever going to see Zuko’s daughter, the Fire Lady (wasn’t her existence confirmed by Bryke?) Unfortunately this woman isn't exactly setting off "good guy" vibes, which is a shame as a regal and benevolent Earth Queen would have been awesome. Let's just hope she's more competent and savvy than the last Earth King.

Dragons! Gliders! Airships! A surprising lack of spirits... But whatever. I’m officially pumped.       

It’s a great first look at Book 3, and a beautifully paced trailer. Every time you think it’s winding down, the action kicks in again, Jeremy Zuckerman’s score is as haunting as always, and its most innovative feature is its tantalizing lack of dialogue. They’ve done that for a number of trailers now, and it’s a brilliant idea; keeping the storylines under wraps whilst still delivering a beautiful set of visuals.

Finally, two interesting articles caught my eye which I’m linking here: How To Get Back To Narnia, which explores the nostalgia/difficulties in re-reading these books in adulthood (and takes C.S. Lewis to task for some of his dubious storytelling choices) and Hell Hath No Fury Like a Superfan Scorned, which explores the backlash against Veronica Roth after the publication of Allegiant, the last in the Divergent trilogy. There’s something about the passionate response of fans to stories that exist outside their control that always fascinates me – and hey, I’ve been there. When characters you love die, it hurts. And there’s not a damn thing you can do about it.

The next Arrow episode review should be up later today.

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