Monday, October 20, 2014

Links and Updates

Hello all, it's going to be a slow week as I'm off to Australia on Wednesday! I'm finally going to see Wicked on stage (I'm glad I'll see it before the inevitable movie adaptation) so there'll be plenty to talk about when I get back.

As such I'm going to hold off my usual reviews until next week, and double them up with the latest episodes that have aired. This'll include Doctor Who, Downton Abbey, Sleepy Hollow, The Flash and probably The Legend of Korra as well. Wow, I watch a lot of shows.

I only tentatively draw people's attention to the BBC's Atlantis, as I'd hate people to actually watch it, but this interview with the cast in the lead-up to the second season is just fascinating to behold. Knowing who's behind this series, just take a gander at some of these sound-bites from the cast:

"It’s tonally darker and more grown-up."

"[Characters] are more flawed, they’re not as simplistic as last year."

"Some really strong storylines this year [for the female characters]."

"The brief this year was to make everything look more filmic."

"It’s serialised as well... last year the episodes stood alone and told their own little story but this has a much bigger arc."

There's also a one-year time skip and an emphasis on sword-fighting. Sound familiar?

Maybe I'm just imagining things but there seems to be a quiet air of desperation running through all this. I'm not surprised that the assorted Merlin producers tried to recreate their most successful show, but what amazes me is that they haven't the faintest idea what made it so popular. Instead they're simply (and hilariously) replicating all its worst bits.

As it happens, the introduction of Medea certainly piques my interest, but let's face it – she's just going to be evil and killed off. And the fact the series is being split into two halves (the first to air in November and the second early next year) suggests a certain lack of confident from its broadcasters.

In better news, Colin Morgan has scored another role in Humans (which means two Merlin cast members have co-starred in British remakes of Swedish dramas) and it sounds pretty interesting – particularly that Gemma Chan is apparently going to be his character's love interest. Gemma Chan who was also Katie McGrath's one-night-stand in Dates. Hee.

So on the one hand, I can pretend that poor single Merlin is finally going to get some action. On the other, a WOC as the love interest of a fandom-adored white male? Batten down the hatches, because they're going to come down on her like a ton of bricks.

Apropos of my recent Why is Frozen So Popular? post, I visited a friend's house who has a three year old daughter with Frozen posters on her wall. I pointed to Elsa and asked: "who's this?" Her answer: "let it go."

I honestly think that at least 70% of that movie's success was down to that song.

Okay, it's time to go finish packing. I'll post again sometime next week!


  1. Re Atlantis, LOL, none of those statements are original, and seeing as how Merlin went, I don't have much confidence that it will really deliver. Plus is does sound a bit desperate. I did see something that said Jemima's character won't appear again until later in the series (she's doing a stage production or some such thing)
    Again they're dropping the ball with female characters, but this IS Capps and Murphy who don't want to catch girl cooties or something.

    The second series of Real Humans has not long finished here (shown on SBS) and its actually quite good - a very female driven narrative. Poor Leo (Colin's character) doesn't get mentioned much in the 2nd series, but he does spend most of the first season looking for Mimi (Gemma's character),as they get separated, however, their relationship is one of the main elements of the story, and the final scene is quite heartwrenching and lovely. I don't think the fans should get too upset, but then, any character that becomes between Colin and another white bloke better batten down the hatches, or at least be prepared to be replaced by Bradly in any pics of gifs!

    1. I'm looking forward to Humans the more I hear about it. Should be a good role for Colin.

      I don't think the fans should get too upset, but then, any character that becomes between Colin and another white bloke better batten down the hatches, or at least be prepared to be replaced by Bradley in any pics of gifs!

      I well remember the gif from Fast Girls that had Leonora Critchlow's character kissing Bradley and a caption reading: "you're not Merlin."

      Honestly, a part of me wonders if perhaps this is at least part of the reason why a) Bradley went to try his luck in America, and b) he took so long in getting another role -- to separate himself as much as he was able to from Merlin.

    2. It is a good show, cheesy in some bits. Having watched season 1 (I missed it the first time around) I do hope the writers stick closely to the original.

      *headdesk* I never saw that particular gif. I do feel for both of them, it doesn't matter what they will go on to do, fans will continue this sort of thing (no wonder Benedict C got annoyed in his latest interview)

      It does make me wonder about the things they are choosing. Leo (and some of his other characters, in particular Newt from Good Omens) good not be further from Merlin if he'd tried, perhaps I'm reading too much into it, but Leo - a freedom fighter, who doesn't want to live among humans, doesn't even see himself as human, but nevertheless wants to be free. Merlin - who did, well nothing but be obsessive.
      and then sweet Newt who at the end *sorry for spoilers if you haven't read* pretty much says do you want to live the rest of your life knowing every single thing thats going to happen, and yes, he might be saying that because he wants to get laid a second time, but still.
      Even Katie is doing things that allow her to smile and not smirk!