Wow, Game of Thrones, wow.
You need to know something about me – I loved Guy Ritchie’s first Holmes adaptation. Loved is not a strong enough word, perhaps. It was a movie that was everything, EVERYTHING an adaptation should be, and gave me characters I enjoyed watching tremendously and it was madly in love with the source it was based on but at the same time extremely aware of itself and the fail and biases in that original canon, and it had gorgeous action and pretty people and amazing, amazing acting, and a really, unbelievably well written script.
Recently I stumbled onto a show called Underbelly: Razor, about the 1920s criminal world of Sydney, Australia.
Let’s have an official plot summary:
It was the 1920s, Sydney, Australia and the gutters were running with blood as the underworld exploded in violence.
Vice in the harbour city was dominated by two powerful women — Tilly Devine, a sharp-tongued cockney who ran a chain of 40 brothels, and her bitter rival Kate Leigh, an Aussie battler who’d built an empire out of sly grog, thieving and cocaine.
Burndive! Second of Lowachee’s Warchild series.
Soulless is, without a doubt, the best book you will read this year.
This sounds like a grand statement, I know. Not everyone likes a steampunk Victorian England inhabited by werewolves and vampires, after all. However, I am confident in my assertion that this book will be enjoyable even to people who usually shy away from every single trope and genre it embraces.
So, I am not a big fan of David Cronenberg. In fact he is the the only director whose film I once reviewed by saying he should never be allowed to pick up a camera again and meant it wholeheartedly. If he was never allowed to make another film for as long as he lived I would be happy.
There are several reasons for this. I came into Cronenberg’s career relatively late, having skipped his straight up horror film phase (I don’t watch horror as a general rule, so I’d stayed away from those films though I’d heard of some of them). In his drama film phase, which is when I became aware of him, he’s made movies with the same overwhelming theme. He explores masculinity and violence, the nature-as-wild-and-violent and culture-as-forcing-us-to-repress-that-nature. His protagonists are always men, usually torn between acting “normal”, civilized, calm, collected, rational, even gentle at times (usually with women), and acting in their “true nature”, which the world around them invariably requires them to reveal, which is violent and brutal
and often includes Viggo Mortensen’s naked ass. He’s fond of exploring the price of that duality – the price of indulging, due to lack of choice, in those base, violent instincts, and the price of repressing them and keeping up a “civilized” veneer the rest of the time.
(I am literally no longer able to see straight after writing all of this out. So, er, be ready for typos?)
So, the Game of Thrones post of The End of Season 1. *deep breath* We have so many things to get through, JFC.
I’m going to write my notes specifically as someone who’s read the books and seeing the show as an adaptation, because I’ve found I’m incapable, no matter how hard I try, to see this show “objectively,” as its own entity. I’ll do my best to avoid unsolicited spoilers for future books though.
So, general season 1 thoughts.
My crush on Syrio, you guys, my God. I don’t remember how that scene went in the books, but I do remember I didn’t really care about him. The actor SELLS IT like nobody’s business. Syrio may very well be my favorite adult character at this point in time. Everything from his foreigner status, to his pride, to the way that, despite his jokes, he is not only a loyal servant but a decent human being who would protect a child from harm even though it will probably mean losing his life. Not a lot of characters like that on this show.
Yet again, we’ll have a post made up of two parts. Part 1 – things that need to go away. Part 2 – things I think are worth mentioning in a constructive manner.
fffff I actually skipped a class today to come home early and watch Game of Thrones. This was… a disappointing episode, purely from a writing/pacing point of view, if for no other reason.