Comics, Comics everywhere
Black Wings
Why is it that in the last few years whenever a book series has gotten kind of successful and popular that they feel obliged to produce a comic series accompanying it?
While initially i really liked to see the artwork and such to books i already loved, i've come to think that almost never the artists bother to keep with the author's descriptions inside the books and i enjoy such visions the less, the more liberties the drawings take, one of the worst "offenders" was the Honor Harrington Semi-CGI-Comicbook, awfully far off from what Weber described.

A lot of the other times (Dresden Files, Asoiaf) the art is just not good enough to really enjoy. It's basically a throwback into the eighties, when we did not know how good Graphic Novels can be and how fine art in comics may be, there just were these endless series of conveyorbelt line produced generic comics about superheroes and tv tie ins that only could be called recognizable if you already were into the original thing that they were based on.
Now, if i compare e.g. the Journey into Mistery comics Asthenie had convinced me to try with her sample uploads with the GOT/ Asoiaf comics... those are worlds in between the good ones (Marvel) and the Martin-tie-in...

The reason for this rant? I've discovered in the Forbidden World Comicbook Newsletter that there will be a Peter Grant (Aronovitch) TPB coming out soon. First i was sorely tempted, but then... I don't know... Do i need any more disappointments? And why do they continue to torture us fans so much?

Giggling about death
Well, i somehow stumbled about this Wikipedia page called "last known survivors of wars and military insurgencies" and looked abit over the dates and such... quite interesting to see how old some of these kids got after nobody managed to fill them up with holes and lead.

THEN i reached this... and now i cannot stop giggling like mad.

TOM RIDDLE was the last confederate survivor? (Actually the article linked above the small table gives some deaths even later, but presumably they were younger at the time of death than Ole' tom or so... but still... :D hehe)

Grooming them early
Hehe, did any of you watch yesterday's "Last Week Tonight"?

The Special District video with those kids was one of the best things they ever produced. I SO hope if some day in 15 or 20 years John Oliver needs a replacement one of these kids has gone into working for television and is ready to take on the job. THAT would be awesome.

Hehe, some days i simply LOVE pinterest...

This explains SOOOOO much...
I've been binge-surfing all over this Deviant Art Account today and she has the most adorable Cartoons about his own fandom Hetalia ripoff called Sweden and the World or SatW...
They are generally funny and cute, but this one blows the top off...

Sooo true. Sooo believable. Sooo sad. And look at the Face the EU is making. LOL

Another one i liked was, although it's maybe a bit cruel to laugh about it... hmmm.

Taking Liberties
During the search for some potential Craig replacements last week i came amongst others onto the name of Ben Barnes, who was listed on IMDB as having played the protagonist of the miniseries Sons of Liberty on History Channel earlier this year. It sounded intriguing and I've always been interested in the era of the American Revolution / War of Independence, so i gave this three-parter a chance.

And well... it turned out a lot like Turn - Washington's spies. Fun to watch, lovely costumes and scenery (even if SoL makes a bit too much use of night time, foggy weather and other sight distorting measures, probably to save a bit on the budget) but they very much favor making up their own history and a lot of dramatic scenes in lieu of what really is reported to have happened.
Sam Adams is portrayed as adventurous, if not even athletic youngish rakish man of dubious character (most of what is shown about the ways he earns money seems to be on the shady side of things) despite him being 45 at the time of the sacking of the governor's mansion and fifty-ish when Boston Massacre and Tea Party occurred, leaving politics only ten years later due to poor health. Hancock is presented as a foppish gentleman who needs to bribe the governor to look the other way when he smuggles his merchandise into town because otherwise (by paying all dues and taxes) he would make a loss when selling it in Boston) and who came to know Adams through need for halfworld help in bettering his smuggling methods.
John Adams is in close contact to the more rebellious subset of Boston society and Paul Revere and Dr Joseph Warren belong to it even if only offering support instead of taking part themselves in the activities like a boycott of Tory merchants and publicans...

I'll readily confess that i'm not very well read in the whole subject, but this deems me a bit too flashy and action laden to portray the real situation 145 years ago... But then, Americans always liked to reinvent themselves. And their history.
And of course it is nice to watch. With the Hans Zimmer Soundtrack and most scenes dominated by the shining scarlet of the king's uniforms it ends up being very fetching and thrilling and entertaining. And i loved every time they showed majestic ships on the seas and at harbour. But to constantly see the soldiers clubbering people down with their musketshafts and now they seem intent to make a lashing scene outgruesome the Passion of the Christ... *sigh* ... it's all a bit thick on the "we had every right to rebel" message it's trying too hard to send. And every time they show the accompanying events back in London we get served a quote of utter disdain to those low class colonists. It's starting to be a bit exhausting.

Seen Supergirl?
As we've recently discussed giving more roles to actors of african-american or afro-british heritage I'm interested to know what my flisters think about the choice in Supergirl to cast two of the most important supporting characters with black actors.

For those who do not know yet, in the new Supergirl series Jimmy Olsen (okay, he insists on being called James as he's all grown up now ;)) is played by Mehcad Brooks (has also played e.g. Eggs in True Blood and an Matthew Applewhite in Desperate Housewifes... the rest of the series he appeared in more than one episode of i do not really recognise on title alone) and Hank Hanshaw (linked in DC lore to the Cyborg Superman that appeared after Clark Kent seemingly died in his fight with Doomsday, so an obvious "white" person in the comics) the boss of this series SHIELD clone "D.E.O." is played by David Harewood (known as e.g. the evil billionaire from David Tennants last double Episode in Doctor Who or as recurring character David Estes in Homeland)

I like both combinations of character and actor and think they are amongst the best cast in the whole series (compared to their Kara Zor-El/Danvers aka Supergirl or how annoying i find Kallista Flockhart (Ally McBeal) playing a very "Devil wears Prada" like Cat Grant), even though it's not quite "authentic" if you go by the comics the series is based on. But then all the other superhero series like Smallville or Lois & Clark had far greater sins in terms of twisting comic based figures into pretzels before letting them appear on screen.

What do you think? Is this the way it should go in terms of "blackification" of Hollywood?
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Fandom Rant, kind of...

I've now run twice into this mistake in just two days and in two different fanfics... how can you even come to mechanizations when you mean machinations?

It's driving me nuts how so blatant a homophone can slip through even the most superficial alpha/beta correction process. And in ten years we'll be forced to accept that mechanizations are machinations in newspeak or what?

And the historian laughed...
I've followed the Revolution Era Spy series "Turn" from the outset on and it is a fine television programme. Wonderful costumes, adequately correct scene buildings (for a good part i understand thanks to the museum village at "Colonial Williamsburg"... ) and a thrilling, meandering, surprising storyline throughout all episodes. It may not be the best program ever made, but it sure knows how to entertain while upholding a good look and feel for the time of America#s struggle for independence those 240 years ago.

That got me interested in the often talked about book that started the whole idea of making such a program about Washington's most important spy ring. And i took up "Washington's spies" by Alexander Rose. A good choice as it turned out to be an excellently written account full of carefully collected hints about their hidden activities and how it was both put into existance and how it was historically connected into the greater effort to achieve insights into future deployments and movements of the enemy's armies. And there the conflict began. As interesting and as life-threatening as the activities of the "Culper-Ring" were, they had only the barest resemblance to the full out portrayal of a modern type spy story the AMC series gave us. Well, a lot of names actually fit both the historical account and the action packed reenactment on the small screen... but almost every scene is embellished, blown up out of proportion and warped beyond recognition.
Where the television makes it almost look as if "Culper" was the best source on New York with nearly a running commentary going on about troop movements, strengths and missions, the truth is far less shinier, such messages were few and far in between. Most often it was hearsay or rumours about where this or that transport would be going or how much more supplies they had just received from Europe... Abigail the brave slave in Major Andrés employ seems to be completely fictional, Anna Strongs man never died in loyalist captivity, her own role is not even mentioned in Rose#s book and called pretty much folklore and local tradition by the sources of the Wikipedia article on the Ring... Also nearly half of what Rose has to tell about the Ring's correspondence comprises of complaints about the dangers and lacks of secrecy in the handling of the spying, questions after money for expenses paid in the course of the achievement of their intelligence like for the courier riders connecting York City and Setauket or for Townsend once he joined up for fresh paper to use with the secret stain (invisible ink) Tallmadge provided... Most of which is put in dialogue form by the tv crew spoken between the conspirators in weak moments.
Even aspects like the "invasion" (a raid by cavalry elements) of Setauket or the mugging of magistrate Woodhull (abraham's father) are grossly overstated in scape and importance when judging by the tv version. Not to forget the "villains", Robert Rogers, J. Simcoe and "Major Hewlett" who are almost unrecognizable if you try to bring historical account and television version into concordance. There simply is not enough flesh on the Culper story to fill twenty or more tv episodes with the level of action and suspense the producers would love to have in it...

Long story short: it's a nice TV show, but historically as accurate as let's say "300" or that musketeer thing half my Flist is so fangirly about.
And i have the greatest of respect for all the persons involved in the real story, risking or sometimes losing their lives so that others may continue to fight for the freedom of their chosen homeland... If you think that the two big polar opposites in Rose's story are Nathan Hale and Benedict Arnold, the poor honorable but steadfast soldier who got hanged for the attempt to gain little intelligence about the situation on Long Island and the big traitor who almost went over to the British with Washington and his intelligence chief Tallmadge on a silver platter and trying to add the whole garrison as turncoats as cream on top of the pie? And for what? Bitter resentment that his - admittedly excellent - service was not honored or rewarded enough by the congress and his army superiors and jealousy that others tried to harvest his effort's benefits instead of him?

Told you so!
Yesterday one of the authors i'm following on FFN posted a comment that clued me to this little gem of news.,0,6543295.story

So it just took ten years of "you must be deluded" for her to come around and leave "the good ship"? Who'd've thought. :D

Okay, it's not really that much a thing, she does not really say she now would write it the other way, just that she thinks it would be more realistic that way, but still... after some of the things said and done during the shipping wars this is very satisfying... to hear it from the horse's mouth that there was a break and the development that followed was not this instoppable natural thing as it always was portrayed. And i do feel kind of vindicated for always having "gotten it right".

Well... TOLD you so! D'Uh!


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