TV Talk: Once Upon a Time

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Because I write in speculative and fantasy it would seem like watching Once Upon a Time would be an obvious choice.  It is loaded with magic, which I love, and fairy tale characters, which I have a love/hate relationship with. However, the small snippets I have seen haven’t yet appealed to me mainly because it feels so much like a fantasy soap opera.

So, I’m giving it a try.

From what I’ve gathered so far there is a fairy tale world and the real human world. Neither of the world’s populations know of the other world’s existence except for the Evil Queen Regina and the naughty Rumpelstiltskin. The queen curses the people of the fairy tale world to live in the real world with no memories of their past.  They live in a small quiet community in Maine called Storyebrook.

There is one who can break the curse, the daughter of Snow White, Emma Smith, who managed to escape the curse by being sent to the real world as an infant before it happened. Her son, Henry has a book with the clues to help unlock the memories of the fairy tale characters.

Once_upon_a_time_season_three_castI haven’t watched more than the first episode so far but I can see lots of promise. There’s good storytelling and cool costuming and that’s enough for me to stick around a bit longer.

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Are you a fan of Once Upon A Time? What is your favorite episode? Favorite Character?

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Before I forget – the awesome folks at Xchyler Publishing have released a knock-your-socks-off trailer for this year’s fantasy anthology that features my story Breath. Check it out!

Winnie the Pooh – Who are you?

I’ve been reliving many of the cartoons from my past, including a few from the Winnie the Pooh franchise. Even as a kid these weren’t my favorite, I grew up in the middle of great cartoons such as Duck Tales and Rescue Rangers.

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Winnie the Pooh has had staying power, I’ll give it that.  They are classics and will be perpetually renewed, just like Treasure Island and Swiss Family Robinson.

Part of the reason that Winnie the Pooh tends to stick around is that each of the characters are so distinct.  There’s Winnie of course, the bumbling silly bear who’s none too bright but friendly nonetheless. He has an obsession with honey and will do anything to get it, including putting himself if danger.

Then there’s Piglet, who is scared of everything to the extent that he won’t try anything new without a whole lot of support from his friends.

Tigger only wants to have fun and is the Polly Anna of the group.  This fun often bothers those around him and causes him the majority of his problems.  He can’t see the effect his actions have on others and is selfish.

Eeyore is perpetually depressed.  He believes that nothing can go right for him and as a result nothing ever does.  He’s not very pleasant to be around but is lucky that he has a great group of friends willing to overlook is dour demeanor.

Rabbit always has a goal, and will do everything in his power to get to that goal, even when it means sabotaging everyone else’s fun.  He is responsible, dependable, and perpetually cranky because no one can manage to do anything right in his eyes. If anything he is the most grownup of all the characters.

As I was watching this with my three-year-old this week I had a chilling realization.

I’m Rabbit.

This stung more than you’d think. You see, I hated Rabbit growing up.  He was the one who was always ruining everything for everyone. Sure, he knows what it takes to get things done, but those things are often not worth doing. Or if they are, they don’t have to be done in the precise anal OCD way that Rabbit insists on.

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What character are you?

Related pages:

Mental Disorders of the Winnie-the-Pooh Characters

A Very Brief History of Idiots Banning Winnie the Pooh

19 Incredibly Wise Truths We Learned From Winnie The Pooh

TV Talk: Warehouse 13

Lately I’ve been in a steampunk rut.  It might have something to do with being in close contact with a publisher that specializes in steampunk novels and short stories. It’s been on my mind and I’ve even come up with a few cool steampunk story ideas. One day, when time permits, I’ll give it a shot.

In my quest to learn more about the genre, I’ve been searching around and talking to friends that are already into it.  That is how I learned about Warehouse 13.

Cast of Warehouse 13

Cast of Warehouse 13

Last night I watched the pilot episode, and I’m impressed.  They’ve got cool steampunk tools, but instead of the typical Victorian setting, it’s very modern-day – which makes the tools look even cooler. Gadgets so far include the Farnsworth, a cellphone alternative that does video chat at the touch of a button; the Tesla gun, which shoots electric bursts, stunning it’s target; the cool warehouse wagon that can run on human electric currents; and also Artie’s cool steampunk computer set with a super awesome old-timey typewriter style keyboard.

The story itself has the feel of X-Files meets Indiana Jones.  Our main characters are two secret agents who were transferred to the mysterious and unfathomably massive Warehouse 13, affectionately referred to America’s attic on the show.  The warehouse holds all the strange and wonderful things created over the centuries that have unexplained or dangerous properties, to keep them safe from the public, and to keep the public safe from them.

There are the usual hijinks between the characters, the agents currently hate each other but my writer sense is tingling and I’m pretty sure they’ll hook up within the first season. Their goal is to recover items that have these strange powers, neutralize them, and bring them back to the warehouse.

There is also Artie, the curator of the warehouse and mission control for our secret agents.  He serves as the quirky comic relief and walking reference book for all the items contained in the warehouse.

You can check out Warehouse 13 on the Syfy channel or on their website.

Related articles and sites:

Hiding under a rock – Me and Doctor Who

I have a confession to make.  I’ve only watched a handful of Doctor Who episodes in my life and I don’t even remember which doctor it was.  Watching was a bit of an accident as well.  I really liked the show that came on before and there were times where I was too lazy to turn off the TV and go to bed.

Yes. I’m a Red Dwarfer.

Oh yeah.

Oh yeah.

I’ve watched all the seasons and even follow Robert Llewellyn, the guy who played Kryten the mechanoid, on Twitter. Turns out he really likes hybrid and electric cars, who knew? I will be a very happy camper when the mysterious season 11, that has been rumored to be in production, is available in the US.

It seems that I can’t call myself a speculative fiction writer without having a working knowledge of the good Doctor. That means I have some catching up to do and will need some advice. It’s time to come out from the rock I’ve been hiding under.

First – is there a season I should start at, or is it recommended to start at the beginning?

Second – is there a preferred snack that pairs well with a marathon session?

Let me know in the comments!

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Help me out, this is the Doctor I remember. What number is he?