I've been Ambassadors of Deathing. This is an early Pertwee Doctor Who, and I found it quite splendid. Astronauts who aren't really astronauts, and lots of slightly wobbly SFX killing people willy-nilly with flashes. I do like a good bit of Jon Pertwee. It's funny how different my favourite Doctors are. Hartnell, all deceptively bumbling, with Ian and Barbara to do the energetic stuff for him; Pertwee striding about the place with his cape all a-swirl, never missing the chance to speed around on a motorbike or a helicopter; Davison with his butter-wouldn't-melt approach, all enthusiasm and improvisation; and McGann, switching from joy to broodage in a heartbeat, randomly snogging passersby and actually managing to get a girlfriend. But none of that is anything remotely to do with "Ambassadors Of Death".

It's a good fun adventure, with a very good guest cast. A seven parter, which could sometimes be the downfall of the Pertwee era, as at times you can't help but think that they'd have been better off being just the usual four. This one uses its episodes well though. The story doesn't outstay its welcome, and if anything it could almost use a few extra minutes to stop the ending being so sudden. I imagine that anybody reading this who is remotely interested has already seen it - but just in case, some astronauts turn out not to be astronauts, to the consternation of the British Space Agency (who pays for all this stuff in the Whoniverse?! Britain must have the best economy in the world!), but to the grim joy of psycho renegade General Herne the Hunter Carrington. He wants carte blanche to annihilate all aliens everywhere, and is hoping to manufacture hostilities between humanity and its visitors, in order to trigger a UN-sanctioned aliengeddon. Meanwhile, HAVOC hurl themselves and each other all over the television screen, and lots of stuff goes snap, crackle and pop.

Here, have some pictures:

... )
I have been YouTubing. Don't you just love rich people, who had video recorders long before the rest of us had even heard of them?! Back in 1982, Children's BBC screened a fifty minute long adaptation of a book called Ghost In The Water, by Edward Chitham. This then disappeared into the bottomless vault of tapes in the BBC basement. I recall finding it brilliantly spooky, and the two and a half other people I've since met who also remember it agreed. I long ago gave up any hope of seeing it again though. And now it's turned up on YouTube! You can watch it here, if you are so inclined. Since it's a one-off film rather than a serial, it keeps the pace up throughout, making it seem almost modern (save for the almost universally brown colour scheme, obviously!), and the cast are terrific. Fourteen year old Tess is assigned a local history project by her teacher, and finds herself haunted by the restless ghost of a young woman who died more than a century before. I didn't find it scary this time, but it is very nicely done, and very atmospheric. So pleased to have seen it again!

Seriously though, check out this school interior:



Who even makes a paint that colour, let alone buys it or uses it?! It may have been 1982, but clearly they were not free of the seventies yet.

And then, also on YouTube, I found East Of Ipswich, which I hadn't seen since the Beeb broadcast it in the late eighties. It's a short film (seventy-odd minutes) written by Michael Palin, and very loosely based on an incident in his early life. Richard is seventeen, and hauled along by his parents on a deathly dull seaside holiday at the tail end of the fifties. It's brilliantly evocative of a particular time and place - rock & roll might have got the big cities hopping, but out in the provinces, a church social was still seen as the height of entertainment; and a seventeen year old boy staying out until ten o'clock at night - in a coffee bar! (gasp!) - was in for a stern telling off.

Though it's roughly based in reality, it's not really autobiographical. In real life he met his future wife, but I'm guessing that two youngsters becoming pen pals, and eventually getting married, was far less likely to be commissioned as a film! Instead, Richard gets tangled up with a naughty Dutch exchange student and some bad boy rockers on motorbikes. And! Guess who turns up as one of the rockers! Yep, looking startlingly young (and not terribly dangerous, it must be said), whilst sporting a quite fabulous DA:



Tip Tipping - one of the many reasons why old telly is better. The other rocker there is fellow stuntman Wayne Michaels, known to fans of Robin Of Sherwood as Michael Praed's regular stand-in. And, telly being what it is, frequently the stand-in for the bloke that Michael Praed was fighting as well. He's also the man behind the infamous bungee jump at the start of GoldenEye.

I'm a well of useful information, aren't I. Who needs sensible facts and figures, when you can end up with a head full of stuntman resum├ęs?
swordznsorcery: (tardis)
( Dec. 1st, 2015 21:08)
1984 was a pretty sucky year, for reasons that I'm not going into. Partly because it was miserable, and partly because I'd get shot if anybody found out I'd been posting about it! But it's not a year that I remember especially fondly. Still some good stuff though. For instance - Manimal! Only eight episodes. There should have been so many more. We also got Blue Thunder that year (cops in a helicopter); Airwolf (vigilantes in a helicopter); and Matt Houston (rich playboy PI with a helicopter). Clearly 1984 was the year of the helicopter. British TV didn't do too badly that year either, although the budgets rarely extended to helicopters. The Bill and Casualty both started that year. Both went on far, far too long, and became ghastly parodies of themselves, but they were both excellent to begin with. Dempsey & Makepeace started, and so did Robin Of Sherwood. Peter Davison ran away when we'd barely got to know his Doctor, and Rentaghost and Crackerjack both ended, probably rather later than they should have done. (And anybody who didn't just yell "Crackerjack!" is being glared at. Just so you know). How did I manage to do anything else, with all this telly-watching?! I think days must have been longer back then. Probably got chopped in half later by the Conservatives, to save money.

Elsewhere, 1984 was the year when my mother decided that, since I never mixed with people my own age, or spoke to anybody ever, I needed to start going to youth club. Oh joy. Consequently, for the best part of a year, I spent an hour every Friday evening in a room full of noisy people. I still didn't talk to anybody, but I suppose I was not talking to them in a different environment, which was possibly at least part of the idea? When she realised that it hadn't worked, she enrolled me in a local Evangelical Bible group instead. What the bloody hell that was supposed to accomplish, I still have no idea. A safe environment, I suppose! Given that the area's three worst problem children had been enrolled as well, presumably in a last ditch attempt to sort them out, it was an experiment quite hilariously doomed to failure. Anyway, we clapped our hands a lot, sang a lot of songs, and I didn't talk to anybody. I'm sensing a pattern. Being the only introvert in a family with seven noisy extroverts takes some careful explaining! Especially when you haven't heard of the word "introvert" yet.

Oh, 1984. You were a problem year. Perhaps that was inevitable, once George Orwell wrote that blasted book!

... )
http://lost-spook.livejournal.com/465693.html

Robin Of Sherwood; Nasir

Fandom: Robin Of Sherwood
Characters: Nasir
Gen, c. 1900 words

Cut for length )
The opening credits for series three of Dempsey & Makepeace have lost the bit where the sword goes through the door. Heartbreak! Less swords is never a good thing, people. Yes, I appreciate that nobody but me cares, but still. However, the real reason for posting - episode 3x05, "Extreme Prejudice". Look look look! (Beneath a cut for maximum drama, even though, again, almost nobody will care).

Dramatic cutty thing )
Tags:
TV meme, shamelessly nicked from several people on my f-list. Behind a cut, because it's me, and I can't not waffle.

... )
swordznsorcery: (queen)
( Mar. 22nd, 2014 18:03)
So, American television was kind enough to make a pirate series. I wanted to wait until I'd got my pretend pirate show all figured out and posted before I watched it, so I finally got around to seeing the first two episodes last night. Obviously, because it's mine, I think my show is better! But, quite honestly... boy is my show better. If only by virtue of not really existing, but still.

Ouch. )
swordznsorcery: (tardis)
( Jan. 5th, 2014 09:55)
Thanks to the wonderful world of Amazon gift vouchers, I've been catching up on some new (to me) Doctor Who. Therefore, today I'm going to bore the world with talk of "The Space Museum".

Huzzah )
Day nineteen, the best TV show cast. Oh, yikes. Have you any idea how much TV I have watched in my life, meme? How much television I remain ridiculously attached to? Or television to which I remain ridiculously attached, if you want it in proper grammar. And yet you keep asking me to not only remember it all, but also to choose between it, and I'm not sure that that was a proper sentence. Choices, choices. The first cast of M*A*S*H? Or how about Robin Of Sherwood? Or original Torchwood, or season three Blake's 7? (I like Glynis Barber a lot, but the poor woman is so easily overlooked in season four, that I can't really rate Soolin above Cally). And then there's Between The Lines (and indeed Drop The Dead Donkey, just to stay on a Neil Pearson theme). Cardiac Arrest? Quantum Leap? How about every TV show in my tags list, with the obvious exception of Invasion: Earth?

If I behave and narrow it down - or if I just stop thinking, which is probably easier - I can get it down to two. Babylon 5, (from season two onward, as Sheridan trumps Sinclair), and The West Wing. And it's a difficult choice, so I'm not going to make it. Instead I'm going to avoid the issue entirely and, in a vain attempt to prove that I do watch modern stuff occasionally, I'm going instead with True Blood. The show is a pale shadow of its former self, but the cast has never put a foot wrong. It's a big, varied, interesting cast, and it currently includes Rutger Hauer, which says it all. Or it included him until this week. I'm hoping they're bringing him back, because Rutger Hauer. And four episodes is emphatically Not Enough. Because Rutger Hauer!

Anyway, that was day nineteen.

And this is Rutger Hauer being king of the fairies. Why doesn't more television have Rutger Hauer in it? I might watch more of it then.

http://lost-spook.livejournal.com/325603.html

Robin Of Sherwood, Robert of Huntingdon, he is the sunlight

Fandom: Robin Of Sherwood
Characters: Huntingdon and Marion
Gen, c. 500 words

Cut for length )
In your own space, share a favorite piece of original canon (a TV episode, a song, a favourite interview, a book) and explain why you love it so much. Leave a comment in this post saying you did it. Include a link to your post if you feel comfortable doing so.

This was incredibly difficult. My first thought was to choose a really good episode of something; but then the full extent of the prompt got me thinking, because there's movies and books to choose from as well. Also, the mention of "a favourite piece of canon" suggests that the choice shouldn't be a favourite episode, but a favourite thing that happens in a particular episode. Which complicated things even further. Eventually I narrowed it down to a shortlist of about twenty episodes, films and books; but since I had no over all favourite, I decided in the end to go for the one that's arguably the least well known. There's too much good stuff out there to try deciding whether one thing is better than all the rest; and small fandoms need support. Shortlist included at the end, just because.

... )
Abbot Hugo story for [livejournal.com profile] liadtbunny. Also sneakily for Snowflake Challenge Day 9.

Fandom: Robin Of Sherwood
Gen, c. 1000 words

... )
Because I don't know. I felt like giving it a go, I guess. [community profile] snowflake_challenge: Day One.

In your own space, post a rec for at least three fanworks that you have created. It can be your favorite fanworks that you've created, or fanworks you feel no one ever saw, or fanworks you say would define you as a creator. Leave a comment in this post saying you did it. Include a link to your post if you feel comfortable doing so.

I generally specialise in small fandoms, but one thing that I wrote turned out to be quite popular. It's based on The Tribe, which hardly anybody watched, or so I thought. Sometime in the near future, a deadly virus wiped out all adult life, and turned the whole world into Lord Of The Flies gone mad. It was very low budget, and some of the acting was a bit ropey, but dear heaven was it a fan fiction writer's paradise. And, to be fair, some of the characters, and some of the acting, were very good indeed. After a couple of years it went off the boil, though. Most of the cast left, and I hated what the show turned into. So I wrote an alternate season four, that somehow amounted to more than two hundred thousand words over more than a year. And people actually wanted to read it. That was kind of fun. Tribe Fury: Introductory Blurb.

Another thing I wrote that turned out to be something people actually wanted to read (this is a novel experience for me), was The Dark One, an appallingly titled Robin Of Sherwood story that carried on where the series left off. For once I think I did a fairly good job of it, which is not something I think very often. The Dark One. I only wish I could have thought of a better title!

One day there was a new series of Doctor Who, but I didn't love it as much as I loved the old one. And then one day new Doctor Who introduced Captain Jack. (And took him away again almost immediately. But still). A time-travelling, space-adventuring conman! Hello new form of procrastination. Captain Jack And The Monster From Space happened soon after, as did its sequel, Captain Jack And The Ship That Flew. Spaceships and pirates and Jack. I must be honest, they wrote themselves; I had very little say in the matter. The Monster From Space and The Ship That Flew. I like to think they turned out okay.

Something a bit different to end on. There was a video that I really wanted to make. It needed to be made, and quite obviously nobody else was going to do it, for all manner of very good reasons. You see, there's this show called Days Of Our Lives. It's a soap, and I readily admit that it's awful, although it wasn't always. Well, it probably was. Whatever. Anyway, two of the characters are Stefano and John. Stefano believes that John belongs to him. He has consequently spent the last thirty years kidnapping John, confiscating his shirt, and chaining him to things. And getting him tattooed, specifically to show the world who he belongs to. This is actually canon, I promise. Anyway, because Days seems to be almost entirely watched by quite conservative housewives, I'm apparently the only person in the world who has noticed how spectacularly slashy this all is. Well, except for the actors. I'm pretty sure they've noticed. Anyway, I made a video. Somebody had to. It's low res due to the quality of the source material, and I can't even pretend that it's good, but like I said, it needed doing. That's my excuse, and I'm sticking to it.


It seemed like a good idea at the time...
.

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