Lessons in Business.
Here's what the last five years or so of beating myself against a new business startup have taught me:
Dear IDF hotties,
Of Thrones and Dragons.
So I've lately become caught up in watching Game of Thrones, the latest surprisingly non-dreck thing to come out of HBO, and sorta-kinda justify the money I give them. In all honesty, it's probably the thing that kept me from canceling the service, as they've been slinging non-stop dreck since Band of Brothers.
Anywho: Game of Thrones. I've got something of a soft spot for medieval fantasy, or at least a particular kind of it. Largely, I can do without hobbits and elves and grand quests. I like people stories. Interesting people stories. That's the primary reason I've been a Robert Jordan disciple for the majority of my life. He made a world with characters in it people cared about, empathized with, and wanted to see win the day. It's a lot easier to empathize with average joe sorts of people, who become interesting when tossed into situations they may not actually want to be in. How they react and develop in those situations is the good drama squishy. Thrones is an adaptation of a fairly Jordan-esque series written by George Martin, A Song of Ice and Fire. I say Jordan-esque for its interesting characters, long story arcs and descriptive scenes. It is, however, much, much darker.
Where Jordan's works were largely about Hope, Thrones is predominantly about Revenge. If it's not enacting it, it's foreshadowing it, or creating the need for it. Revenge and Sex, but mostly Revenge. Where it departs from the typical fantasy genre though is in its propensity to pop off central, and popular characters. Being a likable, honorable and all around good guy (or girl) in Thrones exponentially increases one's chances of being at the pointy end of something sharp, in a "my, is that all my blood draining onto the floor?" sort of way.
The screen adaptation has been a pretty good ride thus far. A lot of my compatriots stopped watching the series when poor 'ol Ned got the chop early on. That's when I started more than casually watching it. I'd read a few of the books early on while between Jordan releases. But I'm getting ahead of myself.
Generally I avoid screen adaptations of books. Especially epic fantasy type books. Usually, there's just too much stuff to cram into even a five year series without chopping it down to the point it becomes a parody of the original work. Thrones, so far, has managed to avoid that trap. The first thing that drew me in was the remarkably awesome and rightly Emmy-winning title sequence. Combined with Ramin Djawadi's utterly masterful use of a Cello. The influences of Zimmer are obvious-- the score is masterful and unique, and it conjures high expectations.
Then, the superb casting makes Thrones entirely watchable. It's hard to cast fantasy characters-- at least beyond the good and evil archetypes. But, in this, they've done it right. Very right in certain roles.
And finally, it seems that they're not actually screwing with it very much. The story is compressed quite a bit, as has to happen for any such series, but they're hitting the plot points well, and the liberties they do take aren't detracting from the story to any great degree.
What will be interesting to see is where the series ends. I'm guessing with season five, unless they actually do crank out one season per book as planned. But between then and now, there's some much-deserved killin' to come, and that suits me just fine.
posted by Mr. Lion @ 21:59 EST | comments (0)
I seem to remeber an old anecdote...
Something about a fool and his money being easily parted.
A Los Angeles car salesman and electric car advocate is shelling $32,400 out of his retirement savings so he can make a pitch directly to President Obama at a "private, off-the-record" Democratic fundraiser next week.
Paul Scott, 60, says he isn't a rich guy. He's a $50,000-a-year Nissan salesman who plans to rub elbows with 24 bigwigs in a private luncheon that he says will put a crimp in his retirement plans.