Lit Literature member interviews

Discussion in 'Literature' started by Point Given, Jun 6, 2013.

  1. Point Given Mod of Literature and Community

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    Dec 12, 2006
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    Sorry about #13. I remember you mentioning this to me after my anaphylactic attack, but I'd forgotten. To add onto the question, what foods are you limited to?
  2. The Loyal Imperial Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 19, 2007
    star 6
    That's something of a frequently changing list, due to the nature of ingredients (companies just love switching things around to try and find new tastes). Anything containing nuts (peanuts or treenuts), dairy, eggs, beef, kiwi, bananas, lamb, sunflower seeds, and a few other more obscure things are off-limits. Anything that "may contain" any of those is off-limits. Anything related to or derived from any of those is off-limits. Anything with "secret ingredients" or vaguely-defined "flavor" is off-limits. Anything that may have been prepared near any of those is off-limits, so restaurants are obviously completely out of the question. That leaves mostly the basics: fruits and vegetables, chicken and pork for meats, and grains. I try to avoid anything too elaborate or time-consuming in its preparation: leaving aside the issue of risk, I lack sufficient variety for it to be worth the effort by the time it's done.
  3. Gamiel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 16, 2012
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    Have you see the old 1998 Hamilton movie? Mark Hamill plays the bad guy in that one
    Last edited by Gamiel, Sep 28, 2013
  4. The Loyal Imperial Manager Emeritus

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    I have not - only the more recent, Casino Royale-esque adaptations.
  5. Point Given Mod of Literature and Community

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    14. What are your favorite types of music? Which artists/bands do you like the most?

    15. What are some of your favorite pastimes/activities?
  6. CooperTFN TFN EU Staff Emeritus

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    16. What do you think PG did to Todd?
    Last edited by CooperTFN, Sep 28, 2013
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  7. The Loyal Imperial Manager Emeritus

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    14. What are your favorite types of music? Which artists/bands do you like the most?

    Fun fact: I actually listen to music all day long. Really, the whole day. My hearing leans toward the inconvenient side of good: I need something to drown out the constant background noise of machinery, birds, and neighbors. So, if I'm not watching or playing something, chances are that I'm listening to something. What that something is changes from day to day. I'll cycle through two or three songs for a few days until I grow tired of them, and then move on to something new. There's not really any one particular band or artist I like all the works of: I just drift between what I find to be the best of each. And so we have likes of Mozart and Beethoven side-by-side with Christopher Lee, video game music, trailer music (somewhere in the world, this song is currently echoing through a sewage treatment plant thanks to me – long story) and other works in the same style, Vivaldi, Doctor Who, dancing Soviet soldiers, Tchaikovsky, Gary Moore, movie soundtracks, dancing Adam Jensen, AC/DC, the best part of Alpha Protocol, Dschinghis Khan, the Russian Easter Festival Overture, Captain Blood, and many, many others.

    15. What are some of your favorite pastimes/activities?

    [IMG][IMG][IMG][IMG][IMG][IMG][IMG][IMG][IMG][IMG]

    As some might have guessed by now, the first answer would be photography – nature and wildlife shots a specialty. Birds and squirrels in mid-flight are a popular choice of subject. Deer are considerably rarer, but turn out some of the best shots if you can get them in the right place. Cats are exceptionally cooperative subjects, and turn out fantastic shots with great frequency. Dogs, alas, aren't nearly as good at staying in one place for an extended period of time. Llamas also make good subjects, but have a tendency to make funny faces in front of cameras. Turkey vultures are extraordinarily common, but their faces just weren't made for modeling. Rabbits are plentiful, and can provide some of the best motion shots if you're quick enough to capture them the moment after they start running. Herons are difficult to find, but conveniently slow and graceful in flight, which makes them an excellent choice for flight captures. Sheep, horses, goats, pigs, cows, chickens, ducks, and donkeys are all quite common as farm animals, and so require greater care to capture them at truly unique moments. Geese have the same issue, due to their abundance. Foxes, raccoons, porcupines, and beavers are among the rarest subjects, which makes it nearly impossible to capture them in the most flattering light.

    Conveniently, photography is also easily combined with one of my other favorite pastimes: driving, particularly when it involves exploring rarely-traveled and unmaintained roads. Though some people would say that all Canadian roads fit that description. I can easily fit 170 kilometers of driving in a day without ever growing tired of it. This is also the prime factor behind my success rate with uncommon wildlife: if one cannot find a single place where such animals can be found repeatedly and reliably, then the only remaining option is to increase the number of opportunities for random encounters. After two years of doing this (and one year of combining it with photography), I've been on very nearly every road outside of major urban areas in all of eastern Ontario, some of which may or may not have been meant for automobiles. Or people. Unfortunately, doing this for so long and so often also eventually robs the process of exploration of some of its entertainment value: the only remaining uncharted territory of note lies either further away than would be conveniently within reach, or beyond the southern border and deep into American territory.

    The study of history, of course, is another activity I find greatly enjoyable. Periods and topics of particular interest include (but are not limited to): Alexander the Great and the Diadochi, the last century of the Roman Republic and its conflicts, the Third and Fourth Crusades (I find the partition of the Byzantine territory to be quite interesting, given how rarely such events have occurred in history), late Byzantium and the Italian Renaissance (especially anything in terms of the political position and workings of Venice and the Papal States), the Thirty Years' War (which has been greatly neglected by fiction for some time now), the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars that followed (I found Napoleon: Total War to be a great disappointment, being unable to model Napoleon's installing of his brothers as the rulers of various realms), the Industrial Revolution and its effect on warfare, the warlords and military cliques of early 20th century China, the Spanish Civil War, the Warring States periods of China and Japan (to note a peculiar phenomenon, there are a great many more games dealing with the latter than there are films), the later years of Tsarist Russia (more specifically, the Crimean War, the various Russo-Turkish Wars, and the Russian Civil War), the discovery of oil and the development of the petroleum industry (particularly with regard to the Middle East). On a broader scale, I have great interest in everything that occurred between the American Civil War and World War II, regardless of location.

    In addition to reading, I also have a certain interest in writing, though not as most people envision the process. For me, the actual process of storytelling will always come second to the building of worlds and the crafting of settings. To not just tell a story, but an entire history. To create entire worlds and societies from nothing, and give name and life to the figures that helped shape them. To invent new technologies and consider their implications on the development of nations, to determine what manner of species and political systems might arise in environments entirely foreign to humanity. Rather than simply telling a story, I prefer to create a universe fully capable of weaving its own tales – the kind of setting where a single look at it gives rise to a thousand different possibilities in your mind. This is the source of my love of role-playing games – a book can tell you the kind of story the author wants to tell, while a sourcebook can inspire you and give you the tools and elements to craft a hundred of your own. All that I read, watch, and play I use as a way to harvest potential, a means of acquiring the building blocks for the foundations of new worlds crafted from the finest and most inspiring elements of everything I've ever experienced.

    So, while we're on the topic of worldbuilding, let us return to speak of the nature of Star Wars and the Expanded Universe for a moment. The films presented us with a variety of planets, each consisting of a single environment. Dagobah, the bog planet. Tatooine, the desert planet. Hoth, the winter planet. Endor, the forest moon. Yavin IV, the jungle moon. Bespin, the cloud planet. You get the idea. Despite the inherent improbability of the concept, I like it. It inspires, it presents possibilities, and most importantly it sets every planet apart as being obviously unique. This is the key factor. I do not mind having desert planets – I do mind having ten identical desert planets, or using the same desert planet ten times over. You see, the expansion of the Expanded Universe has given us a great many more planets than we will probably ever need, and all we seem to do with them is create more throwaway worlds or use the same planets over and over again. Giving us yet another nondescript snow or desert planet, or unnecessarily reusing the ones appearing in the films for no reason beyond the audience recognition factor (see: The Old Republic), accomplishes very little when there are so many more imaginative things we could be doing. I should like to see one or two hundred “core” planets, so to speak, each wholly unique and easily identified at first sight. The significant worlds, the shapers of galactic society, the great and regional military powers, the sources of the most valuable resources, the homeworlds of great senators and founders of colonies. And I would like to see these planets explored in depth, each capable of sustaining a story or game that never leaves its surface.

    Let us take Tatooine as an example. Let it remain a remote desert world with two suns. That's what we know it as, and we don't particularly need it to be any more. We certainly don't need it as the most well-known desert planet in the galaxy. If we require a similar setting, then let us have one with three suns and red sand, or the black sands of Socorro. Perhaps a world of domed cities, where the sun is too hot for life to survive unprotected on the surface. And what of more unique settings? Where are our hollow worlds – a vast planetwide city constructed inside the husk of a dead planet? We have a great many generic ocean planets, and yet prequel concept art very nearly gave us crystal iceberg and reef-based planets. And then we have the smaller matter of individual planetary governments, which are usually vague at best, practically nonexistent at worst. Where are the police states, the theocracies, the caste-based societies, the demagogues taking advantage of chaos, the worlds run according to the predictions of computers, the lost colonies fallen into barbarism, the military dictatorships, the merchant republics, the planets locked in civil war and ruled by warlords, the worlds secretly ruled by cults and cabals? The most coverage these elements ever receive is usually from role-playing game sourcebooks – their story potential almost totally ignored everywhere else. When was the last time we saw Chandrilans and Corellians quarreling over political philosophy? Actually, when was the last time we saw Chandrilan political anything?

    Uncomfortably, aliens are often used as stand-ins for particular Earthly cultures or political systems. The Zygerrians from the Slaves of the Republic comics, for one, are very obviously Space Ottomans. The disturbingly-named Epicanthix are the inscrutable long-lived Asian conquerors from the east trained in martial arts. The list goes on. By comparison, humans come with remarkably little cultural variation. The fact that Hiram Drayson is from Chandrila has as little effect on his character as being from Contruum does on Airen Cracken. Strange as it might be to say, humans may have the greatest untapped potential of any species in Star Wars. As has been repeatedly noted in the diversity thread, very little has been done to promote human diversity. The gender makeup of the human cast is still ridiculously unbalanced. Humans are capable of existing in a great number of different environments and have invented many different kinds of political systems, and yet somehow these things never seem to play a part in the personalities of our casts. The Republics and the Empire are treated as monolithic entities, completely overwriting any hint of cultural or environmental influence a character's homeworld may have had on them. Ackbar has been known to comment on being a fish out of water on several occasions, but when have we ever heard Luke complaining about how cold the rest of the galaxy feels in comparison to Tatooine?
  8. RC-1991 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 2, 2009
    star 4
    RE: Humans, it's my opinion that many of the "Near-human" species should be reclassified as Humans. Because god forbid the humans of Star Wars exhibit any cultural or phenotypical diversity.
  9. The Loyal Imperial Manager Emeritus

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    I'm particularly fond of the idea of humans as aliens, which is the approach taken in the previously-referenced Vorkosigan Saga (it has no actual aliens, but four-armed humans and giant human/cat-people running around). Given the advanced level of technology they've achieved in Star Wars, there's very little reason you couldn't have all sorts of bizarre things that were simply humans that preferred to look like something else. Rather than having aliens representing human cultures, I much prefer them as an exploration of various behaviorals and social structures (particularly when derived from animals) dramatically expanded in scale. Use humans to examine human behavior, use aliens to examine clearly nonhuman behavior.
  10. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    There's a reference to this sort of thing in the last Simon R. Green Deathstalker book (Deathstalker Coda) - when the hero travels back in time and sees what humans used to do when it was possible.

    Iain M. Banks's The Culture series also has it to some degree.
  11. The Loyal Imperial Manager Emeritus

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    Speaking of possibilities, that raises to mind another aspect of the universe that is often overlooked. With every passing book, the Jedi seem to gain new capabilities, now standing at psychic-monk-swordmaster-acrobat-diplomat-general-pilot-doctor-supersoldier hybrids. Ordinary humans barely even pose a threat to them anymore. Considering what kind of weaponry and technology they have available, however, this should certainly not be the case. "Ordinary" humans have access to flechette launchers and grenades, gravity-manipulating technology, force fields, concussion and shockwave weapons, reflex enhancers and combat implants, sonic weaponry, flamethrowers and poison gas, and many other tools perfectly suited to combating Jedi. A sufficiently skilled and experienced combatant could and should easily be the equal of your average Jedi, and pose a serious threat even to the most talented master.

    On a related note, I also much prefer seeing Jedi specializing in various fields to the omnicapable Jedi of today. Particularly for the Jedi Order of old - where they all dress alike, were raised together, and wield identically-colored lightsabers - specializations and unique talents with the Force are key elements in making a Jedi unique and not simply interchangeable with their comrades. It would be nice to see the Force manifesting in different ways, not necessarily in terms of ability, but rather how each individual Jedi perceives it. Not all need to be able to see the future - why not hear it, instead? Perhaps some can get a clearer and more consistent vision of the future, but only for a much shorter period, perhaps in seconds. Some might be less skilled in foresight, but have an advantage in terms of spatial awareness, able to more accurately read their surroundings at a greater distance. The codification of the Force into a limited set of "powers" has probably been more harmful to their place in the story than anything else that has been done with them.
  12. instantdeath Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 22, 2010
    star 5
    Agreed on both counts. I dislike the ever growing notion that each individual Jedi is some ubermensch who is good at everything he or she touches. As bad as KJA is in most areas, I find one thing I enjoy about his work is that he did attempt to give the Jedi characters individual talents. Like many things, I think the tendency to portray the Jedi as a Planet of Hats comes from the prequels. I get that Lucas is a very visual person, but the Jedi can have other differences from each other besides the exotic shapes of their heads.

    And yes, I also really dislike the tendency for writers to portray a Force using character as capable of slaughtering armies of mundane people. While I can perhaps forgive this, but only to a certain extent, with characters like Vader or Luke Skywalker, there's this annoying idea going around EU authors that if a character has a lightsaber, the only thing that can possibly be a threat to them is another lightsaber. I also dislike the notion that blasters are 100% useless against lightsabers; this is something that should be governed by skill and reflex. In other words, I'd put my money on Gallandro against most Jedi.
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  13. Point Given Mod of Literature and Community

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    16. Who are your favorite historical figures?

    17. What's the funniest thing you've ever seen or done?
  14. GrandAdmiralJello Moderator Communitatis Litterarumque

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    Jedi are boring anyway. I liked them when they were a mystical, philosophical sort of thing -- rather more like sages and reluctant warriors (wars not make one great!) rather than big flashy duelists and generally supermen, yes. The way I always pictured Jedi generals as described during the OT was more as a sort of wise advisor sort of thing: General Kenobi certainly fought in the Clone Wars, but his main value was not in cutting down clo--err, well, we thought it was clones back then anyway -- but rather, the ability to see the big picture. Not just to see the eddies of the Force and farseeing and all that, but just in generally being wise.

    Also, the funny thing about Jedi as portrayed in TOR is that they annoy me even though I should like them because it gets back to the old EU idea of Jedi as selfless do-gooders as opposed to self-interested ivory tower do-nothings which the canon has turned them into. Guess we can just call that the post-Ruusan Jedi Order, but still.

    And yeah, I absolutely agree with you all about the specialization stuff. I haven't read much DotJ, but my favorite thing about #0 was how it specified that there were different academies on Ossus -- rather like an English university -- specializing in completely different areas. Some Jedi (or Jee'dai or whatever they're calling it to make it seem old) were basically theatre geeks and art history majors because that's the way the Force spoke to them... we need to actually SEE that. Yeah, we've got Jedi librarians like Jocasta and archaeologists like Jerec but they're rarely used, and we see even less of other non-combat specializations.
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  15. The Loyal Imperial Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 19, 2007
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    16. Who are your favorite historical figures?

    Napoleon Bonaparte and Alexander the Great, of course. William the Conqueror (the Norman Conquest was so ridiculously fast it remains impossible to recreate accurately in CK2). Hernán Cortés (warfare against technologically inferior opponents can be a quite interesting subject). Leonardo da Vinci (multitalented does not begin to describe). Gaius Julius Caesar (obviously). Hero of Alexandria (Leonardo gets his wild inventions brought up all the time, but who remembers Hero?). Galen of Pergamon (it's truly ridiculous how ahead of his time he was). Jakob Fugger (the man makes modern multinational corporations look like amateurs). Marcus Claudius Marcellus, Scipio Africanus, and Marcus Valerius Corvus (great Roman heroes, all). Sargon of Akkad (one of the earliest great empire-builders). Fritz Joubert Duquesne (the man had a ridiculous life even if only half the stories about him are true). Otto Skorzeny (one of the many comic book villains produced by World War II). Nikola Tesla (the mad scientist). The Duke of Alba (the Spanish, one must admit, were very good at this conquering thing). Jack Churchill (any offer who goes into battle without his sword is indeed improperly dressed). Margaritus of Brindisi (so rarely does one come across a medieval admiral).

    Alfred Thayer Mahan and Sun Tzu (strategists, real and fictional, quite fascinate me). Cardinals Richelieu and Mazarin (cardinals were so much more useful back then). Constantine XI Palaiologos (the last Roman emperor). Cecil Rhodes (Bond villains lack ambition in comparison). Gustavus Adolphus (the Lion of the North). The Duke of Wellington (rare indeed is the war with so many famous names on both sides). Sidney Reilly (it's a pity real spies are rarely this interesting). Jacques Cœur (one more great merchant for the list). Popes Callixtus III (1455 – 1458) through Urban VIII (1623 – 1644): I find the Papacy far more interesting as a temporal leader than as a spiritual leader. Andrea Doria (the earlier you look at naval warfare, the more interesting it seems). Jean Parisot de Valette (greatest of the Hospitallers). Frederick II (Stupor Mundi). Augustus (the first emperor). Justinian and Belisarius (reconquerors of Rome). Ramesses II and Imhotep (among the greatest of the ancient Egyptians). Marco Polo, Benjamin of Tudela, and Ibn Battuta (the travelers). Jean de Béthencourt (the embodiment of the successful CK2 adventurer).

    17. What's the funniest thing you've ever seen or done?

    I'm not a particularly humorous person, nor is anyone else around here, so you'll have to settle for seen.

    I like my Jedi Order to parallel the state of the Republic. So, in the Republic's early years, you have the wandering monks and mystics of legend, showing up at random to vanquish evildoers, do good deeds, and pass on their wisdom. Then, as the Republic grows and becomes more established, they start acting in a more official capacity. They're granted official recognition and legal status by the government, and are occasionally called upon as advisers and consultants to deal with the most extraordinary problems. Under certain Chinese dynasties, censors were officials charged with uncovering evidence of corruption among bureaucrats and administrators – I imagine that many Jedi entered into planetary myths and legends by taking on such a role, establishing why their name is revered and feared by so many (“guardians of peace and justice”). Then you have the Jedi of later years, in a Republic too large and inefficient to fully control itself. Rather than secluded temple worlds, Coruscant comes to be their focus, and more and more often they are the first called upon to deal with crises, rather than as a last resort.

    Some fight, some lead, some negotiate, some spy. As the Republic begins its collapse, their traditional Jedi arts and studies become secondary to military training. A transformation, essentially, from a monastic order to a military order. Their decline is accelerated: Jedi who once would've been librarians or archaeologists are thrown in battle, charged with ending rebellions and civil wars. Part of this is the plan of His Imperial Majesty the Emperor: a centralized order is easier to keep track of and secretly weaken than monks hiding themselves in seclusion on a thousand worlds, while the rest is simply the natural side effect of the decline of the Republic. When I see the sage Jedi of the original trilogy, I don't necessarily see that as how they always were (they are Jedi Knights, after all), Yoda's opinion on war, in particular, feels like it comes from personal experience. I like to think that Obi-Wan and Yoda weren't just in hiding on Tatooine and Dagobah – but rather that it was a very intentional reversion to the old ways of the Jedi Order, with much time spent in meditation and study, similar to Alderaan's disarmament after the Clone Wars.
  16. GrandAdmiralJello Moderator Communitatis Litterarumque

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    Member Since:
    Nov 28, 2000
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    Well, these are MY favorite historical figures...

    [IMG]

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    .... oh wait did he mean something else?
    Last edited by GrandAdmiralJello, Sep 29, 2013
  17. Point Given Mod of Literature and Community

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    Dec 12, 2006
    star 5
    18. How did you get interested in Star Wars in the first place? What about the EU?

    19. What are your favorite television shows?

    20. If you could live at any point in the Star Wars galaxy, when would it be, and who would you be? What about in RL history?
    Last edited by Point Given, Sep 29, 2013
  18. The Loyal Imperial Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 19, 2007
    star 6
    18. How did you get interested in Star Wars in the first place? What about the EU?

    I didn't so much get interested in Star Wars as I simply encountered it by random chance. It was fall 1998 or 1999, I can't recall exactly which. Based on the timing, you might think me one of the many drawn in by the prequels, but you'd be quite wrong. In anticipation of the upcoming release of The Phantom Menace, the original trilogy was airing on CTV (the Canadian Television Network) over the course of a week. Purely by chance, I happened to be looking for something to watch in the right place at the right time, and I stumbled across Darth Vader and his stormtroopers seizing the Tantive IV. I was sold. I watched the rest of the movie that day. The next day, I watched The Empire Strikes Back. The day after that, Return of the Jedi. It took me a good while longer to get into the Expanded Universe: the first book I read was Vector Prime (this would've been not long after it first came out), which turned me off as quickly as the original trilogy had drawn me in. It was completely devoid of everything I had enjoyed about the movies, and Chewbacca's death struck me as a complete and utter waste of a good pelt.

    Bantam and Dark Horse managed to slowly pull me back in over the years. I set about building myself a collection. The entire Republic series of comics. Battle for Naboo, Galactic Battlegrounds, Rebellion, and other games (even Yoda Stories!). The Thrawn Trilogy, The Black Fleet Crisis, the X-wing series, the original trilogy novelizations, and many more. Eventually, I obtained nearly every major book and comic that had been released, even the entire New Jedi Order series. Then, as I previously noted, came TFN. I was reading for several years before I actually joined, a certain gelatinous naval officer being my most notable memory of that time, and finally registered on whim (this was one of many sites I created accounts for, on that day). My interest has remained to this day, though now it remains solely attached to the concept of Star Wars. My interest in the actual stories being told waxes and wanes according to what is being released at any given time. Things like Legacy, Agent of the Empire, Ghost Prison, Warfare, and the Atlas have gripped my attention for extended periods of time. Legacy of the Force and Fate of the Jedi very nearly killed it permanently.

    19. What are your favorite television shows?

    My top favorite would definitely be Person of Interest. Truly fantastic show, just started its third season. It does many things, and everything it does it does well. I cannot recommend it enough. It also references (and stars) The Count of Monte Cristo, which makes it basically perfect in my book. If you haven't watched it, watch it now. If you've watched part of it, watch the rest now. If you've watched all of it, congratulations. You might also recall the upcoming video game Watch_Dogs I mentioned previously: in essence, it is the story of Person of Interest in playable form. Now, that aside, the best show I've ever seen would have to be Hannibal. It is the single most technically brilliant thing I have ever laid eyes upon. It's remarkably visual, and wastes nothing. It is the only show I have ever seen that not only do I wish to continue watching it, but I wholeheartedly desire that it be repeatedly renewed until such a time that the story they have developed comes to its natural conclusion (they have a total of seven seasons planned out, which will probably qualify them for a record if they actually manage to pull it all off).

    Then we have the USA Network shows, the recently completed Burn Notice foremost among them, and White Collar a close second. Burn Notice was very much the successor to a show I watched with great frequency when I was younger, which we will get to in a bit. I prefer the earlier seasons to the later ones, as it had an unfortunate tendency to abruptly kill off interesting characters (especially villains) before strictly necessary. Still, it had Bruce Campbell going for it, and it remained entertaining for the vast majority of its seven season run, which is more than can be said for most shows. White Collar I'm not quite as up to date on, which I hope to get around to remedying at some point in the near future, but the seasons I have seen have been quite enjoyable, and it season-long plot arcs to actually be better than those of Burn Notice (which occasionally suffered from the issue of not doing enough to keep the plot moving). Psych goes a bit too heavy on comedy for my tastes, and Covert Affairs I've seen one season of, but wasn't quite sold on its version of the CIA (again, something else I have to get back to finishing).

    British television gives us Benedict Cumberbatch's Sherlock. Its greatest crime is that we don't have nearly enough of it (a three episode season is simply ridiculous). The first episode, A Study in Pink, remains my personal favorite, particularly due to how closely it followed A Study in Scarlet. Still, my favorite thing given to us by British television would have to be Doctor Who, which I find to be absolute fantastic fun. I started watching with The Eleventh Hour in 2010, and have steadily followed every new episode since then, in addition to going back to watch earlier seasons. I've also seen both the British and American versions of House of Cards, and find myself slightly preferring the former. The latter has its enjoyable moments, which happen to perfectly coincide with Kevin Spacey being onscreen. Without him, it's not nearly as good. Hopefully the second season will increase the amount of focus on him, though I'm not sure it will be able to maintain the same level of quality if it chooses to diverge from the source material (which is inevitable, given the different political situations).

    The show to which I previously compared Burn Notice would be MacGyver. Of its 139 episodes, I have seen nearly all of them, and most of those I have watched at least two or three times. Canadian television, particularly in the 1990s, was not quite always as up-to-date as what our southern neighbors had to watch. And so the daily programming would consist of MacGyver, The A-Team, Remington Steele, Green Acres, The Beverly Hillbillies, Magnum P.I., Airwolf, Happy Days, M*A*S*H, and other similar shows. Unfortunately, the only parts of it that have aged well are the opening theme and Richard Dean Anderson. Still, I greatly enjoyed the style, even if the substance has since been done better by other shows. The action-adventure genre, in general, seems to have fallen from popularity in recent years, experiencing a brief resurgence only with Human Target, the first season of which I found quite enjoyable. The second season was not quite as much good fun, and then it was canceled, which was the worst part of all. If we are to speak of older television, I must also raise the topic of The Wild Wild West (most emphatically not the movie). Despite running from 1965 to 1969, it still somehow manages to feel remarkably modern and well-crafted, and is probably the best show of its age I've ever seen.

    Historical series are also of some interest to me, which shouldn't be difficult to guess. The Borgias, which I was greatly disappointed to hear was being canceled. Budget cuts are truly the bane of every truly good work of historical fiction (it seems to have a successor with the upcoming modern series The Vatican). Rome, which I wish could've explored its subject matter of choice longer and with a larger budget. Vikings, which I'm not particularly sure about following. Many hold great love for vikings and pirates, but I am not among them. Isabel, which is interesting but a touch lifeless. Omar, which covers a time and place rarely explored (so rarely, in fact, that I cannot name anything else like it). Spartacus, which would be infinitely more enjoyable if only there were more proper and capable Romans in it. Kings was not truly a historical series, but its inspirations and style were similar and in the end it met the same fate as most: ended far too soon for something of such quality. As you might have noticed with Isabel and Omar, I also have an interest in foreign television, though it is often much more difficult to find than its big-screen counterpart. Iris, the Korean 24 (which I have also seen), and Montecristo, an Argentine modernization of The Count of Monte Cristo, being the most notable things I've seen so far.

    Though I greatly enjoy George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire, I am most definitely not a fan of the series Game of Thrones. It somehow manages to take every bit of life from Martin's novels and extinguish it utterly in the process of adapting it for television. The rich, vibrant, and colorful world he crafted is reduced to various unappealing shades of brown and grey. Characters are dramatically aged up and frequently look nothing like their novel counterparts, making the show feel less like an adaptation and more like an entirely different story. It's not entirely its fault, though - the novels are so massive in their scale that it's difficult to think of any medium being able to do a proper adaptation. Now that we've touched upon fantasy, let us move on to the matter of science fiction. I've also enjoyed several of the Star Trek series. Deep Space Nine comes in first, followed by The Next Generation. DS9 had the most unique setup and some of the best long-term plotting of any Trek, while TNG had the advantage of Patrick Stewart. The Cardassians remain my favorite species of the entire universe they've constructed. I should like to see it return to its traditional form someday: it has been nearly twenty years now since the Federation's Enterprise last properly journeyed into the unknown.

    Conventional crime-solving shows hold little interest for me, but there are some exceptions which I find sufficiently interesting as to be worth following. NCIS: Los Angeles, which I find preferable to its subtitle-less counterpart. Hawaii Five-0 (that is, the remake), which I stopped watching some time ago, but will probably return to eventually. Castle, because Nathan Fillion. The Mentalist (which I will be going to watch the new season of the second I finish this post) simultaneously pleases and annoys me, because I can more or less skip all but three episodes in a season and feel like I've missed nothing. It makes it extraordinarily easy to catch up on and watch random episodes of, but is also displeasing when one prefers that they get on with the main arc already. This season's new series The Blacklist, however, shows great promise, and has quickly made its way to the top of my watchlist for new shows this season, well above Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

    20. If you could live at any point in the Star Wars galaxy, when would it be, and who would you be? What about in RL history?

    Was there ever any doubt? The Rise of the Empire era, of course, as an officer in the Imperial Navy, perhaps originally starting out under the Republic during the Clone Wars. The Ciutric Offensive, the Western Reaches Operation, and other significant campaigns. Serving with Romodi, Holt, Screed, and Tarkin. Ferreting out Separatist holdouts and bringing order to the lawless worlds of the Outer Rim. Cementing His Imperial Majesty the Emperor's rule over the galaxy, and extinguishing the flames of rebellion and separatism wherever they arise. Hunting pirates and intercepting smugglers, subjugating warlords and rogue Moffs. Incidentally, if you asked me about what sort of Star Wars game I'd most like to see created, it would be just such a thing. Force Commander in space. Or a slightly more modern and sophisticated version of Bridge Commander, if you prefer. Rise through the ranks from being one the Empire's first cadets to the distinguished position of Grand Admiral. Could also make a decent book or comic series. Second place would go to the last century of the Old Republic, in a similar position, or as a member of the Senate. The Fel Empire in its prime would come in third.

    If I could live in any point in time in our own universe, in theory, I would first prefer the future. More than any aspect of history, I'd like to know what happens next. Where we go from here. What the long term impact is of our actions in the present. Whether we rise or fall. How the present will be remembered. Who are the great figures that will shape the future who not yet even been born? Now, if we're going to limit ourselves solely to the past and presume that time travel makes the necessary accommodations for us, then my first choice would have to be the Italian Renaissance. So many brilliant and interesting people around, and the age of discovery is just beginning. The age of merchants, explorers, cardinals and condottieri (that would make an excellent name for a board game), artists and inventors, and so many other interesting people, places, and things. I'd particularly love to see the Battle of Lepanto in person. Second to that would be the last century or two of the Roman Republic. The Mithridatic Wars, the Sertorian War, the Servile Wars, and so many famous Roman names to encounter. The Napoleonic Wars would also be an interesting choice, but that would be conditional upon having the opportunity to help him win. That, I would like to see the long-term effects of.
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  19. Todd the Jedi Mod and Sitcom Dad of SWTV

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    Well that's certainly one way of putting it. :p

    And yeah, USA has a great lineup. I got hooked by Monk and stayed for Burn Notice, White Collar, Psych, etc.
    ma_petite likes this.
  20. Gamiel Force Ghost

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    Wrong thread[face_blush]
    Last edited by Gamiel, Sep 30, 2013
  21. Point Given Mod of Literature and Community

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    And that's the end of the interview! The floor is now open for anyone to ask The Loyal Imperial questions. In a day or so we'll continue with @JackG
    Last edited by Point Given, Sep 30, 2013
  22. CooperTFN TFN EU Staff Emeritus

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    21. Boy, you sure have a lot of interesting stuff to say. Do you do any writing for other SW websites? [face_whistling]
  23. GrandAdmiralJello Moderator Communitatis Litterarumque

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    22. What is your favorite historical dynasty?
  24. Barriss_Coffee Chosen One

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    Jun 29, 2003
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    23. Do you work for Fantasy Flight Games?
    Last edited by Barriss_Coffee, Sep 30, 2013
  25. The Loyal Imperial Manager Emeritus

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    As a matter of fact, I do. A little place called Eleven-ThirtyEight. You may have heard of it. First article coming soon.
    Palaiologos, easily. Other notable favorites: Komnenos, the gentes maiores, Medici and the other papal families, Bonaparte, Romanov.
    I wish. :p Given the choice of any profession, writing sourcebooks would probably suit my interests best.
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