Lit Literature member interviews

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

  1. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Depends on which one you go by really, he did die at the end of House of Cards the book.

    Of course, the real source of all Mandarin wisdom is Sir Humphrey Applebee!
  2. The_Four_Dot_Elipsis Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2005
    star 5
    In a world ruled by Michael Kitchen, treason from Ian Richardson is utterly acceptable.
  3. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Eh, whichever way you look at it, that's good casting.
  4. The_Four_Dot_Elipsis Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2005
    star 5
    It certainly is. And I like Michael Kitchen.

    But he's Bill Tanner after all. And Bill Tanner to Brosnan of all people.

    ...oddly enough Rory Kinnear makes a perfectly acceptable king from what little I've seen of The Hollow Crown so maybe this argument doesn't stack up.
  5. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Note to self: Get around to watching Hollow Crown DVD set.
  6. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    20. What was your reaction to Disney's purchase of SW, and what are your hopes for the sequels?
    Disney is a corporation and corporations tend to operate in a short-term fashion, brutally hitting anything not deemed to perform up to an entirely arbitrary standard. Apart an expectation of the Mouse Star to turn up, I’m somewhat on the fence because we know so little. I’m wary about the corporate side but I’d like to think they could be smarter too.

    For all people think Marvel would do a better job of selling SW comics than DHC, I’m skeptical of that. Marvel would produce more material but I’m not convinced it’d be better. In fact, combined with Disney’s film plans, it could easily bleed SW dry. On the books, I’m similar.

    As to how Disney approaches the EU: There’s really 2 ways it can go. They go for the corporate hit of short-term approach of getting new fans with each movie and after 2020 they don’t care that it tails off because they’ll sell the films forever. In this picture the EU does not matter. Or, they see it as a small, but continually consistent income stream for years past and, if handled right, years to come and so are smarter. Which will it be? No idea, but I can understand why they’re not announcing anything as it could easily reap them a crapstorm of controversy.

    Does the basis on which the EU was marketed to the fans matter? Yes, absolutely. Of course they can break the deal and I’ll respond by shifting totally from fan to consumer, which means far less automatic SW purchases.

    The only thing I’m expecting from the sequels is the unexpected – something very smart, very good, that no matter the spoilage claimed could not possibly be anticipated. Second, I think the ST, more than any other series, could be a high point of old and new film techniques fused together to deliver something quite stunning. Some will carp about CGI, but that’s now at the point where it’s very hard to tell what it and isn’t and really, you should be able to.

    21. What's your general opinion on America? Do you think the people on here and elsewhere online are a fair representation of the USA?

    It’s been suggested the US is, on the world stage, quite adolescent in its outlook. I think there’s something to it. On the one hand it’s very passionate about its ideals but doesn’t always see the value in upholding them no matter what – which is where the bulk of its problems internationally start from. It has a massive level of resources available to it – physical, financial, economic, politic, philosophical and human, thus it can afford to think things through but tends not to. There’s a sad strand of anti-intellectualism in the US’ soul that can easily manifest as anti-reason, despite the country owing its foundation to such Enlightenment thinkers as Thomas Paine and John Locke.

    A big problem I have is the US political tendency to push the “world hates us” narrative. This has been especially so the last decade or so, but even then, it wasn’t new. I would go so far as to say Americans should consider such fear-mongering politicians to be engaged in treasonous activity! The reason I feel so strongly on this is that it isn’t true! IF the world really hated you, it wouldn’t be watching your movies, buying your TV series, importing your culinary recipes, enjoying various forms of alcohol and so on. No, the world doesn’t, as a whole, truly hate the US that much.

    What is it then? What the US tends to forget is, via Hollywood, not only is the US shown about the best form of its ideals, so too is the world – and it likes the picture! The problems start when America the State fails to live up to its portrayal in the films everyone has been watching, then disappointment sets in followed by anger that the US sells this talk but doesn’t walk it! A big part, to me, of why the last decade has hit the US’ global image so badly is that quite simply more is expected of it. That is the basis of laying claim to being exceptional. But if you lay claim to that, you have to back it up and here, the US has tended to be more an adolescent teenager, to its detriment.

    What it overlooks in looking at Britain and Europe and saying: But they did this and that….. Yes, we did and we did so with far greater latitude to be complete bastards on a grand scale and it still didn’t work out! This was basically the core of a lot of criticism of the US over things like Gitmo and Iraq. The line was: We’ve been here, we’ve done that, it isn’t a good idea – you don’t want to be us! But the US political response was: We’re America, Y&*^&^% Yeah! We’ll make it work – lo and behold, it gets itself in exactly the same messes as Britain and Europe did decades earlier. Why does it matter? Because the US draws an awful lot of soft power from the idea of representing a break from the past, a new and better way of conducting politics – opting for the methods used by old, ex-colonial bastard powers nukes that sky-high and worse, it’s an irrevocable move. You don’t get to reverse or restore things to what they were.

    US activity 2001-now wasn’t without precedent though, the US response to the Cold War was practically the same and is, in large part, why the world is the way it is now. The only reason Americans aren’t appalled by a large part of what their government got up to in various countries across the world is that they don’t know about it. If they did know? There’d be hard questions to answer by a largely disconnected and arrogant political elite. And it’s those same politicians that keep opting for the “new page” approach: Hey, we’ve turned over a new leaf, forget about all that stuff before. The problem is few do forget about what went on before and often with good reason.

    Yet, at the same time there is quite some leeway granted due to the US being a young country, that it might temper its tendency to arrogance into confidence, it might overcome its inclination towards being parochial and self-interested, it might become the image it sells to the world via its cultural exporting. And people really like that image, no one really wants to believe the US will never be that, so we get hacked off, disappointed, severely irritated but we’ll still buy your films, we’ll still want to grab DVD box sets, still want to play your video games and eat burgers and drink coke, sometimes with Jack Daniels, sometimes without!

    I’ve found the best way of looking at Americans is to consider them entirely apart from their government, which they don’t really deserve. In this respect I’ve never met one I couldn’t get on with quite well, though I might have to keep an eye on the topic.

    As to representation – I doubt any portion of any message board online can be deemed representative of a country whose population is around the 300m mark! Equally there are an awful lot of idiotic postings, at best – they could be characterized far, far more harshly – and I certainly don’t wish to consider them as representative of anyone!

    I think Lit’s US posters act as, for the most part, excellent ambassadors for the country.

    EDIT Some could do with letting me know when they're visiting London though! :)
    Last edited by Jedi Ben, Oct 31, 2013
  7. Todd the Jedi Mod and Sitcom Dad of SWTV

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Oct 16, 2008
    star 5
    @Jedi Ben 22. Which British monarchs do you most admire and why?

    23. What's the funniest thing you've ever seen/done?
  8. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    22. Which British monarchs do you most admire and why?

    Maybe this is one of the big Atlantic differences because I can't really say any come to mind! I can respect the service the Queen has given the country for several decades but I'm not sure I'd class that as something to be admired, but respected? Certainly. It's interesting to note the Princes William and Harry have given the monarchy quite a boost in popularity, both from what they've done in professional capacities as well as personal screw-ups. (As Harry now knows to his cost - what goes on in Vegas doesn't stay in Vegas!)

    For all this though, I'm not a republican either. I'm not convinced that a formal Head of State role would be much of an improvement on the status quo and I wouldn't want a load of old politicians going in for the role either. Directly elected? Perhaps but to what end? That sort of mandate would practically supplant the PM role and Britain is not a Presidential system in any respect, it's far more.... fluid.

    23. What's the funniest thing you've ever seen/done?

    Ah, this'll be a good one.

    Years back I'm in a pub watching an England football match, beer in hand - pint glass of course. Then the chair I'm on collapses! It does so slowly enough that I see it coming, just about, so, as it crumbles, I coolly just go with it, falling backwards to end up smoothly lying on the floor, with one arm up, still holding the pint! Perfectly level! Very funny, very cool and I'd never be able to do it again.
  9. Gamiel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 16, 2012
    star 5
    http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/tue-may-14-2013/prince-harry-visits-America

    http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/wed-may-12-2010/clustershag-to-10-downing---new-prime-minister
    :D
  10. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Clips not available in the UK! :_|
  11. Gamiel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 16, 2012
    star 5
    I feel with you :(
  12. Todd the Jedi Mod and Sitcom Dad of SWTV

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Oct 16, 2008
    star 5
    And that's the end of the interview! Give a hand for Jedi Ben. =D= In a day or so we'll continue with @Lazy Storm Trooper.

    In the meantime, the floor is now open for anyone else to ask Ben any questions.
  13. instantdeath Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 22, 2010
    star 5
    24. What are some of your favorite soundtracks?
  14. Gamiel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 16, 2012
    star 5
    25. Which Nikolai Dante novels have you read? And which one was your favourite and why?
    Last edited by Gamiel, Nov 4, 2013
  15. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Some are:

    Star Wars OT: So many great leitmotifs here, including the Imperial March, although I do love the Emperor's theme for its sheer understated menace. Yet at the same time there's far more to these soundtracks than just motifs - the track for the Death Star attack is perfectly matched to the visuals, so, if your visual recall is good enough - you can play the soundtrack and play the film in your head! In contrast, the PT only really has the excellent Duel of the Fates. It can't compare.

    A Fistful of Dollars: Two words: Ennio. Morricone. Prolific genius. What he did here was incredible and, with Leone, he worked for someone who got it, that whole pipe whistle for Clint's character and that script:
    "Get 3 coffins ready." <cue pipe whistle>
    Few seconds later....
    "My mistake, 4 coffins." <cue pipe whistle>
    And then, of course, there's the finale as Clint walks back into town.... Sheer class. His work on The Untouchables was excellent to, but he's done so very many films over the decades.

    This is not so much a film soundtrack as a a specific sequence - the car chase between De Niro and Pacino in Heat to Moby's New Dawn Fades is pretty much embedded in my visual memory - it's just perfect.

    Gladiator / Nolan's Bat-Trilogy: The first has some utterly excellent cues that match wonderfully to the visuals Scott directs - "unleash hell" being particularly apt in that battle, but where it shines is in matching to the story - the whole Colosseum sequence leading up the helmet removal and the mob turning against Commodus is superb. Similarly, in doing Batman he had to do something different from Elfman's theme so he did.

    Babylon 5: Christopher Franke really raised the bar here for TV soundtracks. The Shadows theme evokes Holst's Mars theme, which also gets reflected in Fiedel's Terminator theme. The music for Sleeping In Light was easily a high point, but watch the first season's Sign and Portents ep and you get a sense there that, on this show, music will be allowed to be far more than background!

    Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring: In a word - Moria. I can play Shore's sequence for that and easily play the film in my head - but it's not limited to that quite wondrous chapter - the Shire, the Riders, Lothorien - the music adds to the fantastic visuals and sweeps you away.

    Iron Man: Ramid Djawadi's guitar rock soundtrack really gave this a distinct sonic identity that immediately set it apart from any other superhero film going. It is also exactly the kind of cocky, swaggering music in which you can see the character of Tony Stark looking back at you.

    Finally, when it comes to using popular musical - whatever the genre - there is only one master and its not Quentin Tarantino but Martin Scorsese. Scorsese's ability to match a moment to music is incredible - an example? Watch the opening minutes of Casino.

    Sadly, I've stuck strictly to the comic and don't have any desire to go further, particularly now the epic is over. Of the comic collections, I like the finale the most. Of the characters, I really love Viktor Romanov, his final scenes with Dante are especially poignant.
    Last edited by Jedi Ben, Nov 4, 2013
  16. Barriss_Coffee Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jun 29, 2003
    star 6
    [IMG]

    You ok by me, Jedi Ben.
  17. Gamiel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 16, 2012
    star 5
    I need to get my hands on more Nikolai Dante TPB:s:(
    Honour (and my wallet) be damned!
  18. instantdeath Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 22, 2010
    star 5
    Very nice choices. As for the PT, I enjoyed its soundtrack more than you did, it seems; it's not quite as iconic or as versatile as the OT soundtrack, but I think it's got a few great tracks beyond Duel of the Fates. I've always felt the best part of the Obi-Wan/Anakin duel is "Battel of the Heroes".
  19. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Oh, that's a good sequence to be sure ID, but I can't summon it up instantly in the way I can Fates or other OT themes.
    IF you ever see Volume 3 going for a reasonable price, don't tell anyone - just buy it! It's infamous for being out of print.
    Gamiel likes this.
  20. Lazy Storm Trooper Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 18, 2012
    star 4
    Ready to go whenever you are.
  21. Grey1 Host: 181st Imperial Discussion Group

    VIP
    Member Since:
    Nov 21, 2000
    star 4
    Just a random thought, Jedi Ben - since your user name comes from the Obi-Wan nickname and obviously predates Ben Skywalker's existence - do you still sometimes feel like the connotation of your name has changed now that there is a character that's 100% called Ben, and that - the very recent Kenobi novel aside - is the the only character the EU calls Ben these days?
  22. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    I guess it could be said that I care so very little about Ben Skywalker is one of the EU great failures, as it's always fun to see characters that share your name - partly why I'm also a big Sisko fan. I suppose the name could well have different meaning to new posters too, but for me, no, there's no change.
    Zeta1127 likes this.
  23. Todd the Jedi Mod and Sitcom Dad of SWTV

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Oct 16, 2008
    star 5
    Alright, it's time for our next subject, @Lazy Storm Trooper! [face_party] (And if one of the many mods could change the thread title, that'd be much appreciated ;) )

    1. Tell us about your username, why you chose it, what it means, etc. And what is the best way to address you?

    2. What made you sign up for the Jedi Council Forums? Do you post on any other forums?
  24. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Before I hand over the spotlight to LST, thanks for the interview Todd - been fun.
  25. Todd the Jedi Mod and Sitcom Dad of SWTV

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Oct 16, 2008
    star 5
    Believe me, the feeling's mutual. [face_peace]