athelind: (Eye - VK)
On my morning commutes, I shift between the local jazz station, two different classic rock stations, and the news-weather-and-traffic station on the radio. A classical station or two will sometimes make its way into the mix, depending on my mood and how recently my mechanic has unplugged my battery and wiped my presets.

(Hush, you whippersnappers; I'll stop listening to the radio when they figure out how to cram traffic updates into podcasts.)

This eclectic morning mix has revealed a deep and hitherto unsuspected facet of my personality:

I can hear the William Tell Overture without thinking, "Hi Ho, Silver!"

I can hear Also Sprach Zarathustra without picturing black monoliths.

For the life of me, though, I cannot hear Bob Dylan's "All Along the Watchtower" without thinking of Watchmen; I grew up on top 40 stations in the '70s rather than any decent rock venues, and thus my first real exposure to the song was Moore and Gibbon's invocation in the climax of the miniseries. Zack Snyder's cinematic adaptation may have been uneven in its execution, but its translation of that scene was perhaps the high point.

I must confess, however, that while nothing can equal the classic Jimi Hendrix rendition as a rock anthem, I still harbor an affection for Bear McCreary's haunting interpretation for the rebooted Battlestar Galactica:





I would be honestly pleased if that version got the occasional radio airplay. It needs more love.


athelind: (hoard potato)
It's Day 3 of this cold, and Your Obedient Serpent's brain is rambling through those twisted corridors that squeeze between sinus pressure, DayQuil, and something akin to stir-craziness.

In this mental state, I happened to observe that, while I have achieved the highbrow milestone of hearing "The William Tell Overture" without thinking of The Lone Ranger, and have occasionally even listened to "Also Sprach Zarathustra" without thinking of 2001: a Space Odyssey, it was going to be a long time before I could hear Bob Dylan's classic "All Along The Watchtower" without thinking of both Battlestar Galactica and Watchmen.



Of course, the Watchmen movie and the BSG finale are still very much on my mind. When I'm in the altered states of consciousness that being sick always seems to induce, and my mind is dwelling on two vivid and engrossing works and worlds... I start to see... connections.

Especially when music is involved.

Cut for BSG *and* Watchmen Spoilers! )

Appropriately enough, I posted this on Joseph Campbell's birthday.
athelind: (Default)
It's Day 3 of this cold, and Your Obedient Serpent's brain is rambling through those twisted corridors that squeeze between sinus pressure, DayQuil, and something akin to stir-craziness.

In this mental state, I happened to observe that, while I have achieved the highbrow milestone of hearing "The William Tell Overture" without thinking of The Lone Ranger, and have occasionally even listened to "Also Sprach Zarathustra" without thinking of 2001: a Space Odyssey, it was going to be a long time before I could hear Bob Dylan's classic "All Along The Watchtower" without thinking of both Battlestar Galactica and Watchmen.



Of course, the Watchmen movie and the BSG finale are still very much on my mind. When I'm in the altered states of consciousness that being sick always seems to induce, and my mind is dwelling on two vivid and engrossing works and worlds... I start to see... connections.

Especially when music is involved.

Cut for BSG *and* Watchmen Spoilers! )

Appropriately enough, I posted this on Joseph Campbell's birthday.
athelind: (hoard potato)
Watchmen, in brief:

Both [livejournal.com profile] quelonzia and I really enjoyed it, demonstrating that it worked both as a movie, for someone unfamiliar with the story, and as an adaptation, for someone who's read it a dozen times or more since it came out.

There's a lot more I can say about it, but it only seems to come out in conversation. When I sit down to try and just write, I come up blank. That's why it's taken me two weeks to present even this much.

I will say that, in my estimation, Snyder made a good stab at examining the superhero movie in his own way, just as Moore and Gibbons scrutinized the superhero comic book all those years ago.

The Battlestar Galactica finale, also in brief:

Whoa.

Again, Quel and I both loved it -- and yes, we both cried. Long-standing questions were answered -- and others weren't. As far as I'm concerned, though, they picked the right questions to leave unanswered.

I also suspect that this ending may be close to the one that Glen Larson really intended for the original series.


athelind: (Default)
Watchmen, in brief:

Both [livejournal.com profile] quelonzia and I really enjoyed it, demonstrating that it worked both as a movie, for someone unfamiliar with the story, and as an adaptation, for someone who's read it a dozen times or more since it came out.

There's a lot more I can say about it, but it only seems to come out in conversation. When I sit down to try and just write, I come up blank. That's why it's taken me two weeks to present even this much.

I will say that, in my estimation, Snyder made a good stab at examining the superhero movie in his own way, just as Moore and Gibbons scrutinized the superhero comic book all those years ago.

The Battlestar Galactica finale, also in brief:

Whoa.

Again, Quel and I both loved it -- and yes, we both cried. Long-standing questions were answered -- and others weren't. As far as I'm concerned, though, they picked the right questions to leave unanswered.

I also suspect that this ending may be close to the one that Glen Larson really intended for the original series.


athelind: (hoard potato)
I'm still processing it. I'm seeing it again tomorrow, with [livejournal.com profile] quelonzia; expect a full review some time this weekend.

athelind: (Default)
I'm still processing it. I'm seeing it again tomorrow, with [livejournal.com profile] quelonzia; expect a full review some time this weekend.

athelind: (hoard potato)
Yes, I've already got advanced tickets -- for both Friday and Saturday mornings. I have tomorrow off, but [livejournal.com profile] quelonzia doesn't.

(I work in a comic store -- can I write this off my taxes as a job-related expense?)

As I may have mentioned, we're approaching this movie experimentally. I read Watchmen when it first came out, as individual, monthly issues punctuated by occasional delays (which is a slightly different experience than reading it for the first time in collected form). Quel, on the other claw, hasn't read it at all -- and since all the hype started last summer, I've been deliberately (and with her knowledge) steering her away from any of the promo material that might reveal plot points.

Our intent is to see if the movie works for both a devoted fan intimately familiar with the story, and a new viewer seeing it for the first time.

Please note that I spent 20 years hoping that this movie wouldn't be made, and insisting that a decent adaptation couldn't be made -- right up up until last summer's previews in front of The Dark Knight. Between the promo material I've seen and the feedback I've gotten from those who have been lucky enough to catch sneak previews, I am now Cautiously Optimistic.

Before I actually see the movie with my own eyes, however, I thought I'd make a few observations.

First, a prediction: at least one idiot reviewer will say something snarky about how the whole "superheroes coming back after being outlawed" is a ripoff of The Incredibles.

Now, a thesis: no matter how good a job Snyder did, the movie is not going to be "everything the graphic novel was". It can't be -- because the original was as much about the form and medium of comics as it was about the deconstruction of the superhero genre. This is, by my readings, the main thing that Mr. Moore keeps griping about.

Personally, I'll be satisfied if the most superficial level, the murder mystery/conspiracy, plays out acceptably. This is all it will take for me to classify it as Successful Entertainment.

If it actually does manage to play as an examination of the underlying premises of the superhero genre, as well, I'll be very happy indeed.

This, as an aside, is why I didn't complain about the liberties taken with the costumes (particularly Dreiberg's). If it's going to even attempt to make the same kind of metacommentary that the original did, it's going to have to address the recent spate of superhero movies, not superhero comics. To do that, it will have to use the visual vocabulary of the superhero cinema.

And yes, this includes, in some cases, latex armor that makes a mediocre physique look buff.

Look for more after I've seen the movie itself.

athelind: (Default)
Yes, I've already got advanced tickets -- for both Friday and Saturday mornings. I have tomorrow off, but [livejournal.com profile] quelonzia doesn't.

(I work in a comic store -- can I write this off my taxes as a job-related expense?)

As I may have mentioned, we're approaching this movie experimentally. I read Watchmen when it first came out, as individual, monthly issues punctuated by occasional delays (which is a slightly different experience than reading it for the first time in collected form). Quel, on the other claw, hasn't read it at all -- and since all the hype started last summer, I've been deliberately (and with her knowledge) steering her away from any of the promo material that might reveal plot points.

Our intent is to see if the movie works for both a devoted fan intimately familiar with the story, and a new viewer seeing it for the first time.

Please note that I spent 20 years hoping that this movie wouldn't be made, and insisting that a decent adaptation couldn't be made -- right up up until last summer's previews in front of The Dark Knight. Between the promo material I've seen and the feedback I've gotten from those who have been lucky enough to catch sneak previews, I am now Cautiously Optimistic.

Before I actually see the movie with my own eyes, however, I thought I'd make a few observations.

First, a prediction: at least one idiot reviewer will say something snarky about how the whole "superheroes coming back after being outlawed" is a ripoff of The Incredibles.

Now, a thesis: no matter how good a job Snyder did, the movie is not going to be "everything the graphic novel was". It can't be -- because the original was as much about the form and medium of comics as it was about the deconstruction of the superhero genre. This is, by my readings, the main thing that Mr. Moore keeps griping about.

Personally, I'll be satisfied if the most superficial level, the murder mystery/conspiracy, plays out acceptably. This is all it will take for me to classify it as Successful Entertainment.

If it actually does manage to play as an examination of the underlying premises of the superhero genre, as well, I'll be very happy indeed.

This, as an aside, is why I didn't complain about the liberties taken with the costumes (particularly Dreiberg's). If it's going to even attempt to make the same kind of metacommentary that the original did, it's going to have to address the recent spate of superhero movies, not superhero comics. To do that, it will have to use the visual vocabulary of the superhero cinema.

And yes, this includes, in some cases, latex armor that makes a mediocre physique look buff.

Look for more after I've seen the movie itself.

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