Friday, 20 February 2009

Mercy and Justice

In Victorian London, two lovers were to be given to different spouses. They could not bare the thought so thy ran away together to the east side. On their first night, the two fools were robbed and the young woman raped. Thus began her slow descent into madness, she began to see her assailant everywhere, her life was a series of wailing, shaking in terror and sleeping from exhaustion. The young man tried to calm her down, searched for a job and found an urge in himself to find the man who robbed them. There was another threat he had to fight with, the neighbours demanding his love were to be given to a mental institution.

Years later, they went to America but instead of finding the American Dream, they found an economic depression. The fact that they neither aged nor died was not lost on them but they were happy to have more time together. The young woman finally free from the madness after the young man found and killed her attacker after all these years. Now they would kill together, she those who craved for the release of death, he those who were judged not to be worthy of walking among the living.

They had their questions; why nothing could kill them? why no one could find them? why did they roam the streets like ghosts?

One day they descented to the underworld. They saw the miserable, the sufferers, the unfaithful, the wrathful, the treacherous and the murderers. The more they walked in, the better this place felt, they were lords in their own domain. In the great city they found their answers when brought before their Godmother and Godfather. They told them thus:

"All that is alive must die. Sometimes the living beg for more time but to create that time it needs to be taken from others. We offered your parents a deal, we would give them the life time of their unborn children. You were born but you were never alive and so you will never die. This is not the first time and not the last. Humanity is growing and we are no longer able to act as the angels of death for all of it. You will share our burden. One for mercy, One for justice."

They agreed... but not everyone did. Years later they would meet those who could not stand this. The deal, they said, was unnatural and against the laws set forth by the universe. The rogue faction searched for allies to wage war on Lord and Lady Death, soon the young lovers would need to take a stand like all the pairs before them did.

Monday, 16 February 2009

Working Weekend is Free

A while ago my dad asked me about one thing in relation to work.

As some of you may (or may not) know, my dad works as a lorry driver. Every other week, he drives off on Friday to make a delivery and returns to base on a Saturday because it's such a long trip from point A to B. Apparently, his employer now tells him that working four hours on a Saturday isn't work so he won't be paid for driving back to base on the weekend. The matter could be resolved simply by not working on Saturday but the situation is such that if he doesn't, he'll be spending the weekend in the lorry...

So he asked me to find out if this is even legal for an employer to do...

Thursday, 12 February 2009

The Colour of Magic

The Colour of Magic is a very misleading title for this film. It is based not on the first Discworld book by Terry Pratchett but on the two first. The Light Fantastic is encompassed by the second part of the film which bares the same title. As such, the film varies from the book in that it meshes the two plots together... or rather, one plot, since as Pratchett says himself, the first book is just a series of funny stories.

Funny stories they are. Thieves, assassins, imaginary dragons, giant stone trolls, magic swords stuck in stones, treacherous and power hungry wizards, heroic barbarians. Epic plot to save the world included. We're getting ahead of ourselves, aren't we?

The Colour of Magic begins with the meeting of Rincewind and Twoflower. The first a failed wizard, expelled from Unseen University due to his inability to learn any spell. The latter is the first tourist, not knowing the value of his gold and a romantic optimist seeking adventure from his mundane insurance clerk job. The Luggage, a walking box with homicidal loyalty towards the tourist seems to be another character in this group, later joined by Cohen The Barbarian, the eighty year old retired Greatest Hero of the Discworld.

The film is very well made, much more interesting than the books it was based on. The characters are interesting and parodies of certain fantasy tropes. However, like with all parodies, it is hard to enjoy them if you don't know the references used. There are visual and audio jokes within and at least a few puns.

What else can I say? I'm too impressed to find much fault in it. I keep having flashes of the humorous parts and they were many of them, this is not to say that the film lacked cohesion. Far from it, using the plot of The Light Fantastic to create a plot throughout two parts proved a very good move, even though some scenes from the Colour of Magic couldn't be included in order to create new scenes with Trymon, the main villain of the film.

Lastly, I can say that to understand the film, you don't have to have read the book. I didn't read it before watching this and I still feel it's a film worth watching.

Monday, 9 February 2009

Idea: +Exposition

I once again had a very strange idea...

I started making summaries of United We Stand threads. I haven't done them in a while but that's beside the point. Those summaries are based on a very simple assumption: the reader knows Exalted. That assumption is a result of playing a roleplaying game. We familiarise ourselves with the game world, make characters that fit into that world and run with it. An outside reader thus can't make sense of what is happening because there is no exposition within the game (and the summaries)... my crazy idea is: what if I were to add that exposition in the process of editing the threads instead of making summaries!

That would take a lot of work. I most likely would have to add NPC scenes that the players weren't aware of but that is more of a plus side, added content is always fun...

Editing them in such a way would also enable non-Exalted readers to familiarise themselves with the setting, or at least the part we are using, and I could show it off to people who aren't into Exalted or just didn't read the book...

It would be a massive undertaking... it would take me months to finish... but it would be worth it... I must ponder this further...

Monday, 2 February 2009

Fly Away

Two brothers are saying goodbye to their friend. He is going on an assassination mission, they wish him no death.

The black car is driving away, they start to run home, their dog with them. As they run through an empty street in the middle of the city, they spread their arms and make childish noises of engines. A moment later their feet stop touching the ground. They fly away, like air planes, they become air planes. The two fighter jets make complicated manoeuvres when they stop a public transport plane. They come closer and land on it. Their maws open, they eat the plane with the people inside and their friend amongst them.