TNT's Will

May. 25th, 2016 10:36 pm
tempestsarekind: (wtf?)
So…the TNT show Will (which has apparently been picked up for ten episodes) has released a trailer:

1. Well, that looks cheap and terrible.
2. Seriously, why are the costumes so awful?
3. I guess you can tell that this show is "modern and edgy" because that One Woman (™) in the trailer basically wears her hair like a current-day high-school student.
4. ahahahaha ha what, can you imagine any Elizabethan playwright ever complaining that "you can't just make up words"??? Oooooh Will, you rebel, you made up words! Just…like everyone else in your profession!

Seriously, what even.

I hesitate to even put this under the "costume drama" tag, but I guess I'll go ahead.
tempestsarekind: (wtf?)
So NPR published this ridiculous interview with Mark Rylance and Derek Jacobi about "the authorship question" on (I think) April 25, in which they said the usual ridiculous things, and the interviewer actually closed with "who cares what they say as long as they say it with those accents?" so it was clearly not a rigorous sort of interview.

(Edit: it wasn't the interviewer who said this, although it did end the piece. Still, this is the kind of question the interviewer asked Rylance and Jacobi: "I wonder about the question of why the authorship question would have drawn fine legal minds? I mean, I'm wondering if they're more open to following where the evidence takes them?" WHAT THE WHAT. That is not a question; that is a leading statement. Here is another "question": "And may I ask, too, there's evidence of a widely traveled person. The plays - Many of the plays are set in Italy." And here is the ONLY question that she asks about the other side of the story - you know, the one where all the facts are: "Although, as you know well, Shakespeare scholars especially have been pretty rough. They have called you - What? - Flat-Earthers?" Not once does she even ask them why scholars might disagree with them on any of their points and ask them to explain why they believe what they believe in the face of scholarly evidence.)

People complained in the comments because there was no counterargument, and several people compared this to interviewing climate change skeptics without also interviewing scientists.

In response, NPR published this defensive piece, which I find more offensive than the original interview:

Rylance and Jacobi are hardly complete amateurs on the subject. Rylance, who was interviewed for but not the subject of the earlier NPR piece, was the founding creative director of London's Shakespeare's Globe Theatre. As he told Montagne in Monday's interview, "Both Derek and I have committed our lives, since we were teenagers, to this author."

Oh, well then. No need to present the overwhelmingly dominant point of view of pretty much every scholar who actually works in this field; Rylance told the interviewer that he and Jacobi have devoted their lives to Shakespeare, so that's clearly the same.

And the second, defensive piece quotes the interviewer, again without doing anything to contextualize her statements or point out that the reason people have problems with this argument is that her entire premise is wrong:

"As I said in the interview, the dearth of evidence connecting the man William Shakespeare to the work, long ago gave rise to doubts as to whether he was the true author. Of course, Shakespearean scholars and most lovers of the Shakespeare plays and sonnets, quite reasonably, start from the premise — and stick to the premise — that he is the author. It is so universally accepted that Shakespeare is Shakespeare that it's quite a stretch to suggest any other line of thinking would be 'equivalent.' And that's especially true after a weekend overflowing with celebrations of William Shakespeare, on the 400th anniversary of his death.

But the mystery is intriguing, and far from a simple conspiracy theory, its champions have compiled some compelling evidence for ruling out Shakespeare and considering, at least, other possible authors.

All in all, it seemed as good a time as any to sit down with two of the world's most acclaimed Shakespearean actors to chat about who wrote the plays they have lived, breathed and, by the way, studied, for decades." (my emphasis)

I mean, "his name is on them, and his friends all said he wrote them, and he was actually a part of the London theater world, and we have way more evidence that Shakespeare wrote his plays than that, say, Christopher Marlowe - I mean Marley, I mean Marlin - wrote his" is not just a premise. Nor is "one of the sonnets says 'every word doth almost tell my name,' and if you take the 'y' off of 'every' and scramble the letters around, you get 'Vere,'" or "de Vere went to Italy and once stabbed a guy, so he must have written Romeo and Juliet and based Hamlet on his own life" actually compelling evidence. But whatever, I guess; who needs standards when one has plummy accents on one's side?
tempestsarekind: (wtf?)
‘Little Women’ Series Produced By Michael Weatherly In Development At CW

(LJ keeps blocking the post because the article is from Deadline dot com, so I removed that bit of the URL.)

"Written by Jolly, Little Women is described as a hyper-stylized, gritty adaptation of the 1868 novel by Louisa May Alcott, in which disparate half-sisters Jo, Meg, Beth, and Amy band together in order to survive the dystopic streets of Philadelphia and unravel a conspiracy that stretches far beyond anything they have ever imagined – all while trying not to kill each other in the process."






(Note: this is not the same Little Women modern adaptation that I posted about before here:
That one gets mentioned at the end of this article, but it's not clear what its status is.)
tempestsarekind: (excuse me what)

… …
… … …

…can anyone explain to me how Almereyda took the cross-dressing romance Cymbeline, with its central female character of Imogen, and turned it into the dudeliest thing ever to dude? (If you manage not to blink, you can just about see her after she's cut off her hair and dyed it, so I guess it's nice to know she's in there somewhere. Just not, you know, important or anything.)

UGH. And it doesn't even look interesting. Like, "ho hum, drug kingpins, shooting people, driving around in old cars, haven't seen that before! This is a new and fascinating look at a world that no one ever puts on screen!"


Nov. 28th, 2014 03:58 am
tempestsarekind: (oh noes)
Accidentally spoiled myself about the last book in a series and found out that all the characters I didn't care about survived and one I really cared about didn't…

boo. Now I'm not sure I want to read it anymore. Which is not the author's fault - I'm sure it's a reasonable storytelling choice - but I just don't want to deal with that, I guess.
tempestsarekind: (austen snark is the best snark)


That is how No Fear Shakespeare 'translates' "A king of shreds and patches." As though anyone uses the word "ragtag" these days for anything other than, say, scrappy underdog sports teams, or motley bands of heroes in lesser fantasy scenarios. Misfits are "ragtag," No Fear Shakespeare!

I accidentally stumbled across this information, and I felt I needed to inflict it on other people, so they could share my pain.

ETA: I looked up "ragtag" in the dictionary, just to give these guys the benefit of the doubt. Merriam-Webster gives the definition of "ragtag" as "made up of different people or things and not organized or put together well." Which…no? Under the fuller definition, we have "ragged, unkempt" (which doesn't fit either; I am pretty sure that Hamlet is not actually upset about Claudius' sartorial choices), but definition 2 reads like this:

2: MOTLEY 2 (a ragtag bunch of misfits)

(from ).

So I think I was pretty much on target. (The definition also gives a usage example about a ragtag sports team. It really does.)

In conclusion: I hate these No Fear Shakespeare things so much.


Sep. 30th, 2014 11:45 am
tempestsarekind: (berowne [david tennant 2008])
There is a wrong answer in this Guardian quiz, and it's really annoying me:
Quiz - which Shakespeare characters speak these lines about love?

So question 2 asks you to guess who says the line "Love each other in moderation"… the problem is that this isn't actually a Shakespeare quotation. The answer is supposed to be Friar Laurence, who *actually* says "Therefore love moderately; long love doth so." "Love each other in moderation" - at least as far as I can tell from Google - is actually the "No Fear Shakespeare" translation of this line.


(It is true that I would probably be less annoyed if this mistake didn't remind me that "No Fear Shakespeare" is a thing that exists.)

[Addendum: when you search for "moderation" in a Shakespeare concordance - okay, when I just did this out of curiosity - you only get one result, which is from Troilus and Cressida and nothing like that line in the Guardian quiz. This is surprising to me, though; I would have expected a lot more results. And "moderate" only comes back with seven, two of which are also from Troilus. "Immoderate" and "immoderately" both come back with one result (the latter I should have remembered, since it's from R&J: "Immoderately she weeps for Tybalt's death.") I kept trying to remember what Claudius says to Hamlet - "unmanly" grief, while Gertrude, of course, uses "common" and "particular" to mark out Hamlet's lack of moderation. I thought that perhaps "seemly" and "unseemly" would get more hits, but there are only two uses of the first and one of the second. "Temperate," though, has eight uses in the plays and one in Sonnet 18.]
tempestsarekind: (histories)
Shakespeare's Globe is being even more unhelpful about this than usual, but it looks - according to Playbill - like some cinema screenings have started rolling out, very slowly, and the plan seems to be that they're going to screen both the most recent batch of filmed productions (The Tempest, Macbeth, and Midsummer), and the ones that they never screened last year (Henry V, Twelfth Night, and Taming of the Shrew).

The problem is that the Shakespeare's Globe On Screen website doesn't seem to be up to date: it doesn't list any screenings in my state at all, but on the off chance I went to the website of the cinema that held screenings last time, and it turns out that there's a screening of Henry V, with Jamie Parker, next week. So, you know, thanks for the heads-up, Globe; it's not like I subscribe to your newsletter and follow you on Twitter or anything, oh wait.)

(And of course, I can't go, because I've agreed to some work obligations that evening. This is not a real hardship, I guess, because I've had the DVD for over a year, I think, and have watched it several times (…including once last month). But I probably would have bought a ticket just to support the enterprise, if I'd known it was happening! And while I also have the DVD for Twelfth Night, I deliberately chose to wait on the DVDs for Midsummer and The Tempest, even though I was standing in the Globe gift shop in July, so I would really appreciate some information about if and when those screenings might actually be happening. And I want to see the Eve Best-directed Macbeth, as well, even though I didn't stand there weighing the DVD in my hands as I did with the others…)

I mean, I want to give you my money, Globe. Why are you making this so difficult for me to do?

oh dear.

Oct. 15th, 2013 08:43 am
tempestsarekind: (facepalm)
Oh, Sleepy Hollow, we were getting to be friends...until you made a plot point out of having the people from the lost colony of Roanoke - people from the late sixteenth century - speaking Middle English. What the heck, guys, really.

...It wouldn't have been *so* bad if it had just been an offhand mention; I mean, if you're doing a show with a lot of historical facts, you ought to make heavy use of a(n) historical advisor, or at least, you know, Google and basic history books, but a lot of people seem to be under the impression that Shakespeare wrote in Old English, I guess because it is English and it is old, so whatever. But when you go through all the trouble of making Ichabod the only person who can communicate with these people because he can speak Middle English (don't even ask; that is my motto for this show), and therefore including dialogue supposedly in Middle English, then shouldn't you, I don't know, check to make sure you actually know what Middle English is and when it was spoken, before going ahead on that path? I'm trying to imagine the situation where they asked some expert how to say these particular lines of dialogue in Middle English, and didn't ask for any other info from the expert, and I *can* imagine that (although it is a *terrible* idea), but I can't imagine just not looking it up in the first place. I mean, at a certain point during the writing of this episode, when you look up Roanoke on Google, and the *first* sentence in the Wikipedia article that I didn't even have to click on because I could read it from the Google page says that it was a late 16th-century colony founded in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, someone should be able to go, " know, I don't think they were speaking like this in Queen Elizabeth's time? On account of how I can totally understand the words in stuff like Shakespeare and the King James Bible?" And the extras were wearing relatively appropriate period clothing (I...may have started yelling "Why is that child speaking Middle English and wearing slops, this is ridiculous" at my screen at one point), so, just, you know, WHAT. Why get that research right and then just bail on the linguistic stuff, when it totally wasn't necessary in the first place? How did you write a line where Abbie says "This kid looks like he just stepped off the Mayflower," and not go " know, I also do not think that the Pilgrims spoke like this? On account of all the US History classes ever?" What even, Sleepy Hollow. What even.
tempestsarekind: (austen snark is the best snark)
Apparently there's a giant fiberglass statue of wet-shirt Darcy* in the Serpentine, in Hyde Park. As advertising. For some TV network:

Why would you. Just. Why.

*It's apparently some weird composite Darcy, so it doesn't really look like Colin Firth. (If you scroll down to the end of the post, you can read the press release for this nightmare. Which I use literally, as in, "if I saw this thing in real life, I'm pretty sure it would haunt my dreams.")

globe sads

Oct. 29th, 2012 01:14 pm
tempestsarekind: (Default)
Well, I was supposed to go see the Globe's Much Ado tonight at the cinema, but there's some kind of storm or something happening, I hear.

Perversely, the cinema itself is still open (I called to ask if they had plans to reschedule the event, since it was a one-night thing), even though the city is shutting down all public transportation in an hour. Ah well, guess I'll have to wait for the DVD.

Keep your fingers crossed that we don't lose power!

Posted via

tempestsarekind: (wtf?)
Is this the worst article, or THE WORST article?

This is male privilege: not having people speculate about whether, no matter the height of your intellectual and literary achievements, you wouldn't *really* have been a better writer (and human) if you'd had children - if your work would have been less limited, your experience of life deeper and richer. Because everyone knows that a woman can't be fulfilled as a human without having children. And they can't write *real* books without this experience:

" Binchy, whose first novel was about a 20-year friendship between two women, didn’t need the experience of motherhood to write about love and friendship in a way that charmed millions. But she might have dug deeper, charming less but enlightening more, had she done so."

Take note, ladies. Without the experience of childbirth and child-rearing, all you can do as a writer is *charm*. And if you *want* to write charming books, well. You just don't know any better yet, because you're not a real, self-possessed writer and person, who takes stock of what she wants her literary subject to be. You see, you're still unfinished, not quite a grown-up. You'll never be a grown-up, not until you start "putting yourself last" and take care of your kids.
tempestsarekind: (excuse me what)
I saw this book in the bookstore the other day:

And I know I'm supposed to think it's clever or ironic or postmodern or something, but actually I just want to punch this book in the face. I can't even figure out why I dislike it so much, or say anything that articulately expresses my feelings about it (books don't even *have* faces!). Whenever someone brings it up, what comes to mind is "I want to punch that book in the face."
tempestsarekind: (excuse me what)

One of the people responsible for this nonsense is quoted as saying that she wondered whether Charlotte Bronte would write erotica if she were alive today.

Which is the kind of dumb hypothetical that annoys me anyway (see also: Shakespeare would totally be writing movies/TV/graphic novels/whatever thing it is I'm trying to sell right now!), but it is also totally irrelevant. Because you know what Charlotte Bronte probably wouldn't do? Take a book that was ALREADY WRITTEN BY SOMEONE ELSE and then just add random sex scenes to it.

(I am sticking this under the "vampire sparklepocalypse" tag because I feel pretty certain that we would not be here, 50 Shades or no, if not for P&P&Z. I mean, at least 50 Shades bothered to file off the serial numbers and involved writing original text at some point.)
tempestsarekind: (oh noes)
Somehow all the chocolate has gone away. :(

(I have been trying to buy free trade chocolate, but the bars get eaten so fast! That is one thing that a bag full of Dove dark chocolate pieces does have going for it; it lasts in the fridge for a while.)

I just ate a spoonful of strawberry jam out of the jar, that's how much I wanted dessert. Actually, fact, it wasn't even jam, it was spreadable fruit. I am a ridiculous human.

Dinner was good, though. A couple days ago, I got home late, so dinner was a can of tuna in olive oil, a can of white beans, a couple handfuls of baby spinach, and some lemon juice and olive oil. I had a spoonful or two left, so tonight I mashed up the rest of the beans-and-tuna with some sauteed garlic, and made it into a pasta sauce for spaghetti, along with the rest of the spinach. I would eat that again, even if I weren't trying to use up leftovers.

Aug. 25th, 2011 10:21 am
tempestsarekind: (your strange behavior puzzles martha)
This morning I was watching The Early Show on CBS while eating breakfast, and discovered that their "Health Watch" segment is introduced by the very beginning of "My Boy Builds Coffins" by Florence and the Machine.

This is either wildly inappropriate or unexpectedly philosophic.

I'm also mildly bemused by the use of by Josh Ritter's "Change of Time" in the latest batch of NFL commercials, but that doesn't seem quite as...actively contradictory.

Aug. 25th, 2011 10:21 am
tempestsarekind: (your strange behavior puzzles martha)
This morning I was watching The Early Show on CBS while eating breakfast, and discovered that their "Health Watch" segment is introduced by the very beginning of "My Boy Builds Coffins" by Florence and the Machine.

This is either wildly inappropriate or unexpectedly philosophic.

I'm also mildly bemused by the use of by Josh Ritter's "Change of Time" in the latest batch of NFL commercials, but that doesn't seem quite as...actively contradictory.

ew what.

Aug. 16th, 2010 04:48 pm
tempestsarekind: (austen snark is the best snark)
Choosing Austen editions for my tutorial; I've decided to go with the Penguin editions, because they're ever so slightly more recently updated than the Oxford editions, and in some cases there's only about a nickel's difference in the prices. I went to the Penguin Classics website to grab the ISBN numbers for my students, and came upon a Jane Austen quiz, which featured this as a question:

9) From what was Jane Austen recovering when she wrote the original draft of 'Pride and Prejudice'?

Well, I had no idea, and got it utterly wrong, because the "answer" was:

C. A broken heart

OH GAG ME. Or, you know, something more witty and biting and appropriate to Jane Austen.


tempestsarekind: (Default)

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