Sep 5, 2022
Source material is something that we can love and respect, but it's just as often disregarded, degenerated, and denigrated, especially these days where it seems like everything you see is an adaptation or even an adaptation OF an adaptation or worse. I think it's important to go back to the sources so you can see what was truly great about the original to begin with. It can help you see what was lost in the adaptations and to discover new and important meanings and ideas that you never would have guessed at.
Topics and Show Notes
This Quackcast topic was inspired by a video by the Youtube based culture critic Georg Rockall-Schmidt and his video titled “Nevermind The Source Material”.
I'm sure there have been a lot of times for all of us when we've consumed an adaptation of one of our favourite books and we've thought it was lacking. But have you ever done the reverse? Have you seen an adaptation and then hunted out the source material to see what all the fuss was about, to see where it all started? I've done that quite a few times myself and it's usually pretty rewarding. I really loved the film version of Tank Girl, it was anarchic and captured a certain alternative 90's zeitgeist. The original comic series though is a very different beast! The movie has a lot of heart and pathos, but the comic is far more cynical, nihilistic and sardonic with a much harder edge. They both have the same sort of style, but the point of view and sense of humour of the creators is largely absent from the film.
Many of us know Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice from the film and TV versions, especially starring Colin Firth. Mr Darcy in those versions is seen as the prototypical sexy, rich, tall dark and handsome man that women lust over, who Elizabeth Bennet eventually wins… It's seen as a great romantic story with a strong heroine. What's lost from the source material is the fact that it's a romantic comedy over the top of a satire on British mating rituals of the country gentry. Rather than an aloof, desirable bachelor, Mr Darcy is actually a pathetic, shy man who hides his acquired social anxiety behind a mask of snobbery, although he's good at heart. And all throughout, Elizabeth's real goal is not to win a man and a big country estate, rather it's to survive and retain her place and pride among her piers.
The Adams Family is a much adapted piece of work. There was the TV series, a cartoon series, a TV movie, the 90s movies, and now a Netflix series, but what was the source material? You'd think it was Charles Adams' comics from the New Yorker, but that's not actually fully true. The Adams Family was actually created for the 1960s TV series starting John Astin, Charles Adams worked with the creators to develop the characters. His comic was simply a bunch of single panel jokes with unnamed reoccurring characters, it wasn't till the show that they acquired structure, names, personalities and a world to exist in. Most people today have no idea that the 90's movies that are seen as so definitive are simply short summary parodies of the 60s TV series. The latest Netflix version is basically a pale copy of a pale copy. It would take far too long to explain what has been lost in the translation- I am sure the Netflix series will be good in its own right but we should never let later adaptations overshadow usurp superior source material.
Have you ever gone back to uncover the source material for something and been pleasantly surprised? Or maybe even disappointed?
This week Gunwallace has given us a theme to Mega Maiden and the Chop Chop Princess - Heavy, deep bass synth thunder dueling with percussion and synth guitar in a fierce fight for dominance, which turns into a dance battle to the death with the bass synth landing the final, decisive blow!
Topics and shownotes
Georg Rockall-Schmidt - Nevermind The Source Material - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HlD63pcwjgE&t
Crimson Stars - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/news/2022/aug/30/featured-comic-crimson-stars/
Mega Maiden and the Chop Chop Princess - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/Mega_Maiden_and_the_Chop_Chop_Princess/ - by Teh Andeh, rated.
Special thanks to:
Gunwallace - http://www.virtuallycomics.com
Ozoneocean - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/ozoneocean
Banes - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/Banes/
Tantz Aerine - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/Tantz_Aerine/
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Jun 27, 2022
A and B stories… And C, and D etc. It seems that it's more popular than ever to have stories with multiple concurrent threads. This is when you have a main story and a bunch of other sub stories all happening at the same time. These might come together at the end of the story or they might peter out. We don't get many stories just made with just an A-plot and nothing else these days.
Sep 21, 2020
Today we're talking about the idea that entertainment aimed at kids can only be enjoyed by kids and the reason that adults often don't like kids things is because adults just don't “get” them. I contend that everyone, of all ages should be able to enjoy General or kid rated media and the true reason we don't is not because it “isn't meant for us”, it's because it's simply badly written - specifically, it's not the content that's annoying, it's the structure.
Aug 10, 2020
DD member Furwerk Studios posted in our forum about how annoying it was that movies try and do an 80s retro thing often get things totally wrong and end up looking dumb because of it: Not just superficial looks-wise but stylistically too in terms of the kinds of shots they do, lighting and story structure. I thought that'd make an interesting topic for a cast! Why do people often mess up retro stuff? We're not talking about historical accuracy here, that's slightly different, what we're talking about is setting something in an era and getting the “feel” of that era right. It pays off hugely when it works, but when it doesn't it comes off as superficial, disappointing and ignorant.
Feb 23, 2020
The process of adaptation is quite interesting. Stories go through all sorts of changes when they're transferred from one medium to another. A lot of the time we bemoan that as “not staying true to the original” or “the book was better”, but there are many times where the adaption is really interesting in its own right, even though it's quite different from what it started out as.
Feb 10, 2020
There are a couple of approaches when it comes to making a big creative project: planing it all out or working things out as you go i.e. flying by the seat of your pants. Well in reality it's a spectrum and those are the two extremes. Most of us work somewhere between those two, sometimes with more or less planning etc… I've tried a lot of different mixtures myself!
Oct 14, 2019
Continuing on our focus on movie franchises for the month of October, THIS time we focus on the king of them all: STAR WARS! This was a genre defining series, not only for movies but for space opera, “SciFi”, and science fantasy on all media! The original trilogy was quite a milestone. Predictably further instalments weren't quite as well received but it still remains popular even so! Currently it's having a resurgence in popularity once more.
Oct 7, 2019
For the month of October we've decided to look at a different movie franchise each week, starting with Indiana Jones! Banes and Tantz have way more knowledge about the films than I, having watched them much more, but we all have a fondness for the character.