dangermousie: (Farscape: JA almost kiss by icequeen3101)
Oh, God. People at TWOP, just SHUT UP!

Yes, yes, JRM is not over six feet tall and Henry VIII was. OMG! Ohnoez. Horrors. OMG, not historically accurate. BLAH. I am one of ten people who didn’t love Rome (it was good but didn’t grab me) and am one of ten people loving The Tudors. Anyway, nothing wrong with thinking it’s boring, slow-moving, whatever. Lay off historical accuracy. The sainted movie Elizabeth (which I hate. Pretentious. Ugh. Hate pretension. Maybe that is why I don’t mind The Tudors, it doesn’t try to be ‘aaaaart’) was really inaccurate. So was Rome (which was also a bit on the pretentious side. The hilarious sex scenes, put in there just to show how edgy they were, turned me off because…LOL. No, not really edgy. This isn’t what sex looks like. Get it right, or even better, don’t try to be fake-explicit). The day I see a truly historically accurate movie/show, I’ll keel over in shock. There is a reason I prefer most of my history reading to be non-fiction.

Except for Richard III novels that is. GUUUH.

In other news, I finally bought Veronica Mars season 2 set. Despite my utter dislike of how S3 went down and complete annoyance at the waste, I adored S1 and liked S2 a lot, and will just prefer to think that the show ended in S2. I remember I started a rewatch/blogging about S1 but stopped somewhere around 1.16. I should restart.

In other news!!! EEEEE! Thank you [livejournal.com profile] booknerd714! Apparently Rain is coming to North America to do concerts in June!!!!! I am so going this time, even if I’ll be probably one of the few non-Asian girls. I got experience in that from Bollywood shows anyway and I am not missing my chance to see Rain rip off his shirt in person. [livejournal.com profile] smartylibrarian, I checked and he is coming to New York, so we are definitely on ;)

Oh, and speaking of events! Nathan Fillion’s upcoming romantic comedy Waitress is doing previews all over. Check out here for whether there are show times round you and (if interested) get free preview tickets from there.
dangermousie: (Farscape: JA almost kiss by icequeen3101)
Oh, God. People at TWOP, just SHUT UP!

Yes, yes, JRM is not over six feet tall and Henry VIII was. OMG! Ohnoez. Horrors. OMG, not historically accurate. BLAH. I am one of ten people who didn’t love Rome (it was good but didn’t grab me) and am one of ten people loving The Tudors. Anyway, nothing wrong with thinking it’s boring, slow-moving, whatever. Lay off historical accuracy. The sainted movie Elizabeth (which I hate. Pretentious. Ugh. Hate pretension. Maybe that is why I don’t mind The Tudors, it doesn’t try to be ‘aaaaart’) was really inaccurate. So was Rome (which was also a bit on the pretentious side. The hilarious sex scenes, put in there just to show how edgy they were, turned me off because…LOL. No, not really edgy. This isn’t what sex looks like. Get it right, or even better, don’t try to be fake-explicit). The day I see a truly historically accurate movie/show, I’ll keel over in shock. There is a reason I prefer most of my history reading to be non-fiction.

Except for Richard III novels that is. GUUUH.

In other news, I finally bought Veronica Mars season 2 set. Despite my utter dislike of how S3 went down and complete annoyance at the waste, I adored S1 and liked S2 a lot, and will just prefer to think that the show ended in S2. I remember I started a rewatch/blogging about S1 but stopped somewhere around 1.16. I should restart.

In other news!!! EEEEE! Thank you [livejournal.com profile] booknerd714! Apparently Rain is coming to North America to do concerts in June!!!!! I am so going this time, even if I’ll be probably one of the few non-Asian girls. I got experience in that from Bollywood shows anyway and I am not missing my chance to see Rain rip off his shirt in person. [livejournal.com profile] smartylibrarian, I checked and he is coming to New York, so we are definitely on ;)

Oh, and speaking of events! Nathan Fillion’s upcoming romantic comedy Waitress is doing previews all over. Check out here for whether there are show times round you and (if interested) get free preview tickets from there.
dangermousie: (Farscape: JA almost kiss by icequeen3101)
Oh, God. People at TWOP, just SHUT UP!

Yes, yes, JRM is not over six feet tall and Henry VIII was. OMG! Ohnoez. Horrors. OMG, not historically accurate. BLAH. I am one of ten people who didn’t love Rome (it was good but didn’t grab me) and am one of ten people loving The Tudors. Anyway, nothing wrong with thinking it’s boring, slow-moving, whatever. Lay off historical accuracy. The sainted movie Elizabeth (which I hate. Pretentious. Ugh. Hate pretension. Maybe that is why I don’t mind The Tudors, it doesn’t try to be ‘aaaaart’) was really inaccurate. So was Rome (which was also a bit on the pretentious side. The hilarious sex scenes, put in there just to show how edgy they were, turned me off because…LOL. No, not really edgy. This isn’t what sex looks like. Get it right, or even better, don’t try to be fake-explicit). The day I see a truly historically accurate movie/show, I’ll keel over in shock. There is a reason I prefer most of my history reading to be non-fiction.

Except for Richard III novels that is. GUUUH.

In other news, I finally bought Veronica Mars season 2 set. Despite my utter dislike of how S3 went down and complete annoyance at the waste, I adored S1 and liked S2 a lot, and will just prefer to think that the show ended in S2. I remember I started a rewatch/blogging about S1 but stopped somewhere around 1.16. I should restart.

In other news!!! EEEEE! Thank you [livejournal.com profile] booknerd714! Apparently Rain is coming to North America to do concerts in June!!!!! I am so going this time, even if I’ll be probably one of the few non-Asian girls. I got experience in that from Bollywood shows anyway and I am not missing my chance to see Rain rip off his shirt in person. [livejournal.com profile] smartylibrarian, I checked and he is coming to New York, so we are definitely on ;)

Oh, and speaking of events! Nathan Fillion’s upcoming romantic comedy Waitress is doing previews all over. Check out here for whether there are show times round you and (if interested) get free preview tickets from there.
dangermousie: (Default)
Watched more of The Tudors and really. How can people object to it when there is so much hot male (and female if that's your thing) flesh about, either in period clothes or verrrrry naked? Seriously. I know I sound shallow but oh well. Plus, all that carping about JRM not looking like Henry. I find myself not caring when I stare at the cheekbones. The history is screwy but I have no problem just viewing it as some AU fantasy type stuff. Sexy fun fantasy, that is. I know this will brand me a total heretic on my flist, but I like it so much better than Rome, which was also pretty ahistorical but also had characters I wasn't very interested in and no sex appeal :) The Tudors otoh, has no redeeming brain value but it way way too fun.

And also, on a shallow note. I have started Sensual Phrase, the manga I mentioned earlier, and heeeeee. I am on page eight or so and the hero is already groping the heroine where people don't unless they are fairly well aquainted (upper leg, if you must know). Heeeee. If The Tudors is my guilty TV pleasure, Sensual Phrase is my guilty manga pleasure. Except I don't feel guilty in the least :)
dangermousie: (Default)
Watched more of The Tudors and really. How can people object to it when there is so much hot male (and female if that's your thing) flesh about, either in period clothes or verrrrry naked? Seriously. I know I sound shallow but oh well. Plus, all that carping about JRM not looking like Henry. I find myself not caring when I stare at the cheekbones. The history is screwy but I have no problem just viewing it as some AU fantasy type stuff. Sexy fun fantasy, that is. I know this will brand me a total heretic on my flist, but I like it so much better than Rome, which was also pretty ahistorical but also had characters I wasn't very interested in and no sex appeal :) The Tudors otoh, has no redeeming brain value but it way way too fun.

And also, on a shallow note. I have started Sensual Phrase, the manga I mentioned earlier, and heeeeee. I am on page eight or so and the hero is already groping the heroine where people don't unless they are fairly well aquainted (upper leg, if you must know). Heeeee. If The Tudors is my guilty TV pleasure, Sensual Phrase is my guilty manga pleasure. Except I don't feel guilty in the least :)
dangermousie: (Default)
Watched more of The Tudors and really. How can people object to it when there is so much hot male (and female if that's your thing) flesh about, either in period clothes or verrrrry naked? Seriously. I know I sound shallow but oh well. Plus, all that carping about JRM not looking like Henry. I find myself not caring when I stare at the cheekbones. The history is screwy but I have no problem just viewing it as some AU fantasy type stuff. Sexy fun fantasy, that is. I know this will brand me a total heretic on my flist, but I like it so much better than Rome, which was also pretty ahistorical but also had characters I wasn't very interested in and no sex appeal :) The Tudors otoh, has no redeeming brain value but it way way too fun.

And also, on a shallow note. I have started Sensual Phrase, the manga I mentioned earlier, and heeeeee. I am on page eight or so and the hero is already groping the heroine where people don't unless they are fairly well aquainted (upper leg, if you must know). Heeeee. If The Tudors is my guilty TV pleasure, Sensual Phrase is my guilty manga pleasure. Except I don't feel guilty in the least :)
dangermousie: (Rome by alexandral)
So, all the squee about Rome on my flist made me go digging for other movie/TV productions dealing with the time period.

So I turned to my trusted friend, wikipedia.

In addition to reminding me of my historical crush on Germanicus and of my glee at the nasty barbs historians loved even back then (sample quote from Tacitus on Agrippa Postumus, the last child of the Agrippa we see in Rome: Though devoid of every good quality, he had been involved in no scandal.), I have also found that there has been, a few years previously, a British/Italian co-production Imperium: Augustus (warning, plot spoilers at the link) which I simply must find as it sounds deliciously melodramatic (Julia as angsty, noble heroine wronged by Tiberius and Augustus! Heh) and no more historically inaccurate than Rome.

Perhaps most importantly, my interest was whetted when I saw the picture of the actor who portrayed Iullus Antonius, son of Marc Antony and Fulvia, and Julia's most prominent lover (in this version he is her angsty star-crossed OTP).

(Not, it suffices to say, in his period get-up):



HELLLLLO.

Where do I get the DVD? :D
dangermousie: (Rome by alexandral)
So, all the squee about Rome on my flist made me go digging for other movie/TV productions dealing with the time period.

So I turned to my trusted friend, wikipedia.

In addition to reminding me of my historical crush on Germanicus and of my glee at the nasty barbs historians loved even back then (sample quote from Tacitus on Agrippa Postumus, the last child of the Agrippa we see in Rome: Though devoid of every good quality, he had been involved in no scandal.), I have also found that there has been, a few years previously, a British/Italian co-production Imperium: Augustus (warning, plot spoilers at the link) which I simply must find as it sounds deliciously melodramatic (Julia as angsty, noble heroine wronged by Tiberius and Augustus! Heh) and no more historically inaccurate than Rome.

Perhaps most importantly, my interest was whetted when I saw the picture of the actor who portrayed Iullus Antonius, son of Marc Antony and Fulvia, and Julia's most prominent lover (in this version he is her angsty star-crossed OTP).

(Not, it suffices to say, in his period get-up):



HELLLLLO.

Where do I get the DVD? :D
dangermousie: (Rome by alexandral)
So, all the squee about Rome on my flist made me go digging for other movie/TV productions dealing with the time period.

So I turned to my trusted friend, wikipedia.

In addition to reminding me of my historical crush on Germanicus and of my glee at the nasty barbs historians loved even back then (sample quote from Tacitus on Agrippa Postumus, the last child of the Agrippa we see in Rome: Though devoid of every good quality, he had been involved in no scandal.), I have also found that there has been, a few years previously, a British/Italian co-production Imperium: Augustus (warning, plot spoilers at the link) which I simply must find as it sounds deliciously melodramatic (Julia as angsty, noble heroine wronged by Tiberius and Augustus! Heh) and no more historically inaccurate than Rome.

Perhaps most importantly, my interest was whetted when I saw the picture of the actor who portrayed Iullus Antonius, son of Marc Antony and Fulvia, and Julia's most prominent lover (in this version he is her angsty star-crossed OTP).

(Not, it suffices to say, in his period get-up):



HELLLLLO.

Where do I get the DVD? :D
dangermousie: (Default)
Finished first two episodes of Rome.

Hmmmm. I am rather over the fact that have so many sex scenes. They don't seem to serve any purpose other than to go 'see, we are so edgy, and so daring, and so cool. And weren't those Romans a wicked bunch?' I am also a bit taken aback by the way they chose to portray Caesar: completely emotionless. Whatever else he was (and he was plenty ruthless), this Caesar has not a single human feeling. More puzzlingly, Ciaran Hinds is such a charisma-less icicle as Caesar, it's hard to see why anyone would follow him across the street, let alone into rebellion. I am also confused with the eagle thing. Are they referring to the Legion's standard, in which case, yes, it's a huge deal and not what they make it seem. Germanicus recovering missing eagles some decades later was a HUGE HUGE thing, Empire-wide-importance. Or are they talking about Caesar's personal standard? In which case, OK? They also really simplify all the history, but that is to be expected.

I am also amused at Octavian being Basil Exposition. :D

BUT BUT BUT BUT

Even though I am not in love with the series' portrayal a lot of historical figures (Brutus as a snotty drunken brat? O-kaaaay). I LOVE THIS. LOVE LOVE LOVE. Why? Titus and Lucius. They are just awesome as characters and I am always mesmerized when they are on screen. Especially Lucius. I am fascinated by their relationship with each other, with historical characters, with other fictional characters (Though poor Niobe, Lucius' wife, who apparently had a baby with someone else when Lucius was gone. I place her odds of survival at about 10%. On a good day. Btw, how come Lucius didn't notice she was nursing. Not to be indelicate, but wouldn't she leak?). I actually wish they'd minimize the historical characters' role (none of which caught my attention except Pompey, whose portrayal I find has drawn me in) and make this into entirely Titus and Lucius show.

In unrelated news, I am still amused by that one scene in ep 3 of Hana Yori Dango 2 Small spoiler for the ep )
dangermousie: (Default)
Finished first two episodes of Rome.

Hmmmm. I am rather over the fact that have so many sex scenes. They don't seem to serve any purpose other than to go 'see, we are so edgy, and so daring, and so cool. And weren't those Romans a wicked bunch?' I am also a bit taken aback by the way they chose to portray Caesar: completely emotionless. Whatever else he was (and he was plenty ruthless), this Caesar has not a single human feeling. More puzzlingly, Ciaran Hinds is such a charisma-less icicle as Caesar, it's hard to see why anyone would follow him across the street, let alone into rebellion. I am also confused with the eagle thing. Are they referring to the Legion's standard, in which case, yes, it's a huge deal and not what they make it seem. Germanicus recovering missing eagles some decades later was a HUGE HUGE thing, Empire-wide-importance. Or are they talking about Caesar's personal standard? In which case, OK? They also really simplify all the history, but that is to be expected.

I am also amused at Octavian being Basil Exposition. :D

BUT BUT BUT BUT

Even though I am not in love with the series' portrayal a lot of historical figures (Brutus as a snotty drunken brat? O-kaaaay). I LOVE THIS. LOVE LOVE LOVE. Why? Titus and Lucius. They are just awesome as characters and I am always mesmerized when they are on screen. Especially Lucius. I am fascinated by their relationship with each other, with historical characters, with other fictional characters (Though poor Niobe, Lucius' wife, who apparently had a baby with someone else when Lucius was gone. I place her odds of survival at about 10%. On a good day. Btw, how come Lucius didn't notice she was nursing. Not to be indelicate, but wouldn't she leak?). I actually wish they'd minimize the historical characters' role (none of which caught my attention except Pompey, whose portrayal I find has drawn me in) and make this into entirely Titus and Lucius show.

In unrelated news, I am still amused by that one scene in ep 3 of Hana Yori Dango 2 Small spoiler for the ep )
dangermousie: (Default)
Finished first two episodes of Rome.

Hmmmm. I am rather over the fact that have so many sex scenes. They don't seem to serve any purpose other than to go 'see, we are so edgy, and so daring, and so cool. And weren't those Romans a wicked bunch?' I am also a bit taken aback by the way they chose to portray Caesar: completely emotionless. Whatever else he was (and he was plenty ruthless), this Caesar has not a single human feeling. More puzzlingly, Ciaran Hinds is such a charisma-less icicle as Caesar, it's hard to see why anyone would follow him across the street, let alone into rebellion. I am also confused with the eagle thing. Are they referring to the Legion's standard, in which case, yes, it's a huge deal and not what they make it seem. Germanicus recovering missing eagles some decades later was a HUGE HUGE thing, Empire-wide-importance. Or are they talking about Caesar's personal standard? In which case, OK? They also really simplify all the history, but that is to be expected.

I am also amused at Octavian being Basil Exposition. :D

BUT BUT BUT BUT

Even though I am not in love with the series' portrayal a lot of historical figures (Brutus as a snotty drunken brat? O-kaaaay). I LOVE THIS. LOVE LOVE LOVE. Why? Titus and Lucius. They are just awesome as characters and I am always mesmerized when they are on screen. Especially Lucius. I am fascinated by their relationship with each other, with historical characters, with other fictional characters (Though poor Niobe, Lucius' wife, who apparently had a baby with someone else when Lucius was gone. I place her odds of survival at about 10%. On a good day. Btw, how come Lucius didn't notice she was nursing. Not to be indelicate, but wouldn't she leak?). I actually wish they'd minimize the historical characters' role (none of which caught my attention except Pompey, whose portrayal I find has drawn me in) and make this into entirely Titus and Lucius show.

In unrelated news, I am still amused by that one scene in ep 3 of Hana Yori Dango 2 Small spoiler for the ep )

Rome!!!

Jan. 20th, 2007 10:36 pm
dangermousie: (Rome by alexandral)
Twenty minutes in, I really really like it.

I can't imagine meta-ing it in my usual hyper fashion (I mean, 'Pompey/Julia OTP 4evah! Get that hor Cordelia away from Julia's man!' just doesn't seem appropriate :D) but it's totally totally awesome.

Though I must be a lot more pervy than normal, because there is the notorious frontal nudity/sex scene and all I am thinking is 'She is sitting too high for it to be real sex. Come on, do they think the viewers are 10?'

Rome!!!

Jan. 20th, 2007 10:36 pm
dangermousie: (Rome by alexandral)
Twenty minutes in, I really really like it.

I can't imagine meta-ing it in my usual hyper fashion (I mean, 'Pompey/Julia OTP 4evah! Get that hor Cordelia away from Julia's man!' just doesn't seem appropriate :D) but it's totally totally awesome.

Though I must be a lot more pervy than normal, because there is the notorious frontal nudity/sex scene and all I am thinking is 'She is sitting too high for it to be real sex. Come on, do they think the viewers are 10?'

Rome!!!

Jan. 20th, 2007 10:36 pm
dangermousie: (Rome by alexandral)
Twenty minutes in, I really really like it.

I can't imagine meta-ing it in my usual hyper fashion (I mean, 'Pompey/Julia OTP 4evah! Get that hor Cordelia away from Julia's man!' just doesn't seem appropriate :D) but it's totally totally awesome.

Though I must be a lot more pervy than normal, because there is the notorious frontal nudity/sex scene and all I am thinking is 'She is sitting too high for it to be real sex. Come on, do they think the viewers are 10?'
dangermousie: (Default)
Yay! We went shopping in Target which for me was totally exciting. An orgy of consummerism. I live in a big city with no large stores but a lot of awesome small boutiques, so this was sort of exciting. It was sort of like 'eeee, that is what real grown-up married people do.' Yeah, I am five.

Bought the first season of Rome though, sight unseen, because of the raves, so we shall see...

Also, in discussing ancient Egyptians, Mr. Mousie and I concluded they were the world's first goths:

1. Men wear lots of make-up and shave their heads.
2. Really really obsessed with death.
3. What other religion worships an undead deity with such fervor? Hello Osiris the Zombie.
4. Ergo it makes sense modern day goths love ankhs.

Yes, our conversation tends to be random.

Oh, and as a counter type thing? Times the running scene from Hanadan rewatched as of today: three.

And sign I am scarily obsessive? All the dramas I have that aren't official shiny sets but burned copies? O bought three gigantic cd-file cases and have one each now, for Japanese, Taiwanese and Korean. Took me ages to sort (big shock, Korean one is the biggest :D)
dangermousie: (Default)
Yay! We went shopping in Target which for me was totally exciting. An orgy of consummerism. I live in a big city with no large stores but a lot of awesome small boutiques, so this was sort of exciting. It was sort of like 'eeee, that is what real grown-up married people do.' Yeah, I am five.

Bought the first season of Rome though, sight unseen, because of the raves, so we shall see...

Also, in discussing ancient Egyptians, Mr. Mousie and I concluded they were the world's first goths:

1. Men wear lots of make-up and shave their heads.
2. Really really obsessed with death.
3. What other religion worships an undead deity with such fervor? Hello Osiris the Zombie.
4. Ergo it makes sense modern day goths love ankhs.

Yes, our conversation tends to be random.

Oh, and as a counter type thing? Times the running scene from Hanadan rewatched as of today: three.

And sign I am scarily obsessive? All the dramas I have that aren't official shiny sets but burned copies? O bought three gigantic cd-file cases and have one each now, for Japanese, Taiwanese and Korean. Took me ages to sort (big shock, Korean one is the biggest :D)
dangermousie: (Default)
Yay! We went shopping in Target which for me was totally exciting. An orgy of consummerism. I live in a big city with no large stores but a lot of awesome small boutiques, so this was sort of exciting. It was sort of like 'eeee, that is what real grown-up married people do.' Yeah, I am five.

Bought the first season of Rome though, sight unseen, because of the raves, so we shall see...

Also, in discussing ancient Egyptians, Mr. Mousie and I concluded they were the world's first goths:

1. Men wear lots of make-up and shave their heads.
2. Really really obsessed with death.
3. What other religion worships an undead deity with such fervor? Hello Osiris the Zombie.
4. Ergo it makes sense modern day goths love ankhs.

Yes, our conversation tends to be random.

Oh, and as a counter type thing? Times the running scene from Hanadan rewatched as of today: three.

And sign I am scarily obsessive? All the dramas I have that aren't official shiny sets but burned copies? O bought three gigantic cd-file cases and have one each now, for Japanese, Taiwanese and Korean. Took me ages to sort (big shock, Korean one is the biggest :D)
dangermousie: (Equilibrium)
I will read or watch (or at least try to) anything involving ancient Egypt, Greece, or Rome. I couldn't help myself ever since I was 8, sick, and with my hands on a book of Greek Myths with photographs of statuary, pottery and bas reliefs.

My first crush was Spartacus, the hero is Rafaello Jiovaniogli's (sp?) 19th century novel. Translated from Italian, it was quite popular in the Soviet Union, and I pored over its pages with the devotion of a religious fanatic. I wrote him a love letter, even. In my defense, I was 9, and when I reread the book recently, I found he was still droolworthy, possessing all the characteristics Dangermousie requires in her fictional crushes: angsty, hot, super-competent and passionately devoted to one woman. (It also gave me a secondary crush on Sergius Catilina, but that's another story).

In fact, my childhood is rather marked by these "ancient world" books. The thing I remember most about my 4th grade, was poring breathlessly with my best friend, waiting until she finished the page so I could turn it over, over "Thais of Athens" by Ivan Efremov, a novel of Ptolemy's hetaira who inspired the burning of Persepolis. My first book report in class was on Euripides' Alcestis, and the teacher did not believe I had actually read it until I retold her the plot, point by point. (It's rather depressing to think that I read the bulk of good serious literature by the time I was 15, and then switched to frivolity :D). My parents gave me Montet's "Everyday life among Egyptians" and the plays of Aeschyus for New Year's, and I cried my eyes out at the Polish movie adaptation of Boleslav Prus' "The Pharaoh," about a fictional Ramses XIII, someone too good for his times (of course, Prus wrote it as allegory, but I was entirely too young to notice).

The first book I read in Engish was Bulwer-Lytton's "Last Days of Pompeii." I understood one word in three but I was determined: it had ancient Greeks and Romans after all.

The obsession abated quite a bit since, but I still can't resist anything set in ancient Egypt, Greece, or Rome. Sometimes it leads to quite amazing treasures (Mary Renault's "The King Must Die" about Theseus is one of my favorite books, and so is Henryk Sienkewitz's "Quo Vadis"), and sometimes it leads to...Hercules movies.

Basically, this is a very long and rambly prologue to two more entrants into "I only read/watched it because it had the ancient world connection." One is good. One...well, it's better than the Hercules movies. Somewhat.

The good entrant is "Julius Caesar," the 4 hour TV miniseries made a couple of years ago that was shown on TNT last night. Of course, they simplify history (the last hour simply flies by. Bam, Pompey's head, Bam, Cleopatra etc etc), and they change events somewhat to suit the story (I don't think Sulla ever wanted Caesar's heart to feed to his dogs), but overall, it is amazingly good (from what I've seen so far. I skimmed it). Head and shoulders above the dreadful "Empire" that aired earlier in the summer. Why?

1. They do not create a fictional character and make him the focus, which is plainly absurd when the real story is teeming with interesting men. Nope, Caesar is the main character, and secondary characters are Brutus, Pompey, Cato, Sulla etc, not fictional gladiators.

2. They might change events a bit, but they don't change the basic sense of the character (as in the horrible "Empire" where Augustus turned into a Warrior Stud, Cassius into a rapist of Caesar's sister, and Anthony a completely useless hand-in-glove with Brutus wimp). Caesar might not have wished to pardon Vercingetorix (in this version he does, but he is constrained by the wishes of the mob and his sense of political advantage. Points to them for keeping the conversation really private, so it could have concievably happened), but they don't change stuff about basic character of their historical protagonists. And the scene with Pompey telling Caesar to get out of Sulla's Rome and giving him his ring as a token, probably also didn't happen, but it makes dramatic sense (unlike Empire where their meddling just made the events less interesting), doesn't screw up the characters, and plus...I get excited seeing Pompey on screen. Poor Magnus never gets much screen or page time (anyone know a good book on him, fiction or non, let me know), but he does in this version. The fact that he is played by the hot Chris Noth doesn't hurt :D

3. Little things make me happy. Like the scene of Caesar refusing to divorce Cornelia on Sulla's orders, or Cato killing himself, or Julia dying in childbirth, to Caesar dying under Pompey's statue. They show all of these!

4. The epilogue cracks me up. Basically, it rounds up the remaining characters and no matter what, ends up with "he/she killed himself." Accurate, but depressing.

Of course, the actor playing Caesar is competent but has no Caesar-like charisma, but overall, a worthwhile 4 hours. I only wish it was on DVD, because I missed the first 15 minutes or so.

And now, the entrant in the "purely awful" category. Conn Igguldsen's "Emperor" series. It is supposed to follow the life of Julius Caesar. "Supposed" being the operative word. If he wrote a fantasy with this plot, it would be passable. As a retelling of Caesar's life, it is notable mainly for "he changed what? what is he going to do next?" feeling. It's a page-turner in that way, and keeps the reader in suspense because it bears little to no resemblance to real history. For all I know, Caesar will kill Brutus in the end. OK, there is way too much wrong in these books for me to write it up (not helped by the fact that the author randomly changes things for NO reason, e.g. making Marius Caesar's uncle on the wrong side of the family. Why? How does it concievably matter? Why screw it up?), but I have to share some "gems:"

Did you know Brutus and Caesar were childhood best friends who grew up together? Brutus' mom was a whore though.

Both Brutus and Caesar compete for the love of a really boring slave girl throughout. But Caesar has a really unfair advantage as Brutus is sent to learn the army ropes (as a great honor) as a simple rank legionnaire.

Marius does not come back and retake the Consulship for the 7th time. He just dies.

Cornelia, Caesar's wife? Evil Roman guy (Cato, I think. It hurts my head to remember) murders her. So he gets promptly murdered as well. Nice to know all the historians were wrong.

And so forth. It is so bad it passes the realm of badness and becomes camp instead.

And I end this ramble by soliciting book recs set in ancient world. Hopefully not ones where Cato murders Cornelia :)
dangermousie: (Equilibrium)
I will read or watch (or at least try to) anything involving ancient Egypt, Greece, or Rome. I couldn't help myself ever since I was 8, sick, and with my hands on a book of Greek Myths with photographs of statuary, pottery and bas reliefs.

My first crush was Spartacus, the hero is Rafaello Jiovaniogli's (sp?) 19th century novel. Translated from Italian, it was quite popular in the Soviet Union, and I pored over its pages with the devotion of a religious fanatic. I wrote him a love letter, even. In my defense, I was 9, and when I reread the book recently, I found he was still droolworthy, possessing all the characteristics Dangermousie requires in her fictional crushes: angsty, hot, super-competent and passionately devoted to one woman. (It also gave me a secondary crush on Sergius Catilina, but that's another story).

In fact, my childhood is rather marked by these "ancient world" books. The thing I remember most about my 4th grade, was poring breathlessly with my best friend, waiting until she finished the page so I could turn it over, over "Thais of Athens" by Ivan Efremov, a novel of Ptolemy's hetaira who inspired the burning of Persepolis. My first book report in class was on Euripides' Alcestis, and the teacher did not believe I had actually read it until I retold her the plot, point by point. (It's rather depressing to think that I read the bulk of good serious literature by the time I was 15, and then switched to frivolity :D). My parents gave me Montet's "Everyday life among Egyptians" and the plays of Aeschyus for New Year's, and I cried my eyes out at the Polish movie adaptation of Boleslav Prus' "The Pharaoh," about a fictional Ramses XIII, someone too good for his times (of course, Prus wrote it as allegory, but I was entirely too young to notice).

The first book I read in Engish was Bulwer-Lytton's "Last Days of Pompeii." I understood one word in three but I was determined: it had ancient Greeks and Romans after all.

The obsession abated quite a bit since, but I still can't resist anything set in ancient Egypt, Greece, or Rome. Sometimes it leads to quite amazing treasures (Mary Renault's "The King Must Die" about Theseus is one of my favorite books, and so is Henryk Sienkewitz's "Quo Vadis"), and sometimes it leads to...Hercules movies.

Basically, this is a very long and rambly prologue to two more entrants into "I only read/watched it because it had the ancient world connection." One is good. One...well, it's better than the Hercules movies. Somewhat.

The good entrant is "Julius Caesar," the 4 hour TV miniseries made a couple of years ago that was shown on TNT last night. Of course, they simplify history (the last hour simply flies by. Bam, Pompey's head, Bam, Cleopatra etc etc), and they change events somewhat to suit the story (I don't think Sulla ever wanted Caesar's heart to feed to his dogs), but overall, it is amazingly good (from what I've seen so far. I skimmed it). Head and shoulders above the dreadful "Empire" that aired earlier in the summer. Why?

1. They do not create a fictional character and make him the focus, which is plainly absurd when the real story is teeming with interesting men. Nope, Caesar is the main character, and secondary characters are Brutus, Pompey, Cato, Sulla etc, not fictional gladiators.

2. They might change events a bit, but they don't change the basic sense of the character (as in the horrible "Empire" where Augustus turned into a Warrior Stud, Cassius into a rapist of Caesar's sister, and Anthony a completely useless hand-in-glove with Brutus wimp). Caesar might not have wished to pardon Vercingetorix (in this version he does, but he is constrained by the wishes of the mob and his sense of political advantage. Points to them for keeping the conversation really private, so it could have concievably happened), but they don't change stuff about basic character of their historical protagonists. And the scene with Pompey telling Caesar to get out of Sulla's Rome and giving him his ring as a token, probably also didn't happen, but it makes dramatic sense (unlike Empire where their meddling just made the events less interesting), doesn't screw up the characters, and plus...I get excited seeing Pompey on screen. Poor Magnus never gets much screen or page time (anyone know a good book on him, fiction or non, let me know), but he does in this version. The fact that he is played by the hot Chris Noth doesn't hurt :D

3. Little things make me happy. Like the scene of Caesar refusing to divorce Cornelia on Sulla's orders, or Cato killing himself, or Julia dying in childbirth, to Caesar dying under Pompey's statue. They show all of these!

4. The epilogue cracks me up. Basically, it rounds up the remaining characters and no matter what, ends up with "he/she killed himself." Accurate, but depressing.

Of course, the actor playing Caesar is competent but has no Caesar-like charisma, but overall, a worthwhile 4 hours. I only wish it was on DVD, because I missed the first 15 minutes or so.

And now, the entrant in the "purely awful" category. Conn Igguldsen's "Emperor" series. It is supposed to follow the life of Julius Caesar. "Supposed" being the operative word. If he wrote a fantasy with this plot, it would be passable. As a retelling of Caesar's life, it is notable mainly for "he changed what? what is he going to do next?" feeling. It's a page-turner in that way, and keeps the reader in suspense because it bears little to no resemblance to real history. For all I know, Caesar will kill Brutus in the end. OK, there is way too much wrong in these books for me to write it up (not helped by the fact that the author randomly changes things for NO reason, e.g. making Marius Caesar's uncle on the wrong side of the family. Why? How does it concievably matter? Why screw it up?), but I have to share some "gems:"

Did you know Brutus and Caesar were childhood best friends who grew up together? Brutus' mom was a whore though.

Both Brutus and Caesar compete for the love of a really boring slave girl throughout. But Caesar has a really unfair advantage as Brutus is sent to learn the army ropes (as a great honor) as a simple rank legionnaire.

Marius does not come back and retake the Consulship for the 7th time. He just dies.

Cornelia, Caesar's wife? Evil Roman guy (Cato, I think. It hurts my head to remember) murders her. So he gets promptly murdered as well. Nice to know all the historians were wrong.

And so forth. It is so bad it passes the realm of badness and becomes camp instead.

And I end this ramble by soliciting book recs set in ancient world. Hopefully not ones where Cato murders Cornelia :)

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dangermousie

November 2012

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