July 6, 2011

Review of Game of Thrones Author's #5 in 7 Book Series + Musa Choreographs Guy's Sword Dance + RA Comments on Capt America Art Dept + Game of Thrones Withdrawal Therapy + The Tudors Series + All Things RA as Advertised:)

BOOK REVIEW:Geo Martin's 5th vol "A Dance with Dragons" in his Song of Ice and Fire series:


Viewers offer variety of the Game of Thrones musical theme:
http://blogs.tv3.cat/seriesenblog.php?itemid=41124#more    My fav..


POLL:What Color is Your Psyche?...answer the blogthing survey and enter your psyche color in latest poll...


Showtime sold the rights to The Tudors to the BBC, but they retain their website--filled with great background material. Chas Brandon ages well ;) Here he is in the final series..details on all 4 available..

                                          Spooks & The Tudors merge....


                                    BLOOPERS - happens to the best of ‘em :)


Still some activity at the Tudorswiki. http://tudorswiki.sho.com/page/SITEMAP+of+the+Tudors+Wiki

There are several stunningly beautiful landscape scenes in each series - unfortunately, unless you're watching the dvds, only indoor pix are available.  Interior sets/cinematography are almost equally as gorgeous as the outdoors...sumptuous costumes, candle-lit court revelries/chapels/ *love* scenes scorching hot enough to provide central heating for the entire palace.. (the latter are a bit overdone at times--the story is compelling enough without needing to flash detailed anatomy lessons every other scene:)  *that said---just might need to re-watch several in the Chas Brandon classroom..giggle*

Writer Hirst said the Brandon character was used as the conscience of the piece.  Guilt did manage to penetrate his emotional armor, unlike he life-long friend Henry VIII..

Brandon, Duke of Suffolk, escorts Anne of Cleeves.  Historical records show that her betrothed, HenryVIII, said she was horse-faced.  Might've been true of the authentic female but certainly not an accurate description of the actress chosen to play her in the series.  The character gave the impression of being an innocent, naive young woman who was ill equipped (that's a compliment:) to deal with the aging king's personal demands.

This is not Anne of Cleves,,,hmmm, doesn't appear to be Anne Boleyn either(she's dark haired)..obviously, you can't keep track of Henry's amorous adventures without a SCOREcard *teehee*

EXCERPT: 'Albion's Seed' by historian David Hackett Fischer, pub 1989..p.445
"THE QUAKER GALILEE": England's North Midlands
These emigrants [to colonial America] came not from North Midlands in general, but mainly from the Pennine moors and uplands which ran in a northerly way from the Peak District of Derbyshire to the Fells of Yorkshire and Cumbria.  This was the highest ground in England.  It encompassed the six counties of Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Lancashire, east Cheshire, west Yorkshire and southern Westmorland.  The Pennine Moors are Bronte country.  Wuthering Heights and Jane Eyre were set in the West Riding of Yorkshire, where Charlotte, Anne and Emily Bronte had grown up in the village of Haworth.  Their writings are uncertain guides to the culture of dissent in this region, but powerful evocations of its climate and terrain.
Later in the modern era, this area became the industrial heartland of Britain...
This region shared a common culture condition, and also a common history.  The North Midlands more than any other part of England, had been colonized by Viking invaders.  Historian Hugh Barbour writes, "...in the central region of the North, the Pennine moorland, where Quakerism was strongest, the villages were mainly Norse in origin and name, and Norse had been spoken there in the Middle Ages.  From the Norsemen came the custom of moots, or assemblies in the open at a standing-stone or hilltop grave, which may have influenced the Quakers' love for such meeting places.  The Norse custom was individual ownership of houses and fields; the Norman system of feudal manors imposed in the 12thC was always resented."
The Norman conquest of the north had been particularly brutal, and had left a region bitterly divided against itself.  Its governing families were culturally distinct from the governed, and long remembered their Norman-French origins.  Many remained Roman Catholic more than a century after Henry VIII broke with the Pope.  In the 17thC many of this elite became Royalist.  But shepherds and farmers of the north thought of themselves as a race apart from their overlords.  Their religion was evangelical and Protestant.  They felt themselves to be aliens from the schools and churches and courts and political institutions of the region---all of which remained securely in the hands of the ruling few.  This attitude entered into the theology of the Quakers, and profoundly shaped their social purposes.  In some respects, the Quaker culture was that of its native region; in others it was a reaction against it.
...This was the region where the Quakers first appeared.  It long remained their strongest base.  The founder, George Fox(1624-91), was a Leicestershire weaver's son who developed his doctrine of the Inner Light by 1646 and made his early converts mostly in the North Midlands.  By the year 1654, 85% of Quaker meetings were in the northern counties of England.
The Quaker founders of Pennsylvania and West Jersey came from every part of England.  But one English region stook out above the rest...The Friends migration drew especially from the counties of Cheshire, Lancashire, Yorkshire, DBY, Notts.  In one list of English immigrants who arrived at Philadelphia between the years 1682 and 1687, more than 80% came from these 5 contiguous counties...The same pattern also appeared among immigrants who settled in Pennsylvania's Bucks County before 1687.[named by Wm Penn after his family's Buckinghamshire UK roots] 2/3 came from counties of Yorks, Lancs, Cheshire, DBY, Notts and Staffordshire...A sizeable number also came from English settlements in Ireland.
Wm Penn was often reprimanded by other English gentlemen for mixing with Quakers.  In 1671 Sir John Robinson told him "I vow Mr. Penn I am sorry for you.  Your are an ingenious gentleman, all the world must...allow you that, and you have a plentiful estate.  Why should you render yourself unhappy by associating with such a simple people?"
To this complaint, Penn answered that he favored "honestly simple" people above the "ingeniously wicked."  In the Friends' migration, he found the company that he preferred to keep.
That said...the writer goes on to state that within the first generation of settlement was a small core of  Philadelphia Quaker families - 85% were related to one another.
The Dilworth, Waln, Pemberton, Harris and Morris families all hailed from Lancashire.  The Sharplesses, Janneys, Simcocks, Stanfields and Brasseys were from Cheshire.  The Matlocks, Buntings and Bartrams came from Derbyshire, the Yardlys and Rudyards from Staffordshire; Hopkinsons from Nottinghamshire; Holmeses from Yorkshire; Whartons from Westmorland; Kirkbrides from Cumberland; and Fenwicks from Northumberland.
There were Buckinghamshire connections related to Penn himself.
Yet another group consisted of Quakers from Wales---David Lloyd and his rival kinsman Thos Lloyd, and also the Jones, Owen, Meredith, Cadwalader and Painter families.
...The Norrises from London by way of Jamaica, the Carpenters from Sussex by way of Barbados, the Dickinsons from Jamaica and the Rawles family from Cornwall.  In the New World they were joined by German and Dutch Quakers.
In Bucks County there was a Quaker connection headed by Jeremiah Langhorne...all came to be connected in a great cousinage with Philadelphia families:  Reads, Logans, Prestons, Smiths, Powels, Morrises, Shoemakers, Lloyds, Carpenters, Cadwaladers.

Fastforward from Henry VIII to a truer heart in the form of RA's Claude Monet and his beautiful painting 'Saint Lazare Train Station'...


Musa said...

Ricrar! I'm watching the Tudor's right now on BBCA, love Sam Neil as Cardinal Wolsey.

Deepest thanks for posting my Guy vid - always much appreciated. Next time we see Richard with a sword it will be Orcrist.

Love that we're getting a surprise a day from RA with Captain America PR. Not too far to go now before we'll see him on the big screen.

Sue said...

I notice that Richard has given away the ending of the Hobbit (1) film (little tinker, smacked bum from Peter Jackson!) I had wondered where it would end and it seems about right what I had imagined (when they emerge from the mountain, of course the dragon is still alive at that point). Mind you it looks like that in part two of the Hobbit poor old Thorin will pop his clogs pretty early on in the film, drat! I wonder if the death scene will be similar to Guy's. I'm think it may well be. He is a stubborn old bugger that Thorin, why didn't he agree to share the spoils and have done with it! Can't wait to see Richard wielding Orcrist, he does sword scenes so well and I'm sure it will all look very dramatic and exciting. Wonder where Cate Blanchett comes into it? Will she give our Thorin a good send of? (Lucky girl!At least he's likely to go with a smile on his chops!)

RiCrAr said...

Sam Neil and Jeremy Northram gave stellar performances as Wolsey and Thos More, didn't they Musa(also the actor playing Cardinal Fischer). Northram's More even upstaged the wonderful actor who played him in A Man for all Seasons.

I watched Jeremy's final scene last night with tearful eyes when he quoted More's final words (to the effect) "I've served and loved my king - but God first." *sob* Altho, I'd never read that More had burned at the stake 6 men he considered heretics. I'm curious whether that's a fact or added for dramatic purposes. Makes me somewhat less sympathetic towards him if it's factual history. Cannot be denied he had the courage of his convictions unlike tens of thousands of others at the time. There's fascinating websites describing priests holes in manor houses - large portion of those considered 'nobility' stubbornly resisted reformation(in secret) for centuries. As you no doubt are aware, Cardinal Neumann's story is fascinating.

I don't remember Katherine of Aragon ever given so much attention as in Hirst's Tudors series. If the actress is feigning a Spanish accent(probably so because her surname is Irish) it's splendid, isn't it. Must admit I sometimes find her extreme piety slightly annoying. He's outta there woman - move on! haha easy to say when you're not striving to have your child again pronounced legitimate. I'd probably scratch his eyes out if he treated me that way.

They did seem to keep Henry sensitive to Katherine's plight until he became truly desperate for a male heir. Got what he deserved for not being content with a female heir, didn't he;)

RiCrAr said...

Hi Sue, when did Richard give away the ending of TH? He'll be taken behind the woodshed for that one - I understand Jackson can be quite adamant about secrecy. Poor Richard used the excuse of concern for loose lips as the reason he won't participate in social network sites.

Drat! is right if we lose Thorin early in the 2nd film:( I've read his dying words -- don't you know Richard will relish every moment of it. IMO, Jackson chose him for the role knowing he can slay orcs with aplomb, and then almost instantaneously break our hearts with movingly sensitive line delivery. He recognized his unusually wide acting range. From tender feelings to enraged killing machine - and it's all good in between as well, isn't it;)

Didn't Cate Blanchett play the ethereal elfen queen in the Ring trio of films? Wouldn't she reclaim that role in The Hobbit? From your mind to Sir Peter's ears re some amorous feelings between her and Thorin. *please God* :)

MsG said...

Anne of Cleeves was played (surprisingly) by our exceptionally talented Devon-born Joss Stone of pop/jazz singer fame....don't know whether she's made it in the States yet?

Sue said...


Richard gave the game away as to the ending of the Hobbit (Part One) in his recent interview. Personally I thought it might end where they were all inside the mountain and the dragon blocked them in the entrance, but I suppose it's a better ending to let them escape, just thought my ending would encourage the little ones to want to see Part Two to see what happens.

Talking bloopers, I remember watching a programme where Richard and Danielle were seen filming N&S and every time the stone was thrown (remember where she is shielding our lovely John Thornton from the marauding mob?)and she was meant to do the scene where Richard bends down to her after she has been hit with it, she starts giggling and laughing. I'd love to watch that again, anyone perhaps know where to find it?

I know Richard mentions this particular blooper in his interview on the CD for N&S. He said that everytime the imitation stone was thrown it usually missed or hit Daniella on the nose, but she still threw herself to the floor and creased up lauging, so they had to film the same scene time and time again! (Some actresses will do anything to get Richard's attention!)

I bet there were plenty of bloopers from RH1, 2 and 3! I'd love to see them!

RiCrAr said...

MsG, thx for the interesting Joss Stone information. I've never heard of her before this but that doesn't mean she isn't popular with the MTV crowd:) Her Anne of Cleves was very well done -- gentle and naive...she seemed like a swan out of water. Kept saying to myself during her scenes.."how could Henry call her horse-faced--she's very pretty."

They do show him warming up to her and finally showing an interest in *visitng her bed.* They'd already amicably decided to divorce - Anne had just beat him in a card game...she looked stunned when he made the request. That passage is most likely fiction, unless one of them kept a diary/journal of some sort. Michael Hirst read tons of research on the characters. The attention to detail is fantastic. There are very few movies/tv shows that I'm ever interested in watching more than once. This Tudors series is definitely one I'll return to many times, because both visually and historically it's tremendously thought provoking. Not just talking the Brandon scenes here :) (He is a hunk for all seasons *chuckle*)
As an example - I never understood what the Pilgrimage of Grace was about until this series.

Sue, That's a good point about RH bloopers. Wonder why we see so many from the tudors but never any from the RH or Spooks series?? Perhaps BBC has a policy against releasing them. wouldn't it be great to see the scene when Richie ran away with Guy? Richard said the crew was yelling STOP!! which he would've been happy to do if it was possible at the time. hahaha

See latest post for a mention of Richard in today's Hobbit in 5. Expect they'll focus on the Thorin character profile next week.

Sue said...


Re: Bloopers

I think Richard was pulling our legs about the horse running away with Guy, he's a little tinker for that. Or perhaps he over-egged what really happened. I bet Richard gets his lines right first time.

Apparently Captain America is to premiere in LA on the 19th of July. I doubt if Richard will be there, although he may make an appearance at the London premiere of the film. (Here's hoping anyway!)