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Jan 14

TV series and how they end

Posted on Thursday, January 14, 2016 in Fandom

Some TV series end too soon, others end up going on for far too long, but some may end at just the right time.

I can tell you one series that went on for too long (or rather could have stopped sooner, even though the fans really wanted more). Roswell. Season 3 was complete crap. It may sound harsh, but it ruined everything. Knowing what I know now, I’d much have preferred to part with the series while it was still good.

It was a bit similar with Veronica Mars, but in comparison, that season 3 was excellent compared to Roswell’s, it was just a lot worse than season 1 and 2.

I apologize for bringing up a very old TV series – The House of Eliott, but I loved that series and I thought it was (gasp) a lot better than for instance Downton Abbey, which I did nevertheless quite enjoy too. The House of Eliott ended far too soon and I think it would have been an excellent idea to end it with a movie. Imagine the glamour of all those 1920’s dresses… And I’m not even that big a fan of fashion. I’m more of a history fan.

It may seem odd to mention Sliders in the same context as The House of Eliott. I mean, there will obviously be no glamorous dresses in Sliders. However, I think a movie at the end might have helped the series. If there could be no movie, then sadly I think the series should have ended sooner.

Prey ended far too soon. It was a very exciting series and I would have loved to see at least one more season before it ended.

The X files – well, I’d much rather have had it end when Mulder left, than have to suffer Doggett in it. This is a series that went on for a very long time and maybe it would have been better to just accept that it was over, than have it go on and lose its quality. On the other hand, I understand that there are viewers who actually liked Doggett and kept enjoying the series up until the end. Or did they really? Who could stand to lose Alex Krycek the way he left the series? What a crap ending for his character.

Horatio Hornblower is a series that I stopped watching before its end, because I heard that Archie Kennedy, one of my two favorite characters in the series, was going to die. I didn’t want to see that, even though there’s always fan fiction, right? I just decided that I’d had enough of the series. They could have given him a better ending if they wanted to get rid of him. Sure, having him die probably gave them plenty of opportunity for Hornblower angst, but frankly, they could have had that some other way, and left Archie alive and well, but not actually with Horatio. Why not?

Star Trek The Next Generation was a series that I think probably ended at just the right time. It went on for quite a long time and although as always the quality of the different episodes varied, I think it ended without disappointment. And there was a movie or two which was great.

In general, I can only say that if a series has to end, it has to end well. No stupid cliffhangers that lead nowhere since the series is canceled before there’s a resolution to the ending of season 1. There should always be closure of some kind.

What do you think? Do you have any examples of series that ended too soon or too late or at just the right time? Are you as annoyed by series ending badly or do you just move on to the next one?

Dec 23

What would Conan Doyle think?

Posted on Wednesday, December 23, 2015 in Fandomlinks, Literature

I just read an article about literary spinoffs.

Maybe most of these won’t be to my taste. I’ve already read a few ‘modern’ continuations of classic novels and didn’t like them very much, unfortunately. Also, I’ve read reviews and articles about others and found that I probably wouldn’t care much for them either. But that’s just me. Some people might actually love these new versions of their old idols.

What interested me, as a fan fiction writer, was the following:

“Would Conan Doyle have objected to any of this? I like to think not. When the American actor William Gillette was seeking to insert a romantic interest into his stage play featuring Sherlock Holmes, he cabled Conan Doyle with the question May I marry him? – to which the author is reputed to have replied You may marry him, murder him, or do anything you like to him.

Writers ever since have been taking him at his word.”

The quote is from the article I mention above. Sounds like Sir Arthur Conan Doyle wouldn’t object to anything we might make up about Sherlock Holmes or for that matter, anything authorised writers and tv producers might make of him. That’s good to know.

Dec 14

My thoughts about the movie Gilda

Posted on Monday, December 14, 2015 in Classics, Fandom, Movies

One of the classic black and white movies that I really love is Gilda. I also like Spellbound and Casablanca, to name a few.

What people say about this movie is that it’s a covert way of depicting a (happy) gay relationship. At least that’s what seems to be carried over from the play or original script that the movie is based on.

You don’t get that many clues about what’s really going on. Johnny and Gilda just sort of show up out of the blue. I have tried to put two and two together over the years, when I’ve watched and re-watched the movie several times.

First of all, Johnny and Gilda come from New York. They’re probably quite poor. Their career is being professional dance partners. Maybe they also make a little extra on the side but Gilda insists that she’s never been unfaithful to Johnny and I believe that. So if someone’s cheating, it’s Johnny. He’s Irish (I think). Johnny Farrell, that’s Irish, right? He’s probably quite temperamental and jealous. They’ve come out to South America during the second world war to make more money. Why, I’m not sure. The US wasn’t involved in the war in the same way as the European countries, obviously. There should have been money to make right there.

After a while, Gilda can’t take Johnny’s jealousy and leaves him. While they’re apart, Johnny meets a rich man called Ballin Mundson who owns a gambling hall. He makes Johnny manager of the gambling hall. You get hints that the staff doesn’t like it. They only feel contempt for Johnny. For instance, Uncle Tio (which, if my high school Spanish isn’t too rusty, means Uncle Uncle) calls Johnny a ‘peasant’ which probably stands for something else, also derogatory) Ballin and Johnny also have a really weird conversation with a sort of double entendre. Johnny basically has to promise that there are no women for him, which Johnny loves to promise, since he’s angry with Gilda.

Now, I might have a dirty mind, but I interpret that as a sort of code for Ballin and Johnny getting involved in some sort of gay sexual entanglement, though not really an equal relationship. It’s more like a rich older man picking up a street kid to take advantage of him. For instance, later in the movie, Johnny is referred to as a boy, who will grow up unless you watch him closely.

That brings me to my next point: I’m thinking Johnny and Gilda are supposed to be a lot younger than the actors playing them. They are, if I’m not mistaken, about thirty, while the characters are probably about twenty.

One day, Ballin goes away on a trip. When he returns, he has married Gilda, which is a nasty surprise for Johnny, who probably feels as if he’s moved up in life and also taught Gilda a lesson. Gilda too, has a nasty surprise when she sees Johnny and probably puts two and two together.

There’s a lot of talk that’s supposed to mean something else. (About who taught what to whom and similar hints about certain activities that mean something other than the obvious – like swimming). You learn that Gilda’s superstitious, so when Ballin proposes a toast (“Death to the wench who hurt Johnny” or something along those lines), she’s forced to go along with it, even though it scares her.

Another thing about Gilda is that you never find out her real name. She’s always just Gilda then Mrs Mundson and later Mrs Farrell (which is a little spoiler).

The tension and the jealousy between Johnny and Gilda keeps growing and Ballin just loves it. It seems he gets off on fanning the flames of their conflict.

Gilda plays up to Johnny’s jealousy (he claims to be keeping an eye on her for Ballin’s sake, but it’s obvious he’s jealous on his own account). She goes out with other men, she puts on shows that are not just musical but rather provocative (at least I’m assuming they would be perceived as such back then). In one, she ‘strips’ though all she’s taking off is jewelry and gloves.

There are also other, exterior factors that increase the tension. Ballin does business with the Nazis and he is threatened, disappears, is believed dead….

I’m not going to go into every single part of the plot, but one day, Johnny wakes up and realizes that he’s been wrong about Gilda and for a second, he’s even prepared to grovel. If I’d been Gilda I would have let him grovel for just a moment longer, but she’s just so happy he’s prepared to make up, so she accepts his unspoken apology and that’s pretty much it. Everything works out. Even Johnny realizes she’s never been unfaithful. And Uncle Tio eventually agrees to stop calling him a ‘peasant’ and refers to him as a gentleman, which I interpret as a sign of Johnny’s having grown up and Ballin losing his influence over him.

The bottom line is this: I don’t see Gilda as the evil woman coming between two happy men involved in a happy gay relationship. In fact, she’s a victim, someone who ends up in the crossfire between two men fighting over her and probably other issues as well, that we don’t get to see too clearly, possibly their involvement. Johnny too, is in a way a victim, a victim of his own temper and his ambitions. He doesn’t seem to see why everyone’s contemptuous of him or that’s he’s being cruel to Gilda.

Nov 11

Blistering barnacles! Tintin is back – with added swearwords

Posted on Wednesday, November 11, 2015 in Fandomlinks


Hergé’s adventurer is born again for the iPad age, with a new show and a digital project that puts all his expletives back in. The world’s top Tintinologist talks quiffs, colonialism – and beating Armstrong to the moon.

Read more here.

Oct 25

Fictional worlds to escape to

Posted on Sunday, October 25, 2015 in Fandom

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about being able to (literally) escape into a fantasy world – that is a book or other fandom universe – and it occurred to me that the books I love (or other fandoms) don’t necessarily provide a good safe world to live in.

For instance, as much as I love Tolkien’s world in LOTR or even The Hobbit, I doubt if I’d like to live there. Unless there was some era that was very peaceful and prosperous (and so didn’t provide material for a very good story, but a better living environment).

The same goes for many of my favorite fictional worlds.

Take Gregory Frost’s Shadowbridge – an incredibly fascinating ‘universe’ but not one where I’d feel safe, unfortunately.

It’s the same with Tad Williams’ The War of the Flowers. Such a fascinating world, but not a very pleasant one for humans. (In case you haven’t read it, it’s about a variety of Faerie.

Also, the Sabriel/Abhorsen series by Garth Nix about the Old Kingdom. On the ‘civilised’ side of the Wall, I’d probably be able to live quite well, but it seems to be set at the beginning of the 20th century so that’s probably not very equal, unfortunatey.

However, I was thinking that Dinotopia would be just right to escape to. It’s a really interesting and beautiful world, yet it’s also more or less safe and pleasant to live in. I’d love to take everything and just go there and never come back.

Ursula K LeGuin’s Earthsea would probably work too, but I’m not too happy about the lack of equality for women on most islands.

I realize that I’ve just mentioned books so far, so I’ll just throw in Star Trek (TNG, Voyager etc). That world would probably be great to live in, if I didn’t end up in any of the war zones. After all, they have replicators, medical tricorders and a more or less completely equal society, not only between the sexes, but also in other ways. There’s no poverty, no currency even (in the Federation anyway).

Some of Diana Wynne Jones’ books will probably do as well, for instance her Chrestomanci series. As long as I didn’t get involved in any magical crisis. Unfortunately, I probably don’t have any talent at all for magic and if I did, it would probably be weak and/or sort of backwards.

I can’t say that I feel as strongly about Maria Lang/Dagmar Lange’s mystery classics, but close enough. To me it’s a very harmless, safe, yet fun world. It ‘looks’ colorful in my mind’s eye. The only drawback would be the lack of equality between the sexes. Of course, Puck doesn’t have to deal with that. Her two guys treat her really well so she probably doesn’t even know other women face discrimination.

To sum this up: I think it’s a tie between Dinotopia and Star Trek. Either would work great if I could only find a way to sneak in and never come back.

Oct 1

Why Writers Make The Best Friends [Infographic]

Posted on Thursday, October 1, 2015 in Fandomlinks

Writers make great friends (just not for the reasons you may think).

Check it out here.

Sep 30

So many different fandoms…

Posted on Wednesday, September 30, 2015 in Fandom

Sometimes, I’ve been thinking about how many different fandoms there must be. I encounter other fanfic writers online and many times they have quite a few fandoms too, but not one single fandom is the same as any of mine. Or they might have one or two in common with me but nothing else. I write or have written in about 100 fandoms, counting the Nordic ones, but of course I’ve read and been involved with many other fandoms that I haven’t written in. At least several hundred. Especially if I’m not counting just tv and movies, but books too and I know there are plenty of other mediums as well. Can there be literally millions of fandoms? I suppose it’s possible. In a way, I wish there were better ways of finding the ones I’ll like and passing by all the ones that don’t seem interesting to me. It would make things easier. Now I’m not just talking about fandoms I might write about, but also any I might like to read and/or watch.

How many fandoms are you involved in? Do you know?

Sep 22

New fanfic and fandom – again

Posted on Tuesday, September 22, 2015 in Fandom

I’m almost embarrassed to flood you guys with my latest writing efforts, but well, since I have a little more to say than just ‘hey, I’ve written another fanfic’ I will do it anyway. And of course you can ignore it if you prefer.

This new fanfic is also in a new fandom for me (to write in). It’s Desperate Romantics. I have mixed feelings about it, but since I did have an idea and since I got it to work for me, I decided to write it. A couple of years back I wrote a review of the series and in that I mentioned my mixed feelings about the setting and the people.

First of all, the women’s situation made me sad. Secondly, though I’m absolutely crazy about Aidan Turner, I didn’t like his character very much. I found him too – coarse, too unfaithful and too false. I also didn’t like most of the other characters, though they did fascinate me. The only one I could really like was John Millais, because he was such a good guy, but at the same time, he bored me a little. Typical, right? One is never quite happy.

Another opinion I have concerning this series, won’t make much sense to English speakers but I’ll mention it anyway. For years now, Swedish tv (and the ones who set the titles for movies as well) have chosen not to translate most of the English titles. On the one hand, I almost prefer them not to try if they’re going to substitute one English title for another, instead of translating it, but I would much prefer them to make an effort to find a Swedish title. Sure, sometimes it’s not going to be nearly as good as the English one that might have a sort of pun or double meaning in it, but on the other hand, they should make the effort. This is our language. We can’t give up on it, just because some simple souls find English ‘cooler’. Sure, it’s cool, but so is Swedish. So, to summarise, this series has the exact same name in Swedish as in English. I’m very disappointed. I can think of a couple of Swedish translations that would work, but no one even tried. Really sad.

Sorry about the whining.

Sep 20

What genre is your book?

Posted on Sunday, September 20, 2015 in Fandomlinks, Literature

What is genre? Genre was originally how a bookstore shelved fiction so the readers could find the stories they preferred. Over time, each genre has grown to have its own defining characteristics, based on what its readers want and expect.

Read more here.

Sep 19

Mr Robot

Posted on Saturday, September 19, 2015 in Fandom, Reviews, TV series

I just watched the first episode of Mr Robot. It was really interesting. Maybe this is an unfair comparison, but it’s a whole lot better and intelligent than Warehouse 13.

When I first heard that a Swedish actor was going to be in it, I was actually slightly disappointed. To be honest, not all Swedish actors are any good, but I suppose I’m being unfair again. No country in the world could possibly have only great actors. And in this case, my fears were unfounded. This guy, that I hadn’t heard of before, seems to be doing ok.

Unfortunately, this doesn’t seem to be fan fiction material, but not everything has to be. I have my hands full as it is, primarily with fan fiction, but also original fiction, so I’m not complaining.

This type of series (about computers, the internet and hacking) might not be to everyone’s taste, but it is also a thriller, if that sounds more appealing.


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