a Beauty and the Beast tangent
So I’m on a Beauty and the Beast kick right now and I mentioned to Ted yesterday morning that if your favourite fairy tale is BatB (as mine has always been), that it is very likely that at some point quite early on you realize that having the Beast transform back into the Prince is a terrible disappointment. The thing is you (we, Beauty) have fallen in love with the *Beast*. We want the *Beast*. We don’t want a stupid prince.
Ted’s response to this was pretty much O.O
So he mentioned the topic to his (all women) gaming group last night.
(An aside: he said this morning, with a sort of weak grimness, “Talking about blood magic w/a bunch of women is…a whole different thing. Thank god I’ve been married almost 20 years. Teenage me would have run away screaming. I almost did anyway.”)
ANYWAY, not the point!
The point: he mentions the falling in love with the Beast, not the prince, thing.
The entire gaming group, at once, with explosive hand gestures, cried, “YES!!!”
Ted is like, “That story is apparently just a completely different experience for boys than girls…”
And, I mean, look: that was part of the appeal of the 1980s TV show, right? Vincent was never going to turn into the prince. He already *was* the prince, but he was *always* going to be the Beast. HOW CAN THAT BE ANYTHING BUT PERFECT?
BatB rewatch: Eps 1-4
Arright, to start with you should actually go read Steve Aryan’s commentary, because it’s much more thoughtful and insightful than my own, and he’s my co-pilot on this BatB re-watch. :)
Here is my relationship with Beauty and the Beast in a nutshell: I had never read GREAT EXPECTATIONS when the first episode aired, and did so just to find out what the last chapter was, because in the hospital at the end Catherine wonders if someone might read the last chapter to her, because Vincent has been reading it to her and didn’t quite have time to finish before she left Below and went back to her world.
It never occurred to me to just read the last chapter.
When Ted put the first Beauty and the Beast DVD in for me I said, “Once upon a time, in the city of New York…” and a moment or three later the first episode came up with that title. Ted looked at me with an expression of bemused horror, pity and affection, and said, “Those are brain cells you’re never going to get back.”
In my defense, I said, I had looked at the DVD information prior to him putting it in; I wasn’t sure I’d have remembered the first episode title, otherwise. (I wasn’t sure I wouldn’t have, either.)
What I did not say is, “No, the brain cells dedicated to knowing the lyrics to the BatB theme music, those I’ll never get back!” But the only reason I didn’t say it was I didn’t think of it at the moment. :)
It’s a little odd to watch a show that aired when I was a teen and to have it look like a period piece. I can’t decide which is more disconcerting, the clothes or the cars. The cars are all, well, mid-to-late-80s make, long boxy things, and when there’s an establishing shot of Catherine getting out of a taxi, the taxi tends to fill the entire screen, left to right. It’s very strange.
And the clothes, oh dear. Linda Hamilton is a petite woman, and the oversized boxy 80s styles utterly swamp her. She looks fantastic on the occasions she’s wearing something fitted, but mostly she looks like she’s borrowed a large man’s clothing (even the skirts. Perhaps she knows Billy?). And high-waisted pants aren’t flattering on short-torsoed people, a fact which never occurred to me in the 80s but which is quite clear after a decade or so of low-riders.
I’d forgotten that Catherine goes to a fight teacher in the second episode and learns how to take care of herself. She actually handles herself quite respectably in the episodes where she gets in trouble (which is virtually all of them), leaving me to wonder, now, why exactly Vincent has to risk being seen to rescue her time and again. This is a somewhat different take than my original Catherine/Linda Hamilton mindset, which came after watching BatB and only *then* seeing Terminator. I spent the entirety of that film waiting for Vincent to show up and rescue her. :)
Ron Perlman, even under all the makeup, looks very young. Linda Hamilton and Roy Dotrice not so much, largely because pretty much everything I’ve seen them in has been from a 5-7 year period around BatB, so they just look like themselves. Perlman, however, has worked a lot more/I’m aware/have seen more of his work in the, oh, twenty years post-BatB, so his youth is striking. And I’d forgotten how much acting he does with his eyes, and how much body language he employs, and to what effect, so that’s kind of cool to watch. Awfully good actor, that man.
Somewhere around the third episode I remembered why it was I really loved this show. It’s not just that Vincent is rawr, though at sixteen that was certainly a large part of it (and who are we kidding, at 40 he still works for me). But in the long term, and in lasting effect, what really made the show wonderful is the poetry, and Perlman’s gift for reading it. I was never much of a poetry person before BatB; he changed that. (And made me like my name. I don’t particularly care for being called Catherine. Ron Perlman is the only person on Earth I’d introduce myself as Catherine to in hopes that he’d actually call me that.) In fact, in the pre-Internet days when BatB was on, I went to quite a lot of trouble to look up the poem from the last Catherine episodes–Dylan Thomas’s “And Death Shall Have No Dominion”–which probably changed my relationship with poetry forever (and to the good).
more media plans :)
I just discovered Ron Perlman is on Twitter (he’s perlmutations, since the resounding response from my Twitter feed was WHAT WHERE?!) and this has somehow immediately blown out of control into an 2014 International Re-Watch Beauty and the Beast-fest, so, y’know, if you’ve been meaning to do that, we’ll be doing that next year. An episode a week, probably, starting early (but probably not instantly) in the new year, with live tweeting. :)
Along with re-reading Guy Gavriel Kay’s novels and clearning out my TBR pile. That should pretty well take care of any time for media consumption that I’ve got. :)
So the GGK thing: my plan is to start in January with the Fionavar Tapestry and work my way through the dozen books one a month in publication order, with a discussion post at…let’s see.
Maybe the around first day of the following month, so anybody who wants to read along has the whole month to get it read? So THE SUMMER TREE’s discussion would come in early February, and the last discussion for RIVER OF STARS, would actually be in Jan 2015. Or should I just post whenever I finish reading a book? :)
best. friends. EVER.
I just got a package in the mail from the redoubtable Blue Haired Angie. This is always a fun thing, so I opened it quite happily, and discovered within the two Beauty and the Beast comics Wendy Pini did based on the late 1980s television show. And I thought, “AWWW,” and smiled a lot, because that was very wonderful and thoughtful of Angie, and well, she couldn’t possibly know that I already owned them. So I plunked down happily to read the note that Angie sent along with the comics and halfway through the note I went… *!!!!!!* and opened them and
OH MY GOD THEY’RE SIGNED
I have the best friends *ever*. EVER. Apparently Angie found them three days before Wondercon and knew Wendy would be there, and SQUEEEEEE! BEST. FRIENDS. *EVER*. <3 <3 <3 On another topic entirely (
fivethree things make a post!), I was doing Pilates this morning and although I realize it’s anthropomorphizing, I swear sometimes my random shuffle on the MP3 player does things on purpose. There’s a coda from the Young Guns II soundtrack that ended up on my playlist, just one line by Keifer Sutherland: “You rode a fifteen year old boy straight to his grave, and the rest of us straight to hell.”
Which, this morning, was followed immediately by “Walk Through the Fire” from Buffy. I love it when that happens. :)
In case you missed the Friday posting, I’m running an experiment, and have put an Old Races (Janx and Daisani) short story up for commission through fundable.com. All the details are here, but I wanted to mention it again because I posted it kind of late on Friday and because the commission is now halfway to goal, which is kind of (okay, VERY) exciting. :)
Okay. Tons of work to do today (ranging from housecleaning to revising to making BBQ sauce and macaroni salad because we found pork ribs! yay!), so I’m going to toddle off quite happily and work and think of how splendid my friends are and just. Yeah. Thank you, Angie, and everybody who’s participated in the commission so far, and…just yeah. Thank you all. You’re awesome.