This is my first podcast diary! I hope you had a chance to listen to our very first podcast, and if you didn’t you can find it here and it will be available through itunes in just a few days. On this first episode we discussed adaptations and reinterpretations of some of our favorite classics. There were a few notes I had that we didn’t get a chance to talk about so I wanted to explore them here.
The Lizzie Bennet Diaries
The Lizzie Bennet Diaries is a modern interpretation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. It was created by Hank Green and Bernie Su and lives at www.lizziebennet.com. LBD is a series of short video diaries. Each video is housed on youtube and is free to view, and the main story line exists within 100 videos. If you love them and want to crawl further down the rabbit hole then there are extra videos that go into the storylines of the some of the smaller characters. The videos average 6-12 minutes so if you wanted to watch one a day you could do it while you fix your hair in the morning, or if you are like me you could watch 32 videos in one day. Now what about LBD makes it fun and interesting and worth your time? Well, it is smart. The creators re-purpose the characters in very creative ways. Lizzie becomes a video blogger who is trying to find her way in the world, while her overbearing mother tries to find her a husband (some tropes are timeless). Her best friend Charlotte is her videographer and all around very smart tech person. As an example of a creative plot change, rather than marrying Mr. Collins, Charlotte agrees to take a job at his company. These characters truly feel like characters that would identify and befriend the characters that Austin created and that I loved so much. Plus, if you check this out and you love it as much as I do, they are currently airing Emma Approved which is an adaptation of Austin’s Emma.
Alice (Miniseries on ScyFy)
A total re-envisioning of Alice in Wonderland. Alice has grown up and is trying to find her father who disappeared when she was a child. While she looks she lives with her mother and works as a judo sensei. On her boyfriend Jack’s first trip to meet her mother he proposes with a unique family heirloom ring, but Alice refuses. After Jack leaves Alice realizes that he snuck the ring into her pocket she runs after him and finds him being abducted. Trying to save him she falls into the Looking Glass and is transported to Wonderland. There she meets Hatter (Andrew Lee Potts) who promises to help her find Jack and escape. The scene is very futuristic but all elements pull back to original story. Flying flamingos, The Hearts Casino, and even Kathy Bates as the Queen of Hearts hearkens back to the original story while adding some sass and interest to it. I watch this miniseries about once every six months because I like it that much so if you generally like things that come out of Scyfy you should give it a watch.
Much Ado About Nothing directed by Joss Whedon
Have you tried to read Shakespeare since you were forced to in high school? I have and I usually have to read the first act twice so I can get myself into Shakespeare mode before I actually understand what any of the words mean. Part of the problem is that the language is so different that I don’t inherently know where to put the inflection in the dialogue. This movie takes on that dialogue but puts it in a context that makes it relatable and understandable to me (aka not a shakespeare expert). Not only did I understand what was happening, I laughed at things that were funny and I sighed when something romantic happened. Plus the cast includes all the actors that we all know and love from Whedon’s other work. All in all this movie is definitely worth watching at least once and probably ten times.
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