Part ninety-nine in my comprehensive retrospective as I read the fiction in Realms of Fantasy and offer my thoughts, right up to the final issue. This time around I’ll be discussing the April 2011 issue.
The cover to this one is by Brom, which marks his fourth illustration in the magazine. This was a previously unpublished piece that we included as part of the Artists Gallery (as a two-page spread that you could remove as a mini-poster if you were so inclined—credit the poster idea to our publisher/graphic designer, Kim Richards Gilchrist) that I also ended up selecting for our cover. It ended up winning the Silver Award in the Editorial Section for Spectrum 18: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art. As you might imagine, this was a huge thrill for me.
The cover also notes this is a “Special Dark Fantasy Issue.” This marks the magazine’s first themed issue. We had plans for a Halloween issue back with Sovereign Media, but the magazine was canceled before this could take place and it was agreed by everyone that trying to make this issue happen while also transitioning a new publisher would be too much of a hassle, so we tabled this idea indefinitely (although the dark fantasy issue would probably have quite a bit in common with the Halloween issue). Then under Tir Na Nog Press we once again had plans for a themed issue, this time a Woman in Fantasy issue. But once again the magazine was canceled before this issue could take place, and we tabled this idea under the new publishers for the exact same reason …along with the fact that the dark fantasy issue had already been announced.
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Ah, episode nine. As just about everyone knows by now, you tune into episode nine of Game of Thrones to see the excrement hit the fan. Season one gave us the beheading of Ned Stark. Season two gave us the siege of King's Landing. Season three delivered the Red Wedding. And this year we got the Brawl at the Wall. Of course, the shock value at the end of episode eight with the death of Oberyn was worthy of an episode nine for those who didn't know what happens in the books, which I imagine only increased the anticipation of the much ballyhooed episode nine.( Read more...Collapse )
Oh, episode eight. I've been waiting for you for four seasons. Yes, I was waiting for other classic moments such Ned Stark's beheading and the Red Wedding, but in some ways I was anticipating this episode even more. As far as fantasy battles go in secondary worlds, the Red Viper vs. the Mountain is probably the greatest example of single combat I've ever read. Please note that I wrote "single combat," i.e. one on one. As I said to a Facebook friend, when we start comparing a battle like this against classic fantasy war scenes (examples: the siege of King's Landing, the siege of Helm's Deep, the siege of Dros Delnoch, etc.) it becomes a matter of apples and oranges. So I was extremely curious to see how they would bring this scene to life. So with this said, let's dive in. As always, the usual spoiler warnings for the books and the show apply.
So there is a lot to cover with this week's episode, and as always be read up on all the books and be up to date on the HBO series before reading this, unless you don't mind spoilers. Before I get into episode seven though, there were actually a few tidbits I forgot to bring up with episode six. So let's get that out of the way to start.( Read more...Collapse )