My litmus test for any adaptation of Pride & Prejudice essentially boils down to the scene where Mr. Darcy slights Lizzie. How the writers of the adaptation chose to make her respond pretty much establishes how well they know the character of Elizabeth Bennet.
I’m Particular about My Bennets: A Brief Reflection on a Few Adaptations of Elizabeth from Pride & Prejudice
Three seconds. Star Wars: Rebels told us a story and gave us a twist ending in three seconds primarily through staging and cinematography.
“Twin Suns” spoilers ahead.
A while back there was an analysis on Maul from Tumblr user scribbleymark, about how Maul is a sympathetic villain because he genuinely cares about certain individuals. This analysis has stayed with me throughout my watch of Star Wars: Rebels and influenced my understanding of the duel between Obi-Wan and Maul in the latest episode “Twin Suns.”
Spoilers beneath the cut.
One of the things that I deeply missed when stepping into Halo was the critical literary analyses. When I first found The Flood, it was when the pop culture was still feeling the after-effects of the Tolkien boom from the Lord of the Rings films. My family and I had stockpiles of books analyzing the films and the literary world of Middle Earth. A particular treasure of mine was a collection of essays from TheOneRing.net, which peeled back layers and layers of Tolkien’s work. I wanted to read pieces like that for Halo.
Today, not only have I found such pieces, I have been writing them as well. I created a Tumblr blog in 2014 initially as a place to explore Joseph Campbell’s monomyth as it applied to the character of Thel ‘Vadam. Starting in early 2015, I began writing for the community site Halo Archive, most of my articles examining the different novels or short stories produced by the franchise. I’ve also written for the online magazine Christ and Pop Culture.
The passion and critical exploration I used for Halo is exactly what I am bringing to this new series on Patreon. Expanded universes are now a staple of gaming franchises, tie-ins and novelizations are being written by big names in the genres. It’s time these books, and other pieces of game-related fiction, were given the same examination as other pieces of literature.
Upkeeping a blog can be stressful (I say on the blog that gets the least of my attention). Heck, writing is stressful, even if you love it. Even if you love the subject matter. Being aware of the craft of writing means that you are second-guessing your word choices, that the smallest typo will haunt your waking moments, that sleep will elude you for the sake of lethologica –
the inability to remember a word or put your finger on the right word
– and desks will be flipped for the sake of research roadblocks. If you’re a freelancer, this goes double. Views, comments, likes, and reblogs become measures of success which can determine if you’re able to snag a contributor position on a site or gather Patreon supporters (shameless plug). Exposure becomes your lifeblood and suddenly timing and topical seasons are everything in order to get your pieces circulating. A source of joy becomes a source of stress.