23 February, 2017

The Regurgitated—Why Everyone Wants to Strangle a Book Purist

[The Regurgitated is...exactly that.]


This story is a tragedy, made more tragic still by all the warning signs present, the ready explanations, the reason and forethought and practical common sense so readily, so easily apparent and available for counsel. And yet, our Lady Claire of House Williams—Denier of Sense and Photoshopper of Shite, chose instead to follow her heart, a heart that wailed at such length and at such a volume that even David and Dan could hear her despair from the deepest of the seven pits in the lowest of the seven hells:

WhhhhhhhhHHHHHYYYYYYYYYY don't the FUCKING TARGARYNS have VIOLET fucking EYES on the SHOW? WhhHHHHYYYYYY?????????????? It's an INTEGRAL PART of their FUCKING CHARACTERS, you mmmmaaaaAAAANNNIIIIAAACCCASS!!!!!!!!!!!!

Let me explain. 

So I accidentally clicked on one of those "sponsored content" click-bait links, and on the buffet of desperate acts seeking ad revenue I found this gem:

How the cast of Game of Thrones should really look by one Claire Williams. It lists 35 (!!) characters from the story, describes their show character, and points out the various "problems' the show suffers by not paying close enough attention to the text when deciding dye color formulas and prosthetic makeup. There is then a description of each as quoted by GRRM, a "rating" system, and sort of before and after photos: the first shows an actor in character from the show, and the second is photoshopped with the changes she thinks are necessary to fall in line with the books.

I hate things like this for a number of reasons, first and foremost being a complete inability to grasp that movies and television do not exist simply to make illustrations of books and stories. It fails to comprehend that written stories have strengths and weaknesses that are different from a visual representation, and the two must thus access vital components for themselves. Lady Claire of House Williams may think that, because television is a visual medium, it should get the visual stuff "right," which leads me to my next point.

Perhaps more important is the presumption of descriptions of appearance as the purest way to judge likeness of character, and anyone who has ever known another person, ever, knows this is not the case. There are times in this list when Lady Claire admits so-and-so's characterization is spot-on, but the problem is that he really has longer hair in hue closer to copper than blood. The real problem is thinking that is the real problem.

Which leads me to this little project. This list is so offensive to my sensibilities of writing, story, character, open-mindedness, and not being a quibbling fistula that action must be taken. It is the annoying humorlessness of book purists like this—the grotesque elitism—that has caused some people I know to swear off the reading of these books entirely. A grievous sin, indeed.

I do not know this Lady Claire of House Williams, by the way, and toward her I bear no animosity. This is just my way of coping with Things that Bug the Shit Out of Me on the Internet. All photos are as-is from the list itself. So here is my answer to "How the cast of Game of Thrones should really look" with "How Game of Thrones fans should really sound," replicated in style and spirit, fully attributed to the author. The title graphics, for better or worse, are my own.