Blackened Skull

There is no gene for the human spirit

Archive for the ‘Childhood’ Category

Quote of the day #2

with 3 comments

For the past 35 years, one of my greatest pleasures has been to see Star Wars passed from one generation to the next. It’s now time for me to pass Star Wars on to a new generation of filmmakers. I’ve always believed that Star Wars could live beyond me, and I thought it was important to set up the transition during my lifetime. I’m confident that with Lucasfilm under the leadership of Kathleen Kennedy, and having a new home within the Disney organization, Star Wars will certainly live on and flourish for many generations to come. Disney’s reach and experience give Lucasfilm the opportunity to blaze new trails in film, television, interactive media, theme parks, live entertainment, and consumer products.

(George Lucas, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Lucasfilm)

I’m glad for one that George is sticking to his word and not making, at least directly, any further Star Wars movies. Disney is an excellent choice to take over Lucasfilm based on their recent track record with Pixar and Marvel.

Other than what others had said, I for one would expect Disney to raise the look of the Star Wars movie franchise. To me that means far less Chroma Key and far more location-based filming. I think Lucas went way overboard in his use of this just to get the recent trilogy(episodes I-III) made quickly. I also believe that Disney do CGI better than anyone else which can’t be bad for the franchise.

I hope that Disney will give the generation that grew up with the original trilogy something to cheer. I remember how awe-inspired I was seeing my first Star Wars back in 1977 and Disney could do well by remembering those adults that still enjoy those original three movies.

Written by David Osbon

October 31, 2012 at 9:14 am

Birthday time-travel

with 2 comments

If I could time-travel but I couldn’t influence the past then I’d like to revisit all my previous birthdays, in chronological order. Many birthdays I can no longer remember while others are just shadow memories.

I’d love to see my reaction to each birthday and how that has changed over the decades. Years 1-18 would be fascinating to watch.

Reaching 42 and in the process answering the meaning of life I appreciate the gifts I get now much more than I did as a child. But then as an adult, receiving presents is naturally a far less forthcoming activity. This years haul has been rather excellent:

Books; A Street Cat Named Bob by James Bowen and Champions League Dreams by Rafa Benitez. As you will know doubt know – unless you are a very new reader – my completion rate for books is very poor. I was surprised to receive two books when the best I can do recently is complete a graphic novel or two.

Videogames; Sleeping Dogs on 360 format. The only game that I had on my list.

Music; Prometheus OST. I’m a lapsed Muse fan and have yet to get over their appearance at this years Olympics, so no 2nd Law for me just now.

Movies; Avengers Assemble. Here in the UK we have been short-changed with a weak Blu-ray/DVD release; very few extras and no audio commentary. Happy enough to be able to watch this for a second time, mind.

Not to shabby, eh?

While on the subject of time-travel, I had hoped to round-off my birthday celebrations with a viewing of Looper – hasn’t happened yet. The last time-travel movie that Bruce Willis excelled in was Twelve Monkeys back in 1995. Which do you consider to be your favourite of the two movies?

I’ll never forget my Claygate childhood

with one comment

I no longer live in Claygate and there have been times that I regret leaving the village after spending around 25 years there – from child to adult. With my old village being the backdrop to some recent unpleasant news, I’ve been muling over my feelings about the childhood I spent there.

Just thinking about the word Claygate drums up so much nostalgia for me. Bad things did happen while I grew up there, sure, but the main story would be one of a magical place that allowed me and my friends the freedom to run with our imaginations.

Claygate had and still has an abundance of woodland and open countryside. As a child living with a woodland behind your home – sitting at the end of your garden almost – I had endless possibilities for make-believe and adventure. Maybe the environment of fields, woods and the heavy scent of nature compounded a feeling of safety. Claygate always felt like a place outside of normal time. Violence and crime never seemed to be on anyones lips and there was a sense of freedom from the ‘big bad world’. The world seen through a child’s eyes? Possibly.

Let me take you through a few of the standout moments from my time living in Claygate;

Queen’s Silver Jubilee, 1977. Street party! Friends were easy to come by in the cul-de-sac that I lived in. We all seemed to get on, no matter what the age. The children from the street would play games of forty forty or it seemed that way. I remember winning second place in the fancy dress competition that day. Both my younger brother and I were dressed as red indians but I went up to collect the prize. I have a picture of me in the prizing winning costume somewhere and will think to get it scanned and added at some point.

AD&D and beyond. The foundations of my appreciation of what a good game is began back in the ’80s. Card and board games came and went but as soon as I experienced my first taste of a AD&D game at a friends, my whole perspective was changed. The friend in question had a games room that contained a snooker table that doubled for some table-top gaming. I think we had a small group of around five but that was an ideal number for my Cleric to get some tough adventuring. I loved that the DM spoke the scene and from the rolls of a trusty d20 developed the adventure with hardly any visual aids. Our AD&D group didn’t live long. It didn’t break any records but it was magical moment that I have not since recaptured. Of course computer gaming – thanks Elite – then came into my life but not before I’d had a good few years of PBM games like that of Crasimoff’s World and Saturnalia. I remember I use to hound our postman as I waited for each new turn to arrive. Some of the wonder of PBM gaming was the wait between sending your turn in and having a GM work out what happened and getting it back to you. A two week wait wasn’t unheard of and can you imagine today’s gamer having that kind of patience?

I feel there’s more about my childhood in Claygate that I have yet to put down in words. You may well see a further post from me on this subject but it really depends on whether you, dear reader. Would want to hear more about those wonder years?

Written by David Osbon

September 12, 2012 at 12:37 am

Posted in Childhood

Tagged with , , , ,

%d bloggers like this: