Monday, January 14, 2013

Award Candidates

I got a late start this morning due to a late night last night. I was up very late reading because I was enjoying a book, I was near the end, and I wanted to see how it ended, so I just kept going. And then the last few pages of the book changed everything, undoing the good that had been done in the previous 50 or so pages. I was furious. And that made it hard to get to sleep because I was stewing over it and then trying to mentally rewrite it. For once, the Amazon reviews mostly agreed with me, but they did say to go on and read the next book because it fixes everything.

Speaking of books, etc., it's time for nominations for the Hugo and Nebula awards, and I'm rather stuck on what to nominate. My favorite books of the year either weren't science fiction or fantasy or weren't published in the right time frame (some were finalists last year). Of the genre books that were published at the right time, I didn't really think they were award-worthy. I'm picky about that sort of thing. While I think my books are good, I'm not sure I'd nominate them for awards like this. Maybe Much Ado About Magic because I think I got some nice emotional depth in there, but I'm not sure it's eligible, since it's self-published (I guess I need to check the rules. Not that I'm planning to nominate myself.).

I'm also mostly stuck with movies because I didn't see too many this year. I think The Hobbit was rather bloated. Last year, the entire season of A Game of Thrones was nominated in long form for the Hugo, since it tells one story and is based on one book, but I thought the second season was weaker and veered from the book in nonsensical ways that made the characters look like idiots. Some individual episodes might fit the short form category, but I don't think the whole season was worthy. I'll probably nominate Brave because I thought it was a fun twist on the fairy tale movie.

Short form (usually the TV series category) is easier. With Doctor Who, there doesn't seem to be any one "big" episode that's an obvious nominee, but I think my vote would go to "A Town Called Mercy," the Western one. It has some interesting science fiction themes and moral/ethical dilemmas. Continuing the theme of episodes involving former Farscape/SG-1 cast members, I think my Haven nominee might be "Magic Hour," the one with Claudia Black. The "guest" part of the story (minus the series plot arc elements) could have been a good Twilight Zone episode, dealing with some interesting what ifs -- what if you had the power to bring someone back to life with a touch, as long as you touch them before sunset the day they died? What would you do with that power? What if you could only save one person a day? What if two people you cared about died? How would you choose, how would you deal with the choice, and how would the person you chose deal with it? Claudia Black knocked it out of the park in a role that was so against type for her that she was entirely unrecognizable, and she made me cry. I also kind of liked "Sarah" for all the wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey and the lovely 1950s production design, but I don't know how well it stands if you're not already a fan of the series. I'll have to look at air dates to decide on a Grimm episode. I'm leaning toward "Leave it to Beavers," the one in which Nick has to encourage the beaver creatures to stand up to the trolls. For one thing, it has fun moving fairy tale tropes into the present (the bridge trolls are now the building inspectors who have to be bribed for a project to move forward). For another, it delves into the cop vs. Grimm dilemma for Nick.

There's a new SyFy series starting tonight, Continuum, which seems to be a time travel cop show. I'm intrigued enough to try watching it.

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