Lovecraft Country - the Green Book you have been looking for
If you were put off watching 'The Green Book' due to its white saviour narrative, then HBO's adaptation of 'Lovecraft Country' might just be what you are looking for. 'Lovecraft country' is a mystery that unfolds using the Green Book as a navigator through 1950's America.
The story centres around veteran Atticus Black who goes searching for his father who has disappeared in Massachusetts, trying to find out a family secret. Atticus travels with his uncle the author of the Green book, that helped keep African Americans safe while travelling across the USA in the racist Jim Crow era.
Confronted by demons both real, the klu klux klan and supernatural, the protagonists must navigate real and metaphorical racism in this clever novel that is written as a cohesive set of short stories that work individually and as a whole novel.
Working on the adaptation is man of the horror hour Jordan Peele who will team up with J.J. Abrams’ Bad Robot and Misha Green, the creator of Underground, to bring Matt Ruff’s novel Lovecraft Country to HBO.
TV Adaptations a gogo - 'His Dark Materials'
Anyone else feel like our favourite fantasy/sci-fi novels from our youth are having a TV renaissance? I mean we've had American God's, Good Omens, Annihilation, Handmaids Tale and The Man in the High Castle to name a few. To top off this list we've also been blessed with the teaser trailer for Philip Pullman's trilogy 'His Dark Materials'.
Set in a world of parallel universes, magic, mythical creatures and strong religious connotations, 'His Dark Materials' as a series will no doubt work better than the film adaptations, as often there is just not enough time in 90 minutes or so to do a fantasy novel such as this true justice.
With a stellar cast, starring Dafne Keen as Lyra, Ruth Wilson as Mrs Coulter, Lin-Manuel Miranda as Lee Scoresby, James McAvoy as Lord Asriel and Clarke Peters as The Master. The trailer isn't giving much away, mainly introducing some characters and attempting to leave you intrigued, the series looks set to drop on BBC later this year.
Blood and Water - More South African Netflix Original content heading our way
Netflix with these African adaptations you are really spoiling us. In recent years we have already had the pleasure of 'I am not a witch' and 'The Burial of Kojo' brought to a wider audience thanks to Netflix. Not only are they bringing more African based content to our screens, they are also investing in Netflix Original content with a second South African based series in the pipeline 'Blood and Water' to be directed by the award winning South African female powerhouse, Nosipho Dumisa.
Essentially a teen high school drama, following a teenage girl as she navigates the pitfalls of school while at the same time uncovering a mysterious family secret… dun dun duuun! Who knows what form that secret will take, but here’s hoping its along the fantasy magical vein perhaps bringing some South African mysticism into the series?
Blood and Water looks set to drop in 2020.
April ANIME ANIMATION ACTION
So here are a bunch of anime/comic related offerings that I just have not had the time to get round to properly researching but look great, sparking my interest. As a long time fan of anime and animation in general, all of these have grabbed my attention, being put on my 'watch list' but sadly kept getting relegated to the bottom of the pile as I focused on other content and my life in general. So in no particular order, here are a few animated gems to get your teeth into.
Synopses' have been taken from their respective websites, with links to the original content included. Enjoy!
gen:LOCK - Michael B Jordan voices Julian Chase in this dystopian animation set in the future.
"Fifty years in the future, an oppressive authoritarian force threatens to conquer the world. A daring team is recruited to pilot a new form of weaponized neuroscience that powers devastating mecha, but they must be willing to sacrifice everything to save the world."
"When a fight between Superman and Mongul crashes into a small Northwestern town, Naomi (last name?) begins a quest to uncover the last time a super-powered person visited her home—and how that might tie into her own origins and adoption.
Follow Naomi’s journey on a quest that will take her to the heart of the DC Universe and unfold a universe of ideas and stories that have never been seen before. Join writers Brian Michael Bendis, David Walker and breakout artist Jamal Campbell in Wonder Comics’ massively ambitious new series and star...NAOMI."
Yasuke the African Samurai
"Brainfeeder boss Flying Lotus has been tapped by Netflix to score the forthcoming anime series, Yasuke. Set in a fantastical war-torn Japan during the 16th century, the series follows a retired samurai who must pick his sword once again to protect a mysterious child from the evil forces that want to see the youngster eliminated. Yasuke, the ronin protagonist of the story, is loosely based on the African samurai who served under the feudal lord Oda Nobunaga during the late 16th century."
"Bingo Love is a LGBTQ romance story that spans over 60 years. A chance meeting at church bingo in 1963 brings Hazel Johnson and Mari McCray together. Through their formative years, these two women develop feelings for each other and finally profess their love for one another.
Unfortunately, these young lovebirds end up separated, as they are caught kissing by Mari’s grandmother. Being forbidden from seeing each other isn’t punishment enough as both Mari and Hazel are forced into marriages with men whom they do not love.
But fate had another plan. Decades later, now in their mid-’60s, Hazel and Mari reunite again at a church bingo hall. Realizing their love for each other is still alive, what these grandmothers do next takes absolute strength and courage."
"Set in 1980s Brooklyn, a young DJ accidentally summons a UFO that transports his family, best friend, and current crush to the robot-dominated planet of Discopia.
Hip-hop, sci-fi and kung fu all hit the turntables for the mash-up mix of the year! Cartoonist/force of nature Yehudi Mercado (Pantalones, TX, Rocket Salvage) sets his sights on 1980s Brooklyn and Wax, a young mix-master who scratches the perfect beat and accidentally summons a UFO that transports his family, best friend, and current crush to the robot-dominated planet of Discopia. Now Wax and his crew must master the intergalactic musical martial art of Sci-Fu to fight the power and save Earth. Word to your mother."
"Papa Cherry is a gritty supernatural romance story about a young guitarist who sold his soul to the devil to become a rock legend."
Have a nice day
"Have a Nice Day (Chinese: 大世界; pinyin: Dàshìjiè; previously titled 好极了 (Hǎojíle)) is a 2017 Chinese animated dark comedy film directed by Liu Jian. It premiered in the main competition for the Golden Bear at the 67th Berlin International Film Festival in February 2017. It is Liu Jian's second feature film, following his debut Piercing I. The film, mostly done by Liu himself, took three years to complete.
Its plot revolves around the journey of Xiao Zhang, a young driver working for a gang, who steals a bag from his boss containing a million yuan (approximately US$150,000) to fund a trip to South Korea for his girlfriend to save her failed plastic surgery in Nanjing, Jiangsu."
"The Midnight Event forever changed the world. Now, centuries later, Jack Kryznan arrives on the outskirts of Paradiso City, haunted by fragments of childhood memories and in possession of a mysterious device-one with the power to change the destiny of this living breathing metropolis, the people who dwell within, and the guardians who strive for and against it."
A Dead Djinn in Cairo
"Egypt, 1912. In an alternate Cairo infused with the otherworldly, the Ministry of Alchemy, Enchantments and Supernatural Entities investigate disturbances between the mortal and the (possibly) divine. What starts off as an odd suicide case for Special Investigator Fatma el-Sha’arawi leads her through the city’s underbelly as she encounters rampaging ghouls, saucy assassins, clockwork angels, and a plot that could unravel time itself."
"Punpun Onodera is a normal 11-year-old boy living in Japan. Hopelessly idealistic and romantic, Punpun begins to see his life take a subtle—though nonetheless startling—turn to the adult when he meets the new girl in his class, Aiko Tanaka. It is then that the quiet boy learns just how fickle maintaining a relationship can be, and the surmounting difficulties of transitioning from a naïve boyhood to a convoluted adulthood. When his father assaults his mother one night, Punpun realizes another thing: those whom he looked up to were not as impressive as he once thought.
As his problems increase, Punpun's once shy demeanor turns into voluntary reclusiveness. Rather than curing him of his problems and conflicting emotions, this merely intensifies them, sending him down the dark path of maturity in this grim coming-of-age saga."
"Urbance is a 26-minutes animated action serie for 16+ audience. Written and Directed by Joel Dos Reis Viegas and Sébastien Larroudé. A topic that hits with stunning visualsand blasting tunes; Urbance brings you into a post-modern story world, made of hip-hop vibes and electronic influences."