Miles On Monday
Game Of Thrones is everywhere again, with the launch of season 4. A hugely popular fantasy set in a world of swirling cloaks and disfigured dwarfs, its huge success is a bit baffling to me.
When I was teaching some students Creative Writing last year, it was all they could think about. Fantasy has had, perhaps, its most lucrative decade ever: Lord Of The Rings, Harry Potter, Twilight, Pirates Of The Caribbean and Game Of Thrones have made awesome amounts of money.
But why, I wonder, are these things so popular? It’s because, methinks, they offer an alternative world where men are brave, women are beautiful and everybody has a sword.
Nobody in Game Of Thrones has to wait at a bus stop in the rain for 20 minutes, or pay their council Tax.
I understand the appeal of fantasy worlds: when I was a kid I played Dungeons And Dragons (remember that?) and I thought Lord Of The Rings was brilliantly adapted for cinema by Peter Jackson and company.
With Game Of Thrones making oodles of cash, however, perhaps it’s time I tried my own version of a sprawling fantasy epic.
So here, dear YorkMix Reader, is a sneak preview of my new series, Shame Of Gnomes. I reckon it has potential. But what do you think?
Shame Of Gnomes
As written by Chief Script Person, Miles Salter
The story so far: the prince gnome, Malcolm, has gone missing in the snow. He has been captured by The Black Ones, nasty, unpleasant people who are capable of great evil and don’t flush their toilets very often. His mother, Galadalaladriel, is very concerned.
Galadalaladriel: Summon the king. At once!
Servant: I’m afraid he’s in a meeting.
Galadalaladriel: Summon him at once.
The King: Now, dear, what’s up, was your toast burnt again?
Galadalaladriel: This is far more important.
The King: You mean we’ve run out of butter?
Galadalaladriel: Shut up, you idiot.
The King: Please address me in the correct way.
Galadalaladriel: Shut up, you idiot, your majesty. Our prince has gone missing.
The King: I did tell him to take a sat nav.
Galadalaladriel: He’s been captured by The Black Ones!
The King: Well as long as he is back for tea. I think cook is planning sausages.
Galadalaladriel: He could be dead by now!
The King: Dead?
The King: Dead! That would be awful. We must do something. (Turns to Servant) Summon the commander of the army at once!
Servant: He’s on leave, your majesty. Funny time of year, what with Easter Bank Holiday.
Galadalaladriel: Oh, this is ridicuolous. Get me a stallion.
The King: But you’re married to me.
Galadalaladriel: A horse! I want a horse!
The King: Wait, my dear, it’s not safe! Come back!
(But Galadalaladriel is off on a white horse, a sword at her side, cloak billowing out behind her. She rides at terrific speed through the castle and stops at Asda for a pint of milk.)
Cut to: home of The Black Ones. They are dressed in black, have disfigured faces, dribble a lot and do a lot of snorting.
Leader Of The Black Ones: What do you want?
Galadalaladriel: Eurgh. You are repulsive.
Leader Of The Black Ones: Don’t remind me about it. I wish I could wear more colourful clothing. And I can’t afford plastic surgery. I’m actually a very sensitive person. I like poetry and…
Galadalaladriel: Never mind that. Where is my child?
Leader Of The Black Ones: Malcolm? He’s in the front room, playing Xbox.
Galadalaladriel: Thank goodness for that.
Leader Of The Black Ones: Just kidding. He’s been killed and eaten. He had it coming with a name like Malcolm.
Galadalaladriel: That’s dreadful news.
Leader Of The Black Ones: Isn’t it? Looks like this series will finish early.
Galadalaladriel: But what about dramatic tension? We need to keep the viewers hooked. If the child is dead there’ll be no reason for the viewer to watch…
Leader Of The Black Ones: Don’t worry about it. There’s snooker on the other channel.
Galadalaladriel: I want to weep and simper and bite my lip.
Leader Of The Black Ones: Stop it. You’re upsetting me.
(Cue dramatic music and aerial shots, from above. Series ends. Broadcasting Chief Executive gets cross. Scriptwriter is fired.)
- Miles Salter is a writer based in York
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