I’ve been on one big nostalgia kick recently, as everyone who follows me on twitter can attest. The issue with being ill all the time is that I’m in need of things to entertain myself, so this blog has become more a “Palace of Entertainments” than “Palace of Distractions” of late. For some reason my mood’s taken me on a pretty awesome trip down memory lane, and I thought collecting a few of the bits and pieces here would be a fun thing to do while I wait for my head to mend.
Firstly, one of my favourite books as a child I discovered through a BBC adaptation in 1994, when it was known simply as Moonacre. The Little White Horse tells the story of a slightly spoilt orphan girl who is taken to her family’s seat of Moonacre Valley at the death of her father, where through self-sacrifice and some pretty nicely done character development she works to save the valley from the evils of man’s pride via some slightly magical pearls. This book is nothing short of adorable if you can weather the Christian overtones – personally, I’m fine with the religious aspect to it, as the author was born in 1900 and it feels like it suits the story she was trying to tell. A film was made of it a few years ago – 2009’s The Secrets Of Moonacre, starring Dakota Blue Richards of Golden Compass and Skins fame, a chaotic mess of a film that wins through simply because it’s so charming and filmed absolutely beautifully, with fantastic costumes, sets and locations. It’s incoherent but I enjoyed it; it’s a great film to watch when you’re hungover or tired, and the bits of the book that most affected my tastes and writing remain strong in the movie, so overall it was satisfying. It’s not as good as I remember the BBC’s Moonacre being though and I heartily hope that the BBC decide to release the 1994 version on DVD or online – partly because it featured the always lovely Noah Huntley. Please, BBC, show it again!
I’ve also been spending time looking at geeky t-shirts on eBay. She-Ra, He-Man, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Final Fantasy VII – there are so many! I’m glad the retro geek chic thing has taken off, it makes my life as a geek with a passion for nostalgia so much easier. That slightly hipsterish tendency to look down on people who were late adopters of a thing I feel passionately about is something that annoys the crap out of me – it honestly fills me with joy when a new reader picks up Game of Thrones and gets into it, not because I can stand there and say “Oh just you wait for Storm of Swords!” but also because that first moment where a book or series clicks and you get it and you’re into it – it’s the closest thing to magic. The geek chic craze makes it okay to like things and enjoy with enthusiasm. I can’t be annoyed by that, as much as people think it’s all about making money. I WANT people to find things that they’re going to get into and enjoy the hell out of, even – no, especially! – if they’re things I’ve been into for over ten years, because that level of enjoyment and involvement and support for a thing is fabulous.
Speaking of ten years, I’m re-reading Inuyasha at the moment, my favourite manga as a teenager. They’re printing omnibus editions and I’d never finished the series so imagine my delight when they appeared in the shop – I’ve had my eye on them for a couple of weeks, and as soon as I could I went right for them and laid claim and now it’s like Natalie and I are skiving off college to go buy manga and wander around the British Museum again and argh, I love it, I really do. Inuyasha’s a half-demon who’s controlled by Kagome, a girl from modern Tokyo who falls through a well into feudal Japan, and there’s all sorts of romantic tension and funny asides and family stresses and horror and nudity and complications and it’s such a glorious mess of a concept that I can’t believe fans of manga have moved on from it so entirely since it and Ranma 1/2 were all the rage. Next I want to find Ayashi no Ceres or whatever the English title was, because I have a terrific thirst for the manga that I used to be addicted to.
And don’t skive off college, kids. Obviously that’s a thing you shouldn’t be doing.
I’m going to hunt down some Bucky O’Hare next, and the Russell T Davies shows he did for the BBC way back when, Dark Season (starring Kate Winslet, who was a favourite of mine from that point onwards) and Century Falls.
I’ll leave you with one of my favourite videos – Captain Planet vs Hitler. No, I know, I KNOW.
What treasures from your past have you rediscovered recently? Is it all as good as it was the first time round, or is it just the rose-tinted glow of nostalgia?
ALSO don’t forget your opportunity to win a copy of Ash Mistry & The Savage Fortress by commenting on my blog post here!