East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai


Blood & Treasure or, I am too old for this

Seven minutes into the pilot of Blood & Treasure, the new TV series by CBS, I stopped laughing and decided that life’s too short to waste time with such irritatingly cliched writing.
And it’s a pity, really, because there’s obviously money backing the series, that was shot on location in a number of places, including my hometown of Turin, but the writing is so abysmal, I really couldn’t make it.
I wanted to, because at one point I thought it might be fun to do a post on Karavansara. I went back and restarted it.
I stopped watching 11 minutes in.

Let’s see what we are talking about…

An antiquities expert teams up with an art thief to catch a terrorist who funds his attacks using stolen artifacts.

Oh, yes, fair warning: here be SPOILERS.
True, I’m gonna spoil only the first ten minutes of the pilot, and a lot of the things you already saw in the trailer, but…

S P O I L E R S!!

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A drying up of the soul

51H8S032BHL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_I was doing the usual three-cards trick on my shelves, trying to slot more volumes in the same old space, and while trying to find a place for the old London Gazzeteer, I found myself with no place for Peter Ackroyd‘s Albion.
And as it happens, I sat down a while and browsed through that 500-odd pages hardback.

For those that missed it, Ackroyd’s Albion is a book about “the origins of English imagination” – that is to say, a catalog and discussion of those elements that make up the imaginary matter of Britain, that complex collection of legends, images, clich├ęs and stories that is the basis of so much literature, music, art and what not.

Now the interesting bit is I was discussing, two nights back, with my friend Lucy among others, what we perceive as an increasing impoverishment of the imaginary matter backing what’s sold as fantasy, as horror, as science fiction. Continue reading