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Old 08-30-2019, 01:56 PM
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The Dark Crystal (Netflix miniseries) spoiler tags


Just started watching the new Netflix Dark Crystal, and within the first few minutes they have diverted from the movie in a fairly major way....

SPOILER:
the Skeksis are “aliens” who arrived on planet Thraa, they built Aughra’s telescope thingy, and the Crystal of Truth appears in its dark purple “fractured” form, but without the fracture, as of yet, no sign of the Mystics


I hope this gets explained quickly as it changes a fundamental concept of the movie....
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Old 08-30-2019, 03:28 PM
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Really hoping it doesn't degenerate into just another LOTR clone.
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Old 08-30-2019, 03:42 PM
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I hate to say this as I really like the movie, but the Netflix special just feels vaguely....wrong, the puppeteering just seems off, the Gelfling puppets just seem so plastic and artificial, compared to the movie puppets they just seem to be lacking life

the only highlights of the Skeksis are Chamberlin, and Scientist, Scientist is voiced by Mark Hamill, and you can hear the occasional bits of Joker mannerisms in his voice

I'm now into the second episode and it's more of a chore to watch than I thought, I hope it gets better....
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Old 08-30-2019, 03:52 PM
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I couldn't get thru the first episode - I may try to finish it, but what little I've seen is such a disappointment. Maybe if I hadn't seen the movie, I wouldn't dislike it so much.

One thing that struck me - the dialogue was too focused on exposition and it just didn't work for me. Visually, it's terrific, but what little of the story I saw did not impress me at all.
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Old 08-30-2019, 04:41 PM
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I never saw the original and was not thrilled enough with episode one to continue unless I hear from others that it gets better.
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Old 08-30-2019, 04:47 PM
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It's a tough slog, the ending of the second episode is nicely dark, but the crystal lore is so different from the movie concept it's hard for me to get past.

the puppetry is also not up to Henson's industry-leading standards, it's close, but not right on, it's more a Henson-Wanabee, Frell, even Farscape had better Henson puppetry and that was a weekly TV series

Henson puppets always seemed to have a spark of "life", an....."essence" if you will, even the primitive "sock puppet" styles, like the Jedi Master that is Kermit

The puppeteers in this series have spent too much time staring into the Crystal on this one...
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Old 08-30-2019, 09:16 PM
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it's starting to improve, Mystics are introduced in episode 4, they do deal with the discrepancy in my spoiler, and things start picking up around episode 5

this is just a slow burn to start....
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  #8  
Old 09-01-2019, 08:55 AM
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Just finished episode 3. So far I am liking it enough to continue.

Brian
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Old 09-01-2019, 10:37 AM
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Finished the first two episodes and really really like this. As I wrote in another thread, it looks amazing. But you can't help but feel sadness knowing what will happen (by virtue of having seen the original movie).
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Old 09-01-2019, 11:22 AM
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In wondering if the puppetry seeming "off" as others have put it is a function of the voice acting being done separate from the puppet acting.
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Old 09-01-2019, 04:16 PM
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I finished it last night, it just takes time to get going, it’s clear they intend at least two seasons to tell the prehistory of Thraa.

The Garthim get introduced at the end of the last episode, and as of yet the Gelflings haven’t yet been scoured, so there’s still more tales to tell

Also, the essence draining hardware is still in version 1.0, the Crystal is not self-supporting (still held by chains and grappling arms) and needs electric current to enter drain-mode


The animation actually has a tiny bit of CGI “enhancement”, according to the making of video, mainly around the facial expressions, to make them “more realistic”, that may be the puppetry issue, a bit into the Uncanny Valley...
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Old 09-01-2019, 05:50 PM
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I'm loving it.

The Skeksis are some magnificently evil bastards. Best villains I've seen on the screen in a long time.
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Old 09-01-2019, 07:23 PM
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The gelflings look like the Olsen twins.
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Old 09-02-2019, 09:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MacTech View Post
Just started watching the new Netflix Dark Crystal, and within the first few minutes they have diverted from the movie in a fairly major way....

SPOILER:
the Skeksis are “aliens” who arrived on planet Thraa


I hope this gets explained quickly as it changes a fundamental concept of the movie....
SPOILER:
the UrSkeks (the original undivided form) were always “aliens”, in the tie-in book The World of the Dark Crystal released the same year as the movie.
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Old 09-02-2019, 12:40 PM
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Finished last night. Yes, it got much better as it went along.

Won't spoiler as MacTech already said it, but clearly the story is not yet done.

I do wonder if the ending of the series will be something like Doctor Strange's vision ... there is one path to choose that will lead to eventual victory, even if it is itself filled with loss and pain along the way, and being able to choose that path is the way to finish the prequel on other than a complete bummer.
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Old 09-03-2019, 09:22 AM
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It was really interesting watching the original The Dark Crystal after finishing this series. The puppetry of the original wasn't nearly as good, particularly the gelflings (although some of the Skeksis had Grover-arms going on). Maybe that's subtle CGI nowadays, but really noticeable.

The Chancellor wasn't as clever and conniving as my memory would have had it; again, much better in this series.

There were a few nice subtle details: in the series, the castle is surrounded by empty land with some rivers trickling through it; in the original movie, it's a wasteland, and surrounded by cracks that have occasional energy flashes in them. Like the darkening under the castle in this series. Also, I completely forgot about the crystal bats from the movie!
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Old 09-03-2019, 07:03 PM
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Note: I watched The Dark Crystal movie for the first time the other night just to fill myself in before watching this. I know it is a prequel, but I wanted to see the movie first. It was actually quite cute and pretty good. Very nicely done.


I have now watched the first episode of the show and I thought it was pretty good, actually. I definitely will be watching more.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Paintcharge View Post
The gelflings look like the Olsen twins.
Be quiet. Now that is all I can see.
  #18  
Old 09-05-2019, 03:38 PM
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Finished last night. Great season finale. I was also digging the "Allegory of The Cave" references with the Gelflings.

That was quite clever.
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Old 09-05-2019, 05:09 PM
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I enjoyed the series. Following the final episode, there's a documentary that covers the making of the program. I kind of wish I had watched the documentary before the actual show. It really made appreciate how much work went into making the program.
  #20  
Old 09-05-2019, 05:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Trom View Post
I enjoyed the series. Following the final episode, there's a documentary that covers the making of the program. I kind of wish I had watched the documentary before the actual show. It really made appreciate how much work went into making the program.
Does it spoil it at all? I'm two episodes in and I do see it listed on Netflix.
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Old 09-06-2019, 03:56 AM
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That would interest me as well - I will definitely watch it, but should I finish the series first?
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Old 09-06-2019, 12:34 PM
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Just finished the second episode and have been enjoying it. Sometimes, it feels like the producers were trying too hard. Like the overly long and complicated establishing shot in the library. But overall, I really like the lush, beautiful settings.
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Old 09-07-2019, 10:14 AM
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I honestly can't remember how much of the plot is revealed in the doc. Erring on the side of caution, I think there are small spoilers in the sense of "During scene ABC we had to figure how to deal with XYZ." Some of the plot might be revealed that way.

My main takeaway was that in the puppeteering world (which is apparently a thing) this production was the All Star Game of the Century. Jim Henson Studios was heavily involved in production, a lot of the team from the original Dark Crystal movie was involved, best of the field puppeteers puppeteered, voice acting was top shelf, set construction was out of this world, and video/lighting was next level. For me, I'd say the biggest surprise was how little CGI was used. I had assumed much of the look was computer generated, but most was actually puppeteering/lighting.

Obviously they might be tooting their own horns a bit, but I definitely came away with more of an appreciation of the series after watching the documentary.
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Old 09-07-2019, 11:58 AM
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I'll check it out after I watch the show.
  #25  
Old 09-09-2019, 10:28 AM
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So how much hot puppet on puppet action are we talking about?
  #26  
Old Yesterday, 04:22 AM
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@DigitalC - "unfortunately" we don't go beyond Holding Hands And there may be a kiss I forgot, but the main guys have some romance implied, but never get to it.

Back on a serious note, we just finished the series and are really touched and impressed. I look forward to the documentary, The voice acting, especially for the Skeksis, must have been wicked fun.

Some spoilery thoughts:

SPOILER:
Making the Garthim - while a nice end reveal, how do you get from Spider plus Froggy mcFrogface to Giant Crab with Caterpillar feet?

The Arathims face/heel turn - one of my favourite Moments. Made total sense in lore, but seeing the classical hivemind baddy switch to the good guys was so refreshing


Where do we we go from here? I could actually live very well without Season 2, as I see no way it not being
A) superdepressing or
B) another timeline or something, which would take away from the original movie.

Like it is, we could end on a positive note, including a reminder that not all is great (see Spoilers), and fill the gap to the movie in our heads.
  #27  
Old Today, 01:04 PM
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I watched it with the expectation of it being pretty dark, given the state of the world during the movie. I can't seem to get a straight answer on how far before the movie this takes place, seen anywhere from 50 years, 200 years to 1000 years, but there were at least some Gelfin villages at least until the very recent past in the movie.
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