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About BethR

  • Rank
    Getting medieval on media

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  • Gender
  • Location
    North Carolina
  • Interests
    medieval English literature, fantasy and science fiction, historical fiction, movies, music, travel, a unified Christian life

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  • Occupation
    university English professor
  • About my avatar
    Dandelion from "Sugarshock" by Whedon & Moon
  • Favorite movies
    Singing in the RainTo Kill a MockingbirdCasablancaGalaxy QuestBabette's Feast
  • Favorite creative writing
    William Langland, THE VISION OF PIERS PLOWMANGeoffrey Chaucer, CANTERBURY TALESJulian of Norwich, A BOOK OF SHOWINGSDorothy Dunnett, THE LYMOND CHRONICLES; THE HOUSE OF NICCOLO; KING HEREAFTERDorothy L. SayersC.S. LewisJ.R.R. TolkienPoetry: John Donne, Edward Hirsch, David Citino, Mary Oliver, Kelly Cherry

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  1. BethR

    Shakespeare Uncovered

    Campbell U library has at least 2 versions on DVD: The Kenneth Branagh Much Ado (Branagh & Emma Thompson), and the 2012 Joss Whedon directed production (Amy Acker & Alexis Denisof as Beatrice and Benedick). Plus three versions via streaming databases: Films on Demand--1974 NY Shakespeare Festival production, directed by Joseph Papp (Kathleen Widdoes and Sam Waterston as Beatrice & Benedick) BBC Shakespeare Plays--an older BBC TV production Digital Theatre Plus--2011 London stage production with David Tennant and Catherine Tate, and the 1974 NY Shakespeare Festival production. Have fun.
  2. BethR

    The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018)

    I'm still looking forward to watching this, because the Coens' have rarely disappointed me, but another friend whom I respect called my attention to this Forbes review by Sarah Aswell, "The Absent Women of The Ballad of Buster Scruggs," and I'm sure I'll be aware of it as I watch:
  3. BethR


    A medievalist perspective by Kevin J. Harty, who has written or co-written several books on medievalism in movies: "Beam Me Up Robbie!: Outlaw King"
  4. BethR

    The Princess Bride

    RIP William Goldman. (Link to a collection of Hollywood Twitter tributes at Slate.com) Maybe he deserves his own thread, but it might as well be here, because he loved The Princess Bride, both the book and the movie. New York Times obit.
  5. BethR

    Shakespeare Uncovered

    Volume 3 has been or is now being broadcast on WUNC--PBS for North Carolina. I made a point of recording the Much Ado episode, as it is one of my favorite plays, and enjoyed it very much. The Campbell Library has vols.1-2 on DVD, and I own vol. 2 (Hamlet/Richard II/Macbeth/Twelfth Night & As You Like It/The Tempest/Henry IV & Henry V) if you want to borrow it. The weak point of vol. 2, unfortunately, is Derek Jacobi on Richard II, as he spends too much time on largely discredited "Shakespeare was really someone else" hypotheses.
  6. BethR

    God Friended Me

    Originally, I thought this would be a 30-minute sitcom format, but it is an hour-long light drama. After five episodes, the clearest TV ancestors are Touched by an Angel--but the "angels" are ordinary humans, at least one of whom claims to be an atheist, and "God" is a mysterious Facebook friend who suggests other "friends" who need help--or Joan of Arcadia, with its skeptical but good-hearted protagonist directed by an enigmatic, multi-faced divinity--if Joan had had a team of friends/colleagues. The show, so far, avoids the sentimentality of Touched, but doesn't have the depth of Joan. So far, the greatest strength of God Friended Me is the cast, especially Brandon Micheal Hall as the main character Miles and Joe Morton as Miles's father Pastor Finer. The two main female characters, Cara and Jaya, look too much alike.
  7. BethR

    The Good Place

    Because everything connects to medieval studies if you look at it the right way (linked article contains SPOILERS for seasons 1-3 of The Good Place): The (Medieval) Saints and Sinners of NBC's The Good Place, by Matthew Gabriele
  8. BethR

    Narnia: the Netflix series

    I'll say here what I posted on Fb in response to this news: This could be good, or it could go so wrong in so many ways that my main feeling is trepidation. Some officious do-gooder will doubtless attempt to rehabilitate Susan, too. (I'm not against her rehabilitation, I hasten to say. I just think some things can be left to the imagination.)
  9. BethR

    A Star is Born (2018)

    AVClub compares four versions of A Star is Born, with trailers/clips: Another Star Is Born: Why Hollywood Keeps Returning to This Tragic Cinderella Story
  10. BethR

    The Good Place

    Thanks for this list, Joel. I just looked at the series titles on the publisher's site--what an array! I worked with the editor of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Philosophy (2003) on another project, and I had no idea the series had gone in so many directions since then! I'll look forward to acquiring your volume eventually.
  11. BethR

    The Americans

    The final season (6) finally won an Emmy for writing, and Matthew Rhys won an emmy for Lead Actor. Keri Russell deserved one as well. (I know awards don't mean anything, but I found myself watching the Emmys and wondering what was going on--everything seemed to be going to just three shows.)
  12. BethR

    The Good Place

    Joel, I would love to read your paper. Have you presented it yet? Season 3 starts September 27.
  13. Ha. I love Edwin Turner's responses overall. He's absolutely right--nobody knows what literature will be canonized in 50 or 100 years. My own thoughts on scrolling through this list were along the general lines of "If this is going to be the 21st century canon, depression and cynicism will rule." But then, that was more or less the situation with the 20th c. canon, such as it is, when I went to grad school, which is why I ended up a medievalist, despite having spent my MA on a shelf-ful of late-20th century poets. In other canonicity news, "The Great American Read" books are a bizarre hodge-podge of actual great books, books people think should be considered great, and complete dreck. My fear is that somehow 50 Shades of Gray, The Da Vinci Code, or A Confederacy of Dunces (the most overrated novel in 20th century literature) will the voted up to the top. So everyone, go there and vote for some decent books.