The Dark Crystal Prequel Series Coming To Netflix

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by JD, May 18, 2017.

  1. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    The official Dark Crystal website's encylcopedia lists 18 Skesis. It says there were two who were killed immediately after the Urskeks split into the Skesis and UrRu, and I'm not sure if those two are included on the list or not.
    I think they probably left most of the hunting of the Gelfling to the Garthim, while they sat back in the castle and watched.
     
  2. Marc

    Marc Fleet Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2003
    Location:
    Shinning Waters
    I've never seen/read any of prequel or tie in material but do they look at the events that lead to the crystal being cracked?

    To my thinking we've seen how the crystal was healed on the screen (saw it when it was released in 1982 with my dad and younger sister) now it would be nice to see how it all began on the screen.
     
  3. Ithekro

    Ithekro Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2012
    Location:
    Republic of California
    It includes those two. The first to be murdered didn't get a title. The second to be murdered was The Machinist (with the UrRu "The Carpenter" dying as well since the two are one)
     
  4. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    I'm torn about this being a prequel. My first reaction is, "Why fill in the parts we already know? Why not move forward and show where the characters and their world go from there?" But then I realize that if it were in the future, then something bad would have to happen after the Crystal was restored, since stories are always about bad stuff happening. So it would undo the happy ending of the original. So maybe a prequel is better in this case.
     
  5. Reverend

    Reverend Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2002
    Location:
    UK
    Just from a technical perspective, I'll be interested to see how they balance faithfulness to the original puppets and advancements in technology. In particular I'd like to see them have the Gelflings be much more expressive as their faces were notoriously expressionless in the movie.

    A good example on this done wrong is the Yoda puppet from TPM. Technologically superior in every way from the original. More dynamic, more expressive, but fell short because it just didn't look like the same character anymore.

    Yeah, the movie ended on such a definite "and they all lived happily ever after" that it'd be tough to justify some new conflict. Moreover, from a meta perspective, this kind of production is very much geared towards nostalgia and by far the most memorable elements of the original movie was the Skeksis (and to a somewhat lesser extent, the Mystics) which you can't really use in a sequel because they're all gone.

    What concerns me with a prequel is where to end it without the story feeling incomplete? Just filling in the blanks for the same of filling in blanks doesn't generally make for good story telling, especially not for the kind of classical fairy tales on which this was so clearly modelled.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2017
  6. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    I figured that was just because he was supposed to be several decades younger. Although a few decades out of 900 years probably wouldn't make that much difference.
     
  7. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2011
    Location:
    astral plane
    The direct light on the Yoda puppet from Coruscant's setting sun did not help matters either, particularly with respect to the eyeballs.
     
  8. Reverend

    Reverend Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2002
    Location:
    UK
    I don't think it looked any better in the softer broad daylight of the Naboo parade scene.
    Like I said, the main reason it seemed so off-putting (for me at least) was simply because it didn't look enough like the older, cruder puppet. IIRC Lucas & Frank Oz even say as much in the AotC BtS material when they were designing the CG Yoda.
     
  9. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    The Creation Myths graphic novel miniseries covers the events around the cracking of the crystal. It starts with the creation of Thra and birth of Aughra, and goes all the up to after the Crystal cracked, but before the Prophecy.
    There was a sequel movie that was in the works for years, but that ended up never being produced, and is now coming out as a comic book miniseries instead.
    Yeah, I'm wondering about this too. I think the designs could be upgraded to modern tech while keeping them recognizable. The Skesis we see in the trailer looks pretty good.
    I think the secret will be to just tell a story that happens to be before the movie, rather than focusing on filling in the gaps of the movie.
     
  10. Ithekro

    Ithekro Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2012
    Location:
    Republic of California
    Watching the World of the Dark Crystal (making of special form 1983) it is mentioned that several of the creatures were designed around how they could operate a puppet and what technology they could get into a puppet to make it lifelike. The eyes being the hardest things to get right it seems. The trick was to attempt to make everything feel alive and not give away that it was a puppet at all. I think the only time in the fil, were you can see one thing is clearly a puppet, its for a laugh, when Fizzgig starts throwing a tantrum to go with the Galfings and his jaw hinges back about like a regular Muppet, seemed like Animal having a tantrum.

    The advantage of more modern technology might be to make the puppets a little lighter, and more wireless perhaps for some of the slighter expressions in the faces and the like that had to be controlled by cables and remotes by a crew of one to four people aside from the puppeteer inside the costume. The Chamberlain, for example, was probably the most complex of the Skesis as Frank Oz had some specific ideas in mind about just how smarmy to make the character.

    I am sort of interesting on how the Skesis would have moved in their youth. When they had four functioning arms. Before their corruption became more and more blatant. The Gatham War I guess started around 200 years before the events of the film.
     
  11. Reverend

    Reverend Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2002
    Location:
    UK
    The design of the Skesis is inherently much easier to deal with. For one thing the beak means they never had to deal with lips, much less lip syncing. Their overall aesthetic was so extreme and muppet-like that most of the character came from the performance and that performance could afford to be as over the top as possible.

    The Gelflings on the other hand were meant to be much more human-like, so they sort of slid into the uncanny valley. Not human enough to be convincing but at the same time too human to be able to ham it up it. To be fair Jen's voice actor delivered the lines in a flat monotone, which only exacerbated the puppet's technical shortcomings.

    I've no doubt they can make a much more expressive puppet, but the question is can it be done and still look like a Gelfling, or like the TPM Yoda, will it look like some Bizarro imitation?
     
  12. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2000
    Location:
    PEBCAK! Three miles west of COVFEFE!
    Not to resurrect a somewhat-old thread, but there is a (maybe) new teaser trailer for this production located on darkcrystal.com. It really looks like they're pulling all the stops out on this, with a focus on honoring and preserving Henson's original vision of the world. I'm sure his son is directly involved. It's a shame the sequel movie never came to pass, but this is definitely something that promises to be quite interesting.
     
  13. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    That's been out for a while now, but I do agree with your point. The teaser does make me very hopeful that they'll be do a good job. I actually saw on Io9 on Monday that they were starting either production or principal photography this week.
     
    Kai "the spy" and 137th Gebirg like this.
  14. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2000
    Location:
    PEBCAK! Three miles west of COVFEFE!
    I suspected that might have been the case, re. the teaser. I just last night came across it while doing some research on the Sierra Online graphic adventure of the original movie and I found that teaser on the homepage. After having missed this thread it came as quite a pleasant surprise, as DC is literally my all-time favorite movie. So I went all fanboy over it... :)
     
  15. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    Glad to see I'm not the only big fan of the movie around these parts. I can't wait to see what they come up with for this.
    I'm curious if they are going to fit this into the same timeline as the novels and comics, or if they'll just start from scratch. I'm pretty sure there are quite a few gaps in the timeline where this could be squeezed in.
    @137th Gebirg have you read any of the tie-in stuff that's been coming out the last few years?
     
    137th Gebirg likes this.
  16. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2000
    Location:
    PEBCAK! Three miles west of COVFEFE!
    Yes, I read the Shadows of the Dark Crystal manga and wasn't terribly impressed. It kind of felt like it was written more for kids and I didn't find the story very compelling. Creation Myths, however, rocked at so many levels and the artwork, IMO, looked like it came right out of Froud's sketchbook. That set of books really felt like they captured the world much better. I'm currently collecting Power of the Dark Crystal but haven't had the chance to read through them yet.

    I do have to brag a little, though, as I have one of the limited run unbuilt resin kits for the Crystal Castle pre-reunification. One of these days I'll need to find the time to build it. It's an amazing little kit and was the first time I've ever seen what the backside of the castle actually looks like.
     
  17. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Why would it be surprising that a Dark Crystal story was written for kids? It's always been for kids. I was 14 when it came out and I was a big fan. Many of the best works of entertainment out there are for kids.
     
  18. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2000
    Location:
    PEBCAK! Three miles west of COVFEFE!
    So are you surprised that maybe Creation Myths wasn't? It may have been written for kids more as a target audience but I found the writing itself and the general story overall somewhat disappointing. CM was orders of magnitude better in artwork, plot and prose yet still suitable for young reading. I don't think it was kids they were writing for with that one, though.
     
  19. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    You see how those two sentences contradict each other, right? "For kids" and "for adults" are not mutually exclusive categories. Good writing is good writing. The things that really make a story unsuitable for children are mainly just sex, violence, and profanity, and those aren't necessary for a good story. Which is why so many high-quality works made with children in mind are also well-loved by adults, including Star Wars, Avatar: The Last Airbender, Harry Potter, Batman: The Animated Series, The Hobbit, A Wrinkle in Time, and much, much more.

    After all, good parents read and watch things with their children. So anything that's "for children" should ideally be made with the expectation that adults will be watching it too. Which is why it makes no sense to assume that the two audiences are mutually exclusive.
     
    Morpheus 02 likes this.
  20. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    I never got a chance to read the manga, but I loved Creation Myths. I have the first 5 or 6 issues of Power, but I only read the first one so far. It was really good, it really makes me wish we got the actual movie.
    My mom got me The Dark Crystal: The Ultimate Visual History for my birthday, but I haven't gotten around to reading it. It looks really cool, it covers a little of Jim Henon's pre-Dark Crystal work, and then goes from Jim and Brian Froud's first meeting all the way through to the release of the Power of the Dark Crystal comic. It includes recreations of hand written notes, sketches, and all sorts of stuff related to the movie.
    I'm hoping to check out the Author Quest e-book, Shadows of the Dark Crystal and Song of the Dark Crystal once I get through more of my unread books and comics. I have to confess, I actually found myself very, very tempted to enter the contest, but I wasn't confident enough to go for it.
    Wow, that is really cool.
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2017
    137th Gebirg likes this.