Neil Gaiman

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Re: Neil Gaiman

Postby pip » Fri Aug 30, 2013 2:31 pm

You search old firm and its all Glasgow soccer so hard to get anything else. I know firm has been used for crime organisations but nothing jumps to mind with old and new beyond the ones above.
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Re: Neil Gaiman

Postby Tonyblack » Fri Aug 30, 2013 2:36 pm

This is from the Annotated Pratchett Files in reference to Pin and Tulip and "The Old Firm":

The characters of Pin and Tulip are somewhat frustrating for Terry in the sense that many, many people feel that they are 'obviously' based on Mr Croup and Mr Vandemar in Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere (who refer to themselves as the Old Firm, and call each other 'Mr'). Or 'obviously' based on the thugs Jules Winfield and Vincent Vega from the 1994 movie Pulp Fiction (and there are a good number of Pulp Fiction references in The Truth). Or obviously based on Mr Wint and Mr Kidd from the James Bond movie Diamonds are Forever. Or obviously based on the two Rons (who called themselves 'The Management') from the BBC Hale and Pace series. Or...

Terry himself had this to say:

"1. The term 'The Old Firm' certainly wasn't invented by Neil. I think it first turned up amongst bookies, but I've even seen the Kray Brothers referred to that way. Since the sixties at least the 'the firm' has tended to mean 'criminal gang.' And, indeed, the term turned up in DW long before Neverwhere.

2. Fiction and movies are full of pairs of bad guys that pretty much equate to Pin and Tulip. They go back a long way. That's why I used 'em, and probably why Neil did too. You can have a trio of bad guys (who fill roles that can be abbreviated to 'the big thick one, the little scrawny one and The Boss') but the dynamic is different. With two guys, one can always explain the plot to the other..."

"A point worth mentioning, ref other threads I've seen: Hale and Pace's 'Ron and Ron' worked precisely because people already knew the archetype."


Full article here. :)
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Re: Neil Gaiman

Postby Quatermass » Sun Sep 01, 2013 10:49 am

Indeed. While not all of these characters were criminals, you do see a double act in many villains. In Doctor Who, you have Mr Oak and Mr Quill (Fury from the Deep), Sabalom Glitz and Dibber (The Mysterious Planet), Ms Winters and Jellicoe (Robot), Solon and Condo (The Brain of Morbius)...need I go on? It's not exactly original. TV Tropes has an entire page called "Those Two Bad Guys".
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Re: Neil Gaiman

Postby raisindot » Mon Sep 02, 2013 1:59 pm

[spoilers]

The history of two-man crime teams aside, Croup and Vandemer are so similar to Pin and Tulip in attitudes, speech patterns, and actions that it's hard for me to see how Pterry created his characters free of Gaiman's influence. Vandemer's obsessive habit of eating any crawling thing becomes Tulip's obsessive habit of trying to consume any inorganic powdery substance as drugs. Both Croup and Pin speak in an artificially "civilized" manner. Croup is literally a consumer of fine art (although Pterry makes Tulip the art expert, which is much funnier). And in the end, Croup trying to save his own life by leap-frogging over Vandemer becomes Pin's murder of his partner to save his own skin.

Pterry may claim that he wasn't influenced by Gaiman, but all of these literary similarities make it hard to believe he wasn't.
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Re: Neil Gaiman

Postby Quatermass » Wed Sep 04, 2013 10:12 am

raisindot wrote:[spoilers]

The history of two-man crime teams aside, Croup and Vandemer are so similar to Pin and Tulip in attitudes, speech patterns, and actions that it's hard for me to see how Pterry created his characters free of Gaiman's influence. Vandemer's obsessive habit of eating any crawling thing becomes Tulip's obsessive habit of trying to consume any inorganic powdery substance as drugs. Both Croup and Pin speak in an artificially "civilized" manner. Croup is literally a consumer of fine art (although Pterry makes Tulip the art expert, which is much funnier). And in the end, Croup trying to save his own life by leap-frogging over Vandemer becomes Pin's murder of his partner to save his own skin.

Pterry may claim that he wasn't influenced by Gaiman, but all of these literary similarities make it hard to believe he wasn't.


Again, that's not actually unique. I mentioned earlier Sabalom Glitz and Dibber. Glitz in particular attempts to speak in an artificially civilised manner, to sound more intelligent than he really is (okay, he's not a complete idiot, and manages to talk his way out of more than a few situations, but he tries to sound more intelligent than he is). To wit, one of his first conversations in The Mysterious Planet...

Glitz: Whereas yours is a simple case of sociopathy, Dibber, my malaise is much more complex. A deep-rooted maladjustment, my psychiatrist said, brought on by an infantile inability to come to terms with the more pertinent, concrete aspects of life.

Dibber: That sounds more like an insult than a diagnosis, Mr Glitz.

Glitz: You're right there, my lad. Mind you, I had just attempted to kill him.


In addition, Shlubb and Klump, from Sin City, make (what I am sure) is their debut in 1996, four years before The Truth. And they, well, let's just put it this way: they have, as TV Tropes puts it, 'delusions of eloquence'. To wit...

Douglas Klump: The perimeters of our assignment were described to us with specificity, Mr. Shlubb. We are to deposit our cargo into the body of water which we now overlook. It was likeways made clear to us that any embellishments of said perimeters would not be advisory.
Burt Shlubb: I cannot prescribe to such a narrow interpretation of the perimeters which you now invoke, Mr. Klump.


:roll:

Not that Terry Pratchett would have read any Sin City graphic novels, but I'm just saying, it's a pretty common type of stock character pairing.
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Re: Neil Gaiman

Postby =Tamar » Wed Sep 04, 2013 10:52 am

Quatermass wrote:[spoilers]
(raisindot) "speak in an artificially "civilized" manner"

Again, that's not actually unique. I mentioned earlier Sabalom Glitz and Dibber. Glitz in particular attempts to speak in an artificially civilised manner, to sound more intelligent than he really is [....]
In addition, Shlubb and Klump, from Sin City, make (what I am sure) is their debut in 1996, four years before The Truth. And they, well, let's just put it this way: they have, as TV Tropes puts it, 'delusions of eloquence'.[...]
Not that Terry Pratchett would have read any Sin City graphic novels...


Heck, delusions of eloquence go back in the 20th century at the very least to Damon Runyon, and the method goes back through the 18th century to Mrs. Malaprop, who used and confused fine-sounding words without knowing their meaning or pronunciation, and probably earlier.
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Re: Neil Gaiman

Postby Quatermass » Wed Sep 04, 2013 10:59 am

At least Glitz seems to understand what was said to him by his shrink, more or less. Or maybe that's just the skillful pen of Robert Holmes. And he also realises that the Doctor is better to have on your side than not.
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Re: Neil Gaiman

Postby raisindot » Mon Oct 07, 2013 1:46 pm

I'm really trying very hard to figure out what all the fuss is about with Gaiman. So far, I've read American Gods, Anansi Boys, Neverwhere and Stardust . All pleasant reads, by they all seem to have the same formula: Ordinary guy gets involves with fantasy/supernatural/gods, discovers he is part godlike/supernatural himself, discovers inner heroic qualities he never knew he had, ends up leaving the regular world for the fantasy realm. Other than American Gods, which was very good if a bit scattered, most of these don't really stand out in any way.

Do his other (adult) books continue this same formula? I'll read them, too, but in terms of this genre I wouldn't put him anywhere near Pterry or even similar authors like Chris Moore in terms of originality, wit and literary ability.
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Re: Neil Gaiman

Postby Ghost » Mon Oct 07, 2013 2:22 pm

I prefer his short stories over his novels
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Re: Neil Gaiman

Postby chillicamper » Sat Oct 12, 2013 6:39 am

raisindot wrote:I'm really trying very hard to figure out what all the fuss is about with Gaiman. So far, I've read American Gods, Anansi Boys, Neverwhere and Stardust . All pleasant reads, by they all seem to have the same formula: Ordinary guy gets involves with fantasy/supernatural/gods, discovers he is part godlike/supernatural himself, discovers inner heroic qualities he never knew he had, ends up leaving the regular world for the fantasy realm. Other than American Gods, which was very good if a bit scattered, most of these don't really stand out in any way.

Do his other (adult) books continue this same formula? I'll read them, too, but in terms of this genre I wouldn't put him anywhere near Pterry or even similar authors like Chris Moore in terms of originality, wit and literary ability.


I do enjoy America Gods the most - but hadn't really thought about recurring themes. I just like his writing style.

But everyone is different and everyone has authors that they really 'click' with. I like Charles de Lint stories - but many would say that his urban fantasy books have very similar themes.

I suppose you could say that our beloved Mr Pratchett has a theme/formula. Most of his books are set on a fantasy world and usually involve wizard, witches, dragons, dwarfs and policemen. ;) :lol:
And a good number of Chris Moore's books usually revolve around vampires or monsters of some sort. I wasn't so keen on CMs his latest - Sacred Bleu - it took a while to get going and focussed too much on the art and not enough on the story.

I think NG always appears to have so many projects on the go (books, short stories, kids books, graphic novels, script writing) that the few proper novels that he does produce may well have similar themes. I'm not sure that makes him less of a writer. My kids both loved his latest kids book - Fortunately the milk - especially the Wumpires :lol:
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Re: Neil Gaiman

Postby Prolekult » Sat Oct 19, 2013 4:40 am

That's the beauty of being Terry Pratchett, you can steal anything you like and simply call it a parody or an homage :lol:

I loved Anansi Boys and would totally recommend reading it before American Gods if you haven't read either, there are more surprises that way and it works better I think.
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Re: Neil Gaiman

Postby Bouncy Castle » Sat Nov 23, 2013 3:24 pm

Gaiman and Cumberbatch in the same room!!

http://www.lettersofnote.com/2013/11/letters-live.html

Pretty impressive guest list.
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Re: Neil Gaiman

Postby michelanCello » Sat Nov 23, 2013 8:49 pm

Awwww, would be nice to be there... are you going, Bouncy?
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Re: Neil Gaiman

Postby Bouncy Castle » Tue Nov 26, 2013 2:26 pm

Nah. Not a fan of crowds.
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Re: Neil Gaiman

Postby michelanCello » Tue Nov 26, 2013 9:15 pm

Shame :( but totally understandable.
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