1.01: Birds of a Feather

Highlander II

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A boy comes to Dresden with a story of monsters out to get him.




Which is a highly simplified plot summary, but that's okay.



THERE WILL BE SPOILERS FOR THE EPISODE LISTED AND POTENTIALLY ALL 8 BOOKS IN THIS THREAD!
 

Highlander II

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Re: 1:01 - Birds of a Feather

I loved the first episode!

I'll put up more tomorrow when I'm more awake and have a minute - just wanted to get the episode discussion thread up and running!
 

Cloud

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Re: 1:01 - Birds of a Feather

okay, it was . . . good. (cautiously). I liked the way they interwove Harry's backstory and paralleled it with the young boy's story. Murphy seemed right.

Some things that bugged me:

Harry's too old.
Too prosperous (at least his house looks that way.)
Where's his staff? His pentacle necklace? His leather duster?
He lives in a loft instead of a basement apartment and . . .
the electric lights worked! Boo!
and . . .
Bob being corporeal (or at least visible) bugged the HELL out of me. They should have made the skull talk and they eyes glow instead.

I realize concessions need to be made in translating one media to another, which is why I'm cautiously optimistic. But still!
 

dwndrgn

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Re: 1:01 - Birds of a Feather

okay, it was . . . good. (cautiously). I liked the way they interwove Harry's backstory and paralleled it with the young boy's story. Murphy seemed right.

Some things that bugged me:
Harry's too old.
This never crossed my mind. Harry's age seems fine to me.

Too prosperous (at least his house looks that way.)
Well, it didn't look at all prosperous to me, everything was built out of older, used parts. I did notice the electric lights, but while Butcher describes Harry's place being lit by candles, he never says that all electricity goes out when he's around. Otherwise, every building he enters would lose it's lighting as well. What is implied is that complicated gadgets and intricate wiring are what go haywire when he's around. Again, his car wouldn't start if he couldn't get that electric spark and so on. So, this didn't bother me though I did think about it when I saw it.

I didn't like that his door to his apartment/office (they shouldn't be the same thing at all) was a double, see-through glass door. I'm not sure why they dispensed with the heavy, reinforced wood door that is so helpful in the books. One would think these doors to be terribly flimsy and easily broken as well as seen into. Harry wouldn't want everyone seeing his business.

Another thing, the 'protection' was just some black strips hung up at the sides of the doors? Harry's wards wouldn't have been so easily removed, or visible except to those with magical powers. This one baffles me. They could have easily made note of his 'protective wards' and wouldn't have needed any props or anything else to back it up. Why use such a cruddy replacement?

Where's his staff? His pentacle necklace? His leather duster?
These changes are minor and have been discussed at length on the Butcher forum, the Dresden Files forum and on the earlier thread here. They do not change the character of Harry himself and were changed for very good reasons.

Bob being corporeal (or at least visible) bugged the HELL out of me. They should have made the skull talk and they eyes glow instead.
This didn't bother me at all. What bothered me was that Bob was such a tenderhearted wuss. Normally he's a bada$$, trash-talking annoyance.

Well, after saying all that, I quite liked it. Though another thing I had some issues with was that there wasn't enough information, too many questions left unanswered. Who hired the Ravens to protect the kid? Justin? If they were mercenaries hired for a job, they wouldn't readily back down and allow Harry to do whatever he wanted. If the teacher was the skinwalker and wanted the boy, why didn't she get him earlier? By all accounts the teacher was taken over by the skinwalker days before the kid was finally taken by the Ravens. Why did the Ravens wait until the last minute to move the boy to safety? Why, other than establishing that Harry is poor, would Harry be badgering Murphy about getting paid? That was out of character.

But, like I said, I definitely enjoyed it and will most certainly watch the next episode.
 

Carolyn Hill

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Re: 1:01 - Birds of a Feather

What bothered me was that Bob was such a tenderhearted wuss. Normally he's a bada$$, trash-talking annoyance.
Yeh, that bugged me too. And, like Cloud, I missed Harry's duster. But I enjoyed the episode and will watch future episodes.

(The actress who plays Murphy looks vaguely like another actress, so I kept wondering who I was confusing her with. Can any of you read my mind and help me sort my confusion?)
 

K. Riehl

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Re: 1:01 - Birds of a Feather

Why did they chose to air this episode first? It's not the pilot. It reminded me of the jerking around Firefly got.
The accumulated changes bothered me alot.
Changes in appearance, clothing, vehicle, house, Bob, use of magic by Harry.
The books were so good because Harry initiated the action. In this story Harry doesn't really Do anything. He needs to be more present!
Hand a Doom Box to the SkinWalker and run. Sheesh
They need to pick up the pace for me.
 

Highlander II

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Re: 1:01 - Birds of a Feather

Before the runaway train starts - I'm gonna link to Jim Butcher's podcast interview about the 'cosmetic changes' for the show -

The Butcher Block

(( b/c the same thing is causing some uproar on Jim's board too - so Fred did some bud-nipping ))


Plus - I'm too lazy to retype it all ;)


This episode wasn't supposed to be first, "Storm Front" was, but it's been moved to slot 5. I don't know why the schedule was shifted, but we've been told that it shouldn't affect any of the storylines. On that - I'm waiting to see what happens.


As for the lights - Harry mentions in at least one of the books that he has electric lights but 'they foul up so often' it's not worth replacing the bulbs. And in his home? sure the lights foul up more - that's where Harry does a lot of his magic and spends a lot of his time. If his lab was somewhere else - he'd probably have less trouble with the electric lights. Also - it's one of those things that on tv, doesn't work so well -- candle light on TV is a bitch to use. And since lighting is so important in visual media, Harry gets lights.

The actress playing Murphy is Valerie Cruz - that's all I got.

More stuff - the satff - it's coming, it's shaped like a hockey stick, but it's coming ;)

The bits about Bob are in the podcast, but this one I remember pretty good - from what I understand, a 'glowy-eyed talking skull' would look cheap and goofy on-screen. Keep in mind the use of Terrance Mann in a pseudo corporeal form is the 2nd change - Bob was gonna be a talking fire in the fireplace. Ghost!Bob is WAY cooler!
 

Carolyn Hill

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Re: 1:01 - Birds of a Feather

I figured out who the actress who plays Murphy reminds me of: Stefanie Powers, who (among other roles) played Jennifer Hart, a detective on Hart to Hart, a TV show in the early 1980s.

I'll insert an image here that I got from a Stefanie Powers fansite. It's sort of large . . . sorry.

 

Highlander II

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Re: 1:01 - Birds of a Feather

That's rather amusing, considering the execs at Dresden are trying to follow in the episodic vein of Hart to Hart - as far as 'detective show' and 'no real huge over-arcing story plot' stuff... ;)

Oh - and Harry does use candles - they show up in the next ep.

I think what we saw early in this ep was Harry's room, which seems very loft-like with lots of windows, so there was plenty of sunlight.

And I think there's a little 'less' of the 'Harry disrupts electronic gadgets' stuff in the show - probably b/c the first couple times it'd be funny, but after that, it'd just get annoying. They could pull it off if they did it subtle-like, but it's probably easier to not futz with it too much.
 

edott

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Re: 1:01 - Birds of a Feather

I really enjoyed it but i haven't read the books. so i guess i'll go to my neighbors, he has all of them, and borrow a few to read.
 

Cloud

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Re: 1:01 - Birds of a Feather

Shouldn't this now be 1:02?

After a close look, I think the lighting in Harry's place is supposed to "evoke" candlelight. They mashed together his home and office, though.

Bob still bothers me--don't like him much.
 

Cloud

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Re: 1:01 - Birds of a Feather

okay, but should this be in the Film & TV forum?
 

Highlander II

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Re: 1:01 - Birds of a Feather

okay, but should this be in the Film & TV forum?
Not yet. Brian said to keep it here - keep all the Dresden stuff together.

If we get enough chatter going - then, yeah - we'll set-up a TV section for Dresden, but it's not quite big enough yet.
 

Dave

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I just saw this; I taped it. Having only read 'Storm Front' I didn't have problems with the back-story from the books. I didn't think Harry looked too old, but I did wonder about all the many women in this episode being so young and good-looking and single. Bob was not how I imagined him either.

I liked it anyway, so I'll keep watching.
 

Highlander II

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Yeah, one of the changes that was made for the tv show was that Harry would be a bit more of a 'ladies man'. I'm not sure yet how I feel about that, since it seems really cliche, but we'll see how that plays out.

Bob wasn't how I imagined him - he was one of the other things that was changed - but I love tv!Bob! :)
 

TiwazTyrsfist

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Bob bothers me. The fact that he's now the soul of a dead wizard trapped in his own skull, rather than a Fey spirit hiding out from Queen Mab.
 

Cloud

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speaking of Bob, does this portrayal seem a bit . . . gay to you? Maybe it was the comment about "that shawl with those shoes." And of course, in the books, Bob is a incorporeal horndog for the ladies.
 
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