Media Roundup: Endings, and also some Medieval Combat

This week’s post is going to be a little bit more of a roundup, rather than focused on one thing. Innkeeper Chronicles (web serial), Once Upon a Time (TV), and The History Channel: Great Battles Medieval (game) are the topics.

Innkeeper Chronicles

The urban fantasy/sci-fi/science fantasy/paranormal romance web serial by Ilona Andrews is completed. Or the first serial, since it seems like a second one might be written. Creatures that mundanes shouldn’t know about begin hunting in a magical innkeeper’s neighborhood. She has to stop it from happening, figure out why it’s happening, and keep magic from being exposed. Her sidekicks include a werewolf, a vampire, and a vicious toy dog.

Once again, I love the worldbuilding here. No Ilona Andrews story has even remotely the same worldbuilding, even though this is the third of her weres I’m reading about. I don’t know how many different ways you can write werewolves, but I am going to enjoy finding out. Recommended.

Once Upon a Time

The second season has done really well. It started just as strong as the first season, but didn’t stumble along the way as much. There were a couple of characters–the villains towards the end–which I think should have been fleshed out more. In another show, this wouldn’t be so noticeable, but in Once Upon a Time, which has so far done a wonderful job of creating complex villains, it stands out.

But that’s a quibble. This season, they fixed a lot of their previous mistakes, and focused more strongly on redemption as a theme. They also make Emma seem more real and interesting as a character, whereas she seemed flatter the first season. There’s some great acting on this show, and that hasn’t changed.

And I am incredibly happy that one big storyline was wrapped up in season one, then we moved on to other compelling storylines. I’m giving the show a pass for the cliffhanger finale, just this once. Can’t wait for season three!

The History Channel: Great Battles Medieval

I’ve also been playing this game, which is probably due to my history major roots. It’s an all battle game, which isn’t what I usually go for, but it’s doing a decent job acquainting me with what weapons are used for what, and so on. Mostly because if I put the wrong kind of troop against the an enemy troop advantaged against them, I have to watch them be annihilated.

Some familiar names abound, as this takes place during the Hundred Years Wars. Agincourt, where Henry the V scored a victory for England. Right now I’m on a Joan of Arc campaign. Again, it’s all combat, so it’s not really my thing and I’m not the best person to judge it. It feels kinda repetitive, but it does take thinking to win the battles, and I am still playing.

Because I can’t resist, here’s a video of a historical reenactment group demonstrating some moves.

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