Thursday 23 April 2015

Pratchett Adaptations or If you don't feel like reading, here are some alternatives

After Terry Pratchett died I hosted a Pratchett readathon here on the blog where I talked many Pratchett-related things for an entire seven days, almost every day. When I heard about the blog tour being organised in his honour by Viv I really wanted to participate but I wasn't sure what there was left for me to write about. Then a copy of the 1992 TV series of Truckers turned up on my doorstep and I thought; adaptations!

Terry Pratchett's numerous books have been adapted in many and various ways. I'm going to give a brief overview of all the adaptations and a little more details on a couple of my favourites! As previously mentioned there is a stop-motion series of Truckers first broadcast in 1992 which is now available on DVD if you want to watch it. I've watched some but not all of it and thought it was pretty good. The same company also made a two part adaptation of Wyrd Sisters (1997) and a mini series of Soul Music (1996), both of which are viewable on Youtube. In 2006 there was a BBC series of Johnny and the Bomb which I haven't yet watched as I haven't actually read the book yet so can't really comment.

And then there were things I have experience of and so can actually talk about! I'm assuming lots of people will have heard of if not seen the Sky One adaptations of Hogfather, The Colour of Magic and Going Postal starring such people as Marc Warren, David Jason, Joss Ackland, Tony Robinson, Ian Richardson, David Suchet, Tamsin Greig and Andrew Sachs among many others. I'll be honest and say that at first I didn't love The Colour of Magic (which is really The Colour of Magic and The Light Fantastic) but in all honesty that probably has something to do with the books not being my favourite and the more I watch it, the more I like it. My absolute favourite of all the Pratchett adaptations I've watched has got to be Hogfather (also one of my favourite books). I just think that the casting is perfect - Michelle Dockery is absolutely fantastic as Susan, Marc Warren is totally creepy as Mr. Teatime, and David Jason as Albert is pure brilliance. It's worked its way into my family's Christmas tradition, no easy feat. I honestly think it's just beautiful and fantastic and hilarious and if you haven't seen it you should. You can get it on eBay for about a pound, what are you waiting for?

I also really like Going Postal, although I didn't enjoy it as much as the book. Like Hogfather it's very well cast and David Suchet is the villain which is just fantastic for a Poirot fan like myself to behold!

Finally, I've been listening to the Radio 4 adaptation of Good Omens with Peter Serafinowicz and Mark Heap and I'm actually enjoying it a lot more than I enjoyed reading the book alone. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed the book, but this is better. It's kind of like comparing reading Fortunately, the Milk yourself or having Neil Gaiman read it to you. Obviously the second is the better option, which is why I don't need to read my copy of that book for a while. If you've not heard it you should check it out. The link above will work until the end of the month!

While we're on the subject of adaptation I'll just give an honourable mention to Tony Robinson's fantastic reading of the Discworld series on audio. These are abridged but his voice is, in my mind, perfect for the stories and actually the audiobook of Equal Rites is how I convinced my husband that Pratchett is fantastic. There are also unabridged versions read by Nigel Planer and Celia Imrie.

Oh, oh, aaaaaand just in case you're a fan of graphic novels, The Colour of Magic, The Light Fantastic, Mort and Guards!Guards! have all been adapted into graphic novels. According to Rhys they're also great. I will get to them soon!

So that read more like a litany of 'things I'm doing to watch/read/listen to one day' and less like a reliable account from a person who know anything, but you should know that everything mentioned in this post is something I'm excited about watching/reading/listening to and plan to get to as soon as possible. The good thing, if it can be called that, to come from Terry Pratchett's passing for me is that I've discovered how much there is that I haven't yet experienced. I thought I'd read pretty much everything but it transpires that's not even close to being true, and even in writing this post I've discovered other adaptations I didn't know of.

Just before I go, although I don't think it's going to be touring anytime soon, if you get the chance do go and see Mort: the Musical. It's worth your time.

Check out the other blogs on the tour or follow along on twitter at #TerryPratchettBlogTour.

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