Flying Cars, Grimm Tales, and Bond Villains – Geekout 20

Writing a blog post nearly every day means that I can write about all kinds of geeky topics. It’s been interesting writing these this year. So for a backstory, I received a page-a-day desk calendar for Christmas. On the calendar, it challenges you to list some geeky things based on three prompts it provides each day. I take that, and I write a little bit about each of my responses.

For example, today I am supposed to list Four Films in which Flying Cars appear, Four Brothers Grimm Fairy Tales, and Four James Bond Enemies. If I’m restricting my answers in some way, I’ll usually explain how.

2017-01-23 Geekout

Let’s see how this day goes!

Four Films in which Flying Cars appear

For this, I think I’ll distinguish that flying cars and near-ground hovering cars are not the same thing. I’d also like to think that the name “car” is not required for these vehicles, but they should be car-like.

Star Wars: Attack of the Clones

In atmosphere, it’s common to have “speeders” in Star Wars. There are landspeeders, snowspeeders, airspeeders, etc. in their world. I’d say that the airspeeders seen in the second of the prequels are most certainly an example of flying cars in a film.

Back to the Future Part II

Where this movie’s going, we don’t need roads. In this film we seen flying cars landing on streets and continuing to drive. These cars use a hovering technology to lift them up into the sky as flying cars. We get to see this quite early, since Doc Brown has converted the DeLorean time machine into a flying car before the events of the movie take place – or in the future past… OK, let’s not go there.

Star Trek Into Darkness

They may not be common in Star Trek films and TV, however, flying cars do exist in the world. In fact, if you saw Star Trek Into Darkness, you watched current Spock’s fighting prowess on display while he was standing atop a flying car.

The Fifth Element

In The Fifth Element, our main protagonist is a cab driver named Korben Dallas. His cab? A flying cab, because the film is full of flying cars. I don’t have to get into the details of the film too much here, which is good; I wouldn’t want to spoil the movie for anyone who wants to watch it. I enjoy the film, and think Gary Oldman and Chris Tucker play some amazingly fun characters in the film!

Four Brothers Grimm Fairy Tales

And in this category, we’ll see how these both Grimm and grim tales have been adapted into modern version we still tell today!

Rapunzel

I’ll focus on what most people won’t know here, and I’ll assume that most people have seen Tangled. In the Grimm’s story, Rapunzel’s soon-to-be father is caught stealing food from the witch’s garden. The food was a craving from his pregnant wife. He is allowed the food in exchange for the soon-be-born child.

You know the locked in the tower and climb the hair bit of the story, but the prince part has some changes as well. He gets Rapunzel pregnant and plans an escape with her during his visits. Before they can complete the plan, Rapunzel foolishly gives away his visits, and when he next climbs up, the witch is the only one there. She pushes him onto thorns, blinding him. A bit more violent eh?

This is surprisingly a happy story, since he eventually finds her from her singing. His sight is restored by her tears and they raise their children happily ever after. This version takes a dark turn, but ends up in the light.

Hansel and Gretel

Again, the story starts as we all know it. The children are taken into the woods, because the family will not be able to feed them during the famine. They children leave stones as they walk, so they may follow them home. The next time they’re unable to get the stones, so they use bread crumbs. Could have worked if animals (likely mostly birds) hadn’t eaten the crumbs.

The children are now lost in the woods for days and, unlike the candy-houses of modern day, find a sugary bread and cake house. Obviously the starving children eat some of the house before being lured inside by the witch who discovers them eating her house!

The witch enslaves Gretel and is fattening Hansel for a meal, force-feeding him. Lucky for the children, the witch has poor eyesight, so when she checks to see how plump Hansel is getting, he shows her a bone instead of a finger. This fools the witch, but she eventually decides to eat both children immediately.

Before the witch can throw Gretel into the oven, she tricks the witch into leaning in first, and Gretel pushes her in, killing the witch.

And as we saw with the last tale, the story ends happily here. After the grim, cannibalistic encounter ending in the children murdering an old woman, they escape home with the witch’s treasure. Their evil stepmother, the one who wanted them gone in the first place has died, and the treasure now makes the family rich and happy.

Rumpelstiltskin

Like with Hansel and Gretel, this one has it’s darker element maintained well in modern versions. I forget exactly how the girl gets locked up by the king, but I believe her father had claimed that she could spin gold from straw. Anyway, once locked up, she’s told to spin the gold or be killed.

Luckily (or perhaps unluckily?) a magical being shows up to help. He offers his services in exchange for her jewelry, and spins the gold. I forget how many times this exchange happens, but eventually she’s out of items to trade for his services. The king has also declared he will marry her if she can spin gold again. Without anything to offer, he demands her first-born child as payment and does the deed.

Avoiding death again, she’s set free and marries the king. When their first child is born, she refuses to give him up, offering instead riches. In an uncharacteristic bit of generosity, he offers to rescind his claim if she can guess his name within some time period. No one knows his name, so she’s doomed (likely why he was willing to offer the opportunity).

She searches for him in the woods at night, and she somehow manages to find him talking excitedly to himself about his great success. In his excitement, he refers to himself by name, and she’s able to return home and give his name at the final opportunity to guess. He leaves without the child, and we get another happily ever after.

Cinderella

The story of the wicked stepmother and stepsisters is consistent here. She’s good and kind as her mother instructed her just before dying, which doesn’t help Cinderella much. Of note, Cinderella is not the German name of her, it’s the English. I just searched, and it seems that it’s “Aschenputtel”, and the Internet tells me that literally means Ash Fool.

I recall there being something done in their version that triggers the magical elements with the birds. I don’t recall what it is, but she does get help from birds in this version (it wasn’t just Disney’s version!) They help with chores and such, so she can be done in time for the ball. You know, the ball where the prince is looking for his bride. She’s left behind anyway, and the birds give her the outfit. I don’t remember how, but I recall it being the birds still.

There’s no midnight thing, but after the ball she makes an escape from the prince. To be honest, I’m not sure why she does that! Unlike in some modern versions, there are more nights of balls. Cinderella returns again, and the prince looses her again when she escapes while he’s walking her home. Failing again to find her, he plans a “trap” for the third night. While the ball is in progress, he has the stairs coated in a sticky substance to keep her from running away. When she tries, one of her golden, yes golden, slippers gets stuck. Now the prince has a way to find his bride-to-be during the day!

Ready for the less-than-pleasant part? In order to fit into the slipper, at the suggestion of their mother, one stepsister cuts off some toes and the other her own heel. Each in turn is thus able to fit the slipper, nearly fooling the prince. The noticed bleeding feet eventually giving away their disturbing treachery. Obviously, when Cinderella tries on the slipper, not only does it fit, but the prince recognizes it’s her.

And just in case it wasn’t disturbing enough already, those evil stepsisters get their eyes either poked or plucked out (I can’t remember which) by the birds from earlier. A bit gruesome there. At least Cinderella and her prince get a happy ending!

Four James Bond Enemies

This says “enemies”, so I’m going to allow myself the main villain or their henchmen. I’ll try to avoid hitting the same film multiple times, since that’s no fun. Although a couple I could pull their whole set of enemies and be happy with the result!

Goldfinger – Goldfinger

The titular character of a Bond film, this antagonist is obviously gold-obsessed, even killing someone and painting her with gold. To be honest, I don’t know if the paint killed her, or if she was dead first. Been forever, since I’ve seen the movie. Either way, he’s plotting some evil that you can watch the movie to learn about!

Janus – GoldenEye

Spoiler Alert! I like this character too much to exclude him from this list, but I attached that spoiler alert just in case. This is the assumed name of Alec Trevelyan, known also as 006. Bond was fooled into thinking he was killed by General Ourumov in the beginning of the film. Since Ourumov is the traitor working with him, that obviously was faked. Anyway, he’s a brilliant villain played by Sean Bean, so how can you dislike the character?

Jaws – Multiple Films

This giant brute is a recurring character in the Bond franchise, and attempts to kill 007 more than a couple of times. I most know him from Moonraker, because he was included in the bonus level of that title in the GoldenEye video game for the Nintendo 64. Jaws is depicted with metal teeth, which, in addition to being scary and iconic, can bite through quite a lot.

Oddjob – Goldfinger

I couldn’t do it! I like Goldfinger and wanted to include him, but I’m adding his henchman, Oddjob here as well! This henchman is strong, and also has a blade in the brim of his hat (likely a chakram). As a result, he is able to throw the hat as a weapon to decapitate his target.

Also, you’re practically cheating if you choose him as a character in the GoldenEye N64 game… The character model (and thus hit box) is shorter than the other characters! Don’t remember him being that short in the film, so perhaps the game developers just wanted a short character and chose him.

Wrap Up

Wrote a lot more than I intended today! Anyway, make sure to follow my blog to catch the next post, which will cover a Gaming, a Comics, and a Sci-Fi topic!

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About Brendan
Nerdin' it up!

One Response to Flying Cars, Grimm Tales, and Bond Villains – Geekout 20

  1. Mei-Mei says:

    Nice job on the Grimm versions of the fairy tales!

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