Game of Thrones breaks records with 12 Emmy Awards

Source: Television Academy

At this year’s Emmy Awards, the fantasy drama television series Game of Thrones sets a record for most awards won in a single year.

From it’s 24 nominations, the show won 12 Emmy Awards including the most rewarding for Outstanding Drama Series 2015. The previous record holder was ‘The West Wing’ which won nine awards at the 2000 Emmys. In addition to best drama, Game of Thrones also took home Emmys for best directing and best script for the episode ‘Mother’s Mercy’ directed by David Nutter and written by David Benioff and D.B. Weiss. Peter Dinklage, who has previously won an Emmy for his role as Tyrion Lannister, won again for best supporting actor in a drama.

Here’s a list of all the Emmy Awards 2015 won by Game of Thrones:

  • Outstanding Drama Series
  • Outstanding Special Visual Effects – ‘The Dance Of Dragons’
  • Outstanding Sound Mixing For A Comedy Or Drama Series (One Hour) – ‘Hardhome’
  • Outstanding Directing For A Drama Series – ‘Mother’s Mercy’
  • Outstanding Sound Editing For A Series – ‘Hardhome’
  • Outstanding Single-Camera Picture Editing For A Drama Series – ‘The Dance of Dragons’
  • Outstanding Writing For A Drama Series – ‘Mother’s Mercy’
  • Outstanding Production Design For A Narrative Contemporary Or Fantasy Program (One Hour Or More) – ‘High Sparrow’
  • Outstanding Makeup For A Single-Camera Series (Non-Prosthetic) – ‘Mother’s Mercy’
  • Outstanding Casting For A Drama Series
  • Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Drama Series – Peter Dinklage as Tyrion Lannister
  • Outstanding Stunt Coordination For A Drama Series, Limited Series Or Movie

Congratulations, Game of Thrones!

game of thrones emmy awards 2015 records

Image by RadioTimes

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Get Yer Kilt On – Outlander: Season 1 Review

Firstly I want to say, I haven’t read the books, so I will only write about the TV series Outlander in this review. My mother loves the books and was very enthousiastic when the series came out. She recommended me to watch and, well, I’m probably a chip off the old block, because soon I was hooked on Outlander. Warning: spoilers for season 1 of Outlander follow.

outlander starz stones show

Outlander: season 1 (2014-15)

  • Creator: Ronald D. Moore
  • Season 1 premiere date: Aug 9, 2014
  • Starring: Caitriona Balfe, Sam Heughan, Tobias Menzies, Duncan Lacroix, Graham McTavish,
  • 16 episodes of 60 minutes

Outlander follows the story of Claire Beauchamp Randall (Caitriona Balfe), a combat nurse from 1945. When she is reunited with her husband Frank Randall (Tobias Menzies) after 5 years of war, they travel to Inverness in Scotland for a second honeymoon. While Frank researches his family history, Claire, interested in the old Scottish folklore, witnesses a Druid ritual among standing stones on the hill of Craigh na Dun. When she places her hands on the stones, she is swept back in time to 1743 in Scotland, in the middle of a skirmish between Redcoats and rebel Highlanders. She is threatened by Frank’s ancestor “Black Jack” Randall (also Tobias Menzies), but saved by a Scotsman and his fellows. Claire’s held captive at Castle Leoch and the MacKenzie clan and is labeled as ‘Sassenach’, an English person or outlander and is suspected to be an English spy. With her medical experience she is deployed as a healer while planning her escape back to Craigh na Dun. But after treating a dislocated shoulder of the romantic, red-haired Scottish warrior Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughan), a passionate relationship is ignited that tears Claire’s heart between two different men in two incompatible lives.

outlander jamie claireWhen you try to tell someone about the series, you probably say it’s a love story about an English woman who travels back in time and falls in love with a Scot. But the thing about Outlander is: it’s so much more than that! The series unexpectedly plays with genre: sometimes it feels like a historical drama, ten minutes later it’s an adventure or swash-buckle story, but also shocking horror, magical fantasy and science-fiction with it’s tagline: “What if your future was the past?” The fact that Claire travels back in time to the the fierce world of Scotland and knows history of these Highlanders and their failing cause is an interesting struggle.

Claire is above all a great, strong female character played by actress Caitrona Balfe. Her character’s traits of stubbornness and intelligence are engaging and sometimes very funny: she doesn’t let anyone tell her what to do, which is in violation with the traditions of Scotland in 1743. She is a strong woman, well-spoken, knows politics, has headstrong opinions, she drinks and she loves sex (which results in long, passionate sex scenes). As Caitrona Balfe says in an interview, Claire is even for her time in 1940’s very modern and very forward thinking.outlander leoch

The series are of course based on the Outlander book series by Diana Gabaldon. In the first episodes of the show, Claire’s voice-over was used very often, a filmic technique to adapt narrated monologue in books – but in screenwriting there’s the principle of ‘tell me nothing, show me everything.’ Since the script is beautifully written, Claire’s voice-over felt sometimes unnecessary because I already saw was she was thinking or feeling. But the voice-over was used less during the season and I got more comfortable with Claire’s character. It was a nice change, since there aren’t that much female protagonists I know of. As a viewer you step into this new world together with Claire. This is emphasized by not translating Gaelic for example, which excludes Claire and us from the conversation and information given. Also, instead of a ‘male gaze’, a ‘female gaze’ is often used, for example when Jamie jumpes naked into the river to fix the mill (if you know what I mean).

Speaking of Jamie Fraser, the charming Scottish warrior with lots of charisma, he is well played by Sam Heughan with his swooing blue eyes. He is well matched with Claire, who teaches him to have an open minded, equivalent relationship based on love and respect (for his time), but also remains to have his proud heritance of his clan and as laird and teaches Claire the Scottish ways in return. Then there is the ultimate antagonist, Jack Randall. Gods, Joffrey Baratheon of Game of Thrones would be afraid of this man! I think he is the most sadistic and horrifying character I’ve ever seen. A memorable performance by Tobias Menzies.

outlander randall claire

The storyline develops with a nice pace, you truly get to know the wonderful characters and setting, which allows you to understand well why Claire’s heart is torn between these two worlds. Sometimes I did find some conflict was resolved too easily: someone gets caught and rescued at the end of the day. For example, in episode 4 “The Gathering” when Claire tries to escape to Craigh na Dun during the clan gathering. She is caught by Jamie in the stables and tells him exactly what she is trying to do and just gives up. But after this, Claire goes along on a journey with Dougal MacKenzie (Graham McTavish) and the hilarious Angus Mhor (Stephen Walters) to collect the rent for the laird Colum MacKenzie (Gary Lewis). From here on, the story builds up and Claire finds herself between constantly shifting alliances and a lot of clever intrigues.

Some episodes are so memorable because there is more at stake than ever. Sometimes even really disturbing or horrifying: the excessive flogging of Jamie whereby the skin is hanging loose from his back in “The Garrison Commander” and when Geillis (played by the Dutch actress Lotte Verbeek) is getting arrested together with Claire for witchcraft and faces an inescapable fate in “The Devil’s Mark”. Especially the last two episodes “Wentworth Prison” and “To Ransom a Man’s Soul” were so hard and even uncomfortable to watch. Outlander doesn’t cut away, but shows you macabre torture scenes in real time, right in your face. I thought the sick flasbacks of the ‘relationship’ between Jamie and Randall, which left Jamie traumatized, are even more shocking than Game of Thrones without only showing sensationalized horror. “It isn’t violence simply for the sake of violence. It’s violence that’s intricately connected to the character, his arc, and even the narratives of other characters on a show,” as Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya writes in her article about the last episode. Really impressive.

Outlander Geillis Claire

Furthermore, there are plenty of historical references which I find really interesting. The rising of the Jacobite army, the wedding rituals of wrist cutting and hand-fasting. Also the opening titles song is adapted from the Scottish folk song “The Skye Boat Song”, by changing the text of the poem “Sing me a song of a lass that is gone” fitting right into the story. The costumes by designer Terry Dresbach, the settings and the music are absolutely brilliant. The scenery of Scotland is beautifully filmed, which gives the series it’s mysterious and sometimes dark atmosphere.

I find Outlander a really engaging show. The characters are intelligent, strong, charming or horrifying with lots of secrets. Although it felt like a love story at first, the story develops into a true epic adventure in the harsh world of Scotland in 1743 which is definitely not for the faint-hearted. Season 2 of Outlander will start in 2016.

News: Bilbo joins Captain America, James McAvoy goes bald and go Supergirl!

HERE’S SOME NEWS FROM THE WORLD OF FANTASY, SCI-FI AND COMIC BOOK MOVIES AND TELEVISION SHOWS.

Martin Freeman joins the cast of Captain america: civil war

Image by Comicbook.com

Actor Martin Freeman, better known as Bilbo Baggins and dr. Watson, joins the cast of Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War for an unspecified role. “From his roles as Bilbo Baggins and Doctor Watson to Tim in ‘The Office,’ Martin’s range from the dramatic to the comedic has consistently impressed us,” Marvel Studios Head Kevin Feige said in a statement. “We couldn’t be more honored or excited to have such a talented actor join the Marvel Cinematic Universe.” Unfortunatley, he won’t be playing a superhero according to Mark Millar, the screenwriter of Captain America: Civil War (read further on Comicbook.com). But I bet he will rock any role!

Captain America: Civil War will be released on May 6, 2016. I’m really looking forward to this movie, because the story of Avengers: Age of Ultron will continue in this movie (you can read my review about Avengers: Age of Ultron here).

 James McAvoy goes bald for x-men: apocalypse

Photo by Bryan Singer

Director Bryan Singer posted this photo last week on Instagram of actor James McAvoy being shaved for his role in the upcoming movie X-Men: Apocalypse. McAvoy plays the younger Charles Xavier in the X-Men movies, now transitioning to the looks of the older Xavier, played by Patrick Stewart. What a ‘bald’ move.

The upcoming X-Men movie will be situated in the 1980s and will introduce younger versions of Storm, Cyclops, Nightcrawler and Jean Grey (who will be played by Sophie Turner, also known as Sansa Stark in Game of Thrones)!

X-Men: Apocalypse will be released in theaters on May 27, 2016.

DC Comics announces Supergirl TV show

DC Comics announced on Twitter that there will be a Supergirl tv series. Melissa Benoist (for me totally unknown) will be playing the 24 year old Kara Zor-El. Read more about Supergirl on DC Comics’ website. Are you excited?