kindkit: Text icon: "British officers do not cuddle each other. (Not when there are people watching, anyway.") ('Allo 'Allo: British officers do not cud)
Yuletide is coming, or at least Yuletide brainstorming is underway. And thus, I shall make a last-ditch attempt to interest you in some of my current fandoms of choice.

I don't plan to nominate Colditz, since [ profile] halotolerant wrote me an amazing story for last Yuletide and we both now frequently write in that fandom. But promo posts 1, 2, 3, and 4, plus this picspam, are still lurking around trying to entice you. I wouldn't be sorry if someone else nominated it! More Colditz fic = yay!

AVAILABILITY: Out on DVD in the UK. Some episodes can be seen, in terrible quality, on the tube of you. (And other means are potentially available for all the television fandoms mentioned here.)

I may nominate The Wooden Horse and its prequel The Tunnel, two lightly fictionalized memoirs by Eric Williams about his experiences as a POW and his escape. They are intriguing books (try to find the unexpurgated versions rather than the ones "edited for young readers"), thoughtful, and not jingoistic, and they're massively homoerotic, too.

AVAILABILITY: The books are fairly readily available seconhand and in new re-released editions. Just be sure you're not buying the expurgated ones (check the front pages for any mention of its being edited for young readers).

Then there's the 1969 BBC series Manhunt, about a downed British pilot and two French resistance members trying, with enormous difficulty, to make their way out of France. There are 26 episodes altogether, with the show gradually expanding in scope and gaining in character depth and moral complexity. Most of the actors give fine performances, notably the brilliant Robert Hardy as Gratz, an Abwehr sergeant; Alfred Lynch as Flight Lt. Jimmy Briggs (not Jimmy Porter, despite what both Wikipedia and IMDB say; they are apparently confused by the fact that Lynch also appeared--not playing Jimmy Porter--in Look Back in Anger); Philip Madoc as Lutzig, an SS officer; and Peter Barkworth as a resistance leader codenamed Vincent. Fair warning, though: this show has a major sexism problem, which never quite stops although it is somewhat ameliorated by the eventual introduction of a recurring woman character who does more than cry, faint, and latch parasitically onto the nearest man. And I must offer a trigger warning for series 1, episode 2 for a gratuitous rape-related subplot handled terribly. You can in fact skip that episode with no harm done (and I'll note that the rape involves one-off characters, not any of the regulars). Despite its flaws, though, this is a compelling program, believably downbeat and cynical, full of three-dimensional characters. And some of the writing (especially by Vincent Tilsley--who also worked on The Prisoner--and Arden Winch) is extraordinary. Finally, a special note to Blake's 7 fans: a very young Paul Darrow is in the final episode.

AVAILABILITY: On DVD in the UK and the US.

Another fandom I might nominate is Callan, which stars Edward Woodward as the title character, a reluctant agent of a very covert British intelligence agency whose remit is not so much actual spying as dirty tricks, blackmail, and assassination. The other main characters are Toby Meres (Anthony Valentine), Callan's ruthlessly amoral fellow agent, rival, almost-friend, and person to have UST with, and Lonely (Russell Hunter), Callan's informant, protegé, semi-willing slave, and the only person to whom Callan ever shows much tenderness. There are some dud episodes, but the good ones are very good and the acting is great. The show, which aired from 1967-1972 on ITV, also includes a remarkably high number of gay male characters, who are sympathetically if sometimes patronizingly portrayed; Callan is laudably devoid of the predatory/decadent gay villain trope.

AVAILABILITY: All surviving episodes (some from the first two series are lost) are available on DVD in the UK; series 3 and 4 are available in the US on DVD and as streaming episodes from, confusingly labelled as "set 1" (series 3) and "set 2" (series 4), but the (superior, in my opinion) black-and-white episodes from the first two series don't seem to be available here except as an import.

Finally, and on a completely different note, there's The Pirates! Band of Misfits (the original and much better UK title is The Pirates! In An Adventure With Scientists) the charming 2012 animated film from Aardman. This was badly marketed in the US and I don't think anyone saw it, but you should, because it's lovely and has Martin Freeman voicing a major character. (Also Hugh Grant, Imelda Staunton, David Tennant, and Lenny Henry in a brief role). There's much whimsy, gleeful historical liberties (Charles Darwin and his monkey butler! scary Queen Victoria!) , genre-savvy, and moderate heart-warmingness that even I liked, and I'm allergic to heart-warming.

AVAILABILITY: Just came out on DVD in the US. I have, however, learned that the US version is different from the UK version (American actors were cast in some roles, including Russel Tovey tragically replaced by Anton Yelchin, and some of the jokes were cut to be more "family friendly"); I'm hoping to get hold of the original somehow because it sounds even better.
kindkit: Text icon: "British officers do not cuddle each other. (Not when there are people watching, anyway.") ('Allo 'Allo: British officers do not cud)
This is a present for [ profile] halotolerant, although other people might like it too (Dick is beautiful!). It's even more lascivious, m/m slash-focused, and OTP-ish than my previous Colditz primer and picspam. This may be a bug or a feature, depending on your tastes.

Under the cut are quite a few pictures drawn from Colditz episodes through 1x07, "Lord, Didn't It Rain."

you know you want to see the prettiness )
kindkit: Captain Kirk writing on a PADD, text: "And then they had sex. The end." (Star Trek TOS: Kirk writes fic)
Here are my answers to the prompts I was given for this meme. I'd be happy to take more prompts if anyone is interested.

[ profile] miss_morland asked about Captain Haddock )

[ profile] mcicioni asked about Peter from The Wooden Horse )

[ profile] executrix asked about Pilot Officer Larry Page )

[personal profile] slashgoddess80 asked about Tintin )

[personal profile] elaineofshalott asked about Conan Doyle's G. Lestrade )
kindkit: Text icon: "British officers do not cuddle each other. (Not when there are people watching, anyway.") ('Allo 'Allo: British officers do not cud)
The final installment! I'm going to talk about one more pairing, then show you some other characters, all of them series regulars, who probaby won't be central to anything I might write but may get a mention. Then there's more picspam, and finally, I recommend the episodes to watch for an abbreviated Colditz experience.

click here to read )
kindkit: Text icon: "British officers do not cuddle each other. (Not when there are people watching, anyway.") ('Allo 'Allo: British officers do not cud)
So far, I've talked about four characters who between them make three pairings, two of which I envision living happily ever after. The next two characters and their relationship . . . not so much.

click here to read )
kindkit: Text icon: "British officers do not cuddle each other. (Not when there are people watching, anyway.") ('Allo 'Allo: British officers do not cud)
This installment is not as brief as I meant it to be, because it features my not-so-secret darling character and a pairing that is almost entirely fanonical but which I can make a pictorial case for.

Warning: there are a couple of unavoidable spoilers here, mentioning the fact that certain characters leave the show. I've kept the timing and circumstances as vague as possible.

click here to read more )
kindkit: Text icon: "British officers do not cuddle each other. (Not when there are people watching, anyway.") ('Allo 'Allo: British officers do not cud)
As the title says, this is not an objective or comprehensive discussion of Colditz. It's an overview of characters and relationships (some extrapolated from canon, some pure invention) that I may be writing about in my Kink Bingo fics: basically I'm envisioning this as a cheat sheet for anyone who wants to read the stories (THANK YOU!) but doesn't want to invest the time to watch 27 one-hour episodes. I'll avoid major plot spoilers, though, in case you decide to give the show a try.

I have an immensely detailed head-canon for these characters, which [ profile] halotolerant and I have developed together through our rewatch and tons of discussion. I won't bore you with too much of it but occasionally some will be relevant. And for your viewing pleasure, I've included screencaps and some links to YouTube clips. The clips are of the crap visual quality that you'd expect from YouTube and sometimes the sound and picture are out of synch, but I recommend giving them a look to see how these people speak and relate to each other.

click here to read more )
kindkit: Text icon: "British officers do not cuddle each other. (Not when there are people watching, anyway.") ('Allo 'Allo: British officers do not cud)
For [community profile] kink_bingo, I'm going to try for an all-Colditz blackout, which is to say 25 fics in the fandom. If all goes well, this means I'll be posting a lot of Colditz fic.

I know most of you are unfamiliar with the fandom, but some of you are kind enough to read my fic even in fandoms you don't know. So I've been thinking about doing a sort of introduction or "cheat" post about the show, so you could learn a bit about the characters etc. without having to watch it. (watch it watch it watch it it is awesome watch it /subliminal)

That kind of thing takes some effort, though, and I don't want to do it if no one is interested. Hence, a poll.

Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 10

Should Kit make a fandom-introduction post for Colditz?

View Answers

Yes, please!
9 (100.0%)

I might read some of the Colditz fic but I probably won't bother with a fandom post
0 (0.0%)

I probably won't read the Colditz fic anyway, so there's no point
0 (0.0%)

Something else, which I may elaborate on in comments
0 (0.0%)

This ticky box:

View Answers

Snogs other ticky boxes in quiet corners
4 (50.0%)

Found the drag revue awfully intriguing
1 (12.5%)

Is too hungry to care about sex
0 (0.0%)

Is busy digging a tunnel to escape from the internet
5 (62.5%)

Just wants peace and quiet to read its book
3 (37.5%)

kindkit: Haddock and Tintin kissing; Haddock is in leather gear (Tintin: gay icon)
I did, after all, sign up for [community profile] kink_bingo and got a card I think I can work with: click here to read my card )
kindkit: A late-Victorian futuristic zeppelin. (Airship)
The advancing Allied front lines have almost reached Colditz--the only remaining questions are whether the Americans or Russians will get there first, and what the SS might do in a last-ditch defense of the Reich.

Click here to read more )
kindkit: A late-Victorian futuristic zeppelin. (Airship)
Both American and Soviet troops are advancing rapidly into Germany, as the British officers learn by listening to the BBC on their illicit radio. Throughout the episode there are repeated air raid alarms.

Major Mohn, listening to the German news, is distressed and argues to Sergeant Winter that the Germans will inevitably win in the end. Click here to read more. )
kindkit: Medieval image of a mapmaker constructing a globe (Fandomless: Mapmaker)
I'm going to summarize this episode pretty briefly, since I don't think it deserves more.

Three high-ranking American officers (Colonel Dodd, Captain Nugent, and Phil Carrington, now a major in the US army) arrive in Colditz from Gestapo custody. The Gestapo having failed to get the information it wanted from them, Major Mohn puts in place an elaborate scheme with the cooperation of both the Kommandant and Ulmann. click here to read more )
kindkit: A late-Victorian futuristic zeppelin. (Airship)
The episode opens with the British officers having dinner in the dorm. The news is read to them by Lt. Michael Brown, who every night listens to the news with the French contingent on their wireless, translates it, and reports back (the French have two wireless sets, the British have none). Ulmann comes in during the news reading and Simon goads him by admitting exactly what they were doing, which Ulmann reports to the Kommandant. Mohn, angry that "propaganda" is being spread around the camp, demands a crackdown to find the wireless, but is taken aback to learn that the news about German defeats in north Africa is true.

Click here to
kindkit: Text icon: "British officers do not cuddle each other. (Not when there are people watching, anyway.") ('Allo 'Allo: British officers do not cud)
. . . but war stories are awesome.

Not inevitably awesome--Sturgeon's Law applies here as everywhere--but the good ones are.

At the moment I feel like I'm having a second childhood, reading and watching all the things I absolutely craved as a tween and adolescent but had no access to. And although it's a second childhood, it's also in a sense a first boyhood, because the last time around I was somewhat ashamed of my interest in this kind of thing and eventually suppressed it, aware that it was seen as inappropriate for a girl and not aware that it was possible I might not be a girl. (Those sorts of gendered distinctions are stupid bullshit anyway, it's just that in my case the gender wasn't even correct.)

Anyway, I'm enjoying the uniforms and airplanes and comradeship and amazing feats of survival and love in the face of death. (And because I'm mostly not watching/reading utter crap, there's also grief and fear, trauma, emotional damage, pain and disability, class distinctions, moral grey areas, and precious little glory or honor. None of which is properly speaking fun, but it makes for damn good stories.)

Still taking recs for homoerotic war stories if anyone has any. I can now recommend the 1977-78 BBC series Wings (with two caveats: first that besides the usually good war stuff, there's a deadly dull soap-operaish home front storyline [the better writers play it down, but unfortunately the series creator and main writer is not among them], and second that I haven't seen the last few episodes yet).

I'm still trying to lure more people into watching the POW drama Colditz, which is extremely well-written and well-acted, is not in any way jingoistic, pro-war, or morally simple, and also for most of its run features a beautiful often-shirtless young man. Beautiful young man has a deeply intimate friendship with another man, which is not a plot point and seldom even a matter of dialogue, but which is omnipresent in the performances once you start to look for it. (And I'm not just talking about "OMG they're standing next to each other!" tinhattery, although I'm more than capable of that, but about things like them discreetly holding each other's hands in one scene.) Let me give you an extra incentive: if you watch the show, you can read the two wonderful stories [ profile] halotolerant has written in the fandom. (I suppose you could read them anyway, but you'll like them better if you know the characters.)

The first series of Secret Army is also good, although bleak as hell; I found the second series less interesting (plus it starts a long slide into tedious anti-communist propaganda) and have for the moment given up watching about 5 episodes into S2.

*hopes for more recs*

It occurred to me recently to wonder why, given that male/male romance is a thriving subgenre now, its typology is so very narrow. It's all either about vampires/werewolves/elves, or about rich New York executives or Hollywood actors, or cowboys or pirates or private detectives, or occasionally it's about Regency or Victorian aristos who fall for their stable boys. War--any war--provides ample opportunity to write about love between men with all the angst anyone could ever want, and yet there don't seem to be a lot of male/male love stories set in wartime.

(NB: It is possible that I'm wrong about this. I don't actually care for romance as a genre, even when it is about two men, and I've only ever read a few male/male romances. But the impression that I get from seeing other people's posts about m/m romances, and also from a quick glance at the Torquere Press website just now, is that war stories are surprisingly few and far between. Go figure. If there were decently written, properly researched m/m love stories--I hesitate to say "romances" because of generic implications I don't care for--like that, I might well read them.)
kindkit: Text icon: "British officers do not cuddle each other. (Not when there are people watching, anyway.") ('Allo 'Allo: British officers do not cud)
Dick and another officer, Captain Walsh, are making observations of Colditz's (closed) theater at night and during the day. They discover that it's possible to get out through a window behind the stage into a corridor and then down into a light well, which when the guard is changed has a two-minute period without a sentry.

Click here to read more )
kindkit: A late-Victorian futuristic zeppelin. (Airship)
This is sadly the last episode written by the brilliant Arden Winch, who wrote S1's two Dick Player-centric episodes ("Name, Rank, and Number" and "Lord, Didn't It Rain") and who himself served in British Intelligence.

Via a recaptured French escaper, Simon learns about the escape lines in existence throughout Europe to help escaped POWs get out of German-held territory. He decides that Colditz escapees need to be able to use the lines, but doing so involves getting a contact name from British intelligence. With the help of a former intelligence officer (who I think is Palmer, although I don't recall ever hearing his name in the actual episode), Simon sends a coded postcard to his wife Cathy, putting in hints that he hopes will alert her that the message is unusual and should be brought to someone's attention.

Click here to
kindkit: Text icon: "British officers do not cuddle each other. (Not when there are people watching, anyway.") ('Allo 'Allo: British officers do not cud)
Quite a long summary follows, because there's a lot going on in this episode and the details are often very important.

In which Simon Carter gets a stalker )

Warning: As always, spoilers for future episodes are likely in the comments.
kindkit: A late-Victorian futuristic zeppelin. (Default)
This is the first part of the two-episode series 1 finale. It opens with Dick, Simon, and Pat in Preston's quarters. Dick and Simon are arguing for an escape plan they've devised, which involves getting into the Kommandantur (the part of Colditz housing the German staff, where prisoners aren't allowed and which is therefore less heavily guarded) and hiding in a pit in the courtyard. Pat has already vetoed this plan because Dick and Simon are simply assuming there'll be a way out of the pit. Dick asks Preston to overrule Pat, arguing that morale is so low that a successful escape is needed; simultaneously, he insists it's not "a show of no confidence" in Pat as Escape Officer and that Pat has done "a marvelous job." Preston refuses to overrule Pat.

Click here to read more )

As always, please be warned that spoilers for later episodes are likely in the comments.
kindkit: A late-Victorian futuristic zeppelin. (Airship)
I'm early with this one, but I've got more time today than I will have tomorrow.

As the episode opens we see a guard, Corporal Henneberg, stealthily enter the parcel office at night, open a Red Cross parcel, and begin filling his pockets with food from it as well as looking at a personal photograph that was inside. Someone else (all we see is a bit of his coat) enters the office and attacks Henneberg. Cut to an exterior shot and the sound of a gunshot, then cut back to the parcels office, where someone is putting a gun in the dead guard's hand.

Click here to read more )

As always, there may be spoilers for future episodes in the comments.
kindkit: Sailing ship at sea. (Fandomless: Blue ship)
This episode focuses on RAF Wing Commander George Marsh, whom we first see helping the doctor in the infirmary. He devises a plan to escape by faking mental illness in order to be repatriated, and says he will draw on his experience working in an asylum while he was a university student. The plan is reluctantly approved by Pat, the doctor, Preston, and Simon Carter, who are the only people aware that Marsh's "schizoid psychosis" wil be feigned. Marsh is warned that he will have to keep up the act constantly for as long as six months or a year before the Swiss protecting power will be able to repatriate him, and that he can't give up once he's begun because it would ruin the chances of any genuinely mentally ill prisoner being repatriated.

More under the cut. )

Note: As always, spoilers for future episodes are likely to occur in the comments.


kindkit: A late-Victorian futuristic zeppelin. (Default)

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