Fantasy beyond dragons..

From the past many years writers like JK Rowling, Stephenie Meyer, George RR Martin have made sure that our humdrum lives are always adequately filled with fantasy. These people created diverse cultures from their writings. Listen to any one GRRM’s interviews and there are thousands of tips and tricks on how to write books, build characters and imaginative worlds. He talks endlessly about the influence of J. R. R. Tolkien’s writing upon his own. It’s good to hear that every great writer draws inspiration from someone else’s works and not just his or her inner reflections. It’s important to have a listening ear and observing eyes before one can actually start writing a book. That’s what I learnt from George RR Martin’s interviews. I know there’s more to learn and I’m in no hurry.

I posted one question on Quora a few days back since I was highly concerned about the future of fantasy.

Here’s the link to an amazing answer I received

Are dragons becoming redundant in fantasy?

And I hadn’t asked myself this question until I saw a YouTube video about Raised by Wolves

Link here Raised by the Wolves

To my disappointment I found out that Raised by Wolves is not available in India.

According to IMDb

The concept behind the series seems like an amalgamation of the two core human principles, survival and faith. At least that’s what I could deduce after watching the YouTube video. I hope they air the series at least on any OTT platforms for Indian audiences. This series seems like a beautiful blend of illusions, myths, human as well non human(Androids giving birth to serpents)emotions, it’s bizarre and captivating. Such kind of work raises the benchmark for fantasy writers higher and higher. How does one establish emotions and relationships amidst a religious war backed by technology? That’s some superior level of creativity.

Well I do understand Raise by the Wolves primarily falls under science fiction, but there’s an equal amount of fantasy involved as well. Fantasy and sci-fi, two different categories mixed together to create something extraordinary and unusual!

But if one was to compare the idea behind Raised by the Wolves with the concept of dragons, which have become the face of mainstream fantasy, I think dragons alone might have a hard time quenching our thirst for the surreal experience that we seek while reading or watching fantasy. But dragons along with a long lost history, magic spells and selfish human motives can turn out to be an interesting concept. Dragons with purpose are more powerful than with mere existence. Similarly vampires with purpose are more interesting than vampires who could only suck blood and then move on to the next target. A vampire who has the wits to tame a dragon, that would be exceptional!

Fantasy must allow merging of two or more categories together in such a way that would create a conducive environment for the growth of human emotions. Happiness, rage, ego, lust, honesty, determination, love, betrayal all should grow alongside the growth of dragons!

Fantasy in the Indian context

There aren’t many examples to mention, I don’t know maybe I’m not aware about them. But would like to mention a 2020 Netflix film,

Bulbul

The film is complete. Aesthetically, dialogues, the cast looks perfect and the overall direction of the film. It can keep you glued to the screen. Tripti Dimri, the lead actress along with Paoli Dam in supporting role shared a peculiar kind of hate hate relationship I hadn’t seen for a long time. Love hate is a relatively predictable relationship, hate hate is a mysterious one. Unpredictable.

Bulbul isn’t completely fantasy. It’s a mixture of fantasy with horror, violence and suspense. With so many dark elements rolling in the film together, the additional layer of feminism enhances it’s story. It creates the required balance in the story.

If you haven’t watched it yet, you should give it a try!!

Wishing you all a happy Friday!!

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