As a Steampunk who is about to be a father, I am delighted to find this:
The only downside is, this is obviously a mock-up. There is, yet, no actual Steampunk-themed series of playsets produced by Lego.
But who knows… They have taken on Star Wars, maybe they branch out into Victorian Sci-Fi as well. In the meantime I do what every good and creative Steampunk should do: Dream!
PS: My regards to the artist!
EDIT at 21:58:
I was just corrected by my friend Piechur of Retrostacja & Steampunkopedia, there is actually official Steampunk-themed Lego, see the links in his comment to this entry. I am delighted!
And I can recommend it to all classic horror and Steampunk enthusiasts out there. The atmosphere is excellent, a rotting Victorian family, plagued by a course, forbidde love, insanity… Psychotropic landscapes (i.e. thunder, lightning and rain when it is appropriate).
The movie is shot in greyish, slightly faded colours as if there was a never dissipating mist over everything. The atmosphere is built up between an empty but still claustrophobic mansion, a hostile wilderniss and the moloch of London. No matter where the main protagonists turn, time and place is against them.
The movie is also a stud of several remarcaby well-played characters:
The son who returns after his brother’s death, haunted by his past and old memories.
The father (you love to hate Anthony Hopkins in this movie), deranged, cursed, yet filled with a sort of love that is literally animalistic.
The father’s noble valet who knows the secret, yet does not dessert hus master.
The maiden, torn up by the death of her husband-to-be and attracted to his brother
The Scotland Yard Inspector (Hugo „Agent Elrond“ Weaving), himself haunted by the last case he could not solve: The murders of Jack the Ripper.
It is this band of twisted, tragic personas that carry this film, together with the very good and never over-the-top special effects. They are helped in this task by the unavoidabe lynch-mob, the gypsies who are somehow in the know and the doctors and orderlies of a really terrifying London insane asylum (the chief doctor of the asylum is a particular nasty piece of work, I did not mourn his death).
What I also found very pleasing was that they stuck to the imagery of the classic Wolfman of Hammer Film fame. These werewolves actually look good in a tattered suit.
So by all means, go and enjoy this dark, Victorian and Steampunk piece of horror entertainment. It is not spaller, but it ha its scenes of violence but this is not what creates thehorror. It is the development of the curse, its spreading and the tragedy of the characters involved.
There is a hauntingly strange and beautiful site on the ætherweb called Parliament & Wake. I can wholeheartedly recommend it. But please be warned. It is not for the casual traveller of the ætherweb, as it contains haunting and engaging knowledge of strange people, places and artifacts. The bold traveller may find it behind the image:
Parliament & Wake is a truely remarcable site. It creates its own little universe with great detail, confronting the visitor with strange places, tomes and people. Every book and artifact is presented with its history and description, giving the reader material to think about and maybe create their own stories relating to these artifacts.
The best way to describe it is what Neil Gaiman calls soft place in his Sandman series of graphic novels.
You can spend hours and hours on this site, enjoying and marvelling over its contents. There is also a whole community and affiliated personas connected to it, giving even more space for exploration. I shall not say more about the actuay content, lest I spoil the joy of exploration for new visitors. Now, by all means, please visit this strangely beautiful site, Parliament & Wake.
I wonder if we can ever get something like this going over here… After all, we managed to get Wacken and the Wave Gothik Treffen going… I already organised a little get-together here in Munich (although I will not be here for long anymore) so I guess we could get a Steampunk fashion show going.
Talking of not being in Munich anymore… Since I am moving to Augsburg, this blog will go on hiatus for a week or two in May because I miay well be offline for a while.
And on a completely different note:
Isn’t that a marvelous drawing of the famedcrocoduck, the bane of creationist pseudo-scientists everywhere?
A cool random webfind. Just take a look at this marvelous contraption:
This is a truly impressive piece of equipment. I wonder if it was actually functional or if it is just an awesome work of art… Unfortunately, I was so far unable to gather any additional information other than it was supposed to be used for diving. I can not say if it was ever used.
Still… Makes for a very good hook for the next Steampunk RPG evening…
For family reasons I have very little time for this blog right now, so I have to keep the entries short. As I mentioned before, I attended a most splendid Emilie Autumn concert in Munich on February 17th. I took a lot of pictures, and here are some of them. They show a „Ratty-Steampunk-Stargate“, the centerpiece of the stage, just before the concert and in action at the start of the show.
This is just a small peek. There is more to come, promise!
It’s really interesting how far the problem of „not acting German in public“ actually permeates German society. There’s a discussion thread at the German steampunk community Clockworker, in which a fellow German steampunk asks, why so few German steampunks choose to impersonate Germans. A valid question and he has to point out that he is no nationalist, in case somebody misunderstood his intention to ask…
Had a Chilean, Chinese, Japanese or French asked this question, an excuse like the one in the thread would have seemed odd. I am actually fairly convinced that most foreigners would consider it odd if it came from a German (which it frequently does).
I have said this before and I am saying this again:
During the Victorian Age Germany was not the global villain! That started later and by now this is already 64 years ago! In a few years there will be noone left alive who participated in World War II. And looking at the track record of Britain and especially the USA ever since the end of the War and the US in the last 10 years in particular, it is about time to stop feeling bad about things people did most of us never met.
So, German Steampunks: Wear your Pickelhauben with pride! The Gründerzeit is something to be proud of! Think of Zeppelin, Diesel, Benz, Röntgen and Siemens! They could all be found during this time!
Since it is already 10 past midnight and I spent the last 45 minuts trying to catch the Lightning (Lightning in this case being a half feral rat), I actually am able to do an article in this blog for February 17th 2010. Again it is a rather short one, since I am pretty tired but today I shall go and see Emily Autumn live which will make for a nice, long article, and there is also the review for Ghosts of Manhattan in the pipe (I was lucky enough to get a pre-release review copy). But for now, here is only another steampunk pin up and I am off to bed: