Muppets in space! Although not the ones you might be used to. Rockne S. O’Bannon and The Jim Henson Company joined forces to create a show that is unlike anything else you’ve ever seen. The Jim Henson Company made alien creatures that look realistic and fantastical all at the same time to populate this quirky science fiction series. The creatures, prosthetics, and visuals of this show all create a fantastic atmosphere. The combination of Muppets, animatronics, and live actors really works to make a wide assortment of alien life. This is a unique series that takes risks and isn’t afraid to get weird.
Farscape follows astronaut John Crichton, who accidentally falls into a wormhole during a test flight and is shot to the other end of the galaxy. There he encounters a motley crew of aliens trying to escape imprisonment. They are forced to go on the run in the far uncharted reaches of the galaxy, and they all just want to go home. Crichton is no exception to this, and is determined to find a wormhole to send him back to Earth. There are a lot of adventures, and misadventures, on the way. Despite their many differences, the characters forge deep bonds with each other which are a joy to watch unfold. The episodes range from drama to action, and dark to incredibly hilarious. There is even an episode with allusions to Looney Toons. It has its share of serious moments, but it doesn’t take itself seriously.
This show has stood the test of time, and remains one of my favourite science fiction series. The cast is phenomenal and the plot is always interesting. It is a very well-rounded show. Farscape is a great choice if you are looking for something different, fun, and out of this world.
Halloween treats come in so many shapes and sizes and somehow always taste better when you can get a little creative. When I saw these "boo-scotti" treats in October’s edition of Good Housekeeping (pg. 131), they looked so spooky and adorable that I had to give them a try. I love treats that I can dip in milk or cocoa!
This treat was so easy to make (I already had some biscotti on hand). Next time, I would love to try this completely from scratch to make it even more special. After melting some white chocolate chips, I found it was easier to grab a brush to help get more of the biscotti covered – my pool of chocolate was not quite deep enough to dip into. I’d recommend planning ahead for this or having a backup plan in mind.
After letting the ghostly coating cool and harden, it was time for the fun part. I modified the recipe to suit what I had on hand, so I used icing instead of dark chocolate to draw on some spooky faces. Using a toothpick is a great trick to help get the face you want. Be creative with this and give your friendly ghosts some personality! Don’t get too attached to your little friends, because they tasted hauntingly delicious.
This treat was a fun and simple way to start getting into the Halloween spirit. I would make them again for a Halloween party or even welcome my guests to decorate their own treats. Having sprinkles or googly eyes on hand would be a great way to personalize each little ghost.
Check out this magazine and more through KPLs digital library today by clicking here.
- Laura A., Information Services
by: the Royal Shakespeare Company
Like most students, I had to read Shakespeare in high school. I fought my way through Romeo and Juliet and King Lear in ninth and tenth grade, surviving largely off of SparkNotes and other line-by-line explanations. It was exhausting and far from enjoyable. By the time eleventh grade came around and the prospect of studying Hamlet loomed ahead, I was desperate for anything that would make it less of a slog. That’s when I came across the Royal Shakespeare Company’s 2009 production on DVD.
Previously a fan of the work of both David Tennant and Sir Patrick Stewart, who play Hamlet and Claudius (as well as the Ghost in this staging) respectively, I picked it up, hoping it would help me muddle through my study of the play. It did not. Instead, it did more, making the work come to life, and causing me to fall madly in love with the works of Shakespeare. This performance opened my eyes to how touching, heartbreaking and hilarious Shakespeare can be, and how relevant so much of his work and his portrayal of humanity still is today, and I’ve been devouring his plays and their many adaptions ever since.
What was most important about this production for me was how little I needed to know about Hamlet or Shakespeare in general to understand it. The performances are so real and natural that the meaning comes across easily, and the text comes to life with a richness and clarity that makes it seem like it could be a twenty-first century conversation.
Tennant’s Hamlet is an energetic character, torn not only between action and inaction in the revenge of the murder of his father, but between rapidly changing moods as he struggles with the ‘madness’ that plagues him. Spending much of the play running around barefoot in jeans and a bright orange t-shirt (which is printed with abs and pectoral muscles), he stands in stark contrast to the proper, well-dressed members of court around him, mirroring his inability to fit into a world he does not belong in.
Universal themes about the highs and lows of human experience are the backbone of this play, and are beautifully and heart-wrenchingly shown in this engaging production.
If “there is noting good or bad, but thinking makes it so”, then I think that it is a brilliant production well worth watching.
Borrow the 2009 Royal Shakespeare Company production of Hamlethere.
- Cassidy, Information Services
What We're Reading
Miss Kopp's Midnight Confessions
by: Amy Stewart
I love a true story and in this case, a fun, fictionalized account in a series about New Jersey’s first female deputy sheriff in 1916. Constance Kopp (a great name for the job!) was also one of the first female deputy sheriffs in the United States. Amy Stewart thoroughly researches each story line she includes in her books about Constance and her two sisters, Norma and Fleurette. Sometimes she even weaves in the historical newspaper articles about the Kopp sisters.
The dialog and character development that Stewart uses to colour in the details needed to tie events together are seamless and compelling. I highly recommend all three of the Kopp sister novels for an easy, entertaining read where history is made fun in such a clever way.
Click on the image to borrow Miss Kopp's Midnight Confessions, or click before to find the first two novels in the series:
It’s that time of year again! On Friday, October 6th, 2017 at 11:15 AM at Kitchener City Hall, Oktoberfest will officially begin!
From October 6th to 14th, over seven hundred thousand people will take part in this celebration full of music, food and fun. The opening ceremonies are free and open to everyone to kick-off Canada’s Greatest Bavarian Festival.
Monday, October 9th is the Oktoberfest Thanksgiving Day Parade, beginning at 8:30 am at Weber & Frederick Street Kitchener. Click here for more information on the route so you don’t miss this wonderful parade! Don’t forget: during the parade, volunteers will be collecting non-perishable food items for the Onkel Hans Food Drive!
All through Oktoberfest, remember to drop by the Willkommen Platz! This bustling hob of entertainment and food set up at Carl Zehr Square has food and entertainment for the whole family. The hours of the Willkommen Platz can be found here.
And to wrap up the Oktoberfest 2017 celebrations, starting at 9:00 AM on Saturday, October 14th, visit the Oktoberfest Car Show at 475 King Street North in Waterloo.
For more information about Oktoberfest and all of the amazing food, drinks and activities that are part of this great festival, visit www.oktoberfest.ca.
- Cassidy, Information Services
Kitchener Public Library 85 Queen St. North Kitchener, Ontario N2H2H1 519-743-0271 http://www.kpl.org/