The Green Grass of SILVER BROWN

The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance

I was eight years old when the feature film The Dark Crystal was released in theatres way back in 1982 (and from there you can calculate how old I am, if you must). Easily one of the movies that defined my childhood. Certain aspects of the premise were confusing as all shit, and it was both criticized and praised for being noticeably darker than the rest of Jim Henson’s body of work up until that point. But the movie’s visuals were striking for the time and continue to be so, especially considering it came out well before Tinseltown began its love affair with CGI.

For those of you who haven’t seen The Dark Crystal, the story is set on another planet. One whose name is curiously never mentioned in the screenplay or credits of the film itself; we only know what the planet is called from the derivative works that were released after the movie. Thra orbits a triple star system, and is home to a host of delightfully strange creatures. Among them are jet-black murderous crabs the size of rhinoceroses. A Lhasa Apso-like mammal that curls itself into a ball and rolls along like tumbleweed as its primary means of locomotion. An old woman with bighorn sheep-like protrusions growing out of her head who has the ability to pull her own eye out of its socket and use it like a periscope. A beast that looks like a cross between a colossal moth (sans wings and compound eyes) and one of the elephants depicted in Salvador Dalí’s The Temptation of Saint Anthony which is astonishingly easy to tame and can be ridden on like a horse. This doesn’t even touch upon the plant life, which is interesting in itself. It’s a world that has stuck with me over the years since I first visited it as a wee lad. But I couldn’t stay on that planet for long. No sequel was ever made. The movie only pulled in modest returns at the box office during its initial theatrical run.

Thirty-seven years later (gadzooks, has it been that long?!), just when I had all but forgotten about the planet Thra, it aligns with Earth once again. This time on a medium whose very existence was unimaginable to the common folk of 1982 – Netflix.

The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance is not a sequel to the original movie, but a prequel. In the feature film, the heroic Gelfling race were portrayed as a hair’s breadth away from extinction, having been all but wiped out in a genocidal campaign embarked upon by Thra’s villainous ruling class, the Skeksis. Age of Resistance takes place at a time well before that, when Gelfling society was thriving. Across the ten episodes, we get a slew of insights into Gelfling politics and social customs that were largely absent from the movie. A living goddess by the name of Sigourney Weaver narrates their history to us, which by itself adds several layers of kickass to the whole production.

giphy (5)

Filmmaking technology has obviously advanced considerably since the day Mr. Henson drew his last breath – a factoid that has not gone unacknowledged in the series. The Skeksis dining scene in the original film struck a prepubescent version of yours truly as amusingly disgusting. But Age of Resistance takes the disgusting to a whole new level, to such an extent that it makes the Skeksis of the movie look like proper gentlemen with impeccable table manners. The striking and fantastic of the movie is also taken to new levels as well as the disgusting. Hypothetical life forms that would be next to impossible to capture on celluloid with even the most sophisticated Hensonian puppetry are very possible with 3-D modelling software. We see quite a few digitally rendered creations in the series. Impressive ones, too. Ones that would come pretty damn close to making James Cameron blush.

Even more impressive if you watch the entire series after a couple of bong rips. Which I did. Twice.

Riding that enchanted canoe through the innards of outer space, I elected to live-tweet my first impressions of Age of Resistance, as a nostalgic throwback to that quainter period of human history when people regularly used Twitter for something other than douchey political ranting.


The Green Grass of SILVER BROWN

Summer Dies With A Bullet

This is my new pipe. The one I got to replace the peace pipe, which vanished from my life after a mere four months of service. The departed elders of this land confiscated it for their own use (which most certainly is their right) the day after I made a pilgrimage to a local tipi to make an offering of holy smoke. I guess they liked what they smelled.

Suddenly finding myself in want of a new portable smoking implement of some type or another, I got this thing. It’s a sneak-a-toke — a similar model to my old silver bullet, except red with a different style of mouthpiece. I call this one the Blood Bullet. It’s a silver bullet that’s killed a few vampires.


The Green Grass of SILVER BROWN

Just What Are You Smoking? August 2019 Edition

This strain is called Island Pink. It’s a sativa-dominant hybrid with about forty percent kush. The buds are small but very hairy, with a faintly purplish and decidedly odorous toke packed with magically delicious wonder-working power.

If you stare at this picture long enough, you will understand at long last why there was only ever one Smurf woman.

This is one of those strains that will glue you to the couch. Even if you’re a seasoned veteran of the holy ganja, such as yours truly. But at the same time, it’s a highly cerebral high. The number of new ideas for the book that came flooding into my brain after two rips of this herb was just staggering. All in all, I quite enjoyed this smoke. I was at peace with the universe. Hardly ever paranoid. There were split-second hallucinations of strange extra-dimensional vermiform creatures at high enough doses, but I was spiritually enlightened enough to recognize those creatures as manifestations of sunyata.


Some of you might be wondering what this (or my previous blog post) has to do with the book. Well, in case you haven’t figured it out by now, SILVER BROWN was largely conceptualized and written by Our Lady of 420. She writes through me. I am merely Her medium. I also do quite a bit of writing whilst not under the influence of anything, except maybe my mandatory morning dosage of two cups of good strong coffee. But when I do, I will usually at some point run it past Mother Ganja, seeking Her wise counsel on how the prose could be improved. She always has something to say.

I’ve had exchanges with many a fellow scribe on Twitter that went something like this…

The reactions I get to such a suggestion range from curious amusement to unfettered moral outrage. It’s the thought processes of the latter folk I particularly can’t fathom. I’m one of those people that needs to be awed. Awe is the spinach that fuels my literary Popeye. Verily, she is my muse. Sometimes awe is in tragically short supply in a man’s day-to-day existence, but fortunately Mother Nature has blessed us with a remedy for awe deficiency in the form of the genus Cannabis. It’s not the only remedy, I’ll admit. Far from it. But I’ve fully explored all of The Man’s “socially acceptable” suggested alternatives, and at the end of the day I’d rather just hit the bong and be done with it. I spent twelve years of my life working for a literal psychopath who notoriously went insane and stabbed a dude, so I think I’m entitled to at least one bad habit.

An extreme closeup shot of Her Majesty packed with the Island Pink. I took this picture early in the morning, for effect.

Expanding on the whole awe thing, writing about some band I’m into is an awe-accumulating thing as well. When I am awed, I gain new perspectives on SILVER BROWN that I am suddenly eager to start implementing.

“Chapters are like turds. Some of them just gush out of you, but others require a lot of ass-straining.”

Speaking of which, all the meticulous editing I’ve been doing on Act One of SILVER BROWN is now complete. When Chapters Sixteen and Seventeen finally came together, the rest of it came to me so easily. Chapters are like turds. Some of them just gush out of you, but others require a lot of ass-straining. The first act has a cliffhanger ending with a Big Reveal. Some people will probably need barf bags, like they did with The Exorcist. But even those people will probably still love it.

“The power of Christ compels you!”