Thursday, November 9, 2017

Daemons Discuss - Podcast: Take 25! | The Return of the Vampire Scientist & Last Thoughts on A Discovery of Witches

 

Take 25 - The One With Dosage Compensation (feat. Dr. Shelli Carter)

Description: We welcome back our favorite vampire scientist, Shelli! We ply her with more questions, and then drift into our reflections of our latest re-read of A Discovery of Witches. Beware! We subject-hop like crazy in this one. Even maybe do a bit of time-walking with 80's heartthrobs. The episode begins with an attempt to balance some daemons with a vampire, and ends with declarations of love for heretical opinions. Make sure your restraints are fastened. Enjoy the ride!

SPOILER ALERT! We (The Daemons) approach this podcast with an assumption that the listener has read The All Souls Trilogy, including A Discovery of Witches, Shadow of Night, and The Book of Life.  If you haven't, and you don't mind, we certainly don't mind!  😊  Let's do this.
*Note - this podcast is labeled 'explicit'

Listen:

Download .Mp3 of this episode

1. Show notes:

For newcomers to the series:- We'll start with the basics: The books in discussion are A Discovery of Witches, Shadow of Night and The Book of Life.  Together they make The All Souls Trilogy by Deborah Harkness.
- Our Daemon Guides to the All Souls Trilogy are available for download: ADOW, SON, TBOL

Deb's newsletter - The Blast; subscribe on her website
- If you'd like a ready-reference from the author herself, be sure to download the All Souls Real-Time Reading companion (free e-book at online booksellers via Penguin and Headline books).
- Deborah Harkness usually conducts a real-time reading on her Facebook Page (starting in September), and shares her posts across social media. Check out her website for all of her social media links, and of course all that she has to offer her readers! Be sure to sign up for her newsletter while you are there!
- To see what's available on the web as far as the All Souls universe fandom, check our links page.

In this episode:
* (01:15) - Shelli explains "dosage compensation"

* (02:18) - Thank you Discussers! Thanks to Karina for your voice mail & to Patricia for your email; Patricia asked Shelli about DNA testing in the group! Last but not least, thank you Wendy for your email outlining your ADOW journey, and your question to Dr. Shelli (answered in this segment as well). Read full emails here.

More:
* (14:22) - Shelli brought the science with her (re: our last episode). She explains how it is that Sophie can have a witch child with another daemon, and how she wound up the anomaly in her family's line of witches. She's brought us pictures:

Figure 1 (Shelli tells us the spot is water from her tea!)
Figure 2
Figure 3
More in this section:
* (20:10) - Origins in Africa, re-explained; links that Shelli sent for further reading:
* (21:50) - Does science explain magic or vice/versa?

* (22:33) - There are more neuron connections in your brain than there are stars in the universe. Think about that! Dr. Shelli's suggested reading for this is here--> The Nervous System, from 128 MPH Signals to Trillions of Synapses

The lighter version of the peppered moth
* (24:24) - The peppered moth links that Shelli sent:

The Star Bellied Sneetches by Dr. Seuss; watch ---> here
* (28:30) - Punctuated Equalibrium vs. Phyletic Gradualism

* (30:12) - Epistasis

* (30:29) - Marfan Syndrome

* (32:14) - Where did the first vampire come from? Too much! We're going to let Shelli think about this. We'll tackle this another time -- well, SHE'LL tackle it, and we'll be here when she's ready to give her thoughtful analysis, as is custom for her.

* (35:55) - AB positive! We'll post this here again: AB-POSITIVE is the correct answer per Deb (see here, and here), but contrary to what we told you, "AB-negative" does appear in some of the newer prints of A Discovery of Witches. In some copies, chapter 13 would show "AB-negative," then the same book would display "AB-positive" in chapter 36! We wouldn't have known had we not checked our prize closets, and peeked in some of the newest books in our stacks. Don't bother writing the publishers, Deb, or her people . . . they all are aware of the misprint!

* (37:40) - Our thoughts on this re-read of A Discovery of Witches
  • Those wayward books that Ysabeau sent: George Chapman, Kit Marlowe - their admiration of Diana and Matthew.
  • The time-loop! Val jumps ahead to The Book of Life and talks about the bedroom Matthew made, waiting for Diana. We stopped discussing the time loop and just attributed it to magic.
  • Diana and Matthew have been shelved together since the 16th Century. Now it is Shelli's turn to have her head hurt! Turnabout is fair play, Shelli. 😈
  • We decide Diana was a muse for George.
  • Angela says this time she was able to get her brain wrapped around the science for this re-read, thanks to Shelli and All Souls Con!
  • Shelli appreciated the eggs and foreshadowing that Deb planted in ADOW for the rest of the books, this re-read.
  • Valerie walked away with much more empathy for Diana this time.
  • For Jean, it was Marcus this time. This sparks a conversation of how parents always see their kids as kids. Shelli brings up guilt that Matthew had about not telling Marcus about blood rage.
  • We talk about how Emily is easily over-looked. A 'noodle'!
* (52:10) - We veered off of the road and crashed into a ditch. We then swam around in it for a bit! Here are our 80's heartthrobs:

(left to right) James Spader, Nick Cage, Christian Slater, Val Kilmer
* (54:19) - Thanks to Jean, we were able to climb out of the ditch! She owes a dollar in the swear jar.

* (55:05) - Events that were catalysts in A Discovery of Witches;
  • Jean - Ysabeau as a master chess player and captain of the ship.
  • Valerie - Diana using her her magic in the Bodleian - and Matthew spotting her as a result.
  • Shelli - Diana's physical reaction to touching the manuscript (since the book was made of creatures); the creatures communicating with her
* (1:00:35) News - Casting (in no particular order)!
Daniel Ezra
Lindsay Duncan
Alex Kingston
Tanya Moodie
Valarie Pettiford
* (1:03:35) Housekeeping: Thank you for the email, Linda! Thank you laureni526, for your wonderful review!

* (1:05:44) Save It For the Show … Topic: But Ysabeau, though? Lindsay Duncan is a fine actor. We have less of a problem with the actor's age than the opinion that TV audiences aren't sophisticated enough to embrace the concept of vampire parents appearing younger than their children, or the more troubling alternative being the canon-altering vampire-aging explanation. Both attempts ring a bit hollow.
  1. The first explanation: TV audiences will have an easier time accepting an older Ysabeau as Matthew's mother. We contend that ALL recent modern shows/movies depicting vampires prove that the maker/child age (parent being same age/younger than child) is not controversial with fans. Do better, TV producer people. πŸ˜’ It's insulting. In the future, tell it like it is: 'We wanted this actress/she was available/she was great in this/this is the direction we are going/we saw her in the audition and there was no one better' <-- all acceptable. Offer more credit to your potential viewers, please.
  2. Ysabeau's trauma; on Twitter, Deb indicated that Philippe's death triggered Ysabeau's aging. What about Miriam? Or Matthew? Or Fernando?! What sort of trauma induces this sudden drastic aging? How deep does it need to be? How is one vampire's trauma more dramatic than another? So vampires now (in this show) in fact age under certain conditions ? Valerie felt this may have been a knee-jerk reaction to help to gently explain away the choice (she admits she doesn't know and may be wrong). Angela said they would've been just better off telling the general public that this was the direction they decided to go, and that's it. Of course, these are our opinions (Angela, Jean and Valerie's -- we're leaving Shelli out of it, she's innocent!)
  3. We go a bit further and discuss Agatha, Nathaniel and Emily's casting + the surprise around the fandom. Listen for more of our chatter. We are pretty content with these choices!
  4. Oh, don't worry, we aren't out with torches and pitchforks (and people out there who are getting heated with us, put yours away. None of this is that serious). In a year, we'll probably forget we said any of it. Even if confronted with this very public recording, we'll deny everything! 😜 Just kidding. Or ARE we? Seriously though, we are adults, shit happens, and sometimes it happens with outstanding results. Let's see how this all plays out, shall we?
* (1:18:00) Promo break – scroll down, or click here to get a hold of us and/or become a Discusser -- information on joining our Facebook group also located on that page.

* (1:19:37) - Last thoughts! Shelli is looking forward to future episodes of the podcast covering Shadow of Night. Jean is looking forward to championing Kit in future episodes. Angela has some future blog posts under wraps, coming soon -- Jean too! Valerie mentions that our jewelry sales are on hold until we get guidance from Deb's legal team. Sorry that they won't be available for Christmas! Also, join our Facebook group:

Here is the link: Daemonic Discussers, and the ‘word’ is 'Fucking firedrake' (or some less offensive variation). Be sure to fill out the second question to enter! Heretical opinions welcomed, and encouraged! 😎

*NOTE: Please keep in mind that this group is just a supplement to our podcast. If you aren't listening to us because you enjoy the podcast, but have decided to listen just to get in, you will not be granted entry. The screening process has been intensified to keep membership intimate, and to try to keep out folks who don’t have the best intentions for the group and its dynamic. It's an imperfect process, but we are determined to keep it a healthy place for speculation and more detailed discussion for all members, including us. When we opened the group, we decided to require listener-only membership because podcasting is a very personal medium. People who listen know how we are and think. Those who like what we have to say (and don't find us too abrasive/foul mouthed/opinionated), will most likely enjoy the group to its fullest, and utilize it as a sounding board with other like-minded members who can peacefully discuss divergent or opposing ideas. We don't have time to worry about mal-intent, because it breeds drama and discourse. If we're not comfortable, then the rest of the members won't be comfortable. This is not negotiable. It's simply how it is. This is why the Facebook group is not public and we don't advertise it on Deb's website, social media, or other venues.

Previous Episode
Take 24 - The One With the Unexpected Visitors
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* Intro music: "Ghost Dance" (edited down to second chorus) by Kevin Macleod, licensed for use by Creative Commons.
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* Our episode titles are a loving tribute to the show "Friends" just 'cause we love Friends and - let's face it - it's easier! Here's how one of the show creators explains their reasoning:
Jeff Greenstein: "When Marta & David & Jeff & I did 'Dream On', we used to spend a lot of time thinking about titles, because they were on-screen at the top of each episode. On "Friends", we decided that was a waste of time. We figured, why not name each episode after the thing that people will ostensibly be talking about around the water-cooler the next day?"
This was a Daemon Production

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