Seven adaptations I really love

Very often adaptations of things we love suck! There are so many great books that have died terrible deaths on the silver or small screens. I have lists of criticism about the Harry Potter movies, the Spiderwick Chronicles movie was so bad I’m not surprised at all they didn’t continue with the series. And we’re not going to talk about The Giver movie. My heart just can’t take it.

And it’s not just books that get shitty treatment. You don’t want to hear how I felt about the Avitar The Last Airbender movie. And you don’t want to be anywhere near me if you played any part in that abortion. Awful casting, terrible special effects, misrepresentation of all the characters. It was humiliating to our species.

All that being said, sometimes adaptations don’t make me want to put a pickax in my temple. Some of them are pretty good. You might have heard me talk about some of these before, but I don’t think I’ve gotten to all of them. So here are the seven adaptations that I really love.


Series of Unfortunate Events And I specifically mean the Netflix series, not the train wreck of a movie.

This show was fantastic! While I would love a straight-up line by line adaptation, I’m realistic enough to know that if that’s all you accomplish, that’s not much to accomplish. Why not just leave the source material alone?

Well, this show was the perfect combination of those two situations. There are great long pieces that are just word for word from the book, and I love that. Then, some additions just couldn’t have been created in book form. Like Neil Patrick Harris singing. That man makes me feel things. The casting was good, the set was wonderful. I loved everyone on this. And it was beautifully true to the book.


Good Omens

This show on Amazon was phenomenal. I know I did a whole review of it, so I won’t go into too much detail here. But I will say it’s always a good idea to get the creator of the source material in on a project if you can. Gaiman, as always, did himself proud. Some additions made a lot of sense, especially near the end. Honestly, I think it improved it.



I’m being cautiously optimistic adding Limetown to this list. As of the writing of this post, I’ve only seen the first two episodes. And, if you’ll recall my blog post from last week, I had mixed feelings about it. But the thing is, Limetown has more source material than most. There are two seasons of the podcast, sure. But there’s also the prequel book to take into consideration. Much to my joy, they seem to be weaving in both. And that’s pretty cool.



I love love love Lore. I look forward to every episode, I haven’t heard one yet I didn’t learn something cool from. I love it every time Aaron Manke says, “I like it when people say hi.”

The show is everything it should be. It’s beautifully filmed, I love the stories it tells. It really is like an episode of the podcast, with actors. I adore it.


The Stand

This is an older one, I know, but I kind of love the book The Stand. I’ve read the original, and the author’s extended edition. And I’ve watched the mini-series about four times.

I can’t read the book without hearing Don’t Fear The Reaper. I can’t help but see the actors in place of the characters in my mind. It all just blends so well together, the book and the show. Yes, there are some changes. For some reason, people who write tv shows and movies just love to shove characters together to make one person out of two.

But I digress.

It’s a little older now, and it might be hard to find. But it’s worth it to hunt down the mini-series if you’ve never seen it.


10th Kingdom

If you’ve never heard of 10th Kingdom, it’s amazing. It’s a twisted fairytale story about a young woman from New York who meets a big bad wolf and falls into a world where our fairy tales come from. They have to save a prince who’s been turned into a dog. It’s wonderful.

Now, this one is a bit different from the other’s on the list, because it was the mini-series that came before the book. And I swear, when you read the book you can see the show in front of your eyes. I remember watching this show every week with my aunt as a child. It was an experience, and probably the birth of my love of fairy tale retellings. Reading the book brings that back to me every time.


Charlie Brown

Let me be clear here. What I’m talking about is not the recent travesty of a movie that kind of made my childhood die.

No, I’m talking about the holiday specials that they used to play on ABC and now I had to buy on DVD because I can’t always find them.

They are perfect. They are the purest representation of a comic character coming to life that I have ever seen. I don’t know what a whole series of dashes should sound like, but it’s exactly right when Woodstock starts chirping. Snoopy transitions so well onto the screen that it’s uncanny. Not an ounce of his sass is lost. And good old Charlie Brown is the same good-hearted, optimistic wishy-washy kid he is in the comics. And I will forever treasure both the comic and the specials, no matter how old I get. I imagine that as I grow older, they’ll mean even more to me.


So, those are seven adaptations that were as good as or better than their source material. But I want to know what you think? What’s your favorite adaptation? Let us know in the comments below.










I, like millions of other people, love the astounding podcast, Limetown. I listened to every episode twice, once by myself and once with the husband so I could watch him experience it. Does anyone else do that? Watch or listen to something you’ve already experienced with someone else just so you can watch them? Is that just me? Oh well.

Anyway, as we’ve been waiting for season three to come out, we were treated with the news that it’s now following the path of other great podcasts like Lore, and becoming a tv show. Damn, do I like Lore, by the way. But that’s another story for another day. (Can I write off my Amazon Prime membership fees on my taxes if I watch Lore for book inspiration? Tax lawyers, let me know.)

As the news came in about the Limetown show, I grew more and more split on my feelings about it. Yes, they got Stanley Tutchi to play Emil Haddock. That’s great, he’s great. But then it was going to be on Facebook Watch which makes me nervous. Anywhere I can’t see how a company is making money from me, I assume I’m the thing they’re making the money from. Which is, you know, not great. But then it’s been so fun watching all of these new fans learning about Limetown and making predictions on social media about what happened to the missing people. Look, I’ve listened to every episode, and read the prequel book. I know what happened, and I’m not telling anybody. But some of these predictions were exactly word for word my predictions. So that was a great moment. There are so many more people in the fan club now. We have pins!

I couldn’t help but get super excited. I couldn’t wait to see Lia dig into the mysteries of Limetown. I couldn’t wait to watch as she talks to Max and The Preacher. I was stoked!

I watched the first two episodes on Wednesday when they came out. And, since I’m sure you’re here for an actual review, not to hear me fangirl, let’s get to that.

I still don’t know what I think.

There was obvious influence from the novel

Just in case you’re not aware, the prequel novel, titled Limetown, was written by Cote Smith. The original podcast authors, Zack Akers and Skip Bronkle. And it’s an essential read if you want to understand Lia and Emil. It was different. Lia’s a teenager, obviously not the strong fearless woman she eventually turns into. She’s kind of a pain in the ass, totally incapable of having any sort of feelings for literally anyone. Emil, on the other hand, was a great guy trapped in a lot of terrible situations. He was a great uncle. Overall, Emil is someone desperately looking for someone, anyone, to love.

All of this had an obvious influence on the show. It feels like the novel was woven through the series flawlessly, as though it was always part of the story. And I love that.

Lia’s character is a pain in the ass

I mean, for the most part, including parts of the prequel novel was a great idea and I limetown twoloved it. Except for one thing.

In the podcast, Lia’s a bad-ass reporter. She’s fearless, no-nonsense. She cares about nothing more than finding the story. Now, she’s not perfect. She is all absorbed by the story, and more than willing to put herself in danger and ignore the rules put in place for her safety. All that matters to her, literally the only thing, is finding out what happened in Limetown.

In the show, Lia sounds more like the teenage version of herself. She’s taking advantage of the girl she’s seeing, seeking physical intimacy because she doesn’t have any room in her for actual love. She misses her uncle to the point of obsession, which is weird because in the podcast she was pretty clear that she barely knew her uncle. The fact that Emil was in Limetown was less than an afterthought to her. And she didn’t harbor all of this pain and resentment towards her mom. Not that there wasn’t a reason for her to be angry at her mom. She did abandon her family. But that was something that Lia had put behind her. There was none of this foolish ignoring her mother’s calls or leaving sad voice mails for her dad.

I loved Lia in the podcast. The show Lia needs some Zoloft and a puppy.

Two great moments were scary as hell, and exactly what I wanted them to be

Fortunately selfishly moody Lia wasn’t enough to ruin the show for me. There were two moments, moments that made me jump out of my chair when I was originally listening to the podcast, that was just so spot on that I couldn’t believe how well they’d been done.

The first was that 911 call, oh that call. The one from the first episode, of a woman calling for help at Limetown. It was that call that got me, and so many others hooked to the story, right from the word go. Or, more appropriately, right from the words, “Hello, can you hear me?” This was played in the show perfectly, and gave me the same chills as the first time I heard it.

The second scene, the real stand out one that I think most people remember better, is the man banging his head on Lia’s hotel room door. Screaming her name. Screaming, “This is your warning.” That was amazing. We still don’t know what that was about. And that was done to perfection in the show. I jumped, even though I damn well knew it was coming.

Limetown looked just spot on perfect

Too often when I’m watching something based on a source material I’m familiar with (read: obsessed with) I tend to get a bit picky. You don’t want to watch the Harry Potter movies with me, for instance. The problem is, the deck is stacked against the creators of visual mediums. While it might seem that they have all of the advantages, they don’t. Because no matter how fantastic a scene looks, no matter how much we try to get it to match the picture we have in our heads, everyone has a different head. And everyone perceives things differently, pictures things. And so when I complain that I saw the Room of Requirements differently then it was ever depicted in the movies, that’s not a fair argument. Because maybe a lot of people did see it that way.

Case in point, Limetown was almost exactly what I pictured when I was listening to the podcast. Almost like Eureka, but darker. A place of light, and creativity, and beauty, but with a sickness hiding. A layer of rot under the skin of a perfect looking apple. And that was just spot on.

Winona was damn well perfect

Then there was Winona. Poor, broken Winona. She was probably the darkest story. And limetown imgKelly Jenrette, who plays Winona, did such a fantastic job. It’s not like it’s an easy thing to play a crazy person. And that’s exactly what she did. Her cadence and verbal idioms were right on point. I am obsessed with this woman. The character is eerie, the way she seems to have had a blank spot in her mind where her daughter should have been, got under my skin. And I can’t imagine I’m going to be able to exorcise that anytime soon.

Some interesting additions that need some more fleshing out before an opinion can be formed

One final thought I had about the show was the introduction of Lia’s assistant, Mark Green, who I’d consider her Jimmy Olson. Or, more specifically, her unwanted partner. Much like the ridiculous number of buddy cop movies where the grizzled old detective works alone. It’s a strange option, to give her a, what? An assistant? A partner? He was introduced, it seemed, just to be barked at and ignored for much of the first two episodes. At this time the character seems like a worthless addition. But we’ll have to wait to see. We just haven’t seen enough of him yet.

I’ll be watching the other episodes, of course, and give a final thought when the season is over. I do suggest checking it out on Facebook Watch. Generally, I hope that Lia’s character improves. And that now that this is off the ground, the creators can settle in and get season three of the podcast already.

AHS 1984

American Horror Story is a cornerstone of my yearly tv watching. It’s a remarkable addition to the horror genre and a yearly test for the actors involved. In the interest of full disclosure, that’s where I’m coming from when writing this blog post. 

Sorry, this review is so late. I want to say I wanted to watch episode two to get a better idea of the season before I wrote it. But that’s a filthy lie. It’s late because I don’t often have time to sit down and watch something to review it. Normally when I watch something, I’m doing other things. Posting on social media, cleaning the house, crocheting, just about anything else. When I watch to review, I watch. I take notes and analyze them. It takes time, Man! But anyway, here’s what I took away from the first episode. What follows are my criticisms, notes, questions, and predictions after watching Episode One and while watching Episode Two.

This episode focuses on a slasher flick style, with a group of people heading to a camp to be counselors for the summer, only to find that there was a gristly murder there fourteen years before and that the owner of the camp is, in fact, a survivor of the murder. She’s reopened the camp as a way to exorcise her fear, as the only one to survive the twisted Mr. Jingles.

Some thoughts on the slasher flick genre, and how 1984 lives up to it.

The episode starts with a three-way between camp counselors, in the same cabin where children were sleeping. While that’s awful and gross, it pairs perfectly with the slasher flick genre. I mean, there wasn’t a single Freddy Kruger movie that didn’t have at least one sex scene.

I am, however, thrilled that they didn’t keep the SD sepia tone throughout the whole show. That would have been a little much.

One big stylistic tone from slasher flicks is the music. It rings true with this show, for AHS Mr Jinglessure. The music reminds me deeply of the scores for Nightmare on Elm Street, and I love it. This is something that Stranger Things did well, too. I don’t wonder much if this season was inspired by the popularity of Stranger Things, because I think it totally was. 

I have to say that I love that this has so far held to the three rules of a horror movie. If you haven’t seen Scream five thousand times as I have, let me give you a refresher.

If you want to survive a horror movie don’t have sex, don’t drink or do drugs. And, most importantly, don’t ever say ‘I’ll be right back’. Ever, dude. 

Questions I have after watching this episode

I had a ton of questions after watching Episode One. Who is stalking Xavier? Why does that ring matter so much? How the hell does someone fill up a van with gas for only $10. Three of those questions were answered by the end of the episode.

How in the hell have none of these counselors never heard of the murders here before? Maybe some of these characters didn’t grow up around LA, but I imagine a few of them did. And even if they didn’t, wouldn’t this be nationwide news if a bunch of kids was murdered at a summer camp?

Also, why didn’t Ms. Booth introduce the counselors to Trevor earlier? When they arrived they were told they were the only counselors. Is this a plot hole, or is Trevor really there?

I also dearly want to know why Mr. Jingles is collecting keys. The first time we saw him it made sense to have keys because he worked there. But why did he take the janitor’s keys? Doesn’t he take ears as a trophy? 

Problems I have with this episode

I don’t think that any of the kills from Mr. Jingles were remotely realistic so far. How did no one in the damn cabin wake up while he was killing them? Did no one scream? Were they all such heavy sleepers? And the death of the orderly at the insane asylum was a problem for me. Generally, a human man wouldn’t have the strength to hold himself up by his neck and also strangle someone to the point that blood came out of his victim’s eyes. While this does feed one of my predictions (see below) it’s a huge issue for me if I’m wrong.

Thoughts on AHS as a series

Let me first say that I love Billie Lourd so much. She is amazing every year. Now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to the rest of it. 

Every year I’m astounded by the actors of AHS. The rich princess from Apocalypse became the crazy religious camp counselor this year. It’s astounding to me that they can fit into all of these different roles. 

Predictions I have for the rest of the season

I don’t think for one second that Ms. Booth reopened this camp for the reasons she’s saying. It doesn’t make logical sense that she only wanted to exorcise her demons and provide a safe place for children. I’m willing to bet that she’s sacrificing these people on purpose. 

I am totally sure that this current group of counselors is actually at very least the second group that Ms. Booth has hired. I’m willing to bet right now that there’s already a group buried on the property. 

As I mentioned earlier, I think that Mr. Jingles has some sort of magical powers to do all the wild killing he’s doing. At least I hope so. Because otherwise, all the shit he’s doing makes no damned sense.

I also predict that this damned camp is under the same sort of weird spell as the murder house in season one. I bet that’s why the counselor from the ’70s is still there. I’m willing AHS Ms. Hallto bet we’ll see a lot more people from that time.

Finally, one bold prediction I have is that by the end of the season, Ms. Booth will have a higher body count than Mr. Jingles. Now, right now the score is 2 to 0, but I’m staying by this one. She’s got death in her soul.

I’ll do a recap at the end of the season with my final thoughts and the followup of my predictions. 

What do you think? Do you have any predictions for the season? Do you think mine are totally off base or spot on? Let us know in the comments below.

Welcome to the brand new Paper Beats World!

And we’re up! Welcome to the new Paper Beats World. What do you think?

With the new look comes a new feel. Not a new me. I’m the same me I’ve always been. But a new focus. I’m writing for readers and fans of specualtive fiction in all forms. So we’re going to be doing a lot more reviews, a lot more stories about living the nerd life and hopefully more short fiction.

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