Rest In Peace, Richard Briers

Last Sunday, February 17, 2013, we lost someone who, in my opinion, was one the greatest British actors: Richard Briers.  I know that he may not be someone who is known to everyone, but if you look him up, he started out on stage, and had gone on to do many movies and TV shows.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Richard Briers

Richard David Briers was born January 14, 1934, in Merton, Surrey, England; he was 79 years old at the time of his death.

I’m most familiar with his work because of the Shakespeare movies that he starred in.  Briers joined Kenneth Branagh’s acting company early on, and after that went on to star in many of Branagh’s Shakespeare films.

In Henry V, Briers played Lieutenant Bardolph (1989), in Much Ado About Nothing he portrayed Don Leonato (1993), he was Polonius in Hamlet (1996), Sir Nathaniel in Love’s Labour’s Lost (2000), and Adam in As You Like It (2006). I own each of these, by the way, and even though I’ve seen each of them countless times, over the last few days I have watched all of them again. I guess it was my own little way of remembering him.

However, Briers did more than just Shakespeare.  He was also known for his role as Tom Good in the British television series Good Neighbors which ran from 1975-1978, as well as many other TV series and movies. He was the voice of the Narrator in the 1974 animated series Roobarb, and later did the voices of the Narrator, Roobarb, and Custard in the animated series, Roobarb & Custard Too in 2005.  He played the Grandfather in 1994’s Mary Shelley’s Frankenstien, and Smee in 2003’s Peter Pan.

His latest movie was 2012’s Cockneys vs. Zombies.  I haven’t seen this yet, but I’ve heard that it’s really funny, so I guess I’ll check it out.

It was a great loss, and I’ll miss seeing him in any upcoming movies.

RIP Mr. Briers.

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Books, Bard, Bugs…and beyond

Most writers have a blog, as do many people who aren’t writers as well, but I am one, and have heard/been told that I should have a blog. I’ve waited this long, because I’m not sure how often I will update this, but I will attempt to do so regularly. First a little about me.

William Shakespeare Chandos portrait

Chandos portrait of William Shakespeare, painted during his lifetime, between 1600 and 1610.

Specifically, I am a science-fiction and fantasy writer, as well as a playwright. Speaking of which, I am also an actor and love theatre. I love Shakespeare too; he is my biggest influence as far as theatre and play writing are concerned. Yes, I’m one of those weird people who quotes Shakespeare in everyday conversation, and goes absolutely crazy, (in a good way), whenever I see anything by or about the Bard                              

Reading is another passion of mine; mainly in the same genres that I write.  My favorite authors include Orson Scott Card, George R.R. Martin, Jim Butcher, Connie Willis, and J.K. Rowling. These are in no particular order. I also enjoy reading Edgar Allan Poe.  I love plays too, whether they are by Shakespeare or not.

Red-Back Jumping Spider

Red-Back Jumping Spider

Entomology, the study of insects is a huge interest of mine. I love insects, and arachnids too. Honestly, I love anything with fur, feathers, or scales, but bugs are something that most other people run from, step on, or completely disregard. I, on the other hand, am fascinated by them. Their intelligence,their behavior…everything about them. I never kill any bugs either. If I have a fly, spider, or any other bug in the house, car, or anywhere else, I don’t reach for the flyswatter, (I don’t own one anyway, I wouldn’t use it), I either shoo it out an open window, or pick it up and put it outside.

And music, I love music. I’m not much into the hip-hop or heavy metal genres, but I listen to just about anything else. From Glen Miller to Flogging Molly, the whole gamut in between and beyond.

I enjoy movies, but far too many to name.  I loved the Harry Potter series however, the books and the movies.  But NOT the Twilight series.  I’m a Trekkie and love the Star Trek series and movies, superhero movies (Marvel and DC), most animated movies, but my favorite is The Lion King, film adaptations of Shakespeare’s play, etc, etc.

I love football too, and although I live in San Pedro, CA, my team is the Denver Broncos.Denver Broncos

Also, as I have been doing genealogy for the past couple of years now, I have an interest in both sides of my ancestry. And I plan to travel this year sometime, (spring or summer), to Missouri and Kansas, where the majority of my father’s ancestors come from.

I may from time to time talk about ancient Greece and prehistoric eras too,as I am researching both for my current sci-fi project, and I am finding myself greatly interested in each of them.

Until next time.