(This was supposed to post on Friday, but it looks like a website hiccup prevented that. Sorry for the delay.)
Normally, I use Flashback Friday to roll back and review a SF/F work I read when younger, but today I’m doing something a little different.
I saw The Dark Crystal in the movie theater back in 1982. I was five.
Jen and Kira‘s adventures through the fantasy world of Thra were eye-candy to my five-year-old self, and while parts of the movie were a bit frightening, I’m not sure that I honestly understood the depths of the movie at that age. I saw The Dark Crystal for a second time in middle school and then again in high school. Each time, I understood more of the movie’s plot. The idea that the Skeksis and the Mystics were two halves of a whole being (the urSkeks) was fascinating. They representing the evil and the good in all things, a very Tao-like idea. Not only did the characters represent the yin and the yang, but the Skeksis each represented one of the seven deadly sins. The characters and art of the movie were developed by Brian Froud, one of my favorite artists.
Jim Henson originally created a much darker version of this film, but the “purse strings” behind the movie worried it would be too dark for younger audiences so many of Henson’s ideas were stripped down for the film.
Either way, this was the very first SF/F film that I saw (or that I can remember seeing…I’m told I saw Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back in theaters in 1980, but I was three. I don’t remember seeing it). My enjoyment of the richly painted world of The Dark Crystal, made me a lifelong fan of Fantasy. While I didn’t spend my elementary school years reading it (that would come later), I did jump into Science Fiction & Fantasy movies with a passion: Star Wars (At 6, it was all about the Ewoks!), Star Trek (my favorite as a kid was the one with the whales…don’t hurt me!), Dune, Red Sonja, Ladyhawke, etc.
I was hooked.
Want to read other Flashback Fridays? Click here to see the list in this series.