Thursday, 11 June 2009

Midsummer miracles

We're now into June and the zenith of fantasy, with Comet Meadowvane filling the night sky as it did in Jack's dream from episode two.

This is the aestas mirabilis, and people can hardly remember a time when magic wasn't part of daily life. Every day, the headlines announce new extraordinary events until the astonishing has become commonplace. Atlantis rises! Camelot is rebuilt! Martians win the general election! The god Pan throws a party and invites everybody in the world (after five days, the Tsar of Russia sends a telegram complaining about the noise). The Long Man of Wilmington decides it’s time for a change and heads south to become the Long Man of Benidorm.

You'll see a change in the notes and queries being submitted to our learned chaps at the Royal Mythological Society. Correspondence is as likely now to come from aliens or faerie folk as from perplexed maiden aunts in Suffolk. This week, for example, distinguished movie director Georges Méliès wonders about the role of special effects in a world where magic comes on tap.

But watch out. In a few months, the green comet will start to pull away past Jupiter's orbit and back out into the void of interstellar space. How will a world that has tasted limitless enchantment cope with its loss? It's a story that must wait until our final chapter, "Dying of the Light". That's a long way off yet, though. Leo and Nikos and I are still putting finishing touches to the Winter book, which we hope to bring you on iPhone and electronic form, if not in the print graphic novel originally intended, in time for Christmas. More news soon. Meanwhile, enjoy the Summer of Marvels.

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