Tag Archive: how to train your dragon

Dragons Race to the Edge Season 3

Season 3! Came out very a fortnight ago and it’s great! Admittedly, I don’t know if there’s anything that the series could do to make me think that it isn’t great, but I really enjoyed it. I will say right now there are going to be some spoilers. I’ll try and coat things in generalities, but some stuff will slip out.

DRTTE ViggoSo, we start with a twist surprise, and old enemy turning out to actually have a change of heart! And the new enemy, oh my dragons the new enemy is kind of scary, and dangerous, and really, really clever, which is so nice to see. It’s someone that even Hiccup has trouble pitching his wits against! And just when you think he might have figured him out, bam! Turns out the guy was thinking six steps ahead of them the whole time. Just, so very well done that evil genius.

People and dragons from previous series turn up, along with the customary new dragons introduced, although it’s not quite one an episode as it was with other series. Still, the imagination and creation of these new dragons is amazing, and it’s great to see what they come up with next. I quite liked the episode where Gobber meets Grump (the dragon he has in the second movie), it’s very sweet.

DRTTE BuffalordSpeaking of old people, Heather! I always like seeing her, and the interaction between her and Astrid. Easily the most competent people in the team. Well, Hiccup and Toothless as well. But having the girls be the main combat force? Excellent.

Overall, I really enjoy this next instalment of the series. 13 new episode in total, and there will be a season 6, so I’m just ready and waiting for that. How do I know there’s a season 6? Well, for one, the internet tells me there will be, and two – they end the series on this AMAZING CLIFFHANGER. Seriously, it pains me that I will have to wait dragons know how long to find out how that’s going to resolve itself, let alone all the other stuff from the series.

All in all, I am very happy, and there is yet another dose of dragons in my life.

Author Event – Cressida Cowell

I was expecting something similar to the last author event I went to, the Garth Nix one, where we were sitting in the Waterstones cafe and having this intimate Q&A session.

What I had completely forgotten, was that Cressida Cowell and the How to Train Your Dragon series, are aimed at children. Not matter how fantastic the books are, and can be appreciated by adults, they do, in fact, live in the children’s section.

Which meant that I was sitting in Waterstones cafe, with five minutes to go, wondering where everyone else was, when the helpful cafe man tells me the event is in the large building round the corner, not the cafe. Thankfully, I made it on time, got my poster and my book, and since I was on my own, squeeze into a seat rather near the front.

Webby at The OpenOh, and as a bonus? There were some of the GoGoDragons there, including my personal favourite, Webby! The schools that were attending the event (yes, some schools are awesome enough to bring their students to events like this) brought their GoGoSchoolDragons with them as well, so there were five big ones and five little ones. It was a lovely setting.

And then Cressida herself came out, and she was simply fantastic. Just, awesome. When she spoke, it was clear to see the enthusiasm and love for what she does, and she really does love having all the kids around. She talked a lot about her own childhood, showing us pictures from when she would stay on this uninhabited island (because her dad wanted to bird watch) with her starting to write, aged approximately nine, and then giving the audience, largely made up of approximately nine year olds, advice on how to write stories, and be creative. And it wasn’t bad advice for us older ones either.

So, she showed us some childhood memories, she did some reading of the books, including the dragonese parts of the book where the adults had to cover their ears because it is not appropriate language for us to hear! She talked about vikings, she showed us some stories and map that kids had sent into her (apparently she gets a ton of letters and pictures like this and loves it).

The Dragon StageShe talked a lot about inspiration, and where she gets her ideas from. I had no idea that she was illustrator as well as writer, and frankly it just make me respect her all that much more, but she talked about how she uses real life to inspire her. For instance, quite a few dragons that she’s come up with are blends or two or more creatures. The monstrous strangulator is made up of a fish that look like a grumpy man, and another fish that has a see-through head because it dwells on the ocean floor and needs to see the prey above it. The Giant Bee eater is a cross between a basking shark and a manta ray. As she kept saying, reality is often strange than fiction, and nature is more powerful than we are!

She even, during her long talk, answered some of the questions that I had. For instance, in the films, Toothless is definately not as he is in the books. And that’s because in the books, Vikings have hunting dragons and riding dragons, but the riding dragon doesn’t turn up until book six or so. The film-makers were doing the film in 3D, and had this large expanse of sea and sky to play with, so they decided to combine Hiccup’s two dragon from the books (Toothless and Windwalker) into one dragon in the films that could fly from the start. And yes, she had always intended to have the slow reveal of the early adventure meaning more than you think they do, and everything ties together in circles and cycles.

An evening of dragonsOf course there were questions asked by the audience. All kids, because lets face it, when kids are actually excited and involved in something, you let them run with it. And from this we learnt that this is the last book in this series, but Cressida loves the world she’s created so much, that maybe, just maybe, other books set in this world will happen. As long as there are dragons, I will love them.

Oh, one more little fact. David Tenant is the voice for all the audio books. And the trailer for the last book that they showed us at the end. David. Freaking. Tenant. I don’t normally go for audio books, but I might just have to now!

After the long talk, during which I was hugging my Toothless cuddly toy, there was a signing. I managed to end up being last in the queue, but there were two girls ahead of me, around my age, and we chatted and found a fair bunch in common. One of them nearly stole my cuddly toy as well. I just think it’s awesome when people can share a love of the same thing.

So it took a while, but I did get to meet her! And I got to tell her how much I enjoyed the books, especially the joy I had of realising that there was a huge plot at work here, and it had been going on since book one. She replied that that was one of the reasons she loved writing books, to hear the reaction of her readers. I got the new book and my original, old copy of HTTYD signed. Then they stamped them with the slavemark, and I got a badge as well!

I was just so happy to have gone to this event. I love hearing authors talk about their work, especially when they love it, and I love it. And also dragons.

Cressida Cowell Author Meet

Dragons: Race to the Edge

So, those of you who like dragons, especially the How to Train Your Dragon series, or those of you with Netflix, might have noticed that there is a new series out. Mild spoilers incoming, just so you know.


Dragons: Race to the Edge is the next instalment in the screen half of the story. Season 3 has 13 episodes currently out on Netflix, with 13 more to come and another season announced. I’ve been trying to find more dates, but as of yet no luck. The first 12 episodes came out last Friday. Why has it taken me this long to watch you ask? It hasn’t, I watched them all last Friday, I just wanted to watch them all again before doing a review about them.

Chronologically, this series, like 1 & 2, also takes place between the first a second films. Three years after the events of Riders/Defenders of Berk, and things are quiet. Very quiet. Hiccup is trying to explore all he can, finding new dragons, but he’s run out of places to explore. The entire Archipelago has been mapped, and the only new dragon is the twins playing tricks.

hiccupHowever, a certain someone decides that jail is not for them, and breaks out. The dragons riders gather together for the first time in a while to go search for them. In doing so, they come across some long forgotten wrecks, and in it, a long forgotten treasure – the dragon eye.

This device is full of information, maps, new dragons. And thus, the new season gets underway.

It’s great to see all the characters again. There’s a measured difference between them in the first two seasons and this one. They’ve grown, the animations have changed to reflect this (but the voice actors are still the same, which is great). And because we’ve seen the second movie, we know where they are heading.

And speaking of the second movie, oh the references. There are so many references to stuff which happens in the second movie, stuff to come! It’s hilarious to watch, because from the character’s point of view, they’re oblivious. And of course they talk about stuff that has happened before. One episode including a dragon they have encountered before, one which Snotlout came off worse for, is filled with Snotlout ranting and raving about how it’s out to get him. It’s hilarious to watch all the personalities in the same rooms again.

Night TerrorsThe new dragons are pretty great as well, very imaginative. My favourite is the Night Terrors – a flock of tiny dragons which work together to form the appearance of a huge one, so cool. And they can learn new shapes as well 🙂

It combines the great animation, with some new stories, but familiar setting and characters. I am absolutely in love with the new series, and cannot wait for the next half of it to be out.

Dragons: Defenders of Berk

So, still ill. Or at least recovering after being ill. The flu really hit me hard and I can’t do much at the moment without instantly tiring myself out. Took a walk to the shops and that’s my exercise for the day.

On the plus side, this does mean that my activities are limited to low energy things, such as sitting at my computer and writing. Well okay, not writing. I should be, but I can’t summon the brain power needed to do writing and plot thinking. Being ill really really sucks.

What I have instead been doing is watching Dragons: Defenders of Berk. It’s the second series of the TV shows which tells the story of the young vikings on the island of Berk, picking up from just after where the movie finishes. After learning that the DVD isn’t going to come out in the UK until three days before the second movie, I decided I wasn’t going to wait that long and resorted to our long time friend the internet to help me out.

I’m going to try not to spoil anything just in case anyone else wants to watch the series but hasn’t yet, but I do want to talk about the dragons.

I love the dragon in this continuity. The books as well, but in the shows they are very well developed. They have classes of dragons: Boulder, Stoker, Strike, Fear, Tidal, Sharp, Tracker and Mystery. Dragons  fit into these categories based on how they look, what they eat, attacks and other characteristics.

The dragons that are featured in the series all the time are: Deadly Nadder (Astrid), Hideous Zippleback (Ruffnut & Tuffnut), Monstrous Nightmare (Snotlout), Gronkle (Fishlegs), and of course the Night Fury (Hiccup). All of them have their own personalities, and are well matched with thier human trainers. I do love how individualistic all of the dragons are from each other. Every species feels different and unique and have their own quirks which you discover throughout the episodes that they appear in. Changewings are some favourites of mine, since they are chamleons and cause so much trouble. They also have these cool little fronds and acid breath. Terrible Terror are also fun because they are they are tiny and terrible and cause so much mischief. They also come in useful on occasion and a variety of colours.

My favourite dragon is the night fury. Not just because it’s the mascot dragon (dragon of the lead character, lead dragon and all that) but because it is well propotioned in body, looks comfortable to ride, has four legs and two wings (my preffered body type), intelligent, friendly, black and most important, has an awesome breath weapon.

Also it’s called the Night Fury. It is such an awesome name. And this is awesome as well. I am saving up for one.

That is all I have to say. And if you have not seen How to Train Your Dragon, then I recommend it. And if you live in America then I am jealous of you, because we in the UK have wait until July 4th for Hot to Train Your Dragon 2.

C'est La Vee

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