Hello, my name is S.M. Carrière, and I'm a The Quest addict.
I wish I was joking, but I'm not. I finally understand television show addiction. Like, proper television show addiction. I mean, I'm a fan of a fair few shows. Firefly, Sherlock (BBC), Merlin (also BBC) etc. I like them. A lot. Love them, even. I get really excited when they're on, and very, very sad when they're not.
But this... this is a special level of watching. I binged watched the first four episodes. I'm chewing my nails in anticipation of episode five. As in, I need it.
And I'm very disappointed in myself for it. Because this is a reality competition show. Well... "reality." Like all reality television, this is scripted. There are challenges and eliminations. Unlike all reality television, it's set in a fantasy realm. So it's a fantasy competition show? What the hell would you call this?
The Fantastical Race.
Contestants must adequately complete their tasks or face banishment. There are twelve in total, and one and all are striving to become the hero of Everrealm. Stupid name, I know. The thing is, the challenges are look like amazing fun! Three person fights in a vat with straw for cushions, an equestrian martial obstacle course, with archery, javelin throwing, jousting and hammer! I mean... come on! How could you not want to do this stuff?
From the website:
There are a couple of characters I need to discuss.
This is the queen of Sænctum in Everrealm. She hasn't had much to do yet, though (SPOILER!) she has been poisoned already (and subsequently saved by the Paladins after an urgent side-quest to find the cure).
She really is the only one the Paladins have met who appears to be genuinely on their side. All of them love her, near as I can tell.
I'm fairly certain that one of the contestants has a crush. It's hilarious and adorable.
Sarcastic, sceptical and generally unpleasant to the Paladins, the Grand Vizier nevertheless seems to care greatly for his queen. He is in charge of the magic in the castle, and knows all manner of potions and cures (and probably curses as well).
I have a feeling that the writers are trying to get you to believe him to be a villain; a traitor. I'm not sure he is. What does Frodo say to Sam after meeting Aragorn? That the enemy "would look fairer and feel fouler." Though, they may be pulling a Wormtongue from Lord of the Rings, The Two Towers. Spot the villain in that!
Who knows? In my head I've imagined a perfectly reasonable reason for his overt bitterness.
I couldn't help it.
Would not kick this man out of bed for eating crackers. I'm a sucker for a man in armour.
That's beside the point. Sir Ansgar is the most decorated knight in all of the kingdom of Sænctum. Charged with turning the twelve Paladins into competent warriors, he's gruff, often rude but also fair. Many of the Paladins really look up to him as a father-type figure and have said as much. He can be hot or cold towards the Paladins depending on their performance. I am sceptical of him, though. I don't know why. There's no real reason for me not to trust him, but I don't. Perhaps the twist will be that he's a turncoat. Can you imagine how betrayed the Paladins who look up to him so will feel?
Anyway, assuming he's straight (as in not crooked, not the sexual orientation), then I really like him as a character, despite the fact that he can be a bit of an arsehole at times. Or probably because of that fact. It's not like his criticisms are ever unwarranted.
Dude is an MMA fighter, but isn't afraid to let his geek flag fly. I really like him. He's funny and fair-minded, and also very sensible (on the banishments, I have found myself agreeing with his arguments every single time). A competent fighter, but that alone does not make a hero.
He is genuinely an awesome guy; the kind you'd want to grab a few beers with, you know? He took one of the other Paladins, his anxiety-ridden room mate, under his wing and helped him along and was really upset when (SPOILER!) the guy was banished. For that alone, I hope this guy goes far.
This girl is so sweet and kind, she really embodies the spirit of the whole venture to me. Genuinely eager to help, and generally cheerful, she's no dope. She's got a good head on her shoulders and excels at organisation.
She isn't as funny as Shondo, but she's just as brave and she tries hard. And she really, really wants to be there.
Like most of the other Paladins, I've got a soft spot for her adorable red head. I honestly hope she ends up being the hero, but I'd be overjoyed to see her in the last two Paladins. My only fear is that she's too nice, and will be taken advantage of by other Paladins who care more for winning the 'contest' than saving the realm (looking at you, Christian).
That said, I hope to high heaven there is a second season of this and that I can apply. I would LOVE to do something like this, you have no idea. No, you really have no idea. The competition aspect of it aside, this would be my idea of heaven.
I'd probably be banished pretty quickly though. I hate competing, and I get nervous with people watching me. I'd fumble a sword and slice my own leg off or something. Still, LET ME PLAY!
So, if you haven't watched this show yet, and you like the whole reality competition platform (think Amazing Race or something similar), and you adore fantasy as a genre, you will probably really like this show.
Reality shows in general are a waste of time, I admit.
But this is a good waste of time.
Alright, I'm done. Have some writing to do.
(Seriously though, producers of this show, if you're reading this, LET ME PLAY!)