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Author Topic: EP092: The Boy Who Yelled “Dragon!”  (Read 10444 times)
Jim
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« on: February 09, 2007, 06:43:52 AM »

EP092: The Boy Who Yelled “Dragon!”
Rated G.

By Mike Resnick.
Read by Matthew Wayne Selznick (of Brave Men Run and Five Minute Memoir).
First appeared in Young Warriors, ed. Tamora Pierce & Josepha Sherman.

Now, this Land was the home of exceptionally brave warriors and beautiful damsels (and occasionally they were the same person, since beautiful damsels were pretty assertive back then). Each young boy and girl was taught all the arts of warfare, and were soon adept with sword, mace, lance, bow and arrow, dagger, and the off-putting snide remark. They were schooled in horsemanship, camouflage, and military strategy. They learned eye-gouging, ear-biting, kidney-punching, and — since they were destined to become knights and ladies — gentility.

So successful was their training that before long enemy armies were afraid to attack them. Within the borders of the Land justice was so swift that there was not a single criminal left. It would have been a very peaceful and idyllic kingdom indeed — except for the dragons.

Rated G. It’s a children’s story. Not recommended for cynical audiences.
« Last Edit: February 09, 2007, 06:46:28 AM by Jim » Logged

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madjo
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« Reply #1 on: February 09, 2007, 09:27:27 AM »

Interesting story, it really points out that no matter what your background is, there are always things you can relate to with someone else.
These two characters really were much alike.
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BSWeichsel
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« Reply #2 on: February 09, 2007, 09:39:03 AM »

I really enjoyed the story thought that it was a good simple laid back and not to mention a great childrens story.

It was a good example of simple childerns fiction nothing revolutionary about it but perfect for what it was trying to do. Just a little confused on the title though. didn't seem to match the story. Thats my only complaint.
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« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2007, 09:49:49 AM »

Just a little confused on the title though. didn't seem to match the story. Thats my only complaint.

I agree with this, because the story of the boy who yelled wolf was entirely different.  After a little while nobody believed the boy. Then when a wolf did show up, no one came when the kid yelled.
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Jonathan C. Gillespie
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« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2007, 10:08:25 AM »

It's hard to take issue with a delightful little story like this -- I think as a children's piece it worked just fine.  As an adult reader, the only thing I was thrown off by was the sudden, abrupt ending.  When Horace and Melvin met, I kept thinking "okay, what scheme are these two going to come up with?".  Then, all they do is allude to it, and *poof*, we're done.

But I'm not the intended audience, so who cares  Grin
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prusik
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« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2007, 02:06:41 PM »

Just a little confused on the title though. didn't seem to match the story. Thats my only complaint.

Made sense to me. The boy would yell "Dragon!" whenever there wasn't a dragon around, much like the boy who cried "Wolf!" So the title refers to the plan they come up with. (I saw the punchline of the story coming, but for this story, that's not a big deal.)
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« Reply #6 on: February 09, 2007, 02:17:41 PM »

Fabulous story!  Now come on, did you reaaly just want to hear "The Boy Who Called 'Wolf!'", only with a dragon?  That would have been boring.  What we got instead was a very pleasant tale of two friends.  And Matthew Wayne Selznick did an excellent job with the narration.
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Holden
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« Reply #7 on: February 09, 2007, 02:25:22 PM »

I liked the dialogue between the boy and the dragon. It reminded me of an old Disney cartoon called "The Reluctant Dragon" in which a knight and boy meet a dragon who prefers writing poetry to fighting. They end up staging a fight for the townspeople, which is what I thought was going to happen in this story.

By the way - nice job on the dragon's voice.
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cyron
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« Reply #8 on: February 09, 2007, 08:17:20 PM »

The sexual equality message seemed a little heavy handed to my ears, but otherwise a good light hearted story that I quite enjoyed. 
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Josh
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« Reply #9 on: February 10, 2007, 04:11:23 PM »

I really liked the comment on school life, my only complaint, which applies to a couple of the stories lately, is that it was really short. I really look forward to a story each week and, while the stories are still great, I am still somewhat disappointed when I see that it is only 20 minutes. Hope to get a nice long one soon.
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Bdoomed
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« Reply #10 on: February 10, 2007, 07:25:51 PM »

twas cute, made me laugh a bit, all in all a good, fun story!
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« Reply #11 on: February 11, 2007, 09:55:39 PM »

I liked the story.  I don't get to listen to too many with an audience (I'm usually listening in the car alone or when walking my dog).  However, my wife and I listened to this one together and be were both amused.

I'm just curious: am I the only one who noticed the blatant Tom Lehrer reference?!?

Dino
« Last Edit: February 12, 2007, 12:59:03 PM by Dino » Logged
RKG
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« Reply #12 on: February 11, 2007, 11:06:42 PM »


A very fun story, and a very good performance.  The dragon effect was just right.

I'm not 100% certain what the target audience for this was, but I can tell you that I liked it and my 12 and 10 year old both thought it was great.  An actual LOL at the "Let's kill the horse" line.

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.Morph.
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« Reply #13 on: February 12, 2007, 04:00:35 AM »

I liked it, but like a few others here i was confused by the references to "the boy who cried wolf", which seemed all in all to be quite a different fabel.
Two thumbs up though.
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Plato
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« Reply #14 on: February 12, 2007, 05:39:45 AM »

I'm afraid I really didn't like this one.  I realise it's a kid's story and as such I shouldn't be too hard on it, but I'm almost certain that it's the sort've story I would have disliked when I was little too.  I don't feel my dislike is simply a matter of being cynical, either, I actually remain a fan of several kids writers to this day: Roald Dahl, Nicholas Fisk, Lemony Snicket, Robin Jarvis, etc;  all of whom wrote books good enough that I can still enjoy them as an adult.

It feels like the introduction to a full story, pretty much nothing happens until the end, it was as if the writer ran out of steam somewhere along the way.  Basically two loners meet, become friends, and that's it!  There is actually no story, just the hint of one to come.  We don't even ever see an antagonist, two of them are given an off-hand reference at the end, though no real evidence of a threat is ever seen.

And it's another case of fictional cyphers, both the dragon and the kid constantly let out American school references 'proms', 'zits' etc, which is probably intended to be funny, but just leaves me cold.

It may well be, though, that I'm just not a fan of Mike Resnick, I've disliked just about everything of his that's been put up on Escape Pod (I've a bit of a soft-spot for the _travels_ one, though I'm not sure if it'd stand a re-listen).  As such my opinion is probably that of a minority, as he's obviously very popular (and fair play to him for that).

On the up side, though, the reading was excellent, I'd be happy to hear more from this reader, he did an excellent job.

I'm still eagerly awaiting the next episode on Thursday, though.  Despite the odd story I've got issues with I do still enjoy Escape Pod (there's even one or two stories I consider among my favorite story pieces!). 

Until next time,

Simon Painter
Shropshire, UK
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« Reply #15 on: February 12, 2007, 01:11:00 PM »

If you liked the reader, Matthew Wayne Selznick, then you should really checkout Brave Men Run at podiobooks.com.  As a warning though, the book is chock full of American high school references.
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« Reply #16 on: February 12, 2007, 02:50:58 PM »

If you liked the reader, Matthew Wayne Selznick, then you should really checkout Brave Men Run at podiobooks.com.  As a warning though, the book is chock full of American high school references.

Yeah, that's what I loved about it.  Brave Men Run to me was like "The Breakfast Club starring Wolverine."  It took me back to my high school days.

Also, I am convinced that the protagonist has the coolest girlfriend in teen fiction.  But that's just one good thing of many.
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Simon Painter
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« Reply #17 on: February 12, 2007, 03:56:01 PM »

If you liked the reader, Matthew Wayne Selznick, then you should really checkout Brave Men Run at podiobooks.com.  As a warning though, the book is chock full of American high school references.

Will do, thanks.

I'm not bothered by American High School references in general, it was just the way they were used in this story, with two loner kids being cyphered as a young knight and a dragon, but just about nothing else different.  As with _Blood of Virgins_ if you swapped them back again, you'd have a pretty dull story.

Simon Painter
Shropshire, UK
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« Reply #18 on: February 12, 2007, 05:05:14 PM »

Ok.  I liked this story.  It was a traditional friendship story; and the twist was obvious from the begining.  However that did not matter, as always it was about the journey.  Yeah the references to the real world came off as cheezy, but I really doubt they were aimed at me. 
I liked in the interaction between the characters; and I liked their different points of view.  Yeah again the zit thing was full of cheese, but it did not matter; it was a point the two strangers could relate on and that was the point.

The story just gave me a warm positive feeling as I travelled to work in a cold busy bus.  It was a good way to start the day.  But please I don't want to be like that at work everyday... or even every week. >__>
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« Reply #19 on: February 14, 2007, 03:31:02 AM »

I enjoyed it - a piece of whimsy and gentle convention breaking. It updates the "boy who cried wolf" story very nicely (but yes the whole zit and cheerleader thing is grating). It does what good children's fantasy ought to do - especially when playing with folk tales - updates the story and places it in its own context. Definitely made me smile though despite the saccharine coating.
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