Dec 21, 2008

Companion Books for TV and film

Books about movies and TV

There are obviously a lot of movies and or television based on books. There are also a lot of novelizations of movies and television (some of the best done by Lee Goldberg and Max Allan Collins) But there is a whole other sub set of these types of tie in books. The companion books.

Over the years I’ve picked up a number of these books and enjoyed them. If you are a fan of the show or movie they can really enhance the experience for you. Recently I’ve been sent a number of different books that fall into this category and I’d like to mention them here so fans of the shows may find something they would like to enhance their own experience.

Mark Cotta Vaz
Titan Books

This is obviously for the upcoming Frank Miller directed film The Spirit based on the comics by Will Eisner. The pre release buzz is great and I think the movie will be wonderful, especially for fans of Sin City and the 300. The book is a look at the making of the film, there are production shots, artwork, posters and stills. An introduction by Frank Miller who is a long time Eisner and Spirit fan. It’s clear from this introduction that Miller loves this film and the original work and that he’s given his all to do it justice. The book is broken up into sections discussing things from the cast and characters to the origin of the Spirit. They talk about comic book movies and working on green screen and other production insights. It’s a really interesting inside look at the making of a film and the photos and artwork are wonderful. Fans of noir art will enjoy it just for the look of the book.
Seeing this book before I see the movie has done something else, it’s amped up my excitement for the film. I really can’t wait to see this on a big screen.
Buy The Spirit: The Movie Visual Companion

These next books are companion books for television series. They are official books which means the people responsible for the show signed off on them and in some cases helped put some things together.

Craig Byrne

Sharon Gosling

Kim Moses and Ian Sander

All three of these TV shows are the type that attract a cult following. People who can’t miss an episode and like to debate the finer points of the shows. Smallville is an addictive show, the look and the drama and the super heroics all add to the excitement that builds throughout each season. The Stargate franchise is one of those show that takes the viewer to a different world each week, not unlike Star Trek did back in the day and Sliders among others. Ghost Whisperer has the supernatural angle working for it and an attractive woman in the lead. These show all have in common the fact that they build a mythology to go along with the show, underlying elements that build and grow, hints dropped and picked up later. Things that viewers love.

Smallville Season 7 Companion has a number of nice features. An introduction by new cast member Laura Vandervoort who plays Clarks cousin Kara, and episode guide, a wrap up of the various characters in this season, a feature on the crew involved in the show and few other features that add to the insider feel you get from these books. Plenty of pictures and also some nice trivia boxes along the way.

The Stargate Atlantis companion is similar to Smallville, features on the episodes, an intro to the season which brings people up to speed and character bios. There are also a number of nice articles on the behind the scenes goings on. This is a nice book for fans of the show as it will help fleshout the mythology of the series. And there is a lot of mythology building with each season, the Stargate franchise is a strong one and the writers put a lot of work into the show.The author of this book did the same.

The Ghost Whisperer companion goes a step further than the previous two books. It has the episode guide and character insights with plenty of behind the scenes shots. It also has articles about real life mediums a guide to communicating with ghosts. The book is really outstanding in that it wants to be an additional way for fans to connect with the show and to add to the overall experience. It is also over half original material not just reprinted bios or the episode guides. If you like this show you need to have this book. Kim Moses & Ian Sander are both Executive Producers on Ghost Whisperer, as well as running the official website and creating the award-winning tie-in webisode series Ghost Whisperer: The Other Side.

All these books are from Titan book. They do an awful lot of wonderful titles for fans of the media age and they have a great respect for the subject matter, it’s pretty obvious that they are fans too.

Buy Smallville: The Official Companion Season 7

Buy Stargate Atlantis: The Official Companion Season 4 (Stargate Atlantis (Seasons))

Buy Ghost Whisperer: The Spirit Guide

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