The First Time
Posted: 20 July 2013 01:10 AM   [ Ignore ]  
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When I first encountered The Dark Crystal, I must have still been in high school. It was in the days when I used to watch YTV and, sometimes, they would put on these movies. I grew up with Jim Henson’s Muppets, Seasame Street and, in particular, Fraggle Rock. I also knew that he had made quite a few movies and I saw previews of them in an old VCR-taped documentary I would watch over and again as a child. But this one day I turned onto YTV and I saw this whole world with these unique characters and backgrounds. It was this ancient place that was as established as the Star Wars mythos. I’d heard of Dark Crystal and I even had an old comic adaptation of the film that I had once barely understood, but seeing it play out was entirely different: especially when I realized that unlike Jim Henson’s other works, there were no humans in it at all. He had created a world without human beings and it possessed its own rules and explored some really grand themes. Later I got to see the film in its entirety. And then I got the DVD and realized that there was more backstory and detail to Aughra and the Mystics and the Skeksis. Over the years, I got to learn a lot more.

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Posted: 21 July 2013 10:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]  
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I don’t remember too much about when I first saw the movie, but I do remember thinking it was a little freaky.  I did love the storyline and the gelflings.  Even though I thought it was a little scary, I kept watching it.  I think I first watched it when I was eight years old…I think…

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Posted: 24 July 2013 05:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]  
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My dad showed me this movie when I was very young, and ever since it has been one of my favorites. I used to rent it from Drug Mart every time we went shopping there, and would refuse to leave without it. Though they are sort of creepy and frightening, the puppets had an alluring quality to them that I just couldn’t get enough of. Obviously I didn’t understand how they worked or even what they were the first time I saw the film, but nevertheless I fell in love with Jen, Kira, Fizzgig, the podlings, and even Chamberlain.

I hadn’t seen the film in years until I watched the documentary about Kevin Clash and his journey as Elmo in Sesame Street, in which he discussed how he was offered a puppeteer job in The Dark Crystal that he refused. Immediately memories started flying back to me, and I just had to watch it again. He also discussed Labyrinth, which is a movie I had never seen, so I jumped into action to get a hold of that movie, as well, and I loved it just the same (though I don’t have as strong as a connection as I do to TDC).

And now I just stumbled upon this website and all of these people that I didn’t know still cared about and participated in a community about this revolutionary work that Jim Henson created for us. I am so happy that I found this, and though I may not have been a fan (or alive) when the film came out, I’m glad I can be a part of this now.

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Posted: 25 July 2013 02:08 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]  
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This feels like the dreamfasting thread. wink


I don’t remember the first time I saw the Dark Crystal.


(I do remember Labyrinth. You NEVER forget the first time your six year old eyes see David Bowie as the Goblin King and you finally realize that boys maybe aren’t that icky)


I lived overseas when it came out, but I was probably four the first time I saw it on video. I do remember that I watched it over and over again until the VHS tape got worn out. I wanted to be Kira when I grew up (the closest I ever came was getting nicknamed Gelfling by some guys in college). The thing that always stuck with me, aside from the fantastic animals and plants of Thra, is how brave Jen was to go off through the wilderness alone after the death of his master. That always helped me to rally myself to do something I was afraid to do when I was little. And I was just FASCINATED by Aughra. Her orrery, her eye, her philosophy, everything about her was unlike any tv/movie character I’d ever seen. And living overseas, I had a lot of dubbed foreign animated films that were pretty dark and weird. The Dark Crystal was always my favorite. It’s nice to know that so many others shared my experiences and enjoyed so many of their own memories of the film.


I don’t know about anyone else who first watched the movie on VHS, but the first time I saw it on DVD it was like watching a completely different film. The things I didn’t see over twenty years of watching the same movie… it was astounding! I almost want to upgrade to the Blu-Ray DC/Labyrinth set for my 55” HDTV, lol!

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Posted: 26 July 2013 07:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]  
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I first saw this film when I was 8 years old. My dad and I watched it together and it was love at first sight for me. Needless to say from that moment I had seen this whole new world, it really changed me life. I felt like anything was possible and there was this amazing place that existed somewhere. I drew the characters like they were distant relatives, each drawing full of love and wonderment. I am so thankful that I had experienced this and it has shaped my love and passion for personal expression through art.

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Posted: 16 August 2013 11:12 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]  
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I was 12 when it came out and saw it in the theater. Always loved the landstriders, and the orrery in Aughra’s observatory.

Favorite light hearted scene, when Jen learns that girls have wings.

Most riveting moment for me, when the urRu sing in unison.

Oh almost forgot, can’t help but smile every time Chamberlain does his Frank Oz voiced, “hhmmmmMMMMHHHhhhhh!”

 

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Posted: 22 September 2013 09:23 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]  
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TereLiz - 25 July 2013 02:08 PM

(I do remember Labyrinth. You NEVER forget the first time your six year old eyes see David Bowie as the Goblin King and you finally realize that boys maybe aren’t that icky)

 


It’s funny; I’m sure I saw The Dark Crystal and Labyrinth around the same time when I was about 4 or 5, but I had completely different reactions to the films.  While the Skeksis in The Dark Crystal frightened me, the movie as a whole filled me with wonder and awe because it was so alien.  My dad is a film buff, so even then I knew about puppetry and stop-motion animation and I was really impressed how there were no humans present in the entire film.  (And I’m pretty sure I cried when urSu died.)


In contrast, after seeing Labyrinth, I refused to watch it again for over a decade.  Jareth scared the bejeezus out of me and I was terrified that goblins were going to come and take my baby brother away (he was about the same age as Toby when I saw it.)  Jareth struck me as being completely cruel, malicious, and evil and I think this was exacerbated because he looked so human.  The Skeksis already weren’t human, so their excesses and evil didn’t…shock me so much because I already wasn’t expecting them to act like people.  But Jareth…well, I didn’t really discover his sexiness and the shades of grey and ambiguity in Labyrinth until I was finally convinced to rewatch it in my early 20s.

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Posted: 10 October 2013 12:33 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]  
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I remember the fist time I watched it very vividly. I was 10 years old, and my grandma had picked me up from school because I was sick. She rented the movie for me on VHS (the cover art was the original poster with SkekSil looming over the top). I remember there was either something wrong with her VCR, and the tape froze up on the shot of the Skeksis standing around the crystal at the very beginning of the movie. We eventually got it to work.

One of my favorite books when I was younger was Brian Froud’s Goblin Companion (now known as Goblins of Labyrinth). I used to carry it around everywhere when I was 5 or 6. I drew monsters all the time too, and Brian Froud really influenced the way I drew. So you can imagine how thrilled I was when I found out how involved he was with the Dark Crystal, which led me to finally watch Labyrinth too.

I remember being sort of creeped out by the Dark Crystal, but at the same time I couldn’t stop thinking about it. It quickly became one of my favorite movies of all time, and I’ve watched it probably more than any other movie I’ve ever seen, besides maybe a couple.

TereLiz - 25 July 2013 02:08 PM

I don’t know about anyone else who first watched the movie on VHS, but the first time I saw it on DVD it was like watching a completely different film. The things I didn’t see over twenty years of watching the same movie… it was astounding! I almost want to upgrade to the Blu-Ray DC/Labyrinth set for my 55” HDTV, lol!

I know exactly what you mean. I hesitated on buying it on blu-ray after buying it on DVD twice because I wasn’t expecting there to be that big of a difference, since it was an older movie. At least not compared to the difference between the VHS and DVD copies. I finally got around to buying the blu-ray last year, and it was definitely worth it. It took me a ridiculous amount of time just to finish watching it because I kept pausing it over and over to just look at nearly every shot. It looks amazing on blu-ray.

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Posted: 15 November 2013 04:39 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]  
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When i was 3 years old back in 85 when my parents taped me a rental tape of the film on a blank tape and i loved it despite i thought Chamberlin was a freaky bastard and i thought Kira was a cutie.

It became one of my top 20 movies of all time as it was unlike any film i’ve ever seen and i even own the poster, graphic novels, DVD and blu-ray as the film looks fantastic on HD.

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Posted: 15 November 2013 03:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]  
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Me and my two younger brothers absolutely loved (and still love) this movie!  We were obviously all very young I cannot say at what age we were when we first saw it, but I was born in 1977 so it’s safe to assume I was probably only 8 years old or less.
We were lucky that my parents had so many cool VHS tapes to watch (Star Wars, Tron, The Explorers, The Last Starfighter, and Bugs Bunny’s 1001 Rabbit Tales).

For me, The Dark Crystal is most dearest to my heart, and this will never, ever change.  It is Jim Henson’s masterpiece!  He knew it as such, and it breaks my heart that he got shot down when it premiered.

“Draiin her esssencce!!”

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Posted: 15 November 2013 05:12 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]  
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The 1st time I saw The Dark Crystal I was 4 years old. I went to the cinema with my uncle and cousin. It was my 1st trip to the cinema too. It has been my absolute fave film from that day to this. I got it on VHS then upgraded to DVD and I have it on blu ray too. I have lots of other Dark Crystal related things too. My fave character has to be Chamberlain - love him oh and fizzgigg too.

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Posted: 15 November 2013 06:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]  
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I was 12 when The Dark Crystal was released in theatres in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.  Friends and siblings attended a screening at the now long since closed NorthHill Cinema.

My heart had been captivated by all things Henson from as early as I can remember, and having seen The Muppet Movie years earlier (and owning the soundtrack on LP) I burst with joy when I spotted an ad on the inside back cover of the free movie magazine, showing this richly detailed and colourful fantasy world “Coming Soon”...!!

The fact that I’m writing here today (at the age of 43) should tell readers that my first experience of The Dark Crystal definitely exceeded all expectations!!

Two highlights (of many many many) have always been the architecture of the castle, and the Garthim.  Although designed to be scary, the movement of Garthim to me feels like dancing.

I won’t claim to be “The World’s Greatest Fan”, but I’ve watched the film countless times since, and I’m currently enjoying reading the graphic novel pre-history.

From the age of six I had the idea I would one day work with Jim, but alas it was not to be.  However I can definitely credit The Muppets for directing my life’s path.  I’ve worked in a variety of capacities both on stage, backstage, and in front of and behind the camera.  I continue to enjoy my life in the entertainment industry today, and I’m very grateful for everything the larger “Henson Family” has done.  Thank you!!

The 12 year old version of myself kept that ad carefully pressed in the pages of a book, looking at it with anticipation in the days leading up to the film’s release.

The 43 year old me stumbles on it with great delight from time to time.  The purple of the Dark Crystal still glows…!!

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Posted: 08 December 2013 08:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]  
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I originally seen the film in during its original release. I was only 4 at the time And while some scenes were completely frighting for a child of that age and, I was to young at the time to completely grasp the plot I was completely in love with the world that the movie painted. 

In love so much so fact because I was part of a Military Family that was moving quite a bit skekSil became an imaginary friend for me. Later when The dark crystal was being Shown on HBO I had to watch it every time it came on. (To the Point that Both of my parents became Sick of it.)

Eventually I Grew up Discovered many other Fantasy worlds along the way. DC opend the “Gateway to many wonderful worlds and will always hold a Special place in my heart as a fond memory of my childhood.

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Posted: 03 September 2016 02:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]  
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I remember bits and pieces of Dark Crystal, Labyrinth, and the Storyteller from when I was a kid, but I didn’t see DC in the theater, because I would have been a toddler.  I remember Fraggle Rock better than anything.  DC I must have seen on VHS some years after its release, and I vaguely remember it being both amazing and scary.  I was reintroduced to the movie from someone I dated over a decade ago.  At that point I rented Dark Crystal and Labyrinth and then promptly bought both on DVD along with Storyteller, falling in love with them once again.  Ever since that reintroduction I’ve rekindled my fandom.

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