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Saturday, September 29, 2012

Idea for a television show: the campiness of the medieval encampment

I love a good renaissance festival/ medieval fair. I don't care that it's not historically correct, I don't care that it's overpriced, I don't care that it's ridiculously overcrowded and super campy. Many of those things are reasons why I in fact love a good medieval fair. The feeling that I get when I'm at one is part of the reason that I love to study the Middle Ages. 

And I think it would be a perfect setting for a t.v. show. Imagine a medieval fair, one of the ones that is open every weekend, as the setting for a television show. It is a place where so many people suspend their disbelief for so long, and indulge in fantasy, that it is a place where magic actually happens. 

The main character would be a 'business' guy who runs the fair, maybe inherited it from his father (a cliche, but sometimes cliches are cliches for a reason). His friend is this guy who hangs around the fair all the time. Most of the people who come to the fair can see that he is a troll, because they believe in that kind of thing, but to the main character he appears as a regular guy, because he doesn't believe in that kind of thing. He guards the festival and was brought to life by the magic in the place. 

The love interest is a girl who has been coming to enjoy the festival as long as she can remember. Another character is a girl who works there, but likes to mutter things about gender roles and patriarchy at work at a medieval festival. They could take on problems that range from creditors, to other problems actual renaissance festivals have to face, to issues in medievalisms, to metaphors for actual medieval issues. For instance, there could be an episode where they get taken over by pirates (a medieval festival issue) and an instance where there is an investiture controversy dividing the food vendors and splitting allegiances. People could misinterpret the role of the Vikings at the festival, and the whole fair could be taken over by an all consuming mud, a problem medieval festivals face when it rains, but a magic medieval festival even more so. They could do a really interesting episode about a woman becoming a knight, and a man becoming a kitchen hand, highlighting the fact that most people at this point won't stop a woman from being a knight, but that people would have a lot more trouble with a guy fulfilling a woman's role. 

Wouldn't that be fun? Anyone want to back me? Too ridiculous? Campy for sure, but that is one of the things that governs what  I choose to watch. 


  1. Sure thing, that would be fun! Another episode idea could be that some "knight" from the Midwest road-tripped/drug-tripped to Ye Olde Faire (title for show?) because he truly believes his "quest" is to be fulfilled there - and hence conventions of Arthurian quests could be good-naturedly satirised etc.