Genres, Heroic Fantasy

WtF a Fantasy Podcast #10 – Heroic Fantasy

Wednesday night we discussed heroic fantasy and why it is a different subgenre than sword and sorcery. Druss the Legend, Pug and Riftwar,  and Neo’s reluctant entrance into The Matrix were all part of our chat. As well as The Vision of Escaflowne, our Anime selection of the week. The origins of heroic fantasy in Arthurian and Greek mythology were delved into, and someone couldn’t stop bringing up random Star Wars quotes. Hope you enjoy.

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June Faramore
Lisa Richardson
CJ Casey

Webcast Notes:

  • 0:00:01 – intro and theme song
  • 0:02:41 – definition and relationship to sword and sorcery
  • 0:06:56 – a few examples of heroic fantasy tropes in fiction
  • 0:09:34 – David Gemmell works
  • 0:12:57 – reluctant heroes – Riftwar Saga and LoTR
  • 0:17:00 – Harry Potter aside, more Gemmell, Trojan War
  • 0:21:07 – Arthurian myths in movies and books – Excalibur, Mary Stewart, Stephen Lawhead
  • 0:27:30 – The Belgariad as Arthurian myth and Hero’s Journey, Hero’s Journey and Star Wars
  • 0:32:03 – The Matrix, off topic – Interview with a Vampire film
  • 0:37:21 – other examples fitting genre tropes – Dune, Mistborn trilogy, OT – Stephen King
  • 0:42:43 – Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and OT – Eleanor of Aquitaine
  • 0:47:07 – heroic fantasy or sword and sorcery – Willow
  • 0:49:49 – heroic fantasy in anime – The Vision of EscaflowneLast Exile
  • 0:55:58 – wrap up, theme song


David Eddings – The Belgariad
Raymond E. Feist – Riftwar Saga
Stephen Lawhead
T.H. White – The Once and Future King
Alfred Tennyson – Idylls of the King
David Gemmell – Legend, also his Arthur books and Troy books
Mary Stewart – The Merlin Series – The Crystal CaveThe Hollow HillsThe Last EnchantmentThe Wicked DayThe Prince and the Pilgrim

Movies – Star WarsThe MatrixWillowExcalibur

T.V. – Hercules: The Legendary JourneysThe Mists of Avalon

Anime – The Vision of EscaflowneLast Exile

Resources – The Demarcation of Sword and Sorcery by Joseph A. McCullough V,

Heroic Fantasy – the Literature of Transcendence by Kate Forsyth,

T.V. Tropes – Heroic Fantasy


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