From Modern Mythcraft to Magical Surrealism

Holiday Gift Guide (For the Fantasy Fan)

The holidays can leave even the most thoughtful gift-giver feeling frazzled, but if any of your friends enjoy fantasy films, consult this guide for the finest in niche purchases! What fan of Lord of the Rings could possibly resist geeking out over a fresh batch of lembas bread? Who among the legions of still-irritated Avatar: The Last Airbender enthusiasts would refuse to cuddle a Momo doll? Read on, gentle reader, to discover even more gift ideas. . .

For the Foodies

Elven Lembas Bread (Lord of the Rings): Baked goods. While they might not be as cool as a plastic singing fish, somehow they always feel like a true gift from the heart. Here’s a site that has the recipe for Lembas Bread (as well as a host of other foods from Fantasy and Scifi movies, shows and books).

Unicorn Meat (from Legend): Okay. So the Lord of Darkness never gets around to making uniburgers in the movie, but he got really close. And for me, the moment when Mia Sarra embraces her dark side and says “I want to kill the unicorn” is one of the hottest moments on film. Yeah, I know, I have issues. But here’s a fun gift for the fantasy foodie in your life.

For the Animal Lovers

Mogwai (from Gremlins): Forget Zhu Zhu hamsters, everyone knows Mogwai are the way to go. Unfortunately, China has stopped exporting the real creatures to the United States until we pay back the money we owe them (for fear that more gremlins will get into our financial system). But until then, you can get the animated toy version!

Momo (from Avatar: the Last Airbender): The real star of the television series (and the only actor in the movie who appeared to be of the correct race or ethnicity), Momo is awesomeness defined. Unfortunately, the fire nation wiped out most of the flying lemurs, and I just sent the real Momo out to fetch me some food while I’m sick. So until he gets back, you’ll have to settle for the doll.

Eglantine the Owl (from Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole): Although the movie taught the valuable lesson that teaching a valuable lesson about the terrible cost of war can somehow be done without so much as getting a broken wing in the end, I think owls are awesome, so here’s a nice stocking stuffer.

Polar Bear in Armor (from The Golden Compass): I’d recommend the actual armor, but in a few more years there won’t be any polar bears to put it on, so you’re probably safer going with this action figure. Whatever happens, at least you’ll always be able to play with this toy.

You can also take a break from shopping to play a polar bear getting revenge for the destruction of his environment here (warning: cartoon violence).

For the Fashionistas

Blue Lipstick (from Dungeons & Dragons): I actually had a voluntary lobotomy to remove the memory of this film, and yet somehow the image of Damodar looking all pissed off in blue lipstick refuses to be expunged. I guess because the lipstick was the most brilliant thing in the film.

Evil Bunny Mask (Donnie Darko): Holy crap is this cool. Although the Director’s Cut was not to everyone’s taste, the original is an incredible film, and Gyllenhaal is much more believable as a white suburban derpy psychotic than as a prince of Persia. But what really makes the film is this mask.

Mullet Wig (Kull the Conqueror): Get this, and some Axe body spray if you want a cleverly thematic gift package for the barbarian in your life. Have fun Christmas night, kids.

Weapons

Lightsabers (from … seriously, do I need to say?): For the love of all that is holy, do NOT buy any Star Wars merchandise. I know the force is strong with those products. For me, hearing a lightsaber sound effect is like smelling popcorn when you walk into a movie theatre, it is an evil, mind-altering influence that makes me want to buy something. But when Mr. Lucas saw the success of the first Star Wars film, he changed his focus from great storytelling to making money on merchandising, and turned the subsequent films into a series of big budget toy commercials (which is why the films get progressively suckier and suckier).

Instead of continuing to reward his choice, you can find toy or replica blades from Star Trek, Lord of the Rings, Excalibur, Highlander, or even a sonic screwdriver from Doctor Who, each offered by many vendors online and at your friendly local convention.

Or you can commission one-of-a-kind replicas of iconic weapons like the three-bladed sword from Sword and the Sorcerer, or the Glaive from Krull. What fantasy nerd wouldn’t have a geekasm holding one of those awesome weapons, I ask you?

Impossible to Find Items

These items may be hard to find in muggle stores or in your current space/time Earth Prime.  But I know you won’t let that stop you.

Time Portal Map (Time Bandits): For use with the Time Traveling Phone Booth. Once available via Boing Boing’s maker marketplace, these appear to have disappeared from the face of the earth. Perhaps Evil has it. Wait, no, I just checked, and it isn’t in my desk. But you can commission to have one made I’m sure.

Mighty Crystal of Auto-Tuning (from Land of the Lost): The source of all auto-tuning in the multi-verse, I want this so that I can SMASH IT! I cannot express enough how much I loathe auto-tuning. And not because it is a cheat for people who are too lazy to learn how to sing properly, but rather because it is one step away from scratching a chalkboard with a cat in heat. Seriously—who thinks this sounds good? Buffy may overdue it on the whining, but on this one she nailed it. It must be stopped.

An Original Idea (from Eragon). Oh, wait, no, sorry. I believe that was cut out of the movie.

Time Traveling Phone Booth (Bill and Ted and Doctor Who): Whether it is the Tardis used by Doctor Who or the version used by Bill and Ted, I would love me a time traveling phone booth. For one, I can go back in time and stop M. Night Shyamalan from directing The Last Airbender. For another, I could hopefully find some way to make the Democrats and Republicans be excellent to one another. Hey—this is fantasy after all.

Now, while getting an actual working time travel device is difficult (what with all the regulations and such) I think you can probably build one:

And with that, I wish you good luck in your holiday shopping.

Randy Henderson stays crunchy in milk. He is a speculative fiction writer, a Clarion West graduate, a relapsed sarcasm addict, a milkshake connoisseur, and master of a robot meerkat army. Most importantly he has won the prestigious “Fantasy Friday Blog for a Beer” award five times (to date). For his further genre-related musings, go to his blog or find him on facebook.