Monday, February 27, 2023

5 Fandoms That Will Love Dwight in Shining Armor

 Move over, Game of Thrones, there’s a new show in town. 

Okay. It miiiiight not be that new. Technically, it premiered in 2018. And, if you’re gonna be picky, it’s got the budget and special effects of an earlier Doctor Who production. But if you’re a member of any of the following fandoms, you may have just found your next show with Dwight in Shining Armor.

1) The Mandalorian. I know, I know. You're wondering what a space western has in common with a medieval-modern crossover fantasy. But did you like Cara Dune?

Dwight in Shining Armor focuses on Gretta, who, like Cara, is a bit of a loner, a person without a home, and someone who can hold her own with any adversary she encounters.  Bound by a “champion spell” to the first person who kisses her, that person is, unfortunately, Dwight: a vegetarian asthmatic, who lives with his grandma and fosters puppies. Because of this, there is very little "damsel in distress" cliched storytelling. Instead, we have a capable, intelligent female who is the equal of almost everyone around her---in everything but cell phone use, that is.

2) The Princess Bride. A summary of this one is likely not necessary. But you remember the cocky Prince Humperdinck? You know, the guy with the smolder and the mullet?


 Well, Dwight has something better: Prince Chlodwig, The Unstable. Betrothed to Gretta when they were both children, he too finds himself in the modern world with a haircut that needs an update and the inability to take a hint(*cough, cough* that she’s just not into him). If you’re looking for other similarities, there’s also an immobilizing spell, an assortment of medieval threats and namecalling, and Princess Gretta quite capable of making her own decisions. But, unlike Buttercup, she also is quite capable of rescuing herself, thank you.

It also has that sly but clever sense of humor, very reminiscent of Princess Bride and some other famously witty shows.

3) Stardust/Hocus Pocus. Neil Gaiman’s Stardust,  novel-turned-sleeper-hit focuses on Yvaine who suddenly finds herself in a world quite foreign to her. A star that has literally fallen from the sky, her greatest enemy is a trio of witches, headed by Michelle Pfeiffer as Lamia, who want to eat her heart in order to regain their youth.

 The second cult classic has enjoyed quite the revival lately. But if you merged Lamia from Stardust and Winifred, Sarah, and Mary Sanderson into one witch you’d get Hexela, a stylishly savvy witch who was unexpectedly caught in the crossfire of the “champion spell.” Determined to regain and keep her youth, she will stop at almost nothing to get almost anything.  

Bonus: There's less skin shown than in Stardust or Hocus Pocus. AKA, if you have this show on and your grandma walks in---you won’t be blushing.

 4) Avatar: The Last Airbender. I can see you all shaking your heads right now. A Euro-medieval-esque setting being compared to that perfect show? But hear me out.

Uncle Iroh is the mentor figure to Prince Zuko. He’s wise, incredibly attractive to women, and easygoing---unless he is threatened. Then he becomes a fearless fighter. 


In Dwight, we have Baldric, who is the Princess Gretta’s guardian. He can be clumsy at times but is a canny and powerful magician. Or would be, if Dwight hadn’t smashed his staff. Even without his magic, he is a force to be reckoned with and quite irresistible to witches. Of course, the physical resemblance doesn’t hurt.    

5) Classic Fairy Tales/Mythology. If you’re that person who loves classic fairy tales, classic Disney animated films, or even one of their more recent forays, Onward, you’ll like this show. Sure, the princess is the one with the sword, but the little nods to the classic tales (troll bridges, ogres, Hansel and Gretta, duels, enchanted trees, etc.) are many. There are also some not-so-well-known appearances from draugar and wyverns. And, though they are infrequent, there are important messages that run a bit deeper than just “don’t talk to strangers” or “beauty is only skin deep.”


In summary, if you like witty fantasy with a twist of awkward, have a fondness for Shasta, or dream of owning a suburban home with a moat housing koi fish--- this show is for you. The only bad thing about it is that the series finale was in 2021. But that means you don't have to wait the seemingly endless wait between seasons. So what are you waiting for? You can watch it here for free.


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