Mark Reads ‘The Light Fantastic’: Part 6

In the sixth part of The Light Fantastic, I can’t deal with this book. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read The Light Fantastic.



I have never been more destroyed by a pun/wordplay in my entire life. I CRIED. THERE WERE LITERAL TEARS IN MY EYES. OH MY GOD.

And the best part about this is that while this is a clear moment of bliss for me, the rest of this section is somehow even better than HORSE D’OEUVRES. 



  • Horse cheese sounds revolting.
  • Neck romance sounds unnerving, too.
  • So, this book/series so far is an unending dudefest aside from some small characters, so I’m torn between appreciating some of the jokes about sexism in fantasy, but then thinking that you can’t exactly criticize a genre for not having many women characters while having mostly men in your stories. We’ve had the leader of Wyrmberg, Lady Luck, the necromancer, Bethan, and now Herenna. (Well, there’s one more later and !!!!!!) Meanwhile, every single character otherwise is a man, and it’s clearly a disparity. And the same goes for the joke about Herenna that references fantasy cover art. It feels strange to poke fun at focusing on the physical attractiveness of women characters and then… bring up their physical attractiveness anyway? (The whole “pert” joke just feels crass.) Just like the joke about “swarthy” men relies on an admission that many side characters of fantasy are nameless or character-less people of color, but then… there are very few people of color in this book or the last one at all?
  • But you know, I’ll step away from this because it’s not my place to really discuss this at length. (The sexism, that is.)
  • Anyway, I love the tarot reading scene a LOT, namely because the necromancer looks to Rincewind at one point as if he totally ruined her cards. I LOVE LITTLE MOMENTS LIKE THAT.
  • I also loved the long section which explained – perfectly, I might add – why Trymon was so terrifying to the wizards: he was medicore. Pratchett describes it as a “grayness,” but really, nothing about him actually stands out as exception or extreme. And it wasn’t until this segment that I even realized that this was the case! I mean, I noticed that he hated Galder’s sense of drama about being head of the Order, but I no idea just how strong his aversion was. He took out everything from Galder’s office that made it unique. Now, it’s boring and uncomfortable, and that’s INTENTIONAL.
  • “It’s an agenda, Jiglad…” “What does a gender do?” STOP IT, STOP DOING THIS TO ME.
  • I totally fell for the misdirect surrounding the “hero.” I assumed that when Trymon revealed that he’d sent a non-magical source to locate Rincewind, we were talking about Cohen. (And gods, that incredible section paraphrasing ever wizard-hero argument was the best.) But no, I wasn’t even close. HERRENA THE HENNA-HAIRED HARRIDAN, who is already one of my favorites because she longs to punch Trymon in the face!
  • I am just in love with every single thing that this book chooses to be when we are sent to Death’s house along with Rincewind. The tether of Rincewind’s soul? Love it. The “grey eddies” of other souls passing by, uttering their last words? LOVE IT. The fact that the flowers in Death’s garden are only “deep purple, night black, or shroud white”? LOVE IT FOREVER.
  • And it just gets better and better. THE CLOCK WITH THE RAZOR SHARP PENDULUM. (Very Edgar Allan Poe, don’t you think? That’s all I could think of.
  • YSABELL. HOLY SHIT, Death has an adopted daughter? How is that even possible? WHERE DID HE ADOPT THAT CHILD? I mean, we know that he found her when she was young, but then he just took her to his house? I HAVE SO MANY QUESTIONS AND NONE OF THEM ARE BEING ANSWERED.
  • But nothing in the universe could ever have prepared me for what came next.
  • Rincewind finds Twoflower in Death’s house.
  • Teaching him how to play bridge.
  • I suppose in hindsight (as I didn’t even realize this until just now), it makes sense that the Four Horsemen would be here. Isn’t the Discworld about to collide with that red star? That sounds mighty apocalyptic. They’ve got to start preparing, right?
  • And Death is one of the Four Horsemen
  • i can’t deal with this HOW IS THIS REALLY HAPPENING.
  • “The Death of the Disc was a traditionalist who prided himself on his personal service and spent most of the time being depressed because this was not appreciated.” Y’all, I want a book about Death so much. PLEASE THERE ARE FORTY MORE OF THESE. JUST ONE ABOUT DEATH.
  • “I’M GOING TO GET TO THE BOTTOM OF THIS IF IT KILLS ME, FIGURATIVELY SPEAKING OF COURSE.” I am so done with this character. He’s my favorite!!!
  • Even when faced with the fact that he is “informally dead,” Twoflower is still optimistic about his future. What a treasure, that man.
  • Sometimes. I admit that it was frustrating that while he and Rincewind were still within Death’s house, Twoflower lacked the awareness that would allow him to reason that STOPPING TO TAKE A PHOTO OF DEATH’S CLOCK WAS A BAD IDEA. Oh, gods, is he ever going to change?
  • Let’s be real, probably not.
  • Their whole escape from Ysabell was actually kind of scary to me. I mean, we don’t know what sort of powers Ysabell possesses (if she has any at all), and she very easily could have severed their ties to the world of the living in order to keep them there. But, once again, Twoflower and Rincewind are falling as a means of escape.
  • For someone who hates falling as much as he does, Rincewind sure falls a lot in these books.

The original text contains the words “crazy” and “mad.”

Video 1

Video 2

Video 3

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About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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