AFBH 3: Pages 29-33

23:29 Tue 03 Oct 2006. Updated: 23:17 24 Oct 2006
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Episode 3. Introducing… Lord Foul!

Sean Knox as the expert, the first appearance of Lord Foul, and a Ouija board.


29-33, starting with “For a while…” (approximately) ending with “‘… Heart of Thunder’” (which is on p34 in my edition).

Sean Knox


This episode has a post-credits intro as well, featuring a Ouija board.

They argue about how Covenant got to where he is, with Julie still insisting that there was a literal precipice that explains Covenant’s falling into another world.

We see Lord Foul for the first time in the action sequence, and this is also the first time that Covenant is in The Land.

###Key Misunderstandings

The ‘precipice’ that Covenant faces during his encounter with the old man (in the previous episode) is not literal.

Similarly, Covenant has not actually “fallen” anywhere. The manner in which he is transported to the Land is unclear—if, in fact, his body goes anywhere.

Covenant is not hit with an actual spear.

Lord Foul is not eating a churro.

Lord Foul is not a ThunderCat, nor is there any connection between the text and the ThunderCats.

###Analysis of Pages

I think that this episode’s section of the text begins with p29, “For a while…”, but as Heatherly starts paraphrasing immediately (04:01) this is a guess. Heatherly’s paraphrasing at the beginning skips a significant number of things, including some things we saw in the last episode; she makes it seem as if Covenant leaves the phone company and immediately gets hit by the car: “He leaves Pac Bell…”

There is some discussion about Heatherly’s reading ‘erratic’ (p31) as ‘erotic’ (04:47)

Lord Foul’s first line (“Back, Rockworm”, p32) is read by Heatherly at 05:43.

As an inducement for viewers to keep going, a subtitle reading “Paraphrasing ends in 92 seconds” appears (05:45). Paraphrasing actually ends at 07:14, but the scene ends at 07:17, which is 92 seconds later.

Julie falls asleep (06:11) and is woken by Heatherly (06:21).

Julie insists on the “precipice is literal” reading here, which Heatherly claims she gave up on in the previous episode. Heatherly appears to be wrong about this. Julie backs down for a moment, but then returns to her original argument (07:23).

Heatherly has Tequila and a lemon (07:25).

They discuss the “spear” (p30) that Covenant experiences, agreeing that it is both real and a metaphor for Covenant’s impotence (08:27).

Cameraman Steve seems erratic in the episode, at one point wandering away from the bed (03:52), and later emitting an outburst seemingly at random (08:40)

They call me to ask me what dotard means (09:45). My line “We can always hope.” is a reference to the title of Chapter Two, “You Cannot Hope”. I define it as “old and feebleminded” at first, but foolishly back down from that after Heatherly misreads the sentence it’s in, and start speculating that it might have some connotation of wisdom. This is obviously completely wrong, but in my defense, they chopped the clip before I then corrected myself—something I point out in Episode 5. Go buy the T-shirt (also available as a Girlie Tee).

One of the things that they skip by going straight to the car crash is the fact that Covenant, after talking to the old man, is determined to do something about the townspeople paying his bills, and decides to visit his lawyer. The line “it’s not possible that they can pay my debts—without my consent.” is significant for the character of Covenant in general, and while the circumstances are very different, he is tormented in the Land by debts he hasn’t paid, and which others try to pay for him.

The passage where he is in the path of the police car hints very heavily that he hasn’t actually been struck.

Covenant then “awakes” somewher very different, a stone cavern, confronted by the red-eyed figure of Drool Rockworm. Covenant has no real idea what’s going on, but instinctively loathes Drool Rockworm. Before long he is taken away by Lord Foul, who immediately begins talking about things that Covenant, at that point, cannot possibly understand. He doesn’t see Foul, but experiences him as an awful voice.

While Covenant can’t really understand what he is saying, Foul is providing critical backstory, telling how Kevin had placed him on the Council (of Lords, as we will see later), before Kevin discovered his true nature and warred upon him, a conflict that devastated the land and ultimately broke Berek’s spirit, causing him to despair and attempt some desperate act. Whatever he was attempting caused Kevin to meet Foul in the same place that Covenant met Drool: Kiril Threndor.

###Action Sequence

This Fantasy Action Sequence starts at 11:38. and is not introduced in any way.

It begins with text explaining that after Covenant left “Pacific Bell”, he was hit by a car, fell into the “precipice of his future”, and was struck by a metaphorical spear (11:45-12:10)

We then see Covenant “falling” before ending up in a cave with a spear in his head (13:20). There’s a sound that could be laughter in the background as he’s falling. He pulls the spear out of his head and bandages himself before being confronted by Drool Rockworm (12:56). Drool is then dismissed by Lord Foul, who appears as a cloak-clad man in skeletal makeup (13:07), and who eats churro (13:15) while lecturing Covenant.

During this lecture, Foul reads from Lord Foul’s Bane, again what looks like th 1997 U.S. paperback edition (13:20). He also uses a diagram to explain the familial relationships between Kevin, Berek, Loric, and Ravi Shankar (13:30).

Note that Foul sounds like he calls Kevin “fey, anal, gutless”, where the text actually reads “fey, anile, gutless”.

At 13:38, after Foul laughs maniacally and says “churro”, there’s an audible laugh from someone off-camera.

The scene ends (14:53) with Foul saying “Kiril Threndar [sic],” being passed a sword, and continuing while raising the sword, “son of Thundar, Thundar, Thundarcats Hooooo!”, an obvious reference to “Thunder, thunder, thunder, THUNDERCATS! HO!”, Lion-O’s call to summon the ThunderCats.

Lord Foul eating churro is available as a T-shirt, a Girlie Tee, Girlie Hoodie, a Black Hooded Sweatshirt, a Grey Messenger Bag, and a Black Messenger Bag.

Fantasy Action Sequence ends 14:53


Sean Knox has read Lord Foul’s Bane twice (15:24) and understood it once (15:39)—he says he understood it better the first time.

Sean is wearing the “expert jacket”, the first suggestion that the jacket I wore in Episode 1 might have some significance.

They ask him what character he relates to, out of a list of Thomas Covenant, Drool, Kevin, the beggar, Steven R. Donaldson, the man in the ocher robe, and the hot chick at Pacific Bell (16:15). Sean answers Drool, because of the name and because “he knows how to please his master”.

There is a great deal of confusion throughout this scene about what’s “metaphorical” and what’s not, as well as what’s real and what’s not. Sean tries valiantly, but is unable to get through to Heatherly and Julie on this topic. This is partly because it’s not entirely clear that the place Covenant ends up in is “real” or not. Sean does point out that Covenant has not “fallen into a precipice” but has gone to another world (along the way disappointing Heatherly when she is told that no spaceship is involve in this interworld travel).

Sean reveals to them that the being lecturing Covenant is in fact Lord Foul (who, after all, isn’t named in the text at this point) (19:23).

When Julie presents her chart, Sean’s response is “You really don’t understand it at all, do you?”, to which she replies “A little, that’s what you’re here for, anyway.” (24:52)

26:05, “favorite part” question. Sean says it was the spear, and the argument between Drool and Foul (prompting Julie to say “They were talking to each other?”) Heatherly says she didn’t have a favorite part, except maybe for Covenant getting hit in the head with a spear, because he needed to be bitch-slapped. Julie’s favorite part was when the fall into the cave went from being metaphorical to being real. She says that was exciting, Heatherly agrees, and the credits roll.

At the end of the credits, Heatherly and Julie crank-call me, with Julie calling me a dotard over the phone and then hanging up, apparently by accident.

###Words Defined
Dotard: “One who is old and feebleminded” is fine as a definition.
Chiaroscuro: Terry’s definition of “a mixture of light and dark” makes sense here, as she’s clearly using it in the technical/artistic sense, and this fits.

First shots of non-bed area in the location where the show is filmed, 03:52
First mention of Drool, 05:32
First line in text from Lord Foul, 05:43
First appearance of Heatherly with Tequila, 07:25
First phone call on show, 09:45
First appearance of Drool Rockworm, 12:56
First appearance of Lord Foul, and his first line, “Back, Rockworm! This prey is too great for thee.” (Actual line in text: “Back, Rockworm! This prey is too great for you. I claim him.”
First appearance of Lord Foul with churro, 13:15
First appearance of Lord Foul’s Bane within the action sequences, 13:20
First appearance/naming of Sean Knox, 15:05
First naming/speaking of Cameraman Terry, 21:22
First expert to use their right hand for chart-drawing, 22:57

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4 Responses to “AFBH 3: Pages 29-33”

  1. Brett Says:

    As an inducement for viewers to keep going, a subtitle reading “Paraphrasing ends in 92
    seconds” appears (05:45). Paraphrasing actually ends at 07:14, but the scene ends at 07:17,
    which is 92 seconds later.

    Wow, just… wow. This level is analysis is amazing. It makes me want to start a blog annotating AFBH. Heck, why not start here.

    AAFBH 3: October 3rd, 2006


    Tadhg examines episode 3 of Fantasy Bedtime Hour, which in turn examines pages 29-33 of Lord Foul’s BANE.

    Analysis of entry:

    In this entry of AFBH, Tadhg continues to explore the various omissions and diversions from the one true word of Stephen R. Donaldson’s text. He continues on the themes introduced in the first two AFBH entries, dwelling on Heatherly and Julie’s difficulties in differentiating the real and literal events in the story. Tadhg also demonstrates his near-encyclopaedic knowledge of characters from 1980s Saturday morning cartoons.

    The concluding “Firsts” section outlines another dazzling array of minutiae, up to including trends in the handedness of the expert. It is not clear what significance this information would have to the casual viewer of Fantasy Bedtime Hour, but then again, these annotations are evidently not indended

    Conspicuously missing from this analysis is the post-credits scene where Julie makes a prank phone call to Mr O’Higgins himself. Is he trying to forget this traumatic incident and put it behind him? Or is he just being a dotard?


    Tadhg pushes FBH merch (byte 3636)
    First “Action Sequence” section without a players’ list (byte 5497)
    Uncharacteristic misspelling of the word “appearance” (byte 11043)

    Man, that took way too long.

    In all seriousness, thanks Tadhg for introducing me to this great show.

  2. Tadhg Says:

    Hey Brett, welcome to the blog, the annotation project, and FBH! Glad you’re enjoying them!

    Thanks for the comments—I corrected the typos and oversights you mention. As for the thoroughness, I’m glad you appreciate it, but I’m actually trying to cut down on it a little, because the posts take way too long. I should probably cut down on the summarizing and focus on the annotation, though that seems easier said than done.

  3. Julie Says:

    I like the level of detail. What you should do after this is start annotating the FBH comic…

  4. Tadhg Says:

    Well, the current level of detail (which I haven’t been able to cut down on despite trying) means that most posts take at least two-and-a-half hours, and that’s a lot of time. Still, I only have just over half the episodes to go…

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