Your Weekend Creature Comforts: Armoured Bears
For all of my followers stuck in the winter wonderland of the northeast, don’t you wish you were in sunny California with Lilith now? I can’t say I miss snow, but my wolves would prefer the ground have a powdered surface to trod on. So I am going to spend a couple weeks bringing all of my faithful followers from the north some polar monsters. Now I have already done a spotlight from the Planet Hoth, but now we’ll be featuring creatures that enjoy the cold, the darkness, and would love to be causing mayhem in the in the snow laden north as it subsides to the winter.
Today I start with a specific creature set in the northern ice lands of the series His Dark Materials. The books specifically call them panserbjome, which translates in Danish to Armour-Bears. These gigantic bears resemble polar bears on steroids, but are sentient and have opposable thumbs.
Being such a strong beast with opposable thumbs, the armoured-bears are avid metalworkers; having the wherewithal to create metal works that exceed anything a human metal smith could create.
The bears of the artic in this series have a society settled in Svalbard, and while they try to maintain their northern ways, humans are beginning to encroach upon them. Since humans in this world all have a daemon counterpart, the bears use their metal smith ability to create elaborate armor that they wear and treat with as much respect as a daemon. This armor is made from metal from fallen meteorites.
And while in the movie the bears only use their strength, jaws, and paws for combat, in the books they also use fire hurlers, a catapult capable of throwing large balls of fire at their enemies.
I think overall all the creatures of His Dark Materials were better in the books than in the movie they released loosely based on Book 1, but my favorite scene from the movie was of Iorek Byrinson, our loveable side kick bear, battling Iofur Raknison, a traitorous and vile usurper bear. It was quite a violent and well-done feat for CGI.
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Posted on January 11, 2014, in Creature Comforts and tagged armoured bears, bears, creatures, His Dark Materials, monsters, snow, weekend creature comforts, winter. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.