Popular Culture Sword Press

Back in mid-March, David McCormick lamented the loss of opportunities for stage combat in his piece ‘Theatrical Combat without Theatre’.  However, he did give a nod to the fact that “Filmmaking will go on” and thus – the stage-&-safety trained Western Martial Artist will have a place to display his/her craft and add to the story being filmed.  Right now – sword movies and books are riding another one of their periodic high points and as a result … swords are flying off store shelves (hopefully under control and discretely wrapped for their trip home); archery classes are jam –packed; interest in HEMA is up (see Devon’s 28 March photo); Medieval-Roman-‘Spartan’-Hunger Games-related fitness classes are available and Jousting series’ are being featured on two competing channels!  If ever there was a time for the WMA community to put forth a concentrated effort to feature our interests to an interested public, it is … now!  Wes


“Blokes and babes with blades and bows” (My choice for title of the Month!)


LONDON EVENING STANDARD (UK) 02 April 12  Sword play  (Nick Curtis)

This UK author explores the current dominance of sword play in popular film, books and computer gaming – and some of the spill over into WMA groups.

“There’s a growing interest in European swordplay,” says Nigel Plum, head instructor of the London Sword and Dagger Club. “There are twice as many clubs as there were 10 years ago.”



““… babes with blades II …”


FAY OBSERVER (Fayetteville, N Carolina) 30 March 12  TV and movies are honing interest in swords (Mike McCray)

In the USA swords are apparently the gift of choice, but the jury is out as to whether it will result in anything more lasting than a fad for ‘wall hangers’.

Johnathan Ashby insists there isn’t just one kind of person buying and collecting swords.

“I’ve had women come in here looking for swords for themselves and for boyfriends.”

{Yeesh, women wanting their ‘own’ swords!

They’ll be wanting to challenge for Red Cord qualifications next!  Oh, wait – they have already!!}



Sword Smithing in the Modern Era


MSNBC (New York, New York) 29 March 12  Real-life sword science plays role in ‘Game of Thrones’ (Alan Boyle)

When George R.R. Martin wanted to participate in the design of the swords carried by the various actors in  ‘Game of Thrones’ (GoT), he wanted to make sure that the swords were ‘real’ – with due consideration given to “who made it, why, and how?”

Today, swordsmiths, including the GoT crew, use a process known as “pattern welding” with multiple layers of steel that produces results similar to the lost art of Damascus steel

.”In more modern times, … you can get precisely the steel with the hardness and flexibility you desire … So materials science has probably made modern swords stronger than older ones, but construction methods have not changed — though, obviously, power tools and other equipment have replaced arm power.”