Me and my good buddy Johnathan Johnson have come up with an idea for a television series, and we think that with the right push, it can become the next big thing. Are you ready to find out about television's next big sensation? If so, read on...
Imagine two normal modern families that have a fierce rivalry with one another. Now imagine those two modern families being suddenly whisked back to the Middle Ages by a wizard who wants them to help him stop a rival wizard and his ally, an evil warlord. Throw in Merlin, a magic sword, and lots of deception and backstabbing, and you get the recipe for the tv show you never knew you wanted: Throwing Down the Gauntlet! Now what exactly IS Throwing Down the Gauntlet you may ask? And how is it different from say, Game of Thrones? Well, first of all, Game of Thrones is very obviously NOT set in modern times. This show is, but very quickly shifts back to the Middle Ages. What makes it different from Game of Thrones is that the modern families now have to learn how to adjust to their medieval surroundings. The story is centered around two rival families, much in the Capulet/Montague style, named the Bondevilles and the Kensingtons. It begins when the father of the Bondevilles, Gerallt, tells his four children a story about a wizard named Balthazar who fought with Merlin and Merlin's ally, the evil warlord, Callaway Erynwood. Meanwhile, Rhain Kensington is relating the exact same account to his three children. Suddenly, both families feel a strange sensation of being pulled. The next thing they know, both of them are in Balthazar's workshop. He informs them that he summoned them by magic in order to help him defeat Merlin and Callaway. Both of the fathers refuse to help their rival but Balthazar threatens to curse them and the two families go their separate ways. Balthazar realizes that he will have to try something more drastic if he is to enlist the aid of the two families, and as such, he tells each of them about a magic sword that will protect its user from all harm in battle. The two fathers each leave to find the sword, but meet each other at the place the sword is being kept. Once there, however, they are met by Callaway, who knocks both of them unconscious and steals the sword. From this point on, the two families enter into a reluctant truce while they attempt to recover the sword for themselves. There is much deception, backstabbing (both figurative and literal!), and treachery, but when Balthazar is killed by Merlin, who then steals the sword from Callaway and flees with it, the two families are forced to take the treacherous warlord into their confidence in order to retrieve it.
Now that you know the basic premise, it's time to meet the major characters!
Rhain Kensington, father of the Kensington family
Rhain is stubborn, traditionalist, distant, and calculating. He is the kind of man who lets nothing stand between him and what he wants. Well, nothing that is...except his wife. Rhain is willing to do whatever he thinks he has to to get what he wants, regardless of who gets hurt in the process. He is the strong and silent type, but extremely passionate about protecting his family and his family's honor.
Fayre Kensington, mother of the Kensington family
Fayre is extremely outspoken, always speaking her mind and encouraging her children to do huge things with their lives. She is highly motivational, and many of her ideals disagree with those held by her husband, but the two of them love each other too much to end the relationship.
Jolenica Kensington, eldest daughter and first child of the Kensington family
Jolenica has grown up as a privileged child and as such, has a very jaded view of everything that goes on around her. She is extremely sarcastic and apathetic. But, when someone close to her is killed in front of her, she decides to turn over a new leaf and discover the warrior she never knew was lurking inside her.
Dayton Kensington, eldest son of the Kensington family
Dayton Kensington is a charismatic Romeo-type character, slightly sarcastic at times, smooth-talking, and charming in his own way. However, he also has a rebellious streak which has made him the black sheep of the Kensington family, so much so that he has even gone to the extreme of falling in love with one of the Bondeville girls, Kenley, who in turn feigns to love him in return if for no other reason than to annoy her father, whom she despises because of what she deems to be his "oppressive" rules.
Ian Kensington, youngest son (and child) of the Kensington family
Ian is the type who doesn't hold to his father's ideals of fighting for honor or glory. Not that he doesn't believe in these values, on the contrary, he believes in them quite staunchly, but he does not agree with his father that violence is the best way to achieve them. He is disinterested in the conflict going on around him and truly wants to simply start a family of his own. However, when he is drawn into the web of chaos, Ian flees and is captured by Callaway Erynwood, who corrupts him against his own family. However, when Ian suffers the loss of a close family member, it snaps him back to reality and he goes out to recruit an army.
Gerallt Bondeville, father of the Bondeville family
Much like Rhain Kensington, Gerallt is extremely cold and calculating. However, unlike Rhain, Gerallt has an aggressive streak. Gerallt has a similar personality to that of General Zod, meaning that he values the protection of his family above all else. More traditionalistic than even Rhain, Gerallt is both horrified and furious when he discovers that his daughter Kenley and Dayton Kensington are dating. He threatens to disinherit her, but his wife Goldieva placates him, reminding him that he did things his father abhorred when he was a young man as well.
Goldieva Bondeville, mother of the Bondeville family
Goldieva is very different from her husband and shares very few of his ideals and ways of dealing with things. She genuinely loves him, but she feels (and justly so) that Gerallt is blinded by his ambition and his determination to secure his family's place in history that he tends to forget that he is in fact, only human. Always the practical one, she recognizes that he is trying to become a legend without remembering that every legend started with a perfectly ordinary person, and as such, she often is the one to defuse the situation when Gerallt's temper flairs.
Kenley Bondeville, eldest daughter (and child) of the Bondeville family
Kenley has a rebellious streak which she inherited from her father. Ironically, this makes her rebel against the man one would first expect to be a kindred spirit. Her rebellion goes deeper than that however, mostly because she resents the strict and ordered nature which her father so cherishes. Because of this, Kenley goes off and pretends to be in love with Dayton Kensington (who in fact is genuinely in love with her) only to infuriate her father. Aggravated to the point of blind rage, her father threatens to throw Kenley out of the house and disinherit her completely telling her, "If you love him, then let HIM take care of you!" Goldieva, who is not dead set against the match like her husband is, calms him by reminding him of his own youthful indiscretions.
Henry Bondeville, eldest son of the Bondeville family
Henry Bondeville has grown up watching his father and recognized that he is not the greatest role model. However, in his efforts to oppose his father's ideals, he ends up espousing those of the Kensingtons, and for this his father can't stand him. The only thing that keeps Henry from completely being thrown out of the family is his special bond with his younger sister Loretta, who often acts as a "dampening rod" to keep her father and brother from having a disastrous confrontation. Henry intentionally provokes his father by diametrically opposing him even when all of his siblings (including Loretta) side with their father. Loretta is the only member of the family who is ever able to talk sense into Henry and even she finds that at times, he doesn't listen to her advice.
Roderick Bondeville, youngest son of the Bondeville family
Roderick stands in stark contrast to Henry, because he takes his fanaticism to the opposite extreme: he will do anything to please his father, even if doing so alienates him from his siblings. Roderick grew up idolizing his father and in his eyes, Gerallt can do no wrong. Even when Gerallt is threatening to disinherit his own flesh and blood, Roderick supports him. Roderick is eager to gain his father's approval and is willing to go to dramatically desperate lengths to obtain it.
Loretta Bondeville, youngest daughter and child of the Bondeville family
Although being the youngest, Loretta is spoiled beyond all compare, she is a sweet and cheerful girl and gracious to a fault. She is not one to be riled however, because when she gets angry, she is almost as ferocious as her father, but generally, she is a patient, loving person who accepts everybody for who they are. Her father absolutely dotes upon her and she merely has to bat her eyelashes and he is immediately putty in her hands. Because of this, Loretta is the one that often defuses her father's short temper. Her mother adores her as well and tries to teach her all she can about how to deal with Gerallt's mood swings. Loretta is the type of girl who has never met a stranger and is immediately beloved by everyone she meets.
Callaway Erynwood is an evil and mysterious warlord, bent on conquering everyone and everything in his path. No one knows where he came from, no one knows how he became so powerful, and no one knows how he was able to raise an army of followers that were loyal unto death within the space of three months, but everyone knows that Callaway is dangerous. It is said that Callaway is merely a puppet and that his personal wizard Merlin actually calls the shots, but others contend that Callaway has Merlin under his thumb to do with as he pleases. Callaway is a strategic genius, a competent military commander, and an incomparable negotiator. The man is charming, but has a violent dark side to his personality as well.
Very little is known about Merlin the wizard. In fact, all that is known about him is that he was once apprenticed to Balthazar the wizard and that he later served King Arthur in Camelot, where he became involved with Arthur's sister Morgan Le Fay and was exiled from Camelot forever. Having fled Camelot, Merlin came into contact with Callaway, who welcomed the chance to have a personal wizard in his entourage.
Even less of Balthazar's history is known than that of his greatest pupil, Merlin. In fact, the only thing that is truly known about Balthazar is that he is the most powerful wizard to ever live. Some would argue that he has grown slow and weak in his old age and that his former apprentice Merlin may usurp his position of greatness, but Balthazar is still as sharp as a tack and is not afraid of dealing with Merlin or anyone else who gets in his way.