In episode 24, meteorologist Nate Byrne joins Elizabeth and Ben for a Discworld tale of murder, golems and nobility in Terry Pratchett’s 1996 novel Feet of Clay.
Two old men have been murdered in Ankh-Morpork, but they’re not the worst of Commander Vimes’ woes. His best Sergeant is six weeks from retirement; his worst Corporal might be the Earl of Ankh; his newest recruit is an alchemist with some pretty strange ideas for a dwarf; and someone has poisoned the Patrician, though he’s damned if he can figure out how. And somehow, the golems are involved…
Content note: this episode contains brief discussion of (fictional) suicide. If you or anyone you know needs help, use the Wikipedia list of crisis lines to find one local to you.
Following on from Men at Arms (from way back in #Pratchat1!), Feet of Clay evolves the Watch – and its leader – even further, and introduces some of Pratchett’s most memorable supporting characters: Cheery Littlebottom, Wee Mad Arthur and Dorfl the golem. It gets a bit deep on questions of artificial life, gender expression and identity, and is a heck of a mystery novel to boot. Did you figure out “whatdunnit”? Who’s your favourite new character? And what do you think the Pratchat coat of arms and motto should be? Use the hashtag #Pratchat24 on social media to join the conversation and let us know what you think!
PS – we recorded this just before the casting announcements for The Watch television series, so don’t be disappointed when they don’t come up! We’ll find a place to discuss them in the near future.
Guest Nate Byrne is a meteorologist, weather presenter and science communicator. He presents the weather for ABC News Breakfast, which means he gets up very early and had been awake for around 14 hours when we recorded this episode, making his jokes and insights even more impressive! You can find Nate’s writing for the ABC here, and follow him on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.
You’ll find the full notes and errata for this episode on our web site.
Next month we’re joined by author Claire G Coleman as we head back to the early days of Discworld with Equal Rites. Plus our subscriber-only bonus podcast, Ook Club, has launched! You can subscribe for as little as $2 a month to check it out. You’ll find all the details on our Support Us page.