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World of May

May. 12th, 2014

08:17 am - Dollhouse

I have been sucked into the Dollhouse. The show is seriously so much better then I originally gave it credit for. On one hand, yes it is disturbing that you are essentially watching the rape of various people on their assignments. And there is one criticism that I agree with, which is that a viewer can only take so much of watching a person be disempowered before turning off the TV. Except the show realizes that, and it moves the plot to freedom along very quickly. I'm not quite halfway finished with season two, and I just love everything about it.

Apr. 28th, 2014

11:19 am - Mad Men "Field Trip"

Character thoughts on Betty DraperCollapse )

Apr. 22nd, 2014

01:06 pm - Orphan Black

HI LJ! I am slowly emerging from the three five horrid stressful months at work. But OMG IS THAT LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNELL?

Things are good. I am lifting weights and walking and trying to loose some weight. Which is mostly boring. And other then that, nothing really much.

What I really wanted to poke my head out of the darkness to say is this. ORPHAN BLACK. I was afraid I wasn't going to be able to see it as it aired because we don't actually get BBCA on our cable subscription, and for a while OnDemand was blocking my requests to watch the shows. For whatever reason, that has been lifted and I can now watch the episodes shortly after they air. WHICH IS AWESOME. Hopefully that block won't come back till the end of the season, because I love this show. I love everything about this show. I love the plot and the characters and all the story elements. I love watching Tatiana Maslany work her acting magic. I love the costuming and make-up choices. Just, everything about this show is so good. I've seen some people complain that it was relatively slow, but so was the pilot. I have told people that if they give it about 5 or 6 episodes they will be sucked into the show, because it does start slow. But it's worth it. I think this may be the same thing, slow starting season that just crescendos into amazingness. I predict it now.

Feb. 17th, 2014

12:56 pm - Winter's Tale

I saw Winter's Tale yesterday, and the more I've been thinking about it the more it bothers me. I have not read the book, so I have no idea if these issues are better handled in the book, and unfortunately I think the movie may have soured me on trying it. If you've read the book, and can assure me these aren't issues, please let me know, because I loved the idea of the movie.Spoilers I supposeCollapse )

Jan. 22nd, 2014

07:57 am - Justified

Does Justified feel off to anyone else this season? Something about it feels wrong and I can't quite put my finger on why. I rewatched previous seasons in the past two months, so you'd think I'd have a better handle on it but the most I can say is that it feels like bad fanfic. It's almost the same characters, but they're all off in ways that don't quite fit them. Boyd is the one I noticed first, and the most egregious example.

I wonder if the writing staff changed. Or the leadership of the show. And I'd be willing to accept the changes if I felt they were for the better, but I'm not sure that they are.


Jan. 13th, 2014

10:59 am

Still alive. Still stressed and busy. However, I thought I'd announce that I need to turn in any claim I have to tea snobbery. Because I have realized that when I just want something hot and comforting I want Lipton tea. I know, I know. But it reminds me of my grandpa and breakfast mornings on the ranch. So um... bye tea snob card. I'm not really going to miss you while I enjoy my cup of Lipton tea.

Also, are any of you all on Goodreads (and I'm not already friends with you)? I've been updating stuff there far more frequently, plus BOOKS. I am https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/767841-melani it's under my real name, so this is getting flocked.

Jul. 24th, 2013

11:16 am - Orange is the New Black, The Fosters, and Pacific Rim

You guys, somehow in the dead time that is summer TV (mostly it's time from mid-June to mid-July) I have found two shows that are fantastic.

Orange is the New Black is... I can't tell you all how good it is. I was skeptical at first, because it didn't really sound like something I'd want to watch. A privileged white girl goes to prison for something she did 10 years ago and this is her story? BORING. And also depressing, because prison. But it's not. First of all, the show never denies Piper's privilege, secondly the show tells the stories about ALL of those women. And they're individuals, even the ones you might think at first are stereotypes turn out to have depth and are much more than the stereotypes. As for the depressing angle, it's not. I mean there are story lines where I just bawled, because the tragedy is so real and so sad, but there are also moments that are hilarious. It's also not a hopeless show, because the show is mostly about how we as humans affect each other, good and bad. So I love it and totally recommend it.

The Fosters is just a really sweet show on ABC Family about a couple raising their kids. Their kids are one biological kid, a set of twins they've adopted and a brother sister pair they're fostering. Oh and the parents are two women. It's complete brain candy and hits the same sweet spot that Bunheads did last summer. (Is that coming back? I miss it.)

As for Pacific Rim. What can I say about it that hasn't already been said. I really loved it. LOVED IT. I grinned the whole movie and it just made me feel like I was a kid again. I fully bought the premise and I adored it. My one minor quibble is covered much better by Carrie Vaughn in her review of the movie here.

Jul. 8th, 2013

05:56 pm - To introduce the Bricksy cat

Cat photos aheadCollapse )

Jun. 22nd, 2013

01:11 pm

So after much protestation that she didn't want another cat, we are now a two cat household again. The roommate came home with a cat on Friday. Adjustments are going about as well as can be expected, which is to say slowly. Right now he's shut behind the doors in the basement and Livie HOWLS in protest should I go in there, though she's getting better. She's not fond of the smell and has smacked both the roommate's and my hand after we've been petting the new guy. It will get better, it's getting better already I can tell. Before they meet face to face I'll be rubbing him down with a tee-shirt of mine that I've worn and smells like me. And we're thinking of switching them around for a bit so that she's in the basement and he has the house.

Anyway. Currently he's sitting with the adoption agency name which is Brick. I'm calling him Brick-a-Brak. Because reasons. But he looks like an anime cat, so Roommate is trying to think of an appropriate anime name.

Jun. 11th, 2013

02:45 pm - Bronze Gods by A.A. Aguire

I’ve just started reading Bronze Gods by A.A. Aguire, a husband/wife writer combo. And I have to say, I very nearly rage quit the novel about 2% of the way in (probably around page two- how does one navigate this in an e-book world?). See, we’re being introduced to the characters, two main characters one male and one female. We’re on the male POV and he’s describing his female partner. She has (paraphrased) short, straight, dark hair with a part that could be made by a slide ruler and she wears only a little pink gloss as protection from the elements. This is an excellent description. From this you get that this character is no-nonsense and meticulous. GREAT. And then the next line says something like, she found (face) paint to be a waste of time. And that’s the moment I very nearly rage quit. For a couple of reasons.

The first reason this bothered me is that it’s contradictory. This is OBVIOUSLY a woman who takes care in her appearance. You can’t have a short bob with such perfect lines unless you DO take the time to care for your appearance. So don’t say that this is a character who is cares little for their appearance, as is implied by the idea that she finds makeup a waste of time.

The second is linked to the first. This whole idea that a woman finds makeup a waste of time implies that women who do take the time to use make up are frivolous and silly. It also enforces this idea that really beautiful women don’t need makeup, they’re beautiful without it. And it pits women against each other, the ones who use makeup and the ones who don’t. Thanks but I’ll pass.

And the third reason this bothered me is that it makes this character a woman first and a person second. She is now defined by how she is different from other women and not by her own personality traits. Any time a woman is described by how she is different from other woman she is thrown in sharp relief against a backdrop of other women and not as an individual person but as one among many.

Basically this line, this one line, pinged SO HARD on my sexism meter that I had a hard time getting past it to keep on with the book. I have no doubt that it’s going to color my final opinion of the book as well. Unfortunately I did buy the book, and it’s sitting on my kindle and I have a strong dislike of not finishing books I’ve paid money for, so I’ll finish it. Sadly I’m not looking forward to it and it feels like walking through a minefield.

Jun. 4th, 2013

10:25 am - TV makes me happy

So I've finally finished the first season of Orphan Black. I am in love. LOVE with this show and it's epic twists and crazy plots. Also I am in AWE of Tatiana Mansalay's acting ability. There's a scene in Ep 9 where spoilersCollapse ) I mean the whole series is like that. Little body changes and she's a different clone. Seriously, IN AWE.

Also, Teen Wolf premiered last night. It was a set up episode, and thus felt way to short and like there wasn't enough info in it. BUT, BUT I loved it. Every single moment. I'm so stoked for this season.

Apr. 22nd, 2013

07:42 am - GOOD NEWS!!

I have a job. A real job. An OMG I can stop stressing about money job. I mean, I'm not raking it in, but I know I can do well on what I'm going to be making AND it's a real, steady job. OMG the relief you guys. I can't tell you. I cried when I got the job offer in my inbox.

And also (and I may be more ridiculously pleased about this one) I've lost weight in the past two weeks doing a lifting regimine. I have no idea exactly how much because I don't own a scale. What I do own is a tape measure, and going by that my body has reduced by an average of an inch. More in some places (like my waist) and less in others (why hello there hips) but averaging out to an inch. AMAZING.

Anyway, job starts today and I'm so very nervous. But I did get lifting in this morning already so YAY!!!!

Apr. 17th, 2013

01:18 pm

I am having a very hard time not jumping all over a facebook friend for a post. Well her and the other person who commented. See, one of her cats (who presumabl is indoor outdoor) returned after six months of being missing. And she's just not sure what to do, does she keep him or let him go back to whoever's been caring for him. Because he's not skinny see? So OBVIOUSLY he's had an ok time of it out there. And the other person was all, LOL cats they take care of themselves LOL.

Oh look at that, I'm seeing red.

FFS, if you get an animal you take the fuck care of it. GAH.

Thing is, I know a lot of her casual attitude is a result of the area she lives in (Why hello there Provo) but OMG. Provo has a stray cat problem. A BAD stray cat problem. I beged her to take him in and not contribute to the stray cat problem as well as just TAKE CARE of the animal you already promised to take care of.

Add in that I watched Animal Cops this morning and I just hate people.

On a brighter note, I'm really enjoying Nashville. Sure, it has it's problems but it has lots of music coming out of it. Music I've really been enjoying. And there are some really great musica talents on the show, which is just all sorts of awesome. Plus I think the show creators are realizing that the most intersting stories on the show deal with the music industry and not politics of Nashville.

Current Mood: blahblah

Mar. 13th, 2013

02:04 pm

Guys! VERONICA MARS KICKSTARTER PROJECT. Yes, I know there were fandom wars that tore the fandom apart at the end of season one. And season two and three were fairly mediocre, but OMG I want this so badly. I would adore a VM movie.

Mar. 11th, 2013

02:41 pm - Oz the Great and Powerful

I went to see this over the weekend. I kind of had to. I’ve been an OZ child for as long as I can remember. When other children were knocking on the backs of wardrobes I was looking down every path I could trying to see if this road would lead me to OZ. So what did I think of it? Well, it’s absolutely gorgeous. Seriously SO PRETTY. And the OZ in it LOOKS like OZ. There’s one scene where the characters are talking and they go past a pasture with horses and they’re these rainbow colored things that aren’t quite horses and it’s amazing, because it’s totally just in the background. Which, granted would normally annoy me, because it’s special effects for their own sake, except in a movie about a fairyland, I think special effects for their own sake add to the world rather than detract from it.

The acting is a little stilted, though I think they were going for stylized. Not my favorite thing but I can move past it.

Obviously, there are some issues with the movie. OZ has always been a very female dominated world. And the Wizard himself was a con man and more than a little evil, or at least he’s portrayed so in The Marvelous Land of OZ. So to give us a whole movie where the Wizard is the hero, and a good hero at that, is a bit inconsistent. Except Baum himself is wildly inconsistent with the OZ books and that in books after The Marvelous Land of OZ the Wizard is much different and more helpful and basically I think he’s one of the main places where you can see how inconsistent Baum is with OZ. Though, I will add that one of my favorite things about the Wizard is that he’s only allowed to practice magic under the direction of Glinda, basically reinforcing OZ as a matriarchy.

However my real issues with the movie were not that. I think retelling fairy tales is fun, and as I said Baum’s own characterization of the wizard is inconsistent.

There are major spoilers after this pointCollapse )

EDIT: OHHH, I'm going to leave a link here to Carrie Vaughn's great critique of the movie. I agree with this LOTS.

Mar. 5th, 2013

10:21 am - The Ladies of Mandigyn- Barbara Hambly

Loved this. Ladies being active. Ladies driving the plot. And it was written in the early eighties? How is this book more progressive than some fantasy coming out now? I’m not saying it’s perfect, there were a few things that bugged me but overall, it was awesome. spoilers? mabye, kinda sorta?Collapse )

What's killing me is that I have no idea how I missed this book while I was growing up. And I know I have this tendancy to forget books, but when I do that and re-read them unknowingly I remember about half-way through the book. Seriously though, I read EVERY fantasy book I could get my hands on when I was growing up. I read everything our library had, and they didn't have this one? Ok, yes small library. Still, I'm glad I found it now.

Feb. 28th, 2013

10:35 am - OZ Reimagined.

Overall I really enjoyed this book. There are some really great stories in this collection. I loved the art work that accompanied each story, a cover art if you will. That said there are a few things that bothered me.

First, I’m sure some of these authors haven’t read any of the OZ books beyond The Wizard of OZ. Now normally, I could care less whether someone has read beyond the first book in a series, but when you’re writing a short story for a book about OZ, I think it’s a little important to do your research. The best stories in the collection were the ones where I could tell the author knew OZ and its denizens very well. The ones that weren’t so successful, at least for me, were the ones where I could tell the author was only familiar with OZ in the briefest of sense: stories where I couldn’t tell if the author had done any research beyond watching the movie and reading a wiki page about the differences.

Secondly, there were far too many re-imaginings of the Wizard of OZ. As in complete retellings of that story in different settings. The Wizard of OZ in a mental hospital, as a cyberpunk story, ‘the real untold story of the Wizard of OZ, etc. It got old, particularly when the stories were back to back. I think it wouldn’t have been quite so noticeable, and thus annoying, if the re-imagined stories had been better interspersed throughout the book with the stories that built on OZ. Orson Scott Card’s story ‘Off to See the Emperor’, one of the reimagined ones bothered me a lot, a lot. From Amazon: Frank Baum's son has the real experiences that his father later fictionalized. Way to take a story that features a girl and make it about a boy there Card.

A couple of standout stories though. My absolute favorite, and a great way to end the book, was ‘The Cobbler of OZ’ by Jonathon Mayberry. It was sweet and lovely, with just the right amount of menace behind the story. Plus it could fit very easily into the OZ cannon as a story that only just pre-dates The Wizard of OZ. I adored it. I also really enjoyed Tad William’s ‘Boy Detective of OZ’. This was a more cyber-punk story, but it wasn’t a re-telling of OZ it was a real re-imagined version of OZ. Plus it featured one of my favorite OZites, The Glass Cat. I liked a ‘Tornado of Dorothys’, though that was one where I wasn’t sure if the author had read any of the OZ books, because it was a kind of ghostly, haunted look at story telling.

Overall, I’d re-read this collection, though I’d skip over some of the stories. Great addition to the OZ world.

I'm going to add one thing about Seanan McGuire's story. I really liked it, though IMO should Dorothy and Ozma ever break up (BLASPHEMY and it will NEVER HAPPEN, though excellently done in this story), she'd be far more likely to go with Betsy Bobbin or Trot, though I understand why McGuire went with Polychrome for the story. Honestly, I would SO READ a novel in this OZ universe she's created. It was an excellent advertisement for the types of novels that she writes, which is I suppose one of the purposes of collections like these. I have a small, teeny, tiny wish that she had stretched herself a bit and written outside of her comfort zone, but the story is awesome.

Feb. 3rd, 2013

07:19 pm

Curry squash soup. OMG YUM.

Jan. 20th, 2013

05:12 pm

This is an amazing Mad Men Vid.

Dec. 18th, 2012

12:58 am

In other news, I need crafting encouragment. My mother asked for a scarf for Christmas, a hand made scarf, about a week ago. I'm halfway done, and it's lovely and I'm really pleased with how it's turining out. But I'm burning out fast. I might take a break and work on the other gifts I'm doing (nothing as ambitious as a scarf) but ugh the thought of picking up a crochet hook is ugh inducing. Perhaps it'll be better tomorow.

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