( Spoilers for NBC's Sound of Music Live with Carrie Underwood and tonight's episode of Scandal.Collapse )
- Current Mood: amused
Yesterday was an unexpectedly exciting day for me, not always in a good sense (a school shooting at a nearby high school which added several police cars to my little trike ride home from Target), so exciting that I pretty much missed for several hours that Nanoism had accepted and published a little untitled twitter story of mine, which you can read here. It won't take long, I promise.
And then there was Arrow, which offered another game changing episode last night, and suddenly made my life look completely dull by comparison. Clearly I need to start wearing a green hood.
( Suddenly, superpowers rang out! And lo, there were many spoilers, though not about the romance stuff – I feel I covered that already.Collapse )
I say "finally" since like pretty much everyone else my response was, wait, he hasn't received it already? To be fair I don't actually keep up with the list of SFWA Grand Masters (though Wikipedia has a list.) Anyway, good if belated choice.
The various people who have already read it have all agreed that telling you anything about the story will completely ruin the story, so instead I'll just throw in some stuff about the publication of the story: one, the genesis of this story goes all the way back to kindergarten and a certain game played in my back yard, which officially makes this the longest gap ever between original concept and publication for me, and two, this story has been read by more people prior to publication than any other thing I've ever written, which gives me a twitchy feeling.
1. Everyone, but everyone, smokes like a chimney -- except for the murderer. And Ralph Bellamy, who loses the girl. Hero? Smokes. Journalists? Smoke. Evil politicians? Smoke. Cops? Smoke. Rosalind Russell? Is for all intents and purposes growing cigarettes out of her fingers.
We're so accustomed these days to the "only bad guys smoke" in films that even though I knew how the film ended I was half expecting Rosalind Russell to end up with the non-smoking murderer or Ralph Bellamy. How the hell did actors in the 1940s not all simultaneously come down with lung cancer?
2. All of the casual and not casual sexism: the reporter who is constantly looking up women's skirts and positions himself on staircases to do so; the way the journalists treat the murderer's sorta-girlfriend (she calls them on it, as does Rosalind Russell's character a few seconds later, and most of them look faintly ashamed and it ends their poker game); Walter insulting a random woman on the telephone (she hangs up on him); the way Ralph Bellamy's mother is casually picked up, tossed over a man's shoulder and carried out of the room (she's in her 60s.) Interestingly, this woman is the only woman who is actually manhandled -- and she's the only woman onscreen who doesn't have a job.
And yet, against this, the film also insists that the main character, Hildy, played by Rosalind Russell, doesn't really want a traditional marriage and children and to be taken care of and romance. Instead, the film says, what she really wants is a career. To the point where despite her protests, despite her valid irritation that her first honeymoon was interrupted by work, pretty much every character, including Ralph Bellamy who is offering the alternative, assumes that she will want to continue working. The film completely approves of Walter's various manipulations to get Rosalind back on the job and away from a traditional, normal role. The journalists are all betting that this will succeed -- and even has to succeed; they accept Hildy as a full time professional journalist and their equal, and immediately guess that she's hiding a major story from them (she is) and that she's capable of doing so (she is.) One of the journalist's gives Hildy's planned marriage about three to six months, noting that she can't be happy away from the job. As it turns out, he's dead on.
Which in turn is undercut by the film's gleeful insistence that Walter is absolutely within his rights to con and emotionally manipulate his ex-wife into doing something that she insists she doesn't want to do because, well, he knows what she really wants. As it turns out, he's right; she is mostly happy at the end of the film, if frustrated at getting cheated out of a honeymoon again, and the journalists are right too: Hildy is a great writer, and that's what she's meant to do.
3. Technically, this is a point that struck my brother, not me, but wow some voices are extremely distinctive: he recognized Ralph Bellamy as the same guy from Trading Places on voice alone. Granted Ralph Bellamy appeared in about a hundred movies, more or less, so generally speaking if you're trying to figure out if Bellamy was in anything prior to 1990 the answer is probably yes, but still.
- my new favorite line from Arrow.
Ok, so the trial part of this week's episode of Arrow frankly sucked even by the standards of Law As It Is Practiced, Or Not, on TV. I finished the episode convinced that every attorney in Starling City needed to be disbarred, like, now. But APART from that, this week's episode did something interesting that most genre shows don't do, so probably overly lengthy discussion of this under major spoiler cuts.
( Spoilery all through the most recent episode, State VS. Queen; love interests and damsels in distress. Warning: lengthy. Collapse )
@mari_ness The Druids will show up later. Possibly with bonus confetti demons, dead wives, or suspiciously German accents.— Jennifer Crow (@CrowKythiaranos) November 19, 2013
@mari_ness I SMELL SPINOFF.— Jennifer Crow (@CrowKythiaranos) November 19, 2013
@CrowKythiaranos We OPEN in ISTANBUL as confused extras say, hey, wait, why does no one with an Irish accent have a head on this show?— Mari Ness (@mari_ness) November 19, 2013
@mari_ness CUT TO an attractive couple stumbling into each other as an eclipse darkens the sky. VOICEOVER low-pitched chanting.— Jennifer Crow (@CrowKythiaranos) November 19, 2013
@CrowKythiaranos Suddenly, machine guns ring out! Just as someone waves around Egyptian hieroglyphs from the Bible.— Mari Ness (@mari_ness) November 19, 2013
@mari_ness Translated, the hieroglyphs explain that the forces of evil have planned an Emergency Backup Apocalypse!— Jennifer Crow (@CrowKythiaranos) November 19, 2013
@CrowKythiaranos Because back in ancient Egypt they foresaw that the Original Apocalyse would be run on Windows software!— Mari Ness (@mari_ness) November 19, 2013
@mari_ness And since the Hessians don't deserve their reputation for efficiency, allowances must be made. Thracians have analog prophecies!— Jennifer Crow (@CrowKythiaranos) November 19, 2013
@CrowKythiaranos Nobody expects the Hessian efficiency!— Mari Ness (@mari_ness) November 19, 2013
For what it's worth, the druids in Thrace made even less sense in the show.
And yes, I realize that yet again my blogging here seems to be reduced to "hey, the latest Tor.com posts" posts. I just have not felt the blogging bug; I have a few things to say about television, like, Go Team Oliver and Felicity Go! and wow, Scandal may be the only show about government to now go several episodes into its third season without having any character decide that, you know, governing might be an awesome idea (even House of Cards, which is primarily about power plays and scandals, at least had two subplots about actual government work), and I feel that Scandal is trying to say something here about our current thoughts on government, and hey, Once Upon a Time writers, sure, kudos on sorta bouncing back from a really awful second season to an at least watchable third season, but if you want to match your main heroine up with the supposed first love of her life, you might not want to give her a sexy, sexy pirate as an alternative love interest, just saying, and seriously, Ichabod over on Sleepy Hollow, you have the nerve to criticize anyone else for their interpretations of U.S. History after a couple of your statements, or that wow, just as you think that show can't possibly get more ridiculous people start leaving 300 year old secret messages on teeth (YES THAT WAS TOTALLY IN THE SHOW) but I got nothing except Go Team Oliver and Felicity, Go!
I don't think this can be totally blamed on the semideath of Livejournal, either. It's just that the blogging bug appears to have gone into hibernation. We'll see if more profound thoughts poke it to come out, or if I just tell myself to go ahead and write more stuff. After November sweeps. Or if Sleepy Hollow gets a tad bit less ridiculous, although I suppose that would ruin the point.
And, like its predecessor, it was in desperate need of snark:
( By the mighty power of Thor, there be snark ahead!Collapse )
I am no Genevieve Valentine, but I do feel the need to direct your attention to certain of the costumes there, and our reactions:
( Cut for the twittering horrorCollapse )
It was one of the last wooded sections left on that side of the road.
The signs say it will be turned into houses. Rationally, I suppose, I should be slightly happy about this: it's a sign that our local economy is bouncing back, that housing is back, that people will have solid jobs in construction again. So, yes, that's good. Only one small, small counter to that:
We live in a place of empty houses.
Oh, it's not quite as bad as it was three years ago, where seemingly every other house was on the market. Still, the area has a lot of available homes, and that's just my local neighborhood: there's still more over in Ocoee and Clermont and up in Apopka and down in the Dr. Philips area. Spreading out, the greater Orlando area has a lot of available housing stock. Closing back in, the area has at least two areas I am aware of that were cleared for development, with trees cut down and utilities installed, shortly before the housing market collapsed. And that's just within trike distance. The empty houses include older homes, newer homes, townhouses -- houses with charm, cookie cutter houses, houses with various amentities, houses built to withstand storms.
I see this again and again: going for new construction -- houses, strip malls, whatever -- instead of using the already existing construction. I'll be honest: sometimes this is to my benefit. If that State Road 50 mall project gets going (it was stopped by the housing crash) it supposedly will have a movie theatre that I can get to all by myself, at least in the winter, which would be awesome, though given movie's unpredictable effects on me, I'd still have to be pretty careful. Then again I could just leave without having to wait for people.
But it also means losing trees. Daniels Road used to be bursting with them, with green areas that helped clean the air and human souls. Now there are carefully planted trees between houses and strip malls. Fortunately, green and rural areas remain just a little to the west, a mile off, still within reach of my trike. But I can't help wondering how long they will remain.
Because the Hilton Brighton Metropole is an old building, please note that access to some areas may be limited or unavailable for those with mobility issues. This includes the Registration area in the Sussex Lounge, which is inaccessible by wheelchair.
Let's just repeat that: people using wheelchairs will not be able to reach the registration area for World Fantasy Convention, an important convention for writers, editors, agents, poets, and artists working in the field of fantasy.
I have spent the last week enviously reading tweets and blog posts and emails from people heading to World Fantasy. Not getting to go just because I use a wheelchair -- well, it sucks. It seriously sucks. This sort of announcement does make me feel a little better about my decision not to go, but it doesn't make the situation any better.
Let's summarize by saying Rooster. Has Made Me Cranky. Very. Very. Cranky. Am dreaming about the possibility of a pack of coyotes (there are some in neighboring areas) trotting down the street and deciding they need chicken. Now. And the comfort of their later howls.
And in other news, it is finally, genuinely, cool, if not cold, but cool enough this morning that a cat crawled under the blanket to put a cold nose on me which was less pleasant for me than it was for the cat. The other cat stayed curled up on the pillow over my head, my new implement for warding off the nightly cries of the sleepless rooster, though even a pillow and a cat cannot completely muffle that cry.
Years back, I used to live by Southern Memorial Park which is an ordinary enough graveyard except for the huge elephant and the two lions, whose backs are visible as you drive down 18th Avenue. It's one of the two "Showman's Rest" graveyards in Florida (the other is in the Tampa area), dedicated to circus folk. Eye catching, yes, not exactly the traditional angels and statues, no, but a nice touch of whimsy and joy in the middle of death. Military graveyards are a bit different, of course, but I think of looking over at Southern Memorial Park, and smiling, and the way that after Hurricane Andrew people trekked through toppled trees and buildings and powerlines just to make sure that the elephant was ok (it was damaged but still standing, and soon repaired), and I can't help thinking, bring back the giant Spongebob Squarepants.