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Far · West · of · Outremer

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So, recently, I watched "North and South" (the BBC one, not the one I remembered having seen verrrry silly and melodramatic bits from lo those many years ago, which, I must confess, had me horribly confused when people were saying effusive things about "North and South" before I figured out they meant the OTHER one... anyway....), because of reasons, and then was poking about to see what else Richard Armitage was in (REASONS... um... actually, I did have an actual reason for that search, but darned if I can recollect what it was... anyway....), and IMDB cheerfully informed me that he was in Captain America: The First Avenger.

Me: Wait, what? Where... what?
IMDB: He played Heinz Kruger.
Me: Wait, what? Who... wait... random Hydra guy in the suit with the Dramatic Dying Declaration? Really? You mean that character had a name? Richard Armitage played that role? I honestly totally missed that....

And then I had several minutes of sounding like Charlotte from Sense and Sensibility, with "I don't believe it!" (but without threats to plant very tall trees).

Me: Hey, you'll never believe this, but Richard Freaking Armitage was in Captain America: The First Avenger!
Intrepid Roommate: Yeah, he played Heinz Kruger.
Me:...
Me: HOW DOES EVERYBODY KNOW THIS BUT ME?

In my defense, I note that he was in fact wearing fairly heavily-rimmed glasses, which, as everybody knows, render tall, dark-haired, blue-eyed guys completely unrecognizable.

(also, I went back to watch those scenes, because of reasons legitimate curiosity, and I find it hysterically funny that you have a British actor speaking lines as an evil German spy who is pretending to be an American...)
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Okay, so, obviously, I adore "Rurouni Kenshin." And I adore (good) RK fanfic. And I adore RK doujinshi, kind of as a subset of that. And the prospect of more actual RK manga-work (HOKKAIDO ARC! ACTUAL RELATIONSHIP RESOLUTION THAT DOES NOT ENTAIL "AND THEN FIVE YEARS LATER THEY ARE MARRIED AND HAVE A KID *ahem*) is thrilling beyond words, at least in theory....

But, seriously, Watsuki-sensei, I think I speak for many people when I say, what the actual ever-loving WHAT??!?!

(I mean, it's not impossible that it gets drastically less insane after the first chapter, but I am not holding my breath, here...)

(SERIOUSLY, WHAT?)
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"In this low-budget fairy-tale adaptation, the part of the pack of ravening wolves will be played by a group of happy, well-fed, bouncy Husky dogs."

("Hey! Hey! Hey! Do you have treats? We heard you have treats! Treeeeaaaaaats!")

(This is on the level with that scene in that one episode of "Criminal Minds" where the Shocking and Terrible Rat Torture was clearly a set of happy, plump, shiny-coated domestic rats who were clearly nosing about looking for the treats hidden in the actor's clothing....)

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Hey, Circle-of-Doom folks-- a review of an interesting-looking novella, which has an interesting take on the "magical shifter insta-bond-you-are-totally-my-destined-mate" trope.

Specifically:

Hero: My animal side says you are my mate!
Heroine: That's nice.
Hero:... but... you... I...we...
Heroine: Don't really know each other yet? Yes, I completely agree.
Hero: But... mate-bond!
Heroine: That's according to _your_ animal side. _My_ animal side, however, does not really do that insta-bond thing.

I have to say, first, of course, that I am now imagining the cracktastic directions this could go in in, say, RK fanfic, and second, that I really like the idea of a heroine who does not just say, "Oh, well, if your animal side says we are mates, clearly we need to go get naked."

(oh, who am I kidding, my reaction is like 95% cracktastic directions that could go in....)
Current Mood:
sleepy sleepy
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On public transportation back to the airport on Sunday (hopefully will post about trip as well; seem to be in constant state of flailing about and not communicating, largely due to job-related stuff, about which I ought also to post), I saw an advertisement in a window which said, "Avoid money problems! Take out a short-term loan!"

(why, yes, it was a somewhat sketchy-looking building; why do you ask?)

Of course, being COMPLETELY tired, I read the sign as "Avoid memory problems! Take out a short-term loan!"

Plotbunnies: *start casually hopping by, in a seasonal sort of way....*

(And that's not even getting into the fact that once I was back in my office yesterday, I mis-read a book title as "Dragon of Virtue"*....)

Clearly, I need two weeks' sleep and then another month for writing...

*It's actually "Paragon," and I have no recollection what it's actually about or why I have it....

Current Location:
Work, work, work
Current Mood:
exhausted exhausted
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It's fantastic and squee-worthy to hear that the Rurouni Kenshin movie is awesome..... but it would be even better if there was confirmed information on a US release.

OTOH, said US release is never going to be anywhere close enough to actually go see it on the big screen, so I guess I shall just have to obsessively stalk the DVD.

Current Mood:
excited excited
Current Music:
Bryan Adams: I Need Somebody
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Way back last Spring, when there were trailers for the two (two!) “Snow White” movies, I thought it was pretty clear which was going to be, you know, more interesting. I mean... Charlize Theron! Looking definitely evil! Kristen Stewart looking.... um... action-chick.. ish! Chris Helmsworth!

The other option, “Mirror, Mirror,” had Julia Roberts, and somebody who looked like Audrey Hepburn, and Nathan Lane, and fantastically colorful costumes which looked like Disney on pastel-colored acid , and trailers which emphasized the color and the humor and the fantastical elements—as opposed to “Snow White and the Huntsman,” which looked GRITTY and ACTION-ORIENTED and like the princess would be... well, more about the action, and the leading the forces of good to fight the evil, power-hungry queen who was literally draining the life from the kingdom, as opposed to being all chirpy birds and flowery dresses and prettiness and sparkles and dwarves on boingy accordion stilt things.

Not that there’s anything wrong with prettiness and sparkles and fairy tales- -I mean, I love “The Slipper and the Rose,” which is definitely pretty and sparkly and occasionally silly (and, okay, sometimes snarky—gotta love a prince whose first line is, “Why do they always sound so many trumpets? I’m not Jehovah!”). But, when trying to figure out what I want to see on the big screen, I’m kind of going to go for the action and the movie that look like it will have a more serious plot.

That didn’t mean that I didn’t, you know, think, “Gee, I should see “Mirror, Mirror” when I get a chance, when it’s out on video, I can get it from the library, but, you know, whatever, silly camp film version, watch for pretty costumes whenever...”

Wow, guys, I was soooo wrong.....

SPOILERS AHOYCollapse )
Current Mood:
bouncy bouncy
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You know, hearing that "I Am Legend" was voted the Vampire Novel of the Century in the 2011 Bram Stoker Awards, and reading various columns on Tor.com about how brilliant and scary and inspirational the book is.... I was not expecting to be both completely bored and utterly annoyed.

I mean, I can see where it would have been revolutionary in the 1950s, in terms of the overall story and the excruciating detailed explanations of "Oh, it's a GERM and this is how it works, and after several years of working on the theory, this perfectly ordinary Caucasian male has figured it out!" And I can see where the ending would have been a real shock, in the days before, well, all the works inspired by "I Am Legend."

But I read it, and... okay, it's partly that I disliked the main character so intensely, because he's set in the 1970s, but he's so very much the product of 1950s male-authored sci-fi, the Last (White) Man Remaining after the Cold War-inspired apocalypse, living in a boarded-up house, trying to cope, probably going somewhat nuts along the way, etc. And that's personal, that's just not a type of character who I find engaging. Except that I also found the writing and the story to be excruciatingly boring-- there's amazingly little action, and very little "vampire" in what is supposed to be a vampire story, and the extended faux-science did nothing for me.

Yes, fine, his former friend and neighbor is the possible-leader of the local vampires, but doesn't show up in any significant way in either the past or present, and there are the ubiquitous tragic flashbacks to the tragic death of his wife and daughter (because two tragically dead females is way more tragical than a wife and son dying when the child doesn't get to actually do anything or be active in any way....). And there is an extended Tragical Last Dog, who is apparently there just to be additionally tragic.

The thing is.... okay, he is boring, and the plot is boring, and the main ideas are boring, and the gender roles are freaking infuriating. Because in the beginning there are apparently Sexy Naked Vampire Ladies trying to lure him outside (....), and he's constantly thinking about them (because he is a red-blooded American male), and then there is the Requisite Last Woman, who is part helpless and part femme fatale and naturally secretly a vampire spy. Add that to the Helpless Deceased Females, and.... yeah, not going to do anything for me.

So, I am in a bit of a quandry, because of course between "Best Vampire Novel of the 20th Century" AND numerous film versions inspired by it, AND inspiration for assorted zombie stories(which I can see much more than vampires, frankly), I feel like I should ask my vampire class students to, you know, read it. And it is definitely a different take on vampires and vampirism and so on, and I could tie the gender issues to gender roles and issues in the other stuff we are reading and watching...

.... but I can't help but feel that the students will respond to it by becoming pretty much zombified themselves.
Current Mood:
tired tired
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In terms of twisty plots for a mystery story, I have to say that "murdered by a spurned lover while on the way to commit suicide due to the financial collapse following the failure of an attempt to sell a fake cache of documents exposing a real global secret conspiracy" works faaaaaairly well.
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Current Location:
Home
Current Mood:
cheerful cheerful
Current Music:
Nothing in particular
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In other news, the rain is making me alternately twitchy and sleepy. Also, I could have SWORN I had a whole YouTube account with a bunch of favorites and, essentially, a playlist of things like anime soundtrack music and other stuff that made a nice background mix to work with... and I can't find it. Apparently the Interwebs ate it.
Current Mood:
cheerful cheerful
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