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Entries by tag: avengers

Damn

I just noticed how, more than once, a gun-covered Emma Peel began to snap her fingers rhythmically, in an almost hypnotic fashion... and then karate chopped the gun away. I don't recall it having been discussed explicitly in the series, but it's a fantastically badass move, and very much in character: Ms. Peel is exactly the kind of polymath who'd could have learned how to do that from either an old manuscript or a cutting-edge psychology research paper, and then apply it during a fight to the death to give herself a completely unexpected edge.

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But I digress.

One of my favorite things about The Avengers (Peel's, not Romanova's) is how pretty much the entire fabric of British life and culture is basically the blueprint for one form of another of murderous conspiracy. At no point, I think, do Peel or Steed find what their lives reflect about the reality of the world as unsettling as it should be; in a country practically wrapped in probably overlapping well-connected conspiracies of the gifted and pathologically unstable, they are a two-person extremely well-connected conspiracy of the gifted and almost pathologically stable, Steed because it's his job and those are often his co-workers (and what could be weirder than that, in their world), Peel because, well, I think it's basically that she does whatever she wants and she's usually very good at it, and it turns out this is such an entertaining hobby (besides, they are both kind loners).

I'm reminded of a couple of comments of wellntruly about Hannibal: how in their world basically most everybody is trying to kill you in gruesome ways, and how, for a while (and in ultimately legendarily unhealthy ways) Hannibal and Will connect because they are alone together (identically different, in Jack's phrase). Steed and Peel share a similar situation, with a some large, fundamental differences in their mental health.

Also: it was 1971, and we had a series where the male and female leads were both single and charismatic and/or hot, kept saving each other's life, spent a lot of time doing things together like going to the theater or just having a quiet read in each other's apartment, constantly looked at each other in various forms of fond and/or exasperated amazement, flirted shamelessly (although, to be fair, their flirted with pretty much everybody for tactical reasons, and with most of the rest for practice) and yet, if memory serves, never slept together. And neither seemed particularly troubled about it, one way or another, which is a fantastically mature approach.

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Didn't we get two canonical confirmations that Beast bringing the teenage versions of the original X-team into the present broke the multiverse? (quoth Beast: Ta-da) First, the Watcher himself told him so by getting into his bedroom (nope, not creepy at all) and giving him visions of all the universes, both good and bad, that he had killed. And later, in one of those bi-monthly situations when one or more people get cosmically omnipotent or thereabouts, he made the calculations himself and confirmed it.

So I'm calling shenanigans on the the Beyonders weaponized the Molecule Man crap. Beast did it (in his defense, he was dying at the moment, and it was an hilarious thing to do).

Things get interesting after that. Beast being an X-Men, he won't give up just because he screwed up at a cosmic level. I mean, that's what they do: they screw things up at a cosmic level and then they sort of fix it, mostly. Therefore, he's Rabum Alal (oh, and in the Black Swans' language, that's more accurately translated as the Predator, the one who culls the weak). Because he didn't find another way to save universes, he keeps destroying Earths to buy time, going to other universes to find increasingly powerful weapons. He's no Doom or Reed Richards, but there's an awful lot you can do if you're a genius that has seen them work and has given up on small measures. Needless to say, the accumulated guilt has driven him quite crazy, but there you go.

Bottom line: Beast is a doctor. He knows that sometimes you have to cut something out to extend the life of the rest. And there's so much blood on his hands that the marginal guilt of each new genocide is negligible.

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cass, can you not
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