#anyway this is NOT a colour theory post (cos others have said it better!)
There’s something about Eddie and Buck in the kitchen scene and then the balcony scene, where both times Eddie is dressed far more formally (BOTH times in a black shirt and green trousers) and Buck is in a hoodie.
Something about “I’m not really a guest” but Eddie maybe not feeling quite the same way about himself in Buck’s house, despite having a key, despite finding such comfort (3x09) and the ability to be emotionally vulnerable (3x12), and despite it being a safe place for Christopher (4x08).
Something about Eddie still holding back, being a little buttoned up, keeping a little figurative and literal distance (could you stand any further away in 5x04???)
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more spn discussions, just skip this post y’all
@queerbluebird thanks so much for engaging with my post/reply! i really enjoyed reading your response and i have a long reply here.
i’m responding to your post/reply here rather than reblogging it because honestly that thread is - so long. so very long.
so first -
i agree there is a difference between entitlement and what i would call, not promise, but instead “narrative follow-through”. A story that completely lacks narrative follow-through does end up feeling disappointing, or frustrating, or rage-inducing, depending on what’s happened. to me there’s a fundamental difference between critiquing a story based on follow-through and bad storytelling (which your post aims to do), versus say, creating hashtag campaigns about a character being silenced because and spreading conspiracy theories about a bad dub (among other things honestly).
and also - queerbaiting totally sucks, we definitely do agree on that.
where we disagree, i think are these two core points:
i do not see the narrative build-up that demands a follow-through. i do not see supernatural as having built up to the story that many destiel shippers seem to think was there, and no one has ever been able to point out to me any actual textual reasons that do craft that narrative build-up
i fundamentally do not believe that destiel was ever a queerbait. queerbait involves active intent on the part of creators to tease a ship or queer representation in order to draw in $ from queer audiences without ever making it canon, so as not to alienate straight audiences. so, refering to point 1., i do not see the canon text as having laid the groundwork for a queerbait and those romantic tropes, at least not at any point in the past 7 years. and beyond the canon, the writers and producers and jensen ackles all indicated dean was straight, and that they were not writing a romance. if anyone queerbaited the fans, it was misha collins who kept teasing the possibility, and personally i would argue that was irresponsible of him. but that’s a different discussion altogether and tends to piss people off when it’s framed as such, because misha means a lot to them and it hurts to see the man who validated their feelings get criticized for the manner in which he validated them. so i’m gonna leave that aside.
beyond that, I want to engage with some of your specific quotes:
Supernatural loves to say “wait for it.” And I don’t think it’s entitled to feel betrayed if an author uses their story to say “wait for it” in order to convince you to stick with their story and then delivers the opposite after you do.
May i ask, where was the “wait for it” with destiel? this ties in directly to the queerbaiting. i indicated in my post/reply that while i see it from cas, there’s been little to no hint of any reciprocation of feelings from dean, and if anything the past 7 or so years have driven the point home that it isn’t happening. i personally am not able to see the “Wait for it” and that was the point of my question. without the “Wait for it”, i also can’t see the queerbait.
I asked for specifics and while i totally get not having the spoons, you provided a few:
(off the top of my head for Dean though, the mixtape, his response to Cas’ death at the end of 12, subsequent grief arc, and reaction to Cas’ return in the front half of 13 rank highly. His reaction to Lucifer’s prank call in 15x19 might rate, but maybe just because it’s so recent.)
not trying to be unkind here, but i quite genuinely don’t see any of these examples as framing cas and dean in a romantic light, or as hinting at a “what if”. the mixtape is like.... okay, maybe. i had read that as being symbolic of something else, but i can see wanting to read it from a shipping lens. (i don’t however think i’d read it as baiting or “what if” - it was quite textually not framed that way. shipping, 100%, but canon build-up, not for me).
for the other examples -- grieving for someone you consider family? and being happy when they come back? that’s not shippy to me. i mean - contrast the grief he showed over cas’s death compared to his grief over, say, mary? or, less extreme, charlie? and nothing compared to how off the rails he goes when sam is dead or he thinks sam is. so i -- i just can’t see those as creating a narrative that demands a follow-through. and when your friend who is dead calls your phone? of course you hop to the door - i don’t know what is romantic about that. sam would’ve hopped just as quick if “cass” had called his phone instead.
and look - i see what is fun to ship about all that. if i shipped it, i’d be happily collecting these moments with a smile and grinning to myself about how cute they are and much they mean. but shipping it vs. it being romantically framed in the canon are two fundamentally different things. shipping doesn’t imply narrative buy-in or deliberation from the creator.
moving on, you also spoke at length about 15x18:
15x18 made the sort of statement that drew back even people who did exactly what OP said they should do, turning off the TV years ago. It wasn’t a quiet “if you’re still watching, keep waiting,” so much as a shouted “hey we’re gonna do this thing, watch this!”
i guess destiel fans vs. those of us who don’t ship it really see this as fundamentally different. because you discuss that moment as one which requires follow-through, and say that if this were heteronormative m/f love declaration, there would be that expectation of follow-through. not necessarily reciprocity, but more - more conversation, more acknowledgment, more something.
(i mean - if there was more, but that more was “hey i love you too but only platonically, sorry man” would that be better?)
but no - i actually just... disagree with your point on that front. i can see why you feel the way you do and i acknowledge that it can be read as the start of a conversation. to me though -- and clearly, now that the finale is out, how the writers saw it -- that was actually the end of a conversation. the end of, like you pointed out, 12 years. a 12-year conversation that ends in a gorgeous declaration of love, and specifically how love isn’t about being together, it’s simply about being - it’s about the fact that you love someone, and that feeling alone is the most beautiful thing in existence.
to me, that declaration can only be written and interpreted as an ending. a sacrifice, a declaration, and a goodbye. so - while i kind of expected seeing more people in episode 20 and realize that didn’t happen largely due to covid - i’m not disappointed we didn’t see cas, because that culmination of his narrative (and then knowing he was with jack, after, rebuilding the heaven that he rebelled against and finally completing his narrative circle by fixing all the problems with it alongside the good god he sought to find all along) is kind of perfect.
and i genuinely don’t think if cas was in a female vessel this entire time that that would change. maybe some audience members would feel differently, but i think many of us would see it for the end it was nonetheless. there’s plenty of stories with m/f ships that are one-sided and that character sacrifices themselves for the person they love, so i don’t see why this would be any different (except the bury your gays issue, but that’s a whole other and very real conversation about media tropes).
moving on to the series finale.
As many people have pointed out in praise of 15x20, Sam is the absolute most important thing in Dean’s life, his priority above anything and everything… And yet there, at the actual end of the world, Dean ignores Sam’s call and instead cries over the loss of Castiel. Dean’s loss of Castiel plays in tandem with the loss of literally the whole world. But we’re not to take that as a promise that Castiel means more to this story, or to Dean, than a couple seconds of wistfulness after the dust settles?
I... yeah. i don’t see what this even is arguing. that dean taking a minute to himself to grieve his best friend, who just died in part because dean decided to go hunt down billie (who was literally dying anyway). he’s hurting. there’s nothing about this that’s a promise - it’s an end. it’s grief. it’s the horror of losing someone you care about, and the silence that comes after. it’s fundamentally human in it’s pain. and we, the audience, are invited to grieve with dean.
so I mean - of course cas means more to this story. of course he’s meant more than a few seconds of grief, after 12 years. but just because that’s the last time we see him on screen doesn’t mean we don’t value his story, and celebrate how it too came full circle.
You mention cas as a sort of avatar for a different potential ending for the brothers, and highlight him representing:
An ending where higher powers stop yanking them around and they get to actually live in the life they’ve built for themselves.
So while i never considered cas an avatar for that, i do think we all wanted the brothers to have their freedom. “finally free.” so we can agree on wanting that end. but we disagree on whether it was delivered, i guess? because i feel it was.
you also talk about what you and many other fans conceivably wanted a happier ending to look like. can i -- i’m going to be totally honest. i have not seen a single person who’s critiquing the end saying “i just wanted sam and dean to grow old hunting together with their dog until they retire together and die of old age.”
would that be satisfying to those who are mad about the end? i personally don’t think so, but maybe my opinion is being coloured by the most vitriolic fans i’ve seen. if sam and dean got to have the life they wanted free of chuck, and dean didn’t die, and they kept going (or retired and opened a bar together!). maybe sam still had a kid, but again because romance wasn’t the point, the wife wasn’t important and they left her blurry still so we could interpret ourselves if she was a wife or a co-parent or a surrogate or what. maybe dean has a kid too, with a similar question-mark-wife. maybe we get a few images of them having a holiday with jodie and the girls. and then getting to heaven together in old age, greeting bobby with a beer, and going for a drive.
would that be an end that wouldn’t cause fandom uproar? i would enjoy it, soft an slightly discordant as it would be to me. i prefer the ending we got, bittersweet and heartbreaking though it was, but i wouldn’t be taking to social media to yell about it if we got a softer epilogue, so to speak.
on the other hand... would that still not be enough, at least not for so many of the angry fans? i’m genuinely unsure. it seems to me that so much of the ire is about destiel itself, even if people are pretending it’s about more and other things than that. not everyone, but like, a big portion of them. which leads me to believe that nothing short of dean and cas at least interpretable as together is what they wanted. if every other single thing about the existing finale was the same except that cas was the one to greet dean instead of bobby, and even with the same basic dialogue, without discussing the confession, but they have a lingering smile, and dean leaves to drive and wait for sam with the promise he’ll see cas later -
if everything else stayed the same except who greeted dean, i genuinely don’t believe i’d be seeing almost any critique of the finale on my dash. maybe i’m cynical, but that’s where i’m at.
which is part of why i really struggle to believe that people are engaging in good faith when they critique the finale. because i feel like if it offered them either a) everything they’re purportedly asking for but still no cas and zero hint of destiel, vs. b) every other thing they claim to hate stays the same except there’s a wink and nod to destiel - i believe they would take the wink and nod.
On to some other things you raised:
But how can you know to walk away from a tragedy if the tragedy says “the end won’t be a tragedy, keep watching” right up until it ends in tragedy?
Oh i Get this. I hate thinking i’m consuming fun media only for it to rip my heart out at the end. i’ve literally - well, i’ve had a very unpleasant and distressing experience of this, actually. so i get it. also the opposite: i sometimes feel disappointed when i’m consuming media that is gripping and intense and painful, but then the end is too easy, too soft and happy?
BUT - supernatural never pretended it would have a happy end? the end was so. much. happier. than i ever expected. the Swan Song end was going to have Sam in hell being tortured by lucifer for eternity. according to something i read which i am fundamentally too lazy to link because who knows if it would have turned out this way but -- kripke was apparently going to have Dean jump in the cage with him at that end, if the series ended on S5? the ‘horror’ ending. completely devastating sacrifice for mankind (sam), and completely devastating sacrifice for his brother (dean). just -- oof. even if that wasn’t the plan and the series would’ve ended as the episode did - sam was still in the cage and cas was off waging war in heaven and dean was living every day knowing he was alive and his brother was being tortured.
i’m sorry if you thought you were watching a happier show. i know how much that hurts. that doesn’t mean the story was actually that happy though. sometimes, it’s on us as consumers to acknowledge we were misreading the media. i’ve had to do this. it’s hard, it hurts, but it helps you consume things healthier. i’ve had to do this growing recently, and i’m better off for it.
regarding the specific manner of dean’s death - that’s really not what my post was about and i’m not gonna address it here. i’ve talked about it elsewhere and so have others, and @lovetincture‘s original post spelled it out beautifully, in how human it was. i have feelings on how and why i loved dean’s death, and why it was the absolute opposite of what Chuck’s ending was and what he wanted (no blaze of glory), but i’ll leave those for another time.
They cast aside all the relationships they’ve built. [...] They lost/walked away from the life and home they built in the bunker. Dean got a season 1 death. Sam got a season 1 life.
I feel that there is a very huge difference between regression and progression when it comes to cyclical storytelling. And that difference seems to be missing from the ongoing discussions i’ve seen about this in fandom.
Coming full circle to season 1 does not at all mean that the development is ‘undone’ or that the story has regressed or that anything has been lost or destroyed. It can mean that, if the storyteller doesn’t know what the hell they’re doing, but in this case i don’t (personally) feel it’s a fair critique.
Dean’s death might parallel his s1 not-quite death from Faith, but the s15 result of that death is night and day. Dean is no longer alone. Dean does not go up to a lonely heaven filled with bittersweet memories, where even his canonical soulmate and him have wide gulfs between the memories they fill their shared heaven with. Dean dies a hunter, but he dies a hunter who literally saved earth and changed heaven and gets to spend eternity with his brother, side-by-side and together without all the pain and miscommunication, and he gets to see his family and loved ones too. he died having literally made the world so much better.
even without that though?
his story comes full circle, but dean’s character development isn’t about his death, it’s about the fact that in the first several seasons dean could hardly admit he cared without acting like his teeth were being pulled. he was too afraid of abandonment to ask for someone to be by his side. he was too afraid of rejection to let anyone in. and in the end? he asks sam to stay. he tells him that he loves him. he pours his heart out and says all the things that 15 years ago were stoppered in his throat, words trying and failing to claw their way free but his hurt and fears were too deep.
dean is free.
the point of dean’s story coming full circle to season 1 parallels was specifically to highlight this incredible development, not to undermine it. he is different. he is free.
god it makes me tear up just thinking about how happy i am for him despite how gutted i was by that scene??
(i could write a similar analysis for sam, about how he left for stanford to escape his life and how his finale life montage bits were the opposite of that, but honestly this post is long enough already).
Destiel is loosely a part of that promise in the sense that Castiel is a part of that promise. The symbol of free will
You make a super interesting argument about Cas being a symbol of free will. I don’t have much to say about it, because I’m gonna mull it over, because I think it’s kinda cool and I’ve never thought about it.
That’s - all i’ve got. thanks again for engaging. i’m happy to continue the convo if you have questions or want to reblog/reply
(though my followers might hate me omg, i’ve been spamming long spn meta posts for weeks now, it’s just been so confronting to see the ongoing fan reaction on twitter and how divided it is...)
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My 15x12 rewatch commentary! In it’s full, unedited glory! *lol*
Earth 2 seems to be a better timeline; not only does it have two moons, but Clinton is president. Not that this would make a huge difference to CH02 but it sounds like a win for US02.
I don’t like Chuck, but I can’t help thinking that some of his behaviour is still super entertaining. “It’s monologue time.”
Chuck’s monologue suggests that “The World” (the scene we see of TFW) is Chuck’s original creation. The other worlds (the other “toys”) are variations of The World, with “different combinations, scenarios, characters or different versions of the same characters”.
I feel Chuck: he created fanfiction of his story and while he got what he wanted out of them, he still doesn’t get it out of the “original story”.
This singular focus on Sam and Dean makes me wonder if anything actually really existed or mattered before the Pilot... Is that all Chuck cares about, everything it boils down to? Or has he focused on other people like that before and Dean and Sam are just the latest objects of fascination to him? If we go one level above the show, then obviously nothing exists outside of Sam and Dean for us. Sam and Dean (and other characters) have no lives outside of the story we see on screen. All the talk about past is wrapped up into the stories of those characters and we only get to know it when it’s relevant to a story point. That’s just how this works.
If Chuck loves Sam and Dean so much, then why does he want to destroy them? Don’t get you, Chuck, my dude. There’s no more story for you to watch if they’re gone.
“All the other worlds, alternate realities and subplots. The failed spin offs,” have to go according to Chuck. Putting aside the comment about subplots and failed spin offs for the moment, I wonder what the difference between other worlds and alternate realities is. I assume that another world is Earth 02, whereas an alternate reality is... what we got in Lebanon or Endverse. A twist of The World, a branch off of it that might go nowhere and gets undone again?
Anyway, side note that Chuck only talks about Sam and Dean, as usual, but it’s so striking that he points at a screen that features Cas. Chuck’s Cas-related blindness continues to captivate me. Usually, during the apocalypse, it was Cas’ actions that led to a situation where Chuck said that they’re not supposed to be part of the story. Sam and Dean flipped the script (well, debateable of course) because Cas contributed.
And now on to Dean, Sam and Co.
I’m actually a bit bothered with the fact that Jack’s still soulless. I’m also bothered by how casual especially Dean seems to be around Jack (considering how hard it hit him that Jack killed Mary, how Dean wanted to kill Jack, how Dean treated Cas), I’m especially bothered by how Sam seems to feel hurt by Jack not coming to them right away because they would have helped (it seems we’re also forgetting the whole locking Jack away and then conspiring to kill him plot).
Now, a comment on Jack without a soul; it seems to me like he’s perfectly able to feel things, despite the fact that he sometimes said that he didn’t feel anything. The thing is that Jack is part angel. It took Cas - who has no soul as well - years to learn how to act human and how to care. Maybe there’s a learning curve to emotions if you’re an angel, as well as feeling guilt and accountablility for one’s actions. That didn’t come easy to Cas, it doesn’t come to most angels we know at all (Gabriel for example? Bag of dicks, still beloved.)
Souls aside, I really have to comment on the fact that Jack seems to own only one sweater, but in 5 different colours. *lol*
Back to the kitchen talk! I do find Cas’ willingness to blindly trust Jack’s trust in Billy, despite his knowledge that Jack is so easy to manipulate (by Lucifer, by Sam and Dean, by Dumah) pretty concerning. Sam’s being reasonable in the face of Dean’s lack of interest and Cas’ naivety...
Is it just me or do you also feel Dean’s a bit off in this scene? He keeps looking at Cas, or avoiding eye-contact. Though it’s clear he chose to position himself close to Cas, with how it was filmed it looked like Dean and Cas provided an united front and Sam was “alone” with his worry. I wonder if he did this because this is his way of showing Cas support after they’ve been so divided? For me it doesn’t make sense that Dean and Cas have overcome their issues so quickly, with just one one-sided tearful prayer. I know that Supernatural glosses over issues. Things that I feel should bother the characters don’t bother them at all.
Ah! Okay, Sam also darts Cas a lot of looks, so maybe he feels he can’t talk freely about his doubt regarding Jack and Jack-Billie’s plans because Cas’ complete faith in Jack? Like it’d fall on deaf ears anyway and Dean’s not being helpful either.
I both love and kinda feel weird about Dean and Cas sharing that drink. I love it because they spend time together like that (just sitting together, drinking, talking. We know they spend time together that we don’t see, but it’s nice to see it for once). I also feel weird about it because of all the talk about Jack’s destiny... Still sounds like Nephilim propaganda to me. *lol* (Yeah, yeah, I sort of believe the conspiracy theory that Kelly and Cas were manipulated by Jack. Not really Jack’s fault I guess but still... I feel Cas was shown some kind of ideal world, that only Jack could create, that turned Cas into not much more than a supporter of Jack’s cause. Like... his desciple to Jack’s messiah... I know Cas needs to have a mission and be useful, but I don’t like how it guided him away from being the hero of his own story? He can’t be now I feel? I mean, he could of course, but not in his own understanding of himself? I’m not sure I buy the “I had myself” speech... But that’s a rant for another post. I’m gonna put my conspiracy theory tin hat away now.)
Dark Kaia’s reveal! ♥ Even though we only had Kaia for a short time, she’s one of my favourites, so I’m happy she’s alive.
I’m 100% convinced that genius strategist Cas didn’t lose at Vier Gewinnt to Jack, but that he let him win.
I wouldn’t trust John Winchester on whether he killed the last member of a monster species. He thought vampires were extinct too so he’s not exactly the most reliable source... Besides, I’m sure some witch or hunter or man of letter has that item in their stock somewhere. Especially if this so-called extinction happened as recent as John Winchester’s hunting...
As someone who’s written my Master thesis on characters travelling to different worlds and trying to adapt (and most often failing) dark!Kaia’s explanation of how there’s no place for her in this world apart from empty spaces hits me. I love it. And I wish that exactly this - the displacement, the not belonging - would have been addressed properly also for AU Charlie and AU Bobby. Clearly, they solved the majority of the problem by wiping out the AU hunters but that’s not what mattered. (Of course, I also don’t really like AU Charlie or AU Bobby, Bobby significantly less than Charlie)
Sam was so on the fence about Billie’s plan and now he’s upset about Jack potentially jeopardizing Billie’s plan. Make up your mind.
“Some bs male chivalry thing” Jody says to the genderless angel *lol*
While I’m bitter (again, me and my bitterness) about the fact that Dean threatened Kaia with a gun, which we were reminded of in the preview, I do like the hug. SPN just brushes everything under the table and gives us a simple fix without putting in the work. But from reading Beren’s tweets I knew that this was something that Jensen felt strongly about (i.e. make things right, keep his promise to dark!Kaia) makes me forgive the sloppy way of doing it, I guess.
I wish dark!Kaia would have left with them, even though I do think the ending for her is fitting.
P.S. generally this world destruction thing Chuck is doing is toeing the line of things that trigger panic attacks for me. I was bracing myself for it this whole episode and while I was very uncomfortable it wasn’t yet the kind of stuff that throws me into a spiral of anxiety and existential dread so... yeah. I’m a bit scared about that going further.
I find it interesting to learn more about the fabric of the... well... story. Of God having to write himself into the story (which calls back to Chuck - the author of the SPN books - writing himself into the story we see, of God writing himself as Chuck I suppose one could say?)
Sam and Dean being “messengers of God’s destruction” is something I need to think about. Because the messengers doesn’t exactly sound like they have an active part. However, if you take messengers to mean “carrying out the will of xy” then maybe? But if God is what keeps the multiverse running, then destroying an intrinsic part of the machinery will also make sure that the machinery no longer works. Since Chuck destroys the multiverse then that probably doesn’t matter (but here I’m also reminded of Billie’s words about how delicate the multiverse is, like a card house. She was concerned about it then, but no longer now?)
Okay, this was a mess of a post, as always. Maybe I can collect them later, to write a proper review or analysis, make some hopes and predictions about the future? We’ll see. :3 Thanks for reading this rambling!
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The creature on the lower decks
Tags: Space AU, aged up characters, killugon day, gon’s a prodigy but not in terms of physicality, in this au he’s a researcher
Warnings: one mention of worms and eyes
Summary: Gon can’t not explore.
A short written for the killugon day 2020 (am i cheating posting this now? it’s been the 7th here for a few hours now XD).
It’s in the same universe and story as ‘Zoldycks in space’.
Thank you @subdee for betareading <3
Only in the canteens did the passengers and crew mix. Other than that the researchers and corporate representatives kept to their cabins or general recreational areas, while the ship's personnel busied themselves in the restricted parts of the Void Traveller.
When they boarded, Captain Kruger showed the passengers around but the tour had covered only a few selected areas from the crew-only sections and Gon wished he could see all of it. He loved exploring so the various pastimes available on the upper decks and conversations with his peers only partially distracted him from his wanderlust. Talking to people outside of the university crowd helped a little too, the corporate representatives had a completely different perspective on the Void Traveller’s mission compared to the researchers. Whether the crew had any attitude towards their goals, other than to get there safely, Gon couldn’t quite tell. He tried to look approachable but they treated him with polite distance most of the time. According to Gon’s observations all three groups treated one another with a serious dose of suspicion.
Thus it surprised him when five crew members invited him to sit with them at breakfast. He soon realised why, though. The men saw him as an easy mark to make fun of. They started to tell him about various medical conditions he could develop from the fake gravity on the spaceship. Gon knew their stories held no water but he encouraged them anyway to amuse himself.
‘Space leeches’, Gon repeated after Sommy, the guy with a monkey-like robot on his shoulder. ‘Tell me more about them. I thought the ship didn’t have air vents that go outside.’
‘How else would it exchange air?’ Tonpa asked.
‘Ah, right, my bad.’ Gon nodded his head while suppressing a laugh. It wasn’t his first space mission, not even his second. His young age may have been misleading to these guys but Gon finished his masters in general biology at the age of 14. At 16 he got another in exo-zoology. He conducted research on Enceladus and Europa until he defended his doctorate soon after he turned 20. Later he went to Pluto for another research grant. He’d spent enough time in spaceships to know what to expect from them. Actually he may have even been born on one. Mito didn't know the details, she’d been stationed with her parents at the time, far from where Gon’s father’d conducted his research. She first met Gon a few minutes before pirates attacked the colony. She and other kids, including her nephew, were put in an escape pod and shot back to the Solar System. They drifted and slowly jumped through space for twenty five years, spent another year in quarantine, checked by doctors and military personnel, before their cryo capsules were opened. So in theory Gon was almost fifty years old, but no one counted cryo.
‘I'd love to see these leeches,' he said after Amori described the supposed parasites sucking someone's brain out through their eye socket. 'I'd like to dissect and describe one, it sounds like a new species, unknown to science, you know I could get famous for a discovery of this caliber. It’d be fascinating to write about their evolution, animals that can live in the void of space, waiting for their prey presumably for eons. Also fascinatingly enough their biology and feeding habits so fitted to the human biology, almost as if they co-evolved with us. This is great stuff, could prove the old theories from centuries past of ancient travellers who seeded life on Earth, so many people on the deep web are going to feel validated by this.' He flashed them a wide smile when confusion bloomed on their faces. 'I'm an exo-zoologist, this is very up my street, you see.'
Tonpa snorted, the others looked disappointed and maybe a bit bashful, it made Gon laugh out loud.
'We were just playing,' Umori said defensively.
'I know,' Gon winked. 'So was I. I don't expect to see an alien species before we start orbiting a planet.'
‘Yeah.’ Sommy scratched the back of his head.
'You could check the lower decks,' Tonpa suddenly said more seriously and smiled showing all his teeth which made him look predatory. 'You'd be surprised what specimens they keep there.'
The others chuckled but it sounded fake. They shifted nervously, discomfort clear in their posture and movements.
'Thanks for the tip,' Gon said and winked. 'Talk to you guys later.' He clicked a button on his empty tray so it'd be picked up by a service bot and he left the canteen.
Those guys were full of shit but they made him curious. He'd been wavering whether it was worth the risk to break some rules and venture into the crew restricted areas. Tonpa's cryptic suggestion kind of gave him an excuse. Could he ignore it and still stay true to his scholarly principles? What if the government was harbouring alien life?
Yeah, this sounds legit, Gon thought. It calmed his conscience. He just needed a crew pass to get to the lower decks.
It took him two weeks of socialising and charming his way into drinking with the crew before he lifted a crew pass. Now that he had a clear goal he didn't mind the delay. It was gathering resources and so a part of his expedition. He could work patiently for his goals once he set them and would never give up before he achieved them. All his tutors and colleagues at the university always admired or envied his dedication and focus, even though it sometimes put him in dangerous situations.
The maps the passengers received covered only the upper decks so he was going beyond that blind. His fingers trembled with anticipation, he loved everything about this. With his tablet in hand he sneaked into the maze of service corridors. Prepared for the labyrinth he launched a mapping app that he'd received while traversing the ice caves and tunnels on the moons of Saturn and Jupiter. It could create super accurate 3D maps on the spot by scanning the surroundings as he walked.
Gon moved slowly to let the app do its thing, but also to remain unnoticed, always ready to find a place to hide.
The crew areas looked sparse with little decoration, arranged with practicality in mind. It reminded him of the smaller intra-system ships, their size allowed for little extravagance. The Void Traveller resembled a cruise ship that took tourists on a tour of various planets and moons when it came to sheer size but also because the passenger areas were rather fancy.
Gon decided to explore it deck by deck as much as he could, his pass wasn’t of the highest priority so some areas would remain closed to him.
All the time as he wandered where he shouldn’t, a debate was taking place in his head. How probable was it that the military hid aliens on board? He kind of wanted it to be true. For his excursion to have this grand reveal.
On the first day he only found some production facilities and crew cabins which he chose to avoid. In the next few days he got deeper, far enough to barely make it back to attend meals with everyone. He had to start packing some food and a blanket to sleep without needing to come back to his cabin. His progress was too slow to reach everywhere within a day, he spent too much time hiding from the personnel. That part of his trips gave him an adrenaline rush he loved. Just on the verge of being discovered. Going further after that felt particularly sweet.
Maybe a week into his adventure he wandered into a chamber that would usually be devoted to the pilot AI, a large open space with a panel in the middle and servers within the tall walls. In the Void Traveller someone converted it into a sports area. Gon saw treadmills, stationary bikes and some other typical gym machines. He’d used similar ones on the upper decks. Further away he saw a ping pong table, a small basketball court and a squash room. Inside it, behind the thick glass a person was running and playing by themself.
Gon came closer to get a better look. Did Tonpa actually tell him the truth? The skin of the creature swinging the rocket with great accuracy was glowing with a myriad of colours, twinkling like dotted with little stars. But the general form looked very human, human male if he’d have to determine that at the first glance. Very pale with what seemed to be naturally white hair, nothing a bit of genetic engineering couldn’t achieve. In human terms maybe twenty years old, athletic build. But that shining skin, was that also genetic manipulation? For what purpose though, it made the creature stand out. Maybe a random mutation?
Gon collided with the glass when his curiosity took him too close.
The sound attracted the creature’s attention. They stopped playing and turned towards Gon, eyes wide in shock.
Gon smiled and put his hand behind his head, he felt very awkward stupidly busted like this.
The ball was still ricochetting from the walls, but when it launched itself at the creature they caught it sparing it only a quick glance. What reflexes, Gon marvelled.
The creature scrunched their forehead, like a human would. Their very beautiful face was marked by confusion.
‘It seems like you’re missing a partner to play.’ Gon spoke before they could. He reasoned it’d be better not to leave them too much time to consider the situation. He also hoped an offer like that wouldn’t be interpreted as threatening.
‘So it does.’
That sounded human, though the voice production sounded a bit off, as if the creature wasn’t used to speaking.
‘Come in, we’ll see if you can keep up.’ They went to the wall and got Gon a racket. ‘I’m Killua, by the way.’
‘Gon.’ He replied. He put his bag outside the glass room. After a moment of thought he stripped to his tank top and boxer shorts, from what he’d already seen Killua was no joke. He was in for a workout.
‘You’re on.’ Gon took the racket and assumed the position.
Killua smiled and threw the ball up in the air. A powerful swing followed.
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OKAYOKAY i’ve actually sent an ask about this yesterday but anyway I got my tpn manga volumes recently and when reading the little doodle pages between the chapters in volume 4, there was a page with a list of items in the grace field house including a well with the caption/description, “the secret of the backyard”. I haven’t seen posts of this anywhere so I thought I should bring it up to the best tpn theorist I know. Okay but is the well THE SECRET ESCAPE ROUTE OF GRACEFIELD??? Not only is it connected to WATER (atlantis theory) but it is also a HOLE (escape route possibly a hole theory) I know you’ve theorised that it is probably in the middle of the 5 plantations, but could the well be the escape route?
Thank you for the submission @heyvapesauce! Sorry, it took me a while to get to this!
This volume extra page that you pointed out is very interesting actually, and I think it is full of clues to various mysteries and plot points!
Since you made another submission about the well later, I will not talk about it here, but address it in the other post. Instead, I want to talk about the various items, and their significance as I think there is more to them than it meets the eye. Let me get a better picture:
~Mom is always running things on time.~
We know that this is in reality is the tracker device. However, there is a significance given to time in later visuals, and the pocket watch re-appears on volume 13. I think I understand now what this is about, but I am writing a whole different post on that, just bear in mind that there is more to this item as well…
~What was written in the letter?~
This is talking about Grandma’s letter to Krone, as the knife was used then. You can’t really read the writing (apart from a signature that looks like Sarah), but it is fairly easy to deduce what that letter was about.
What is a mystery still however is the bait that Ray wrote for Krone and she showed Grandma. Shirai-san has said in an interview that this bait “letter” will be explored in later plot.
My personal thoughts are that Ray confessed to receiving various items from Isabella, but rather than admitting being a spy, he would have given the reason as being Isabella’s biological son, and getting preferential treatment from her. I think it may be revisited once we explore how things get shipped to Gracefield from the human world (Krone confirmed that clothes toys etc get supplied from there).
~Which door should we open?~
This key was used by Don and Gilda to get into Isabella’s secret room. Later Krone also gave a key mold to Norman, which was used to gain access to medical supplies. However, we can assume that the kids kept the mold, and if it can open other doors at the various Gracefield plants, then we can expect them to use it again when they break back into Gracefield.
This is a ball
~There are several of these.~
This seems more like a statement to me than a clue, but perhaps I am just missing something. Perhaps it is just a reference to the fact that toys supplied from the human world are factory made.
First Aid Kit
~You never know when you will need it.~
The first aid kit was used to remove Ray’s and Emma’s tracking devices, as well as to treat their wounds. The need for this featured again when kids ran out of medicine in the aftermath of the Goldy Pond fight, as well as for treating Christy and the mission to get him medicine. I am not sure if it will come back again since it has already featured in the new arc.
~With this the house at night won’t be scary.~
The lantern is a traditional symbol for leading the way, it makes passage safe by giving light. During the escape Don signals that the cliff is safe to cross with a lantern, and later we see the use of glowing crystal plants in a lantern in Mujika’s cave by both Mujika and the kids. More importantly I have noted that the colour spread with the tiny kids inside the lantern was a direct reference of a scene in Peter Pan where Tinkerbell is locked inside one. Tinkerbell’s golden fairy dust allows passage to and from Neverland just like the golden water in TPN allows passage over the Seven Walls. It makes sense for the Moon to be required for a safe way, after all it lights up the night sky like a natural lantern.
~Can’t wait for mealtime.~
The bell is used to signal mealtimes at Gracefield, but its first appearance is with IsaBELLa… Ray and others also use it later, and it features later in the Mother’s Day omake as part of a mystery about Isabella. I believe the hidden clue here is Isabella’s association with TinkerBELL, who in Peter Pan is an antagonist to the female lead, Wendy, yet not completely an enemy, just like Isabella is to Emma. Will it feature again? Maybe, but it might be as the alarm bells being rung at Gracefield when they break back in to save Phil and co.
~Do you remember the last night that you slept well?~
These don’t feature heavily in the Escape arc. I wonder if they got included here to draw attention to a similar display we see in a Lambda spread, but with different characters. The lambda baby mobile includes planets, spaceships, and multi-eyed aliens (demons have many eyes too…). I have thought that this is a clue towards my theory on the origin of demons as extra-terrestrial bacteria. It would make sense then to draw attention to it.
Carol’s Stuffed Animal
~Can you write your own name?~
Again, this item doesn’t seem to have a lot of importance in the Escape. We know from additional info that Isabella names all the children, sometimes based on real life people, and my theories often include names that are references. Actually, nevermind, I think I have figured this one out now, but this will also have to go into my new theory post.
Alicia’s Stuffed Animal
~Just like Little Bunny, it looks handmade.~
The point about this toy as well as Little Bunny is that despite having access to factory toys from the human world, Isabella took the time and effort to handmake farewell gifts for the children getting shipped. Not only that, we know from Don’s and Gilda’s discovery that she kept each and every personalised gift. I think these actions speak volumes about how despite the circumstances, she did also love those children, and this was most likely part of her coping mechanism with their loss and her guilt. There is another significance to Little Bunny and to highlighting Alicia here, but unfortunately again it has to be explained in my new theory post. I apologise, but it’s a fairly complex and big thing that none seemed to have noticed so far, but was there from the beginning, so I want to explain it properly in its own post.
~Where could this be?~
The globe features in the discussion when the kids debate where Gracefield could be located in the world. We learn later that they are in the demon world, which seems to be uncharted to normal humans, just like the deep sea… Notice that this globe with its question shows us an ocean? Pretty straightforward if you consider my demon world is like Atlantis at the bottom of the ocean theory…
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It seems like the majority of the FNDM, even the folk at RWBYRW plus Shannon has taken the notion that Ozpin will take over Oscar or that the merge is parasitic in nature. How do you feel about it?
Honestlyanon-chan,I’ve never viewed the Merge that way. I acknowledge that the Merge is a seriousphase that both Oscar and Ozpin will essentially have to go through once thattime comes. But if I’m being completely truthful I’ve always leaned more towardsthe positivenotion that Oscaris going to be completely fine by the end of the change. It’s whyI’ve never quite dug the idea of other fans treating Oscar as Ozpin or as ifhe’ll just come out as another carbon copy of Ozpin. Technically… any mannerisms we’veseen Ozpin do that Oscar adopts as well came from Ozma. I’d like to think that theWizards inherited traits from their past lives, not just Ozma. Just as how theyall adopted Ozma’s formal way of talking, my belief is that the Wizard personais comprised of traits inherited from all past lifetimes.
Anyways,I’ve always first and foremost viewed Oscar as his own character with his own personality, story and journey to take in this plotthat differentiates him from Ozpin. It’s mainly why I’ve been vocal about thecanon fleshing out Oscar a lot better. Thus far, RWBY hasn’t frankly done muchfor Oscar, despite having source material that’s practically begging on itshands and knees to be used. I’d love to thinkthere is a lot more to be desired of Oscar as his own character besides hispart to play in the Ozma Reincarnation Cycle.
I’deven like to raise the point that there has been canonical evidence to highlight that Oscar isn’t the one who isexpected to change with the Merge. I talked about that in this musing post right here. Backin V5 when Ozpin was explaining his curse to RNJR for the first time, hedescribed it more along the lines as something he has to go through.
Ozpindidn’t even talk as if he was one person. He described himself as culmination of men—ofall the lifetimes that the Wizards have spent combating Salem and her forcestrying to save humanity.
Ozpintold the group that with each rebirth, his soul iseventually merged with another and he is changed but his memories remain.
Ozpintold RNJR that hewill change. He never once said that Oscar is going to change. Hedidn’t even describe it as if he and Oscar are going to change. Ozpin is theone destined to be affected the most from the Merge. For this, I stick with myown theories. My theory is that the closer the Merge approaches, it’s going toaffect both Oscar and Ozpin in different ways.
ForOscar, he’ll probably start to have frequent, dreams that involve him reliving memoriesfrom the lives of past Wizards as if the memories were his own. I’d actuallylove to see Oscar dream about the Great War with the King of Vale because he’sone life we have yet to learn more about.
Andas for Ozpin, Ozpin is going to begin to look more like Oscar physically. Forthe longest while I’ve been hoping that the CRWBY would give us a visualrepresentation of what the inside of Oscar’s mind looks like. When Oscar told the JNR_QRWBY that Ozpinlocked himself deep inside his head, I got super excited at this because Ifigured it would mean Oscar ultimately deep diving into his mind to bring Ozpinback home.
Y’know have Oscargoing on his own little journey to Oz tofind the Wizard locked inside his lonely Emerald tower deep within theuncharted corridors of Oscar’s psyche behind curtained doors that contained themost cherished and forgotten pages of Oscar’s past.
Theidea I had was that the CRWBY would reveal more about Oscar’s life through his memoriesas we looked at his mind. My idea even was that Ozpin had hidden himself behind a painfulmemory thatOscar had repressed; buried so far in the back of his mind that hedared not look at it again because it’s a memory he hasn’t come to terms with;even as a teenager.
Mytheory was that Oscar was going to have to face his past in order to findOzpin. AJourney to Oz about a farm boy in search of a wizard who he wants to take home. That was my hunch and it’s one I hold dear to myheart because it’s a Pinehead headcanon Irefuse to let go of.
Although we got Ozpincoming back briefly in the V6 finale, I’m still holding out for this. Why Iwant the show to highlight Oscar’s inner mind palace or the Dreamscape as I dubbed it is because I personally want to seehow Ozpin appears inside Oscar’s mind.
Howdoes Ozpin look to Oscar inside his head? Right now I’d like to believe that ifOscar were to meet up with Ozpin inside his head, the old Wizard would probablytake the shape of his previous form—the one we’re most familiar with. The personaof Professor Ozpin, headmaster of Beacon Academy.
Butmy idea is as the Merge draws closer, Ozpin will come to physically resemble Oscar as aclear indicator. I got this idea from Ozma’s lifetime as Henkle. During that moment withHenkle having dinner with his family, you could see Henkle kind of acknowledginghis other soul—the past Wizard before him but what was very interesting to meis that the past soul looked exactly like Henkle but exhibited all the seriousnessof past Wizards before him.
Whenwe first met Henkle, he and the past Ozma before him has already co-existedlong enough that they were now working together in unison. The last time we sawHenkle, it was when he was an old man, possibly years after the Merge hadhappened. So by this point, the two souls has become one.
I am notscared for Oscar with this Merge. I stand firmly by my hunch that Oscar is notgoing to lose himself to the Merge. Ozpin is not going to take over and all essenceof Oscar won’t be erased. I don’t think any of that is going to happen. On thecontrary, all this talk about Oscar becoming someone else he doesn’t recognize—thatmore sounds to me like a reflection of Oscar’s fears of the Merge. Oscar is the one who believeshe is going to disappear while in reality, I think he’s going to be made whole.
Besides,even if I’m proven to be wrong and the Merge does become as serious as everyoneelse imagines it to be, nevertheless, I still stand by my hunches and anotherone I gave is that Oscar’s experience with the Merge is going to be differentthan any other Wizard before him.
MyPineheadheadcanon is that Oscar is meant tobe the last life. He is one I expect to change it all or at leasthelp to end it all. There are a few canonical signs pointing to Oscar’sscenario being different.
Oscaris the youngest of the Wizard reincarnates. There is also the titbit in theseries to suggest that Ozpin’s pairing up with Oscar might have been unexpectedand premature. The villains all reacted profoundly surprised that Ozpin wasback so soon.This is why I shared this musing post talkingabout the Ozma Cycle.
Thenthere is the detail about Oscar and Ozma—the first form, sharing the same VA.This could be just a coincidence here but…again I am sticking to my guns. Mytheory is that Oscaris special. He is meant to be the last life because I think Oscar is one truereincarnation of Ozma.
WhenOzma was first revived, he never got back his original form. Instead it’s been his soul that’s been revived and paired up with the souls ofother chosen warriors throughout the years. Although Ozma’s soul returned timeand time again, his body never did. Or…so we believed.
Iknow this assumption sounds like a stretch however this squiggle meister stubbornly believes that Oscar is the reincarnation of Ozma’s originalform reborn in Modern Remnant. I have watched too many anime overthe years where a character who was another person in a former life gets rebornas someone else in modern time. Although RWBY has brought its own spin toreincarnation with the merging of souls, the thought still remains. It ends where itall began. Ozma was the first. He was the one who started all this. Butthe Gods never granted him back his old body. The unfortunate thing about thecycle is that the Gods had Ozma rope other innocent men and people into his warwith Salem which is where all the guilt and mistakes lie.
Butit began with Ozma so naturally it should be him tofinish it. If Ozma was the beginning then Oscaris the end because Oscar is not like the others. He’s not another life for Ozmato life. He is the last life. Oscar is Ozma. His true reincarnate.
Iknow in a cycle where one man has been paired off with other men to the pointthat we don’t know if it’s either him in control all the time or him plus allthe other men in there, putting all that into consideration, this hunch soundsweird. Buuuuut…dagnabbit, I’m running with it. Even if I have to stand alonewith this theory, I’m sticking with it. You can’t deny that there is somethingvery unique to Oscar’s situation that will set him apart from all the others.
Anotherinteresting detail that I liked that connects Ozma to Oscar is that Ozmasignature colours that he can be seen wearing during his scenes in the LostFable are the colours that correspond to Oscar’s name. Ozma is wearing pine green with oscar gold. Coincidence, I think not.
Ican’t sit by and join the brigade in saying my precious freckled farm boy isgoing to end up just like his predecessors when the very show itself has toldme otherwise. So until then, I’m on the side that believes Oscar will be justfine in Merge and I’m also (probably all by myself) on the side that believesthere will be a twist to Oscar’s story with the Merge.
The twist that he is Ozma’s trueincarnate. He may not look like it now but I have a feeling as Oscargrows older and matures into a fine, young huntsmen, he’ll begin to resemble Ozma.But y’know, as always, these are just my views.
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