On Favorite Foods
Let's talk about how the smallest of details can show just how well Horikoshi can craft his characters. In this case just how much work he's put into creating Shimura Tenko.
Food is often used symbolically in media to convey something other than it's base nature, mostly because food does that outside of media. The food we eat and how we prepare it often has class, religious, and ethnic connotations; and to look at food historically is to traverse thousands of years of war, politics, and culture.
I'll use a small example first. We know Momo is wealthy because so many things about her are markers of wealth. Even more interestingly, compared to the traditional wealth of the Todoroki family, Momo's wealth is very much Westernized and that can be seen in how she interacts with tea. Her method and preference of tea is very different than the traditional love of matcha and tea ceremonies that some Japanese schoolchildren can take as extracurriculars. No, the way she drinks tea is very British-style, and this is bolstered by Gentle's mutual obsession with the same tea brands - he has a fixation over Anglo versions of gentility, as seen in his design. Momo then comes off as a 'lady'-like character. Not a traditional Yamato Nadeshiko, a term for the ideal 'Japanese' woman, but.. a Lady.
That's the more obvious stuff! But it's in throwaway things that I see Horikoshi's ingenuity.
This is Tomura's maternal grandfather serving him Ohagi. Tomura's been shown once or twice consuming sweets, so it makes sense that a five year -old version of him liked sweets the best. In this case he's fond of a very traditional sweet named Ohagi, or Botamochi.
Ohagi is a sweet, sticky rice cake made by steaming and pounding rice flour and adding things like red bean paste to it (which according to color is what we see in this image). It's traditionally associated and eaten the most during the Spring and Autumnal equinoxes during a weeklong Japanese Busshist holiday named "Ohigan". This is a holiday primarily concerned with remembering ancestors and visiting memorials. Ohagi itself is bit more associated with the fall equinox than Botamochi.
So, as a food associated with Ohigan, what this means is that often Ohagi is offered as an offering to the dead on that week, and is eaten in memory of those who have passed.
Tomura Shigaraki is a character created of grief, death, and mourning. He literally wears/wore those he mourns throughout the manga. Don't forget that AFO bestowed the name Tomura out of the verb Tomurau; 'To Mourn For'. Shigaraki also contains death (Shi), while the Shi in Shimura is a homophone.
Digging deeper, Tomura's given birthday (if it's real) is 4/4. Most casual Western watchers might recall that four is considered a 'cursed' number in Japan because it can be pronounced 'Shi'. Thus his birthday, 4/4 is very much a reminder of death.
The dates of the Ohigan vary, but it's usually associated with the Chinese calendar and specifically a period of time named Chunfen (Shunbun in Japanese) that starts around March 20 and ends on the 4th of April, with the 5th usually being the first day of the new fiscal year as well. Endings, deaths - it's likely very few details are over looked when Horikoshi comes up something for a character close to his heart.
Just from a small dessert, we have such richness in seeing how Tomura was created as a character. So much of his concept and design revolve around mourning and death that even a small throwaway line of a favorite childhood sweet has meaning and characterization. This is where Horikoshi shines the most - in small details that end up giving a character so much depth.
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Thinking about the connections between Frankenstein’s Creature and c!Wilbur and just about ready to burst into tears.
I’ve talked at length about what I think of the fandom’s general artistic interpretation of Revivebur as having partial zombie/undead features, but with Halloween around the corner, more and more people are dressing him up as Frankenstein’s Creature and … 😭😭😭
The original Frankenstein’s Creature is not the green and bolted silent figure you’re probably more familiar with. He’s a man of letters. He loves words and philosophy. His One Big Thing is trying to connect to other people, to be considered and treated the same as - but being consistently rejected by - everyone who meets him because they refuse to see him as anything but a monster.
He is a living mosaic, built from the people around him both literally and figuratively, and it is this constant rejection and denial of his personhood that eventually drives him to more violent and destructive acts.
Frankenstein builds his Creature because - I mean mainly he builds the Creature because he’s a little bitch with half a semester’s worth of a bachelor’s degree who thinks he knows better than all his professors and God themself - but the Creature is initially built in the blind euphoria of idealism. He builds his Creature to be the most perfect, the most beautiful, being he can. This naive idealism, driven primarily by ambition and hubris, is quickly brought crashing into reality as the consequences of what he’s done, the “catastrophe” that is at the heart of his actions, the living being he has brought to life, stares him down.
Honestly, there are connections to draw all over the place between L’Manberg, Wilbur, The Creature, and Frankenstein, all with their own delectable nuances and symbolism. They all mesh together in an exploration of identity, creation, and the responsibility we hold for others, ourselves, and what we create, but what I’m particularly drawn to tonight is the idea of a creature, brought into the world beautiful and shining, with all the expectations of success, a creature who grounds their understanding of the world in the books they read and the people they meet, and who eventually, specifically because people refused to acknowledge their humanity - the innate preciousness of the individual life we each possess - that because this creature was not given the right resources, space, or care, to become their truest and best selves, partially through their own stubborness, partially through the neglect and ignorance of others, despite being a fully cognitive, intelligent, and emotionally rich person, so ready to love the world and the people in it, was only ever rejected by that world and called a monster, and eventually gave up, deciding that if the world saw them as a monster, a villain, they would do everything in their power to become worthy of that title. Because what is the use of trying to be a good person if no matter what you do, at every turn, no one will ever acknowledge or see you for who you truly are, and that maybe, if this is how everyone sees you, if this is your true purpose in life, and if you are fulfilling your life’s true purpose, surely, even if you’re not a good person, you can be good at being a person.
“Tommy are we the bad guys? … Then let’s be the bad guys!”
“If I cannot inspire love, I will cause fear”
And in the end, because in fact you do have a moral code, and you are a good person, and you have actually been holding yourself accountable for the terrible things you’ve been doing this whole time, your self loathing has reached such a peak that you truly believe the world would have been better off if you had never existed at all.
“My unfinished symphony! Forever unfinished!”
“Kill me, Phil. Phil, kill me. Phil, stab me with the sword. Murder me now.”
"I shall die, and what I now feel be no longer felt. Soon these burning miseries will be extinct. I shall ascend my funeral pile triumphantly and exult in the agony of the torturing flames. The light of that conflagration will fade away; my ashes will be swept into the sea by the winds."
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You know what, no. Everybody's talking about how there are always other people outside the core on shift with them, and these people barely have names—someone might occasionally refer to one of them by name, but they sure as HELL don't get nicknames.
So I submit to to you that Evan "Buck" Buckley had already decided that they were going to keep this overly attractive army man by the time they were on their way to that first call together—even if he was also going to be a little pissbaby about it—because otherwise why would he possibly care about a nickname for someone he wasn't already begrudgingly accepting into their fold ????
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Chispas Does a Meta, Pt. I
and it doesn’t even mention Daario*...I know, right?
Sometimes I live in the country,
Sometimes I live in the town;
Sometimes I get a great notion
To jump into the river … and drown - Lead Belly
(Above quote used for no reason whatsoever)
Chapters in Question
Daenerys X AGOT
Jon III ADWD
I will also be pulling a few quotes from Daenerys IX AGOT & Daenerys I ACOK. For funsies.
Why these chapters? Fire & Blood sacrifices, baby.
Let’s meet our sacrificial lambs
Daenerys X, AGOT
Bound hand and foot, Mirri Maz Duur watched from the dust with disquiet in her black eyes. “It is not enough to kill a horse,” she told Dany. “By itself, the blood is nothing. You do not have the words to make a spell, nor the wisdom to find them. Do you think bloodmagic is a game for children? You call me maegi as if it were a curse, but all it means is wise. You are a child, with a child’s ignorance. Whatever you mean to do, it will not work. Loose me from these bonds and I will help you.”
Get it? Mirri is Lhazareen...who the Dothraki call Lamb men...lamb...sacrificial la— oh never mind.
“I am tired of the maegi’s braying,” Dany told Jhogo. He took his whip to her, and after that the godswife kept silent.
(above quote used and in bold for no reason whatsoever)
Jon III, ADWD
They brought forth the King-Beyond-the-Wall with his hands bound by hempen rope and a noose around his neck.
The Ghost of Christmas future is blowing in to remind everyone who only watched the show, or forgot everything that happened in ADWD, that it’s actually Rattleshirt who is sacrificed, glamored to look like our boy Mance...for reasons.
Speaking of reasons…
CHISPAS….Why ARE WE DOING HUMAN SACRIFICE? Isn’t that like...a crime against humanity**?
We can’t only gaslight and gatekeep our way into being girlbosses, okay? Sometimes we need to do a little murder. Still, for those of you who have forgotten what the context is for these two parallel sacrifices, let me bring you up to speed.
Daenerys X, AGOT is the very last chapter of book I. Dany just lost her baby, her warmongering baby daddy, and all of his warriors and riches (all the slaves worth any $$), because of 300 years of incest and some blood magic gone wrong (thanks Jorah). Despite Dany knowing who to blame (see exhibit A), Mirri had to open her mouth and go all sassy pants with her “liberator” (see exhibit B), so when Dany decides to try a little blood magic of her own, it’s the woman who pays (because for a fantasy, this series has quite a bit of unbearable realism).
Ser Jorah had killed her son, Dany knew. He had done what he did for love and loyalty, yet he had carried her into a place no living man should go and fed her baby to the darkness. He knew it too; the grey face, the hollow eyes, the limp. - Daenerys IX, AGOT
“You knew,” Dany said when they were gone. She ached, inside and out, but her fury gave her strength. “You knew what I was buying, and you knew the price, and yet you let me pay it.”
“It was wrong of them to burn my temple,” the heavy, flat-nosed woman said placidly. “That angered the Great Shepherd.”
“This was no god’s work,” Dany said coldly. If I look back I am lost. “You cheated me. You murdered my child within me.”
“The stallion who mounts the world will burn no cities now. His khalasar shall trample no nations into dust.”
“I spoke for you,” she said, anguished. “I saved you.”
“Saved me?” The Lhazareen woman spat. “Three riders had taken me, not as a man takes a woman but from behind, as a dog takes a bitch. The fourth was in me when you rode past. How then did you save me? I saw my god’s house burn, where I had healed good men beyond counting. My home they burned as well, and in the street I saw piles of heads. I saw the head of a baker who made my bread. I saw the head of a boy I had saved from deadeye fever, only three moons past. I heard children crying as the riders drove them off with their whips. Tell me again what you saved.”
Mirri Maz Duur laughed cruelly. “Look to your khal and see what life is worth, when all the rest is gone.”
Goodnight Irene, goodnight Irene, I'll see you in my dreams...Chispas has nothing to say about the above quote. Mirri does a bang-up job of explaining herself.
Where were we now? A yes. The King-beyond-the-Wall of it all.
Approximately one thousand years ago, in A Storm of Swords, when the Wall was under siege by Mance Rayder and his merry horde of wildings, Stannis “epitome of middle child syndrome” Baratheon showed up out of the BLUE to save the Night’s Watch while Jon “most conflicted boi in the North” Snow was supposed to be assassinating Mance. Instead, during the ensuing battle beneath the Wall, Jon guards Mance's tent while his wife, Dalla, gives birth...and dies. Look at Jon: protecting babies, while Jorah...unwittingly murders them. I digress. This is not a meta about Jon and Jorah.
After the battle Jon goes through it. He is imprisoned, released, offered Winterfell and a wilding wife, turns that down, and ends up 998th Commander of the Night’s Watch. Can I get a woop woop for Samwell Tarly?
More importantly for my very important ramblings, during the battle beneath the Wall, Mance is captured by the forces of Stannis Baratheon, along with a bunch of the wildings who weren’t strong enough to escape; a.k.a. the women, children, his baby, elderly, sickly, & injured (this is important later).
Stannis parks his ass at Castle Black and he and Jon Snow set themselves up for a real Chandler/Joey roommate situation in the upcoming A Dance with Dragons.
Gods...that was so much exposition. Can we get back to the murder, already?
Not yet...because I’m tired of typing. On the next episode of Chispas Does a Meta, look forward to “Murder Pyre Assembly for Dummies” & “Dueling Maid-of-Honor Speeches...if your Wedding is actually a Murder, and your guests are literal captives”
*Daario, you blue-bearded rogue - Part II is fourthcoming (as in it will arrive in approximately four years)
**For Planetos legal inquiries, please contact….literally anyone else.
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ASOS Dany I
● Summary ○ My thoughts
● This chapter opens with Daenerys aboard the Balerion, watching her dragons chase each other and feeling as happy as she could ever remember being. The ship had met a squall six days into the voyage that terrified the Dothraki, but Daenerys was not frightened because her name was Stormborn, given for her birth amidst a storm far greater than the squall. Dany remembers telling her brother how fine she thought being a sailor would be, but he had hurt her and screamed at her for it. She still misses her brother for who he used to be, the brother that let her creep into his bed while he told her stories of the Seven Kingdoms. Dany had won over the captain of the ship since her dragons had consumed the rats and his sailors loved to watch them fly, they took pride in “their” dragons, but not so much as Dany.
○ Daenerys still longs for a simple life, she is happy sailing the ocean and watching her dragons. She had wanted to be a sailor but Viserys quickly crushed that dream so she feels immense happiness on this journey. Dany still mourns for him and finds herself missing him despite everything he had done to her. I hate seeing people say that Dany wanted him dead or that she flat out stopped caring about him, that’s not true. Dany was born on Dragonstone, a volcanic island that SMOKES and smells of sulfur and brimstone, during one of the greatest storms Westeros had ever seen, the SEA raged outside and smashed her father’s fleet. Dany was born amidst smoke and salt (a ham??), just reiterating the Azor Ahai imagery.
● Jorah strikes up a conversation with Dany about dragons. Jorah lets her know that dragons live beyond men but doesn’t know exactly how long since Targaryen dragons were bred for war and that was how they died. It is no easy thing to kill a dragon, but it can be done. Arstan joins in the conversation and says that Balerion lived to be 200 years old and that dragons never stop growing so long as they have food and freedom. Arstan mentions that he had the honor of meeting Aerys and Dany asks if he was good and gentle, to which Arstan replies that he was at times, but harsh to those he thought his enemies. Arstan mentions Viserys as “prince” in passing to which Dany corrects him with “King”. She asks Arstan about Rhaegar being a warrior, he hesitates, and she replies that he may speak freely to her. He tells her that words do not win battles, and that Rhaegar was bookish until he read a passage that pushed him to want to become a warrior, then Arstan excuses himself to assist Belwas.
○ Dany learns important information in the conversation; dragons can live to 200 years, they never stop growing so long as they have food and freedom (no walls or chains), and that her father was not as good and gentle a man as she thought given the look on Arstan’s face (this is the first step to her learning his true character). I love that even after Viserys’s death she refuses to have his name dishonored or titled incorrectly. She never sought to rob Viserys of kingship and although he never ruled, he was her king. I think it says a lot about Dany’s character that she still misses Viserys and respects him even after she is free from his abuses when most im her position would curse him.
● Once Arstan leaves, Jorah advises Dany to take his words well salted. ~“A queen must listen to all," she reminded him. "The highborn and the low, the strong and the weak, the noble and the venal. One voice may speak you false, but in many there is always truth to be found." She had read that in a book.~ A wind picks up and Dany is thankful to be moving fast again. She ponders her future arrival in Westeros and thinks to herself that it will be a beautiful sight to behold. Later that night Dany is naked in bed, her handmaids are in bed with her because they all sleep together. Jorah knocks on the door and Dany pulls up the covers then invites him in, sending her handmaids away so that they may speak in private. Dany shows him that she is training her dragons by tossing a piece of meat in the air for them and saying “dracarys” to which Drogon sears and consumes it. Jorah suggests to her that Artstan and Belwas may be the betrayers forewarned by the Undying, but Dany brushes this off since Arstan saved her life. He keeps trying to convince her to mistrust them and to be more weary of Illyrio. "It seems to me that a queen who trusts no one is as foolish as a queen who trusts everyone. Every man I take into my service is a risk, I understand that, but how am I to win the Seven Kingdoms without such risks? Am I to conquer Westeros with one exile knight and three Dothraki bloodriders?" Jorah finally tells her to set course for Slaver’s Bay to purchase Unsullied, that she can return to Illyrio in her own time to test his loyalty.
○ Dany loves to read books and takes the wisdom she learns from them to heart, her quote shows just the kind of Queen she is going to be; one who listens to all and draws her own conclusions with the information presented to her. Dany has a habit of idealizing Westeros, but she can’t be blamed for that since she grew up hearing only glorified tales of it from Viserys. She also has no idea just how ravaged by the War of the Five Kings the country is, it will be heartbreaking for her to see the country she wishes to rule destroyed and the smallfolk suffering. Daenerys, with no solid knowledge on how to train dragons, is very clever to begin associating “dracarys” with searing meat for the dragons, they are already highly responsive to the word. Dany knows that Jorah’s suspicions come from a place of caring, but she finds his obstinacy rightfully troubling. She knows that she cannot mistrust everyone and depend on him and her bloodriders alone, her quote is very wise and very true. Despite not having a formal education, Dany is naturally a leader with good sense and reads to educate herself often, an excellent quality of her character.
● Jorah tells Dany the story of the Three Thousand to convince her that the Unsullied are worth it, she can return to Illyrio but with a thousand swords at her back instead one one. She finds wisdom in his words but asks how she is to purchase them, he tells her that the trade of the ships would be enough. She says that they belong to Illyrio and despite being a friend of House Targaryen she shouldn’t steal from him, but Jorah convinces her that a true ally would lend her his wealth or else he is Xaro with four chins. She questions if her captains would change course, what Arstan and Belwas would do, and Jorah urges her to find out. Dany excitedly agrees to Jorah’s proposal and jumps up, forgetting her nakedness before Jorah and grabbing clothes from her bunk. Dany doesn’t have time to react when Jorah grabs her and kisses her. When it ends she covers herself and says that he should not have done that, she is his Queen, not his woman. He tells her she should take him as a husband, and the chapter ends.
○ Daenerys is unsure of Jorah’s councel, but recognizes that having a small army at her back would give her more protection and more power upon returning to Illyrio. This also gives her the opportunity to test the loyalty of Illyrio, her captains, Arstan, and Belwas which would put Jorah’s suspicions as well as her own to rest. Dany knows that Jorah desires her, but this is the first time that he acted on his desires and he did so without her consent. He crossed her boundaries, and it sets her on edge to be around him afterward. This is the beginning of Dany realizing just how clouded Jorah is by his own desire for her and how it can lead to his judgement being biased. She does care about him, but if he is to be her advisor he must give her helpful councel that will assist in her goals, not his personal motive to win her heart.
Art 1 by Veronica V. Jones 😄
Art 2 by Gary Gianni 🥰
I've been working a lot lately so sadly I lost my streak of a chapter a day for Dany month 😩 Still continuing my reread and analysis though!
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Hiiii!!! Me again :^) I’ll go crazy if I think too much abt Grissom suffering from land sickness so I’ll change the pace here haha
I know you’re more privy to the little details from the show so I’m curious as to what your thoughts are on the “throwback” ID pictures they showed?
These bother me so much because the details are simply… incorrect??? Grissom’s eyes are blue and why does it say Captain? And Sara isn’t 5’7” - she’s 5’10” (well, Jorja is). So now I’m just confused. Is this really just carelessness on the props department’s side or is there something wrong with LVPD’s archive 😂 because even Hodges’ ID was a mess. although if it was faked, you’d think Sara or Grissom would’ve pointed it out already lol
Thank you so much for indulging all of our questions and sharing us your thoughts! <3
i think the props are just bad, honestly.
like you mentioned, the hodges documents from the premiere were an absolute mess, and then the case files grissom was looking at last week somehow were even worse.
these old badges are just more of the same.
not only is the problem of the bad information basically universal to all prop documents we've seen so far, supposedly doctored or not, but the problem is also not one that's being acknowledged by any characters within the world of the show; that so, i've got to believe it's something that's not actually meant to be part of the narrative.
i mean, grissom straight up tells sara that the fucked up case files are "authentic," mentioning nothing of the fact that just about every detail on them is egregiously wrong, which means that to him, within the universe of the show, they must look okay.
we as the audience are not supposed to have noticed that none of the dates, descriptors, or even simple personal stats on these licenses, badges, case files, newspaper articles, etc. checks out.
clearly, the production crew doesn't either expect or even really want us to be screenshotting this stuff.
they're not intending for it to be read closely.
they just want us to get the gist of "oh, this is a case file!" or "this article is about hodges!" or whatever; they don't mean for us to read past the titles at the top of the documents, much less to try to find clues in the fine print.
as for the badges specifically, grissom's is one that was actually used on the original series back in s1 and sara's was used in s2.
though the version that they use for sara in the reboot also claims that she’s a forensic psychologist, which what the hell is up with that?
they were wrong on grissom's rank and eye color and sara's height back then, too.
yay for consistency, i guess?
why they were so off on what should have been some very straightforward information, i don't know, though i think the answer there is ultimately the same one as above: i.e., they never intended for us to look too closely at that stuff.
anyway, at the rate they're going with this, we'll probably see a lot more misinformation listed on prop documents before this season is over.
how far will they go to give grissom and sara a height difference they've never actually had?
thanks for the question! please feel welcome to send another any time.
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THE MISCONCEPTION ABOUT COMMENTING ON FIC
I’ve read all kinds of posts both from writers and readers lamenting about comments on fic. Authors are upset when they don’t get any, readers don’t know what kinds of comments to leave, etc. And it finally clicked in my brain why I think a lot of people don’t bother writing comments.
And this is what it boils down to:
Writers do not want praise.
We just want to talk about our story.
I can’t speak for everyone obviously - but I think the majority of writers don’t care so much for the “omg you’re a brilliant writer!!” comments as much as we just want to hear your thoughts on the story. Even if it’s just your thoughts as you’re reading of “oooh x happened! I can’t believe y said this! What’s going to happen now that z has happened?!” We literally just want to talk about what we’ve written like you would with a friend about a tv show. We’re not out here demanding praise like some entitled narcissist.
While praising our writing skills or writing style is appreciated, it doesn’t need to be said on every fic and every chapter that you read. If you regularly comment on someone’s work that’s telling enough that you like our technique. Readers shouldn’t feel pressured to have to praise a writer’s abilities every time they want to comment.
In the grand scheme of things, talking about the fic/chapter is actually more helpful to us writers instead of spewing praise. It’s the same with artwork. As nice as it is that people tell me “wow your art is so pretty!” it’s a LOT more useful to me to get comments like “I love their expressions!” or “the lighting on this is gorgeous!” because then I know WHAT people are liking about it. If no one ever comments on my backgrounds, I now know what to improve. If most people comment on liking the expressions, I now know the strong points of my art and can use it to my advantage to make even better art in the future.
The same goes for fic. If multiple people tell me they liked a certain part of the story I now know that things similar to that are a hit. It’s feedback I can use to improve the story and give my readers more of what they want. Without that I have no idea what they like about the fic.
Talking with a writer about their story also gives them inspiration!! Nothing gets us more in the mood to work on a fic than to have people wanting to talk about it. A lot of times just talking about one of my fics with someone will give me that push to continue working on it. Getting a comment that just says “great chapter” or “you’re a great writer” doesn’t do much to motivate us to continue that particular fic. But if you talk about the story and the characters it gives us motivation to continue working on it, may even give us ideas for future chapters. I would hope that those of you with “comment anxiety” find this approach so much easier than trying to praise the writer every time you read.
So that fic the author hasn’t updated in forever that you’re dying to read? Talk to them about the fic and the elements of the story! It will make the writer want to talk to you about it and will get their mind thinking about it, hopefully inspiring them to continue where they left off. Fics that are left in silence are more likely to be abandoned or even deleted because nothing feels worse than putting your heart into a story to have no one say anything about it.
TLDR; Writers do not want praise, we just want to talk with our readers about the story itself, and these are the kinds of comments that inspire us to keep writing more.
AMENDMENT >>> Some people are misinterpreting my words so I just wanted to make something clear. I am not trying to police how people comment - I am merely reassuring readers that not every writer is an entitled asshole who expects you to comment about how talented they are and what a gift they are to the fandom. I’ve seen this attitude in writers occasionally and I want people to know that most of us writers are not like that. We love any and all comments but you do not ever need to feel pressured to say how amazing we are and lick our boots. There is nothing wrong with praising the writer, in fact a lot of us love it, but it is not something that should be required if you feel inclined to comment.
A good writer will love any positive comment whether there be praise or not. A good writer will never have expectations or demand something of their readers. A good writer will appreciate their readers and cherish the comments they receive.
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I meant to have this out for @jedijune’s first prompt, “There is no emotion, there is peace,” but oh, well.
Obi-Wan is sometimes accused of being somewhat repressed – not demonstrative enough, not emotional enough. On the other hand, he’s just as often characterized as an emotional wreck.
What struck me while going through some of the hardest moments of his life is how powerful his emotions actually are when he is faced with loss. More often than not, you can see the passion, the fear, or the heartbreak.
But far from being wrecked by those feelings, Obi-Wan deals with them with the endurance and steadfastness of a Jedi. Obi-Wan feels very deeply, there’s no question about that, but what makes it so poignant is how quiet his grief actually is, once the initial emotional reaction has passed.
Obi-Wan can’t help but feel deeply, that’s who he is. His instinctive emotions are just as strong as anyone else’s. But Obi-Wan’s grief – the bone-deep sorrow that lingers past the first emotional reaction, that carries years into a person’s life, the conscious pain brought forth by loss – is very soft. It’s clearly deep as well, but it’s contained, private.
It’s very Jedi of him, to feel so much, and yet to only allow himself to express it quietly – unobtrusively. To only choose to be calm and measured once he is in control of himself. To strive for peace.
I just love that aspect of him. Powerful, but quiet.
Just like his love.
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i love subverting expectations. oh you think tubbo’s an uwu bee boy? surprise bitch he’s the most dangerous character around. oh you think tubbo is frightening and feral and unsafe? SIKE he’s a kind and caring father and the most weary but helpful person on the server.
oh you think ranboo is tall and scary… WRONG he’s an awkward, no thoughts head empty, house husband. you think ranboo is pure and adorable?? well you’re WRONG he’s a little shit and he makes dirty jokes all the time for fun.
you think tommys annoying well buddy i have some news… his friends love him to death because he’s the most endearing person out there. ALSO tommys not soft he’s evil and eats mud and bites !
no matter what you are wrong and i am right and you are forced to watch as i keep them perfectly in character while still confusing you
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one thing I can't get over (besides the entire episode) is the way sam scattered small, quiet moments over these seven hours to show how far veth has come
she takes a level in wizard. the man who was with her at her lowest point and brought her back to herself, the one whom she's watched over and guided to the door of his self-imposed cage. her best friend. he'll be a part of her, always
she gives her ring of water walking to luc. she doesn't need that safety net anymore, even as she lives by the coast. no, she doesn't need to carry that weight. it has far more use as a token her son can use to wreak havoc and fun
she passes on her flask. the shadows of her trauma might always be there, but the light from her family and her friends is enough to overpower them. kingsley needs it more, now, for he has a hard road ahead. she's veth the brave, and brave all on her own
she shares a kind word with wensforth. she may be back in her own body now, but she walked a mile in the skin of a goblin, and I like to think she's made peace with the pain she suffered at goblin hands
and at the end of it all, she lives out her days with her husband and her child, but she's no mere housewife, and she never loses that spark of adventure she found. no, she works side by side with yeza in his apothecary, a partner in experimentation, not an assistant. she opens that detective agency with jester (and let's be real, they probably create more chaos than they solves mysteries). she starts a summer camp for other kids and imparts the wonders that mischief and a little magic can bring
it may not be an epic conclusion of exploring the high seas or rooting out corruption in a broken system. but it's not settling, either. she's come so far and discovered so much about herself, and she isn't letting any of it go. it feels right.
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Other people are doing brilliant meta on this already, but I just need to process Essek’s grief over the initial failed resurrection.
Because the m9 have been doing the impossible from the moment he first saw them! He’s seen them pull off miracles so many times. from pulling out a beacon to save their friend’s husband to ending an international war, he has seen them succeed wildly, unexpectedly, unbelievably, far more than he has ever seen them fail.
and even when he has seen them fail? when they begged him to help them get to where yasha was to try and get her home? and they came back battered and beaten and grieving, without her? they still didn’t give up! they basically, to his point of view, vanished off the face of the earth for a few weeks, and then showed back up in the queen’s throne room, with yasha by their side, having killed an unkillable monstrosity to get her back! he doesn’t know how they did it - he just knows that she was gone and now she’s here and they did it, somehow, and essek is not a man of faith but holy shit he has seen these people work miracles.
he helps them with veth’s spell, yeah - but then it fails! and off they go again, disheartened but not defeated, and the next time he sees them - there she is! she’s a halfling again! again, he doesn’t know how, but here they are, apparently breaking the fundamental laws of reality for their friends, once again.
and just that day, maybe a few hours earlier? he watched beauregard force this city to bend to her will to show them the way to another lost friend, and he watched caleb reach out into yussa’s corrupted astral form and bring him back to himself, to save him and send him home.
and so, even though essek is painfully aware of the unfairness of the world, and even though he is, in his own way, deeply practical and unsure if bringing molly back is even really a good idea -- he lets himself believe for a moment that he’s going to see one more mighty nein miracle. He lets himself believe that the Mighty Nein’s love for each other has the power to change what should by all reasonable measures be impossible to change. he finds himself, for the first time, experiencing faith, not in gods but in his friends.
and then it doesn’t work.
after everything, after all that they’ve gone through, it doesn’t work. and at last, the mighty nein seem to have run out of hope. out of ideas. out of miracles.
of course the world isn’t fair. of course it’s not. he knows it’s not. but he’d let himself believe, just for a moment, just this once, it might be.
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i recently replayed portal 2 (again) and i'm having trouble putting it into words but. the way that this story does grief is something that resonates stronger and stronger with me the older i get and the more i lose.
just, the story of old aperture is a story told through scar tissue. it's a tragedy that tells you upfront it's a tragedy, and you can see the downfall before cave gets it on the tapes, but even so it still hurts in the end. the fact that cave johnson's last legacy is a recording of him breaking down over and to no one. the fact that caroline is so essential to glados that she would remain when glados is stripped to her most basic systems, but that unmaking is also the only way glados could remember her.
how grief is this cavernous structure under the surface that still pulses and some of the lights still flicker. that we are built on it even if we can't remember it's there.
you unlocked something that taught me about myself. you are trouble and you are bad for me and i love you and for that you have to go. and when you turn around, that which was your whole life looks so tiny from the outside.
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Thinking about how c!wilbur uses repetition to reinforce things he says but does not actually believe, or when he is in a particularly bad mental spiral, and how he uses it to reinforce his own narrative over reality, reframing and actively shaping the narrative of his life, lending reasoning to the destructive choices he makes ...
“Tubbo’s like, ‘I’ll be your spy!’. And then we’ve got like Fundy who’s like saying to everyone’s twitch chats that he’s gonna revolt against us. And you’ve got Eret giving us fucking potatoes, that say fucking ‘I’m gonna be friends with you’. It’s bullshit! It’s all bullshit!” - (Wilbur’s Vod: who are you go away: 1:13:22, 8th Oct 2020)
“Everyone who’s claiming to be on our side, they’re lying to us! Tubbo?! He’s lying to you man! He would drop us at the second he realises we’re not in the lead anymore!” - (Wilbur’s Vod: who are you go away: 1:16:15, 8th Oct 2020)
“I have to light it, I’ve got to light it, I’ve got to light it.” - (Wilbur’s Vod: The Festival: 1:08:17, 16th Oct 2020)
“He [Technoblade] fucking killed Tubbo, he killed Tubbo. He fucking killed Tubbo.” - (Wilbur’s Vod: The Festival: 1:08:08, 16th Oct 2020)
“It’s just as exactly as I predicted- It’s as exactly as I predicted, it’s exactly as I predicted. This is just all a travesty.” - (Wilbur’s Vod: The Festival: 1:17:59, 16th Oct 2020)
“Don’t get me wrong, don’t get me wrong, it’s fine that you’re a traitor, I like it, I like it, it’s cool.” - (Wilbur’s Vod: The Festival: 1:23:39, 16th Oct 2020)
“No, no. You know what, no, no, no, wait, wait, wait, wait, this is, yeah. Let me make a point. This is perfect! No, no, no, no. Look, Tommy, this is perfect. Tommy, this is absolutely magnificent.” - (Wilbur’s Vod: The Festival: 1:15:15, 16th Oct 2020)
Followed shortly by:
“Ah that’s perfect, that is perfect. That is absolutely perfect. Thank you, thank you. I am honestly, I’m satisfied with today.” - (Wilbur’s The Festival: 1:28:26, 16th Oct 2020)
And November 16th, holy shit, Wilbur repeats himself so much, it hurts:
Whenever I'm here, I'm reminded of the song that I've scribbled on the walls. That - That you know, that there was a special place, there was, was a special place, where men could go and emancipate, you know, and there was definitely - That special place did exist once. It did. It did. (Wilbur’s Smithereens (L'manberg Finale), 1:12:13, 16 Nov 2020)
The thing that I built this nation for doesn't exist anymore! The thing I worked towards doesn't exist anymore. (Wilbur’s Smithereens (L'manberg Finale), 1:13:12, 16 Nov 2020)
We just made Tubbo President! We, we - um - we elected Tubbo as president and - (Wilbur’s Smithereens (L'manberg Finale), 1:13:46, 16 Nov 2020)
Have you heard the song on the walls, before? Have you heard the song? I was just saying - I made this big point - and it w - and it was poignant! And it was that it's um, that there was a special place where men could go, but it's not there anymore, you know? (Wilbur’s Smithereens (L'manberg Finale), 1:14:38, 16 Nov 2020)
I'm always so close to pressing this button, Phil! I have been - I have been here, like, seven or eight times I have been here! Seven or eight times. (Wilbur’s Smithereens (L'manberg Finale), 1:14:58, 16 Nov 2020)
Phil: And you want to just blow it all up?
Wilbur: I do. I do. I think I - (Wilbur’s Smithereens (L'manberg Finale), 1:15:21, 16 Nov 2020)
I don't even know if it works anymore, Phil. I don't even know if the button works. I could - I could press it and it might - (Wilbur’s Smithereens (L'manberg Finale), 1:15:30, 16 Nov 2020)
Wilbur: Phil - There was a saying, Phil - I'm gonna turn down these bloody fireworks - Phil, there - there was a saying, Phil, uh, by a traitor, uh, once part of L'Manburg, a traitor, I don't know if you've heard of Eret?
Wilbur: He had a saying, Phil. It was never meant to be! (Wilbur’s Smithereens (L'manberg Finale), 1:15:51, 16 Nov 2020)
Deliberately repeating Eret’s phrase is I think particularly interesting.
And the most brutal of all:
Wilbur: Kill me, Phil. Phil, kill me. Phil, kill me! Phil, stab me with the sword, murder me now. Kill - Kill me. Killza! Killza! Do it! Kill me, Phil. Murder me. Look! They all want you to! Do it, Phil. Kill me. Phil, kill me! (Wilbur’s Smithereens (L'manberg Finale), 1:16:51, 16 Nov 2020)
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I'm intigued by the juxtaposition of the Buck and Eddie balcony talk in 5x04 and the Buck and Taylor opening scene in 5x05.
(And the fact that narratively these scenes follow one another—this is the first we've seen of Buck since his talk with Eddie, if I'm not mistaken—and the 5x05 opener starts with those aerial shots that mimic the post-blackout ones in 5x03 immediately before Buck returns to the empty apartment that looks as isolated and claustrophobic as that loft ever has with the behind the stairs shot and a decidedly absent Taylor, and then in 5x05, we get these lonely aerial shots as the lyrics angel from heaven / please hear my plea / will you return and come back to me that start to fade out when we get back into the loft, and there's Taylor. Which was an interesting choice?)
But I'm not here to analyze the cinematography and music choices right now, so let's move on.
I am, however, truly intrigued by the conversation between Buck and Taylor here because it contrasts the talk with Eddie so starkly. Taylor's talking about the team kind of in passing—in the way you would when someone tells you about someone you don't really know, but you know it's important to them. Her attempt at comfort that tries to dig a little deeper goes back to a personal story of her own experience, not back to Buck and the team. And the advice she's giving isn't bad, exactly, but it so very separate from the actual situation Buck is experiencing. It highlights the way Taylor is still an outsider. Not for Buck, but with the 118. And I don't necessarily think that means much, but it does strike me as interesting that she hasn't started to build any kind of relationships with them, even though we know she has interacted with them. She was even there at Bobby and Athena's (I think?) in 4x12, and then of course the 2x06 debacle. So she's not a stranger to the 118, and yet she still so much is based on this conversation. She has this place in Buck's life where she seems to care and be making a bit of an effort, and yet she doesn't know enough about the team to reassure him beyond simple gestures and then a personal story that's only peripherally related.
Eddie, on the other hand, has an intimate knowledge of the situation and of everyone in it. Which is why it had to be Eddie last episode and not Taylor—it absolutely had to be Eddie because Taylor just doesn't know Buck the same way. She doesn't know the team. She doesn't know Maddie. She doesn't know Chimney. And she doesn't know the inner workings of Buck's relationships with them. Eddie knows everyone involved, and more importantly, he knows (and understands) the nuances of how Buck views Maddie and he's been both the one leaving and the one being left in his own marriage, so he has an intimate knowledge of every aspect of this conflict and he can help Buck take a bird's-eye view of the situation.
And while it should be obvious why it had to be Eddie, the choice to open 5x05 with this exchange between Buck and Taylor that highlights the difference in the way Eddie knows Buck versus how Taylor knows Buck—and the fact that she really doesn't yet because so much of who Buck is is tied up in his family—feels really important here.
And, now, I personally don't have anything against Taylor. I quite like her and the fact that she's trying, and I could see their relationship growing in the future. And to be 100% honest, I don't necessarily expect anything canonically romantic to come of Buck and Eddie's relationship.
But regardless of whether or not Buck and Eddie could go canon romantically, they still have a deeply important place in one another's lives, and this is highlighted so obviously here. And it makes me desperate to see Buck and Eddie actually talk through some shit. Like, we have these two conversations that parallel one another and highlight what it looks like for Buck to have a conversation with a best friend who is so deeply entwined in Buck's life that he has intimate knowledge of Buck's history with his sister and his parents and with chimney and can therefore immediately see straight to the heart of the issue. Versus the relationship with the new-ish girlfriend who is just learning who he is and can't offer him what he really needs from a conversation like this.
There is something under the surface here, and I would bet anything that it is tied up in the shooting and the guardianship reveal and the fact that Buck still views himself as expendable (and obviously also tied up with Eddie's own issues, but I'm on Buck at the moment, so we're gonna keep it there for now).
Buck is so obviously isolating himself (I mean, obviously, it's made very clear in the 5x05 narrative). He's isolating himself so far that he feels outside of the team. He's removed himself because he believes he's at fault, but he's removed himself so far that everything that's happening around him feels off. And yeah, that's in part because Chim's not there, but it's also because Buck's not there. He's created his own self-fulfilling prophecy (and isn't it a bitch when we do that shit to ourselves). He hasn't been in the team. He's hovering around the edges. Focused on Ravi on calls, hanging out downstairs instead of in the loft when in the station. He makes the decision to go through with his talk when he walks upstairs and, specifically, when he sees Eddie joking around with Ravi. When he sees Ravi standing in his place. What Buck sees is the team moving on without him. What he doesn't seem to recognize is that, had he not removed himself to the boundaries, he would have been standing right there beside Eddie like every other day.
I am quite convinced that Eddie and Hen and Bobby "acting weird" is simply a trick of Buck's mind—of course they're acting weird. Buck's not there, not completely, he's stepping to the side, and he's so much at the heart of this team that of course that creates a feeling that everyone's being weird with him.
(I am also intrigued that Buck, instead of sitting beside Eddie, where he initially stops, moves past Ravi and sits himself as far away from Eddie as he can at that table. I haven't figured out what to do with that yet.)
And I don't remember exactly where I was going with this, but there's something in the idea of expendability. In the way Buck looks in on Eddie (and the team) and sees himself being replaced. In Buck's worry for Eddie in the first two episodes of the season.
I am so stressed that they went from this huge, dramatic trauma that, yes, they survived, and then gave us the will reveal, but then none of that has been dealt with. It's like they just moved on. And even in the end of 4x14, Buck is standing on the sidelines when he brings Eddie home. He steps aside and lingers in the doorway as Eddie greets the others he loves. And maybe that means nothing, but it doesn't feel like nothing, especially alongside this reveal.
Buck has just gone from literally living in Eddie's home, caring for Christopher, and suddenly we get the will reveal–which in the moment, Buck accepts with little question and a lot of awe. But then the moment he sees Eddie with the rest of his family, Buck looks on fondly from the outside—like he feels like he doesn't belong, even though the space is one with which he is intimately familiar. And it feels a lot like a moment where Buck feels it and believes it when Eddie tells him that Buck is his choice for Christopher. But then the moment Buck is faced with the reality of the others in Eddie's life, he steps back and suddenly feels like an outsider. Like maybe he's not enough and maybe he is just a guest hovering on the boundaries until something better comes along.
And I just need them to deal with the aftermath of all that trauma somewhere. There's this new situation, but the last one was never resolved, and in some ways it feels like they've taken steps backward. Like everything's just okay, and they've healed and everything is normal and they can just exist in this reality where Eddie didn't almost die under Buck's hands and Buck didn't drop everything to care for Christopher and Eddie didn't reveal that an entire fucking year before this incident he had deemed Buck so very important in their lives that he entrusted Buck with his son. his world.
And for that to just be something that happened and not a really. fucking. big. deal. connected to some serious trauma... well. It just doesn't feel right that nothing has come of that, and I have to wonder how much of Buck's family trauma weighs on him when it comes to the possibility that he could one day have to step up as legal guardian for Christopher without Eddie by his side and the self-doubt that would eat at him about that.
I am proud of Buck, in 5x05, for listening and hearing what everyone was saying. But I worry that that understanding is tentative at best and he could topple the moment he's faced with another moment where he feels like someone else could just as easily replace him.
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ok this is maybe kind of dumb but quackity telling slimecicle that snow is called coke actually gave me some hope for him
like. he's still in there. it's him. the quackity we know and love. it took somebody as bizarre as slimecicle to bring it out of him, but he's still hanging on. he sounded almost surprised to be making that joke - but he made it.
I don't think he's going to be pulling out of this spiral anytime soon. he has a long way down to go before he can even start to think of getting better. but it's comforting to know that he hasn't managed to cut the humor and joy out of himself entirely. it's buried deep, but somehow it's still hanging on.
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Honestly, Twice and Toga have goofy, huge-age-gap sibling energy. Twice is the overprotective himbo older brother who lives in a crappy apartment across town and cares more about others than himself. Toga is the chaotic I'll-fight-God younger sibling who likes to run with knives because Mom told her not to. Their age difference is what makes their friendship special. Siblings with huge age gaps (10-15+ years) have a unique bond because the older sibling is in a unique place of being an authority-wielding, responsible, wise adult without being a parent. They're just a cool older sibling who happens to be an adult, so that means they can take you places and buy you food and toys/stuff and hang out with you. They'll protect you when your parents aren't around. They won't nag or lecture or ground you like a parent would when you confide in them, and that's exactly what Twice is to Toga. If Twice ever saw Toga with a cigarette he'd definitely tell her, "hey you shouldn't smoke, it's bad for your health" after taking it from her and inhaling deeply like the nicotine fiend he is because he wants to steer her away from harm while also not pretending to be perfect. He's not her parent, so he doesn't have to be the example of a healthy adult or whatever. He can be real with her and be silly with her, and he is.
Toga and Twice get along because they see themselves in each other. They are two people who had their childhoods taken from them. Twice lost his parents at a young age and was forced to grow up too fast, and Toga wasn't allowed to be herself and was rejected by her parents. She lived on the streets by herself for a while, facing the world much sooner than she should have. Being left to fend for themselves took away their opportunity to be childlike - goofy, mischievous, carefree, to establish who they are as a person without being judged. That's why they act so dumb together - they have a mutual understanding, much like siblings raised by the same parents even though the older one left the house years ago.
Twice doesn't judge or reject or lecture or scold Toga like her parents did, and Toga's silliness is endearing to Twice, who is a funny guy himself when he's not overwhelmed with his trauma and mental illness. Toga doesn't call him names or think he's a loser like the rest of the world does. They both just want to be happy and be accepted, and they know that about each other. That's why they feed off each other's energy. They each have 1 braincell but when they're together the braincells cancel each other out, bringing their total brain power to 0.
But Twice knows he's older than her and therefore has some sort of responsibility, just like an adult sibling does. An adult sibling feels like a parent sometimes because at the end of the day they're an adult, and yknow what? Sometimes parents want to feel needed by their children. Everyone wants to feel needed sometimes, but especially Twice because he's been alone for so long, without a friend in the world, feeling unwanted. And it's interesting that Twice felt like Toga, the only minor in the League, needed him especially. Not Dabi, not Shigaraki, not Spinner. Toga. She was the youngest and he knew that he, as an adult, could be there for her.
In Toga, Twice found the opportunity to be a teenager again, to be young and do dumb shit with his friends - two things that were taken from him when life dealt him shitty cards. In Twice, Toga found a caring older brother figure who encourages her antics but also looks out for her wellbeing like a parent would, something that she never had before. And just like a younger sibling, she gets annoyed over being fussed about after the battle in Deika city. In her mind, she's okay so what's the big deal? But Twice is grieving what could have happened - Toga almost DIED and it was too close for comfort.
Thinking about Toga and Twice's relationship really hurts considering what happens to Twice. These two needed each other. They gave each other the empathy, understanding, unconditional acceptance, and friendship they were desperately seeking in this world that had rejected them many times over.
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I love that Amity, who's unused to giving love because she was always punished for expressing her feelings, was the one to make the first move with Luz, who's unused to receiving love because she was always made to feel like she's ““too much”” for people.
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Fenris: All that Andraste did long ago to end the tyranny of magic has been undone.
Anders: She ended the tyranny of magic and replaced it with an entirely new one.
Fenris: Considering all that magic has done to my homeland and my race, I weep for your predicament.
Merrill: She freed our people as well. But it was your Chantry that ended that.
Fenris: And who enslaved us in the first place? Don't be naïve.
This conversation is frustrating. Fenris comes so close to identifying colonialism as the real problem!
With Anders, this is one of the rare moments that Fenris actually verbally identifies with his race. Most of the time, like when Merrill tries to relate with him, he acts as if him being an elf has no meaning to him personally or no part of his story. But here he points out to Anders that he knows tyranny plenty well, as his people are subjected to plenty of it themselves. (This is also something that Anders has more than once shown his ignorant colours on.)
And yet with Merrill, Fenris calls her naïve when she rightfully points out the Chantry’s colonialism when he praises Andraste for her fight against Tevinter. “Who enslaved us in the first place?” Fenris means Tevinter mages, but that’s not the whole truth. Humans as a whole enslave elves all over Thedas, not just in Tevinter.
This bounces back to the way Fenris blames magic, not humans, as responsible for what has been / is being done to his people, with Anders. And this is what pisses me off, because it’s such a white writer’s line of thinking. It reeks of the same logic as those who claim “it was the disease small pox, not the settlers who used germ warfare, that killed millions of Indigenous peoples.” This displacement of responsibility onto magic instead of the people behind the acts, using magic as a means of creating their system of colonial power, is where Fenris is wrong.
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Anakin: *brags about never listening to the Council*
MEANWHILE, THE JEDI:
The entire Jedi Order: “ 🧡✨Let’s validate Anakin’s lessons and his methods, let’s praise him for Ahsoka’s qualities, let’s praise Ahsoka for being a credit to his teachings, let’s encourage them both to rely on each other and trust each other, and let’s even praise Artoo for the same things while we’re at it. ✨🧡”
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don’t mine me just thinking about how tommy told tubbo to act rational and stop being optimistic on disc day, when in reality tommy couldn’t even comprehend tubbo dying, versus tubbo who pretended to be confident but was 100% ready to not come back from the mountain
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