love getting sweet messages from my friends :’)
this is............ peak acting. also a great representation of what it’s like living in camelot when you’re a magic user hiding in plain sight. / don’t reblog.
Pls take this random assortment of dsmp “hcs” (which is actually just me rambling out my ass but we love to see it//)
- Sam just like gets really fuccn energetic in a thunderstorm... like just hyperactive but also like v strong..... also immune to electrocution :)
- He’s also like all creepers are, shit terrified of cats which is v funny considering he’s sorta friends with ant
- Even funnier if u want to take the ‘canon’ fact of ant being a whole ass 20 feet tall
- Speaking of ant and this absolutely isn’t a hc but I just find it very funny that people draw humanoid versions of all of the non human characters EXCEPT for ant who I have only ever seen drawn as a cat ghgh
- Bads skin colour is deadass vantablack like if he holds his hand in front of his face it just seemingly vanishes and you can’t pick out where his hand ends and face begins
- I want him to look terrifying.... like absolutely massive a complete unit of a man, sharp ass teeth, sharp spikes and horns, sharp claws, white glowing eyes........... but he’s just like “owo” at all times ghgh
- Skeppy has chronic pain from the diamonds growing inside his body and out of his skin... sometimes he ramps up how cheerful he is to try and hide how much pain he’s in that day
- Ranboo’s body is longer on his enderman side and so he physically can’t stand up straight unless his shorter leg is on a slope
- He’s half silverfish... mainly cause I think that’s funny like hehe both those and endermen are linked to the end/stronghold and can break blocks
- This does also mean he joins bad and skeppy in the ‘help I am v spiky’ club tho
- Also also like absolutely none of his clothes fit cause his limbs are so disproportionately long so rip his ankles in the tundra I guess
- Shortza supremacy
- Sapnap... blaze boy..... I want him to steam when he angy...... v warm to the touch and all of the dteam lay on top of him when it’s cold lmao
- George is like some weird ass mushroom man.... like he looks completely human for the most part but he’s not he just never tells anyone cause he has the mentality of ‘well no one ever asked?’ Or ‘it didn’t seem important’
- When he’s in danger the surrounding plants try to help him (like lmao there’s a war goin on? Nah just take a nap and miss out so you won’t get hurt :) )
- Imagine how much funnier the lmanberg saga would be if schlatt just looked like his profile icon rather than his mc skin.... just cute tiny sheep man in a sweater... I think it’d be like that one gif of the teddy bear slamming its head onto the table to acquire angy eyebrows
- Dreams has symmetrical white patches down the front of skin... kinda like vitiligo but not? Like deadass pure white
- I also kinda just imagine him having creepy solid black eyes ghgh (haha it’s cause he’s possessed)
- He’s immortal and kinda just snapped tbh like half the reason his actions are so manipulative, selfish and drastic are both because he’s so desperate to have control over things in his life and because low-key he kinda hopes that people will find a way to kill him off or get rid of the thing possessing him (I just want a happy ending :( make him not evil pls my poor heart can’t take a non happy for everyone ending//)
- Puffy is fluffy :) I will not elaborate further
- Revived people have creepy blacked out maybe kinda glowing eyes.... paler skin.... scars and phantom pains from their injuries....
- Phil just deadass found Wilbur hiding inside a fridge and took him home with him... wil just assumed the fridge was his mom and Phil found it too funny to correct him
- Tubbo is a moobloom hybrid and all the bees love him ok 💛
- I think it would be funny if dream just deadass can’t see shit through his mask rap considering all the feats he has done
- Phil is v old and ‘wise’ but is also fairly detached from reality as a result cause he can’t really remember what earlier parts of his life were like to understand how other people act
- I also think it’d be hilarious if he ironically had like 0 life skills... cooking? He’s shit at it. Sleep schedule? Never heard of it. Taxes? Isn’t that a state?
- The floors in the tundra trios homes are constantly being ruined by techno having hooves and Phil and maybe ranboo having claws... like u no how u can like dent and scrape a wooden floor with heels? Kinda like that
- Speaking of those three I also think it’d be very funny if they all collectively became useless or started fighting in the presence of a gold block cause like 👀 ‘oo gold/hehe shiny/hold block’ mentality
- Quackity can shapeshift.... but he’s like a ditto and always has the :] face.... mmm also maybe keeps any scars he has
- His ability to control this decreases the more he dies
- So like u could he talking to him and just suddenly he looks like someone else or like a weird mishmash of people and just hasn’t noticed lmao totally not freaky at all
- Literally non of the tundra trio are equipped for the weather like u have someone from the hot af nether, bird man who’d realistically be prone to hypothermia and someone who’s allergic to water like lmao why do yall live here what is wrong with you
- I want niki to just be very exasperated by this fact
- I want her to bake goods for her friends... tailored to their tastes.... cheer up food :)
- Also i forget when she changed her skin but I think it’d be very funny if she dyed her hair pink as an intimidation factor to tommy cause she knows he dislikes techno
- Puffy ily but I do not trust you with Tommy after the disaster that was bbh and skeppys relationship counselling
- The concept of the totems being foolish’s children is very funny to me like just the implication that he just leaves his kids in random chests for people to steal and that when they witness someone die they just explode with revive energy or something like w h a t
- Ghostbur either isn’t actually Wilbur and is just some entity pretending to be him hence the ‘poor memory’ OR him and limbo Wilbur are two halves of one entity
- I just find it v sus that he’s the only ghost that’s ever shown up... and regularly at that
- mmm tubbo hard of hearing.... relies on reading lips the best he can when to help clarify what people are saying but he can hear people well enough if they raise their voice quite loud
- cursed hc but what if ash and Zachary were somehow michael decendants and they like porkums cause he’s either originally a family friend or he just reminds them of stuff
- Ok half of these aren’t even hcs anymore and is just me rambling but who let Karl be in charge of the time travel he has such strong himbo energy
- That being said villain Karl when 👀//
- Why is tubbo like one of the smartest most accomplished people on the sever... he’s like 17..... like my man has been president, developed a new form of fast travel, has a family, developed a nuclear weapons program by himself, launched a man into space, developed a whole town and more .... like who let him have this much power he can barely read//
- I think it’d be funny if techno was just really bad at strategy games..... like ok technically he’s not bad at them but like he just spends 4 days analysing every last minute detail every round to optimise his chances of winning//
- I feel like people don’t give Jack enough credit for the fact he cheated death using nothing but spite
No.5 Five Hargreeves “The Boy”
In the comics:
He generally only cares about himself, Mr. Pennycrumb, and Pogo. However, his whole motive seems a bit contradictory, as it is to come back, warn the rest of the Academy, and prevent the Apocalypse. Driven mad in the Apocalypse, Dolores manifested in his head as conversations. He was offered work by the Temps Aeternalis, his only way out of the Apocalyptic wasteland. He doesn’t like Vanya much. He shot Vanya in the head, giving her amnesia, rendering her incapable of walking and playing the violin and tells her he never liked her (to be fair the pieces of the moon came crashing down on Earth). He tends to collude with Allison a lot because her abilities are convenient. His DNA was merged with those of the most prolific killers in history, giving him a kill rate of 100% accuracy, and he was taught by the Temps Aeternalis to do small jumps in time, making him really fast, whereas in the show it’s teleportation. In the comics I think he has the ability to time travel only, while in the show, it’s the ability to travel through time and space. Going back in time, he was trapped in a body that no longer aged or regenerated. From the outside, he looks like his ten-year old self, but his insides are those of a healthy 59-year-old man, which is a fucking nightmare. He is just lucky he is so fast and accurate. Otherwise the most minor cut might kill him. He was responsible for killing JFK’s killer in the original timeline, but he collided with Allison in Dallas to cause JFK’s death and as such prevent JFK from giving Reginald nukes, and thus preventing Hazel and Cha-cha from stealing them and detonating them. After getting the Temps Aeternalis off his case, he worked as a hired assassin. He attempted to pose as a kid to spy on the Perseus corporation in Hotel Oblivion, and teamed up with Allison again. He dresses like an adult man.
In the show:
He cares a lot about his siblings, especially Vanya. In the show it is implied that he will keep growing and is not stuck forever looking like a child (And Aiden has to grow, it would be impossible to keep the not growing aspect in the show), unlike the comic where it’s explicitly stated that his cells are neither being created nor destroyed, his outside form is that of a kid, but his innards are those of a 59-year old man, which is fucking horrible. In the show he stays in his childhood uniform all the time.
What the show did right:
I think the show did right in giving him a more humane side than just making him a stone-cold killer that only cares about himself and two other beings. I like that he actually cares about his siblings. Because it was a bit contradictory that he was this coldblooded selfish asshole that came back to avert the Apocalypse. Maybe he cares about Pogo that much in the comics? I think the show made the Five vs. Five much funnier than the comic, and Luther’s confusion and attempts to help made paradox psychosis Five even funnier.
What I would have done:
I would not have kept the Handler around in S2. She had a proper send-off in S1, and we were ready for Carmichael as the big bad. Five in the show is perfect and he is actually the character whose comic and series counterparts are the closest. I do hate that they gave The Handler one of Five’s incredibly iconic comic book scenes where she eats Carmichael, and that Five never says “I am a gazelle.” However, they better get Mr. Pennycrumb in S3 or I will riot! And I want him to say that Mr. Pennycrumb only eats soft foods. I want him to dote on a puppy! Goddammit!
How I feel about the character 2009 and now:
I consider him to be the most iconic character of the Umbrella Academy. He is full of odd quirks, especially in the comics, that just leave you like “WTF” or are kinda endearing, like how he dotes on Mr. Pennycrumb and his fondness of Pogo. I thought it sucked that he is stuck forever in a kid’s body when he is a 59-year-old man. But it made things humorous. I think Aiden Gallagher did a wonderful job at portraying him, and I am impressed by his acting. I feel about the same about this character nowadays. He is very iconic, and endearing despite his murderous tendencies.
Phase One: Thor
Since I was looking up my past live-blog of the novel and realising how annoying and repetitive reading through it all is because of my having structured it as a bunch of reblogs, I’ve decided to organize it all into one long-ass post instead. In case anyone else wants to read it in the future. Or in case I decide to re-read it. Because I’m hilarious. 😅
SO WITHOUT FURTHER ADO
My Hilarious Yet Wrathful Overview Of Phase One: Thor, Redux
If your son who’s to become king requires a babysitter to not screw it all up and also the idea of him being king is stressful enough to put you into a coma, maybe, uh… reconsider doing that? Just a thought.
But you see here why Odin was so deadset on Thor becoming king, despite him being ill-suited for the role. It’s not about what’s best for Asgard; it’s about personal legacy. Thor is Odin’s mini me, and Loki is very much not. There are places within the text where Odin laments Thor “lacking his father’s wisdom” (he’s definitely inherited your humility, though, Odin!), but he hopes for Thor to grow into a “wise king” like himself. Whereas he holds no such illusions (lol, pun) that Loki will ever take after him.
now with tag commentary! #this scene is in the script and both novelizations #(though in reading this novel seems to just be a more complete version of the junior novel? #idk i'm confused because they're supposedly written by different authors but so far the text is identical) #and it drives me insane each time i read it
“Haha, I’m a warmongering piece of shit, isn’t it funny?”
I know, I know. I try to cut Asgard some slack for being such a militaristic culture because social changes happen slowly and when you live for thousands of years per generation, it makes sense that your views on things like war would be regressive. The text says Odin has ruled Asgard for tens of thousands of years (so much for taking Loki’s “give or take 5,000 years” line literally; sure, the Odinsleep would have extended Odin’s lifespan, but by that much? Idk).
Still, fuck Odin. Especially since he’ll eventually try to shame Loki for doing the same thing he’s fucking boasting about here. And on a much smaller scale too.
…is it, though?
I actually think Loki’s relationship with being the centre of attention is really interesting in its complexity and we don’t discuss it enough. I’ve said this before, but he strikes me as the sort of person who craves attention but also wouldn’t really know what to do with it if he had it. He craves it as a result of neglect, because he’s never been shown recognition or validation. This is why he seems to revel in it in Stuttgart, even in (or maybe especially in?) his brainwashed state. But he also frequently comes across as pretty introverted and has horrible self-esteem, so I think on another level, sustained, genuine attention would make him feel kind of uncomfortable. Loki seems to believe that in order to be loved or respected, he has to literally be Thor, though. And Thor has always been the centre of attention, so for Loki, attention is synonymous with respect.
I find Loki’s relationship with wanting attention especially fascinating because I too both crave and fear it. As a borderline, I need it. When no one is paying attention to me, I lose my sense of identity. I feel as though I literally cease to exist. It’s excruciatingly painful. And yet, I have no authentic sense of self; I’m just a chameleon, and the closer people get to me, the more likely it is they’ll see behind my mask. They’ll realise it’s all a show and that I’m actually no one. And then they’ll leave. I can’t help wondering if that’s how Loki feels sometimes too.
Wait, what? You mean goat. His horns are shaped like a goat’s. This is a ram:
This is a goat:
This is Loki:
Do you see now? They’re like a goat. Not a ram. Not a cow. A GOAT.
This book was written before Ragnarok was a thing, so it may be unfair to connect the two, but it still seems worth noting that it was Thor who reduced Loki to being no more than a trickster to begin with. “You could be more,” my ass. Loki’s problem has never been that he was one-dimensional; it was always that the people in his life, including Thor, refused to see any other dimensions to him. Which makes those words particularly cruel—as if they aren’t cruel enough already, what with the physical torture and all.
Always happy to have cause to point out that
Loki was on Thor clean-up duty their whole lives; he certainly was not trying to kill Thor.
People like to point to Loki’s attempted genocide of the Jötnar and attempted(-ish? lol) conquest of Earth as proof that he’s some kind of violent maniac. But in a little place I like to call reality, Loki was historically far less aggressive and bloodthirsty than his peers.
Question: why is one conqueror evil and the other is righteously entitled to ruling over the Nine Realms?
Asgardian exceptionalism FTW
I can’t even begin to imagine what would lead you to expect such a thing, Odin. 😂
Uh, ‘cause it is?? And also their planet is MELTING without it??
This is all only within the first two chapters, btw. Lmao
“Looking for answers,” my foot.
YOU WOULD THINK SO, WOULDN’T YOU??
#i mean unless you knew heimdall #he only commits treason on days that end in y
What’d I say? Thor clean-up dutyyyyy
Just wanna remind everyone that this
is why he’s smiling during this scene
because it makes me laugh every time. 😂
My heart breaks every time I remember that second excerpt because literally ALL OF IT happened to him when he survived falling through the wormhole. My poor boy. 😭
But also of note… Loki gets cold (and also does not like being cold). This interests me because 1) as many are aware, the prevalent headcanon that Loki has a low body temperature irritates me and 2) it possibly(?) lends weight to the theory that he may not be fully Jötun, whether by virtue of his birth or Odin’s spell.
Haha, look at this Feminist Icon™ trying to take credit for his female friend’s accomplishments! Truly inspiring.
#for some reason the ragnarok lovers have somehow decided that thor is both a feminist and lesbian icon #whatever that means 🤷♀️ #and i'm still trying very hard to figure out why #is it literally just because he *says* he respects women or whatever in that dumb rambly conversation with valkyrie?
Ooh… you were so close to getting the point, Volstagg. So close. Take your tongue off Odin’s boot for just a couple minutes longer.
Also, the author just forgot the name of the Casket. How did this book get published? 😂
JUST LOOKING FOR ANSWERS, HUH?
Because fuck Loki, amirite? He, uh… he’s a prince too, you know.
Also… Fandral, you dweeb 😂
…am I reading too much into this, or did Odin just literally forget that Loki exists?
On the other hand, the author also seemed to forget Loki existed for most of this chapter, so who knows. 🤷♀️
lmao @ Jane immediately trying to convince herself she’s too rational to be attracted to a stranger
Honestly, though, big mood.
Just your periodic reminder that Thor’s sycophantic friends KNEW Loki was right and decided to throw him under the bus anyway.
Just as I’ve always said: That was it. That was their ENTIRE rationale. That Loki *could* have done it, therefore he must have. Please tell me these people have nothing to do with Asgard’s justice system.
…lol, jk, Asgard has no justice system.
Ok, first of all, no.
Second: thank you, Fandral. You’re a self-absorbed cad, but also evidently Thor’s least stupid friend.
Thirdly, how…? First, it was, “Loki arranged all this because he’s jealous of Thor.” Now they’ve suddenly jumped all the way to, “All of Asgard is in danger.” What exactly does Sif think Loki is planning? He’s gonna, what… assassinate Odin and then sell Asgard to the Jötnar?
Please stop hurting me.
Just so there’s no confusion: this one sentence explains everything Loki did for the rest of the movie. It explains how a person who has been historically non-aggressive suddenly transforms into a warmonger. To prove himself a real Asgardian, like his brother and father and grandfather.
…why did Odin fall into the Odinsleep in two completely different scenes in this book? I’m super confused.
Also, we really need to talk about how cruel it is of Marvel to keep forcing Loki to prove his loyalty again and again and again when he’s been doing so almost literally since we met him. And by “we need to talk about it”, I mean I need to tie Kevin Feige and co. to a chair and spend a minimum of five hours lecturing them on how poorly they understand their own fucking character.
Let’s just be clear here: they’re talking about Loki. They’re saying Loki, their LEGITIMATE king, is an enemy of Asgard, based on evidence so paper-thin it’s practically invisible. Just… please, let that sink in. Take a moment to appreciate how utterly fucked up that is.
I’m sorry (not really), but Thor was so much funnier before Ragnarok.
This scene has always kind of bugged me. If Odin removed Thor’s powers, how come he can still control the weather? Confusing.
So what exactly was Thor’s plan anyway, before he realised he couldn’t lift Mjölnir? He was just gonna call on Heimdall to help him commit treason AGAIN, show up on Asgard against the expressed command of his king, and… Odin would just shrug and be like, “You got me, son! I guess I can’t keep you down. Welcome home!”?
…I mean, I guess that more or less is what happened in the end, but it’s hard to imagine it would have still gone down that way without all the stuff that happened with Loki. Idk.
#look what i'm saying is... thor is not exactly a thinking person #no one on asgard is a thinking person #except loki but he's crazy now so he's also thinking somewhat poorly lol
Cool, Thor. Now imagine feeling that way for ONE THOUSAND YEARS and develop a little fucking empathy for your brother.
But you won’t.
You’ll brush off his feelings of worthlessness as “imagined slights”. 😒
Nice that somebody knows how the royal line of succession works, I guess…
That sound you hear? Yeah, that’s just my heart breaking. NBD.
First, they mislabelled it the Casket of Eternal Winters. Now it’s the Cask of Ancient Winters. Author must have been thirsty when they wrote this. Lol
Look, not to nitpick, but this is not the recommended procedure when you see a storm that you don’t believe is of supernatural origin coming. I’m just saying. Lol
Uh… ‘cause he is?? And your pals are committing treason AGAIN, Thor, so it technically is responding to a threat to Asgard. Just FYI.
Anyways, this is an important point that doesn’t get made often enough. People want to act like Loki illegally usurped the throne somehow, but even without the deleted scene that explicitly shows Frigga passing rulership to him (a scene which is, for some reason, entirely skipped over in this book, but whatever), understand this: Loki could not have controlled the Destroyer unless he was legitimately King of Asgard. The fact that he’s able to do so is irrefutable proof that his rulership is valid.
lmao you little shit
So… here’s my issue with this scene (and with Thor as a character): He always assumes that Loki’s acting out specifically to hurt him. That Loki’s entire life and thought process revolves around Thor. He does it in this scene, he does it in The Avengers… it’s just a chronic thing with Thor. Everything is viewed through the lens of Loki inexplicably hating him.
But that’s… just not accurate. Yes, Loki harbours a lot of jealousy towards Thor. But that’s not what’s happening in this scene. Loki is not trying to kill Thor here because he wants him dead; he’s doing it because Thor (and his friends) are getting in the way of Loki completing his ultimate goal. Loki tried to solve this problem non-violently, by lying about Odin being dead. It’s Thor’s friends who all but forced his hand by going behind his back and trying to bring Thor back to Asgard against Loki’s (and Odin’s!) direct orders.
For all the humility he’s learned in the past few days, this entire speech is still really all about Thor. About assuming that Loki’s doing this for personal reasons, because he holds a grudge against Thor for some unknown reason. This is implicit in his request to “take [my life] and end this.” It never even occurs to him that his friends are traitors to the Crown and Loki, as King of Asgard, is perhaps justified in pursuing them.
It also needs to be acknowledged that Thor’s apology here is hollow, even if it’s ultimately coming from his heart, because he has no idea what he’s apologising for. “Whatever I have done to wrong you” is not an apology. An apology addresses specific hurtful actions taken and commits to not repeating those mistakes in the future. Thor cannot commit to not repeating the hurtful things he’s done, because he doesn’t know what he’s done. Despite his best intentions, what Thor is doing here is actually kind of manipulative. He’s not addressing any substantive issue between the two of them; he’s just trying to talk Loki down. And it ultimately fails not because Loki doesn’t care or because he wants Thor dead, but because it doesn’t actually change anything.
Finally and only semi-relatedly, we should maybe at some point talk about the fact that Loki, who is stated to be a master tactician, has displayed a weird pattern of hardly ever being as lethal as he could be. He freezes Heimdall in place instead of killing him outright; he backhands Thor with the Destroyer instead of incinerating him; he, well… *gestures vaguely at almost the entirety of the first Avengers movie* Anytime the violence is even a little bit personal, he seems to hedge. Odd behaviour for somebody who’s supposedly super evil.
I’m sorry, I know I’ve pointed it out at least a hundred times before, but I just can’t encounter this scene in any form without taking a moment to appreciate how underrated and hilarious it is.
I also genuinely wonder how many Ragnarok stans who have accused me of having no sense of humour, have failed to laugh at moments like this one. Kinda feel like if you need to have the comedy spoonfed to you in the form of ass jokes, maybe you’re the one whose sense of humour is lacking. 🤷♀️
Let’s be super clear: this is not what happened. Loki did not betray Odin; he was betrayed by Odin. He did not open Asgard to its enemies; he attempted, misguidedly, to destroy Asgard’s enemies. And he most certainly did not commit suicide out of a sense of guilt.
I’m not saying Loki did nothing wrong, nor am I saying he feels no regret for the lives he has taken. What I’m saying is there’s no indication that he believes he betrayed Odin or Asgard in the process. Which makes perfect sense, because he didn’t. Everything he tried to do was for Odin and Asgard. It was misguided and horrible, yes, but it can hardly be classified as a betrayal.
The insurmountable burden on Loki is not that he did terrible things, but that no matter what he does or how hard he tries, Odin will never look at him with anything but contempt. Consider once more these passages from the very beginning of the book, at Thor’s coronation:
Consider that this book goes to great pains to point out that Odin favours Thor because Thor is a warrior like him. And yet even when Loki embraces that, even when he acts more war-like than ever before, Odin rejects him— just as he always has.
There is a reason why this moment is the last time Loki will ever call Odin his father. Because he realises once and for all that, no, nothing he tries will ever be good enough; no, Odin won’t ever look at him with pride. That is Loki’s burden. That is why he lets go.
The epilogue is really just two pages of making me want to vomit.
There’s your party where Thor and a certain subset of the fandom insist that Loki was mourned. There’s barely an indication here that anyone even perceives his demise as a negative thing.
“[Sif] could see Frigga thought [Loki was dead] as well” also contradicts the tie-in comic for TDW, so I don’t know what the author is on about there. Unlike the majority of Marvel comics, the tie-in comics are canon to the MCU, so it’s a bizarre statement to make.
COULD YOU SMEAR THE DEAD* ABUSE VICTIM A LITTLE HARDER, PLEASE? Fucking hell.
No matter how many times I encounter this scene, in whatever format, I still fail to become desensitized to how disgusting it is. I realise there’s a good chance that whatever version of events Thor has been told was twisted at best; but how you can look at a man whose son has just committed suicide under any circumstances and say there will never be a better father than that guy, is utterly beyond my capacity to understand.
And Odin’s “you’ve already made me proud” line just feels like extra salt in the wound because, again, Loki let go because he realized Odin would never say those words to him. And yet they come so damn easily when it’s Thor.
Fuck this entire family so much. I think I hate them more than Loki does. Sometimes I wonder what he would think about that. How he would react to knowing that not only is he actually loved, but that he’s so loved that people are genuinely furious at the way he’s been mistreated. That there are people who regularly devolve into full-on rants because they just can’t contain how much anger they have towards the people who hurt him. I think he’d have a hard time wrapping his head around that concept, tbh.
Anyways, to end on a not-completely-depressing note, I’m still waiting for someone at Marvel to explain how Loki knew what Thor said in this scene after plummeting into a wormhole. ‘Cause he references this conversation as Fauxdin at the end of TDW. So like… ?? Did he steal Odin’s memories before he erased them? Because that would be… kind of neat, actually. And very clever. Not entirely ethical, of course, but it’s Odin, so fuck ethics.
WELP, THAT’S IT. Thanks for following along with my dumbassery, hope you enjoyed yourselves. Lol
one of us is leaving; an excerpt from the self sacrifice files
“hey!” a voice calls him from across the floor, and it’s scratchy and dirty and the sound of it makes purpled want to curl up and die. it’s a rich voice, but all voices are if they’re this high up in quackity’s casino. he turns, and a blonde boy is leaning across his table, beckoning purpled with one hand, holding a cigarette in the other. purpled winces, and briskly walks back to the table. he’d rather not interact with quackity’s people today, but this boy screams ‘important’ and purpled would be a fool not to listen to him. maybe it’ll get him in good graces with quackity, he thinks and then promptly snorts. yeah, right.
“uh, hello.” purpled greets awkwardly, “can i help you?” the blonde is familiar, a face he’s seen maybe a little younger. maybe a little happier.
the blonde lets out a laugh, “nobody can help me, man. not anymore. the real question is what someone as clean as you doing in a rotten place like this.” he seems amused, as if he’s toying and imagining purpled’s backstory in his head and hoping purpled’s more realistic telling will do his imaginary script justice. and with that, purpled realises where he recognizes him from.
“wait, aren’t you tommy innet?! from smp earth?” purpled sputters, eyes going wide for a moment. tommy innet was an icon, for practically everyone. he was the character everyone wanted to be, behind no one except for maybe technoblade, and even then he was a funnier character. people loved him, and once he got booted off the show, there were practically riots. nobody's seen him since the show, but his fame remains the same. tommy doesn’t look pleased to have been recognized, his eyes darkening and his smile returning to a straight face for just a moment. the facade comes back up though, when he laughs and waves the hand with a cigarette, the smoke curling around his dismissive wave of a hand.
“yeah, yeah, old news. that isn’t all that important right now,” the blonde says, his smile taking a dispariging tone. “what’s important right now is your story.”
he points a cigarette at purpled, grinning. purpled feels like he is trying to distract purpled from why child star, and current star, tommy innet is doing in a casino when he’s clearly underage and it will wreck the reputation s.m.p studio’s built up for him.
“now come on, do tell.” he leans closer to purpled from across the table, and dismisses the casino worker that’s been standing by them this whole time. purpled can’t refuse, partly because it seems like tommy really wants to know, and mostly because tommy seems like the type of person to have access to executing purpled if he doesn’t get the story he wants, and purpled is not in the mood to die. he can entertain a spoiled rich kid with his sob story, for just a moment. it might help him get some cash, or even better, some reputation.
“there’s not much to it, i’m afraid. my brother’s been missing for months because of a job. quackity said he’d help me find him if worked for him.” tommy raises an eyebrow and covers his mouth with a hand, seemingly suppressing a smile. but then he takes a longer look at purpled, probably realizing the older boy is serious. his eyes soften in sympathy, and he breathes out a sigh.
“and you believed him?” he asks, and purpled could feel his breath stolen. he has nothing to say to that, nothing other than-
“yes.” and there’s nothing else, truly nothing else, purpled can say. he feels like an idiot, to put it simply. that he believed quackity would help without any strings other than work, that he believed anyone so high up in this fucked up, and ruthless city would spare a moment of their time with someone like him without an ulterior motive. it’s such a simple lie, that purpled is ashamed he didn’t see through it. ‘work for me and i’ll find your brother,’ that was it, no contracts signed, which means quackity is under no obligation to pay him or help him except his own free will, and purpled’s entire life and way of earning money and aspirations are in his hands.
“it seems you’ve figured out that was a shitty ass decision yourself.” purpled looks up at tommy, and the boy’s eyes look questioning, so he nods. tommy shakes his head, sad and tired and angry, all at once.
“quackity isn't a good man, i’m sure you’ve seen. but he was once, and that’s gotten you farther then it should have. you know to be careful, i’m sure,” he doesn’t phrase it like a question, he says it like a fact, and purpled feels almost complemented by it. he thinks that’s the best complement he could receive from people high up here. he nods, and turns to leave, because that’s when these types of conversations are usually over, with the person never helping him except for wasting time but making purpled feel artificially better. tommy grabs his wrist, and purpled twists his head.
“be better than i was, okay? be smarter than i was. don’t sign any of his contracts, don’t even look at a pen near him. the city’s elites will sink their claws into you and pick you apart, bit by bit. i don’t want that happening to someone like you. you’re the future for kids like us, don’t waste it.” and oh, this isn’t some artificial sympathy from a boy who’s had it good, rocking with the stars his whole life. tommy is desperate and clinging onto a last hope, and when purpled gets a good look at him, everything fits into place. his blazer’s a bit too big, looking less like an expensive jacket tailored to him but a hand me down, something a poor girl would wear when trying to look rich. his dress looks like it was supposed to be white, the black lace looks like it’s supposed to be fancy, but it doesn’t quite do it. tommy’s hair is blonde, but it’s a dirty blonde, and his blue eyes are not dollish or adorable in the way s.m.p studios marketed them as, but wild. tommy looks wretched.
tommy either looks like an expensive mess or a cheap legend, and purpled supposes that was always the tommy innet brand. ripped apart and scrappy, but in a sellable way.
“okay.” purpled says, and tommy lets go of him. he offers out an unused cigarette, a signing to their peace treaty. purpled takes it, and pockets it. he doesn’t smoke, but he knows an olive branch when he sees one. it’s tommy’s apology to him, and it’s tommy’s apology to the people’s he left behind, because when purpled recognizes his face from massive billboards and hit reality tv shows, he also recognizes it from the orphanage that was just down the street from him and his brother’s tiny apartment, filled with kids who would’ve killed at a chance to even see the blinding white lights of the city, of fame and money and people to love them.
purpled supposes that’s what tommy did. he killed. they all killed to get here. it’s another thing purpled and tommy have in common.
Ranking : Jim Jarmusch (1953 - present)
When you get someone adept at the art of filmmaking that can resonate at the highest vibrations when creating, that is a blessing in itself, but when you get a jack of all trades, everyman who is deeply observant and unabashedly humanist, and happens to make films to boot, then you start reaching the realms of Jim Jarmusch. As a Midwestern kid who studied at New York’s famed Columbia University before transitioning to a span in Paris, Jarmusch has the unique gift of deeply appreciating lofty art on the same level as outsider, underground art, and by understanding the context that connects all of them, his appreciation of time is enhanced by association. In a world that has become obsessed with taking in information with no intention of retention at a breakneck speed, it is refreshing to know that Jim Jarmusch has stood his ground in terms of deliberate pacing and tone.
Most of my Jarmusch familiarity came from the first half of his catalog, and it’d been years since I watched his work, so rather than rank what I remembered while trying to fit first watches in, I decided that the time was right to revisit the entire catalog. Doing so not only gave me a broader understanding of his overall vision, but it made me realize that a director with 25 years in the game is still capable of making drastic style shifts. Without further ado, here is my preferential ranking of the 13 Jim Jarmusch films available as of March 2021.
13. Coffee and Cigarettes (2003)
This isn’t a bad film, but Coffee and Cigarettes definitely reeks of a narrative-less venture. The best parts of Coffee and Cigarettes come in attempts at placing what was shot explicitly for the film, versus what was shot during the previous fifteen or so years that Jim Jarmusch directed other feature films. Taken as a collection of independent vignettes, the film is rich in memorable moments, but for a director so adept at unifying themes with incredible nuance, specifically within the obtuse hurdles presented by an anthology film, Coffee and Cigarettes feels much more like assorted pieces than a fractured whole. More so than an original idea, the movie feels like a deep cut that true fans will appreciate, casual fans can easily reference, and Jarmusch-laymen can use as an entry into deeper conversations. If nothing else, see Coffee and Cigarettes for the incredibly entertaining scene where Cate Blanchett acts circles around Cate Blanchett, but Cate Blanchett still does her thing.
12. Broken Flowers (2005)
Bill Murray has been popular longer than I’ve been alive, but somewhere around the beginning of the 21st century, it seemed like the entire world caught Bill Murray fever in a major way. After a couple of iconic roles in films by Wes Anderson and Spike Jonze, his star was riding new and unfathomable highs, and that was right when Jim Jarmusch teased collaboration via Coffee and Cigarettes before diving headlong into it with Broken Flowers. Of all the Jim Jarmusch films, this one still feels the least like his style, at least in terms of purity. Most of its magic comes from surrounding Bill Murray with Jeffrey Wright as a human conscience, as well as a parade of memorable actresses the likes of Sharon Stone, Frances Conroy, Jessica Lange, TIlda Swinton, Chloë Sevigny and more. The film runs high on charm, and for any man staring at the Autumn of his years, the feelings of romantic regrets are likely relatable on some level. Interestingly, this project feels like one of the most accessible in the Jarmusch canon, perhaps because of its efficient production presentation. If there were ever a Jim Jarmusch date movie, it’s Broken Flowers.
11. Permanent Vacation (1980)
Upon initial viewing, Permanent Vacation possesses many of the earmarks of a student film, such as limited locations, long passages with minimal dialogue, symbolic monologues in place of standard narrative dialogue, and isolated characters within the context of an implied bigger world. The strengths that the film possesses, however, are elements that became staples in Jim Jarmusch films : a protagonist either absent of motivation or driven from within, cross-cultural fascination and iconography and the aforementioned patient approach to narrative are some of the key ingredients in the Jarmusch recipe. As a unique voice in a burgeoning New York collective of filmmakers, it makes total sense that his debut would be both an ode to New York City and an ode to living life like an outsider in the mecca of culture. This film probably wouldn’t be the best place to start a curious party to the Jim Jarmusch canon, but it would certainly be one to circle back to if their interest is piqued… I would recommend this one to fans of Richard Linklater’s early work for sure.
10. Stranger Than Paradise (1984)
Stranger Than Paradise marks the first of many black and white commercial releases from Jim Jarmusch. As a second film, it has everything you’d want to see from a director finding his place in the industry : the cinematography has evolved and incorporated more movement, Jarmusch is starting to let his personality shine through via musical choices, and the stories are evolving into more relatable narratives rather than ruminations on isolation (while simultaneously becoming much funnier). Jarmusch still isn’t afraid to let his films breathe, however, which leaves his distinct style present even among the areas of growth. The incorporation of a strong female lead presence (thanks to Eszter Balint’s brilliant performance) showed that Jarmusch had a full understanding when it came to presenting stories for everyone on the screen, rather than limiting his voice to male characters. The casting of John Lurie and Richard Edson opposite one another is kinetic both visually and in terms of performance, as each of their versions of uptight laid-backness compliment one another.
9. Night on Earth (1991)
Of the anthology films that Jim Jarmusch has created, Night on Earth is possibly my favorite. More so than any of the others, it captures the intriguing aspects of human nature by juxtaposing them directly against the very human tendency to judge books by their covers. With the vast majority of the film taking place in a handful of taxi cabs, we are left in the hands of the actors and actresses in the hopes that their interactions, chemistry and dialogues can keep us captivated, and the cast presented in the film completely stand up to the challenge in their pairings. Jarmusch also presents movie audiences with a way to show different worldly locations without having to lean on the cinematic and iconic shorthand that we are used to, such as the Hollywood sign, Times Square, the Eiffel Tower and so on… instead, we are shown places that locals would inhabit in all of their rundown and lived in glory, which in turn, amplifies the grounded realness of the interactions, as if we are looking at a fictional blueprint for what would later become the popular HBO series Taxicab Confessions. This film sits in-between two of Jim Jarmusch’s most iconic releases, so it is easy to see how this one could be easily lost in the shuffle, but it is certainly not a film to be missed, especially for those who would consider themselves Jarmusch fans.
8. Paterson (2016)
Jim Jarmusch brings a humble sense of humanity to all of his films, but Paterson stands out for its nuance, subtlety and confidence in its patience. Much like Forrest Gump or a less abstract Charlie Kaufman film, Paterson dwells in an interesting realm of an unknowingly wise protagonist tethered to the center of tornado-like emotions and experiences from all they encounter. Jarmusch manages to take this framework, dial down the absurdity to a sneaky degree, and ramp up the grounded elements to the point where a viewer cannot help but graft pieces of themselves onto the events presented. As a musician with a day job, I can also relate to Paterson’s displays of beauty found in redundancy, and the peace that comes with understanding intentions for creative expression, even if others see it in a different light that you do. While not the grandest of Jim Jarmusch gestures, it is without a doubt one of the most sincere and heartfelt of his selections.
7. Mystery Train (1989)
Mystery Train marks the first definitive signs of Jim Jarmusch knowing, understanding and utilizing the tools he’d come to favor in a manner that seemingly resonated what he pictured in his head. Memphis as a setting provides the juxtaposition of beauty and urban decay captured in Permanent Vacation; placing our audience on a journey with two foreign tourists brings the worldly view introduced in Stranger Than Paradise; and, most importantly, all of the coolness and humor that thrived in Down by Law returns triumphantly. Jarmusch also puts anthology filmmaking on the table, which is important for two reasons… first and foremost, it would become a style he would go on to thrive in, returning to it immediately with Night on Earth and once more with Coffee and Cigarrettes… secondly, as for Mystery Train directly, it allowed Jarmusch to surround Masatoshi Nagase and Youki Kudoh (burgeoning stars Western audiences were unfamiliar with) and Nicoletta Braschi, and surround them with his talented friends like Steve Buscemi, Cinqué Lee, Rick Aviles, Vondie Curtis-Hall and Tom Noonan, as well as legendary musicians like Tom Waits, Joe Strummer, Screamin’ Jay Hawkins and Rufus Thomas. Between these high profile castings, the stylish cinematography and the heartfelt quirkiness of the leads, Mystery Train feels like the film where everything came together in the best ways possible.
6. Down by Law (1986)
To my knowledge, Down by Law would be considered the breakout success of the Jim Jarmusch library. John Lurie returned to the fold to provide another performance infused with coolness, but this time around, up and coming Italian star Roberto Benigni and iconic recording artist turned actor Tom Waits share lead duties, forming an unlikely trio with monstrously dynamic on-screen chemistry. Jarmusch not only switched things up for himself by setting the film in New Orleans rather than centering it around New York, but he turned the jailbreak genre on its ear by focusing on the escapees rather than the escape itself. The conflict between Jack and Zack is seeded with their individual problems with women (which both include emasculating each man by chastising them for not using domestic violence), as well as each of them ending up framed prior to imprisonment, which makes Roberto the de facto peacemaker despite his huge language barrier. Down by Law marks the first time that edginess found its way into a Jim Jarmusch film, and while it never became his forte, it wasn’t the last time that element was key to a Jarmusch film.
5. The Limits of Control (2009)
When reflecting on The Limits of Control, the word patience comes to mind : the patience of accepting repetition… the patience of a trilingual film with minimal dialogue… the patience of a film that shows much more than it tells. As a take on noir, the Jim Jarmusch variety brings to mind films like Le Samourai, where actions speak infinitely louder than words, choices come with a definitive set of consequences, and we as viewers are allowed to consider what we are presented with in real time, just like our protagonist. The coolness levels are also pushed to maximum levels in this film, but then, what’s a Jim Jarmusch film without a generous dose of cool in it? While it is never rightly stated, I like to pretend that The Limits of Control takes place in the same universe as Ghost Dog, with Raymond having evolved into The Lone Man using the tools left behind by Ghost Dog. Maybe it’s a bit of embellishment on my end, but it makes an already great film have that little extra touch of pizazz needed to stand out from the pack.
4. Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (1999)
While Jim Jarmusch isn’t necessarily a household name, he is relatively well known, and for many familiar with his work, Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai served as the introductory film for them. The casting of Forest Whitaker in the lead role continued the trend of higher profile names joining the Jarmusch fold, and stylistically, the mixture of Ghost Dog’s hitman and samurai worlds with that of the mafia film (which was about to see a popularity resurgence in light of the recent premier of The Sopranos) was alive, kinetic, and rich with varied personalities. Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai also stood as an early example of RZA’s talents in the realm of scoring films, which would later go on to be a key element of Kill Bill: Vol. 1. For a movie with a more traditional approach, perhaps even the most accessible approach of all Jarmusch films, Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai is anything but conventional, and it’s the sense of pride it wears in its non-conventionality that makes it the cult classic it became.
3. The Dead Don't Die (2019)
Not since Dead Man has Jim Jarmusch picked such a distinct genre for a film of his, or decided to include such a long list of high profile names in character roles. While the sense of doom that usually comes with zombie movies is present, Jarmusch sticks to his toolkit by focusing solidly on the human element during the early portions of the film where many people would already have zombies doing the narrative and visual heavy lifting, and in turn, the audience finds themselves drawn deeper and deeper into the story well before the undead arrive. Of all the Jarmusch films, The Dead Don’t Die has the rare designation of being the only one that seems to comment on film itself, be it references to iconic characters from other properties, ruminations on film as a format, or even discussions centered around film fandom. While most films tend to stay around from outright explanations of whatever the root cause of the zombies are, The Dead Don’t Die uses the vacuum as a brief opportunity to make a comment on polar fracking and other climate/environment-altering processes. Even the zombies get the most on-screen humanity received since the days of George Romero’s Dead series, a refreshing change of pace that has been often ignored in recent films centered around the undead. Films like this one prove that Jim Jarmusch has the capacity to make films about most anything, and the further he strays from his supposed comfort zone, the seemingly better the films get.
2. Only Lovers Left Alive (2013)
For a man so dedicated to being aware of the passage of time, a man with a deep appreciation for nostalgic cool of all eras, and a man with a rich and layered appreciation for art and music from across the board, it makes total sense that Only Lovers Left Alive would be a celebration of all these aspects framed as an eternal love with a deep cross-section between the original lovers and the tales of vampires. The vampiric leads allow Jarmusch the perfect vehicle to seamlessly tie stellar creativity from any point in time with a singular line, and the deep implications of our protagonists' names suggest a subtextual lore that one could likely build a cinematic universe around. For a venture with aspirations this lofty, the casting must fit the call, and the main four of Tilda Swinton, Tom Hiddleston, John Hurt and Jeffrey Wright build a solid foundational square for all characters to navigate deep emotions freely. If you’re looking for Twilight and Interview with the Vampire fare, you’ll probably long for more, but if films like Let the Right One In are more your speed, then Only Lovers Left Alive will likely be a revelation.
1. Dead Man (1995)
While Jim Jarmusch never lost his auteur sensibilities, Dead Man marked his initial foray into the world of larger scale traditional productions through the vehicle of the period piece. Jarmusch films were not unfamiliar with showing us a broader view of the world we know, but transposing his trademark style into the world of the Western marked a bold (but ultimately rewarding) turn. With Neil Young serving as his Ennio Morricone, Jarmusch dusted off his black and white filmmaking equipment and seemingly told the production design team to blend all of the best parts of Spaghetti Western and German Expressionism. Johnny Depp, the film’s star, was riding the wave of success afforded from What’s Eating Gilbert Grape?, Benny & Joon and Ed Wood, and Dead Man carried that momentum right along. As for his Western universe, the list of names that Jarmusch chose to populate it with is where his style stood out : Crispin Glover, John Hurt, Robert Mitchum, Iggy Pop, Gibby Haines, Gabrielle Byrne, Billy Bob Thornton, Alfred Molina and more drive home Depp’s “fish out of water” characterization convincingly. Based on its period-piece designation, Dead Man signalled a drastic leap in style utilization for Jarmusch, a creative rarified air that he would return to for several future productions.
Long post heads up
so im assuming this will be controversial but i’ve been thinking about this for a while, so please hear me out on this: pagans, even white American ones, literally are marginalized. now, i realize that by making this post i’m opening myself up to a lot of ridicule and accusations, so i ask that yall please do me the courtesy of actually considering what i have to say before you write this post off completely.
a few things to get out of the way first: to act like it’s equivalent to widespread racialized religious discrimination against well-known established religions such as Judaism or Islam is obviously wrong. to act like modern pagans aren’t mostly white and that our communities don’t have huge issues with racism is obviously wrong. i laugh at most posts criticizing pagans, because i genuinely think most of them are funny; it often comes across to me mostly as bemused roasting more than anything actually hateful. i feel like pagans often just need to learn to take a joke and take ourselves a little less seriously, as many religious people need to remind themselves. also, as someone who’s been hanging out in these groups for about 6 years now, i’ll outright tell yall that most pagan groups have ongoing issues with racism, transphobia, ableism, and other social prejudices, as well as the aforementioned predators and cults. many many pagans really do just go “lols The Spirits Don’t Care About Race silly sjws” and then appropriate the hell out closed traditions and act disrespectful as hell to the people who say it’s wrong; if you’re criticizing us for shit like this, GOOD. That’s legitimate criticism that we choose to ignore far too often.
however, more and more of the “criticism” i see on here toward pagans is just saying we’re crazy, stupid, gullible, or other shitty nu-atheist talking points that have just been repurposed to target a growing fringe subculture that has been widely declared an acceptable target by culturally christian progressives AS WELL AS the religious right.
the justification for this is that no white pagans are discriminated against for being pagan, and i know for a fact that isn’t true. all the pagans i talk to report having to keep it a secret from family, friends, or coworkers -but for this post, i’ll keep it limited to my own experiences. i was abused by my parents as a minor for converting from christianity to a pagan faith, and having to keep my religion and experiences a complete secret from most of my friends and family really did take a toll on me. now, as an adult, i’ve learned to keep my religious beliefs a secret from most strangers and especially anyone who might know me at work, because people will start treating you differently -either like you’re evil, or gullible and stupid in a way they (mostly) don’t accuse mainstream religions of. when i was in the psych ward, i was refused my paperback holy text which i had brought with me for the same reason a christian would bring a bible into a scary and traumatic situation, but because the mainly-christian patients were bullying me for being pagan and the nurses didn’t want to deal with it, so the staff withheld it from me for 3 days until i could talk to a social worker. when my aunt took me in so i could move away from my parents, she coaxed me into sharing about my religion, which i naively did because it was rare for people to take an interest in it, and then the next day she told me if i didn’t get rid of all my “occult” stuff (mostly books and tarot cards), she would kick me out. i can’t get holy days off and in some states i can’t run for a lot of public offices unless I’m Christian. (yeah, i realize the post is talking about atheists, but people use those same laws against pagans as well, because as far as they’re concerned, we don’t believe in God, either.)
if any of this happened because i converted to buddhism or another well-known established open religion, people would call it religious discrimination. non-pagans who talk about this almost always say “yeah well you CHOSE to convert that religion, it isn’t a culture or religion you were raised in”, as though that means we’re under some obligation to quietly absorb any insults or abuse related to something so universally personal as one’s faith -like why does it matter to yall if i was raised in this faith, or converted? why is a faith only “real” if you were raised in it, or are adopting it literally from your direct ancestors?
i realize to people who aren’t religious that this may sound like nonsense, but my experience as a kid wasn’t that it looked cool and trendy and i wanted to feel special. i’m sure that some people are like that, but on the by and large, that’s just a strawman. Personally, whether my experiences that led me to convert were real or not is irrelevant: I was a kid who needed to be able to confide in adults about what i was going through, but the fact that I had started to perceive the world vastly differently than Christians did, and no longer believe in Christian theology, meant it was unsafe for me to do so. not being able to talk to anyone about it without getting either literally accused of being crazy, demonically possessed (happened many times) or like i was just stupid caused real, lasting damage. instead of being the source of stability, comfort, and fellowship that faith can be during difficult times, it’s often been something i feel i need to either hide from others, or defend my right to care deeply about.
as a result of people taking this attitude toward pagans, i and many other young pagans have to rely on online spaces to find any kind of fellowship with people who believe the way that we do. this is isolating and uncomfortable for most, and legitimately dangerous for some. see, if you confine a whole subculture to be either a joke or Satanic depending on your political leaning, the subculture generally develops an Us Against Them in-group/out-group mindset, which makes it much easier for predators and some actual cults to prey on vulnerable people.
keep in mind: pagans are not a monolith; it’s an umbrella term for a lot of different religions. (i don’t claim any kind of ancestral tie to my particular pagan faith, but since it was always an open culture and religion, it doesn’t matter if i have a “hereditary right” to it.) there are a lot of pagans of color, even including Heathenism which has a literal Nazi problem. (i’m referring to people i’ve met irl as well as online here.) lots of young queer people who feel rejected by mainstream religions find a lot of comfort in worshipping queer icons like Loki, Dionysus, Artemis, Set, etc. When you write off pagans as a whole for being just dumb racist white people, you throw them under the bus by erasing them. you isolate them the same way you do me, and they are even more likely to experience the kind of discrimination and abuse i have. is it really worth it to make them feel even more alienated in their religious choices, because they go against the mean-spirited stereotype that secular and non-pagan progressive people have crafted for pagans?
Also, antifascist and progressive pagans are already swimming against the tide to make social prejudices persona not grata within our spaces, and it makes pagan reactionaries’ recruitment tactics WAY more effective when the world around new, insecure pagans tells them they’re automatically racist privileged white people for being interested in paganism. you don’t need to have any sympathy for bigots, but you should at least acknowledge the end result of this kind of rhetoric. i don’t like it either, but most people aren’t going to stop being pagan, or stop talking about it publicly altogether (as that seems to be the only thing that will make yall happy lol) when people make fun of them constantly; they’re gonna dig their heels in and do the in-group out-group thing people always fuckin’ do in these situations. that mindset makes otherwise-normal people, who may have been willing to learn and grow out of their background prejudices under other circumstances, easier for the truly racist monsters in our community to begin grooming.
paganism is a swiftly growing counterculture, and it’s more than likely that at some point it’s going to be part of a larger conversation on religious freedom. i don’t think people on tumblr or twitter roasting pagans is discriminatory necessarily, but life isn’t split up into “discrimination” and “okay things to do”. yall are pretty obviously just petty and excited to make fun of people who you think are weird, because yall can easily insist that every pagan is a privileged racist cis white lady, therefore it’s totally okay to be rude, dismissive, or just outright mean-spirited to pagans as a group because you’re pretending your bullying is enlightened or required by social justice laws. this is what we in pagan culture call “a dick move”.
besides, it’s ten thousand times more accurate and funnier to roast us for being too self important and arguing over whether emoji spells are Serious Magic or not lmao.
lol blaze it (i’m funny i swear)
In your opinion, which fast food place has the best fries? Without a doubt, Bojangle's. Good. Shit.
Are there hurricanes where you live? Yeah, they're common here.
What do you hate the most about yourself? I'd really rather not get into this right about now.
What song are you listening to right now? "Beast of Gévaudan" by Powerwolf.
What was your first concert? Alice Cooper. Also my only concert.
What’s your favorite Johnny Depp movie? Alice In Wonderland.
Who did you last say “I love you” to? My sister.
Do you like pumpkin pie? Anything pumpkin-flavored is a hell no from me.
Do you know anyone named Austin? Knew, rather.
Do you know anyone who is having a baby? My friend recently announced she and her husband are having their second child in December.
What was the last thing you cried about? Just PTSD.
Do you prefer regular or chocolate milk? I like both, but I prefer chocolate.
Do you think you are an argumentative person? Definitely not.
How many deep dark secrets do you have? Two or so, idk.
What was the spiciest thing you’ve ever eaten? Some wings at Buffalo Wild Wings with one of the hottest sauces. Wanted to die. ... Yet I continued to get that one whenever I went for years lmao.
Who last called you sexy? I don't know.
Would you class yourself as a good role model? In some ways, but in a lot of other ways, no.
Are you scared of the dark? No.
Do you have a motto? No.
Who did you last see on webcam? The doctor that overlooks my TMS progress.
Do you need a haircut? I need a trim for sure.
How would you react if your mother told you that she was pregnant again? Well, considering 1.) she's way past menopause and especially 2.) she's had a complete hysterectomy, y'know... that's kind of impossible. She also hasn't been with a guy in many years, so she would have to be joking.
You log into Facebook and see the red ‘1’ notification next to the message icon. Who do you want it to be? -___-
Would you rather exercise alone or with other people? ALONE. You will NOT see me exercise in front of other people.
What is the most difficult or involved video game you’ve ever played? The most involved is DEFINITELY World of Warcraft, and I guess you could consider it the hardest too, given some of the much more difficult things I've done in it. It itself isn't a hard game whatsoever, but you can pursue some really hard achievements.
Ever watch the show Supernatural? If you have, then what’s your favorite episode? I used to love it, but just stopped watching eventually. My fave episode... Man, it's been too long to remember many. Probably one of the funnier ones. I remember I specifically liked the bit where they were in your everyday comedy show, as well as the one where I THINK Dean kept trying to prevent Sam from dying. I just remember the "Eye of the Tiger" bit that is pure gold.
Ever heard of flavored honey? If so, what’s you’re favorite flavor? Oh, no, but that sounds good.
Do you remember what your favorite show was when you were little? Yeah, Pokemon.
Do you put anything besides cheese on grilled cheese sandwiches? Besides butter, which I think is pretty standard, no.
When it comes to books, what do you think is the “perfect” amount of pages? Uh, I dunno. It depends on the book. I don't really care about page numbers.
Would you ever be interested in going scuba diving? Yeah.
Out of all of your friends/relatives, who would you say has the best vocabulary? Girt, probably.
Are any of your fingers or toes deformed? What about the nails? I don't think so?
When is the last time you cried? I was sobbing earlier today, fun stuff.
Would you ever date somebody that has been divorced more than once? Most likely not. ESPECIALLY at my age.
What are some stereotypically nerdy things that you like? Oh god. WoW, M:tG, big glasses, anime (does that count? idk really), video games... a lot of stuff, really.
Have you ever attended a wedding that ended where the bride and groom didn’t actually get married? What happened? Y I K E S, no. That would be SO uncomf.
What scares you the most about becoming a mother (hypothetically, if you don’t want to have children)? Actually raising it properly, physically and emotionally.
Would you ever want a job in fashion? What would you enjoy about that type of job? No.
Would you ever be a surrogate mother? No.
What do you think would be the best and worst parts about being a twin? It'd be cool to have someone you feel an almost supernatural connection towards, but I'd also feel like I wasn't as "original" as I would be if I was born alone.
Do you feel that your childhood was more rough compared to others around you? I mean it wasn't awful at all, but sure, in some ways compared to at least someone.
How would you react if you found out today that you were actually adopted? Well today I'm a wreck, so don't tell me. I want to know that I wasn't lied to for 25 years.
Have either of your parents ever cheated on one another before, that you know of? How would you react if you found out today that one of them cheated? I'm not entirely clear on this, but I'm 90% sure Dad cheated on Mom with his now-wife. Dad also accused Mom of cheating, but I HIGHLY doubt that's true.
Do you like cleaning and organizing? Not really.
How would you react if you found out you were infertile? If you don’t plan on having kids to begin with, what is a long-term goal you’d be crushed to find out was impossible to achieve? Fuck having kids. I'd be a terrible mother. So to answer the other question, I'll be pretty, pretty sad if I can't get permission to spread Teddy's ashes at Yellowstone.
Would you take your dream job if it were out of the country? Well, obviously not considering my dream job is a meerkat biologist, and I'm not moving to Africa.
Have you ever been robbed? No.
Is anyone close to you an alcoholic? Not anymore. Dad was, but he's recovered.
Have you ever dumped anyone? Yes.
What kind of tea do you drink? I hate tea.
Do you know anyone in a gang? No, and I hope I never do.
What’s the sweetest thing anyone has ever done for you? Risk his fucking sanity and health to try to hold my fucked up self up.
What is your orientation? Gay? Straight? Metrosexual? Anything other? Bisexual. I've kinda been questioning pansexual of the late, though. I don't know.
Have you ever done anything really dangerous or illegal with friends? Not to my memory.
Name three feelings you’re feeling right now: Regret. Hopelessness. Loneliness.
And the reasons for these feelings? Take a wild fuckin' guess.
How do you feel about your life right now? It's an actual dumpster fire.
Is it easy for you to like yourself? Why or why not? Fuck no. Because there's just not very much TO like about me. Even on my good days, I see flaw after flaw in myself.
What subjects come naturally to you? English, some aspects of science.
What subjects do not? Math, economics, politics, history...
Do you read more fiction or more non-fiction books? Definitely fiction. When I read a book, I want an escape from the real world.
How has today been for you? BOY HOWDY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
What did you do? Went to TMS therapy. Sat on the Internet. Cried. :^)
Are there any candles lit in the room you’re in? No.
Are there any lava lamps near you? No. I want one, though.
Do you like cats or dogs better? Cats.
Are any of your friends a pothead? Yes.
What’s a goal you’re trying to accomplish soon? Start losing weight again. That'd be pretty goddamn grand.
Are you a high maintenance person? Definitely not.
The last time you yelled as loud as you could, what was the reason? I was having a nightmare.
Have you ever been heartbroken? For sure.
Who did that to you? First Dad, then Jason.
Did you go through an ugly stage as a kid? Boy, did I.
The last type of sandwich you made or ate: A pb&j.
The last time you spent most of the day in bed: Literally every day. I do just about everything in bed. Pathetic, I know.
The last friend or acquaintance you made: Ummmm idk.
The last thing you took pictures of: A hydrangea bush.
The last time you were scared: Now. The future is terrifying, my friend.
The last thing you looked up online: The definition of a word to ensure I was using it correctly.
The last thing you disagreed with: So I've been watching John Wolfe's old stream of him playing Alice: Madness Returns, and he went on a total soapbox about smoking being okay essentially because we're all gonna die eventually from something, and I really disagreed with it.
Does your house have a separate laundry room? No, just like a closet.
Do your parents still help you financially? I'm still entirely dependent on them.
Does your car have a backup camera? No.
Have either of your parents ever been in trouble with the law? Not to my knowledge.
Have you ever had a pet that lived to be really old for its breed/species? REALLY old, no. Teddy was definitely up there, but beagles have lived longer.
What was the last strong scent you smelled? Lysol.
Have you ever told someone to their face that they were ugly? Christ, no.
Is your bed against more than one of your walls? No.
Have you ever been attracted to someone’s parent? Don't think so?
Have you ever pole danced before? No.
Have you ever broken into someone’s house? No.
Have you ever seen a live bat? Yes.
What is the most amount of money you’ve spent on a meal before? I dunno.
Have you ever taken a woodshop class? No.
How much time do you spend on Facebook, if you have one? Funny you ask, because as of today I decided to take a break from it for awhile. I've found it's nothing more than a breeding ground for envy and making me feel like a horribly incompetent adult.
Has a teacher ever made you hate yourself/your work? I had one photography teacher in college that I was NOT a fan of. He was super, super hard on everyone, like to an unnecessary degree. We were students, not pros.
Have you ever been on the barrier or front row at a concert? No.
Are your parents supportive of you? Somehow.
Is It Really THAT Bad?
So, Dr. Seuss. What a guy, am I right? The man is responsible for some of the best and most creative works of zany poetry ever, making up nonsense words and crafting iconic characters and locales. And when it comes to adapting his works, the best way to go has tended to be animation, with the Grinch getting one of the most iconic cartoons of all time and Horton and the Lorax offering up some decent adaptations as well. But those are short films; for feature films, Seuss has been a mixed bag.The live-action Grinch and the Blue Sky version of Horton are at least somewhat well-regarded, with the former being praised for Carrey’s performance and the Oscar-winning makeup work while the latter has a lot of the fun charm of Seuss even if some awkward moments are sprinkled in; meanwhile, the Illumination versions of the Grinch and Lorax are seen as soulless, dull, and even outright bad, though the former veers more into “so bad it’s good” territory. But there is a movie that stands out even in this crowd, a movie that has lived in infamy since its release…
The Cat in the Hat.
Nominated for eight Razzies and critically eviscerated, the film is at the time of this writing sitting at the bottom spot of the IMDB Bottom 100. Long has the film been reviled for its uncanny valley makeup on star Mike Meyers, its odd adult humor, and just in general being a terrible adaptation… but in the late 2010s, something curious happened. Memes.
Tumblr from 2017 to 2020 has gone out of its way to make memes out of the film, post screenshots, and generally just rehabilitate the film’s image, however slightly. And it was this that led me to check this film out, a film that derailed the career of its director and star for quite a long while. Was this film really worth nominating for the “Worst Comedy of Our First 25 Years” Razzie? Was Meyers’ performance worthy of him being nominated for “Worst Actor of the Decade?” Does this film truly deserve the revulsion it got on release?
In short… is it really THAT bad?
Ok, hear me out on this one… Mike Meyers.
I’m not going to pretend like this costume is amazing, especially compared to the Grinch, mostly because it’s obvious Meyers is uncomfortable under all that makeup. I will say that, despite it all, Meyers actually does manage to be funny at quite a few points, with the standout example being the Kupkake-inator scene, or generally any time he decides to try and resort to murder as an option, which is so disturbingly hilarious that it somehow works. Of course, a lot of his schtick does end up being pretty lame or awkward, but I’ll deal with it for a few cheap laughs.
Generally speaking, the humor in this film has aged pretty well. Again, not every joke lands, but there is a lot of humor that feels very shitposty and even resonant with current era of internet comedy. It helps that the entire film feels bizarre and inexplicable, so when something bizarre and inexplicable happens like the Cat hallucinating after being hit in the nuts or a weird matador sequence pops up out of nowhere or the Cat goes to a rave and flirts with Paris Hilton, it’s almost like “Yeah, this definitely could happen.”
I don’t think the quality of the set design is up for debate; the town looks gorgeous, and very Dr. Seussy. The colors just pop, and the characters inhabiting the town that we get to see feel like goofy cartoons brought to life. They really got the setting down, because the setting of any Dr. Seuss story is instrumental in creating a tone and atmosphere for the work, and I think that was accomplished to great effect here, whatever your opinion on the overall film is.
Let’s get the big issue out of the way forst: as an adaptation of the beloved children’s story, this is almost disrespectful. Almost. I do think that adult jokes and mature humor can work in a Dr. Seuss adaptation; Green Eggs and Ham did it pretty well and had moments that would be funnier to adults than kids. The thing is, in that show, they never did anything quite as blatant as having an acronym spell out “shit” or having a character call a gardening tool a “dirty hoe” before apologizing and attempting to French kiss it. I think adult humor has its place but I totally get if this crosses a line for some people.
And then there are the Things. Thing 1 and Thing 2 look absolutely terrible and creepy. Like, for all the crap people give the Cat, he doesn’t look nearly as bad as the wretched henchmen the cat calls upon. These two are disgusting little demons and gazing upon their wretched visages fills me with an insurmountable dread, a dread that reminds me that I am but a mortal and my time on this Earth is finite, while these nightmarish gremlins will exist in the minds of mankind long after I am gone.
In short, they suck.
It also goes without saying that the film’s CGI has aged very badly. Even at the time, this couldn’t have been the best they could have brought forth. The worst of it is definitely the fish, who is not only bad CGI but is utterly superfluous and inexplicable in the film. He was an important character in the book, but here, he’s more of a running joke and has no real purpose.
I mean, I guess the acting isn’t amazing? Like the performances are all either hammy or a bit wooden; the kids especially tend to be the latter, but it’s not the worst I’ve ever seen. And Meyers is firmly in the former, and I’m not gonna lie, I can see why he was despised and why someone might not like him, though I found him generally entertaining. Other than that, though… there’s not much else I can say is genuinely awful. The film is only about 80 minutes long, so its not like it lingers, it’s over fairly quickly and there are enough jokes that you can power through the crappier bits.
Is It Really THAT Bad?
So I’m of two minds about this film.
On the one hand, it’s most certainly a terrible and borderline disrespectful adaptation that features some of the most repulsive and awkward makeup work you will ever see and has an abundance of random humor that seems to just be there in an attempt to entertain the short attention spans of children. I totally get why Seuss’ estate decided live-action adaptations were no longer allowed after seeing this film.
But on the other hand… I definitely vibe with some of this weird, random humor. In a way, this movie was ahead of its time; if it came out more recently, it probably would have garnered an ironic fandom a hell of a lot sooner. Like this film is full of memeable moments with some genuinely enjoyable humor scattered among the cringey bits, so writing it off entirely seems a bit disingenuous. I don’t think this is a film that rises above “So bad it’s good” territory, but it is firmly in there, because there’s too much to like here for me to condemn it as it was already condemned.
Its current score of 3.9 on IMDB is… really not unwarranted. I’d say anything within 3.9 to maybe a 5.5 would be suitable, though I don’t think it deserves to be on the Bottom 100, and I’m not sue I think it deserved so many Razzies (few movies ever do, really). I generally think this movie is far better than The Lorax, because this movie manages to have a bit of humor and at least some respect for Seuss, where that movie is constantly undermined by the reality of its corporate nature. The film feels a bit underrated, if I’m being totally honest.
While I can’t say all the humor gels well and this movie is certainly not legitimately amazing, it has its moments and it’s worth checking out if you’re in to more modern nonsensical humor. I think it leans a bit more to the good side of “so bad it’s good,” though it’s good in a lowbrow, stupid way. But hey, movies like that have their place, and this movie has certainly made its mark on meme culture.
It’s certainly not the worst thing ever, and it’s not even the worst movie featuring jarringly humanized cats… we’ll get to that one eventually.
NEO CITY IN LONDON
okk guys so as most of you know i got to attend nct 127’s concert in london on the 7th and here’s my in depth experience and impressions of each members as promised :)
TAEIL: is an angel. he’s precious honestly. he’s just like how he is in nct videos. he has a really peculiar sense of humour which makes him even funnier and his gestures and facial expressions are exactly what you see in videos. his vocals are top notch wowza. his high notes are exceptional in bridges like chain, simon says, firetruck! what i remember the most about him is the part where he was asked to do something sexy and cute at the same time and this man licked his hand and did the peace sign after :)) said his iconic line “fans are our energy, we are always thankful and we love you.” love love loved him!!
TAEYONG: exudes leader energies all the way. honestly, the concert just really proved why all the members hold him in such high regard. his stage presence is so alluring and his voice is so clear and an exact replica of how we hear him in their songs. his dancing is oh my god absolutely dazzling and so smooth no wonder he’s a centre. he looks so good in blue hair his visuals are no joke + he spoke english a lot and did so well in communicating with the fans it was great. also his aegyo comes out in random bursts when you least expect it. it’s such a complete 360 contrast when he performs cos he’s so charismatic onstage but when he’s talking to fans, he’s a lil baby :( 100% precious. would definitely keep in my pocket.
JOHNNY: really really playful and dorky. johnny stays true to all the descriptions we’ve all read of him; funny and absolutely kind hearted. during their ments, he’s mostly the one who asks fans to get involved in their songs, i.e. doing the crowd wave or swinging the lightstick a certain type of way to correlate with their songs. he’s also very deep! one time, he talked about how open he felt within himself because he saw us being so open to cheering for them and hyping them up. also how could we forget— he clowned doyoung again and imitated his dance from masked singer and the crowd went balistic :))) also need to give him more credit for his singing as well as his dancing!! some fans in the crowd needed assistance since they didn’t feel too well and johnny openly asked for security and pointed out who needed help + voice slightly higher in pitch when talking.
YUTA: a crowd favourite! (he bias wrecked me the entire night). really really knows what the fans want and he delivered it so well in their songs. his smile is literally blinding and he had so much energy the whole night! his dancing is oof so so so fluid and the way he hit his high notes screamed effortless to me. you could literally see his passion burning as he performed onstage— intense and powerful. red hair suits him so much. his gestures during their songs were all captured so well by the cameras i’m pretty sure he stole everyone’s hearts that night. also his english is sooo sooo good. we stan this man.
DOYOUNG: another bias wrecker of mine. he’s beautiful onstage his eyes were literally shining i kid you not, so much so, i thought he was crying but really, they just had sparkles in them. his vocals, let me tell you, made all the hairs in my skin stand. he accentuated a lot of his notes and combine that with his emotions (esp, back 2 u— rip) really makes you think wow what a powerful talented man. i literally caught myself with my mouth open because i was so drawn to him. g o r g e o u s sweet man!!
JAEHYUN: wow this man. wow. absolutely ethereal in real life. his skin is so smooth and milky you could literally still see it miles away. his expressions were breathtaking, from his smiling, to smirking, to staring into your soul, you name it, he’ll just take your breath away. i’m convinced that man has no bones because his waves and his dancing were so fluid. the wigs were snatched with his vocals— so so good at maintaining his low notes and even better at reaching them notes so so high (timeless and no longer jdgsgsga). when he talks, his voice is actually a little higher pitched than what we expect it to be from videos and whatnot. will really steal your heart literally any day just by standing there looking all perfect.
JUNGWOO: precious precious precious. you know the way our baby gets nervous very easily? he said that he was nervous at the beginning but he felt so much better after seeing the lighsticks :(( his voice really really stands out when he sings, it just has that distinct sound that catches your attention. his smile is actually so pretty and cute! also his english was really good he had so much phrases and words up his sleeve and he spoke so well and without any effort. also dancing was phenomenal, very fluid and well delivered. we really gotta appreciate how he learned all of 127’s choreographies in such a short amount of time and dancing it all with so much ease!! we love love love :((
MARK: ok here we go. the first thing that caught my attention when mark spoke was his voice. it’s actually a tiny bit slightly higher pitched than what we hear from videos or their songs like jaehyun and johnny. but when i watched the videos i took, he sounds the exact same as other videos so i’m confused? regardless, mark proves he’s absolutely fully capable. he looked marvelous onstage and so comfortable there he literally does belong up there. he was so dynamic from his singing, rapping and dancing. he speaks really fast and i feel like his brain has no brakes so sometimes his words get jumbled around or he says the same thing twice in one sentence but it only makes him so much more endearing :( totally fell in love with him way more than i already have HAHAHA.
HAECHAN: oh my god this man. haechan’s voice is like honey okay, very very smooth and definitely one that you can distinguish right away. also watching him made me realise how not only should we praise him for his vocals, but also for his dancing. THIS BOY CAN DANCE. and may i add very very effortless too? he makes dancing look soooo easy and his footwork?? we should really consider putting him in the centre more and adding him to the dance line :(( his interaction with johnny are the most precious!! his skin glows it really really does he’s so beautiful :(
NCT127: overall, a team with really really good teamwork and unity. their choreographies were executed so well there’s so much hard work and late hours of practice evident in it. they all compliment each other really well, and for the members we don’t hear much from in their recorded songs, got other members’ lines or shared with them. THEY EAT CDS FOR BREAKFAST. they really outsold themselves— they make it all look so easy. all of the boys couldn’t stop thanking us and kept emphasising how it was their first time in europe and how it was all because of us that their visit to london was possible. they also kept reminding us to have a good time with them but on top of that, to mind ourselves and to be careful. all of their english was so so so good, they really did study so hard, they only needed the translator once. they’re very open with their gratitude to their fans and you could feel how thankful they really were :(( we tried to sing them a happy birthday but we weren’t in sync so jaehyun stopped us and counted us in so we could all sing together :)) honestly the sweetest souls ever!
pretty sure i repeated a lot of words and adjectives and i hope this gave you a good idea of the boys!! please do feel free to ask me anything if i’ve missed out on some things!!
The Six Queens As YouTubers
Warnings: Some Strong Language
A/N: i promise i will work on request soon i just wanted to get these out
Catherine Of Aragon
Aragon has a lifestyle channel and it's honestly probably the best one on all of YouTube
her videos are an equal mix of vlogs and just sit down videos
she does a few story times about her and the other queens but she also does vids like "My Favorites For The Month Of *Blank*" or sometimes challenge videos where she invites the other queens along to collab
once all six of them played never have i ever on her channel and it went wild
Katherine can never look at Parr the same way again and Anne definitely made Jane explain some answers off camera
her vlogs are very calm but entertaining
she likes to show off her outfits in each and every one and she goes through her goals for the day and what she hopes to accomplish during the video
her channel is like a mix of Avery Ovard and Lindsay Webster
a good bit of her vlog footage is her filming Cleves doing something funny and her laughing behind the camera
she responds to the early comments on her videos
and if she needs editing motivation she goes looks at all the sweet comments her subscribers leave
especially if she just finds herself bored with nothing to do she'll go respond to people on her latest video
Anne is the most chaotic gaming YouTuber this Earth has EVER seen
she plays Roblox and Minecraft like a seven year old and takes it SO seriously
her and Kitty have a shared survival world that they play on all the time and it's possibly one of the funniest Minecraft let's plays in existence
not only does she play Roblox and Minecraft but she'll play games like Call Of Duty, GTA V, and she plays RPGs every now and again just 'cause
she has horrible rage though and doesn't stand for anybody's bull at. all.
her favorite thing is joining random servers and someone recognizing her and she just gives this knowing smile to her camera while filming
you're bullying someone in game? she'll kill you AND your whole bloodline with just her words
she's made people cry before
she'll take a break from gaming videos to do stupid videos that she'll convince the other queens to do with her
when her and Katherine film together they'll starting recording and immediately start laughing at nothing because they know it'll end in madness
Anne's fans learn to embrace her crackheadery quite early on
Anne does too seeing as she makes her own compilations like "me falling out of my chair for three minutes" or "every time i've broken something while raging"
Jane definitely had some questions about the rage video and a few of the broken items that made an appearance
oh Anne has the second best merch out of all of them and she makes sure her prices are actually reasonable
we'll come back to who has the best merch
Anne really lets her gremlin status show in her comment section
between leaving hearts on every good comment and completely destroying haters she's honestly got her hands full in between making videos
if she just doesn't want to give someone the attention she just deletes their comment and blocks them from commenting especially if the comment is about another queen
Katherine and Anne convinced Jane to start a YouTube channel and she will never admit she's grateful they did
she vlogs too but it's not really like the other girls
her videos don't feature her a lot, it's more of an equal amount of everyone
all the fans jokingly call her the mommy-vlogger because that's how she acts with the girls
she films a lot of them all hanging out or them during rehearsals just having fun and relaxing
her videos are the most relaxed out of everyone
they do a lot of group videos on Jane's channel that just features them being themselves and their "family outings"
Jane doesn't like doing videos by herself even if she is encouraged to do so
oh the fan compilations off of her channel y'all don't even know
"jane saying 'anne don't do that' for nine minute forty-two seconds", "Jane Seymour stopping the other queens from getting killed", "Jane's best mom moments"
Jane tries to respond to comments to the best of her ability but she's not too good at it
to make up for it she answers questions people leave with the other queens for videos every now and again
Anna Of Cleves
Cleves is so chaotic honestly
she just posts whatever she feels like posting whenever she feels like posting
it can be a seven minute video of the most random things you have ever seen or it can be the most planned out and coordinate twenty minute video on YouTube
she loves to interact with her fans and subscribers and goes live like every other day to answer questions and hang out
she exposes all of the other queens just for fun
oh the classic prank videos are unreal
Aragon, Seymour, and Howard are her main three victims and they almost always fall for it
Aragon acts like she's upset with Anna for the next few days but she has to admit it was a little funny, Jane just tells her not to do it again, and Kitty always gets sad because she fell for another prank but usually ends up laughing at herself by the end of the day
when her, Anne, and Kitty film together it is so chaotic and almost never monetized
it's even worse if you throw Parr into the mix
Anna's iconic best selling "Tea Cleves Gang Gang" merch is almost always out of stock but she's always doing giveaways of hoodies and whatever she can
Anna loves her comment section and she can hold full convos with subscribers if she really wanted to
she also features a fan's comment in each of her videos at the end
Katherine has like the second most organized channel out of everyone
she doesn't really vlog because she forgets about filming through her day so she finds sit down videos easier
she's a little bit of a crossover of Aragon and Anne in a sense
she does stuff like Aragon's favorites of the months and videos with some of the other queens
she also plays a few video games but not the ones like Anne does except for Roblox and Minecraft
her style is like if Levi Bernhardt's and iHasCupQuakes's style (in her prime that is, idk if she still makes videos. pour one out for Minecraft Oasis) had a baby
she lets Parr edit for her and Parr just takes her videos to the next level and makes them so much funnier
she loves playing games with the other queens on her channel because they all end up enjoying themselves by the end of it and at least three of them are red in the face from laughing
Kitty goes through her comment section when she's bored and answers any questions or leaves cute messages under sweet things subscribers leave
she allows one of the other queens to go through and delete hate comments for her because she doesn't want to see them and they always agree to do it for her
she learns to put on a few filters that hide comments with hateful messages in them
Catherine Parr is iconically known for her vlogs
her editing is above amazing and it just makes her videos even better because her editing style is just like Sidney Lavin's
she narrates her day to day life and all the other queens make appearances in her videos
they're kinda like David Dobrik's vlogs where the videos are just clips from throughout the week and at the end there's a bunch of funny clips/bloopers but her vids are way longer
she usually starts the video with a clip of something crazy or stupid happening and 9 times out of 10 it's Boleyn or Cleves before the intro card plays
she'll vlog rehearsals and Kitty always goes and blows a kiss to the camera while Parr pans over things because it's tradition
fans make SO many compilation videos from her vlogs "anne boleyn being a crackhead in catherine parr's vlogs for seven minutes straight", "four minutes of catherine parr being done with everyone's shit", "Jane Seymour Being Stressed™︎", "katherine howard blowing kisses in catherine parr's vlogs", and so so so many more
on top of the vlogs she does book reviews and people are genuinely interested in them and love them more than they can explain
a complete child in the comment sections
don't let her see a hate comment because she'll make someone cry HONESTLY
even if it's not about her, she'll be ready to track someone down with a knife in hand
There's the full moon,,,,,,,,,,, very cool but also romantic
YB's pouty face,,, baby
You know, YM saying maybe he is the dominant half isn't entirely wrong, beside the fact he would have already took over if it wasn't for Rishid's simple existence, he is literally the embodiment of all the feelings Malik couldn't accept about himself: his hate towards his father, the clan, their constant brainwashing and obsession to send Atem to gay pharaoh heaven, in a way YM is more true to the real Malik than the current, repressed Malik
How i image Dark Necrofear being summoned just to watch her master being a loser
Also did they made Bakura's hair longer? Since when they are reach his hips? not complaing tho, just a weird detail
"I pay 800 LP-"
BITCH YOU ARE LOSING HOW MANY RISK YOU CAN STILL TAKE
"Just calm down Bakura, he is still planning something, i know myself all too well"
Are you admiting you are lil mf too Malik?
"And now that i think about it, Malik it's your fault our previous strategy didn't work!"
You literally told him to shut up everytime be opened his mouth to say 'hey' what '''strategy''' did he ruined, Bakura?
Ok ITA dub time, the scene where Malik and Bakura argue was really funny because while here YM is "i don't mind", italian!YM is offended by them, to quote him "two friends that fight eachother, how shameful!"
It's funnier because the ita dub also upped the allyship between the thiefs in earlier eps and that, for some reasons, italian!YM's primary character trait is being SNARKY AS HELL, and almost everything he says is sick burn, he doesn't even need Lava Golem because every sassy insult he makes is so strong that it burns the opponent by 6666 LP and sends them to the Shadow Realm with a single effect
So you have this guy who is been roasting Bakura all this time complaining because he isn't treating his best friend with respect now, c'mon is this a sitcom?
Bakura's blushy face when he faces YM..... darkness canon
Is Kaiba putting his coat on Mokie a 🥺 moment?
Nope nothing special, I literally brings pillows to my little sis everyday
Get on my level Kaiba-boy
Anzu is getting some character development? She is finally realizing she is getting excluded by everything (even tho,,, girl you have a lil dude called Malik in your head) but she still wants to help? Holy shit blessed episode
Ra doesn't get so flashy animation when summoned which is great imo, but i love that even poor Bakura looks so scared when Ra gets summoned from his GY, despite the anime not really using Bakura a lot they did a great job to make him an evil but somewhat normal kid rather than oooo00000 edgyy scaryy ghost 000000oooo
We get more "Ra is written heratic text", being a tomb keeper, Malik probably know it from his studies but he can't understand what YM is saying, then YM says the Rod revealed to him that only Yami Malik can decipher Ra's special abilities
I have my headcanons but it's interesting to think about it
"It's been a fun duel, Bakura" by GX this is the highest declaration of love possible, let's keep this in mind
WE GET THE HYPE, THE ICONIC SCENE OF YAMI MALIK FUSING WITH RA
"Ra and i become one!!" YOU GO FUNKY BOY
I was thinking how Bakura summoned all those cool monsters for nothing as they didn't even got to attack (poor Ha Des we will miss you)
Until i realize that that if they were in DEF position Bakura would have another turn
I can't even with this guy
This duel was a trainwreck, except the first attack, Bakura lost all his LP by himself, without managing to even TOUCH YM's, YM didn't lose a single LP until he himself used everyone by 1 to end the duel
This duel was basically a race to see who could lose all LP faster
"Now die and disperse my residual thoughts!!" (@marik)
Cool line man
There' a lot to unpack here
1) YY and Anzu doing nothing but talk until the end of the duel (ok same thing with Pegasus, but it's weird)
2) YM and YB talking for the last time, dude
3) YM's very bored face when YY starts speaking
4) YM and his 3° failed attempted stabbing of Rishid
BATMAN: HARLEY QUINN
BY PAUL DINI, YVEL GUICHET, AARON SOWD, RICHARD HORIE, TANYA HORIE AND ALEX ROSS
Poison Ivy finds Harley Quinn in the middle of a wreckage and soon learns her origin and puts her in motion to get what she really wants.
I feel like this could have been a nine had it been separated from Cataclysm/No Man’s Land. You know, just to make it timeless.
But it also adds some logic to things that looked odd in the cartoon.
The origin remains very similar to the one in “Mad Love”, although in this version, I feel like Harley is a bit smarter.
The art fits very well with many of the bat artists of 1999 (you have to remember that No Man’s Land had many guest artists that normally wouldn’t have gotten the chance to work on the character). In this case, Yvel Guichet does a very glossy Batman, in a style that was all the rage at the turn of the century, almost reminds you of Wildstorm or some of the Marvel Knights comics. I think it reminds me a bit to Joe Quesada, but without being completely iconic. He started his career at Valiant, so that may explain his style.
Now, there are a couple of details worthy of mentioning, in the spoilers section.
Spoilers after the break...
So, Poison Ivy’s serum is the reason the can hold a giant mallet. It also gives her an edge to survive whatever the Joker has planned for her.
This also adds Harley to a very specific point in Batman history, she became Harley Quinn after the earthquake, as far as I know, since the Earthquake’s existence in the timeline is at the moment inconsistent, and we have seen Harley in several flashbacks way in the past, I would have to assume this placement in the timeline is no longer canon.
I do appreciate Poison Ivy being the first person to trust in Harley, but it would have been even funnier seeing her reaction at the end of this story, with Harley going back to Joker. I mean, in the end, she got away with her own plans, and she didn’t do anything Poison Ivy suggested. That speaks a lot about how much determination this character has.
Yeah, TMI Ron!
Maybe I'm just greedy for more content but the Aladdin bonus features really could've been a little longer, especially the bloopers, it was criminal for it to be that short xDD
I mean come on we didn't even get Mena's iconic Heem nom whom Heem seem heem is and that was the part everyone was looking forward to lol. Not only that but I felt like they could've chosen funnier scenes for the bloopers? Cause I'm sure there's a lot of those moments on set and the bloopers didn't go full on out with those for some reason 🤷
As for the deleted scenes, they're definitely the bonus content that I'm most satisfied with but I can't help but notice that there were some scenes that I've seen in earlier BTS featurettes that didn't make it into the movie being missing?? For example a scene where Aladdin and Jasmine were on a lift presumably during One Jump , I was kinda hoping that it was included. Not to mention the epilogue where they were supposed to meet with Genie and Dahlia's kids, that was also sadly missing though someone suggested that it might be because they wanted to save it for the sequel because including that scene would've nullified the point of a sequel? Fingers crossed that that is the case cause if not I'll cry.
The video journal I'm actually somewhat mixed about cause I really felt like it could've shown us more lol. I guess it's because Mena has been feeding us so many good Behind the scenes content that I kinda had higher expectations for the actual exclusive bonus content? Like literally I feel like Mena's vlogs had more to show and they're free of charge 😂 kinda ironic cause Mena was in charge of the vlogging for the Video journal so like why didn't they just ask him to give them all his vlogs lol 🤔😂
My biggest disappointment is the fact that not one of the bonus features includes scenes of the cast in the recording studio?? I get that only 3 characters ever sing in this movie but even the featurettes never showed us any of those moments and it's honestly such a shame 😩
alright now that i’ve finally seen both fullmetal animes here’s my compare & contrast
2003 does this better:
better soundtrack. brotherhood’s ost is SUPERB but 2003 still wins. it’s iconic and historic
wack-ass ending aside 03 is MUCH cleaner and more self-contained. brotherhood zooms out a lot and takes a bigger look at the world than 03. that’s not to say one is better than the other, but something i like about the 03 anime is that a lot of minor characters came back in the end when they deviated from the manga. everyone was connected somehow
like ok in 03, winry’s parents were actually murdered by mustang, and the homunculi were created by regular old alchemists - i think little plot stuff like that is what i mean by “self-contained” - everything is so weighty and it matters so much and there’s nothing that isn’t important in the end
similarly, 03 has really good character development...brotherhood has a lot to accomplish in a short time, so the pacing is much faster and more oriented towards action where 03 has time to really slow down and dig into everything...we got a much longer time to get to know characters like nina and maes and marta/martel and even yoki
03 is a lot darker i think both thematically and literally as in they used darker shading which is like...obviously everyone has their own tastes but i really enjoy it
hohenheim, scar, lust, and envy all get like 10000x more character development in 03...in fact, almost all the homunculi save for bradley get more development, 03 is very definitely character based. i like 03 hohenheim a LOT better actually and i think his rocky relationship with ed gets more closure in 03, even with 03′s wack-ass ending
03 did a better job of exploring the fallout of having to do really and truly horrible things during wartime...it’s talked about a fair amount in brotherhood, but in 03, the weight of those sins is made much more tangible and horrifying
03 had better voice acting. sorrryyyyy but some of the new guys they got for brotherhood (to replace scar, marcoh, and breda, most notably) just aren’t as good! i did like the new al though in spite of myself
brotherhood does this better:
brotherhood actually knows what the fuck it’s doing as far as plot goes and the ending was cool and satisfying
since brotherhood does take that zoomed out view of the world we got to learn a lot more about it, which was really cool
some brotherhood-only characters are dope as hell. specifically the characters from xing but i also really loved general armstrong, brotherhood’s pride, & kimblee’s ex-men
brotherhood has more WOMEN. not that 03 is a slouch in that department but brotherhood is even better
while brotherhood didn’t do as well showing us the fallout of committing atrocities in war i DO think it did a better job exploring what it means to be marked by committing a taboo - how that changes you forever - in a way that 03 just didn’t quite reach
while i love 03′s darker look, brotherhood’s animation style is like...really so much easier on the eyes it’s GORGEOUS and i like the brotherhood openings better too. sometimes i had trouble skipping them bc they are so good and i just wanted to watch ‘em over & over. that plus the fact that it’s not a square (we didn’t all have widescreen TVs in 2003 lol) is like...a big bonus
brotherhood is just plain cooler in a lot of ways - the creatures are cooler (envy’s true form?? PRIDE?? HELLO??), the environments are more diverse (xerxes! briggs! amazing!), the FIGHT and ACTION SCENES (roy vs lust, greed vs wrath, SCAR USING ******* AGAINST WRATH), and lots of the action has nice little twists, such as al sitting in the dark with pride, or the briggs soldiers freezing sloth in the blizzard...yeah brotherhood has less character development but the action scenes are absolutely gripping. sometimes i forget how much i love a good fight scene when they’re actually choreographed well & brotherhood reminded me
brotherhood is scarier because the stakes are higher. the main villain in 03 had much smaller ambitions than the main villain in brotherhood. granted, i think dante is a cooler and more fun villain than father, but he’s definitely much scarier. dante wants to kill a lot of people. father wants to kill ALL of them. father can disable ur alchemy. father can force mustang thru the ******
brotherhood is a LOT funnier. i was surprisedd at how often i actually laughed out loud. this is a result of 03 being more angsty in general i think
brotherhood has no nazis. zero of them.
brotherhood DIDN’T KILL IZUMI CURTIS in fact i don’t think there’s a single character death in brotherhood that i disagree with which is REALLY rare for me. there were a couple in 03 that i thought were dumb and stupid
anyway, this concludes my comparison. neither is necessarily better than the other, they’re just Different, & i really love both of them
I was blessed enough to see Hamilton so here’s my thoughts.....
(these are from my phone, on which I took notes during intermission and for half an hour when we got back to our hotel after the show....I am still so incredibly shook from the beauty of this show. This is also a good 90% chunk explaining my love of Lexi Lawson throughout all my thoughts so I mean.....enjoy)
(also @apocalyps-o I’m tagging you because as a new Lexi stan I am here for a fellow Lexi stan and you need to know legitimately every detail of how flawless I think she was.)
— Lexi Lawson
Literally an angel
Eliza is my favorite above any other character in this musical so although I was honestly just happy to be there I had the most high standards. They were MORE THAN EXCEEDED.
She is so soft and good, her smile makes me want to fling myself into the sun. She plays Eliza exactly as she should be-gentle, kind, and with this kind of air that makes me want to squeeze her and never let her go. She makes the Reynolds pamphlet hit twice as hard because you fall so deeply in love with her. Her inflection of every note, her vocal control, the way she would do these really soft, long, gradual crescendos that just felt so natural and SOFT SHE IS SO SOFT
Her helpless was such an iconic moment because she really showed Eliza’s naivety but also her excitement, and a lot of her relationship with Angelica because she kept going back to her and hugging her or grabbing her arm, and they’d gossip and I was so excited about the air of sisterhood they held. They’d share these looks with shining eyes and when Mandy Gonzales held her tenderly by the elbows I wanted to cry-It was a closeness I really felt blessed to witness. Also, Lexi’s Eliza Eskimo kissed Peggy during Helpless when she puts all the letters back into their box and it made. My. Entire. Night. It was the cutest thing. Also, her riffs were incredible-the last little riff if Helpless, she held out the first note a bit shorter so she could go into this miraculous, longer, so controlled and effortless riff to ALL sides of her vocal range where she had the biggest smile-so gentle.
Something to note about the difference between her and Pippa is that I think Lexi generally took everything a bit softer-the moments that were big and belt-y in Pippa’s Eliza ended up still being big with Lexi, but gentler. There weren’t these big, loud, joyous moments of belting but these blissful, effortless riffs that really just tugged at my heart as an Eliza stan. She takes the whole idea of Eliza being this naive, young, ANGEL and runs with it so beautifully.
Also, it really made her burn more impactful I think, because she had her powerful moments but they’d been showing more with her facial expression and movement than with the volume of her voice-so when Burn comes, and her voice is cracking and she just looks so DEJECTED? When she sings the first verse as one sort of deep, lethargic sigh? Oh my god. There’s this hint of rejection in her eyes, a helpless sort of tears beginning to pool, it’s the most heartbreaking thing.
She also laughed during helpless at Lafayette, and had to bring herself back it was so precious.
Watching her dote on Peggy too was really sweet, and the Peggy was really funny and I feel like she was rolling with the whole “and Peggy” Joke
Quinton Johnson as Mulligan stole the show. Really. He is so funny, he would do these little motions and actions in the back that had me cackling. The entire audience was CACKLING because he gave so much emotional reprieve after some of the more intense, heavier moments.
I sobbed during dear Theodosia SO MUCH. Daniel Breaker?? He comes out and he starts singing, then you can see him start to cry, and by the end of his first verse he is crying and my heart just felt so attacked by the amount of emotion in that performance. The two of them were so incredibly on top of portraying that feeling, that pride and happiness and pure joy, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing.
The cast dynamic as a whole was incredible-I really felt the way they made the show into their own experience, twisted it to fit their personalities and what they wanted everyone to get out of their experience. The show was so. Funny. And it’s due to the cast and the way they made little moves or added extra quirks that I couldn’t handle. During the cabinet battles there were mics, and I was dying over the fact that there was also a mic drop, and the audience completely ate both cabinet battles up.
And Hamilton Was played aggressively in a way that he really felt more like he was really trying to keep himself under control, like he was having a difficult time keeping his mouth shut and his energy down and finding the appropriate balance of using his voice and trying to keep himself in check. It was really neat to see the way that everything felt much more urgent with Hamilton-like he really was running out of time and he was aggressively trying to get his points across. He was an anxious mess as Ham is, but he definitely portrayed a bit more of the power and precision that Hamilton possessed.
The best scenes in act two were:
Maria being kind of lower key, showing a bit more of her actual young mannerisms because SHE WAS A CHILD. And then during the Reynolds pamphlet when she literally had this look of utter fear and betrayal on her face, like ‘how could he, how dare he,” because her life was falling to shambles. An unrecognized, underappreciated role to portray so much in so little time.
Phillip rapping because he was so shy, and then as Alex built his confidence up he got louder and stood up a bit taller, and by the end Alex was really showing his pride and so Phillip hugged him and left cheering himself on, it made Eliza so happy, she was reeling by the end, what a nice family moment.
Also Lexi doting on him during that scene, sitting on one side of the bench, waving her arms playfully like she’s conducting but she also takes his piano seriously as he’s rolling his eyes. Their whole take on pip and Eliza’s relationship was so sweet. I feel in general that Lexi Lawson did such a wonderful job of showing Eliza’s nurturing side, the way she so gently coddles Phillip and even during helpless how she’s always looking back and going to Peggy, making sure she’s alright.
Lexi’s voice quivering as she’s singing to dying Phillip. And then her choked out sob. Oh my god.
It’s Quiet Uptown. The entire thing. This performance had me shaking in my seat. I felt so deeply rooted in their emotions that my heart felt like it was going to fall out of my body. Right as they’re singing about Eliza standing with Alex in the garden, they were standing next to each other, each of them tearful and looking away from one another with pained expressions. Then, when Eliza takes Alex’s hand and they sing “forgiveness,” Alex completely broke down. Like. Crouched on the floor holding her hand, both of them are sobbing, then they hold on to each other so tightly the rest of the song. She touches his face and they kiss, and god knows how I remember it through the sobbing, but it was the most emotionally raw performance of anything that I have ever witnessed.
Her burn. Because she was so subdued, and everytime she said “do you know what Angelica said” it was in an “oh, stupid me, I should’ve known” voice with this sort of sad slouched shrug, holding her letters and playing with them with her hands and that was HEARTBREAKING.
Her GENTLE, completely heartbreaking CRESCENDO, and the way she finally lost it and BROKE DOWN as she sang “you’ll sleep in your office instead” in a cracking, loud, tearful voice. ugh.
Lexi during Who Lives, Who Dies where she absolutely tore me to pieces with her eyes all tearful and proud as she sings about ELIZA’s legacy. You go girl. And then her gasp at the end? Iconic.
A good goo Jefferson. He was HILARIOUS. Just in his exaggerated movements and his facials, I was dying over every facial expression he made. And Madison carrying around a Hankie and being a big nerd baby.
And every time the king came out and everyone just screamed. He was so animated, and so light on his feet, it’s like the laughter fueled him and every time he came out he was ten times funnier than before.
anyway, I’m about to work every weekend and every day after my full-time job just so that I can see Hamilton again.....this was the best payoff for the ridiculous amount that I work. Like.
Friday, 19 January 2018
We Don't Go Back #76: The League of Gentlemen (1999-2017)
The League of Gentlemen
was first broadcast, I didn't own a TV, and by the time I owned one, I was living with my Beloved, who didn't have any interest in seeing it. Nonetheless, I could tell you a not insignificant amount about the major characters, and reel off catchphrases. I could tell you what it was like. People cared about it. Partly this was because several of my friends adored it, and it entered the referential lexicon of our conversation. But partly it seemed to be present, part of the furniture of our pop culture.
For example, I remember that at the time the university LGB society (the T or the Q were not yet added, which is related to a point I'll pick up later) used pictures of prominent gay and lesbian people on posters for an anti-homophobia campaign and one of them was Mark Gatiss, and I recognised him as the chap from
The League of Gentlemen
. It's fair to say that
The League of Gentlemen
fell firmly into the category of things I'd never seen but which I could take part in a conversation about without getting completely lost.
I never got round to watching
The League of Gentlemen
But now this project is Serious Business, there are some things I can't really get away with leaving out. So I committed myself to watching it. A good friend expressed concern that it might be too late for me to do that. I sort of half understood what he was getting at, but only really got what he was about having worked through it.
The usual caveats about how writing about comedy are the antithesis of funny apply here, by the way (I still think my funniest article was the one about
Planet of the Apes
, but I digress).
Honest town signs.
The League of Gentlemen
are Reese Shearsmith, Mark Gatiss, Steve Pemberton and Jeremy Dyson. All four of them write; Gatiss, Pemberton and Shearsmith appear in front of the camera and divide the vast majority of characters, men and women, between them.
It's set in and around the fictional village of Royston Vasey ("You'll never leave!"), in the North of England, where everyone is a grotesque. It's sort of but not entirely sketch comedy.
Some characters appear in most of the episodes: Pauline (Pemberton), who runs a job start course, loves pens and despises the unemployed; Mike (Pemberton), Barry (Gatiss) and their spectacularly messed up mate Geoff (Shearsmith); disappointed musician Les McQueen (Gatiss); Mr Chinnery the vet (Gatiss again), who kills every animal he touches; Hilary Briss the butcher (also Gatiss) who puts something terrible and evil in his delicious sausages; and perhaps the most iconic characters in the show, Edward and Tubbs (Shearsmith and Pemberton), a pair of debased, depraved yokels who run a Local Shop for Local People and who visit unspeakable fates on anyone who comes who isn't Local.
What's all this SHOUTING?
But unlike many sketch shows, the recurring characters' stories progress from episode to episode. So for example, the fate of innocent Benjamin (Shearsmith) at the hands of his finicky aunt Val (Gatiss) and monstrous uncle Harvey (Pemberton) develops and escalates as he realises he might never be able to leave, and begins to formulate a plan of escape. Pauline finds her nemesis in one of her course attendees. Mr Briss's Special Stuff creates an epidemic of nosebleeds.
Many characters appear in no more than a handful of episodes at most, and become the focus of the episodes they're in. The Legz Akimbo theatre company (slogan: "put yourself in a child!") come to visit the local school but their internal tensions destroy the group. A guide leads a party of tourists through the Royston Vasey caves, while replaying a terrible tragedy for which he blames himself. A farmer keeps a man who slept with his wife as a scarecrow in his field. Kenny Harris (Gatiss), owner of the Dog Cinema, engages in a cutthroat business struggle with a rival who's more into cat films.
And then there's Papa Lazarou.
Papa Lazarou (Shearsmith) is the single most nightmarish creation of the League of Gentlemen, and along with Tubbs and Edward, is most representative of the show's folk horror elements. He's the owner of the Pandemonium Carnival, which comes to town early in series 2. Papa Lazarou is a nightmare in human form, his scabrous face caked in black-and-white minstrel makeup. He forces his way into people's houses, insisting on calling them "Dave", and intimidating them through an almost supernatural power of domination into giving him their wedding ring, wherein he spirits them away as his slaves, with the phrase, "You're my wife now."
He is genuinely terrifying, and I wonder how that first episode he's in would play if it didn't have a laugh track (only the first two seasons have laugh tracks). And of course he's one of the two places where people most take offence at
The League of Gentlemen.
The most usual objection to Papa Lazarou is that he's in minstrel blackface. But while minstrel makeup is a blot on our culture, it is, it's obvious from the way that Papa Lazarou is framed is that he's supposed to be horrific because he's precisely the sort of person who wears blackface and always wears it.
In his second appearance (the final episode of series 3) there's an insane visual gag revolving around him disguising himself as relatively normal by painting a pale skin tone
his blackface makeup, which I found hilarious. But it's also a bit of a problem for a lot of viewers, evidently, because I've read at least two pieces online that interpret the scene as meaning that he's naturally minstrel-toned, which is... Well, I don't know. I'm starting to doubt my own reading a bit, but part of Papa Lazarou's grotesquerie is that you can see how the black and white paint is caked on his face in closeup, and I'm sort of inclined to go with my original reading, partly because it's much less hard to swallow, and mostly because it's a lot funnier.
The League of Gentlemen
is part of a tradition of British comedy and horror alike that deals with grotesque figres: in a show with Geoff, Mr Briss, Pauline, Harvey and, oh God, Edward and Tubbs, Papa Lazarou is just one more of a parade of freaks and monsters. And he is scary, really scary. The episode where Papa Lazarou and his Pandemonium Carnival comes to town (season 2, episode 1) is the point where I moved from a state of "that bit was pretty good" ambivalence to understanding why people consider
The League of Gentlemen
to be an undisputed classic of British TV comedy. Whatever the framing of Papa Lazarou and his freakshow (and notwithstanding the arguments about whether anyone should be making gags about blackface at all, the politics of freakshows is a subject I am simply not equipped to get into), that whole episode is a delirious comic horror and I have seen little to match it.
I can't go to Dorothy Perkins.
The other point where
The League of Gentlemen
gets some flak is in the figure of Babs the transgender cabbie. And the joke with Babs is partly that she's butch and hairy, so that she looks like a bloke in drag (specifically that she resembles the other women characters on the show, only more so), and partly that she's excessively forthcoming about the mechanical details of her transition with her clients. It's complicated by the fact that most of the people of Royston Vasey like her and are supportive of her. No one on the show is ever an open bigot about Babs. She's never deadnamed, for instance. And she's essentially one of the most sympathetic characters in the show. But nonetheless she embodies most of the most enduring transphobic stereotypes, simply by being so grotesque (so much so that we never see her face).
And back in 1999, as I mentioned in passing, we still talked about LGB issues and a lot of us hadn't added the T yet. And it's not as if trans people hadn't been there all along, but trans rights are in the general sphere of discourse now in a way that in the UK they weren't in the 90s. And this doesn't mean that a character like Babs isn't a problem, it means that many of the people who might be aware of the problem now weren't then because it hadn't been pointed out to them. And that isn't an excuse either. It's like all the history that comes back, unresolved, to haunt us.
You could tell that it haunted
The League of Gentlemen
: in the special episodes that aired over the 2017 Christmas season, she's back. She has to be, really: in a lot of ways, Babs acts like a Greek chorus for the unfolding story. So here she is, opening proceedings as ever. Barbara has transitioned successfully now, and she even says that trans people should not be "a source of cheap laughs" just for being who they are, and given that Barbara is a character who has always been framed as having her heart in the right place, as someone you're supposed to sympathise with, it's pretty clear that this is what Dyson, Gatiss, Pemberton and Shearsmith actually think.
But for her to even appear, and it's more or less obligatory that she does, she still has to supply a joke. So now, no longer an Ugly Trans Person, Barbara is an Excessively Touchy Trans Person who seizes on innocuous statements and takes offence to comic effect.
I wonder if Papa Lazarou and Barbara are problems like this because of the way
The League of Gentlemen
engages with its inspirations.
The League of Gentlemen
owes a great deal to classic British TV and cinema of the 60s and 70s, but crucially it engages with that source material in a way that enriches the show. It's instructive here to compare it with
Dr Terrible's House of Horrible
, which is roughly contemporary and which, unlike
The League of Gentlemen
, has not entered the annals of classic comedy. They both get their inspiration from similar places, in fact in several cases the same places – I mentioned
The League of Gentlemen
's odd relationship with sketch comedy, and it's sort of fair to say that it's sketch comedy in the way that an Amicus anthology horror is sketch horror. But where
depended on your being familiar with the source material, at least to some extent, to get the gag,
The League of Gentlemen
tells a collection of stories that don't depend on any foreknowledge at all. It's not a parody, and it's not entirely an homage either, although it has parodic elements and homage is threaded through the whole thing.
Rather, it's a comedy that focusses on the absurdity of evil and the equal absurdity of despair and that uses the grammar of classic British horror to tell those stories.
For example, a narrative thread in the fourth episode has workers on a proposed road digging up an inexplicable creature. Mr Chinnery comes to examine it, and proves as incompetent as ever. And while the scene carries a bunch of signifiers that come from Nigel Kneale, echoing
in particular, and multiplied by the simple fact that Mr Chinnery looks and acts like Tristan Farnham (Peter Davison's character in
All Creatures Great and Small
), the joke doesn't depend on that. It depends on a moment of uncanny horror punctured when the vet's incompetence is revealed once more.
For the joke to land, you don't have to have seen
Quatermass and the Pit
, and while the whole scene is richer if you imagine Tristan Farnham in a Nigel Kneale script, that's not the joke. No, for the joke to land, you just need to have seen Mr Chinnery in action enough for you to be waiting for the moment when he fails catastrophically.
The League of Gentlemen
, this texture is present. Royston Vasey is a vaguely comical, Northern-sounding name. But it is also the real name of legendarily foul-mouthed comedian Roy "Chubby" Brown, who himself appears later in the series as the town's mayor. And the joke with the mayor is that he's got a swearing problem, and that's a simple enough joke that you don't need to know who Roy "Chubby" Brown is, or that he's guesting as mayor of a town named after him to get it. That other stuff helps, but it isn't essential.
But the problem with the way that
The League of Gentlemen
mines classic horror and comedy is that sometimes it homages the things that perhaps should be left behind, so you get characters like Babs and Papa Lazarou, who are both beautifully played and well-written comic characters, but who reference stuff that is difficult to justify beyond nostalgia.
The League of Gentlemen
is important as the first sign of the folk horror renaissance that we've had in the last few years. Rather than saying "look at all these ropey old films! Aren't they terrible?"
The League of Gentlemen
embraces them, but crucially makes new things. It's a comedy, but it's also a horror: Edward and Tubbs reference any number of pagan village conspiracies. "We didn't burn him!" blurts Tubbs to the Scottish policeman who comes looking for poor missing Martin, but not before Edward tells Tubbs that she "did it beautifully." You don't have to know that they're quoting
The Wicker Man
to think they're funny and scary.
There's nothing for
The members of
The League of Gentlemen
have taken active part in the rise of folk horror as a recognised genre. Jeremy Dyson scripted the recent film
Shearsmith of course starred in
A Field in England
, and with Pemberton continues to make
Inside No. 9
, an anthology show that combines comedy and drama, and which has had at least a couple of folk horror episodes. The most notable of these is
The Trial of Elizabeth Gadge
, where Pemberton and Shearsmith play 17th century witch hunters. Just like
The League of Gentlemen
The Trial of Elizabeth Gadge
isn't a spoof or a parody, it's a black comedy that stands on its own merits, even while it draws inspiration from other sources.
And Reese Shearsmith took part in Folk Horror Revival's 2016 event at the British Museum, hearing about which is how I realised that there was a name for the things I liked.
Mark Gatiss is the man who might be credited for extending the name "folk horror" to a genre (Piers Haggard being the first to apply it consciously to his own film). In his 2010 series
History of Horror
, Gatiss popularised the idea of the Unholy Trinity, and talked at length about
Blood on Satan's Claw
, which probably did more to bring about the critical reassessment of that film than anything else. Gatiss also wrote
, which aired on the BBC in 2008, and the 2013 adaptation of
The Tractate Middoth.
Together with Shearsmith, Gatiss has remade
Blood on Satan's Claw
as an audio drama (released January 2018).
You could argue pretty persuasively that without
The League of Gentlemen
, there might not have been a rebirth of interest in folk horror at all. Without them, it would still be an accidental genre. A local genre, for local people.
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atlantis (popular) rising
city of god
i blame society
in search of the miraculous
m4 death trip
on a thousand walls
the age of miracles
the prince of exiles
the question in bodies
the shivering circle
the truth about sappho
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written in water
your move darwin
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this pic motivated the search
Tagged by @thenightdayblogger
I usually forget to do these, but I remembered this time!
Height: 5 ft 7
Favorite Animal: do I really have to pick one? I mean I’ve always loved wolves so let’s say that for now
Average hours of sleep: recently? like six-ish hours :/ But normally I aim for 8-9
Cats or Dogs: I love both, but it changes with the mood. Right now probably cats because I’m feeling more lowkey
Number of blankets: Absolutely no limit (but there are two on my bed right now)
Favorite song of the week: uuh maybe Welcome the the Family by Watsky. or Nobody Likes the Opening Band by IDKHBTFM. Or maybe Good Girls by Cris Cab? Still Feel by Half Alive? All This Love by JP Cooper? Yeah I have a lot right now
Things I find comforting: My dog, sweatpants and flannels, a mug of tea, my sad boi hours playlist, looking through my camera roll, wearing chapstick, napping, taking walks, my sisters, reading
Favorite band/artist: As mentioned above, I listen to a lot so. Can’t really choose one. Raveena, BTS (yeah.), Dean, Saib., Boy Pablo, Jacob Banks, Tom Misch, Daniel Caesar, NIKI, Kali Uchis, and so on so forth
Song stuck in my head: Honey by Raveena
Last movie I saw: The Jungle Book (the Disney animated one)
Other blogs: uuh yeah so. I have seven. No, none of them are for porn, I just have a lot of different interests lmao
Do I get asks: I mean Tumblr never notifies me so when I check my inbox (like twice a year maybe) there’s usually one from four months ago or something but I think it’s safe to say no, I don’t
Why did I choose this username: I was sitting on my kitchen floor while soup was cooking on the stove and I was like ‘hm what’s a good/unique thing I can use as a name on the internet. Glittergravy is kind of cool and unique’ but then it was taken (ironic) so I went with a longer and funnier version
Following: 2,608 :l
Lucky number: never thought about it but 13 I guess
What I’m wearing: Bright yellow shorts, a sports bra, and a really thin, almost see through balck and maroon tshirt my sister gave me (it has a tiger on it)
Dream Trip: Way too many options to choose, but I’d love to visit my friend in Korea. Or Italy sounds really nice
Favorite food: Almost all food is good so. but I really love any fruit right now; grapes, cherries, peaches, nectarines, oranges, apples, bananas, mangos, watermelon, plums, strawberries, blueberries, pineapple, it goes on
Play any instruments: no. I’m lowkey bitter about it :( maybe one day piano
Eye color: light blue
Hair color: dark brown
Describe yourself as aesthetic things: yikes I’m bad at this uh. Messy buns, oversized sweaters, hot tea, fresh fruit salads, crunchy leaves, natural makeup, glossy lips, silver chain pendants, muddy athletic shoes, glittery hair, fresh baked bread, light nights reading books, spontaneous stargazing
Languages you speak: Just English but learning Korean and working towards French, Spanish, and German!
Most iconic song: Bohemian Rhapsody, obviously
Random Fact: If you lined the entire population of China up single file and had them walk past you, the line would never end because of the rate of reproduction. A fact about me: when I was younger I would always go out barefoot and step on something that would stab me. I can think of at least six different occasions.
K, so ya girl made the trip to see Anastasia on Broadway because WHY THE FUCK NOT also I needed a much needed vacation lmaooo (RIP MY $$$ but I’m here for a good time, not a long time!!! And worth going to see the show alone!)
I also saw it twice because I’m so Extra(TM). But anyway, here be a reallllyy looooooong ass flail-y recap and thoughts for prosperity!!! I’m also combining both nights because I can!!!
So the first night, I sat center orchestra so I can IMMERSE MYSELF IN THE SHOW and the second time, I sat mezzanine right and HONESTLY the theatre is so small that as long as you’re not super to the side, you’ll get an amazing view wherever you are.
When the EMPRESS WALKS IN, THAT SHIT SPARKLED LIKE A FUCKING THOUSAND DIAMONDS!?!?!? WOW LINDA CHO WAS ROBBED. The audience also gasped audibly during her entrance
People laughed when they took pictures IDK WHY IT’S SO FUNNY KJDSFS
The Attack (as I’m dubbing it) is so intense and visually stunning, especially the end
Also the “In The Dark of the Night” melody playing!!!!
I also loved the Romanov Sisters “AAAAAHHHHHHH” before the run away
Ok MAX AS GLEB!!! I LOVED HIM he really was more awkward and less poised than Ramin was, at least in front of Anya but just as terrifying and intimidating. I thought he was also funnier sdjfhdsjkhf. The tone of voices were pretty similar too so it was kind of easier to focus on his portrayal, which was amazing overall.
Uhhh once Dmitry comes out, you can’t stop looking at him. JAWLINE. And also he gesticulates a lot sjkfskjj.
Christy really forreal literally has a sparkle in her eye whenever she sings and it’s amazing to witness SHE REALLY IS SUCH A SPECIAL PERFORMER
ISTG, one of these days Derek and John are forreal gonna end up flipping Christy over when they lift her THEY ALMOST DID THE SECOND NIGHT AND I WAS STRESSEDT you legit could see her feet up in the air lmfaaooao
After Anya chases off those hooligans, she points the stick at Dmitry and says, “Come at me, I won’t hurt you.” in this playful almost flirty voice and it gave me......thoughts......
DEREK GETS SO SWEATY AT THE END OF MY PETERSBURG AND IT’S SO FUNNY KFHSKJF also he kind of warbled the last note in both nights but I find it kind of endearing lmao bless him
There are a number of moments where Dmitry just kind of stares at Anya and then kind of catches himself and shakes himself out of it and it’s adorable like “hahahahaha idiot you’re falling in loooooooooooooove”
Uhhh OUAD is even more amazing because the ghost projections extend to the sides of the theatre so like SENSORY OVERLOAD I cried metaphorically
Watching the ensemble is so fun, when you can look away from Derek/Christy for a few seconds (WHICH IS HARD TO DO) lmfaoo, and in “We’ll go from There”, when it’s Dmitry’s turn to sing and he’s just hanging on the train rails, I was watching the two smoker girls (one played by Lyrica aka Odette/Ballerina), and at first, they have these disgusted looks that slowly turn into “Oh no, he’s hot” and LYRICA ESPECIALLY had that “gosh, he’s actually really cute” AND IT’S HILARIOUS (and I told Lyrica when I met her at stagedoor and she laughed a lot, saying she and Sarah have a lot of fun doing that scene)
OTP: DMITRY x BATHTUBS FOREVER
Stay, I Pray You gets me on a deep personal level because the immigrant connection is real (”You are all I know. You have raised me.” WHEN WILL I NOT CRY!?!?!?) , also I love numbers where everyone just sings classic choral style also the harmonies at the end PHEW
Also CONSTANTINE’S VOCALS
Journey to the Past. No words tbh other than MAGICAL.
PARIS HOLD THE KEY TO YOUR HEART IS SO FUN AND THE ELEVATOR RIDE UP TO THE EIFFEL TOWER IS SO FUCKING FUN!!!
I appreciate Land of Yesterday so much more as a visual performance because Caroline O’Connor is amazing. Her wit and her PHYSICAL STAMINA
MBP is one regal HBIC and Close the Door made me EMO
TCATCM is always such a hoot and John and Caroline are amazing together, the audience really just eats it up
IN A CROWD!!!! OF FUCKING THOUSANDS!!!!
I love arm
Christy’s delivery of “I remember” has gotten much softer it seems, and then they both kind of stare at each other for awhile, as if really realizing who each other is before they CRASH INTO EACH OTHER RIP ME
both gasp lightly between “I’d find you....” “again”
*cue the disappointed sounds of the audience when Dmitry pulls back. SAME, MY DUDES*
also they both let out really audible gasps before Dmitry pulls back and it’s so !!!!!?!?!?!?!?!!!!!!!?!?!?
When Dmitry kneels down, the background turns into this starry sky AND THE FULL EFFECT OF IT IS BEAUTIFUL AND I WAS AWESTRUCK
I always get so emo when character’s leitmotifs play but ANYWAYS when the Dowager came out, you can tell she just looked so done and tired AND IT BROKE MY HEART (she looked regal af though)
When Dmitry comes RUNNING OUT and just kind of looks around and you know he’s searching for Anya THE silly boy and then Vlad spots him and he’s fixing him up while he acts like a disgruntled son lmflaks
ANYA’S ENTRANCE IN THE ICONIC BLUE DRESS fuck, the sparkles on that dress is so mesmerizing and SHE WAS GLOWING but she only had eyes for Dmitry right when she found him and has this fond look on her face AND SDKJFHSKJ SHE LOVES HIM FLALSMA
(release “When She Walks In”, you cowards!)
I didn’t really cry cuz during both performances (I was TOO HAPPY TO SEE THIS ALL COME TO LIFE BEFORE MY EYES) BUT I did get super emotional when Vlad sang “Meant to Be” becaue HE JUST LOOKED SO HEARTBROKEN FOR BOTH HIS CHILDREN!?!?!?
QUARTET AT THE BALLET is one of my favorites AND I LOSE MY SHIT EVERY TIME!!!! Also LYRICA!!!!! What an amazing dancer and I found it really nice that it was a show within a show and they had their own curtain call for this
Seriously, which of the writers hates Cleveland sdkjfhsdjkfh that joke will never not be funny
DEREK’S CRESCENDO AND DESCRESCENDO IN ETW!! BITCH!!!!
Also, DMITRY BOUGHT ANYA A FUCKING DOLL!?!!? WHY IS HE LIKE THIS!?!?!? Let me stare off into space while I continue to process that information
Uh, when Dmitry checks in on the Dowager and Anya during their reunion, he has a little smile on his face before he angstily walks away (and out of Anya’s life forever!!! Or so he thought, haha that fool)
The Anya/Gleb confrontation is always such a cool and emotional scene, especially when the Romanov ghosts also step back behind
After Gleb decides to let Anya go, and the Romanovs/Officers leave and you see them carry a body, as if physically and metaphorically burying the past IT’S SO. WOW. HAUNTING AND EVOCATIVE AND I THINK ABOUT IT A LOT
When Anya finds Dmitry and he kind of takes her in for a bit before going all emo on her and Anya kind of has this fond smile before getting all sad once he says, “I can’t be in love with someone I can’t have for the rest of my life” like GOD, YOU’RE A FOOL BUT I LOVE YOU!?!?!?
“*softly* I’m not your prince, Anya.”
*cue my tears*
THE KISS!!! SO MUCH CHEERING And lmao whenever Christy grabs his suitcase to step on it, IT’S SO HILARIOUS because even in her heels she’s almost eye level with Derek (a real testament to how big of a height difference they have)
After Dmitry pulls away, they both have dazed smiles on and kind of look at each other for a beat longer RIP ME
EVEN AFTER ANYA TAKES HIS ARM AND THEY KEEP SMILING AT EACH OTHER AND IT’S SOOO!!! CUTE!!! I LOVE ROMANCE!!!
The finale gets me so emo, the Dowager’s “Still...” and her opening the music box AND THE ROMANOV SPIRITS ALL COME OUT AND THEN THEY ALL ROTATE LIKE AN ACTUAL MUSIC BOX!!!! IT’S BEAUTIFUL
Also the bridge in the background changes from being real, to a PAINTING as if to really add to the fairytale effect of DIMYA WALKING TO THEIR FUTURE and then when it goes, “Far away...” IT CHANGES TO A SNOWY SCENE AND I!!! LOSE MY SHIT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Stage door. K so honestly, I appreciate all of them so much they are all so nice and gracious AND DESERVE ALL THE LOVE AND PRAISE!!!!
Max was so nice (SUPER HANDSOME) and I told him that he was really funny as Max and he laughed skdjskjf
Nicole came out next and she’s adorable, protect her forever!!!!
Lyrica is WOW BEAAUTIFUL TBH and I told her she’s an amazing dancer and she said how she has so much fun doing the ballet (also she has the most legible signature and I respect that lmaoo)
Caroline O’Connor is a delight and is so nice and I told her that I love her jokes and her high kicks skjfhskdjfh and she laughed and she thanked me for buying the program lmfaoo that was cute
Mary Beth also came out and is so elegant and precious and Zach was following after her because he was carrying some box (??? hers??? WHO KNOWS)
I’m lame and exclaimed, “You’re the music box!!!” when it was Zach’s turn to sign and he was all, “How did you know!?!?!? We have an avid fan over here, guys!” sdkjfhskjfh and I honestly would love to see his Dima cuz he’s really witty and a good egg.
I told John that he was the real winner in my heart and he laughed and said how they really enjoy making the vlogs and I jokingly asked when the next season was and he was very ;)))) about it SO THAT’S EXCITING BECAUSE I WANT MORE ROYAL MISFITS FOREVER!!! I also told him he deserved a full pack of gum sjkfhsjk and he said that he doesnt even like gum sjkdfsh
Derek is unreal beautiful and lmao the thirst for him by everyone is real but he’s so nice with everyone. I just told him that his vocals in Quartet are particularly amazing sdfjhsjkfh and he laughed adorably (ok, everything he does is adorable lbr). I was kind of a mess trying to take a pic with him but he was really patient while I got my shit together and flkaoska he’s so tall he had to crouch down quite a bit (sorry for my shortness, my dude). Anyway, both pics turned out slightly blurry because???? He just has that effect, I guess!
Christy went last and lmao, I wonder if they purposely plan it that way now because of how long she takes interacting with each fan. Even the security guard was impressed with how much she loves doing the stage door lmao. She really is as precious as you expect and I pretty much babbled my love for Anastasia and for her AT her because SHE’S EVERYTHING AND IS A LITERAL PRINCESS and emanates so much love and kindness. I asked for a pic and I’m such an awkward ass turtle, trying to decide which way would provide better lighting lmao she offered to do hold the phone instead and I didn’t even realize she was taking so many pics lmao. Then I told her I loved her and thanked her for being THE BEST ANASTASIA A FAN CAN HOPE FOR and we hugged and she thanked me for coming and told me my hair smelled good sdkjfskf. The second night is when I gave her my gift (lmao, it’s supposed to be a giant easter egg that I painted with some candy in it but the top half came off when she was taking it out, hence why she’s only holding half of it in the picture akhad) and she’s honestly like a little kid with how excited she was about it and even held it out so the other peeps could see lolol. She saw the treats inside and I told her how I know she loves snacking and she kind of went on about the pocki sticks she was eating backstage (which she pronounces, “poke-y” lmaoo so I didn’t know what she was talking about til like, a day later) and how they’re so addicing lmao I love one (1) backstage snacker. And she keeps saying how they have the best fans and I’m like, “UH!!! YOU GUYS DESERVE IT, HONESTLY!!!!” and she does the “Awwww!!!” face (y’all know the one). OH she also tried guessing where I was from but I kind of blurted it out before she could and she was so “SEE, I WAS GONNA SAY ‘CALIFORNIA’! I shouldn’t have even asked!” lmao. I gushed at her again, thanked her and probably told her I loved her again before I finally said goodbye lmao.
I’m probably missing a lot of stuff, honestly it’s a blur and I’m trying to finish this up before I pass out from a food coma but ANYWAYS! 20/10 would fucking recommend, I love this musical so goddamn much and the cast and literally every one involved they’re all so talented and it will always hold a special place in my goddamn heart!!! *a million crying emojis*