Just gonna jump right into the liveblogging on this one.
Season 2 episode 2 starts with a flashback to when Mellie accepted the Republican nomination, making it even harder to ignore how unrealistic it is that the Republican party would vote for a woman to get their nomination.
Olivia yells at Fitz for sending "scrubs" to investigate a crime scene. The actual FBI Director steps out and informs her that, no, he sent her to investigate the crime scene. (This director is a black woman with giant hair. I want to like her.)
Cyrus invites Mellie to join him as VP-elect. This is all so terribly incestuous. There's no discussion of what policy would be, because of course there isn't -- I'm not sure if Scandal buys into the fallacy that the two parties are Basically The Same, or if this is just a symptom of it not caring about government except as a dramatic backdrop for sexy power struggles.
Olivia has dinner with the FBI director with the hair. It starts as piercing commentary on the way they get treated, as competent black women in positions of power...and turns into Olivia asking if the director has a thing with Fitz. Turns out no, but not because it's a terrible idea for the head of the FBI to bang the President, it's just because she was worried about disrespecting Olivia.
At the same time as this is happening, Olivia's people are stealing evidence from the FBI, and the White House is having a "confession" tortured out of a suspect who's supposed to be under the FBI's purview.
(The evidence is a hard drive, which, when recovered, has "over 5,000 hours" on it. By my back-of-the-napkin calculations, that would fill 17.6 terabytes. On a laptop drive. As of 2017, if you're willing to shell out several thousand dollars, the most Amazon can get you is 4.)
...I got real worried because Olivia's next thing is to snap at the WH that forced confessions are worthless as intelligence. Which is absolutely true -- but the show has never seemed to realize that before, and also, it's 23 minutes into the episode. (Thankfully, the next one seems to be backing her up.)
Flashback to Mellie's romance with a campaign staffer, and, oh hey, it turns out Abby knows Olivia broke up her and David! (I don't remember if we knew this already, or if this is the dramatic reveal.) Flash-forward to Mellie confronting Olivia over orchestrating her breakup with the staffer. "Why are you doing this? What is wrong with you?!" Good question!
Episode 3 retcons the video data to "300 hours of [tip-giving videographer]'s footage, 2200 hours of the security feed." That would need less than 2 TB on the hard drive, which is more believable.
Portia di Rossi's character is back! And she's amazing. Partly because I can't help seeing her as Veronica, all charmingly ridiculous, meant to be judged by comedy standards rather than real-world ones.
This episode uses flashbacks to unveil that, yep, Cyrus isn't the murderer. I was definitely expecting that to be dragged out for longer. (There's a secret video of Frankie yelling at him for being a terrible person who should be in jail, and, look, he's not wrong, but for other reasons.)
Most obvious suspect is the hitman Cyrus was secretly having an affair with, because that's the kind of show this is. Flash-forward to the present, Cyrus secretly meets with the (armed!) ex-boyfriend at night in a park, because that's totally the kind of thing PEOTUS can do. Secret Service, what Secret Service?
Vengeful hitman ex throws a wrench in the works by "admitting" to killing Frankie on Cyrus's orders. This'll be fun.
Olivia: "With Cyrus in jail, the Electoral College will have no choice but to vote for you." Orrr they could vote for the runner-up in the Democratic primary. Without knowing anything specific about these people's policies, that seems like the most moral and honest choice re: the will of the voters.
Wow, almost nothing to say about episode 4. It's all Cyrus's Adventures in Jail. The narrative woobifies him hard, to the point where in spite of everything I actually feel bad for him by the third act. (Fourth act, he gets a guard murdered. So much for that.)
And episode 5 focuses on the drama around Jake Ballard -- Olivia's ex, former agent of Olivia's dad, now Mellie's VP candidate, in a politically-orchestrated marriage with a not!Kennedy who's now going into an alcohol-fueled emotional tailspin as she slowly realizes (a) Jake doesn't like her very much and (b) he's a terrible person.
(To illustrate: he seriously considers strangling her in order to keep the angsty tailspin from damaging his career.)
Newly revealed in flashback: Jake blew up the cabin that held the laptop that held the video that came from the photographer that called in the tip that swallowed the spider to catch the fly. Don't ask me why.
Olivia wrangles Mellie to have a heart-to-heart with the not!Kennedy wife, as part of the Women Whose Husbands Like Olivia Pope Better Club. This wrangles the wife back into urging Democrats to fall in line behind Jake's ticket, based on him being a Good and Honorable Person who married someone from Massachusetts. What policies does he support that they should appreciate? Ha. Aha. Ahaha.
Then she spends the rest of the episode trying to get proof that Jake did the murdering, which of course means he didn't do that, although she lets him drive her alone without her phone to an isolated location before she figures it out.
And, whoof, that's about all the Olivia Pope always-rightness I can take in one sitting. (Still working on commissions, but I'll have to switch to some other background TV for the rest.)
Find My Past (one of the big online genealogy sites for the UK) are allowing free access to their main UK collections till 26th June. (No strings attached for this one, not even fake-orders to get it; only registering if you haven't already.)
Some more details & instructions on the site's blog: https://blog.findmypast.com/free-
*skuttles off to collapse somewhere again*
The latest season is on Netflix now, so it's time for me to work through more of this incredibly watchable show about terrible people.
For those who need a brief refresher:
Do you like The West Wing? Do you like Leverage? Would you like a series that's cross between those two shows? How about a series that thinks it's a cross between those two shows, but missed the memo that a big part of the appeal was the main characters being likeable, competent, and out to do good things? Well, Scandal is that last one.
Our heroine is Olivia Pope, a freelance fixer of political problems with a reputation for being supercompetent, brilliant, and heroic. Before canon started, she had already helped rig the US Presidential election to put her (Republican) (also married) boyfriend into office. The first few episodes follow a mini-arc where she is asked to defend the reputation of a woman who also had an affair with said President. Olivia yells at this woman for being a lying liar. Olivia is proved wrong.
This sets the stage for a pattern where, halfway through any given case-of-the-week, whoever Olivia is defending will turn out to be evil, and whoever she just shot down will be revealed as the true victim. She is aided by a motley crew of employees and allies, some of whom are already terrible people when the show starts, others of whom compromise their morals over the course of the series. They've covered everything from war crimes to murder to perjury to torture.
An illuminating example: One of the employees (Abby) idolizes Olivia for rescuing her from an abusive husband -- now if only it stopped there. Later, Abby and a much-nicer love interest (David, also a legal ally of Olivia's) come perilously close to uncovering Olivia's Presidential-election-rigging. To get them off the trail...Olivia plants information that triggers Abby's abuse-trauma, manipulating her into a panicky and tearful breakup. Neither Abby nor David finds out Olivia orchestrated this! Both of them continue to idolize and adore her! The writers still seem to think we should too!
At the end of season 5, there were maybe 2 characters that were likeable human beings. Senator-turned-VP Susan Ross, who pleasantly surprised me by flat-out quitting her job rather than sell her soul, and governor-turned-Dem-candidate Francisco Vargas, whose soul is still up for grabs.
Liveblogged the first episode. Might end up doing the same for the whole season, depending on how commentable it is.
Season 6 opens on the night of a presidential election, and it all comes down to...California. That's right, folks, in the Scandal universe, California is a swing state.
Also, Olivia is chastising her staff to vote if they haven't already. I mean, hey, just because they're reporting totals on the west coast, that doesn't mean the polls can't still be open! Our competent political-genius heroine in action, folks.
Frankie won. So now Olivia is berating her candidate (Mellie, also her boyfriend's ex) to call and concede, which seems like the smart and reasonable move. Knowing this show, that means we will eventually learn it totally the wrong move.
(I like Mellie and Olivia being friends. For all that they're awful, their fighting with each other was pretty evenly matched -- not one abusing the other, they both gave as good as they got. And it all stemmed from their rivalry over Fitz, who is painfully not worth it.)
Dammit, they shot Frankie. He might escape becoming awful by dying.
Obnoxious agent: "Ma'am, I'm sure you have some security clearance..." Abby: "No. I don't have some security clearance. I have all of it."
Hits all the beats and all the right emotions of a badass smackdown scene. Logically, undercut by the fact that Abby didn't show any security clearance. If you're going to waltz into a hyper-secure operation (the hospital) and start barking orders, have your badge in hand! (Also, her entire order was literally "don't let anyone in here," which I'm pretty sure they were already doing.)
...yep, they killed Frankie.
Olivia yells at her father (ex-leader of the government's Evil Secret Black Ops Division): was he behind the killing? Well, we're 22 minutes in and she's yelling at him, so I bet not.
Mellie just wants to go on vacation and leave this all behind. Now that would be the smart and reasonable move. (She never really wanted the job in the first place. She wants power in the abstract, but has no interest in doing anything in particular with it. Five minutes later she'll forget all her reasonable plans and decide she wants it again.)
Now Olivia's convinced it was Cyrus (part of the Fitz conspiracy, now VP candidate for Vargas) who had the candidate murdered so he'd be promoted to the top of the winning ticket. But we're only 27 minutes in, so she's probably wrong. After all, the Electoral College hasn't voted yet, so Cyrus would be taking a pretty steep gamble on them not abandoning the Vargas-Cyrus ticket even with half of it gone.
Olivia storms into the hospital. The same hyper-secure hospital that nobody was supposed to be let in. And finds Cyrus in mute, trembling shock. Who could've seen that coming?
Fitz: "I wanted you to be right. You're always right." Dude...have you never seen this show?
He ultimately supports the EC supporting Cyrus, which is the right choice as far as the will of the people is concerned, although both he and Mellie are impressively awful choices who should not be trusted with this country.
Vargas' widow is still in the hospital after a sleepless night, still covered in blood from standing next to the shooting, but for some reason her hair and makeup is still flawless. D- for realism, makeup department.
...So the last five minutes unveil a tip from a mystery person that it was Cyrus (no details on how the tipper came to this conclusion). Well, now that this twist has been un-twisted and re-twisted again, I'm sure the issue is settled, and will be quite shocked if the rest of the season isn't completely straightforward.
I meant to post this when reviewing Salazar's revenge, but here's an excellent idol_reflection essay on (Captain) Jack Sparrow, based on the first three Pirates movies – worth reading the comments for a look at Jack as a trickster: Captain Jack Sparrow - A Legend in His Own Mind by The Stowaway.
And via musesfool The Chrisening of Hollywood from Vanity Fair - an amusing take on the Four Chrises phenomenon here.
Roundup of incidents of Trump supporters being proudly violent, sometimes to the point of murder, in his name. Features racism, sexism, homophobia, Islamophobia, the whole hatred spectrum.
Trump wants to start charging stores to accept food stamps, because apparently Republicans want to help small businesses by driving away their customers.
The Leopards Eating Faces Party constituents:
"'I really haven't seen him doing anything' on jobs, Olsen said. 'The longer they stall around and dance around and whatever, the more people are gonna get hurt.'" GEE, YA THINK.
"Mike Catanzaro, a solar panel installer with a high school diploma, likes to work with his hands under the clear Carolina sky. That’s why he supported President Trump, a defender of blue-collar workers. But the 25-year-old sees Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement as a threat to his job."
"Trump supporters in Texas are coming to the realization that their vote for the president may force some of them out of their homes for less than they are worth, with others finding out that — if they stay — they’ll be living in Mexico if his wall is built."
One coping mechanism: “I didn’t want to be depressed. I don’t want to feel that he’s not doing what he said, so I just choose to not listen.”
"My neighbor and I drove home in silence. I wondered if his being amongst Middle Easterners who wore hijab and spoke in their native tongue reaffirmed his anti-immigration stance. As we were parting, he said, 'Let me know if you need help with more deliveries. I’m happy to help anytime.' He had tears in his eyes."
Not everyone in this mindset is stuck there forever. Some people can learn, and grow, and change.
And then just now I happened to look and Network are having a 45% sale again!. And guess who still has nearly all her b'day money? Oh, yes, I do. Now I just have to decide what to spend it on, so at least that will be some sort of an antidote.
If you are in R2 or can play R2 discs, you too can snag yourself obscure old British telly! (Mostly ITV, it tends to be other companies that release the BBC stuff.) I have been poking through to see what's on offer from my wishlist (lots! \o/) and can tell you that you can also get Press Gang, Enemy at the Door, Public Eye and Sapphire and Steel at bargainous prices! (Also Manhunt, The Power Game, The Sandbaggers and Mr Palfrey and Undermind and Zodiac). So you should go out and buy them
Anyway, I thought I'd give the heads up and enable my like-minded souls on my flist. (liadtbunny, I am shocked that you did not already tell me this! I rely on you for these things! ;-D)
En revanche, j'ai bien envie de me faire la Nuit Lastman au ciné de plein air la Villette le 22 juillet. Est-ce que ça intéresse du monde ?
Pairing: Amarant Coral/Freya Crescent
Canon Level: Teammates
I have capital-o Opinions on Freya and the canonical end to her character arc. Suffice it to say that I do not agree with it, and that my preference for Freya with Amarant shares a common cause with my dislike of her with Fratley but isn't the reason for my dislike by itself. But Freya and Amarant were built up by the game! Sparks practically flew the first time they met, and they had that nice scene outside the auction house where Amarant opened up to Freya, and then they worked together to defeat the Fire Shrine. They had an understanding between them, warrior-to-warrior. Amarant respected Freya, probably liked her company and cared for her well-being. Freya got Amarant, something not many other people did, because I think she saw something of herself in him. I really, truly believe they would have been great together.
If I Win by runicmagitek
Alone by Andrivette
Parlor Tricks by Wallwalker
Rebuild by Anonymous
Do you want to play? See the details below! =)
( The rules )
( The prompts )
( The claims )
Questions? Comments? Suggestions? Feel free to comment on this post, and I'll try to answer them for you. Don't forget - this challenge is open from June 20th, 2017 through September 22nd, 2017, so you have plenty of time to play, if you want!
Have fun, stay cool, and happy writing! =)
Pairing: Zack Fair/Cloud Strife
Canon Level: Friends
Somewhere about halfway through Final Fantasy VII, I was so thoroughly confused by what in the world was going on with the plot that I decided to go read fic in the hopes of clearing things up. (It certainly wouldn't have been able to make my confusion any worse.) And promptly fell down the Cloud/Zack hole but good. I like Zack's friendliness and general happy-go-lucky attitude, but it's his complete devotion to the people he cares about that really gets to me--and Cloud is definitely one of those people. I feel like it's only natural that Cloud would be drawn Zack's bright spirit. And the thing that makes them work for me is that Cloud has just as much devotion as Zack, only it's a little harder to see at first. I feel like Zack was able to see a smidgen of that (one of the few who did see Cloud's true strengths), was intrigued, and determined that he had to get to know Cloud.
Too Good To Be True by Miko
Revisit by Cephy
I Promise by puella_nerdii
It Rains Ashes On Golgotha by Harmony
In Your Hands by sister_coyote
BUT I am wondering if anybody wants my FFVII Ultimania or Crisis Core Ultimania? I can ship book rate, so they'll be cheap to send. PM me if you are interested- I can probably unload them at Book Off but just in case anybody I know wants them. (They're in Japanese.)
Also, somebody finally reviewed the second chapter of Discretion and yay, a rave! I know Reeve/Rufus is a rarepair and I know the fandom is pretty much in hibernation, but still. YAY. VALIDATION I HAS IT. :DDDD
"CRANFORD" (2007) Review
Ten years ago, the BBC aired a five-part miniseries adaptation of Elizabeth Gaskell’s series of stories about a small town in North West England. After viewing the 2004 miniseries, "NORTH AND SOUTH", my curiosity regarding the 2007 miniseries became piqued and I turned my attention toward it. ( Read more... )
|Titre : Wonder Woman|
Langue : principalement anglais et des bouts d'autres langues
Traduction : id
Type : film live
Genre : action/guerre/super héros
1ère sortie : printemps 2017
Durée : 140 minutes ?
|Title: Wonder Woman|
Language: mainly English
Type: live action movie
1st release: 2017
Length: 140 minutes?
( Read more... )
|Conclusion : Personnellement j’aurais pu faire sans la partie romance du tout, mais heureusement, elle n’encombrait pas trop les choses. Je ne suis pas fan non plus des détails de l’origine de Diana dans cette version, mais tant pis. Et ça m’agace un peu que les Amazones restent sur leur île et que Diana soit une seule fille dans une équipe masculine… tant pis encore, elle reste le personnage central, elle poutre tout, la façon dont elle est tellement efficace et dont elle grandit encore en tant que personne vont fichtrement plaisir à voir et zut, je décide que ça compense tous les défauts que ça pouvait avoir à côté. |
J’ai passé un super bon moment et j’espère bien que ce film aura beaucoup de succès !!
|In short: OK, so I didn’t like much the romance aspect but it didn’t get too much in the way so I can deal with it. I can’t decide wether the diverse cast is a good thing or too full of clichés and I don’t like that’s it’s predominantly masculine, but whatever. Diana is still the main character, she’s capable and awesome in so many ways and her growth as a person is fascinating. In the end, I’ll say that the awesomeness outweights the flaws, I had a great time watching this movie and I really really hope it does well in the box office!|
In the meantime, because of that, and because it's being summer, which is always unreasonable, have some summaries from the Unconventional Courtship Random Generator:
( Cut for the usual ridiculous )