I realise that I didn't ever do a post on the music festival. It was fantastic all around, I discovered a bunch of new bands, and saw some old favourites. The weather was too hot in the day and too cold at night (we were camping), but there was always swimming in the river and huddling together for warmth.
I've been thinking a lot about the k.d. lang show, and why it worked as well as it did. Part of it is, of course, that she has an absolutely heart-stopping voice and the ability to make it do exactly what she wants, but I think more than that is her stage presence, and what that means. Here is a woman who is something like middle aged, not especially good looking by conventional standards (which are fucked up), somewhat androgenous in dress and presentation, kind of a goofy dancer, singing music in a slightly dated style (she did a couple of Tony Bennett songs that fit right in with the show). There are so many things about her that should be your mum average, but it's not. She completely pwns, and it's not in denial of any of the above, it's completely accepting all of that and saying, Fuck you, societal norms; I'm awesome!
And she is. She utterly is. She's out and gay and fabulous, and she wants everyone to know it but doesn't care what they think, and it's just... That's me, up on stage will a million-dollar smile, a voice to die for, and the audience eating out of the palm of my hand. She's so charming, it's alarming how charming I feel.
I'm up to Volume Six of Fullmetal Alchemist
and loving it so far. I tried One Piece
a while ago, and didn't really connect with it, but this is great. It's got a lovely blend of angst, humour, charm, social commentary and intrigue. I'm pretty much totally invested in all the characters, and what's going to happen next. I've been assured that Roy Mustang is the best, but I don't think I've gotten far enough in to tell. Onward.
Comics this week (ones I couldn't stand to wait to hit town for anyway): Daredevil
#15 and Captain Marvel
#1. Both, solid, emotionally resounding superhero comics that had angst and joy and humour all in one. They should be handed out and taught.DD
: My reactions on reading (based on what was happening to the character, not a reflection on the writing (though that and the art were amazing)): D: D: D: D: >:[ D: D: :'( :'( ((((MATT)))) -holds breath- .... .... :D :D :D \o/ \o/ \o/ I <3 U, Tony! :D Oh. Fuck. D:
When was the last time you did that reading a 22-page floppy?CM
: Generally I loved it. Carol was just such a badass, and not in a Strong Female Character kind of way, in a brash, vain, resilient, compassionate fighter jock kind of way. She felt like a real person with real friends, and real hear-aches, and I loved her mentor (a new character and you really should check out Kelly Sue DeConnick's literary and real life inspirations for this comic
, and Legacies
about said mentor). The monologue at the end may have made me tear up a bit. My only two quibbles were: Too much Spider-Man, they get time together in his comic, and it felt tacked on here, and the colouring was kind of... idk ghoulish? Not a good match with the rest of the art.
Sitting this week out on Master and Commander
reread. I read the chapter, but didn't feel up to commenting. We'll see how I feel next week.
The last two weeks of Continuum
(not today's episode, which I have not yet seen) have really picked up the show's game. It was great before, but now it feels like the plots starting to hurtle towards the season (series?) finale. The grey areas are growing, master plans are moving forward, and everyone is gearing up for... something. My only quibble is the way police discipline was treated last week. I tend to give cop shows a pass because they're only tangentially connected to reality at best, but somehow having it be the VPD hits me harder. I really don't want
to see them being so casual about such things. They've got in enough shit for it in RL lately, that this makes me go :/ at the heroes rather than root for them. Hopefully they will clean up their act in future.
So I watched The Eagle
and rather liked it. The plot was pretty light, there were a few too many battle scenes, and a bit too much running about, and the Iraq allegory near the start might have been slightly heavy handed? I guess it's as good a short hand for "empire" as any. Given all that, the story completely rests on the relationship between Marcus and Esca, and they totally sold it. I thought both actors were excellent, and I don't really know why CT gets ragged on so much, and man, all my kinks, right there. The trust issues, the Strong Feelings about Loyalty, the additional trust issues, the bonding, the clash of cultures, the betrayal, the love! Great movie from my fannish perspective (Dad: I'm glad it wasn't any longer).
So then I read the book, The Eagle of the Ninth
by Rosemary Sutclif, and I was... kind of underwhelmed? Like it had lots of great background information, and much greater historical accuracy, and an actual girl, and she was fierce and awesome, and a puppy, and a map (which was great, the first scene was in Cornwall, who knew?), and less battle scenes and gaps in logic. So that was great, but they kind of took out the part I actually liked. It just read a lot like a 1960s YA novel (which is is), where the conflict is almost entirely between Team Hero and an External Force. Marcus and Esca iron out their differences so quickly that all the lovely tension and trust issues just isn't there. Plus the original had the characters as rather more generic and likeable (which is why they got on so well so soon), and that was fine, they had fun adventures and I was entertained for a couple hours, but, but, but... that's not what I liked about them in the movie. I wanted to read about them growing into a relationship, and that mostly seemed to happen in the "As the months past" part. Kind of disappointing, really.
I have the next in the series from the library, and will try it but probably won't press on if things don't pick up.
Saw True Grit
and liked it a bunch. On a meta level, I kind of want to read the book and see the older version of the film for the meta experience, but on the other hand, I can do about one western a year, and that was it.