but not really minimalism

Stabler-centric thoughts on Ep 18x13

Transformation complete. From Nu Munch to Nu Stabler, in just 13 episodes!

:D

Seriously though, surprisingly long post ahead: (I would cut it down, but I don’t have the time or the patience)

Carisi-centric thoughts on Ep 18x13 

First things first: what the fuck happened to Barba’s chocolates? Biggest disappointment of the night. The official SVU account is not to be trusted.

Overall thoughts

Decent episode. It had some issues*, but it was reasonably, well, not terrible. Probably a little above average for Season 18’s standards. 

*starting with the issues, to get them out of the way: too much rapist(s), not enough victim. We got to see if the rapist (the first rapist) was “okay” with a plea for rape 2, and he “admirably” said he deserved that punishment, but we never got to see if the victim was okay with that. We never got to see the victim again, period. We don’t know if and how she is coping. She was a total afterthought. We did see the other victims, during the trial, but that was just to poke holes in their stories. It seems that’s the only reason we ever see a victim, in S18. Not to see how they can overcome their rape as survivors, but to make them appear unreliable for the sake of plot twists.

Anyway.

Barba thoughts

I joke about Sonny going from Munch to Stabler, but I’m not joking when I say that Barba is going from Cabot to Novak. Seriously, Barba went from fierce and flawless Ice Queen Alexandra Cabot, who won every case and didn’t give a shit, to earnest but messy Casey Novak, a half-decent lawyer who loses every other case but it’s okay because we love her. and i do love her :’)

Barba doesn’t really lose cases, but he never wins them on his own merits (with the sole exception of Making a Rapist, when he got the mother’s testimony on the stand, about 7 years ago, when that episode aired). It’s always Liv, saving the day. Even in episodes which are spent mostly in the courtroom, there are no legal victories. No big moment in which Barba argues the fuck out of a case. He just utters a few snarky tidbits like “Bunny,” so we can all admire Raul’s sass, and then he loses (like he lost the motion about confidentiality) or he wins because of something Liv did.

Has Barba gone soft, not to mention less competent, on purpose, or is this poor characterization? that’s a rhetorical question btw

The Legal Side of SVU

Why does this season waste all these semi-interesting cases? Why did we spend the entire rape trial debunking the victim statements, instead of watching Barba argue the law? I was expecting the “rape gene” theory to figure more heavily into the trial, but it never did. Why not? Why waste that opportunity?

The earlier scene with the minister on the stand, that was way more fun to watch (mostly because it didn’t involve victim-blaming). Why do all these cases, which could be considered vague (and therefore exciting) from a legal standpoint, get reduced to arguing the boring facts, like a suspect’s height? Same thing happened with Imposter, an episode which could have been a million times more interesting, if only it had focused on the law.

For instance, Sonny suggested another case offscreen, and Barba dismissed it offscreen, and we never got to find out what it was. Why bother introducing legally murky cases if you’re not going to bother presenting the arguments? Rick Eid is a lawyer, but I can barely tell from watching. He only scrapes the surface. I’m a much younger lawyer, and totally inexperienced when it comes to criminal law, and I still routinely come up with, like, three more things Barba could have done or said in each episode.

But, in fairness, I do have to say the minister/confidentiality theory, as well as the AA comparison, that was actually smart. It was the only unique touch in terms of plot, and they even set it up well, with the prayer, or whatever that was, as Rollins and Carisi were surveilling the group on that earlier scene. That raised my expectations, as did Barba’s argument that the guy was a only being a minister as a hobby (now that’s a fun argument to make!), so the return to mundane victim blaming later on disappointed me even more.

On to Sonny:

Sonny’s Temper

I’ve said it before (and used the SpongeBob gifs to illustrate it), but there is nothing in Sonny’s characterization this season that could be viewed as an organic progression of the Sonny from Seasons 16 and 17. Nor has there been anything plot- or character-related which would justify such a stark change (please no one mention Dodds unless you want to make me laugh).

When is the last time Sonny cracked a smile that wasn’t sarcastic? Remember when Amaro was the angry stereotype, and he’d argue with Barba or Amanda, and Sonny would try to defuse the situation with a joke? Now Sonny has picked up the mantle of Angry Cop. Which, I mean… Sonny, gurl, if Amanda freakin’ Rollins has to scold you about being insubordinate to your superiors, that means you’ve taken it about eighteen steps too far (wait, do the writers remember how she used to talk back to Liv and Dodds? Probably not.)

Sonny and Empathy

Where? 👀 Shouldn’t Sonny have talked to that Will kid more gently? Instead of saying “I’m not a priest or a shrink, just gimme the information, goddammit”? Sonny usually cozies up to perps. This kid wasn’t even a criminal, and Sonny was treating him aggressively, when it was obvious he was fragile and would probably respond better to a milder approach. Which brings me to:

Sonny and Continuity

Sonny told Will (still in a very pointed way, when I was expecting a more casual, if not cordial approach) that the “next” rape “will be on him,” if he didn’t testify. Might that be a callback to Sonny’s own guilt, since he believes the fact his bully murdered someone is “on him”? Even though that’s wrong? And it was extra wrong to lay that kind of a guilt trip on this Will kid? Or did the writers forget about Sonny’s past already?

The Barisi Corner

Barba gave Sonny a sassy look! Because Sonny over-explained a legal matter to show off! And then he sarcastically thanked Sonny! Classic S16 material. We are blessed!

“I don’t care about Barba”

Seriously though, Sonny said “I don’t care about Barba”, meaning he cares about the case more, or about the victim, even if that means making a colleague mad. And that’s fair, especially in the heat of the moment. But this is coming a week after Barba’s secret is (almost?) revealed, at least according to the original production order. What can we deduce from that?

I’d like to think (the old) Sonny would be more considerate when talking to a colleague who had recently been compromised, or gone through some type of emotional hardship. So, maybe Barba’s secret never actually comes out? Maybe we learn it, as the audience, but it doesn’t go public, so Barba ends up worrying over nothing?

Barba obviously doesn’t lose his job, so maybe no one finds out (other than Liv, of course, because from that promo we know she tells Barba about the hacker). What if Sonny doesn’t find out at all, and he doesn’t even get to learn Barba has a secret to begin with? Could Barba’s storyline run in parallel to the “main” case, with no other characters (other than Liv, of course) involved? That would be both disappointing (because the writers would be wasting yet another opportunity to integrate Barba and show he is a valued member of the team) and unsurprising (because, S18).

Of course there’s another option; maybe continuity is a non-factor and the writers just never bothered to write anything to further the “Barba’s secret” storyline past that one episode :D

Sonny’s Temper, Vol. 2

As Amanda noted, Sonny totally overreacted during that argument. Why would that be? Does he really think he knows better than Barba, on whether or not jurisprudence from another state is applicable or relevant? Like, that’s not an “opinion,” Sonny. And, even if it were, it’s Barba’s opinion which defines the prosecution’s strategy. If Sonny wants to make these decisions, he should quit the force and start prosecuting perps himself.

Which brings me to:

Sonny and the Law 

Dare I hope that’s what the argument was about? Is Sonny getting increasingly frustrated with the fact his job ends when he arrests a perp? That would be a great way to bring back his dilemma about becoming a prosecutor. This type of long-running professional frustration would perfectly explain why he snapped like that. It wasn’t about him knowing better than Barba, it was about him wishing he could be doing Barba’s job. Or even thinking he should be doing it.

Apparently, Sonny researched the case, and he came up with an idea which he presented to Barba offscreen, thinking it could save the day. That’s going above and beyond, from a cop’s perspective. And then Barba rejected his idea without a single word, also offscreen, and that pissed him off. Maybe Sonny felt underappreciated, in terms of his legal skills. He is a licensed attorney, but he is not treated as such. Problem is, he is not a prosecutor, he is a cop, and that’s how he should be treated.

So, what if Sonny’s constant sour mood is because he’s unhappy where he is? Because he wants to do more, from a different position? Maybe that’s the reason for his changed demeanor, and it will be explicitly dealt with near the end of the season. lol yes I’m reaching for the stars, Sonny’s law aspirations will probably never be mentioned again

Stray Thoughts

Greg Germann was awesome! So evil and hot. Strauss gave Buchanan a run for his money. By the way, remember when he was an ADA? lol neither do the SVU writers. Why didn’t Barba at least tease him, for switching sides? Like he did to Calhoon (except for her it was the other way around, when she advocated for that victim in that one episode). It would have taken three seconds, and it would have added context.

What’s that? Barba also had an abusive father? lol no one cares or remembers :D

Okay but, when Liv just popped up on that roof, out of fuckin’ nowhere, to deliver some angst and sell her backstory, totally overshadowing that kid? Classic Liv! (srsly tho she was great in this episode :D)

Speaking of, why didn’t we get a close-up of Sonny on that roof, after he found out about Liv’s history? He was right there! And that, too, would have taken three seconds. I was craning my neck to see his reaction, even though it was off-camera, lol. What a wasted opportunity to show how much he cares about Liv. Oh, and Amanda apparently found out offscreen (as if Liv would ever tell her, lol). This season does not give a single fuck about the squad dynamics.

Peter needs to do that botox thing people do between their eyebrows for their “11” lines, he’ll get wrinkles if he keeps frowning like that in every single one of his close-ups.

Amanda’s coats keep slaying me.

What a waste of Bill Irwin.

That first defense attorney is my fave! I wish he’d been in more scenes!

he was a king.

this was the year he was going to die.

may or may not have spent my entire sunday finding obscure indie movies to steal clips from to make this video. idk, you can’t prove anything. 

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ok but i imagine hunk going to shiro whenever he stresses about lance!

bonus:

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With the release of the new Pokemon movie trailer, I just wanted to do some pointless ramblings as someone who’s been a loyal follower of the series since it first began airing in America 18 years ago.

The anime has largely stopped most forms of continuity in recent years (with some very minor exceptions). The reason for Pokemon’s lack of continuity is largely because they want to reset the series with each new region that Ash travels to. Because with each new generation of Pokemon comes a new generation of viewers. They want this generation to be able to follow along easily without needing to worry about ongoing story arcs or an ongoing plot. It’s one of Pokemon’s marketing tactics so that their main viewing audience (children between the ages of 6 and 10) don’t lose interest. The Pokemon anime’s older viewer base (people aged 18+) is incredibly minimal, as such, they aren’t really paid attention to as much. It makes sense though. Do what you have to do to keep the series running strong and drawing in new, young fans, especially since that’s how they’ll make the most money.

So, as someone who’s been following this series for nearly 20 years, it’s really nice to see a call back like this to where it all began–the title of the movie even being “Pokemon! I Choose You!”, which is the same as the title of the first episode. The movie might be a retelling, it might be a totally new story, but regardless, the air of the original series is still there. The usage of aspects from the original series is clearly a tribute to the Pokemon anime having it’s 20th anniversary this year, but it also seems to be a tribute to the fans who have stuck with the series since it began all those years ago. It shows that Pokemon still thinks about the young kids who sat in front of their TVs to watch VHS tapes of the original series a long time ago–kids who are now adults and have taken their own journeys in life.

I don’t know if people under the age of 20 can fully understand just how huge Pokemon was in the late 90s–either because they weren’t born or are too young to remember. Pokemon wasn’t just a fad, it was a full-blown phenomenon. Remember the hype that surrounded Pokemon Go? Take that and times it by ten. And then take the four weeks that Pokemon Go was relevant and imagine that for three straight years. Everyone knew what Pokemon was. It was on the news, it was in every form of media, schools had to ban Pokemon games and cards, it had a musical that was shown at Radio City and went on tour. The list goes on. Pokemon quite literally built the childhoods of millions of children because of how huge it was. There are many people in their 20s and 30s who don’t know anything about Pokemon anymore, but they’ll still see it and go “My childhood!” My cousin recently saw my Pokemon 20th Anniversary 3DS (it has a picture of Blastoise on it) at Thanksgiving. He and I grew up together, we’re both 24 now, but very different people. But when he saw my 3DS his face lit up and he said, “Oh my God!! Pokemon Blue!!” and I was like, “Yeah, man!!” And just for a moment the two of us were able to reminisce about the childhood we spent together playing and watching Pokemon.

Pokemon is the foundation for the childhoods of so many people–even those who don’t follow the series anymore. The anime was one of the biggest factors of that foundation. People who haven’t seen Pokemon in years can still look at the first episode of Pokemon and say, “Hey, that’s the first episode, right?” It’s just that iconic. So to see all of these references to the first episode of Pokemon makes my heart swell. It shows that Pokemon still cares about the fans who have remained loyal to the series for all this time, and still thinks about all of the childhoods that it had an effect on 20 years ago.

And this isn’t just about the older fans either. It’s about the younger fans too–especially the very young fans who possibly have never seen the original series. The writers are exposing these young kids to the Pokemon anime’s roots. They don’t want the original series to be unknown to this new generation of Pokemon fans. And now they’re getting the chance to experience it in their own way. Perhaps the movie won’t be exactly the same as the original episodes, but it gives both the old and new generation a chance to experience the day Ash met Pikachu and set out on the biggest adventure of their lives.

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The problem with emotional abuse is that no matter how many people, even ones who know you and know what was happening, tell you that it wasn’t your fault, it still feels that way sometimes.

A short comic from my comic zine Venti, a project I had over the summer. I tried to focus on emphasizing compositions using minimal detail and stark contrast. I really feel like this project helped prepare me for stuff I’ve done since, such as Canticle of Change and my current project, Bloom

Phil’s Livestream // 12.8.16

He was early wow impressive

#amaingphil

He left and came back on idk younow is a mess

He’s wearing the navy Christmas jumper grab on at danandphilshop.com #spon

Headache shape man

“This train isn’t stopping til we get to Christmastown”

Stockholm was very festive

The Christmas decorations in the Dan and Phil household have started (the tree should be up tonight)

There was a giant fluffy doggo outside the venue 

He watched episode 10 of yoi today (no spoilers)

Dan’s been watching the Final Fantasy trailers constantly

His starter was a rowlet

They got some really cool artwork on tour that he showed us

He shared his minimal knowledge of Swedish with us

They filmed for about 9 hour for YouTube Rewind but it all turned out really well

He messed up his video link on tumblr 

Top fans got rewind themed things

He took German, art, and geography GCSEs

He loves the part of rewind where the camera spins around them 

PINOF8 bloopers will be up in a couple days

Gamingmas has actually been successful wow no one can believe

“Tabo is prego”

He thinks he has nice “shook” nostrils

Dan’s editing tonights video (it should be up around 10)

“Said Dan. It’s not THE Dan. There’s other Dan’s out there.”

Westworld is intense 

“Ho ho ho this is a festive bio” 

Dan didn’t have an existential crisis he was just incredibly shook (they watched a panda documentary to get over it)

January is quite bleak but his birthday brings back the fun

Click that notif bell because YouTube is stupid 

“Oh Dan he’s not on fire. He’s editing a video. This isn’t a roast.” 

“I forgot I was roasting I just started talking about him”

The Lion Guard

Phil yodeled he is a man of many talents

I’m hearing reports that Dan yodeled back but I was too busy watching Phil open a chocolate bar I’m sorry I’ve failed you 

He ate some Swedish chocolate for us

He had a nightmare that his plane was fake crashing and they all took selfies with oxygen masks on 

2017 liveshow days is still undecided 

He’s going to a family members wedding this weekend so that should be fun

“The best thing about weddings is just eating loads of food” -Phil 2k16

Dan isn’t coming he’s going with his family 

Thomas Sanders is a good dude

He started listening to Muse again “the feels”

His favorite winter scents are mulled wine and gingerbread

He’s eating more chocolate

“Pork cutlet bowl!”

He’s going to go help edit the gaming video

Mentions of Dan: ||||| ||||| |||||

C: It’s so weird to me how the #AllLivesMatter trip has been done to black girls. Now there’s #blackboymagic. Like, can we not have something to celebrate us? Would you rather we not ever be celebrated even by ourselves? You want to take the spotlight off of black girls because you want to minimize and trivialize our movement and, really, take away from the cause of empowering and giving little black girls that pedestal.

In Light Of The Election Results;

I want to give you some comforting words.

It’s been period of turmoil all around, but this event really caps it. Don’t let anyone minimize your pain - by all accounts, this will be one of the worst things to happen in our lifetime.

But you woke up this morning, still alive and kicking, because you’ve got that fire in you that makes you stronger than any tomato in a corn silk toupee. Your blood flows from all the people before you who screamed, kicked, and yelled their way into progress. And that’s not gonna end.

There might be times where you’ll have to actually physically leave your spaces. Maybe some of you will have to relocate yourselves. Maybe some of you will have to pursue a life change; getting a different job, or leaving school. And maybe you’ll also have to leave some social circles, or familial circles. 

When you’re physically vulnerable, or having suffering intense emotional trauma, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by sadness and despair. And it’s easy to feel that way no matter what situation you’re in.

Don’t forget about the power of internet safe spaces. This blog’s entire purpose is to direct words and imagery designed to comfort and validate. We’ve reached a staggering 18,000 followers, and it’s climbing every day. This blog is moderated by four real people who want to reach out to you, and help you on your life’s journey.

My parents and grandparents are from the generation that felt the direct blow of Mao’s reign, where safe spaces were nonexistent, and anything that deviated from the norm was under immediate danger. And guess what? I’m here, aren’t I? I’m the first generation to be born and raised as the direct product of government tyranny, and I’m queer, brown, disabled, and radical as hell.

You’ll make it. And your children will make it. And you’ll never be alone. 

- Fae

i will say it 100 times over. But I think Kakashi is an amazing example of writing and developing a character.

He has interests, and hobbies, and character quirks that are minimal but apparent, and that really create a person. In a way that a lot of Naruto characters never actually get. (See Sasuke). His ‘tragic back story’ isn’t the only thing that makes his character but it clearly affects him.

His character developed and grew the fuck up and became a better person. Kakashi’s a fucking prodigy child and that’s also somehow not the only thing that makes his character. 

And he’s /not/ a perfect character. He gets hurt and makes mistakes.

God damn. Grade A character design and development. 

Anime and honestly tons of media in general tends to love over exaggerated and focused tropes and stereotypes. God damn. Good stuff. Kakashi all day. 

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The first bit was inspired by a post @svartalfhild made shortly after the fight with Saundor and I just really wanted to draw it lol

The second is a parallel since these two are ALL about the parallels and my intense desire to draw Percy without his glasses…either way he’s one hot tamale but DAYUM

Also I don’t know why I’m so into gray scale and minimal color lately but I’m really enjoying it!

Still this took me a lot longer than I thought it would… I have a couple more I want to do but these two were intended to go together so I had to finish both before I was willing to put it out there …

I’d say pardon my shameless Perc’ahlia shipping but now we or FUCKING CANNON AHHHHHH! SO HAPPyyyyyy!