ep of this week was so good and full of love

So let’s talk about Sasha’s climactic scene

And why the Attack on Titan anime adaptation once again proves itself to be incredible. 

Sasha reading her bow and telling the kid to keep going is an amazing moment in the manga already–Isa deserves all the credit here. In the og flashback, Sasha refuses to abandon her principles just because outsiders are in trouble, she refuses to help them; a perhaps egocentric, but also human point of view-we tend to prioritize us and those closest to us over strangers. Then, in the current time, Sasha tells the kid to run bc she’ll certainly find kind and helpful people ahead; and stays herself behind to fight; she fights knowing that proper victory cannot be achieved, to save a random stranger; a kid, further emphasising that Sasha herself has grown into a great person and abandoned that egocentric child she once was.

It’s great stuff, but the animated execution of it made me realize just how good it actually is.

In the yumikuri flashback the S1 version of counterattack mankind starts…its positive a track expressing a sense of optimism and peace, it suits the “ordinary moments” she thinks about. Then, we cut back to present time. A newer arrangement of the track, led by faint strings with hints of an organ in the background–there’s a distant but growing intensity in there. 

As Sasha talks to the kid, most of it is shot from the kid’s perspective, so we get to look up to Sasha–she’s seen as the grown up here, perfectly fitting the above characterization. In the meantime, the music grows ever stronger-the organ is very present, and drums are added too. The buildup to the sequence is thus heavily emphasized. Also, listen carefully to Kobayshi Yuu (who’s performance here I loved). There’s definitely exasperation in her voice–they’ve been running for some time and are chased by a titan, not to mention that she’s afraid. Yet, you can still find a lot of tenderness in there–the kid is supposed to feel safe and secure, despite everything going on, and it just makes you love Sasha even more.

Let’s get to the real meat

I LOOOOVE this scene. Sasha spinning on her feet to stop and get into position looks really cool…but its’ the following take that I adore the most

The spin kills her entire momentum…she stands still and ready, and the camera lingers on her. But the kid didn’t do any spin, kid’s still going, not slowing down. Sasha however wants kid to keep going, seems to use her spin as a way to propel kid forward. And the moment her arm is separated from kid, the camera moves on as well–doing so, Sasha’s staying-behind-to-fight is visually translated and further emphasized without the viewer consciously realizing it. I have a hard time describing it, but there’s an incredibly powerful sense of organic dynamism in there that just sells the scene. It’s excellent visual storytelling, not only of the situation, but also of Sasha’s character–she’s strong and altruistic now, and she’ll fight against all odds to save the kid in need. Yuu’s performance here is perfect as well–there’s now definitive desperation to be heard, alongside remaining hints of kindness but also a certain intensity. Sasha is afraid–she has no equipment to protect herself, she has no weapons to eliminate the threat, but in spite of that, she still sends the kid away, she still stays behind, she still stands in the way of the titan. 

And THAT shows just how brave she is–Sasha overcomes her weaknesses, she fights against all odds, she dedicates her heart–and that is what the anime manages to portray so masterfully here.

And of course, that is what the best shot of the episode does.

We get an incredibly gorgeous wide shot…starting off once again from below, keeping both the titan and Sasha in frame, reminding us of the threat ahead of her, but in one amazing panning zoom, we fly all the way to a closeup filled with nothing but fierceness. The visual alone is amazing in its own regard, but the sound is what truly rounds it up. Counterattack Mankind A reaches its climax, going all out on instruments, cue-ing the all-so-familiar melody in an immensely epic arrangement worthy of the scene it accompanies. Kobayashi Yuu 100% sells it too–her first “now-go” is still a bit feeble and unsure as mentioned above, the 2nd “run” already stronger but there are still hints of fear….and then, with the musical cue behind, after getting a full frontal close-up–the all out “get runnin’!”, filled with nothing but raw energy and determination–Sasha’s abandoned all fear and is in all out character-climax-badass mode. Her shout echoes through the woods, the kid is literally hit by a shockwave and finally starts running (sidenote–her eyes were dark and lifeless throughout the ep, but only after that do they lighten up, adding once more weight to Sasha’s moment). And of course, Sasha’s accent arc comes to full circle in the same frame as well, as she yells the command out in her native dialect she’s tried to hide for so long. Pretty much everything that could’ve come full circle did–in terms of writing, performance, sound and visuals.

It’s an amazing sequence deserving of ludicrous praise for the creative staff–they’ve proven once more that Attack on Titan is a work of art. The manga is already without a doubt amazing–most of the points above stem from it after all-but the anime is so ridiculously good at presenting I sometimes can’t believe it with my own two eyes.

In case you couldn’t tell, I fucking loved this sequence and I’m gonna yell about Sasha all week long. 

Son Week is an official event held every year from 5/7 to 5/10 in Japan, during which merchandise is sold and fans celebrate their love for the Son Family characters through different forms of expression. After recently learning that there hasn’t been an organized Tumblr event in previous years, I’ve decided to host it as well as extend it to a full week, with 3 added days: ChiChi Day (a reversal of ChiChi’s 11/5 birthday, as suggested by @redasuki), HanVi Day (Gohan x Videl) and Bardine Day (Bardock x Gine).

I’ve included three prompts for each date. You can choose one or the other, or a combination of two or three of them, and you may interpret the themes however you want! They can be presented in whichever form you prefer including but not limited to: fanfiction, fanart, moodboards, comic strips/doujinshi, AMVs, videos, vines, screenshots, headcanons, au edits, character analysis, gifs, etc.

Keep in mind, these prompts are meant to inspire you, not to inhibit your creativity, so if you want to/ already have created Son Family content using your own ideas, I’d still be more than happy to share what you’ve made!

PROMPTS AND DAYS:

GoChi Day 5.7-  Anniversary/Honesty/Long-Distance

Gohan Day 5.8-  Animals/Laughter/Hope

Goku Day 5.9-  Sacrifice/Motivation/Excitement

Goten Day 5.10-  Adventure/Music/Friendship

BONUS DAYS:

ChiChi Day 5.11-  Dance/Courage/Happiness

HanVi Day 5.12-  Fireworks/Cosplay/Chemistry

Bardine Day 5.13-  Battle/A Second Chance/Desire    

AND CRACK/FUN IDEAS:

-Uncle Raditz

-Horror au

-The 80s

-Getting lost/stuck somewhere

*** These can be used for any of the days and characters/ships, either as a replacement or in addition to the other prompts.

For additional fun, I will be streaming a movie or a number of episodes each day on rabbi.it. You don’t need an account to sign in; you just need to sign in as a guest. I will be posting a link on this blog 30 minutes prior to streaming the video, which will be shown at 5 p.m. EST all through Son week (time subject to change if you guys prefer another time- let me know!)

Movie/Episode Selections:

5.7-  “Wedding Filler” episodes (149-153)

5.8-  Bojack Unbound

5.9-  The World’s Strongest

5.10-  Broly, Second Coming

5.11-  “Anonymous Proposal” (ep. 137)

5.12-  Battle of the Gods

5.13-  Bardock, the Father of Goku

Guidelines:

  1. Please be respectful. No hatred towards the participants, Son family members, and other ships and supporting/main characters.
  2. NSFW is accepted, but must be tagged as such.
  3. Tag your work within the first 5 tags as #sonfamilyweek or #son family week, so that I can track and reblog it to this page. You may submit in the submission box or send a link via message. If you wish to remain anonymous, please let me know. You may also send me a link from a site that is not Tumblr.  
  4. Be positive! This is not a competition or measure of your talent, so please PLEASE don’t feel like your work is not good enough to submit. Every contribution is welcome!
  5. You don’t need to do make something for every day, though it is encouraged (the more the merrier!)! You can create more than one thing per day, if you’d like!
  6. Have fun and please reblog to spread the word!

***Feel free to drop me an inbox or message for further questions.

Also a BIG thank you to @rickseriastar for the lovely banner! And @maiikawriter for giving me feedback.

Modern Conveniences

So the idea for this came from one of @freifraufischer‘s herd of anons, and then @sometimesangryblackwoman gave some prodding to get it written. Anyway, post-ep in which Henry sends the other Regina a care package of things from the modern world, and makes the mistake of soliciting suggestions.


A couple weeks after sending the Evil Queen off to a fresh start and a chance at some happiness, Henry writes her a note. It’s mostly to tell her they’re all okay, that they’ve survived the latest peril which has so marked his adolescence. She’d want to know, he thinks. He tacks on a post-script about his grades, fully aware that she won’t be pleased about that, but hey, there was an epic battle going on and a few nights where he was out late saving the world instead of studying algebra. Surely she can forgive him that.

It’s a one-way form of communication, but it’s the least of what he owes her. Every once in a while, he pens another note, telling her about the situation with Violet and how the horses are doing and everything he thinks she might want to know. It’s not enough, but it’s what he can do.

He’s taken little Neal to the park to give Snow and David some time to themselves and is thinking of what to say to his other other mom when he hears what the mothers in the park are saying. Princess Aurora is laughing about one of the first times she used the internet for shopping. “I couldn’t believe it. You just tell it what you want and it arrives! Better than magic, if you ask me.”

“It still comes with a price!” Ashley says, and the women all laugh.

It gives Henry an idea.

The family is having Thanksgiving at the Mills house. It’s the one holiday they all really embraced after the curse was broken—Mom loves to cook, Snow loves to decorate, and Emma loves to eat, so it’s perfect for their quirky little family. The night before, Henry informed them all that he could use his abilities to send things, modern conveniences she might miss, to the other Regina, so if they had any suggestions he was certainly open to them.

The table was stunned for a minute, but soon they were coming up with all kinds of ideas. Before long it devolved into a conversation of the old days in the Enchanted Forest, and sometimes about the things they missed during the year when Henry and Emma were in New York. But on Thanksgiving itself, Emma calls him aside. “Hey, kid, you haven’t made up your magical care package yet, have you?” she asks.

He shakes his head. “No, I wanted to see if there were any more ideas.”

“Right. So this might be a little embarrassing, but trust me, it’s necessary.”

She hands him a slip of paper and walks away. On the note are two items.

Tampons. Chocolate.

For half a minute Henry wants the earth to swallow him.

He shoves the embarrassment as far back as he can and tries to be sensible. Emma’s right, probably—okay, definitely, since he has no idea what this is like and she does. But ugh, he wishes the pen would let other people write down their seriously personal suggestions instead of him having to do this.

Half an hour later, Snow calls him away from football with the guys to the dining room, where she’s putting the finishing touches on the table. “Wow, Grandma,” he says, “it looks great.”

“You think so?” Snow replies. “I keep thinking the flowers are too tall, but I guess not everyone’s as short as me. You’re not even as short as me anymore.”

He grins by way of apology. “So what do you need help with?”

“Oh, I was actually going to give you another idea for the other Regina. I don’t want to embarrass you, but…”

The words aren’t even out of her mouth yet and Emma’s note may literally be burning a hole in his pocket. Why isn’t there ever a sinkhole when he really needs one?

He stammers his thanks and hopes he isn’t blushing.

Dinner is great, even if he can’t quite look a couple of the women in the eye. He stuffs himself on mock-apple pie (Mom’s idea of a joke), and when Mom gets up to wash the dishes, he follows her to help. The others try to protest that she shouldn’t be cleaning up when she did most of the cooking, but she waves them off, knowing she likes things done a certain way.

Henry knows her system, though, so he can help. The others clear the table and let mother and son get to work. As she washes and he dries the china, she says, “There’s something very important you need to add to your list for… the other me.”

Ugh,” he says. “I know, Mom. Emma and Snow both talked to me about this, okay? I know. Chocolate and… the other thing.”

Mom looks at him with this expression, torn between laughter and incredulity. “The other thing? Come on, Henry, the word won’t hurt you.”

The ground beneath him betrays him yet again, refusing to open and put him out of his misery. “Chocolate and tampons,” he mumbles.

With a soapy hand, Mom pats his cheek. “That wasn’t so hard, was it?”

Seriously, he’s going to crawl into a cabinet and live the rest of his life in there as a hermit.

“Have you got a piece of paper?” she asks.

“Yeah…”

“Good. I want you to write this down.”

“Mom, Emma already gave me a note with this, so it’s not like I’m going to forget.”

“No, I want you to write down the actual brand. These things are not to be left to chance.”

Mortified, he obeys.

*~*~*~*

In that other place, Regina is between encounters with the angry young king—she’ll bring him around yet, she knows—when she gets a box from her son. It’s thoughtful and kind and makes her heart so full she thinks it must burst. But in the bottom there’s another box, wrapped in brown paper. Henry has scrawled a note on it. They said you needed this.

She laughs so hard when she opens it that she literally falls out of her chair.

My poor little prince, she thinks. You must have wished the earth would swallow you whole.

billboard.com
Darren Criss & Brother Chuck Talk New, 'Unapologetically Fun' Alt-Pop Project, Computer Games

Darren Criss was always destined to make a career out of music. He studied the violin from age 5 well into his teenage years, picking up other instruments along the way, while also pursuing a love for musical theater. But he credits his own musical endeavors to the environment in which he grew up – particularly his older brother, Chuck, who brought other musical interests to the table especially when they were in high school.

“Music has always been the backbone of our relationship and our household,” Darren tells Billboard. “We both had a voracious appetite for music, but I think high school is when we started playing together and being to communicate on a level that changed everything. I think the kind of music we played is probably loud garage rock, because we were just playing in the basement.”

Once they graduated, though, the Criss brothers decided to take their own paths. Darren independently released a solo EP, Human, in July 2010, just months before debuting in his breakthrough role as dreamy choir head Blaine Anderson on Fox’s hit musical dramedy Glee, while Chuck found a home in New York City and became a founding member of indie-rock fivesome Freelance Whales.

With Glee seeing its end in 2015 and Freelance Whales’ most recent album hailing from 2012, both Criss brothers were itching to do something new musically – so they thought, why not relive the days of the brotherly collaborations? And come March 8, 2017, behold, the Criss alt-pop project Computer Games.

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HVFF Chicago 2017 Wrap Up

What an amazing weekend! First, I got to spend it with my dear friend @triciaolicity​. She generously let me stay at her house, which gave us ample more time to talk about Arrow and our lives as wives & mothers. We are two Irish ladies who love to sit around a kitchen table and share stories. She is such a blessing in my life. I love you!

Second, HVFF Chicago was AWESOME. Seriously great. I tweeted out as much information as I could, but I do have a few more details that cannot fit in a 144 character limit.

This was my third convention, not including SDCC. I realize there are so many of you who would love to go, but may never get the chance to for a variety of reasons. So, all the goodies I picked up at the convention I will be giving away.  It’s just my small way of trying to bring HVFF to you. The giveaways will start the week before 5x20 airs. I’ll give away something each week (5x20-5x23). I thought it’d be a fun way to wrap up the season together.

Back to HVFF though. Let’s dig in!

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Absolutely Speechless Thoughts about 407

So like, aside from the Octavia stuff, this episode was cooking on all cylinders for me, and god, did it land some gut punches.

I’m gonna get the Octavia stuff out of the way first because…yeah.  I’ll buy what they’re selling (she’s hit rock bottom and longing for something– anything– to make her feel again) but I’m not happy about it.  Her conversation with Murderous Elf Prince was well acted but really heavy handed, and the shift from suicidal to Ready to Bone was a little bit abrupt.  But I’ve struggled with her arc this season and if this means she’s turning over a new leaf and we get some forward progress…sure, okay.  Also, this show’s insistence on what makes a murderer and what doesn’t is shaky at best and I wish they’d stop using that phrasing because it bugs.

The Science Island stuff really worked though, from Clarke’s lovely reunion with Abby to Emori’s delightfully in-character twist at the end.  I am INCREDIBLY CONFUSED how the mansion survived the first death wave not just intact, but pristine but I guess I can chalk that up to some Becca Invention of Future-Plot-Related Convenience because the initial scenes of Murphy cooking and Clarke taking a goddamn break with a well deserved shower and almost nap were on fire.  I wish we could have had Raven in there, giving Murphy increasingly unhelpful hints as he cooks just like he did for her in the flight simulator, but I do like that she was also taking a goddamn nap because literally everyone on this show deserves a nap and a cuddle.

The very convenient red shirt breaking in was puzzling, but it paved the way for Emori to steal the fucking show, so as my darling Moses in Attack the Block would say: allow it.  She really tore shit up, first with that brutal fight and then with her spitting out her whole horrible history and what I really liked about it was contrasting it to Clarke, who has darkness but in a very different way.  I have a lot of feelings about how Emori honed in on how Clarke was clearly loved and cherished as a child, because that is a fundamental to her characterization in a lot of ways.  It sets her apart from other characters, like Murphy and Bellamy and Raven, and it’s a sort of invisible privilege that she doesn’t always recognize.  (Privilege isn’t quite the right word there, because “being loved by your parents” should be a baseline human experience, but it isn’t and it’s a sort of emotional advantage that Clarke has that other characters don’t).  And having Murphy be totally fucking into Emori’s ruthlessness was a delightful surprise that still felt earned and in character.

Anyway, the red shirt solution was clearly an appealing option for Clarke, but I really, really liked that Abby was still all “this is fucking terrible of us.”  I appreciated the wisdom that Abby is bringing to the table there, because Clarke is just like “oh thank god this guy is worthless we can kill him nbd” and Abby’s like “…yeah, but we’re still killing him.”  (Or if he lives, they’re still torturing him.)  It’s an organic difference of opinion built around age and experience and I just love how it’s playing out.  It’s also highlighting how Clarke is unable to see the trees because of the forest, and that indicates some interesting moments for her in the future when they inevitably turn into Mount Weather: Bone Marrow Boogaloo.

Sidenote: real glad Zach McGowan was able to pick up a paycheck for this episode.  Good to see you boo, and I hope next ep we get Roan like, poking at fancy tech stuff in curiosity while Raven impatiently slaps his hand away.  I also totally forgot that Miller was on the island so when Clarke said Roan was unloading the fuel “with the others” I had this great mental image of him and Luna doing it by themselves, because they’re both ripped but he’s crossfit and she’s yoga and man now I want to write a fic with them as dueling personal fitness trainers.

The Arkadia scenes worked well for me too, although the “every other character who isn’t contracted for this ep is magically elsewhere” dialogue felt a little clumsy because how fucking big is Arkadia then?  But whatever, it gave Harper her own storyline that was heartbreaking and human, and well done, show.

But what I really want to talk about is Beard Dad and Bellamy having it out over a radio.  First of all, I’m really glad both Ian and Bob got some solid material for their highlight reels because they both acted the shit out of those scenes with just radios to play towards.  But everything was gut wrenching and in character, because Kane was parenting the shit out of everyone and nobody was having it, not even his Favorite Son Slash Trainee Dad.  

People have already said it already, but thank all that is holy for a Bellamy story that did not revolve around the massacre, but who he is as a person.  And who he is as a person is someone who will save the person in front of him every goddamn time, no matter the risk.  But lately, he’s been fading because he keeps trying to protect people and no matter what, they’re leaving him or dying and he’s utterly powerless against the oncoming radiation.  Bellamy telling those men that he wasn’t coming was agonizing to watch, and it reminded me of Bellamy finding Atom in the woods– he’s helpless and all he can do is listen to them die.  He can’t even give them mercy like Clarke did for Atom.  It’s a stark moment, and we feel every last bit of despair that Bellamy has been fighting for weeks.  

And man, poor Kane.  He was dadding Bellamy as best he could, but Kane has put his season one self so firmly in the past he forgot that not everyone has.  Bellamy bringing up Kane’s role in his mother’s death complicates their relationship in a really challenging way, because so much of who Bellamy is now is because he lost her.  He’s been carrying that guilt and anger around on his own for years, and you could tell it hurt him just a little to unload it on Kane, as deserved as it might be.  (It’s also a very on-brand moment for the Blake Siblings, and let’s have a moment of reflection to thank the new writers who managed to nail this in one fucking episode).  I am really interested to see where Bellamy is next episode, because “not wanting to be saved” is a really bleak place for him, but it’s also a place he’s been headed for this whole season and I cannot wait to see that arc come to fruition.

Next week: Bellamy and Jasper go on a very depressing looking road trip, and Jaha goes Full Cult!

True Q - 6.06

Oh, Q, you rake, you scalawag. You’re so mischievous that you’ve snuck into one of these mostly-unis episodes like the scoundrel you are. Also I believe this episode title, much like Return of the King, contains a spoiler within the title. But we’ll get there.

“Don’t even try to out cheekbone me, girl. I’ll eat you for lunch.” —Bev

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X-Files Fic: Emet

This is a post-episode for “Kaddish,” for @txf-fic-chicks‘ post-ep challenge.





The air inside the oncology clinic is stale, antiseptic, a hospital smell even though it’s not technically a hospital.  Though it’s not a smell that’s ever bothered her before, this time, Scully begins to feel nauseous just walking through the front door.  Not a good sign, wanting to vomit before the treatment has even started, before she’s even consented to be treated at all… but after Allentown, after Scanlon’s “treatments,” she’s a acquired a whole new selection of experiences to associate with the smell of a hospital.

She gives her name at the front desk and takes a seat in the waiting room, trying hard not to look around at the other patients, all in various stages of treatment.  Some look perfectly healthy, some are a bit pale, many are sporting scarves and soft, knit hats, and a few are living ghosts, thin and listless, staring lifelessly at the taupe carpet.

Scully wonders, if she decides to go through with the treatment, whether she’ll lose her hair… then mentally chastises herself for her vanity.  She should be using this time to make a decision, one she should have made long before her appointment, not worrying whether or not she’ll need to invest in scarves and wigs.

It’s not like her to arrive at an appointment like this not having made up her mind already.  Dr. Zuckerman had outlined her treatment plan on Monday and had told her to go home and think about it for a few days, and to come back on Friday.  She had been ready with an answer right then and there, but Zuckerman had pleaded with her to discuss it with her family first.

She hasn’t.  She had never planned to.  This is her choice to make, and hers alone.  And until a day ago, she had been firm in her decision: even with aggressive chemo and radiation her prognosis is exceedingly poor, and she doesn’t see the sense in spending what little time is left curled over the toilet vomiting, or lying exhausted in bed.  Until yesterday, Scully had been prepared to tell Dr. Zuckerman to give her a good, strong prescription for the headaches, and to send her on her way.

But then had come the case in Brooklyn.

A year ago, Scully would have scoffed outright at the very idea of the golem, at the suggestion that earth and clay could be shaped into a man, animated and given life- after a fashion- with a few Hebrew characters written on its hand.  And she still isn’t sold on the idea, not literally… but in a figurative sense, the notion is all too real to her.

Isaac Luria, Mulder claims, had been brought back to life by the love of his fiancee, Arial Weiss.  But absent his soul, it had been a pale imitation of life, one where he had known nothing but a thirst for vengeance, stumbling mindlessly from one victim to the next.

For Mulder, Scully knows, it will be the other way around.  She will die, and he will be left behind, empty and broken, feeling nothing but hate, caring about nothing but exacting revenge, taking out the men responsible for what has been done to her, one by one, until there is only himself left.

And then, she fears, he will finish the job,

She doesn’t think she’s being overdramatic.  Her mother and Melissa have told her the full story of what a wreck Mulder had been when she’d been taken, and when she’d been returned comatose.  She’s seen herself, these past weeks, how he’s looked at her with guilt-stricken horror every time she’s had a nosebleed.  In the hospital hallway, in Allentown, he’d kissed her forehead, right over the spot where the tumor is lurking, his lips lingering a fraction too long, as though he’d thought that maybe, somehow, he could siphon the cancer out of her and take it into himself.

She knows he would.  He wouldn’t eve stop to think about it.

Kenneth Ungar, the scholar from the Judaic Archives, had explained that the golem was animated by inscribing three Hebrew characters onto it: Aleph, Mem, and Tav, spelling out “emet,” the Hebrew word for “truth.”  The golem could only be killed by erasing the first character, the Aleph, changing the word to “met,” meaning “death.”

Scully is Mulder’s truth.  She is the Aleph being gradually erased from his life, and when she is gone, she will leave behind only death.

She reflects, again and again, on his words to her in the hallway: “The truth will save you, Scully.  I think it’ll save us both.”  She knows he’s right.  And she knows she cannot give in without a fight, no matter how painful and difficult the battle may be.

“Ms. Scully?”  The receptionist calls Scully’s name, jerking her out of her reverie.  She follows a nurse back to the office, where Dr. Zuckerman is waiting.  He smiles as she enters and takes a seat across from him.

“So, Dana,” he says, “have you had some time to think about how you’d like to proceed?”  Scully takes a deep breath.

“Yes,” she says firmly.  “I’d like to go ahead with the treatment.”

Winter 2017 Anime watchlist

Lmao this was supposed to go up last week but it takes me forever to write these things up orz.

Anyway, we’re 1/3 of the way into this barren Winter season, and thus my watchlist has shrunk significantly. I think I’m currently watching what, 10 shows? vs 23-ish last season? Anyway we’ve had a couple neat surprises this season, but it’s mostly the sequels that are keeping everything interesting. Also there’s quality hatewatch material which I hadn’t had in a while.

Because I fucked up, this time I’m going from best to worst rather than the usual opposite

Top Priority

Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju: Futatabi Sukeroku-hen

To no one’s surprise, Rakugo maintains it’s tightly written character drama in top form. The direction is still unusually creative and masterful, especially considering this is a DEEN anime, production team deserves every kudo. If season one was a tragedy, season 2 is gearing up for a story of salvation. Every week I go in completely prepared to suffer and am repeatedly surprised by how happy I feel at the end of each episode.  Scenes like Yakumo consoling a sleeping Konatsu with her father’s rakugo or his performing an old play in Sukeroku’s style for Yotaro are as heart-wrenching as they’re heartwarming. S1 was a strong contender for anime of the year 2016 (and for me it was a toss up between that and YOI) and season 2 seems ready to pick on that and go for a second run.

Originally posted by cutefujoshiyaoi

High-Priority

Ao no Exorcist: Kyoto saga

Honestly this one had my full devotion guaranteed when they decided to commit to those thick af Kansai accents. I am also very pleased with the budget this is getting, it looks reeeaaally nice. Kato’s designs have translated to animation greatly (not that this was a surprise since they did that pretty well on the first series too). The plot seems to be moving rather fast so I wonder if they won’t suffer to fill in the full cour (although this arc is quite long) but for the time being I’m excited to get the Kyoto otaku in me continually catered to.

Originally posted by vongrell

Yowamushi Pedal: Next Generation

I was a Little dubious about how well they’d manage the transition of Makishima’s departure, and while killing him off was rather abrupt to the point I’d even say the guy was fridged for the sake of Onoda’s development, they did a rather good job in setting Teshima as the new role model for the 1st years (who is also very dreamy). I also laughed my ass off with how gigantic they made Ashikiba who is a rather delightful addition to the cast. Kudos to you show, you’ve got me excited in a new season even without my favorite character.

Originally posted by yowa-pedal

Little Witch Academia

It’s hard to find something to say about this show other than it’s energetic, lively and fun to a fault and that Sucy is still Best Girl. It’s very easy to tell how passionate the folks at TRIGGER are about this project and I’m glad they didn’t give up and continued to work on it even if it was poorly received by Japanese audiences. The show reminds me a bit of The Worst Witch, which I used to love in my early teens so there’s also that.

Originally posted by senor-sama

Kuzu no Honkai

This is such a fascinatingly disturbing show to watch. Like watching a trainwreck I guess, except that it’s not a trainwreck in the sense of Hand Shakers, but in you’re just watching all these horrible people destroy each other and self-destruct emotionally and it’s really interesting. I’m particularly invested in Hanabi’s internal struggle and self-deprecation. Could complete dispose of Moca (whose choice of nickname makes my skin crawl) but otherwise I’m constantly at the edge of my seat waiting for the next developments. I also continue to be rather fond of the vagina imagery in the ending, and I appreciate that there’s actually a show that treats female sexuality in a layered, human way, for purposes beyond otaku titillation.

Originally posted by sugoihentai

All Out!! 

This show continues to grow on me with its unique approach to team dynamics. The fact that rugby teams are so big gives us an interesting opportunity of seeing many characters take the spotlight at different times, and this show’s cast continues to be funny and extremely likable to the point that even if Gion has had to sit out most of the games, and even if there isn’t as much focus on Sekizan as I’d like, they’re still engaging and fun. There have also been genuinely emotional peaks, notoriously when that one guy quite the team and it crushed Sekizan’s heart. Also kudos for how even in-show Sekizan’s amazing hair is considered cray-cray

Originally posted by dailyanimefans

Classicaloid

Honestly this second cour just keeps getting better? I don’t know how they did it but they managed to make me not care about whether we’ll ever get some semblance of plot or explanations, I could watch the Beethoven, Mozart, Schubert, Chopin and Liszt doing nonsense stuff show all year round. Whoever wrote the Fish!Schubert episode should get an Oscar and a Nobel Prize

Originally posted by mimimochi

Here we make a drastic leap between things I’m loving and things I’m just eh-watching

ACCA 13-ku Kansatsu-ka

Aaaahhh what should I do about you, show. Ep 1 was okay, ep 2 was great, ep 3 was kind of nothing. There’s obviously way more than meets the eye in this allegedly peaceful country and once that starts to unfold the show will start gaining momentum, hopefully, but as it is I think it suffers greatly from how inscrutable the main character is. I have no idea of Jean’s motivations beyond his love of cigarettes (and I feel they’re overdoing it, unless they plan to make the tabacco thing a  crucial part of the plot later on, they’re hammering the whole ‘tobacco is rare and this guy is weird for smoking’ thing way too hard) so we’re at this weird position of not really knowing where we’re going. I’m intrigued enough to keep watching, but I certainly hope we get some form of interesting developments sooner rather than later.

Originally posted by wakata

Gundam Iron-Blooded Orphans

The writing continues to be notoriously better while the story gets more and more tragic and I still don’t know how to feel about it. Seeing bad guys cheating their way to victory always upsets me a lot, and seeing people die meaninglessly only adds insult to injury. I’m in too deep to drop it at this point, but I honestly can’t forgive how they didn’t even give us that final revenge moment against the Kujan kid. Also every time Atra brings up her dream life of being part of a polyamorous marriage with Mikazuki creeps me the fuck out because obviously Mikazuki doesn’t have the emotional maturity to engage in any such relationship

Originally posted by captainstarlord

Onihei

I’m very uncertain about what to do with this show. First episode was promising, with murky direction, but interesting setting. Episode two was mostly unimpressive, the final twist was rather predictable and the moral outcome wasn’t particularly satisfying. And then episode three put me to sleep. My first impression was that the dyamics between Heizo and his thief-turned-snitch subordinate would be the core of the show, but the latter seems to have been mostly sidelined in favor of focusing on the coolness of Heizo. Which isn’t a problem per say, but the execution just isn’t working and they’re completely wasting the Edo setting, with the cases turning out quite generic. I don’t know, ep 4 is already out so I guess I’ll check that out and decide from there (watched episode 4 already, fell asleep again which I guess is as good a sign as any that this isn’t working for me,but I’m too lazy to move it to the bottom. Dropped)

Originally posted by oboreta-ningyo

Hate-watching

Hand Shakers

Why is this pile of steaming garbage over the mediocre (and gross) show? Well, this one’s gross too, but exceedingly terrible is always better for ironic entertainment than plain boring stuff. At least Hand Shakers keeps me engrossed with its terribleness. Honest to good, even if I hardly remember what the previous episode was about, I’m always looking forward to the next one, I enjoy the terribleness too much.

Also, this is a little insignificant, but this is the first time I see any reference to the Japanese immigrants in Brazil (th, which was kind of a big thing back in the 1930s, in any anime I’ve ever watched, and since I had to look up into that for my thesis, it felt kinda nice to see it and understand why Brazil of all countries.

Super Lovers 2

This is so boring. Even when they try to address the issues I had with the previous season (mainly questioning the nature of Haru and Ren’s relationship), they always do it half-assedly. No drama, no tension, no resolution and certainly no semblance of any plot progression and it’s becoming increasingly tedious. The introduction of the new host guy could add at least some drama to the plot, but I’m not holding my breath. The dog continues to be cute

Originally posted by plisetskiz

I dropped Marginal #4 since episode 2 and I can’t quite remember what it was about other than there was a long sequence of one of the guys desperately looking for his “lucky undies” and I’m too old for this level of juvenile “lol undies” humor. Turns out “not putting me to sleep” wasn’t that strong an asset after all.

Anyway really dead season but the scarce good stuff is really quite good, and the truly terrible stuff is so terrible it’s hilarious so overall the season doesn’t feel as terrible as it could. 

Victuuri Fic Rec List

I love long fics (>10,000 word count) and have a bad habit of needing to organize and list my favorites. Even though Yuri on Ice is new, the fanworks are growing fast (Amazing! Wow!) Here are some completed worksI have enjoyed. 

WIPs I am following can be found here.

UPDATED: Jun 11, 2017

For this list “au” is a completely different universe and “au - canon divergent” is an au where one or both are still competitive figure skaters.
***really really enjoyed, with a brief description as to why it is a fav.
†Just added this update

I. Completed works (Summaries under the cut - there are so many!!!)


Keep reading

ASTRO for Harper’s Bazaar Korea May 2017 Issue - Eunwoo


Listening from start to finish your EPs which you released throughout last year in time for Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter, you naturally imagine an innocent boy wearing his school uniform. Can we see a developed image through your new mini album that you’re busily preparing for now?
Carefully envisioning it, I think it’s more of growing from a middle schooler to a high schooler rather than becoming a straight up adult. ASTRO’s characteristic zesty energy is similar to how we really are now so I think that it’s right we slowly change while maintaining that vibe.

The concept for today’s pictorial is a little different compared to the past and current ASTRO.
I’ve always wanted to try filming with this kind of feel. But it’s definitely hard. I realized that again as we were filming. “Ah, I’m still far away from being sexy, the company didn’t uselessly push for a cute concept (laughs).”

Your straight-laced model student image is strong. Even pointing out that your life’s best escape was ‘going out alone to watch a midnight movie.’
I was like that back then. (How are you now?) If I were to talk about that… If I were to confess something of a level higher than midnight movies is us having secretly gone to an internet cafe? During our trainee days, avoiding eye contact with our manager and heading off to somewhere was a really big deal. Like a 007 mission, we’d carefully make our move, hiding around the corners of buildings and assessing our every step.

On the other hand, you’re in charge of the role of ‘rebellious top star MJ’ in the variety drama <The Best Hit> which is being directed by PD Yoo Ho Jin in collaboration with actor Cha Tae Hyun.
He’s an extremely cocky and selfish character. He’s someone you’d really hate so i’m practicing with the mindset of “Let’s act while thinking of someone that you never want to become and who you shouldn’t become.” Before I went to the script reading, I was practicing my lines with my manager and there were tons of labels and ways of talking that I’ve never imagined of until now, like, “Hyung! What do you do for a living?” So it was a new feeling. Next week would be the first filming so I’m really excited.

When is your loneliest moment?
When I’ve to go to sleep but can’t. It’s really distressing. I’m the sort to have a lot of thoughts so I’d think “There wasn’t the need to go that far” but then go deeper into thinking “What kind of person am I that I would think there was no need?” So I want to quickly promote actively and have no time to think.

Do you not have any thoughts about wanting to date? Not simple (based on) good impressions, but love.
Up til now, I’ve only dated once but I still don’t know what love is! When you read books or watch movies, don’t they say that someone who has never fallen crazy in love would never understand? That you have to experience it in order to become an adult. They say that when you love, your heart gets torn apart and you spill tears but I can’t empathize. I’m usually the style to only develop emotions after a long period of time so i really can’t comprehend falling in love at first sight. I’ll probably experience real love one day.

‘A guy ripped out of manhwas,’ ‘a guy with a sexy brain’ and even ‘face genius.’ Your nicknames are flashy. Today in particular, your members themselves looked at your close up shot and commented, “A top class handsome guy,” they seemed fascinated. If you were to freely boast about yourself?
Someone who’s more reliable than anyone else and who always give his all to the people he treasures, who’s very hard on himself and there are times where it gets too much but because of that, he’s someone who’s detailed and earnest. (Your visuals?) Then… Cha Eunwoo’s a handsome guy whose face and heart are both pretty (laughs)!


Translated by @99pmh | Please take out with full credits! 

The biggest question I have for YoI right now:

Why do we know so little of Viktor’s life in Russia? 

We know he spent most, if not all, of his life in St. Petersburg, and never expected to leave the city (from ep 4′s beach scene). We know that before he moved to coach Yuri in Japan he lived in an expensive looking one-bedroom apartment with Makkachin. We know Yakov has been his coach for a long time, though he is not the only coach Viktor has ever had. 

That Yakov is very close to Viktor, being the only one to call him by the nickname Vitya. In fact, Yakov is also the only one who comes to see Viktor off when he leaves Russia, well he is mostly trying to talk Viktor out of leaving but you get what I’m saying. Though we don’t know who Viktor told, or how close to leaving he informed them, no one except his coach comes to see Viktor off as he is leaving the damn country for the foreseeable future with no return date in sight. 

Actually, now that I’m on the subject, Viktor doesn’t seem to have any close friends at all. He has rivals in the skating world that he is friendly with, and he has Yakov, but his life ever since he was a kid has probably been centered around skating, and if he was like any other athlete at the top of their sport it probably  left little time for friends outside of that realm. And everyone around him in that realm reveres him too much to see themselves as equal to the god-like Viktor Nikiforov. Yuri is the best example of this, but Chris, who is only two years younger, also looks up to him and cares more about bringing Viktor back to skating so he can finally beat his rival/idol than he cares about Viktor on a human level. Even Georgi, another Russian skater under Yakov’s tutelage that is the same age as Viktor only sees Viktor as a bar to overcome and not a human being. For a reference to other skaters having friendships: Yuri has Phichit, Yuuko, and Nishigori. Yurio has Mila, and later on Yuuko. Guang-Hong and Leo have each other and Phichit. Mila and Georgi look like they’re close given how she openly she jokes about his programs, and in the earlier episodes they’re featured together around the rink in St. Petersburg. Michele and Sala look like they’re good friends with Emil. Seung-gil doesn’t appear to have any friends, but that seems to be self-inflicted. For the most part, excluding Chris and JJ, all the other skater are shown to have friends around their own age groups that they are close with to different degrees. JJ may be similar to Viktor, in that he is a step above the rest but his narcissism prevents it from effecting him, and Chris is also quite old for a competitor and his friends may no longer be competing or competing at the same level. 

With that comparison in mind, I have to mention that Viktor’s apartment in St. Petersburg, or what we see of it, is noticeably devoid of sentimental items and though it looks lived in, it still has a distinctly empty feel. 

Granted it’s only one limited angle, but we still get a number of other personal touches included by the animators. Even then, there is nothing more superficial than a plant on the far table, what looks like a pile of papers on the ottoman, a few books on the close table, and a coat hanging on the rack. 

For the sake of fairness, his room at Yu-topia Katsuki is also sparsely decorated:

The wall behind Yuri and Viktor is a row of doors, and the only things in his room not furniture are a set of Matryoshka dolls, a picture of himself skating, a lovely piece of art on the wall, a snow-globe, a handful of books. Again, nothing overtly personal. It looks lived in, but again strikingly empty. No photos of friends, or family, or of Viktor on vacation. The only picture is literally a photo of Viktor working (as someone on a different post pointed out it’s the same as one of the posters hanging in Yuri’s room so take from that what you will). Whatever is in all these boxes from earlier in the same episode is open to interpretation (I personally believe it’s mostly clothes and books). Also, I’ll note here that it appears Viktor shipped everything he owned ahead of him when he left, indicating that he has no intentions of going back to Russia anytime soon.

For comparison, here is a picture of Yuri’s room, after he takes down all the Viktor memorabilia:

It’s dark, but Yuri’s room is full of personal touches. But must notably, there are trophies, and a picture of his family on the bookshelf in the back. In Viktor’s rooms we see, there are no picture frames of friends or family, nothing that indicates a deeper connection in Viktor’s life than Makkachin, or Yakov. No indication of what he does in his free time aside from possibly reading, or friends he spends his time with when he’s not training. And no indication of any family to miss him when he’s living in Japan.

Now, back to my original point: Viktor has been living in Japan for roughly 8 months by episode 8. That is a long time. And it looks like he just packed up Makkachin and left on a whim within a week or two, not knowing how long he’d be gone or even if he’d return. I pointed out it looked like Viktor brought everything he owned with him, so we can assume he isn’t planning on going back to Russia anytime soon. We don’t know how much time passed between Viktor seeing the video of Yuri skating and arriving in Hatsetsu. But it wasn’t long: the video is posted April 10, and I can’t seem to find any date stamp for the day Viktor arrives but it’s less than three weeks after that. I’d guess probably less than a week. For someone who says he never expected to leave the city he’s always lived in, Viktor doesn’t seem to have anything tying him to St Petersburg, or even Russia, more significant than his skating/training. And once he decides to quit there is nothing keeping him there anymore, and he can leave without having to alert too many parties, or worry about forwarding mail, or consoling his mother that he’ll visit on holidays. Typical shit you’d expect from someone moving halfway across the world. I get it, he’s rich. But still moving, especially moving internationally, takes planning. And Viktor just kind of packs up his whole life and leaves, no questions asked. Which is weird, to me, if he has family in Russia.

So what is my point, here?

Given how central the theme love of all kinds is in this show, it is weird that we know nothing about Viktor’s family, or his past. Of the three main characters we have, Yuri, Yurio, and Viktor, we have at least a basic understanding of Yuri and Yurio’s family, and how it has affected them emotionally/professionally. 

In the latest episode, we learn that Yurio’s grandpa is from Moscow, and since his grandfather used to pick him up from practice that Yurio is probably originally from Moscow as well, and now lives/trains in St Petersburg (he now lives with his ballet instructor and coach full time, according to Ep 4 and the rink Yavkov’s skaters train in is in St. Petersburg). We can infer from this that his family supports him enough to either let their fifteen-old-son live on his own in St. Petersburg, or his parents uprooted their lives and moved to St Petersburg so he could train with Yakov. Also, given several things we can probably infer his family isn’t wealthy. His grandpa picks him up in a beaten up, old, soviet-era car. He looks like he’s part of the blue-collar, working middle class. I assume Yuri’s parents benefit from his success but his family doesn’t come from any kind of wealth so any support they gave him growing up was likely financially straining. We also know that his grandfather loves him, and is still in his life and even arranges to pick his grandson up from the airport despite the fact that Yurio is staying at the hotel with the other skaters, which we know because we see him there later that day and he leaves his luggage under Mila’s care before running off to do this:

Later that day:

Yurio’s family had an impact on his life, and it’s part of his story. His grandfather is the epitome of unconditional love, for him, and even though he has the apparent support of his family, his grandfather doesn’t come to watch Yurio skate in the competition. We’ll likely get more development on this, and Yurio will probably have a lot of growth in the next few episodes. But family love and the effect it has is clearly important to Yurio’s story, and character development 

We have a deeper insight to Yuri’s family dynamic. They have clearly provided him with love and support over the years in their own way, though the quality of that love and support, and how much it helped or hurt Yuri, is up for debate. It clearly never got through to him though, and in his own words was more “abstract”, but still the love was there. It took Viktor coming to be his coach, and showing him a new type of love for Yuri to really grasp the concept of unconditional love despite having it surrounding him the whole time. Yuri’s journey has been a blend of learning how to love someone else in a way that is more than familial love, and learning to love himself. But after a lot of character development, and some time, he has realized that he loves Viktor, as a friend, a coach, probably as a lover as well, and that love is all around him in all kinds of forms. Familial love, in Yuri’s case, was something to be worked from. It was a bedrock that Viktor’s presence built off, and bolstered. It was key for Yuri’s character development, even though the primary focus has been on his relationship with Viktor.

The point is, for two of the main character’s their families are pivotal in their character development. We know they are supported, and loved. We know Yurio’s family either moved to St Petersburg for his career, or let their teenage son move alone. We know that Yuri’s family watches all his competitions:

Last Year’s Grand Prix Final:

This year’s Cup of China:

Yuri always has someone cheering him on. Whether it’s Minako in the stands in China, Yuuko and Nishegori at the Regional Qualifiers, or his family at home. Someone, somewhere, is watching Yuri and cheering him on.

But what about Viktor? The mystery of Viktor’s origins and the lack of any showing of familial love kind of stands out.  Despite what we know of him, Viktor is still the biggest enigma in the show. We know almost nothing about his background, we know nothing about his family, or his past struggles. Did his family watch all his competitions? Did they support him? Did they offer him love, and make sacrifices for his success? Were they even involved in his life? Does anyone miss him since he left for Japan? Does his mother call him asking how his day went? Was there any talk of Viktor going home on his trip to Russia to see his family, like Yurio saw his grandfather? He’s been gone for nearly a year, it wouldn’t be that out of the question. But given what we know, and what we’ve been shown, I think not.

Viktor was clearly missing something when he chose to fly to Japan to coach Yuri on a whim. And yeah, he says he came to Japan because Yuri’s skating and music and all that poetry that inspired him. And yeah, that’s probably part of it. But I think it’s something more than that.

Because I don’t think Viktor has had any kind of deep, emotional connection in a long time. Because I’ve got three possibilities for Viktor’s life and family back in Russia:

1. They’re all dead, and Viktor had been alone with just his skating and Makkachin for company for a long time. 

2. They are all estranged - either they did not support Viktor’s skating or the fact that he is gay/bi/whatever - and Viktor has been alone with just his skating and Makkachin for company for a long time.

OR

3. They really just aren’t important, or are just a normal, loving, supportive family and bringing them up isn’t relative to the plot. Which, at least to me, seems unlikely given the themes of this show.

The whole point of this is that Viktor’s life was missing something. And I think that Viktor, too, was lacking love. He doesn’t seem to have any friends, or family. His closest confidant seems to be his 70 year old coach. He has no one his age that is close to him: not other Russian skaters, not other top skaters, no one outside the skating world. He was isolated. And that was probably fine, for a while. He seems like a work-aholic that loved his job, and for a long time wasn’t bothered by the fact he had no one to go home to, or no one to spend his down time with. But when skating stopped being fun, when he stopped being able to surprise people, and everyone around him (Yakov excluded) turned into either rivals, or idol-worshiping yes-men, it probably started feeling empty.

When he first arrives in Japan, in episode 2, he is very pushy about learning things about Yuri under the auspice of needing to know everything about Yuri to coach him. But the things he asks about are pretty personal, not things one would expect a coach to need to know. Things like: what is your favorite food, what kind of rink do you skate in, what is in this city, is there someone you like, do you have feelings for Minako, do you have a lover, do you have any ex-lovers? Some of which are appropriate for a new coach to ask his new student. But most of those questions are more like things that someone might ask if they haven’t ever had a close friend, and are trying to get close to someone. This is only enhanced by the fact that when Yuri refuses to answer any questions, Viktor switches gears and starts talking about his ex-lovers instead. Which doesn’t make sense if Viktor, like he said, is trying to learn everything about Yuri and just sees their relationship as coach-student. It makes more sense if you look at it as Viktor trying to get close to Yuri as something more: as a friend.  

I think that finding someone to be close to is definitely part of Viktor’s motivations on leaving Russia and flying halfway around the world to coach a flubbed foreign skater. And Yuri was probably already on Viktor’s radar before he even saw the video of Yuri skating his program. He’d probably been on Viktor’s radar since December and the GP Final, four months prior (GPF in December, Yuri disappoints at Nationals in Jan/Feb and probably graduates from college somewhere in here, fails to qualify for 4 Continents in February, and fails to qualify for Worlds in March. Returns home in March, at the same time Viktor is winning Worlds. The video is posted, and Viktor arrives in Japan in April). Where Yuri was staring at Viktor, which is probably a common occurrence given how Viktor reacts by assuming Yuri just wants a commemorative photo like any other fan, and Yuri just walks away in shock as his heart shatters because his idol just assumes he wants a stupid commemorative photo when he really just wants Viktor to acknowledge him. Look at Viktor’s reaction to Yuri walking away without a word:

That is not a happy face. That is genuine emotion, and not something he puts on for the cameras, or his fans, or basically everyone else around him. But it’s not an angry face, either. Viktor just looks kind of, I don’t know, lost. Probably because he’s never had a reaction like that to an offer for a photo-op, because who is going to pass up a chance at a photo-op with THE Viktor Nikiforov? 

By this point he’s so used to people fawning over him and kissing his ass he doesn’t know how to react when he’s met with disappointment. He’s confused, and baffled by Yuri’s reaction. And the first time I watched this scene, I thought Viktor just assumed Yuri was just a fan or something and that is why Yuri is upset. But it’s not like he wouldn’t know who Yuri is. He just competed against him, and all the skaters seem to know each other in the past few episodes. There is no reason to assume Viktor and Yuri have never interacted before, in fact Yuri even says they have spoken before though not often because Yuri puts Viktor up on a pedestal. It’s not like Viktor thought Yuri was some random member of the public here. He is just assuming that a fellow skater, one of the fellow top 6 in the world, only wanted a photo-op and nothing more. And that is why Yuri is upset. And when Yuri defied his expectations of a rabid fan jumping at the chance of even being photographed with him, and just seemed disappointed with the superficial offer, it threw him off. And Viktor probably remembered this moment when he was watching that video of Yuri, I doubt it was something he easily forgot. The animators showing us Viktor’s reaction was no accident, or a way to eat up scree-time. It’s meaningful. He’s thinking about Yuri, and what made Yuri react like that.

So four months later, what Viktor sees when he watches Yuri skate in that video, and when he remembers Yuri’s reaction in that moment, he sees someone he wants to connect with, and someone who he knows wanted to connect with him too. He sees someone that he wants to be close with, and get to know deeply for what I expect to be the first time in a long time, if not the first time ever. And what he found in Yuri probably exceeded all his expectations. In the words of Chris, he found someone to protect. He found someone, for the first time, who meets him where he is, someone who sees him as something more than a rival to be defeated, or an idol to be worshiped. Someone who jokes with him, and is intimate with him, and is a companion in every sense of the word. Someone who sees him as a human being, with flaws, and weaknesses, and accepts those flaws and weaknesses as part of him and loves him still.

And that is fucking beautiful.

The 100 4x10 - YASSSSS

Season 4 cannot be saved, but it can be salvaged. 4x10 is exactly what we need, for ALL of the remaining episodes.

I’m excited again, for the first time – honestly – since the DRAMATIC ROMANCE STARE in 4x05 (yes, I loved the stuff in 4x06 but I was feeling too twitchy about the show in general to get the full buzz). That’s not to say that the problems with this season get wiped away. There were issues that lingered here, and those issues will remain. But enough good work was done in this episode to make me willing to look past the problems, if the final steps of this season follow suit.

I’m not re-watching (blessedly, because I don’t have time and not because I don’t care) so please excuse this messy summary of my full thoughts.

-          The greatest thing about this episode is the salvation of Octavia. And here is the first example of us having to look past prior issues to accept what we got here. Some of us won’t be able to do that, for good or bad. But I can, and WOW this episode was killer. Firstly, the writers didn’t try and pass Octavia off as a badass warrior that could hold her own. Everybody knew she didn’t have a chance to win. Everybody (including Clarke, yo yo). Octavia knew. She was trying to act brave, but you could still see her fear.

-          The person that believed in her? The person that gave her a way to survive? BELLAMY. And he did it referencing her upbringing and HOW POWERFUL WAS THAT. The Octavia of old meshed with the Octavia of new. Bellamy’s Octavia meshed with Lincoln’s Octavia. Bellamy not being able to tell her he loved her, Octavia saying may we meet again. IT WAS ALL SO TAUT AND HESITANT. There was so much left unsaid because so much has gone down.

-          And then not only is Octavia reminded of her brother’s love for her, but Kane hugs her. And then Indra!!!! Despite Indra having her own man in the fight, Indra presents Octavia with her sword – once rejected by the daughter of her blood, now accepted by her adopted daughter. I WAS CRYING DUDES. CRYING. And the cracks start to form…

-          Octavia’s relationship with Illian has been…odd, to say the least. His death made me sad because Chai is great, and Marie killed it, but I’m not particularly put out to see him go (he’s a guest star who’s characters purpose was entirely tied to a main – he was given a full bodied arc and the cast needed to be trimmed) but Illian saving her took those cracks that had formed and forced them wider. It’s obvious that Illian was a Lincoln substitute in a lot of ways to Octavia. Her grief was very much for this boy that had – for whatever reasons – decided to fall for a murder kitten, but it was also wrapped up in Lincoln and it felt so earned that she got to give Illian a good death (all of the Lincoln mentions and references were ON POINT)

-          And then we get Bellamy stepping out to save Octavia, and GUYS. BELLAMY HAD BITE AGAIN IN THIS EPISODE. ACTUAL BITE? CAN YOU BELIEVE????????

-          BITE

-          First, he stands up to Kane and Kane relents because YES.

-          THEN HE FINALLY GETS TO ACTUALLY BE FURIOUS WITH ECHO

-          (One of the small flaws with this episode is a perfect example of how this season does not track. What was the point in Echo’s epiphany earlier in the season, if she was just going to shoot O now? SHE DIDN’T EVEN HESITATE! The plot should serve character, and not the other way round dammit!)

-          Bellamy was gonna kill her, and honestly – he earned it.

-          Still, I felt for Echo when she got banished. I certainly get the sense that she was almost…crafted by Nia, and I can buy that it’s hard for her to let go of those instincts. I can’t very well defend Clarke’s choices to save her people, and then shit on Echo for trying to save hers, right? I’m intrigued as to where she goes from here. Logic points to some sort of death protecting a Blake, OR maybe she gets a full arc in S5. We’ll see…

-          Then we get the GORGEOUS Blake scene with Roan. It was just…so wonderfully acted, and so perfectly on point for all the characters. Roan and Bellamy have always antagonised each other, but there’s a healthy respect between them at this point. And then of course there’s Octavia’s face when she hears Bellamy speak. I’m wary of making connections this season, due to the lack of consistency from ep to ep, but it took me back to 4x06 and my thoughts after Octavia rejecting him utterly. I said then that I felt her rejection had as much to do with her hating and blaming herself, as it did with her hating and blaming him. And I felt that again here. It’s like…despite everything, Octavia didn’t believe that Bellamy could still love her or have faith in her after everything that had happened. But he does, and he always will.

-          Roan is another character that has suffered this season (honestly, the large majority have) as a tool to the plot. We aren’t completely free of this at the start of the episode, and I’m still frustrated by it. This is a guy that knew Ontari was a fake Commander and was prepared to roll with it, and he’s only now getting all shitty about religion and culture? Hmmm. I suspect the writers felt the scene with Clarke was necessary to show her trying one last time to save everyone, but they could have handled it better. Maybe just show her trying to reach him, but Gaia intervenes or something? HOWEVER, I’m willing to look past this scene because everything else with Roan was wonderful.

-          As with Bellamy, Roan has a shit ton of respect for Octavia. That’s evident from the start, and it has a profound impact on Octavia when he offers the truce. This is a girl that has felt incredibly alone since Lincoln died, but now – as she faces death – people are queuing up to love and support her. Yes, we as viewers know those people have been there all along. But Octavia? Grief, trauma, pain distorts your view. She hasn’t been able to see through that.

-          ROAN GETS TO BE A BADASS EVEN IN DEATH (although I maintain that until Zach tweets his goodbyes HE’S ALIVE DAMMIT). Him melon crushing Trikru man was wicked good. His fight with Luna was gloriously done. The twist of the black rain coming in, removing Octavia from the equation, was a great way to have him lose. But YIKES LUNA, what a way to murder someone. It just looked GREAT.

-          QUICK NOTE: Gaia’s reaction to Trikru losing out, and her hugging Indra ALSO MADE ME WEEP.

-          If (IF DAMMIT) this is Roan’s end, then at least it’s a good one. They could have gotten more out of him this season, but I’ve enjoyed him since 3x02 and Zach was a great addition to the show.

-          So, let’s talk about Luna. I felt her turn to darkness was abrupt, and that one scene in an episode prior would have made it track better. But I also kinda loved this as her ultimate endgame? This was Luna at her most interesting, honestly. So yeah, if we’d gotten one extra scene hinting at this it would have been perfect. Nadia rocks a bad girl, like whoa. And again, kudos to the writers for doing the right thing. There is no way that Octavia would beat Luna in a fight. Having her fight dirty was the best and only way.

-          MAJOR YIKES AT OCTAVIA’S LAST WORDS TO LUNA THOUGH. WAY HARSH.

-          So then we get to Octavia returning to the throne room, and whooooooooooooa.

-          SO last week we all breathed a sigh of relief that Clarke was NOT going to become Commander, but now it very much looks like Octavia is going to become some sort of leader of a ‘one’ kru. I’ll reserve judgement on that until I see how it forms, but one thing I do want to mention is the respect that an abundance of grounder characters have for Octavia. Wanheda has been feared and revered, but has always been apart. Octavia has embraced grounder culture since day one. When Clarke tried to take the flame, she disregarded grounder beliefs. Octavia wouldn’t do that. THAT is why when Octavia suggests sharing the bunker they all accept it. Octavia took on the conclave, won, and they respect that.

-          KANE WAS SO PROUD

-          INDRA WAS SO PROUD

-          I WEPT SOME MORE

-          And then I wept a bit harder when she ASKED FOR HER BROTHER.

-          SHE WANTED TO SEE HIM

-          SHE WANTED TO HUG HIM DAMMIT

-          Now, I’ve already expressed why Clarke’s choice legit does not bother me one iota and I’m just gonna link to that here because I’m lazy.

-          My one gripe with this scene and the setup is that Clarke’s choice happened off screen, and was used as a twist. BUT I am putting major faith in 4x11 to delve deep into her choice and her headspace so it’s not a major thing YET.

-          Also, NOTE BELLAMY’S BITE.

-          I’m gonna close by doing something that I generally avoid doing, because I hate raising expectations…but…my friends…my immediate Bellarke reaction after this episode and ESPECIALLY AFTER SEEING THE NEXT EPS PROMO WAS EXCITEMENT.

-          That bunker will be open by the end of the episode, and I can’t imagine that anything other than Bellamy getting through to Clarke will be the reason it does.

-          Could there still be angst right up until the end of the season? Sure! But not necessarily.

-          So my fun times scenario is below the cut, and you can play with it if you’re unable to see any light at the end of the tunnel (DISCLAIMER: YOU SHOULD ALWAYS PREPARE FOR THE WORST, THIS IS NOT ME PROMISING THAT THIS WILL HAPPEN).

Keep reading

Okay, I think I’ll loose half my followers and be yelled at by almost everyone in the fandom, but fuck that, I’m doing this post anyway.

Guys. Guys, guys, guys. GUYS. Could you please tell me why everyone is just shitting on Andrew’s face, like,  EVERY TIME his name is mentioned in ANYTHING ?! I know LWA is about witches, so mainly if not only girls and that a lot of yuri shippers here don’t want to see any guy but seriously, don’t you think it’s going to far ? Don’t get me wrong, I’m a Dianakko shipper and I don’t want to see het bullshit in LWA either. I was scared EVERY TIME I saw that Andrew would be in an episode, especially after ep10 because, let’s be honest, the beginning of this ep was pure bullshit. But in ep6 as well as in ep17, the ones that really matter since ep10 was pretty much a joke from the producers, he has been nothing but a good boy, considering his upbringing. I mean, the guy was raised in a family that hates witches and that won’t allow an 8 year old to learn to play piano (which is just stupid), so yeah, guess he suffered quite a lack of “useless” things such as FUN and never talked to anyone not thinking like him (or when he did, his father said something like “They are fools that we need to guide on the right path, no matter what they say : this is what us, statesmen, are here for.”). So yeah, in ep6 and before, when he and Diana met as children, he was a real dick with witches. I won’t deny that.

But ep6 and 10 (even if it was full of bullshit in the beginning) came and he changed his view on witches, leading to him defending Akko and Amanda in ep17. The guy has grown up and is now an ally. A FRIEND for Akko, even if they don’t always get along and still argue about some things. And seriously, aside from Akko blushing a bit when she met him in ep6 (I won’t talk about ep10’s beginning, I consider it as a joke from the producers’ and nothing else, but even in ep10, after the first part in the ballroom, there’s no more romantic interaction between them : the scene at the fountain gave Andrew hope and courage, their little interaction at the end was nothing more than two buddies acknowledging their good work at solving a problem), so aside from that, there hasn’t been any real het bs. Sure, you can quote one or two things, like Akko’s look to Andrew at the end of ep17, but the look itself only means what you want it to and I chose to believe that it was just Akko being grateful for Andrew’s help with everything that happened.

So I get why everyone is mad that there might be a SLIGHT CHANCE of getting Akkandrew scenes, we’re not here for that, clearly, but if you look at it objectively just 2 minutes, the “romantic scenes” are, like, 1/10 of their interactions so far. And it’s a really, REALLY little part of EVERYTHING that happened in the anime and that is going to happen.

And now, for ep19 : yes Andrew is here, yes he might get some screentime, no it doesn’t mean it will ruin anything. I mean, come on guys, you’re better than that ! Even if Andrew DOES have some role in the ep aside from taking Akko to Diana’s house and explaining her what’s going on (like the aunts taking over the family and their positions about prestige and witchcraft), it doesn’t mean it will ruin the interactions between Akko and Diana ! I understand you’re worried, but saying things like “shit head will ruin the ep” or “I thought it was going to be an ep about Akko and Diana, but now Andrew ruins it” is just stupid and really annoying. Another character being there, even if it’s a boy, doesn’t mean the focus of the ep will be on him or that he will ruin scenes between the two girls or anything like that ! There are 10 screencaps from the ep that have already been released and Andrew is in only one of them, just like Diana’s aunts, so don’t you think it’s a bit early to say his presence will ruin everything ?

As far as we know, he might as well make his coming out, say he sees Akko as an annoying little sister and give her advices to talk to Diana and ask her out on a date.

And if you didn’t see it already, I’ll ask you to please read this really nice analysis of @darthcontusion that was made 2 weeks ago where it explains clearly how Andrew is not as shitty as some people make him look like.

And if you’re not convinced yet, think about Gamagori in Kill la Kill. The guy was deeply in love with Mako, but it never stopped Trigger from giving us really nice scenes between her and Ryuuko and in the end, Gamagori’s feelings didn’t ruin anything. NOT. A. THING. (Mako didn’t even notice them and only saw Gamagori as a great and reliable senpai)

One doesn’t have to hate and shit on the face of a character to support a ship. Andrew being a white (I don’t even know why we talk about his skin colour, seriously) and potentially straight guy doesn’t mean it will ruin anything between Akko and Diana because BREAKING NEWS ! It’s not how it works. So please, let Andrew breathe and start insulting Diana’s aunts ‘cause THESE ONES seem to be real bitches. Just give Andrew a chance, I know he’s a nice guy deep inside.

Suspicious Partner fanfic

So, wow, it was in there after all. All it took was a prompt from anon. Tonight, I opened up the piece I wrote and asked myself… why am I struggling with it? Why does it sounds so stilted, like I am trying too hard. Isn’t Noh Ji Wook a beloved character?…. and no, the answer was no. For the first time, I want to write the female lead. There’s something about Eun Bong Hee that I adore. She’s real, she’s droll and she’s witty, mostly at her own expense. So here is my version of her. Nam Ji Hyun is perfect in this role, and I believe she inspired this fic. 

Thanks for waiting! Have fun!


Title: That Man. These Eyes.
Description: Eun Bong Hee’s point of view, from her confession to the day after. Spoilers up to Ep 13.


“I like you.” 

Was that my voice? It didn’t sound like it. Most days, my voice sounds like a dignified chicken, I like to think. That voice I just heard? It sounds like a howling amoeba. If an amoeba could howl. Amoebas have one cell. One cell to think, eat and poop with. One cell to lust after the boss with.

So no. That couldn’t have been me.

That was me.

Keep reading

Gintama anime ep 325/manga chaps 580, 581, 582, 583, and 584

Dear Gintama gods and Sorachi-sama,

Having seen the return of our Shinsengumi boys for the Battle of Earth, I cannot thank you enough for answering my prayers and giving us at least one more season of the anime. You are, as usual, too too generous. Words cannot even fully express how truly grateful I am. So that I do not take up any more of your precious time, I will cut right to the chase this week. Please allow me to share with you what I most appreciate about this episode. 

I am very thankful for…

- little big brothers who carry tiny little baby sisters on their backs like a treasure,

- little boys who have not yet lost their wide and genuinely happy smile at the sight of their no-good Papi,

- tiny little baby Yato girls who are still fierce as F with great kicking power and perfect aim,

- so-cute-she-makes-me-want-to-cry-buckets-and-melt-into-a-pile-of-useless-goo Kagura-chan,

- self-sacrificing, loving mothers who deserve to live forever dammit,

- young, handsome Yato pirates who rescue little rabbits from bullies,

- simple page to screen changes that makes a difference and causes my heart to overflow with emotion,

- young, handsome Yato pirates who has a penchant for rescuing one particular bratty, little rabbit even when it means taking a brutal gut punch to himself,

- no-so-young-anymore-but-still-handsome Yato pirates who still continue to rescue the same bratty-but-not-so-little-anymore rabbit by trying to save what is precious to him (even if the brat still won’t admit it),

- Papis who really tried their best but lost their one remaining good arm for their efforts,

- families bound by love even if not by blood,

- lovable idiots who use their heads even though there was no real reason for it (and it didn’t even work),

- the poor straight man who realizes (though not for the first time) the leader he has been loyally following is a lovable total idiot,

- dialogue chock full of sexual innuendo when taken out of context,

- stupid big brothers,

and finally, my favorite manga to anime moment:

Yours truly,

A silly fangirl with yaoi dreams

(^3^)

MONTHLY MEDIA: April 2017

This is how I spent the month of April!

……….FILM……….

The Wrong Guy (1997)
I loved everything about this movie. Everything was so silly and yet 95% of the characters are played so straight that it just makes the comedic bits that much funnier. So good. 

Get Out (2017)
I admit that I read the synopsis before seeing it because it’s the only way I could survive a horror film. Though in hindsight, it really felt like more of a suspense or thriller. With that said, I loved every minute and it still scared the hell out of me.

The Love Witch (2016)
What a fascinating movie. There’s an interesting dissection of romance, relationships, and gender underneath the 70s aesthetic but I can’t help but feel like I missed another 2 or 3 layers of the plot. I mean I think I liked it? Parts of it? All of it? I dunno but I’d definitely watch it again.

……….TELEVISION……….

Riverdale (Episode 1.02 to 1.11)
In watching this show I’ve learned that I don’t like romance while murders are being solved. Everything else about this show is perfect.

Crashing (Episode 1.01 to 1.02)
If you listen to You Made it Weird then you’ll probably know the main beats of the show, but I don’t really think that’s a bad thing? I mean it’s not a documentary. Also I never knew just how uncomfortable comedians bombing made me feel.

……….READING……….

Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer
(Complete)
Amazing. It’s scarier than I expected and equally as abstract. It’s a tight read and I think the trade off to that was that I didn’t get a great sense of distance. There’s a lot of exploration but I would’ve loved if it allowed itself to go off and detail the setting a little more. I’ll definitely be rereading this. 

Johannes Cabal: The Fear Institute by Jonathan L. Howard
(Complete)
In rereading this I finally got to pick up on the “clues” to some of the twists that this book is full of and it made for a super enjoyable experience. I really can’t stress enough how much I love this series and I hope Howard’s short stories featuring Cabal will get collected and printed someday.

Arthur and the Golden Rope by Joe Todd Stanton
(Complete)
I love this picture book/comic hybrid to bits. I think I would’ve gotten into D&D waaaaaaay sooner had this been on my bookshelf as a kid. There’s treasure, monsters, fetch quests, and everything else my 11 year old (and 30 year old) mind adores. Plus it’s beautiful as hell.

……….AUDIO……….

Plastic Beach by Gorillaz (2010)
I somehow skipped this album back when it was released but with Humanz now out, I figured I’d go back and hot damn is it great! I’m glad I waited cause I don’t think 2010 me would’ve appreciated this.

Homecoming (Podcast)
Such a great radio drama! It’s a tight 6 eps and has a super great cast so go listen to it. There’s a little mystery, a little humour, and just a whole lot of great aural storytelling.

S*Town (Podcast)
This is a podcast of zigs and zags. It kinda meanders and has a wrap up that’s similar to season 1 of Serial, but I guess that’s just the way with real-life stories. Also I loved it.

……….GAMING……….

Sushi Go! (Gamewright)
This was so much fun! It was super easy to pick up and it’s the sort of game that can scale with the players’ strategic skills. Plus I just found a version for up to 8 players!

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo)
Amazing. With a little help from an online map I’ve found all of the shrines (just locations, not how to complete them) and even so I’m STILL discovering new stuff. I didn’t love the final boss design (or those motion-control puzzles) but they’re mere blips compared to all of the great things about the game.

Hoard of the Dragon Queen (Wizards of the Coast)
It’s been a while since we’ve continued our recon mission but this week saw our group’s first player death! It was dramatic and has really fractured the party so I’m not sure what the future holds.

Dungeons & Dragons Homebrew Campaign (Wizards of the Coast)
The party is still dealing with a zombie hoard that seems to roam the city streets at night and soon they’ll discover the source!

And that’s it! As always, I’d love to get your recommendations for stuff to read, listen to, and watch!

Happy Sunday.

A Big Mistake

Originally posted by blogfandomimaginesstuff

Pairing: ReaderxStiles

Rating: NSFW 18+

A/N: Okay so this is the first kind of sad one I’ve written. I wrote this after I watched the new episode this week (6x09). I was so emotionally moved by that ep that I cried when I wrote this. Anyways, thank you once again to @dumbass-stilinski for helping me edit this and help with the song choices for this one. IF you don’t want this to end sadly, let me know if you want a part 2! Enjoy reading!

Part 2

Listen to these songs:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bnVUHWCynig

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WBKnpyoFEBo

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GsPq9mzFNGY

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qkP6Tf79UrM

——————————-

“Stiles you don’t get it!” You screamed at him, your body boiling up with rage.

“What don’t I get Y/N!” Stiles yells back at you, causing your body temperature to rise even higher than before.

Your voice softened and all the muscles relaxed,“You don’t want me Stiles, you want her, you want Lydia.” Suddenly, you weren’t even angry anymore, you were just filled with sadness.

You were tired of doing this to yourself. He wanted Lydia, he has been in love with her since the 3rd grade, but you, you have been in love with Stiles Stilinski since the 3rd grade, but know one knew. You were sick of meeting up with him in secret just to relieve both of your sexual frustrations. You didn’t want to keep going with this because you were trying to save yourself from heartbreak. It didn’t mean anything more to him than sex, and after 6 months, you finally had come to terms with it.

He didn’t say anything but flash what you took as a look of apology and guilt. You couldn’t even look him in the eye.

“Y/N, that’s not-”

“Look Stiles. I’m tired of this okay. You know how I have felt about you forever. Let’s just not pretend anymore, I love you but the feelings are not mutual. I’m such an idiot for letting it get this far,” you sighed as a hot tear ran down your cheek, “I think you should just leave okay, pretend what we have been doing for the last six months never happened. See you around Stilinski.” You opened the door of your bedroom and motioned with a hand signal for him to leave.

“Please Y/N just listen to me.” Stiles cried out.

“Just go please! It’s hard enough as it is!” You urged, needing to be alone to analyse the situation.

He finally left and you slammed your door shut. You let out the rib shaking sob you had kept in the whole time you two argued. You decided to grab a change of clothes and have a shower, hoping the water would clean you of your heartbreak from the boy you have loved for 8 years, and just make you forget about everything, for a little while.

_______

You laid your clothes on the bench in your bathroom, and brought your phone to play your slow, chill playlist in an attempt to relax you. You hopped into the shower and turned the water on, letting your body absolutely soak in it. The water surged around your body, encasing you completely with it’s cool and smooth touch. The water on your skin that at first felt only a smidgen cold, has turned to full on biting as you turn the hot water up to nearly its maximum temperature. Your skin began to sting, turning a bright red from the harsh caress of the liquid, but it made you feel good, good enough to nearly forget what happened five minutes ago, but it’s wasn’t enough.

Suddenly, you felt the same hot tears from before run down your face, overwhelmed by what happened. The shock had finally worn off when you realised that just before you began arguing was the last time you would feel his arms wrapping around you, his soft, delicate touch which you now yearned for.

Your thoughts about him were interrupted when you felt someone press against your backside in the shower. You felt long, skinny fingers run up your arm, the touch all too familiar. It was Stiles.

He grabbed your sides and turned you around to face him. You couldn’t look at him as he wiped the tears off of your face with his thumb. He then began rubbing his thumb in circles on your cheek, you still couldn’t look at him, and continued to let tears splurge from your eyes.

“Come on Y/N, look at me,” He whispered, and you slowly looked up, seeing that his eyes were watery, tears falling down his face, “You know I didn’t mean to hurt you, but just look at me.” You grabbed his hand that was cupping your face and and held it, sparks flying all around your body when you connected your hand with his.

“I know Stiles, I know that’s not who you really are.” He replied by pressing his lips against yours, and you immediately responded. He moved his hands down to your ass, kneading it.

It felt so right, but you stopped and pulled away. You had to, or it would just make it harder to get over him. You moved closer to the glass wall and turned your back to him. He moved closer you, sending a shiver down your spine.

“Come on Y/N, please, just keep looking at me, please.” He turned you around to face him again, like he did when he first got in the shower.

He ran his long, slick fingers through your wet hair and just like that, you crashed your lips against his. You couldn’t help yourself, you were so in the moment you had forgotten about how much more complex things had suddenly become.

The kiss deepened as Stiles slipped his tongue between your slightly gaping lips, tongues roaming around everywhere in each others mouths. He bit down and nibbled on your bottom lip before moving down to your ear, sucking on your lobe, driving you absolutely crazy. He knew that was your sensitive spot. He then moved down to your neck and sucked just above your collarbone, which was your other sensitive spot, causing you to let out a soft moan. You entangled your hands in his hair and pulled on it, causing him to let out a low, throaty growl.

He moved down your body, cupping your breasts and taking one in his mouth, swirling his tongue around your nipple, making you roll your eyes to the back of your head. As Stiles continued to suck on your nipple, he slip his index and middle finger in between your folds, earning a loud groan from you.

You returned the favour by slowly starting to pump his length a few times, his head rolling back, nearly hitting it on the glass wall of the shower. He turned you around, pushing you up against the glass door, pulling your left leg up and lining his tip up with your entrance, slowly pushing himself all the way inside of you, the both moaning each other’s name. He pulled in and out slowly, taking his time, which was very different to what would usually happen the other times you had sex. There was always constant ass-slapping, hair pulling, dirty talking and just straight out fucking until you both nearly slipped out of consciousness from the mind- blowing orgasms you had, but this felt extremely different. It was so much more intimate, it felt more like he was making love to you, it was more than just a fuck to him.

He began to pick up his pace a little, but he still wasn’t moving as fast as he usually would. You put both hands up a against the glass for support. You begin to feel every single tiny muscle in your body tense up and the familiar pit in your stomach began to increase. You clenched around him a few times before both hitting your release at the same time, panting furiously as you both rode out your highs.

You and Stiles hopped out of the shower and got changed.

“Y/N?” He turned and looks at you, his eyes full of concern.

“What is it Stiles?” You looked at him and brought your hand up to his face. You sighed as you realised this was actually the last time were you would have to say goodbye to him. He stood there looking at you for minute. He put his hand on the one that was still cupping his face, he even rested his head on it, putting value in your touch.

“It should have always been you Y/N. Yeah I was in love with Lydia, but that is in the past. I am such a fucking idiot for not seeing that it was, still is, always should’ve been, you.” Tears threatened to spill down your face.

“Come on Stiles, you know that’s not true what you are saying. It’s the sex talking, not you.” He pressed his forehead against yours and you closed your eyes, the tears from earlier spilling out.

“It’s true Y/N. I’ll do anything to prove it to you.” He whimpered, plead laced though his voice. You wanted to believe him, so badly, but you just couldn’t. You knew what he really wanted, Lydia.

“Look Stiles, I want to believe you but I just can’t. As long as Lydia is in the picture, I don’t know if I can ever believe you.” You moved away from him, a continuous stream of tears running down his face. He tried to grab your arm, but you pushed him away. You grabbed a bag and stuffed it with clothes. You also grabbed your car keys and ran downstairs and outside into your car.

You banged your hands against the steering wheel and let out a scream, sobs continuously erupting from you. You eventually put the key in your ignition and began driving without a destination. Even though she was one of the last people you wanted to see, you always ended up at Lydia’s house when something was wrong.

You ran out of you car and banged on her door while yelling her name. She opened the door and her mouth dropped to the floor when she saw the emotional, terrible state you were in. She grabbed you and pulled you up to her room.

You sat on her bed, and she sat next you. She handed you a tissue and asked you,

“Okay Y/N, what the hell is going on?”

You began to explain what happened from the beginning. How they fought about you and how you told him you loved him but he was in love with her, and pretty much just using you for sex. Then you continued with all the details from the shower and the words you exchanged after. A long river of tears flowed from your eyes.

“Wow Y/N, I don’t mean for this to come off insensitive, but Stiles wasn’t lying with what he said.” Lydia smiled at you rubbing her hand along your arms. You froze.

“What? Lydia how is that possible?” A flutter of butterflies arises in your stomach.

“Yeah, he came here before with Scott. He said the same thing to us, practicing what he was going to say to you. Scott even heard his heartbeat when he said it out loud, and it didn’t skip a beat. He really does love you Y/N.”

You eyes widened after Lydia had finished talking and that’s when it hit you, He wasn’t lying, he was telling the truth, and you realised you had made a big mistake.

Music to write Torn by

Just after I’d delivered the second draft of Torn - in the end there were three drafts plus two short “production drafts”, where only tiny changes in dialogue were asked for right before they locked it as a shooting script - I found myself emailing with our brilliant exec producer Juliet about the various processes writers have to get a draft done.

I told her that for me, it was imagining how the actors would look and sound doing and saying certain things, and music. Always music. I know some writers who prefer silence and they BAFFLE AND CONFUSE me. I can’t do it. To me, silence is just a huge void of “Why can’t you type anything? / Why have you just typed that load of shit?” That still happens regardless, but with my headphones blasting something, it’s not as crushing. I told Juliet that I had a long playlist to write to, and certain songs for specific characters and moments, including the one I listened to over and over and over again whilst crying at 2am trying to write one scene. (No, you don’t get a prize for guessing which scene yes obviously it was that one.) I’d like to share that playlist with you now, and talk a little about how it connected the characters for me along the way.

(Skip down to the first video below & play - it really kicks in after about 2 mins)

When I got the WB job, I started on a playlist almost straight away - if I recall, the night that Ep 1 of S4 had gone out. Now I’d met the new characters, and seen the new style of shooting, I went to my iTunes (30,000+ tracks all stored on an offline PC running on XP and iTunes 9 - FUK U APPLE MUSIC YOU ARE NEVER REPLACING MY RARE TRACKS) and started throwing in music that said this one thing to me -

- running through the city at night, surrouded by lights.

Didn’t have to be running as a wolf, just needed that rush, that feeling. This netted me 5 or 6 tracks. I tried to stick to recent-ish things (circa April 2016), and mainly British artists. Anything with energy, screaming “city!”. Then I got corny and searched every Wolfblood related word I could think of - moon, howl, wolf, run, teeth, etc - to see if that threw up anything good. (More on that below.) This was a start, and was what I took up to the writers room in Salford. (On that journey, I also played the hell out of Try Everything from Zootropolis, which I had seen the Friday before. I especially played it on the tram out to MediaCity basically so I could arrive there for the first time like Judy Hopps.)

When I got back from the room, I worked on the playlist, adding a few more tracks (the full Aurora album was out by now as well and was the kind of thing I buy & love anyway) over the next couple of months while I was waiting for the real work to start. So, by the time August rolled around, and my story outline was locked… I. WAS. READY.


I try to avoid too much existing film music on a playlist because generally it’s already got a strong connection to something visual, but an exception was the opening track on my list, from the 1979 movie The Warriors. I know a lot of people who grew up with this film, but I only saw in a couple of years ago, when the full score was released on limited CD, and that’s where this track is from.

When I made this my opening track, it was merely to set mood. Creepy city night moving into propulsive action. But when my story changed in July and my opening became the scenes of Emilia, Madoc and Hafren stalking the city… OHMYGOD can you imagine more perfect music to write that too? And when they filmed those scenes I was there and could hear this music in my mind as I watched them walk. Magic.

(There actually seems to be another nod to The Warriors in Ep 5, when Birdie taunts “Wolfbloods, come out to play…” I must ask Ed if it’s intentional.)

Then I had the 30 second title version of Running With The Wolves on my iPod, so it was essentially like listening to my episode start after the teaser (”They think so.”) and then away we go. And yes, my nerdery knows no bounds.

I may skip around the actual order of the playlist now to talk about it, but the playlist linked at the bottom of the post is the order of the tracks on my iPod, so go hit that and enjoy.

First up after the titles, TURN THE MUSIC LOUDER (RUMBLE). This is everything I said above. This is running through a loud, lit city at night. This track gets me so fired up, and though I love love love Katy B & Tinie Tempah’s voices, the extended instrumental was the best one to get my blood going - especially when it was 1am and I’d just cued the playlist for the fourth time that night. When that beat kicks in at 46 seconds <3

Chaleur Humaine was such an important album to me last year. It was an album I got a few weeks before getting the job, which was also the week my grandma had a fall and went to hospital and… all that’s on my instagram, go look. Point being, I *needed* this album last year. So it was obvious some songs would make their way onto the list, and TILTED is just… It’s audio heaven to me. And while I was still finishing Torn, they’d started shooting Block 1, and a video went up of Jack dancing to this in the green room. So when you’re listening to the same thing the cast is, you kind of know you’ve chosen well. “But I’m actually good / Can’t help it if we’re tilted” could almost be a WB motto. We’re not human, but that doesn’t make us bad - just tilted. Later, iT was a song for Jana, “I’m a man now” becoming a stand-in for “I’m an Alpha now”.

Raleigh Ritchie, aka Jacob Anderson, aka Grey Worm on GoT. How talented can one guy be? (Plus he used to follow me on Twitter when he had a seperate Jacob account and we’d talk movies and trade puns a bit.) If you haven’t heard You’re A Man Now, Boy, do it right now (or when you’ve finished reading this). Anyway, these songs keyed me *straight* into TJ. “This is a blue town / And I feel a Gene Kelly moment comin’ on” is sooooooooo TJ. That boundless optimism, even when the world is falling down, that sense of play and fun and joy about being a Wolfblood - more than that, being Terence Cipriani, the one and only. But he still can’t *quite* get it together with Selina, even though he *totally* should, so BLOODSPORT ‘15 got me into their scenes** together, and then when Raleigh is joined on THE CHASED by his real life partner, the amazing Aisling Loftus, that basically became TJ and Selina singing together.

**There’s not a lot of TJ and Selina in Torn, which is a regret, because I love them so much. I did write them some other scenes (while they’re waiting for Hartington, and in the Den at the end) but they were cut for time before shooting. They were nice in isolation, with Selina supporting TJ (he’s still worried about the chip having been in him), then him supporting her after her parents are taken, but they didn’t really contribute to the story, and as you saw, we had quite a few events to blast through in 27 minutes as it was.

ROMAN HOLIDAY by Halsey is almost an odd one out - one of only 2 American tracks on the list, but something about it struck me as right for Torn. “We’ll be looking for sunrise”, and “for now let’s get away” maybe? But it always felt like it belonged there.

The Wolf Alice tracks were the one of two results from my Wolfblood-related word search. Full disclosure - I had the Wolf Alice album and EP but they hadn’t grown on me yet when I put these on the list. That all changed as these songs became essential to the writing. STORMS seemed to fit for both Jana and Matei, as both are being told things by people and wonder the refrain over and over again “Who are your friends, your friends, your friends…”. By the third draft this always put me in Matei’s head. FREAZY became a big Jana song, as she tries to navigate ties and deals throughout the show, but always open to hope “You can join us if you think you’re wild / You can join us if you’re a feral child / Our love is cool”. “You can hate us all you want but it don’t mean nothing at all”, Jana just keeps Jana’ing, like a fucking boss. YOUR LOVES WHORE was kind of an all purpose track to again serve that big city tone, but the more I listened to it, the more the insistent beat and heavy guitars felt like Selina. She could be talking to TJ (”I could be your perfect girl”?) or she could be taking on the world, because she is Selina Khan and she will kick you in the face whilst delivering a cutting comment, then one minute later come out with the sweetest gesture you’ve ever seen.

I used the other Aurora songs to mainly access Emilia and Hafren. CONQUEROR is basically Hafren’s entire mission statement. Despite being swayed in method by Madoc, Hafren is a pure WB, just like Emilia tells her. That was a really important scene to me - one that never changed from the first draft. I wanted to have a scene that showed just what a good Alpha Emilia has been when she’s not trying to start a fight. Hafren may deploy her aggression very easily, but she’s doing it for very clear - almost innocent, really - reasons. She really believes, and when she howls and raises her fist on the castle, it should be that pure moment of triumph (along with an “oooooohhhh shit” moment equivilant to shutting down the grid in Ghostbusters in terms of WB/human relations). Laura G was amazing, coming to those short scenes with brilliant notes on what they meant to Hafren that completely chimed with my thinking, and I really can’t explain to you just how amazing it was to be up there and see and hear her howl like that.

TILL THE END by Lucy Rose was almost a chillout section in the middle of writing for me. It feels very fresh and optimistic, and can work for any number of characters, including Katrina. And if you want to take the lyrics “‘Cause I want to believe / That I will keep fighting 'till the end / And I should have believed / That you were much more than just a friend” and apply it to what Katrina is feeling after she hears what she does in this episode, I’m not going to stop you…

Katrina is a segue into what I always thought of as the Kafe section of songs, from Florrie through Karen Harding & Little Mix to Hailee Steinfeld. All great modern pop songs that I love and could imagine playing on the radio in the Kafe, backgrounding the long talk the pack have at the beginning. If there’s going to be a day when BLACK MAGIC doesn’t get me feeling upbeat and happy, I don’t want to know about it. Hailee Steinfeld is also the only other invading American song on the list, but the Kafe is a place where that doesn’t feel strange.

After the Kafe section and before Bloodsport ;15, I had another song I can’t add on Spotify -

I have the proper studio version of this, on a sampler for Chlöe Howl’s album that never came out, which is a fucking tragedy because wow. I love her, I loved every song she put out, and this song was sooooo important to the script. It works for Jana and Emilia and Matei… it takes them a long time to trust someone. And now some of those trusts are breaking down, and some are building again. (Howl was the other result from my wolf word searching, but I can’t imagine I’d have gone into battle without at least one Chlöe song regardless.)

The only other song on the playlist I can’t include here is SLOWDIVE by Gemma Hayes, which is an exclusive song I got for putting in an amount of £ to back the album that became Bones + Longing. It’s a really beautiful song - it sounds like audio sunlight and green fields, and I used it mainly to write Emilia teaching Matei Eolas. Nothing on the album sounds exactly like it, but check out Bones + Longing and Gemma’s previous album Let It Break for a taste, and because they’re amazing.

For the longest time - before the July story change that landed the Kafe Escape scene into Torn, HEY NOW (BONOBO REMIX) was the only song on the list that represented Robyn. It’s *very* city at night music, and I kind of imagined it being something she’d listen to on headphones in her room, laying awake and thinking of a person sleeping not very far away, and what she was starting to mean to her. It’s one for looking at the rain streaming down your window and hugging your covers tighter.

Another song like that is HEARTLESS. Oh my musical god. Really. This is one of the songs that went on the list that first night. I can listen to it endlessly. It represents everyone, in every space we go to. Kafe, Den, streets, wild. I can even access *Madoc* with this song (And it was important to understand Madoc and his reasons, but I can’t go into that now for spoilers. But I get why he’s doing what he does.) This is simply a key song in the creation of Torn.

Believe it or not, in my first draft, we had a car chase! I know!! Basically Hartington was somewhere else than the gym, and they all piled into Jones’s vehicle to track him on the roads before cornering him. Then everything went down the way it does in the ep now, but still, car chase! Then of course production said we could spend the enormous amount of money the chase would cost on better things, so can they just ambush him as he leaves the gym? But for the time the chase existed, the theme from The Warriors returned in BASEBALL FURIES CHASE to go with it.

The third Aurora song, I WENT TOO FAR was always Emilia to me. Perhaps not in lyrics, but in voice and feel. Has she gone too far? Maybe in some part of her mind. But she can relate to the “Crying 'give me some love, give me some love and hold me” part. For all the strength she takes in her pack, she’s so happy to get Matei back. It was a joy to write those scenes reuniting the siblings, and I am so so so happy with the Eolas scene. That’s been the same - bar literally changing one single word - since my first draft, and Sydney blew me away with how beautifully she delivered it. I hadn’t seen anything of that scene until Monday, and … yeah, it’s so so beautiful. Sydney, Jack, the look, the music. <3

The last Christine and the Queens song, NIGHT 52, I used to track the deleted Den scene, which came inbetween Madoc slipping away from the party and his call. Not much happened - it was really Jana, Imara, TJ & Selina trying to figure out a way to do… anything… to help the situation they’re in now. So it was sombre and quiet and though I’m now glad it’s gone (aside from missing the TJ & Selina beat mentioned above), this beautiful track gave it life.

So, it’s late July, and my story now includes a certain scene, and yeeaaahhhhh, gonna need some specific music for this one. Thankfully a couple more albums had come out recently. First, Nothing’s Real, by Shura. How good? Is it even measurable how good it is? And it gave me two songs in particular that seemed really Robyn, who was now so much more important to the episode. MAKE IT UP, with all the talk of waking up in the night, was like a companion to the London Grammar song, but 2SHY? That might as well be the narrative in Robyn’s head in the days leading up to Torn. “It’s taken me so long / Maybe I’m just too shy to say it / We could be more than friends / Maybe I’m just too shy / Too shy.” Wanting desperately to say something but too professional and maybe even hesitant to say it, until one awful event leads them to a very specific set of circumstances. They weren’t outside at the time. They weren’t downstairs, where Robyn could have quickly bolted out of the back door. No. They were up in the flat. One terrible moment, as brutish men crash into their lives, leads them to the only exit - to that window - and that moment, that perhaps could not have happened at any other time. And suddenly something terrible becomes something beautiful…

And that’s where HEAR YOU CALLING by Birdy comes in. It just hit me in the heart. In the music, in the lyrics (“I could take my make-up and put a brave face on” could be a mantra for Katrina during recent events), in Birdy’s beautiful voice. *This* was the song for that moment, and I played it and played it and played it. I left this scene to almost the last in my first draft, as I basically knew what I wanted to do with it, it just needed to be done right. So it was about 2am on the second night of writing when I cued the track for the first time. (I wrote the first draft over two nights in a 24 hour cafe, which is a useful thing Plymouth has for writers. And hey, a few months later I was reading Lucy Sutcliffe’s amazing Girl <3 Girl AND GUESS WHICH CAFE SHE MENTIONS HANGING OUT IN!!111!!)

And then I wrote the scene, over and over. Every line of description, every line of dialogue read and re-read and changed until it flowed with the music, and we reach that moment where Robyn stops herself from leaving, and the chorus kicks in on her declaration to Katrina…

And because Katrina is just a glorious wonderful beating heart of a human being she responds to Robyn with love and *that* **Alpha** ***headtouch*** and that human red red kiss that says come back to me and then Robyn’s gone until they meet again…

Every night when the sun goes down
And I’m left in this lonely town
I hear you calling me, hear you calling me, yeah
Every time that I say goodbye
Every night when I close my eyes
I hear you calling me, hear you calling me

Take me home, take me home, don’t know this place
Are you there wondering if I’m lying awake
Thinking of you?
Take me home, take me home, don’t know this place
Are you there wondering if I’m lying awake
Thinking of you?
Oh, my beautiful summer
How the winter makes me wonder
Where you’ve gone

And then a few weeks later they started using Hear You Calling for the opening titles of Our Girl, but they cut if off before the best bit anyway, so I’m planting the flag in it for us.

And finally, we’re back to the city, literally, with IN THE CITY, the end credits song from The Warriors, that just feels like the end of a very long day - but one where you have hope for the future, which is exactly what our pack need at the end of Torn, and what I needed because hearing this song meant I’d been writing for a couple of hours, and probably had loads left to do, and was about to start the music all over again…

Anyway, here’s the music that helped me with Torn - I hope you enjoy at least some of it!

(https://open.spotify.com/user/siunderwood/playlist/3Ux8JQLhDbbRVbGMAlgtxh)