it was inconsistent in some places but overall it was pretty good

Savior Ink

Every artist has their signature and hers, it’s cover-ups. Sometimes it’s to mask a now unwanted tat but her favorite is to cover a scar, or as she likes to explain to her clients, honor it. She gets a rush at taking something unwanted and turning into something to cherish.“ 

(Modern AU / Rated T / 3200 words / AO3


The heels of her boots are loud against the poured concrete floor of the hallway, the last quiet spot before reaching the constant swarm beyond the double swinging doors. Ten years in and she still quickens her pace to enter the one place she’s ever felt it in her heart to call home. The buzzing hits her like a lover’s embrace, melting the tension from her shoulders brought on by a restless night’s sleep.

Ruby’s client’s tongue is trapped between her red tipped fingers, slightly swollen from the shiny new  barbell piercing she’s securing with a sultry wink. Emma can practically feel the pheromones pulsing around the pair as the beautiful asian owner of said tongue blushes furiously as Ruby’s thumb brushes against her bottom lip. It doesn’t take a genius to know that Ruby will be offering to show this new client how to really make use of that piercing, with hands and tongue on demonstration devoid of any clothes.

Emma catches Belle’s eye from behind the counter and they share a knowing smile, both of them used to Ruby’s sexual adventures thanks to her love for giving the entire shop a very detailed play by play.

“Hey Ems, there’s coffee on your station.”

Ah, salvation. Belle is seriously the best, keeping this pack of lady tattoo artists organized and as drama free as possible, considering they’ve all gotten on the same damn cycle.

“What would I do without you?”

Belle just waves her off and goes back to adding to the schedule of appointments on the computer. There’s already three people waiting on the sunken leather couch in the front corner and Emma starts the process of getting her station set up for the day. Other than the appointment with Anton later on tonight to finally finish the intricate beanstalk tattoo on his back, she’s free for the rest of the day for walk-ins.

“I call dibs on stubbled and broody in the armchair, darling. He’s just this side of smarmy and I need the eye candy to help me wake up.”

“Whatever.”

Emma doesn’t even look up from her prep as Crue slinks by on wispy limbs towards her prey. Here’s hoping the guy wants a dog tattoo, cause that’s just about the only thing that woman is good at.

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Why Iris matters to me

There’s a reason Iris and Westallen are so important to me. As a Black girl, I will naturally gravitate to the person who represents me on-screen. I like seeing Black women get more visibility, more room to play different kinds of roles, and in fact, shine in central roles instead of being in the periphery. I am nearly 30 years old and it’s only in the last decade that TV seems to have woken up and realized that Black women can be leads, can be love interests who are cared for and adored, can be both action heroes and soft and feminine, can be independent and vulnerable at the same time.

Before Iris, there were two Black female leads I absolutely loved but who didn’t always get the love and respect they deserved from fans or even the show. Joss Carter (Taraji P. Henson), and Lacey Porter (Kylie Bunbury).

Detective Joss Carter, Person of Interest (CBS)

To me, it seemed pretty obvious that Carter, an attractive older woman would be a natural love interest for the lead character, John Reese. They had great chemistry together, and their interactions would range from the downright hilarious to the deep, solemn and intimate – and this was all as friends. On any other show featuring an exasperated detective working with an unorthodox man in a suit, these two would have been clear endgame (Mentalist, Castle, Lucifer), but POI producers claimed that romance didn’t really fit this kind of show. I took that at face value, even as lost romances drove both the male leads in the show. A ship featuring the two men sprang up, and I saw that phenomenon in action (slash shipping as a way of circumventing the black female lead). But for the most part, the two shipping fandoms actually coexisted peacefully.

So the show kept teasing, kept having them flirt, kept having this thing dance right to the edge of romance, without ever going there. Jim Caviezel, though, definitely played his character Reese, as if he was in love with Carter. To the point that he initiated an unscripted kiss in one of their final scenes together. Some parts of the TV audience exploded with indignance: where the heck did that kiss come from??, they bellowed. They had never seen anything remotely romantic between the two characters ever. Either they had been blind, or they had simply never wanted to see it. This, like Sleepy Hollow, also suffered from the “Can’t men and women just be friends? They are my brotp. So tired of romance in every show.” complaints.

Only after Carter died did they explicitly refer to her as someone John Reese was in love with. Another lost love to add to his angst. If only he had not been so hesitant (he, or you POI writers?). And only after Carter died did the show seemingly change its mind about romance, having a full-blown romance between two of the main female leads. But hey, that’s none of my business.

Let me say though, that Carter was very well written during her tenure on the show. I grew to like her more and more over the seasons. I started off pretty ambivalent, but Taraji won me over. Even her relationship with Reese, defined only as “whatever this is” was a joy to watch. She was an important member of the team, with relationships with all the other team members, plus her own nemesis later (not a whole lot of her home life but still). But even though POI was brave and innovative in other ways, it always seemed a bit too scared to go there with Carter and Reese. Her death was an ignominious end to a fantastic character, was done just for shock value, and turned a good number of fans off the show for good. Also, the show had always been a hybrid sci-fi/police procedural but losing Carter upset that balance, and the sci-fi aspects became more prevalent, alienating other viewers. The show’s ratings never recovered.

Lacey Porter, Twisted (ABC Family)

Lacey Porter was a lot like Veronica Lodge in Riverdale: a spoiled princess with a huge heart and a complicated home life. She was a third of Twisted’s main trio of erstwhile friends, which also included reformed juvenile killer, Danny Desai (Avan Jogia), and earnest loner, Jo (Maddie Hassen). The show was supposed to join Pretty Little Liars as an ABC family guilty pleasure. But inconsistent storytelling (they got a new writing team between the first and second halves of season one, leading to a significant drop in quality) was it’s main downfall.

The first half of the season did get a couple of things right. The suspense was there - did Danny really murder his Aunt as a child, or was he covering up for someone? And what about the fact that a girl died just as he got out of juvie and slinked back in town? It was great. The other stroke of genius? Danny and Lacey. Danny had Barry Allen levels of thirst when he saw Lacey again for the first time in 5 years. Like he drank her in every single time he saw her (btw, in real life this can be creepy as heck, but on TV, well).
Anyway, the two actors had amazing chemistry, and fell in love head first, with Lacey moving from suspicion and wariness to total conviction that Danny was innocent.

In the second half of the season, the new writers broke Danny and Lacey up, and #PoorJo’s unrequited crush on Danny was finally… requited. “It’s always been you.” He says to her, which made little to no sense. Danny and Lacey had heat. Danny and Jo reminded me of custard.

The show threw away one of its strongest assets. An overall mess of a second half spelled doom for the show and it was gone with a whimper. But for a while, Twisted had given us an interracial relationship featuring two POC, and given it time and attention. Kylie made Lacey as lovable as Camila makes Veronica, but unlike Veronica, we didn’t get to see her home life very often either. We had an entire episode about her family that took place at her younger sister’s birthday party. And the show didn’t even bother to cast a girl to play the sister. Lol. I mean, come on. Try. In contrast, we saw Danny and Jo’s home lives in every episode.

Iris West, The Flash (CW)

Now back to Iris. The difference between these shows and the Flash, is that the latter has been clear from Day One, that Iris is the love of Barry’s life. Unlike POI, they actually took the plunge, and unlike Twisted, they have stayed consistent throughout about their endgame. You can’t know what it means to see this woman be earnestly and wholeheartedly loved like this, by a superhero. She’s the Lois to his Superman, and it’s not a role I had ever ever imagined I would see a Black woman in.

It’s not surprising that there are haters. There was a predictable whitelash. Iris, like many Black and female characters, was under increased scrutiny at every turn, and many times criticism turned into vitriol. And although crackshipping is all over the show (Cisco x Peekaboo ♡), only SB was insidious enough to replace Iris in her own narrative with the closest white girl.The ship was crowned before anyone had seen the GG and DP act opposite each other, on the show or even in the first trailer. But it was formed after Candice Patton was cast as Iris. It pained me to think that there were people who were so repulsed by this beautiful Black woman that they would make up a ship with literally nothing to go on and then make so much noise about it, that people began to think it was real. I sometimes see posts saying that they ship SB out of love for them, and not hate for Iris. Some joined the Flash fandom years after the premiere and can claim ignorance. But, regardless of whenever they joined, the beginnings of the ship were rooted in anti-black racism, and I don’t think 3 years has been enough to actually distance it from that. I’m a fan of live and let live because there will always be a diversity of opinions, but we can’t be disingenuous while we are at it.

Now, the writing on this show is nowhere near POI quality, and I have said a lot in other posts. The only thing I will point our here is that in Season 1, because Iris didn’t know The Flash’s identity, the writers had to construct an entire world just for her (CCPN). That season, we saw journalism progress from a class project, into a hobby, into a genuine interest and then flower into a passion. Without CCPN, Iris would barely have been in the show since it mostly took place in STAR Labs, and the Police station.

Since then, it seems that because Iris is in the know, the writers aren’t working as hard to build her own world around her, which is sad. I’m glad she is more visible, and I am glad that she and Barry have the romance to end all romances (he proposed twice!!!), but I hope that the writers will remember next season that Iris’ career matters too. It’s part of that representation that we value so much. Who are the major black journalists on scripted TV? I can’t think of any off the top of my head. There is still a lot of story to tell with respect to Iris’ professional and even social lives.

So, yes, I have experienced some fandom foolishness around Black women. I have seen writers give their Black female characters half-baked story lines compared to some of their white counterparts. I have seen shows underestimate the draw of these Black women to their own detriment (looking at you, POI and Sleepy Hollow). Iris West, for all the shortcomings in her writing, sits in that TV Black Girl Hall of Fame, for being a demonstration that black girls can and should be adored, loved, uplifted and protected.

anonymous asked:

I know we're all are on tony defend squad but wdy think about Steve? I know in the mcu he's a shit but in other universes? And about Chris Evans? You don't have to answer ofc but I just wanted ur insight on this, I like the stuff u post :)

WHAT DO I THINK ABOUT STEVE LMAO AIN’T THAT THE QUESTION ANON.

Okay.

so.

Okay.


From a lot of what I post, you would probably think I dislike Steve. Honestly, right now I’m going through EXTREME STARKQUILL/GUARDIANS FUCKING OFF INTO SPACE WITH TONY/ BITTER TONY moods, and so…

There’s a lot of shade being thrown in Steve’s direction.

But listen. Okay. I LOVE STEVE. I DO. I mean MCU Steve is, in my opinion, a very wobbly character, who could have been done so much more in-depth and meaningfully than what we got.

 Like, for starters, his relationship with Tony is just. What. Where are the sly sex jokes and secret passwords @? All we got was Steve being a bit of a prick to him as soon as he laid eyes on the guy, and then a continuation of that, manifesting itself through judgment and lack of trust. which is completely OOC for the Steve we know and love.

Secondly, the whole Civil War argument was just turned into Saving Bucky Barnes, The Saga- which is totally not what happened in the comics at all, and made everything he did and said so shallow, because we knew he was just fighting for his bestie. 

But yeah I mean aside from occasional moments (CATWS I thought did a pretty good job overall with him), I… I gotta say MCU Steve Is Not For Me. 

But?? I HONESTLY LOVE HIM. 

BURIED SOMEWHERE. UNDERNEATH THE BITTERNESS AND ANGER THAT RESIDES FROM CIVIL WAR, HE IS SUCH A GOOD BOY. i think it’s just… it’s very difficult to really place a specific set of characteristics for him, purely because of that fact that every writer does him differently. Some (hey Nick) write him like utter shit and make me want to burn out my retinas- some write him in what I consider to be perfectly in character (hey AA writers). 

I mean AA Steve is my dad. End of. He’s number one. You don’t get better than AA Steve. 

(Plus he and Tony are just. married. so that sweetens the deal a lot)

But like I said, it’s all about personal preference. Some are gonna be reading this like ???? Steve was perfectly in character in CW wdym???? and some are gonna be relating a lot. But for me, the Steve I know and love is the guy who believes in his team- the guy who is sly and dry-witted and unconditionally selfless. 


And who fuckin treats Tony like he deserves. But whatever.


so like i said- AA Steve is the winner for me, purely because he’s very consistent and pretty much ticks off everything I just listed a few seconds ago. Comic Steve- when not a nazi- is, as far as i gathered, a pretty cool dude? Although I don’t read comics with him, he seems to have his head screwed on straight. MCU Steve is Very Much Average And Inconsistent, plus he highkey mistreated Tony, which is a Large Offence for me, not to mention OOC.

BUT WHEN I SAY STEVE CAN CHOKE. OR THE AVENGERS. I DON’T MEAN IT. I’M ANGRY AND I HATE THEM BUT I LOV THEM. THEY DESERVED BETTER CHARACTERISATION THAN WHAT THEY GOT AND I WILL BE. ETERNALLY BITTER. I WANTED A TEAM FAMILY. I WANTED A GROUP THAT CARED FOR ONE ANOTHER. I WANTED A STEVE WHO WASN’T JUST LOWKEY AN ASSHOLE. I WANTED THE FUCKING FRIENDSHIP BETWEEN TONY AND STEVE TO BE AS MEANINGFUL AND DEEP AS IT HAD BEEN IN THE COMICS. I’M JUST SORRY ABOUT WHAT THEY DID TO YOU BABES. I’M SORRY. YOU WERE ROBBED

may 10th, 2017 // #vivs1.5k

yikesss the banner lmao thank you all so much for getting me to 1.5k followers!! i kinda wanted to do something for 1.25k but i never got around to doing it so here’s a big celebration!!

keep in mind ive been in a v bad place mentally and are in the middle of exams and still have gymnastics so this will probably happen slowly!

rules:

  • mbf ya girl
  • reblog this post
  • send an ask with what you want + (optional, but nice!) your favorite blog(s) for me to tag and add a nice note to!!
  • you can pick as many as you want! but those who choose more may have to wait a while. 
  •  ✨ + your name // v short name aesthetic
  •  🌟 // detailed blog rate
  •  🍋 // a meme i associate with your blog
  •  🌸 // blog compliment  
  •  🌊 // blog advice/ comment
  •  🌼  // join my fandom fam!!

format below!

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Proposed: Thedas is not a ‘medieval’ setting

I don’t know about you, but when I was first considering the overall state of Thedas, mostly for worldbuilding purposes, I was semi-consciously thinking of it as a fairly typical pseudo-medieval-Europe.  And that’s natural enough, because in Origins, Ferelden really did look like that.  Thatching, half-timbering, nobles in fortified castles, a fairly monolithic church around which much of society was built.

The further you go into the franchise, though, the more problems you encounter with this.  Kirkwall as a city doesn’t give off a particularly medieval vibe, nor does its government.  You have sailing ships that are more advanced than Europe saw in the middle ages, you have the Qunari with their mind-altering drugs and poison gases and explosives, you have a popular novelist.  A popular novelist requires printing presses, paper manufacture, relatively widespread literacy, and fairly complex shipping systems to exist.  The first European novels were published after the medieval period.  Come Inquisition, we have the almost Baroque Orlesians, broadsheet newspapers, and a lot of things most people probably didn’t notice, like cast iron cookstoves and Bianca Davri’s steam-powered thresher.

Here’s the thing.  Okay here’s a lot of things.  I once had pages of notes trying to work this out, and I’ve tried a dozen times to make a post about it, but it’s too much.  I give up being organized.  So here’s some of the things:

  • Ferelden is a poor backwater.  I know, I’m a rabid Fereldan too, but to the rest of Thedas, it is canonically the arse end of nowhere.  It is no more a good example of the overall technological state of Thedas than the hills of my Appalachian home (where people lived without power or indoor plumbing well into the 20th century) in the 19th century were a good indication of the state of things in 19th century Boston, even though they were only a few days’ ride apart.
  • Thedas’ history and development is in no way like the real world.  It’s a place where the world faces a potentially fatal apocalypse ever few hundred years.  Again, the first game is pretty misleading in this regard, because we neatly wrapped up that Blight in, supposedly, a year, without it ever escaping the borders of one country.  The First Blight lasted over a hundred years and ranged across all of Thedas.  Far and away the shortest Blight besides the fifth still lasted 12 years and destroyed entire kingdoms.  That’s five huge periods of world war and cultural destruction.
  • Magic.  I mean, obviously.  Now, the tangible existence of magic and demons in the Dragon Age arguably has a lot to do with the strength of the Chantry, which has set itself up as a protector from these evils, thus providing an excellent excuse to accumulate military power and suppress dissent.  It doesn’t really effect everyday life much for anyone but mages in the Dragon Age–most people have never seen a mage, and only the wealthy can afford enchanted items.  But of the five empires Thedas has seen, only two (dwarves and Qunari) put any emphasis on technology, and the earliest two (Elvhenan and Tevinter) relied very heavily on magic, and thus presumably had very little incentive to develop technology.
  • The Qunari deliberately suppress at least some technological innovations in the south.  Remember your friendly neighborhood dwarf who liked to blow shit up from Awakening?  His name is Dworkin Glavonak.  You meet his cousin Temmerin in DA2 during the Finding Nathaniel questline, and he tells you that Dworkin’s been driven into hiding by the Qunari. (video)  Certainly sheds new light on why no one outside of dwarves seems to have explosives or gunpowder in the south.  Orzammar dwarves may be the exception here because a) they use lyrium in their explosives, thus making them self-limiting due to the restricted access to lyrium, and b) since Orzammar is a closed society and you cannot come in from the outside, the Qun could not easily place spies in Orzammar society anyway.

So let’s look again, not starting from Origins but look back from Inquisition.  And this time when we look, we find a world that

  • has steam technology, albeit very new–steam-powered threshers were invented around the 1850′s
  • has cast iron stoves such as were not invented in our world until the 1850′s
  • has a canonical reason for lacking gunpowder–which, in turn, completely changes the nature of warfare (or more accurately, doesn’t change it, since it’s guns and cannons that put an end to armor and swords and siege weapons)
  • clearly has printing presses, even if we don’t see them, because there are popular, cheaply printed novels and broadsheet publications and banned book lists

And it’s not quite all from later games, either.  Branka was made a paragon for the invention of ‘smokeless coal’–which isn’t actually a thing in itself but rather a process which removes the impurities from the coal so that it then burns cleaner.  Which, as far as I can ascertain, is a process that was developed during, you guessed it, the 1800′s.

Now, I’m not trying to excuse all the inconsistencies in technology or claim that the devs did a good job of following through on all the implications of things they stuck into Thedas.  Frankly, I think it’s a weak point in their worldbuilding.  BUT it’s really going to keep not making any sense if you try to insist that the setting is more-or-less-medieval-Europe.  In fact, I think it’s futile to try to match Thedas up to any period of real-world development, partly because Thedas’ history is just too wildly different, and partly because a lot of the worldbuilding is done by sticking a bunch of cultures into a blender and picking out what they like.  But if you start thinking about it as a place where technology has continued to develop in places to something roughly congruent to the western world in the 1850′s, but with none of the socioeconomic conditions that created the Industrial Revolution, you might be a bit closer.

Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days

- Ok, since this a movie of sorts, I’m just putting this all in one post so it’s going to be pretty damn big.

- The mass has ended, Go in peace.

- I’m sorry but just because he’s effectively 255 days old doesn’t mean he’s an absolute moron, I think he can gather why the sunset is red.

- Ok, so maybe Nobodies can’t do math, I believe a group called Organization XIII needs to have 13 members, at least to stick with a theme, having a 14th just ruins the aesthetic.

- Oh yeah, Gothic Bob Ross is creepy, I can just imagine him undressing Roxas with that look.

- Screw the Organization, do it for the horde.

- Because of his voice, I now imagine Roxas as a Canadian.

- Maybe it’s because he’s the Ultimate Lucky Nobody.

- Damn it Roxas, must you question everything, just follow along, do what you’re told and be a good little cog in the machine.

- So all this so far takes place during the final parts of the first game?

- Oh great, it’s evil Kairi.

- Some of this dialogue is a little painful to listen to.

- It’s the Great Kingdom Hearts, Roxas Brown.

- There seem to be a few inconsistancies going on, I mean in one scene, Xion goes from being hooded to being unhooded in the span of seconds and, I don’t know, it just doesn’t look like a natural edit.

- Are we sure Gothic Bob Ross isn’t some kind of cult leader?

- Roxas: Master of comebacks (I guess this is the one thing he shares with Sora, he’s crap with comebacks).

- Roxas, surprising people like that is a very good way to get punched in the face.

- Yeah, he’s a complete dork.

- Yeah, that’s a bullshit philosophy.

- I find the most interesting scenes are with Firelord Chandler and Bishie Goth.

- I’m starting to wonder if maybe there was a thing between those two and there was a bad break up or something.

- Oh yeah, there was definitely something going on between Firelord Chandler and Bishie Goth.

- Can’t be a Kingdom Hearts game without some mind fuck.

- So they’ve just been involved in a Uriah Gambit andyet they’re still able to go to Twilight Town and act like nothing happened.

- Something nifty? What is Firelord Chandler from the 50s?

- Wait, who was that, he looked like Roxas but different, different clothes and considering how Xion works, it’s someone who’s connected to Gothic Dick Roman (Yeah, I’m changing that name because of his VA). That’s not the same person from that Birth By Sleep ending is it?

- And there’s your oscar-winning performance.

- Well that’s just plain fucking creepy.

- Did they just cut out an entire battle

- Young girl has existential crisis, convinces friend to help with assisted suicide.

- Well overall, that was a depressing story.

Let’s be honest about Season 13...

This has been one of the worst THE WORST season of Grey’s Anatomy. This has been why I have barely been posting in this blog about it at all. I’ve been forgetting to watch this entire season, which I have never done with Grey’s Anatomy. I’m always eager to watch a new episode every Thursday, but Season 13 has dropped in quality so much that I’ve had to force myself to watch it. And it was a chore.

I’m sorry, Shonda. I love you and I will always love Grey’s Anatomy and will watch, but this season has been so disjointed and messy and a general waste of 24 episodes. I genuinely only enjoyed 5 episodes out of the 24 this season which is…bad. The season finale was great (but then again this show is always great with season finales).

I just wanted more focus and tension that didn’t feel artificial, because this season felt like a strange rip-off of Grey’s Anatomy not the actual show. There seems to be a fatigue going on in the writers’ room or something, because there was a lot of storyline repetition and barely felt drama. (I saw that there were a lot of new writers for the show. Is that the reason for the drop in quality?)

There could have been so much more with the entire Alex/Jo situation but that storyline alone was poorly handled and Jo was barely in this season. I don’t remember much of that storyline at all other than the fact that I found it grating. Justin Chambers deserves better storylines honestly. Do something with his family. That would be so much more interesting than what he was given this season.

The Owen/Amelia stuff was forced as well and did not go anywhere really until Meghan showed up. And it really could have gone in some interesting places just regarding Amelia’s trauma of pregnancy.

The Meredith and Riggs stuff got better as the season went along, and it felt more heartfelt and emotionally provoking. The parallels and complexities that were slowly added to their budding relationship were pretty well done for the most part and I wish the season gave them more time than some of the other crap this season was filled with.

However, the whole thing with Maggie was trash–it totally ruined her character for me. She became so grating too–and childish for no real reason. (I will say, the episode Ellen Pompeo directed about Maggie processing her mother’s death was great).This is an adult show, is it not? I couldn’t tell this season. It felt like watching bad episodes of Degrassi too often. Sometimes I felt embarrassed to watch, which I’ve never felt with Grey’s Anatomy before. And now it seems like the show is trying to pair Jackson with Maggie together maybe…they don’t really have any chemistry as far as I can see, but…sure, I guess. (Y’all still know I secretly want Alex and Maggie to happen!)

The Minnick stuff should have been more interesting than it was and there is no excuse because this show did a whole season (Season 9, one of my favorites) in which there was an uprising within the hospital regarding management and doctors taking sides. They could have made this whole situation more compelling. And the Minnick and Arizona relationship–trash. I feel nothing for their relationship and Arizona seemed to be out of character this entire season. (Callie needs to come back). Bailey was good this season, although I did not like the whole artificial drama between her and Webber–it did not feel earned. Webber deserves better storylines than this petty stuff.

The Jackson and April stuff was mildly interesting. But thee Japril episode from Season 12 was so much better. I wish they allowed more story for Stephanie up to the finale and her departure, but they gave her a good exit that did not involve death. Also, the medical cases were just not very memorable at all either.  

Overall, this season suffered from inconsistency in plot and character development. I don’t see myself rewatching this season except for those five episodes I liked (Episodes 8, 10, 18, 23, and 24).

All I know is that Season 14 has to be the great comeback, because I was expecting so much more after the brilliance that was Season 12.

How I Met Your Mother: Ted Mosby [INFJ]

UNOFFICIAL TYPING by aanau 

Introverted Intuition (Ni): Ted tells his entire story of how he met his wife to his kids…from the VERY beginning. The reason for this is because he sees his whole life not as a bunch of little stories, but a whole interconnected web forming one big story. Everything he tells has some kind of symbolic significance, and he often stops to analyze why something might’ve happened to him and how it contributed to the big picture. He’ll often stop to analyze what might’ve happened if he had, say, gone right instead of left. He tells his story objectively, and from different perspectives, rather than reliving it and its emotions (which is what Si does), and he always has to draw meaning from those experiences (which is what Ni does when recalling and analyzing the past). Ted has also said multiple times that he overthinks and lives too much in the future. He once said that he looks forward to and thinks about old age a lot, when he will have already achieved his personal life vision. He has trouble seeing that part of life is the journey you are on as you reach that future you envision for yourself. Speaking of that future, Ted has a pretty solid vision of his future, and is transfixed on it. (He is very tunnel-visioned. He’s quick to shut down other opportunities that don’t fall into that line of sight.) He must find “the one,” have two kids, live in New York, keep his current friends, and have designed a building and be a successful architect. His resistance to change that sometimes erupts is not because he’s afraid, but because he feels he has already reached the best vision for himself. He won’t move apartments because the apartment he has is already what he wants, etc. It’s also good to note Ted’s obsession with “the universe.” He sees everything as part of a grand scheme, but he still believes he controls his own destiny. Overall, he finds comfort in the future because it’s something that is certain for him. No matter how bad things get, he’s able to be comforted by what will be.

Extroverted Feeling (Fe): Ted can appeal to others, and he expresses his emotions freely (anyone who has seen the show knows Ted is a very sensitive and romantic guy). Since a young age he had been very emotional and idealistic. Overall Ted is a very compassionate and selfless person, though when his personal vision is being disrupted, he places the blame primarily on other people and the universe before he uses his Ti-reasoning. Once he thinks things over, he’s often quick to admit he was wrong and makes up for his selfishness.

Introverted Thinking (Ti): As stated above, after the initial Fe-blaming, his Ti kicks in and he can reevaluate something objectively. Ted is an intelligent and thoughtful guy, and constantly falls back on his tertiary Ti. It rarely causes problems as it most often keeps him in check. It keeps him well-grounded despite his feeling nature.

Extroverted Sensing (Se): On the bright side of Ted’s inferior Se is his creativity and appreciation for the finer things in life. He feels right at home with other “pretentious” people who can discuss art and wine for hours. He expresses his creativity through his architecture designs. On the downside, when Ted’s life isn’t going his way, he falls into the grip and will act impulsively. He quits his job, buys a car, buys a house, etc., all as random, self-indulgent and self-destructive behaviors in response to a loss of Ni-vision. When the future becomes bleak, he becomes paranoid about his own abilities and his environment. For example, he becomes too afraid to make progress with his architecture firm because he’s worried he won’t be able to handle all the details (his “what if I forget the books?” analogy is an inf-Se fear…lack of faith in yourself to handle the physical world and its details). Additionally, Ted says he was never good at sports. In the show, Ted deals with a lot of negative events, and his reaction often goes: Blaming the outer world before reevaluating himself and his emotions internally and seeing where he went wrong (Fe/Ti) and/or being impulsive and self-destructive due to stress before quickly moving on, because in his head it is already fifty years into the future when all of this will not matter anymore (Ni/Se).

Note: I think people who type him as ISFJ look too much at one function at a time and at individual behaviors, which can be inconsistent to personality since behavior is situational (there are times where certain things he does seem like Si). When you look at Ted as a whole, and how his functions work together, you can see he’s a Ni/Se user. He also does not fear the future and see it as uncertain, which is an inferior Ne trait. Any worries he has are usually based on distrust in his environment or of his own physicality, which is inferior Se. 

millukilluallukalluto submitted: could you critique this? i made this recently, and i wanted to know if there’s anything i could do to improve in the future! thank you!


Hey! This looks overall pretty good!

The shading is a bit inconsistent between the hair and everything else! Maybe try placing the hair highlights in a more tridimensional manner, and you should be good!

Also, while the drawing itself looks really nice, there could be some minor fixes to her posture that could make it look even better. The point where her sleeves join is particularly unaligned compared to the rest of her body. Fixing that could really make the whole figure look much more tridimensional!
We’re attaching an edit by Mod Mango to show you what we mean.

Keep drawing!

anonymous asked:

What do you think of the New52? I haven't read much of it, but i hear so many who hate on it. What do you think?

I have been making an effort to be positive in my blog. To only focus on things I like and celebrating these things, rather than tearing down things I dislike. I hope to continue this trend. Which is why I was going to ignore this question. But I have a few thoughts on the New52 that I would like to share. I will try to keep this as balanced and objective as possible.

I think overall the New52 is pretty bad, but came from a good place and has a few successes. Beyond any knee-jerk, nostalgia goggled, nerd rage over changes I consider “ruinous,” it isn’t very good. But first:

The Defense. Based on where the DCUniverse and comics in general were prior to the launch of the New52, I have said before and repeat again: A reboot was in order. In some form, the DCU needed some bandaids. Superman just finished the really long, very intricate New Krypton crossover and was currently in JMS’s incredibly boring “humanizing” Grounded storyline that was so bad not even he stuck around to finish it. Wonder Woman had her entire history radically changed by JMS in his Odyssey story nonsense. The egregiously terrible JL: Cry For Justice and Rise of Arsenal happened. The Justice League of America was full of C-List characters. Etc. And from what I understand, sales across the board were pretty low.

So the idea of kind of getting back to basics in a few series, and wiping away some awful stories, and kind of getting the entire universe on the same page seems like a good idea. And reboots, if nothing else, grab attention and make sales.

And in that regard, the New52 was certainly successful. At first. I don’t remember where I read it, and I don’t care to look up any actual numbers now, but the New52 skyrocketed sales for not only DC, but across the board for all comics.

All of the titles were starting fresh at #1, giving new and old readers a great jumping on point. We had the Justice League looking like the iconic Justice League again. And things seemed exciting. 

The problem was their plan wasn’t sustainable.

The Problems. Even from the get-go, the New52 relaunch was half-hazard and inconsistent. Batman and Green Lantern went relatively untouched, with their stories remaining basically in tact. Meanwhile, some characters were getting a new coat of paint and some were being thrown out and rewritten from the bottom up. And that is a really rough way to start your reboot that tried to build a consistency across their product line.

Beyond inconsistency in portrayals and how hard the reboots were, there was the drastic inconsistencies in quality. Some titles were great from the get go, with solid creative teams and solid, clear directions. Others were terrible. As we stand now, 47 of the 52 titles launched in 2011 have been cancelled. This shows not only a failure in creating a product that anyone wants to buy, but also shows the company’s lack of faith in their properties. But that’s something I’ll get to later.

Though things seem to have finally cooled off after a year or so of turmoil, the creative teams at DC were pretty visibly unhappy. We heard a lot of horror stories of creators walking off titles and being very vocal about the status of the heavy hand of editorial at DC. While some creators seemed to be getting free reign to tell the stories they wanted to tell (which shone through in the quality of their work), others were pigeon-held into telling stories that editorial wanted them to tell.

Which leads to another problem, the PR. I don’t know who is running the PR department at DC Comics, but they have done a terrible job. Between the Sex-Doll-Starfire outrage, Harley Quinn sexy-suicide scandal, the ban on Batwoman’s marriage and all marriage of any superhero, the death of Damian Wayne (more on that in a sec), a lot of the creator-editorial issues, and plenty of others, DC has gained a really abysmal reputation. 

Why. What is the source of all these problems? If you ask me (and you have), the problem that DC has, and what I see as their biggest problem is that they're a corporation first and make comics second. And yes, I realize that DC is a business and their job is to sell comics and to make money. I recognize that, and to a degree, I can appreciate it. But when your product is a comic book, a work of art, a story, and something that comes from a creative place, you can’t let the art suffer for the sake of the sale. And that’s what DC does. Constantly.

It’s pretty obvious to me, as someone who watches the industry pretty closely, that DC doesn't care about making good comics. DC cares about selling comics. And the victims are not only us the fans, who don’t get quality work, but will eventually be DC, when their sales continue to drop.

The example of this mentality is pretty obviously illustrated by a lot of things. Most notably, the Death of Damian Wayne. A few days prior to the release of the issue of Damian’s death, DC went out of their way to exploit the hell out of the death of Robin. They deliberately spoiled the ending to one of their stories in advance, undermining the emotional and storytelling impact of Damian’s death as a character. And this says it all. They don't care if you like or even read the story. They only care if you buy it.

Character deaths sell. This is a reality. This is why it happens all the time in public ways. DC went to extreme lengths to get people’s attention (which I can understand) on this title. But instead of selling the book as a story, they're selling it at pure shock value. Pandering to the casual fan to get them to pick up that issue. And even then, a casual fan may not understand that characters and stories return and continue after a character death. Those sales are probably a one time thing. 

But the fault cannot be entirely laid on DC’s shoulders. A huge problem with their business model is they’re relying only on the collector and ignoring the reader. Far be it from me to tell someone how to live their lives, but the Comics Collector is the nemesis of all fans everywhere, including themselves and they’re probably not even aware of it. The collector mentality is easily the worst thing to come of the 90’s. The notion is that somehow getting everything with a Bat on it, or getting every event-tie in or variant cover is going to be some day very valuable. It’s also a false notion. The problem is DC is making their comics as collectibles and not as stories. How many variant covers do we see a month? How many standalone Forever Evil or Futures End tie-ins? How many events have we seen? How many Batman titles a month? And how many of those things are even readable? This exact collector-business-model is what drove Marvel to bankruptcy in the 90’s.  And why DC’s sales are continually dropping.

Another obvious problem with DC’s New52 is the homogony. Even from the start, DC’s New52 seemed targeted at one demographic. The adult white male that they knew was their strongest audience. I don’t know exactly how many of those #1s featured murders and/or sex, but I know it was a lot of them. The New 52 did nothing to expand the target audience to try to gain new fans or readers. And by targeting such a singular demographic, you’re alienating a lot of others. Most importantly, children. With so few (if any) books actually kid friendly, they’re cutting themselves off at the knee, without fostering a future audience.

DC has thrown all their eggs in one basket. And that basket is Bat-shaped. DC is making it increasingly clear that they really only care about Batman. They seem to believe he’s the only thing that will sell, and seem to just put out titles featuring other characters to retain the rights to them. As of November, DC will be putting out 14 in-continuity Bat/Gotham-themed titles (one of them a weekly series), and that’s not even counting the guest appearances or the Justice League. Even in mass media, it’s Batman all the time. And as a guy that really likes Batman and his mythos. I’m exhausted by it. It’s overwhelming. And that singular “Only Batman Sells" mentality comes at the expense of the fans again and will eventually bite DC in the ass when fans get tired of so much Batman, or only Batman at the expense of other characters.

Personally. I think that the New52 is a failure both critically, financially, and creatively. For me personally, my greatest disappointment with it is that I just don’t care anymore. DC has seemingly gone out of its way to make me less and less interested in anything it’s doing. I have almost completely given up on them until something radically changes. There are titles out there that I think are good, and will continue to collect in trade (Batman and Aquaman) but beyond those two titles, I just don’t care. Superman dating Wonder Woman? Don’t want it. Scott Lobdell writing Superman? Don’t want it. Superman turned into Doomsday? Don’t want it. 

BUT

Despite my overall apathy and all that naysaying I just did, I still do hold out hope. And even now, I do have high hopes for Johns’ new Superman story, I have hopes for the new Batgirl creative team, and I will definitely be reading Grant Morrison’s Multiversity.

If you should check out the New52? I wouldn’t. Very few titles are worth it. Quick hits that may be worth your time: Snyder/Capullo’s Batman, Johns/Reis’ Aquaman, Snyder/Paquette’s Swamp Thing, Buccaletto/Manapul’s Flash, Lemiere/Pugh’s Animal Man, and maybe Azarello/Chiang’s Wonder Woman. But there’s tons of great stories from before the New52 that you can hunt down.

Okaaaay

I needed time to get my rage under control again (because hm yeah I have some issues with the msf) but I won’t clog up your dash … 

                  Follow me under the cut if you care to hear me ramble a lot

                                     also beware of possible spoilers

Keep reading

Sun in Gemini / Astrology 101

When I think of Gemini, I remember what it felt like to be a kid and anxiously count down the days until the school year was over. Of course, it wasn’t a tormenting anxiety, it was more of a restlessness, a vital need to explore the world beyond the structure of class times and seeing the same people and having to follow the same rules every day. There was so much to look forward to. The days were bright and colorful and I awaited with much excitement the freedom to fly away into the endless potential for fun which was summertime.

The end of spring is still one of my favorite times of the year. For many, school is out, or about to be out, and summer vacation is right around the corner. Plans to visit new places and people, start on various kinds of projects, and do new, fun and exciting things of all kinds are being made, loosely that is—you never know when a better idea might pop up. The world is vast and abound with rich experiences and the purpose of life is to get a taste of each and every one of them.

The Gemini mentality is just that. Life is too interesting to get caught up in any one thing too seriously for too long. This is why Geminis are generally very intelligent. They are eternally curious about everything and often know at least a bit about any particular thing. It’s a childlike sign, since it is only the third one. It represents the psychological stage of human development where children start to think. They start to ask questions like “why” and “how”, and there is a fascination with nearly everything since life is still so fresh and unexplored.

As an air sign, the Geminian characteristics are all mental. People who are strongly influenced by Gemini are always thinking. Gemini’s ruling planet is Mercury, which symbolizes the mental plane, communication, and speed. Add those three elements into the Gemini recipe and you will get a fast thinker.

Geminis have a constant chatter inside their heads that is incredibly perceptive about the world around them, not missing any detail, similar to the sponge-like quality of a child’s mind. This is why they are known as the biggest talkers of the zodiac. Their constant brain chatter needs to go somewhere, but they’re also quite entertaining with how they communicate. They are gifted at language and can articulate concepts with wit, wordplay, and a dash of their broad imagination. So even though they love to talk (the more introverted ones tend to make great writers), they are rarely ever boring to listen to or have a conversation with, and due to their extensive knowledge, they’ll usually teach you something you never knew before. Overall, they are lighthearted and have a good sense of humor. Remember, this sign is more like a child than a professor. They just want to have fun in the end.

The darkside of Gemini is typified as two things: their superficiality and their two-facedness. Can they be superficial or two-faced? Totally. But these characteristics are usually ascribed to them from a misunderstanding of the essential nature of the Gemini archetype.

Its two main symbols are the butterfly and the twins. The butterfly just wants to roam free, never staying at a single flower for too long. As I mentioned before, the world is just too damn big and interesting to take anything too seriously. It’s a much better idea then, from that perspective, to take something seriously for a bit and then move on to the next thing. Why would a butterfly stay at a single flower when there are literally millions of flowers and they are all so diverse and beautiful. This mentality applies to everything.

Another thing about Gemini is its inherent duality. In Greek Mythology there is a story about a set of twins, Pollux and Castor, who made a peculiar deal with Zues when one of them died. While one twin stayed in heaven and enjoyed a life of divinity, the other twin had to be on earth and deal with the reality of mortality. After a while they would switch places. The mortal twin would go up to heaven and the divine twin would come back down to be a human, and during this exchange, they would meet again, albeit briefly, and share what they had experienced. But they could never both be in the same place at the same time. In a metaphorical sense, this cycle of perfection and immortality and imperfection and mortality is a reality to Geminis. Its manifestation produces a personality type that is emotionally and mentally inconsistent. They will hold a certain perception one day, and then just as strongly hold a seemingly contradicting one the next day. It may make them seem fickle, but they certainly are not liars. If they say something or do something in one moment, they really mean it, no matter how differently they may think or feel later on. Gemini is a mutable sign, and is therefore not committed to any one kind of perception. To try to control the changeability of Gemini is to trap the butterfly that just wants to be free by all means.

Several lessons can be learned during the Sun in Gemini transit, one of them being learning itself. This is a perfect time to learn about anything that sparks one’s curiosity. We may not want to delve too deeply into any certain topic, but instead dabble with various hobbies, or read more articles and magazines rather than books or volumes. The world’s conversations are tinted with a sort of childhood wonder. We may find ourselves Googling just about any random topic: How do slugs reproduce? Who invented money? If God created Satan why is Satan evil? Why do we dream?

But perhaps the most important lesson during Gemini season is learning how to balance our inner polarities. We often look at the world as if things may only be viewed through either a spiritual and intuitive lens or a rational and realistic lens, seeing both as mutually exclusive. The truth is that they are both real and valuable, just as a Gemini native will fully believe both kinds of perceptions, although rarely ever at the same time. The key here is to integrate one’s inner divine nature and one’s mortal human body, one’s feminine energies and one’s masculine energies. This is ultimately the alchemical purpose of the Gemini Sun and Moon.

This is my favorite sign for various reasons. When I’m around a Gemini I feel comfortable being myself because I get a kind of, “You’re weird. I like you,” reaction from them, and if you’re someone like me who indulges in some pretty crazy ideas you’ll find that Geminis will always keep an open mind to them. The weirder you are, the more they like you. It’s the child in them that is simply fascinated by the funniness of life itself. I love them because they are Childhood Awe and Wonder, a precious vision many of us have forgotten. I love them because they always remind me.

anonymous asked:

I would have liked this episode more if it didn't left you feeling like Ruffnut/Tuffnut are so much better people than Astrid. This episode takes no regard for Astrid's character. She is written extremely one dimensional. At this point of her life Astrid was supposed to be less serious and enjoy life but instead she has regressed into the 15 year old super serious Astrid.

From this.

It’s totally fine for you to feel unappealed by the episode. We’re not required to like all episodes, and if Astrid felt off to you, I can understand feeling a little upset. If you’re interested in my perspective why I think “Edge of Disaster” is actually a worthy, well-written canonical addition to expand Astrid’s character and analyze her personality in better depth, I’m going to discuss my own personal perspective below. This is why I have no issue with “Edge of Disaster” and Astrid’s characterization here.

We interact with different people in different ways in different contexts

One criticism you bring up is that Astrid at this point in her life is supposed to be less serious and enjoy life. The greatest canonical evidence that Astrid goes from a more rigid to less serious character is the Hiccstrid scene at the start of HTTYD 2. At the start of HTTYD 2, Astrid is pretty goofy and teasing around Hiccup.

I’d bring up the caveat that the HTTYD 2 Hiccstrid scene cannot be indicative of Astrid’s entire personality in all instances. In HTTYD, we saw Astrid’s personality mostly from how she interacts with Hiccup. At this point, in her competitive mindset, fifteen-year-old Astrid was “super serious Astrid,” as you so wonderfully described her. In HTTYD 2, we also see Astrid from how she interacts with Hiccup. Now that she loves Hiccup and has developed a deep romantic relationship with him, she’s more relaxed and cheerful.

Neither HTTYD nor HTTYD 2 depict how Astrid interacts with other people, though. We have seen Astrid be less serious around Hiccup as she grows older. Have we seen Astrid be less serious around the twins?

Not really as much.

We humans all interact with different people in different ways. Around my close friends, I have a devious sense of humor, use my fair share of swear words, and broil in sarcasm. Around my boss and coworkers at my university, I am refined, serious, proper, evenly-spoken, and slow to output words. This isn’t me being inconsistent with my personality; it’s me being myself, my true self, in two very different circumstances around two different sets of people.

The television series is the primary medium by which we see Astrid interact with the twins. That interaction, and that development of how she interacts with them, is on a semi-separate plane than how she interacts with her soon-to-be-boyfriend. We people develop with an overall characterization, yes, but our relationships have their own unique developments, too. It’s even consistent for me to become a friendlier person over time with people in general… and yet get increasingly meaner to one person I hate in particular.

Within the shows, we see that Astrid typically tolerates the twins, but that they can get under her skin sometimes. She is a bit more lighthearted in RTTE with everyone, I would say, and I’d agree she’s probably learned to love life a bit more by and large. Still, she’s the same human being, and if someone is rattling her skin, and it’s someone who has rattled her skin for years… she’s more likely to be terse and tough with them.

The fact is she hasn’t ever had a good relationship with the twins, meaning that she isn’t going to joke with them like we see her joke with Hiccup in HTTYD 2. This means there’s good motivation for Astrid being more serious because she’s around people with whom she’s less comfortable by and large.

What we actually get here is an expansion of Astrid’s character: we learn how she develops in her interactions not just with Hiccup, but with others like the Thorstons. It’s just like seeing your boss at the grocery store with their family: they’re probably going to act a bit differently, a bit surprisingly differently, than how you see them at work with their employees.

RTTE S2 depicts Astrid in her strengths and weaknesses - everything

Character expansion is best done when we see characters at their best and at their worst, when we see them lighthearted and happy, when we see them depressed and despaired, when we see them frustrated and angry. To see them in all these facets is to understand them more, and for the characters to shine more realistically as real human beings.

If you look at RTTE S2 as a whole, you’ll see that Astrid’s character is being depicted in many respects. We see many of her strengths. We see Astrid successfully (though still seriously, mind) develop a new team of dragon riders for Berk in “Astrid’s Team.” We see Astrid bond with Stormfly in an early-morning flight. We see Astrid fight Dagur, put an axe to his throat, and punch him in the face (which is also in “Edge of Disaster” - the episode we’re talking about!). We see Astrid fight off dragon hunters with a broom. We see Astrid defend off a lot of enemies in “Edge of Disaster Part 2″ before they implement Tuffnut’s plan. We see Astrid treat Gustav with kindness and respect. We see Astrid comfort Hiccup when he frets he has made a horrible mistake. All of these are positive strengths to Astrid’s character that are depicted in RTTE S2.

Just as many times, we see Astrid in weakness. We see Astrid feel vulnerable and emotionally down after her parents’ home is destroyed. We see Astrid try to fight that off by being overly critical about her new team of riders. We see Astrid make mistakes in battle. We see Astrid lie to Hiccup. We see Astrid get upset at the twins. All of these are negative weaknesses to Astrid’s character that are depicted in RTTE S2. 

Throughout Riders of Berk, Defenders of Berk, and Race to the Edge, Astrid has been portrayed overall in a pretty positive light. We’ve seen her be the athletic gymnast and gifted warrior. We’ve seen her be Hiccup’s confidante and emotional support. But the truth of the matter is that we haven’t seen as many weaknesses in Astrid’s character as we have some of the others by this point in the television series. The one exception to that is in “Heather Report Part 1,” but even then, Astrid was right in her assessment of Heather.

“Edge of Disaster” is one of the only episodes ever to deal with Astrid in a moment of making a serious oversight. It’s one of the first, and even throughout the rest of RTTE S2, we watch some pretty positive Astrid moments. The fact that this one episode shows Astrid making a mistake builds realism rather than reduces her to one dimension. It shows that Astrid - just like anyone else - is fallible. What is usually her greatest strength can sometimes prove to be a weakness. 

Other characters have episodes where they’re in opposition to another good guy. “Defiant One” is a perfect example. Snotlout is a good guy, but he pits himself against Hiccup in this episode. But this doesn’t turn Snotlout into a one-dimensional personality just because he and Hiccup had a bad fight and Snotlout refused to listen to his cousin in this moment. Something like this happens again in “Cast Out”. Fishlegs even has moments where he goes against the rest of the team in “Shock in Awe.” Astrid is in opposition to the twins here, a decent parallel to other episodes where other characters have their moments of weakness and opposition.

Yes, Astrid is opposing Ruffnut and Tuffnut, and this causes a huge mistake on her part. Yes, it was short-sighted of her. Yes, Astrid is a bit of the “bad guy” to Ruffnut and Tuffnut. But she’s not at all antagonistic in “Astrid’s Team.” She’s not antagonistic in “Night of the Hunters Part 2.” She’s not antagonistic by and large, and she’s depicted throughout RTTE as someone who is hardcore, more serious-minded than the twins, and full of strengths and weaknesses.

Astrid is heroic in many other episodes. Making her clash against another good character in one episode doesn’t negate all the good she has done throughout the rest of RTTE S2, but in fact amplifies and demonstrates a broader and more nuanced scope of her character.

Astrid’s frustration is understandable in the context of this episode

Astrid is in an extremely high pressure situation. Dragon’s Edge is being invaded. It’s enough to make someone more tense. She does act a bit more extreme and serious here than in other episodes of the timeline… but then, she’s in a pretty serious context!

Hiccup becomes more snappish and chews out Snotlout in “Defiant One” because they’re in a deep, dangerous, pressurized circumstance when Snotlout isn’t pulling his weight. Astrid becomes more grating against the twins in “Edge of Disaster” for the exact same reason. Given the context of the danger of the episode, it makes sense for her to be a little more on edge.

This isn’t the first time Astrid has done this, either. There’s her competitive streak in HTTYD. There’s “Heather Report Part 1″ where she becomes snappish at Hiccup. And while RTTE takes place three years later after those incidences, it’s still not the time of HTTYD 2, and there’s plenty of room for growth between now and the second movie. Not to mention HTTYD 2 isn’t a time where Astrid is in a snappish mood… so there’s no inconsistency to what is shown here.

Imagine you’re paired with someone who gets under your nerves in a high-pressure group project. Even if you have become a friendlier, more relaxed person by and large, you still might be more inclined to be close-minded and angry around this person in this unpleasant situation. The right context can breed worse animosity.

Astrid is three-dimensional in “Edge of Disaster”

In this episode, we see Astrid being stiff, serious, and angry. We see Astrid hold up rage and then release it. We see Astrid being snide and sarcastic. We see Astrid jump quick to conclusions and cut people off. We see Astrid on the verge of crying and emotionally hurt. We see Astrid nervous and afraid. We see Astrid accepting and appreciative. We see Astrid smiling and smirking. We see Astrid cheering and celebrating. We see Astrid criticizing and apologizing. Astrid is thrown into a round of many complex but comprehensible emotions, many reactions, all based upon the context of what is going around her. Astrid is shown to be a human being who goes through a variety of emotional reactions, a rather three-dimensional individual who has understandable feelings for every moment. It’s tied up into the complicated mass of who she is.

“Edge of Disaster” is about the merits of BOTH sides of the argument

The entire episode is about balance. It’s not saying Astrid is fully right. It’s not saying Tuffnut and Ruffnut are fully right. We audiences don’t leave the episode saying, “Ruffnut and Tuffnut’s slacker personality is totally correct 100% of the time,” nor do we leave the episode saying, “Astrid’s discipline is totally the worst thing ever.” We understand there needs to be balance. Furthermore, the way the situation gets solved is when Astrid and Tuffnut work together and use all their resources to defeat an enemy. It takes both Astrid’s weaponry and Tuffnut’s trickery to scare off all the invaders. When Hiccup asks them how they held off the dragon hunters, Astrid responds, “It’s called teamwork.”

Teamwork - both of them using their combined skills.

Tuffnut is shown being appreciative of what Astrid can do in “Edge of Disaster Part 2.” At the start of this episode, Tuffnut shoots two of Astrid’s weapons. The first one is the enormous crossbow on top of the roof. The second is a flaming catapult. Notice that one shot each from these two weapons sinks both dragon hunter ships. Tuffnut is so amazed at what Astrid’s work has done that he starts dancing on the spot. The point of the matter is that Astrid’s defenses do an AMAZING amount of damage. The dragon hunters are furious about the fact they lost both their ships so quickly. Astrid’s tactics legitimately help their dire situation improve.

We also are shown of the twins doing serious breaches of responsibility that aren’t ever excused as being “right.” The scareships were never presented in the story as anything except avoiding work - not a good thing. Ruffnut and Tuffnut aren’t shown as the people with all the right answers, either.

It is true that the merits of the Thorstons are emphasized a more in this episode, and Astrid’s snipness and close-mindedness shown to a great degree. As you say, Astrid doesn’t seem to be given a chance. In the end of the episode, Astrid apologizes to the twins for how she treated them; we don’t see an apology in turn from them.

From a writing perspective, though, I can see why Astrid’s error is keenly emphasized. We as audience members don’t need to be convinced Astrid is a worthy fighter. We’ve seen her prove her weight on the team time and time again. However, throughout the series, we haven’t seen the twins be the heroes or the merits of the time. It’s more novel to write an episode by which we as audience members can see the importance of Ruffnut and Tuffnut… rather than get emphasized yet again that Astrid is a competent woman.

“Edge of Disaster” is about showing us new, novel things about the characters, and showing the balance that needs to be reached between usually-successful-Astrid with usually-lazy-Thorstons. The episode comes in with the assumption we understand Astrid’s dedication doesn’t need to be proved meritorious and the twins’ laziness doesn’t need to be proved unhelpful. “Edge of Disaster” shows us that Astrid’s dedication and rigidness - usually great strengths - can sometimes be a weakness. It shows us that the twins’ ridiculousness - often a weakness - can sometimes be a strength. That’s important to realize. It’s important to realize Astrid, who we still know is a very competent fighter, can be liable to error, and it’s important to see the twins as good team contributors.

The result is we understand the balance. Astrid apologizes because she is the one here who was most dogged about upsetting the balance of perspectives, and was the one who first blew up and shouted at the others. It’s not that Astrid’s warrior-driven dedication is an antagonistic energy against the twins.

“Edge of Disaster” builds the dimensionality of the twins

The way “Edge of Disaster” is written brings out the twins’ emotions and three-dimensionality to a level we’ve never seen them exhibit before. The twins have been somewhat two-dimensional in the past, but here, we learn an intricate amount about how they handle stress, how they handle pressure, how they handle rivalry, how they care about each other, how they care about the other dragon riders, how they are lazy, but how they are also creative and important.

Ruffnut especially has been a character on the sidelines. She is the personality who is probably seen the least. “Edge of Disaster” is an episode that brings her to the forefront and makes characters we typically dismiss as comedic relief… the heroes.

It’s hugely important to see the two women on the dragon team - Astrid and Ruffnut - directly interact after all this time. It’s important to get the female representation of both of them. It’s important to demonstrate the twins as more than muttonheads. It’s important to show Astrid as something more than Hiccup’s kickbutt girlfriend.

It’s fine if you don’t like “Edge of Disaster.” That’s totally fine. No worries! But these are the reasons I personally appreciate this episode hoards.

Date #1 with POT “The Debater”

I’ve let this float around in my head for a week. I know it will be long. I also know that writing clarifies my thoughts and I end up seeing how I internally must really feel about someone or a situation. How much should one put up with for money? How much is acting and how much is allowing someone to lessen your dignity, though you’re aware of it? Who is using who? If you’re torn, which side is being pulled tighter?

When I first made my account on SA forever ago, only really lurking and browsing, not planning to meet anyone, this guy was very interested. Good grammar, very wealthy, looking for similar things. But I ignored everyone and gathered as much info as I could from afar. Plus, I still lacked the confidence to meet people, put myself out there and get what I wanted.

But after a lot of text tagging. A lot. We finally chatted on the phone and set up a date. Expensive restaurant, always a good sign and confirmed my intuition that he’s loaded. LOADED.

I show up, early as always and looking fierce, projecting confidence and ready to take on whatever happens…with the aid of inhibition lowering alcohol. Mind you, I don’t know what he looks like, never asked but I enjoyed the conversation and his pursuing of me that I figured what the hell. If I had asked and he refused, that’d have been a red flag. But I really could care less for a first meeting and personality can go far with me. In he comes and yes ladies, he’s very unattractive. Overweight, bad double (triple?) chin, bald (can sometimes be lovely like Bruce Willis but not this time), one lazy-ish eye. The good? Deep voice, tall. Now, I know myself very well after the shit I’ve grown through and the woman I’ve become in the past years of self-discovery. One of my strengths is body language, knowing when and what to say and hiding how I really feel in my face. And reading others. I can read you like a book from your words and actions. I’ll piece these things together and draw accurate conclusions weeks before they reveal themselves. I was super genuine and kind. I could tell he was initially overcompensating because he was a touch self-conscious about his looks. Now don’t you think for one second that means he was shy. He was the other direction, flamboyant and boisterous and a bit all over the place. We are walked over to our table and I’ll tell you my first turn off, though it’s not necessarily a warning sign but it did stand out: he didn’t pull out my seat for me or take off my jacket. He just sat down quite quickly (perhaps nervously?) and opened the drink menu. This stood out mostly in contrast to “Southern Gent” because he has done this for me in all three of our dates, and he always says I look beautiful when he greets me.

Alright. Date time. Here we go. So he dives into talking about his HUGE champagne and wine collection. He has a cellar with thousands of bottles of champagne. I can tell he’s being honest. And he orders a bottle of champagne for us. I can’t remember why I felt this way but I recall he could have treated the waiter a touch nicer. How people treat wait staff is always a huge indicator of who they are. We dive into convo. And by “we” I mean “him”. Smile and nod. Giggle and agree. Or, if you’re me, try to interject occasionally with wit, questions or confronting an opinion of his. Things I learn rather quickly in the beginning of our three hour date which all confirmed themselves throughout.

EGO: This man has a huge ego. Many wealthy men do. So the question becomes, is it inflated on the first date because he’s trying to impress me or is this something that won’t go away or lessen to a manageable extent? I ain’t stroking that thing. There’s bound to be internal eye rolling at many comments but how much are you willing to put up with? This is just an overall vibe I get from him. I don’t think it will lessen if we continue.

Smart: He’s very intelligent, though he doesn’t always go about it in the right way. He can see logical inconsistencies in others but I doubt he’d recognize them in himself. He had a way of lessening my opinions and shutting them down when I’d speak up loud enough to be heard. He even called someone I made it clear that I idolized a “loon”. What the fuck, get some manners.

Misogyny, women as property and meat: Oh man, where to start with this one? More details later. Little hints of it throughout dinner. How he spoke of his submissive wife and how he can sleep around but she can’t. How he commented on my breast size ON THE FIRST DATE. After saying I’m extremely gorgeous and even prettier than my pictures, he guessed I was a 34 D unless I was wearing a “really good push up bra”. And after I was being “feisty” with my opinion on something that differed from his and he probably had no comeback he commented that I’ll be “over his knee in no time”. Now, I’m VERY submissive sexually. Not into vanilla sex and this would be hot to hear from someone I knew and trusted but on a first meeting it made me gag inside. There were also many other comments here and there on monogamy and past relationships that gave me insider views on how he views women in and outside the bedroom.

Self-centered:
Really though. I’m not even exaggerating when I say that he asked maybe one or two questions of me. He just talks and I have to speak up with questions or my own thoughts and stories. He will shut me down instead of inquiring further about me. Pretty sure I could have just sat and been a pretty face the whole time but curiosity always demands I speak up. He didn’t seem used to this and commented he was “intrigued” and that I seem to really “observe the world”. It was as if all he’s used to is pushovers and being the boss of everyone. Doesn’t quite know how to respect other’s (or maybe just women’s?) opinions. There a better way to disagree with someone than he knows how to. I felt the desire to put him into his place almost constantly. Had to bite my tongue.

Filthy rich:
Business owner. He makes 3 million a year. I verified this. He has a lot of money to blow. Talks of houses he owns and his cars and adventures. Expensive taste. He has a townhouse downtown he hinted we would be meeting at.

Daddy issues:
If you shift your tone or body language when you talk about a certain subject, or avoid it in some way when I inquire further, I can learn a lot about you. And this is what happened when he said that he doesn’t have a relationship with his real father. Now Freud was on to a few things, more than modern psychology may acknowledge or care to recognize. This bothers him more than he would outwardly admit. I just know it from how this came up and how he handled it.

Lingerie and Champagne (and allowance!):
His vices. He loves Agent Provocateur and Prada. Owns too much champagne. I’d be dressed well, go shopping and I’d be drinking well and go home with 1,000$ each intimate meeting, 2-4 times a month.

MORE STANDOUT MOMENTS:

***Midway in our date a bartender walked directly to me with strong eye contact while putting on her jacket to leave and said, “I had to let you know. You are a very, very intelligent woman.” She clearly had been listening to me arguing with his opinions and him belittling me a bit. My mind is a touch foggy from the champagne and wine at this point but he manages to turn this compliment aimed at me towards him. NO LIE. He did and I was in shock. I forget how he worded it but file this one under ego, misogyny and self-centered.

***He said he could “turn me into a lady”. I said, I already am a lady and he said no I wasn’t because when my fork fell off the table I said “fuck”. *Eye roll* Really? A word disqualifies me from being HIS IDEA of a lady.

***Here we go. The end of the night. He walks me to my car and tries to kiss me. I turn my head and say, very clearly, “I do not kiss on first dates. I don’t break this rule.” HE TRIES AGAIN. And I turn my head again. He giggles and says OK. Then he smacks/grabs my butt real quickly and says we are bound to have fun and he gives me 100$.

***I ate Cedar salmon and wine sauce potatoes and split a bottle of wine and bottle of champagne. He didn’t ask if I wanted dessert which actually made me mad cause shitttttt I wanted something made of chocolate. I was gonna speak up but it looked like they were closing and the waitstaff was probably wanting to leave anyways.

So there you have it. Wow, I guess my true feelings came out in writing. We definitely had an interesting dynamic and I know he’s attached and the caveman in him wants to cage me since I’m “different” to him. Here’s the torn part. I’m aware of his downfalls and how he really feels superior to women at his core, but how much would I be willing to put up with for money and spoiling? Do I hold my nose? I can tell I’d be having the type of dirty, painful, degrading, powerplay sex I like and can be drunk during it and get plenty of money and gifts. And I haven’t met with enough men to know the extent of these issues within the SD pool. Southern Gent is a rarity, very submissive and the opposite end of the spectrum as “The Debater” is. The ball is in my court and I just don’t know what I’m willing to put up with. The offer is here and the search is no fun. Do I settle? Is it settling? Is it just the pitfalls of the job? He’s not dangerous in an outright way and I’d love to milk him for all he’s worth but I wonder if the grass is greener somewhere else, with someone not as rich perhaps but who respects me more. I just don’t know. I’m teetering back and forth depending on my mood. I may meet up with him one more time to teeter further one way or the other, but I’m even debating that. He’s already asked to grab drinks one night and I just stare at the text unsure how to respond. I know the decision is up to me but any opinions or musing you all have on these questions, lessons you’ve learned or this story are always fun to read.

Why arguments over whether or not Hannibal is OOC are missing the point

Like everyone else, I’ve seen a lot of posts go by after “Hassun” that have complained that Hannibal was out of character, or that the show is somehow getting something wrong by its emphasis on the relationship between Hannibal and Will. Several people have responded to that allegation really powerfully, and I’m thankful for this or I would have felt compelled to write an argument myself, and heaven knows I have too much stuff backlogged to write about as it is. 

But I got to noticing that the whole argument hasn’t really been acknowledging something that really should be a part of the discussion.

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Shamelessly Underwhelming

So…Season 5. Huh.

Underwhelming.

I toyed with many different words to describe this seasonand since Garbage sounded a little too harsh, I went with underwhelming. They tried so hard to be interesting and invest us in these stories but I was bored. And since everything was pointless anyway (i.e. no follow through or consequences) there really wasn’t a reason to be invested in anything. Of course that didn’t stop me from stanning for Ian Gallagher all season, but hey, I wasn’t invested in anything else.

I said last night that I was trying to write this, but I literally could not be even remotely constructive with my criticism so I had to stop. This is my second attempt. We’ll see how it goes.

Spoilers for the finale under the cut. Trigger Warnings: Mentions of rape. 

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anonymous asked:

This isn't about character design, but I still figured this would be a good place to ask this: What should I do when I severely doubt the quality of my work? This happens to me over and over again: I start writing a story and am proud of the beginning chapter(s). I post it up online and get nothing but praise, sometimes even from skilled writers. I continue writing, but I always realize that I made stupid mistakes in the first chapters. *Continued in next ask*

*Continued from previous ask* I try to fix what’s wrong, fail to see what EXACTLY needs fixing, and then feel ashamed that I put up something with such poor quality. All of my stories die early. But at the same time, I’m not sure how well I would work with a beta reader because of potential schedule conflicts as well as fear of clashing visions for how the story should be. What can I possibly do to get over this? It is absolutely crippling me as a writer.

I know this feeling really well and from what I’ve seen it seems to be pretty common among writers.  I might not be the best person to answer this cause I still struggle with it myself but I’ll share some things that have helped me get a little better about it.

  • It’s a cliché saying, but you really are your own worst critic.  When you write, you get to know every single line and each word seems immensely important and everything has to be perfect and in its exact right place or else it feels like it’s terrible.  But in reality, unless you have a really jacked up word choice or something else that obscures the meaning of the sentence, most readers aren’t going to care or even notice if a sentence could have been worded slightly better or if a marginally more descriptive phrase could have been used.  What feels catastrophically awful to you probably doesn’t even register as an issue to most readers.
  • If you have problems with making plot mistakes early in the story, you could try doing a rough outline of the whole story to try and minimize the plot holes, inconsistencies, or whatever issues you may have with early chapters.  Obviously this won’t fix everything, but it could give you a clearer overall picture of the plot and therefore help you keep things consistent throughout.
  • Also, writing shorter stories can be great practice at finishing stories and plots without the commitment of writing a novel-length story just for practice.  The compact form of a short story really forces you to focus on moving the plot along and wrapping everything up quickly and efficiently, which can be good practice for when you want to write a longer piece.
  • This is probably the hardest thing to do in this situation, but sometimes you just need to keep writing no matter what.  Don’t worry about editing or making it perfect.  Just write and get the words on the page and don’t let your inner critic silence that flow of words.  First drafts are never perfect, and if you’re writing anything at all, that’s a success in and of itself, no matter what your opinion on the quality of it is.  If the first story, or the first ten, that you finish have plot holes in the beginning or huge gaping flaws everywhere, that’s okay.  You can always go back and edit, and besides, no one starts out perfect at anything.  Just like drawing or learning a new language or doing yoga or just about any other endeavor you could try, writing is a skill that needs to be developed through constant practice and experience.  So sometimes it is a painful struggle to muddle through an awkward first draft, but it’s something that all writers have to do.

So yeah, long story short:

About that Arrow episode last night …

I know a lot of you hated it, and I totally understand why. I’m not trying to talk anyone out of their opinion. But I wanted to explain why *I* thought 4x19 was some of the best writing I’ve seen all season.

It all comes down to one thing, basically:

It was character-driven.

That’s far too rare a thing for this show. My biggest beef with Arrow from day one has its terrible habit of throwing characterization under the bus in order forward plot. All too often, the characters on the show behave in a way that runs contrary to their established personalities—or make bad choices without proper motivation, or are dumbed down—either in furtherance of the episode’s action plot or to drive ill-conceived multi-episode arcs.

But in last night’s episode, not only were most of the characters behaving in ways that were well-motivated under the current circumstances, but the main focus of the episode was actually on the emotional fallout of recent events, which isn’t something they often take the time to do, given that Arrow is an action-driven show. It takes a major event, like the death of a main character, for them to pause and spend a whole episode focused on the emotional aftermath of a plot development. (Note, for example, that when Felicity was paralyzed, the emotional consequences of that were largely glossed over, and we got only a few brief scenes sandwiched in between action set pieces to hint at what the characters were going through.)

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Defending Laurel Lance

A lot of you are going to see the title of this post and scroll right past. And that is totally okay. I’m not writing this to change anyone’s mind.

Some of you might find this because I wrote out Laurel Lance, instead of abbreviating. And if less than positive comments about her get your hackles up, I would encourage you to move along. I’m not interested in engaging with haters, and if I see hate, you will be blocked.

If you choose to click on Keep Reading, then what you’ll find are my burning thoughts and feelings in my heart for Laurel, whom I love. I’m writing this to get this off my chest and onto my blog.

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Arrow Review – 3x10 – Left Behind

Going into this episode many of us were weary of the appeal of watching a show in which the protagonist of the series had just fallen after a battle with one of the deadliest villains in DC history. Ra’s al Ghul.

For weeks we’ve seen the hardiest push in Arrow history since its premiere back in 2012 from the showrunners, actors, and network. Basically the message was varied & promising a good show for all involved. This ranged from, the beginning of a Black Canary trilogy, to no no no, it’s really not - where on earth did you hear that, to it’s a Brick trilogy, to Diggle’s most emotional scenes ever, to team arrow deals with the fallout, to Felicity and Emily Bett being promoted in the clips as if to say, “Look, see….she’s got some rocking material and there’s Olicity too!”

I think its common knowledge that I’ve been one of the loudest detractors of this arc. That hasn’t changed. Up until the day of the airing of this episode, I changed my mind several times about tuning in as each spoiler and interview unfolded. After finally caving in and watching, I have to admit, I’m glad I did. I rather enjoyed this episode. I felt it may possibly be one of the most solid episodes of the season. But that doesn’t mean it didn’t have its issues. Overall, I enjoyed it.

So let’s get to it.

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