literary prowess
Oscar Wilde Awards Honors Irish-Hollywood Connection
Oscar Wilde Awards honoree Martin Short, known for his zingers and stinging observations, was asked if anyone in the current presidential administration is ripe for satire. “Everyone is ripe for sa…
By Will Thorne

Oscar Wilde Awards honoree Martin Short, known for his zingers and stinging observations, was asked if anyone in the current presidential administration is ripe for satire. “Everyone is ripe for satire,” he says, “particularly in this administration. But it’s hard to satirize, hard to go broader than what we have seen.”

Asked if his talk-show character Jiminy Glick would have anything to say about the current Trump administration, Short demurs. “I’m not going there.”

Short feels a connection to the Wilde Awards. “My mother was half-Irish, my father was 100%,” he offers. Short, who has credits going back to 1972, says his father introduced him to film. They watched Ireland-set films such as “The Quiet Man” and “Shake Hands With the Devil.”

And while fans admire his wit, the performer freely admits, “I don’t know that if I could compare to Oscar Wilde.”

The comic actor is one of several honorees at the 12th annual Oscar Wilde Awards, put on by the U.S.-Ireland Alliance to celebrate Irish contributions to entertainment, and hosted by J.J. Abrams on Feb. 26 at his Bad Robot headquarters.

The class of 2017 consists of Short, “Outlander” star Caitriona Balfe, Zachary Quinto, Irish folk-rock singer Glen Hansard, and “Loving” actress Ruth Negga.

What is the common link for this cluster of actors, singers and comedians? They are all, at least in some part, Irish.

As a result, they have inherited a penchant for storytelling, which Balfe says is rooted deep in Irish culture.

“I grew up in the Irish countryside, but there’s such an amazing tradition in Ireland of storytelling, and even though my dad was a policeman, he and his friends used to put on plays and sketches, so it was something that I was surrounded by all my childhood, and it was always something that I wanted to do,” she says.

Although the star of Starz’s “Outlander,” filming its third season, grew up in a local theater milieu, she admits she took a less-trodden path for Irish actors in heading to the U.S.

Balfe’s first film role was in “The Devil Wears Prada,” where only her ankle was shown. The rest of her appeared in J.J. Abrams’ sci-fi thriller “Super 8.”

“J.J. gave me my first job in the U.S., so it’s quite a nice full circle event to be a part of,” Balfe says of the honor. “It was quite a small role, I played a mom in flashbacks, but for my first job it was such a big thing, and I remember going down to Virginia and meeting J.J. and we chatted for a few hours. He’s such an interesting guy, and he was telling me about how he started filmmaking when he was a kid.”

Balfe isn’t the only one on this year’s Oscar Wilde honorees list to get a first big film break in an Abrams movie.

Quinto’s star-making turn in 2009’s “Star Trek” and the subsequent franchise follow-ups have given him a large fan base and a powerful voice with which to advocate for gay rights and organizations. Quinto says the Oscar Wilde Awards are of extra importance to him because of Wilde’s homosexuality and the oppressed community he stood for.

“I got my Equity card while I was still in college doing a play called ‘The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde,’ so I’ve had a long awareness and affinity for Oscar Wilde — not only his literary prowess and his incisive wit, but also what he represented in that time in the late 1800s,” he says. “He was persecuted and ultimately prosecuted and imprisoned for his homosexuality, and in many ways was ruined by the society of the time and their intolerance. Yet he maintained an integrity and an openness about who he was and how he lived his life that I have a tremendous respect for.”

The actor is so inspired by Wilde’s life and work that he named his company Wallpaper Goes. That’s a reference to a line that was attributed to Wilde. Legend says that as Wilde was on his deathbed, he said, “Either that wallpaper goes, or I do.”

“I always thought that was pretty humorous, the fact that he said it: a) to his wife, and b) that it was such a witty contemplation of his own mortality, and when I was naming my corporation I thought I’m not going anywhere, so wallpaper goes,” Quinto says.

As for Oscar-nominated Negga, U.S.-Ireland Alliance’s Trina Vargo says: “I watched the film [“Loving”] several times at our various screenings and found new subtleties with each viewing. The brilliance of Ruth’s performance lies in the nuances. It’s a role that requires the conveyance of emotion as much through a look as through dialogue.”

Hansard, who won the Oscar for song with “Falling Slowly” in 2007’s “Once Again,” gave an impromptu performance with Marketa Irglova at the 2008 event that made such an impression he is back as an honoree. He will perform again at this year’s event.
Abrams will emcee, and Chris Pine and Catherine O’Hara will be among the presenters.


I have made a terrible mistake.

(my terrible mistake is due to this post, which in turn was due to a conversation @ave-puella and I had about terrible modern Laurence/Tharkay romcom AUs in which Granby was Laurence’s long-suffering roommate who cANNOT BELIEVE these two idiots haven’t figured their shit out yet.) 

Romantic Misinterpretation: The Bell Jar in Pop Culture

Thanks to the end of the semester/the holiday season/complete laziness, I haven’t posted on here in a couple months, which I would like to change. This was my final essay for a class I took on Sylvia Plath (and Elizabeth Bishop) where I talk about The Bell Jar, young women in pop culture, and Woody Allen being a dick. I think it’s pretty good, but you should tell me what you think about it!

Keep reading

*takes deep breath*

((OOC: So my writing bug has been devouring me lately and tumblr is basically an Aladdin’s cave of inspiration, as is the world of a certain Rowling we all know and love.  

So, this silly little thing was heavily inspired by @asktheboywholived doing this over here , (which you should go and see if you want to know what’s put poor Moony in this mood). They in turn were inspired by @toujrspur doing this over here.  Both are fabulous people, go lookie if you haven’t already :) ))

Do What Now if I’m Wrong?

Sirius Black was a monster.

This fact, whilst blissfully abstract to some, was nevertheless a truth universally acknowledged.  Much like those gentlemen of fortune in want of wives and so forth (he’d had a rather worrying obsession with Pride and Prejudice through his sixth year which he refused to analyse).  Unlike these particular men, however, Sirius Black did not know how to take no for an answer, had no sympathy for awkward, horrifying slips of the tongue and was a truly terrifying mix of guilty and repentant to the depths of his soul and truly, utterly shameless.  Hence the monster.

Lily was still (a little wonderfully if he was honest) quietly furious with Sirius.  It didn’t affect their day to day relationship, but she’d never quite developed the forgiveness he himself had.  Peter still just got very quiet and looked at James.  James got that perturbingly adult look on his face he’d been perfecting since doing Head Boy stuff with Lily and said something about: Well, what did he expect after all this with Evans?  This was perturbing for a number of reasons, the least of which was the sudden and instinctive check that James wasn’t going to punch him.  They’d done that in fourth year, which he still thought privately was unfair.  The more pressing concern was that James was passionate, highly intelligent and occasionally deathly serious.  Wise had always been Remus’ patent expression and he wasn’t altogether pleased with it being pinched, especially since he had no buggering clue what he was being wise about.  If Sirius had a problem with Lily at all, Remus thought, it would be for that unstoppable, slow moving earth shift in his best friend/brother that not even he could ignore.

He supposed it might be because he’d spoiled the secret by telling Lily.  Their boys’ club had not only grown by one but sprouted female parts and this, Remus knew, was probably ‘not on’.  However, given the circumstances at the time, Remus also rather thought Sirius could shove it.

Unfortunately, Remus knew that all this maudlin supposing was distracting him from dwelling on the monster that was Sirius Black and the ‘incident’ that still made his toes curl and stomach flip in embarrassment.  Remus had always been very careful to cultivate defences against this sort of thing and stupid floppy hair and toothy grins and unabashed, flagrant disregard of the fact that Remus was trying very hard to be angry with a person should not warrant this amount of uninvited thinkage.  Though, caught between thinking of the monster or the ‘incident’ was not a choice he wanted to make and why did that seem to be the only choice this morning?  

Stupid git didn’t have to look so bloody chuffed at the prospect, either, did he?  If it had just been another ‘haha Moony did that thing where he said something that may have been interpreted as sexual’ that would have been a normal Wednesday breakfast at school.  But for one (he refused to think ‘heart-stopping’ because that would be gauche) moment those blue eyes had gone very big and very vulnerable and then pleased as sodding punch, which happened less often than people thought.  Much like when Remus had come downstairs on Friday 31st March to breakfast and announced that just because Sirius Black was a selfish, unthinking, soul-shrivelled prat didn’t mean there would be no April Fools.  Such pure and unadulterated happiness in a person was unfair, really.  Grossly so.

Almost as unfair as said monster sliding onto the bench opposite him and spilling tea all over Remus’ half-written Charms homework.  It was a testament to his monstrosity that all Remus could do was watch as panic set in, curses and flailing dripping napkins and dabbing of parchment and mumbled ‘Sorry Moony’s’.  Finally he stilled, looking up a little stupidly.


Remus discovered he’d been caught staring.  Monster.

“Well if you will make a spectacle of yourself.  What do you want?”

“To get you another cup of tea.”

“I can get my own, thanks.”

“That’ll be two more teas then.  And the Ravenclaws have cake, wait there.”

“How old are we?”

“Never too old for cake.”

He should probably have a witty answer for that, but the monster had just done that thing with the cheeky grin and Remus found his eyes siding to the back of Sirius’ neck where he could barely see the skin.  Some part of him that wasn’t all wolf became inexplicably pleased all of a sudden, some strange teenage masculinity that had always secretly rebelled against how his cardigans and love of chocolate and way with small animals had cast him in a certain role for a certain type of boyish joke.  The infinitely masculine Sirius with all his ‘birds’ had certainly not been averse to the idea of switching things up a bit and he knew that was the wolf because no human could have taken in the wide eyes, tense line of his shoulders, hitch of breath and know it for the submissive gesture it was.  Not that it had lasted long and Remus could only hope he himself hadn’t then been so obvious.  By the far-too-knowing smirk he’d received, his hopes were in vain.  Sirius wasn’t a wolf, but he was more dog than boy sometimes.

He pushed the thoughts out of his head as Sirius sat back down, pushing a perfectly made cup of tea over to Remus and glaring at him until he took a fork and had a bite of cake.  Monster.  For some reason, watching godlike Sirius Black do that foul thing where he went between chewing the inside of his lip and tossing his hair back, ever the heir, made everything not funny anymore.  He’d played with his cuffs at Remus’ bedside, too.  It was the first time he’d known Sirius to be utterly silent and the first time he’d realised that he’d done so specifically because Remus asked him.  Not James.  Not McGonagall.  Remus.

“I can’t.”

Sirius looked at him and all his fears that he was blowing this out of proportion and it was just a joke melted away.  Sirius looked old like he only ever was when he got drunk enough to talk about his family without swearing.  Until he cocked his head.  

“‘Cause you don’t want to?  Or ‘cause you think I don’t want to?  Or ‘cause you think I don’t want to as much as you want?  Or the other way round?  Which is bloody stupid, really.  ‘Cause if you don’t already know and actually, I know you, you great prune and I’m taking you outside.”

Remus was still trying to make sense of the babble when he was dragged out of his seat, sparing a fleeting, disorientated look at his full tea cup which now seemed to be on the other side of the Great Hall.  Along with his bag and his soggy homework.  It appeared he was allowing himself to be man-handled outside by a monster.  Which was strange, because he was pretty sure he was the monster.  Only wait.

The fresh air made him feel instantly better, something settling in his shoulders and his gut at the scent of pine and lake.  Trying not to drown in years and weight and boyhood and looks and betrayal and pack was more difficult.  They rounded the corner, careering down the hill towards the lake, deserted this time of year.  Balls but it was cold.  Sirius turned, laughing as they managed to stop but he’d seen this laugh before and he was sick and tired of all of it.  Something clicked: Here you are, ladies and gentlemen - Remus Lupin: wizard, werewolf and a compete bender for his best friend.



What had they been arguing about last night again?  Oh yes.  Was he slightly hysterical?  Probably.

“I hold to the fact that James helping Lily pick out curtains for their future flat does not, in fact, make him a ‘prancing trollopy girl’ as that is inaccurate and beneath you in equal measure.”

Sirius was looking at him like he’d starting lecturing him on the mating habits of the honey badger in fluent Korean.  Perhaps monsters need more help.

“What I mean to say is.  You’re still wrong.  Very wrong.”

And that was it.  All his literary prowess and he couldn’t think of anything else to say.  So he waited.  And watched.

It was instant, the change, just like before.  Those big eyes, the little jolt that took Sirius’ body from something brash and imposing to something less readable but strangely acquiescent, hanging on what was about to happen to him next, knowing that he wasn’t in control of it.  Only this was Sirius Black and it lasted just long enough for Remus’ doubts to come back full force before that submission shifted seamlessly into boldness.  One last thought about where this ridiculous boy might have learnt to wait for the blow and then the wolf took all those doubts and told him exactly where to stick them.  Oh look, Remus thought rather abstractly as trembling, powerful fingers swept his hat off, I did that ‘interpreted as sexual’ thing again.  Teeth nicked at his neck trying to get under his old scarf, Sirius’ hair was floppy enough to tangle at his own knuckles and when he finally managed to breathe out it was a mutual laugh into each others’ mouths which should have been unpleasant but wasn’t and those strong fingers wouldn’t have let him pull away if he’d wanted to.  Sirius was doing that thing again where he was too sodding happy to properly exist without breaking a law somewhere.  This was so much worse (better, he dared to think, better) than Friday 31st March, however, thus confirming what, as Remus had already posited, was universally acknowledged.

Sirius Black was a monster.

I love Kilgrave (as a character concept) so much, man. He lives in a delusion he’s fabricated for himself as a result of the circumstances he is surrounded by. He is as much a product of himself and his abilities as he is a product of how those independent of his influence (either before or after he inherited his ‘Gift’) act around him and create (or fail to create) demonstrable distinctions between right and wrong. There is a dangerous certainty in the way that he acts because for him this false reality is perpetuated by his abilities; he need not care for others because they are not truly individuals, only actors on a stage awaiting instruction in a great game of cat-and-mouse, and those free of his influence are the rare other Gods literally made for him, if only they would see.

He could have been so much more. If these powers had been brought to him in some other light, if he had been a different person, if the people he knew had not been who they were (he reached out for help from Jessica and was subsequently drugged and tortured; he tried to reconnect with his parents and told to his face that he was a burden and one best dealt with through murder; he was never talked to about the reasons for the experimentations on him as a child, if any, or offered a choice in the matter). There’s so much failed potential in this man who is clever, calculating, emotionally intelligent (a man lacking emotional intelligence would not be quite so manipulative), powerful (though perhaps not in a very morally correct way), addicted to the high-life (tell me you wouldn’t watch a show about a superhero not about saving lives, who’s only in it for the money). 

But as well as all of those things he is deluded, impersonal, the creator of an autonomous power elite, and fails to even recognise others as truly other, as more than the dolls they are to him. He does horrible things because he is not able to does not recognise them as quite as horrible as they are, and those things are not excused by this, only explained. But the explanation is beautiful. The explanation of who he is is beautiful and brilliantly executed by David Tennant. He is not a good man gone wrong but a selfish man gone self-righteous. 

A psychopath by circumstance. 

I am not excusing his actions. Rape, murder and mind control are all terrible things to do. He should be imprisoned permanently, he’s a madman and a danger to others and obviously, obviously condemnable. But as a character, purely as an example of literary prowess in fiction, he’s brilliant – and obviously, obviously commendable. 

But forgiveness… I’ll hold on to that fragile slice of hope and keep it close, remembering that in each of us lie good and bad, light and dark, art and pain, choice and regret, cruelty and sacrifice. We’re each of us our own bit of illusion, fighting to emerge into something solid, something real. We’ve got to forgive ourselves that. Because there’s an awful lot of gray to work with. No one can live in the light all the time.

anonymous asked:

You are being extraordinarily rude to those people. It is heavily implied that those things are connected and those are some very good and likely interpretations. Just because it hasn't been outright said doesn't mean the clues aren't being put out there for people to see. Have you never taken a literature class?

Have I ever…


A literature class…

You know what’s rude? Me having to state over and over and over again that I don’t agree to the same person, who yet insists on bothering my inbox. And then having you come in and question my competence. I never said their interpretations weren’t “good.” Them being “likely” is subjective. We don’t have enough info as far as I’m concerned and that’s my opinion. 

As a literary major that’s only one semester of gen eds away from graduating with a bachelors that’s focused on creative writing and literary analysis, that’s my opinion

As someone who’s the top of their class at their top 100 university and one of the most proficient writers attending, that’s my opinion

As someone who’s won scholarships and earned trips abroad for their literary interpretations and writing prowess, that’s my opinion

And I have every right to it and every right to point out the faults in others if they’re going to be bothersome enough to pester me about the same thing over and over and over again. There are clues, but I don’t have to interpret the same way you or anyone else does, and when someone comes into my inbox to fragrantly disagree with my opinion and not have any evidence to back up their claims, I’m going to point out those things. 

When I interpret a piece of writing–no matter the media type–I take it in from every angle and consider every possibility. No, I’m not certain, but anyone who’s well-versed in literary interpretation knows better than to form one opinion and stick with it no matter what anyone else might say. I’ve considered the headcanon the anon offered and it’s too specific and exaggerated for me to take seriously based on the “evidence.” A book, a piece of jewelry, and a picture all stacked up together doesn’t lead me to only one conclusion, it leads me to many, and none of them are specific enough to zero in on something as exact as what the anon was proposing. 

I’m a realist, which means I don’t make up things and then claim they’re viable because it pleases my headcanons. When I have headcanons, I own up to them, I don’t go around bothering other people’s inboxes simply because theirs are different than mine. I post about it, yes, but it’s within your right to pass over such things. 

So don’t tell me that I’m being rude because their “evidence” wasn’t enough to prove anything to me or sway me in a certain direction. Provide a good argument and I’ll consider it. Tell me “Well, the book, the picture, and the miraculous were all together, so they might be connected” and I’ll agree with you, but don’t come in with a narrative about how these two characters were in Tibet and one got lost who happened–for no stated reason–to possess this miraculous, and it’s all another character had left, and in their search for their missing partner, they happened across some blah, blah, blah. That’s a headcanon–that’s a narrative. And it’s very nice. But it can’t be proven as canon, so don’t act like it can be. 

It bordered on fanfiction, and as someone who writes the stuff rather avidly and have been for some 10+ years, I think I’m pretty well-qualified to evaluate it as such. 

But that’s my opinion, and you’re more than capable of disagreeing if it so suits you. But be warned that I’ll be just as equally “rude” if you feel the need to spam my inbox with the soul intention of disagreeing with everything I have to say. If I disagree with someone, I tell them. And if that’s something someone can’t handle, then why enter the fray in the first place? 

I never once said their interpretation, their narrative, could be wrong. I simply said that there was no evidence with which to prove it concretely true. And I’d say that, with a tone that started with “well then you tell me,” their comments were “rude” far before mine were. And if someone is going to address me in such a manner, they don’t deserve my respect. Just as your childish question about my competence earns you the same–or, rather, lack thereof. 

Words matter. Be careful how you use them.

Later, gater.

Originally posted by hunter-and-biggest-nightmare