A witch puts a spell on a girl, a sleeping spell that promises the girl shall wake through true love’s kiss. Men come and kiss her. She slumbers. Women come and press their lips to hers, but still she sleeps. Many years past, and the girl remains still. One bright morning,  a lost little boy finds her resting spot and clears the dust and grime from her face. He offers her a kiss on her forehead, and her eyes flutter open. She never feels romantic love for a man nor a woman, and she cares for the boy until the day she dies.

A young woman is imprisoned in a castle by a monstrously formed prince. The servants of the castle hope for them to fall in love, and when the spell is broken they assume their prayers have been answered. They are all surprised, but nonetheless pleased, when it is revealed to them that the young woman and prince are the truest of friends, and nothing more.

They say the kingdom is ruled by an evil queen, a woman who is incapable of loving. She is unmarried, she has no consorts, and she wishes for no partner. She is the wretched queen, the heartless queen. She must hate her daughter, for her daughter is beautiful, and women are incapable of liking another woman who’s prettier than themselves. It must be for this reason that the princess was sent away, not for how she was attacked by a man in the woods. They say the kingdom is ruled by an evil queen because she cannot love. The queen loves her daughter, and that is enough for them both.

There lives a prince who is forced to choose a bride at the ball. He meets many beautiful women, but find none which he loves. He spies one in a gorgeous gown and wonder in her eyes, and he dances with her all night long. The kingdom is sure he has found his bride. When the clock strikes midnight he tells her how he will never love a woman, or a man, in the way he is expected to. The beautiful woman smiles and tells him she expects nothing from him. The next morning the prince and the beautiful woman are missing, having run off together to see the world. They leave their shoes behind in their haste.

Many kinds of love exist. It doesn’t all have to be romantic.

Join me in AU Territory for a few minutes, okay?

a.  So Obi Wan Kenobi basically ends up going, “NOPE. FUCK THIS NOISE.” and decides to raise baby Luke Skywalker himself.

(He’s not a true Jedi anymore; not when he can see all the mistakes he’s made with Anakin in full, excruciating detail.  Not when those closely held values of detachment and denial of emotions have led to fire and death and grief and…

No.  He will not turn.  He might not be a perfect Jedi, but he won’t turn to the Dark Side.)

b.  So he loves Luke with all his heart and baby Luke is basically the teeniest, most adorable ball of sunshine and light and his smiles are a balm on Obi Wan’s broken heart.

c.  Also.  Obi-Wan joins the Rebellion. Because hope doesn’t just lie in Jedi and the Light Side of the Force.   Hope lies in the people who are willing to live and die for their freedom, who are there to resist the Empire and its lies.

d.  Eventually, Obi-Wan finds Rex and Ahsoka and of course, that means baby Luke has more family members who will love him.  Maybe he’s not growing up as royalty the way Leia is, but he is equally treasured and precious to Uncle Rex and Aunt ‘Soka.

(Except Luke calls her Snips - just out of the blue - even though Obi Wan has never told him about this nickname and he doesn’t understand why Aunt ‘Soka suddenly catches him up in her arms and holds him tight tight tight.  He thinks he’s made her sad but Aunt ‘Soka tells him she can be his Aunt Snips and thus, Aunt Snips she became.)

e.  Obi Wan does not want to put the burden of stopping Vader on Luke’s shoulders.  It is monstrously unfair and neither Luke nor Leia should be burdened with the task of repairing their father’s mistakes.  This was Obi-Wan’s failure and it is his job to make it right.

f.  Vader chases after Obi-Wan’s ghost in various Rebel skirmishes - Jedi who mysteriously disappear and escape his finest soldiers,. Imperial shipyards being sabotaged, the best scientists of the Empire making successful defections.  He is always just one step behind, just one moment too late.  Vader’s rage knows no bounds.

(Vader never sees or hears about the child in Obi-Wan’s care.  His heart has already been buried in the royal tombs of Naboo, where Padme Amidala lies in her forever sleep.)

g.  There is a holo of little Luke and little Jyn Erso playing together.  Jyn has not smiled in months as her father and mother have desperately tried to flee the Empire, so that they would not be forced to keep working on its latest monstrosity.  It is Luke who has made her laugh again for the first time as they ran and chased each other.

h.  Luke’s first friend, first crush and his idol is the dashing Cassian Andor.

i.  Obi Wan finds healing and a new outlook/philosophy on the Force when he becomes friends with Chirrut Imwe and Baze Malbus.  He and Luke make the pilgrimage to the Holy City of Jeddah and while Luke is too young to understand, the ruins of its ancient temple make the child “feel good.”  For Obi-Wan, it is a peace he’s not felt in years. 

j.  Some things are still meant to happen.  Obi-Wan and Vader clash over the years but each duel is inconclusive and both men walk away alive.  It takes years for the Rebel Alliance to gain steam.  Galen Erso still falls into the hands of the Empire.  The pilot Bodhi Rook still defects to the Rebels.  Jyn Erso and Cassian Andor still lead a desperate group to Shariff to retrieve the Death Star plans.

k.  The difference is that Luke Skywalker defies his somewhat overprotective Uncle Ben, having stolen a ship to Shariff to rescue all of his friends.  They barely make it off planet as the Death Star blows up its Imperial base, but Luke’s gotten to be a very good pilot and will spend his downtime happily chatting away with Bodhi Rook.    

l.  Baze spends a few minutes yelling at Chirrut for having the “suicidal tendencies of an Alderaanian lemmingray” before kissing him stupid and it is the first good laugh that Rogue One has, even as they are all safe and sound and alive.

m.  Luke grins even though he knows he’s in deep trouble with Uncle Ben.  There is a transmission from him - Darth Vader is now in hot pursuit of those lost plans and he is chasing after the Tantive IV.  They will all rendezvous with Princess Leia on Tatooine. 

It begins.  A long, long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…  

I’ve seen crowdfunded projects crash and burn, but for my money, one of the most entertaining failures was a Kickstarted tabletop roleplaying game a few years back. I won’t be naming any names, since the poor guy’s clearly having a hard enough time as it is, but there should be enough information in this post to hunt it down if you’re morbidly curious.

Anyway, the target was met and exceeded, and the projected due date came and went. Nobody was particularly surprised, since crowdfunded indie projects basically never make their projected deadlines. Months passed, apologies were issued, backers were repeatedly reassured that everything was on track - the usual song and dance.

A few more months passed. Updates were scant, and handful of people asked for refunds, receiving them after variable amounts of dicking around. Not necessarily a sign of catastrophe, but folks were getting antsy, and the backer updates had been silent for an unusually long time.

Then right out of the blue, this big, ranty post went up, in which the project owner set forth the following:

1. The fact that people backed his project proved that the backers had surplus income, and the fact that they chose to spend it on financing the production of luxury goods (i.e., tabletop RPGs) rather than immediately giving it to the poor proved that they’re all bourgeois scum.

2. More narrowly, the backers had wronged him in particular by backing his project. Since that money was theoretically contingent upon the delivery of finished goods, the act of backing his project represented a monstrously predatory act of economic coercion against him.

3. In redress for this wrong, he would be keeping all of the remaining money, and neither a finished game nor any further refunds would be forthcoming. Anybody who felt slighted by this decision should take it up with the other backers, since it was their fault for creating the situation in the first place.

So yeah.

Dude’s Kickstarter crashed and burned so hard, he became a radical socialist.


Title: Aftermath
Characters: Hanji Zoe x Levi
Genre: Humor / Angst
Rating: T

@levihanweek​ Day 2: Nightmare

Levi’s Nightmare: Having a heart-to-heart with Pastor Nick.

“Are you worried about your wife?”

The question shocked him out of his musings.

Levi looked up, “My what?”

But the pastor was already speaking, “You’re obviously beside yourself with stress – and it’s understandable. Not knowing if your wife has survived-”

Levi cut him off, “My what?”

The pastor hesitated, apparently realizing he’d made some mistake, but misunderstanding precisely what it was. “Your…wife? The woman we traveled with before? She’s ah – forceful. You two uh – have the same, er – strident personality. When we first met, she dangled me off the wall.”

Keep reading


He was weak from imprisonment, and chained at the wrists. No knight in the Seven Kingdoms could have stood against him at his full strength, with no chains to hamper him. Jaime had done many wicked things, but the man could fight! His maiming had been monstrously cruel. It was one thing to slay a lion, another to hack his paw off and leave him broken and bewildered.

jaime lannister


Neil fiddled with the ring. It was habitual – and it was a better habit than biting his nails down to the quick or scratching said nails over the ridged skin under his arm bands. But every time his finger caught the thin silver chain and spun that silver band around, Andrew would settle a flat look until he stopped. 

Maybe because he was drawing attention to it. But it was just a ring on a necklace. Andrew had never worn his in public: There was no way anyone would think of the ring as anything special. How much had it cost? Neil couldn’t remember. 

Keep reading

I don’t disagree that D&D‘s nine-point alignment system has issues, but I think it’s interesting to look at how those issues are a direct consequence of how the framework of alignment has developed over the course of the game’s history.

Folks tend to think of D&D as being based on epic, good-versus-evil fantasy in the mode of J R R Tolkien - which is totally understandable, given that many highly visible elements of the game, like having elves, dwarves and hobbits as playable races, are clearly lifted directly from Lord of the Rings. However, in terms of its actual storytelling conventions, the game owes a much larger debt to swords-and-sorcery fantasy and weird fiction - especially authors like Jack Vance, Robert Howard and Michael Moorcock.

One of the common features of these genres - and of Moorcock in particular - is the notion of an eternal battle between cosmic forces of Order and Chaos. These forces are characterised as vast, inhuman and largely alien to conventional morality. Early versions of D&D followed suit and included not the more familiar nine-point alignment system, but a three-point system: Lawful, Neutral and Chaotic. Though player characters weren’t necessarily expected to take an active role in this cosmic battle, it was assumed that most would be notionally aligned with one of these forces. (Indeed, this is why it’s called “alignment”!)

Trouble is, folks who weren’t familiar with the source material tended to  assume that “Lawful” was a code-word for “good”, and “Chaotic” for “evil”. (Or possibly the other way ‘round, depending on their political bent.) Subsequent versions of the game attempted to clarify the matter by adding the Good/Evil axis to complement the Law/Chaos axis. The idea was to emphasise that the universe didn’t particularly care if you were a good or bad person, as long as you served the appropriate cause. As far as the monstrously inhuman gods were concerned, the most virtuous saint and the most brutal tyrant were morally equivalent, as they were equal in their commitment to cosmic Order. Likewise, a heroic freedom fighter and a cannibalistic serial killer were equally good exemplars of cosmic Chaos.

Of course, that was a really weird perspective, so a lot of players continued to ignore the whole “cosmic battle between Order and Chaos” thing and simply treated “Lawful Good” as “Extra Good”, and similarly, “Chaotic Evil” as “Extra Evil”. Compounding the issue, while later iterations of the game still included the notion of Law and Chaos as cosmic forces, they de-emphasised the battle between Law and Chaos in favour of foregrounding more accessible Good-versus-Evil conflicts, and discarded the notion that player characters would be actively aligned with those cosmic forces - yet they retained the nine-point alignment grid as a legacy feature.

With the nine-point grid still in place, but its original rationale now downplayed or absent, it was necessary to find alternative justifications for it. The Law/Chaos axis gradually shifted from being described in terms of cosmic principles to being described in terms of social conventions: a Lawful character was now merely one who believed in a well-ordered society and was inclined to respect and obey legal authority. This is where awkward questions like “how does a Lawful Good character react to unjust laws?” rear their ugly heads; note that this question wouldn’t even be on the radar in earlier versions of the alignment framework, since human laws don’t necessarily serve the cause of cosmic Order (and may well serve Chaos).

And that’s basically where we are now: the nine-point alignment grid is a semi-successful patch job on a feature designed to give rules-based weight to an aspect of the game’s default/assumed setting that no longer exists, subsequently kept around as a legacy feature. It’s not really surprising that its conceptual basis is full of glitches and weird edge cases - really, it’s kind of amazing that it works at all!

sinking like sand in your sea

some people believe in love at first sight. some people say it takes a lifetime. for maya hart it takes five years. // or the stages of falling in love with lucas friar

lucaya oneshot. title from send me the moon by sara bareilles

Keep reading

Just some random thoughts and theories about Ackerman Clan.

We do learn from Granda Ackerman that Ackermans used to be a close family to the royals, just like East Sea Clan. What made them different was that they were the shield and the sword of Royal Family. At Chapter 93, we also learn that they are a myth only royal family knows. 

At dark ages, Eldia Empire enslaved Marleyans and so told tried to etchnically erased them over 1700 years, of course as Kruger said so logically, this makes no sense.

What if like Eldians were trying to make humans more titan-like, what if they were making experiments on Marleyans like Titan Chemistry Research Society is doing on Eldians recently? And the conclusion of those experiments are Ackerman Clan? 

We don’t know much about Dark Ages where Eldia Empire ruled, what we do know is not reliable and changed by many people many times. But R.I.P Eldia Empire and Marley Empire are more alike than any Marley would be able to acknowledge.

Eldia defeated Ancient Marley Empire, relied too much on Titan powers and got defeated by Marley thanks to their super power human brain a hundred years ago.

And now, Marley is cornered at a close situation. They relied too much on Titan power that Mid-East Empire was nearly defeating them with their super power aka developed tech and they also know if they do not stop relying on Titan Power, they are done for.

It is really like a wheel that keeps turning endlessly, one time Marley is at top, one time Eldia.

If those who are at the top of it really did and are crush the ones at bottom, this would be just another piece to show how similar they actually are.

So what I am saying here is what if Ackermans actually Marleyans that somehow got injected with Titan powers? That would explain a lot. That would explain why King Fritz can’t control them even though they are not Eldians yet how monstrously strong they are even though they are humans. Not Marley, not Eldian, something in between. Outcasts that can’t be controlled other than one thing.

Their lieges.

I wonder if the actual reason Ackermans have lieges is to keep them under control. They can reach the great power that lies within them only if they choose a liege they are going to serve under. They gain a great control over their body and mind in order to be under control of that one person.

For a long amount of time, these people were chosen from royal family. After Ackermans rebelled to King with East Sea Clan, they also gained the freedom to choose their own liege yet they still are the slaves of their great strength and their lieges thanks to blood running through their veins. Yet again, they still have free will and they still can make individual choices. Maybe, the hanged Ackerman chose to give up on his life and the status Ackermans have within royals and chose to rebelled to gain this freedom. Even if it is just a little bit.

It would be fitting to learn that Ackermans are some kind of genetically changed Eldian - Marley hybrid instead of super mysterious magical winged ninth titan.

Just my two cents.


Aren’t you supposed to be Sakata Gintoki? The man who’s let so much slip away, who’s failed to protect so much, but swore that he would never run away from his responsibilities! Didn’t you promise her husband?! Once you’ve decided to protect something, you’ll protect it to the very end! Isn’t that what makes you Sakata Gintoki?!

So what if Otose-san’s life was in danger?! That isn’t enough to kill Otose-san off! It isn’t enough to kill us off! It isn’t enough to kill you off! Because you’re going to protect us! Because we’re going to protect you! Isn’t that what Yorozuya is about? Isn’t that how the three of us protected so much over the years?

Expedition to Sol2487-3 Pt. 2

The first encounter with life on Sol2487-3 - we called it “weeny wacky mudpot”, at least for the time being - would proof itself as one of the most gruesome experiences of my life.
We enterd the “field”, as Dr. Proaxl named it, but in fact it was a jungle. The stems of that cultivated grass reached far into the sky, almost as far as anyone could see. The soil underneath was brown, crumbling, muddy, and smelled like a space corps’ field latrine in Pjörecian summer.
Our expedition platoon consisted of in total four security squads members, including Loxxar Kraes, respectively two members of both medical and scientific squad, on top of that Dr. Proaxl, my first mate Xato Nexgrra and myself. Eleven trained and experienced ambassadors of the Intergalactic Federation of Peace in Space, half of our ship’s crew. The other half stood behind and secured the ship.

As we ranged the woods, suddenly a creature stepped out of the shadows. Our first encounter! Following the protocoll, we stayed alerted, but calm and peacefully. The creature was about our size, quite round and, well, fluffy. Its skin looked like it was covered of billions of the Grdklean Firewrappers poisonous prickles - hopefully it wasn’t as toxic as them. But our protective gear should grant our safety.
The creature approached us on all four of its limbs, and began to collect grains that were scatterd around the ground and nibbled peacefully on them while it peered at us. Its eyes were dark and round and full of… nothingness. Did it even see us? Did it even comprehend the fact that it had encountered life from outer space? This one clearly couldn’t be one of this planet’s sentinent races. I at least couldn’t remember of any sentinent race that used the same limbs for running as for eating. And this empty glance, uninvolved to anything on this planet and propably the entire universe and… for Xaleates’ sake, just how many of that grains could this thing fit in its cheeks?!
“Look how it’s stuffing itself” smirked Loxxar Kraes, “those grains must be quite delicious. Maybe we should take some, to…” As soon as he reached for one of the grains, the gates of Xyrrhos hells opened. The creature, just a second before dispassionate as a rock, jumped at him like a rabid Rjurcean Brooax. Fangs as long as my head burrowed into Loxxar Kraes’ breastplate. Fortunately it was designed for and tested in outer space, so there was no way it… it just broke. That beast just bit through one of the toughest armors the IFPS could provide.
Loxxar Kraes screamed in pain, but was soldier enough to take his gun and shoot the damn monster in the face.
I nearly had forgotten my position, as I pulled my gun and screamed on top of my breathing diaphragms “Fire! Fire! With all you’ve got!”
Beams of blazing hot plasma and bolts of concentrated electric energy whooshed through the air and hit the creature hard. It squeeked in such a high pitched tone and absurd enormous volume, that three of our team’s members - one security and both of the scientists - fainted immediately. But thank Xaleates the beast fled, leaving a scent behind that was even worse than the latrine soil we stood in.

“He is alive” answered Dr. Proaxl, “at least for now. If we returned to our ship, we could stabilize and propably save him, unless…”
“Unless?” I asked nervously.
“Unless those spineless worms that prefer crouching through the mud rather than helping in medical care of a wounded comrade can’t pull themselfes up again!” she vituperated against the collapsed crew, especially her own squad members.
The scolded ones flinched concerned, regardless the circumstance that Dr. Proaxl was the only one around who as a matter of fact had not a spine.
“Ok everyone” I commanded, “return to the ship! Weapons at the ready and all organs of perception at work!”

We retreated as fast as Loxxar Kraes’ condition allowed. But as we reached the edge of the street, the next monster awaited us.
Right on top of our ship sat - IT FRICKIN’ SAT! ON MY SHIP! - a monstrousity unheard of. Not even the scariest tales of my homeworld’s pitchblack mythology would have prepared me for this nightmare. A creature, covered in dozens of long spikes, each of them encircled with black filaments, like leafs of a tree. And its size. It was as tall as half of my crew stacked over each other. Its two limbs each branched into four roots, three in front and one in the back, wrapped around the ships hull and left screaching deep scratches, for the giant claw at the end of each root, that would have put the ceremonial weaponry of the IFPS’ guards of honour at blank shame. Its head alone was formed like an ancient weapon, a gigantic spear, meant to impale one’s body at whole. And its eye. It was gigantic, wide opened, deep as the wide darkness of space itself, but nothing compared to that earlier one’s eyes. This here seemed terrific intelligent. It fixated us with its cold, taxing glance. Suddenly, from one second to the other, the giant turned its head and showed us another eye, identic to the other one. It even bent its neck and stared down to us. It was horrific intimidating. Through the windows of the ship I could see the rest of my crew, shuddering of fear.
Then the beast unbended two additional limbs one couldn’t have expected, it stretched those extremities as if it wanted to cover the sun and bring neverending darkness upon us. We could feel how the ground was shaking and from afar rumbling thunder approached to us. This was an incarnation of Xyrrhos himself and he was about to bring us doom. Then with a clash of its gigantic black limbs it jumped - No! It pressed the air beneth it! - it flew! It genuinly flew! Without any recognizable device, it flew! Away.
“What at my progenitor’s lappets was that?!” whispered Xato Nexgrra.
Then, the doom struck.

A mountain, taller than you could see, faster as you could think, with deafening uproar scorched through, black and silver linings hasted through my sights, a screaching noise of ripping metal echoed in my ears. Blazing storms dragged me along, hundreds of steps away from the point I stood before. When I could pull myself up again, the unimaginable had happened. My ship was gone. Obliterated. Pulverised. Half of my crew, shreds in the blasting winds. Exterminated by a might incomprehensable to my thoughts.

“This isn’t weeny wacky mudpot any longer. This is… Devil’s Playground.”


Bridge Podcast valentines for you and your special sea monster <3 

Created in collaboration with @pryce-and-carter​, who did the monstrously impressive backgrounds, text, and special effects!

anonymous asked:

Pls share any thoughts you might have on Barry Allen (you always have such wonderful thoughts about every character and amazing grasps on their characters and poor Barry has been falling victim to mischaracterisation at every turn for the past eight years)

he calms me down. superman symbolizes the good people can achieve and be even in their darkest moments but flash makes me feel that people are already good, in a way? he’s like the exact opposite of an anxiety attack where everything looks scary but the silly kind of scary where you know it’s all just in your head. he’s the guy who doesn’t get fazed by something you thought was the end of the world so you catch yourself thinking “hey? hey. this isn’t bad. yeah this isn’t bad”

he brings so much positivity to the table and it’s not the annoying kind, it’s the “i can make the day better” in a very chill, matter-of-fact tone, which could so easily sidetrack his character and make him be a bit faster than life, yet he cares and will go out of his way to slow down just to show it. he’s so genuinely kind and that’s only multiplied by the flash family who are, to date, one of the most lovable families the dcu has had on such a big, extended-members basis

every flash is so laid back in their own way, but the reason i consider barry “my” flash is because i always found a hint of something more in his character. i can see the sacrifices he’s had to make in the way he carries himself but i can also see the crystal clear acknowledgement that he’s one of the very, very few people who hold the power to change the tides so monstrously. so he accepts it. he accepts that responsibility. he more than readily accepted it when he very first got his powers because he knew he was now the only person who could finally find his mother’s real killer and drop his dad’s charges; he accepted it when he tried to keep his mother from dying in the first place just to have the entire timeline completely turn around because of his actions. and instead of being okay with this new reality, instead of turning a blind eye which was so much easier to do than to actively try and do his duty (and possibly die in the process), he did what was right for literally everyone else except for him and lost her all over again so things could be the way they were

he’s so invested. it’s the only appropriate word i can use to describe him. you can see how much he inspired everyone who met him just by the legacy he left after his death, by how the other heroes talked about him in near reverence. the respect they had for all he had attained, how they held him as the gold standard for others to achieve (not just the justice league but the entire world). he’s had one of the most heroic deaths in Crisis on Infinite Earths, one of his last few words literally being “there is always hope” even as he was willingly getting torn apart to save everyone he loved and knew, and the people he’d never met or would likely ever meet. why? because he could. so he did

the reason i began by putting clark and barry side by side is because i consider clark to be one of the most human characters in the entire dcu and yet barry still has something more, however small the difference might be. he’s in every sense of the word a real hero and a genuinely good human being

Here’s the difference between you and the average billionaire: You will go out in nature and say, “these trees are beautiful!” The billionaire will follow that up with, “Now scoop ‘em all up and mail that shit to my house!”

Take Bidzina Ivanishvili, the wealthy former Prime Minister of Georgia (the country, in case you’re wondering when U.S. states started electing Prime Ministers), who likes to collect giant, ancient trees. So, he’ll see one, and then crews will have to dig them up and float them upright, King Kong-style, along the coast to his private villa which already includes his own waterfall and menagerie of exotic animals.

This is much, much harder than we just made it sound. In 2016, Ivanishvili paid to have a 135-year-old tulip tree barged to his property, though it was so heavy that it almost caused the boat to sink, so they tried to build a road instead, which kept collapsing. In the end, it took almost a week to drag the massive tree just 40 kilometers and plonk it down in his cartoonish trophy forest.

He does insist that he will grow new trees to fill the space of the ones he’s taken, and that his acquisition of these historic trees is actually saving them (it’s like an animal sanctuary, but for trees!), which so far hasn’t done much to quell the tide of criticism. But what are they going to do? They can’t vote him out again. Checkmate, assholes!

5 Billionaires Who Pulled Some Monstrously 'Rich Guy’ Moves


I don’t love you loud or monstrously. I don’t love you like a hurricane loves a city or a bullet loves flesh. I don’t love you like the writer in me wants to love you. I don’t love you in a way that makes good television. I don’t love you as if you were cursed and broken and imploding, as if you were a grenade waiting for my words of regret and grief. I don’t love you like I’m waiting for you to explode and burn every part of me that wanted to believe what little we had was immortal. I don’t love you so my heart can bleed all over my fingertips and I can call the stains art. I don’t love you so I can one day hate you.

I love you and there is no explosion.
I love you and instead, there is quiet.

(I love you in the way that creates, not destroys)


Audiovisual essay adaption of a popular essay on SVLLY(wood) Magazine vol.1 issue.1: The Feminine Mystique Redux [link below]
Unpacking the highs and lows of Blaxploitation horror through the prism of Barbara Creed’s seminal, ‘Monstrous-Feminine: Film, Feminism, Psychoanalysis’. Featuring readings on classics such as, ‘Ganja and Hess’, ‘Abby’, and 'Sugar Hill’.

Black Feminity As The Monstrousness by Rooney Elmi

Seven Things About Supernatural: 12x18 - The Memory Remains

I haven’t had an opportunity to do a rewatch yet – life stuff, tax stuff, etc. – but I want to get some things written before they go out of my head.  So.

  1. Three big things are going on with Dean this ep: Cas being missing, Dean’s  behavior as the holder of the Colt, and Dean’s hookup with Carmen.

    We know that Dean is stressed with Cas being MIA.  This is two episodes straight where we know he’s making calls, and he makes it clear to Sam that he’s been trying to track Cas through the usual channels – his phone, police and hospitals, etc. – to no avail.  It bothers him.  He’s not okay.  This is an active stressor for Dean.  When Dean is stressed out in one area, he tends to turn up the volume on other behaviors in other areas.  The boy’s got coping mechanisms for days, generally manifesting in violence, substance use, erratic behavior, and recreational sex.

    The situation with the Colt might well be the simplest thing happening with him in this ep.  He has the Colt and he’s practically fucking doting on it: maintaining it while he talks with Sam, carrying it as his regular weapon, etc. It makes good sense that he’s keeping it close with Dagon in play, but I feel like it’s more than that.  Holding the Colt means holding something that makes him more powerful.  It simplifies things.  He doesn’t have to think as much when he’s got that in hand.  Given that he’s already stressed, this is welcome.  

    And then there’s Carmen, the waitress with a familiar name (2x20, his djinn-induced dream girlfriend) with whom he blows off some steam in an easy, brother-ditching hookup.  There’s nothing to critique about recreational sex – people have it, it’s fun, blah, blah, blah – and it’s been a part of Dean’s character for most of the show that hookups of opportunity are a part of his lifestyle.  What’s interesting about it is the timing: Dean’s out of balance with Cas missing and the temptations inherent in holding the Colt.  

    Mindless hookups of opportunity aren’t just satisfying in their own right (which again, I’m going to allow that they are) when they’re also compensating for another unmet need, or relieving stress.  Dean and sex, Dean and drink, Dean and burgers?  Pursuit of pleasure to compensate for pain is Dean’s real lifestyle choice.  That the thing is satisfying in its own right is immaterial when there’s a pattern, and there is.
  2. I’d be curious how intentional it was on John Bring’s part to bring in a metric fuckton of callbacks to other episodes.  There were shades of the Benders and the Stynes, as well as the community in Scarecrow.  Shades of law enforcement handwaving from The Chitters.  There was an outsider brother (Andy’s brother Ansem in 2x05, Adam Milligan) trying to get his due.  There was the taxidermy thing (direct 9x05, but also 7x17 and 3x13 if you squint), Carmen’s name, Game of Thrones references (various episodes from S9 on).  And, of course, the carving of initials onto the bunker table which…
  3. …brings me to an uncomfortable thing in that there’s a lot of talk about legacy and endings, passing things on, and the bunker itself.  I know I’m not the only one looking at this and wondering a) if they’re starting to set the pieces in place for a path to endgame, and b) worried about the Bunker’s continued existence, but…yeah.  Those two things.  At an extremely high volume.
  4. One of the big factors in my concern for the Bunker is, obviously, the BMoL home invasion party.  Which, wow.  Massive violation on an extraordinary scale.  And worrying in terms of the Winchesters maintaining a home base beyond S12.  I wouldn’t call it unexpected – this is really just escalation from Ketch bringing liquor and Mick showing up uninvited with the unwelcome news that all chapter house keys work on all chapter houses – but it’s ugly. 

    Two interesting things about this:
    - Ketch steals a photo
    - Dean shit-talks Ketch after the phone call at the table he and Sam just marked.

    This suggests to me that Dean, without even seeing the rest of the Bunker or having an opportunity to discover the missing photo, has an inkling that something is Wrong.  Because that bike?  He liked that bike earlier in the season.      
  5. It’s also a penny dropping for me about the nature of Ketch’s particular flavors of monstrousness, and his relationship with Lady Toni.  Arthur Ketch isn’t just someone groomed to violence.  He’s got obsessive behaviors that his training can’t compensate for.  He’s fixating on Mary enough that he broke the single cardinal rule of the operation he was staging: leave no trace.  He’s fixating on Mary, and given how dangerous he is as an individual, I think we can assume that any kind of pathological attachment is absolutely a flag for other forms of potential violence incoming.
  6. Going back to the premise of the episode, I did really enjoy the idea of a company town with a bit of nasty local lore, all of it with requisite “just the way things are” logical explanation.  

    Like, how many small towns have weird folklore?  And how much of it is genuine weird and how much of it is people being fucked up in unexpected or unpredictable ways?  

    We’ve also got someone at the heart of a nasty family legacy – “hunting people, killing them, the family business” – taking responsibility for it.  That makes me worry in whole other ways about, say, Mary.
  7. For once, my “watching while Pagan” moment was less about squirming at the show getting it super wrong, and more about pointing out one of the many, many reasons Carthage must be destroyed.  

Bonus Thing: 
Okay, but seriously.  Carthage must be destroyed.