most important scene of the arc

I saw Guardians of the Galaxy 2 again today and noticed a bunch more things on the rewatch.

  • First of all I was expecting to be bored at least some of the time (I mean, I just saw it a little over a week ago), but I never, ever was, not even once. This movie uses every minute so well. (Unlike the first one, where most of the Ronon and Thanos scenes dragged horribly even the first time, and were completely skippable on a rewatch.)
  • I love how the end of the movie recontextualizes some of the earlier scenes. For example, Mantis’s misery and fear is so obvious when she first meets the gang, and in most of her scenes afterwards. The first time you watch it, her anxiety is easily read as nervousness around strangers. The second time, though, it’s such a gut-punch to see her standing behind Ego, wringing her hands, and knowing why.
  • Drax mistaking Yondu for Peter’s actual father is another of those fantastically recontextualized scenes. The first time, it’s funny, just a tossed-off joke. The second time, though … right in the feels. Because Drax, for the most part, doesn’t get the whole concept of people pretending to be something other than what they are. He watches Yondu and Peter interact with each other and he totally gets the actual relationship in a way even they don’t.
  • Speaking of which, there is some really brilliant editing in this movie. This time around, I noticed how it cut from Ego’s “I’m your dad, Peter” right to the first installment of Yondu’s storyline (which also involved interacting with his parental stand-in, Stakar). And none of the significance of this is clear if you don’t know the characters’ emotional context! You basically can only pick it up after having seen the movie once.  
  • The pacing on all the emotional arcs is so, so good. I didn’t even really notice, the first time around, how strong the Peter-Rocket arc is, from their fighting in the beginning, through Rocket not wanting to leave him on the planet, to their little moment of connection at the end.
  • I still can’t get over how this movie has eight major characters (not counting Ego; let’s not count Ego) and every single one of them has a) an emotional arc of their own, b) at least one strong platonic relationship arc with a beginning, middle, and end, and c) at least one scene in which they get to be awesome and do something important. EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM. Even the noncombatants. Even the baby!
  • The first time around, I didn’t really notice how brutal Gamora and Nebula’s fight is. @sheronm pointed out how incredibly OTT Gamora picking up the ship cannon is (in a way female characters rarely get to be) but the whole fight is like that: brutal, dirty, vicious, and not sexualized in the slightest. Speaking of which …
  • The only shirtless scenes in the whole movie are guys (Peter on the ship, and Yondu at the brothel). The closest the movie comes to a romance arc is Peter and Gamora flirting and dancing. I still adore how Mantis and Drax make it explicitly clear that they aren’t into each other in a sexual/romantic way, and yet the most important relationship either of them has in the movie is with each other, and he’s willing to die to save her in the end. The movie doesn’t completely ignore romantic love (the Peter/Gamora relationship is still important), and it is true that there are a few sexist jokes (like Peter hitting on the Sovereign queen – though he apologizes for it, which is a rare thing). But overwhelmingly, this is a movie that never dismisses its female characters to “love interest” or sexualizes them any more than the male characters are.
  • When I saw this movie the first time, I thought the soundtrack and use of music was better in the first movie, but now that I’ve seen them both back to back, I was so, so wrong. They both have great music, they both have some great musical scenes, but I think it’s mostly that the first movie has a faster, more actiony soundtrack, while the second movie has a slower, gentler, more emotional soundtrack that I didn’t fully appreciate at first. But in the first movie, the music is mostly a (well-done!) melodic accompaniment to the action, while in the second movie, the songs are very carefully fit to the scenes in which they occur – whether the important thing is the peppy/awful contrast (“Come a Little Bit Closer” over the murder montage), or the whole point is that the song is so terribly, cheesily on point (“Brandy”), or sometimes because the song fits the emotional tone of the scene in the best fanvid kind of way (“Father & Son”, or the repeated use of “The Chain” for the characters being separated and then coming all back together in Peter’s love-epiphany/Power of Friendship™ moment at the end).

It’s just sooo goooood. I really didn’t expect a bombastic, ridiculous musical comedy in space to genuinely be one of the best movies I’ve seen in ages.

Moments of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 (MAY HAVE SPOILERS)

-Drax’s infectious laughter through the whole movie.

-Additionally Drax’s continuous ineptitude for social interaction, especially with Mantis.

-Gamora truly becoming Space Mum and suffering the whole time.

-The entire family dynamics within the team and the fact romance was vaguely alluded to, but wasn’t more important over family unlike most other hero movies.

-Kraglin being the Best Boy!!! The purest character in the movie who deserves only good.

-Groot being brilliant comedic relief, but ultimately also being a 3D character who pulls through in the end.

-More trAGIC BACKSTORY FOR ALL!!

-Nebula having the best redemption arc and the saddest reasoning behind it all.

-#Let Gamora and Nebula hug more 2k17.

-Also someone give Rocket more hugs because he suffers too much. Real revelation of his character and his scene with Yondu fuCK!!

-Yondu = true dad and hero of the movie.

-FUCK EGO AND HIS STUPID FUCKING ASS HE CAN BURN IN HELL FOR WHAT HE DID TO PETER!!

-Movie should be renamed “The Incredibly Shitty and Horrendous Time in Peter Quill’s Life”. Let him rest.

-The unabashed hints and references dropped. Every five seconds they references someone and it was amazing.

-The soundtrack once more!

-The reference they did to the first movie where Groot freezes while dancing when Drax sees him.

-Groot. That’s it. He was amazing.

-Mantis and Drax’s incredibly weird but endearing platonic relationship that I hope stays platonic forever because it’s too good.

-Someone must tell Mantis she’s beautiful every day this girl needs it.

-Teach Mantis to smile and love herself !!!

-Big Sister Gamora must take Mantis under her wing and teach her not to take shit from anyone.

-Dad Peter at the end with Groot. Takes after his dad Yondu. Next he’ll threaten to eat Groot.

-The inappropriately times jokes.

There’s so much more good parts to this movie but I’ve rambled on too long already. It must be watched!!

you know, i get the disappointment that some people felt over the conclusion of claw arc on mob psycho 100′s anime. how they were expecting a big action scene, a big fight showcasing mob’s powers, but were instead met with reigen taking over the situation, and solving it mostly through talk alone. to something that was built up as the conclusion of a big, fight-heavy arc, it might feel like a let down. 

but while i get that, i also feel that the people who were expecting this don’t really get an important aspect of this series. it has action and it is an action series, yes, but in many ways, mob psycho doesn’t glorify fighting. and most of all, mob psycho doesn’t glorify making kids fight.

mob, ritsu, teru, all of the other psychic kids. they are kids. and the show doesn’t brush it off as something natural, the fact that a bunch of adults are placing these kids on this situation.

mob hates using his powers, and he hates hurting other people. and while the show is always very aware of his shortcomings, this isn’t presented as one of them, as an evidence of his weaknesses. and i have to say that after so many animes having these 12-15 kids as these merciless badass mini-adults who are always unfazed by the shit they have done and must do, it felt extremely refreshing that on the defining moment of the arc, the moment where i felt sure that mob would have to reach his breaking point in order to win, we instead got an important adult figure in his life reaching out to him, calming him down instead of urging him on, and saying ‘no, hold on, you don’t have to go through this. i’ll solve this out for you, kiddo’.

LOVE is not a GAME

It’s been weeks and I’m just so struck by the fact that the whole theme of Sherlock throughout the years was…“The game is on!”. Sherlock using the distraction of his detective work as a substitute high, and honestly a way to keep himself at arms length from ‘humans’ and any emotional and/or romantic relationships of course.

And then there’s THE FINAL PROBLEM and in comes Eurus Holmes, setting up this game for Sherlock, and putting Molly Hooper’s life in danger, and during that call we get all this…

  • Is this one of your stupid games? No, it’s not a game.
  • I’m not an experiment, Sherlock. No, I know you’re not an experiment, you’re my friend, we’re friends.
  • You know why. No, I don’t know why.
  • Because it’s true, Sherlock. It’s always been true. Well if it’s true then just say it anyway.
  • Say it like you mean it. I love you. I love you. 

He spends the whole phone call worried and pleading and as soon as it’s done he tries to shut all that off and get back to the game so he says…”Eurus, I won, I won…I won, I saved Molly Hooper.

But then you have Eurus coming back with that EMOTIONAL CONTEXT speech and being like, HAHA NOPE, silly boy, you just lost, you proved yourself wrong, you have emotions, you do care.

And the writers had Eurus use Molly Hooper against Sherlock, like this, to facilitate this exact epiphany, (disproving everything he’s said over the years, that he’s not a hero, that he doesn’t have a heart) because MOLLY HOOPER does count, she matters the most, he loves her, and LOVE IS NOT A GAME.

AND I JUST CAN’T GET OVER HOW IMPORTANT THAT SCENE WAS! NOT JUST FOR THIS SHIP BUT FOR SHERLOCK’S ENTIRE ARC OF CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT!

On Reading Sherlock’s Face

I’m not a fan of metas based on reading faces. I’ve seen other people do it well, but I’ve never liked actually basing conclusions off expressions alone. Everything exists in context, but especially facial expressions. They’re also the easiest thing to project onto– you can read a lot of things into a facial expression, and I’m very wary of that sort of thing in analysis. I am particularly wary when shippers do it and/or there’s an agenda involved (and usually there is an agenda involved, in fandom). My point: I don’t really do facial analysis if I can help it, and certainly not alone. But there’s definitely a point in TFP where the show kinda begs you to look at Sherlock’s face, and I can’t deny it’s interesting.

In a general sense, I’m also kinda going through the things that seem off or are interesting in Series 4 (in no particular order), and of course, I haven’t addressed this yet:

I remember being struck by this when I saw it in the trailer, and analyzing it a bit. It was obvious to me it wasn’t to John, because John is behind Sherlock. In thinking about it before I knew the context, I thought it was weird, because Sherlock looked so unhappy. His whole expression is… tense, disturbed at something. It’s not the kind of face (or set-up) one associates with an ‘I love you’, so I thought something rather dark must be going on.

Now, I agree with the analysis that this isn’t Sherlock’s ‘lying face’, or the over-the-top acting Sherlock was doing with Janine in HLV. This is definitely different. But the only two options aren’t ‘he’s lying’ vs ‘he’s just realized he means it’. The difference between TFP and HLV is context: in HLV, Sherlock went on to dismiss John’s horror at his callousness, and say love was ‘human error’. In TFP, Sherlock no longer thinks so. That is the point.

A lot of people (no matter what they ship) don’t understand this scene– they either seem to think it’s gratuitous emotional torture, bad Molly characterization (because she’s apparently not gotten over her feelings, though as I’ve said, there’s no reason to think she had), or– I suppose– there to show us that Sherlock just loves Molly back, all appearances to the contrary. Of course, many fans essentially believe there doesn’t really need to be a reason for that last option, particularly seeing as it’s about a heterosexual couple, so I’ll just say that no, there actually does need to be a reason, not to mention build-up. Besides, if Sherlock simply… meant it, that would kill the drama (and the intended darkness) of the scene. In general, no matter what Sherlock’s face says, the narrative has to support it or it makes no sense and constitutes bad writing. But for what it’s worth, his face doesn’t really say ‘I love you’. He looks sad and disturbed, but I do believe he also looks like he’s realizing something on some level. It’s a form of his serious deduction face, except we don’t get as much of an inward look as we did the last time this happened, during the wedding speech in TSoT (as I once wrote extensively about).

So what is Sherlock realizing, in context?

That question is closely tied to asking why that scene is there. I mean, I’ve seen plenty of Johnlock shippers sort of riff on the fact that the deduction of the person meant for the casket could have been about John– he too is short and practical, and he loves Sherlock! But I think bringing John into it is a derailment. It’s not about John, but it’s not about Molly, either, not directly. Like I said in my John analysis in TLD, it’s not about John ‘cause it’s about Sherlock. Obviously, this applies to this scene: we’re focused on Sherlock’s face here, full screen. That certainly suggests that we’re meant to be focusing on him (and his arc).

And yes, that’s what I think it’s about. I realize most people who’re not Johnlockers seem not to care that there’s an arc, but even though we’ve been wrong about various things, the one thing I’ve been right about is the importance of Sherlock’s arc. Moffat has explicitly referred to it and its relevance to TFP, too. This is Sherlock’s test, his final test (as administered by Eurus, the embodiment of the ‘high-functioning sociopath’ persona). The Final Problem is becoming human.

So what does that have to do with Molly? He’s already told Eurus that he realizes his life is not his own: “Your own death is something that happens to everybody else.” So he’s learned the lesson of Reichenbach. The ‘human error’ thing is about people like Janine and Molly though, in the show. He doesn’t really have a problem accepting his feelings about John (however you want to read them); as soon as he realized them, around TEH and TSoT, he accepted them. John is always the exception. It’s everyone else’s feelings– and feeling in general– that Sherlock hasn’t taken seriously or accepted as valid, as important, as worth empathizing with. So this is the final step: he’d already felt bad for Molly in TEH, but he didn’t take her feelings fully seriously, because then there was Janine. Love was still ‘human error’… but then Sherlock kept making that error. You don’t have to read this romantically, though it’s certainly not been about Molly. He’s made the error about John, about Mary, and even about Eurus (in TLD). That’s what he was telling Mrs Hudson with ‘Norbury’. He knows that ‘human error’ is something he has to take into account. Heartbreak is something Sherlock is now very familiar with. He has to feel it, but he doesn’t have to fear it (as Moriarty said).

Sherlock fake-smiled when he proposed to Janine because he was dissociating, essentially. Here, he wasn’t. But that doesn’t mean he was confessing his love. It means he was fully feeling the awfulness  of what he was doing to Molly, and that he was aware he was using  his real feelings– because he really does care about her as a friend– to hurt her, essentially. This is the realization he started to have at the end of TAB, about how many women he’d hurt. This is the consequence: it hurts. It burns. It aches, being human. But it allows him to reach his sister, in the end, so the point is not about avoiding the pain but embracing it.

Stuck in the Middle (With You)

I just rewatched my favorite episode, 12x12, and I can’t believe how apparent the foreshadowing was for… well, pretty much everything that was going to happen in the finale. I mean, one of the most blatant parallels in that episode is to Reservoir Dogs with Dean as Mr. White and Cas as Mr. Orange. Mr. Orange dies at the end (so does Mr. White, but I’d suggest that the death he experiences is an emotional death before his actual death), but it is prolonged. We think he is going to pull through, and up until the last few minutes, it really looks like he is actually going to survive. From my point of view, this parallel didn’t end at the end of the episode. It continued through the season, through Dean and Cas bonding with each other even more than before between moments of heartbreak and mistrust. Kind of like how Mr. White and Mr. Orange got to bond as they prepared for the heist, but the real development in their relationship came in the aftermath of the heist, before their deaths.

Aside from that, this episode was really a preview of all of the supporting characters’ roles in the finale, especially their motivations and their fates.

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My Analysis on Giomis and Why I Ship Them (1/2)

I doubt this will get any real attention since I hardly use tumblr, but I digress. Any-who, ever since I read Vento Aureo for the second time, I was struck by many important scenes I missed during my first read through. Unfortunately, the terrible scans and awful translations I read of VA, really hindered my understanding of what was happening in the entire series as a whole. Thankfully, I found colored scans fully translated in English (some of it is still a bit off, and I am waiting for Jojo’s Colored Adventure to finish translating all of the colored volumes), that helped me grasp many aspects of the story I missed the first time around.

The most important of these details I missed the first time around, was Giorno and Mista’s budding relationship throughout the series. When you are forced to stare at low quality images with sub-par translations, what tends to happen is that you try to read as quickly as you can just to grasp some idea of story’s main plot. I unfortunately did this during my first run through of VA, so when I decided to give part 5 a second chance, I made sure I found scans that wouldn’t make my eyes bleed. As I re-read each chapter, it felt as if I was experiencing the story for the first time, and found myself relating to Giorno’s character even more. Like myself, he is a quiet reserved person, who enjoys spending all of his time alone. He has goals, dreams, and ambitions that give him a hunger for success. Being only a 15 year old boy, with no real guidance on how to achieve his dream, he simply turned to petty crimes in order to put his name out there. Meeting Bruno became a life changing experience–he found someone who valued his goals, and offered to work with him (though warning that if he got caught, Bruno would abandon their partnership) in order to make those goals into a reality. Having someone who is older, and experienced like Bruno, would have given Giorno confidence, for he found someone that he could not only work together with, but look up to as a mentor.

When Giorno meets the other members of Bruno’s team, quickly he learns that he has to prove himself, and tries to act coolly towards their mistrust. In fact, an important thing he says after drinking Abbacchio’s special tea, is that he was going to hide his stand abilities, because he felt that they wouldn’t openly show theirs to him. This gets reinforced when Abbacchio berates Giorno and refuses to summon Moody Blues while they are attacked on the boat to Polpo’s treasure. Why is this particularily so important? Well, that’s because Mista, being the carefree person he is, doesn’t even attempt to hide Sex Pistols from Giorno. In fact, he offers to team up with him right away, something that shocks Giorno. Mista doesn’t try to hide himself from the teenager, instead he offers to work with him on various missions. For Giorno, who must have been feeling the pressures of being isolated from the rest of the group, this would have been refreshing and comforting.

Skipping ahead to the White Album arc, (ah yes that quintessential Giomis arc), Giorno still wasn’t fully integrated into the group. The members of Bruno’s gang still thought of him as just some newbie, and Mista again, finds himself working with the teenager. When Ghiaccio’s stand attacks them, it is an ability that completely counters Giorno’s. In fact, as he sat there freezing in the driver’s seat, Giorno felt hopeless. He voiced his concerns to Mista repeatedly, telling him that the mission was the most important thing, and that he felt as if there was nothing he could really do to help. Mista countered Gio’s pessimism with his own optimistic view on life, telling the teenager that even in the most difficult of times, there is a silver lining. This was exactly what Giorno needed to hear. Mista’s encouragement, guidance, and directions, was enough to remind the teenager that all hope was not lost. He pushed Gio to use Gold Experience, making special bullets for him to use, and even further supports Gio by shouting Gold Experience for him when he couldn’t.

What’s important to consider with this arc, is the fact that Giorno was willing to get himself killed, and sacrifice his dreams, in order to stay loyal to the group. This means during that point, he was at his lowest, and Mista was there to pick him back up. Importantly, Giorno offered Mista the same support in return, guiding him as a leader to find his resolve to stay alive. Once White Album is defeated, we then get one of the most IMPORTANT scenes from the VA manga, which is the one where Giorno heals Mista’s head wound, and holds him as the sun symbolically rises behind them, illuminating the path to victory. The teenager then gives a very touching speech, letting readers know that Mista and Giorno are going to stay “together” until the end–this is one of the few instances where Jojo gives us a life-flag rather than a death-flag. We get a hint that Mista will be one of the survivors, following Giorno wherever he decides to go. Also, it is important to note that when the other members of passione monologue about the teenager’s charisma and leadership skills, it is all one-sided–Giorno offers no commentary in return. However, with Mista, Giorno is the first to speak up on the 18 year old’s determination, giving an excellent speech about his remarkable skills as a fighter.

WOW this came out to be much longer than I thought…and I am nowhere near done with my analysis…I’ll make another post sometime soon about this…starting with everyone’s favorite scene of Giorno “healing” Mista and how, though it is a gag, it’s timing in the narrative and changing dynamics of their relationship, suddenly gives their partnership a lot more sexual/romantic overtones.

Differences between the Anime and the Manga - Intro

I’m gonna be posting the differences between the anime and the manga for every episode. I’ll be doing each episode of s2 as it comes out, and in between each episodes, I’ll be doing s1.

Just like many others, I was hyped for season 2, so I decided to re-watch season 1 of the anime. It was only my 3rd time watching s1, and this time, I decided to re-read the manga as well along the way, just to see what kind of changes the anime team made.

I read the manga more than 10 times, and even though I knew that there were many changes in the anime, I was still surprised by how much.

First, I wanna say that I love the anime, I think the animation is amazing, the voice acting is perfect, and the music is beautiful. I liked watching every scene from the manga animated, and I liked watching fillers that we knew happened in the manga, but they weren’t shown (for example in ep26 that would be Mike slicing up the Titans, that was awesome).

So I’m hyped for season 2, and I can’t wait to watch all those amazing manga panels animated.

However, I don’t like when scenes from manga are deleted or changed, and I’m not interested to watch someone else’s head-cannons.

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Sanji and Nami – Fights and danger

I always rant about how Oda seems to put emphasis on Nami when it comes to Sanji, which is also one big reason for me thinking that Nami is in fact special to him. I decided to make a post that goes through their fights specifically and how often there seems to be some type of connection to the other person in their fights. Of course it’s not the case in all fights, but still there is a considerable amount, especially from Sanji’s side. I also bring up some other instances when the other person is in danger which I find interesting from a story-telling point of view.

It’s super long (and it took a long time to make too) but I hope you’ll read it and like it anyway. ^^’‘

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Hope and the Return of Clarke in 406

It’s a little trickier to write meta about Clarke’s POV during 406 since it was clearly weighted more towards Bellamy’s POV, especially during the rover scenes.  We see him go off on the mission with Roan, find out Clarke is missing, find the body, and then take off in pursuit of Clarke, and we don’t see her until we’re well into the action sequence.  Bellamy and Clarke’s storyline this episode was basically structured around “Bellamy is scared of losing Clarke,” so it makes sense that they spent more time on his mental state rather than hers.  But I do think 406 showed us some important elements of Clarke’s character arc this season, especially when compared to where she was in 403.

In 403, most notably in the beginning food-sorting scene and then at the end during the list scene, Clarke is, to put it mildly, not in a great place.  She’s hacked off with everyone at the top of the episode, pushing back against Raven’s (harsh but reasonable) request that she write the damn list already, and snapping at Bellamy when he announces he’s planning to die.  She breaks down while writing the list, and asks Bellamy if he has hope.  It’s only when he tells her he does (which I suspect was a lie for her benefit, because when your partner is hitting rock bottom sometimes you gotta pretend like everything is Totally Fine because otherwise you’re both gonna be at rock bottom and then nothing will get done) that she manages to pull herself together.  She goes for a walk, discovers nightblood, and…bam, she’s back.

It’s not exactly smooth sailing for her in 404 and 405, though, mostly because of the List.  The list is Clarke’s least favorite solution for the problem facing them, but until her mom and Raven can figure out to make nightblood, it’s their only hope– but it’s a shitty, half-hope for her, because it doesn’t save nearly enough people.  I think Clarke was sort of relieved when Arkadia blew up, because at least that gave her the excuse to scrap the list.

So in 406 with the hope of nightblood being available for everyone, we’re suddenly back to Original Recipe Clarke.  You know, the girl who made plans to forge a truce with the people who were picking them off one-by-one in s1, the girl who refused to accept Mount Weather’s promise of safety in exchange for giving up on her people, the girl who wouldn’t let ALIE win.  Because Clarke with hope is a force of fucking nature.  And Clarke doesn’t just turn her formidable skills towards saving her people– she also turns them towards being emotional support for Bellamy.

Bellamy’s role as Clarke’s emotional safety net is very well established in canon, but Clarke’s role as Bellamy’s emotional safety net is similarly ever-present; it’s just a little more subtle because Bellamy does his emotional supporting with words whereas Clarke tends to do more silent-listening-and-then-hugging.  In 406, Clarke immediately picks up that something is wrong with Bellamy just because of the way he says time to go, and then when they’re in the rover and he has no way of escaping the conversation (just like how my mom used to make me talk about serious emotional shit during car rides in high school) Clarke gently nudges Bellamy towards hope.  They haven’t talked about Octavia in a while, but she’s firmly on team She’ll Come Around, Just Give Her Time.  Bellamy doesn’t think they have much time, but Clarke straight up isn’t hearing that.

Just like when she had no hope while writing the list and Bellamy was there for her, when Bellamy has no hope of fixing things with his sister Clarke is there to say “No, you can fix this.  And in fact, I will face down the end of the world itself to give you that time.”  Bellamy kind of lets it drop there, but then when he announces he’s not going to Science Island with Clarke, she immediately guesses the reason why.  But she doesn’t just say “she’ll come around,” she says “she’ll come around because you are special.”  

There’s a few things to unpack there, starting with the insinuation that Octavia needs time, and they’ll have that time.  They’ll have that time because of the nightblood solution, so Clarke is basically Stacker Pentecost here, announcing that they’re cancelling the apocalypse.  At her lowest in 403, she wouldn’t have had that confidence, but she does now and it’s amazing to watch how different her body language is– she’s standing straight, arms crossed, radiating We’ve Got This, as opposed to slumped over a desk with tears tracking down her cheeks.

But the other element at work here is Clarke’s faith in Bellamy Blake’s natural goodness.  She’s never lost that, not even after the massacre, and here it just comes bubbling out.  She’ll see how special you are, Clarke says, like it’s a self-evident fact and she shouldn’t even have to say it.  Clarke’s faith in Bellamy was there at her lowest, as evidenced by putting his name on the list even though he’d already rejected that option, but here it’s more openly directed at him.  I know your sister will forgive you because I believe in you she tells him, and Bellamy lets that land before considering a confession that will shift things between them.

And then she stops him.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, but Clarke totally fucking knew what he was about to say, and she didn’t stop him because she didn’t want to hear it– she stopped him because she has hope.  They’re going to survive this, and she’s not going to even consider the alternative.  And Clarke didn’t do this lightly, because she knows exactly what it feels like to think you’ll never see the person you love again.  She knows how it feels to desperately confess your love for someone knowing that’s your last fucking chance, and she knows how much it hurts to lose someone without saying it.  

She knows all of that and she cares so fucking much about Bellamy and yet she still stops him because she believes, with every fiber of her being, that they will see each other again.  It’s also in stark contrast to the way she snaps at him at the start of 403, all goddammit you will live and that’s final.  Here she’s calm and peaceful, confident and supportive.  As @verbam pointed out, she’s denying him death.  This is not going to be their last goodbye because Clarke Griffin has something to say about the apocalypse, and that’s: not today, motherfucker.

Reasons I Don’t Think Root Died

From the start of TDTWWA, Root’s acting weird. She clearly has been in contact with The Machine prior to her first appearance in the episode, as Root knows Finch is going to shut down The Machine. Throughout the episode, there’s a sense of her trying to say goodbye and set things in motion. Like the I-love-you-but-in-other-words talk with Shaw, or trying to give Shaw a kind of coping mechanism during their fight. Perhaps most importantly, mere seconds before they see Blackwell on the rooftop, Root says to Finch “when the time comes, you’ll know what to do”. If Root knew at the start that she was going to die, but then TM faked her death (the theory I’m inclined to go with), or that she’d die or that she was going to fake her death, it makes all the writing that much tighter and potentially reframes her talk of living on in The Machine as someone trying to come to terms with an approaching expected death.

Every time a Team Machine member dies (I’m including Elias for season 5 since he really was part of the team that season), the show references their first episode in a major way for some symmetry. The Crossing has the Pilot precinct, Reese and Carter repeating dialogue from it and beating up subway thugs. The Day The World Went Away itself has Elias going back to the Double Bs and talking about when he was there with John. return 0 has Reese talk about when Finch found him and gave him a purpose in the Pilot, and you can include the ending symmetry perhaps. But TDTWWA has none of that for Root. It’d be completely contrary to how they handle death within the series.

Finch’s number coming up. Samaritan never wanted to kill Finch until Root and Shaw intervened, and the episode ends with Reese highlighting this fact and saying he thinks his number came up because of what he was going to do to them. So that’s what the writers want us to take away from it. And, if so, that means The Machine would have to know Root would die or “die” for Finch to be pushed to do those things to them.

The episode also makes a point to show she’s shot and bleeding before Blackwell takes his shot. Once he does, we never actually see any entry wound or more blood. This show has always made sure that the big character deaths are definitive with no questions about them, it’d be weird for them to suddenly not even show that someone died. While they did show her body, Shaw’s very first episode involves her in a body bag.

Speaking of said body, everyone in the ‘core four’ of Team Machine has been presumed dead. Finch after the ferry bombing, Reese after Ordos, Shaw when Hersh “killed her”. Root never has, but this episode would complete that running theme if she turned up alive later.

The next piece is found in Synecdoche. I read somewhere that Lisa Joy helped a lot with The Machine’s dialogue uncredited, which explains why it’s the highlight of the episode, and I think there’s a very particular reason for that they were keeping close to the chest. Throughout the episode, The Machine, the person who knows Root better than probably anyone, keeps calling her Samantha Groves. She talks about her death in those terms, using that name. But over .exe and return 0, she says ‘Root’, though never uses it to refer to the ‘death’ with Finch. In one of the first scenes of .exe, The Machine says to Finch “You know I can’t lie to you, Harold.” And she’s not. Samantha Groves died a long time ago, maybe on records is officially dead now, but that doesn’t mean Root is. There’s no other reason for her to suddenly be calling her Samantha Groves except to circumvent her programming not letting her lie to Finch.

“Oops, they must have dug her up.” Must have? The Machine acts like this is a surprise to her, but if she can see Shaw, she can see the grave, and she would know if they did. 

In the commentary for .exe that was briefly on the CBS website and has since been taken down and is not on the blu-ray, Plageman talks about Root knowing the Ice 9 password, and specifically says that we’d find out why next episode. But clearly that’s nowhere in return 0, so that must have been among the cut scenes.

And on that line of cut scenes are perhaps the most important two. The first, the fact that apparently Shaw had a full conversation on the phone that was cut, Nolan only saying that Root’s voice was 100% on the other end. The second was revealed by Michael Emerson, who asked an interviewer who he thought the “dark haired motorcyclist in the final montage” was. But, as anyone who has seen the episode can attest to, there is no motorcyclist, that was cut. So if you can see that dark hair under a bike helmet…must be long, huh?

Then there’s the arc Jonathan Nolan has over the interviews. When TDTWWA aired, there was the usual interview that went up on IGN and he and Plageman talk about how Root ‘transcended into The Machine’ and became The Machine. I was…heartbroken, to say the least, by the end of TDTWWA, but honestly…I do kinda like that idea fine. I can be okay with this. Buuuut then Synecdoche comes out. And early on, it establishes from The Machine’s POV that she’s not Root, she’s just using her voice. Which is fine too, but these are not the same thing. Come that weekend, at a festival they showed .exe at, his story changes to “Sometimes heroes die in the dark alone!” And then a friend linked me to an interview from after return 0. Don’t recall where it was though to find it, and Jonathan Nolan goes back on everything he said and says he’d be cool with a spinoff about Root and Shaw working for the new Machine and that you can take the ending how you want. 

Way back when The Devil’s Share aired, the Writer’s Room Twitter tweeted that they were planning to reveal Reese’s name that episode, but decided not to because they found a better spot, adding a hashtag saying season 5. So I’m fairly certain Reese was a goner this season even if it wasn’t the end. Michael Emerson also mentioned in interviews for season 5 how he wasn’t able to keep up with the 22/23 episode seasons anymore just due to how exhausting it was. Which means 2/5 of the cast is gone going into season 6. I really don’t see them knowing that, writing those two off, killing Root and just having Shaw and Fusco from now on with Amy Acker voicing The Machine.

But why would The Machine need to fake Root’s death and lie about it? Because Root would stand in the way of what needed to be done with Ice 9 to bring down Samaritan. I don’t think for a second she’d allow them to use it since it would kill The Machine as well, and Finch wouldn’t have gone through what was necessary to get it or use it without that push. We’ve seen The Machine manipulate pieces on the board before to give characters the push they need, perhaps most explicitly in 4C.

When the season 5 airing date was announced, the showrunners pulled the plug themselves, knowing CBS was jerking them around and were going to cancel it anyway. But since they were, at one point, hopeful they’d get a sixth season, I think Root on the phone and motorcycle was the tease for it. The “come back next season” moment that they cut because they weren’t getting another season to explain why she’s alive. But even though they, if I’m right, cut it, the gap is still there where it can fit and nothing really contradicts it. After all, who else would get that big a smile out of Shaw after all that happened this season?

supergirl season 2b we deserve:

  • cat grant and lucy lane coming back
  • lena luthor promoted to be a regular
  • james olsen being recognized again and getting his own arc back
  • kara being happy on her own and realising she has a lot of stuff to work out (or realising she still has feelings for james and karolsen rises again)
  • maggie and alex being all touchy with each other and telling everyone they are in a relationship, NO CONFLICTS JUST HAPPY LESBIANS
  • maggie getting her own backstory and own arc so she can grow as a character without alex
  • mon-el disappears and no one asks where he is (and no one cares)
  • m’gann being promoted as a regular and getting her own story and maybe becomes a member at the DEO and starts a happy friendship with everyone, specially with the ladies
  • ladies interacting with each others more
  • j’onn has some serious bonding with m’gann and more ‘father’ scenes with alex and kara
  • MORE ALEX AND KARA SCENES, DANVERS SISTERS ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT THING ON THIS SHOW
  • thank you for your attention

Loose-flowing bits and thoughts about the new DW episode below:

  • Clearly and undeniably an episode about the evils of fascism. At one point, the Doctor uses the literal term “fake news.” And at the end, Bill and the Doctor talk about how frustrating it is that humanity has the potential inherently needed to overthrow dictatorships, but rarely chooses to do so because it never learns from its mistakes.
  • Bill seems to have had her traditional DW Companion “Moment” here. You know, the bit where the Doctor’s plan goes to shit and the companion has to step in and save the world. Generally these were usually reserved for season finales, but since we know Peter is stepping down, I suspect they’ve saved the finale for an arc about him.
  • Bill has been under fire (ha) for “shooting” the Doctor. I feel it was entirely warranted. As she said, if the Doctor had indeed sided with the Monks, then the earth never would truly be saved. He’s too powerful a figure. And in taking that stance, he would have lost his moral center. He would have no longer been the Doctor at that point. That was her one chance. If she had let him live hoping he’d eventually come round, she’d literally never get that chance again. She did the right thing and the Doctor clearly agreed.
  • The final solution had potential, but I think needed a bit more supporting dialog to really drive it home. The Doctor states that Bill’s image of her mother is incorruptible by the Monks but the dialog isn’t clear on how. I had to watch the scene a few times to really get it. I’m fairly certain that it worked because the memory of her mother wasn’t a true memory. It was a fabrication she had spent so many years investing in and creating that it grew into what the Doctor called a “subroutine.” Basically a mental “program” that she runs every time she’s under stress, sad, scared, etc. It’s become such an essential part of her that it was stronger than the Monk’s programming which had no real depth. Her programming came from something strongly rooted within her reality while theirs was just a made up bit of propaganda. In essence, her fabrication was truer than theirs could ever be. But again, thought some clarification was needed. I had to literally rewind and watch the scene again to understand which really broke me from the story-line and mood.
  • I still almost cried like a little bitch, though.
  • Really touched to see the Pride Flag pop up as one of Bill’s most important and defining memories, by the way.
  • I honestly do feel that this three episode arc was a turning point for Bill and the Doctor’s relationship in a good way. Happy with that.
  • Don’t believe Missy will ever be “good.” Do believe she has a lot of untapped potential as a character though. A+ would buy her a pony. 

anonymous asked:

In one of your posts, you said: "But, Killua wants Gon’s problems to be his problems. That’s why he’s so happy when Gon says 'It has to be Killua'." THANK YOU for this! I get how Gon's words may seem to be selfish and even abusive, but to focus on that alone would be missing an important point. It's easy to laugh with strangers, but often we only let the people closest to us share in, and be hurt by, our own pains. Gon was allowing Killua to be a friend. And that is why I love that scene. :)

Yeah! I really think the ‘It has to be Killua’ scene is, at least from Killua’s perspective, the most intimate moment between him and Gon in the series. Like, Gon went from “only I can say I’ll die” to “I can only do this with Killua”. I’m sure that progression was deeply meaningful to Killua.

And then in the next arc, Gon tells Killua ‘it’s none of his business’ and completely shuts him out. And what makes things even sadder is, right before that scene, Killua was shown questioning his standing and, on a subtext-y level, the lines of their relationship (the “which is it” scene where Killua follows Gon off the palace ledge). Everything considered, you can see why he breaks, and why he so desperately needed to hear from Palm that “the one most important to Gon is you”. If Palm hadn’t said that to him, I’m not sure if he would’ve felt empowered enough to go back to Gon’s side for the fight with Pitou.

And now I’m getting carried away with Sad Feelings again, hahaha. But you brought up a point that I wanted to address: Gon was an overall positive influence on Killua’s life. I do not think this can be argued against, no matter how tumultuous the Chimera Ant arc was for him (and for all of us watching from home as well, haha). His existence was literally life-changing for Killua. I think, while Gon’s actions were certainly selfish at times (ironically, not because he doesn’t think of others, but because he never thinks of himself), I would strongly hesitate to label them or Gon’s character as a whole as “abusive”. Gon made Killua feel good about himself, good enough that he was able to break free of Illumi’s mind control — purely with thoughts of Gon. The real problem in their relationship is that they are both young, hurt, and severely lacking in overall self-esteem.

In Killua’s case, he understandably latches onto the first person who made him feel good about himself. But consequently, as he begins to repair his fragile sense of self-worth, he ends up rebuilding it entirely around Gon in the process. Killua genuinely feels good and purposeful when Gon needs his help — it’s not that he is being forced or taken advantage of out of naivety. The obvious problem here is that a self-esteem based wholly on altruism towards a single person isn’t very healthy or sustainable, especially when the person you’re dedicating yourself to has reckless and self-destructive tendencies arising from abandonment issues. (Killua learns that the hard way.)

So I guess to try and tie this all together, Killua’s self-worth for a majority of the series rides on how useful he feels he is to Gon. This isn’t Gon’s fault or doing (in fact, it’s definitely the fault of his family — his demonstrably abusive family — for making him feel like he needs to be useful to be worth something). That’s why Gon saying to him “it has to be Killua” and “it’s none of your business” completely make or break him respectively. The moments where Gon allows Killua to share his burdens are Killua’s happiest.

Anyway, thank you for sending this ask! I think it generated a lot of good rambling from me (most of it wasn’t actually included in this response, believe it or not)! After I finally finish that Killugon meta I promised, I’ll revisit this and write up something bigger and more substantial exploring Gon’s character and his own self-esteem issues. I feel like I went over Killua’s side of the story here but Gon’s really warrants its own post entirely.

anonymous asked:

"We saw Scott hit rock bottom and rise up again, sure, but we haven’t really seen any evidence that it’s changed him." Exactly! It didn't change him or change how he does/view things. He didn't reflect on what he did, didn't understand/acknowledge what he did wrong, didn't learn anything, didn't grow. Like, in 5b the most important thing for him was getting the pack back together, but at the same time he makes plans with both Chris and Deuc behind the pack's backs.


It’s that giant reset button in the writers’ room. They don’t know how to give Scott an arc that actually explores his mistakes (and all heroes makes mistakes) so they hit the button and start all over. Sometimes at the end of the season, sometimes at the end of an episode and, when they’re really stuck, sometimes at the end of a scene. 

anonymous asked:

Do you ship EremikA? What did you think of the scarf scene? Do you think he avoided her kissing him because he doesn't like her like that or do you think she wasn't kissing him in the first place

Hello anonny! To answer your first question, yes I do ship eremika! I love that ship very much :) And secondly, I absolutely adore the scarf scene. In my personal opinion, it is one of the most important and interesting relationship/character moments within this current arc, as well as the yumihisu and reibert moments as that is what the arc is mostly centered around. I also think, that Mikasa might’ve been going in for a kiss, but possibly not in the way we think. Perhaps, she was leaning in towards him to kiss his nose, or his cheek, or do the typical Forehead Touch thing, which would’ve been awfully sweet. However, because of the situation it wouldn’t have been appropriate. Whilst I think it is clear of Mikasa’s feelings for Eren, I feel as though Eren simply doesn’t think about this stuff, although he did promise to be with Mikasa “now and forever” 

Their relationship is extremely complex. They share a familial bond as well as a friendship and romantic one. I think though, I am glad they did not edit the scene and include a kiss, because it was absolutely perfect without one and simply not really needed because of the emotional weight of the scene it already carried. Mikasa was prepared to die by Eren because of the lack of resources, she was injured and Eren couldn’t transform. It says a lot about their bond, really.

10-5-17 Mini-show report

I didn’t watch the show tonight with the idea of writing a detailed report in mind, as it’s the second to last time I’ll see it with this cast and I expect to be sobbing to hard to really experience it next time. So this will just be a few snippets of things I remember.

Anthony was really emotional tonight. Scorpius cried on the staircase before Delphi showed up, and again in the library scene after Albus told him he was kind. Real, genuine crying with his eyes going all funny. And then again of course during James and Lily’s murders. I still love his performance more than any other actor’s excluding Jamie, but I’ll always be sad that he toned himself down so much. I wonder why he did it. Maybe it just took too much energy to maintain spazzy, over the top Scorpius. Idk. I was hoping he’d bring a bit of his old mannerisms and childish energy back towards the end, but it doesn’t look like that will happen. 

Jamie was wonderful tonight. He’s always wonderful and he was wonderful again. 

Helena was super hyper as Umbridge tonight. At one point when she was talking to Scorpius by the lake, she jumped in the air and shrieked with laughter. Absolutely terrifying.

Alex Price… omg. I always love him, but tonight he was better than I’ve ever seen him before. Just completely inside Draco, every nuance of emotion showing on his face. His speech about Astoria and Scorpius was devastating. He kept breaking. Oh, and I’ve not noticed this before although I assume it isn’t new, but Draco was soooo irritated when Ron climbed by him on the staircase to announce that he was going to stand by his friends. 

The Romione moments were wonderful too. Ron looked like his heart was being torn apart on the staircase in the second timeline.

I love watching Ginny’s reactions to Draco. There’s a whole arc there, subtler than Harry’s, but it’s definitely there. She’s disgusted by him at first but slowly warms to him by the end.

Ginny fond smile when Harry says his ridiculous “There’s plenty you’re good at, Albus!” line. = <3

Oh! I saw Helen as Rose for the first time and she was adorable. She’s smaller than Cherrelle and feels much younger.  I found it harder to buy Scorpius’s crush on her, but maybe she’ll be better matched with Samuel. Her performance was great, and that’s the most important thing.

Thoughts:

I’ve written before about how I think the Voldemort MLE office scene between Draco and Scorpius is so important because we see the fears about his ex-DE father that Scorpius has been living with. And through the course of that scene, his fears are put to rest. His father isn’t a murderer or a torturer. Draco didn’t get the same reassurance about his own father. His father was a murderer and a torturer (it’s heavily implied at least, if not explicitly canon). 

I think I wrote last time that Albus’ change of heart about Harry starts when Harry tells him that he didn’t volunteer for adventure, he was forced into it. And given Albus mentions that to Scorpius later, it’s clearly hit home. And then, Albus is forced into his own adventure, where he witnesses an innocent being murdered, faces death himself and is forced to use his wits to survive. I think that experience shows him who his father really is even more. Leading to, “Draco, trust my dad. He won’t let us down.”

Will add more tomorrow if I remember anything I’ve left out.

anonymous asked:

Hi ! Do you think there's any chance we could see Zeke in the end of season 2 ? Maybe to bring more closure to this arc concerning the Beast Titan and keeping the fans in suspense regarding his story ?

Hmm… I’d like to think it’s possible, actually. In all of the Season 2 interviews (well.. most of them), every member behind the anime has been hyping up the Beast Titan, even though his importance barely reaches up to the first half of Season 2. I’d like to think they have something else planned. Maybe a filler scene or whatnot. Because.. well, in the manga, we didn’t see Zeke after Ymir remembered him (which we’re gonna get the day after tomorrow) until Chapter 70. I think we MAY have a filler about him just to wrap up that “importance” just right.

anonymous asked:

imo mashima gave gru/via jer/za and na/lu A LOT in this arc hell even zer/vis while ga/levy only got 1 major scene :/ do you think it's possible that they get more towards the end or are they done to you? :( most people consider them canon already but imo they're not, they need more

Out of the big 4, Gruvia and Gajevy are the pairings that got the biggest moments in this arc so far, anon. These two couples were pushed forward quite a bit. On the contrary we have seen multiple smaller scenes and panels of Nalu/Jerza, but nothing game changing so far. What’s important is actual progress. So you should be happy about that, haha.

Zervis was all over the arc, both major and minor scenes so I won’t touch on that lol. I do agree that Gajevy isn’t 100% canon yet though. Their feelings are mutual, but they aren’t in an official relationship (which is why they aren’t considered canon on the wiki). But after the war is over, I am sure all these ships will be called canon. ^^

As for the rest…. I don’t expect anything major involving Gajevy anymore. Maybe we will see Gajeel bringing Levy back to the guild like he said he would, and them in the epilogue with their kids. Since they got their major moment already imo.