Director - Zack Snyder, Cinematography - Larry Fong
“Rorschach’s Journal. October 12th, 1985: Dog carcass in alley this morning, tire tread on burst stomach. This city is afraid of me. I have seen its true face. The streets are extended gutters and the gutters are full of blood and when the drains finally scab over, all the vermin will drown. The accumulated filth of all their sex and murder will foam up about their waists and all the whores and politicians will look up and shout “Save us!”… and I’ll whisper ‘no.’“
Downton Abbey: The Exhibition, based on the beloved television show, transports you to post-Edwardian England, where the characters and the iconic house come to life. You’ll be immersed in the fascinating social history, culture, and some of the most memorable moments from the show’s six-season run.
“You’ll find there’s never a dull moment in this house” -The Dowager Countess, Violet
Downton Abbey: The Exhibition will be at 218 W57th Street (between Broadway & 7th Avenue) in New York City for a strictly limited time, starting November 18th, 2017.
We all know it, everyone who recognises a trope knows it. @margarittet and I just wanted to catalogue a few obvious ones in one place to put this to rest.
So what is a trope?
It’s an agreed-upon narrative, an archetypal, recognisable reading of a story or situation, a kind of narrative stereotype. Tvtropes says “tropes are devices and conventions that a writer can reasonably rely on as being present in the audience members’ minds and expectations”.
So essentially a trope is a way for a writer to tell the audience something, something important that they want to get across without saying blatantly out loud… yet. They have pay off but in the mean time it’s a means to convey the authors INTENT and for the audience to be prepared when the pay off happens without being surprised.
Examples of tropes in Supernatural:
-The cough of death. If you just cough once on screen, you’re gonna die (or at the very least it’s showing there’s a BIG health issue at hand) eg. Karen. It’s not like coughing irl. This is a long running laughed about trope in hospital dramas, you come in with an unknown cancerous tumour that should definitely kill you, you are cured and live! BUT the guy in the bed next to you who thought he was just there for a check up coughs once and he’s the one who dies.
- Love nostalgia songs. Dean singing along to “can’t fight this feeling” as a romantic link to Jo with lyrics “what started out as friendship has grown stronger”. Dean later singing along to “all outta love” as a romantic link to Cas after his death where he now feels huge guilt with lyrics “I’m so lost without you, I know you were right believing for so long, what am I without you, it cant be too late to say that I was so wrong”.
- Redemption = Death. As soon as “bad guy” Crowley saved Cas in 12x12 and seemed on a path to bettering himself/redemption. DEAD. It’s a standard semi-villain trope, eg. Darth Vader.
- Sadness Tropes. Depression, lack of sense of belonging etc. When Cas in early season 11 had a meltdown the flashbacks are a PTSD trope. It’s thus clear his depression is going to have a key role in the story. It led directly to saying yes to Lucifer after this was exposed further by Ambriel, but the earlier meltdown is the set up trope.
- The male gaze. The 8x07 gaze trope as Cas exits the bathroom and Dean has a full body and face reaction.
- Star crossed lovers. Lovers who are told they cannot be together. Usually due to fate, duty, family, cultural norms, or, for example sacred oaths… something will always be in the way, until it isn’t or they die.
These are standard tropes of storytelling, they pay off. The trope is there to show us the author’s intent to do so. So mixtapes, what do they tell us?
Let’s set the scene with what I believe is the most succinct quote below:
“Maybe I need some kind of a gesture. You know, something that says we’re moving forward without having to talk about it…” “A mixtape?”
1. High Fidelity - of course is the place to start, Rob making Laura a mixtape to show how he feels (romantic love of course).
“the making of a good compilation tape is a very subtle art. Many do’s and don’ts. First of all, you’re using someone else’s poetry to express how you feel. This is a delicate thing.”
2. Bring it On - This is my favourite, cos hey, I grew up with this movie :) So Cliff gives Torrance a mixtape to show he’s crushing on her and I shit you not the lyrics repeated over and over again are “you’re what I need!”:
“Cliff makes Torrance a mixtape that even by 2000 standards would have been outdated technology, to say nothing of the fact that all these characters would have been listening to their music in MP3 form in just a few months. Still, in movies and in real life, mixtapes have special properties, and this one gives Torrance the drive to push through the final leg of the story. It’s a lot more romantic than, say, giving someone a thumbdrive” - People Magazine
“Even by 2000 standards”. Yep 17 YEARS later it’s even better, especially when the recipient doesn’t even have a tape player in their car so it’s literally JUST a trope for the trope’s sake. They could have given Cas any excuse to talk to Dean, he could have asked for his phone to be charged, his car to be fixed to get Dean out of his room, whatever, it could have been a borrowed tape that was clearly Dean’s and not a gift. Anyway he didn’t even need an excuse, he could have just gone to talk to him as buddies/brothers would after the heated exchange earlier, they’ve talked in his room before, there was no plot narrative NEED for the gift of a romantic trope mixtape (of crotch rock music that is already associated with love interests, Jo saying that’s how men think they get into her panties and John/Mary) ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
3. Friends - 8x11 The one with Ross’s step forward.
Ross says: “Maybe I need some kind of a gesture. You know, something that says we’re moving forward without having to talk about it.”
Rachel & Phoebe tell Ross to give her a mixtape ;)
4. Friends - Monica & Chandler and Chandler & Janice. A mixtape is seen as a romantic gesture twice in one episode. It’s undeniably romantic.
5. Family Guy - 4x08. Stewie comically makes a mixtape for his crush (the babysitter) because it’s such a recognisable trope.
6. Guardians of the Galaxy - I keep seeing this used as an anti argument and it’s kinda hilarious as there’s one instance of it as a platonic parent-child gift but everything else around it is 100% romantic and it’s use is overtly romantic for the protagonist. It’s a platonic sandwich (starlord-mom) between two bits of romantic bread (mom-dad and Starlord-Gamorrah). It represents the love of his mom for his dad, her gift is a legacy of that love that she then gifts to her child. Starlord then in GotG 2 uses it to woo Gamorrah, thus reinstating the original romantic meaning of the mixtapeand it’s music in the movie.
7. No Strings Attached - As Adam’s feelings becomes more obviously romantic, he’s jealous of others and wants to take it to the next level, he gifts her a mixCD because it’s 2011 and a mixtape would be so outdated and too obvious a cliché for even this tacky romcom…. uhhhh ;)
Emma: “Adam, did you make me a period mix?” Friend: “That’s so romantic!”
*Tink stares into the camera*
8. Cuban Fury - Bruce makes Julia a mixtape to show her how he feels (hint, it’s romatic, shocker I know!), he is kind and respectful of her. This is directly compared with Drew who also is vying for her attentions but does so in a sleazy and patronising way. The mixtape represents his romantic feelings and the time, thought and effort that went into making it, showcasing him as a caring person who cares for her in particular.
So yeah, mixtapes are romantic. They’re consistently romantic and used as a “moving this relationship to the next level, trying to tell you how I feel without saying it out loud” trope.
It’s so weird that they’d use a romance trope here though right? There’s been no reason to read the two of them as written as a love story for 9 years. It’s so out of the blue! No-one has noticed this before now! I’M SHOCKED AT THIS UNFORSEEN TURN OF EVENTS.
If only there were other indications that this was just a part of the consistent theme between Dean and Cas, that it felt like the author intent in season 12 was to show us “you know, something that says we’re moving forward without having to talk about it”…oh wait ;)
I feel like this is enough, there’s no need to flog a dead horse after all. It’s a romance trope. Some lovely people did send me more though so they’re below the cut :)
Video: First Look at ‘Downton Abbey The Exhibition’ World Premiere in Singapore June 17, 2017
Several cast members are slated to attend a red-carpet event at MBS on June 21: Laura Carmichael, who plays Lady Edith; Jim Carter (Carson); Phyllis Logan (Mrs Hughes); Kevin Doyle (Molesley); Sophie McShera (Daisy); and Michael Fox (Andy). - Straits Times June 3
Hidden in the shadows she
watches them, silently. They’re quiet too, talking with their eyes. Like we
used to do, she thinks. She watches as their bodies move close together, merge
into another until, in the dim light, they seem to be just one body.
“I love you,
Fox.” The voice floats to her, hits her like a wave of cold water.
“I love you,
Diana.” More water as it takes her under steals her breath and drowns her whole
while they, oblivious to her fate, seal their love with a kiss.
Scully wakes up, coughing
and gulping for air. She reaches blindly for the lamp switch and can’t find it.
It’s then that she remembers; she’s not home and this is not her bedroom, her
bed. The Falls at Arcadia, California. Undercover as Rob and Laura Petrie, the
perfect couple. As if.
She rubs her eyes and gets
out of bed. Her watch is in the bathroom and tells her that it’s 2 am. Scully
pours herself a cold glass of water, takes a few sips. Up until now she hasn’t
allowed herself to think about the dream. Now it comes back to her; the images,
the words, the helplessness. Scully grips the counter in front of her and finds
her reflection in the mirror. These last few months have not been kind to
her. Or has it been the last few years? The frostbite on her face and
arms has healed nicely. The one in her heart, the bitter bite of betrayal, has
taken root, though. There’ll be no scars on her skin. Inside, no one will see
the wounds or guess her pain. On the outside, everything is perfect.
Tonight was not the first
time she’s had this dream. The only variation is the location; sometimes it’s
Mulder’s apartment, other times it’s the office. The rest is always the same.
Mulder and Diana in each other’s arms professing their love. Scully shivers in
her light pajamas, her bare feet against the cold tiles. It has nothing to do
with the dream, she convinces herself as she wraps herself in her big, fluffy
robe. There is no way she’ll be able to fall asleep again now. What she wants,
and needs, to calm her nerves again, is a nice, hot cup of tea. That will
solve all her problems.
Scully descends the stairs
as quietly as possibly. The living room is bathed in a soft blue light; the TV
is still on, though muted. She peeks over the back of the couch and there is
Mulder, fast asleep, with his hands under his hands as a pillow. His legs are
too long; he just doesn’t fit here. In any way. Denying herself the need to
touch him, to brush the loose strand of hair off his forehead, Scully taps into
the kitchen. She puts the kettle on and searches the cupboards for tea. She
knows they have some because she put it on the list with their essentials. All
Mulder wanted were sunflower seeds and orange juice. When she finds the tea,
peppermint, ginger and lemon, she curses under her breath. She can’t reach that
high. Scully gets on tiptoes but it’s just no use.
“Need any help?”
Mulder’s voice is dark, barely awake. He doesn’t wait for her answer, easily
reaches over her head, filling her nostrils with his sleepy scent, and hands
her the tea. Ginger. Exactly the one she wanted. She mumbles a thanks as she
searches for a cup. The kitchen is too big, has too many nooks for their
simple, fake needs.
“Do you want one
“Nah, thanks. Couldn’t
sleep?” He jumps up on the counter, sits there and watches her. His legs
swing slightly back and forth.
Scully answers truthfully.
“Ah.” If anyone
knows about bad dreams, it’s Mulder. “Do you want to talk about it?”
The kettle hisses angrily and Scully is thankful for the distraction. She pours
the hot water over the teabag, takes a deep breath to revel in the spicy sweet,
“I’m fine, Mulder. It
was just a dream. I’m going back to bed. Sorry for waking you. Goodnight.”
She feels Mulder’s eyes burning into her back. Unspoken words, questions and
accusations flitter through the air. They whirl around her head and confuse
her. Scully misses a step, stumbles and falls. The scalding tea splashes
against the stairs and her hand, the cup shatters.
is by her side in an instant, helping her up. He touches her hand and it burns.
Scully winces. “I’m sorry.” He whispers. He leads her back to the kitchen,
turns on the cold water and puts her hand under the stream, The cold numbs the
pain, numbs everything but her mind.
“I’m fine.” She
repeats, though she is not sure whether she wants to convince him or herself.
“I know you are. Let
me get some cooling gel – I know you put that on the list. Keep your hand under
the water.” A moment later he is gone. Scully watches the water as it runs
over her hand. There is a small red splotch on her skin.
Mulder turns off the water and gently wraps her hand in a towel, “is this
okay?” He searches her eyes for discomfort, a hint; anything. When she
tries to smile at him, her lips start to tremble and her eyes fill with angry
“Hey, it’s not too
bad,” he tells her gently, taking the towel off, “you’ve had worse.
Tell me about your dream, Scully. That’s what’s really bothering you,
isn’t?” As he talks to her, his voice soft and cuddly, she watches his
hand expertly open the tube and apply the gel to her skin. This is her job,
most of the time. He is the one who runs too fast, too recklessly, and ends up
hurt. Not her.
“I can’t tell
nothing you can’t tell me. I hope you know that.” A few months ago she
would have told him without hesitation. Her belief in him, her trust, unshaken.
But then she never would have had dreams like that either.
“It’s just a dream,
“But it bothers
you.” I love you, Diana, dream Mulder had said. He said these words to
her, too, once, not that long ago. Drugged up and out of his mind. He’s said it
more than once, really. It was in his voice when he told her she was his one in
five billion. When he told her she made him a whole person. But what a fickle
love, it seems; once Diana showed up, Scully became a liability, a I don’t
believe this from a man who believes in everything. “I can tell you about
my dream instead. Can’t say it was bad, though. We were at the beach and-”
“We?” He nods and
she feels it rather than sees it; his head is close to hers, careful not to
miss a spot on her skin.
“You and me, Scully.
At the beach. One day I’ll find us a nice x-file in the Carribean and we’ll
live it out.”
“I dreamed about you
and Diana.” Scully blurts. Mulder’s hand stops but he doesn’t let go of
“That really sounds
like a bad dream.” Mulder mumbles, putting more gel on her hand, rubbing
it in gently. “Tell me… tell me what happened.”
“It’s always the
same,” he lifts his head then, his hair tangling with hers because they’re
that close; she can’t see the color of his eyes or read the expression on his
face, “I watch you with… her. You’re close like,” like they are
right now; the way she wants to be with him in the dream, too, “really
close.” Scully tastes his breath, swallows, needs more.
“Then what?” He
asks her. His thumb is still rubbing against her skin absent-mindedly. It’s
just a touch now, a caress.
“Then she tells you
that… she loves you.”
“What do I do?”
“You tell her that you
love her, too.”
“I’m an idiot.”
He whispers and kisses her hair. “What happens then?”
“You kiss and
I…” Scully doesn’t get to finish because Mulder’s lips are on hers. They
move against hers gently as if in slow motion. He separates from her too soon,
just as slowly, before either of them can deepen it.
is what should happen, Scully. You and me. That’s what I dream about. You
should, too.” He kisses her nose, smiles at her. Scully doesn’t think, is
too tired and wants to forget. So she takes his hand in hers, tells him with
her eyes to follow her. They’re careful not to step on the broken porcelain
pieces on their way to the bedroom. They’ll take care of the mess in the
could you do 22 for the prompt thing?? Purdy please
22 I don’t know why I married you.
This is Rob and Laura Petrie’s second case. I
have no idea where this came from. It’ a bit weird and no doubt has more plot
holes than the spongiest X-File ep. It’s long, so you can keep reading under the cut.
She stood on the threshold
and ripped through his shirt with the pinking shears. The fabric shredded,
leaving strands of cotton floating to the ground along with the sleeves, collar
and body. When she finished, she turned to the pile behind her and found the
dress pants. Charcoal grey, well-cut, heavy. She took the point of the blades
and dug in, snipping a triangular shape out of the crotch.
“I don’t know why I married you!” she yelled over her
shoulder. “You fucking fucker,” she added for good measure.
His footsteps down the wooden staircase were punctuated with the curse
words he favoured. She looked out across the immense front lawn, beyond the
upright and sensible white rose bushes, the flowering clematis and trimmed
hedges to see the Cartwrights, arm in arm on their own doorstep.
“What the hell are you doing with my Armani?” He grabbed one trouser leg
and yanked it from her. She held on to the other leg but the scissors clanged
to the ground, making a nest in the pile of shirts.
“I’m doing what I should have done years ago,” she hissed. “Cutting you
Fred Cartwright had made it to the front gate, pushed through the ornate
metal and strode to the front door.
“Having a little domestic trouble here, I see.” He smiled and reached
out to take the pants. “Why don’t we head inside and see if we can’t work it
out,” he looked over his shoulder as Valerie Cartwright arrived, “privately.”
Scully picked up the pile
of clothes and walked them upstairs, placing them on the bed and folding what
was left into a suitcase. She parked it at the bottom of the closet and headed to
the en-suite for a shower.
Hot water ran down her back and she relished the
slightly-too-hot spray for longer than was ecologically-friendly. There was
something so satisfying about cutting up clothes and she sifted through her
memories to see if there was a source point for that feeling. She couldn’t
recall her mother doing it to her father’s wardrobe. Theirs had been a love
true and enduring; she could half-entertain the notion that Tara might have
done it to Bill’s clothes, but she couldn’t imagine him telling her and she
hadn’t talked with Tara that closely for a few years. It was a mystery, but an
She didn’t hear the door open but she did feel the
momentary draught. She turned and rubbed water from her eyes, to see Mulder
standing stark naked in front of the door. He smiled. She shook her head. He
pouted. She rolled her eyes. He opened the door. She stepped aside and took the
razor from the side.
“Can I help you with that, Scully?”
“You want to shave me?”
He grinned. “It’s a bit of a kink of mine.”
“You, with kinks, Mulder? I don’t believe it.”
He took the razor and held it up.
“Maybe next time,” she said and pinched it back.
“Always ready to serve you, Scully.”
He laughed, then looked down at her with that expression on his face and
she knew she wasn’t getting out of there without calf-strain, hickeys where
nobody else would see them and at least two orgasms.
He did cook her dinner –
one of the many surprisingly good dishes in his repertoire. Chicken fillet
stuffed with mozzarella and avocado with mushroom sauce on a bed of basmati
rice. He poured a pinot grigio and offered her the pepper shaker.
` “So are the Cartwrights the prime suspects, Scully?”
“I guess I’d better be on high alert, now that I’ve shown
my true colours, Mulder. Wouldn’t want the neighbourhood to suffer from an
unusually high divorce rate, would we?”
He chuckled over a mouthful of chicken. “No, an abnormally
high number of missing persons reports is a much more digestible statistic. Three
halves of couples in five years simply vanishing is more than an anomaly. The
Cartwrights, and their neighbour, a Miss Lethbridge, have been here longer than
the other residents. But there’s never been any evidence against them.”
The cool wine was going down too well, the comfort of
playing house, she sat back in her chair and smiled at him, still smug from the
shower. “So, what’s the next step? A blazing row on the lawn? Snipping off the
heads of the roses?”
“Only if we can have a very public making-up session,
Scully.” He leant forward and planted a kiss on her mouth.
“I think Valerie Cartwright would have a stroke if she
witnessed that kind of activity. I can’t imagine that pair has so much as held
hands in the past ten years.”
He smirked. “Then let’s give them something
Rob and Laura Petrie (like the dish) met at a debate team social in college. Though Rob’s obsession with space memorabilia was at first a red flag, Laura just found him too darn cute to resist and they now reside in Arcadia Falls and abide by most of the housing association rules. They have a schnauzer named Curie, their five year plan includes a baby and their dark secret is that Rob actually does all the cooking because Laura can, and has, caused a fire making toast.