can you imagine the Gen Ed students having to write an essay about their favorite hero and it’s all good until the teacher says they have to read it in front of the class all of a sudden so Shinsou is there with cold sweat running down his back his mouth dry hands shaking and then:
guys oh my god i just watched beauty and the beast and i am SHOOK. i dont think ive ever been so blown away by the visuals, graphics and details in a movie. everything about it was SO beautiful and stunning and i have truly fallen in love with hills!!!! like the scene where belle is on the hill, oh my god. being on a green grassed, tall hill that overlooks a city is my dream. so, so dreamy.
“Ok… but what if Bucky told Tony about his parents? The last fight could’ve been completely avoided.” Cas’ methodical tone crackled through the phone.
It brought a curl to Dean’s lips imagining his angel, tucked away in the bunker, watching the Marvel cinematic universe and contemplating every scene. “Babe, that’s the most intense fight. It made the movie.”
“Hm.” A few calculated breaths before Cas had his rant back. “I don’t understand why we needed a movie of them fighting. And why each time was split right down the middle. They shouldn’t have been fighting! They are the Avengers!”
Snorting, Dean glanced over to the passenger seat to make sure Sammy was still sleeping. “The three of us fight, right?”
“Well, yes, but-”
“Any team is gonna have their arguments. It just happens. Don’t worry about it to much, sweetheart. We are gonna be home in a few hours and we will watch the next movie together.”
“I really enjoyed Antman, Dean. It was a very compelling story of a man who was raised by ants.”
Not being able to keep his laugh from barking out of his lungs, he heard Sam shuffle a bit. “He wasn’t raised by ants.”
“Dean. How can you watch these movies, claim to love them, but know so little? It’s astounding.” Cas gasped softly. “I ‘goggled’ it and he wasn’t raised by ants!”
Now the laughter was bringing tears to Dean’s eyes but he worried he might crash the car if he kept it up. The last thing he wanted to do was silence Cas’ voice in his ear but he knew he’d be seeing his angel soon. “I gotta go, honey bee. I love you.”
“I love you, too, Dean. Please drive safe.” There was a click and then static.
Placing his phone on his lap Dean eyed the road ahead of him. What he didn’t tell Cas about this hunt was that he made a small detour to a local jewelry store and bought a ring. The ring was nestled in his jean pocket, shining like nothing Dean had seen before. All he wanted was his angel every day for forever. Especially when the goof thinks things like Antman was raised by ants.
There are a lot of indicators of just how healthy/happy a relationship is, but in my opinion, one of the most telling is the body language between a couple. This form of nonverbal communication, that includes facial expressions, body movements, eye contact, hand gestures, touch and space, speaks volumes about the state of any given relationship- how content the couple is, how well they communicate, how well they handle conflict and resolution…
Can you guess where this is going?
Let’s compare two separate relationships from Avatar: The Last Airbender - one that displays unhealthy body language by both parties and tells of an unhappy pairing and one that displays healthy body language by both parties and shows potential for happy relationship.
First up, Zuko and Mai, sharing an emotional conversation… or rather, attempting to share. (I’ll be including verbal communication here just for some context and reference of the body movements).
After supposedly being shut out of his father’s war meeting, Zuko is upset and spends the evening with Mai, who tries to console him:
Mai: Zuko, it’s just a dumb meeting. Who cares? Zuko: I don’t.
Disregarding her words for a moment, look at what his face is saying in the first image. He won’t look at her. He’s staring off into the distance with furrowed brow and a set jaw. He has literally built up a wall between himself and her. This shows that he has stopped listening entirely, he’s done emotionally and he’s already trying to plan an escape from the dialogue.
But Mai doesn’t pick up on this cue, and she continues to throw out reasons why he shouldn’t be sad:
Mai: Well, good. You shouldn’t. I mean, why would you even want to go? Just think about how things went at the last meeting you went to. Zuko: [Sighs.] I know. Mai: You know what will make you feel better? Ordering some servants around. I might be hungry for a whole tray of fruit tarts. And maybe a little palanquin ride around town. Double time.
Ugh. So much ugh. Using a painful experience from someone’s past does at all help coax the “sad” out of them. In fact, the comment only seems to make things worse.
The sigh, first of all, displays resignation. He doesn’t want to talk anymore, at least not with her and certainly not about the scar on his face when the conversation centers on a war meeting. He still refuses to look up, wearing a glazed expression, and Mai literally has to pull his face up to hers.
Then she offers him his escape- distractions.
But he hardly even reacts to that. This is perhaps the most dangerous sign: no sign at all. He’s showing disinterest. He’s disengaged from her and whatever she’s saying - and the issue they are really fighting about (his regret/resentment for himself & the Fire Nation) will likely never be resolved.
Oooh shocker… when they are shown together the next morning, Zuko’s emotional disconnect seems to be even worse. Again, we see the glazed expression, the refusal to look at her, and now, his entire body is pulled away from her. He’s probably still reeling from that comment about his last war meeting, Mai. Good one.
And you might be sitting there, screaming at your screen, ‘Well, Zuko and Katara fight too! Doesn’t that make them unhealthy?”
Funny you should ask, because I’m actually prepared to show you how well the couple communicates with each other, how they handle a fight, and beyond an angry situation, how they handle their emotions.
Ah… the Crystal Catacombs… The first moment of real interaction between Zuko and Katara. We start with Katara raving at Zuko about his inherent “evil-ness” just because of his parentage and his element. She also goes so far as to tell him that he’s the face of the enemy, directly tying his scar to her hatred.
Yes… Zuko did have his back to her during this conversation, which one may argue is a sign of disengagement, but I would argue that it’s not. Or, at the very least, his resulting interest in and apology at the mention of her mother shows a re-engagement.
Zuko turns around to face her - his shoulders are relaxed, his face is calm, his stance is trusting. All these signals are reflected by Katara and they end up having an open, honest conversation despite only knowing each other for five minutes.
More telling, is the end result of the relented emotions. After Zuko and Katara are free to open up - Zuko, about his scar and his journey, and Katara, about her mother - they come together. They are quiet. They are listening. They are trusting each other.
In fact, Zuko closes his eyes in the face of his sworn enemy, a girl he knows can sit his ass down faster than he can say honor, and lets her touch him. And Katara reaches out to him, within seconds of using her spirit water on him, a boy she knows would likely stop at nothing to hurt her and her friends just to redeem himself. It’s beautiful. It’s pure. It shows something that could easily be a redemptive, whole-hearted, wholly-open relationship. But Brkye doesn’t think functional is funzies.
Taking emotional situations a step further, let’s dig into how these pairings actuallyfight.For the first example, we have Mai and Zuko in the Boiling Rock. Mai is upset -some might she’s justified, but she’s mostly not- because Zuko left and informed her through a letter.
Well… the fact that he couldn’t face her only confirms my point that he is emotional closed off from her. If their relationship was a healthy, open one, Zuko would’ve had no issue informing Mai of his decision in person. Instead, he chooses a nonverbal form - a letter and a disappearance.
Furthermore, Mai is literally looking down her nose at Zuko, her partner, her boyfriend, some she loves doesn’t hate, and sending the signal that he is inferior. She’s rolling her eyes, blowing off his answers, throwing things at him. Her signals actually say, “I’m not going to listen to what you have to say, because it’s worthless.”
He believes it too. He believes he is worthless in her eyes and nothing he says matters - just look at how he’s sitting. He’s hunched over, he’s silent, he’s completely shut down and disengaged again.
And before you get in my inbox, blabbing about how any fighting could be seen as unhealthy and healthy couples don’t fight, (because Kataang never fought post-war and that ship was totally healthy right?) take a step back.
Fighting has nothing to do with how healthy a relationship is. Fighting can actually be healthy and productive if it is handled, then resolved, correctly.
A couple may, for instance, look enraged, but they also look emotionally engaged. (See first image) A couple may, for instance, be furious with each other, but their torsos are facing each other. (See second image) A couple may, for instance, see no resolution, but they are making eye contact. They are talking. They are trying. They are working through it. (See third image)
It shows a lot of respect to A) Face someone you know is livid and B) Turn around and give the person you are livid with the time of day. It takes an even greater amount of respect to trust that person on a life changing field trip, to trust that person with a side of you no one has really seen, and then offer that person forgiveness.
You know what shows a huge lack of respect? Finger pointing!!! which we see from Mai several times when arguing with Zuko. This gesture signifies the accusing partner’s conscious or subconscious attempt to threaten the other into submission. That, coupled with the clenched fists on both sides in the first image, and the look of contempt on Mai’s face in the second, only furthers my point that Maiko’sbody language alone tells a story of a very unhealthy, unhappy relationship.
But if you need more proof, what’s the end result of both scenarios?
Well, following the first image, Zuko explodes on the beach in front of Mai and his other friends. While this outburst isn’t necessarily Mai’s fault, it goes to show that he doesn’t feel comfortable or safe being open with Mai. If he did, his internal debates would have arisen in a calmer setting between the two, long before Zuko was pushed to a breaking point by toxic drama that Bryke throws in for funzies.
After the second scene, Zuko is coronated, works to maintain peace while his nation is threatened, and Mai dumps him. And you might try to blame Zuko, to pin the fault on him and justify Mai’s behavior by saying “Oh well, Zuko was closed off and Zuko didn’t talk to her,” but why would he when his first attempt to be open and honest was met with “I just asked if you were cold. I didn’t ask for your whole life story.”
Right… becuase that’s conducive of a healthy, happy relationship…
So my high school had this event we called ialac for the 10th graders. We would all go out to this camp ground somewhere outside of Pittsburgh, and it was actually pretty fun at first. Everyone brought a ton of snacks, me and my friends snuck into the boys cabin and met my friends future boyfriend. Of course all the teachers had all these events planned to keep us busy so we couldn’t get into trouble, but we still managed to. We ended up getting lost in the woods for almost an hour, and had no cell service to call anyone, and ended up climbing up the steep hill beside a waterfall to get back. That night we had a rave themed dance where the teachers wouldn’t turn the lights off, and a ‘campfire’ which was actually us sitting in our respective cabins in front of a heater, so of course we all hung out outside instead. One kid had a mental breakdown in front of everyone, an ambulance came and he was pretty much quarantined for the rest of the trip. We all had to go inside after that, so me and my friends stayed up all night being stupid and around 3am a ton of fire trucks showed up to the boys cabin. Apparently one kid sprayed a fire extinguisher on a sleeping ginger kid. So all the boys got kicked out in the middle of the night, and the teachers were pissed. We ended up leaving early the next day and the trip got canceled for next year’s class.