Alright folks. I have no idea about what the fuck the McElroys are. No go damn clue at all,, people have been obsessed with them for months and like a god damn fool I am lost after all this time. and I’ll see stuff about them on my dash,, but it always leaves me with more questions than answers?? Like are they producing podcasts?? But I’ve also seen videos of them., so what the fucks that about?? I’ve heard about an adventure zone? I think they make that? Like I’m somewhat sure they’re producing fictional content, but whenever people talk about it they always just mention the McElroys like they’re characters in the content they’re producing????? And ALSO aren’t they brothers?? For some reason I’m p damn sure there 3 of them, but?? I’ve only ever heard anyone talk about Griffin McElroy. Is he just the most popular or do the other two not exist and I’m going crazy, are there more than 3 brothers.? What exactly are they making? What are they doing??? Are the McElroys real people??? I’ve heard about my brother my brother and me, is that some kind of music thing? Every now and again Griffin McElroy will pop on my dash like some kind of godforsaken cryptid but no one else seems the slightest bit confused about all this shit?? And I know I haven’t actually put up that much of an effort to figure it out, but whenever I see a new thing tagged Griffin McElroy, I feel more lost than I ever have in my life and like I’m fucking Charlie and I. Got. Boxes. Of. Pepe. Silvia.
Lemme just preface this with saying that I am a writer. I have been writing for most of my life. I have taken actual classes about writing and about what fiction can offer you, me, and people as a whole. I have won an award for something that I wrote. I know and love fiction, be it in written form, graphic novels, or film. It is all so good and complex and it’s something I am passionate about. That said, let’s get into this.
A good majority of the discourse that goes on in most of the fandoms I’m in stem from the idea that violence and forbidden sexual acts in fiction will encourage those actions in reality. It is important to know, firstly, that the only time this happens is when a person is immature enough or not mentally healthy enough to distinguish reality from fiction. Growing up, my parents would often stop horror movies (back when I first started watching them) to ask me questions. To be fair, they were pretty shitty people, but in this one aspect, they were so good about making sure I knew this difference. “You know this is just a movie, right? None of the stuff on the tv is real.” They’d assure before continuing the film.
It’s not real.
Now, half of the stuff I read or watched back then was nowhere near pushing boundaries or making me think critically about society or whatever. However, I knew that what I watched wasn’t real. It was images on a screen. If I don’t like what I’m seeing, I can walk away. It doesn’t have to affect me, personally, unless I let it.
Now, lets circle back. School. College. I took a writing class that used this book:
Granted, it was a screenwriting class and most of the chapters were about various script formats, but the beginning chapters focused on why we write and why we make the stories we do.
It had a section in it describing how human needs and desires are met through fiction. It detailed those needs in a list. This list:
Please draw your attention to the ones on the list that say that fictions helps people to:
Be purged of unpleasant emotions
To have vicarious but controlled emotional experiences
To confront, in a controlled situation, the horrible and terrible
To explore taboo subjects without guilt
Just because you personal don’t need various forms of ‘taboo’ media, doesn’t mean that others don’t. Media, in all of its forms, is a way for people to explore things safely. It’s an outlet that doesn’t harm anyone and it offers the creator and viewer/reader a safe way of exploring the complexities of situations (or in some cases relationships) that these people do not want to be involved in irl. Because we can distinguish reality from fiction. Because none of us are going out killing people or getting into abusive relationships or fucking our sibling.
While being critical of the media we consume is important and it is vital to dissect the whys of the media being created, there is a line between creating open discussion about these taboos, about the society and personal experiences that makes one need these outlets, and verbally abusing and harassing strangers.
If you want to create a dialogue about media or a ship you don’t agree with, fine. Talk about it. Dissect it. Really dig deep into the human condition and the psychology behind these outlets, but don’t shame people for them to the point of telling them to kill themselves or telling them they are human garbage or what the fuck ever.
Fiction isn’t always meant to be picturesque. It’s not always going to be SFW. If that isn’t your cup of tea, then great. Stop going into the tags of things that make you feel unhealthy. You do you. Keep yourself safe. Stop continuously exposing yourself to content that you can’t swallow. To keep getting involved, to keep harassing people, to keep abusing strangers shows that you don’t give a damn about the content. You need an excuse to bully someone else and indulge in holier-than-thou circle jerks with other people who also have no sense of what fiction is for.
so recently, there were a lot of really bad spoilers leaked about ML. i can’t imagine how this must feel as a creator, to have all your hard work just thrown out like that for everyone to see, completely out of context. it’s really awful.
in support of thomas and his team, the discord server i am in decided to start a small project: #HeartsForAstruc – even after everything, we still love this show and look forward to the new season. this show means a lot to many people. i am personally really thankful it exists. i have made so many good friends through it, it’s brought me closer to some old ones, and it’s something me and my daughter can enjoy together. honestly, it’s really hard to put into words how much each of these things mean to me. so just… thanks so much for what you guys do. esp thomas, for creating such a great universe for us to play around with. really, thank you so much.
for anyone else who would like to join in: draw a character [or two, or more; can be ML charas or ml oc’s, or yourself if you want] offering hearts. doesn’t have to be a sign, just some sort of love hearts. post it with or without a message, up to you, and then tag it #HeartsForAstruc. let’s cheer the team on. :D/
Jack is…big. With time and distance and schedules that refuse to cooperate, Bitty forgets this sometimes. Jack is diminished on the computer screen when they Skype, or through the phone when they call. Bitty sees him and hears him and forgets, sometimes, the exact dimensions of Jack’s broad, broad shoulders.
And, oh, they’re broad. And solid. And strong and smooth and hot beneath Bitty’s hands.
In freshman year I had a math teacher who was super mean to me specifically who would loan out basic calculators. So one day I decided that I would steal all the calculators. But not all at once bc then it would be obvious it was me. So whenever she wasn’t paying attention I would grab 2 calculators a class and put one back but keep the other one. I did this over a course of 2 months. Now I wasn’t gonna let my fellow students suffer just because of my spite. So I’d loan out calculators. But then I realized I could gain something from this. If someone wanted a calculator I’d ask for a quarter or something like food. I became known as the calculator girl. But everyone kept it on the dl bc no one liked this math teacher.
In the end I think I had over 50 calculators.
And the last day of school I dropped them all off anonymously in her classroom.
And that’s the story of how I ran a successful black market business out of spite.
I’m currently re-watching Season 4, simply just to indulge myself, and mainly because I personally loved it. I thought I was done expressing everything I have to say about the matter in this post, but there has been an unending sh*t-storm still looming over S4 that has gone beyond what I had expected. Not to mention that things I’ve seen on Twitter earlier regarding the so-called Norbury movement.
I am not dismissing the fact that this season had its flaws, but there’s a significant meaning to it all that some people are dismissing because they’ve been blinded by their own illusions that I would want to highlight. For someone who had cried over and mulled over these episodes more than the past 3 seasons, this season gave my love for existentialism a baseline that tugged at the heart – the very reason why I wanted to talk about it.
Just a brief explanation, existentialism is the belief that life has no meaning in general. To quote Moriarty, “Staying alive… So boring, isn’t it? It’s just… staying.” However, what I like about it is the idea that society or any other factor is not responsible for giving life it’s meaning – it is solely up to the individual to discover it on their own.
With that said, I think this is why this season resonated with me so much, and I find the chaos in some parts of the fandom frustrating, especially to the point that the writers are being attacked for this. So as usual, I have to say something about it. Because instead of writing articles for work, I’m thinking about Sherlock.
Anyway, I’m just gonna go ahead with my point.
The Six Thatchers : Horrors Of The Past
This may be my least favourite among the three, but the message of this episode is clearly simple: we all have horrors that will come and haunt us in the future – and how we face it all comes down to the path we choose.
We live hundreds, and even thousands of roles throughout our lives. And we all have our past; things that we regret, hate, cringe at, miss, still believe in, etc. But whatever that past might be, what I got from TST is that you can never run from your past as it catches up to you, but it is one facet of your life does not completely define you.
Death has been played with through the past seasons that it seemed all too mundane to us now, in terms of the context of the show. But S4 is here to correct this notion in Mary’s persona. With Mary saying that Mary Watson was the only life worth living, it showed that we get to choose which part of our lives we live out the most.
Same with John and his ‘cheating’. To be fair, I’m pissed at the fact that this was completely out of character. But when the series culminated, I understood why they have to do it. We saw what we wanted to see in these characters as they were presented to us – John was supposedly honourable, kind, and courageous, but what is this? Who is this new John?
This is where I head to my next point.
The Lying Detective : Being Alive And Human
This episode made me cry buckets, to be honest. And it is because this is all about changing what you know about these characters and seeing them all in a different light.
Here we see a Sherlock not led by the mind but the heart, a John who was weak against temptation, a cheater, someone who looked jealous from having the spotlight all on the detective – it showed that no one is ultimately good and that someone’s facade is not who they entirely are. It shows that everyone has their ups and downs because that’s what humanity is about. It illustrated that everyone was capable of being angry, desperate, conceited, weak, lonely, alone, etc. It highlighted how these characters are broken – especially Sherlock – and how redemption can mean so much more to a person.
We all have our flaws, our downfalls, our agonies; but who are we really, at our most vulnerable? And who are the people willing to believe in us even if we’ve shown them our true, and sometimes, faded colours?
“Taking your own life. Interesting expression, taking it from who? Once it’s over, it’s not you who’ll miss it. Your own death is something that happens to everyone else. Your life is not your own, keep your hands off it.”
This is a plea. That shutting down and ending your life is and should never be the answer. This is one of the most beautiful pieces of dialogue I have ever heard, and it’s a very upfront message about warranting a value on your own life. And for people to threaten the writers of the show that they are the ones who caused the lives that are put in the line or the self-harm that will happen due to their distaste for TFP is devastating to me.
And yes, there have been people tweeting Mark and BBC that they are and will be responsible for these lives, which is just unfair.
The Final Problem : On Love And Redemption
I’ve seen people questioning why Benedict said ‘love conquers all’ in one interview before the season aired. There has also been statements that this season will be ‘groundbreaking’, which others failed to see why, leading to the claims that the showrunners are queerbaiting.
Now, every single show, every single actor, not just in Sherlock, but basically everywhere, is being put in the microscope because they need to identify with something, and that they need to represent a cause — which I get! I advocate for this! But, just when the world is being careful about mixing up their characters or when they are inserting a gay character just because now, society is demanding them to, Sherlock had already presented that years before (note that some TV shows only became more open to having gay characters around late 2014, early 2015-ish onwards because people are becoming more vocal about it as inspired by those bold enough to make a first move, e.g. Glee).
Here, we have an openly gay character (which is still another topic of debate but I stand by it when I say Irene used the term gay loosely), had openly gay actors play brilliant and unstereotypical roles, and for God’s sake, Mark Gatiss is a gay man who is behind this brilliant show, and that’s the very reason they passed it off as normal. They didn’t do it in a way that we always have to be reminded that the character is gay, that there has to be a sex scene just to prove that they’re gay… it’s just there – again, as one facet of the characters. Sex, as something that has been explicitly expressed in the show, isn’t the only thing that defines a character or their relationships with someone else, and I appreciated that. They had a story to tell – the story of these characters as a whole and not just one side of them.
And personally, I did see why they made their claims as indicated by my chosen title. When this season ended, Sherlock who claimed to have never been attuned to his emotions, had his eyes open and had embraced that he was also human, flawed, and is capable to love IN ALL FORMS.
He learned to value his life because of what happened to Mary, he had admitted that he also succumbs to his impulses with Irene Adler (texting or beyond that, depends on what you want to believe), he fully realised that he would never ever want to hurt and make Molly feel like she’s being used by him because she’s his friend, he was able to extend a more human side of himself to John more than he did before, he finally understood and accepted Mycroft’s intentions and actions which I think mended their relationship significantly (this one hits me to the core so much), and lastly, he discovered that if he was left in the air in isolation, he might have ended up like Eurus, which is why he never wanted to make her feel alone again.
To me, it is groundbreaking because it left that cliche of someone running off into the sunset in the end and it’s all butterflies and rainbows. They wrapped it up with the characters still broken, but living through it day by day because someone chose to love, accept, and help them heal despite their flaws.
It is what it is, they keep on saying, because that’s how life is. It can be unbearable and it can most certainly be shit, but in the end, whether you ship Johnlock, Adlock, Sherlolly, Sheriarty, Mollstrade, Mystrade, etc., if we all let love – self-love, romantic love, familial love, platonic love – all kinds of love in our lives, it will help us conquer all, within and beyond this show.
edit 2: this is a post about bipolar disorder, made by me, an artist with bipolar disorder, strictly for other people with bipolar disorder. stop tagging it for unipolar depression, anxiety, bpd, psychosis, or anything else (those are just the most used tags on this) because it’s not about those. even if you think you can relate, tagging this as anything other than bipolar disorder is stripping my meaning away from my work, and invalidating my feelings as a mentally ill person AND an artist. stop doing that.
edit 3: do NOT put this on gore/guro blogs. thanks.
Person a tripping in the street and person b whomst is a stranger to them catches them and accidentally dips them ( like the dance thing u know)
Justin Oluransi likes to walk, and being in this city so far has been nothing but walking.
Walking from the subway to the hotel to the pharmacy back to the hotel, then to the hospital in the morning for his interview and from there to the deli for an early lunch then back to the hotel and then just - out to explore midtown.
New York City is all. walking. all. the. time. And it’s beautiful clear weather on a breezy spring midmorning.
He loves it.
It’s like a dance, weaving between the many pedestrians, pausing for cars in the street but not waiting for the signal to turn green, picking up the pace to get away from the creepy dude following too closely, and then slowing down to enjoy the atmosphere - suddenly halting to catch his breath when he turns a corner and sees the Empire State Building.
What a sight, what a rush, what a thrill! The only thing missing would be a -
A man bumps into him from behind so hard he’s twisted around and Justin’s glad he’s got quick reflexes because otherwise the man would have hit the concrete with the back of his head.
Instead, Justin has an arm under his shoulders and the other hand gripping the man’s waist tight to keep him cradled against his chest.
Wide green eyes stare up at him, and for a moment Justin can’t think. Those eyes are mesmerizing - they’re beautiful, soft, sweet. Justin’s lost in them.
It takes a moment for him to register that the other man’s hands are both gripping his arm tight, fingers digging into the light fabric of his favorite salmon hoodie, and he realizes he should help the man back to his feet.
“Sorry,” Justin says, pulling him into an upright position and letting his hands linger on the other man’s biceps for a moment to make sure he can support his own weight just fine.
“Chyeah, no, please, I’m sorry, I just, uh -” The other man is fumbling for words, running his hands over himself and then reaching up to right the cap on his head. “My legs don’t always send letters of intent to my brain, so sometimes my body wants to keep a pace and my legs just like - bolt for no apparent reason and I tumble over myself like a newborn fawn and it’s not - uh..”
He finally looks up and meets Justin’s gaze and for a moment Justin thinks he might lose himself in those beautiful eyes again, but the other man seems to suddenly regain control of himself upon catching sight of him. He straightens and stands taller, pulling at the hem of his t-shirt and licking his lips.
Justin does,, not follow the movement. Nope.
The other man clears his throat. “That wasn’t very chill of me.”
Justin laughs and the other man smiles softly in response.
“That’s ok,” Justin says. And then, because this man is really beautiful and Justin has never passed up an opportunity to flirt with beautiful people, he says “I was just thinking about how walking around here is like dancing, and then you waltzed into my arms for one heck of a grand finale.”
That gets a surprised laugh and a hint of a blush creeping on his cheeks, Justin can tell.
God, this man is beautiful.
“I’m Justin,” he says, extending his hand forward.
“Derek,” the other man - Derek - says.
When their palms meet Justin has to will himself not to stare at the way they fit in each other so well, or how they look clasped like that, or how long Derek’s fingers are.
“So uh,” Derek says, pulling his hand away but letting his fingers trail along Justin’s just slightly. “You pick up dance partners on 6th Av often?”
“Shit, is that the street this is? I thought I was on Broadway?”
He has to look around for a second, because if he got lost he has no idea how he’s gonna get back to the hotel and he cant handle being lost right now.
But Derek’s easy laugh flows over him, as does his gentle touch on his shoulder to draw Justin’s attention back to him.
“Yeah, Broadway’s right here. It just intersects here, see.” He’s pointing out all the street signs around them. “You probably just walked one block this way without realizing.”
“God, I’m such a tourist.”
Derek laughs again, and Justin loves how it sounds. “That’s alright, so’s everyone else.”
“You’re not from here either?”
“Oh no, I was born and raised on the Upper East Side. But everyone’s a tourist in this city bro, even the locals. Tourism is a state of mind.”
Justin lets that hover in the air for a moment. He watches Derek’s face and the way he seems so much more collected now, so much more in control and - chill.
“I’d love to have a five hour conversation with you about that one sentence.”
“No shit.” Justin revels in the curious look adorning Derek’s face and asks “Where can we get coffee and talk into the sunset?”
Derek smirks and Justin can feel in his bones that he is not going to make the flight home tonight.
But that’s ok, maybe he won’t go home. Maybe he’ll stay in this city, take that position at the hospital, and maybe… maybe he’ll have Derek show him around in the meantime.