you know how much i love comparing the series the books and the movies

on the new Iron Fist series

So after binge watching a ton of Marvel’s new Iron Fist series, I went onto tumblr, wondering what the fandom was up to now, what with all these new gifs and stuff to make. ‘Maybe I would find some fan art or something’ I thought innocently to myself,

BUT BOY WAS I WRONG

instead, I was greeted with SO MUCH DISCOURSE on how Iron Fist ‘needs a chinese-american actor’ or ‘has terrible dialogue and is slow’.

the best part is when I found out that some of y’all are trying to get this show boycotted like ‘????’

Now as a Chinese-speaking Asian female, living in Asia, with an Asian background and a good know-how of Chinese history, as well as a decent knowledge of comic books, (although I confess I got into the animated series first) I’m here to end the discussion before y’all get your full rage on and start fighting fans of the show like it’s Lord of the Flies up in here

So keep reading if you want to be educated or if you just want to fight me before you know what you’re even talking about

“THE SHOW INSULTS CHINESE CULTURE”

Uhhhh…no? I’ve seen a few episodes and I mean so far there isn’t really anything that screams ‘insult’ or even offensive in the slightest. Besides maybe the fact that they take the beliefs and twist them a little bit but honestly even that ain’t that bad as to what I’ve seen elsewhere.

I’ve read the boycott post and let me say that yea, they dressed him with an eye for Asian elements, but maybe that’s because it’s supposed to be resembling Asian clothing? I mean how is that offensive? Is it the part that it looks Asian? Or that you simply feel that white people that direct these shows should not be using Asian stuff for entertainment? Because I hate to break it to you but it’s still not offensive. Even the dragon tattoo is totally fine because it’s supposed to resemble Asian elements yea but also have y’all read the comics? Because he punched through a dragon and basically took it’s heart. So I mean a dragon tattoo kinda matches the theme.

I mean in the first episode they speak almost flawless Chinese for Pete’s sake! Hell, I was surprised that they even had it in them to have a non-Google translated line. Sure the accent was a little overdoing it cuz not even I have that thick a Chinese accent but I’ll excuse it since he was apparently learning and speaking 15 years. (I speak it maybe a few times a day for like the last 14 years or so only)

So no, the show doesn’t really insult Chinese culture, sure they might be ignorant, but you must understand that after generations of stereotypes and misconceptions that that can’t just go away with one show

“Danny Rand should be played by an Asian guy/be a Chinese-American”

I can’t even begin to tell you my frustration about this.

Y’all do know this show is based on the comics right?

You know, the one with the white guy.

I know Marvel is infamous for not including enough representation in their shows but seriously? This is like the Harry Potter thing all over again with Hermione being black, it’s not that we don’t want representation or anything, but it’s the fact that this hero that us comic fans have come to already love has been replaced. Or at least it feels like it. Like when a movie is made from a book and people go crazy because character XYZ suddenly has different traits or isn’t quite what was described as compared to the book.

Frankly, it sucks.

So even though yes, Marvel should have more Asians in their shows, don’t expect them to completely give the main character a makeover, even if the makeover was supposed to provide representation. And honestly? I don’t want them to change him because I really freaking love Iron Fist, just as he is.

“This show just villainizes Asians”

So you tell me that my race is being made villains because Marvel decided that most of their Asians on their shows are evil ninjas (aka the Hand) and at most there are like 3 sorta good Asians. Oh and I’m sorry, you want more Asian men that are good guys? You want a balance of Asian heroes?

Well I guess that would be kind of hard to fit into the story since, oh, I don’t know, everything happens in the USA?

If you want more Asian characters well then look no further because you do have them. Daisy Johnson from Agents of Shield? What about her extremely brave mom? Or maybe Colleen in Iron Fist? Everyone seems to be blatantly ignoring her badassery and only seeing the part where she’s a sorta love interest.

Facts are, there are Asian characters, you’re really just looking hard enough. I agree wholeheartedly when you say that more Asian men need to be in the Marvel universe that aren’t part of the bad guy team but you gotta say that they are still awesome.

Does anyone even remember the Japanese ninja yakuza guy from Daredevil? Dude got set on fire and STILL came back to kick ass. That’s a plus in my book because even though he’s considered bad, he’s been proven to be cunning, smart, and overall awesome.

“The show has terrible stunts/acting/dialogue/fight scenes”

From here on out it’s mostly just me trying to explain why the directors and writers of the show made decisions in the show to make it what it is, so let’s dive right into it.

  • STUNTS

Actually the stunts weren’t half-bad. If you’ve seen other shows or movies that are heavily reliant on stunts and action, and compare it to this show, they really aren’t that much different. Sure it might seem a little unbelievable sometimes like they’re breaking physics or something, but he already has a glowing fist. I think we’ve crossed the line of believable long ago.

  • ACTING

I have nothing to say about this except that go and take some acting or drama classes before coming and criticizing these awesome men and women who did indeed try their best

  • DIALOGUE

Now I get the dialogue might be a little weird at times and what not, but you must understand that this show was partially written with the Defenders series in mind. So almost everything that was said in the show is meant to lead to something more. Thus, you must take it as a bigger picture. Sorta like how everyone said that Fantastic Beast and Where to Find Them wasn’t as good as they thought it would be, that movie was also meant to lead on to a bigger story so you might want to excuse the weird speech and cryptic lines at times.

  • FIGHT SCENES & ACTION

Okay seriously people, please read the comics. Danny Rand is supposed to be an accidental hero, one that doesn’t want to fight unless he really has zero choice in the matter. So yea, the fight scenes won’t be that interesting, but only because the character in question is more interested in ending the fight than anything.

~

So there you have it, my whole slightly angry info-dump on Iron Fist and Marvel’s representation problem in general. If you want to correct me or scold me even then by all means message me or shoot me an ask. But just keep in mind that Marvel can’t make all your problems go away in one show, and please for the love of all that is good read the comics before coming to rant okay?

What about the RFA and Unknown and V finding out that MC has a career in the arts (author, artist, actor or something like that?) @saeranlover


Lol it’s been like 5,000 years since I’ve done a request, here you go bbies

Yoosung:

  • It was always a lingering thought in Yoosung’s mind
  • The thought always came randomly, but sometimes he swore that he  recognized your voice
  • Like the one time you yelled “Come at me!” at a friend who was teasing you and he just froze for a second to think about why it sounded familiar
  • It wasn’t until one day he was testing out a LOLOL character he’s never played before and she screamed out a line of dialogue before her attack
  • And suddenly he heard your voice behind him perfectly recreate the line
  • He turned around to see you cheekily grinning from your place on the bed
  • But it was wiped off your face soon enough because baby boi just pounced you into a big hug
  • “MC WHY DIDN’T YOU TELL ME YOU VOICED A CHARACTER IN LOLOL I WOULD’VE PLAYED AS HER MORE OFTEN IF I KNEW.”
  • You giggled as he rapidly asked you other things you voice acted in and gawked when he recognized the other characters you’ve voiced in games and cartoons
  • He’ll shyly ask you to reenact his favorite lines or scenes and his inner fanboy will show
  • Yoosung’s never really been into the behind the scenes stuff but he already somewhat was a fan of yours before so he’s basically dating his favorite VA
  • Silly lil’ peanut is gonna ask for your autograph on his merch of the characters you’ve voiced

Jaehee:

  • She found out during one of your nights in
  • You were in the kitchen preparing the snacks while Jaehee sorted through the set of musicals the two of you had rented for tonight (you finally convinced her that watching ‘Promiscuous Jalapeno’ for the 8th time in a row was a little much)
  • Once that was all said and done, you cuddled up to Jaehee while the movie started as she fed you popcorn
  • Oh crap, you recognized this movie
  • You actually got the part of the main dancer in this film (it was your typical dance batte film)
  • You somewhat never wanted her to find out  that you were an actor/dancer in fear of always being compared to Zen
  • Once your character was introduced, Jaehee’s eyes squinted a little at the screen before gasping and shaking your shoulders
  • “MC, MC, IS THAT YOU?”
  • “U-uhm nooooo…?”
  • “Wait, why would you keep this secret from me?”
  • After explaining your reasoning as to why, she just pulled you into a tight hug
  • “I’d never compare you anyone else, I love you just the way you are, famous or not!”
  • After watching the movie, she put aside the time to scour the internet for every performance you’ve been in and is about to be the proud owner of all your merch
  • jaehee please no that was our grocery money

Zen:

  • “lolol zen have you seen mc’s latest cover?”
  • “Cover? What’re you talking about?”
  • “the one on her youtube channel???”
  • “…”
  • “you do know what she does for a living, right??”
  • After Seven endlessly mocked Zen for not knowing what his own girlfriend did for a living, Seven graciously provided the link to your Youtube channel
  • Zen then proceeded to spend the next 3 hours of his life going through
  • your entire channel
  • He knew that you liked to sing and sounded like an angel but this
  • This is something extraordinary
  • You actually made a living doing this and he never even knew!
  •  He finally made his way up to your latest cover (which was uploaded about a week ago), and HO L Y  C R A P
  • It was the song he’s practiced at home for months on end for a musical he recently just starred in!
  • When you get home that night, you’re bombarded with compliments and questions (mostly compliments)
  • You explained that you never recorded around him because you were afraid that he might’ve thought you were going to use him for popularity
  • “Babe, I know you would never do that NOW WILL YOU PLEASE DUET WITH ME–”
  • Guess who has the best mashup cover of ‘Butterfly’ now

Jumin:

  • Coming home a few hours early was indeed a rare occurrence for Jumin
  • Usually when he came home, you were instantly there to greet him with a hug and kiss
  • He called your name, but there was no response, just a faint typing sound
  • After hanging his coat on the coat hanger, he began walking towards the noise, his hands already working on loosening his tie
  • “Ah, here you are, my love,” he said upon entering the officeroom
  • “Jumin, you’re home early,” you smiled, letting your husband wrap his arms around your shoulders and resting his chin atop your head
  • “The office had to close early for some renovations,” Jumin explained, “but I’m more interested in what you’re working on.”
  • “I’m working on my next book!”
  • The surprised look on his face made you remember that you never brought it up to him before, but now is as good as time as any to explain
  • Jumin seemed genuinely intrigued as he listened to your explanation on your book series, which was apparently very popular
  • When you finished, he asked if you could lend him the first addition, as he did enjoy reading in his spare time
  • And soon enough, he was hooked
  • He’d have long talks with you over dinner on how he wasn’t expecting a plot twist or how well you wrote your characters
  • Or about how you should hurry and finish the next book because you left him on a cliffhanger

707:

  • He’s known since the background check that you had a job in digital art but he tucked that away in the back of his head because there were too many other things happening at the time (eg the hacker, your sudden appearance, his emotions and job…)
  • It isn’t until one day where he’s been able to work for a few hours straight without you lecturing him about how he should take a break
  • So he got up from his chair, slapped his right leg a few times to wake it up, and ventured outside his office to find you
  • To no surprise, you were huddled inside in the bedroom, but this time with your drawing tablet in hand
  • “Hey Saeyoung,” you tiredly muttered, eyes still glued to the laptop screen
  • His eyes trailed to where you were looking and a look of mock hurt morphed on his face, “MC, how dare you draw a picture of another man!”
  • You stifled a laugh at your boyfriend’s dramatic tone, “Zen just asked me to draw some things for his website so I’m–”
  • You should me drawing me instead! Here, I’ll even pose for you!” 
  • You regret even looking behind you, because Saeyoung was already stripping down to his boxers, need I remind you the pair with cat faces on them
  • “DRAW ME LIKE ONE OF YOUR FRENCH GIRLS.”
  • “SAEYOUNG PUT YOUR CLOTHES BACK ON AND GET TO BACK TO WORK!”

V:

  • Usually you were making some sort of noise in the house, but today you were oddly quiet
  • “MC? Where are you?”
  • “I’m in the living room,” you hollered back as he started making his way over, “Be careful not to bump my arm though.”
  • “What’re you doing?” he asked, taking a seat on the floor next to you
  • You explained that you liked paint and used it as a way to make some extra pocket money
  • V was very happy and excited to hear that you had an artistic career just like him
  • You were always delighted to describe the paintings to him, and you always did it with such passion
  • After awhile, he started to miss photography and he so badly wanted to see your work for himself
  • So he decided to get the eye surgery
  • Once he did, he was shocked at how much he can see your heart poured onto the canvas
  • You often went out into nature together and sit there together for hours to photograph/paint and enjoy one another’s company
  • You also loved painting some of V’s older photographs and he loved it and every single one is framed in the house
  • #artsycouple
  • The day you painted a picture of the sun and gave it to him, he cried

Unknown:

  • The first time Saeran ever walked into your room, his eyes immediately darted to the big, colorful collection of sticky note pads on your desk
  • He picked one up, noting that every one had a slightly different drawing than the others, “What’re these for?”
  • “Oh, I’m an animator! I like to use these sticky notes when I’m bored.”
  • He never got to watch cartoons as a child so this was all new to him
  • Watching you peacefully work is very, very soothing to him, to just watch the lines fill with color so smoothly
  • You even let him have some of your already drawn-on sticky note pads and he likes to flip through them when he’s nervous or needs to calm down when something’s bothering him
  • His favorite is the one you made for him where it goes “I love you, Saeran!” with a cute little doodle of a cartoony-looking you kissing his cheek on it
  • As mentioned before, he never got to watch cartoons or movies as a kid and he’s willing to watch the ones you’ve worked on
  • It always amazes him that you made what was on the screen and he loves it (he’s never said it out loud but it shows on his face)
  • He really enjoys the ones that are story-based rather than the nonsense slapstick ones (which is what Saeyoung enjoys, much to his dismay)
  • Seeing the childlike innocence in his eyes is heartwarming and you wouldn’t trade it for the world 

Zayn opens up about conquering touring anxiety, prepping album No. 2 – and why he’s been living on a farm

There aren’t many places in New York, or anywhere else for that matter, that feel as cocooned from the ­outside world as the live room in Electric Lady’s Studio A. Designed to Jimi Hendrix’s ­specifications, the curvy space is stocked with shiny vintage gear, faded Persian rugs and a cosmic, wall-sized mural. On this Sunday night in September, a little after 9 p.m., the room’s sole occupant is a slight, ­strikingly handsome 24-year-old, whose unique ­combination of global fame and acute anxiety can make life outside of insulated creative oases like this one ­challenging, and who is currently kicked back on an overstuffed leather sofa, pulling ­meditatively from a joint and watching the smoke curl toward the sound-­deadened ceiling.

For the last nine months, Zayn Malik – who in his solo career goes by his first name – has lived in similar womblike rooms in New York, Los Angeles, London and even rural Pennsylvania (more on that later), ­crafting the follow-up to his debut solo LP, Mind of Mine, which bowed at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 last spring and spawned the Billboard Hot 100-topping ­single “Pillowtalk,” which has racked up over 750 million YouTube spins. That album, with its Frank Ocean-esque ­moodiness, bedroom vocals and, “Pillowtalk” aside, resistance to radio-friendly sonics, demarcated a clear line between Malik’s grown-up second act and his beyond-famous first one.

Seven years ago, Malik was plucked at age 17 from a small city in Northern England, teamed up with four other boys as One Direction and ­tornado-ed into the most intense global teen craze endured by a crew of British kids since Beatlemania. The ­experience left him unmoored – he abruptly quit the group in 2015 – and as a solo artist, he’s devoted to serving his own muse. In the 18 months since the release of his debut LP, he has deepened his ­relationship with his supermodel girlfriend, Gigi Hadid, started taking better care of his health, corralled collaborators ­including Taylor Swift and Sia, and determinedly honed his sound. For an artist so shaken by his time in One Direction that he has yet to launch a tour, the intensely private star has found a way to navigate, even thrive, in his highly public life. Or, as Malik himself puts it, “I don’t do things that I wouldn’t buy into. I try to explain that to people and hope that they understand – it doesn’t come from a place of being arrogant or above anything.”

It’s probably not intentional, but Malik seems dressed to match the room in an ­outfit you can easily picture Paul McCartney rocking in the early 1970s: a dark-red cable-knit sweater that looks both cozy and off-the-charts expensive, a subtly ­patterned button-down shirt, earth-toned, jean-cut pants and a pair of black Chelsea boots. His left hand is covered in a ­mandala-like tattoo; his right is adorned with a pair of red lips ­billowing smoke. His hair, which evidently grows quickly, has already returned to an ­appealing fuzz less than a week after he made headlines ­worldwide by ­shaving it bald. He’s in New York to take some meetings and work on the album, but the trip also lines up with New York Fashion Week, which means that he and Hadid get to be in the same place at the same time. The pair, says Malik, “pretty much live together,” whether it’s at his homes in Los Angeles and London or at her pad in New York. “It’s actually not that hard for us [to line up schedules],” he says. “It helps that she’s really organized. Thank God! Because I’m really not, so she helps organize my ­schedule around seeing her.” (Hadid is also one of a small group of people, including Malik’s parents, siblings and management team, who get to hear in-progress music. “She’s in the studio quite a lot,” he says cheerfully. “She likes to cook for me and stuff – when I’m here late, she’ll come down and bring me food. She’s cool.”)

The new album, says Malik, mines two main moods: one more rhythmic and pop, the other more downtempo. “The last album veered into a much more nighttime kind of thing,” says Peter Edge, chairman/CEO of Malik’s label, RCA. “This one is more of a mix than that.” The young star has been back in the studio with ­his first album’s main ­collaborator, Malay, well known for his work on Frank Ocean’s Channel Orange and Blonde. Veteran ­producers like Timbaland and Rob Cavallo have contributed, and Malik also has made a bunch of songs largely by ­himself. He has been toiling away at the disc for months, blowing past deadline after deadline; ­originally slated for a late-­September release, the album now won’t be out until the first quarter of 2018.

I got a preview of two tracks in late October. The first, which is built around Malik’s velvet vocals, a heartrending ­melody and spare, sonar-plink sonics builds – and improves – on his debut album’s sound. The other, all synths and ­effortless vocals, feels directly aimed at pop fans’ ­pleasure centers. “What impresses me about Zayn is the vision he has for his music,” says Timbaland. “How he looks at it, takes his time with it – just really thinks it out.”

Most recently, Malik has been ­collaborating with a musician that his management declines to name, saying only that he’s “unknown,” from Brazil and that Malik met him through friends. “I think I’m like 90 percent of the way there,” says Malik in September of the LP’s process. “But I’m still working on stuff and trying to decide what goes on the album and what comes off.”

Cavallo, who worked with Malik and a killer crew of session vets to grow a spare, downtempo demo into a Michael Jackson-inspired funk-rock tune, was most impressed by the young star’s calibrated ear. “He kind of reminds me of when I was in the studio with Fleetwood Mac,” says Cavallo. “His instinctive impulse to know what’s good or not good is like an ­incredibly precise laser beam. He knows which lyric to sing, he knows when the guitar part is good, he knows when the beat is right. It’s all right there at his fingertips.”

In person, Malik is polite, friendly and willing to answer ­questions. But he’s not exactly a chatterbox, and he’s more likely to reply ­cryptically than with a concrete ­anecdote. Even softball questions ­sometimes elicit strange responses, like when I brought up a recent Instagram post of his that ­compared two images of Game of Thrones’ Iron Throne – one as it’s depicted in the books, the other as it is in the show – along with the caption “Tru.” (The throne is apparently described in print as taller and spikier.) So he must be a huge fan of the show, right? “Ah, I’m not too into Game of Thrones,” he says, ­shrugging. “I just put that picture up because [it ­represents] the difference between a book and a movie. The ­overproduction of things is always hilarious.”

There is at least one HBO series that he genuinely loves. “I watched Girls – the whole thing,” he says. In fact, one of the stars of that show, Jemima Kirke, appears in the action-blockbuster-style video for the new album’s lead single, “Dusk Till Dawn,” which features guest vocals from Sia and is more full-bore pop than ­anything on Mind of Mine. Malik thought Kirke seemed cool and reached out to see if she’d be ­interested in playing his femme fatale co-star in the video, which was directed by Marc Webb, who helmed the 2012 Spider-Man reboot. In its first day, “Dusk Till Dawn” got over 10 million views on YouTube. Malik was enthused by the ­reception, in part because he wrote much of the song ­himself. (The video raises another ­question: Does he have any ­interest in ­acting? “I do, yeah,” he says. “It would have to be a good script and something that was a bit ­different, like an art movie. Something people wouldn’t expect.”) Malik’s a huge admirer of Sia, not only for her talent as a singer and hitmaker, but also for the way she has ­navigated the perils of celebrity and figured out how to perform live, ­on her own terms.

Malik ­himself has yet to tour – or even play a single major concert – since he left One Direction. During the last two years, he has canceled shows in London, Dubai and Japan, citing extreme anxiety. “The band was like being in the army for him,” notes his manager, Sarah Stennett, adding that the last few years have been a time for Malik to recalibrate. “You lose your sense of intuition and instinct about what you really need, and what’s right for you.”

In Zayn, an autobiography-slash-photo book he published in 2016, Malik made it clear that his time with 1D wasn’t just ­stressful – it was damaging to his mental health. He opened up about having ­developed an eating disorder triggered by the endless grind and total lack of ­anything resembling a normal life. “I’d just go for days – sometimes two or three days straight – without eating anything at all,” he wrote. “Food was something I could control, so I did.”

Today, he insists that he’s in a much better place. “I’m taking things at my own pace, eating well, not going too crazy,” he says with a wry little laugh. “Making sure we have dinnertime.” (He’s clearly not on a rabid health kick, though. At one point a member of his team delivers a pack of Marlboro Lights, and he spends several minutes trying to get one lit by holding it in his hand and toasting the end with a lighter.) One of the ways that Malik has achieved a more serene mind space has been by ­spending much of this ­summer and fall in the last place any fan would think to look for him – on a working farm in rural Pennsylvania, with a private studio nearby. “[The farm] is just out of the way and feels grounded,” he says. “There’s not a lot of things around. I do a lot of farm work.” Really? “Yeah, yeah, I take the horses out and feed the cows and that kind of stuff. It’s cool. I’ve always been ­interested in animals.”

The farm reminds him, he says, of the countryside around Bradford, England, the town between Leeds and Liverpool where he grew up. A rotating crew of friends, family and collaborators – including Hadid – join him in Pennsylvania and listen to music and offer opinions. Zayn’s father, Yaser Malik, a British-Pakistani hip-hop fan, gravitates toward lyrically ­sophisticated songs. “He likes the more meaningful ones,” says Malik. “He’ll be like, ‘Read more, do this, work on this lyric.’” His mom, Tricia Malik, who ­converted to Islam before she married Yaser, “likes anything that’s clubby and upbeat. She’s hilarious to me. All of what I call my proper ratchet songs, she loves.” He cracks a big grin and laughs.

Malik isn’t the only ­prominent Muslim star in music – rappers from Ice Cube to Q-Tip share the faith – but his religion was one of the clear ­markers of difference between him and his 1D bandmates. He has made a few ­tentative political gestures around his religion (including tweeting the hashtag #freepalestine in 2014) but generally avoids the topic of intolerance in the era of Donald Trump and Brexit. He’s ­cheerful when talking about his father’s family’s culture, though. Malik understands Urdu, although when he speaks the language, it’s a ­hodgepodge of Urdu and English and slang. He has never been to Pakistan but is ­interested in visiting someday. And he’s a fan of Pakistani food, music, poetry and movies. “My grandparents would always have that going on the TV,” he says. “So I’m pretty in the know.”

According to Malik, he no longer has any contact with former 1D bandmates Harry Styles, Liam Payne, Niall Horan or Louis Tomlinson, all of whom have also released solo music in 2017. He says this without malice, and if he feels ­competitive with his old crew, he’s certainly not letting on. “Our relationships have definitely changed since we were in a band together, but I think that’s just life,” he says. “Everybody grows up; two of the guys have got kids now. But no, I don’t talk to any of them, really.”

It might help that he has edged out the others on the Hot 100, especially when you count “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever,” the No. 2 smash that he recorded for the Fifty Shades Darker soundtrack with Taylor Swift – another artist for whom he has major respect. He personally recruited Swift, who is tight with Hadid, for the track. “I worked with her because I felt like she was the right artist for the song,” says Malik. “And of course she’s also a massive artist, so that brings its benefits. I get to let her fans know that I’m doing this kind of music, and she lets her fans know she likes my kind of music – there’s no opposition, for real. Everybody can like everybody’s music.”

While nothing has been booked yet, Malik is planning on launching a major tour behind the new album. His anxiety around performing, he explains, wasn’t just a 1D hangover – some of it came from not ­having figured out how to do a solo show that felt natural, especially with only one album’s worth of material from which to draw. “Like, there were a lot of upbeat dance [songs on the album], and I don’t dance, so it would have required a lot of extra dancers and stuff going on, and I don’t necessarily want to do that.” (Fans hoping to hear Malik perform 1D hits, as they can on Styles’ recently launched tour, are likely to be disappointed.)

Part of the solution, it turns out, came from that session with Cavallo and ­seeing how one of his studio creations could take on new life with a great band. “It definitely helped identify in my own mind where I want to be as an entertainer,” says Malik. “For a long time I’ve struggled with, ‘Where is Zayn as a performer?’ I don’t want [my show] to be too eccentric or out there, because I’m not that kind of ­personality. I’m quite a reserved person, and I feel like [the vibe of that session] sort of fits me and what I want to do onstage.”

Near the end of our time together, I ­gently float an idea: “If there are any songs you’d feel comfortable playing for me,” I ­suggest, “I’d love to hear them.” Malik seems totally into it. “Yeah, of course, man,” he says emphatically. “Cool. I’ll play some stuff.” He gets up from the sofa and heads to the ­studio door. “I’m just going to get the songs off my manager.” I tell him I appreciate it. “No worries, bro,” he says, before he disappears through the door. And then, in probably the most Zayn-like move of the night, he never comes back.

VIA BILLBOARD

Even More Things To Add To Your Bullet Journal

Hello, my journalers! I am making another long list of bullet journal ideas. If you’d like to see my first list, click [here]. I had 30 ideas on that list, so be sure to check that one out! 

1. Books To Read

There are so many cute ways to create this section. 

2. All About Me Pages

These are some of my favorite pages to make. They can be simple and to the point, or colorful and complex. You do you and show off that you! Here’s a [link] to the post I made about my pages. 

3. Future Log

Having a yearly spread of what you are planning, need to plan, or just simply feel organized will help you feel less stressed about the coming year. I’ve seen a few ways how to set up a future log, but I chose the one that works best for my life. Mine has gotten a bit messy and only has the rest of 2016.

4. Movies to Watch

There are so many good movies coming out soon, and so many movies I just haven’t gotten around to see. If you’re like me and love coloring in blocks to show progress, then I suggest to set up the page sort of like mine. (But you can also do it any number of ways as well.) Here’s a [link] to my post about creating a movie/tv tracker)

5. Skills to Learn

I imagine a simple checklist can work. If you like to be more detailed oriented, you can make it more like a progress log. 

6. Important Phone Numbers/Addresses

Much like an address book, you can make pages in your bullet journal for the same function. Most people put numbers and addresses into their phones, but sometimes it’s just nice to have them written down someplace else. 

7. Year In Pixels 

If you’d like to see an explanation of this page idea, click this [link]. 

8. Fonts, Banners, and Frame Ideas

I think it’s convenient to have a few pages that act as a cheat sheet for your designing needs. 

9. Snail Mail Log

This is something that I am totally going to do soon, and possibly even include you all in on it. I want to start a mailing list for sending letters to more people. I love getting mail from family and friends, but it doesn’t happen often enough! 

10. Savings Tracker

This is such a lovely idea to keep in your journal. Be sure to stay on top of your finances! I like to keep an extra page for things I need to pay off or people to pay back.

11. Favorite Lists

This could also go in your “All About Me” section, but I decided it should be separate for me. You can list things like your favorite restaurants, meals, songs, classes, sounds, tastes, places, shoes, animals, colors, instruments, plays, games, etc. Get to know yourself better. 

12. TV Series Tracker

This is for those people who want to feel like they just want physical proof of how many times they’ve watched that series on Netflix. Here’s a [link] to my post about making your own. 

13. Monthly Challenges

These are so much fun to make for you all. If you want to add a challenge to your journal, click [here] for my master list of challenges. 

14. Music Playlists

You can make playlists on your phone with various apps, but there’s something sweet about writing out your favorite songs. You can create a workout, relaxing, studying, writing, etc. playlists.

15. Timeline of Your Life

Use two pages for this one because it will be filled by the time you are done. You can even use this for what you want to do in the future. 

16. Inspiration Page

Quotes, songs, people, pictures, charts, graphs, jokes, scripture, events, love, etc. WRITE THEM DOWN, BE INSPIRED, AND GO DO. 

17. Self Care List/Ideas

Sometimes we don’t know how to make ourselves feel better. Write a list of things you could try to do to help yourself become a healthier you. Examples: take a warm bath, go for a walk, drink a glass of water, watch a sad movie, etc. 

18. Monthly/Yearly Memories

It’s nice to have a page with all the memories you had that month/year. I tend to put a little doodle with each event/milestone in my life just to make it more memorable. (This was from my first journal. Please don’t judge.)

19. Sleep Tracker

I personally don’t use a sleep tracker because my sleeping habits are the worst and logging them might be upsetting to me. However, you can track the time you go to bed and what time you get up in the morning on a chart that is easy to read and compare with other nights. 

20. Me Time Log

Sometimes we all need a little time to ourselves. You can use this with the “Self Care List/Ideas” pages to log specific activities you do with yourself. You can keep track of the activity, when you do to, and how long your me time was. 

21. Tiny Adventures

Not exactly real adventures, but adventurous enough to get you out of your comfort zone. To see the original post about these adventures, click [here].

22. Word Tracker

For those authors and poets, keeping a goal sheet or tracker of your words helps a ton! 

The Usage of the Word “T’hy’la” or Lack thereof

So, a while ago I had this discussion with a fellow Trekkie about how canon K/S exactly is. When I brought up the Motion Picture Novel and the scene where Spock thinks of Jim as his T’hy’la, his final argument was (apart from the infamous footnote) that the word never actually made it into the series or movie franchise, and, therefore, couldn’t have been that much of importance.

But since I will fight anyone over this matter I thoroughly thought about this discussion, because he had a point. I mean the book still stands, but why didn’t Roddenberry or anyone else include the word? It seemed to be important enough and it became famous in the fandom almost immediately after it’s creation.

It took me a while, but then I re-watched WoK and the penny finally dropped.

Spock never used Vulcan Vocabulary with his captain (well duh, I know, but hear me out), because as far as we know Jim doesn’t understand Vulcan. 

And what is more: T’hy’la isn’t exactly a simple word. Due to it’s emotional intonation it’s probably a word derived from high Vulcan and it doesn’t even have a proper Standard translation. It is therefore loosely translated as: “Friend, Brother, Lover” since the word itself incompasses all three of them, but in Standard it’s untranslatable, because there is no comparism. (We, read: the fandom, translate it as soulmate, since this is probably very close. But this was never made official.)

So yeah, no point in confessing feelings that reach this deep to someone who wouldn’t understand the proper vocab, got it. 

That doesn’t mean that Spock never made Jim clear what he was to him. As I said, it took me some time, but I finally realized that Spock DOES use the word, he even says it directly to Jim. He just uses the Standard translation.

1. Superior officer = Brother (in arms)

2. Friend

3. I am yours = Lover

I could kick myself for not realizing this sooner. HE ACTUALLY DOES SAY IT! I mean, of course I’ve known since forever, that they love each other, but that Spock actually uses “T’hy’la” in the franchise is news to me.

This means exactly two things: that I am incredibly stupid sometimes (how many times did I watch this movie? 10?) AND that I can rub this under everyone’s noses. 

EXCUSE YOU MY OTP IS CANON!

On the Ending of Animorphs

Or: What Animorphs got right that Harry Potter got wrong.

Obvious massive spoilers ahead:

So I flashed through the last three books in the series, and I have to say, even knowing what was coming, having read this series back as a teen, I really wasn’t prepared. It’s one thing to read this series as some middle/high schooler over the years the series was released. Obviously I was part of that demographic. But to read it now as an adult all the way through in the course of about six and a half months, to get all of the subtleties, to be able to appreciate the messages this series gives. This ending hit me hard.

Because the Earth was saved. The war was ended. Humanity lives. But these six kids, the Animorphs, don’t get happy endings. There is no coming back from this war for them. But it’s not like this heartbreak wasn’t earned as a series. Everything that has happened throughout these books, all of the decisions these kids were forced to make, if K.A. Applegate had given everyone a happy ending, I would honestly have felt cheated, because it’s anathema to the anti-war message this series has crafted.

Rachel died. Rachel was a warrior, the only one of the Animorphs who seemed to get enjoyment out of the war. She wasn’t a sociopath, there was just something in her that would have made it impossible for her to go on even if she had survived. So she gets to the die the hero. She willfully goes with Jake’s plan, even tho she’s scared, even tho she doesn’t want to die. But she does, and once again does the dirty deed Jake has asked her to do: she kills Jake’s brother, her cousin, Tom. This is why her character only makes sense if you accept the fact that she probably killed David back in The Return. Since that point, she has had no qualms about killing. She murdered that Yeerk that only wanted to escape to be a nothlit. She was willing to run down that innocent military officer with a truck. Rachel was not the type of person would could have survived this war and had any semblance of a healthy life. But even in her death, she was still scared: was her life worth it, she asked; did she matter?

Rachel’s death pretty much strikes out the last remnants of Tobias’s lingering humanity. It’s not that it gives him manpain; he doesn’t grow from this, but is utterly wrecked. But it’s not just that Rachel died; it’s that Jake sent her to her death. Jake betrayed the illusion that the Animorphs was a family, the only real family Tobias had ever known. So Rachel’s death basically destroys him so much he leaves behind the actual remaining family he has: he abandons his mother Loren and his uncle Ax to live his life as a hawk. He has the option of becoming a human nothlit, but he doesn’t. Tobias has given up on his humanity and humans in general.

Ax goes back to the Andalites and gets the military rank of Prince, gets to become an even bigger hero than his brother Elfangor. It’s everything he ever could have wanted or strived for. He’s widely respected and admired. But when the Andalites begin to dismantle their military government and go back to civilian mode, Ax finds he cannot make the shift back into normal life. He cannot go back to his family and just make a home for himself. Whether he has become addicted to war as Rachel has is unclear, but it is clear that war has so become a part of himself that he cannot let it go. He chases down the last remaining Yeerk force for years because he cannot move on.

Marco at first seems to have been the one who got through it all okay. He soaks up the attention and celebrity that comes with being a war hero. He goes on talk shows, signs books and movie deals. He exploits his time in the war for money so he can be a millionaire. He surrounds himself with beautiful women. He buys multiples homes, this kid who started out the series in the slums. But it becomes apparent that this is a façade. Look at how he reacts to something so minor as dropping his keys in the pool. He morphs lobster. Marco has immersed himself into stardom and surrounded himself with stuff because something in him is broken beyond repair. The fame isn’t enough to fill it. It’s hollow and empty.

Cassie probably comes the closest of successfully moving on. She keeps morphing, learning about her beloved animals. She helps the free Hork-Bajir. And it’s obvious she has had to do a lot of soul-searching to make peace with what she has done in the war. She tells herself, tells Jake and the others over and over that they did what they had to do, that as the victims they had the right to do what they did to their oppressors. Even with that assurance, tho, it seems to not be something she even fully believes. See her reaction when Jake admits he did what he did not because he was a victim, but because he plainly just wanted the enemy to suffer. And this creates a rift between her and Jake. They don’t get to be the happy couple. She moves on to someone else. And that’s portrayed as okay, while heartbreaking.

And then there is Jake. Jake, who was simply unable to recover from having his family taken as controllers, who was ultimately unable to have the weight of leadership on his shoulders without it consuming him. Jake, who ordered the bombing of the Yeerk pool. Jake, who manipulated and treated his ally Erek King as property. Jake, who ordered the death of his brother and sent his cousin to her death. Jake, who threw the auxiliary Animorphs, a group of disabled kids, into the front lines as cannon fodder resulting in every single one of their deaths. Jake, who committed genocide against seventeen thousand helpless Yeerks out of revenge. Jake, who has become numb to the world because of his actions. Jake, who cannot even get enjoyment out Visser Three’s court martial because he realizes that he, too, is a war criminal. Jake, who knows that just as Alloran will forever be known as the Butcher of the Hork-Bajir, he can not escape his actions. Jake the Yeerk Killer.

Which leads us to the infamous cliff-hanger ending. But let’s be real, there is no cliff hanger. After Ax is captured by a new enemy only known as The One, Jake gets Tobias and Marco back together for a rescue mission. And you think this might play out as the typical trope, war heroes getting together for one last mission, for one last hurrah to end on a high note. But while I don’t doubt Jake genuinely wants to save Ax, it’s obvious the real reason he’s going: he wants so badly to make right what he did wrong. He thinks this is his chance for redemption, to not fall back into the traps of war that made him go against everything the Animorphs thought they believed in.

But in the end? It’s 99% percent likely Ax was already dead, absorbed into The One. Jake rams their ship into the Blade ship. There’s just no way he, Marco, and Tobias survived that. The reader must accept that there was no last hurrah. All of the young heroes, sans Cassie, are dead. Jake, in his desperation to right his wrongs, kills his friends and himself.

And that feels incredibly empty. It’s harsh and unforgiving. But as I said above, it was earned. If the Animorphs had just moved on and lived happy uncomplicated lives, how disrespectful would that ending have been? Compare this ending to the Harry Potter series. Rowling may not have had qualms killing secondary characters in the final book, but her faves the Golden Trio and their love interests were never in danger. Harry, Hermione, and Ron emerge from the war largely intact. They get to marry out of high school with the person they were set up with from the beginning. Rowling was not committed to her message. The war doesn’t seem to have any lasting affect on the heroes. The good guys beat the bad guys. They pop out kids and get their happy endings. There’s no lasting damage. Which, if you aren’t willing to see through your message to its end, why bother?

many faces, but one name.

it has faces comparable to the blue of the ocean, so you’ll drown when it rains and break when you’re alone. a series of difficult emotions to process– it only has one name. we confuse it, very often, we suffocate it. we turned this daylight butterfly into a heavy stone and that’s how we got the sound of heartbreak. we use mirror neurons to copy the people that makes us feel nice. how could I ever hate you if we’re so alike? how could I erase you if you’ve always taken me far from this place? it’s such a shame. it’s torture. you have one name, but multiple pretty faces– how do I find you? which one will ask me to stay? how will I know that it’s you? how many lifetimes must I search before I have you? did we meet in a book? are we fiction? did we get written down by a writer? oh, passion. are we fireproof? I cry so I’m not waterproof, my heart breaks– proof that you’re real and I’ll search for you. my hands shake, I’ve had too much coffee. in one life, how many times will I have met you? how many versions of your lips have I kissed? maybe we once reached for the same candy bar, how many times have our skins touched? cheap jump scares in horror movies, how many times did I clutch your hands? it’s such a shame. have I gotten in trouble with you before? have we been to places that were off limits? they say that some people were made from the same stars. oh, stardust. if I was made from the moon and you were made from the sun… how will we ever meet? I don’t want easy. I want complicated. can something as profound as you exist more than once in a single lifetime? how many years will I confuse you as someone else? within decades, how many times will we have said hello as strangers and walked away without a second thought? how many nights will I spend calling out your name? how many seasons will past until our petals bloom? I have a million questions, when will you be my only answer? my heart has been broken before, but I’m certain that it wasn’t your fault. I’ve written a few thousand poems, were you ever my muse? you have a billion faces, but only one fucking name. some call you pain. some call you bittersweet. some call you as you’re walking away. me? I call you love.

Dumbledore’s Fault

Summary: The very first words your soulmate ever says to you are tattooed somewhere on your body since the day you are born and no one could really understand why Dan got stuck with ‘Man I can’t believe Dumbledore died’. For years he worried about the fate of whoever Dumbledore is, until he actually started reading the Harry Potter books. After that, all he wanted was to actually meet his soulmate so he could give him a piece of his mind over having ruined his favourite franchise.

Based off of this post on Tumblr. 

Words: 2.2k

A/N: All my exams are over, all assignments have been handed in, and I can finally start enjoying my Summer. This also means that I finally have time to get back to writing and I decided to celebrate that by posting this little oneshot I wrote. I apologise for the bad summary, but I wrote it while half asleep.

Thank you to @lilialand for being my beta and looking over this for me. 

Read it on AO3


Dan’s soulmate tattoo was not what one would consider to be normal. Most people have greetings permanently tattooed somewhere on their body because, let’s face it, that’s usually what you say when you’re meeting someone new. Imagine how shocked Dan’s parents were when their son was born with the phrase ‘man I can’t believe Dumbledore died’ tattooed above his waist.

Who in the world was Dumbledore? How was he going to die? And, probably the most important question, what did this Dumbledore guy have to do with their son? The only person who could answer their question was Dan’s soulmate and everyone knew it would be awhile before they would get the chance to meet him.

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Narnia v Harry Potter

I’m going to compare these two serieses for a couple reasons.
One of them is because I see people comparing them a lot, with their other-worldly aspects and the other is because of something J. K. Rowling once said about Susan being disregarded for “finding sex.”

J. K. Rowling is a very talented writer and I could never have created the rich world she did, however I’d like to point out a few things wrong with her books in this post, so you were forewarned.

C. S. Lewis started his 7 book series in the late 40s and finished them in the later 50s. In this time there was not a loud cry for female representation, however in the first book a little girl finds Narnia, followed by her family. Both Lucy and Susan are considered smart and never disregarded for being girls or being girly, which they both are.
Polly and Digory chronologically come first, and with them, Polly is very smart and not used for Digory’s character development, at least not any more than he for she. This pattern continues throughout the series, the only female character that could have been just used for male character development is Ramuda’s daughter (Lilliandil in the movie, we call her Noor), and many minor male characters played similar roles in the story.

We all know there are 7 Harry Potter books. They all revolve around a male character. Multiple female characters are used to further Harry’s story. Many. Cho Chang is used after Cedric’s death, Ginny is used to make Harry Grow Up And Protect Her, Luna is used to show that Harry is both a Good Person and to move along his story. Hermione is used so many times I’m not sure I can narrow it down to a single incident. The first one was probably when they fought a troll in the bathroom, though.

Unlike in Harry Potter, there is a nearly equal amount of male and female characters in the Narnia books. For instance, the main characters in LWW are the two girls and two boys. As far as I’ve seen, female characters are not used at all in that book to further male character development.
Almost all the girls in Harry Potter are used to further his character development. Also, it’s been pointed out that the female characters are treated poorly, particularly the woc. For instance, Cho Chang isn’t even a Chinese name!
As an adult writing an incredibly popular children’s series, Rowling should have done a little research and at least named one of the few woc properly.
She also shames the twins for being interested in looks and divination. Not all girls are photo copies of Hermione, and it’s stupid to empower only one type of girl.

Moving on to Lewis again, all of his characters have both flaws and good points. Female and male, and if there’s a female character, she has development of her own and isn’t a love interest, even if she falls in love later.
Aravis, for instance, is a rather self-centered brat at first but she changes over time and is always considered brave and “true as steel”. She becomes such an amazing friend and person, as does Cor, after his development, that eventually Cor and her find themselves in love.
Harry, on the other hand, seems to be about the only one developing. Sure, the other characters grow, but all his relationships are only really about him. (Ginny, Hermione, Luna, Cho Chang, etc,.)

now, on the subject of Susan:
Susan, throughout the series, is never. Never. Made fun of for being too girly.
It’s also very obvious that she’s respected by everyone who meets her. Corin literally fought someone who said something nasty about her.
People mainly, including Rowling, say that Lewis was sexist because of one comment: “All she’s interested in nowadays is nylons, lipstick and party invitations.”
This comment was made by Jill.
On Jill: Interesting character, Jill. Brave, smart, albeit forgetful (ironically ). As far as we know, Jill never had much of an interest in looks. She was more like Aravis than Lasaraleen.
Remember what Lewis said about them? Something along the lines of both of them liking different things and both thinking the other silly for it.
“For what you see and hear depends a great deal on where you are standing; it also depends on what kind of person you are.” (C. S. Lewis)
Jill was a person who wasn’t interested in her looks, while Susan was. That’s the kind of people they were.
And another thing about Jill, she didn’t know Susan very well. Susan struggled with faith throughout the entire series. In Prince Caspian, she was the last to see Aslan for a reason. And if Susan has distanced herself from Narnia, Jill probably wouldn’t be a part of her life and wouldn’t have seen the young woman who struggled with faith her entire life.

Lewis wasn’t sexist, especially not in his Narnian works. However, Narnia WAS written in the 40s-50s and that’s why it doesn’t match up to our more modern ideals. We’ve come further than that now!
But Rowling, on the other hand, was a single mother near the turn of the 21st century when she started writing Harry Potter. Why is it that that’s so and yet sexism managed to seep into her writing?

cottonballwithmustache-deactiva  asked:

Greetings~ senpai-chan! What kind of porn stash that modern au SLBP lords might have? Let's make it a classic scenario when MC found them, accidentally. C:

Hahahhahaha, oh my goodness you are soaked in SinTM, my dear @cottonballwithmustache, I do so approve! Hm hm hm, answer after the break aite? For some explicit content, fufufufufu!

Originally posted by ve-lure

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Sherlock, Supernatural, and How I Am Trying to Take Shipping Less Seriously

I want to tell my story. 

(tl;dr: I have a lot more fun with shipping when I don’t worry about whether or not it will ever be canon. OR: Never put that much faith in the hands of showrunners. It always ends BAD.gif)

I wrote most of this post months ago and it’s been rotting away in my drafts since maybe March? It seemed like a good time to actually post it. This is my own personal perspective, where I’m coming from on this. Obviously everyone’s feelings and opinions are 100% their own and I respect that. We’re all coming from somewhere.

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The Dynamic between Kylo & Rey and where it can go: A parallel analysis with the Shatter Me trilogy

This meta is a collaboration between my friend @sillylovesongs17 and me. We decided to do this after I told her to read the books because I didn’t want to scream alone about this series. We think this is a wonderful example of what a relationship between Kylo and Rey should look like in the next movies and we hope you have fun reading this meta.

WARNING: There will be spoilers about Shatter Me and Star Wars.

Shatter Me is a book series written by Tahereh Mafi. Followed by Unravel Me and Ignite Me, Shatter Me tells the story of Juliette Ferrars, a girl that can kill with a single touch. After being locked up for 264 days, she gains a cellmate, a boy she thought she would never see again as the Reestablishment (the new government in power) has plans for her, Juliette must make a choice: be a weapon or be a warrior.

In this meta we will discuss the possibilities for Kylo and Rey’s relationship and where they might end up at the end of the sequel trilogy comparing them to the very similar relationship of Juliette and Warner in the Shatter Me trilogy.

We are aware that these stories are not the same but both dynamics are similar, sharing a lot of common traits so we’ll only analyze these characters and their dynamic only.

In the surface, Rey and Juliette share little in common. Rey starts of as a very capable scavenger, she can hold her own against enemies because she had a lot of time to learn how to defend herself in Jakku. In contrast, Juliette starts as a fragile girl, she’s locked in a cell for quite some time because of her lethal abilities and is on the verge of losing her mind.

But they do share similarities. Both girls were born with powerful gifts: Rey is force sensitive and Juliette has a lethal touch. She was abandoned by her parents because of her abilities and if the leaks about Ep. VIII are correct Rey’s parents did the same to her making both wish for belonging.

Rey and Juliette are destined for great things and one more thing they share is their uncommon relationship with the antagonist.

Kylo Ren and Warner share very similar traits, both in personality and their actions. Aaron Warner is the leader of Sector 45, viewed as a cruel sociopath by his soldiers and enemies he hides behind this mask not allowing anyone to see the real him until he meets Juliette.

With Kylo we have the same pattern, his descent into darkness is only stopped when he meets Rey. He senses that she’s special and their connection only grows after their first interaction.

Both Kylo and Warner are trying to please their leaders who abused them mentally and, in Warner’s case, also physically. In Star Wars, the Leader is Snoke, someone that according to the book “Aftermath: Empire’s End” has been watching and manipulating Kylo since before he was even born.

In Shatter Me, the Leader is Anderson, Warner’s father who treats him like shit. He taught Warner to be merciless and cruel hoping that would destroy the gentle nature of his son.

Warner and Kylo are both murderers, they don’t deny it but find no pleasure in harming someone. They are passionate and intense characters with a great sense of style and beautiful hair (sorry).

The point is, Shatter Me is a trilogy, divided exactly like the Star Wars movies. So, we will show how their dynamics are similar and with luck Mafi’s books will illuminate us, the reylos.


                 Shatter Me and The Force Awakens: 

                            Presenting the Characters

The book starts with Juliette in prison after years of passing through countless reformatories and mental institutions, her last home is now a solitary cell where she’s been locked for 264 days without no one to talk to but herself.

The only thing that keeps her from losing her mind entirely is the bird she dreams about it:

“Instead, I ignore the desperation sticking my fingers together and watch for the bird I’ve only seen in my dreams.”

(…)

“I’ve dreamt about the same bird flying through the same sky for exactly 10 years. White with streaks of gold like a crown atop its head.

It’s the only dream I have that gives me peace.” – Shatter Me. Chapter 6. Pg. 21.

Everything changes when a boy joins her. Adam is someone from her past but he appears to no longer remember her. They talk sometimes but never touch until she discovers that Adam works for the Reestablishment and he was only there to evaluate her.

She’s brought to the headquarters of Sector 45 and is immediately interrogated by Warner. His looks and youth weren’t what she was expecting it:

“I’m immediately struck by his youth. He can’t be much older than me.

It’s obvious he’s in charge of something, though I have no idea what. His skin is flawless, unblemished, his jawline sharp and strong. His eyes are

the palest shade of emerald I’ve ever seen.

He’s beautiful.” – Shatter Me. Chapter 8. Pg. 25.

This is a great parallel with Rey and Kylo’s first meeting. When Kylo removes his mask, Rey is expecting a disfigured almost robotic person and his looks caught her off guard:

“She just stared at him in silence.
In itself the narrow face that looked back at her was not remarkable. It was almost sensitive. If not for the intensity of his gaze, Ren could have passed for someone she might have met on the dusty streets of Niima Outpost. But there was—that gaze. That, and what lay simmering behind it.” - TFA Novelization, Chapter 14.

“That happens when you’re being hunted by a creature in a mask.

Kylo Ren stops, considers her… then reaches up, unlatches

and REMOVES HIS MASK. Rey reacts, stunned. It takes a moment

before she regains her own mask of defiance.” – TFA Script.

The majority of the book is Warner trying to unlock Juliette’s power while she falls in love for Adam who has feelings for her. She discovers that he can, somehow, touch her and they start a relationship without Warner knowing about it. He tries to test her powers and pushes her to her limits using not so good ways to do it but it works with Juliette discovering her super force.

On TFA we see Kylo trying to get inside Rey’s mind. This works like a test, and she discovers she is Force Sensitive. Then Kylo Ren and Rey also create a bond (a deep connection, a link…). For Warner and Juliette this came with him touching her without being killed.

Juliette escapes with Adam leaving Warner in all his anger and confusion. Adam is Juliette’s love interest throughout the first book and since Rey doesn’t have a love interest in TFA there isn’t much to compare. Finn, who is Rey’s companion in the movie is more like Kenji Kishimoto, Julliette’s best friend.

While Kylo’s feelings for Rey aren’t explicitly stated, Warner’s feelings towards Juliette are very clear throughout the first book and even Adam notices that he treats her differently but all she feels for him is hatred and disgust:

“I hate you.”

“So much passion.” He laughs again. He looks so calm, so genuinely amused. He stares at me with eyes softer than I ever expected them to be.

I turn away.” - Shatter Me. Chapter 14.

Juliette and Rey are girls that never had someone who cared for them so the thought of losing Adam and Finn is horrible to them. Warner and Kylo both commit an act of violence against them making their hatred only to solidify. The word “Monster” is used by them to describe Kylo and Warner:

“You’re a monster.” My voice is too even, my body filled with a sudden rage. “Why don’t you just kill me?” - Shatter Me, Chapter 9.

“Ren held his lightsaber, poised to strike. “I could kill you right now. But there is another way.” Breathing hard, Rey looked up in disgust at the man looming above her. “You’re a monster.” – TFA Novelization.

Even with their feelings made clear both men still want these powerful women by their side:

“You and I, Juliette—together? We could be unstoppable.”

I will not look at him though I feel his gaze touching every inch of my body. “No, thank you.”

We’re in the elevator. The world is whooshing past us and the walls of glass make us a spectacle to every person on every floor. There are no secrets in this building.

He touches my elbow and I pull away. “You might reconsider,” he says softly. - Shatter Me. Chapter 13.

“No. You need a teacher.” He was beseeching and insistent all at once. “I can show you the ways of the Force.” – TFA Novelization.

At the end, they both fight. Who wins? Yes, the girls. Rey uses the Force and kicks Kylo’s ass. Juliette uses the attraction that Warner feels for her and shoots him. Then both women runaway with their friends and find their resistance. The men are hurt, but still alive.


                     Unravel Me and The Last Jedi: 

                          Finding Common Ground

Since The Last Jedi isn’t out yet we will analyze the events of Unravel Me and compare to what may happen in TLJ based in what we know so far.

After scaping from Warner, Juliette and Adam are brought to the resistance by Kenji, their friend. There she meets Castle, a mentor for her, that wants her to train and learn more about her abilities but it’s hard for her. She can’t concentrate in her training and everything seems out of place. As her relationship with Adam starts to crumble, her dreams come back and she doesn’t understand:

“The dreams are back.

They’d left me for a while, shortly after I’d been freshly imprisoned on base with Warner. I thought I’d lost the bird, the white bird, the bird with streaks of gold like a crown atop its head.

(…) It was my one piece of hope in the bitter darkness of the asylum, just until I met its twin tattooed on Adam’s chest.

(..) I thought it was a signal, a message telling me I was finally safe. That I’d flown away and finally found peace, sanctuary.

I didn’t expect to see the bird again.

(…)

I’ve had the same dream every night for the past week, and all 7 mornings I’ve woken up shaking, shuddering into the earthy, icy air, struggling to steady the bleating in my chest.

Struggling to understand what this means.” – Unravel Me. Chapter 4. Pg. 28.

The belonging she thought she had found with Adam and Castle’s resistance isn’t real, she still feels incomplete like something is missing.

The same can be said that this might happen with Rey. After her forceback, Maz tells her that the belonging she seeks it’s not behind, in the past, but ahead in her future. Rey thinks it’s about Luke and becoming a Jedi but she might find out that the belonging she wants rests with another person.

Rian Johnson compared TLJ to Letter Never Sent regarding how the story shifts in the middle surprising the audience. We know that Rey and Kylo don’t have the basic hero/villain dynamic and this could be one of the surprising elements. Showcasing their bond and the connection they feel to each other but for this to happen they need to spend time together.

In Unravel Me, Juliette’s feelings about Warner starts to change when she sees him commit an act of kindness:

“And I wish I’d never seen it.

Because something inside of my heart is ripping apart and it feels like fear, it tastes like panic and anxiety and desperation and I don’t know how to understand the image in front of me. I don’t want to see Warner like this. I don’t want to think of him as anything other than a monster.” – Unravel me. Chapter 20. Pg. 101.

Her doubts about him only increases when she meets him again, this time with his father Anderson, the Leader of the Reestablishment:

“And I see the difference in him now. I see what’s changed.

He’s making no effort to hide his emotions from me.” – Unravel Me. Chapter 35. Pg. 154.

Anderson knows about his son’s feelings towards Juliette and plans to kill her in front of him to teach him a lesson:

“The mistake”, he says, almost announcing it now, “that he always makes, time and time again – allowing his emotions to get in the way of his duty – it’s pathetic”, he says, spitting in Warner’s direction. “Which is why as much as I’d like to let you live, my dear, I’m afraid you’re too much of a distraction in his life. I cannot allow him to protect a person who has attempted to kill him” – Unravel Me. Chapter 35. Pg. 157.

Just as we suspected that this was what Snoke wanted to do with Rey, to kill her in front of Kylo because he felt compassion for her:

“Kylo Ren. It appears that a reminder is in order. So, I will show you the dark side. Bring the girl to me.” – TFA Novelization.

Juliette wins over Anderson and Warner is taken as hostage by their resistance. Once there, Castle states that Juliette must interrogate Warner because he’ll only talk to her.

They spent time together and the connection she feels with Warner is stronger than everything she has ever felt:

“Because there’s something about him – there’s always been something about him that’s intrigued me and I don’t understand it. I wish I could ignore it but I can’t.” – Unravel Me. Chapter 50. Pg. 203.

“But I know that I don’t hate you anymore. I’ve tried,” I say, “I’ve tried so hard. Because you’ve done so many terrible, terrible things. To innocent people. To me. But I know too much about you now. I’ve seen too much. You’re too human.” – Unravel Me. Chapter 50. Pg. 207.

They start a strange relationship, Warner thinks he knows her, knows what she feels and she is confused about Warner, not wanting to believe that he can be more than a monster. She likes to spend time with him and she hates herself for that.

She’s the only person to who Warner is kind. He sees her as his equal and explains why he wanted her by his side:

“He looks at me. Really, really looks at me.

“You’re going to go on to do incredible things,” he says. I’ve always known that. I think I just wanted to be a part of it.” – Unravel Me. Chapter 52. Pg. 218.

When Warner discovers that he has abilities, Castle offers him a place there, in their resistance but Warner refuses. That’s not who he is, he can’t change for a matter of days and forget everything he’s done. He knows nothing is that easy because he can sense other people’s feelings, he can feel the hate they have for him and that’s why he can’t stay:

“Feel what?” I whisper.

“What people think of me.”

“What…?”

“Their feelings – their energy – it’s – I don’t know what it is,” he says, frustrated, stumbling backward, shaking his head. “I’ve always been able to tell. I know how everyone hates me. I know how little my father cares for me. I know the agony of my mother’s heart. I know that you’re not like everyone else.” His voice catches. “I know you’re telling the truth when you say you don’t hate me. That you want to and you can’t. Because there’s no ill will in your heart, not toward me, and if there was I would know.” – Unravel Me. Chapter 54. Pg. 227.

Their feelings for one another are so strong that they almost have sex. Warner wants Juliette to go with him, they fight and he escapes alone.

Now back to TLJ, we know that Kylo and Rey will spend some time together on Ahch-To. According to some leaks, Kylo will go after Rey maybe finding her by their “mysterious connection”. He will be stuck on the island with Rey and Luke. Their relationship will evolve (without the “almost have sex” thing, of course), and they will get out of Ahch-To, so who knows?

We only know for certain that Kylo and Rey need to spend time together, their understanding of one another in TLJ is crucial to their future.

Another thing that we will have to wait and see is the answer about Rey’s family. Mafi’s trilogy could give us a way. Juliette was abandoned by her family and we don’t meet them. She is no one, her parents aren’t important to the story only Juliette and the discovery of her abilities are.  It’s a good contrast to Warner’s background, he is like royalty, son of the Reestablishment’s Supreme Leader.

A broken young man that meets a strange powerful girl with who he shares a connection. Sounds like something we know?

At the end of book two, everything goes to shit. Their resistance seems to be over and Juliette and Warner seems to be the only survivors making their mission to destroy Anderson.

Based on leaks, it seems that Luke and Rey get off the island and go their separate ways. Luke goes after Snoke while Rey goes after Kylo. If their connection is truly explained and deepened in this movie maybe Rey asks his help to defeat Snoke (we can only hope).


         Ignite Me and Episode IX: A forged Alliance?

This segment is basically our hopes and dreams for Rey and Kylo’s relationship since we have no clue to what will happen in Episode IX.

Ignite me sums up everything that me and Lu want for reylo. Obviously, we don’t know anything about the last movie but we want to show you what happens in the last book of the Shatter Me trilogy. Oh, and dream a little.

Juliette is now a strong woman who wants to make things better for the people. She decides to kill Anderson and stop the Reestablishment. Warner doesn’t change so much, he still cold, quiet, with a beautiful hair and only cares about Juliette, the love of his life.

Juliette and Warner spend the whole book together. He’s now the only one she can trust and their bond only grows as the trust is built between them. Warner believes in her and see her as an equal something that Juliette never had before:

“I like the way I feel about myself when I’m with him,” I say quietly. “Warner thinks I’m strong and smart and capable and he actually values my opinion. He makes me feel like his equal – like I can accomplish just as much as he can, and more. And if I do something incredible, he’s not even surprised. He expects it. He doesn’t treat me like I’m some fragile little girl who needs to be protected all the time.” – Ignite Me. Chapter 25. Pg. 105.

In return, Juliette sees the real Warner, someone he tried to hide for so long that he almost lost sight of himself:

“You allow the world to think you’re a heartless murderer,” I tell him. “And you’re not.” – Ignite Me. Chapter 4.

He tells everything to Juliette about his sick mother, why he freed her in the beginning, about the men he killed and everything he did for her. The girl now understands that he is a soldier and not a monster. Juliette finally understands him completely and she accepts who he is, the good and the bad parts of him:

“I’m not trying to fix you; I don’t think you need to be fixed. I’m not trying to turn you into someone else. I only want you to be who you really are. Because I think I know the real you. I think I’ve seen him.” – Ignite Me. Chapter 29. Pg. 120.

If Kylo and Rey spent so much time together as did Warner and Juliette this would be the kind of development that we could see happening between them. They aren’t black and white characters, both Rey and Kylo have darkness in them and the acceptance of each other’s darkness (and light) is crucial to bring balance to them and The Force.

Juliette finally understands what her dreams meant and (shocker) this is the belonging she looked for:

“Warner.
A white bird with streaks of gold like a crown atop its head.
A fair-skinned boy with gold hair, the leader of Sector 45.
It was always him. All along.” – Ignite Me. Chapter 31. Pg. 124.

Juliette only acknowledges that her feelings for him are indeed romantic in the last chapters of the book. That is something that we would like if it happened to Rey and Kylo at the end of the movie.

“What – ‘’ Warner is blinking fast. His voice is fragile, uneven. “What are you saying?”

“I love you,” I whisper. “I love you exactly as you are.” – Ignite Me. Chapter 55. Pg. 200.

Also in this book, Warner loses his mother and Juliette is the only one there to comfort him. The only thing we know about Episode IX is that Leia is not there but this will certainly affect Kylo’s storyline.

“I’ve never, ever seen him look like a child before. Never, not once, not in all the time I’ve known him. But right now, he looks just like a little boy. Scared. Vulnerable. All alone.

(…)

“His eyes are red-rimmed and a startling, striking shade of green, shining with barely restrained emotion. His face is the picture of so much pain.

I almost can’t breathe.” – Ignite Me. Chapter 50. Pg. 189.

Now our favorite part is obviously Juliette and Warner working together. They make an alliance and built their own resistance gathering the survivors of the last battle along with Juliette’s friends to fight against the Reestablishment.

I mean, don’t we all want to see Kylo and Rey kicking Snoke’s ass (or Hux, sorry I’m not sorry at all), using the force bond and being amazing together?

This was basically it. We wanted to show how the writer wrote this very similar dynamic respecting the characters and their development making them a couple you want to root for. We expect reylo to be subtler than a YA book since their audience is PG but if TLJ follows just a bit of this same path we don’t need to be worried about Episode IX at all.

Sometimes A Masterpiece Can Be Appreciated by What it’s Not

So, you might’ve heard that Netflix dropped a teaser a few days ago for their new film adaptation of the legendary anime Death Note. Or you might not have, in which case, I’m sorry for being the bearer of bad news, but… it’s bad. But maybe not in the way you’d think when I told you that.

I think you could guess the main issue that’s causing such an uproar just by watching (namely, the white-washing of characters that are Japanese), but what I meant is that the execution isn’t bad.

Director Adam Wingard clearly has a style and atmosphere in mind that he wants to bring to life, and for what it wants to be, it looks like an intriguing action movie.

But the problem was there from day 1 of the story meetings: the ideas driving this adaptation are totally off-base. The execution on those ideas might be fucking rad for all we know, it’s just that from what we can see, they missed the point in fundamental ways.

And obviously we can debate about the white washing and race-changing (it’s not seen here, but another beloved character that’s Japanese originally, L, was changed to black) and how it steals potential roles from Asian-American actors, and whether or not it effects the narrative (I mean, why would Light be nicknamed ‘Kira’ if this isn’t set in Japan? And if it is, well, it’s not like Japan is completely one race, but it just begs the question: ‘why make the change at all?’)—but I feel like that’s already been well-covered. If not by other analytical sources and entertainment news hubs, then by comment sections and forums all over the internet.

Instead, I’d much rather focus on what a fantastic series the original Death Note was, because aside from the white washing issue, that’s the reason people are so up in arms over this adaptation missing the point—They were very good points to begin with.

So, what do you say we go over what this movie seems to be getting wrong that the original anime got so incredibly right?

1. Death Note is Not an Action Series

To me, it seems like both the series and the movie are trying to be a thriller, but the ways in which they go about it are completely different.

The big-budget action scenes in the Movie’s trailer look impressive, but that’s not at all where the vast majority of the tension came from in the original series.

What makes Death Note truly outstanding is the gripping descent of its main character and the brilliant back and forth between Light and the forces of the law, in particular, of course, L. The tension came from the fact that these characters were often several steps ahead of each other, and remarkably, even the audience. The game of cat and mouse couldn’t be more satisfying to follow step by step as it unfolds in perfect time to when we figure out what’s going on.

2. Death Note is Complex

In adapting anything to a 2 and a half hour format, you’re usually going to lose a lot of the nuance and subtlety when the source material was something much longer, like a book series or a manga. There’s just a lot more time to pace things out.

It can be done and done well, but it’s extremely difficult to communicate all those important elements without rushing the pacing.

That’s why it’s hard to understand where they want to take the Movie’s story. It’s not impossible for it to be good, but it’s… perplexing. It’s clearly got scenes that weren’t in the original anime (I never read the manga, so I can’t say for sure it’s not something from there), so changes will be made to adapt to the time limitation, it’s just hard to say where they’re going to take it.

It also makes me wonder why they wanted to re-adapt Light’s story instead of setting this in the same universe and centering it on a different character. That would at least give a narrative reason to the white-washing, even if it’s still not great in my opinion, and it could be cool to revisit Kira’s world in a different continent. Like Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them was to Harry Potter, except instead of magical whimsy and wizardry, there’s just more death.

But whatever, that in itself is a derivative idea, I’m just saying that with all these changes being necessary to fit this story into a 2 hour time-frame, at some point you do have to ask why retell this story instead of a new one?

Because Death Note’s story was paced so well. I mean, my favourite part will always be the arc with L and Light facing off—I can sort of understand the impulse to find a way to wrap it up there somehow and make that the movie—but there’s still a lot of great elements all the way up until that legendary ending.

I would hate to lose any of that methodical, well-thought out story or the subtle symbolism worked around it, so that’s just another aspect the Movie makes me appreciate more in the anime.

3. Characters and Atmosphere

I’m jamming these sections together because it’s hard to talk about both of them when all we have to compare to is a small teaser.

But my point is that I’m a bit bummed not to hear that classic Death Note score yet. You could argue that they’re adapting the manga, not the anime, so they don’t have to draw any elements from the anime if they don’t want to. And hell, they might even benefit from trying to differentiate themselves.

But… nostalgia goggles are blinding, you guys. It’s just hard for me to feel like I’m watching Death Note without a score even at least a little reminiscent of this. Maybe that’s just me, but when you’ve got some iconic music already attached to the property, why not use it? 

Granted, the trailer music might just be the trailer music, and they might even have the kind of musical nod I’m hoping for, but until then, I’ll stick to the original. The tension and dark, Gothic style can’t really be beat.

And speaking of things that can’t be beat, here’s to hoping we’ll get something even remotely similar to the character depth we got in the show. There’s so many iconic characters that have stood the test of time to come from the show, losing any of that richness would be such a shame.

Overall, there’s a lot of elements that I would miss from the show if we lost them in translation to the movie. And for the record, yeah, you can tell I’m someone who does consider this white-washing, so even though I’d love to see Nat Wolfe try a really challenging role just to see what he can do, I don’t love the premise I’ve seen in general.

I guess that means I’ll be rewatching the anime this summer, huh? Fine with me. It’s truly one of the classics, and nothing can ever really take that away.

THREE {pt. 4}

Type: Halloween Special Series; Three | Four | Five
Genre: Drama, Mature, Thriller
Member: Joshua/Jisoo
Word count: 1,583
A/N: I consider THREE to be one of my more dark and unsettling works, so I do want to warn you guys to read it with caution as the story progresses.
©


Joshua lets out a frustrated sigh as his fingers slowly tap along his keyboard. His notes of spoilers were spread out all over his desk, all scribbled with side notes. Pencils and highlighters were sprawled out as well. The wall before him had multiples sticky notes stuck to it, highlighting key points. He leans back in his chair, pulling himself away from his laptop.

He was having a rough day. Nearly everything he wrote ended up deleted. Nothing was coming out right and it was bugging him.

So far, he could only get one full page and he had been working since the morning.

Joshua reaches over for his coffee but realizes that there’s nothing left in the mug. With a grunt, he pushes his chair out and leaves his bedroom. He goes downstairs and into the kitchen to get his refill. As he pours the dark beverage into his mug, there’s a knock at the door.

His brows knit together as he sets down the pot of coffee.

Joshua wasn’t expecting any guests and it shouldn’t be his editor either.

It also couldn’t be a guest of either Seungcheol or Jeonghan because they both were at work.

There’s another round of knocking and Joshua paces from the kitchen to the front door. When he opens up, he’s surprised to see you standing on his front step.

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March 2017 in Numbers

How oh how is it April tomorrow? I still have a very clear moment in my memory from when I was a kid, and my mom saying “in the year 2000,″ and I was all like “no way, that’s the future!” And now here we are, well into the future

March flew by, as has 2017 so far. Here are some of the highlights for me from March 2017. 

16  ⇨ The number of times I worked out this month

Which, considering there were 31 days in March, means I worked out 51% of the days.  Truthfully it feels like way more than that (any day I go to CrossFit and/or a run is still a big, big, BIG deal, ha), but I’m still happy with this number (especially when I hardly worked our a mere few months ago).  I’m also really trying to focus on balance; by this I mean not go to the gym six or seven times a week, but rather something normal and consistent. For example I missed CrossFit last night to hangout with colleagues in town from Toronto, and as I type this I feel sick (cold) so I’m skipping it… balance! 

5 ⇨ The kilometers I ran this month (okay, so I went on one run, but it was a great run through downtown Detroit). 

I definitely had a holy crap I’m running through Detroit!!!!! moment on my run. It’s absolutely amazing the wonderful twists and turns life throws; WHO WOULD HAVE GUESS I’D EVER RUN THROUGH DETROIT?!

Here some bright n’ fun wall graffiti murals I saw on my run. 

6   ⇨The number of white roses I received. 

They’re pretty, eh? Along with this theme, and to throw another number into this post; 8. Eight is the number of dates I had with 1 guy.  I don’t really know what I’m doing or why, but it’s new and fun and for lack of a better way of saying it, a very adult “relationship.” (In quotes because hey oh, it’s not that serious yet.)  

I get dressed up in high heels and red lipstick, and we eat at beautiful restaurants, and walk around the Detroit Institute of Art. He brings me roses(!) and candy and cooks for me. He opens doors and kisses my forehead and holds my hand. It’s all very movie-ish right now; including me taking to my blog to write about it.  He’s a Doctor, which is interesting to hear about; both his everyday and the American health care system. 

I’m currently feeling very Sex and the City like though; dating at 32 and enjoying the city a lot! 

68 ⇨ The percent of income I saved 

68% is a bit misleading; I received a bonus this month for my rotation in Detroit, so my income is inflated this month. And to be transparent I get a lot of perks living in Detroit (car is paid for, allowance, etc.) so I advise to not compare your budget numbers to the ones below!  

Remember when I did that do-not-buy-things challenge for myself for the first month of January 2015? well I still think it was the best thing I’ve ever done for myself; it completely broke my habit of buying clutter and things, and triggered my savings; I’d still highly recommend it.  

0 ⇨ the number of books I finished

Ughhhh. This was a bad reading month. I finished a book last month, and don’t have a new one; suggestions are welcome! 

5 ⇨ the number of Big Little Lies I watched (it’s, so, so good)

Have you watched it yet? Get, on, it.  It’s a short series (5 episodes total) with Nicole Kidman and Reece Witherspoon and oh.my. it’s binge TV heaven. 

2.4 ⇨ the number of pounds I lost

Boooohiss as 2.4 pounds seems very little for a month of eating really relatively well and working out. 

That being said, my clothes are fitting SO MUCH BETTER. So much so, let me add a self indulgent outfit collage below. I really need to start looking at the camera and/or not parting my hair to one side, but let’s ignore those two factors for a hot second, because I am feeling pret-ty good in my own skin lately.  My bum is looking great (for me) if I do say so myself (s.q.u.a.t.s.), and I took a nap in my jeans the other day. I repeat. I TOOK A NAP IN MY JEANS (#youknowyourelosingweightwhen).

3  ⇨ the age Lily turned in March

On March 14th, my beautiful niece, Lily, turned THREE! Obviously I headed back to Toronto to help her celebrate her ladybug themed birthday!  The night before my sister and I put together ladybug loot bags, and prepared everything for her big day.  She played with her friends, blew out her candles, opened presents, and celebrated the milestone with a consistent smile on her face. 

That evening her dad asked her, “Lily, what was your favourite part of today?” and she replied, “Seeing Olivia and Adele and Mason and Audrey and Auntie and Grandpa…” and the list went on! It was so cute. 

1,800 ⇨ the calories I aim to hit each month 

I hit over 55 days on My Fitness Pal counting calories. True, March wasn’t the most perfect month; I’d often start recording breakfast and lunch and then forget / not bother at dinner time, but still, I tried and didn’t drop off. As I type this I hope to stay consistent in the month of April. 

4 ⇨ the number of times I went to the Detroit Institute of Art

I’m not sure why I enjoy the D.I.A. so much or why I put so much effort into heading to their exhibits; but I absolutely love it! I live very close too, so sometimes I walk there and then stroll around for an hour or two, or sit in their cafe and listen to the harp man play.  It’s all very adulty of me, or at least I feel that, and a nudge to embrace the art in Toronto when I’m back, as I hardly ever went to the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) downtown, or Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) when I lived really close to them too! 

8 ⇨ The number of new restaurants I went to this month

Okay, I actually have no idea how many new spots I went to in March, but I’ve been exploring the restaurants in Detroit, and have been so impressed.  Here’s the link to my Detroit Google Map (I’ve been to the red restaurants, and still want to go to the brown ones!)

213 ⇨ The days till Courtney’s wedding!

On the day of Lily’s birthday party I was triple booked! In the morning I zoomed to the west end of the city to meet the Bride-to-be Courtney, and her other beautiful bridesmaid to choose dresses!  

Here’s mine:

And with that, that’s a happy summary of my life in Detroit.  I started this post on April 30, and today it’s April 5, which shows how BUSY life has been! 

I’m slowly making friends and settling in and really enjoying the Detroit life. I’m still waiting to hear from work whether my stay here will continue on throughout the summer or not, but I’m really hoping it does; especially as I have so many Northern Michigan to-dos! We shall see :) 

Friends after all - Dean Winchester x Reader - Chapter 1 (Fake boyfriend/Neighbour AU)

Title: Friends after all

Pairing: Dean Winchester x Reader

Word count: 4,049

Warnings: Angst (?) 

Summary: AU. Dean Winchester. Mechanic. Neighbour. Best friend. Single father. And fake boyfriend? You babysit his daughter. You’ve known him for years and you’ve been really close. Everything will be put to test though when your sister’s wedding approaches and he has the brilliant idea of pretending to be your boyfriend. Nobody would have ever thought of the result. Certainly not you.

A/N: So, excited? Or is it just me? Truth be told after I re-read it I kinda am not as happy as I used to be because, yes, here come the doubts again! Please I really would need to hear your opinion on this one! It is an important series that I hope to get into a book! So… opinions?

@virgosapphire79 @thegirlwiththeimpala @jodyri @starswirlblitz @liger26 @yaya-snowflakes 

You wanna be tagged? Ask right away!

You let out a soft sigh as you snuggled more with your blanket, a bowl with pop-corn resting on your lap as you took the TV remote-control in your hand and pressed play for the movie to start playing. Friday night meant movie night for you and that was one of the best things in your basically crappy life. You could not say you hated it but it was not the best either. You had moved into your house a long while ago and you were lucky to have found a job rather quickly. It was not anything special, just working as a waitress at the local restaurant. It was not really big but it had its usual customers coming in almost every day so that meant that it kept working well and you got paid in your time.

Sure the payment was not something to brag about but it managed to help you get by and that was the important. Besides, you liked living in this place. You were actually looking for a way to get away from your old house- sure you loved your parents just like living with them but at some point you could no longer stand them. You wanted to get out of that house and finally live on your own and be independent. It was hard, you were not going to deny it, especially after you failed to get into university- you were obviously just not made for it, although it was hard for your parents to accept that- but finding a job and then a small house of your own was your main priority and you luckily succeeded in it.

Once again it was nothing special but still was yours. You had been saving money for months and with a little help from your parents you finally bought this small house and were happy with yourself. The town you lived in was small yet everything you could have ever asked for. It was great living here actually.

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Zendaya is probably Mary Jane or a Mary Jane adaptation part II

This is Mary Jane’s first ever appearance.

Notice the characters involved. The blonde is Liz Allen. The brunette is Betty Brant. Their are reasons why we aren’t getting a Betty Brant romance because usually when she is introduced, she is older than Peter and now of days it is taboo for adults to date teenagers. Peter tries, but Betty has always been an adult(except for the Ultimate Universe when she is too sleezy and stuck up that she would do anything for fame.) You don’t see Mary Jane’s face. They build it up as, “Oh my god, she is so pretty.” 

This is called anticipation. A lot of super hero movies introduce the female lead as an object of the main character’s desire if not already involved in the hero’s life. Mary Jane does not start out that way. She was introduced without Peter knowing her, but about her.

You want to know how dedicated Stan Lee and Steve Ditko were to her “real debut.” These panels came from Amazing Spider-man #25. She was finally introduced Amazing Spider-man #42. She was mentioned in Amazing Spider-man #15. Comic books were released every month. They centered a debut and anticipation of a character nearly 2 and a half years worth of anticipation and build-up.

Zendaya’s character “Michelle” is not apparent in spite being one of the most well known actresses in this movie. Michelle is the only character without a last name. We first see her after Peter starts swooning over Liz Allen and the trailer is not being subtle about it. It is literally right after we see Liz Allen. 

“But why are they keeping it secret then or why doesn’t she have red hair?”

Because people honestly think that what made Mary Jane so great was her red hair and green eyes. That she was a model. That she was gorgeous. But so was literally every other super hero love interest. What seperated MJ aside from her introduction from Iris West, Lois Lane, Batman’s literal graveyard of dead romantic leads is that MJ had depth.

From the very beginning, MJ had this lively personality and was fun compared to ultra-serious Gwen Stacy or popularity Alpha female Liz Allen. What made her substantial was that she was different from the get-go. What made her memorable is that as soon as you pinned Mary Jane as the party girl who does not care about drama going on, she flips the script again.

She was one of the first female leads in comics that actually show depth. The first in Marvel? Gwen Stacy. 

Spider-man used to have the most complex female characters for awhile. Like Gwen Stacy had sex with several people before she slept with Peter and no one thought less of her for it or shamed her. She also had a hot and cold relationship with Peter because she was annoyed with how much you can count of Peter being late or disappearing all the time. Gwen also had a bad habit of using sex for solace due to her boyfriend Pete being distant, Harry, her ex having a drug problem, and her dad dying. She was a human being with flaws.

Mary Jane Watson, however, was probably the most interesting. Beneath the party girl veneer, Mary Jane lived in an abusive home. She inherited her love of literary work and plays from her abusive father who was a college professor and a failed writer. She delved into romantic stories such as Romeo and Juliet to escape from the hell of her home and became the party girl to shrug off the stress in her daily life. Mary Jane, the party girl, was a facade. Who she really was is the fragile girl so deeply affected by witnessing an abusive marriage that she had commitment issues and refused to be tied down for fear that what happened to her mother would happen to her.

Yes, giving MJ depth and character is what made her iconic.

How this relates to Zendaya’s “Michelle” is that you can’t use this trope anymore. What made MJ significant back in the 60s will not fly here because that is a dime a dozen. There are no bullies like Flash Thompson and Cheerleaders aren’t as revered anymore.

As someone who has to adapt a story that does not fit in the times, what would you do? 

I would keep the same structure. MJ’s iconic introduction needs to remain in tact because what made her significant was drowned out in the first series. So instead of keeping it unknown to Peter on who she is, keep it from the audience as well. And to do that, you have to introduce the character without actually “introducing” her. MJ’s party girl facade will not fly in the 21st century in a world where Cardi B and Miley Cyrus and Nicki Minaj are like revered and celebrated for being that.And it would be way too obvious if Zendaya had red hair because people associate that with MJ and really, MJ does not have to a red head because red headed romantic leads in comics are so overdone.

The structure of Mary Jane and Peter Parker romance resembles Romeo and Juliet in the beginning. Like Peter, Romeo is fixated on Rosaline as a lone interest. You never meet Rosaline in the play and Liz Allen is a really obscure Spider-man character. As soon as he sees Juliet, Romeo becomes fixated on her. When he meets MJ, Peter does not necessarily drop everything and sprint to the alter, but he does show interest or as much interest as he does in her as he does long running Gwen Stacy.

The structure is this:

-introduce a faux lead to make audience care focus on the faux lead

-keep real lead out of focus

-then make the real lead the real interest

So I am hiding obvious tells from the audience while still keeping her character known? Men associate MJ with being impossibly curvaceous. I remember when Kirsten Dunst got the role and immediately comic book fanboys said that she was not endowed enough or something along the lines of that.

 I would be extremely subtle about it without it coming out of nowhere.

I would make Zendaya’s character seen and heard, but not apparent. Zendaya is gorgeous. Okay, no make up for the role. She is still gorgeous to me, but dudes are stupid and won’t pay any attention to anybody unless she is gussied up. Mary Jane is an actress. Well actresses do read a lot and tend to read up on obscure roles as research. Give her  a stack of books and novels of old novels that were adapted into classic, but obscure films.

I already went over 2 of the books in the stack. A Woman in the Dunes is the second book from the bottom of the pile. The third book is the Wings of the Dove. Both are classic movies with prominent female leads. 

The book on the bottom is Democracy which threw me off, but I finally found that there is a novel called Democracy that follows a woman dealing with politics. So, that is right up MJ’s alley?

But why complex female leads?

MJ as an actress resented that her talent was not being used properly and was routinely casted for her looks alone. She always desired complex leads. She wanted a challenge, as any actress worth her salt would.

I cannot figure out what the book she is holding is(looks like a notebook) and the book on top is due to her coffee blocking it.

So we have trendy, hipster MJ or MJ-esque character. Instead of having a bodacious bombshell, we have nerdy, exhausted Mary Jane who really looks like she needs a nap. I really do believe that this is Mary Jane or her adapted substitute. She is still MJ in spirit and character, but not the one we are most familiar with. 

5

Being Human: Robert Pattinson interview

by Elizabeth Day, 3 November 2017

Robert Pattinson was recently required to film in New York. More specifically, he had to act the part of a criminal narcissist, on the run from the law with his mentally disabled brother after a failed bank robbery on the streets of Harlem. It posed some practical challenges, not least because Pattinson has one of the most recognisable faces in show business.

The movie in question was Good Time and its directors, Josh and Benny Safdie, are known for their gritty social realism, so the shoots were often clandestine, set against a busy urban backdrop, and Pattinson’s primary concern while filming was that he would be spotted and attract a crowd.

He spent a lot of time ‘trying not to think about being famous. I was constantly worried.’ But trying not to be famous is tricky when you’re Robert Pattinson. The Twilight movies, in which he played a chisel-featured teenage vampire… catapulted him into the realms of teen heart-throb megastardom in his early 20s.

Vanity Fair named him ‘The Most Handsome Man in the World’ in 2009 and Barbie produced a doll with his features painstakingly rendered in plastic. ‘Looks just like the dazzlingly beautiful vampire Edward Cullen,’ the packaging claimed.

Pattinson filmed five of the Twilight movies in quick succession from the ages of 22 to 26, as well as appearing in the hugely successful Harry Potter franchise, and after that it was impossible for him to walk out of his front door without being mobbed by Twihards or Potterheads. He’s 31 now and freely admits he still doesn’t get out that much. ‘I don’t know anything about anything,’ he says, only half-joking. ‘I live in a bubble inside my ivory tower.’

Pattinson describes being recognised while filming as an accumulation of small but significant moments that lead to a great conflagration: an initial spark that lights the keg of gunpowder.

‘You walk down the street and there’s like, one person, and you can see that even if they don’t really recognise you, there’s a kind of flicker of something.’ After that, someone might send a tweet, and then a photographer arrives having been tipped off, and then ‘within hours the entire situation changes. People in the street start looking, then everyone starts taking photos and the entire energy is…’

He breaks off, and when he speaks again it is with a sort of helpless matter-of-factness: ‘You just can’t shoot.’

Despite the constant pressure that lurked in the back of his mind throughout filming, in Good Time Pattinson delivers a formidable performance. His character is a frenetic but charming con artist called, helpfully, Connie. Pattinson is so convincing that at first I didn’t even click when  I saw him on screen.

‘Who is this charismatic American actor?’ I thought, until the penny slowly dropped around 10 minutes in. When it was screened at the Cannes Film Festival, it got a six-minute standing ovation. It has already been compared to the work of Martin Scorsese and the New Yorker called it ‘exemplary and brilliant’.

It’s an intriguing choice for Pattinson because at the film’s heart is a man who creates his own narrative and chooses to believe in it. Essentially, Connie disappears into a fiction he has invented.

In preparation for his role, Pattinson spent two months in Queens before filming started. He befriended ex-convicts and spoke to correction officers in local prisons, where he would arrive in character and try to blend in.

He even exchanged fake prison correspondence with Benny Safdie and improvised a physical altercation at a car wash. His performance was influenced by the 1970s classic Mean Streets. ‘Definitely,’ Pattinson agrees. ‘He lives in his own reality. I think that’s what very successful con men do. It’s like, even when they’re lying, they’re not lying.’

There’s a sense in which this mirrors Pattinson’s own off-screen trajectory. As an actor, he has made a series of deliberately interesting choices since Twilight, opting to work on projects that will allow him to ditch the tag of superficial celebrity. Unlike many of his contemporaries, he has successfully resisted the lure of lucrative superhero movies or comic-book franchises.

‘It’s because I can’t get a six-pack, I’ve tried for years,’ he deadpans. ‘No, I think it’s scary to be sort of synonymous with one part… I’ve never even auditioned for them.’

For the past five years, Pattinson has instead been steadily building up a body of critically acclaimed work: from David Cronenberg’s Cosmopolis in 2012 to Werner Herzog’s Queen of the Desert alongside Nicole Kidman in 2015.

Last year, he appeared in The Lost City of Z, directed by James Gray. Pattinson grew a heavy beard and shed 35lbs for the role of British explorer Corporal Henry Costin.

When we meet in a London hotel, Pattinson is in the middle  of filming High Life, the English-language debut of French director Claire Denis, who he has wanted to work with for years, and is finding it a struggle to shift his mindset from filming one movie to promoting another.

He repeatedly apologises for being ‘totally spaced out… I’m kind of, like, all over the place’. Normally, when a film star says something like this it stems from an automatic politeness reflex or an attempt at offbeat charm. But Pattinson really is exceptionally spaced out. In person, he is about as far-removed from the self-possessed immortal high-school heart-throb of Edward Cullen as it’s possible to be.

He is awkward, jittery and given to meandering answers full of ellipses and loop-backs. His hair is close-cropped, revealing a badger-like patch of white on the left, and as he talks, he hunches forward, rubs at his scalp with the palm of his hand and fiddles with the black electronic cigarette on the table in front of him. He seems uneasy in his own skin and several times will be halfway through a reply when he admits he’s forgotten the original question.

‘Sorry,’ he says at one point. ‘This is terrible. I’m trying.’ I’m surprised how unsure of himself he seems. Even his clothes are uncertain. When he went to the Coachella music festival recently, ‘I felt like I looked like a bit of a narc [an undercover drugs cop]. I looked way too overdressed.’

He says he was wearing denim shorts, which doesn’t sound too embarrassing to me, but maybe at Coachella everything seems out of place unless it’s covered in fringing and ironic slogans.

Today, he is wearing a boxy leather jacket, turned-up trousers and trainers, all of which are in shades of black or navy blue. ‘I had to do a photo shoot so I look very, very styled today,’ he says.

Pattinson has been playing catch-up with his own reputation for years; he never expected to be a big movie star. He grew up in the south-west London suburb of Barnes. His father dealt in vintage cars and his mother worked for a modelling agency. Pattinson had two older sisters and attended local private day schools.

He became involved in the Barnes Theatre Company as an amateur, and was spotted by an agent in a production of Tess of the d’Urbervilles. At 19, barely out of school, he got the part of Hogwarts prefect Cedric Diggory in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. ‘I sort of fell into it and went on from there,’  he says. Does he think he’s a good actor? ‘I don’t know. I know I try hard.’

Still, when Twilight came along, his life would never be the same again. At first, his family were ‘worried’ how he would cope with the attention. ‘But then I just didn’t really change. And it was fun. For me. I had good agents and stuff and I’ve had really good friends since the beginning. So  I think when it gets dangerous for people is when you have no friends and you think, “Oh, if I get strangers to love me then it will fill that hole.” And then when it doesn’t fill the hole then you go 10 times crazier.’

Does he think fame comes with certain mental-health issues? ‘Yes,’ he says, not missing a beat. ‘Definitely. Pretty much every person I know who’s got famous is completely nuts. It’s just isolation and also the repetitiveness of your interactions with people… It’s just weird.’ At the height of his fame and while living in Los Angeles (where he still has a home), Pattinson came up with a complicated system to throw the paparazzi off his scent.

Wherever he went, be it a bar or a restaurant, he would take a change of clothes. He would then order several Ubers, swap outfits with one of his friends in the toilets, and send them out into the waiting taxis as decoys. During one period, he had five hire cars parked around the city.

Each one had a change of clothes in the boot. If Pattinson was being followed, he’d drive to one of the rental cars, switch vehicles, change outfits and then leave.  Is it important to him to be able to disappear? He nods. ‘I try to not be seen whatsoever between movies. So hopefully the only thing that exists of you in the public realm is what you agree to put out there… It’s always just a control thing.

People say, “Just be yourself!” And myself is the last thing I want to be

If the control of your life has been taken away from you, that’s when you go a little crazy.’ And has he ever gone ‘a little crazy’? ‘I mean, kind of,’ Pattinson admits. He won’t expand, but people who know him say he’s not averse to smoking various substances.

‘I can’t really tell how crazy I was before. It’s definitely difficult to really know. But yeah. I think being able to disassociate and compartmentalise kind of helps you quite a lot. If you let everything hit you all the time it would probably be quite difficult to cope with.’

Celebrity has often been surreal. Pattinson says that when he was in Twilight, his agent used to receive sackfuls of fan mail.  ‘I remember once my old assistant found this letter from this woman that was just the worst sob story ever. And it was like, “You have to read this, this woman has had the worst life ever.”

And I was reading it like, “F—k. I should call her. I should definitely call her.” And then he was going through the rest of this box and he was like, “Wait a second,” and we noticed the exact same handwriting on a totally different sob story… It was funny.’

It can’t have been easy, then, when in 2012 Pattinson’s off-screen relationship with his co-star Kristen Stewart imploded in spectacularly public fashion after three years together. Stewart had been having an affair with director Rupert Sanders – who was married to British model Liberty Ross – and pictures of the couple embracing were splashed across the media.

There was endless coverage and everyone had an opinion, including Donald Trump, who took it upon himself to tweet unsolicited advice: ‘She cheated on him like a dog and will do it again – just watch.’ Pattinson will not discuss any of his past or present relationships (‘I just don’t talk about it,’ he says, shutting down any further conversation).

And his reticence becomes more understandable when, in the days after we speak, it’s rumoured that he has split from his fiancée, the singer FKA Twigs.  Dealing with all of this in the public eye has triggered episodes of anxiety.

‘I get a lot of anxiety with everything.’ How does it manifest itself? ‘Just kind of paralysis, indecision. You don’t really end up doing a lot.’ He describes acting as a means of escaping the intense thoughts in his own head.  ‘One really nice thing about acting is that it’s like a weird therapy exercise. If you’re insecure or shy or something, then you can kind of experiment with expanding your horizons within the framework of a fiction.

‘I get so much anxiety in performance and everyone’s reaction is to say, “Just be yourself!” And myself, in general, is the last person I want to be.’ A few years ago, Pattinson started going to therapy. When he told his parents back in England they were ‘literally horrified. And I was like, “Why is that a bad thing?” There’s just this weird stigma. It’s so strange… But I think it’s a sort of throwback attitude.

‘I don’t go that often. I just really like her [his therapist]… You’re just trying to figure out how you feel about something. I’ve got a lot out of it… I mean [without therapy], I don’t know how you’re supposed to do…’ He sinks into a lengthy pause. Life, I suggest? ‘Life,’ he agrees and he looks down at the floor and then back up at me and smiles.

Robert Pattinson is not what I expected. From the outside, his existence looks charmed. Yet behind those perfect looks, his head is a bubbling cauldron of anxiety, self-doubt and unanswered questions about life. It makes him interesting to talk to. It’s possible it even makes him a great actor. But above all, it makes him less teen vampire, and ineffably, undeniably more human.

Telegraph UK interview

Yoosung - Valentine’s Day Special

 After you chose the innocent and youngest boy, as if affected by a spell, you felt tired. Your body was heavy and your eyelids were closing instinctively. Just as if you hadn’t slept for days. You gave up quickly, without reading the messages.

 Some hours later, you woke up feeling a lot better. Unlikely before, your body seemed extremely light. You looked for your phone and found it on the bed table. It was already 7AM. Your first thought was about the chats you lost.

 That moment you noticed what was wrong. Firstly, that wasn’t your bed. You weren’t in your room either. It was a very different place. Moreover, none of your apps or contacts were in your phone.

 You started to freak out a little. How did you get there? It was a pleasant and comfortable apartment, maybe someone’s house. Yet you didn’t find anyone. The best choice would be to leave.

 When you went to get your phone on the bed, you noticed a letter was on the bed table. The sender was… Cheritz?!

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