ATTN: Arya/Gendry Shippers!

Self has been all GOT, ever since Season 2, which she caught in a hotel in Bacolod years ago.

The last two years she’s been traveling a lot, but she makes it a point to get caught up when she lands in a place with a TV.

Which is just a roundabout way of saying: she’s all caught up.

Amazing! Awesome!

She used to ship Brienne/Jaime like crazy, but the fan fiction for this pair hasn’t been great.

Because she ships Everlark, she follows Everlark fan fiction writers on tumblr, and that’s led her to a new favorite: Stranger Things.

Today, one of the tumblrs she follows revealed that Joe Dempsie, who plays Gendry, was just sighted on a Game of Thrones set.

!!!!##@@!!!

She hasn’t seen Gendry in sooo long! She thinks it was the scene where Ser Davos and he were sitting in a boat and Ser Davos asked him, Do you know how to swim? And Gendry said no, so Ser Davos said, with his usual deadpan sarcasm: “Don’t fall out.”

Self used to ship Aray/Gendry like mad.

Poor Arya lately has become rather — strange. Self hates it whenever she goes into one of her trance-like states.

But if Gendry is back on Game of Thrones, maybe there’s still hope for an Arya/Gendry pairing. Self certainly hopes so. Because it would be too sad to imagine Arya ending up alone, after all she’s been through.

Stay tuned.

Northanger Abbey: Readers, Meet John Thorpe

Still in Bath.

We meet the brother of Isabella Thorpe, whose name is John Thorpe.

This is his appearance:

John Thorpe was a stout young man of middling height, who, with a plain face and ungraceful form, seemed fearful of being too handsome unless he wore the dress of a groom, and too much like a gentleman unless he were easy where he ought to be civil, and impudent where he might allowed to be easy.

The very plain-ness of the man means the heroine, Catherine, will be paired up with him because she, though not un-attractive, is decidedly not beautiful. So why should anyone in Bath, England, pay attention to her? Isn’t it rather presumptuous of her to go to Bath and look for romance? Most women of Austen’s day and age would be happy to have anyone, looks or affinity do not matter in the least.

Self knows there will be plot twists and blah blah blah, but why in God’s name does Austen allow John Thorpe to bore us the same way he bores Catherine with pages and pages of tomfoolery and dull dialogue that was delivered to greater effect by Tom Bennett in the recent movie Love & Friendship?

We get that John Thorpe has no other subject of conversation other than horses (“look at his loins; only see how he moves”) and gigs, and that he doesn’t see the value of novels, but — could Jane Austen please stop belaboring the point and get on with it, please? A point can be made twice. It cannot be made three times. This is a short novel.

All self can see in her head is the dinner scene in Love & Friendship when Tom Bennet takes great delight in “little green balls” on his dinner plate and asks what they are and Reginald de Courcy (who is brought to blazing life by a blazing hot Xavier Samuel) says, “They’re called peas.”

Speaking of Xavier Samuel, self cannot wait to have Love & Friendship in her Netflix feed.

Stay tuned.

“Indignation”: It Ends

SPOILER ALERT!!! SPOILER ALERT!!! MAAAAAJOR SPOILER ALERT!!!

Interesting, the way the characters in this movie spoke. No one sounded natural delivering the dialogue, but perhaps this was done deliberately, to reflect an “uptight” decade in American life (the 1950s)?

Everyone, that is, except for:

  • Logan Lerman
  • The actors who played Logan Lerman’s parents, especially the woman who played his mother
  • His childhood chums, discussing the death of one of their friends in Korea
  • His college roommates, one of whom (the phlegmatic big guy) was very, very good

This arch-ironic delivery, however, ends up being pure acting gold when it comes to the portrayal of a Dean of a University located in, of all places, Winesburg, Ohio (How very Sherwood Anderson!).

Nothing the Dean said (mainly a string of platitudes) made any sense. He was all about double-talk and veiled warnings, yet he delivered them with such a sense of conviction, as a man absolutely unshakeable in his moral beliefs, a man who’s been taken over so completely by his need to uphold the “right” standards that he doesn’t even know how to react when Logan’s character says (at least 5x): “I’m about to throw up. I have to go.” (Because self has seen Animal House at least 3x, she knew exactly how this scene was going to go down. How weird is it that Indignation and Animal House have a scene like this in common?)

The performances in this movie were really, really on point.

Lerman’s character, who hails from Newark, New Jersey, is completely out of his depth. Not only is he from Newark, New Jersey, he’s the son of a butcher. Not only is he the son of a butcher, he’s the son of a kosher butcher. Can you imagine? Oh the horrors of a guy like this attending university in Winesburg!

Lerman’s character is an atheist but unfortunately for him, he’s the only “out” atheist on campus. Everyone else — aside from 80 Jews — is Christian.

There’s a femme fatale. Okay, so she slit one wrist, was treated, she’s okay now. Self is so tired of these fragile college girls, these doomed Sylvia Plath iterations, who mess up the lives of innocents like our hero played by Logan Lerman. From the moment her character was introduced, self knew she would mess up the hero’s life. (Yes, Hero, You Should Listen to Your Overprotective Mother!)

And then the end. Let’s just say, not since that trendy woman’s novel where a woman kept going to bars and sleeping with strangers and ended up describing how she was killed, on the very last page, has self ever felt so cheated, cheated, cheated!

You cannot do first person when you’re dead at the end, all right?

If you’re dead — unless you’re an angel or a ghost or the second coming of Alice Sebold — you cannot tell a story like this, where everything is wrapped up so prettily in hindsight. Because the human being who lives the story will not tell it like this. He’ll be all: I cannot believe I’m going down like this! This sucks!

Total disintegration would be preferable to tragic story arc (In hindsight, everything can be made to seem tragic. It’s “spin.” It’s also a cheat. That is self’s humble opinion. You can get away with it but please, not in first person)

But, Holy Cow, LOGAN LERMAN. The only other movies self has seen him in are 3:10 to Yuma and Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief. Her main objection to him was that he looked like a girl. She won’t be saying that again, after this movie.

When the movie ended, self had to turn to her seatmate and ask, What the heck just happened there? Is he really dead?

The woman’s countenance was completely shattered. Yes, she said. He is dead.

And with that, self left the theatre in a very bad mood. Practically stomped out. Like, she could not believe she just spent two hours listening to Logan Lerman’s poetic narration, only to have it end up like this. So, all that before, that was his disembodied dead self telling us the story? Nooooo!

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

 

Everlarkian Feelz 2

Instead of the Hunger Games we have a hotly contested election for the presidency of Panem.

One of the candidates for President is Alma Coin. Her slogan: 24 YEARS OF PEACE. 24 YEARS OF EXPERIENCE. SUPPORT PRESIDENT COIN.

Among her achievements: “She continued the availability of tesserae within the poorest districts of Panem, including District 12, up to six times a year for residents who qualified.”

Mayor Undersee is welcoming candidate Coin to 12 with a themed banquet, “Taste of District 12.”

Unbenknownst to almost everyone in 12, Katniss and Peeta have been exchanging clandestine kisses in the janitor’s closet of the local school.

How are all of these threads connected? You would know if you read fan fiction.

Stay tuned.

 

Most Laconic Comment Ever

There’s this one reader of Everlark fan fiction who’s been leaving one sentence responses to any and all for over a year.

After a chapter on a fan fic based on “The Tudors” where everyone is shown to be snogging or bonking or whatever: The court is a busy place.

In response to a fan fic that’s super-angsty and dark: WOW.

After a Tarzan Peeta fan fic (It is great; self likes it so much better than any Tarzan movie version) dropped a new chapter today, a chapter in which Tarzan Peeta (who knows no English) shows a wary Katniss a scene of two monkeys fornicating in the jungle, then stares intensely into her eyes (Chapter ends right after Katniss stares dumfounded at Tarzan Peeta — which is to say, damn cliffhanger of all cliffhangers!)

Peeta has absolutely no experience with any women, but he wants to _____ with Katniss so the only way he can show her what he wants is to take her to a scene of animals doing it which is so — sweet and gentlemanly, like he’s asking: Are you down with this sort of feral activity, Katniss? I wish not to offend!

Comment:

  • Peeta wants to get busy.

LOL LOL LOL

Self finally told the Laconic Commenter how much she enjoyed those cryptic zingers, and found out today that the commenter is a busy Mom who dashes through airports while madly reading fan fic on her cell phone. Which explains everything.

There was another comment on the Tarzan Peeta fan fic that cracked self up today:

  • I did see the Tarzan movie and it is good. Alexander S’s body is fabulous. Sorry to digress.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

 

 

THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN: Train of Thought

Self wants it to NOT be Rachel.

Because Rachel evokes so many feelz in self.

And Rachel’s point of view is the one we’re inside of, mostly.

Somewhere near the halfway point of Girl on the Train, self reads an Anna point of view. Self is usually impatient with multiple point of view narratives: she thinks the switching around is really just a lame excuse for the author not to come up with a tight plot. Like the switch is nothing more than an extended tease. But self really relishes the point-of-view switches in Girl on the Train. The novel presents us with a great puzzle and a great unreliable narrator and the only way the reader can figure out what’s really going down is to hear from all the characters.

Anna (Tom’s current wife) describes seeing Rachel. It’s a scene that we’ve seen earlier, narrated from Rachel’s point of view. All along, self has thought of Rachel as a well-meaning, deluded drunk. Just your typical messed-up anti-heroine. Self absolutely loathes Tom. His diatribes, his abandonment of Rachel. Of course, we aren’t that sympathetic with Anna, Tom’s current wife.

Then, suddenly, we’re inside Anna’s head, Anna watching Rachel. And it is a little un-nerving to read Rachel as giving a sort of sneer at Anna. The sneer of a woman who is absolutely in control of her actions, if not of her emotions. Could Rachel be pulling a fast one on the reader? (And how on earth is Emily Blunt going to play this character, Emily Blunt who is so immensely likeable even when bitchy, as she was in The Devil Wears Prada?)

What’s really interesting is that, despite the fact that Anna is the Other Woman, and of course we would not expect her to have a sympathetic view of Rachel, when she describes sneering Rachel, it makes the reader question her liking of Rachel, instead of making us dislike Anna more.

Why does this happen?

Each switch in point of view is a surprise. In other words, the patterns are unpredictable: we don’t have a uniform order for the switching. It’s not Anna, followed by Rachel, followed by Megan, then back to Anna, followed by Rachel, followed by Megan etc etc

But each switch does carry the story forward. And readers find themselves becoming detectives, constantly testing new theories of who did what.

And such is self’s curiosity that she sometimes cannot wait to resume reading, she grabs the book (which is always in her tote) even if it only means reading a few paragraphs more.

She thinks her seatmate on the plane who much preferred Daniel Silva to Paula Hawkins was so, so wrong.

The Girl on the Train resembles The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime, another mystery that asks: Who did it?

The central character has some flaw that makes it difficult for her/him to be taken seriously. In TCIOTDITN, it’s the narrator’s Aspergers. Here, it’s the fact that Rachel is alcoholic and depressed and given to mood swings. Yet, they doggedly persist in their “investigations.”

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Quote of the Day: Yes, You Know It

From Matt Zoller Seitz’s review of “Love & Friendship,” Whit Stillman’s new movie, on rogerebert.com, which is self’s current go-to site for reviews of new movies:

(NOTE: Parenthetical comments are self’s adds)

(Lady) Susan is distinguished by her audacity, not just in her wants and desires but in the way she talks to other people (not least of whom is her own daughter, a most woeful waif named Frederica), turning subtext into text in a way most people would not do unless the person they were talking about was in another room, or another state. But they’re standing right there! And they can’t get their minds around how staggeringly rude and entitled Susan is — most of all Reginald, who’s played with great precision by Samuel as a decent man who is so stunned by Susan’s nerve that he can barely bring himself to reprimand her: he’s too busy marveling at her existence.

Yes, in Stillman’s movie, social cruelty is played completely straight by Kate Beckinsale and Chloe Sevigny and also by Xavier Samuel. Beckinsale’s Lady Susan utters lines like “Facts are horrid” with such sweetness you don’t even know if that’s what she really said so you go “Facts are WHAT?”

Great job with directing this sly and absolutely wicked Jane Austen work, Whit Stillman!

Stay tuned.

Whit Stillman’s “Love & Friendship”

Self has two words, only two words to describe the movie. And those are:

Xavier Samuels

Holy moly, the guy is perfectly cast as Reginald De Courcy, a confused yet decent young man who becomes the romantic target of a beautiful and conniving widow played by Kate Beckinsale.

As Samuel plays this smitten young nobleman, you can’t take your eyes off him. And yes, self writes this knowing that Kate Beckinsale is right there, sharing most of his scenes.

Chloe Sevigny is also great in her role as the straight-faced, American confidant of Kate Beckinsale’s Lady Susan. Never once does her mask slip. The only thing “not British” about her is her accent — which is strange, not flat-out American, but certainly keeps us guessing. She shows generous dollops of bosom, in contrast to Lady Susan’s very slender form. And that’s another way in which this movie is sly: just having these two actresses stand side by side, Stillman ensures that the viewer’s eye is always engaged, always parsing, always differentiating. Whew! This is no stuffy period film!

As self walked out of the movie theatre, she overheard a young woman telling her companion: “They’re jabbing at each other right and left, all with salon manners and smiles.”

Yes! That is exactly the point the movie was trying to get across! And kudos that the message came through so clearly.

Self must own up to having confused Xavier Samuel with Matt Czuchry of The Good Wife. They do look somewhat similar. Here’s Matt, also delicious.

Next up: “Me Before You,” featuring Sam Claflin (Finnick! You’re alive!) and Emilia Clark (first big role post-GOT)

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Tarzan Peeta Part 2: Finnick Tries Flirting

Her thoughts drifted back to the mysterious man that had saved her (from drowning) earlier that day. She really hadn’t stopped thinking about him at all since he’d run into the tropical forest like a mad man, wearing her orange sundress. The vision of it made Katniss’s laughter bubble up . . .

“You liked that one, Kitty?” Finnick asked, catching Katniss by surprise.

Her laughter subsided at the pet name he’d coined for her as soon as they’d met on the plane. She stared at him a moment, willing the scowl to stay behind the delicate mask of merriment. She had to play along, knowing she couldn’t tell any of the men about her savior. At least, not yet. Not until she knew more about him. Why was he on the island. Where he came from . . .

Can you believe anyone finding Finnick tiresome?

LOL.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Tarzan Peeta!

Anyone remember when Brendan Fraser was super, super-hot?

Anyone remember him in George in the Jungle?

Well, today, after another blissful day in Annaghmakerrig (Thank YOU, Tyrone Guthrie Centre!), self fell to searching for new Everlark fan fics. And she found one that was mighty intriguing!

Let’s see if she can adequately summarize it:

Katniss is fleeing tabloid rumors about her husband’s predilection for men and goes on some kind of exotic adventure with her uncle Haymitch and a male companion (and possibly would-be paramour, Finnick, of all people). The company have to sleep in tents out in the wilderness. Katniss has a life-changing encounter with a naked man with blonde hair and blue eyes (of course, the man’s body is perfect, just perfect) and she raises the alarm (Katniss, you are absolutely clue-leeeess!) and the man goes scampering back into the jungle, but not before he’s had the chance to don one of Katniss’s dresses.

Yes indeed, the last we see of Tarzan Peeta in the opening chapter is him running into the forest wearing an ORANGE dress. Which, on him, barely reaches to there.

Love it!

Stay tuned.

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