Fashion Friday :: that time of year again!

18 Apr

Mad Men time that is.  Starting with Megan (Jessica Paré) as often is the case.

megan calvet draper (jessica pare)

Except I’m sad because I could swear I’ve seen a dress like this on ModCloth before and I can’t find it anymore, so I’m having to go less literally than I’d like.

mod about blue dress (modcloth)

I mean, this is still the right color, and it’s short, and it’s mod, but it doesn’t have ridiculous sleeves or a bow or anything, and that’s too bad.  Mod About Blue Dress, ModCloth.

charter school cardigan in baby blue (modcloth)

And that’s why I’m pairing it off with this matchy-matchy sweater, because at least that gives it sleeves.  Charter School Cardigan in Baby Blue, ModCloth.

chicago-getter earrings (modcloth)

And these are long enough, I think.  Chicago-getter Earrings, ModCloth.

ice cream or cola sunglasses (modcloth)

And these aren’t quite the right shape, but they’ll do also.  Ice Cream or Cola Sunglasses, ModCloth.

sliver of silver flat (modcloth)

I don’t know.  These just feel right.  Sliver of Silver Flat, ModCloth.

–your fangirl heroine.

girly drinks

Theatre Thursday :: musicals and LGBTQ characters (C-E)

17 Apr

The continuing.

Cabaret (Cliff, the Emcee [depending on the version])
La Cage aux Folles (Georges, Albin, Jacob)
Camp (Michael)
A Chorus Line (Greg, Paul)
Closer to Heaven (Vic, Dave)
The Color Purple (Shug, Celie)
Company (Peter ["possibly gay"])

7 out of 255 (or 2.7%) of these musicals feature (conditionally) LGBTQ characters.

1 out of 255 features LGBTQ characters who are cis women.

–your fangirl heroine.

comme ci comme ca

Whedon Wednesday :: Agents of SHIELD cocktails, so there.

16 Apr

“So there” because — well, I recognize the way I’m processing this show right now.  It’s funny, because my first thought with this show when it started was, “I’m going to watch this and enjoy it, but I don’t want to let myself fall in love, no.”  For, ah, reasons shall we say.  I didn’t want to risk getting too involved in another silly show.  At first, I was into it and enjoying it, but I was really only at the risk of getting emotionally involved with, well, Jemma (Elizabeth Henstridge) and Skye (Chloe Bennet) and Fitz (Iain De Caestecker).  Science babies.  But since the break, I’ve somehow found myself in a pulse-is-racing, theories-are-popping-up-fully-formed level of processing that I know all too well.  So either my heart is going to be quite broken or things will actually go as they ought.  Jury’s still out, but here are some drinks.

fitz

Fitz
1 shot peach schnapps
1 shot (scotch) whiskey
Cranberry ginger ale

The fact that I have been hoarding cranberry ginger ale worked in my favor this time.  “They have bogs in Scotland,” said one of my people.  Bogs apparently pertain to cranberries, so there is that.  Then obviously scotch, and peach just… because.  It’s kind of weird and specific and delightful and that suits.

Simmons
1 shot lemon sorbet vodka
1 shot apple pie liqueur
1 shot (scotch) whiskey)
Apple juice

This kind of reads like a Tyrell drink, what with the apple, which is funny because we were talking the other day about which houses these characters would belong to and Jemma is very, very far from a Tyrell.  (Stark, actually.)  But here it’s apple and lemon because those things are kind of wholesome and reliable.  So.

–your fangirl heroine.

this is a lifeline i am clinging to

Television Tuesday :: television and the Bechdel test, part one.

15 Apr

Since the beginning of the year, I have been keeping track of television shows and the Bechdel test (do two women talk for more than thirty seconds about something other than a man).  I’ve only been doing it with shows which had seasons that started after January 1 2014 (i.e. The Walking Dead and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. are not part of the tally) because… I don’t know.  Statistics are comforting.  The people I watch the most television with are already getting tired of me talking about this.

I won’t be posting the entire summary until the end of 2014, because that’s how I designed the… not-quite-experiment… and I want to be very technical about it, but I will be routinely commenting on certain things that doing this teaches me, beginning with tonight.

Season five of Justified finished airing last week.  Now, I’ve liked Justified since the beginning (we came for Timothy Olyphant and I stayed for Rachel [Erica Tazel] and Tim [Jacob Pitts], among other things) but one of its biggest failings has always been the lack of Bechdel passing.  It’s always had good female characters (Rachel, Ava [Joelle Carter], Winona [Natalie Zea], Mags [Margo Martindale], Loretta [Kaitlyn Dever], etcetera) but there hasn’t been a lot of interaction between them, or in the case of Mags and Loretta they often (not always) were talking about men and anyway that was way back in season two.  I wasn’t expecting Justified to pass at all this season, since they rarely do, so imagine my surprise when they had a 66% pass rate by episode.

Why was this?  Why, Ava went to women’s prison.

It makes sense that women’s prison would involve talking to other women, and it makes sense that they’d talk about things other than men.  In large part this is just because there weren’t any men present, and sure, they did have conversations that mentioned men on the outside, but that was not the only thing that they discussed.  They had schemes of their own, friendships of their own, rivalries of their own, a women-centric religious circle of their own –

And it occurred to me a few episodes in how really sad it was that the only reason for this abundance of female stuff was that there were very, very few men physically present.  This couldn’t exist on the outside, apparently, the show had to physically remove the women (and do so in order to set up a scenario pertaining to Ava and her man, mind, I’m not forgetting that) from the male world.

Gosh, that’s a sobering thought.

–your fangirl heroine.

that's the approach you're taking

Music Monday :: my thoughts on Sway

14 Apr

Heyyyyy Merriment.  I’ve been excited about this album since I heard that it was going to exist, because I just adore every single member of this entire musical family.

“Take Heart.”  Christie’s voice is a bit folksier than that of any of her sisters — it’s different but equally nice, and more suited to some moods.  Said folksiness is being nicely highlighted here, though this is not a folksy song in particular; this has a bit of a Ingrid Michaelson/A Fine Frenzy feeling to it, which I mean with love and adoration given the immense respect and fondness I have for both artists.

“Tremendous Love.”  A slightly folksier riff to start things off, but not particular folksiness in the vocal or the lyrics or any such.  This feels like it would belong nicely on a film soundtrack, possibly an episode of a television show that I might not watch because it’s not my genre but I’d see gifsets of it on tumblr and respect it from a distance.

“Somehow.”  The thing that’s always killed me with Eisley is the harmonies and therefore the fullness, but since this is mostly just Christie singing (and the boys doing instruments too, an equally important part but not the same as pertains to the affect of the tone) it’s a whole different thing.  More label-ably singer-songwriter, as evidenced by the aforementioned comparisons.  I like it.  I’m up for it.  I wanna learn the words to all of it.

“Now I’m Silver.”  Oh that’s a nice little title.  And this is a nice little song.  I feel like this particular liveblog is not super-super coherent, for which I apologize, but I’m quite happy.  That’s enough.

“Backwards.”  They posted this one as a preview months ago and I spent about four days listening to it obsessively.  I like it a lot, and it feels a bit less twee than the rest — not that I mind the twee, I quite like it, but this, at least the verses, feels a bit more… moody.  A bit more.  This band still has a very optimistic sound.

“Two Worlds.”  Oh, hey, I know this song too.  From previous release through Strange Yellow Patterns and subsequent mixing.  This is a better quality of recording though, with a bit more contrast between vocal and instrumentation and that’s nice.  I like listening to new recordings of songs I know already.

“Patterns.”  “Maybe you could be some part of what I need.”  Yes, all right.  This one is a bit less twee also.  I’m not sure if twee is even the right word, actually, but — okay, well, let me put it this way.  The DuPrees are fairies, right, Sherri is the most colorful one and Stacy is the one who’s best-suited to the white floral maxi dresses and Chauntelle is the one who’s best at blending in with humans, well, Christie is the baby (of course she is she is technically the youngest of the sisters) and she has a bit more earthiness to her, she’s spent less time in the fairy world or whatnot.  (I’m sorry I have this whole ridiculous fantastical headcanon about these real people.  But they don’t exactly do anything to disprove it, considering I have seen multiple instances of them referring to themselves as fairies via reblogged Instagram photo commentary.)  Also, “it goes one, two, three, one, two, three,” I don’t know why I like that so much, it’s just counting, but I do.  I like the melody of it.

“Spill.”  “You know it feels nice to have you on my side, when everything is dark and lonely it’s hard for me to tell you baby that I want you here beside me.”  “You take the hardest part of leaving, you make it so hard to believe in.”  Introspective, yes.  “I’ll never fake a smile just to please you.”  Oh that is such a beautiful thing that I am glad is in a song.

“Nothing to Lose.”  This one was also pre-released, I believe.  I’ve definitely heard it before, anyway, and I like it.  The guitar sounds almost vintage, like it belongs in a surf movie, though her voice sort of does not match that and I really like the contrast.  I also really like what she’s doing with her voice on this track on an individual level.  I like her little slides and whatnot.

“Down by the Creek.”  Oh, oh, I.  I get the feeling that this might belong — “go on take it to the river but I swear you’ll never see me there again” or something I think that’s what she said — on something I am working on.  Even though there is already a Merriment song there.  Oh, well.  This fits very well.

“Right Again.”  Oh, here’s more moody instrumentation.  Yes, please, I will take this.  “But you were right in front of me there, and you say I wouldn’t dare but you know what it’s like to be the only one who cares.”  That’s nice also.  These are good songs that I relate to and that is nice, and they could be love songs but aren’t necessarily entirely, and that’s nice.  This is also a very good closer song.  It’s got that thing about it.

–your fangirl heroine.

the cat that ate the canary

Spoiler Alert Sunday :: my thoughts on The Grand Budapest Hotel

13 Apr

One of my favorite things about Wes Anderson movies is their vibe, the thing that I’ve never really seen any other director doing but can’t name exactly.  Like they’re a storybook come to life, except for that it’s a storybook about and with and for grown-ups.

Because of this and also because I am very fond of things that read as meta in one way or another, I enjoyed the story-within-a-story-within-a-story of this film.  I think part of it comes from my background in theatre and English, but I like narrated things, where said narrator is even voice-overing the “he said, we sat, I did that” kind of stuff.  It would get tiresome if it was done all the time, but on occasion it adds to that slightly surreal ambiance.

The cast is A+ and really completely predictable (“I don’t think Wes Anderson can make a movie without one of the Wilson brothers,” one of my people commented) and definitely made me think about how it must be fun to be Wes Anderson or someone like that and be able to just call up everyone and be like “come be in my movie for thirty seconds” and have them agree to it.

I enjoy how pretty Wes Anderson movies often are.  How they feature such beautiful settings and such ridiculous situations taking place all over them.  How they can actually pull off wacky chase scenes.  How they exist in a world that both is and is not our own.  How they have a certain measure of kitsch and eccentricity.  How they have exposition thrown about all the time.

Also, I enjoyed Saoirse Ronan’s accent and face.  That was nice.  And semi-surprise momentary Lea Seydoux.

I don’t know that there is actually a whole lot to spoil about this movie, because like many Wes Anderson movies it is more about characters and scenarios than actual plot (which I don’t mind actually, being a very character/ambiance-driven person myself), but I’m still not going to say a terrible lot about it.  If you like this sort of thing, I’d highly recommend it.

–your fangirl heroine.

patient

Spoiler Alert Saturday :: my thoughts on Captain America: The Winter Soldier

12 Apr

“You aren’t usually on the edge of your seat like that,” one of my people commented in regards to watching me watch this movie.

It’s a fair point.  I was on the edge of my seat in the very most literal sense, elbows resting on my knees, chin resting in my hands, occasionally idly pawing at my throat in the excitement of the moment.  This in turn was not helped by the way that during the film’s slower moments my mind would run to what was possibly happening on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. at that exact moment (we saw this on Tuesday night, for timing reasons, so at that exact moment also in the near-literal sense) and then I’d worry about the babies, but that’s another story.

I was genuinely expecting to love this movie, mostly just because of Natasha (Scarlett Johansson) who is, as seen last night and many other times, my darling.  I care quite a lot about her.  But I wasn’t expecting what happened, which sounds dramatic but is entirely accurate.Suffice to say, I’ve been having a lot of feelings this week about how beautifully constructed the Marvel Cinematic Universe is.  The ways it feeds into itself, the ways it echoes and ripples and what have you.  It’s an impressive feat.  I don’t know anything of the comics, really, except for what little other people tell me, so I don’t know much about how it compares.  But I just — I really like completism and things.  One of my favorite games to play is “come up with a way for two separate things to exist in the same continuity, even if they don’t,” and the fact that the MCU is a canonical version of that (therefore eliminating the “if they don’t”) makes me really happy.

Anyway.  This has been out a couple of weeks, so I feel comfy throwing a couple of spoilers out, but if you don’t want them, they will be after this point, so stop now.For starters, I really love Sam (Anthony Mackie) too.  For one, Anthony Mackie himself seems like a great dude, but for another, I really appreciated the character and his general attitude about things.  The banter, the buddying, the “oh you need help?  Of course I’m in.”  And I also really love the fact that he is a self-made hero, a guy who has sad stories and the chaos of war in his background but still generally seems to be a fairly positive kind of guy.  Upbeat, open, etcetera.  It’s nice.

Pretty much everyone else is having feelings about Steve (Chris Evans) and Bucky (Sebastian Stan) so I’m just going to let them have those.  I get it, I do.  I just don’t have anything to add in particular.  But oh, the scene with Peggy (Hayley Atwell) about broke my heart, largely just because I still have a very big soft spot for Peggy.A large part of my love for this movie was the Steve-Tasha-Sam dynamic, though.  Any given pair of the three or all three together.  Teammates and buddies and — oh, that just makes me so happy.  The aformentionedly-quoted person of mine (who spent the couple of days between seeing this and watching this week’s S.H.I.E.L.D. spouting theories about how-what-why) was adamant that Steve and Tasha had a romantic dynamic to them, and because his reasons seemed at least somewhat well-thought out and not just “opposite sex protagonists must be attracted to each other” I didn’t dismiss them out of hand, but I don’t think that at all.  I think they are a couple of people who are still learning how to be friends with anyone again or almost ever and learning to trust each other achieving those things.  And Sam?  Sam is just a delightful human being and an A+ addition to any dynamic.

Now.  Onto the business of S.H.I.E.L.D. and HYDRA.  I think in the back of my mind I’ve been expecting S.H.I.E.L.D. to come crashing down since Avengers, because — well, that’s sort of just what happens to large fictional secret organizations in this genre.  It’s true of virtually everything else Joss has done, not to mention countless other things.  I wasn’t expecting it necessarily to pertain to HYDRA, though.  Prior to this week’s episode of S.H.I.E.L.D. I’d been trying really hard to be a good girl and not speculate about things outrageously, because when that happens (as I’ve before said) it usually goes to hell.  (Incidentally, this got thrown out the window with the ~twist~ in the show, which I idly predicted based on logical conclusions and which actually came true according to those [this show is a gift to me].  Speculations have been initiated in a very hardcore way.)  It makes sense, though.

(And my favorite idle thought from watching the film: “well, Jemma, at least that time you shot a superior officer in the chest, you accidentally made a good choice regarding which agent that was.)

I think it’s an interesting narrative choice, too, because on one hand it nullifies so much of the MCU (the organization itself, the motivations of all of the associated characters [particularly Steve and Tasha]) but on the other it opens so many doors.  It doesn’t retcon, it logically revises; it forces us as the audience to take a step back and look at everything we thought we knew or something dramatic like that as the characters do the same and deal with their own business.

And while I’m stopping before I start to go in circles with the inarticulate MCU feelings I’ve been having, I need to say that Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) and Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders) are always A+.

–your fangirl heroine.

i self-deprecate as a defense mechanism

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