Wow, this episode has Stargate Command being extremely shady (and actually kind of colonialist?) in regards to the Langarans, who are refusing SGC permission to use their stargate to dial Destiny. Given that the last two times that Destiny was dialed, the planet the stargate was on exploded I think the Langarans' caution is absolutely the right thing to do. Especially because this seems to be their home planet, not an outpost like Icarus or the Lucian Alliance planet.

I'm kind of surprised that Col. Telford has the clout to force a mission that could cause this big of a diplomatic incident -- by which I mean the worse case failure scenario is that the Langarans decide that they're better off as allies to the Lucian Alliance than to Earth. Given that Wolsey is in on this, you'd think the diplomatic corps would be having a fit over this -- there's spycraft, and there's creating a causus belli that will turn your allies against you.

Given that that side of the episode is about hijacking the bodies of Langaran administrators and military officers, were any of the SGC people actually surprised that the Langarans responded with 'we will shoot you even though you're wearing the bodies of our friends'? If so, why? I mean, that's what SGC did when Go'auld took over their people, why did they think the Langarans would act any differently?

What was so wrong with letting the diplomats keep negotiating and maybe get the intelligence services operating on-planet. Are we really supposed to think the Defense Intelligence Agency wouldn't have off-world missions the minute Stargate Command became a thing? Really?

On the flip side, the plot with Rush and Amanda Perry was just heartbreaking. I mean, Rush takes a day off to go into a VR simulation, have sex with his incorporeal girlfriend, and wander around the ship barefoot in clean clothes (and I noticed she gave him his watch and fancy ring back that he lost to the Nakai aliens, but not his wedding ring ). That was such a modest fantasy that I can't even... and it turns out so badly. I wanted to shake Mandy for telling Rush that he didn't love her, especially when he's lowered his defenses so much for her. I'm pretty sure that asking a computer program to define and quantify love is asking for disaster, which is what she got.

When he gets stuck in the simulation, she deceives him and shuts Ginn down -- the best case I can think is that she panicked, but I have the terrible suspicion that if she hadn't slipped up and kissed his cheek so that he could feel her, she'd have let him think he'd gotten out of the simulation until being in the chair killed his body. And then she'd still have him, as he'd have remained uploaded to Destiny's computer core. I really think she didn't know how to handle being in love (Rush seems to be the one love interest in her life, so much inexperience) along and being turned into a disembodied consciousness inside the ship's computer. Rush, on the other hand, knows how being in love and being a partner works because he was married; it's a sad day where Nicholas Rush is the more mature, emotionally dependable human being out of any pair.

I felt sorry for Eli and Ginn, because they were the responsible ones in that plot. They had decided that a romantic, nonsexual relationship was something they could and would live with, but because Rush and Mandy decided to play VR games, and Mandy didn't think that maybe no two people experience romantic love the same way and a computer certainly can't quantify it anyway, Eli and Ginn suffered. No wonder Eli is pissed at Rush at the end of the episode.
I've been reading CHANGES to get myself up to canon before tackling a cross-over big bang idea that's been rattling around in my head lately, but I got to Ch. 37 and hit a bit of a wall...

Opening paragraph of Ch 37 here )

Am I to believe that Loki doesn't exist in the Dresden'verse? Even though Harry crosses paths with a Valkyrie every other book and met Odin in this one? What? Loki's only the most mentioned character in the Eddas -- it's not like he's not integral to rather large parts of the mythology.

Or am I to think that Harry doesn't believe Loki is real... even though Harry has just had a conference with Odin -- who is stocking up weaponry and soldiers for something... like, I don't know, Ragnarok, maybe? And how does Harry know the story of Thor and Loki's journey to Utgard well enough to reference it, but poorly enough that he mixed up who did what challenge (Thjali, Thor's manservant, lost a race against a thought from their host's mind. Loki lost an eating contest against a disguised wildfire)?

Or is Jim Butcher just messing with his readers?

Also, a wild theory about Ms. Gard )
neotoma: Roadrunner fetish goes "beep beep!' (roadrunner)
( Apr. 17th, 2011 09:27 am)
Considering I only have 12 stories on AO3, my top ten list isn't surprising, although what is at the top is...

Wow, I write mostly for challenges and gift exchanges )
200 Countries, 200 Years, 4 Minutes...

This clip illustrates exactly why when someone starts talking about the 'good old days', I tend to downgrade them in my estimation of their intelligence and common sense.

Also, when fiction writers complain about how awful the 20th century was (I'm looking at you, SPN), I know that they don't have a clue -- there were many things wrong with the 20th century, but people not dying of measles, mumps and polio in childhood and actually managing to make it out subsistence poverty? Not a bad thing, at all.

Yes, there were awful, horrible wars. Otoh, most people thought that war was a bad thing, instead of an exciting chance for the elites to prove their bravery, and there were not roving bands of discharged-soldiers-turned-brigands destroying the countryside, holding towns hostage for go-away bribes, or actual class warfare where the workers killed the landowners, or religious figures proclaiming crusades to distract people from the fact that they were selling church benefices. I've been reading Barbara Tuchman's A Distant Mirror: the Calamitous 14th Century, and 14th century France had all that *and* the Black Death.

Anyone who thinks things were better 200 years ago is invited to go live the life of the average person in the UK or the Netherlands (the richest, healthiest countries) of that time period, which still means a life expectancy of 40 years, and annual income of under $4000.
I've been pimping Xmen at my friend [ profile] sanj. It's a devious plot to get her to write me Xmen fic. First I got her to watch Xmen Evolution with me. Then I got her the 'Gifted' trade of Astonishing (cause she love Joss Whedon, yes she does), and now I've lent her some of the New X-men trades.

But we were talking about the books on Sunday, and Julian Keller (Hellion) came up. [ profile] sanj thinks there is a good kid under there, somewhere. I'm not so sure. But we both thought he was reckless, and that he is taking advantage of Laura (X-23) Kinney's crush on him most cruelly. And that Emma is actively making the boy worse, no matter what she actually intends with her mentoring of him.

Today, I realized that Julian is just one of a long string of teacher's pets that Emma has had, and that none of them were exactly improved by her attention.

In the original Hellions, there was Manuel de la Rocha (Empath) who Emma allowed to prey on his teammates and the non-mutant students at Emma's Academy. In Generation X, Monet seemed to be Emma's favorite student, or at least the one she thinks is most competent. Then in the Morrison run of Xmen, Emma focused on the Cuckoos, and in Xmen Academy/New Xmen, she's focused on Julian Keller.

All of these students are powerful psychics of one sort or another, from the upper classes, with a tendency to play cruel power games. It's a really worrying pattern. It's like Emma is trying to recreate herself.
All right Marvel fans, I have a question for you.

Emma Frost, though she's tough as nails and frighteningly pragmatic, fit into the role of femme fatale. She uses her looks as weapon against men, and to compete against women; that's not all she uses, obviously, as she is smart, cunning, and an excellent telepath, but it's the most obvious tool she has.

But how does she react to men who are not attracted to her at all? Does it throw a wobbly at her, to meet someone who just is blank towards her?
So, I'm watching Sharpe's Regiment (thank you, Netflix), mainly because I moved to New Mexico when the series was airing on PBS and I didn't get to see them the first time all the first time round.

And really, all I can think is that Richard Sharpe falls predictably for two types of women: the first category, who last an episode or so, are damsels in distress that he can and does rescue; the second category, rarer but longer lasting, are women who can totally kick his ass. His sergeant actually twits him about his predictablity about women.

It's also fun to watch for the manners displayed -- I'm not an expert on Regency manners by any means -- but it is amsuing how Sharpe tends to be very correct about how to address people (even strange women who drag him home, shag him, and then kick him out the door without ever telling him their name) but the people above him the social ranks just aren't.

His brief foray into shameless street theater in an effort to keep his battalion from being broken up is an effort shameless enough for Miles Vorkosigan. Actually, if Miles ran into a man like Richard Sharpe, the Hegen Hub would be doomed -- Miles would do all the political manuveuring and just point Sharpe in the right direction, end of story. Sharpe's plan to figure out where his missing recruits are by joining the army as a private is rather Milesian, come to think of it...

It was also figuring out that one of the villians is played by the actor who played one of the more memorable roles in the 7th Doctor episode "Ghost Light".

Basically, I'm having fun watching, and will for days, given that there were so many episodes made.

PS I have seen the first disc of House, M. D., and it was wonderful. I have a lot of catching up to do...

PSS I'm still planning on having a marathon of the first Sharpe's episodes sometime in the next month or two. I should have copies of the first five by then...
neotoma: Neotoma albigula, the white-throated woodrat! [default icon] (Batman -- bale version)
( Sep. 10th, 2006 09:06 pm)
so, [ profile] sanj, [ profile] ellen_fremedon and I were talking today as we walked from the Takoma Folk Festival, and the question came up of "what House does Batman sort into"?

[ profile] ellen_fremedon brought up that you really have to take his personae into account here. There is 'Bruce Wayne the playboy', Batman, and the combination that is the real Bruce Wayne.

'Bruce Wayne', the silly role that Batman fronts to the world is, pretty much a Gryffindor in the eager-but-dim-puppy school. No one thinks he's dangerous, or even observant.

Batman, on the other hand, is an angry Ravenclaw. [ profile] sanj was most firm on this -- *angry*, then Ravenclaw. Yojimbo was brought up for comparison.

The combined, *actual* personality of Bruce Wayne is, of course, Slytherin. Terrifyingly so.

Of course, we can't leave out Hufflepuff. That's Dick Grayson. And Superman. And Wonder Woman too, come to think of it.

Batman needs a lot of Hufflepuffs to sit on him, apparently.
I've dived back into Lord of the Rings recently (long weekend of knitting combined with watching all three Extended Editions), and really JRRT wrote a *lot* of Ravenclaws and Hufflepuffs.

It's very odd -- there are Gryffindor characters (mostly Rohirrim, to boot) but not as many as you'd expect for an epic fantasy.

Aragorn certainly *isn't* a Gryffindor. Neither is Frodo. And Gandalf is a Slytherin.

It's not that surprising, I suppose, considering JRR Tolkien *was* a Ravenclaw -- a professor who invented languages for fun -- but it's still odd. As is writing an entire species as Hufflepuffs (ie Hobbits). But it's odd that Lord of the Rings is the modern ur-fantasy, and yet its characters don't quite fit the mold.
English is a weird language. There are feminine words for some occupations, though they're so archaic that they are mainly used for surnames now.

The ones I can come up with easily are:

webster -- weaver
baxter -- baker
brewster -- brewer
spinster -- spinner

Are there others?

ETA: I was thinking about words with the -ster construction, though words with the -ess construction are equally valid.
[ profile] sueworld2003 has an interesting post on slave-fic in Buffyfic that I found through [ profile] metafandom.

I don't read much in Buffy anymore, but I have noticed slave-fics as a cross-fandom thing -- TPM fans, I'm looking at you -- and have even tried to write my own fic on the subject ('twas terrible, by the way). There was even a slash archive, Boys in Chains, dedicated to slave-fics, once upon a time.

Maybe it's safer to look at power inequalities through the viewpoint of men-coded-female then through the viewpoint of actual women characters )Or maybe we just like to imagine attractive men in handcuffs...


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