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Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Links and Updates

So remember a few weeks ago when I said I had been nominated for a Sir Julius Vogel Award for Best Fan Writing? Well... I won!
I'm still sort of processing it all, and I've been told it'll be a few months before I get the award itself, but – wow. I didn't expect it, and I'm still very happy. Thank you to anyone out there who voted for me, as well as any lurkers that continue to read and share my reviews/meta.
If you're interested, the material that I sent in for my sample booklet was my Why Is Frozen So Popular? post, my review for The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, two articles posted on Helen Lowe's blog as part of my Big Worlds, Small Screen series (Orphan Black and Robin of Sherwood) and my book reviews for Gregory Maguire's Wicked and Garth Nix's Clariel, which can be found on my page.
I'm ... kind of struggling to say anything eloquent about this! Again, I'm very happy and grateful to everyone who was involved –particularly Helen Lowe who nominated me, and June Young, who suggested that she do so in the first place. I'll talk more about this soon, though probably over on Helen's blog.

In other news, Sleepy Hollow has been renewed for a third season. For me it's joined Once Upon a Time in the "now you're just somebody a show that I used to know watch" category, but I'm glad for Tom and Nicole, sincerely hopeful the writers can get the plot back on track, and willing to be drawn back in if I hear good things. (That goes for OUaT too by the way, but so far hearsay hasn't been encouraging. Let me know if Mulan returns).
I'm watching plenty of stuff right now (a head cold frees up a lot of time) including PoldarkVikingsArrowThe 100, and the first season of Homeland – but I also tuned in to the first episode of Thunderbirds Are Go. Admittedly I did so not out of any particular nostalgia for the original series – though I do remember watching reruns and enjoying the puppetry/model work – but because I knew Angel Coulby was lending her voice to one of its characters.
Turns that on its own merits, the show isn't that bad! True, the pacing is so rocket-fast that at times it's almost impossible to figure out what's going on, and the animation of the human figures is a bit clunky, but I found myself engaged nonetheless.
And Angel's character is much better than I anticipated. Despite initial fears that she would end up being the token minority (which usually ends two ways: by being shoved into the background so far that they may as well not be there at all, or depicted as so perfect at everything they do there's no real characterization to them at all) Kayo is an intriguing addition to the cast. She's head of security, something of a mentor to the youngest Tracey brother, and the niece of the show's main antagonist – though as of yet, this is a secret known only to herself and one other character (who as it happens, is another female character).
Her presence feels very organic and unselfconscious on the part of the writers, and she's even allowed to take out the episode, what with the final scene being her flying off in Thunderbird S for a test drive.
Basically, I was drawn in by simple curiosity, but I may stick around out of genuine interest.
In the countdown to Orphan Black I've been reading various essays and metas, and this one in particular is excellent. It discusses the show's portrayal of mothers and daughters, Sarah Manning's role as an unsympathetic lead, and the fact that redemption arcs are seldom accorded to female characters (off the top of my head, the only three I can think of are Faith from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Cara from The Legend of the Seeker, and Xena from Xena Warrior Princess. Three ain't bad – but just compare that to the hundreds if not thousands of redemption arcs accorded to male characters over the years).
One paragraph in particular pops out:
We readily excuse our favourite male characters of murder, but if a woman politely turns down a date with someone she has no interest in, she’s a timewasting user bimbo and god, what does he even see in her? Don’t get me wrong, I’ve seen some great online meta about, for instance, the soulfulness and moral ambiguity of Black Widow, but I’ve also seen a metric fucktonne more about what that particular jaw-spasm means in that one GIF of Cumberbatch/Ackles/Hiddleston/Smith alone, and that’s before you get into the pages-long pieces about why Rumplestiltskin or Hook or Spike or Bucky Barnes or whoever is really just a tortured woobie who needs a hug.
I have no reaction GIF that  can appropriately sum up my feelings of THISNESS.
Finally, you've probably already seen this doing the rounds on Tumblr, but watching this fan video of various film stars dancing to Shut Up and Dance never fails to cheer me up. The editing of the Tangled clips in particular are a work of genius, for now I'll never be able to watch it again without believing that: "this woman is my destiny" was exactly what Flynn was thinking in that moment.


  1. Congratulations! Great to see your hard work getting recognition

    I watched Thunderbirds with my 7 year old, who really loved it, and has watched it a few times, I guess that's the real audience, I've heard grumbles about the CGI and how its not the same, and its not supposed to be the same! I'm glad Angel's character isn't just plonked in, she's got backstory, and an arc we can follow - and she's got gumption too

    I had not heard about the renewing of Sleepy Hollow - what an failure of the internet there! It will be interesting to see if they've listened to the feedback - or not.
    I did see a interview (before the finale) with Tom who stated that for Ichabod, its ALL about Abbie

    I"m like you - counting down the days until Orphan Black - its been advertised on tv here - fast tracked from the US.
    There are a lot of good articles around about Orphan Black (love Foz's - I"ve just been reading here twitter feed responding to the Hugo's - I hope she puts it on Tumblr! )
    I'm heartened to see in a recent on that the focus will still be on the female clones, and not so much the male ones.

    Thats a great clip, but - no Footloose?? I'll have to watch it again to see :)

  2. Thank you; the award was definitely something of a surprise - I have to keep reminding myself that it actually happened!

    I had not heard about the renewing of Sleepy Hollow - what an failure of the internet there!

    The other day I found out that the sixth season of Downton Abbey will be its last - and I was astonished that this news came to me via a newspaper instead of my Tumblr dash!

    Re: Thunderbirds - it was much better than I expected it would be. Perhaps a bit too hectic, but still entertaining. And apparently it's already been picked up for a second season!