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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The continuing travails of a Star Wars fan

As you may have heard yesterday, Lucasfilm is being sold to Disney for $4 billion. George Lucas will be a "creative consultant" but otherwise plans to retire.


After the initial shock, I have decided that this may not be the end of the world. My only real side-eye goes to Disney's apparent plan to release a new Star Wars film "every two to three years" because really? Really? I feel like that may be reconsidered once the new projects get off the ground. However, all told, I like Disney (with caveats) and the thought of someone besides Lucas making films for my favorite franchise is not a bad thing. I do have many questions: will Marvel start publishing Star Wars comics now, rather than Dark Horse? Will someone try to shoehorn Harrison Ford, Curmudgeon Extraordinaire into playing Han Solo one more time? Will Disney World finally get an all-SW theme park? Will the first three new films utilize Expanded Universe canon or will they be totally original efforts? Most importantly, will there be Mara Jade??

That last query leads me to the real point of this post. As I see it, the Star Wars franchise coming under Disney's control opens up the universe to...really anyone whom Disney sees fit to write or direct a movie. Some of Disney's live-action films have been really great (The Princess Diaries, Remember the Titans, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, The Muppets, and of course The Avengers come to mind), and I would love to see something stellar come out under the Star Wars banner. Given the wealth of sudden new directions and opportunities for Star Wars, what would I want from a new Star Wars movie? Well--it's not like it would ever happen, but I'd kill for a Mara Jade movie set before the events of the Zahn novels, a nice pulpy shoot-out directed by Tarantino and starring Bridget Regan that sneakily calls to events taking place in the Empire as Mara serves as the Emperor's Hand, but never quite Goes There. A hack/slash Rodriguez flick about the Nightsisters would be fun. A taut political thriller by Bigelow about the second Galactic Civil War would not be unwelcome. And I'd watch a creepy, beautiful travelogue of the known universe directed by del Toro in a heartbeat.

Probably none of these will happen. Probably Disney will hand the reins to one of the directors that immediately came to my mind as people I didn't want around the SW franchise (Abrams, Whedon, Jackson, or--heaven forfend--Bay). But that is the chief blessing and curse of the Star Wars fan: there is always room to hope. Right now, my hopes are high. Please don't dash them too badly, Disney.

Monday, October 29, 2012


A few days ago the image below went up on a Kamelot fan confessions Tumblr.

Now. Let me count all the ways this gave me flames on the sides of my face! 

1. Complaints like this specifically target female fans. When a statement along these lines is made, no matter what fandom it's for, the person making it is not usually thinking of tons of gay men who suddenly love Hawkeye because Jeremy Renner is hot. They're talking about frivolous female fans who are apparently only interested in looks, not content. Complaints in this mode are inherently sexist; someone assuming I only enjoy Kamelot because of the hotness of the lead singer is the spiritual sibling of the dickbag that makes me prove my nerd street cred by listing my favorite comic book artists.

2. Complaints like this almost never have any basis in fact. If Kamelot's music had taken a sudden downturn or become otherwise radically different after gaining Tommy Karevik as a lead singer, fans might have a reason to look askance. But it didn't; I haven't heard all of the new album yet, but it's by all accounts more like certain older albums, which should please longtime fans, and it's doing exceedingly well on metal charts. If there is an influx of new fans, it's more likely due to a new album getting lots of positive reviews and the band touring with Nightwish, a gigantic name in European metal.

3. Complaints like this ignore the fact that Roy Khan is fine as hell. If you are going to be the kind of asshole who makes remarks like this, you better remember that Kamelot's previous lead singer is also exceptionally attractive. Neither Khan nor Karevik's looks have any bearing on their musical talent, which in both cases is extensive.

4. Complaints like this ignore the fact that Kamelot has always had a sizable female fanbase. Why's that? For one thing, women enjoy good music! Wow, right? Brand new information! For another, neither the band members nor the music have ever been overtly misogynist or gross toward women. Always a plus. The culture around power metal is more welcoming than some other subgenres, and I personally have never felt threatened or unwelcome at Kamelot shows (though as in all things, YMMV). These factors combine to make a great atmosphere for all fans, including women. Female Kamelot fans are in no way new or news.

In short, keep your jerkery out of my fandom. One of the best things about being a Kamelot fan is that the fanbase is usually very levelheaded and not assy about non-issues like this. A more drama-free fandom I have yet to meet. I don't like seeing shit like this floating around, and I don't enjoy people creating issues where there simply aren't any.

Friday, October 26, 2012


As you may know, I was born and raised in Florida, and lived there until almost a year ago; now I'm in Ohio, where there are Seasons...like autumn. Real actual autumn. I have slowly been going insane with the weather since September: looking up scarf-tying tutorials, mulling mead, baking tiny pumpkin-shaped pies, standing under trees and photographing their leaves, etc. 

And as the days have edged up closer to Halloween, I have been wanting to dress up like a witch, all the time. Witch-chic or bust. However, in lieu of spending my paychecks on velvet skirts and pointy ankle boots, I mostly just make Polyvore sets. 

curse the night

the power of Manon

everyday witchcraft

Echo Bazaar

Are any of you as addicted to autumn and/or Polyvore as I am?

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Why be serious when you can make stupid jokes?

I suppose I could write something about the Romney campaign, how Romney has figured in news media and how Mormonism has, and my general ire that such a man is a serious candidate for presidency, but I would rather recount an amusing portion of a popular LDS book.

Everyone has heard of The Work and the Glory, right? If not, all you need to know is that it's a sprawling nine-book epic of historical fiction centering around the development of the LDS church. The storylines range from the earliest inklings of Joseph Smith in New York to the arrival of the Saints in Utah; most of the notable figures from LDS history factor into the plot, which is about the fictional Steed clan as members of the church. Obviously I read these ravenously when I was a teenager, and I suspect that if I read them now, they would likely hold up reasonably well as literature, despite the first six being practically hagiography of Joseph Smith.

ANYWAY. At some point--I think in Season of Joy?--one of the characters, an Irish girl named Kathryn, is struck by lightning. During her recovery, English boy (and later husband) Peter reads to her. One of the things he reads is Robert Browning's play-poem hybrid Pippa Passes. Now Pippa Passes is most famous for its line "God's in his Heaven, all's right with the world!"--an extensively quoted piece of literature--and Peter mentions this line before reading it to Kathryn. However, Pippa Passes also contains one of the greatest authorial misunderstandings in the Western canon: the inclusion of the word "twat" where a twat has no business being (the line in question is "owls and bats, cowls and twats/monks and nuns in a cloister's moods/adjourn to the oak-stump pantry").



So yeah, just imagine good little Mormon boy Peter reading the word "twat" to his good little Mormon girl future-wife Kathryn. I have no idea when the cultural ban on swear words occurred in the LDS church, but I do know that "twat" was a dirty word back then as it is now, and it's amusing to consider a gently-bred young woman like Kathryn being like...what did you just say? I have no idea if Lund was aware of this line. Either way it's funny, because I have a twelve-year-old's sense of humor.

Also, mostly unrelated, but I'm a little bit amazed that there is no filthy fanfic for The Work and the Glory. Get on it, writers! So many slash opportunities! So many husband options for Jessica! Lydia hooking up with Joshua on the side! Polygamy! Sorry I'm not sorry.
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