ladybug_archive: (snakes)
... not to avoid something that everyone and their dog hates.

Over and over, I find that if I avoid something because of negative reviews, I almost always end up loving it. It happened with season 3 of The Man from U.N.C.L.E., with season 9 of Perry Mason, with TMNT 1987, with Equestria Girls, and with many other things. I also in general love things everyone hates, regardless of whether I initially avoided it myself or not. The Batman series is a good example of that. I enjoyed it from the start, compared to everyone who tears their hair out over it.

I finally got around to buying/seeing Ghostbusters 2, mainly because of the two cartoon episodes it comes with. One of them is a favorite. (The other was WTH territory and I sincerely hope that it isn't typical of the later seasons.) Honestly, I ... ended up loving the movie much more than the original. I think there were only four instances of swearing and a couple of naughty comments, compared to swearing practically every two minutes in the original (or it felt like it, anyway). It was creepy but wacky, had many more character-developing scenes, and Winston had a lot of good screentime. It felt much more like the series, and that may have been the point. They probably knew a lot of kids would be watching it because the series was running right then. Also, the plot point I really wasn't crazy about before I saw it, them being discredited and having gone their separate ways at the beginning, ended up in practice feeling a lot like TMNT, especially Ray and Winston at that birthday party. LOL. So I actually ended up not being too bothered by that after all. I can see myself rewatching this movie and enjoying it, whereas I'm honestly not sure I would rewatch the first movie, at least not in full. I have rewatched my favorite scenes from it.

I can't remember if I mentioned, but Build-a-Bear had a 30% off deal the weekend before this one and I was able to get Michelangelo with that. We were finally going to be in the area and I couldn't pass up a chance to get that much off of him. Then I discovered that the big Slimer plush was on clearance at a Wal-Mart other than ours. I couldn't get him then, but the other day I was able to go back and get one. Our Wal-Mart still isn't clearancing them. It was awesome to get him for $7 instead of $15!

It felt so good to get my [livejournal.com profile] 31_days challenge done last week. Some pieces I really enjoyed writing, but others were puzzling, and it was definitely frustrating to have to worry about the day's piece each day when I really wanted to be writing my Turtles fic. But I kept on because I wanted to do the challenge too; it was a story I'd wanted to tell for some time. I still think I'll also write the original Snakes and Chita story I was going to tell, though, which was a third-person narrative oneshot involving one of the last times Snakes put up with looking all over town for Chita when she deliberately ran out to make him find her after an argument. I have a very distinctive image of the opening lines of that fic and they have never gone away, so I need to write it.

I tried to basically keep to the prior versions of the Snakes and Chita tale that Snakes related in two earlier fics. When I realized I had some details wrong in a couple of pieces, I went back and redid those parts. For a couple of other parts, however, I decided that I wanted to tell it slightly differently and that would either make more sense or be closer to what I wanted, so on a couple of points I deliberately made it different from the earlier accounts. Like, I didn't have Snakes and Chita go gambling all night long the first night they met. I mean, they'd been beat up in the first casino when Snakes tried to defend her. It seemed much more likely that they'd go try to take care of their battle wounds. And then at the end, I changed the point where Snakes lost track of Chita's trail in 1910. I wanted Chita to turn up again, but not decades older. I drew inspiration from both a role-play where I'd used her and from the fact that she was always intended to be characterized as sort of a flapper wannabe, and had Snakes lose track of her trail in the 1870s. She found a portal to the 1920s, where she fit in and was happily staying for the most part. (I will speculate that the portal was another result of Dr. Faustina's experiments.) But then she returned to the 1870s once, heard that Snakes was alive, and found the portal to the present-day to see him again. They were able to converse and have some closure at last.

Chita was very interesting to characterize in that last piece. Unlike other versions of her, including the role-play version, this Chita actually did mature a little bit. She wasn't as superficial, was willing to touch the scar that she had always avoided before, and felt badly for how her past cruelty had negatively impacted Snakes. But she wasn't ready to settle down and she recognized it; she had finally opted to stay single. She wants parties and material objects and yet she knows they're not what truly bring happiness. Still, she can't make herself not want them. I drew some inspiration from my own feelings regarding her love of material things and not feeling ready to settle down.

She was never meant to really be a likeable character, so I am amused that I kind of got fond of her and developed her a little. Even some of her superficialty is endearing to me. But since she has plenty of negative characteristics, I would totally understand anyone not liking her. What she did to Snakes was horrible. Not that it was worse than things Snakes did canonically, of course, and so there is definitely the possibility of redeeming her. That was kind of where I was going with the final piece.

I would never have her and Snakes get together again, but they parted on civil terms, and this past night I ended up drawing a cute picture meant to take place around that point where Snakes is standing watching her dance as she whips her boa around him. I sketched the whole thing out very quickly and I quite love it. I might ink it before I scan it, though.

Apparently I had Snakes on the brain after that themeset, because yesterday I had a weird dream involving him. It seemed to take place in the Old West, before The Poisonous Posey episode, even though some things ended up not making sense. Dr. Loveless was there too, and Snakes seemed to be working for/with him and there was some explosion planned for Jim West. Snakes seemed all into that, the little weasel (despite the fact that he seemed to not know Jim in the episode, so there's where it doesn't make sense). Then the tables were turned when Jim escaped and Dr. Loveless chained Snakes to a bomb that was set to go off in a couple of minutes. He was begging and pleading to be set free, and finally someone did. His characterization felt very similar to what's seen in the actual episode: pretty much a pathetic coward who likes to set bombs as ways out of his problems and ends up digging his own grave by doing so.

I never at all intended to become intrigued by him with that characterization, and yet it happened when I was fleshing out his character out of necessity in The Night of the Deadly Codename. And of course, that also led to Christopher rightfully taking his place as one of the darlings when I studied the episode more. I wonder if there's any chance at all that I could have seen that episode when I was very young. Mom insists that Dad used to watch WWW in reruns, so I wonder if there's any chance I saw it back then. That would be hilarious. And it would mean I did encounter Christopher years ago, just like all the other darlings. I want to say I have a vague memory of watching that episode in bits and pieces when I was a kid, but I'm probably just inventing something in my mind because I want so badly for there to be a time when I saw Christopher years ago. Still, wouldn't it be interesting? Snakes is one of my favorite characters to flesh out and develop, and if I actually saw him many years ago and just don't remember it now, that would be rather intriguing.

I also started thinking again about maybe making a Snakes plushie. I'd have to learn some basic embroidery so I could make the scar raised up, but that would be an interesting challenge. Now that the weather's cooled down, I feel like working on my other projects too. Maybe I can finish Barry's clothes at last and also make Mike's jacket!

I just love autumn so much. As always, I celebrate meteorological seasons and not calendar seasons, so for me Fall started on Thursday. It was a beautiful cloudy day too, perfect for the first day of Fall. When the sweltering heat of summer fades, my sewing creativity seems to wake up again. I am excited for what this autumn will bring and hope that it will be happy and enjoyable.

I think I'm almost done with the Turtles fic. I have the climax largely written, or all written, unless I add more to it. Then I just need the epilogue stuff. The story will definitely end where I decided it should. And I may or may not continue it in oneshots or other multi-chapters. We'll have to see. One thing I do know is that while I'm totally cool with watching the series in all its formulaic glory, I don't think I could make myself write stories that are all so formulaic like the series' nonsense, with Shredder's crazy plans failing, etc. I think I could only do a handful before it wouldn't feel believable to me any more. It's easy to watch nonsense; not so easy to create it yourself time and time again.

I kind of have a vague idea of the alien computer still being around after all and discovering that Baxter is finally human again. That would be kind of cute. And it would be interesting to see how Baxter would react to the computer while sane, and whether the computer would want to help him like before. That might be one of my oneshots. And if I do continue things, Baxter and Barney need to have a proper conversation again. Maybe Baxter can finally tell him that Krang was trying to murder him when the cross-fusion happened.

One problem I discovered while writing is trying to keep Barney from feeling too much like a Kylo Ren trope of wanting to go to the dark side/not caring if he has to kill a family member to do so. I fleshed out some of his scenes in chapters before I put them up and had him monologue and have doubts and wonder if he's just acting tough to impress Shredder when he appears as though it doesn't bother him, what he might have to do. I don't really want Barney to be sympathetic, exactly, because really, how much sympathy can you have for someone who willingly joins a megalomaniac while sane because he wants power and recognition? But when he's only in one episode and we just don't know much about him, I don't think it would be fair to paint him as irredeemably evil just to contrast him with Baxter being redeemable because of wanting to be honest at first and then having gone nuts. (Seriously, compare him in season 1 with the season 2 opener. He is sane in season 1 and just wants to invent something that would be helpful to the city's population. He really doesn't know what Shredder's up to. He thinks the guy just really hates rats in the city. He doesn't know Shredder is marketing the Mousers in order to murder someone, nor that Shredder is stamping Baxter's name on them so he'll take the blame. And Shredder is going to kill him just because he saw Shredder and could say that Shredder offered to market the Mousers and was using an old house as a hideout. By season 2, after he's been framed for attempted murder, blamed for the damage the Mousers caused, and thrown in the insane asylum for talking about the Turtles, Baxter is cackling madly about giant talking Turtles and is clearly insane. It is very sad, actually.)

So anyway, this story already inadvertently inverts pretty much all the angles of the other Baxter fix-it fic. I also hope to invert the Kylo Ren trope when it actually comes time for Barney to follow through on his vow to kill Baxter if he interferes. I really like how I've written the climax.

Then I drew Leonardo for the first time since my childhood, and this time he actually looks pretty good! I think I'll be able to draw those Turtles pictures for my "opening" clips that I wanted.

And I always meant to muse on this thought: Coming back to things I like that everyone hates, I actually liked when there was a girl who was part of The A-Team. She seemed to be a reporter if I recall correctly, so I kind of equated the situation as April O'Neil and the Turtles. Heh. The girl seemed to fit just fine into the A-Team's plans and it was nice to have someone around that I could more easily relate to.

Along those lines, I also tried comparing members of The A-Team to the Turtles, but that didn't go so well. Naturally I got B.A. and Raphael, but then I kind of stalled on drawing any other logical parallels. I guess Murdock could be equated with Michelangelo, since they're both the most out there members of their teams. But Hannibal and Leonardo and Face and Donatello don't seem to make very good parallels. And I keep wanting to equate Murdock with Donatello because of their mechanical know-how. So ... heh.

ROTFLOL.

Aug. 24th, 2016 08:12 pm
ladybug_archive: (ecks_wye)
Station Identification is hilarious for its TV show parodies. Leave It To Woodchuck (**snerk**). Then there was a Star Trek parody called Star Patrol that some ghosts acted out with Kirk, Bones, and Spock. Their Spock parody was called Mr. Spook. LOLOLOL. And then some nightmare material for me with a Gumby parody called Gumbo, which was a cross between Gumby and Rambo. Gumby creeps me the heck out as it is without giving him a machine gun. I think I echoed Ray's "Oh no!" But I laughed.

The Real Ghostbusters wasn't done with Star Trek parodies, either. The episode Not NASA-sarily So is one giant Star Trek parody from beginning to end. And they keep comparing Egon to Spock. LOL! Good comparison, really.

And then I'm reminded of the Spock Bear at Build-a-Bear. Even though I'm only a casual Star Trek fan at best, I find that bear kind of adorable and I actually have considered getting it. I like Leonard Nimoy quite a bit, so there's that.

Also, I watched more Turtles and finally tried Michelangelo's Birthday. That episode is several kinds of WTH in the last few minutes, but oddly enough, the "forgotten birthday" trope that I hate so much was actually handled much differently than I thought it was going to be. It ended up illustrating that if someone is too sensitive for a prank like that, it shouldn't be pulled on them. Mikey ended up feeling so bad that the others had seemed to forget something so important to him that he up and left. The others immediately realized they'd taken it too far and Leonardo admitted that he knew they shouldn't have. So I have to be impressed with that even though the episode was weird as heck in other ways.

Hmm.

Jul. 25th, 2016 02:53 am
ladybug_archive: (paulgantry)
Weird dreams and I go hand in hand. I had a concourse of weird ones the last time I was asleep. My favorite involved us back in the creepy three-story haunted house that we can only live in about half of because of the ghosts. I had all my plushies in the living room for some reason and I took out a crocodile that looked like Vector from Sonic the Hedgehog, only it wasn't because it was a girl. Then we were having our kitty in the garage, and somehow the other neighborhood cats that hang around in real-life were in there too. One of them, a ginger tabby, kept getting in the house and we had to get it out. I kept calling it Ginger because of its color and because hey, I just wanted to name something Ginger. Dad was calling it Caruso. LOL. And my Hello Kitty plushie was in the garage for some reason. And she was alive. There were bunk beds out there and she was sleeping on the top bunk and leaned over upsidedown to look at me. She was bigger than the one I really have, she didn't have sprinkles, and she had a blue dress. She fell out of bed and I helped her up onto the bottom bunk.

Weird. But nice.

Then I've been reading a lot about all the different Ghostbusters series. There was that live-action series in the 1970s called that with Forrest Tucker and Larry Storch as the Ghostbusters. LOL. Then ten years later, the company that made that decided to make a cartoon based on it after the success of the unrelated Ghostbusters movie. But what I seriously don't get is that, of all the totally lame things, they made the main characters the sons of the ones from the live-action series. Uggggh, I honestly hate when shows do that. Gosh, only ten years later. They could certainly have had the original characters there instead, especially considering it was a cartoon and characters don't have to age in cartoons. Maybe there was some concern about celebrity likenesses, but cartoons can easily get around that. Look how they changed Egon from the movie. MeTV was doing an article about that and showed a picture of a figure line from that other Ghostbusters cartoon. One of them was this bizarre two-faced thing and I totally recognized it as a toy my brother had. I always wondered what it was, but I didn't think it came from anything specific. Anyway, that Ghostbusters cartoon is actually why the more popular one had to call itself The Real Ghostbusters. LOL. I always wondered why it was called that.

(LOL, and speaking of toys my brother had, I'm remembering the silliest and most random things. I have a couple of Gremlins, a big one and a little one he gave me later, and the big one was always the Federal Marshal when I played with figures and the little one was his son. Then we had a vampire figure who was our main crook until he fell behind the bed. Then I brought out a Penguin from Batman figure to be the crook, and I creepily named him Oswald without even realizing that was Penguin's real name.)

[livejournal.com profile] 31_days has an interesting themeset for August. They're calling it "A Summer Romance, A Summer Horror." I like the themes so much that I'm tempted to try to write for all of them. I can't decide what my subject should be, though. I instantly thought of Paul Gantry from Mannix, the cutie in my icon. But it was so heartbreaking how he thought Sheila loved him and she ended up betraying him to the bad guys because she loved material things more. I want to write at least one piece with him because what happened certainly qualifies as a horror for him, but I'm not sure I could take writing that much heartbreak all throughout the month. Another thought was alternating themes between him and Captain Scofield, but that would also be sad since I've set Scofield up with Giovanna and they'd be happy while meanwhile Paul was being used by Sheila. Yet another thought would be Rumbelle. They would certainly fit with a lot of the themes. Or I could write about a whole bunch of different characters.

Next question is, Could I really write a whole month of romantic themes, no matter who the characters are? That's just not me. I'm lucky to be able to write one little Rumbelle piece every few months, and even at that, they're not really blatantly romantic pieces. What I'd really like is if the themes could be used platonically. Some of them could be, so I'm also considering using those themes platonically and then figuring out what to do with the rest of them. It feels a little like cheating if I don't use them all romantically when that seems to have been the themeset author's intention. But they always figure the themes are open to wide interpretation, so maybe it wouldn't be too terrible.

Fun quiz!

Jul. 1st, 2016 04:14 am
ladybug_archive: (ginger_lou)
So I took this interesting quiz here: What Decade Do You Actually Belong In?

And got this result here:

If you are young in this century, you are considered an "old soul". People of the 70s can go anywhere between coo-coo disco and sweet and calm guitar playing. The 70s were where everything started to change. Black Sabbath came in, introducing heavy metal, and the Beatles ended, causing a lot of sadness in teenagers and young adults of the age. To find an old soul like yourself, pay attention to peoples' styles. Look for someone wearing a 70s band t-shirt or a modern hippy. (you may find this in Urban Outfitters)

Music: Queen, Steve Miller Band, The Eagles, Billy Joel, Pink Floyd, The Who, Elton John, Foreigner, Journey, Boston


Interesting. I certainly have a great love of the 1970s. The cars were awesome, I definitely like some of the music, many of the TV shows had this wonderful cheesy innocence (Charlie's Angels, The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries, Fantasy Island, The Love Boat, The Six Million Dollar Man, The Bionic Woman), and the more serious shows (Mannix, Cannon, The Mod Squad, Hawaii 5-O, Kojak, Adam-12, Emergency!) were also great. I think I said once that the '70's might just be my favorite decade for television. And of course, it can't be overlooked that the characters I love writing about the most are from an episode of a 1970s show. I moved the time period to the present-day, but they still originated in the 1970s. Wow, that is suddenly a weird and wonderful thought. I mean, I knew it, but I didn't consciously stop to think recently about how people have known about Ginger and Lou for almost 39 years. I guess because The Rockford Files just isn't a period piece (i.e., it doesn't have to take place in the 1970s) and to me, it slides into the present-day with absolute ease. And I'm so used to the world I've lovingly created for the past three years where it is the present-day that I have to admit, it feels like that is canon. Whoops.

I thought I might get the 1980s, but I don't know if that was even a choice in the quiz. Given the options they had for each question, the 1970s makes perfect sense.
ladybug_archive: (twilightsparkle)
The A-Team is such a cheesy, silly, ridiculous show. But still probably way better than almost anything currently on TV. It's so outlandish, how there's so many wild crashes and bullets flying and no one even gets hurt. But it's escapist entertainment. The good guys win, the bad guys lose. And I have to admit to having a soft spot for it because my brother apparently liked it. He had an activity book for it that he gave me. I used to like having Mom read it to me. No, I don't know the logic of reading an activity book like a storybook, but there you go. Also, apparently at least some of my other siblings liked it; Dad has a book of it that I think is an adaptation of the pilot and probably belonged to one of them. I'm sure it wasn't Dad's book. LOL. But he seems to have a soft spot for the series too; he'll let the TV stay on it when it's on Cozi and sometimes he'll even watch it.

I don't like George Peppard much, though. He seemed so juvenile! When he got invited to some thing in ... Hungary, I think it was, he thought he was the only cast member invited. When he knew the others had been invited too, he refused to attend. WTH. And then he had problems with Mr. T at times and wouldn't even talk to him except by other people relaying messages. **headdesk.** That's what children do when they're mad at each other! It did sound like maybe he matured later in life, though, so I'm trying to give him the benefit of a doubt. Anyone can change. I liked when I read that he overcome his alcohol problems and tried to help others do likewise.

Also, I always thought the pilot was ... well, not very "with it" since the poor guy has so many screws loose. But he really shined in the episode I saw on Monday night. And it was one of those kind where the character is on a game show, and usually I hate those because they think it's funny to have the contestant lose everything, but he won and he also apparently got the girl of the episode. The show's standard Casanova looked pretty frustrated that she was more interested in the pilot than him. LOL.

The Casanova is played by Dirk Benedict, whom I know from the original Battlestar Galactica. And then of course Mr. T. Everyone knows Mr. T ... right?

I don't think I'd ever watch the show religiously, but I do like having it on while we're putting groceries away. Classic '80's.

Also, I always thought it strange that plushies weren't made of the ghost character in the Ghostbusters' logo. That would be a really cute plushie! I'd much rather have that than one of the Stay Puft thing. The mascot itself is innocent, but since the evil ghost used its form to try to destroy the world, I'd always be thinking of that. A Stay Puft plushie would hence creep me out.

I realized that the logo ghost is actually in Build-a-Bear's new Ghostbusters plushie collection. It's a ghost bear and it's actually way cute. And I don't understand the logic of dressing it in the Ghostbusters' uniform. (Or the logic of Stay Puft being online-only. WTH? He's probably what most people would want the most!) I kind of want that ghost bear. And I think the Ghostbusters uniform is clothing I might actually buy. Not for the ghost, but for one of my other plushies.

Also, I apparently have a Slimer fingerpuppet. I always wondered what that thing was; my brother gave it to me and I liked it, but was puzzled by it. When I saw pictures of Slimer in the first movie, I realized that's what it was. I also have a pinball game based on the TV show, which is weird because I don't think I ever saw the TV show. I really want to see the reboot movie when it comes out next month, and that will be my first time seeing any of the media for the franchise (unless I watch the older movies between now and then).

Ooops.

Jun. 5th, 2016 06:38 pm
ladybug_archive: (hamilton)
So I was reading over some of the early Ginger and Lou pieces, the [livejournal.com profile] 31_days set, and there was one where Lou mentioned he was surprised to think of Mike as a gamer. It fit at the time, but after much more fleshing things out, it sounds too unbelievable that Lou wouldn't have known that, as by now Mike has been pegged as a gamer from childhood. Maybe I could modify the line to Lou not knowing Mike still had an interest in gaming. That would work, maybe, because I have it that Lou and Mike kind of drifted apart for a while and Mike didn't confide in Lou so much because he thought Lou was happier with Ginger and Mike felt left-out, which were the feelings Donny Waugh preyed on to get Mike to eventually betray Lou and Ginger.

It's interesting to see how things developed and changed from what was written in the earliest fics. I try to have things match up, but sometimes it doesn't quite work. I can definitely sympathize with things like George Lucas deciding he wants to do some things differently than he had originally planned on to begin with, since I keep discovering that happening with me. I don't always agree with his decisions of what to alter to match up with his new ideas, but I do understand those feelings.

I also realized that saying that my first multi-chapter Rockford fic is set in season 5 won't wash, because there are references to season 6 events. That means that I really do need to get in there and promote Dennis from Sergeant to Lieutenant, because he definitely was a Lieutenant during the time frame of the story.

Another thing I really need to fix is at the end, where Lou is asking Ginger how he got the nickname Ginger and Ginger reveals it isn't a nickname. It doesn't make sense, because it would have come out in the court trials that Ginger is his real name. I hate to change the scene because it's funnier the way it is, but the illogic of it bugs me.

Also, I'm not sure I can ever watch Gilligan's Island without madly giggling at places where one wouldn't ordinarily madly giggle, because Ginger is Ginger Townsend to me and hearing the name Ginger will always make me think of him, not a female actress or any other character named Ginger.

Musings.

Jun. 3rd, 2016 07:47 pm
ladybug_archive: (twilightsparkle)
So a couple of weeks ago I finally solved my dilemma about the Amazon books. I really wanted to get a manga in the order, but I couldn't figure out how to make everything come out to exactly the cost of the gift card. I really felt I couldn't pay any cash with that order, so finally I had to set the manga idea aside and I got the two Pony-related books and two Nancy Drews.

The package was delayed because of weather problems and other such things. I was worried it might show up waterlogged. Thankfully it didn't, but whoever packed things couldn't do a good job. The one paperback in the order, the Pony U.N.C.L.E. parody, showed up completely dog-eared on one corner. Half the pages in the book were also bent at that corner! WTH? I don't know whether it was packed stupidly and happened then or if the book was damaged to begin with. I was absolutely furious. I'm still not sure what to do about it. Returning and replacing things online is such a pain, and that was probably the book I was looking forward to the most, so I hated to think of waiting even longer to get to read it. But I don't like always having to settle for damaged merchandise when I order paperback stuff from Amazon, either. I really chewed them out when I bought comics from them and they were packaged really stupidly and all showed up bent. I wonder if Barnes and Noble packs things better. They also have the free shipping with $25 of books deal. The problem there is that I don't have B&N gift cards, so I'd have to pay cash.

(Oh, I miss Borders so much. I was actually in the area where it used to be a couple of days ago and I spent some time just staring out the window at its location across the street. They were so much better than B&N. They actually had discounts in general and coupons for more than 15% off. And they generally had a bigger selection of stuff, except Nancy Drews, but now B&N's selection of those is lame too.)

I ended up reading the book last night. Of course it was a quick read and meant for kids, so it didn't get too deep, but I was intrigued that it touched, albeit briefly, on Bon Bon being weary and wanting to leave the secret agent stuff behind and have a peaceful life now. I would kind of like to expand on that in a fic sometime. And it ended happy, with her and Lyra still in the organization but being able to stay in Ponyville when not on missions. Also, the secret agent place was in New York (well, their New York) and it was accessed through a fridge in a pizza parlor. LOL.

The Equestria Girls book was really interesting. It takes place after the third movie and a large part of the plot is the human Twilight trying to befriend the girls from her old school. At first I was puzzled that it only focused on Sunny Flare, Sour Sweet, and Sugarcoat. But then I realized that the other girls, Lemon Zest and Indigo Zap, were already pretty nice people and probably didn't need any serious help turning their lives around. Lemon Zest is seriously adorable, definitely among the most normal of the girls at Crystal Prep, and so is Indigo Zap, basically. The other three are all kind of dysfunctional in various ways.

I don't think the author really captured the girls' personalities well, though. Sunny Flare was depicted as the nastiest of the bunch and the one most unkind to Twilight and worried about her turning into a monster again. That just doesn't fit to me, because while she was definitely nasty early in the movie, she was the one who called out Principal Cinch for trying to run away, and she looked really horrified and upset when Cinch said she was trying to get away from "that monster" and Sunny Flare should do the same. Sour Sweet was really the nastiest to Twilight in the movie.

Not once did the author do Sour Sweet's trademark of first saying something fake and nice and then following it up immediately with her true feelings, always a burn. She did occasionally do Sugarcoat's trademark of being very blunt, but it seemed more like she gave that trait to Sour Sweet.

I also didn't agree with the author writing that either Sunny Flare or Sour Sweet said they were Twilight's friends (and they were also apparently on her Friends list on Facebook). Not once in the movie did they ever act like they were interested in being her friends; they only interacted with her when circumstances forced them together. Sugarcoat was really the only one of those three who acted like she might be what Twilight considered a friend. And then Lemon Zest was really nice and didn't seem to have anything against Twilight at all. Indigo Zap kind of thought Twilight was an idiot, but she "defended" Twilight when the Canterlot High students started wondering what she was up to, which was kind of cute. (Although she probably only did it because Twilight was a Crystal Prep student, not because she really cared about Twilight personally.)

The author also set it up that Sour Sweet, Sunny Flare, and Sugarcoat were supposedly friends, but weren't happy together. The first two hung out together in the movie and really seemed pretty chummy to me. Sugarcoat, on the other hand, really gave the impression of being a loner.

I did love that Twilight eventually did make friends with them in the book and things ended happy for all of them, instead of them just being portrayed as one-dimensional characters that wouldn't change. But to be honest, I kind of think I could write a better story with that basic plotline that would stick closer to canon regarding personalities. I'll admit that Sunny Flare's personality is the most underdeveloped in the movie, but I don't think it was fleshed out in the book in a manner that fits with what we did see in the movie. Maybe I can try to start writing a story like that and see what happens.

Then last night I started randomly singing Unleash the Magic to myself. It's sung in the movie by Cinch and the Crystal Preppers as they try to tempt Twilight to, well, unleash the magic she's collected in her mystical pendant. I was considering maybe trying to record it and do all the voices. Cinch would be a blast to voice, although I probably wouldn't be able to sound as nasally as she does. But so I got to the line "I understand you have your reservations/it's hard to have a brain as large as yours" and suddenly I wondered if it wasn't just a line of manipulation, but something Cinch personally understood. I finally listened to the commentary track for that movie and they were wondering what her backstory is. Now I'm wondering if she was a smart outcast like Twilight growing up and if in some way, she is a dark version of what Twilight could have become had she remained an outcast. She certainly is smart and calculating and loves knowledge. And even though she seems to be very arrogant and egotistical and is worried above all about her reputation, I'm not entirely sure she was worried for completely selfish reasons. As she told Twilight, it was her reputation, and the school's, that was responsible for everything they had to work with. If the reputation dropped, they might not have all the funding and other things they needed to function properly. So honestly, I could understand her worrying about keeping up appearances to some extent, although of course she took it way too far and her manipulation of Twilight throughout the movie was horrid.

Another thing the commentary track mentioned was that an early draft of the script had Cinch fall through the gaping portal hole created by Twilight when she flipped out and became Midnight Sparkle and Cinch ended up a horrible monster in Equestria. They changed that because it seemed too mean. I agree, honestly. Maybe it would have been poetic justice, especially after how she ostracized Twilight's transformation considering she encouraged her to use the magic, but I wouldn't have wanted her to stay like that permanently or be stuck in Equestria. That's more like what a show like TMNT might do, or maybe even the U.K. Pony comics of the '80's and '90's, but it doesn't fit for something sweet like the current My Little Pony series and movies.

Speaking of TMNT, though, the new movie came out today! Eeeee! And hopefully I'll get to see it next week! I actually really loved the movie two years ago; I thought it was great overall and I loved that there was scarcely anything crude and it was largely absent of swearing. I was very surprised and impressed by that. And to be honest, I really think I liked that movie better than the one called TMNT that came out about nine years ago. (Oh gosh, that long ago? Seriously?) While that movie was cute too, it had some things I didn't like, such as April and Casey living together while not married, and how they made it look like only Raph did something bad during the fight between him and Leo. Honestly, it was kind of interesting how they had Leo finally snap and say something really awful to Raph ("I'm better than you"), but it was spoiled by neither Leo nor the script acknowledging that Leo did something wrong as well as Raph. That was just seriously WTH?

Well, at least that film contributed to my loving Raph more. He scared me as a kid because of his bad temper. That still scares me a bit, but I'm mostly seriously intrigued by him and he's replaced Donny as my second-favorite Turtle.

I still need a Mikey figure. Even though he's my least favorite, I want to have a complete set of Turtles. I just wish the figures weren't so expensive these days. It costs almost $9 for one from any current Turtles line! And that's the cheapest price, since it's Wal-Mart's. I've checked other places before and they've been worse.

(Amusing note: just about each Turtles figure I have is from a different line. My Raph, and my Fugitoid, are from the 1987 TV series. My Leo is from the second movie. My Donny is from a line that looks more like the comics. And my Casey Jones is from the 2003 series. I need an April too. Not having her is sacrilege. And Splinter. Actually, I'd kind of like another Raph too, since my Raph is a space suit Raph and even though I love him dearly, I'd like one that's just normal Raph. But then I'll probably feel guilty to have two Raphs and not two of everyone else. Heh.)

I also want Mikey and Donny plushies. I had thought of getting Build-a-Bear's Mikey, but their new Mikey has a different face than the old one, I think. The old one was just cute, but this one's expression is seriously obnoxious. And then with Donny, I always planned to get him from the same line as my Leo, since I'm not crazy about Nickelodeon's redesign of Donny and it's less obvious with those big pillow plushies. But I didn't want Mikey from that line too, since they all have the same expression and that's kind of WTH. That was why I got Build-a-Bear Raph instead of pillow Raph.

And then I was thinking that while the 1960s and 1970s fascinate me, it seems to be the 1980s that I have some serious nostaglia for. Which is funny because I don't even remember the 1980s. By the time I was old enough to remember much, it was 1990. But so many things I loved from my childhood are from the 1980s to begin with: Ponies, Mario, TMNT, DuckTales, Gummi Bears, Pound Puppies, Care Bears, Garfield (well, he started in the late 1970s, but he sure got popular in the 1980s), Baby-Sitters Club, Alf, the latter two Star Wars original trilogy movies.... Most of my paper dolls had 1980s fashions. We had a couple of huge catalogs, a Sears Wish Book and a J.C. Penney's equivalent, both from the 1980s, that I just adored looking at again and again. And when I go to antique malls, it's the 1980s toys that send me into serious nostalgia trips. Sometimes I remember happy times of playing with 1980s toys with friends in the 1990s. When I see shows from the 1980s, especially family or kids' shows like Punky Brewster or the Pony or Care Bear cartoons, the nostalgia continues even though I never saw those when they originally aired. There's just something innocent and sweet and fun and cheesy about that decade. Then there's things that started in the 1990s: TaleSpin, Darkwing Duck, Sonic.... I love those too. And I'm trying to remember when Trolls got a resurgence of popularity, the 1980s or the 1990s. I think the 1990s, but they've existed since the 1960s. Gomer even had a pink-haired one in his foot locker, which Sergeant Carter threw a fit about. ROTFLOL. ("A Troll doll is a non-regulation item!") But I just don't seem to be nostalgic about the 1990s like I am about the 1980s. Weird. I almost wonder if that's because I actually don't remember the 1980s and so it carries a sense of mystery and the ability to place it on a pedestal, whereas I remember the 1990s very well and it just doesn't hold the nostalgia/pedestal factor. I don't think there's one decade I remember that I feel nostalgic about, really. I get nostalgic over experiences and shows, but not decades as a whole.

Waaaah....

May. 22nd, 2016 02:33 am
ladybug_archive: (duke_fallen)
And now Alan Young is dead, as of Thursday. I just learned this past day. He was 96 (!!) and still doing some acting and voice-work.

I think this death hits me the hardest this year. Such a good, full life, but he was so much a part of my childhood with DuckTales. I loved Scrooge McDuck so much. I wanted a plushie, but wasn't able to get one. I doubt I'll do much, if anything, with the reboot, but I'm really hoping it causes new plushies to be made so I can get one. I do have a couple of figures, a tiny one from Kellogg's mail-in thing and a bendable one.

Alan Young was also in The Cat From Outer Space as a veterinarian. That was probably the first time I ever saw what he looked like. It's a hilarious movie filled with wonderful character actors and an adorable cat. (And you get Harry Morgan and McLean Stevenson in the same place. It's a must for M*A*S*H fans!)

And then I discovered a whole new side of Alan Young several years ago when I watched Mister Ed. I honestly thought the horse was pretty mean sometimes, but I did love it whenever he showed that he really cared about Alan Young's character. And I totally ate it up when Alan played Wilbur's father in one episode and used his Scrooge McDuck voice. Epic.

I watched a couple of my favorite DuckTales episodes tonight in tribute. I don't think I've ever actually crushed on Alan Young or his characters, but I loved him and Scrooge McDuck about as much as I can love actors and characters without actually crushing on them, and that's a lot.

... Lovely.

May. 8th, 2016 05:11 pm
ladybug_archive: (ginger_lou)
So I've been thinking a lot about Mike Trevino lately, as evidenced partially by the long post I did on Tumblr this past week. He's figured a lot into some of my recent Ginger and Lou pieces. It's been very interesting developing Mike and Ginger's interaction throughout the past three years and actually getting them to a place where they actually like each other and are comfortable being around each other. They don't confide in each other and probably never will, but Ginger finally apologized to Mike for the shooting (whereas previously he had only apologized to Lou).

I've thought off and on for years that I should probably make a Mike plushie to go with my Ginger and Lou plushies, but sewing is such a pain that I've always put it off. I decided I should really do it, so I used a coupon on Friday to get another pre-stuffed doll at Jo-Ann's for half-off and am planning to start work on the plushie this week, since I have materials for ears, hair, and pants already here. I'm already trying to start by finding a good picture of 1970's Joe E. Tata that I can use as a guide in making the expression, which I practice many times on paper before actually applying to the plushie.

On that, I'm running into some trouble, as it seems like most of his 1970's characters don't have much to smile about. I can't use a more recent picture as a guide. And the only 1970's shots I've got of him, save one, are side views. I'm going to need to get out everything I have with him guest-starring and study it for possible shots. If I don't draw the expression from an actual picture of the person, it never looks as accurate.

I finally solved my Amazon problem by waiting for another gift card that was just about ready to come and then using all of that plus a little cash to get the complete Cannon boxset. I waffled a bit on whether to really do that, since I'd end up having to pay a little more cash than before and I'd been hesitant to add that much cash. But the price was right and Cannon is a show we love in general and not just when darlings guest-star, so it seemed like a very wise investment. I don't have a lot of episodes recorded compared to how many there actually were, and I don't know if the ones I have might be cut. Some of them look like they might be. Crystal encouraged me to get the boxset and last Saturday I finally did, with no regrets. It came yesterday and Mom was thrilled. We watched a couple of episodes, including Don Knight's and the second one with Joe E. Tata.

Joe had a pretty big part, unlike a lot of the times when I see him. He appeared to work for an old man who did a lot of crooked things but had never been caught at it. I say "appeared" because he really seemed to be so much more than just an assistant. They'd been together for years; Cannon mentioned a drug operation that both Joe's character and the old man were involved in eight years ago. He spoke as though they were more like equals or partners in the operation, although I admit that could have just been my interpretation. But there was much more as evidence; it seemed like they lived in the same house, either that or Joe's character Higgins was just over there all the time. And when the nutcase in the episode sets a bomb in the old man's car and he's seriously hurt, Higgins is extremely distraught. He goes to the hospital and is there for hours waiting to hear if he'll be alright. Of course, an assistant or other employee could be that devoted to their boss, but all in all, I got the vibe that maybe even if he technically was an assistant, the relationship was more like a surrogate son and father or extremely close friends. We actually never learn the old man's final fate, but I like to think that he did pull through since Higgins would be so sad if he didn't.

In thinking about it in the hours since, I determined that there are two basic criteria that need to be met, in general, if I'm going to be intrigued by antagonist characters to the point of wanting to write about them. #1, For them to show some indication of caring about someone, and/or #2, That there is some indication that redemption is possible.

Of the two, #2 is the more important reason for me. That could manifest in several ways, including reason #1, or by them doing something decent, or even just by the idea that they will be going to prison and maybe they can be rehabilitated. In this case, while #1 is definitely present, there didn't seem to be any indication that either Higgins or the old man would be or could be interested in changing the way they handled life, so despite being curious and interested in their interaction, I seriously doubt I would write about them.

In the past I somehow got so intrigued by Gin and Vodka that I ended up being willing to write about them performing their jobs as assassins, although the stories were more about them as characters than about what they were doing. But I am still appalled that I did that. That just isn't me. More recently, when writing about Ecks and Wye, I did have to touch on their canonical jobs a bit, but mostly the stories were about them running for their lives after canonically betraying the organization and trying to start over and go straight. I still had to write Wye as having some darker views than I am generally comfortable with writing, but I tried not to touch on that as much and I did have him finally determine, at least, that the organization with which he had been affiliated did do things worse than most governments.

Sometimes I don't intend to get intrigued by a character and I end up doing it anyway because of what I'm writing about them to flesh them out. That was what happened with both Sephiroths (especially KH Sephiroth) and Snakes Tolliver. It also happened with Baby Face Morales. I had honestly originally intended that he would be the dark foil and counterpart to Micky and nothing more. I wrote The Return of Baby Face Morales with that idea in mind and I did not have the character show any redeeming qualities at all, that I recall. But then when I wrote the sequel and had to have Baby Face work with the good guys and later when I wanted him and Tony to patch things up, I got myself intrigued by the idea of him being more of an anti-hero and also developing his interaction with Tony. That was how and why I ended up changing how I wrote for him and started diving into his past and trying to flesh out possibilities of what could have made him such an angry and dark person. Some of it probably went into sob story territory and I might not follow that exact backstory now. I seriously doubt that I'd write about him at all anymore, really, both since his and Tony's story is probably as a standstill and since he really is a dark character and not one I'm that comfortable writing for anymore. If I were to do anything with those characters again, it would probably be to finish that hanging story about them and the Monkees held captive by mad scientists, and/or to keep writing that crossover with Kolchak. Tony Ferano would be the main character in the latter. I toyed a little bit in my last burst of Monkees stories about Tony and whatever goodness he still has in him. If I were to write about him again, I might further that angle and have him finally break away from Baby Face and try to get his life back in some semblance of order again. Even though I'm probably not comfortable writing for Baby Face, I have to admit that I do still love Tony. Jimmy Murphy's portrayal of him was classic.

Of course, Ginger is really quite a dark character too, so it's possible that in the future I will also not want to write about him anymore, either. But in his case, there was that actual chemistry I sensed between him and Lou (which could have been chemistry between the actors) and that is really what set the whole intrigue off. The fact of that chemistry combined with their interaction in general just fascinated me for some reason and led to me being unable to stop writing about them. And in their case, they really are trying to go straight after their stint in prison (something Baby Face would likely never do), so it's not uncomfortable writing about them. So I really hope that I will never feel differently about that, especially now that I've learned some more information that might possibly put a different spin on the elephant in the room of the shooting. I went into that in detail on Tumblr. http://lucky-ladybugs-lovelies.tumblr.com. Of course, as I say there, I will never be fully satisfied on that, but this is the best I can do to handle it. And in my timeline, as I mentioned, Ginger finally has apologized for that.

Bottom line is, I usually really don't want to like or get intrigued by certain characters, but sometimes I do because of those criteria.

Occasionally, I suppose, I can also get fascinated by a character for one other reason: if it feels like they got a bum deal in canon. Dutch Ingram would fall in that category, because the idea that he committed a murder was just shoehorned in, said by Ken Swofford's highly questionable character, and there was no proof it was true. I still don't believe it is, and that is the basis of my Rockford fic featuring him. But if it weren't for feeling like he wasn't the murderer, I doubt I'd write about him. He isn't really the type of character I like either. I don't think just the fact of Christopher playing him would have made me want to write about him, since I don't want to write about every character played by a darling.

And I need to decide what to do about another Amazon gift card I got. There's no chance of any other one coming soon, so with their changed policies I'm thinking maybe I should get a few books with this one. I considered that recent set of Kolchak short stories, which I want to get since I know the author of one of the stories, but I keep hesitating on getting it since I don't know if any of the stories deal with Tony (Vincenzo now and not Ferano, heh) and his and Kolchak's intriguing relationship. I know that in general, the prose stories do not. That collection of 43 short stories I have only has one where Tony really gets to shine, so in a set of 14 stories, there's not much chance Tony will have good screentime. The comics are better than the prose at giving Tony stuff to do, but I don't know if there are any graphic novels out that give him a lot of "screentime" since there are also some comics where he doesn't appear much. If I knew of any I don't have with good Tony content, I would jump to get them.

Other possibilities are Miles Edgeworth manga or Nancy Drew or Hardy Boys books or some combination of several things. There are also a couple of new Pony/Equestria Girls books I want, an artbook for the series and a new Equestria Girls novel that will be out a week from ... Monday, I think. I almost always ponder for ages on what to spend gift cards on, since it's a treat I only have several times a year and I want to make sure I get what I really want and what will be meaningful for years to come. Hopefully I'll come to a decision this week.

Watched.

Apr. 19th, 2016 04:27 pm
ladybug_archive: (twilightsparkle)
So yesterday I did indeed buy season 1 of Little House to get that episode uncut. I was also finally able to get my Archery Applejack and Fluttershy dolls! Wal-Mart lowered the price to $7 each and I couldn't pass that up when I've been wanting them for months. I am so glad I didn't break and get that hippie Fluttershy doll at K-Mart. While Fluttershy would agree with some hippie ideas, I don't think she'd agree with everything and in any case, I just don't think hippie fashion works for her. I liked the Archery doll much better.

On the episode ... it certainly helped to already know that the character was going to die. He was a nice guy, but pretty cheeky (like, Dutch Ingram-level cheeky; I was a little surprised the show would have him say and do some of what he did) and a practical joker, so I didn't like him as much as the more serious Paul Gantry. Practical jokers are just never among my favorite character types. But I did like this character when he was serious and I liked how much you could see he loved his family and cared about people, including those who became his new friends.

I think it was just one reviewer's opinion that he made a stupid mistake and that got him killed. When I saw the episode, it looked to me like the explosion was just one of those freak accidents that happen with explosives that can't be prevented. He was too good with what he did to actually make a bizarre mistake, I think.

It seemed that there wasn't even a body to find. I had hoped that maybe I could have it that the explosion just blew him some distance away where he might not be found for a day or two, but watching the episode, it doesn't seem likely. I didn't see any place where he could have ended up that they wouldn't have found him. So as of right now, I don't know how to revive the character. I'll think about it, but I may have to leave this one dead and just write a ghost story. I do at least think that it was an almost entirely fiction story and not something Laura wrote about as having happened; I can't find anything like that in the books. There was a plotline where her father left to find work, but he ended up working in a wheat field and not a quarry.

As to whether I saw the episode before or not? I am almost certain that I did. Right now, the main part that stands out to me is the explosion itself. I remember how it lingered in the air and how final and shocking and chilling it was. I also kind of have a memory of giggling at one of the cheeky things he said while Mom was rather appalled, but that's not as strong a memory and might be of my own creation.

Also, I wonder which was Don Knight's natural hair state. In the 1960s, it seemed to be very straight. In the 1970s, it got very curly. I squee over the curly hair; I have a weakness for thick, wavy, curly hair. **headdesk.** I love how Christopher's hair got the same way in the 1970s and 1980s.
ladybug_archive: (snakes)
So today I've been doing some serious YouTubing and finding awesome stuff with darlings. I started out Huluing and watched Don's Night Gallery episode before moving on to YouTube. One thing I failed to find was so much as a clip of Don's Little House episode, but I did learn that the popular two-part episode The Lord is My Shepherd was from the same season (season 1). I have a pre-recorded VHS tape of that saga, given to me as a child, and I remember that back in the day when I used to watch the show on the local PBS affiliate, I wondered why scenes were missing from those episodes that were present on my video. This tells me two very important things.

1, The episodes on TV were cut. Therefore, the tapes we have around here that my sister recorded from the TV are most likely also cut. Even if I find the tape with Don's episode, it may have scenes missing, possibly something with him.

2, I was absolutely watching religiously during season 1. There is very little likelihood that I did not see Don's episode. That would mean I "met" him probably the very first of any darlings (with the possible exception of Roy Stuart, since I used to watch Gomer Pyle before kindergarten. However, I have no memory of watching the color episodes at that time, which would mean I did not see Roy then).

I think that if Wal-Mart still has season 1 for an epic price on Monday, I'll buy it. Don is most definitely a darling now and I keep craving to see more of him and his character on Little House is supposed to be adorable. Which of course only makes the death all the more upsetting and means I will probably try to find any loophole possible to save him after watching said episode. Screw the fact that the crew wanted him to die; I don't! Especially if the story is completely fictitious and it isn't something Laura wrote about. I guess I should try to find that out first of all, since if it was based on something she wrote as having happened, I'd have to accept the character death.

I just find it so intriguing that in every case so far, all of the people whom I especially liked so many years ago eventually find their way back to me. Or rather, I find my way back to them. I'm sure that I would have liked Don's character, and maybe when I see the episode again, I'll remember it and him.
ladybug_archive: (ginger_lou)
So I got plunnied hard for a Ginger and Lou piece when I watched the Hart to Hart pilot. I rarely ever like pilots as much as I like a series proper, and this was no exception; I really thought it was gross how Jonathan kept manipulating Jennifer into helping him solve cases and would also just decide to pick up more cases without even asking her first. It felt like he really thought more of other people than he did his wife's safety. It was honestly hard for me to believe that they were really in a healthy relationship in the pilot. I think that was dropped in the series proper, thank goodness, and they were equally into solving cases in the series. I also think a lot of the time the cases just dropped in their laps instead of them always being asked to look into things or deciding to look into things. But anyway, the pilot has them undercover and pretending to not know each other (and in Jennifer's case, to not like Jonathan). So my plunnie involved Ginger and Lou undercover and pretending to hate on each other. They have a reason for it, of course; it's not just randomly being done.

I wrote several pages of that since getting plunnied, and then I got another plunnie while watching Perry Mason and decided I could incorporate that one into the fic too. The plunnie was horrible, involving Lou being accused of killing Ginger after an argument. Unlike a story I did some time back, this time there would be a body and Ginger would really be dead. That was unacceptable, but I tweaked the plunnie into Lou getting accused of hurting Ginger and Ginger unable to back him up because he's unconscious from the attack. The fact that they had been pretending to hate each other didn't help, either.

The story altogether is twenty pages long and thirteen of those pages were written in the last 24 hours. As much as I love to write, things don't often flow quite that easily, so I'm thrilled. I think it's finished, unless I want a little more to go into the epilogue scene, so I will hopefully be posting it soon.

Meanwhile, my Big Valley story decided it refuses to be a oneshot. I have enough material for three chapters and more to come. I kept trying to think of it as a oneshot, but when I saw the direction it wanted to go in and how there are several clear chapter breaks in what I wrote, I gave up. (And I am so grateful again to one of my steady reviewers, who is apparently a Big Valley fan. He is once again the only one commenting. Oftentimes, he and a woman are the only commenters. What I'd like to know is, why is it that the people who actually frequent some of these story categories are rarely interested enough to comment?! They read; I can see it from the hit counts. But 99% of the time, they never want to say anything!)

Yesterday I was thinking that I had two frames of mind battling for control. One was an extreme desire for a hurt/comfort fix, specifically with Ginger as the victim. The second was an extreme desire to watch Don Knight in more stuff. I got to see him on Kojak, so that hyped me up, and then later that day we got a Hawaii 5-O disc with his first guest-spot.

That was an interesting experience. In the Kojak episode he is totally a secondary bad guy, but still pretty bad, really. The Hawaii 5-O episode was ... hmm. Actually, there didn't really seem to be any "Big Bad" in that episode. There were three jewel thieves, and in their own ways, each one was sympathetic.

The episode starts out with the police chasing Don's character, who has a girl next to him in his car. There's no indication of what's been happening that led up to that point. (And they're playing the musical cue from the car and helicopter chase in Christopher's episode. Heh.) Suddenly the girl wakes up and starts fighting Don's character Jack Larsen for the wheel. That goes about as well as can be expected, and she finally opts to fling herself out of the car instead of staying with him. The jump ends up being fatal, and one is left wondering what on Earth kind of a horrible person Larsen is that the girl would basically kill herself to get away from him.

It's not until the fourth act when things really start coming together and we see that perhaps things aren't what they seemed to be. Another of the thieves is totally in love with the girl and insists on believing that Larsen stole the jewels from their hiding spot and killed the girl because he didn't want to share. But Larsen doesn't have the jewels and is looking for them too. And he really hadn't killed the girl, even though he did apparently beat her trying to get her to talk (ugh). Larsen insists that the girl double-crossed them both. But the girl has left a coded message for her guy, revealing the new location of the jewels to him. The guy goes a bit hysterical, screaming again that Larsen double-crossed them and killed the girl, and shoots him down. Chin Ho later informs us that Larsen is still alive.

Anyway, there are two possibilities of what happened. 1, That Larsen did steal the jewels because he was trying to cut the others out, the girl found out and stole them back, and he beat her and tried to get her to tell the new location. 2, That the girl stole the jewels because she was trying to cut Larsen out, Larsen found her and beat her to get her to tell the new location. The first way seems messier and more confusing, so it seems more likely that they intended for it to be the second way.

The question remains as to why the girl wanted to cut Larsen out. Either she found out he was especially awful or else she just didn't want to share because she wanted bigger shares for herself and her guy. I'd be more inclined to believe the latter, because while Larsen definitely seems to be somewhat cowardly and was horrible to beat her, the other guy is prone to violence as well. He almost killed one guy before Steve stopped him, and Steve later had to intercede when he was beating up Larsen. And then he shot Larsen. But since he was so emotional because he actually really loved the girl, I did have some level of sympathy for him. I loved that the girl loved him too. It's not often that you find crooks in shows who genuinely care about each other. But I didn't like that she wanted to cut Larsen out of their deal. And I also didn't like that Larsen beat her. But he really didn't kill her; he was shocked when she leaped out of the car. There's no indication that he wanted her dead, although it's certainly possible that she leaped out because she figured he did. Or maybe she was just that determined to keep him from getting the jewels because she wanted her guy to get them even if she couldn't share in it.

So in the end, everything is just up in the air enough that I am mildly curious about Larsen and kind of like all three of the crooks, even though at the same time I of course do not condone stealing jewels or some of their other behavior.

I kind of wish I'd taken pictures from the Charlie's Angels disc. I had debated whether I'd want to, but it's so time-consuming that I opted not to. However, I really knew that I was well on my way to including Don among the darlings. He was already pretty close to it and the more I watch an actor on the cusp of it, the greater the guarantee that they'll make it in. I would definitely say he's in. I want to watch the Mannix episode again and I should really take pictures from that. Paul Gantry is still my favorite of his characters and I think I need an icon. Plus, Tumblr seems to have a deficiency of Don Knight content, so I need to correct that as I try to correct the deficiencies they have regarding the other darlings.

Also, I finally got my second gift card after two months, only to discover that Amazon has changed their policies regarding free shipping again. It wasn't that long ago that they changed to $35 as the minimum, and now they have two different options: buy $25 worth of books and they and anything else with them ship free, or buy $49 worth of non-book merchandise. AURGH! Seriously, WTH? When they switched to $35 I thought they were just greedy, but now I'm wondering if they're in financial trouble because maybe most people try to get free shipping and they're actually losing money by trying to fill all the free shipping orders. It costs so much money to ship things that I can't believe even a Prime member's yearly fee could cover all the shipping costs if, say, they're the type to order things left and right all through the year.

So I've been trying to decide what to do. Part of me wishes I hadn't bought some music a month ago with some of my first gift card. I had actually intended not to use the gift card, but for some reason, Amazon doesn't give me the option to not use an attached gift card to pay for digital music, like it does on regular orders. I really wanted those songs and I never get to buy digital music, so I can't fully regret it, but now I'm in a position where I have to either wait for a third gift card or else spend $13 in cash in addition to the gift card money, just to reach the new minimum free shipping amount. Or I could go the book route, since there was one book I really wanted, but I wanted several DVD sets right now too and if I get $25 of books, I can only get one other thing with them if I'm trying not to go over the gift card amount. So I feel like I'd really be happier getting the DVDs right now. Part of me keeps hoping for that third gift card, but I'm in a stretch where I'm not qualifying into too many surveys for that company right now, so it could be a while before I can even get the smidgen needed to get the gift card. And prices on Amazon fluctuate, as everyone knows, so I don't know whether waiting is a good idea. (And since I already had to wait so long for the second gift card, waiting even longer isn't really appealing.)

Then if I get the DVDs now, I need to fully decide what to get. I really decided on season 1 of Rockford (the only one I'm missing) and The Big Valley season 4, but then that leaves one slot that's difficult to fill. Everything I want most is slightly less that the needed amount, so I've been considering other things I wanted but not quite as much. I think I decided on Vega$ season 2, volume 1, but now part of me wishes I could get one or two Charlie's Angels sets. But season 2 is also slightly less than the needed amount and season 5 is outrageously priced compared to all the others. Sigh. It's so frustrating that normally I'd be thrilled for some of these DVD sets to have such low prices, but that right now I just wish one of them would be a dollar or two more so that they'd fit in the needed slot....

I had been going back and forth on whether to get The Big Valley or Cannon, since I want to support the new Cannon releases. And I don't think I have many season 1 Cannon episodes recorded. But I think Cannon does air uncut, whereas I know The Big Valley does not. And season 4 has so many episodes with darlings (1 Simon, 1 H.M., 2 Richard, 2 Don ...). So I kind of wanted The Big Valley right now, but I fully intend to get Cannon too.

And I really need to have a Hawaii 5-O tag. But going back and finding all the instances where I talk about that series to tag them is not going to be fun. So time-consuming....

Also, my Lalaloopsy order arrived from Build-a-Bear's website and they stuffed pretty firmly everywhere ... except where I specifically asked them to! I didn't want a floppy neck and they didn't stuff the neck firmly! Now I have to go into the store and fix that, in addition to getting something for her to wear. I'm hoping I'll get to do that right away; I can't even fully enjoy holding her and such when I'm worried about the extreme floppiness of the neck. If I buy from the website again, I think I'm just going to order unstuffed since I'd probably always have to go into the store anyway to have it done over right.

Heh.

Apr. 5th, 2016 08:19 pm
ladybug_archive: (schrank)
Turns out my script was already here when I was typing yesterday's post. I didn't learn all I'd hoped to, but it provided enough interesting tidbits that I made a new blog post out of it: http://thepathofthestars.blogspot.com/2016/04/the-script-of-riptides-pirate-and.html

I also watched two of Don Knight's Bonanza episodes. He played good guys in both and it was quite delightful. The first episode reminded me of The Big Valley's episode Earthquake!, and I had to suspend disbelief over why anyone would build a courthouse over a MINE, but the plot of Ben and four other people being trapped in the basement of a collapsing building was so intense. And everybody got out of there alive! I was really afraid someone would die, probably Don's character. But he didn't. And he was exonerated for a crime he didn't commit!

I wondered how I'd feel about the second episode I watched, since it was from the final season and Dan Blocker and Hoss were both dead. Gah. Hoss is my favorite Cartwright, so that was definitely a dread. But I liked Jamie, so it was okay viewing. It kind of felt like a cross between Bonanza and Little House, though. I wonder if that's how the final season was in general. But there were cute dogs, which is always a plus even though I don't agree with hunting for sport by any stretch of the imagination.

I hear Don plays the bad guy in the other Bonanza episode. I couldn't catch it on MeTV today and wasn't sure I'd go out of my way to do so anyway, but maybe I'll try looking it up now too.

I also saw the first of his Charlie's Angels episodes. He was a bad guy in that, although he didn't reveal just how bad he was until he discovered Kelly was a private eye. Then he pulled a gun on her, threatened to kill her, and made her drive away in his van. Kelly deliberately pulled a dangerous traffic stunt to get a nearby policeman to come after them, whereupon Don's character threw his gun out the window. Bosley, who was following, picked it up and brought it over to the van after the officer stopped them. Don's character's expression when Bosley said, "Excuse me, Sir, you dropped your gun out the window," was priceless. LOL. He started to sink down in the seat.

(Bosley, by the way, is still awesome. I love him and I love all the girls. I think there's two basic ways to look at a show like Charlie's Angels. One is that it's filled with threadbare plots, beautiful women, and exists pretty much only so that men can ogle said women. The other way is that it's about strong female characters fighting crime, and in spite of the sometimes silly plots, that's the way I look at it. Every one of the girls seems to be a good role model (except I definitely wouldn't recommend dressing the way Kris sometimes does ... yikes). They're all good people determined to not let the bad guys win, resourceful, intelligent, and very human. I have trouble picking a favorite. Usually it's either Sabrina or Kelly, but I love them all. Interesting that when I first saw the show, I wasn't sure what to make of Sabrina or whether she was as smart as the others; in the episodes I saw at first, I got the impression more of her maybe not being as all there. But as I watched more, I realized I must have just been seeing some of her undercover personas. She is very smart and on top of things, and her actress Kate Jackson seems to be generally hailed as the best actress of the bunch. Out of all the girls, Sabrina also seems the most like she really wants a romantic relationship, so I was happy for her that when Kate left, they wrote in the show that Sabrina was going to get married and have a baby.)

Before any of that, several days ago I saw Don Knight's first Big Valley episode. It was the really creepy one where Adam West was a psycho. Don's character was a twisted mix of selfishness, greed, and some genuine remaining goodness. Even though he had agreed to keep quiet about the first murder in exchange for sharing in Adam's character's high living, he didn't want any other murders to happen and tried to prevent them. Adam's character eventually killed him, which I figured would probably happen. I got plunnied and wrote a fic, but it keeps feeling like it's not complete and I'm not sure what to do with it.

(I actually feel a little like I've been in a fanfiction slump the last couple of weeks. It's just been crazy here and there hasn't been much time for writing, and it seems like when I do, I can't advance very much on the stories. I don't know whether this Big Valley one is holding things up and I feel I can't concentrate until it's done or if it's a slump in general. I feel more like I want to write Ginger and Lou fics for a while instead of continuing the fics I've been actively working on at FF.net. But I feel like I can't fully devote myself to Ginger and Lou fics when people are waiting on those others, or at least on the WWW one. I really wish I could get some input from Riptide fans on the Riptide one; the only person even reviewing it isn't even a fan of the show, so I'm pretty honored that he likes my writing enough to read it. I certainly didn't ask him to. But while I'm thrilled that he's reading, he of course can't provide much advice on the characters and such. There are silent readers, but the only Riptide person who actually said something only commented on the first chapter and expressed her dissatisfaction with the thought of there being real ghosts. I don't know if she even read on enough to see that things are still up in the air regarding the ghost angle, which is just like the season 2 episode that dealt with ghosts was like. I don't think they fully eliminated the idea of ghosts until towards the end. But so yeah. It seems like lately, my only real writing interests have been work, Ginger and Lou fics, The Big Valley fic, and non-fiction blog posts. I don't imagine it will last long, but it is frustrating when I gravitate to the non-fiction rambling posts here instead of working on stories.)

I feel the urge to watch Julie London's Big Valley episode again sometime soon. Her character was also a curious mixture of selfishness, greed, and some remaining goodness. She was a traitor to the North during the Civil War, but not because of changing ideologies; she wanted higher living and she was promised that if she turned. At least that's how I remember it. She showed up after the war and was understandably shunned by the town, but as I also recall, they took it way too far and actually tried to harm her and her old friend in the Barkley family tried to help her. I can't remember now whether it was Jarrod or Nick. He couldn't come to terms with what she'd done either, and it seems like even though she was sadder and wiser, she wasn't terribly apologetic or sorry for her actions, which only made things worse. I remember it ended with her leaving town. I wonder what kinds of interesting interaction might happen between her and Don's character were they to ever meet. I revived his character in my fic, naturally. Hmm, future plunnie.

I often think of The Big Valley as the poor man's Bonanza and/or an inversion of Bonanza, since The Big Valley has a woman at the head of the wealthiest family in town and some of the concepts and set-ups seem similar to Bonanza (and since the show only lasted four seasons as opposed to Bonanza's fourteen). But one interesting difference is that while the Cartwrights seem to be respected and well-liked, the Barkleys seem to be looked down on because of their wealth. Usually shows do the cliche of arrogant rich people so much that it's really a drag. The Big Valley has the flip-side of arrogant poor people, which isn't seen as often but is just as hurtful and damaging. And while I enjoy both shows, sometimes I feel like The Big Valley has a lot more heart than Bonanza. Maybe that's at least partially because there are women in the main cast and they bring something to the show that Bonanza lacks. On the other hand, I'm not saying I think Bonanza should have had a female lead. Each show is what it is and is enjoyed for what it is. I think a female lead probably would have ruined Bonanza, because that was not the angle it was going for. On the other hand, remove the women from The Big Valley and something is very missing.

I find it intriguing how quickly Don Knight proved himself a capable and awesome character actor. He just showed up to start acting in 1965, and it was only like three-ish years later when they were starting to bill him as "Special Guest Star" and/or list him at the top of the guest cast list. It's like what happened with Luke Andreas and Christopher Cary. With all of them, they were sometimes given small parts, but the show's crews quickly realized their talents and that having them around was a feather in the cap. They'd then be given meatier parts sometimes, or else even if they didn't appear much, they were still credited very high on the list. And as frustrating as it is when they're not in something much, like Christopher in that 1970s Captain America movie, it's still extremely exciting when they're given such high billing.

And I'm sure there was something else I wanted to talk about, but I don't remember what it was.

Oh, I just remembered. Star Wars: The Force Awakens came out on DVD today. I'm still undecided whether I'll buy it. I just can't bring myself to consider it absolute canon, even though yes, I know that as far as Disney is concerned, it is. And I can't see myself re-watching it much. But I love Rey and Finn and BB-8, so I figured I'd probably buy it for them, at least. I can't get it this week, though, since my account is cleaned until the weekend. And then I need to think about still getting to Build-a-Bear to get an article of clothing for the Lalaloopsy plush, since I wasn't able to include that in the order. I also need to think about getting the big Rey figure, because Wal-Mart finally got a huge shipment in (probably in anticipation of today). I just hope they'll still have some when I have money....

Some spoilers, just in case someone still hasn't seen the film but wants to )

Gah.

Mar. 29th, 2016 07:59 pm
ladybug_archive: (persuaders)
Patty Duke is dead at age 69. And from something apparently unexpected and sudden. That makes it even worse than ever. It's so sad to think of her being gone and so sad to think of her loved ones grieving. I was thinking how sad William Schallert must be, since he really ended up like a father figure to her, and then of course Sean Astin and her other kids must be so sad.... I should do some kind of a Tumblr tribute.... I wonder if I have any pictures of her already taken from my DVD sets.

I spent the afternoon filling out our Netflix queue.... I added a lot of Hawaii 5-O, Scarecrow and Mrs. King, and Hart to Hart, although Mom's probably already seen most of the latter episodes. They come on Monday evenings on Cozi and she watches them while Dad and I are getting groceries. I wish I could see the show more often because it's adorable and generally clean. I love cute 1980's series. I think that was the last decade when we really had a lot of nice and safe live-action TV shows, and of course even then, some of them were starting to get kind of bad sometimes.

Among the Scarecrow discs I added was the one with Luke. It's been years since I've seen it and since he was the main guest-star, I wanna see it again. I was thinking the other day about when I got my first Equestria Girls dolls, the original two-pack with Twilight and the Sunset with incorrect hair. That was in November of 2013. I had a big, fun de-boxing session that night and then set them on my desk while I watched that Scarecrow episode. Then I made a silly Tumblr post commenting that I was playing with dolls of Ponies as people and watching old shows with middle-aged men ... and loving it.

PAX TV used to air Scarecrow around 2000, right before Remington Steele. I hardly ever got to catch it, but weirdly enough, the one with Luke was one that I saw at least part of. I distinctly remember the epilogue. And that means I at least was introduced to Luke's name in the credits, even if I didn't see any of his scenes. Kind of eerie.

Wal-Mart currently has season 1 of Remington Steele available for $10 and I've been debating getting it. I loved that show back in the day and saw almost all of them repeatedly, but I wonder if I would still love it today. My only semi-recent experience with it was when I caught one episode on Halloween night on MeTV several years ago, the one about the stolen dog with Tom Baker guest-starring, and I loved it just as I had before. That was season 2, though (I think). I'm wondering if I'd like season 1 as much as the other seasons. Season 1 didn't have Doris Roberts, and one of the things I loved the most was her interaction with the others. Still, after reading over the season 1 episode summaries, it still sounds like a blast.

Among the stuff I added to the queue today were several things with Don Knight. I tried to weed out a few where he either might not be playing bad guys or where he at least wasn't playing the Big Bads. I'll get around to seeing everything I can with him eventually, but when possible I like to start with things where the actor plays nicer people. I didn't add the Little House disc, though, or even see if Netflix has it. I'm still displeased by the sound of his character's needless death. Anyway, I probably have the Little House thing around here somewhere, as I think my sister gave us all of her Little House tapes when she graduated to DVDs. Ten to one I actually saw that episode years and years ago, as I grew up often watching the show on our local PBS station (which lost the rights to it only a couple of years ago or so, after airing it for decades, gah). I liked it okay, especially as a kid, but I don't know if it would have the same appeal for me now since I really prefer shows with more action. I remember being surprised one time when I saw a Little House episode with bad guys invading the town and holding people hostage and somebody (Laura, I think) bonked one of them with a frying pan. Buwahaha.

I also tried adding The Apple Dumpling Gang and was told it's on Very Long Wait. **rolls eyes.** Not encouraging; that usually means it will end up lost. I wonder if the library might have it....

Also, this morning I decided to look for cheap copies of Interrupted Melody, a movie I want to see with Roger in it. I've been trying to get it for a couple of months and finally just decided to wait and get it with my next Amazon splurge. Only problem is, the survey company is taking forever about giving me my gift card. Uggggh. It's been almost two months now. That occasionally happens with them and it's really frustrating when it does. A while back I got Gold of the Seven Saints on eBay when its price came down, so now I decided that if I could find a cheap copy of Interrupted Melody I'd do the same with it.

I ended up finding a sealed VHS for only $6 and free shipping! I had really wanted a DVD copy, but oh man, it is hard to beat a price like that! I opted to grab it up. At the time I was stressed about stuff and worried that maybe getting a VHS wasn't a good idea, since that means I can only watch it in the living room. But after a good sleep and a dream involving the actors in it, I woke up ecstatic to have finally got a copy. I can hardly wait for it to get here. Also, I love the picture on the VHS copy, as it looks like it's probably Roger's character bending down to the leading lady. He plays her brother, so now I am hoping there will be some sibling squee.

In any case, I hope I will like this film way better than Gold of the Seven Saints. That was ... probably one of the stupidest things I have ever seen. I knew I shouldn't expect too much from it, but I was expecting a little more than I got. Still, Roger was cute and there was hurt/comfort and friendshippiness, so it was worth watching.
ladybug_archive: (nancy_peter)
A couple of weeks ago in Wal-Mart I saw the most awesome playset: a Scooby-Doo haunted mansion! There were trapdoors and ghosties everywhere and a falling chandelier.... I don't have any place to put something like that, but I sure want it. That is epically awesome. It's one of the most creative playsets I've seen in a long time.

There's also a new line of Scooby-Doo figures. For some reason, there's two Scoobies in the line instead of there being a Fred. They'd better still make Fred! All the other original characters were there. Each one comes packaged with one of the supernatural creatures they unmasked on the show. And even though there's two figures and they're around 6 inches tall, they only cost around $7! I so want those, too. So do lots of others; there were three full pegs of those figures two weeks ago, and last week there were only two figures left.

So I had a very interesting and odd Once dream today. It was similar in nature to some LOTR dreams I had years ago, in which I and Mom and other people were acting out the character roles. And there was snow on the ground. I'm not sure why that's a feature of those dreams, but there you go.

I was playing Rumpel (and Regina, apparently, as there weren't enough people for each to take one character). It was around season 2, and the entire cast had been sent to some weird, snowy place with a huge castle. Rumpel was walking with Belle and they were talking about the problems in their relationship. They seemed to be at a rocky stage. One gave the other some kind of native little white flower before they separated. I was having a blast figuring out how to talk with a Scottish accent.

Belle was then walking with one of the girls, and I think I narrowed it down to Ruby. They were talking and seemed to be upset with Mary-Margaret about something, but the details of that conversation have faded. They were climbing up snowy hillsides that were like steps and heading for the castle. Everyone seemed to be going to a funeral, but I don't know who was dead. They walked along the outside of the castle, which weirdly seemed to have different entrances with numbers corresponding to season 2 episodes. Most were bizarre crooked stairs that were at unclimbable angles. They finally found a way up via the stairs marked for episode 2.

Regina was walking down the corridor, heading for the room with the funeral. For some reason, she ended up casting a spell on herself that made her appear as Rumpel to everyone else she passed in the corridor. It was not shape-shifting, like Cora could do, but it was expressly just a spell that warped how everyone else saw her. She got to the room and ... apparently laid down on a low table/slab in front of a row of people. Then she was ... either faking being unconscious or there was some other spell. Everyone thought it was Rumpel and was confused as to why they couldn't wake "him" up. Rumpel was supposed to appear in the doorway and be all "WTH is going on here," and I think he arrived and was trying and failing to get people's attention, and I woke up around then.

A very weird dream. But actually rather enjoyable while it was being had. I woke up missing the good times on Once before the writers decided that Rumpel wasn't allowed to continue his progress being a good guy. I should write some more in my vignette series again.

I wonder if another reason I'm worried about posting it on FF.net is that I'm afraid some people won't like that I'm unhappy with the direction the show took starting with 3B. But there's quite a lot of us who feel the same way, so that probably wouldn't really be much of a problem.

Recently I re-watched the season 3 Mannix episode with Don Knight, another British actor with lovely blond hair. He reminded me a little bit of Christopher, while at the same time definitely being his own person. He played the only survivor of a shipwreck, and he knew the truth about the wreck, that it had been hijacked and everyone else deliberately murdered by being thrown overboard to the sharks. He himself had been permanently mutilated; his left arm was gone and he had a limp. He was being sought after by the bad guys to kill him, but he refused to come forward and tell the police what he knew because they were threatening to kill a girl he loved. In the climax, he discovered that the girl was actually one of the bad guys. Heartbroken, in a moment of rage he started choking her, but Mannix rushed in and stopped him. When he calmed down, he insisted that the girl must have been coerced into being a part of things, because she was just too sweet to really be bad. The girl told him that she hadn't been coerced, that she wanted to be there because the Big Bad saw her as she really was instead of putting her on a pedestal. It was heartbreaking, gah. The guy didn't have anyone else in the world and he lost the one person he thought cared about him. Mom wondered if he might end up committing suicide, feeling like he had nothing left, but I hope not. Maybe I will write something about him and see what he's up to.

I remember liking that character and the actor before, but I didn't follow up on it. I wanted to this time, but I didn't get around to it until I discovered him in a Hawaii 5-O episode quite by accident over the weekend. That time the character was a bad guy, but he was in danger being kidnapped by the psycho Big Bad of the episode and I hoped the taskforce would save him in time. They did, and I decided to look up the actor. He had turned out an amazing performance and had broke down in hysteria because he was terrified of heights. So very different from the Mannix character. Like all good character actors, he really slips into whatever part he's got.

I found a list of credits and saw that I have one of his Virginian episodes, so I watched that this morning. He was a bad guy again, but he survived the episode. It was a pretty depressing episode, though, called The Mustangers. I don't think I want to get into it right now, but it seems like many season 7 Virginian episodes are depressing. I remember that while many season 6 episodes were high drama, they generally seemed to end well. I'm not sure what was up with the seeming change.

I also found a website run by Don Knight's son, which is awesome. I'm going to go back there and see if there's a way to contact the son. And I'll probably keep looking up his father's credits; I think one of his Charlie's Angels episodes is already on one of the discs I put on the queue.

Don Knight sounds like a sweet man in reality and I know I definitely loved his Mannix character. Apparently he also played a beloved character on Little House on the Prairie, so if I end up deciding I like him enough to make him one of my darlings, finally there will actually be one of them who has appeared on that show. Heh. I've always wondered why none of them ever guest-starred on that. Or at least if any have, IMDB doesn't have a record of it (which is possible).

His character on that has a very famous and tragic death. He works with dynamite, and he's watching some contest that includes his friends Charles and another guy. When they win, he's so excited for them that he doesn't remember he has a lit dynamite fuse that he was dealing with.

They invited Don Knight back for another episode as a different character, but when he got there they paid him and then fired him. They felt that his character's death had been so poignant that the audience would not accept him as another character.

...

Is it just me or was that a really lame and jerky thing to do? Once they hired him for the episode, they should have followed through with it. And isn't it just a little bit arrogant to think that their show's character death is so powerful that he could never return as someone else? I've watched lots of shows with powerful oneshot character deaths, and very often the actor will be allowed to return later as another character. I never see any problem with that.

Also, speaking of his character's death, it just sounds so pointless and needless that to me it almost seems like they killed off the character for the sheer shock and tragedy factor. Unless the episode was based on something Laura Ingalls Wilder really wrote about as having happened, it seems to me it should not have been done that way. I don't like character deaths that are pointless and needless and exist just so they can point to their show and say, "Look how dark and gritty we made it! It's some kind of artistic achievement!"

And as a closing note, eerily enough, Don Knight follows the pattern of being someone I saw in something many years ago. Apparently he was in The Apple Dumpling Gang. I actually wasn't crazy about that movie; I'd gone in looking for a hysterical comedy and it honestly didn't strike me as being very funny in most parts. The big funny scene seemed to be where Don Knotts' character was being accidentally choked by a rope up the side of a building, which ... really isn't very funny. But maybe if I go back to it and watch it not looking for anything specific, I'd like it.

I know it's stupid, but it still kind of troubles me that I can't think of anything I saw Christopher Cary in many years ago. He's the one darling that doesn't fit the pattern. I did see him on Rockford before I was interested in him, and I did like him, so I figure I've got to accept that as the time I saw him years ago. But it wasn't in the long-ago past, like all the others. I keep thinking there must be something I saw him in years ago and that someday I'll pinpoint what it was.

Aheh....

Feb. 1st, 2016 02:02 am
ladybug_archive: (snakes)
The last time I was asleep, I spent most of it dreaming about Roger Moore's James Bond. Which ... sounds highly embarrassing out of context, since it sounds like I'm swooning over the character.

The truth is just that I've had the character on the brain for the last couple of days. We had a family thing up at the gorgeous place of one of my paternal aunt's and then I got to go to the big F.Y.E. afterwards. They were clearancing certain stuff and I'm afraid I spent over an hour going through everything.

But first things first. My aunt's house. Gah, I loved it! Cute entryway room, giant living room and dining room, a kitchen with counter space, a hallway with a bathroom for each bedroom and an awesome alcove in the hall for DVDs and collector's dolls to be displayed.... My aunt apparently collects them; they're also all over her room, along with other fascinating old things like old vinyl records. (I know vinyl is popular again, but I'm pretty sure the records I saw were from when it was popular before.) I was in love with the house and the way she styled it. I felt a little like I was in an antique shop. I didn't go in the basement, but I imagine it was pretty amazing too.

Then the big F.Y.E. It's always so nice to go there. I'm there maybe once or twice a year, if I'm lucky; usually I can only go to the small F.Y.E. in a mall closer to home. There's always so many fascinating pop culture collectibles. I'll admit my main purpose in going was on the off-chance that maybe I could find a figure based on Roger Moore's James Bond or some other such memorabilia. No luck there, but I did see all of the movies, naturally. I got scared away from the first one due to the pictures on the case and wasn't sure what to make of any of the others. I decided to take [livejournal.com profile] 1bigbeatlesfan up on her offer of the Moonraker DVD. Reading the summaries again, as I previously did some time ago, it sounded like it might be the one I'd be the most comfortable with and a good one to start with. Then my brother has the last three of Roger's James Bond movies among the video collection he let us have, but the problem with that is that our only working VCR is in the living room, where there's a high chance of being interrupted while watching....

I also wanted to see if I could find either The King's Thief or Gold of the Seven Saints. No luck there, although I was told they actually do carry the latter and were just out. It'd probably be pretty expensive there anyway, though. And then I sort of hoped maybe a few Ivanhoe episodes had been released to DVD. No apparent luck there, either. I wish Columbia would release that. And Circus Boy, if they've never put that on DVD. I'm still missing a few episodes from Antenna TV's run, and I'm not sure which ones.

Regarding Gold of the Seven Saints, it has one of those rather irritating plots where they're trying to keep the gold but of course lose it in the end. But on the upside, there's tons of friendship squee and hurt/comfort, according to the summary. Roger's character is hurt and some of the plot is taken up with getting him to a doctor. Then later, the bad guys kidnap and torture him and his friend has to save him. Gah! And it sounds like they're always loyal to each other and don't betray each other for the gold, which is a breath of fresh air in movies like that.

(Then I heard Roger sing again, on The Persuaders!, and it was pretty awesome. Squeeee.)

I was also thinking about an amusing James Bond-related moment, although I think this was based on Daniel Craig's Bond rather than Roger's. There's this silly, nutty sketch comedy show called Studio C. Mom doesn't like it and I haven't seen enough to judge, but one time the TV was on to the channel and we came home from getting groceries and I was taking care of them while watching the show and there was this hilarious James Bond parody where he comes to get the new gadgets for his case. I don't even remember now what most of them were, except I remember the girl tried to give him this bizarre gun that would only fire if he wasn't stressed. And he was in disbelief and exclaiming, "My life is filled with stress! People are shooting at me every day!" ROTFLOL. I wonder if I could find that on YouTube....

EDIT: Found it! ROTFLOL.



And switching gears to talk about a character played by my other favorite British-born actor.... I finally got unstuck on the Maverick story where Bret tells of how he and Snakes met. I finished that, wrote the one where he meets Snakes in a saloon, and then started my fic idea of Beau meeting Jack Vandergelt. Snakes features into that one too. It will be another multi-chapter and I look forward to seeing how it will come out. I'm thrilled to have finally been able to pick up my Maverick stories again! I also want to write the one where the Mavericks react to Snakes' death, gah. That is going to be a bittersweet and sad one. And then I naturally won't be able to refrain from writing the story where Snakes comes back through the portal after his revival to find Beau and tell him he's okay. I'm just wondering how to handle that one without getting into the sci-fi elements of being brought back from the dead by a mad scientist, since I'm not sure the Maverick fans would react too well to that strangeness. Maybe Snakes can just say he's alive and let Beau see that he's alive and not get into the details. We'll have to see.
ladybug_archive: (persuaders)
So our dryer has been acting up for a while and Dad finally decided that so many things needed fixing, it would be better to get a new dryer. K-Mart had a Kenmore on sale for $299, so on Friday we went and looked at it and decided to get it. Dad then had to return the dryer parts he'd bought, so that took us up near Build-a-Bear and I got the Lalaloopsy doll/plush I wanted, Mittens Fluff N Stuff. I think I will get the other Honey Girls plushies sometime, but I figured they'd be around longer since they're the house brand and not one of the licensed brands that floats in and out. I saw all four Lalaloopsy dolls they've made, and I kind of want Crumbs Sugar Cookie too, so we'll see how that goes in the future.

I also managed to snag both Saint DVD sets and The Persuaders! online. I lost two auctions trying to get the seasons 3 and 4 set and then finally went to a Buy It Now listing that was still cheaper than the going retail price. I've been watching the Saint episodes I missed on MeTV's website and then plan to re-watch the others. And I've been gobbling up The Persuaders!. Oh my gosh, it is seriously adorable, gah. This show is just overflowing with friendship squee! It is paradise. Words cannot fully describe how much I am in love with this series.

I wrote that Saint fic that I had the idea for a year and a half ago. It absolutely flowed and ended up clocking in at 11,400+ words. And I posted it on AO3 in one chunk without checking word count first. Ooops. But some people have looked at it anyway. I hope they liked it. As usual, no one comments on AO3. I've posted 42 things there, and I think only five or less have comments. Part of me doesn't know why I bother. But at least I see people are reading, and sometimes I get Kudos, so that's nice. And there's no Saint category at FF.net. I requested one, but nothing's happened. I also wrote another Persuaders! fic, a follow-up to the angsty Angie ... Angie episode. I want to write a follow-up to Read and Destroy too, and then I want to move on to an amnesia fic. I originally figured Brett as the victim again, but then I decided it should be Danny and we'll see how poor Brett with all his British resolve reacts to that. (I think I'll have some Brett hurt/comfort in the climax, though. And poor Danny will feel horrible about not remembering Brett. Amnesia fics are cliche, but they're so interesting for exploring character reactions. Anyway, The Persuaders! takes some cliches and puts their own spins on them, making them all seem new.)

The Scott plushie I ordered came too, and he is also adorable! Very well-made, as they generally are, and he fits well with Elliott's size. I finally gave up on having the hair I really wanted for Barry and rushed to get him semi-presentable once I knew Scott had shipped. I wanted Barry to be part of the welcoming committee. I got brown fleece at Wal-Mart to do the hair and it doesn't look too bad. Making a ponytail out of that looks a bit odd, but I just decided Screw it, I can't find hair extensions anywhere and they probably wouldn't match the fleece anyway, so I'll just totally wing it. I think when I finish Barry, I want to make a Snakes plushie. I need to make Barry's shirt, tie, suspenders, and hat. I may just stop for a while after the shirt or tie, though.

And then I got around to finding out if I could find any Ivanhoe episodes. I could, and watched one. My reaction during it was basically, "... Oh my gosh. Soft, thick, fluffy hair. I didn't know he grew it that thick back then. Help." Mixed in with, "... Such a lovely voice to listen to. Help." And, "This character is awesome! Help." Also mixed in with amused/embarrassed giggling due to my shameless fangirling and thinking, "Oh brother, I am acting ridiculous. I shouldn't be fangirling over him." And, "Oh dear, wouldn't it be amusing if I end up saying offline what I'm watching and why I've got the giggles." And the American distributor was Screen Gems. I'm trying to remember if Antenna TV has ever aired this series. If they haven't, I wonder if they'd consider it. It would make a nice addition to their oldies block for children on weekends. (If they still do that....)

If I watch a few more episodes, I think I'll be ready to brave Mom's copy of Ivanhoe the book, which she gave to me. I want to read it (I loved the 1952 movie), but I'm worried the old language will go over my head. I don't read many classics because the language often confuses me. But now I have an indelible image of Ivanhoe looking like Roger Moore. I already got out the book and skimmed around in it today.

I also want to see the film The King's Thief. It's part of the Warner Archive collection. I'm trying to remember if my sister might have given us a VHS copy among some stuff she recorded, but I kind of think I'd remember a swashbuckler. Most of what she gave us is musicals, which I'm not so into. I think I remember everything she gave that was something else. It sounds like Roger has some good screentime and that he survives the film, so I'd probably be willing to spring for the DVD. It sounds like a pretty fun movie in general. And of course, everything is always better with a darling or two.

It also occurred to me that there is probably a figure of him as James Bond and I should have it, since so few darlings have figures of them. I thought maybe there'd be a little four-inch figure or something. Instead I only find listings for 12-inch figures, and there's one I particularly like that could perhaps double as a Simon Templar figure, but I can't seem to find it for less than $60. Oyyyy.... I cannot spend that much on a figure!

Sometimes I still want to bash my head against the desk for including him among my darlings. But I have accepted that that's the way it's going to be. He certainly has his faults, but there are lots of good things about him too, and I try to focus on that.
ladybug_archive: (persuaders)
Help, I've got a crush on Roger Moore that will not be denied. Nevermind that his good guy characters usually always have many of the same elements about them and hence he doesn't fully slip into parts the way character actors do. I guess in one way, that kind of makes me love him even more, as I then figure the characters are probably much the same as the real person and I love the characters.

I dug up those four episodes of The Alaskans, gobbled them up, and want more. And since I still don't have The Persuaders! DVD set, I just watched two more of those on YouTube. And I need more. Both of those shows are hilarious and adorable. I wish they'd run longer, I wish Roger had played Beau Maverick longer, and I wish The Saint box set wasn't so expensive.

What do you want to bet that I will wear down enough to actually watch some certain James Bond movies? I have never desired to see a James Bond movie in my life, but a couple of times this past year I've been tempted by the Roger Moore DVD sets Wal-Mart has had. If they still have those, I may just decide I need them in my life.

I also apparently need to watch an old 1950s version of Ivanhoe. Wheeeee.

Someday I may take pictures from my DVD of The Last Time I Saw Paris. His character in that is a jerk and a creep and I don't like him, but focusing on the actor and not the character, he is so young and cute and the quality of the DVD is pretty good even though it's one of those dollar DVDs.

Originally Mom gave that to me when we bought it years ago because Micky Dolenz's dad is in it. That is awesome too. I wasn't expecting to ever have another reason to squee over having it. When I was looking it over and saw Roger's name on the case, I immediately set about arranging a time to watch the movie. Naturally I plugged the reason as being to see Micky's dad, and I don't think Mom realized I had a second reason too. Which is just as well, since as mentioned, Roger's character in that is not a nice guy.

I still kind of want to read his autobiography too. Normally I don't like reading those, as I can very easily end up disillusioned. It took me years to decide I was ready to read Micky's very colorful book. But I think (I hope) I already know about the skeletons falling out of Roger's closet, so perhaps I wouldn't end up with too many unwelcome surprises there. And he is, I believe, the only person I crush on whose book I don't have. Most of them haven't written books; the ones who have, I have their books (Micky and Richard). I can't find the book at the library or at Barnes and Noble; thus, the only way I can read it is either by Inter-Library Loan or by buying it on Amazon without being able to skim through it first. I suppose Amazon may have a few preview pictures, at least. I don't like to not be able to examine it all the way through before buying, but the latter would give me some secrecy; getting it through the library loan thing would likely mean Dad might become aware of it since he would probably take the call about it arriving, and um, yeah, I think I'd rather not go that route.

That's because there's still that slight uncomfortable problem that I don't think either Mom or Dad like him. Mom used to, but then was displeased by that movie where his character seduces a missionary. (I doubt I'd be too thrilled with that one myself, although when I looked it up, his character didn't sound quite as bad as Mom was saying. He did offer to marry the girl and Mom hadn't remembered that he did.) I've sort of tried to hide my crush on him and acted blase one time when I showed her Vendetta for the Saint and she wondered if I would end up adding him to my list of guys. (He was definitely already on the list at the time.) But if she isn't aware it's there now, she will be soon. I don't think she placed him when I showed her some clips from The Alaskans (they mostly focused on other characters, the screen was small, and the picture was a little fuzzy), but I have to show her some of this hilarious Persuaders! episode I watched and she'll place him then and most likely connect the dots between him and Silky Harris.

Ah well. I accepted months ago that I am crushing on him, instead of vainly struggling against it. I've definitely been happier since accepting that fact.

And I wanna go write a hurt/comforty and angsty Persuaders! fic.... Help....
ladybug_archive: (ecks_wye)
So I've had the weirdest urge to watch The Alaskans, something I thought I'd never have the chance to do. It's never been released on DVD and isn't aired on television. Lately I've particularly been bemoaning the fact that I'll never see it. I figured it was nothing spectacular, but I still kind of wanted to see it at least once. Then I found four episodes today and watched one of them then and another right now. Unfortunately, the Simon Oakland episode isn't among them, but I look forward to seeing them all anyway. I've heard the series was notorious for simply recycling other shows' scripts (typical, Warner Brothers, looking for ways to be cheap and greedy and cut corners). The first one I saw was an alright episode, but I don't know if it was a recycled plot or not. The second one definitely was one of the recycled plots (you can always tell because they list the writer as W. Hermanos, heh), but I've never seen the show that originally used it and I loved it. Roger's character was the only one of the main cast in it, so I got to see plenty of him.

I was confused about exactly what the main characters do, as I had originally had the impression they dabbled in a lot of get-rich-quick schemes. Then reading up on the show earlier today, I ended up thinking it sounded more like they were crooks. Actually watching the episodes, it kind of looks like my first impression was closer to the truth. Silky Harris is always coming up with some sort of money-making scheme, but it doesn't seem like he wants to hurt anyone, nor is he a criminal. And he seems to honestly believe his plans will work. He reminds me a little bit of the Maverick boys in his dislike of real work, albeit the Mavericks prefer to quietly gamble rather than to make exhibitions of themselves. In the second episode I saw, where he was on his own, he reminded me tremendously of Beau. (He even got accused of murder, like poor Beau always did. **headdesk.**)

Also, Maverick is now airing weekdays on Cozi again. Yesss! And The Virginian is back as well. They're both starting over, so I'm going to guess it's something new they decided to do for the new year. I'll have to keep close watch and get the other ones I wanted of those shows.

And here is a blurbfic I've been writing based on that latest Ecks and Wye dream I mentioned. It's clearly part of something bigger, but I don't know if I will ever write the rest of the story. This is mostly conversational, character developmental, and shameless hurt/comfort. Napoleon and Illya are in it a lot, but I don't know if I'll post it anywhere other than here, since it's just a homeless scene.


When plans go wrong )

Trains....

Dec. 21st, 2015 10:43 pm
ladybug_archive: (ecks_wye)
So I had a dream where one part of it involved Ecks and Wye trying to trip up some bad guys. Ecks pretended to be stabbed (he was wearing heavy protection under his coat or something and got fixed up with blood so it would look authentic) and Wye pretended to flip out on the one "responsible." I believe the idea was that when the bad guys were occupied with Wye, Ecks would spring into action and join the battle and catch the bad guys off-guard. But something went wrong and Wye ended up hurt and missing. Ecks was panicking and trying to figure out how to find him. I don't think the dream ever did reach a solution. It seems like most dreams don't. Man, I have such weird ones. And when they're like that, I wanna write fics of them.

And ... help, I think I might be getting interested/intrigued again by the Thomas franchise.... When I was at Toys R Us earlier this month, I saw an entire blue aisle devoted to the franchise, but I didn't pause to examine it; I never have. I grew up on Shining Time Station and loved it, but didn't have any exposure to the franchise beyond that. I felt like it just wouldn't feel right to me to not have Shining Time Station characters around. However, I was curious as to what the franchise was like beyond that and how it was still going strong, so the other day I finally took time to look it up and read about it. I'm curious enough now that I'd like to see what some of the new episodes are like. I'm wondering about the female engine they've introduced; I hope she's awesome!

I always like to watch the Shining Time Station Christmas special each year, even moreso now that I know Lloyd Bridges plays the Santa character. I did that the other day, lapped it up, kind of want to watch it again, and maybe look at some other old episodes. I remember one time as a kid, I got on a kick where I watched the Christmas special every night for a while. That's one thing I still have my VHS copy of, recorded on TV the last year I remember them rebroadcasting the special (1994). I have happy memories of watching it with Mom while recording it and how that was one of the last times I was small enough to fit in the big chair with her.

I remember when they came out with that Thomas movie in 2000. I was curious, and somewhat surprised, but didn't make any effort to look up more information on it. I figured it was strictly train-world-only, and I liked both worlds. Now I've learned the movie brought in Shining Time Station elements, particularly Stacy and Mr. Conductor. Tasha and Billy Twofeathers, too (albeit played by different people, as is Mr. Conductor again). I must see that movie now. The train-world adventures sound pretty intense, too. The movie is generally disliked, and maybe I wouldn't like it either, but I'd like to give it a chance.

Also, I don't know whether to laugh or be very, very disturbed by the thought of Susan Roman voicing James. Susan was one of the original Sailor Moon dub voice actresses. I want to say she was Jupiter, but she might have been Mars. Either way, she was really good, one of the best in that cast, but I'm not sure what to think of her playing the male engine who was, as I remember him, rather conceited/boastful and kind of a jerk sometimes. It's a source of aggravation among fans that she played him; they felt she made him sound too young and feminine. I'll withhold judgment until I hear it for myself.

And I knew nothing of the details of this Ant-Man thing until I was reading that part of the climax is fought on a toy Thomas. Um, LOL. Also, apparently the toy Thomas grows huge at one point. **snarks.** But shrinking to the size of an ant, whether that's the character's superpower in general or whether it was just something weird done solely for the climatic battle ... I think I'll pass, thanks.

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