... 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 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.