And now I'm going to have it stuck in my head for months again, aren't I? sineala, I apologize in advance.
And now I'm going to have it stuck in my head for months again, aren't I? sineala, I apologize in advance.
the hour before dawn (266 words) by Anonymous
Fandom: The Unit
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Jonas Blane/Mack Gerhardt
Characters: Mack Gerhardt, Jonas Blane
Additional Tags: Mornings, Trust, Fluff, Voice Kink
Even half asleep, Mack can hear everything he needs to know from the sound of Jonas' voice.
And my darling devilpiglet posted the third of her Steve/Bucky series right before the tidal wave of Yuletide broke, and even if it wasn't a gift it FEELS like a gift, the best Christmas gift we could get because it's gorgeous and emotional and funny and tender and the writing is exquisite, which is like my favorite stuff all rolled into one, and you should go read and leave her glowing feedback because she is magnificent.
The Mercy Seat (5343 words) by DevilPiglet
Fandom: Captain America (Movies)
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: James "Bucky" Barnes/Steve Rogers
Characters: James "Bucky" Barnes, Steve Rogers, Tony Stark, Pepper Potts, Natasha Romanov, Original Dog Character(s), Maria Hill, Nick Fury
Additional Tags: Emotional Hurt/Comfort, Psychological Trauma, Past Torture, Mind Control Aftermath & Recovery, Post-Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Series: Part 3 of A Nightingale Sang
“If you come for Bucky,” Steve says, “I walk.”
Fury’s voice is very, very soft when he replies. “Watch yourself, Captain.”
“Keep the shield. Keep the costume, give it to the next guy you run up the flagpole. Bucky and I will disappear, find a beach on the other side of the globe and live out our days in peace.” There’s bitterness, there at the end.
Hell of A Good Universe Next Door (Let's Go) (8094 words) by Anonymous
Fandom: Political Animals, Captain America (Movies), Marvel Cinematic Universe
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Thomas "T. J." Hammond/Steve Rogers
Characters: Thomas "T. J." Hammond, Margaret Barrish, Steve Rogers
Additional Tags: Crushes, Crossover Pairings, Crossovers & Fandom Fusions, Getting Together, Huddling For Warmth, Hurt/Comfort, Protectiveness, Recovery, Slow Build, Stranded, sassy everyone, you choose your own fate
Or how T. J. Hammond went looking for himself - and kept running into Steve Rogers' broad chest along the way.
If this is a love story, it was inadvertent. Also, ridiculously unsuccessful supervillains, dear old dead friends, Secret Service, TJ's grandmother being inappropriate, and a lone match-making deer.
I just…flail. I got a TJ Hammond story!! I never dared hope for one, honestly. And it's not just TJ, either, it's TJ finding himself while also finding a really awesome boyfriend in one Steve Rogers. I can't even. Really, the summary does a great job of conveying what's in it--it's just delightful.
Echo (2920 words) by Anonymous
Fandom: Kings (TV 2009)
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Jack Benjamin/David Shepherd
Characters: Jack Benjamin, David Shepherd, Thomasina (Kings)
David has faith in his most loyal soldier, even when Jack has no faith left to draw upon.
AND THEN. Then I got a Kings story that is everything I could have hoped for and more. Jack being a soldier, and loving David, far into the future, and finding faith in each other. AUGH MY HEART.
Just My Type (1485 words) by Anonymous
Fandom: The Losers (2010), Captain America (Movies)
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: James "Bucky" Barnes/Steve Rogers, Carlos "Cougar" Alvarez/Jake Jensen, Jake Jensen & James "Bucky" Barnes
Characters: Jake Jensen, James "Bucky" Barnes
Additional Tags: Crossover, Fluff and Humor
The guy's name is Jake Jensen and he's a motormouth ringer for Steve from another dimension. Hopefully the same one where Loki sent Steve.
Then today I got this delicious treat in Madness. Dimension swap! Jake Jensen in bunny slippers! Bucky and Cougar bonding over how much they love their feisty boys! This is adorable and so much fun.
Seriously, what the hell did I do to deserve all this?
But you know, it's a ton more fun if people join me--I'd love to see some other folks do 31 recs of different fan works on their own. I really love seeing recs, even for things I'm not into. I hate how bookmarking took over fan culture, because they say nothing about why people are enthusiastic about something. So let's rec!
My first one is actually for a non Yuletide story.
Reformation (4409 words) by Speranza
Fandom: Luther (TV)
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: John Luther/Alice Morgan
Additional Tags: First Time, Episode Tag, Case Fic, Serial Killers
"Oh," she breathes finally, gleeful and scandalised, both. "You love me. Oh, poor you."
I was definitely in the mood for John/Alice fic when Speranza wrote this, and it didn't disappoint me at all--it was so perfectly in character and the voices are so precisely them it kind of took my breath away. Alice is every bit the clever psychopath but also kind of undone by her gleeful obsession with Luther. And there's a really interesting shift to an outsider POV that works perfectly in the context of the story, so that we see Alice and John through a completely different experience. It feels very much like how their story really will go post-series. It also starts with a scorching hot sex scene, so there's that. ;-)
ETA: The fuckers at Universal are already creating a limit on one of the vids I uploaded. Can anyone point me to language I can use to dispute it? I need something I can paste into the little box that says I have a right to fair use...
Obvy after Escapade I'll have a new vid for the channel, though. I haven't even figured out how to pack yet. I want to try to pack light this time as practice for traveling to Boston/England/Wales in May, but packing light has never been my strong suit. It's too complicated!
I haven't been able to start on the story that was writing itself in my mind the other night. Haven't been able to do more than lay in a few clips for my Club Vivid vid. But at least I found a fantastic freaking song for a vid to take to Vidukon, for the series Awake. It's so perfect I could die.
I read a wonderful, wonderful story the other night. Though it's a Steve Rogers/Phil Coulson story, it's also a love letter to fandom and being a fan, and what it's like to be the object of fan adoration and to be a fan and meet the object of your affections, what it's like to be friends with them. I just...seriously, people who know me know how vanishingly rare it is for me to come over all flaily about a story, because I'm usually so stuck on the minor issues and spelling mistakes and things like that that I can never fully rec things. But this was easy for me to handwave any issues -- it's just lovely, and swoony, and you should go read it right now, I don't care if you don't want that pairing. It's got friendship with everyone as well, and it's just lovely.
Ask Galatea (7251 words) by thingswithwings
Fandom: The Avengers (2012)
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Phil Coulson/Steve Rogers, Bruce Banner & Steve Rogers, Steve Rogers & Natasha Romanov, Steve Rogers & Thor, Nick Fury & Steve Rogers
Characters: Steve Rogers, Phil Coulson, Bruce Banner, Natasha Romanov, Thor (Marvel), Nick Fury
Additional Tags: Fannishness, Fans, Soldiers, Patriotism, Service, Service Submission, Steve Feels
The trading cards and the costume redesign are Steve's first clues, but he doesn't recognize them at the time; he's too new to the world, too angry at it, too busy fighting a war.
I had a rough weekend emotionally. One of the last things to do with my dad's estate left me really sad and shaky on Friday (honestly, why are people so shitty to someone when they know they've lost their entire family and have nothing and no one left, someone who was deferent and polite to them? What makes a person behave like that?), and then being around mean people on Saturday was just kind of the icing on the shit cake. But at least I got to spend many hours with Buffy, my previous foster dog and the happiest dog on the planet. She is doing so well! All her fur has grown back on the nakey spots she had while she was here, and she hasn't lost any of her joie de vivre. And of course she was loving being loved all night.
Keeping fingers and toes crossed for full sunshine at Escapade. I really need it.
Notes For A Murky Morning (277 words) by Anonymous
This is really lovely and bittersweet, looking at Michael trying to cope with his two universes.
My main story, for Allstate Insurance (Mayhem):
And I'm the Obstacle You Never Expected (2003 words) by Anonymous
When I first saw that there was an original character, I was a little nervous, but Peggy the narrator is a fabulous creation, and a perfect match for Mayhem. I was lucky to get this!
James Bond/Casino Royale through Skyfall
All the Queen's Women and All the Queen's Men (1208 words) by Anonymous
Lovely voices, has a nice bitter tone under it.
Brittle Year (1096 words) by Anonymous
Wow, what an amazing take on what Bond and M had, and how things might be after Skyfall.
That Untravelled World (1105 words) by Anonymous
Wonderfully bittersweet, and a take on M after Skyfall that I want to think of as real.
Protégé (2012 words) by Anonymous
Fantastic portrait of M, with bonus Peggy Carter from Captain America.
Cranberries (2999 words) by Anonymous
Wonderful, wonderful Jane voice, and a perfect Max as well.
How Grant got his Max back (1089 words) by Anonymous
This is the story I wish was an actual episode. I want Max and Grant to get back together so bad.
An Efficacious Remedy (4025 words) by Anonymous
I loved that there was a story centered around Mary, and that she gets some love and the possibility of a happy future. I still don't totally get why the doctor's friend played the Valentine's prank and I was hoping this might give me a reason, but it is a sweet take on the two of them getting together.
An Explanation Waiting To Happen (7231 words) by Anonymous
A look at Jackson trying to help one of his women with a broken wing clients.
and we'll be free (1194 words) by Anonymous
It doesn't seem like this one gets the love it deserves -- it's a beautiful picture of Elinor and what she thinks about in life.
all the more reason (1331 words) by Anonymous
I guess because Bourne Legacy is getting all the love, this one is not getting the attention it deserves, but it should -- this is an excellent picture of Pamela Landy and the aftermath of her helping Jason.
The Diner Rules (4523 words) by Anonymous
Another time I was a little bit wary of an original character narration, but it was totally worth it and a good read for a point in time of Mallory's life, and how she affects some other women.
Fairytale Princess (2689 words) by Anonymous
It makes me sad that this is not getting many hits. This is an excellent look at Mallory's path through life, and the structure is unique and fascinating.
Gashlycrumb Tinies/Addams Family
V is for Virgil who died en flambé (1374 words) by Anonymous
This wasn't actually on my list to read, either fandom, really, but I'm so glad I detoured and read this. It has illustrations!
A Few Sparks More (1069 words) by Anonymous
Awesome Rawhide voice, cute fill-in between the movie that was and the movie that never was.
I haven't even read for my major fandoms like Justified, but I hope I'll get there soonish. Festividding is taking up a lot of the time I expected to devote to more reading. I know there's still a plethora of stuff to read.
So, I haven't paid much attention at all to the fic that poured forth from the Avengers mania, but reading belmanoir's Thor/Loki roadtrip series is making me want to read more. I think, honestly, there's not a pairing I wouldn't like, but I'm especially interested in Coulson/anybody (I can't even tell you how much I adore Coulson. He is my new fictional spiritual fiance -- I would never leave him like that ungrateful cellist!), Clint and Natasha together, and Clint with whomever or Natasha with whomever, as long as she's not portrayed as weaker. I could also do Loki if someone's good at explaining him. But honestly, I like them all (science bros!). I'm afraid, though, to walk unprotected into these waters. I would love some recs. Stuff I like -- angst (real angst, not OMG I Have a Hangnail "angst"), hurt/comfort, road trips, plotty save the world stuff, and most of all, cracking dialog. I do not like kink stuff, bdsm, anything with babies, or heavy AUs (I like "what-if" AUs, where one small change alters the course of everything, but there better be some consequences). Actually, now that I mention it, I love stories with stakes -- no, not the Buffy kind, the kind where things are at stake, where there are consequences to things. I enjoyed the Thor, Cap, and first Iron Man movies, though I didn't think they were the genius works everyone else thought they were, so characters from those are fine (Peggy! Bucky!). Also, spelling and grammar really count with me. What would you rec for someone with my requirements? Anything?
I need to get started on my 100 things challenge. I will!
And here are the pics of the day from Hawaii.
Anole lizards around the McBryde Gardens at the National Botanical Gardens on Kauai.
Also I have a new foster puppersons, a little charcoal colored schnauzer who is super cute and looks kind of like a dark version of Gromit.
But the main thing I wanted to talk about is a plea for help. I volunteered to VJ a show at Vividcon called Weird Science. It was my idea, and now I'm in a panic because I'm realizing the vids I was thinking of probably wouldn't work! What I was thinking of was vids about skience (like Fringe, X-Files, House that sort of thing -- the goofy stuff that passes for science in tvland), about mad scientists (from Frankenstein to Walter Bishop and everyone in between), crazy skience run amok (like, well, the movie Weird Science), mutants and slayers and monsters and all that. Maybe there's even a good Spock vid out there... I just don't know. Do you?
Feel free to point me in the direction of some vids for this show, otherwise I'm going to be in serious hot water! I said in my notes that it's not about 'ships, but I'm totally open to vids where the 'ship is part of the skience (and if anyone has a Walter/Gene vid, I'm all over that one). So help me out, flist and droll! Tell me about some Weird Science vids!
The first one is for The Middleman, and it's just fabulous and funny and silly and captures the tone of the show so perfectly: The Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny by Lemon Demon (and at DW here). Seriously, Indiana Jones references, Wendy is Chuck Norris, and Abraham Lincoln with a machete. It's just wonderful and it looks really fabulous, and the timing is superb. I hold it next to my heart, but I'm also careful not to watch it again when I'm drinking tea.
The second one is just... here is where I get all flaily and teary-eyed: It's for the little movie of my heart, Catch and Release, and I was really not expecting this because only about five people in the world have ever seen the movie, and probably even fewer of us love it with a passion like I do. Breakable (DW here is an Ingrid Michaelson song that just fits the characters in this movie to an absolute T -- they are all breakable girls and boys, but they are resilient because they love. Even if you don't know the movie, you should watch this vid because it's lovely and beautiful and sniffly and perfect.
This has really made a time that's been feeling pretty bad so much better. I feel very lucky.
Last night I watched some of the things that have sat on my tifaux for a really long time, including a one-woman monologue by Julia Sweeney (from Saturday Night Live, she created a number of memorable characters, especially Pat) called God Said, Ha! It's about her moving back to LA and then caring for her brother through his treatment for lymphoma, and her parents move in with her, and then she develops a rare kind of cervical cancer, all of this after a divorce.
I really admire people who can talk about tragic things with humor, that was always something I tried to do when both Mom and sis_r were sick. My mom wasn't exactly famous for her sense of humor, and mine is pretty black, but sis_r, I think, often appreciated my bitter sarcasm and bleak jokes because they were things she wanted to say but couldn't, because she tried so hard to keep up that positive, brave face. I think I got to be her outlet sometimes, although she used to tell me I had to be her rock, which I think both of us knew was pretty funny because I was never anybody's rock.
Anyway, at one point during this terrible ordeal, one of her cats moves in with a neighbor. I laughed and laughed. I couldn't have picked a better movie to watch. At one point she details horrible thing after horrible thing and ends up having to go to the grocery store to get cat food, and talks about how it's not a good sign when the single lady is in the checkout line with 15 cans of cat food in the middle of the night. Ah ha ha ha.
I would highly recommend this for just about anyone, but if you're the kind of person who can appreciate black humor in the face of overwhelming emotional problems, you should totally watch this. It's really kind of cathartic, I felt, and she does such a perfect impression of clueless parents that anyone can relate to the story, even if they've never had a family member get sick before.
So, speaking of cats who find themselves new homes, Olive has been pretty agreeable about following me home when I go up and get her from Sandy's house (the neighbor whose house she decided should be her new home). She talks to me like I just stopped by for a kaffee klatch or something. But then she runs right back out first chance she gets and legs it up to Sandy's. Yesterday, though, much to my surprise, she came in for food while my friend Keith was visiting (he was only here for a few hours, but I took him up to the cool new bar here and bought him a birthday drink). Then after he left, I brought her home for dinner, but she zipped back out before I could stop her, then came back a few hours later for a nap on her bed, then ran back out when I took out the garbage, and finally came home around 1, when I was going out to go look for her, there she was waiting to come in!
I guess that means the no extra food and water thing is working. I think she still wants to be up in Sandy's yard or porch, since there aren't any other hated kitties there, but she seems willing to at least come home once in a while for food. We have to work on a lot of other stuff, though. It's obvious she hates being here, but... for now, I just hope she stays with Sandy and doesn't try to find another person who'll take pity on her.
That story would be for Buckaroo Banzai, and it's called Buckaroo Banzai and the Floydada Scuffle and it is just... it left me speechless. It is as though Earl Mac Rauch had written a prequel for the movie, about Buckaroo and Rawhide's first meeting. It is hilarious and witty and has the exact perfect banter, not to mention a spot-on voice for Reno, who "narrates" it. It involves tinfoil hats, squirt guns filled with Tabasco (Jo, really, you must read this right away), assassination attempts by screwdriver, and flying tricycles. That's just for starters. Buckaroo and Rawhide were one of my requests this year, and I swear, I felt like the author had made it for me, even though it isn't. I think anyone who loved the movie would feel like this was written for them. This is an utter gem.
A couple more for James Bond-Casino Royale, two very small pieces that pack a huge punch. One is even in second person, which I normally loathe in fanfic because most people think they're being clever using it and can't pull it off at all, but this one does, beautifully so, and it fits in with M's personality. The other features one of the best lines I've read yet: "Dear boy, I'm older than you'll ever be." Yum.
In Crusoe, a couple of sweet little pieces highlighting Crusoe and Friday's loving friendship (and some extra Blackthorne creepiness bonus points in the second!)
Hot Cross Buns
But a Dream
I'm still trying to figure out reactions, too. The story I slaved over and poured my blood sweat and tears into is either so sucky no one but my recipient wants to leave comments for, or people couldn't care less about the fandom or more likely the pairing within the fandom. OTOH, the story I wrote as an extra for a pinch hit just in case something fell through? Getting tons of comments. Not that I put less effort into it, but it's a lot shorter and I didn't have much time to spend on it. I know there's no predicting Yuletide, though!! Everyone's warned me suitably.
So, things I've read, which I liked a lot. I read kind of randomly, sometimes all through the entries for one fandom, and sometimes just poking around.
The Heart of Rock and Roll has lovely small portraits of Rawhide, Perfect Tommy, and Mrs. Johnson. Yes! Mrs. Johnson!!! And Rawhide couldn't be Rawhidier.
Casino Royale (2006 James Bond)
Sur Le Pont d'Avignon has this incredible interior Vesper look at the time between the hospital and before they reach Venice. Bittersweet in the best possible way.
Wild Turkey Chase is short but really quite funny, and everyone's perfectly in character.
Selves Unimaginably Mine is another bittersweet piece, about Chuck and Sarah and what the most recent ep, Chuck vs. Santa Claus, meant for his feelings about her.
And it's Charlie Jade, y'all. The one fandom I expected least, because it's so freaking small and I know most of the people who are in it, and a lot of them aren't doing Yuletide this year.
Subjective Truth (isn't that a fantastic title?) is here and it's a Karl Lubinsky point of view looking at my beloved Charlie, after the investigation into Themba's disappearance. For a short piece, I am amazed at how much is packed into it, including real political stuff and Karl's history. Go read it and please leave comments for my wonderful gifter!
And someone else got a story... well, a couple thousand someone elses. And one of them was for another one of my v. small fandoms, Flashpoint, and it's a wonderful, lovely interior voice of Jules Callahan, on her first day at the SRU. It has Greg being sweet, adorable Greg and Ed being (and having!) a big dick. It's called Lateral Entry Program and it's really fantastic.
More recs later!
Casey vs. the Dorks is here. Yeah, there are some errors in here, but overall the voices are excellent (I especially love the Nerd Herders).
"When bored, the Nerd Herd turned on its own in a harmless but still deeply annoying fashion."
"His smile was chilling as he bore down on Chuck and Morgan, both of whom remained rooted to the spot in a fantastic display of poor survival skills."
And a slightly longer, porny Casey/Chuck slash, Chuck vs. the Itch, is adorable in the calculated way Casey decides to go after Chuck.
"It's really simple. Somehow you've gotten under my skin like a bad itch. And the best way to ease an itch is to scratch it."
I have such rotten cabin fever that I think I will go mad. The cats are certainly going mad. I walked up to the grocery store, very carefully, this afternoon just because I couldn't stand it anymore. I walk up to the store all the time, almost every day if weather allows, and I felt very petty and small sometimes, watching a lot of my neighbors walking up there too. They're the people I see drive to the store, which is about six blocks away and very walkable, as often as I walk, in their goddamn SUVs, and all I could think was, well, here we are in our hell of climate change, and it's people like you who've put us here. I expect we'll have much more unusual weather in our future and I definitely don't believe this will be the last of it for a long time, which so many people seem to think, judging by the TV and the talk at the store around me.
OTOH, my icicles on the front of the house are freaking spectacular, and huge, and I find them endlessly entertaining. I've been cleaning house a lot today, because it's gotten so horrid in here. I don't like clutter but I can live with it for a while until I snap, but I hate dirt, and I had both dirt and clutter, so I snapped and did as much as I could. I can't dust though, because of all the Christmas decorations, but I'm itching to do that.
I hope the rest of you who're in places where there's a snowmageddon going on are safe and warm, and those of you who are in places where it's quite nice, well... ptttthhh. ;-)
I wrote about all the reasons why in a review I did of the last one, which I went to see primarily because Will Yun Lee from Witchblade was in it and Lee Tamahori (Once Were Warriors) had directed, but the condensed version is: wink-wink-nudge-nudge misogyny up the wazoo; smug, above-it-all, cooler than thou suavity rubs me the wrong way; no human character to speak of, as Bond is uber-human and that's just boring; stupid gadgets and chases that go on for fucking ever; no consequences. I loved the beginning of Die Another Day, because Bond gets thrown in prison and tortured. Finally, I thought, consequences. But then he got out and the movie turned into another piece of crap. The only movie I ever liked in the franchise was On Her Majesty's Secret Service, which is widely reviled, because again, there was heartbreak and loss and consequences and a super tight plot that didn't waste a lot of time with stunts.
So you can imagine my distress when one of my favorite actors, who's always taken unusual roles and flown under the radar for most people, was getting stuck in that horrid franchise. It was heartening to hear that they were planning to reboot it, but I still had doubts. Not about Craig, though -- I think he's just one of the most amazing actors around, and he can be such a chameleon that I knew he could do anything. Plus, he singes my eyeballs with his hotness, and so I figured that at the very least, it's a couple hours of him looking good at my local theatre.
I know not everyone thinks he's hot (some critic described him as having the quality of a dyspectic Steven McQueen) and of course, you're nuts, but the thing that makes me happy is that even those who aren't swept away by his sexayness have talked about what an amazing actor he is.
There are still a couple movies to go on my Netflix list, which I keep pushing back for one reason or another (like, I just don't want to watch another talky political drama as in Archangel just now, and I'm not up for yet another loony obsesso guy like he sounds in Obsession, so I've just kind of kept them back a bit, and I will get around to Infamous when I can), but I've seen most of his work that's available here across the pond, and so thought I'd do more than just wax rhapsodic about an actor I adore, and tell you, in case you're thinking it since you now want to write and read James Bond fic and Daniel Craig is your new BSO, about his canon. Because I gotta tell you, some of the movies should come with warnings. Seriously. Henceforth my gift to you: Daniel Craig-o-rama.
( So, you want to rent a movie with Daniel Craig in it )
It's the last, apparently, of the Faction Paradox SF books from Mad Norwegian Press, and I highly, highly recommend you get your hands on it. I think it's probably easiest to order through Amazon, alas, but if you love good writing and great story ideas, you won't be disappointed. Or maybe if you have a great bookstore nearby, you can order it. Really, seriously, go buy!
I had the privilege to work on it a bit in a previous incarnation because one potential publisher wanted Kalima to cut 40,000 words! (And then the bastards didn't even publish it!) The best part was that I got to spend so much time talking to her for real, instead of only online through LJ.
I know it's been a trauma, sweetie, and I know you're worried about the future, but I hope that this is a good sign that people are now going to recognize the incredible writing talent you have and this is the first of many stepping stones. I am thrilled to have your book, and I hope that we can meet up sometime so you can autograph it for me. You are truly gifted and I am proud to know you.
Cells by the Servant, Global Frequency pilot, vid by the Pug. The first one is for a fandom that pretty much no one knows -- I sure didn't, when the_pug told me about it: Global Frequency, which was scheduled to air on what became the CW and so was disappeared when the WB went kaput. It's a very cool futuristic noirish series (at least, it looks like it to me; the pilot was leaked to the Net of course, and the_pug is sending me a copy so I can view it all on my own, very exciting) and the_pug has found an excellent song for this incredibly atmospheric show, and also managed to take what is probably a heavily exposition-heavy episode (pilots always are, I find) and give you just enough sense of what's happening to reel you in, without expecting to take away a lot of context. Also, it has Michelle Forbes kicking ass, and that is always a good thing.
Whatever It Takes by Sinead Lohan, Bend It Like Beckham, vid by just_eunice. I have loved this song for years and years, and I was thrilled to see someone use it for a vid, but the extra bonus here was that it was used beautifully, and that's always the treat -- you're willing to fogive a lot in a crappy vid if it's a song you adore, sometimes, so it's a joy when it's used to make a lovely thing like this vid. It captures everything I loved about the movie, and everything I love about the song -- getting high on my mortality, indeed: it's impossible not to feel like you could go to the moon, too, with these ladies when you watch this vid. My favorite thing is right at the beginning -- a wonderful contrast of the practice lineup of female footballers , juxtaposed against the older, proper Indian ladies in their saris, all sitting in a matching immobile line.
Perfect Day by Lou Reed, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, vid by aycheb. This has a wonderfully spooky, weird, off-kilter quality that I absolutely adore (and the choice of Lou Reed just seems like a masterstroke to me, the drugged-out, trancelike way he "sings"). It's a perfect backdrop for Willow -- her overweening needs to know and make things conform to what she wants, while still being somewhat passive, the various "addictions" (I use that word very hesitatingly and believe it's grossly overused, and that they never ever made a good case for Willow being addicted to magic on the series) or at least dependencies in her life. The song is so quiet that it seems almost as if it's not tied together, that there's no narrative, but aycheb's gift is that she threads in a little narrative and character study while you're not even looking, and the ending is a doozy.
Hung Up by Madonna, Driven, vid by Obsessive 24. Really, I have no idea who the guys are in this movie, I've never heard of it before, and I don't know if it's all half as blissfully gay as it seems, but I am certainly -- and not even the least bit quietly -- rather giddy about racing cars and the barely closeted gay boys that drive them, whether it's street-racing rice burners or Formula 1 cars. And I'm also giddy about pretty much everything obsessive24 makes vids-wise, so it's a wonderful combination. Cars, homoerotic subtext made text, longing looks, spewing champagne bottles... really, what more could you ask for? I have to check this movie out, soon. And you should, if you haven't seen her other vids, watch all of them. Because I said so.
I Only Want to Be With You by Dusty Springfield, The Persuaders, vid by keiko_kirin. There are actually four vids on the JKL site mentioned in Keiko's LJ post that I'm linking to here, and you absolutely have to watch all of them or I keel you dead, okay? Especially Pants, which is just fucking wonderful, and Jill's Crazy, which got a lot of press after Vividcon and it totally deserves it (Life on Mars and SOO GOOD), and Lynn's This is the Place, which is so exciting to see online, but most of all I want you to watch I Only Want to Be With You. Because it is FUN. And schweet. And so, so wunnerful. Keiko has this amazing knack for finding neglected fandoms or not famous fandoms or obscure actors from other corners of the world and then introducing or reintroducing us to them via her fiction and vids (and her gorgeous screengrabs of beautiful Asian actors, sigh). The Persuaders was this swingin' mod-a-go-go series from 1971 with Tony Curtis and Roger Moore, and they've never been more adorable and so, so very gay. There's a little bit of Life on Mars, a little bit of Pros, a lot of I Spy and Man From UNCLE, and just a whole bunch of other great stuff from that time period (give or take a few years), and you must go watch it or I keel you.
ETA: Please, if you enjoy any of these or have anything to say about them, even if it's just "I really enjoyed this," let the vidders know. Vidders spend a lot of time, money, and effort to create these things, yet they get no cookies for all the hard work. I guarantee you it'll make their day.
I'm definitely in the "innovative and audacious" camp. When you first start watching it, you're thinking, wow, this is gorgeous, and then you kind of go, huh, that's an interestingly... uh, modern choice of music, and then when you get to some of the first bits of dialog between Swank's character, the suffragist Alice Paul, and Frances O'Connor's, you're thinking, whoa -- that is not a phrase from 1917! But then it starts to grow on you -- or rather, it did me. I loved the fact that they used modern techniques and dialog to make a story about a period a lot of people find yawn-inducing into something much more compelling.
Initially, in fact, the story is slow -- Paul and her fellow "take a more aggressive approach" activists are embroiled in some more political maneuvering as they gradually begin to make a split with the main suffrage organization at the time, and that is never terrifically exciting. Though the cast is incredible -- Angelica Huston, Julia Ormond, a pre-McDreamy (but no less dreamy, OMG) Patrick Dempsey, Vera Farmiga, and even Alma from Deadwood! -- political machinations are often not that engaging for modern audiences, but the director's really unusual approach and the beautiful cinematography pull you in.
The right to vote for women has way too often been downplayed in our history texts -- I didn't know about, for instance, the jailing and torture of many of the women until I went and researched it on my own in junior high. Most of the time it's just a note on 1920 -- women were granted the right to vote by an amendment blah blah. The best thing about Iron Jawed Angels is that it brings to life people who have been shoved into the margins of history, and shows us just how terrible their fight was for something we all take for granted. Toward the end, when the U.S. goes to war in 1918, things start to get very, very ugly, and they do not stint on showing just how horrific force-feeding of hunger strikers actually was.
For me, the movie was a great example of just how engaging film can make history to a modern audience. We seem to have this belief that history has to be told in epic presentations, with everyone using faux British accents if they're not already from there (because god knows, no other accent would be historically accurate! Look at the pasting Scorsese took when he let his American actors use their own voices in Last Temptation of Christ), and with quasi-symphonic music as a background. Iron Jawed Angels is gorgeous, living proof that you can make history and the people who made it engaging, fascinating, and thoroughly relatable. If it weren't for a steamy bathtub scene with Swank and a few swear words, in fact, this would be a perfect movie to show junior-high kids to make them fully understand the cost of the rights they will probably soon grow up to take for granted and ignore.
Judging by the amount of comments on her LJ, I don't think there's anyone who hasn't seen f1renze's incredible Veronica Mars vid, Deja Vu, which you can get info about here. It's haunting and beautiful, and did something that I really love, which is to give me a new perspective on a character I didn't much like in the series. I came away not just understanding better how much Lily meant to, and has influenced Veronica, but who Lily was as a person, and why she mattered so very much to Veronica and to others. Perfect song, perfect show, perfect vid.
That vidding goddess killabeez has made what she called a schmoopy vid for Deadwood, for Seth and Sol, that is so not just schmoopy it is to laugh. A link to The Heart of a Man is here but I just noticed that this post is friends-locked, and I'm not sure if she's put it up on her site yet (and also, that my info about Killa's vids site it woefully messed up and I need to rectify this post-haste). I love the bittersweet edge to the song, which is why I don't think it's just schmoopy, but Killa's threatening to "fix" it in the future, but I hope not. It's just a lovely little picture of these two guys and the complexity of their relationship to each other and to others. Yummy.
sdwolfpup posted a Farscape vid to Tom Waits's Rain Dogs. Yup, you heard that right. Farscape and Tom Waits. In a million years I could not have expected that combo to work, but it so does in her capable hands. Run here and go watch. The timing elements here are just fascinating to me, with these long slow doors-opening-and-closing shots that work perfectly within the vid, and then the faster cuts -- all mixed up and played with to create these wonderfully askew clip timings that match the tone of the show perfectly. As a non-FS fan, I found it really accessible, which I can't always say for vids in this fandom. And? It's just *pretty*.
justacat and przed collaborated on a new Professionals vid called I Don't Know Why I Love You, that is available in RM format on PRZed's site and in Divx here at the Professionals Ciruit Archive. For the most part I really liked this vid, from Bodie's POV about just how difficult it is to understand why on earth he loves a pain in the ass like Doyle. As someone mentioned last night, "poor Bodie" vids are pretty rare. I had some issues with some of the editing techniques used in the vid but for the most part I really enjoyed this, and am just loving the fact that there are NEW Pros vids coming into the world after so long of it being merely history.
Another vid that I had a few issues with, notably the too-soft fadein/fadeout transitions, but that overall impressed me a lot was a Black Hawk Down vid to the Wallflowers' Everybody Out of the Water by missmishka, available here. For the most part this uses the driving beat of the song and focuses on the action of the battle to create a pretty clear picture of the chaos and misery of combat, especially when you're trapped in a city being targeted from all sides, and unable to get help.
I would like to rec my frequent vidding partner in crime's (feochadn) new anime vid called Waltz, but alas, I do not know if she will put it online at the AMV archive. It is to Nickel Creek's The First and Last Waltz, for a fandom I can never remember the Japanese name of but that always makes me think of tonkatsu because it has katsu in the name and I always go to a food place when I hear it, but it is an anime version of The Count of Monte Cristo. Anyway, it is the first vid she's completed solo in years, since her Band of Brothers vid Ebben? Ne andro lontana, and I am very excited that she has done something at last where I wasn't standing behind her going "finish a vid. finish a vid. finish a vid." It's gorgeous and sad and just ... gorgeous and also rare (for me) in anime vids in that it's not just this assault-your-eyes fest, it tells the story as it needs to be told. It is available on our work in progress DVD now, though, and you can get info on how to get those from my vids site page about DVDs (the new one we're putting together is called Son of Don't Fight in the Snow). And also you can encourage her to put it up on the AMV site if you want to see it, but man, it looks shiny on the DVD!
Whew! Okay, hopefully more recs sometime in the future. Unless no one cares. In which case I will stop. Or something.