25 September 2017 @ 04:12 pm
Oh Hey, I Guess Teen Wolf Is Finally Over  

Posted by Kaila Hale-Stern

A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away called 2011, I started watching the television show Teen Wolf because everyone in online fandom told me to.

I tried to love Teen Wolf; I really did. The show was loosely modeled on the 1985 movie starring Michael J. Fox, and it had a lot of hallmarks of the kind of content that I like: supernatural good and bad guys, brooding antiheroes, family drama, close-knit friendships, and pretty people upon which to gaze. The friendly cast went out of their way to interact with fans and even engage with fan theories and popular “ships.” I got sucked into the world of Teen Wolf for a while. I still have a winter hat that I bought, shaped like a wolf’s head, from when I was feeling it.

But Teen Wolf was never a very good show, with its first season consisting of 93% lacrosse games, 4% bumbling high school angsty hijinks, and 3% transformative monster makeup that was usually more laughable than scary. Still, for me, the appeal lay in the sense of community and camaraderie that had sprung up around the show, and the affection for the characters, who all seemed to have clearly defined parts: the smart-mouthed best friend, the beautiful love interest whose family background prompted a Romeo/Juliet-type storyline, the rude, macho jock, etc.

What was exciting about Teen Wolf at the time is that everyone had secrets and suggested hidden depth: the picture-perfect Queen Bee was also a brilliant student, tragedy lay in most characters’ pasts, and the out gay character was the most popular kid in school.

It felt refreshing that “otherness” in the show was represented by being an actual mythical creature, not because of sexual orientation or race. In this representation, Teen Wolf was groundbreaking for a little while. And then, as often happens when there is an obsessively dedicated fanbase, criticism and toxicity set in after disappointed expectations, and the show’s creatives dropped all kinds of (lacrosse) balls. I’ll let the Advocate explain:

Teen Wolf also flipped the objectification script by flaunting the buff bods of the boys in its cast at every opportunity, including numerous homoerotic locker room scenes, and then took it even further. Boys would flirt with boys as well as girls — most frequently by Stiles Stilinski (played by Dylan O’Brien). Before long, it became obvious that the creative minds behind Teen Wolf weren’t simply using queer elements to infuse the show with gay appeal, they were ramping up the gay appeal to court a young audience. And this audience had grown up with LGBT visibility in various forms.

By the time Teen Wolf entered its third season, the show was primed to be one of the gayest ever aimed at a young audience. A new gay teen was introduced in the form of alpha wolf twin Ethan (played by Charlie Carver), who became romantically involved with Danny, and “Sterek” speculation, which had been encouraged by the show’s cast and production team, was at an all-time high.

But while the third season included standout moments for visibility such as a hotel room make-out session between Danny and Ethan in the episode “Motel California” (which was depicted in the same light as an opposite-sex smooch fest that took place later in the same episode), the show’s potential to be an LGBT entertainment beacon began to fade. Danny and Ethan’s romance received little screen time and went largely undeveloped, with Ethan’s character moving away from Beacon Hills following the heroic death of his straight twin brother at the season’s end.

[…] Additionally, the is-he-or-isn’t-he draw of Stiles’s sexuality became less of a reason to watch and more of a point of contention for several fans who began to accuse the show of “queer baiting” by continuing to tease viewers that the character might swing both ways while avoiding any actual payoff.

When news originally broke that Teen Wolf’s fourth season, which wrapped last week, would include a new gay teen of color named Mason (played by Khylin Rambo), many fans were hopeful that the show’s potential to greatly further LGBT visibility would be realized.

Instead, the opposite happened.

Stiles became romantically involved with the female werecoyote Malia (played by Shelley Henning), Danny completely disappeared from the show with no explanation, and Mason — who received very little character development – essentially became a token character.

Fans hungry for LGBT visibility from a show that had begun with such potential were outraged at the new direction, and when The Advocate published a recent interview with the show’s principal cast discussing the history of the show’s positive LGBT elements, a wave of angry comments ensued.

While some might dismiss fan outrage over the show’s dwindling LGBT representation, their passionate outcry highlights a growing divide between younger viewers and those who are creating the shows they watch. For a generation that has never known a time when LGBT people were not represented on the small screen in some form, limited visibility and queer subtext are no longer enough to hold their interest.

Essentially: Teen Wolf built much of its initial wildly enthusiastic reception on a promise of a new era for LGBT characters, then was seen, time and again, to let fans down with teasing winks and nominal characters who were openly LGBT but otherwise unimportant. By the time Ethan and Mason were introduced I had long since stopped watching, but I would see the occasional bursts of frustration and anger go by on my Tumblr dashboard. I’d shake my head and mourn for the promise that Teen Wolf once held to be truly groundbreaking herein.

Instead, like much other media these days, the show seemed to believe that it was enough to simply include LGBT-labeled characters, pat themselves on the back for it, then move on. Giving those characters fully rich romantic lives and plotlines—or, God forbid, letting one of them be a lead character—seemed entirely out of the reach of Teen Wolf‘s claws.

So as I read this morning about the show’s finale, I’m no longer interested in it enough to watch even the last show—Teen Wolf happened for me a long time ago. But seeing so many mentions of it reminded me of when a lot of us thought that LGBT representation was going to get its due on a slick MTV series made for a new generation, and the sadness I continue to feel that we’re still so far from it.

Did you watch the Teen Wolf finale?

(image: MTV)

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25 September 2017 @ 03:32 pm
New Trump Travel Ban Is Now Indefinite, Still Cruel and Xenophobic  

Posted by Marykate Jasper

Our xenophobe-in-chief issued the third version of his travel ban on Sunday, just as the second version was set to expire. This new version of the ban adds restrictions to three additional countries (Chad, North Korea, and Venezuela) and removes one previously banned country: Sudan. Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen are still on the ban list. With more tailored restrictions and the addition of countries with a non-Muslim majority, this new ban may prove more difficult to fight in court, but since these new restrictions are indefinite rather than 90 days long, the fight against them is more crucial than ever.

Despite the removal of Sudan, this new proclamation is undoubtedly more of the same, meant to appeal to the xenophobia and Islamophobia of Trump’s base. It even specifically targets immigrant visas, in case it was unclear that this is about preventing more non-white people from becoming U.S. citizens. “The United States affords lawful permanent residents more enduring rights than it does to nonimmigrants,” reads the proclamation. “Lawful permanent residents are more difficult to remove than nonimmigrants even after national security concerns arise, which heightens the costs and dangers of errors associated with admitting such individuals. And although immigrants generally receive more extensive vetting than nonimmigrants, such vetting is less reliable when the country from which someone seeks to emigrate exhibits significant gaps in its identity-management or information-sharing policies, or presents risks to the national security of the United States. For all but one of those 7 countries, therefore, I am restricting the entry of all immigrants.”

Even in its official language, this proclamation views permanent residents’ rights as some sort of burdensome, unnecessary security concern.

For nonimmigrants, the restrictions are still quite severe, but they vary by country. Citizens of Chad, Libya, and Yemen won’t be allowed to enter on non-immigrant business visas; only students and exchange visitor visa-holders from Iran are still allowed entry; nonimmigrant Somali nationals will be subject to additional scrutiny; North Korea and Syria are banned entirely; the restrictions on Venezuela are mostly limited to government officials and their families. You can read more on the specifics for each country in the proclamation itself.

Current visa holders will not be affected, according to The New York Times. “Administration officials said that the new rules would not apply to legal permanent residents of the United States, and that visitors who currently hold valid visas from the countries listed will not have their visas revoked,” the Times reported. “That means that students already in the United States can finish their studies and employees of businesses in the United States who are from the targeted countries may stay for as long as their existing visas remain valid. People whose visas expire will be subject to the travel ban.”

Refugees are not covered in this proclamation, and so an additional executive order and/or presidential proclamation on refugees is expected in the next few days.

These modifications to the ban, while significant, don’t change – and in many ways amplify – its rotten core. As ACLU Executive Director Anthony D. Romero stated: “Six of President Trump’s targeted countries are Muslim. The fact that Trump has added North Korea — with few visitors to the U.S. — and a few government officials from Venezuela doesn’t obfuscate the real fact that the administration’s order is still a Muslim ban. President Trump’s original sin of targeting Muslims cannot be cured by throwing other countries onto his enemies list.”

However, the Trump administration was undoubtedly craftier in its language this time around. According to the text of the proclamation, these restrictions are based on three factors in the countries’ security apparatuses: identity-management information, national security and public-safety information, and national security and public-safety risk assessment. And countries can supposedly be removed from the ban list once they meet certain standards, with one official describing the ban as “necessary and conditions-based, not time-based.”

In an email to Reuters, Saikrishna Prakash, a professor at the University of Virginia School of Law, said that this may make the new version of the ban more difficult to fight in court, because it explicitly claims to be based on a global review of foreign countries’ security capabilities. She wrote, “The greater the sense that the policy reflects a considered, expert judgment, the less the temptation (by courts) to second-guess the executive. It looks less like a matter of prejudice or a desire to fulfill a campaign promise.”

This new ban is set to go into effect on October 18, more than a week after Supreme Court arguments against the current ban are scheduled to begin.

(Via The Washington Post, The New York Times, and Reuters; image via Shutterstock)

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25 September 2017 @ 03:18 pm
“ABCs of Beth” Is One of Rick and Morty’s Most Thematically Developed Episodes This Season  

Posted by Vrai Kaiser

The Recap: Beth visits a procedurally generated dimension Rick built for her as a child in hopes of rescuing a friend she’d repressed memories of abandoning there, learning in the process that she really is just like her dad; meanwhile, Summer and Morty suffer through custody weekend with Jerry and his rebound alien girlfriend.

This might be one of the most considered, thematically developed episodes of the season. Director Juan Meza-León and writer Mike McMahan last worked together on the season three premiere, and they shine just as well with this comparatively mundane material (for R&M, anyway) as they did with the mindhopping space epic. We’re severely overdue for an episode focusing on Beth, and while a single episode can’t fill that void it makes a pretty good start of it.

The script for this episode structures itself as variations on a theme: the transfer of behavior between generations.  It’s a somewhat baldly stated conceit, but that doesn’t detract from the success of the execution. McMahan’s script (and the rest of the writers as well—I give a fair amount of time to the lead writer, but R&M is clearly a strongly team-based pitch room) connects and twists the theme through each set of parents and children—Rick and Beth (two of a kind), Jerry and Morty and Summer (the kids are a vast improvement), even Tommy and his barely-seen father (Tommy is fucked up in the exact way his dad is accused of, for debatably unrelated reasons).

Jerry’s subplot is a pretty straightforward breather. His new girlfriend is less character than conflict-generating plot device, but it’s hard to begrudge the opportunity to see Morty and Summer operating on the same tired, frustrated wavelength. The show’s always struggled with the “love’ part of the “terrible people who love each other” subgenre; showing that these kids are almost certainly not okay but at least better off as a team scratches that narrative itch in an appealing way. And I have yet to tire of people telling Jerry to get his shit together—at least so long as it continues resulting in at least incremental change.

But all of that is so much side dish compared to the A-plot. The time in the first act spent assuring us that Beth and Rick are smarter than the plot is briefly excruciating, the kind of writing choice with obvious logic behind it that’s still something of a chore to sit through, but it blossoms fantastically into the discussion of Beth-as-young-sociopath. Watching Rick pull out Beth’s childhood toys is wonderfully layered writing: here we have two unambiguously terrible people responsible for multiple deaths with little to no remorse for their actions beyond Beth’s slight discomfort at how this would affect perceptions of her, but the subtext at work speaks volumes. Why did Rick save these toys? Why did Beth forget about this element of her relationship with her father? What does this mean for both of them and also Beth’s unseen mother?

Of course, the most important subtextual question is the pointedly unanswered one: if this cloning project is so ideal and so perfect, then why did Rick ultimately leave his family rather than employ it? The fandom will no doubt have plenty of time to spin theories on the subject, as well as Beth’s decision—next week’s season finale seems to be returning to the Citadel, meaning that it’ll likely be literal years before we see any kind of resolution on this subject.

While slightly frustrating, it makes sense as an issue to leave dangling in light of the direction the show’s taken this season. Beyond questions of practical usage, the idea of the perfect clones flies in the face of the fact this season has hammered home again and again: life is about choices, and actions have consequences. It’s kind of awesome to see Beth begin to embrace who she wants to be rather than who she thinks she should be (even if that…uh, involves a lot of murder), but a brief moment in a literal sealed-off fantasy land isn’t the same as deciding to abandon your not-yet-grown kids without even talking to them (points in Beth’s favor: making sure the kids’d be cared for; points against: not wanting to deal with actually interfacing with them as humans). Whether or not Beth left—I’d say the framing implies pretty heavily that she did—that forces changes on both the character and the central family.

Up to now the show took Beth’s normalcy for granted, using the mundanity of her issues and the narrative archetype of The Oblivious Mom as a source of grounding. With that gone, everything has to stabilize into a new normal. And in a show that so frequently turns its eye toward metatextual subjects and how stories work in particular, I have high hopes for how the writers might explore that topic going forward.

Vrai Kaiser is a queer author and pop culture blogger; they’re not ready for another two year break. You can read more essays and find out about their fiction at Fashionable Tinfoil Accessories, listen to them podcasting on Soundcloud, support their work via Patreon or PayPal, or remind them of the existence of Tweets.

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25 September 2017 @ 07:43 am
[Sep. 25, 1962] Peaks and Valleys (October 1962 Analog)  
[if you’re new to the Journey, read this to see what we’re all about!]

by Gideon Marcus

There are two poles when it comes to how science fiction magazines like to fill their pages. The Fantasy and Science Fiction approach involves lots of short stories -- it makes for an impressive Table of Contents and a lot of bite-sized pieces. Analog tends toward the other extreme: its stories tend to be novellas and serials, and you only get 4-5 piece of fiction each issue. As a result, the average quality of any given issue relies on a very few pieces. With Analog, if you don't like several of the authors, you're pretty much out of luck (and 50 cents).

The October 1962 Analog is, fortunately, not that bad, but a wide swath of it is taken up with a pretty lousy novella. If I'd started with it, I don't know if I'd have made it to the rest of the magazine. It's a good thing I read from the back first...

(see the rest at Galactic Journey!)
Current Mood: sick
Current Location: San Diego, CA
25 September 2017 @ 02:17 pm
Review: Loving Vincent Paints a Beautiful Portrait of a Beloved Figure - 3 out of 5 starry nights  

Posted by Charline Jao

Over almost a decade, writer-directors Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman, along with 125 painters, produced 62,450 oil paintings that became Loving Vincent.

There are two stories told within the film, separated jarringly by black and white scenes and scenes told through the artist’s vivd impressionist style. These shifts transport us through time—events leading up to the death of van Gogh are in B&W, and events in the “present” are in color. The story follows episodes of van Gogh’s life through the perspective of Armand Roulin (Douglas Booth) who must deliver a letter to the artist’s brother Theo van Gogh. It’s a task he somewhat begrudgingly takes on after his father (Joseph Roulin, van Gogh’s postman) emphasizes the important of van Gogh’s final letter finding a recipient.

After Roulin discovers that Theo is also dead, he goes on a journey to deliver it to van Gogh’s doctor Gachet whom he believes is the most suitable recipient. The story then becomes a kind of pseudo-crime mystery as Roulin talks to various people who knew the artist. Gauguin, a fisherman, the doctor’s daughter, the woman who ran the inn he stayed at, his paint supplier, etc. all share memories of the artist. We learn that van Gogh went from perfectly happy to allegedly suicidal in six weeks—or did he? Was he murdered and instead lied about the cause?

This mystery plot, it turns out, serves more as an excuse to speak to different people involved with van Gogh than anything else. Through this we see van Gogh the genius artist, van Gogh the tortured and deeply lonely soul, van Gogh the awkward man, etc.

The artwork is mesmerizing, as if we are watching a painting organically move and take on a life of its own. The frame often lingers on van Gogh’s original composition before going into motion, which feels like an excellent and appropriate tribute to his work. There is nothing else like it. However, the films shines best in its quiet moments and in specific sequences. As a complete piece, the art can sometimes feel almost too rotoscope-y and during transitions, things get almost overly punctuated by individual paintings.

Of course, the biggest appeal of Loving Vincent isn’t the story but the art. Still, the two don’t complement each other or fit together as seamlessly as they should. This stiff pacing, as well as the back-and-forth between investigation and biopic conventions, makes it difficult to stay immersed at times. I suspect that this might be the great challenge of the film, to try and capture the magic of van Gogh’s paintings and build on them in a different medium. When we think of the wonder that a van Gogh painting inspires, the story told here just feels a bit … underwhelming. And while one cannot deny the talents of Saorise Ronan, Chris O’Dowd, and Jerome Flynn, this feels like a film where casting less recognizable actors would’ve been a better choice.

Despite the stumbles in story, Loving Vincent provides a small glimpse into the mind of this genius man. It likely says more about him than the film, that the movie couldn’t fully contain his capacity for love, loneliness, and imagination. Instead, the film chooses instead to observe the impacts he had on the people who knew him and the impact he still has on us today. While those already familiar with the artist might not gain too much from the story, the beauty of the film is sure to be a treat for fans of van Gogh’s art and history fans.

The title Loving Vincent is a reference to the artist’s signature and how he ended his letters, “Your Loving Vincent.” However, it clearly has a secondary and third meaning—that this is a film about the people who loved Vincent van Gogh and grieved his death, as well as the people who still love him today. The film is a clear labor of love.

Especially for a figure that’s so often romanticized for his mental illness and deep sadness, it’s a beautiful way to remember the love that surrounded him and the love he put into the world.

The shifts in color, while occasionally disjointed, show how the van Gogh saw the beauty in the most mundane, forgettable, and bland spaces. Places, object, and people that would have been forgotten became vivid, unforgettable masterpieces unlike anything else. For me, these images—more than any dialogue—emphasize what kind of vision, talent, and character was lost when van Gogh died.

Loving Vincent is currently in theaters in NYC and expanding nationally.

(images: Good Deed Entertainment)

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25 September 2017 @ 02:10 pm
Get Freaked Out by Pennywise for the First Time All Over Again With the Losers Club Actors  

Posted by Dan Van Winkle

It is now the highest-grossing horror movie of all time—in the United States, at least—not accounting for inflation, having surpassed The Exorcist. That’s due in no small part to Bill Skarsgård’s incredibly freaky Pennywise, who will never let you look at a clown the same way again, regardless of your existing feelings on them.

With that at their disposal, the filmmakers went the extra mile in getting the best reaction out of the child actors portraying the movie’s “Losers’ Club.” In a featurette about bringing the villain to life, they reveal that the kids had never seen Pennywise before the projector scene, when It shows up to terrorize them. That resulted in some especially horrified reactions to Skarsgård’s take on the character, and you can see it all come together in the video above, if you want to vicariously relive your own first time through the film.

(image: screengrab)

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25 September 2017 @ 08:45 am
Sorry to keep beating this dead horse  
Except the horse isn't dead and I truly believe the nation's entire healthcare system is at risk. Graham-Cassidy 2.0 is out, with increases tailored to win the votes of specific holdout Republican Senators, while punishing Blue states, basically, by withdrawing their funding. Please call your senators. And while you're at it, your governor.

And while you have the senators' office on the phone maybe mention that over 3 million Americans are drowning in Puerto Rico and our president is more worried about football.
25 September 2017 @ 12:25 pm
Monday Cute: Frida the Rescue Dog Is the Floofiest Hero of the Mexico Earthquake - 10/10 Would let r  

Posted by Vivian Kane

Embed from Getty Images

As Mexico City and the surrounding areas work through the aftermath of the devastating earthquake that hit earlier this week, a lot of heroes have stepped forward to help rescue survivors. Not the least of which is this beautiful pupper, Frida.

Frida is nowhere near the only wonder pup saving lives in Mexico, but she does have an incredible reputation. In her time as a rescue dog, the 7-year-old lab having saved more than 50 lives (via the above video) in a number of natural disasters.

Frida is a hero pup, who is now working to find survivors of the Mexico City earthquake. 1,00,000/10 would let save in time of devastation.

The work Frida is doing is important, and also devastating. At the same time, I cannot stop looking at these boots.

Embed from Getty Images


Embed from Getty Images

That is one heroic pup. Since we can’t all be Frida, here are a few ways you can help those in need:

Direct Relief


Global Giving

Fondo Unito Mexico

Facebook Safety Check

Embed from Getty Images

(via Reuters, image: screengrab, Twitter)

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25 September 2017 @ 04:00 am
Real Estate  
I tried converting the prices into pizzas, to put it in more familiar terms, and it just became a hard-to-think-about number of pizzas.
25 September 2017 @ 11:29 am
Germany and Britain: The difference a voting system makes  
Germany just got a 13% vote for the populist anti-foreigner party. In 2015 Britain also got a 13% vote for their populist anti-foreigner party.

In Germany that will result in them getting some MPs in a separate party, and their centre-right party will do a deal with someone more central (their centre-left party last time, probably the Greens and the liberals this time around). Total influence of the far-right: almost zero.

In Britain this resulted in the Conservatives basically implementing the manifesto commitments of UKIP in order to stop their party fragmenting. Total influence of the far-right: Brexit.

This is _entirely_ down to the voting system. Germany has basically had the equivalent of a Lab+Con coalition for most of the last ten years, and the parties are constantly moderated by having to work with each other. Even France's two-tier presidential elections allowed people to vote for a relative outsider.

In Britain you end up with two main parties which spend all of their time scrambling to keep both wings together. It's a political system which, frankly, encourages extremism by making the more central politicians reliant on the further-out wings of their parties.
25 September 2017 @ 10:20 pm
Nominations Queries Post Five  
We have been working on the tag set for 216 hours, and there are now 3196 approved fandoms in the tag set. We’re nearly there!

Please help us with the following issues:

17th Century CE RPF - We would like help to narrow this fandom down, as it is presently too broad. The characters nominated are:
  • Ben Jonson

  • Esme Stewart 1st Duke of Lennox

  • George Villiers 1st Duke of Buckingham

  • James VI and I

  • John Donne (17th Century CE RPF)

  • Robert Carr

  • Robert Carr 1st Earl of Somerset
-are these Robert Carrs the same? Esme Stewart 1st Duke of Lennox died before 1600; nominator, which person did you mean?

Chronicles of the Raven - James Barclay - Ry Darrick only seems to appear in the sequel trilogy; is that incorrect, or does this fandom label cover both trilogies? We’d also appreciate a little more information on the Unknown Warrior.

The Dark Tower - Stephen King - this is approved, and includes both 'The Man in Black' and 'Marten Broadcloak'. Nominators, would you prefer they are merged, or kept separate?

NaPolA | Before the Fall (2004) - Two characters, Albrecht Stein and Friedrich Weimer, are characters in the film; the other two, Florian Stetter and Martin Goeres, are actors. Nominator, could you please confirm whether you wanted to nominate the movie, or to nominate an RPF canon of the movie’s actors?

Never Too Wanted - The Composed Faucet Collection (Commercial) - We can’t figure out which character you’ve identified as the US Marshall - pointers, please? (Anyone?)

New York Yankees RPF - this has been approved, with characters Aaron Judge, Didi Gregorius, Gary Sánchez, and Greg Bird. However, Baseball RPF has also been approved, with characters Adam Lind, Anthony Rendon, Bryce Harper, Ian Kinsler, James McCann, Jayson Werth, José Iglesias, Michael A. Taylor, Miguel Cabrera, Sean Doolittle, Trea Turner, and Wilmer Difo. Yankees nominator, would you prefer your nomination was folded into Baseball RPF or that it was kept separate? (NB: this is possibly the last year ‘Baseball RPF’ is eligible under its current label.)

No Game No Life - Kamiya Yuu - we're a little confused by the character 『 』| Kuuhaku | Blank. Could the nominator please give their reasoning for nominating this character separately?

Smosh - the characters nominated are Keith Leak Jr., Noah Grossman, Olivia Sui, and Shayne Topp. Could the nominator please clarify if this is a nomination for RPF, or for fictionalized characters that share the names of the real people?

Star Wars: Marvel Comics - this nomination combines characters from multiple different series. The characters nominated are Captain Tolvan, Eneb Ray, Lando Calrissian, Queen Trios, and Terex. Could each nominator please choose one title for us to approve?

刀剣乱舞 | Touken Ranbu - Unfortunately, we made a mistake when we sent this through. Sorry. While we’re happy to approve this, we’d like some help: could each nominator please tell us which characters they nominated and under which label? We’d particularly like to hear from the Katsugeki!-specific nominator.

Zero | Project Zero | Fatal Frame Series - this seems to be a nomination for characters from two separate games, with Hinasaki Miu, Kozukata Yuuri, and Kurosawa Hisoka from Fatal Frame V, and Kurosawa Rei from Fatal Frame III. Could the nominator please either clarify, or pick just one game? (Fatal Frame IV is in the tag set separately.)

All Media Types fandoms
We need clarification from the person (or people) who nominated the following fandoms. Please specify a single version of the canon and provide a link to your nominations page so we can confirm the nomination. If these aren't answered, the fandoms will be rejected:
  • Kino no Tabi | Kino's Journey - All Media Types, characters: Kino (Kino no Tabi)

  • Kizoku Tantei, characters: unnamed main character (Kizoku Tantei)

  • A Room With a View - All Media Types, characters: Charlotte Bartlett, Eleanor Lavish

If you are commenting about your own nomination to say what you would like done with characters or fandoms, please link your nominations page! It is the page you get by clicking ‘My Nominations’ from the tag set.

If you notice any problems with your nominations - mis-spellings, etc - feel free to comment on this post.
25 September 2017 @ 10:01 am
Graham-Cassidy: it ain't over until it's over  
McCain's a no, Susan Collins is finding it "very difficult" to envision voting for the bill, and others are dithering or have expressed concern. But as I understand it you need three Republican "no" votes to stop Pence from tie-breaking, and Trump and co. are leaning hard on people to fall in line.

The latest trick is revising the bill to send money towards the states of potential holdouts.

[tumblr.com profile] plaidadder: Zombie Trumpcare 3.0 continues to stagger through the streets. It is time to call your elected representatives again.

[tumblr.com profile] bengaliprincess: heads up: as of right now, whip count for the graham-cassidy health care bill (trumpcare 3.0? i think it’s 3.0 honestly i’ve lost track) is split evenly at 50-50.

[tumblr.com profile] sashayed: Hello! Good morning! Did you know Congress is trying to kill millions of people, again? (includes script, with screaming; maybe leave out the screaming? or maybe don't?)

[tumblr.com profile] digoxin-purpurea: Anonymous asked: yeah that's part of the issue.... phone anxiety means i don't like to make people uncomfortable even if it's Very Worth It (contains very brief and good phone script)

WaPo current tally:

Cassidy-Graham whip count

Satirical commentary:

McSweeney's: Why Won’t You Just Let Us Pass a Health Care Bill and Kill a Few Million People?

(Cross-posted to [community profile] thisfinecrew.)
25 September 2017 @ 12:53 am
Daily Happiness  
1. I actually got to sleep in this morning and didn't have to go in to work until around noon! I was so worried I was going to get called in for something or other, but thankfully no.

2. I have jury duty tomorrow. Bleh. But on the plus side, I did the online orientation, so I don't have to be there until 9:30am instead of the usual 7:30 or something ridiculous.

3. It was supposed to get hot again this weekend and into the week, but although it did get a little warmer, it's not really hot, and the humidity is low, so it's pretty nice.

4. Such a pretty kitty!

25 September 2017 @ 12:05 am
Watch Chirrut Îmwe Waste The Entire Empire In This Rogue One LEGO Parody  

Posted by Marykate Jasper

The How It Should Have Ended folks recently released this LEGO parody of Rogue One, in which Chirrut Îmwe takes down Stormtroopers, Darth Vader, AT-ATs and more in an escalating, wonderfully manic series of fight scenes. As the battles rages on, Jyn Erso asks, “Aren’t you going to help your friend?” but Baze Malbus simply shrugs and continues to watch the show.

As with most of the HISHE content, this video does have an underlying joke about its source material. It pokes some very exaggerated fun at how Chirrut took on the Stormtroopers single-handedly, and how at times he seemed a touch overpowered – but mostly, it’s just an excuse to have a blast watching the hyperbolic, inventive LEGO action. (And include some fun Star Wars reference and Easter eggs, of course.)

(Via Nerdist; image via screengrab)

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The Mary Sue has a strict comment policy that forbids, but is not limited to, personal insults toward anyone, hate speech, and trolling.—

24 September 2017 @ 08:58 pm
Neighborhood bluejay on a chain link fence  
I love these beautiful noisy birds. We have a few that come to the yard. It's hard to get pictures though because they're a bit shy. I had to take this between the railing on my porch.
Read more... )
24 September 2017 @ 04:42 pm
Giant Days, Vol. 5, by John Allison  
Giant Days: Volume 5, written by John Allison, illustrated by Max Sarin, colors by Whitney Cogar: Nonsensical, disjointed, and not as charming as earlier volumes. Even Esther's clothes are visibly less amazing. Plus the episode where a stranger from Susan's past—another one—drugs her drink. No thanks.

I think I'm done with this series for reals now.
24 September 2017 @ 10:35 pm
Things We Saw Today: What Do We Think Is Happening In These “Desperate and Dangerous” Han Solo Set P  

Posted by Marykate Jasper

Time for some speculation, nerds! New Han Solo director Ron Howard recently shared two photos from the set, both of which he captioned as showing “desperate and dangerous times.” What do we think they show? Where do we think they’re set? Could this be Kessel? (via Deadline)

Shooting a scene about desperate and dangerous times.

A post shared by RealRonHoward (@realronhoward) on

  • The New York Times recently published an article titled, “Push for Gender Equality in Tech? Some Men Say It’s Gone Too Far.” While the content itself draws necessary attention to a disturbing trend in the tech community, the framing of that title is…part of the problem.
  • Yesterday, I included a reminder to call your representatives about the devastation in Puerto Rico and let them know that their constituents want federal aid sent. Today, I’ve also  seen a lot of people passing around a link to the Hispanic Federation’s Hurricane Relief Fund, so you can also help out with a donation there.
  • Marvel and Disney have released some new groovy, retro posters for Thor: Ragnarok. You can see them all over at CBR.
  • Amanda Deibert published a fiery, timely essay on Medium: “Stop Calling Everything Trump Does A ‘Distraction’” As she writes, “When you say ‘This is a distraction from the REAL issues’ what you are saying to marginalized people is: You are not REAL Americans. Your issues, your lives are not real lives. This doesn’t matter as much as straight, white, Christian people problems.
  • Cartoonist Matt Furie has started sending cease-and-desist letters to far-right figures who use the image of Pepe the Frog character in their merchandise and media. But does the alt-right’s use of Pepe the Frog, as morally repulsive as it is, constitute “fair use”? Ars Technica explores the legal issues.
  • NASA is using origami to inspire new spaceship designs. (via NASA)

What did you see today?

(Featured image via Walt Disney Studios and Lucasfilm)

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24 September 2017 @ 11:08 pm
Edition 4,280  

Posted by slytherinblack

Before you comment to the newsletter, please make sure you have read the comm userinfo carefully [here].

S13 premiere photos at all_spn [SPOILERS]
Gen and Jared announce Stronger than Storms partnership linked at all_spn
S13 trailer linked at all_spn

Name that Cap Challenge 5, day 90 hosted by raloria

Fanfic: Sam/Dean
If It's red, drink it. 38/? by lukinha_jesus (NC-17)

Fanfic: Other Slash
Wouldn't It Be Nice? by melanieathene (Dean/Castiel, R)

Fanfic: Gen
What Lies Beneath by madebyme_x (PG-13)
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Random Fanart: Sam from 6x16 by raloria
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New Jersey Con Panel Compilations: Friday, Saturday

spn_reversebang claims are open.