I follow Whoogle on WordPress which has a lot of Doctor Who news (sometimes my feed is only Whoogle, which is a lot of new stuff). I don’t go through all of it, but every once in a while I find a gem, like this one. A minimalist poster by Stuart Manning of the episode Flatline. Which I thought was a great episode.
Two years ago I discovered Rachel Caine who wrote the Weather Warden series about a universe where Djinn and humans with supernatural abilities, called Weather Wardens, fight each other over power. The Djinn were enslaved by the Wardens because the Djinn enhance the abilities of the Wardens. I read several books in that series and reviewed the first of them, Ill Wind. You can read the review here. You can read more about the Weather Warden novels on Caine’s website.
Recently, I discovered another series based on the same universe with some cross-over characters by Caine. The Outcast Season novels revolve around an outcast Djinn, Cassiel. In Undone, Cassiel is sent to earth to live among the very humans she despises so much after being cast down by her ruler, Ashan. From demigod to mortal human flesh, Cassiel has to learn how to live with her human body, emotions, and limitations while being hunted by an unseen force.
While Joanna in Ill Wind is a Weather Warden, human, trying to understand the Djinn, Cassiel is the opposite, a Djinn trying to understand humans. I was afraid that the two female leads would be so like each other as to make the two series so similar as to be indistinguishable. But, I was wrong. Cassiel is quite the character, I love her non-human reactions to things. I love how she tries to make sense of the world she has been thrown into while trying to stay aloof from the mess of knowing a human. And she fails, in the beautiful emotional sense of failing to keep emotions separate from the mess of life.
The mystery of the unknown foe was well played throughout the story as little pieces are revealed and Cassiel’s past problems hunt her down on earth. But there is more at play than past wrongs, the abilities of the Wardens are being used against them. Cassiel and her partner must figure out who they can trust while they track down kidnapped children. The action never ends. In fact, neither story is wrapped up by the end of the book and I was glad I had the second one in my possession when I finished the first. Though, that only managed to make me want to read the third as the twist keep coming and the story continues to evolve.
I wouldn’t recommend taking on this book unless you have time to take on the series. There is so much going on that very little gets resolved, but especially not Cassiel’s new found romantic interest. A hard to put down book that leads into a hard to put down series, clever, imaginative, well written, Caine’s Outcast Season novels is an unforgettable urban fantasy series.
I love street art. I used to see more of it in Chicago than where I live now, but that is what the Internets is for. I’ve found some lovely street art on Pinterest and immediately threw it up on my Art of War(ms) My Heart board, which you should go and follow if you haven’t yet. Here are a few of my favorite new pieces.
What fun. I wish I could go there and be the puppet!
The interweaving of arms and roots and wall are just wonderful.
The concept of this piece is brilliant. The detail amazing. I love the little footsteps.
And my absolute favorite is the following piece. What emotion.
I adore Coulson, he’s my favorite avenger/super hero. He has the best wit. Clark Gregg has an amazing face and I love love love him as Agent Coulson. I mean, how can you not love this face? Adorbs!
So, I haven’t not been keeping up on all my superhero movies. My husband is not a fan of them. I know, right? So I have yet to see quite a few of them. BUT, he cannot stop me from watching copious amounts of TV while he is at work. Working retail means working weekends and a lot of evenings. This means sometimes we are more like strangers passing in the night than a couple living together, but it does makes watching vastly different types of TV shows easier. I’m sure I’ll catch up on my movie watching soon, but for now here are some of the best things about AoS Season 1.
I was absolutely sold on all of the characters right from the beginning, except for Skye. I grew to accept her and appreciate what she brought to the crew, but it wasn’t until the last two or so episodes that I really saw her as a great character and understood what Whedon saw in Bennet. I have a huge crush on Agent Coulson, so it was no surprised I loved Gregg reprising his role on the small screen. But I was also quite drawn to Ming-Na Wen as May. She is so tough and smart and bada$$ in such small and quiet ways, that she is all that much more powerful in her being. Baugh! I cannot get enough of her! I love how Ward starts off as a very static character that appears to have a particular story arc, but one that way outside the norm of such a character. It was kind of mind blowingly amazing how Brett Dalton took such a character and brought his story arc to life. Kuddos to you sir. Kuddos.
But my absolute favorite characters where of course FitzSimmons, the nerds who were more than that. The nerds who were the heart of each and every episode. Of the entire season. The people who made me laugh and smile and cry. Their characters absolutely resonated inside of me. Just. ::Sigh:: Yes, wonderful beautiful thoughtful full bodied characters. My absolute favorite moment of the season was when Simmons was asked, “You wash up on a deserted island alone. Sitting on the sand is a box. What is in that box?” And she says, “That’s a hard one. Let me think. The TARDIS.”
The CG and Backdrop
The ship that the crew live on was such a big part of the show and made each episode feel bigger and grander than some dinky little TV show. Whedon is masterful at the use of his stage and backdrop and incorporating them as characters into his show. I loved it. I thought the CG was all done wonderfully and only once or twice was a bit hokey. I like that there were new places where the story was told, but that everything was brought back to a home base. It kind of reminded me of another story about an amazing crew on a flying ship… ::coughfireflycough::
While not every episodic story was extremely strong, the overall story arcs for the characters in season one were excellent. I love the slow build to find out what happened to Agent Coulson and how he died and was brought back into the series. There was well drawn out suspense with a good payoff. Each of the characters grows wonderfully and I’m super excited to see what Season 2 brings and how the crew grows and changes over the season.
Whenever I start a new show I like to watch at least 3 episodes before making any decision on whether or not I like it. With a new person as the Doctor, I thought I would give Peter Capaldi the benefit of at least 3 episodes before making a decision on whether or not I enjoyed him as the Doctor and whether or not I thought the new season was any good. I don’t plan on doing episode reviews of Doctor Who this season, but I have been joining in the discussions over at Those Who Geek. You can start with Season 8, Episode 1 (Deep Breath), and join the conversation there if you want! As of last night I am caught up on season 8 and here are my general thoughts after watching 6 episodes. *MINOR SPOILERS AHEAD*
Peter Capaldi as the Doctor: I was really really hoping to just fall in love with Capaldi’s version of the Doctor, but I cannot. He always looks angry, he is almost always angry, confused, or in denial, and he’s mean much of the time. Every episode jokes about his angry eyebrows, but all I can think is ‘THAT IS WHAT THREADING IS FOR!’ He’s dismissive of Clara’s well being at times, but needs her to function. His relationship with Clara is extremely unhealthy for her in a similar but not exactly Martha/Doctor relationship way. I’m just not impressed at all. I think Capaldi is a great actor and perhaps we are all supposed to hate him just a little, but every time he is on the screen playing his angry version of the Doctor I want to make angry age appropriate (for me) finger gestures at the television. I’ll be the first to admit my absolute admiration and adoration for Matt Smith may be clouding my judgement at bit, so sure, I’m biased, but I have tried very hard to be open to his interpretation of the Doctor and where Moffat is taking him this season. But I’m not liking it one bit. Now, I’ll also freely admit that this may all be Moffat’s fault, but the Doctor has lost a huge portion of his charm in this version of him, and I can only hope as he grows as a new person he will gain some of it back.
Jenna Coleman as Clara Oswald: I’m absolutely in love with Clara Oswald. Jenna Coleman has really begun to shine in the latest season of Doctor Who. She was fine opposite Matt, but in season 8, she keeps blowing my mind with each new episode. I have the hugest girl crush on her. She is gorgeous, smart, clever, and however awkwardly expresses genuine emotions other than anger. I may be a bit hateful where Moffat is taking the Doctor’s character, but his development of Clara Oswald’s character is brilliant. Which is the hard thing about Moffat shows, there is usually one part that I absolute am in love with and another part that I hate. Usually it’s the camp, the really nonscary Daleks, but having it be the Doctor this season is stirring up so many emotions, it’s a bit hard to handle. Clara is my saving grace and the sole reason I continue to watch Doctor Who this season. I could care less if the Doctor appears, I just want to learn more about her and see more of her life. Jenna Coleman shines in her role and I keep hoping Clara realizes she needs to do what is best for her and not necessarily for the Doctor. I slightly hesitant to declare it, but she has become my favorite companion, even out shining Donna to me, and that is saying something.
Samuel Anderson as Danny Pink: OMG what a beautiful man. I love his eyes! His eyes are amazing! Pink’s initial awkwardness around Clara is adorable, and as his character comes into his own through the first of the season, the transformation is just wonderful. Anderson is a great actor and quickly becoming one of my favorite characters on the show. I love finding out more and more about his past and future as the season progresses and I’m far more interested in what he and Clara mean to each other than I am whether or not the Doctor is clever enough to figure out if there are people in the shadows. His confrontation to Clara of who he sees the Doctor as was amazing, and I had to agree wholeheartedly. Which makes me mad at Moffat, I just know that man is playing with my emotions- on purpose!!! Ugh. But if it means more Danny Pink… than I’m all in. Oh so pretty. Such pretty people this season!!!
Michelle Gomez as Missy (The Doctor’s Girlfriend?): We know so little about her, but I find that one of the most intriguing things about this season. We see little snippets of her, she seems to be in charge of some version of the afterlife, or an alternate dimension she is pretending is the afterlife. She seems knows so much and yet reveals very little. She claims to be the Doctor’s girlfriend, yet is too busy to greet some of the people that make their way to her dimension after a bout as episodic companions of the Doctor. Who is she really? What is her true connection with the Doctor? So many questions and yet another draw to this season.
The story telling in season 8 has been a big draw, little pieces of a larger puzzle are falling into place and I’m anxious to find out what it all means. Even if Capaldi’s Doctor is a tad callous for my taste, I respect his acting chomps. I look forward to every scene that has Clara or Pink in it and I eagerly anticipate every new episode. Even knowing that the episode is probably going to elicit explosive comments not to be repeated in front of polite company.
Someone made an animated version of the intro to Buffy the Vampire Slayer which includes hundreds of wonderful homages to the original show. Check out some of these homages highlighted on the post by Zimbio.
Watch this amazing couple dance on the side of City Hall during an art festival. It is quite beautiful and an amazing feat. I hate heights, so … respect.