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Jun. 28th, 2008

Dear asshole dog-owners,

Admittedly I'd kind of missed that this was a dog-zone and I wasn't supposed to bike through there, but this still is no reason to physically stop me and explain this fact to me while I'm being surrounded by your three madly barking, not very friendly dogs one of whom actually nipped my ankle, trying to keep my my legs out of their reach and getting increasingly panicky, while you and your girlfriend are completely unable or unwilling to control them. No thanks for rekindling my fear of dogs that I'd kind of got rid of,



In pleasanter news, I lost about half of my hair at the hairdresser today, which makes it shorter than it's been since I was nine or ten - chin length in front, really short in the back; I just hope it'll still look nice when it only gets my quick head-down-blow-dry treatment.


Am I getting crankier and harder to please the older I get? I've finished Lynn Flewelling's Shadows Return and am not very enthusiastic about it. The characters are all there, but they walk through the plot a bit lifelessly, so that despite the rather high angst level (slavery, abuse, more abuse, a few near deaths, one death, one resurection, dark magic, a sort-of magical child resulting from said dark magic, an old lover turning up again, ensuing jealousy, etc.) I found it hard to really care about what happens to them. The whole thing feels a bit... sketchy? slapdash? fanfiction-like? Some of the ideas could be interesting, but I don't find the execution and the result very compelling. It might have to do something with the fact that while Shadows Return has about the same amount of pages as the earlier volumes, the font is visibly larger, and in terms of wordcount it must be about a quarter to a third shorter than any of them, which would explain why the plot seem rather less complex and the writing less detailed in general.

Same with Life on Mars. I finished S2 last weekend and while I liked the last two episodes better than the previous six ones, I never was really happy with S2. The main problem for me was that to make Sam's betrayal at least somewhat plausible the characterisations and the antagonism were more extreme than in S1, and a bit too extreme for my taste; The Gene Hunt of S1 I more or less believed when he said there were lines he wouldn't cross, S2 Gene Hunt I'm a lot less sure about. And Philip Glenister is a fantastic actor who is reduced to stereotypical yelling and punching in S2 far too often. Another problem is that all the episodes that tackle the big issues and -isms while trying to balance historical accuracy with 21st century values are at least slightly awkward, even when they're trying to do it right, or especially then. Personally I find the fact that it takes Sam to inspire his future superior to become the man Sam will admire a lot more problematic than the casual 1973 racism. I suppose what they were going for with the story-line was that both in Sam and Gene's case the people they idolised were, or turned out to be, not that perfect after all, but in these specific circumstances it comes off as more than a little patronising. And on the whole I just find it easier to ignore the subtle sexism that keeps Annie in uniform as a matter of fact in S1; the blatant and constant in-your (her)-face sexist remarks once she's promoted are much harder to take from characters I'm supposed to find likeable.

And the end is a bit too nostalgic and escapist for my taste. Maybe it would have been better to just have Sam jump, and fade to black, the end, no clear resolution.


Eh. Sometimes I think I'm too stupid for the smart tv shows. All the clever people love Farscape, while for me that's the closest I've ever come to watching a show just for Teh Pretty. OTOH, Torchwood, which something like 95% of fandom is only watching for the slash factor? Watch solitary_summer write. And analyse. And write some more. And, hey, amazon has just dispatched my S2 DVDs.... :)


solitary summer

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