Important Announcement First: LJ is offering 2 free weeks to all paid users to compensate for the downtime. To claim yours, go here. (Thanks to herself_nyc for posting this.)
I finally sent off Cuckoo in the Nest to the betas just a few minutes ago. The Tony Harris fic that wouldn't go away is finished and I can finally, finally, finally get back to Water Hold Me Down and the CHAPTER FROM HELL!
(Apologies to nwhepcat for the delay. But this Tony Harris fic wouldn't go the hell away.)
I'm really looking forward to posting Cuckoo in the Nest because it's probably one of the strangest stories I've ever written. It's also probably the closest I'll ever get in style to my beloved Hawthorne (not that it's anywhere near as good as The Master). It's probably the first time I've ever written anything from the point of view of a character I disagree with 100%.
Gives me mega hope I'll be able to write Spike since Spike wasn't always entirely wrong, especially in the last season of AtS.
I've also left a certain Yahell Newsgroup and signed on with PYGS. Special love to bastardsnow and d_tepes for inviting me and a few other authors to join their special brand of madness on Yahoo.
Also, special love to ludditerobot and hjcallipygian for the sooper sekrit project they're working on. I'm sort of the leach in the picture since I can't code beyond basic HTML.
If anyone sent me personal email in the past week and I haven't gotten back to you? I'm soooo mega sorry. I couldn't keep my hands off Cuckoo because it wouldn't leave me alone. I promise to try to catch up this weekend.
Also, if I'm moving slower on the fic, there's a reason.
After a lifelong struggle with horrible insomnia issues, I finally broke down and got help. I was skeptical at first that pharmaceuticals would help solve my problem, let alone Wellbutrin which inhibits serotonin, and pretty much remained skeptical for about a week after taking it.
Duuuude! I get almost eight hours of sleep! When my head hits the pillow, I fall asleep instead of staring at the clock for five hours or living with waking up every hour.
Did you know that when people wake up in the morning they're awake? It's a total revelation to me! I'm functional before noon! I actually am down to a single cup of coffee a day because I don't need it to wake up! I feel better than I have in years!
Well, what it means is that my window for writing fic is significantly smaller. I'm trying to resist the urge to write faster at the expense of not writing as well. So I apoligize to people to whom I owe fics.
And also, let me join others on LJ for showing big love to the new Battlestar Galactica. I don't know how many people out there were fans of the original like me, but personally, I totally dig the new version. Hell, I dug the mini. Sometimes I feel all alone in the original BSG crowd because I look at the new series as something distinctly different from the original and no one else seems willing to do the same.
I rather like the new series. Is it the same show as the original BSG? Nope, but then again, it didn't pretend to be. In the end (much as there are people who I know will want to throw rotten fruit at me), I think it was a very, very smart move. I've always maintained that any BSG revival (or re-imagination) would need to:
- Update the storytelling style</p>
- Go with a new cast (this I realized once the actors became clearly too old to reprise their roles)</p>
- Have to reach beyond the core original fans of BSG
1) Actually dealing with the reality that people are freakin' desperate and that it's going to be that way for a long time to come.
2) The use of wonderfully telling details without dialogue. The corridor full of pictures posted by desperate survivors sent a chill down my spine (Clearly it was inspired by 9/11, but I've seen similar things in the Tsunami damage). The white board where they kept writing the diminishing number of survivors. The use of the count-down clock in 33. The anti-radiation drug (yes, a wank on the part of the writers, but if consistently used, not any more a terrible sin than using replicators) in Water. Hell, the use of water in Water. Touching a picture for luck as the pilots file out to their vipers in 33.
3) The acting was excellent. During 33 everyone acted, and sounded, and looked like they had been up for days. The "pretty faces" on the front lines weren't looking none to pretty. The decision to blast the Olympic carrier apart and the actual sequence of the vipers opening fire on it was underplayed nicely (I especially liked how Kara kept appealing to Lee not to open fire right up to the last minute, but did as she was ordered.)
4) I have to admit, I actually really loved the scene between Lee and Kara in the landing bay about her taking uppers. Yeah, she was a bitch about it, but she was also dead-on right. Lee was trying to be friends, but he's in charge, so he can't and shouldn't be in that role. When he gives her and order and she refuses it, he shouldn't just fluff it off. Best of all, it didn't devolve into a screaming match. (Loved how they looked at each other and just started cracking up in a punch-drunk sort of way.) I suspect that this version of Starbuck is going to be as much a backbone of her unit as the original version, although she'll be going about it in a completely different way.
5) I actually liked the paranoia and claustrophobia they've got going on here. Plus, the actual focus on what they'd need to keep 45,000-plus people alive on ships (Lee: "Is that per month?" Baltar: "That's per week."). The sense that even getting the basics aren't going to be easy (no replicating water for these guys). Plus, they've got a scared population that's not afraid to riot.
6) Even though you know it won't work, the fact that they're still hanging on to the governmental conventions of their homeworlds. I like the Commander's and the President's prickly feeling out of each other as they try to come to grips with their new roles.
7) The new mecha Cylons are waaaaaay too cool. Plus their utter silence (except for the red light) makes them scarier than our beloved tin cans from the original series. These guys are straight up killers, they're designed to be killers, and that's all there is to it.
8) Honestly? I'm kind of fascinated with the whole 'god' thing the Cylons have. Who or what is their god? I'm almost tempted to say it's a "collective" of all the Cylons since they're clearly connected to each other. I'm interested to see where they take it to and how far they go with it. Certainly Six is trying to brainwash Baltar into believing in the Cylon god.
9) Baltar and Six (mostly). Is she his guilty conscience? A chip? Is he a Cylon himself? A combination? Dunno. That's the best part about it. You can almost seeing him starting his long slide down.
1) Pacing. I thought the pacing could have been better, but I can forgive since they are "set up" episodes. The interpersonal dynamics and the actual logistical talk (yes, I'm a geek. shut up.) of providing for 45,000 people also made up for the lack of action. It also helps that according to some of my U.K. spoiling buddies, things that are laid out in scenes that you don't think are important tend to get picked up in later episodes in some pretty interesting ways.
2) Way too much sex. I can actually see why they're using it the way they are with Baltar and Six, but I do think it's a bit much. They could dial it back and I probably would be happier. Although I admit that it may be that it's because it's dirty between Baltar and Six and is actually be portrayed as something dirty and not at all healthy could be part of the squick factors. Thank heavens this show will be on at 10 p.m.
3) Helo-Boomer the Second storyline. I'm not sure about this one and I'm not sure I like it. According (again) to my U.K. spoiler buddies, there's a point to it and it gets a lot more interesting as the season goes on.
As the first two eps of the neo series, I thought it set the tone pretty well. You pretty much know what you're going to get, you pretty much know what it's not going to be. In all honesty, I don't see false advertising on that front.
I'll definitely be watching and I suspect I'm going to like it. Admittedly, I was biased to like it based on the tidbits I've been spoiled on and because I did like the mini, so I definitely wasn't watching with my hate on.
So to sum up:
1) Is it the original series? No. It isn't. However, I don't think the original series could've flown after the disasterous Galactica: 1980 (if ABC had brought back the original series in 1980, that would be different). I honestly don't think it could've flown in either case after 1990 because viewing habits and tastes had changed among people who watch genre television.
2) Does it the diminish the original series? IMHO, no. It's a completely different animal and I'm perfectly okay with that. This is apples and oranges, pure and simple. I love the original BSG for what it is, I like this new show for what it is.
3) Did the first two episodes do their job? Yes. It established that this was going to be an ensemble drama. It established that there was going to be more focus on the people trapped in this situation and less on external forces. It re-introduced the characters. It picked up right where the mini left off (literally hours after the mini left off). It attracted an audience beyond the original BSG fanbase. It entertained me and made me interested in seeing more. So yes, 33 and Water did the job, IMHO.
In other news, went home this weekend and took out Mom for her birthday. Lunch and a movie. Can I just say that Ray is totally awesome, especially considering that most biopics suck.
Also, got some somewhat surprising news from Mom this weekend that has forced me to re-evaluate something I once took as gospel. Oh, nothing serious or deeply personal or anything like that. I just have to think on it a little and order my thoughts before writing about it in a non-fiction-y kind of way.
Also, to do this weeked: Reorder links to break out fanfiction stuff from political blogs.