T4: No

May. 22nd, 2009 11:01 am
rsadelle: (Default)
I should forewarn you that I was inclined to be cranky about this movie anyway because (a) I'm still upset about Fox canceling Sarah Connor Chronicles and (b) the theater we were in had the volume up to be the loudest thing I've ever heard. I don't think I would have liked it even if those two things weren't true.

Spoilers for T4 and SCC )
rsadelle: (Default)
This is the part where I talk about this entry.

To preface this entry: I don't know if this is everything I want to say, or even how I want to say it. This doesn't flow as smoothly as I wish I could make it go. This feels, to me, more like thinking via my fingers than the actual essay someone else might make out of the same ideas.

I also think I should note that I spent much of the morning being teary-eyed about Sarah Connor Chronicles. Just so you know where I'm coming from.

You should also know there are spoilers in this entry. I've put them behind a cut, but if you've come here via a link that takes you directly to this entry's page, you might not notice the warnings.

This is the part where I talk about women.

I've been saying that all my reading about race, racism, and anti-racism has resensitized me to issues of sexism, but that's not really true. My resensitization started before that, with Leverage's "The Stork Job." This part of this entry has Leverage spoilers. )

This part of this entry has Dollhouse spoilers. )

[livejournal.com profile] norwich36 pointed me to a pair of [livejournal.com profile] coffeeandink's posts about Sarah Connor Chronicles. This part of this entry has Sarah Connor Chronicles spoilers. )

I think it's worth noting that SCC and Dollhouse are both the brainchildren of men: Dollhouse is Joss Whedon's and SCC is Josh Friedman's. I skimmed the list of writers on IMDb's full cast and crew pages for each of them, and Dollhouse has more women writers than SCC, both by numbers and proportion. Extra interesting to me is that the two pieces of SCC fan fic that I've read that were absolutely incredible (I have to admit to not having read much, just most of the things at Yuletide and a handful of other miscellaneous things, and most of it tends to blend together) were both written by a man: "Cinderella, Made of Steel" and "Seven Sunday Mother-Daughter Mornings," both by David Hines. You can't end oppression without involving the oppressors. The Egyptians are God's people too. (Happy Passover.)

For me, in some very real ways, the season finale of SCC marks the end of this TV season. With that done for the season (or possibly forever), there isn't anything I'm going to look forward to in quite the same way. But I've also been busying myself with watching the first episodes of a bunch of midseason shows.

This is the part where I talk about lgbt people.

One of the shows I watched the first two episodes of was Cupid. I have vague memories of seeing the ads for the Jeremy Piven version, but I don't think I ever watched it. I thought I'd watch this version because I really like both Bobby Cannavale and Sarah Paulson. Then the first episode had both Sean Maguire (I had no idea he was actually British) and Marguerite Moreau, both of whom are pretty and I like. This part of this entry has Cupid spoilers. )

I've been thinking about characters who are retconned into being straight, both because it's one of the things that happens to the lgbt superheroes on Perry Moore's list and because [livejournal.com profile] minkhollow brought it up in [livejournal.com profile] brown_betty's book discussion. This part of this entry has Supernatural spoilers. )

This part of this entry has Kings spoilers. )

This part of this entry has Sarah Connor Chronicles spoilers. )

One of the midseason shows I watched the first ep of this week is The Unusuals. If I could choose only one midseason ensemble cop show about a rich kid who became a cop, it would be this one (over Southland, but I'll watch another ep or two of that because Ben McKenzie did sell it at the end and Regina King is hot), although that's not much of a rec. It's not as funny as the ads made it look, and Amber Tamblyn is the kind of cute-pretty that they should be doing something with (in terms of the character) rather than ignoring. This part of this entry has The Unusuals spoilers. )
rsadelle: (Default)
Sarah Connor Chronicles rocked my socks off! I'm in the habit of watching each episode twice before the next one airs (I was doing that with SPN, too, but I kind of lost some of my interest in the Winchesters), and I'm totally excited to watch it again before next week.

Dollhouse is another matter. If it weren't a Joss Whedon show, I would have stopped watching halfway through the episode, and even with it being a Joss show, it only gets another couple of episodes to convince me it's worth watching. There was an interesting comment on an io9 Dollhouse post where the commenter was proposing that Joss ought to do a show that doesn't really exist - there could be spoilers and reports of trouble on the set and controversy without there actually being a show - and so far Dollhouse might have been better like that.

Both shows, however, were made extra enjoyable by real-time emailing with [livejournal.com profile] norwich36. It's been a long time since I watched something with someone over the internet, and I'd forgotten how fun it is! It was also hilarious when we sent nearly simultaneous emails mentioning how much the Summer Glau-Eliza Dushku promos they kept showing suck. Seriously, they almost made me not want to watch either show.
rsadelle: (Default)
So way back in December, when Sarah Connor Chronicles went on hiatus for two months, I decided I needed some projects to get me through the time without it. I actually completed those projects quite a while ago, but keep forgetting to post about them. Since the show starts up again tonight, I figured I should write about them today. (Although if I'd done it earlier, I would have more to say in more detail. Consider this more in the way of a long overview.)

Project 1: The Wizard of Oz

I'd never read L. Frank Baum's The Wizard of Oz before, although, of course, I've seen the Judy Garland movie version. Sarah Connor Chronicles references it fairly often, so I thought I would read it. I ended up getting The Annotated Wizard of Oz (1973 edition) with introduction, notes, and bibliography by Michael Patrick Hearn from the library. The annotations were actually fairly interesting and often amusing (he spends a surprisingly large amount of time seriously considering the location of Oz), but I think I probably should have read the book without them first so I could really concentrate on the story. I think I remember more about the eighty-page introduction and the annotations than about the story itself. Amongst other things, the introduction includes a fascinating look at Baum's involvement in the early days of motion pictures that's certainly worth reading. It's also fascinating to note how much legwork Hearn had to have put into it that would be so much easier now with the internet.

The book holds up really well as a children's story, especially when you compare it to the story from the same era in the Denslow Appendix. (W. W. Denslow did the original illustrations for the book. Apparently there was later strife between him and Baum, and at various points, some of Denslow's Oz character illustrations were published with other stories written to go with them.) There's almost nothing that's confusing to modern ears, probably because most of the story takes place in the magical world of Oz.

I was also trying to make the analogy to the show, and it works in an interesting way. You would think John should be Dorothy, but he's not. In terms of experiences, Derek's Dorothy: he's the one who travels to a different world, and if you think of Jesse (or even Kyle) as his home, he does want to go home. Cameron's obviously the Tin Man: she's built without a heart, but she does learn to care and think of others (sort of, at least). Sarah's the Cowardly Lion: she started out not knowing what she's doing and she's scared to death, but she keeps going anyway. And John's the Scarecrow: he doesn't know anything/enough, and yet he's the leader and he's making choices and choosing strategies.

Project 2: Terminator Movies

It had been so long since I last saw the Terminator movies that I was having trouble tracking any conversation about Sarah Connor Chronicles that referenced the movies. The answer to this was obviously to watch the movies again. (I also wanted to rewatch them all before Terminator Salvation comes out in May.)

The Terminator had me laughing in the first few minutes because pretty much the first thing you see that's not just a place is the governor's naked ass. (Remember, I live in California.) Given my penchant for reading/surfing the internet while watching things, I actually found it hard to watch this movie because it's so dependent on visual imagery.

Terminator 2: Judgment Day is the one that relates most to Sarah Connor Chronicles - the show takes place after it, and I believe the powers that be have said it's supposed to follow from T2. I was amazed, watching it, at how well Lena Headey is playing Linda Hamilton's Sarah Connor. Between the first two movies, Sarah toughens up a hell of a lot, and I could see the roots for Lena's Sarah in Linda's. I could also completely see Thomas Dekker's John in Edward Furlong's. (Aside the first: his voice keeps breaking, which is at once both kind of distracting and probably part of the point - he's a human being with all that comes along with that. Aside the second: I think of "douchebag" as a relatively recent insult, but John uses it in this, which is from 1991.)

One of the things I really appreciate about the first two movies are the special effects. I find myself annoyed with movies where the special effects are the point. In both of the first two Terminator movies, the special effects are secondary to the story, and they're kind of cheesy to modern eyes. I like the cheesiness. They're not afraid to make a movie that's a movie with some shooting lights added in to give you the sense of what the terminators are like.

Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines has kind of a bad rap, but I liked it when it came out, and I liked it again this time around. It doesn't really connect to Sarah Connor Chronicles - Cameron jumping them years ahead completely changes the timeline - but that doesn't mean it's not worth watching. The most relevant thing about T3 is that Arnie's Terminator says, "You only postponed it. Judgment Day is inevitable." This is what I've been saying all season, and where I hope the writers are really going with Sarah Connor Chronicles. I want them to take a middle path: Cameron is teaching John that robots can be allies, and Ellison and others are teaching Weaver and John Henry what it means to be human. It doesn't have to be robots vs. humans; metal and skin can work together to make a future they can all live in.

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Ruth Sadelle Alderson

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