nevermoreraven: Photo of ravens sitting in rafters (Default)
The page feels cluttered when I don't hide everything behind cuts, so...have a cut!  (Or ignore this entirely if these don't happen to be the droids you're looking for.)  Maybe at some point I'll get out of the habit of essay writing.  (I doubt it though...)
I'm glad someone compared Cowboy Bebop to Firefly, or otherwise I may never have found this anime.  I'm loving it so far (though I haven't finished yet).  It really does have a lot of similarities and similar feel-Space Western, sense of humor, etc.  The characters are amazing, and Spike's faces are interesting to watch.  It's also a lot of fun to watch him fight-he's got a fighting style that involves a lot of fluid movement and using the attacker's momentum/movements against them.  (From just an academic standpoint, similar to Aikido...but I haven't actually watched any bouts or anything, just know the principle/basic on-paper details of the martial arts style.)  Jet and Mal have the same sense of tarnished cowboy heroism, too.  Jet's less flashy about it though.  The movement of the show is kind of like Firefly too...throwing them in the middle of the action, then slowly adding new members and flashing back to history, interspersed with just normal episodes.  There's a bigger plot and world going on behind the action, but it's not always the center of everything.  Given that it was made in the 90s, the animation is impressive, but then again the Japanese were far ahead of anyone else I'm aware of on animation/CGI in general.  Though maybe I'm a little biased by watching old BBC (...if you want to know how bad the animation is, watch Pyramids of Mars for the robot mummies or...well, a lot of the old ones.  There was one, Third Doctor I think, with plant creatures...truly cringe/laugh-worthy.  But that's part of the appeal for some people, and if you've got an imagination, it doesn't matter, because the plot is excellent.)  The plot's excellent here, too.  None of this new need to make everything so depressing you want to hide in your room and pretend the world doesn't exist because it's a lonely terrifying world out there.  No need to force drama.  They focus on the characters, they focus on telling the story, and it's so much better because of it.  It's poignant at times, yeah, but that's life for you. 
Some of the science is really good, too.  The method of travel is hyperspace (I was mentioned once, but I've only seen ~17 of the episodes so far and only once, so I could be wrong...)  and they've got gates like in Babylon 5.  Given the vast distances and the limits of non-quantum physics, that's probably the only way humans could really travel the distances you see in most science fiction.  Faster-than-light travel, at this point, is impossible.  (Though humans have commonly shown their ability to overcome the impossible.)
There are a few things, like explosions in space (sorry, fire needs oxygen).  I thought (as several others did) that Spike traveling through space without his spacesuit was impossible, but apparently it is (type in 'effects of vacuum on human body', click the NASA link, and you'll find that apparently you can survive half a minute in space without any damage.  If he's better than most people at holding his breath, the stunt he pulled in Heavy Metal Queen is actually possible.
There are definitely some similarities to Firefly-the fact that they really are a family, however occasionally dysfunctional.  The ship, the occasional times of little to no food or money because despite what they might think and say they really do have a conscience.  The use of some Chinese (not as heavy as in Firefly, but still present). 
The soundtrack's a lot of fun too.  Jazz, blues, and the like, all with the theme, all totally cool and fitting the show.  Plus it's a lot of fun to play a bounty hunter in Star Wars the Old Republic MMORPG playing the soundtrack.  Seriously, it almost makes up for the fact that all of my character's employers are lunatics.  (Imperials.  They must put something in the water, I'm telling you.  Or maybe it's just the fact that they're hyped up on power.  And fear.  Don't forget fear.)
I'm not sure what's going to happen in the finale, but I have a guess, judging by the similarities between Firefly and Cowboy Bebop.  We'll see how accurate that guess is.  There's apparently also a movie.  I want to see it, although I'm not sure whether it's going to be like Serenity.  (At the same time I hope the answer is 'yes' and 'no'...we'll see.)
Finally starting to catch up on Doctor Who, and by 'catch up', I mean 'slowly watch episodes of Series 7 and maybe I'll be up to the end eventually'.  Episode 2 was better than Episode 1, in which I wanted to slap everyone at least once, spent a bit yelling at the screen, and felt they'd just thrown in some of the stuff to pull our heart strings.  Really?  I mean, at least have a good reason for it, rather than just messing with your audience.  A lot of the stuff would be so much more awesome if they hinted up to it, rather than just throwing things in out of the blue.  The inclusion of Nefertiti did seem like one of those things, but then it turned out to be a plot point, so hurrah for the writer!  (On the other hand, I went 'YAY IT'S LESTRADE' at the screen.  I don't actually know the character's name...but he turned out to be not all 'let's shoot 'em all' so double yay.)  On the other hand, I'm looking forward to Episode 3 because of one reason and one reason only.  Ever since I saw the Series 7 trailer, I went 'Hey, it's MUSE's Knights of Cydonia'!  Luckily, I'm not the only one-others have created music videos.  If there wasn't one, I'd have to take it into my hands to make one.  Someone reminded me of the multi-part Trial of a Time Lord and the Valeyard, and suddenly the growing cruelty in the Doctor makes a whole lot more sense now.  (Hopefully the Valeyard will be as awesome as the Dream Lord.)
The ranting will likely be saved for later...but for now, just a few things.  I'm not enjoying Doctor Who as much as I did, so not having access to BBC America the minute the episode airs isn't as big a deal for me.  Stephan Moffat's getting out of hand, I feel.  It's not that he can't write/direct good stuff-just look at Sherlock for an example of that.  But it seems he needs a partner or a boss to keep him in line, just like the Doctor needs his companions.  Stephan Moffat can't write science fiction.  He keeps trying to write fantasy.  Nice for a change, but not for an extended period of time on a science fiction show.  He chooses the most obvious answers while ignoring the clever, cool things, and introduces things that he promptly just leaves behind.  He adds all these cool, shiny toys and then locks the cabinet, so not only does he not play with them but others can't either.  It's really annoying.  (Not all of it is him...but it's still Moffat-era.)  River Song, to me, feels like a Mary Sue, and when I saw Nefertiti in the trailer I went NOOO WHY WON'T SHE LEAVE?.  (Luckily, that wasn't River Song.  I predicted I'd hate her if she turned out to be in the actual show, whereas if she was just in the books, I'd be completely fine with her.  I was right.  I think I'm more forgiving of books/comic books, since I could barely make it through The Two Doctors and couldn't even finish Sixth's regeneration episode, but I'm perfectly fine with him in books and comics.)  More on that probably later.  I'm just not enjoying it like I used to.  Part of that is growing out of (a bit) of my childish naivety, part is just...I'm not going 'these episodes are really really cool and I will watch them a hundred times'.  Like Dalek, The Christmas Invasion, Tooth and Claw, Idiot's Lantern, Shakespeare Code, 42, Blink, The Doctor's Daughter, the Unicorn and the Wasp, Midnight, Amy's Choice, The Lodger, The Doctor's Wife.  Though honestly I could probably name a fair amount of RTD's stuff and say 'okay, it's over the top, but yes, I enjoyed it enough to watch it MANY times'.
And looking forward to ANYTHING Neil Gaiman writes because he's a genius and actually cares about silly things like continuity and Old Who.  And good storylines, and good (if quirky/insane) characters.


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