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Love Resolution letter

Here is some info/squee about things I would like people to watch/read/make for love_resolution! A bunch of the text is nabbed from other posts I've made, so if it looks familiar to some of you, that's why.

EDIT: I'm adding one more super big wish right here at the top, and that's if you become or are already familiar with any of the TV/books/comics I mention below, that you post about them on your journal. I have several friends who've already read Seraphina, for example, and I would LOVE to have them write rambly squee or meta or whatever about it, so I can jump in and squee, too. So even if you've already watched/read the thing I'm requesting, you can still totally fulfill one of my wishes!!

Twin Peaks
Trippy, quirky mystery show that starts out fairly ordinary and just gets weirder and weirder as it goes, transitioning from drama to black comedy to just, well, black. It's from the early 90s, so the hair/fashion/soundtrack all add another layer of weird that it (probably?) didn't even have at the time. And it's gorgeous. It's a beautiful, beautiful show, so you don't even mind that the pace is kind of glacial. Stars Kyle Maclachlan and Lara Flynn Boyle, among others, with Don Davis, David Duchovny, Michael J. Anderson, and other familiar faces wandering through from time to time.

I'm only asking for the first season because honestly it's the best part (even though the mystery isn't solved yet).

Rick Remender's run (#1-35) of Uncanny X-Force (here on Marvel.com or here in 7 volumes on Amazon, although I recommend the library unless you have an MU subscription)

Ugh, okay, I'm just going to tell you in advance that this is a flawed and difficult run of comics that I mostly just want someone to read so I have someone to talk about them with. At length. In great detail.

So, Remender is the same guy who wrote the mutant=minority speech in Uncanny Avengers that had everyone in an uproar last year; he's also the guy who within the last twelve months has killed Rogue, the Scarlet Witch, and Sharon Carter, among others. Somehow, in this his first major run, he didn't do anything that bothered me nearly as much as I'd be bothered by any of those, although there is one death of a character whose mixed-race heritage and bisexuality I didn't learn about until later. In any case, this is in general Remender at his least offensive.

This is also a book that expects you will already be familiar with all the Marvel toys it wants to play with, and thus bothers to give you very little introduction of them. Also Remender is terrible at exposition, I have decided. On the plus side, I wasn't familiar with most of these elements, either, and I still managed to be hugely engaged with the characters. And I will be happy to answer specific plot questions as best I am able, for anyone who's interested in reading.

On the plus side: CHARACTERS. Specifically Psylocke, Fantomex, and Deadpool.
* Psylocke is a psychic ninja and the one woman on the wet-works team that is X-Force, and this entire run, which Remender means to be a meditation on murder as a means to an end, is her story. There's a lot of her getting broken down and her getting (nudged into) getting up again, and a lot of her being deeply ambivalent about her own actions. It's pretty great. (Except for her costume, ugh, sorry.)

* Fantomex is a guy in a coat who speaks with a French accent because it annoys other people, and he has three brains. He's an ass a lot of the time, but not all of the time, and he has something of a redemption/reformation arc over the course of the story. Also, he gets beat up a lot and has to be saved by Psylocke, and we knows how Snick likes that.

* Deadpool is the zany, fourth-wall-breaking clown of the Marvel 'verse, although the zaniness gets downplayed quite a bit here. He also has the emotional development of a dirty-minded ten-year-old, which makes his sometime-role here as the heart of the group weirdly poignant.

Also, the art is pretty fab for most of the run. I find the first arc off-putting, but then they get Esad Ribic in for an arc, whose work is gorgeous, and then later on Phil Noto, new Black Widow artist, does quite a few issues.

That's a terrible sell job, I know. But this run has given me more FEELINGS about characters than any other single run since I've started reading comics, and I just want someone to talk to about it!! (And then write me fic.)

Saga (trade volumes #1 and #2)
I'm just gonna point to the big long promo post I already made, here.

FF - the first two trades (this and this)
I have a lot of feelings about this comic, and they are all "AWWWW." I love this comic for how warmly human it is. Most of the problems in it are things like the moloids' well-meant jealousy and Bentley-23's need to prove himself as a villain and Darla's fear of letting people down. I love that the comic can kind of drop in to look at those struggles and then drop back out again – we're not ignoring them or fixing them, necessarily, we're just acknowledging that they're there.

Alternately, I love this comic because it's so much fun. :D I love Scott Lang and his earnest doofiness and his simple human grief for his daughter and his general failure as a human being and how he keeps trying anyway. I love Jennifer's competence and grumpiness and how she rocks that pink suit. I love how Darla is determined to not let anyone down, and how she really, really doesn't – I love that speech of hers, about who she is and her pop music awards, because she may not have powers or, maybe, what some comics people would call 'cool' accomplishments, but she's still awesome. Jennifer Walters/She-Hulk can do no wrong and steals every scene she's in. Likewise the moloids (including Tong, our transwoman).

Also, the art is fab - very poppy-retro.

I picked the first two trades because they're what's readily available of this comic via, for example, the library, and they make for a pretty satisfying read by themselves, even without tying up the major plot thread. Note that the first trade is actually half FF and half Fantastic Four (yes, these are different titles).

This is a free webcomic by gingerhaze/Noelle Stevenson. Nimona is a shapeshifter who attaches herself to Ballister the supervillain as a sidekick. She is absolutely herself, has a sad orphan story, and takes to villainy very, very well and with great enthusiasm. Her relationship with Ballister is too charming for words. The art is lovely, too. It updates twice weekly and we are now in the third and final act; come reeeead so that you can experience the final months with me!!

something by China Mieville (either Railsea, The Scar, or The City and the City)
Novels! China Mieville is in my top three favorite SFF authors ever. His worldbuilding blows my mind, his facility with language does the same. The sheer inventiveness is stunning; he gives a page and a half to an idea other writers would write a novel on, and then he moves on to the next thing. I memorized the first two pages of The Scar because I so loved his description of his fantastic ocean. He does tend to have an ick factor, although two of the three books I've chosen here have minimal ick.

Railsea - my ideal intro to Mieville because it's representative of his more gonzo worldbuilding but with, as I said, minimal ick. It's a coming of age story about a young man who rides on one of the great moletrains, which cross back and forth across the railsea hunting giant moles. It owes certain debts to Moby Dick, but feels in no way constrained by them. (For starters, the Ahab figure here is a woman.)

The Scar - probably my favorite Mieville, this is one of his Bas Lag novels (although it stands alone and has basically nothing to do with the others). Protagonist Bellis Coldwine is aptly named, an intense, fiercely self-contained woman who finds herself shanghaied aboard a floating pirate city and is determined to make her way home. This one does have considerably more ick, but my gosh, the concepts Mieville plays around with here will make a person gasp aloud, the first time they're encountered (at least if the person is me).

The City and The City - the novel Mieville won (shared) the Hugo for, this isn't much like his other books. It's set in a faux modern-day country somewhere in the vicinity of Turkey, it's a murder mystery, and it's built entirely on a single bizarre worldbuilding premise that I won't spoil you for, but is the kind of thing that changes your whole thought process, at least temporarily. You know how by the end of Memento you found yourself remembering things in five-minute chunks? Like that.

Seraphina, by Rachel Hartman
This is the best fantasy I have read in years. As so many fantasies are set in faux-medievalism, this one is set in what I’d call a faux-Renaissance, possibly in Italy specifically. Seraphina is the cranky, anti-social assistant to the kingdom’s head musician; she’s also half-dragon, which is not only verboten but considered impossible. This sounds like it’d lend itself to Mary Sueishness, but Seraphina is so aggressively down-to-earth (not to mention cranky) as to murder that accusation in its bed. The worldbuilding is fabulous; these are the most interesting dragons I have read about in ages, analytical and unfeeling (by cultural enforcement, if necessary), completely alien. Also there are plots! Several of them! This book elegantly juggles far more elements than it ought to be able to. I found it deeply satisfying from start to finish and recommend it to EVERY SINGLE ONE OF YOU.

The Birthday of the World and Other Stories, by Ursula Le Guin
I assume you're all familiar with Le Guin. This book is a hodge podge, as collections tend to be, but it has some very thoughtful and thought-provoking anthropological thought experiments of the kind Le Guin is wonderful with. In particular, this book has the sedoretu stories; a story-within-a-story about a planet of mostly women that chills me every single time; and my very favorite Le Guin work of all time, "Solitude," about what Le Guin calls in the foreword "a planet of introverts."

Crossposted from Dreamwidth. Comment here or there. (comment count unavailable DW replies)


( 11 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 15th, 2014 12:21 am (UTC)
I just started reading Seraphina today. :)

That Le Guin book looks interesting. I've actually never read anything of hers beyond an essay I had to read as an undergrad, so I had been wondering what might be a good place to start.

Also, obligatory cooing over FF, because, seriously, it is the cutest and I'm so sad it's ending.
Jan. 15th, 2014 12:40 am (UTC)
YAY, Seraphina. It's so great. I hope lots and lots of people discover it as the series goes on.

Hmm, I kinda just wandered around with Le Guin when I was first reading her. Lots of people love her Earthsea books, but I found them difficult to get into and have still haven't read the last book in the original trilogy. Honestly, I think short stories might be your best bet. If that doesn't appeal, then The Dispossessed is good (but extremely low key), and of course The Left Hand of Darkness is her best known work, which I have completely failed to read thus far, shame on me.

*coos over FF with you*
Jan. 15th, 2014 12:45 am (UTC)
I didn't realize it was part of a series. It doesn't, like, end on a cliffhanger, does it?

Cool, thanks! A short story collection sounds good--I've been enjoying those lately.
Jan. 15th, 2014 12:46 am (UTC)
No, not a cliffhanger. There is definitely room for future developments, but it wraps up all the immediate plot threads.
Jan. 15th, 2014 12:46 am (UTC)
Oh, good. :)
Jan. 15th, 2014 04:05 am (UTC)



(Will be back later to steal wishes) but first!

I *just* finished Seraphina on Saturday and was HEAPS of pleased with it - for all the reasons you state. although I was sad at the ending because WHAT do I even care about unrequited love I WANT TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENS TO THE DRAGONS - DO THEY DIE? (I believe that I shouted that last to my roommate upon finishing.)
Jan. 16th, 2014 07:05 pm (UTC)

Too late, I thought of another thing I'd have added to my 'miscellaneous' list, which was for those who are already familiar with any of the things I requested, to make posts and talk about them, so that we can share squee even if it is not brand-new to either of us. Oh, well.
Jan. 18th, 2014 08:56 am (UTC)
IT IS SO DELIGHTFUL AH! ((I had been stalking it at the bookstore for months and finally broke down and bought it. I'm soooo glad that I did!))

which was for those who are already familiar with any of the things I requested, to make posts and talk about them, so that we can share squee even if it is not brand-new to either of us. Oh, well.
I mean... you can still do that?
Jan. 18th, 2014 03:42 pm (UTC)
Well, I can't edit the original comment. Should I make a new thread? Or comment to my original comment?
Jan. 18th, 2014 04:10 pm (UTC)
I would edit the love letter and make a comment to the original post in the thread? or you can make a new thread?

I could also make a post at some point in the comm specifically for talking about things we've already seen/read. But it's such a small comm that would be up to you :)
Jan. 18th, 2014 04:16 pm (UTC)
*nod* I will do that then.
( 11 comments — Leave a comment )

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