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25 May 2009 @ 11:06 pm
Not a terribly productive weekend...  
I started a drabble for particlesofgale's birthday ficlet, and trying to expand it has dragged on so that it still isn't done! Not much on the Sweet Charity fic this weekend either, though it's a dialogue-heavy beast and lots of fun so far.

My parents came on Sunday, and we had a good visit. This consisted, as usual, of being trapped at the kitchen table for the entire day, which always makes me a little nuts. Got a little yardwork done while talking to my mother and listened to Christopher and two friends verge on hooliganism with water balloons and squirt guns.

We'd hoped to get together with another family today, but they were tied up, so I took Lauren out to look for swimsuits and went biking. The swimsuit trip was pure failure-- she's too tall for the girl's sizes, and the older sizes are too sexy or too matronly, and all require a bosom that has not yet arrived. I now understand why her best friend wore a basic black speedo-type-thing to Lauren's B.D. party almost a year ago (she was about Lauren's height then). As for the biking... had to fix a flat beforehand (thanks to another staple, courtesy of my bike-commute!), and then change the tire again 2.5 miles in. The rear tire, of course, and I HATE the heavy bead on thisi particular set of tires-- they're really hard to work with. HSH bought them. :(

Saturday night we had a date, and saw Star Trek, which was indeed marvelous.

Making this a prequel to the original series, and something of an AU, really worked well. I was very nervous about recasting the roles, especially if the point was just to restart the franchise. This was different.

I really liked the new Kirk and McCoy (who was actually good-looking, and what cute lips!). Chekhov was adorable (his little face!), the other roles okay. Uhura was fine, and the character strong, but she lacked the sex appeal and the marvelous voice of the original. Nichelle Nichols had allure, and made that role more than it should have been. Not so here. For Sulu... I'm bothered that a non-Japanese actor was cast for the part. Call me petty, but it bugs me-- John Cho looks no more Japanese than I do, and haven't we moved beyond the "interchangeable Asian" concept?

Loved the Mr. Scott, though this one was rather loopy compared to the original. Much funnier, not always intentionally.

I was really jazzed at the choice for the captain of the U.S.S. Kelvin. Faran Tahir played a villain in Iron Man, but with such presence and charisma (and looks) that I'd hoped to see him again. Not a lot of screentime here, but he carried it well.

Unlike most people, I'm fairly "meh" on Zachary Quinto as Spock. The young Leonard Nimoy did so much with that role, with the emotion under the muted surface, that it's just hard to accept anyone else doing it. Moreover, he had a saturnine sex-appeal that had housewives tingling across the country. Quinto's acting as Spock is fine, but his appearance is SO bland. He's like a baby-faced blob with the eyebrow/hair/ear accessories tacked on. He doesn't have the physical appeal as Spock, and the casting just feels flat to me in that regard.

The story was fun-- loved McCoy repeatedly attacking Kirk with the neck-hypo and Kirk getting more and more irritated by it (those things were always SO unnatural, and they should have hurt). Loved Mr. Scott's gulag and the accompanying alien. Loved Chekhov altogether. Loved that Sulu's hand-to-hand combat experience at fencing proved serendipitous. Loved Kirk's persistence, bordering on idiocy at times, but always there when needed.

Definitely worth seeing, and I was a skeptic!

After we got home, we plugged in our Netflix movie, which was Charlie Bartlett. I recognized Anton Yelchin as the name of the Chekhov actor, and was surprised to discover that he was the movie's lead. Talk about coincidences! The movie has rather sweet undertones despite the flippant start, and was a nice surprise in general. Plus, Robert Downey Jr. is in it, looking fantastic.

Later, I may or may not have been surfing the net for boykissing videos and stumbled across something called Star Trek: Phase 2, which looks to be a fan-project continuing the "Original Series" episodes. One of them has a gay subplot (that's the one I tripped over). Some of the acting is borderline, some of the casting not at all bad. The attention to set detail, story layout, camera angles, and use of the original series' music is all terrific, though. Someone clearly paid a lot of attention to the original show. ;)

And now? Back to the fics, and then off to bed!

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black_regalia on May 26th, 2009 07:28 am (UTC)
Call me petty, but it bugs me-- John Cho looks no more Japanese than I do, and haven't we moved beyond the "interchangeable Asian" concept?

To be fair to the movie, Sulu isn't actually Japanese -- even the original. While his given name is Japanese(Hikaru), his family name isn't. 'Sulu' is not a Japanese name or word.

The original series was the original perpetrator of the 'interchangeable Asian' problem, in that it made Sulu of any Asian heritage. If I remember correctly, though, he's actually from San Fransisco.

Admittedly, Takei is of Japanese descent -- though Zoe Saldana is from the Dominican Republic, and she is playing a woman from Africa in the movie. And Urban is playing an American Southerner, while being from New Zealand, so.

And, while I'm thinking of it, Pegg is actually English XD
black_regalia on May 26th, 2009 07:29 am (UTC)
Oh, there was more to this. Which was: YAY I'm glad you enjoyed it :D Man, I love this movie @_@
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: heh-hehhalfshellvenus on May 26th, 2009 07:43 am (UTC)
Hee-- me too! Because I was AFEARED of the sacreligious potential. It wasn't until after I'd seen other people in my (*koff*) age bracket who'd known and loved the original series say that the movie was okay, that I considered the possibility of seeing it.

Awesome way to approach the series, truly, and really well done. \o/
black_regalia on May 26th, 2009 07:54 am (UTC)
I know! I loved that they played in the original canon. It wasn't just "Oh, this is an AU" or "This is just a prequel", they sewed the story to canon, all the while leaving themselves free to create an all new, original story.

I entered Trek with TNG, when I was a little girl, but when I got older(and geekier), I got into older Trek, as well as DS9. I've never ventured into Voyager or Enterprise(I heard that Enterprise was awful in every way), but it made me so happy to see this movie as part of canon, but still free to change, grow and explore new stories.

...which, of course, means that I must now fic. /weep
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on May 26th, 2009 05:51 pm (UTC)
they sewed the story to canon, all the while leaving themselves free to create an all new, original story.
And that worked SO well. Really a solid, creative effort, and great storytelling. \o/

but when I got older(and geekier), I got into older Trek, as well as DS9. I've never ventured into Voyager or Enterprise(I heard that Enterprise was awful in every way)
You probably have a different perspective than I, if TNG was your first encounter.

I never understood the point of Riker, and the character was like all the asshole parts of Kirk without the spark/charisma/creativity that made Kirk special. His "function" on the Enterprise always seemed redundant.

All the new Treks share the "castrated captain" problem, where Gene Roddenberry decided that the original series hadn't honored the Prime Directive enough, and that the newer captains should interfere with other cultures less (more respect, less cowboying). I can certainly understand and appreciate that viewpoint (it shows SUCH a change in America's cultural attitude as well), but it makes for dull captains and dull television.

Picard had SUCH potential, and was delightful, but was shackled too much. Sisko was hampered in part by Brook's overacting (he never adjusted to TV vs. theater) and Roddenberry's "Western In Space" approach). Janeway was a godawful captain, partly due to Mulgrew's acting decisions, and that was infuriating-- first female captain, and while she started off well she became a dictatorial harpy. 7 of 9 was introduced around S3 as T&A, but her character's storylines actually became the best part of the show.

And Enterprise... the first season was wonderful, again with such potential (though I hated the presence of T'Pol, because canon had Spock as the first Vulcan Starfleet member). But they made Archer a sexless entity who became dictatorial as well, and S2 forward was a waste. So sad. :(

which, of course, means that I must now fic. /weep
Hee! At least it's not like stumbling over something at comment_fic or the Gen Fic Battle and veering off into fandoms that no-one reads. Because you suddenly have to write those stories. ;)

Edited at 2009-05-26 05:52 pm (UTC)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on May 26th, 2009 07:37 am (UTC)
Sulu is presumed to be Japanese because his given name is, though. Japanese-American.

Uhura, as I understood it, was always an American character. She spoke Swahili, along with a bazillion other languages, but I thought she was American. We'd certainly have noticed otherwise-- African English has a beautiful cadence to it that is British-influenced and much more "flavorful" than American English.

The other things you mention are more of "origin" than of race, though. Uhura is still black, Scotty still Caucasian (and still not actually a Scot-- the original was Canadian). Urban was fairly convincing as a Southerner (to Northern ears, anyway).

Eric Bana, though... I know he's from New Zealand or Australia, but he sounded very much like a "modern American" here and that was not of the good. Not as bad as the strangely British Vulcans, but still out-of-place.
black_regalia on May 26th, 2009 07:50 am (UTC)
Uhura's actually from the United States of Africa -- which is assumably the political configuration of Africa in the 23rd century :B A more specific location is never mentioned, though.
Princess Robot Bubblegum!astrothsknot on May 26th, 2009 07:31 am (UTC)
Tankini with a boyshort bottom for Lauren? It'll take account of her height without being revealing
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on May 26th, 2009 07:40 am (UTC)
She does have a tankini already, which fits fairly well (because all her length is in her legs, so the top part doesn't change much). She wants a one-piece for some reason (may be feeling more modest), and the tankini now shows some tummy. I don't think she likes that.

The tankinis in the Junior's and Misses departments both had cleavage cups, which is kind of a problem right now.

Hope it won't still be a problem a year or two from now. :0

I know it'll eventually happen (she's not 12 yet), but her friends all have a little something there and she takes after the willowy aunt on HSH's side. I.e., there'll never be much in the breast department and I have no idea how long it will take to show up. :(
mooyoomooyoo on May 26th, 2009 07:56 am (UTC)
re: Star Trek: Yay! I'm so glad you liked it!! I haven't yet talked to anyone who really didn't like it :)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on May 26th, 2009 05:52 pm (UTC)
Yes! I meant to follow up on your comments on Jules' post, but got sidelined.

It was really fun, and worked so much better than I expected!
The Good, The Bad and The Lanathelana on May 26th, 2009 08:13 am (UTC)
I thought the prequel/AU aspect was rather smartly done. As for the characters, I think I have taken to just treating them as new characters. Who seem like a pretty fun bunch in their own right even if they can't live up to the originals.

Above all the movie worked for me I think because they got the nostalgia/respect for the old right, particularly in scenes like the two Spocks meeting. I think if they hadn't had those kind of scenes it would have felt cold and shallow, but those hat tips to the past made it feel like it came full circle.

Other than that: McCoy for the win :)

I have to say though the movie really made me yearn for fic from the POV of the old Spock when he meets the young Kirk with in mind that "his" Kirk probably has been dead for quite a while, what it is like for Spock to see him in the flesh again (in way at least). You know, one-sided yearny, to see Kirk all energetic and alive and just pure Kirk.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on May 27th, 2009 06:43 pm (UTC)
I think if they hadn't had those kind of scenes it would have felt cold and shallow, but those hat tips to the past made it feel like it came full circle.
I think you're right-- the appearance of the "future" Spock in general, actually, did it for me. That make the AU approach seem "real" in a way that it would not have, otherwise.

Other than that: McCoy for the win :)
He was surprisingly cute. And all-too-ready with that hypo-gun!

Also, I loved the nod to his creative ability to "bend rules" to get the right results.

You know, one-sided yearny, to see Kirk all energetic and alive and just pure Kirk.
I can understand that, though this never seems like "his" Kirk to me because the actors look SO different. Seriously-- different eye color, different facial structure, and above all... the Shatner Kirk would have required a major eyebrow-ectomy to become his later self. We're talking caterpillars here!
Queen of Musicdove95 on May 26th, 2009 11:13 am (UTC)
That's right! I knew there was another place I recognized Anton Yelchin from. I went to his IMdb after I saw the movie back, but I just didn't remember seeing Charlie Bartlett until you just mentioned it. Huh :)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on May 27th, 2009 06:44 pm (UTC)
He's so earnest and adorable as Chekhov, and actually very earnest as Charlie Bartlett too. But I find him cuter as Chekhov, for some reason. :)
mercurybard on May 26th, 2009 02:09 pm (UTC)
Yeah for it living up to your expectations!

For Sulu... I'm bothered that a non-Japanese actor was cast for the part
If it's any consolation, Cho was worried about it too.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on May 27th, 2009 06:44 pm (UTC)
Actually, I do feel better knowing that!

Really, it's not as if Cho has any shortage of work these days, too.
Pixpixel_0 on May 27th, 2009 01:58 am (UTC)
Ooh, it's been a while since I've seen Charlie Bartlett. I agree with you in that it definitely does have some sweet undertones. I did feel as though there were some plotlines that didn't seem to connect or work to help build the story. Overall, though, I really liked it. I just felt like it could have been a bit better...if any of that makes any sense. ;P
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on May 27th, 2009 06:46 pm (UTC)
I just felt like it could have been a bit better...if any of that makes any sense. ;P

It does, entirely. The opening scene, where it became apparent that he was forging IDs, was consistent with his desire to be liked, but made NO sense in the context of how he "evolved" into his armchair psychiatrist role.

That last one truly came out of a sense of wanting to help people-- being liked happened secondarily. I would have preferred that they changed the opening entirely. What's wrong with "having to cut back a little on finances" or "his mother being lonely" as an excuse to pull him out of boarding school?