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Friday, 18th April, 2014

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Off LJ News

Guide to Classic Who DVD releases due out this summer
The TARDIS Newsroom posts the Whoniverse News and Extras for today
Day of the Daleks - Doctor Who tribute song

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Challenges/Communities

dw100 opens Challenge #498: spurn

Fanfiction

Completed
Some Old Tragedy by (Ten | G)

WIPs
76, Totter's Lane (9/?) by wildwinterwitch (Nine/Rose | M)
In Another World (21/23?) by bas_math_girl (John Smith/Donna Noble | PG-13)

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I’ve been re-reading The Case of William Smith, by Patricia Wentworth. I think it’s probably the best book this rather limited author ever wrote. Wentworth wrote “mysteries” around the same era as Agatha Christie, but her books weren’t nearly as good. I think the problem was she wanted to be a romance novelist, but instead she was a mystery writer. She would’ve probably been a better romance novelist than mystery writer. There were always at least two suspects who could immediately be crossed off the list, one male and one female. You just knew that neither of them were the murderer, because they were destined for a respectable happily ever after.

Come to think of it, Ngaio Marsh used to do the exact same thing. She was yet another mystery writer in Christie’s era who liked to have a romantic element in her books and where you could inevitably cross the star crossed lovers off your list of suspects, although she was much more technically proficient than Wentworth. I never liked Marsh’s books very much, although I acknowledge that her plots and alibis were often very ingenious. Partly because you could always cross the young lovers off your list of suspects (and where’s the fun in that?), and partly because she had an unpleasant anti-gay streak.

She had gay and lesbian characters, but they were always figures of fun. It’s weird, because Marsh’s background was actually in theatre, and you would’ve though she’d have met enough non-closeted queer people in that world that she would’ve realized continually stereotyping and ridiculing them in her books was cruel and unfair.

Agatha Christie’s books often had a romantic element, to be sure, but you could never be quite sure with Christie that the romance wasn’t a front for one member of the couple being the murderer. That never ever happened with Marsh or Wentworth. And Christie wasn't particularly homophobic. A Murder is Announced, in particular, contains a very sympathetic portrayal of a middle-aged lesbian couple who've been together for years. Naturally, it's never mentioned that they're together.

Dorothy Sayers also had a romantic element, at least in the Peter Wimsey/Harriet Vane quadrilogy, but it wasn’t some sort of tacked-on happy ending like with Marsh and Wentworth. Sayers made her characters *work* for their romance, and put well-thought-out psychological obstacles in their path. Finding the real murderer didn’t give them an automatic happy ending.

Anyway, back to Wentworth and the Case of William Smith. I’m about to spoil everybody for part of the plot (not the murder part, though), so placing the cut tag here: Read more...Collapse )

In different news, Season 2 of Orphan Black starts tomorrow night. I'd say Happy Good Friday to people, but that's a bit like saying Happy Yom Kippur. *Sad* Good Friday to those who celebrate, and to those who don't, happy day off work, assuming you live in a jurisdiction where today is a holiday. I skipped out on the service this morning. I find Good Friday services to be utterly depressing. Which is the whole *point*, I admit, but they also tend to be quite graphic. I might go to the Saturday evening service. Still sad, but not nearly so gruesome.

This entry was originally posted at http://raincitygirl.dreamwidth.org/146687.html. Please comment there using OpenID or here at Livejournal. You decide!

Drabble: Locked In

Title: Locked In

Author: badly_knitted

Characters: Jack, and someone else

Rating: G

Written For: Challenge 313 – Open at tw100. Prompt used is Challenge 151: Locked In A Room.

Spoilers: Nada.

Summary: Jack accidentally triggers a lockdown.

Disclaimer: I don’t own Torchwood, or the characters.

A/N: My third drabble for this prompt.


Locked In



My tweets

Read more...Collapse )

Tags:

Review Roundup for 5x13, "Basic Sandwich"

Good morning, Communies, and welcome to the last review roundup of the season! And possibly the last one ever? Let's hope not, because I don't want to be killed by an asteroid strike. But let's not worry about that right now; let's look at some reviews instead.

Gabrielle Moss, TV Fanatic:
The two-parter's (alongside Community Season 5 Episode 12) Goonies-meets-an-existential-crisis vibe presented the show in its most unadulterated form - creating a solid bedrock to send off for the Greendale...wait, are they back to 7? (4.7 / 5)

Tim Surette, tv.com:
All told, I think both episodes comprised a very funny hour that didn't go as far off the deep end as many Community episodes do, yet still stood out from the rest of the comedies on network television.

Eric Goldman, IGN:
In an episode jam-packed with great meta moments, nothing will beat Abed’s line near the end. “We’ll definitely be back next year. If not, it’s because an asteroid has destroyed all of human civilization. And that’s canon!” (9.2 / 10)

Alan Sepinwall, HitFix:
If this winds up being the actual end (more on that in a moment), it felt appropriate that we would go out with an episode that was so acutely and vocally aware that it could be the last episode of a low-rated but beloved sitcom. And if Jeff thinking warmly about Britta, Annie, Abed and even Dean Pelton to reboot the computer wasn't a surprising character moment at this point in the series — even he long ago stopped pretending that he'd rather be rid of this place and these people — it was still a touching one.

Todd VanDerWerff, A.V. Club:
But its big emotional climax also involves Jeff trying to trick an ancient computer into feeling intense passion because of his love for his friends, and it features Chris Elliott at his Chris Elliott-est. Neither of these is unworkable, but the whole thing sort of feels thrown together at the last minute so everybody can head out for summer break. (B / season grade B+)

Matt Carter, cartermatt.com:
“Basic Sandwich” was not a revolutionary episode of the show that we’ll go back and watch a dozen times, but it was still an enjoyable romp [and] we still enjoyed it enough that we’re left chanting “six seasons and a movie” all over again. (A-)

Randy Dankievitch, Sound on Sight:
On some level, I have to think this is the point of “Basic Story” and “Basic Sandwich”; the stories are so absurd and superficial, it’s as if they’re designed to fall apart under the slightest scrutiny. Whether it’s devilishly clever writing, or just a mix of laziness and exhaustion from the end of a long production season, it makes for an interesting – if not slightly disappointing – interpretation of “the journey is more important than the destination.”

Aisha Harris. Slate:
“Even if we do save Greendale, which Greendale will we be saving?” Annie wonders. It’s a question worth asking, especially following last week’s filler episode in which the premise was that there was no premise to speak of (at least until the final moments). It was a little too on-the-nose, even for Community. But this week’s episode, and most of the other ones from this season, suggest that the show still has life in it.

Polar Bear, Polar Bears Watch TV:
“Basic Sandwich” is certainly a satisfying end to the uneven fifth season. The concept behind it is a bit shaky, consisting of a trip to a computer lab underneath Greendale, complete with the creator of the school and his emotion-lacking computer. However, the actual interactions we get are effective. (B+ / season grade B)

Tim Morse, Morse Code:
This show has always been ridiculous. But the story idea of a treasure hunt kind of takes the cake. But it allowed them to have a ton of fun in this episode, as they always seem to do. (9.0 / A)

Damon Houx, ScreenCrush:
Abed spells out that this might be a possible finale as his way to understand what’s going on, which straddles the line between clever and obvious, but it works in the context of the show. This season has been a little more aware of itself than usual, or perhaps is less afraid of embracing its more out there ideas, but this also ties into the show’s existentialism.

Joe Matar, Den of Geek:
The first part of Community’s two-part finale, “Basic Story,” was really rather a mess that felt like several disconnected plotlines and underdeveloped concepts tossed together. It did have those brief moments where it felt like possibly the show was returning to a familiar, good place ... Well, the second part, “Basic Sandwich,” gets rid of all the complicated stuff, but even the few good bits get thrown out with it. The episode is even less funny, more emotionless, and at times feels so comically unfamiliar; it’s like if the Farrelly brothers made a Community movie.

Brian Collins, Badass Digest:
For a season/possible-series finale, it's pretty grounded compared to other season enders, with minimal use of the supporting cast and not much of a resolution for anyone's attempts at a degree. I assume it was for budgetary reasons that the regular co-stars don't appear in an episode about saving Greendale, but it's still kind of a bummer - Magnitude should have been around to offer up a "Pop, pop!" during the celebration, instead of a bunch of random anonymous extras.

Laurel Brown, zap2it:
"Community" Season 5 has nothing to lose and everything to gain in its finale, "Basic Sandwich." That's probably why the episode essentially dares NBC not to renew it for a sixth season (and a movie).

Untempered Television:
If you’re a sucker for Abed’s meta commentary, “Basic Sandwich” was essentially Mecca and I happen to be such a sucker so his musings threading through the entire half hour were just so perfect that the lack of any sort of meaningful depth was easily forgiven.

Nick O'Malley, masslive.com:
Somewhat lost in the dense fog of the meta-commentary of the episode is the fact that "Basic Sandwich" was really funny. Starting off with a good comedic lead-in with the "buried treasure" bit, the writers clearly had a good bit of fun with having the characters pull off a cartoonish "Scooby-Doo"-esque caper in the bowels of Greendale.

Lauren Stern, Pop Break:
The last review I wrote for this series was the Dungeons and Dragons episode, which was classic Community just by the theme alone. I’m happy that I got the opportunity to review this season’s finale, as it was classic in that it one of the most meta Community episode ever produced.

Jennifer Marie, Just About Write:
I expected more from this season because of Harmon’s return. I expected a central theme that progressed the characters. I expected them to learn and to evolve, not to merely circle around the same themes and plots from years past like a hamster on a wheel or a person on a gym treadmill. So if “Basic Sandwich” is the series finale of Community… what did I think of it, exactly? I thought it was a decent farewell to an okay season but that it was – when it boiled down to it – reminiscent of a hamster on a wheel.

As always, thanks for reading, not just this week but throughout the season. See you next October 20, whenever it happens!
 

Volume 009, Issue 074

This issue covers April 17th in crossover fandom.

All fan fiction has been listed at least twice, once for each fandom represented in the story. As the lists are very long, lj cuts have been implemented. Enjoy!

Crossover Fan FictionCollapse )
We don't pretend that what you see in this newsletter covered everything in the world of crossovers on Livejournal for the dates in question, though we have done our best. Please feel free to comment with suggestions on ways to improve the newsletter. Also, please let us know of any content we have overlooked or if any of the links are broken.

~Your editor,
carley9

Easter Wells 2014

Last year I was in London during the Easter holidays, which meant I couldn't follow one of my favourite Easter traditions, to wit, visiting the beautiful Easter Wells in our Franconian country side. This year, I did so one day early, because rain was broadcast for Good Friday (and sure enough, it's raining now), whereas yesterday it was lovely and sunny. And thus, I can share with you my annual Easter pic spam again - the wells in their multitudes of colours and eggs are there below the cut.

Easter Wells 2014Collapse )

In case I shan't be able to post properly again during the holidays: happy Easter to all who celebrate it!

This entry was originally posted at http://selenak.dreamwidth.org/978522.html. Comment there or here, as you wish.