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On the Merits of Good Bone Structure - The Book of the Celestial Cow

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October 6th, 2007


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12:49 am - On the Merits of Good Bone Structure
Tonight, daynr graced the state of California with her presence, and my place, specifically, bringing upanashad along with her. I wasn't intimidated by her like I was when I met her in March, though I daresay she was even cuter this time, with those delightful curls atop her head. We went to Cactus to grab dinner, and this attractive woman totally probably flirted with me, because she seemed very interested in my opinions regarding the burrito selections. She even took my recommendation of the pollo con mole verde. Sadly, I could not ditch my companions to go make out with her, and besides, some things are more important than making out.

Like Avatar.

Avatar

I am having a weird time here, you guys. See, I came into Avatar during a really awesome time in the show, and I was able to move pretty quickly through the first season and mainline the rest of the second season. And when you do that, you don't have to wait a whole week for the next installment. You don't have to wait a week, get one half hour, and then wait another week. You don't have to focus on each individual episode since you always have the next one not too far away.

But...WHAT THE HELL IS THIIIIIIS. Like, I totally appreciate that we're in the Fire Nation and telling Fire Nation stories, but I feel like there's been a bizarre backslide in creativity. I'm not feeling this season, and it's saaaaaaad.

So, let's maybe get the bad out of the way so I can end on a good note?

Katara, just...what the hell. I hate when she gets like this. This wasn't nearly as bad as "Imprisoned," because that would be difficult, earthbending lemurs and overboard captains aside. But, seriously, the impassioned "I will NEVER turn my back on people who need me!!!!!!1111" from the trailer was...actually about this random-ass town? I know she's trying to do a nice thing, but her need to help the downtrodden is almost pathological. Perhaps this stems from her obvious abandonment issues.

And then she has to GIVE A FUCKING SPEECH again. And this time, she doesn't even make any sense! "You can't wait around for someone to help you; you have to help yourselves...[WHICH IS WHY I CAME AND HELPED YOU????]" Ugh. Can we stop making pit stops to teach children moral lessons and get back to the damn plot already?

No, seriously, how much fucking time must they have wasted cleaning up the river? It's a fucking big river! And I like the waterbending/earthbending filtration trick, but Sokka had a schedule! And it seems to leave little room for dilly-dally! How the fuck are they going to get there on time? At this rate, they're going to have to get themselves good and discovered so they can just fly away on Appa.

That being said, there was still a lot of good stuff.

For instance, Toph out-awesomed Katara with one line: "Maybe we could clean up the river!"

So I presume they're on the secret river that leads straight to Ozai's digs? Which they will reach on the Day of Black Sun and have eight minutes to take down the Fire Nation? Good...luck with that, guys. I wonder what the plan is. At least that will be awesome. I presume.

That dude was pretty hilarious. I have to say. It's a gag that's been done before, but it's still funny. I loved how committed he was to the crazy.

Sokka and Aang demonstrating a spirit attack? Comedy gold.

"You look just like a hill with horns!"

Even though it led to painful speechifying, Katara as the Painted Lady was actually a pretty neat idea. I liked the execution of the idea, just not...the characterization behind it.

At first, I kind of hated Katara for lying to everyone and faking a sickness for Appa, but then I thought about it and found the whole situation pretty interesting. Sure, she lied, but only so she could do a good deed that she thought would benefit other people. There's a certain moral greyness there, even though they didn't really dwell on it.

Toph punching Aang.

"I know Hei Bai! We're close personal friends!"

If "She's cooooooming" wasn't a Poltergeist reference, I'll eat my sock. That was awesome.

The fake spirit attack was also pretty awesome, with Toph and Sokka on foley and score. And then Aang airbending from underneath the dock! That's mad skillz there!

In conc—oh, fuck it, Ty Lee's probably off watching Dexter. Aaaactually, I sort of love the image of the Dangerous Ladies getting together to watch Dexter. And taking notes.

I somehow forgot to actually set the series recording for Friday Night Lights, and we almost missed it. I switched the channel just in time.

Friday Night Lights

I was worried about the premiere because advanced word was not good. Most people seemed troubled and critical, as is expected after a great first season, but...GODDAMMIT DEXTER GOT IT RIGHT. Damn network television.

It was strange. It was still FNL, but everything was so different

Lyla inexplicably became a Bible thumper, which will not help me like her, even though we were doing much better by the end of the season. Her grace before dinner was hilarious, though.

Riggins seems to have backslid completely. I don't remember where he was at the end of last season, but wasn't he still involved with the hot MILF? Where'd she go?

Matt and Julie are on the rocks? Nooooo!! What the hell is that? Who is this stupid Swedish guy with a crappy rock band? What the hell happened all summer? Why would it be bad for you two to turn into Coach and Mrs. Coach, just like typicrobots said? I actually do like how that came up in relation to Coach's absence over the summer and OH MY FUCK JULIE IS TURNING INTO KATARA. (P.S. "What about The Saracen?" = love.) And how did Aimee Teagarden's breasts double in size in a matter of months?

Mrs. Coach...looked older, somehow. And she was crying. Aww.

Coach Taylor, goddamn you. One thing I like about this show is that it's not afraid to show Coach being an ass. That doesn't mean it's easy to watch. Are they seriously going to keep this up all season? Because the new coach of the Dillon Panthers suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuucks.

Smash was still Smash in his three seconds of screentime. Good job, there.

Street as coach is promising so far. If Coach of Suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck doesn't ruin it.

Landry joining the football team = DO NOT WANT. Part of the character's appeal is that he is the only major male character NOT ON THE FUCKING FOOTBALL TEAM. Even Tyra thinks it's a stupid idea, which is why I love her. As for the budding Tyra/Landry business, that whole scene was terribly cute. I will not be studying his technique, however.

So. The thing.

Tyra's attempted rapist stalking her was really creepy. And I liked that Landry got punched out, because he would. And I liked that he ragefully grabbed a lead pipe and ran after him. And I liked that he killed him. That whole scene was really intense.

Because I honestly worry about this. I wonder about being put in a situation where, to protect someone, I end up doing something that leads to someone's death. I worry about someone jumping in front of my car when I'm not paying attention. I think about having to live with having taken someone's life.

Yes, things might have gone better if they had called the cops, but they panicked, and I don't blame them. There was a river, and it was there, and I don't blame them. I feel like that is exactly what I would do to avoid being caught, to avoid having my life fucked up for one rashly stupid action.

It seems a little big for FNL in a way (a radio commercial I heard on the way home said that in the premiere there would be "a hook-up, a break-up, a birth, and a murder," and I was like WTF??), but I do wonder how they'll handle it.

Yeah, I don't know.
Current Mood: listlesslistless
Current Music: Snow Patrol - Ways and Means

(30 memoirs | Describe me as "inscrutable")

Comments:


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[User Picture]
From:latropita
Date:October 6th, 2007 08:17 am (UTC)
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On the one hand, I'm bummed that I wasn't super-jazzed about this episode, but on the other hand, it's on par with "The Great Divide," so I'm not really worried about the quality of the show falling or whatever. I'm sure there is imminent squee.

"You can't wait around for someone to help you; you have to help yourselves...[WHICH IS WHY I CAME AND HELPED YOU????]"
Hahaha, I didn't even notice that! Oh, Katara.

Re: FNL, I can fully understand Julie's deal. It's unfortunate because AT isn't the greatest actress, but I can see her deal. Lyla, too, though I empathize less.
[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:October 6th, 2007 08:21 am (UTC)
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on the other hand, it's on par with "The Great Divide," so I'm not really worried about the quality of the show falling or whatever.
That...is my second-least-favorite episode, shortly behind "Imprisoned"! This episode is better than "The Great Divide" on the presence of Toph alone.

Hahaha, I didn't even notice that! Oh, Katara.
I totally get that she means that she...helped them in order to...take that help away to make them keenly realize how they shouldn't be dependent on help...but it just came out hypocritically hilarious.
[User Picture]
From:miniglik
Date:October 6th, 2007 01:02 pm (UTC)
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If you ever panic and dump a body in a river, I am so hunting you down and kicking your ass, m'kay? Always. call. the. cops. That goes for everbody... unless you're Dexter, because he's a professional.


Wow, I didn't dislike Avatar near as much as you did. I did feel it was too moral-lessony and way too Free to be Green. But it was still fun. It's just acting more like a kids cartoon than an awesome epic narrative right now. It'll get back, I assume.
[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:October 6th, 2007 04:47 pm (UTC)
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If you ever panic and dump a body in a river, I am so hunting you down and kicking your ass, m'kay?
*makes a note: don't tell Sarah...*

It's just acting more like a kids cartoon than an awesome epic narrative right now.
I want my awesome epic narrative!!
[User Picture]
From:faithx5
Date:October 6th, 2007 01:37 pm (UTC)
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The MILF broke it off sex-wise, but Riggins was still hanging out with the kid (gave them tickets to the State game). We didn't really see him at home, though, in the opener, so I guess we don't know if she still lives next door. I'd assume so. The episode was just busier breaking up Julie and Matt, and making Tyra and Landry into murderers.

And yeah, I liked the whole sequence dealing with the would-be rapist (that was one of my favorite plots of S1--because it was compelling, not because I like attempted rape). But they didn't just happen to be by a river--Tyra drove there. I suppose she could have just been driving randomly and ended up there, but I got the impression that she drove there on purpose.
[User Picture]
From:rachelmack
Date:October 6th, 2007 02:39 pm (UTC)
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I was fully expected Lyla, having been shown that even if she's "perfect" her world can get blown apart, would do a Veronica. Maybe not to the extreme, but I felt like her character was poised to become badass at the end of the season there.

And then they went... the born-again route. Eh wuh?
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From:rachelmack
Date:October 6th, 2007 02:42 pm (UTC)
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Oh, yeah, and if you are afraid of doing something like Landry did, CALL THE POLICE. Because, if for no other reason, you saved them the time and money ofa full-blown investigation, and that tends to put them in a good mood! And it shows remorse and taking responsibility! And for fuck's sakes, Landry, the guy was trying to rape Tyra, again, and she already has reported it! CALL THE FUCKING POLICE!
[User Picture]
From:etherealclarity
Date:October 6th, 2007 04:17 pm (UTC)
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I liked the episode. And I loved that the real painted lady thanked Katara at the end. But yeah, I'm also looking forward to it getting better. I'm trusting that it will... all the seasons started out this slow.
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:October 6th, 2007 04:49 pm (UTC)
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It is indeed!
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From:gingerwood
Date:October 6th, 2007 06:05 pm (UTC)
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I think in Avatar, they're trying to establish up front that even though the fire nation are the agressors, the War is making life just as bad for the average fire nation as it for those in other parts of the world (if in different ways). It worked in Headband, but was way too heavy handed in PL.
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From:spectralbovine
Date:October 6th, 2007 06:09 pm (UTC)
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It's weird because the stories they're telling aren't all that different from those in previous seasons, but everything's much more red! So I think you're right about the intention.
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From:eirefaerie
Date:October 6th, 2007 06:24 pm (UTC)
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re: FNL. I feel like I can see where the network pushed in with Business, if you know what I mean. Networks are here to make money, the show wasn't making money, it's Ryan Howard's Dunder-Mifflin Infinity in the form of a shoddy murder/hide the body plotline. I loved pretty much everything else though, wrt Julie/Matt (I see where Julie's coming from. she is sixteen, after all) and Coach being kind of an ass and Mrs. Coach being awesome and even Lyla made me laugh. Not totally sure about the backslides of Riggins and Smash - where's Waverly? Did the joy of winning State make them turn back into young false idols? IDK.
[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:October 6th, 2007 06:35 pm (UTC)
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Networks are here to make money, the show wasn't making money, it's Ryan Howard's Dunder-Mifflin Infinity in the form of a shoddy murder/hide the body plotline.
Yeah, it definitely felt like that belonged on another show. This show is melodramatic, but in different ways.

wrt Julie/Matt (I see where Julie's coming from. she is sixteen, after all)
No, I definitely see where she's coming from. It still sucks!

Coach being kind of an ass and Mrs. Coach being awesome and even Lyla made me laugh.
And mothers of three should not be wearing skinny jeans!

Not totally sure about the backslides of Riggins and Smash - where's Waverly?
Back in "Africa"? I never warmed up to her. I don't see Smash as a backslide; we know there's Smash and there's The Smash, his persona. Riggins, though, what the hell.
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:October 6th, 2007 09:20 pm (UTC)
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Yeah, she just doesn't understand OTP like we do.
From:birdsarecalling
Date:October 6th, 2007 10:30 pm (UTC)
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This season seems like it's more kiddiefied than S2, which was when I came into the show. The first episode was exposition punctuated by platitudes by mentor figures and an ending group hug. The subsequent two episodes have been mostly self-containted morality plays. I want to see more of Zuko's story, not because I like Zuko better than Aang, but because his plot thread hasn't been simplified in the same way.

I wonder if that's a directive from the network suits, after the relative narrative complexity of the end of the second season. Or if S2 is just destined to be the Empire Strikes Back of ATLA, never to be surpassed.
[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:October 6th, 2007 10:39 pm (UTC)
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This season seems like it's more kiddiefied than S2, which was when I came into the show.
Same with me, and I agree.

I want to see more of Zuko's story, not because I like Zuko better than Aang, but because his plot thread hasn't been simplified in the same way.
Good observation.

I wonder if that's a directive from the network suits, after the relative narrative complexity of the end of the second season.
See, I wish we could always play the Blame the Network card, but I don't see why they would do this because Avatar's ratings have always kicked ass. They have no incentive to fuck with it, right? I just really really hope the next few episodes start kicking things up a notch. Especially if these episodes are doing double-duty as setup for plots down the line.

Or if S2 is just destined to be the Empire Strikes Back of ATLA, never to be surpassed.
Wooooooe. (I actually preferred Jedi. I didn't realize I was supposed to not like it. But there were speeder chases! And Ewoks destroying AT-ATs! It was a good time!)
[User Picture]
From:upanashad
Date:October 6th, 2007 10:54 pm (UTC)
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We went to Cactus to grab dinner, and this attractive woman totally probably flirted with me

She TOTALLY probably flirted with you. And then she was, like, hovering around you at the salsa bar. And then we ruined it by talking about her while she was standing right there.

I feel like that is exactly what I would do to avoid being caught, to avoid having my life fucked up for one rashly stupid action.

Haven't you watched enough tv to know that if you did that, you'd subsequently have to die as punishment? Or turn irretrievably corrupt and then eventually die. It would be much better to take your chances with the cops.
[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:October 6th, 2007 11:07 pm (UTC)
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And then she was, like, hovering around you at the salsa bar.
Was she? Because I was looking all around for her while waiting and then unexpectedly saw her when I went to the salsa bar.

And then we ruined it by talking about her while she was standing right there.
Hee.
[User Picture]
From:chrismarlowe
Date:October 7th, 2007 01:54 am (UTC)
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I effin' missed Avatar. I wasnt' able to watch or tape either of the showings Friday night and they didnt' appear to rerun it Saturday morning. ARRRRGHH!!!

There is a site that puts up the Avatar eps, so hopefully I will be able to watch the latest one soon.
[User Picture]
From:shpyum
Date:October 7th, 2007 04:12 pm (UTC)
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Um, I sort of liked the new Avatar (hides). I also tend to like the little one-off, diversion episodes that don't further the story but remind you that these are REALLY YOUNG KIDS having to make REALLY DIFFICULT DECISIONS about who they are and how they want to live (and very possibly die), being faced with the worst truths about the world (and then being tasked with trying to save it). I think it's easy to forget with all the complex plotting and awesome character development the gravity of little kids with nary a helpful parent figure in sight (except Iroh, and he's in jail) at the center of a war that is tearing the whole world apart. It's like if Winston Churchill or the Archduke Ferdinand had been 12 (I haven't had any sleep or coffee, shut up). And so I like the little character study eps for highlighting that. Also like, quests are slow, yo. Sometimes you get super-sidetracked and end up like, running across Rohan for half of a god-damned book (okay, to be fair, technically the Quester was not running through Rohan, but you catch my drift). Traveling across the world on Appa is slow, sometimes very tedious (less so with Toph around) and you run into some really weird shit. Some days, you fight the forces of evil face to face, some days you deal with a fishmonger with MPD. These's are the perils of an epic quest, my friend.
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
From:spadada
Date:October 9th, 2007 12:57 am (UTC)

Totally unrelated comment

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I can't tell: is that you mocking me or are you really requesting that I refer to you as "Darth Vader" now?
[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:October 9th, 2007 01:03 am (UTC)

Re: Totally unrelated comment

(Link)
Whichever you prefer, Kelley. Whichever you prefer.

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