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Randall quizzing Mike!

(Sorry for the crappy quality, this was like my first time making gifs D:)

The video’s here, btw.

Nov 7
waywardponds:

candlehat:

Promised myself I wouldn’t reblog election stuff
but this actually made me really warm and fuzzy inside

political shit,

waywardponds:

candlehat:

Promised myself I wouldn’t reblog election stuff

but this actually made me really warm and fuzzy inside

political shit,

(Source: politi-gal)

Nov 7

thoughts on hiroshi

fannishcodex:

hyperbolic-tangents:

fallingivy:

Sometimes when I watch LoK I feel like the show became, somehow, a completely different show near the end. Like they suddenly realized that, the way they’d been writing and pacing these episodes, they could not hold up the plotline they’d been forming and had to change things drastically so that events would make sense or feasibly be able to happen. (Korra ‘defeating’ Amon, for example.) In doing this, they completely ruined at least two characters and stymied their lead character. More on that later, because right now I’m just going to focus on Hiroshi fucking Sato and how he makes no sense.

So we’re introduced to Hiroshi as an extremely wealthy business owner who built this vast company on his own invention, the Satomobile. Originally poor, he built his company from the ground up in the kind of blaze of bootstrapping glory that would make Americans proud. He is devoted to his family, his daughter that he dotes on and protects lovingly. They seem to have a wonderful, loving relationship. I’m gonna say this again: Asami, as we see her in the beginning, loves her father, is not resentful towards him, and is pretty much a stereotypical daddy’s girl. THEY LOVE EACH OTHER VERY MUCH.

Hiroshi’s wife was killed by a firebender, leaving him as a grieving single father. Either after or before this murder, he had Asami go through a lot of physical training and martial arts classes to become quite possibly the most badass hand-to-hand fighter on this show with the exception of Amon. He even protected her from what he was doing with the Equalists, wanting to leave her out of the violence for as long as he could. When she attacked him in defense of her friends, he forgave her and spent the time worrying about his daughter with Amon.

So everything we saw of Hiroshi up to the point of the finale was a man who had turned to the Equalists out of vengeance and was capable of doing horrible things out of anger, but loved his daughter beyond anything else. How many people would come up from being electrocuted by their child with only the thought: “I hope she’s safe, I hope she’s not making the wrong choices, I hope she won’t be hurt by what is going to happen?” We see no anger from Hiroshi over that attack.

In the FINALE, he fights her in a mech, trying to keep her from helping the Krew. (Also I’m just going to say, unlike Mako, he actually gives a real apology at first: I know I hurt you and I’m sorry.) Anyway, she tells him: “You don’t feel love for mom anymore. You’re too full of hate.” And he suddenly decides she’s no longer worth saving or protecting. This guy. This man, who previously has been painted as a dedicated family man, who put his daughter through so much self defense so she would be safe, who put everything on the line for his family- THIS MAN. He tries to murder her. He would have crushed her if Bolin hadn’t come to the rescue.

This made no fucking sense. It also shows that Bryke never had any intention of making the Equalists look legitimate, or allowing the movement any kind of validation. Why have Hiroshi go over the top and murder his daughter? Why not have them talk it out, yell at each other until they both start crying, come out of those walking weapons and deal with each other face-to-face like father and daughter should, because after all these are two people who love each other? This is a family that was never shown as unhealthy or abusive, like Zuko’s. It’s a family that is broken but mendable. Their fight would have still happened, but think how much more poignant it would have been if they both had retained their humanity, if Hiroshi was left as a violent revolutionary- but still a family man.

Instead, they have Hiroshi swallowed up by anger and made inhuman enough to try and murder his daughter, in a fit of character-smashing idiocy that completely left him unsympathetic. The only reason for them to do this would be to display, yet again, that the Equalists are wrong. They are misguided at best, violent and hate-filled at worst. The finale is full of such moments, with the writers doing their ham-handed best to show us these people are bad, immoral, and worth being defeated in the worst way.

It’s like they just could not deal with the complexities of the plot they had set up. They could not, for some reason, write this struggle as people fighting people, they set it up as a classic good vs. evil. They went for the simplest, most disappointing way to tell this story and boy, did the characters pay for it. 

Hiroshi Sato causes me a lot of pain in my heart.

Same.  I try to treat him better in AU fic.

fuckyeahgleelove:

lucyndareadsspookystories:

metallikato:

deepclaw:

sane-as-a-starkid:

dapper-darling:

disneycrossover:

If Harry Potter was made into a Disney movie [x]

Harry (Eric), Hermione (Belle), and Ron (Hercules) in Hogsmeade


PERFECTION


Luna (Rupunzel)

Oh….Oh my god….Plz? I really would read this fic. I’d probably read more disney fics if they had fantastic setting/plot ideas LIKE THIS ONE.


Bellatrix Lestrange (Mother Gothel) 

VOLDEMORT

VOLDEMORT

FUCKING VOLDEMORT LOL

fuckyeahgleelove:

lucyndareadsspookystories:

metallikato:

deepclaw:

sane-as-a-starkid:

dapper-darling:

disneycrossover:

If Harry Potter was made into a Disney movie [x]

Harry (Eric), Hermione (Belle), and Ron (Hercules) in Hogsmeade

PERFECTION

Luna (Rupunzel)

Oh….Oh my god….Plz? I really would read this fic. I’d probably read more disney fics if they had fantastic setting/plot ideas LIKE THIS ONE.

Bellatrix Lestrange (Mother Gothel) 

VOLDEMORT

VOLDEMORT

FUCKING VOLDEMORT LOL

bryankonietzko:

KATARA
This piece was inspired by the bewitching and bewildering work of Amei Zhao, aka seventypercentethanol, who consistently blows my mind here on Tumblr.
EDIT: Yep. Made a couple tweaks.

bryankonietzko:

KATARA

This piece was inspired by the bewitching and bewildering work of Amei Zhao, aka seventypercentethanol, who consistently blows my mind here on Tumblr.

EDIT: Yep. Made a couple tweaks.

Cuil Theory

pugletto:

rika84:

fuckyourfrecklestein:

myra-smiles:

singthiswithme:

suckmydracula:

mischief-and-thunder:

shirleytemplar:

claykaaczmarek:

thealyssacomplex:

rudeand—ginger:

starry-dawn:

sithlordenna:

bastardlybrendan:

dcshadow:

panicmoon15:

murgatroid:

what just happened?

Why the hell did I start laughing half way through this?

What is life

O____o what the fuck

… I—

sometimes there’s a lot of things wrong with tumblr

u ok internet

this is kind of really fucking terrifying

(Source: shiranuiamaterasu)

beroberos:

Doodled this in class today~ Rule 63 Borra

beroberos:

Doodled this in class today~ Rule 63 Borra

“Candy cabbie” Mansoor Khalid gives passengers as much candy as they want.

Now that’s one sweet ride.

Taxi driver Mansoor Khalid is on a one-man mission to cheer up New Yorkers with a daily dose of candy.

“The New York life is not the easy life,” Khalid, 36, told the Daily News. “People are depressed. I see a lot of people stressed sitting back there.”

Khalid is no stranger to stress. He dubbed his taxi the NYC Candy Cab after his 2-year-old son died in April from a long battle with heart disease.

“I learned a lot of things,” he said of the trauma of losing his child, who underwent two heart transplants and lost a kidney before he passed away. “Life is too short.”

Khalid, who moved to New York from Pakistan in 1993 and has been driving a cab since 1997, had already seen the impact of small acts of generosity. During the two years he spent in the hospital with his son, he routinely brought coffee and desserts to the doctors and nurses when he got off his shift at 1 a.m.

“They got so happy when in the middle of the night I gave every person coffee,” he said. “I was so nice to them and they were so nice to me.”

After his son died, Khalid decided to bring his routine to the people he interacted with every day in his cab.

Khalid said he was inspired to do something sweet after the death of his 2-year-old son.

“I was very depressed, losing my little boy,” he said. “Somehow, God gave me this idea. Now (I’m) chit-chatting and time is flying by!”

Though he doesn’t eat much candy himself — “Skittles, only” — Khalid offers a wide variety of sweets, and has started cataloguing his collection on Instagram. Fans can also follow him on Twitter (@CandyCabNYC), and he may even start a blog for his growing following.

One such fan was thrilled to discover the cab on a late night out last weekend, and quickly spread the word about him through social media.

“We all started freaking out,” said David Weiner, 27. “You don’t see piles of candy like that in adulthood. It’s just one of those things that reminds you you’re in New York and anything can happen.”

And Khalid’s unusual project has the full support of the city.

“We encourage drivers to go the extra mile in the name of customer service, and Mr. Khalid certainly does this,” said Taxi and Limousine Commission boss David Yassky. “We appreciate the loyalty he inspires in his passengers.”

Loyalty isn’t the goal, considering that Khalid responds to every hail, candy or no candy. His mission is to spread warmth.

“It’s a little thing,” he said, “but people get happy.”

Emotionbending: Mary Sues

lunarblue21:

lets-roast-mako:

fuckyeahbromotions submitted tolets-roast-mako

There’s been a lot of talk about Mary Sues on LRM, and, while a few people seem to know, a lot are getting confused, and possibly offended by it. 

As a disclaimer right now, I get most of my information from TV tropes, as it seems to be a pretty good consensus for phenomena in the media today. 

1) A Mary Sue (or Gary Stu) does in fact have a lack of flaws, but it’s not that simple. A MS (as we’ll call them) can have flaws, and a non-MS can lack flaws… it all depends on what you do with them. 

MS occur mostly within the realm of fanfiction, but canon-sues are common as well. Canon sues get called out a lot less often, because the validation that the creative force behind the work is usually enough to dispel criticism. Harry Potter himself was kind of a sue at first. He got everything he wanted, everyone constantly talked about him and praised him, if a character disliked him they were jealous or evil and got their recompense, and he lacked any convincing flaws, other than naivete…

No one questioned it because JK Rowling is like, the goddess of young adult literature. Thankfully she wised up by PoA, and gave Harry real flaws that would have narrative consequences. The first one being that he accuses the wrong person (Sirius) and trusts and defends another wrong person (Wormtail)… this comes back to bite him. Thus began a long line of deconstructions that wiped away any trace of Harry ever being a sue… it’s quite clear considering what happens in book 4 and on. Bless you JK…

Anyway, this both transitions into the next point and elaborates on the present point. You see how good I am at organizing arguments? 

So, it’s not a lack of flaws… it’s a lack of meaningful flaws. It’s very cliche and hackneyed by now, but MS in fanfiction usually, if they’re female, are clumsy. GS in fanfiction are usually overly competent to the point of attempted deconstruction. AKA, they care too much and are just too good… oh and we can’t forget the dark and troubled past.

As gender roles get blended, we see more MS action heroines who ‘suffer’ from the same problems. There are a whole variety of subspecies of sues, and each one has their own overdone unconvincing flaws. 

And these flaws don’t do anything for the story. Stories have economy to them. If you want to add something, you pay for it in this imagined currency. You as an author can only add so much, or in the right combinations, before the readers roll their eyes. Everything must have a purpose, and every purpose must be clear and prioritized. 

Having your MS be ‘clumsy’ and ‘awkward’ means nothing if s/he doesn’t have this be an opportunity for character growth or be used as an important plot point. Have Destiny Prudence Amalthea Sapphire-Rose Potter II be clumsy and awkward if you must… but then have her mess up during the important mission. Have her screw up trying to woo the male love interest (or female if you’re so inclined). Have her flaws do something that sets her back, and have them be a starting point toward her growth. 

(Also… don’t name her Destiny Prudence Amalthea Sapphire-Rose Potter II. Most people actually don’t name their OC’s in fanfiction this way anymore, unless they’re parodying MS. Canon sues will usually have names that conform to that world’s naming conventions… unless they’re named after someone famous… but there’s no one I can think of who does that.)

This segues pretty well into the next topic.

2) Don’t fucking hand them things! 

You want interesting and compelling characters that the audience will get invested in and want to go on a journey with said character until the very bitter end, be that sad or happy? You want to justify every twist and turn and development either in plot or in character? 

Don’t fucking hand them things. Make them work, just like every other character. I talked briefly about a ‘currency’ in writing… well here is where you want to spend quite a bit of it. Don’t skimp out on the real meat of any good story- the characters. This is where the drama happens. No one will really care if you write a story about war and death and desolation, if there aren’t good characters we can identify with. 

Roland Emmerich seems to think himself immune to this. He’s fond of disaster movies. He has lots of characters without much development, save the divorced writer who ends up back with his wife in the end. (Seriously that’s like in five of his movies). But, he doesn’t allow us to invest enough in a singular character or group of characters. There are too many. 

How does he apparently ‘make up’ for that? He resorts to gross cliches and emotional manipulation. He blows up important landmarks… stuff we’ll recognize and sympathize with automatically. Characters flat and underdeveloped? Too many to even try to test that? Blow up the White House… that’ll make people feel the weight of the alien invasion/global warming/whatever, not the actual thoughts and feelings of real people. No.

Yeah… we’re people. We identify with people, not buildings. Sure they mean something to us, but it’s so incredibly cheap when a filmmaker resorts to that intrinsic and very inexpensive emotional attachment to things, instead of taking the time and effort to build up actual characters with conflicts internal and external, who grow and develop and interact with the plot that they’re given.

Well, having a character who is just handed things or just simply accomplishes thing is in the same vein. Sure, it’s cool if Awesome McCool Hardass Bad Motherfucker III slays the dragon, or deposes the evil emperor… but if it’s just that… so what? What real human connections could be made about that? How can we apply that to our lives? When does it become more than just a telling, and become a story?

Handing things to characters completely undermines any depth and reality from a situation. Characters struggle and claw their way to the conclusion. They get dirty- sometimes very dirty. Sometimes they don’t make it. But above all there’s a reason for it. 

Writers who create MS inadvertently or not, don’t want to get their characters dirty. They don’t want their characters to get hurt. They’re afraid of what they don’t understand… and, seeing as how it’s often very inexperienced or just untalented writers who create MS… they don’t understand.

They don’t understand the concepts of action and consequence, gravity to events, and implications that go with them. Their scope isn’t broad enough. They’re too single-mindedly, narrowly focused on this character… who is too speshul to give opportunities to grow. 

It’s not necessarily the lack of flaws, or even the lack of good flaws… it’s how they’re used. How is this character used? If the character is simply a vessel to channel the power of awesome/sexy/whatever you will… they are not a character. And we as an audience can usually see right through that.

This brings us the the next point.

3) Wish fulfillment

A lot of MS are created as wish fulfillment. There is nothing intrinsically wrong with self-insert, in fact, it’s often used to great affect, whether it be author avatars, audience avatars, etc etc. Wish fulfillment is also tolerable, because often the artist knows what he or she is doing. S/he knows that a meaningful story has to come out of this wish fulfillment. 

It’s the reason so many superheroes are tolerated. It’s the reason Batman is so beloved. He has many qualities that so many men wish they could have… looks, fame, wealth, women’s love and attention (if you know what I mean), respect, strength, you name it. But he also has flaws, a tragic back story that is relevant and active in his life and his story. He seems like a really unrealistic person, but that doesn’t matter, because of how he is used to tell a similarly unrealistic story. Also consider Belle from Beauty and the Beast. How many women are like her? Independent, smart, non-judgmental, etc etc. She’s ‘too perfect’. But she plays a part. She has a purpose. She has a role. All the while she herself grows and learns from her experiences. She’s a cleverly used plot element but the creative force behind Disney never forgot that she was also a character, with her own motivations and inner workings. 

MS have none of these. They’re wish fulfillment because the author wanted to present an ideal person, or what he or she views as ideal. Bella, as opposed to Belle, is a prime example. Men fight and die for her. She stirs up trouble wherever she goes. She’s manipulative and needy and doesn’t even try to be independent. But she’s presented as ‘normal’, and ‘average’. It’s a forced attempt at relatability while Stephanie Meyer rakes in the cash and tried to play up this character as speshul and unique and ideal. 

Often, MS’s creators try to assert that their concoctions are both unique and mundane at the same time, to combat this obviousness in their wish fulfillment. It’s not even necessarily wish fulfillment per se, just trying to assert what they think is ‘cool’ when they know they’re wrong. 

Who ever thought sparkling vampires was cool? 

Anyway, it’s when an author sits down and cooks up a character who looks cool, and acts cool, and has cool powers, and cool cool cool. And… cool? What are you going to do with that? Again and again, what does this have to do with the story? 

Don’t add frivolous details that won’t get you anywhere. Remember… you have narrative currency… don’t waste it letting us know how different and special and unique yet totally average and ordinary they are. Spend it giving the character attributes that will help set up a good story. 

Some schools of thought put emphasis on character, and I respectfully disagree. It all has to contribute to the plot. It all has to relate to what you’re going to tell. (In case you hadn’t noticed, I am a plot writer) Authors by all means write stories that are phenomenal which invest most of their stock in their characters. Even some writers who excel at both so perfectly that you can’t be sure which they focused on. 

Anyway, again, a lot of this comes through lack of impetus toward the plot, but also toward the language. 

Here we start the jokes about MS having eyes like limpid blue tears… and pages and pages describing what they look like, and random and common and unnecessary mentions of what they can do, or how they’re so awesome. 

Writers put too much stock in their character pretty much by their design plan, or their stats card. They don’t really list down human emotions or drives, except in passing and vapidly. They focus on looks, abilities, and other people’s opinions of them (usually positive, but if negative it will be in spite/jealousy), as opposed to their own personalities. 

There is another factor too… which is more of the creator’s…

4) Reactions

An author is expected to love all his/her characters. It’s expected, even demanded. What author wouldn’t? S/he created this world, and the people in it, and the events that tell this story… by his/her own hand. Who wouldn’t love every minute of it. To me it’s the only reason to write in the first place. 

A lot of author’s though… don’t take criticisms gracefully. They like to pride themselves on how ‘detached’ they are from their work and its contents… but really, they’re far more attached than they should be. 

At the slightest hint that an audience member isn’t satisfied, such will be regarded with indignation, scorn, or even aloof arrogance. The insufferable ‘genius’ persona that claims no one is deep enough to understand. Or that people just aren’t seeing it right. It must be the audience’s problem… they’re all just angry fangirls anyway. 

Well, if there is a problem in communication, which is what the MS phenomenon is in media today… it’s the responsibility of the speaker… ie. the creator of said MS to get his/her point across clearly. It is not the audience’s fault if they misunderstand because they to a point can only work with what they’re given. Sure, some people can fill in the blanks… but only the author can know the author’s own mind. A lot of accidental MS become even more hideous when the author so pettily insists on his/her competence. Admit your mistakes, and learn from them. Jeez.

This being the perfect segue for the last point. All of these tie in together for the grand finale… of what I personally can be the simplest definition of a Mary Sue. 

5) Disproportionate affection.

You love your character too much. It’s why you’re afraid to give him/her flaws, it’s why you’re afraid to have real implications and trials and tribulations, why you’re afraid to get him/her dirty and grimy and full of the reality of life. It’s why you’re so focused on other people’s opinions of them, and what they can do, and what they look like, than actual substance and personality- you’re afraid to look at your character through human eyes. Because, God forbid you might not like what you see. You’re afraid to admit this to other people, and become defensive when any one might dare to point out your shortcomings as a writer. 

When you love your own OC too much, or one particular character over others in your original work, you are damaging the work. You are harming it. Because then the audience knows that you’re doing it. It’s inherent.

When the ‘popular’ girls are really just jealous because the new girl somehow has huge boobs and an anorexic frame. When the villain compliments the character even when he has the character at his complete mercy. When the characters can never shut up about the one. When the laws of physics and fate seem to bend for the benefit of this character. The list goes on and on and on… 

Character shilling, cheating the rules of the world built, unrealistic retribution to enemies and reward to allies… all of these creep up when a character is too loved. 

I should reiterate. Not ‘too-loved’. No that isn’t the right mindset to get into. A better way to put it would be ‘loved more than everyone else.’ 

An artist must love his/her work completely… every single aspect. The villain must receive just as much love and care as the protagonist. 

And when the author is investing too much in one character, the balance is thrown out. The audience grows suspicious. 

“They shouldn’t really be able to do that” They say.

“Why are we always focusing on him?” They ask. 

People’s patience will quickly run dry for a character such as this. It’s creator is too afraid to let it breathe and live and explore and grow and fail and then get back up again and all the things that make a story entertaining. 

We want to go on a journey with these characters. We want to relate to them as we go on this journey. We want to feel everything they feel and more… we want something worthwhile for our investment of time, energy, and emotion. We want a character that is loved… but so much that it stifles the character. 

In a way, one could say that these characters are loved so much that they are no longer loved at all. And that is sad. 

With all that in mind… Mako is a Mary Sue (or a Gary Stu, whichever)… there is no question. Any Mako Stan who bitches and moans otherwise is afflicted with the same disease as Bryke. They can’t look past their lurve for him. 

And LRM already made this excellent point- making Mako a tribute to Mako Iwamatsu is the main reason for this. Modelling a character, or at least paying homage through the name of said character, after such a great man and actor… ruined any chance Mako had as a character. It’s too sacred, to clean, and Bryke was too squeamish and too caught up in their own wish-fulfillment and their worship of Mako Iwamatsu. 

It strangled any and all opportunities for Mako as a character in book one. Maybe not in books to come… but if the previews are anything to go by… Bryke hasn’t learned their lesson.

And this is why canon sues are so much harder to point out and rectify. They’re creators can fancy themselves gods. Bryke literally dismisses all of us as angry fangirls, ignoring all the implications of their writing. They’re too immature to grow themselves, so why should their characters grow? 

The validation of fame and monetary success blinds them in a way that anonymous mean-spirited reviews on fanfiction.net don’t for young authors. Who cares if Mako and by extension Makorra have heaps of misogynistic undertones? Who cares if Mako sets a deplorable example for little boys? Who cares if Bryke sacrifice good character and story to spout badass!Mako and twuwuv Makorra bullshit? 

They’re getting big fat paychecks from Nickelodeon and the undying love of fans who have also been blinded by the so called ‘authority’ they wield.

Who said original works that garner success are free from criticism? JK Rowling got it. She still gets it. She made Harry more realistic and more relatable… and in turn got even more monetary and critical success and fostered one of the most beloved and famous young adult’s series of all time.

Bryke either doesn’t know, doesn’t care, or doesn’t care to know. 

Mary Sues are avoidable. It takes planning, dedication, and yes, skill, to craft good characters in good stories… but it can be done. If you take anything away from this, (and by all means don’t think you have to listen to anything little old me has to say) be careful with how much you love your characters. Too little or too much can seriously alter the intended content… you might not even realize it until its too late. 

I don’t know how to end this, so… the end?

Very good writing points to keep in mind.

Sometimes it helps just to beat up your characters entirely or give them the crappiest lives in existence…. but…. that will make them feel REAL to the audience. As readers, we don’t want caricatures of ourselves or the flimsy illusion that mary sues and canon sues offer…. we want to know that we can find the remnants of our soul in someone else…. who lives and breathes and suffers as we do or have. That’s what makes a character real. (and also avoids the blight of the mary sue) 

So, beat your characters up. Make them suffer for their actions, whether in their own mind or because of external repercussions…. and make them GROW from it. Because that’s how life works. And what else is fiction and writing but a shadow of reality itself?