bimo: (Terra_incognita)

Just an idea from that split second before analytical thinking kicks in and kindly informs me that I’m chasing impossible butterflies, because OuaT and Neil Gaiman’s Sandman universe are really not all that compatible.

I’ve been nursing the thought before. There is this half-overheard conversation I have in my head. Two of Gaiman’s Endless (a family of timeless entities embodying universal concepts), the sisters Despair and Desire looking down on Killian Jones during his Neverland years, and discussing to whom of them he ultimately belongs. So far, so much for private fantasies and head!canons.

But now that OuaT has added an officially introduced “Realm of Untold Stories” to its evergrowing list of fictional worlds I’m beginning to wonder. What if they all, the various realms and everybody within them, every forest, castle, mountain, mouse and man were actually part of the Dreaming?

Sounds weird, yes? However it would account for quite a lot of the things going on.
bimo: (Alex_Gene_mug)

Negative stuff first, just to get it out of the way:

No matter how much I used to enjoy Castle, after all the news and rumours surrounding the departure of Stana Katic, I am actually relieved that ABC has finally decided to cancel the show. 

There is this conversation I had with [personal profile] selenak  a while ago, about series being continued well past their natural expiration date, that ideal, non-realized stopping point at which plotlines could have come to a satisfying conclusion and the characters full-circle. With Castle, that point would have been reached at the end of season 7 by latest, I guess, with Beckett’s impending promotion and a lot of personal growth for both her and Castle himself. It was back then, when both Cavendish and I decided to quit and let these two characters ride off into an imagined sunset, so we would be able to remember them fondly.

And this is exactly what I will do now. 

Salute a show that I followed for over one hundred fifty episodes. Here’s to cast and crew, to the fun-to-watch character dynamics. To a plethora of criminal cases ranging from serious, over bizarre, to simply hilarious.

One of the things I liked best was how shamelessly self-indulgent Castle played with the boundaries of its genre. As audience you never knew what you would get. Thriller, film noir, romantic comedy, western, mystery, sometimes even sci-fi. Also bona fide B-Team action adventures with Detectives Ryan and Esposito. Almost as if the show wanted to acknowledge its own fannishness by being playful.

One of my fanfic stories, a little Once upon a Time/Castle crossover would never have worked, if Beckett, in addition to being simply gorgeous, competent and smart, hadn’t also been such a huge, canon-confirmed fangirl. I had so much fun writing her from Hook’s point of view.

Thank you, Castle, for being such an occasionally weird and goofy fun ride. You were one hell of a show.

Kate Beckett, back in the Enchanted Forest, you would have been royal.
bimo: (Default)
Some older, more settled fandoms like Farscape or Doctor Who have always made it rather easy for me to find just the sort of fan video that I enjoy. Perhaps because of their well-established infrastructure, or perhaps because the respective age music taste of the vidders in question was a bit closer to my own, I figure.

However, over the last couple of days, I finally managed to track down and bookmark a few Once upon a Time vids that were striking a chord with me. I'm going to spare you the Captain Swan one, though, because I doubt anyone around in these spheres would be interested in this particular folly of mine.

Instead, have two more general vids, with a strong focus on the ensemble cast and earlier seasons.



Once I Was Real by Hurleybird, pure, beautifully edited S1 nostalgia, dealing with themes of identity and loss.




Seven Devils, by Jackie1609f. Of demons and fears. Powerful imagery matched by just the right song. This one is a  killer.



bimo: (Mug_collectors)
I’ve been wanting to post these pictures for over a week now, because they constitute such a wonderful case of real life weather conditions mimicking fiction. In the current season of Once Upon a Time the sky of the underworld to which Emma and her family have traveled looks just like this.




The view from my study at sunset, during a thunderstorm. Thunder from afar, the sky heavy and oppressive, the air glistening with rain. Only a tiny stretch of blue at the horizon. On a clearer day you would see a large iron bridge leading across the Rhine and also some industrial buildings on the other side of the river.




Completely out of focus, but this picture gives a much better impression of how it looked like when I went outside.

Oh, and speaking of my study, in case you are curious…



The desk where I type all my posts. Both the keyboard and the desk are antique. I purchased the keyboard in 1998, the desk is roughly one hundred fifty years older.

bimo: (Terra_incognita)
I guess, I had this one coming ever since 5.11 "Swan Song"...

Atlas by Bimo (430 words)

Fandom: Once upon a Time
Rating: G, but dealing with themes of loss and abandonment
Summary: A closer look at the Jones brothers, set shortly after the children were sold into servitude. The reality of their father's deed sinks in slowly.
Characters: Liam Jones, Killian Jones
Thanks to: Scapeartist,  for the fantastic beta!

bimo: (Terra_incognita)

I'm currently in the process of planning our summer holiday in the Scottish Highlands. Starting from Inverness, mostly by rail. Sometimes it's just weird which remote places you can discover simply by checking out every single stop along the train line (not that there are that many stops to begin with *g*).

 

 

Altnabreac (from Scottish Gaelic Allt nam Breac) is a tiny settlement within the former county of Caithness, in the north of Scotland, and now within the Highlandcouncil area. The settlement, notable for its remoteness, consists of Altnabreac railway station, the former Altnabreac School (converted into a house in 1986), and a couple of scattered dwellings. It can only be approached by train, or along unsurfaced roads from the nearest village, Westerdale, about 12 miles away.

Altnabreac, like Dounreay, was considered as a location for a final repository for the UK's nuclear waste. However, this idea was not pursued.

 
bimo: (Mug_collectors)

A happy Easter to everybody out there! :-)


Easterly pictures ahead... )

In case you are wondering about the not quite so brightly coloured eggs: I was naive enough to believe that if you set out to buy egg dye the Saturday before Easter, the supermarket would actually still have some in stock. Surprise, surprise, everything sold out. So I had to resort to curcuma and beetroot...



bimo: (Coop)

Watching  5.12 Souls of the Departed it occurred to me how strongly the episode seems based on a theme of smoke screens of mirrors.

All in all: Very Orphic, very fairytale-like and much smarter than it looks at first sight. Rather well-done, show. )
bimo: (Terra_incognita)

1. You begin re-reading Treasure Island.

2. You try installing the 2004 edition of Sid Meier’s Pirates! on your shiny Windows 10 PC only to realize that the game, quite miraculously, is running more smoothly than ever. During an afternoon of nostalgic bliss and cheerful plundering you memorize the exact shape and position of Nassau. Seeing Jack Rackham included in the game’s Top Ten Pirates Ever list is making you cheer.

More side effects likely to follow.

Now, the computer game that I’d really love to play is a 1715 Age of Empires Special Edition located in the Caribbean… *g*





bimo: (Default)

I guess this is mainly for a certain person on my friendslist, who has been repeatedly trying to get other people into watching this show...  Well,  [personal profile] selenak ,  I’m glad to report that your efforts have not been entirely without success. *g*

After a real life week from Hell, I thought it was high time to unwind and grant myself some marathon viewing. Thanks to you I picked Black Sails. Consider me hooked.

I must say, though, that I probably wouldn’t have made it past the *ahem* decidedly action-laden pilot, if I hadn’t known about the character-driven drama and world building to come. What a spectacular mix of historical and Stevenson-based fiction! I’m fascinated by the show’s take on Nassau and the evolving web and interpersonal relationships.

(Extra kudos for fleshing out even supporting characters like Dufresne in a way that is not only contributing to the plot but also a pleasure to watch.)

So, hooray for fannish osmosis!  Also hooray for Bear McCreary’s soundtrack and  the simply gorgeous opening credits! Hooray for morally ambivalent characters, male and female, and their agendas.

 

 

bimo: (Mug_collectors)
I usually tend to keep my cookery adventures private, but this particular one turned out too nice not to share it. Especially since it was an improvised first attempt.


Grilled venison fillet with kale-potato tartlets and a dark sauce made of apple syrup, rosemary and red wine:





bimo: (Terra_incognita)

Maybe it is my occasional tendency to romanticise the good Captain Hook, which I should hold responsible.

Until now I had always assumed that it was Hook who had drawn Milah’s portrait on that sheet of paper which Baelfire finds on board the Jolly Roger in 2.22, “And Straight On ‘til Morning”.

For me, the idea of Killian Jones as a person with a secret artistic streak has always gone hand in hand with the notion that said portrait was an expression of grief. Maybe Killian could have drawn it several years after Milah’s death, feeling the memory of her face slip away from him and fearing he would lose it forever, I thought. Perhaps drawing was a talent Killian had always possessed, but never really honed before Neverland, initially just to ease the passage of time, helping him to stay sane. (Bill Murray’s character in Groundhog Day is coming to my mind, the longer I think about this.)

So far, so bitter-sweet melodramatic melancholic.

Yesterday afternoon, while doing the laundry, I listened to the 2.22 audio commentary by Colin O’ Donoghue and producer David H. Goodman, in which David Goodman clearly states that the portrait wasn’t done by Hook, but by a still alive Milah, as a self-portrait.

Judging by the sound of his voice, even Colin O’Donoghue appears to have been a tad surprised and disappointed when he heard that.


 

bimo: (Default)

I have to admit I was looking forward to the new mini-series.  A clear case of curiosity and nostalgia winning over reasonable caution, one could say. No matter how frustrated I might have become with the X-Files during the show’s later years, agents Mulder and Scully will always be dear to me. Also, wouldn’t it be interesting to see what kind of spin the 21st century with its changed political, technological and social landscape of would put on the general narrative? After all, it’s a post financial crash, post Snowden world that we live in, a world ideal for any kind of deeply unsettling fictional nightmare driven by conspiracy and paranoia.

So I acquired an ITunes season pass, leaned back and watched... )

 

bimo: (Terra_incognita)

If you live in an area as densely populated as I do, where one city seamlessly blends into the next and even the greener agricultural fringes with their fields and small patches of woodland just seem a little less tightly knitted, you are used to a certain level of business. Cars on the road. People running their errands. Supermarket customers queuing at understaffed checkout desks.

So the following observation took me by complete surprise, though I certainly should have expected it. After all it is mid-January; for days temperatures have been below zero, even here in north-western Rhineland. No snow, though, just frozen soil and puddles turned into ice.

Under these conditions there seem to be few places so perfectly quiet, so perfectly at peace with themselves as a garden centre at 9.15 am on a Wednesday morning.

Plants in deep slumber, their leaves rolled up or lost. In a heated glass house some eager azaleas, pink crimson and white. Not a soul in sight except for an employee quietly unpacking some bird seed.

(Before you ask what on Earth I was doing there: Cavendish had asked me to get some bark mulch for his Dahlias.)

 

On a less winterly note: Yesterday evening we finished rewatching Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere, which has aged surprisingly well. A clear victory of writing and acting over relatively low production values. Even in this day and age of near perfect CGI worlds the show manages to be every bit as atmospheric as it used to be. Also, it’s fun to see a young Peter Capaldi play Islington.



 

bimo: (Fivey_drawing)
Nothing fully formed, just a bunch of thoughts and topoi aimlessly roaming around in my head. So, let’s attempt to give them some shape:

 

 

I'm afraid this turned out slightly different from what I intended )

 

bimo: (Alex_Gene_mug)
Yesterday evening Cavendish and I finally grabbed our chance to watch Steven Spielberg's Cold War drama Bridge of Spies. The movie may not be a flawless masterpiece (a little bit of "too much pathos" here, a slightly too stylised characterisation there...), but all in all it turned out an intriguing and memorable viewing experience.

Very well-filmed, in a rather classical style. Well-acted and casted. Tom Hanks is playing Donovan, the chosen US negotiator, in a way that feels rock-solid and palpable, on one hand, yet not entirely free of self-ironic touches on the other. In consequence, his Donovan, while certainly put on a pedestal as the archetypal upright lawyer hero, always manages to stay likable and human.

An impression, which also seems to be strongly supported by the script; most noticeably perhaps in a scene playing in freezing-cold East Berlin where a border-crossing Donovan is forced to hand over his good woolen coat to an East German youth gang.

Also, lots of absurd and delightfully wry humor in other scenes, probably due to the influence of Joel and Ethan Coen.

bimo: (Obi_pov)
Somewhere in a galaxy far, far away the good old "Name your top five OTPs" meme is making the rounds again. And as I've always wondered how I might answer this particular challenge, I thought, well let's give it a try.

My OTPs, though, might not be “true pairings” in the classical sense. While there are certainly quite a few canon and fanon relationships that I fancy, I’m afraid I’ve never been enough of a shipper to make the OPT concept work for me ;-)). Therefore I’d rather list my current top five cases of a broader, more abstract type of love, the kind that drives, nurtures and consoles people, or just defines a major part of their very essence:

Obi-Wan Kenobi/ The Force
Malcolm Reynolds/ Serenity (and the things that she represents)
Londo Mollari / Centauri Prime
Gaius Baltar/ Survival (a study in irony and absurdness)
Killian Jones/ the Sea
bimo: (Mug_collectors)
Back from a wonderfully relaxing "End of the Year" holiday on the beautiful island of Spiekeroog, I just wanted to wish everybody out there a happy and peaceful 2016! :)

Now off to playing catch up with people's entries... *g*

bimo: (Obi_pov)

My non-spoilery impression in a nutshell: Viewed and loved, for all its Star Wars-y flair. Heroes, mentors, planets, droids, and Space Nazis. Yup, everything just as it ought to be.

As someone whose focal point has always been Obi-Wan Kenobi (in both original trilogy and prequels alike), I was somewhat worried whether the new characters would manage to intrigue me. But, hey, they did, with flying colours.
 

One or two spoilery observations )
 

 

bimo: (Tardis_christmas)
The adult education semester is finally coming to its close. With only three classes left to teach, I can virtually feel my brain sliding into holiday mode. There are cards to write, presents to wrap, letters to write and also a somewhat intimidating twelve pound goose to roast next Sunday. Thankfully, I'm enough of a self-assured and experienced cook to at least assume that all will go well with that bird as long as I stick to the recipe.

As for looking back on my fannish interests, well, apparently 2015 has turned out a year of wonder and second chances. Re-watching The X-Files, getting enthusiastic again about Doctor Who. Not that I didn't enjoy the previous two seasons after almost quitting the show during s6 (River issues, don't ask ;-)), but the current season really struck a cord with me due to its themes, its open embracing of the surreal, and last but certainly not least the brilliant performances by Peter Capaldi, Coleman, Williams and Gomez.

It seems that during the past twelve months I've talked quite a bit about fannish disenchantment with various people. What I had not expected, however, was that one of these conversations, the one I had with [personal profile] selenak, to be precise, would eventually lead to the biggest surprise of 2015, a phenomenon I'd like to describe as the big "Once upon a Time paradox". Getting warned about season 4 and thus refraining from viewing it probably was exactly what enabled me to enjoy the first half of season 5 as much as I did, once that [livejournal.com profile] astrogirl2 's lovely episode reviews had made me curious enough to give the show another try.

And good grief, am I glad that I watched, and not only because the two episode half season finale gave me the Hook backstory of my dreams. There also were quite a few sense-making character developments and a surprisingly original and fun-to-watch take on Arthurian legends. Knowing this show and having been exposed to season 5B promos, however, I must admit that I'm not really sure if 5B will live up to the quality of 5A.

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