lizbee: Three white, slim teenage ballerinas (DA: The Girls)
I saw this a few weeks ago, at a preview screening attended by executive producer Joanna Werner. I did a "spoiler-lite" review at No Award, that basically gives away where everyone is at the movie's start, including that SPOILER and SPOILER are talking about SPOILERING together. But I've been sitting on everything more substantial since then, and I need to get some stuff out.

Spoilers, soundtrack notes and dubious legal shenanigans within )
lizbee: Three white, slim teenage ballerinas (DA: The Girls)
Yesterday I got home from running some errands (...I waited until the sale had started before I bought my parents' Christmas gifts. Yes, I'm a bad person, but I saved, like, $12!) and played Portal, and completely forgot about the meme!

[personal profile] amaresu asked me to talk about Avatar. know, it's weird, but I don't think I can. Usually I'm just waiting for my chance, but there's so much squee harshing on my Tumblr dash about Avatar and Doctor Who today that my brain has turned into a tiny echnidna and rolled up in a defensive position. (I tried to find a gif of an echidna to illustrate this, but there was nothing. Except that there's a surprising amount of porn in the echidna tag on Tumblr.)

I'm sorry. I have failed at the meme. And in the place where I least expected to stumble.

[personal profile] rj_anderson asked me to talk about Dance Academy, and reminded me that I never discussed the ending. THAT, I can talk about. (The fandom is tiny, and easy to ignore.) For example, I wrote a series of posts about its male characters and how it approaches masculinity here.

Spoilers for the ending )
lizbee: A white, slim teenage ballerina (TV: Abigail)
I didn't do a post last week, on account of DYING OF THE COMMON COLD, but it would have been, basically, "GET IT TOGETHER, CHRISTIAN."

Spoilers, talk of eating disorders )
lizbee: Three white, slim teenage ballerinas (DA: The Girls)
Have to say, it's quite weird to be watching week to week instead of in a block! And on the TV instead of my computer! (Thank you, iView, iPad, Airplay and Apple TV!)

Spoilers! )


Oct. 12th, 2012 08:05 pm
lizbee: Three white, slim teenage ballerinas (DA: The Girls)
I finished watching Dance Academy during the week. It was a lot like being hit by a truck, and then the truck reverses over you and the driver gets out to punch you a few times. IT WAS GREAT. Spoilers. )

Anyway, one of my weirder hobbies is reading Christian pop culture reviews. This stems back to my childhood, when one of my parents' even-more-conservative-friends, concerned that we kids were being exposed to decadent secular television like, Star Trek and, um, Babar, gave Mum and Dad a book of Catholic movie reviews. They never even cracked the cover, but I read every single review. It was like looking into an alternate universe where Star Trek III: The Search For Spock was a deliberate slap in the face of Christianity in general and Catholicism in particular, and not just a mildly boring movie. I loved it.

These days most of the review sites are run by evangelical Christians in the US -- Catholic reviewers are really into paywalls for some reason -- but I make do.

Anyway, I am especially charmed by this review here (the top one) where the 11 year old reviewer is concerned about the teen angst and semi-nudity, there's also this:

Than she and Kat jump off a BALCONY in their bikini's into a bay, with no idea about what could be down there! A BAY!!!!

A BAY, YOU GUYS! (Actually they jump off a high jetty into Sydney Harbour, and frankly, last time I was in Sydney the Harbour was full of jellyfish, so no thank you. But A BAY!!!!)

My other favourite is a review on one of the other sites that describes Korra as "a spiritually dubious heroine." YES! TENZIN HAS BEEN SAYING THAT ALL ALONG!

(I must point out that, passive-aggressive gifts of Catholic pop culture guides aside, I wouldn't have been allowed to watch Avatar if it had been around when I was in the target age group, and the Asian spiritualities would have been part of the reason why. But the main reason would have been the martial arts -- imitative violence and all that. I have never seen any incarnation of TMNT or Power Rangers.)

(As you can see, my parents' belief that isolating their children from pop culture would produce a family of intellectuals has ... not quite paid off. Sure, my brother's doing a PhD, but you should see his DVD collection!)
lizbee: A white, slim teenage ballerina (TV: Abigail)
I seem to have, um, accidentally followed a lot of Dance Academy Tumblrs lately, but I've been really puzzled as to why the subtitles and captions on a lot of graphics had weird inaccuracies. Like, "Mom" for "Mum" I guess was inevitable, but "mousies" for "Mouse Ears"?

Finally I twigged: it's the Australian accent throwing people for a loop. Not that it's particularly broad here, this being a show co-funded by Germany and designed for an international market, but I think at least two of the big fan Tumblrs are run by people who have English as a second language, and they're obviously not as accustomed to the Australian accent as they are to the British or American.
lizbee: Three white, slim teenage ballerinas (DA: The Girls)
I thought I had to go out, but I was wrong, so now I'm fully dressed and sitting at my desk, watching Dance Academy and quilting.

(I'm probably going to bring my current quilting project on my trip, because I like having something to do with my hands when I'm sitting around and talking. Please don't laugh at how dodgy my work is up close.)

Anyway, my SI joint started playing up again yesterday (I think it must be related in some way to my gait, because it happened just after I took a long walk), and this made it extra painful to watch Spoilers for 2x12, 'Breaking Pointe' )

Meanwhile, the Tara-hate on Tumblr is horrible. It took me a while to warm up to her character, because at first I thought she was a bit bland and gormless. Then, of course, it became apparent that she's just an awkward turtle-duck who never met a bad idea she didn't wholeheartedly embrace. But according to Tumblr she's an evil slut who needs to be punished for her various transgressions.

Abigail, on the other hand, is regarded as a hero by the same people. Now, I love me some Abigail because she's like if Mai and Azula had a daughter and decided she should take over the world via ballet. She's as much a failbot as Tara, she just doesn't hide it as well.
lizbee: A white, slim teenage ballerina (TV: Abigail (over her shoulder))

1. I can't be the only person who's weirdly fascinated by Tara Morice's right eyebrow, can I?

(ETA: How did that thick black line get there? Well done, Liz, it's apparent you have more than a decade's experience with graphics editing software!)

2. Sometimes I wish the whole show was about Kat and Abigail. I have a bunch of OTPs that basically boil down to "Christian should make out with everyone", but my real ideal end for the series would be for the two of them to be BFFs again.

3. It's right and proper to hate Saskia like burning, right? I don't think I've encountered a character so (intentionally) detestable since Dolores Umbridge.
lizbee: (Default)
This Australian teen soap (spoilers: it's set at a dance school!) is SO MUCH BETTER than it has any right to be! It starts out all, "Oh, the main character is kind of wide-eyed and innocent and the buttmonkey of the world, and there's a rebel and a mean girl and a non-threatening boy and one character of colour from the wrong side of the tracks with a criminal past!"

And now I have one episode of the first season left, and it's all, "The non-threatening boy is freaked out by having a crush on the boy from the wrong side of the tracks, and what if this means he's gay, and what if he loses his best friend, and they have to work it out together, and meanwhile the three main female characters have their own separate storylines about self-determination and obligations to family and self!"

Seriously, I kind of want to smush the show up into a great big hug. Not least because, without ever being preachy or didactic, it portrays really positive behaviour modelling. For example, when the mean girl comes back from her inevitable brush with an eating disorder, her dance partner (and love interest, because he also likes girls), the non-threatening boy, feels responsible for not saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaving her, and is over-compensating by being the food police. And finally she says, "Stop that. It's not helping. And you can't take responsibility for my choice to starve myself." AND THEN HE TOTALLY RESPECTS HER BOUNDARY! WITHOUT BEING GUILT-TRIP GUY! IT SHOULDN'T BE THIS EXCITING, BUT IT IS.

And meanwhile, wide-eyed new girl protagonist manages to kiss all the boys, and struggles with maintaining her integrity and finally stops making a fool of herself (although no one forgets those times she did).

And the storylines about helping underprivileged kids THROUGH DANCE ... well, they improved.

Oh, show, you are kind of OTT and I side-eye your depiction of Sydney's geography, and also the last time I looked at Sydney Harbour it was full of jellyfish so I'm not convinced by the scenes of joyous youth throwing themselves into that particular body of water, and if I drank every time there was a loving shot of the Sydney Harbour Bridge I'd be dead by now. And also I've developed a Pavlovian response (*snerk*) to your love theme, on account of how you used it for every pairing, plus some rehearsal scenes. But you're actually pretty great.


lizbee: (Default)

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