nenya_kanadka: rubber stamp text: "complete and utter bullshit" (@ bullshit)
Rewatched Spellbound last night. I really think it's going to become one of those movies that goes in the queue to be watched again every year or two. Peck is so pretty and Bergman is so determined!

It's really her movie, too, in the sense that she's the main protagonist and it's all told from her point of view. And pretty much from the moment she opens her mouth in the first scene where her male coworker is trying to get her to soften up to his romantic advances and she's like "Lol, no," I just really like Dr. Constance Peterson. (He tells her she's too cold and cerebral, and she asks if he's buttering her up; he says her "lack of emotion" is "fatal for her as a woman" and a doctor, and she says yes, yes, she's heard that from any number of amorous psychiatrists who toootally want to make her a better doctor. :D)

And she's the one who takes action to find out what's wrong with Ballantyne and try to get him some psychological help before the police lock him in the slammer. She's the one trying to figure out WTF is going on (while Gregory Peck is intermittently collapsing, staring off into space, being grouchy as fuck, or looking attractively dishevelled). And she doesn't give up. Not just because Peck is hot (though she certainly thinks so) but because she believes in his innocence and she isn't satisfied with the explanations she's getting. And then they get a happy ending, entirely due to her efforts, and Peck swoons a little less but still canonically "madly adores" her and thinks she's "brilliant."

So, I like her. She's cool. Bergman is hot. She gets the hot woobie. Very nice.

But then of course I run across someone being Wrong On The Internet about her. Okay, maybe Wrong In A Book? I was googling around to see if anyone had any opinions on Peck's more slashy roles, and came across some essay in a book on Google Books1. Some kind of "queering the text" analysis of Hitchcock movies. And oh boy, are they wrong!

cut for Spellbound spoilers )

It all starts to remind me of fans who decide that a female character has gotten in the way of their slash ship, so she must be a huge raging bitch (and that plant in the corner proves their faves are doing it). Or people who see an advertisement that features a beautiful, sexualized, perhaps vulnerable man, and go, "Oh wow! That's really homoerotic!" without stopping to think that, wait, straight and bi women just might have some interest in male beauty. Halfway through reading this thing, I said to myself, "Good lord. Some people just REALLY can't handle women being in charge." Women can't be assertive or take the lead role, especially not in a het relationship! No, there has to be some other explanation. He's gay. She's an alien agent of patriarchy. (I never did figure out why that was supposedly the case here.) Something. Anything, to prove a woman can't be the knight in shining armor.

I'm queer. I'm also a woman who really appreciates active female protagonists. I also enjoy a good dose of beautiful man occasionally, and if he's a little vulnerable along with his gorgeous broad shoulders and deep brown eyes and delicious ruffle-able hair, all the better. (I might, too, have a carefully-nursed pet peeve about how alpha male heroes are so much more common than dominant women and their pretty boy-toys in het romance.) I'm a m-slasher and a fem-slasher as long as the day is long. But it really gets my goat when people take a female hero I love and pretend all the awesome things about her don't exist.

Dr. Constance Peterson: brilliant, determined, gets the hot boy. And badly-conceived meta can go fuck off.


(1) I've lost the link now, but I think it was for something called "Intimate Violence." I'm not opposed to queer theory generally, but just as I sometimes disagree with queer fandom meta, I had huge issues with this particular iteration of queer theory. It really felt like they were trying to force the facts to fit the thesis ("someone in this movie is queer and being oppressed by a straight woman, I just know it!") rather than the reverse.

(2) Even the 18-year-old son of Mucca's assistant lightkeeper feels that Guns of Navarone is pretty damn gay.
nenya_kanadka: quality content: Gregory Peck with his shirt off (@ Gregory Peck shirtless)
I, er, maybe got a little carried away.

30 black & white icons from Gregory Peck's early career )

Also a thingy that I suppose one could use as a friends-only banner or one of those NaNoWriMo "You should be writing" inspirational graphics. (Once one had stopped wibbling in the corner, of course.)

nenya_kanadka: Phryne Fisher in red (Miss Fisher Phryne)
First of all, Happy First Contact Day! Only forty-six more years until the Vulcans land in Montana! :D

Today would also have been Gregory Peck's 101st birthday. In honour of which, please have some screenshots of him as a young, ridiculously pretty priest, kneeling down and kissing his mentor's hand.

Gregory Peck, 1944

Gregory Peck, 1944

moar pics (2), The Keys To The Kingdom, 1944 )

All from The Keys To The Kingdom, 1944. The one where he's looking up all puppy-dog-eyed like, "Please approve of me!" (which is pretty much the context) is doing things to me. (Peck in a 1987 interview: "I hadn’t learned how to relax and how to concentrate. All I had was sincerity." HELP)

File under: Oh, The Things I Would Do To That Man, subcategory: Please, Santa, I'll Be So Good.

And, you know, it's not that I find either the Pope or John Gielgud attractive in any way, but Peck does it again in The Scarlet & The Black (1983) (also one of my favourite movies ever):

Gregory Peck, 1983

moar pics (2), The Scarlet And The Black, 1983 )

The hair-petting, argh! The fact that this scene is a small moment of personal approval from someone the character respects, after a whole movie of incredible, inconspicuous bravery and self-sacrifice!

File under: I Don't Have A Fealty/Praise Kink, YOU DO

(According to Wikipedia, in real life Gregory Peck was also outspoken against the House Un-American Activities Committee and was a faithful Catholic who disagreed with the church about contraception and abortion. While having excellent taste in women and an almost 50-year-long marriage. I'm fond.)
nenya_kanadka: Jupiter Jones in epic space wedding dress (Jupiter Ascending dress)
Somebody else has made some, right? Somewhere? Twenty minutes of googling last night didn't turn up anything. Thus a few of Jupiter in her swanky dress--chosen, admittedly, for the pretty pretty dress rather than for the scene itself--and please let me know in comments if you've seen more JA icons elsewhere!

nenya_kanadka: Wonder Woman poster (kneeling with sword) (Default) everything everyone said it would be. :D :D :D

We took a fellow gay-lady friend, and it was so worth the half-hour trip to the nearest theatre that had subtitles. (Also, they had fantastic waffle fries, which I don't think I'd had in a theatre before.) So pretty, much explosion, very space-hybrids, wow. Enjoyed it thoroughly and unironically.

Plus we spent last night (Valentine's Day/my birthday proper) watching Xena, Quantum Leap (the one with Susan Ivanova in it), and Voyager (including part of the one with evil Janeway with black gloves) over some great local beer, so, you know, Mucca knows how to treat a girl right. <3 (And the night before that we went out to fancy dinner and I wore my brand new dress & new necklace from Mucca, so we did also do the traditional things, though I suspect that was more discussion of kinky slash than that particular fancy restaurant usually sees over its appetizers.)

The rest of the trip to town (we head back to the lighthouse Monday morning) has been lovely and low-key, involving short visits with a couple of friends but a lot less running about madly than our Christmas trip. Which may be because Christmas, or may be because we intentionally under-scheduled this time. It's worked out well. Though Mucca may have lost her phone at the restaurant tonight; she's out trying to track that down, poor panda.

Off to try uploading some photos I need to Shutterfly, via hotel Internet, which likes to play better than the one at home. Then I shall probably go back to reading The Steerswoman (Rosemary Kerstein), which I am eating up with a spoon thanks to a rec from [personal profile] rachelmanija. :D
nenya_kanadka: Wonder Woman poster (kneeling with sword) (Default)
Some very excellent things these last few weeks.

Title: For you are with me
Author: [ profile] Lizardbeth
Fandom: Babylon 5
Characters: Alisa Beldon, Jeffrey Sinclair
Rating/Length: G, 5700 words
On Minbar telepaths are trained to serve, but for trainee Alisa Beldon her closeness with Jeff Sinclair sets her path.
Utterly gorgeous mentor/protégé story with Jeffrey Sinclair and Alisa Beldon on Minbar during the events of To Dream In The City of Sorrows (so, season 2/3). Makes me want to cling to Jeff and go "Come baaaack!" which admittedly is my default setting for him. Also makes me want all the grownup!Alisa fic.

Title: rocket queens
Author: [personal profile] openended
Fandom: Babylon 5 (Pacific Rim fusion AU)
Pairing: Susan/Talia, 3400 words
Rating: G
Telepaths rose the same year as the kaiju, and the Pan Pacific Defense Corps provided a convenient way to keep both away from the general population.
In which Susan and Talia get their happy ending, in a universe where punching Godzilla with giant robots is a valid life choice. Susan still manages to toss an telepath out a window.

nenya_kanadka: Wonder Woman poster (kneeling with sword) (Default)
Your main fandom of the year?
Babylon 5! I got quite into Doctor Who during the River Song episodes this summer, and followed along desultorily with [ profile] ds9_rewatch, but as I mainlined all five seasons of B5 (plus some of the movies) since April, I think that has to count as my main fandom.

Your favorite film watched this year?
Desk Set, with Katherine Hepburn. Made the year my mother was born, and yet it has women who behave more like actual real people I have known than many more modern romantic comedies. They have friendships with each other! And there is witty banter! And, well, Katherine Hepburn. I am not one for movies about how Technology Is Evil (large and extremely important parts of my life would be impossible without computers), but I still loved it.

Your favorite book read this year?
Remnant Population by Elizabeth Moon and To Dream In The City of Sorrows by Kathryn M. Drennan. The first is a novel of first contact whose protagonist is a 70-year-old woman, and the second is a Babylon 5 novel about what happened to Jeffrey Sinclair between when he left the show at the end of season 1 and when he reappeared in War Without End. It apparently is considered canon, which yay.

Your favorite album or song to listen to this year?
I rediscovered on YouTube some Russian Christian songs I'd had on tape back in my teens, and got a chance to translate the lyrics of a few of the songs for my cousin, who'd also had the tape but no idea what any of it meant. I probably looped this one the most: Я хочу с тобой поговорить ("Lord, I Want To Talk To You")

Your favorite TV show of the year?
Babylon 5!

Your favorite LJ community of the year?
[ profile] wrisomifu and [ profile] ds9_rewatch

Your best new fandom discovery of the year?
My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic. OMG so much cuteness. And finally watched some of Avatar: The Last Airbender--also pretty damn awesome. It's amazing how much excellent storytelling you can put into a show that's ostensibly about kids.

Your biggest fandom disappointment of the year?
Susan and Talia didn't get enough screentime. And Talia's exit from the station. Also what the hell, JMS, with your final Lennier plotline.

Your fandom girlfriend of the year?
River Song! Also, Delenn. And possibly Mira Furlan.

Your fandom boyfriend of the year?
Dukhat, Lennier, Valen--all the men in Delenn's life that she didn't marry, I guess. :P

Your biggest squee moment of the year?

The most missed of your old fandoms?
Deep Space Nine and LOTR. I poked about a bit in Silmarillion fandom (enough to get Mucca making annoyed comments about Elves), and I did rewatch some of the first three seasons of DS9.

The fandom you haven't tried yet, but want to?
Sherlock, Sanctuary

Your biggest fan anticipations for the New Year?
Squee, the Hobbit movie! And seeing The Avengers with Mucca on holidays.