Apr. 16th, 2024


Moar thoughts on the Fallout TV show


Non spoilery squeeing ahead:  

Read This...

Welp, I've watched this through twice now (I hardly ever watch something twice, folks.)  I will probably watch it through another time, just to take notes and remind myself of what happens when, because I already have both Coop and Lucy in my head sniping at each other and continuing the "we might kill each other, we might end up fucking in an alley" UST vibe that I got from that one scene.  (It was the fingers scene.  Of course it was the fingers scene.)  So there needs to be fanfic, and for that I need reminders of what happened when.

I'd purchase the damned series right now, "TAKE MY MONEY!" style, but of course Amazon won't sell it to me.  And though I loved it, I don't love it enough to lease it from Amazon forever.  So, before my month of Prime runs out, I'll watch again and take notes.

So yeah.  I loved it.  I was incredibly surprised how much I loved it.  Fallout is TRICKY.  It's tricky to do both goofy retro absurdism and social satire and gratuitous violence in the way that Fallout does and not have it seem ridiculous or overly serious or just...cringe.  But oh.  My god.  They nailed it.  And all the way through, too.  I loved the first episode, admit there were some times where stuff just slowed down (mostly in the flashbacks - though on second watch, the flashbacks were necessary context for all the present day stuff - it was just not quite so interesting, as I knew more about the story Coop was in than he did), but even on second watch, I didn't skip much.  It was beautifully done, wonderfully staged with just gorgeous environments rich in little lore-friendly things in the background.  I kept stopping the stream so I could look closer at computer screens and things on desks, and it was nearly always worth it.  You find little callbacks to the games or to the flashbacks all through the show, and I feel like I'm still catching them.

It was also SMART.  It was a complex tale worked by people who if they were not smart were at least CRAFTY (I'm looking at you, Maximus...I love you, but INT was your dump stat, I get it, it's ok.)  Coop, Norm, Lucy...they were all perceptive planners, and they were rewarded for it.  The plot made sense (and people reacted realistically) all the way through, and for parts where I thought "huh, they didn't explain that....", I can see where explanations are forthcoming.  Even on second watch, i could see how the later reveals still had been worked into the story.  This was just...wonderfully done.  It felt like whole, not riddled with "oh, they won't notice" plot holes.  The writers were obviously huge fans and they made this show look like a game.  The tone, the look, the bits of lore...beautiful.



Read This...

I loved Lucy from the second she just...hopped on that raider's cock lol.  I loved that they made her adaptable and naive in some ways but matter-of-fact in others.  That she was pushed and pushed but always fought back or pushed through.  Kind but tough in ways that you don't usually see.  Also no doubt traumatized after the end of S1.  (I loved that she shot her mother, because I was afraid that they were just going to drop that thread.)  It'll be interesting to see if they change her any in S2.

And Maximus...such a doofus.  I love that they made the BoS character like...the punching bag and comic relief.  Anyone who watched this show and thought they were glorifying the tincan fascists was like...watching a different show than I did.  Maximus was tough and persistent, but dude was inept and doofy.  Also so achingly broken.  His actor visibly showed when Maximus was putting up his guard.  He'd drop the smile, eyes would flicker around, face would harden.  He masks ALL THE TIME when around the Brotherhood, because he's so used to being hurt and having vulnerability used against him.  He gets to Vault 4 and experiences soft robes and comfy chairs and hot water and he is just so HAPPY.  He is a deprived, starving man, and it shows.  Also a delightfully ruthless one, too.  I thought at first that they were going to leave it unspoken whether he'd really injured Dane or not, and I kind of liked the idea that he HAD, that Dane knew, and that the "I told them you wouldn't hurt a fly" was a sly "I know, but it's ok".  But then he actually fucking sat there and watched a knight die and stole his armor and I was like, "My dude, I am going to enjoy watching you make so many terrible choices, carry on."

And now...for my TED talk.  Because I have so many thoughts on the Ghoul/Cooper.  Walton Goggins just did...SUCH a great job.  Coop is such a good character, in both incarnations, and the more you learn about him, the more you can appreciate the ways the Ghoul has twisted himself over the years.  I expected to like him because he was a ghoul and a bounty hunter and a smartass and an all-around badass.  I did not expect to like him because he's smart and a man who is perilously close to both losing and regaining his humanity.  Smart, because fuck he plans everything.  He watches and waits and looks for weaknesses and then ruthlessly takes advantage of them.  He manipulates everyone with Speech checks and intimidates them with the Terrifying Presence perk.  He's constantly thinking his way around the very few morals he has left.  I need a bulleted list here to describe all this grayness:

  • Very few rules, but clinging to those few rules - He doesn't seem to lie, just avoids telling the truth by answering questions with questions or strategic silences. I also don't think we see him draw first - I think that's a line for him, but watch how he gets around it : the "sherriff", the lead farmer kid...he baits them into drawing on him so he can take them out. It comes across as him being a bloodthirsty asshole (he's obviously enjoying himself in Filly). He knows he's better than them, looks like he's TOYING with them, but I don't think that's it. I think he's still trying to be a good person who doesn't just murder his way through the Wasteland, even though he could. But he also knows how the Wasteland works and that if he can't take care of problems, they'll come back for him later. So, like a good player who's trying to not make their character a murder hobo, he pushes, and those who back down get to live, and those who are stupid die.
  • Lucy gets a lot of his asshole side, but it doesn't see personal - He's an asshole, grade A, no question. But unlike some other folks say, I don't get the sense that it's misogynistic or even personal. She was in his way, and then she was a resource he could exploit. I feel he would have done the same thing to anyone else in that position. Yes, that he was a man dragging along a collared/bound woman does carry some gendered baggage but...well..., I felt they handled that better than they could have. He doesn't treat her with kid gloves, nor does he let her walk all over him. When she mouths off, he pushes back, making her cut up Roger, and when she tries to run he drags her back, and when she bites off his finger, he takes exactly what she took from him. It's shocking, but it's PROPORTIONAL. He's treating her, in some ways, like an equal. Also...I get the sense that he's withholding water and taunting her in such an asshole fashion because he knows where she's going - and selling her will be easier for him if he dehumanizes her, makes her hate him.
  • If it comes down to you or me, I'll always choose me - Yes, the whole "selling Lucy for vials" thing. Again, shocking, and again, he's a selfish asshole willing to destroy someone else to save his own skin. No question. But it's not gratuitous, and it's not his only or original plan. He only does it when he has no choice. From the second he knows his own vials are destroyed, he knows he's got a time-limited side quest going, and he abandons the main quest for it. He has to. He can't just ask her for help, because he knows that she can't help him in time, that she doesn't have enough money, and he doesn't know if she would be willing to help her after he's used her as gulper bait. He takes Lucy with him because again, he's a planner - he doesn't want her to go after the head without him and...well...she's plan B for how to get more vials. He heads to Roger first - he was hoping he'd have some to sell, or maybe he thought the clinic would have some and Roger just got there first. But Roger didn't have any. So, on to plan B: sell the most valuable thing he's got for more vials. Selfish. Cruel. Practical. Utterly understandable knowing what we do about how he sees the world.
  • Waste not want not.... - The cannibalism?  I have a theory on that.  It's staged as if it's just some senseless barbaric thing he does:  he's just killed a man, and he's holding Lucy prisoner, and now he's gonna eat the guy he just murdered?  But.  But.  He looks down at all those empty vials at Roger's side.  He knows Roger's taken at least a few, but it's not working.  It's possible that some of it was taken recently and might still be in Roger's system.  So why would he go cannibal right then, right there, when, again, he's got a TIME SENSITIVE SIDE QUEST RUNNING?  It's not JUST for extra food to take along, he actually cut deep in and then ate something RIGHT THERE.  I think it was a way for him to try to recover some of the medicine Roger had taken.  If he was eating either the liver or the kidneys, where drugs are usually collected form the bloodstream and broken down?  That would actually make a lot of sense.  
  • Flashes of kindness, well-hidden and only when he could afford to - yes, the dogs. The chicken. I'd argue that him playing with Maximus rather than killing him (I mean, think of the last fight, in the hallway: he COULD have killed Maximus, obviously) was also kindness, though I can't say why he'd do it other than Maximus having plot armor - maybe Maximus came off as too much of a kid. He also saved Lucy's life by pulling her out of the lake - he could have just let her drown, but he didn't. Also, most obviously and poignantly: Roger. Think of how that scene played out: "do you remember what food used to taste like?/Apple pie and ice cream." Roger smiles, laughs, thinking of his mom's cooking, he turns and looks at Lucy...and that's when Coop shoots. He could have just killed Roger right to his face, but he distracted him, made him think of a good memory, waited until he wouldn't see it coming. It didn't cost him anything, but he did it anyway. Also...it was not clear if he knew that Lucy was aiming at her mother, in that last scene. If he didn't, then he let her take the shot, trusting that either she wouldn't kill him or that she deserved to have that shot at him, for what he'd done.

I'm interested also in what the show didn't resolve:  Why had Moldaver not aged?  Where was Coop riding off to after the bomb fell so fast, when he knew that they were too close to the blasts (my guess:  he was trying like hell to get Janey to his wife, because he knew her plan was to get Janey to a vault.  Him wanting to know where his family was makes it sound like he succeeded, but why does he not know where they are?)  Are they in Vault 31 with the rest of Bud's Buds (and now...with Norm?)  Or was the "Vault that manages all the other vaults" something we haven't seen yet?  And whaaaaat awaits our heroes in New Vegas?  :DDDD



No, Drumsticks Aren't Actually Made With Real Ice Cream

What fresh hell is this? The next thing they'll tell us is that Push-ups came in toilet paper holders!

Apr. 14th, 2024


Peanut Butter Honey Oatmeal Cookies

Hello! Hope you all are having a wonderful Sunday!

The nurse finally came Monday to fix my wrappings, I had to cut them off myself which was fun. I can't reach my lower legs easily. Still, it was finally fixed so yay!

I got my hair cut! Yay! It looks cute and feels so much better. I love not having hair in my eyes. LOL!

Going to the doctor tomorrow afternoon, what fun. I'll see if I can get a skin graft or not. I hope so, that would help a lot I think. So, cross your fingers.

Other than that, not a lot going on this week. I have a slight earache, and it may or may not be getting better. Don't know if I'll end up at the doctor's or not. We'll see. I hope not, because it's a pain in the butt to get in there, a long walk, but if I need to go I will.

We had another round of storms the other day but the power didn't go out thank goodness! They have a planned power outage later today to fix something in one of their power stations. It's from 8 to 9. I don't get why they are doing it at night on a Sunday. You think They'd want to do it during working hours, and in the daylight so people could see. I have no idea where they get their ideas.

Got an interesting cookie for y'all today. Peanut Butter Honey Oatmeal Cookies. My blood sugar went up just reading this recipe, but it does look good! Enjoy!

Peanut Butter Honey Oatmeal Cookies )

Apr. 13th, 2024


Well I've had a fight. Had some wings, Promoted Shane Taylor and the Lads. See you good folk next All*In!

Oh wait. I've got to stay a bit. Wonder if I can couch surf for a few months.

Apr. 12th, 2024


"Oh my god, you all are such freaks, and I love it"

^ I keep saying this to the screen as I watched the first 4 eps of the Fallout TV show.  

I have so many thoughts on this show, and I'm about to head out for a Weekend of Familial Suck, so you all have to wait for most of them, but...some bullet points (nonspoilery, but will cut anyway):

Read This...
  • I very much appreciate that the show writers knew that folks were gonna find the Ghoul HAWT, and they were 100% ok with that.
  • I did not expect to like Lena and Maximus this much.  I honestly did not.  I expected to like the Ghoul and for Lena/Maximus to get a lot of eyerolling.  But no.  See title above.  When Lena cocked her head and went, "huh...okeydokey! :D" on her wedding night, I fell in love with her a little.  When they left it completely unanswered whether Maximus did That One Thing?  And then he did THAT OTHER THING?  That was when I was like, "oh, I see who you are, sir, ok, I'm on board, let's go."
  • The show is gorgeous - the practical effects look so good, and the sound design!  I realized that they're using SO many of the actual sounds from the game:  the vault door opening, the keyboard clacks for the computers, the Pipboy sounds, and even some of the gun noises, I think.

I get the sense that People on the Internet are not liking the show for various reasons.  I get the sense that some of these are "this is a terrible show", some are "this is not sticking 100% to the Fallout canon so it is dead to me" and some are "I don't like how this is handling this one particular social issue", so here's my take:  this is Fallout.  This feels 100% like Fallout, with its "edgy" options, its' shock value taboo-breaking, its gore, its dark absurdist comedy, its scrappy and terrible Wasteland, its messy choices and complete disregard for the player's feelings.  I honestly don't get why someone who likes the tone of the Fallout games would gripe about this show's vibes, because it feels very, very much like a Fallout game.  

Now...I could see some folks not liking how certain groups are portrayed - fair.  Hardly ANYONE is portrayed as Good and Right in the first 4 eps I've seen.  Both the past in flashbacks and the present BoS and the Wasteland are all shown as being "this might look ok on the surface, but boy is this Not Right".  It's all unapologetic:  this is just how people live, and the viewers have to accept that people have to make these choices and some of them will be bad and not nice and not respectful of a person's anything, or this is just not the show for them.  But moral questioning and sometimes doing bad things to get a good result is part and parcel of Fallout.  So it feels appropriate.  

The Fallout show isn't for EVERYONE (and please, please ask someone in the know or check Does the Dog Die? or similar if you have a hard-no squick or trigger, because there are a lot of glancing blows like that), but I feel it is definitely FOR SOMEONE, and that someone is the type of people who loved Fallout's messiness.  And in that context?  They understood and nailed this assignment.

Apr. 11th, 2024


Women, leisure, and "gold diggers"

This should be a gift article, folks, enjoy:
Tradwives, stay-at-home girlfriends and the dream of feminine leisure

Christie was taking a cosseted, retro archetype — the gold digger — and presenting it as something intellectual and liberated. She hadn’t wanted to marry a fixer-upper, she writes, citing her younger brother who still left his towels on the floor. She wanted a man that some other woman had already fixed up, and who could, in turn, fix her. Not a partner, she writes, but a “mentor.” Specifically, one who could fulfill a promise that feminism had allegedly failed to deliver: “I had grown bored of discussions of fair and unfair, equal or unequal,” writes Christie, “and preferred instead to consider a thing called ease.”

A thing called ease.

That last sentence was the only one in the whole piece that made me stop in my tracks. It was breathtaking in its transparency: I’m not doing this out of principle or based on a worldview. I’m doing this because life seemed hard and this seemed easy.

You could argue, as many did, that if your relationship is predicated on you being young, it might get considerably less easy when you age. But castigating Christie’s essay was actually the least interesting way to engage with it, because, at heart, it was dealing with bigger themes than even she seemed to know what to do with: The elusiveness of female contentment in the modern era. The elusiveness of rest — for everyone — in the modern era. The concept of romantic relationships as the ultimate life hack, and the resigned idea that the only way to move forward is by moving backward.

I think this is an interesting take on this.  Because I have thought, at various points, "Boy I can't blame guys for liking patriarchy:  I, too, wish that there was someone who would take care of my house and prepare my food and plan my appointments for me, all unpaid."  And that is the same line as this: "Yeah, life is hard, and wouldn't it be nice if someone just cared for me?"  It's the same line as "marry a doctor!"  (why?  Because you'll be rich off his money and your life will be easier.)  it's the same reason that the gold digger (affectionate) lady was looking at rich, successful guys, rather than equally patriarchal but lower-class guys:  it's not the patriarchy, it's the ease that money can buy.

She's applying for a job.  As long as everyone is transparent and clear on what that job entails, the salary and benefits involved, and the possible expiration on that job term...go for it, girl.  I don't blame you one bit.  I don't feel like I can dis someone in this situation without getting misogynistic and/or puritanical about either sex or marriage.

Apr. 7th, 2024


i want brownies

that title has little to do with the post, but i really do want brownies. nice chewy ones.

part 1 - the actual moving )

part 2 - some electronics issues ) Mirrored from the original entry at Dreamwidth. Reply there using your own Dreamwidth account or OpenID!
comment count unavailable replies over there.


What We Weading Wednesday

(I'm stealing this new iteration of WWW Wednesdays, because I love it.)

This week has just...exploded, so, short version:


I finished:

- Kingfisher's A House with Good Bones (verdict:  good!)

- Vol 7 of Resident Alien, The Book of Love (verdict:  meh)


Currently reading:

- Four Lost Cities: A Secret History of the Urban Age by Annalee Newitz (current verdict: interesting!)

- Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky (current verdict: ...not far in, but I'm at the point where I need some characters to care about, please.)


Strawberry Swirl Cream Cheese Pound Cake

Hello! Happy Sunday everyone! Hope you all are having a great weekend!

I'm sitting here waiting for the nurse to call me back. My wrappings on my leg have gotten twisted or wrinkled or something and it hurts like the dickens! Hopefully, they'll sort that out for me without going to the ER. Urgh. I hate going to the ER. I don't think it's infected or anything, just hurting. So yeah, fun.

But I have no doctor appointments this week! YAY! I do have a hair appointment this Wednesday. I need my hair cut, I'm looking like a haystack or something. Cousin Itt's sister. LOL!

Is everyone ready for the eclipse? Not sure what I'm gonna do I'm not going to watch as I don't have any glasses. I'll have to think about it.

Not much else going on this week. It's a nice slow week. I hope I didn't just jinx myself. LOL!

Today's recipe is a Strawberry Swirl Cream Cheese Pound Cake. Perfect for a Spring treat!

Strawberry Swirl Cream Cheese Pound Cake )

Apr. 5th, 2024


Commission: My FNV Courier

Y halo thar, Archangels was nice enough to put up a commission-for-a-Pillowfort-donation deal, and I took him up on it.  In addition to my references, I told him "he is the soft-spoken, gather-info-then-take-it-out-at-range type.  He's the one who's always quietly asking all the questions because he wants to know how everything works before he foils the bad guys' evil plans.  He likes fighting for underdogs, long rifles (because the best fight is one you win before the other guy even sees you coming), and outsmarting people."  He knocked it out of the park, imho.   :D

I've had Fallout: New Vegas on the brain, so here, have my FNV Courier, quite early in the game back when he felt like he was a hair away from dying all the dang time and had to think REALLY HARD before he decided that no, really, he really DID need to murder every Legionary he saw.  His tendency to take on heavily armed fascists at 3:1 odds directly informs his preference for rifles (the more sniper the better).

Also, anyone excited (in that "oh god, this is probably going to suck, but I'm going to watch it anyway, aren't I?" way) for the Fallout TV show this week?  I actually reupped my Prime membership in preparation, so it better at least be worth the 8 bucks I paid.  (Amazon was trying to lure me back with a discount, so that worked out at least.)

Apr. 4th, 2024


Library Extension


I'm not sure where I found this, but now that I'm using it wow do I love it:

Library Extension -  An extension that will automatically check for you and display (on an Amazon, Goodreads, Storygraph, etc. page) whether your local libraries or services like Hoopla or the Internet Archive Open Library has the book you're eyeing.  It requires a bit of setup (I mean, you have to tell it which libraries/services to check), and it doesn't ALWAYS work 100%, but it's helped me not buy a book more than once!

Reminded about this by the twice today that I've found that things I was linked to are hey, available to borrow on Hoopla!  :)