alixtii: John and Cameron, looking cue together. (Sarah Connor Chronicles)
CAMERON: You sent [Derek] back to wait for us. (in "Queen's Gambit")

This reaffirms the notion that Derek and Cameron come from the same timeline. (Or does it?) But when and why did John send Derek back?

If Derek was sent back to 2006+, then he would have been wiped away when Cameron changed history in 1999, and wouldn't appear in the new timeline The Sarah Connor Chronicles takes place in--unless both John's send back Derek: the first so that Cameron can remember it, and the second so that Derek can actually reach the destination. The thing is, they'd have to send John for different reasons: the latter John would send Derek back knowing that Cameron would cause Sarah and John to jump forward in the future, and the former John would send Derek back because--the thing is, I can't figure out a coherent reason why John would send Derek back.

He'd have to have known that Cameron was going to change history, because presumably he wouldn't have remembered meeting Cameron as a teenager. (I toyed with the possibility of ignoring T3 and assuming that John did remember meeting Cameron, and having it all be one big causality loop--but no, Sarah's death by cancer screws up that theory.) So it'd be silly to send Derek back to any point in time after he sent Cameron. So he either didn't think things through--and I'd hate for the fanwank to only work by assuming the characters are stupid--or else he sent back Derek to before 1999. But that doesn't seem to work--surely Jessie would have noticed if he was suddenly a lot older? (We can assume that Derek jumped back and then jumped forward, but now we're getting to truly massive amounts of fanwank.)

Maybe there's some way John could send Derek and Cameron back at the same time (but to different temporal destinations) so that Derek would be protected from the effects of Cameron changing history? Call it the Stargate: Continuum school of time travel theory.

Ruling out that possibility, we're now back to Derek and Cameron being from separate timelines. But why would Cameron claim to know the reason John sent Derek back if they aren't from the same timeline? Assuming that John did, for whatever reason, try to send Derek back in Cameron's timeline, she could have assumed the same logic would carry over. This seems like a big assumption--if Derek's John knew Cameron as a teenager, that John might well reason very differently, but again, for the show to make any sense at all we do need to assume some degree of temporal inertia, that certain patterns (like Cameron's conversation with Jessie) keep happening over and over again in multiple timelines. Cameron would presumably be familiar with this phenomenon. But that explanation still doesn't seem totally sufficient to explain Cameron's utter certainty that Derek's mission was not to kill Andy Goode, but rather to wait for "us." There's no way she could be 100% positive that history didn't change in a salient way, is there?

The simplest explanation might be to simply assume Cameron is lying. But what could her motivation be? (Ooh, there's a fic there somewhere.)

Two Notes

Jan. 8th, 2010 11:37 am
alixtii: Player from <i>Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego?</i> playing the game. (Default)
1.My character tag at the Archive of Our Own. (I don't believe you need my permission to write RPF about me, but you certainly have my blessing. Just don't out me if you know my legal persona.)

2. SCC 1x02 strongly implies that Derek and Cameron come from the same future (the date that Cameron provides for Judgment Day is the combination for the safe). Thus, in the future that Derek comes from, John doesn't skip any years. (Presumably, in the future Jessie comes from, he does.) In short, Timelines B and C are the same.

That would mean any appearance of Cameron in Derek's flashbacks would be an appearance of our Cameron, and the differences between the future of, say, "Dungeons and Dragons" and T3 would be the same as between Cameron's future and T3--the main difference we know of being the date of Judgment Day. (I'm not quite sure I understand the mechanics of T3, though--at first glance it looks like a causality loop, but on further looks it become clear that history is being changed, although I'm not sure what it's being changed from--so it might be better to just ignore it altogether.) Off the top of my head, I can't think of anything problematic about this (other than one would expect his and Jessie's timelines to be more wildly divergent, but we already have weird parallelism existing between timelines: Judgment Day itself, of course, but also the fact that Cameron and Jessie both remember the conversation about Jessie's unborn child despite both coming from different timelines) or any detail to contradict the theory. Can anyone else?
alixtii: Player from <i>Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego?</i> playing the game. (Default)
Here's the poll, inspired by the "She's-not-straight-they-just-love-each-other" Giles/Kennedy fic I may or may not be working on (when I should be working on one of my five fest fics, but that's another story):

Poll #1893 Kennedy's Heterosexual Experience
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 10

Prior to her introduction in "," had Kennedy ever had sex with a man?

View Answers

No; she's known she was gay since she was a little child, so why would she?
5 (50.0%)

Yes; given the cultural context, it's likely she's had some heterosexual sexual experience, even if she didn't particularly want it.
2 (20.0%)

It depends on your definition of "sex"; she's likely had some heterosexual sexual experience, but not intercourse.
3 (30.0%)

Ticky box!

View Answers

Ticky box is a Kinsey six.
3 (33.3%)

Ticky box.
1 (11.1%)

Ticky box transcends labels and categories.
0 (0.0%)

Ticky box transcends labels and categories in theory, but in practice fits into radio buttons fairly easily.
3 (33.3%)

Ticky box is bisexual.
1 (11.1%)

Ticky box would totally go gay for Alyson Hannigan.
3 (33.3%)

And here's a meme, gacked from my flist:
If I had a warning label, what would it say?


Dec. 10th, 2009 08:12 am
alixtii: The five-pointed sleeping thing from Dollhouse. (Dollhouse)
I feel like that, after last week's Dollhouse episodes, there's finally enough for me to write a fic that's not just a cameo (like my last remix was). 60% of that might be Summer Glau, even though I'm not really interested in any pairings. spoilers )

In conclusion: Summer.

(Oh, and thank you to all the people who sent me vgifts!)
alixtii: Codex at her computer, from the first episode of "The Guild." (Felicia/Vi/Codex)
The other day I made a comment on Twitter (after much counting of characters to make everything fit):
Bit disturbed by implications of man needing to sweep in & make things better, but guess @feliciaday's awesome makes up for it. #theguild
And just today she blogged:
An interesting comment was made on Twitter, about everything being made “ok” because a man came back and took over. I certainly didn’t mean that at ALL. The fact is, Codex is not a good leader. She will never be a good leader, especially in the time frame of 6 days in this season. That is how people ACTUALLY are. She’s BETTER than she was at the beginning, but to think that she realistically could take on the mantle of Guild Leader (and REPLACE Vork which I didn’t want her to do) against the Anarchists was such a stretch for me, and a direction I didn’t want to go in with the script. So, Vork comes back, after his big journey, and puts the Guild back together. Codex will get her moment, don’t worry.
Now my main reaction to this is to mentally jump up and down in excitement that Felicia Day spent a whole paragraph in her blog responding to a criticism I made. (I went backwards through the hashtag and I'm assuming it's me she's responding to there.)

As an obligatory response to what she wrote, I suppose I should say that of course I didn't think for a moment (nor do I think anyone else could) that Felicia Day intentionally meant to say anything anti-feminist. I think her cred in that area is pretty much unassailable, but at the same time her intent doesn't negate the possible moral of the episode I read in it. This is basic Anti-Oppression 101 to anyone on my flist, but somehow I feel need to reiterate anyway. I don't think Felicia Day is any more sexist than anyone else; I do think this particular episode she wrote and produced (and starred in) does replicate sexist messages already present in our culture in a disturbing way.

But again, I think the more important point is that she wrote and produced it, period. When I say Felicia's awesome makes up for it, I don't mean I'm willing to look past the flaws because I like her a lot. I mean that the fact that the episode exists at all, a product of the entrepeneurship of her and her co-producer Kim Evey, is an inherently feminist act.

As I've said before, the problem with our culture isn't that stories like S3 Ep10 exist.

embedded video for context )

The problem is all the other stories which don't exist, or at least don't get to be heard.

The problem is a lack of pluralism: stories which focus on (white, heterosexual, cisgendered, etc.) men's problems and men's victories keep on pushing out other media. I think the only solution to this problem is a two-pronged approach: one, producers of media need to think more deeply about the stories they're telling. But this can only go so far; if all the producers are men, chances are the stories they're going to be interested in telling just aren't going to capture the whole of human experience no matter how much feminism they try to inject in. Sometimes even a Joss Whedon is going to want to tell a story like Dr. Horrible where cut for spoilers? ). I think we need to respect that.

That's where prong two comes in: making sure people other than cisgendered heterosexual abled white males get a chance to tell their stories. And this is why Felicia Day's story (her life story, not Season 3 Episode 10) is so important. She managed to carve out a space for herself outside the already existing system where she could tell the stories she wanted to tell, where she could exist as a powerful woman to create, write, produce, and star in the webseries we know and love, to find a way to support her project (in season one, on donations; for seasons two and three, by being sponsored by Microsoft and Sprint) without giving up the rights to her project or creative control. She is a pioneer and an inspiration to others.

(And which is not to elide the fact that Felicia is privileged in so many other ways, of course: she's white, straight [so far as anyone knows], abled [for now at least], brilliant, [so incredibly] beautiful, university-educated, and comes from a background where she was encouraged to use her talents from an early age).

The Guild is not a perfect feminist work. In addition to the issue with S3 Ep10 I already mentioned, it has some real successes alongside some real failures in its treatment(s) of race, class, and able-ness. Felicia Day, as deeply awesome as she may be, is still only human. But I don't think any work is a perfect feminist work: the future I envision is one in which all types of works, each one of them deeply flawed in its own way, get brought to the table, not just a certain kind, so they can all end up critiquing, complementing, and supplementing each other. And I think The Guild, taken as a whole, brings us closer to that future.
alixtii: The five-pointed sleeping thing from Dollhouse. (Dollhouse)
Dollhouse 2x04

Between this and "Epitaph One," I'm really falling in love with Adelle.

Sarah Jane Adventures 3x04

So, has anyone written K-9/Mr. Smith yet?
alixtii: John and Cameron, looking cue together. (Sarah Connor Chronicles)
One of the things about fanfic is that things which are ambiguous in the original text need to be resolved, even if you like them ambiguous. Sometimes storytelling demands deciding whether Schrodinger's cat is dead or alive. At these times, whether or not a fic will work will often depend on whether or not it fills in the blanks in a way which is plausible to its audience.

So I'm working on my post-"Born to Run" John/Savannah universe, and I'm wondering is John Connor a virgin in "Born to Run"? If not, with whom has he had sex? If so, what is the extent of his sexual experience?

To be clear, I'm not asking what you like to think happened in your own personal canon, but rather what you think the most straight-foward explication of the text would be. In the closest possible world to the actual one where what we see on the show is "true", is John Connor a virgin?

Poll #1408 Is John Connor a virgin?
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 5

In a "least hypothesis" reading of the text (which is to say, one which is relatively 'shipper goggle-free), is John Connor a virgin at the end of the (television) series?

View Answers

No (go to question 2)
3 (60.0%)

Yes (go to question 3)
2 (40.0%)

If not, with whom has John had sex?

View Answers

Cameron, in season 1
0 (0.0%)

Cameron, in season 2
0 (0.0%)

3 (100.0%)

Someone else
0 (0.0%)

If so, what is the extent of his sexual experience?


Sep. 13th, 2009 04:01 pm
alixtii: Text: "I believe in BWFW [by women, for women]." (BWFW)
Pick five of your favourite shows, in no particular order, before you read the below questions, then answer them!

1. Star Trek: Voyager
2. Buffy the Vampire Slayer
3. Veronica Mars
4. The 4400
5. The Sarah Connor Chronicles

Q&A )
alixtii: Player from <i>Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego?</i> playing the game. (Sarah Connor Chronicels)
Remember this post, where I diagram the various timelines of T:tSCC? After "The Last Voyage of the Jimmy Carter" and "Born to Run," it seemed like it was time to update the diagram. Below the cut is the new and improved (and very spoilery) diagram, with notes. As before, history-changing time travel is represented in red, causality loops in blue, indeterminate events in green, and Judgment Day in yellow. I've also added certain other major events in purple.

spoilers for the entire Terminator film and TV franchise )

I don't quite understand all the fanresponses I've read that seem to assume that show canon can be one big, happy causality loop, and I find that pervasiveness of that perspective frustrating. (Even the Terminator Wiki tries to press everything together into one timeline.) The only way I can imagine that working is if everyone who came from the future--Kyle, the T-101's, Cameron, Derek, Jessie, Catherine--has been lying not only about the date of Judgment Day, but about pretty much everything. Which would be a serious break of contract with the viewer.

If we don't get a Season 3, I don't even know what we'll do.
alixtii: Player from <i>Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego?</i> playing the game. (Sarah Connor Chronicels)

Know what I just realized? spoilers for SCC season finale )

In other news, I finally booked my plane tickets for [ profile] writercon. $179. Not bad. (Especially since I'll be reimbursed. Which reminds me, I still need to look into arranging my volunteer work to pay off the scholarship.) My plane leaves Philly at like 6:30, though, which means I'd need to get to the airport by like 5. Blech.

It will, however, be the first time I'll leave the time zone without leaving the country (and, for that matter, the continent). I've never been any meaningful distance west--Colgate is probably as far west as I've been. Well, actually the Abbey of the Genesee, I guess, which I visited while I was at Colgate and is west of it.

Speaking of meeting up with fans, I met up with a bunch of fangirls, most of them MiniMerlin alums, at Central Park on Saturday. We had a blast, pretty much just hanging out and talking and playing a party game. I continue to be amazed at just how easy and stress-free social interaction with other fangirls is. All of my normal social anxiety pretty much just disappears, because I'm free to be myself.

Why can't I be surrounded by fangirls all the time? *pouts*

The Squad

Apr. 5th, 2008 10:20 am
alixtii: Player from <i>Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego?</i> playing the game. (Default)
On the basis of [ profile] fox1013's recs here and here, I ILL'd Jennifer Lynn Barnes' The Squad: Perfect Cover. It came in yesterday (which is a lot sooner than I had expected) and I read it during the train ride to school and while waiting in the station for the train home (where I finished it and thus resumed listening to The Silver Chair on my train ride home).

And, yeah, I enjoyed it quite a bit. *puts in an ILL request for The Squad: Killer Spirit*

The contents are what you would expect in a young adult novel about cheerleading spies: enough homosociality to power a small lesbian separatist commune, a healthy helping of high-school teenaged angst *glances at Spiderman <3's Mary-Jane and Supergirl and New X-Men on comics shelf*, and will-to-powery plots. Indeed, to my delight the book takes the spy plot much more seriously than I expected, capturing a tone more reminiscient of La Femme Nikita than of D.E.B.S. (Not that I don't love the latter movie with all my passion, but it relies so heavily on its visual aesthetic I don't see how it could possibly translate to book form. Fanfic is another story.) It plays it straight in a way which I really liked.

There's even a brother, although he's not quite as 'cestastic as he should be (although I did enjoy his squee at seeing his sister in cheer shorts) and, frankly, I don't quite buy him as a complete human being. Which could go for a number of the characters in the book, but in general the point of the book is that the cheerleaders act like cardboard cutouts while actually having unexpected depths, and Barnes' nicely foreshadows where those depths might lie in a couple of places, and I'm interested in learning more. Whereas the brother is the protagonist's frakking brother; his sister should be aware of his depths beyond "horny heterosexual teenage male" since, you know, she's known him his entire life.

At the same time, there's an emotional realism and down-to-Earth-ness to the characterizations, rooted as much in feelings of pain, frustration, and alienation as optimism and pep, which is refreshing. Insofar as it goes easy on the camp, it actually works that much better as a wish-fulfillment fantasy, because one can actually see oneself as the protagonist. It's more realistic than D.E.B.S. while still being more will-to-powery than Bring It On, which is really a totally awesome place to be.

It might just be me and my particular privilege, but I've always seen D.E.B.S. less as a movie about a lesbian romance than as a a quite brilliant deconstruction of a certain type of pseudolesbian mythology. In its way, The Squad is much less radical/postmodern in its method but just as important for its liberal/modernist move: while the former work of art interrogates the het male gaze (and its relation to the queer female gaze), The Squad sidelines it altogether (mostly anthropomorphized in the supposedly-laughably-pathetic portrayal of the brother, see above). Fashion and cosmetics and clothing--yes, including the skirt--are thus, I think, more forceably reclaimed as nexuses of female power. Part of this is the medium: there's a process of objectification inherent in film which can be avoided in the novel. When the Squad equips the protagonist with the necessary equipment and knowledge to seduce a man, it's clear that she's doing so as an agent in her own right and not as a het male (or even queer female) fantasy, a fact which the first-person narration emphasizes. Rather than destabilizing a narrative, it provides a new one--something that the young readers who would make up The Squad's primary readership need desperately in our world.

This is not, of course, to say that this alternative narrative is not unproblematic from a radical feminist perspective--what isn't? Like in both Bring It On and D.E.B.S., the female homosocial community is empowering but at the same time embedded in the larger structures of male power. All three texts problematize this embeddedness, but in different ways and to different degrees. Bring It On, I think, mostly leaves it intact, as the characters settle into heteronormative relationships and remain within the sphere of the socially-sanctioned sport. D.E.B.S. recognizes the way in which the queer relationship is unsustainable within that structure and requires an exiting from it. I don't want to spoil the book (I'm assuming you've already seen the movies--if not, go do so), but The Squad does make moves in places to problematize the legitmacy of the specific male power structure which is making use of the female labor--in particular in one specific (spoilerish) way that I expect will be taken up in books to come.

And The Squad never glorifies the situation or pretends it is ideal. Some of the girls manifest their "cheerleaderiness" as an authentic aspect of their femininity--and part of the protagonist's journey is coming to terms with the conclusion that that's okay. But for others that is not the case, and each girl gets her own unique (well, the twins share one) path and history which, while filtered through the somewhat opinionated perspective of the protagonist, is ultimately treated with sympathy. There is no wrong way to be a female, but there is a sense of loss in the idea of a society that won't let girls play with lightsabers.

The premise of the book is based on the assumption that cheerleaders are never taken seriously and thus make the ideal covert operatives, but this isn't painted as just or fair. The novel recognizes the pressures a young woman feels to conform, to be pretty, to not be too smart, to be an object, and it shows a group of women subverting those expectations, but without ever justifying them. Instead, it simply takes the assumption that we live in a frelled-up world and women simply have to live in it as best they can (perhaps while doing their best to change it). In the very process of working to preserve patriarchal society, the Squad by its nature reveals the sexism inherent within it.


Mar. 15th, 2008 04:38 pm
alixtii: Player from <i>Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego?</i> playing the game. (Default)
My problem with Torchwood season 2 isn't that it hasn't given us any episodes which live up to the glory and genius of a "They Keep Killing" or a "Countrycide." Indeed, there have been some really good episodes.

Instead, it's that they've so reconceptualized the characters, tone, and and structure that a "They Keep Killing" or a "Countrycide" wouldn't even make sense. That kind of story--which was the epitome of everything I loved about season 1--well, I'm just not sure it's even possible anymore.

And I mourn for that.
alixtii: Player from <i>Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego?</i> playing the game. (Default)
Are the spoilers for tonight's SCC ) supposed to be taking place in the future Cameron remembers (her subjective past) or the new future which exists in the timeline Cameron created by taking Sarah into the future and not having her die of cancer? I missed last week's episode and I'm so confused.

more spoilers )

I have to say, they're certainly doing a good job of keeping the intensity. That was a really good episode of television. I just hope they're managing to have it make sense while they do it.

TW 2x04

Feb. 9th, 2008 09:56 pm
alixtii: Mary Magdalene washing the face of Jesus of Nazareth, from the film production of Jesus Christ Superstar. (religion)

Now that's the Torchwood I loved in the first season, and had been missing. Squee!

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