Still sick. Now in a way where I've exchanged fever and headache for sneezing, coughing and sinus pressure. Dry/swollen throat feeling remains. You know what I bet would make me feel better? Looking up the Top
I confess, I did watch the first hour on Wed. out of boredom. Generally, I thought the mansion - or more to the point, the judges' red throne-like chairs - was ridiculous, and I miss the low-budget-looking elevator cam. The sing-offs were asinine; I hate watching people fret and now they've created more of it. Kara did finally say something I agreed with, though. "Why don't we just bring in a bunch of models??" Ostensibly directed towards Simon with scathing sarcasm, but I am fully prepared to take her statement at face value and run with it.
In a related note, I continued to be exceptionally disappointed by the lack of cute boys. I don't understand it. There are tons of cute actors on TV, reality shows (a phrase which here means "Survivor") included. More than I can count. And yet apparently, the ability to sing automatically precludes one from being handsome. This leaves me with no choice but to cheer for the pretty girls, occasionally bringing my sexuality into question. That's a risk we'll have to take.
And with that...time to hit up the official website and make snap decisions based on photos & biographies, and perhaps the odd few that I've actually seen on camera before, in which case I can also factor in personality but probably not singing ability, since I won't remember a paltry thing like that.
I've just made the very upsetting discovery that apparently, the official site doesn't care about putting up little survey-biographies when there are this many people. Screw you, site! I have no choice but to be pettier than ever before!
Adam: Could you be a little more punk-goth? I'm not sure there is enough BLACK on your person to make things clear yet.
Alex: He seemed like a nice kid. I award him with the stamp of pre-approval, which entitles the bearer to a handicap-free first performance, after which I will judge him on his abilities and stage presence without any preconceived notions.
Alexis: Mom likes her. Says she reminds her of Christina Aguilera. Way to handicap a contestant for me, Mom...although then again, she probably would have done it on her own before too long, because I swear to God, my patience for listening to her tearfully talk about her precious little daughter is already gone.
Allison: She seems cute enough, I suppose, and -- HI, SIXTEEN? Welcome aboard the first-class approval train, Miss.
Anne-Marie: Quite pretty...very beautiful, actually. No ping! of automatic love from me, but that could easily change after a good song. This description of "milquetoast" in combination with "singer/songwriter" and "flowy dresses" intrigues me.
Anoop: BANE OF MY EXISTENCE. I'M CALLING IT RIGHT NOW. I loathe his name, he's not attractive, everyone else mysteriously loves him, and if pressed I could probably think of even more shallow reasons.
Arianna: She, on the other hand, has a very pretty name. And is pretty herself. And is 16. I give her the equivalent of a golden ticket.
Brent: My, aren't you...old. With facial hair. *shrugs* Nothing to see here, move along.
Casey: She seems sort of fried. I choose not to vote for her on home-state principle.
Danny: Looks spastic.
Felicia: Nice, she has one of those photos where it looks candid instead of being a professional studio shoot, and thus she looks real instead of Hollywood-glamorized. I love that.
Jackie: See above.
Jasmine: *sighs dreamily* I miss Jasmine Trias...oh! *snaps out of it* Well, she's 16, she could be nice, but I also think I've maybe met my quota of 16-year-olds and she doesn't stand out as much. Sacrificial lamb, yes.
Jeanine: I like her hair! She kind of reminds me of Leona Lewis, only without the "Bleeding Love" albatross around her neck (yay!).
Jesse: Now, this is a home-state entry I think I will vote for on principle. Also because I like her red hair, and her general look suggests the singer-songwriter type to me. Don't disappoint me! (oh, win, MTV compared her to Fiona Apple; that's a good sign.)
Jorge: Nope, not attractive. Begone!
Ju'Not: Well, that's one way to make the previous guy look attractive. And what kind of name is this, anyway? I don't even know how to pronounce it without feeling antisemitic; surely it cannot be real.
Kai: Ahoyhoy...*is intrigued* Hello, sir, have we met? Because you've got some star potential, by which I mean "possible eye candy." Depending on your voice, song potential, and your ability to keep that hair from looking too frizzy/poufy, I think we might have something here. Stay tuned.
Kendall: Cutesy! Almost too cutesy. I don't usually turn on the young blondes, but I fear that it wouldn't take much for her to aggravate me.
Kris: Not technically offensive yet. Reminds me of Blake Lewis, without the tattoos. (that's a good thing)
Kristen: You know, I think I like her for the same reasons I like Kelly Kapoor. She seems like someone I'd dislike, but then she's so wide-eyed and bubbly and frankly naive that it's impossible not to like her. I fear that she's going in under Simon's Glare of Dissent, but I also want to stand up for her after Kara's stupid comments about her style.
Lil: That's short for "Lily," right, and not because you think "Li'l Rounds" would make a great hip-hop artist name? Good, cause otherwise I'm renaming you in the most stereotypical way I can think of.
Matt B: Mom loves him because she's glad to see a "real man" instead of the girly boys that are usually featured, and she took offense to Idol acting like it was a surprise that someone with a good honest job, wife and kids could make it on this show. I regret to inform you that I agree with Idol's surprise. The "big bald bouncer" look is not in for me.
Matt G: I got nothin'.
Megan: HI, I LIKE YOU. Lots. Tons. Favorite person I've never seen before, look at how pretty she i - holy WTF do you mean "has tattoos"? Screw that. So you'll be the frustrating Carly of season 8, then.
Michael: Better than Matt B. No other opinion, except that I will probably grow bored with him immediately.
Mishavona: Cute...perky...feeling favorable; we'll see.
Nathaniel: *gnashes teeth* THERE ARE NOT ENOUGH WORDS IN THE WHOLE ENTIRE UNIVERSE TO DESCRIBE HOW MUCH I DESPISE HIM. Think "Danny Noriega," but times twenty. Such a freak.
Nick: NO. WTF, how did this even happen after Nathaniel?! (or vice versa, depending) I remember him. He came in with that stupid shtick, designed to piss everybody off and then shock them with his excellent voice - he should have been turned down on principle for being annoying - but then he wasn't even good; he sounded like a muppet. Kermit the Frog, to be precise. Look for that name next week.
Ricky: ...right. Short of a Clay-Aiken-style makeover (first edition), he has no hope.
Scott: I don't care, I don't care, I don't care; he looks like a serial killer when he sings.
Stephen: He seems happy. Maybe he'll last longer than Brandon did.
Stevie: Excellent namesake! She seems fresh-faced and fun.
Tatiana: THIS GIRL, RIGHT HERE, IS MY FAVORITE. Let that be proclaimed. She's freakin' gorgeous, and that is really all that matters to me especially now that Idol has Declared her to have a voice good enough for competition. I know the internet hates her; I knew they would from the first second she showed up in auditions, and it is an uphill battle doomed to end (probably swiftly) in my heart breaking, but I do not care. Honestly, I have a relative with a more annoying laugh, and I adore said relative in spite of it. Her theatrics don't bother me, either. Most girls in college are no worse.
Taylor: She's pretty and fresh-faced too. Gotta say, I love all the teenagers this year.
Von Smith: I am too mesmerized by his weeeeeeeeeeird little face to say anything else.
So once again, we've got a slew of gorgeous girls who will force me to keep watching despite the slew of nondescript to downright infuriating boys (less one possible-attractive wild card who, by virtue of my calling him attractive, will probably get shot down early on). Yep, I'm stuck watching. If there's one improvement over previous years, I'd say it's that there appear to be fewer big-voiced female soul singers ("Melinda Doolittles"). I could be completely wrong about that of course, but let's practice a smidgen of optimism here, for the heck of it.
Lost: "This Place is Death"
At some point, I should really learn that when a death is heavily telegraphed, it is going to happen. These writers don't do bait-and-switch.
That did not stop me from somehow believing Charlotte could DEFY THE ODDS and live long enough for rescue. Or, well, I knew the nosebleeds were going to take a deadly turn at some point, but I was hoping for later in the season. At least the halfway point. Come on, I'd just officially resumed liking her! And it was all kinds of sad and heartbreaking when she was dying (and a little bit eerie, when she gave a high-pitched giggle and regressed back to her childhood).
But of course, this was always going to be the way of things. I was not prepared to cheer for Charlotte/Twitchy Little Ferret. I was, however, fully prepared to bawl my eyes out when she died and he couldn't do anything about it, and that's exactly what happened. Well, not so much bawling; I wasn't that invested...but I was properly emotionally gutted, in a way where I even stopped thinking of Dan as TLF. Was actually very touched by Daniel's staunch refusal to leave her behind, and moved by his oh-so-sad wait for the inevitable, trying to make her comfortable and wiping away the blood. My heart, it is broken. Masterfully so.
My Jin love appears to have waned a bit, because I wasn't nearly as excited as I thought I would be about watching just him for the first quarter of the episode, but it was worth it because WHOA. Of all the unsolved mysteries, who ever thought we'd get further clarification on what happened to Rousseau's "sick" team? At first it broke my heart, as it seemed to prove that Danielle really was the insane one - come on! He's pleading je t'aime! It's not his fault that "security system" sounds like a crazy explanation for the monster! - but then, well, he tried to shoot her. So clearly the smoke did infect/otherwise Mess Them Up (speaking of, getting to see Smokey again is always welcome).
-Sawyer/Jin reunion hugfest FTW.
-I cannot lie, Locke getting hurt still cracks me up. And it'll be so much more pleasant to watch Sawyer et. al. without him in their midst.
-Eloise Hawking: still the eeriest character on TV. And not for the first time, I remain intrigued by the never-ending war as to which side is right & which is wrong. I know it's not straightforward, but I'm looking forward to having all the clues in place so that I can decide for myself which team I believe in. Instinctively, I keep wanting to trust Ben (never thought I would say that!), except that whatever decision I make regarding him is usually wrong. Then again, I've always been extremely unwilling to trust Jacob/Christian/whatever the hell is going on there, so...
-Previews for next week: Hey, you know what I'm over? Jate kissing. But you know what I'm super over? Kate. I don't like her even a little bit at this point. I'm not even sure I want her to get back together with Sawyer anymore, except I can't think that way because then Evangeline Lily's "I think the audience tends to root for the coupling that gets the most screen time" nonsense wins.
On the other hand, Sawyer is WAY TOO GOOD FOR HER and so as much as his in-love angst brings the exquisite torture, I am now like 93% invested in the beauty and combined awesomeness of Sawyer*/Juliet instead. I'm still keeping the Skate hope alive, but I fear that if/when he and Juliet kiss, that will be the Point of No Return for me.
(I feel weird calling him Sawyer at this point, since I think everyone has permanently switched to "James." Also, also! "James/Juliet" has the same fantastic alliteration as Jack/Juliet, which is just like more proof that they should be together)
I probably should have either shut off the TV that night or watched CSI: NY outright. Instead I lay in bed wrapped around the dog with my eyes shut, feeling sick, and listened to the episode. I wasn't that impressed by what I heard, so although I've read some good things about visual tidbits (especially Flack-related things), my overall impatience with this show (as will be explained in one of those elusive State of the Networks posts...soonish) was such that I decided not to bother watching it online.
Also skipped most of Thursday TV, for now, so that I can move past this Doctor-Who shaped hurdle.
Doctor Who, 4x09, "Forest of the Dead"
Immediate thoughts upon finishing: Um, yeah. I'm just going to go crawl into bed for three days and hook myself up to some extra-strength Retcon until I flush all traces of River Song from my system. *wobbles off*
Right. So. I figured her "proof you can trust me" whisper had to consist of his name. Having flipped through Yon Standard Fanbase Theories, I now realize why Past Me wasn't precisely clear on River's relationship to him, but I'm afraid I also have to concur with the domestic theory. (or, well, you know, the equivalent/as close as it gets...I can't phrase this any way that doesn't sound perfectly stupid). I reject notions that there's a parodox-y thing where he tells her because he knows he'll need a reason to trust her later. Nope. I need to believe in self-contained shippy reasons, because that is what I do. The problem lies in the fact that River is played by Alex Kingston, and I CAN'T SHIP THAT.
I can't even platonically ship that, like with Donna, as I've just realized that in place of "shippy" I wouldn't mind going with regular emotional reasons. I tried! It positively ripped me apart hearing "The towers sang, and you cried. You wouldn't tell me why, but I suppose you knew it was time." I'll go ahead and give you five minutes to reminisce about imagining that gorgeously heartbreaking picture.
But I...cannot, cannot, cannot remove context and just tell myself that he and River are ever at a point where they're terrifically close. Chemistry, they do not have it. He had more chemistry with Astrid, and we remember my feelings on her. It's nothing against Kingston, as I saw her recent clip in the "previously on" segment of ER and flailed with love all over again, but these two do not go together. Excessively frustrating.
Does not in any way hamper my enjoyment of his begging her not to sacrifice herself - the Doctor bursting with compassion is always welcome - nor does it alter the squee factor of afterwards, in which he stares dully with that empty, hollow expression, but...it's just off. It's not satisfying. I am usually quite happy with one-sided emotional investment - it works wonderfully well for Derek/Meredith - but here there's a complete disconnect, and since it ruined some otherwise brilliant writing, my best coping mechanism is to ignore it.
Or rewrite the music-and-crying scene with Rose, or at the very least Donna, in mind. In fact, since clearly my Rose needs to be traveling with him at all times and would never be left behind, it definitely could be Donna. Who still goes on occasional adventures when she's not doing her regular much-better-than-temp-work job and taking care of her family with the nice bloke she finally met again and married. THAT IS HOW THE DONNA STORY ENDS IN MY HEAD.
That is the AU I'm clinging to, yes, because while I really never considered Donna in a domestic light (I know! Me! After 8 episodes! Where were my brain's priorities?), having seen her as a mother, I NEED THAT TO HAPPEN. Because she is brilliant. Whether taking them to the park or tucking them into bed or just hugging them close, I'm pretty sure I was convinced that this was the natural way of reality, and had to be dragged screaming back to the world of the TARDIS and Time Lords. Also, let it be known that I shall be forever resentful if Donna dies and Martha gets to settle down with a husband*. Don't mind me...it's just, enh! Enh! She is most natural mother figure ever.
(*I love that I am still unspoiled as to Donna's, um, "rueful fate" - that's not a detail! It's an adjective what could mean a lot of things! - and don't know how I've managed this miracle, but please help me stay that way. At this rate I might get to the end by the end of the month. *jinxes self*)
Hmm...what else happened...
-Miss Evangelista's face = scariest thing about the two-parter, YES. I don't even know why, because going back it's not that scary, but the shock factor - even when I was expecting her to be, I don't know, a skeleton - may have made me shriek louder than the little girl. Moral of the story: characters gliding silently about in long black dresses with lacy face-covering veils = a master trick of horror.
-Very fond of the Doctor's snarling about Eliza's fate, after letting the V.N. delude themselves into thinking they'd tricked him
-"Pull him out when he's too stupid to live." Hee, okay, that was a good line from her. As was the "I hate you sometimes!" / "I know!" exchange, hehehe.
-Still pretty sure that my version of heaven needs to be wandering through a library with every book ever written. Well, with optional outside time to play with animals. There was a sad lack of pets in that heaven. Which, incidentally, was kind of a weird place for River & Co. to end up, and I've just realized why it's a good thing that I'm not emotionally invested in River - that forever-conscious-but-separate ending would have ripped me apart in a Doomsday sort of way. As it is, I can just shudder and think "the first time he meets you is the last time you meet him. That's unpleasant."
-Don't know how Donna resisted peeking at that journal, because if I were her, even with the Doctor's disapproving eye on me I'd have snatched that thing and read it cover to cover.
Voice: No, you wouldn't have. You've had the opportunity to literally do just that for months, and you've been resisting at every turn.
RS: If it was about my life, that would be totally different. Duh.
-No fair, not nice to make the poor stuttering guy seeing Donna leaving and unable to call out. I wasn't even that fond of him, but I'm sour on his behalf. Turning my displaced wrath on Tom Millegan the Magnificent in 3...2...1...
-Opening the TARDIS with a snap of the fingers, while convenient, is change. I do not like change. *rejects*
-UGH. I wrote all that and I still don't know how I feel about the 2-parter. I think maybe it's the kind of thing I have to come back to, after I've seen much much worse.
-*curls up to go think about images of "you cried... you wouldn't tell me why" some more*
Up Next: I can has terrified!Doctor episode? Also, I keep hearing it's "Donna"-lite. Is that because the Doctor's actually in it a respectable amount (squee?), or just because Donna has so completely eclipsed the fandom's hearts that people care about her absence more?