they really had dean say ‘we’ve lost everything. now you’re gonna bring him back’ and then lose his will to live after cas died for 5 whole episodes, only to do a complete 180 as soon as cas came back. they really did that….
how is dean not the same as john. in the later seasons i mean. sorry but describing him as "not an angry man" is insane to me cause dean's number 1 of getting out his emotions is anger. i love dean as well but like. you know john tried to be better too right? like i dont really understand how you extend this huge hand to excuse some of dean's angry/bad tendencies (which imo makes him that mlre interesting: the fact that he is angry and he's sometimes not a particularly good person) but refuse to extend even a sliver of this to john? obviously i get that you're attached to dean way more than john thats like common sense for us deangirls but genuinely. cas died and dean did turn into his father. its a thing that happened. i love dean and i dont understand how you can call yourself a deanlover but... erase so much of him??? like you can say he has bad qualities. thats what makes him human. john and dean are much more similar than you claim and its genuinely confusing to me why you don't see that. not trying to start a fight or anything i genuinely would like to get a piece of your mind on this
no no no you misunderstand. i am not erasing ?? his anger. he IS angry (it's just that anger for dean is rarely actually anger). i also think his imperfections are what make him interesting. i talk abt this a lot actually. about how i don't believe in flatting ANY character to prop them up as your fave. people being messy and flawed is good. the problem i have is people who do not look at dean w/ any nuance and just point blank go: he's angry therefore he's abusive and equals john without examining WHY he's angry, where that anger originates from, the fact that his anger most often is Not true anger for the sake of anger or violence. instead, his anger most often stems from fear and grief. especially during widower's arc. he's drowning in grief and as much as we love jack and can see in hindsight that he wasn't a threat at all, dean doesn't know that! we as the audience get the privilege of often knowing and seeing more than the characters! all dean sees at the time is a Very powerful being, who IS the son of lucifer, and who he believes manipulated his best friend and got him killed. he does have every right to be afraid and wary of jack. (and i'd argue he has the right to feel this way again with soulless jack, he IS afraid of him and what he might do and he's also grieving mary and that mixture of grief + fear is where his anger-but-not-really-anger comes from). like, because of the way dean was raised, because of growing up with the angry man that is john, the only emotion that was really expressed and "allowed" was anger. anger was justified. crying and sadness and fear, that's weakness in john winchester's household. but anger was powerful and masculine and good.
i also DO look at john with nuance as well. i've talked about how i don't like when people reduce john to a flat caricature or cartoon villain abuser. there's more going on, there's nuance, their dynamic is so complicated. john is Also, at first, drowning in his own grief. i think early on, john DID try, and was mostly motivated by a desire to protect his family, but he went about it wrong and imperfectly. however, where they diverge, is that john continued to let his anger consume him for the sake of revenge. he neglected his children, he put them in danger through his repeated neglect, and he did (based on various pointed insinuations) at one point or another physically abuse them, most likely dean specifically (the line abt flagstaff, also less "canon" but in the john's journal book john mentions how dean was particularly responsive to "discipline" and that john feels he's been too soft on sam)
the thing is, being angry doesn't make you a bad person. being angry is human. dean's anger imo, and the way we see it manifest--most often when what he really wants to express is grief and fear--is indicative of his internalized behaviors learned from john and past trauma that remains unresolved. this man has never had a chance to COPE or unpack not only the abusive and controlling environment he grew up in, but all the subsequent years of trauma INCLUDING his hell trauma. that's a lot. all those bottled up feelings are gonna turn into a lot of anger and frustration. he doesn't suffer perfectly. like you said, and which i agree, he is not perfect. he's flawed. he's human. but i don't think being angry and suffering imperfectly makes him a bad person. i feel too much empathy and compassion for him. i can see struggling and i want someone to help him. sometimes when people are in pain they'll say or do things they don't mean. and yes, they may hurt people in the process and those people are allowed to feel upset, but dean is also hurting. and i don't think he's a horrible person for not suffering the "right" way or not being a "good victim." and that's how i view widower's arc, as someone who is deeply hurting and suffering. it's not excusing his behavior but it's not villainizing it either. john gets similar feelings from me too, to a point. but john took things further and actively abused and neglected his young children and raised them to be soldiers and made them put aside their dreams and desires in the name of HIS revenge quest. he raised his children to live in fear and used fear and violence to control them. however, despite the fact that *i* don't particularly like john winchester, i know that his dynamic w/ his sons is nuanced and i know that dean both Loves and Hates him and that both those feelings can and do co-exist and i enjoy that duality.
dean's complicated emotions during times of intense grief and stress (widower's arc, losing mary, finding out chuck was controlling his whole life) are isolated moments but do not speak for his whole self. outside these high stress situations, where what he's really feeling is fear / grief / worry, we usually see dean to be very compassionate and patient and good with children.
this is getting very long now and i don't know if you'll take the time to read all of it but i'd like to conclude with saying my main issue with the "angry man in the house" phrase is the way it is used out of context to paint dean as becoming john and taking the place of the angry man in the house, when the original context of the quote is about being haunted by the angry man you grew up with, not becoming him. i talk more in-depth about all of that in this post.
also, just as an aside but, i generally have two "modes" of operating on this blog. one is fangirl mode where yea, dean is my blorbo specialest princess who can do no wrong<3 and then there's the other mode where i'm doing formal analysis of canon where it's more abt dissecting things and talking meta and looking at WHY characters are acting how they are. that's when i talk abt their flaws and motivations and nuance and context. also, people are often needlessly harsh or over-exaggerate things dean said or did in canon just to villainize him and in those instances yes i will go to bat for dean and "defend" him, usually by just, pointing out the nuances and additional context for his actions that many choose to overlook or misinterpret just to make dean seem worse than he actually was.
okay so here's the thing. i do genuinely think that queerbaiting as a word has lost all sense in today's social landscape, because like. people will look at canonically queer characters and cry queerbaiting just because they don't have like. a partner or something. (or talk about real people queerbaiting which is jusy. not going there. not touching that with a ten foot pole. pls stop.) which is not what it's about. largely, queerbaiting has always been more of a marketing thing than a story-thing. like it's not just where they're writing "canonically" non-queer characters in queer-adjacent scenarios, altho that does happen, but it's also about. writing characters in explicitly queer scenarios but not acknowledging the queerness with an INTENT TO KEEP THE QUEER AUDIENCES INVESTED, while not giving them what they're invested in.
and like. it's not easy to categorise media as queerbait without taking into account the social scenario surrounding the release of said media. like Star Trek is absolutely NOT queerbait. it's queercoding! (while I haven't watched the show myself, I've talked about it enough with my friends to gather as much.) at some point it is the writers trying to slip as much queerness in heavily censored media as they can without getting like. cancelled. which is not them baiting you. it's just them telling a story. and stranger things is not queerbait, because will is gay. whether or not he and Mike have a thing is just. that's a whole different thing. he's explicitly canonically gay. I don't care enough about the show to dissect the coding with Mike but what will experiences as a young kid coming to terms with his sexuality, and him falling for his best friend, and struggling to articulate his feelings, trying to reach out to his brother and failing...these are all just lived experiences of so many queer people. that's not baiting by any means. i mean you can say they're "byler baiting" bc maybe they are idk (I'm sorry I'm just. picking popular media to all about but I don't personally engage enough w it I'm so sorry) like they're kids yk but like. that's not queerbait!!!
and this brings me to supernatural which is probably the only show where I will call it queerbait just because I sense SUCH a, for the lack of a better word, sinister air around the whole destiel thing that it makes me want to put my head in an oven. There's just something INSANE about this show. I do think there were writers who wanted to genuinely give us a queer love story in some way and slipped in as much as they could within the bounds of censorship. and I do think there was so much accidental queercoding because many cooks in the kitchen resulted in this scenario where dean's performance is so very see-through and entirely breaks down even if some of those cooks intended for whatever dean does to be taken at face value. and then there's these episodes where you know those fuckers wanted you to keep watching bc you thought they were gonna make destiel real but they weren't gonna do that they were literally laughing at you they were throwing rocks at you and you still STOOD THERE TAKING IT because you COULD NOT be crazy like you are WATCHING THIS SHIT LIVE. AND YOU KNOW YOU'RE RIGHT.
it's like this. after despair. after s15. hell even after s12. (market research. oh god the market research.) i think a lot of the audience will probably be like. well. this is not queerbait anymore. and they'd probably be right because like. market research!!! and widower arc!!! and tombstone!!!! and domestic family shit in s14!!! the trap!! despair!! this is all just very much a love story. beats of a soap opera romantic drama even. but then you HAVE to consider the way they'd ridicule audience members for bringing up destiel being canon at cons. you have to consider them doing this for almost a year after the show ended even. and then it's like. well what was that about.
see I'm not very smart or articulate so I don't know if I'm conveying my thoughts properly here but what I'm trying to say is. queerbaiting is not about the story. it's never been about the story. it's about corporations trying to lasso in a new demographic without having to do the work to actually earn their attention in full.
like if you asked me if supernatural was canonically a queer show in terms of what was written i would say that it was complicated. because they do toe the line a lot..but there are many arcs which only make sense completely if you turn the rainbow beam on them. so TO ME it's a queer show but if anyone says it isn't I would not talk to them but I also wouldn't be able to refute them completely and that's the catch.
but like. if you asked me if it was queerbait, I would also say yes. because like. the people who forced the queer storylines to toe the line (the network execs I'm talking about the network execs only) wanted to reap the advantages of being an explicitly queer show while not doing anything to rescind the censorship that could make it one very easily.
AND LIKR.. THAT'S MY PERSPECTIVE ANYWAY. IDK ANYTHING ABOUT ANYTHING. SO WHATEVER.
did. Huh. did you guys know that the line really is you’re gonna bring him back. did you guys know this. i genuinely thought it was kind of up in the air like maybe the line was “them” and the delivery just made it sound like “him”. but it actually. it actually is him. what the hell. genuinely what the hell. that’s insane. widower arc
on the subject of crackships.
in a prue lives, phoebeleo piperkyle pruecole paigeandy au (in which paige meets them in s1) how do u see it playing out and ALSO. do u see them all having kids still. this is so random i am so sorry (also i don't mean they have to be set from the get go and never get w anyone else but these would hypothetically be endgame)
i mean with phoebeleo like hard yes like in s2 when they're watching the baby at the end everyone's like phoebe ik you're gonna be a great mom you're gonna have like a million and one kids like mark my words and phoebe's real smitten about it like wow u really think you : ) i'd like to. guess i should probably find a guy first tho huh. but if that guy's already there bc it's leo and he's been here since season one i think they are easily first to have kids and first to get a full power of three the other three is definitely like another can of worms bc like.
okay so for paigeandy obvi we're starting andy's an old childhood friend of the halliwell's for the sake of cleanliness did not date any of them (if we're going messy tho dated prue hooked up once or twice with phoebe (not while dating prue, but neither of them ever mentioned it around prue bc well. yikes.) And piper had a major crush on andy for like. a decade. from ages 13 to 23) and he's a cop and does. stuff idk helps people and this lands him frequently in bed with social services which is. consistently. a pain in the ass. and he doesn't try to hold it against them bc they're clearly understaffed underpaid there's a lot to do but um jesus. and everyone in the precinct Hates having to go over there to do stuff bc you're just standing in the lobby drinking bad coffee for fifty minutes before you can even get a word in with the work and unlucky andy he drew the short straw ends up at social services and who should he meet there if not this gorgeous but really scatterbrained berkeley grad with a mouth like a sailor and a heart of gold and now um there's no need to draw straws at the station because andy straight up volunteers to go to social services just to see paige which she notices of course because like. were you jinxed or something? cursed? i've never known someone to draw the short straw so many times. and andy's like no i just um. like being hands on with my work i don't like leaving up to some dumb rookie with bad luck and paige is like oh don't worry i promise it is still being left to some dumb rookie with bad luck i mean i am right here blah blah blah banter conversation hint at a tragic backstory give it half a season and then it's official bf/gf shit and as far as charmed goes it's a prophecy about four sisters and the halliwells are like phew. dodged a bullet there lmao. until they do something only charmed ones could do and they're like Wait. Fuck. Is There A Fourth Sister Out There? so they find paige within the first hmm ten episodes or so.
so since we have both s1 phoebeleo and paigeandy i'd say they'd be on the fastest track but i feel like paige does have a lot more issues when it comes to getting married and having kids than phoebe does regardless i think by s4 they're married on track to have kids with pruecole we're doing the s3 introduction and the enemies to lovers arc we seal that with either a wedding at the very end of s4 or at the very beginning of s5 however kids is like. like they both want kids but prue has daddy issues and cole has mommy issues not to mention the charmed one/demon hybrid so they need to do some soul searching on that one. prue's probably pregnant by the end of s5 and has her baby halfway thru s6. paige may or may not have had kids at this point if they did they were kind of a whoopsies baby but she and andy r embracing it with open arms.
piperkyle imo is peak in a divorce/widower era it's been pitched like piperkyle au where he's not fucking insane piperkyle au where she's not brokenhearted piperkyle au where they're both normal happy people who then meet but like. nah. the appeal of them to me really is being the broken fucked up human being and feeling like you're kinda just gonna stay broken and fucked up bc you had your shot and you blew it so now you're here get used to it and then to have someone to meet someone who sees you so genuinely as you are that at first it's disgusting leave me alone i hate you but out of that just honest sight grows familiarity and comfort and before you even realized it happened love and jfc i'm in love with them???? but you realize that you're always happier when they're around you want to stay by their side and you don't even have to wonder if they feel the same because you just know they do because you Know each other and you don't have to wait for them to turn and run once they see who you really are because they know who you are they've known from the start saw the ugly the broken and vile and looked past that and saw the beauty and genuine love underneath like 🗣‼🗣‼🗣‼🗣‼. piperkyle consistently makes me insane. So. in order to hit this. we're bringing in dan. that's right, from season two to six (maybe just five but i'd like to have the pruecole arc wrapped up in a nice bow by the time we open up the next enemies to lovers) piper and dan give a relationship the old college try going from the honeymoon phase to the cringe failmarriage stage until it's eventually just time to call it quits like you literally can't move forward. so because of the delayed start piperkyle would def be the last to have kids but because this is a long slowburn full of character development and just like. vulnerable bonding moments i think that once they go official as a couple wedding and kids are not far off on the horizon i think if we close out a season (a hypothetical 9 or 10) with them getting together for the first time then we gotta burn some miles on the freak out denial stage because i always think that's funny that'll last half a season? maybe a third. and then by the end of the season we're looking at a wedding. by the end of the following season they def have a kid
most fashionable couple: pruecole
most likely to name their kids after dead relatives: piperkyle
most likely to break p tradition: paigeandy
most chill about dating a charmed one: phoebeleo (andy kyle & cole would all be way too willing to throw themselves into danger, leo trusts phoebe's foresight and knows when he needs to sit on the sidelines. it is a lesson all the other men still struggle with)
best bromance: 1st place: leoandy 2nd place: leocole 3rd place: colekyle
I’m back on my bullshit and we have GOT TO TALK about 13x08 The Scorpion and the Frog; which serves as a good example of why you should not ONLY watch spn episodes with Cas (partially because of that scene I shamefully blogged about earlier - no I will not link that cursed post here). The episode title comes from a fable in which the villain is the scorpion. Interpretations of this fable note its uniqueness lies in the concept that “the scorpion is irrationally self destructive and fully aware of it.”
To quote the scorpion, buddies - “it’s in my nature.”
Anyway, this episode is subtextually predicated on exploring Dean Winchester’s nature and specifically - his bisexuality, and I’m not only saying that because it opens with Dean in his Bi Colors Plaid (that also he wore on his burger date with Cas).
Let’s get started, after the cut!
Season 13 on its face gives me absolute whiplash because it starts widow arc-reunion-TOMBSTONE and then Jack yeets himself off to Chuck knows where so Cas can go out Looking For Him Because Otherwise He Will Definitely Kiss Dean there is no other option for the writers at this point. Sigh. Here, have another shot of Dean anxiously cleaning his gun as he always does when Cas has Gone Off For Reasons -
Anyway, this feels like a filler episode at first, but as always they bury the ENTIRE damn world in it and I am here with my dossier to Unearth It.
Lets start with Bart (demon of terrible nicknames and microagressions) meeting the brothers at Smile Diner to talk about some spell or whatever.
(I am not thinking about the Cherry Pie meta I AM NOT)
THEY HAVE THE AUDACITY to start with these lines immediately introducing the theme of duality, a thread throughout this episode.
Everything. I've been following your careers a long time. You're a real pain in the pitchfork. And the halo. Natural disrupters. We have that in common, you and I.
Mm. Yeah, we're twinsies.
***MORE DUALITY! But as we know, Dean does not like Bart because He Is A Freakin’ Demon
Well, see, here's the thing. When a demon tells us to jump, we don't ask how high. We just ice their ass.
UMMM excuse me Barting Bacting Boices? What is that sexual gaze?
Then we find out that Bart has 1/2 of the spell. They need the other 1/2. Oh, a spell with two parts, you say? [ I am going to scream :) ]
***Also, Dean eats the pie Bart ordered. I cannot begin to explain to you the state of unwellness that I am in regarding how important this is. DEAN NEVER GETS TO EAT THE PIE, remember? But in This Filler Episode, Dean eats the pie. While Sam looks at him with a very quizzical expression. Pie -> what Dean wants but never actually gets -> Dean actively eating this pie. Dean is coming to terms that maybe he can have what he wants.
***I am reminding you again that this is post widower-arc, post-reunion, and especially post-Tombstone. Anyway-
Now we get to Smash and Grab. Not literally even though I want to Commit Such Conduct at this point. We are introduced to two one off characters named
Smash (human/female presenting) - can crack any safe built by man
and Grab (demon/male presenting)- expert in bypassing supernatural security.
Reaching or no, you can’t disagree that when spn introduces one off characters - it is almost always a Narrative Parallel or Mirror.
So we have a human and a demon (and Dean Winchester, a human who has been a demon)
who are experts in cracking open/bypassing something that has been secured and guarded (breaking down walls, if you will).
They also use fake names identifying them as Tools to be Used ( Dean Winchester, the Michael Sword/daddys blunt little instrument)
Dean himself is literally used as a tool in this episode.
So yeah. Smash and Grab are physical representations of Dean’s duality. Human/Demon. Femininity/Masculinity. Dare we say something else, too?
Anyway, Dean is paired with Smash and Grab; Sam is off to idk negotiate weird artifact purchases lawboy style with Luther Shrike, a man who cannot die so long as he never leaves his house (I cannot even begin to unpack this shit; please just sit there and think about it. I’m not even going there here. I CANNOT DISCUSS Luther Shrike RN).
Speaking of things I cannot discuss without halgdhsag;lsa - Smash has very Specific boots (a look overall, really).
Hey, Winona. The '90s called. They'd like their shoes back.
***That’s right girl - do not take his shit; he actually LOVES them and is therefore Overcompensating for it with this little jab.
***Dean’s pop culture references and particular attention to the details here Should Not Be Overlooked. 90s! Winona! Ryder!
ANYWAY, then Dean and Smash bond over a caffeinated beverage -
[While Dean is doing a spell, Smash opens a can of drink, takes a mouthful and burps loudly. ]
***This scene makes me literally insane. (even aside from Dean living on something named NERVE DAMAGE as a KID. They could have called it anything. You’re saying this wasn’t a Choice)
She chugs a swallow of the drink and burps. Something stereotypically associated with masculinity. Not feminine. Dean’s reaction is that she is “weird” - because she is not acting in a way stereotypically, J*hn Winchester brain-rot patriarchy bullshit-tily associated with Being Female. But also, says the stupid show, they like the same soda. They are The Same. She shares the soda with Dean. HIS FACE WHEN SHE DOES -
Other similarities are addressed throughout the episode (they are working for demons because they have no choice; they don’t discuss feelings/emotions, they both sold their soul, they both This Thing -
You know, we could help you.
No, you can't. I gotta take care of me.
etc. etc.) Smash is absolutely dean-coded.
****Also it’s textually established that Smash thinks Dean is attractive -
[looking at Smash] Oh. You said he was just a pretty face.
***But Grab flirts with him too.
I will kill you.
I bet you say that to all the girls.
***sorry, Grab - you won’t get far with Dean, but only because as he mentioned in the beginning of this episode -
Now Dean has to put his hand in the mouth of this stone lion thing and all of a sudden he is acting....very-not-like-Dean.
[Dean looks again and takes a deep breath.]
I… how about this? What if I cut myself, put it on, like, a little piece of paper? We'll just wad it up and throw it in the mouth, okay? Okay.
***Dean Winchester, who has been to Literal HELL, who has been torn apart by hellhounds, who has battled the devil and angels and God’s sister - all at the expense of his own life is now - afraid of spiders. Well, technically he has always been afraid of spiders, but why isn’t ‘he being performative about it At This Time??
***Come to think of it, this sends me right back to how Jackles was playing Dean in 12x11 Regarding Dean THE episode dissecting Dean’s performative masculinity [one day I will clean up and post that analysis sitting in my drafts like a sad hamster]. That makes sense actually, because -> -> ->
that episode and this one are both written by Meredith Glynn. Girl get in I want to torture you affectionately with a barrage of questions.
So here we have Dean and he’s not performing for Reasons, and he’s scared he’s genuinely scared of putting his hand in this stone lion-gargoyle-pig-creature’s mouth and then -
Smash gives him a push.
She gives him a push. I cannot stop thinking about how she gives him a push. A push to go do this thing that he is scared of; his fear being something he was hiding under his performative masculinity. Smash - dean coded dean mirror who does not perform femininity and is ‘weird’ - she gives him a p u s h.
***linking here for the jackting joices that follow.
Now, let’s circle back to Smash’s story; why she is working for Bart in the first place -
You think I wanna be here? Like I have a choice?
You made a deal.
Wow! You think?
You sold your soul.
And if I could take it back, I would.
there is no reason for this picture here other than I needed you to see the jackting again
***How does the story end for Smash?
Take care of you.
[Dean glances down at the box, and then at Smash. She sees that Dean has put a lighter on top of the bones.]
Alice, chop chop!
[Bart indicates she should get his bones].
[She grabs the lighter and sets Bart's bones alight. Bart screams as he bursts into flames. ]
***She accepts help and breaks free from the narrative, literally burning it down. The female presenting but not female-performing “weird” ooc representing a side of Dean breaks FREE because she makes a choice. The lighter Dean drops? It’s a push. And she goes with it.
Alice reclaims her story.
(Also, Grab gets ganked. The male presenting ooc; the performative masculinity side; the demon; the darkness; the not-humanity - gets ganked).
Guess what Dean says to Alice when they say goodbye?
Hey, Alice. Stay weird.
[I know the peace sign is probably just a Charlie throwback but I’d still like to say duality. Two. ]
Dean’s not just talking to Alice. He’s talking to himself; because the walls have been breached and for once Dean isn’t as scared of being different. Maybe, just maybe, he’s going along with the push. That’s exactly how the episode ends - with Dean feeling a little more hopeful, a little more at peace; a little more Considering he is capable of not only loving Cas but also not hating himself for it.
[until the knowledge that Mary is still alive and the guilt of allowing himself ANY happy thoughts instead of looking for her miserably rears its ugly head in 13x09 and round and round we go but for NOW at least -> ]
I'll drink to that.
(oh look Dean is just wearing his henley. It’s almost as if a layer has been peeled back).
tagging @im-shaking-like-milk and @deanwasalwaysbi for letting me ramble on to them while writing this; and @lilac-void because you are always so kind about my stuff :)
i have not seen any episodes of spn past season 10. but i am asking u because i trust ur opinion. should i watch the other 5? or is it not worth it?
oh ABSOLUTELY watch the other 5. you'll get some big hits and some big misses. my opinion on ~dabb era~ as a cohesive concept changes every time the wind blows but (and i was yelled at on discord for this) season 12 is one of my singular favourite seasons of supernatural. some general pros of seasons 11-15:
- genuinely post-carver supernatural just feels like it's less afraid to have fun. like you get yockey and perez who specialise in writing an all-caps WHAT IF... on the top of a whiteboard and just fucking slamming the gas from there. but like WITH the reading. the 3-episode season 12 yockey hat trick is like. BING BANG BOOM. angel gender! cas backstory! hunter funerals that aren't lonely devastated burnings but a big crowded house full of drinking games and collective community lore! THEE banes twins! other one-episode wonders include the chitters, scoobynatural, baby, regarding dean, tombstone, ouroboros, mint condition..... late seasons supernatural is at its best when it says fuck the very tiresome molasses mytharc and let's be insane and do a Concept. and it WORKS. like the finales mostly drag but many individual episodes are so good that i could live there
- you get claire's coherent arc!! miss newton killed it in 10x09 and 10x10 and 10x20 but a lot of it is claire having like. the worst fucking life of all time and being prickles and thorns and too much anger behind too small of a gun. her relationship w jody is SO good and aching and the wayward sisters setup is super fun even if. yknow. they didn't follow through
- BILLIE is truly one of the best chars they've ever done though they did her dirty at the end. like she haaaates the winchesters but rather than being some deep seething hyper-personal resentment she has a fascinating relationship to like. the desire to generally bring order to the universe — not imposed power, but just like the natural cycle of being in the world. in a way she's not so much working against the winchesters as she is the like very existence of the entire show — what dies Should stay dead and what is clearly dying Should be put out of its misery and YET the show rolls on. like it's deliciously uncomfortable every time she's on the screen because she's RIGHT! the only reasons the winchesters "should" survive another day is like.... they want to. her style her flair her lines her philosophy her position as Librarian mwah!
- rowena as well. god. milfnatural REALLY goes crazy in the later seasons i don't know what to say she's so good. the FLAIR the drama the royal court shakespeare production of it ALL
- MARY PLOTLINE HIIIIII. WOW. Well. if i think about mary for too long my brain does microwave noises but like the fact that they Literally resurrect the ghost of an inciting incident, the mother-as-plot device who does not speak, never the mourner eternally mourned???? And they stick her into the living world????? And she takes off that stupid nightgown???? big qualms w mary in lebanon and lack of john followthrough BUT LIKE. and her relationship with dean like she cannot meet his eyes. she cannot meet his eyes. multiple dean mary scenes that i cannot physically watch it's like a live wire MMM DELICIOUS
- JACK. SO important to understanding cas' arc. he is gay and he is a dad and he is a dad ON PURPOSE w such sweetness and sincerity and presence like i will become so fiercely father-shaped it's just quite excellent like the dude queers fatherhood. i am of split minds of how they did the dean jack relationship bc at the risk of over-spoiling it i think it's all setup and no followthrough/denouement/proper resolution. and like this is a general problem w supernatural in general that doesn't go away in late seasons you can see the moving parts of something great and then they kind of shrink back and explain it away in the vaguest way possible. But still. jack amazing mesmerising so much potential much of it realised it IS ABOUT father and sons
- you get to see dean and cas build up to 15.18. which is just, like, delicious and SO rewarding. season 12 almost-get together! widower arc! divorce arc! tenuous quasi-parenting debates! all building to I Love Every Body Be Cause I Love You
basically like much of supernatural, it has a lot of truly delicious moving parts with a lacklustre mytharc and some truly egregious writing decisions thrown in. it's not coherent in a way that supernatural has never been and arguably gets worse. BUT it has some of my personal favourite characters and writers of all time and if you want to see any of the above it's like. entirely worth it. and there is something delightful if disturbing in watching a show go on for so long that it parodies itself and references itself and eats itself whole. it is so often so much FUN let's hear it for cwification
Between seasons thoughts
- that certainly was a season
- I actually really liked it
- characters usually mean more to me then plot and that was a very character driven season so I liked it a lot
- I WAS SO HAPPY TO SEE GABRIEL AGAIN AND I WAS PRETTY SURE HE WOULD DIE BUT LIKE :(
- JACK JACK JACK
- I love Jack so freaking much
- widower arc! Was really something!
- it was insane and I hated it but I also loved it
- 13x05 Advanced Thatanology was soooo much definitely one of my favourite episodes
- THE DEAN AND CAS REUNION WHERE HE SAYS WELCOME HOME AND HUGS HIM LIVES IN MY HEAD RENT FREE
- 13x06 cowboy husbands <3
- wayward sisters!!! yes!!!
- KAIA GOT INTRODUCED AND I ADORE HER
- HAVING ANY VERSION OF CHARLIE BACK MAKES ME INCREDIBLY HAPPY
- Rowena got some reallyyy good stuff this season I love her
- BILLIE AS DEATH IS THEE GREATEST THING SHES ONE OF MY FAVOURITE CHARACTERS
- Sam and Jack’s relationship is amazing I love it so much
- Cas and Jack’s relationship is also amazing
- I love Dean being family to Jack however I know he continues to be mean to him and I don’t like that
- LUCIFER IS DEAD HALLELUJAH I HOPE THAT LASTS A WHILE
- very excited to see Michael!Dean but also dreading it a little
- the empty got introduced! Finally! It’s very interesting
- Eileen still isn’t back and that sucks
- Cas didn’t do enough this season
- I was genuinely interested in the apocalypse world stuff, and I think they could have done it better but I still liked it
- I love that any time Misha gets to play a different character (empty, evil Cas) he immediately starts doing the weirdest accents
- ANAEL!! GOT INTRODUCED! And then disappeared? What happened to her?
- FUCKING NAOMI IS BACK FOR SOME REASON
- they never fixed the lights going out in heaven stuff? Are they gonna do that next season or
- is Jack human now?
- I don’t know when Adam is gonna show up but I hope it’s next season
- season 13 was interesting because supernatural is usually either amazing or terrible and I just found it mostly good
- I know a bunch of stuff that happens in the next couple seasons but no idea how any of it happens so
- season 14 time! Only two seasons left!
I think the thing that Sense8 really nails is that it gives us the found family dynamics that most sci-fi / superhero shows only tease at.
Like there is no manly posturing in the group, there’s no being snide, or squabbling or girls fighting over guys. They argue about the right way to do things, and Wolfgang goes off on his on a few times. But on the whole the conflict comes from outside the gang! So we get them being sweet and affectionate and genuinely friends/family. And the conflict comes from Nomi’s arsehole family, Kala trying to decide between Wolfgang and Rajan, Lito and his struggle with staying in the closet vs coming out.
I think that is one of the main reasons why Sense8 resonates with people so much. Because if you look at say Avengers, or Justice League fanfiction there are an overwhelming number of found family dynamics, or at the very least, they get on dynamics. And then you watch the film and have to deal with these people bitching and fighting for no good reason just to add some unnecessary conflict to the story. If you want to give me conflict, give me Thor struggling to deal with the loss / insanity of his brother. Give me Tony Starks cronic pain and health issues from the arc reactor. Give me Black Widow’s entire backstory and Steve having to deal with smarmy politician types who have been using his face for the past fifty ears to promote their nationalist, bullshit views and expect him to agree with them. Give me Clint struggling to maintain his lfe as a Spy and his life as a farm dad with three kids and a wife. But mostly, give me the TEAM helping each other to deal with these things!
So yeah, to sum up: Sense8 is incredible, and if you’re looking for found family you should 100% go and watch this show! I have so many feelings about how beautiful and incredible and above all how much better than any Marvel film it is.
The Joker Tropes Part 2
Taken From Here and here
Nether Realm Studios especially seems to love making Joker out to be evil incarnate. In Injustice: Gods Among Us and its sequel, he loses all his cred (and life) once he nukes Metropolis; Harley ditches him entirely, Batman just completely gives up on indulging him any more, even Guest Fighters like Hellboy consider him worthless, and non-Batvillains such as Grodd and Brainiac and even Darkseid loathe him for either Metropolis, or just in general principle. Mortal Kombat 11 shows that even the MK cast see him as a scourge upon the realms, and also express distaste toward him for either his nuking, a previous outing, or because he's seen as a buffoon who cannot be taken seriously (this is usually the case for other villain characters).
About the only person who can tolerate him for long is Lex Luthor, only because they both have the same level of hatred for their respective enemies. Even then, Luthor prefers to keep his distance from the Joker, if only because a bored Joker screws with everything For the Evulz.
In the animated series, he claims to have been beaten as a child when interviewed by Harley Quinn. It is unknown if this is true. According to Batman, he's simply making it up.
In one issue of New 52, he claims to have been driven insane by an abusive grandmother, who also bleached his skin to its present pallor.
In the same continuity, he is one to a baby gorilla he adopts, trains up as a gun-wielding henchman, and ultimately gets killed off for laughs.
In the comic book adaptation of Injustice, it's implied Harley fears Joker would be one, and gives their daughter to her sister, lest he kill the child. It's left ambiguous whether the Joker's even aware of the ruse.
Averted in one story, wherein one of Arkham's doctors realizes Joker's faking insanity just to piss off Batman as revenge for his disfigurement. Another doctor finds the report and excitedly reveals it to the current head doctor, only to learn that the Joker left it for everyone to read, since the paper's written by Harley Quinn, and therefore worthless as evidence.
In Batman: The Man Who Laughs, it's established that the name "The Joker" was given to him by the media, and he liked it so much that he decided to call himself that.
The same happens in Joker (2019), where Murray tells the audience to "look at this joker" when talking about Arthur. Arthur took it to heart.
Batman: Arkham Knight takes this even further by revealing that being forgotten is the only thing the Joker truly fears.
Just to demonstrate how much disregard he has for his henchmen, a reoccurring motivation for offing his own lackeys is failing to laugh at one of his jokes. Or laughing too late. Or laughing for too long. Or laughing at the wrong joke. He's... unpredictable.
The Joker loves it when people laugh with him, whether genuine or not, but if someone laughs at him, they're most likely already dead.
Joker loves attention and being above the normals, so never imply that he's not interesting or unique. Terry exploits this flaw in Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker just to drive him to a Villainous Breakdown.
The Batman Who Laughs. Since the character's first appearance in Dark Nights: Metal, the mere mention of him is enough to put The Joker in an uncharacteristically un-jolly mood and is a good way to get on his bad side. In fact, the dislike of this twisted version of his archnemesis is so great, that when Lex Luthor and The Legion of Doom started cooperating with him against Joker's protests, he quit the legion (after non-lethally jokerizing every other member of it) in disgust.
If you're going to hurt Batman, do it right. One of the supplementary stories for Joker War had him beyond furious with Bane - to the point of promising him he'd kill him in a way he would never see coming - for showing so little imagination in killing Alfred in City of Bane without even letting Batman listen to it to torture him. By his reckoning, if you have a great gag to break the Bat, use it to break the Bat - don't blow it by having Robin be the only one to witness it.
Originally Conrad Veidt from The Man Who Laughs.
Later portrayals base themselves on his actors, with Cesar Romero a popular candidate, and after Jack Nicholson came in, artists such as Alex Ross base him on him, such as the actor's distinct widow's peak and slicked back hair.
During Knightfall he and Scarecrow killed several members of a SWAT team, and one of his last actions in Batman: No Man's Land was to kill Commissioner Gordon's second wife, Lt. Sarah Essen.
One of the alternate realities seen in Zero Hour! was one where he killed Commissioner Gordon instead of crippling Barbara.
Part of the reason Gordon takes over the post of Commissioner in both The Dark Knight Trilogy and Batman: Arkham Series is due to the Joker killing Gillian Loeb. Additionally, the first game in the latter series, Asylum, he sees several of Arkham's guards killed by him and his men.
He's holding a dead cop's corpse in his intro in Injustice: Gods Among Us and using it as a puppet. He also talks to the body of one of the Regime enforcers who captured him once he breaks out and heads to Gotham.
Whether he was driven insane or was already insane and became completely bonkers.
Where he is on the spectrum between "wacky prankster" and "utterly depraved and sadistic sociopath and murderer".
Whether he is a senseless, performative terrorist wreaking havoc for kicks or a deceptively cunning and competent criminal mastermind. Or both. Usually both.
He's no Batman, but sometimes he is a proficient hand-to-hand combatant, Knife Nut or marksman, and other times a flimsy wimp who goes down in one punch. In some of the grittier settings, his raw strength, numbness to pain and viciousness are enough to level the playing field with Batman.
Whether he actually loves Harley Quinn varies. In the animated series, (where Harley first appeared) the writers haveoutright said he's a sociopath incapable of loving anyone, and just sees her as a useful mook. Some other works imply he really does love her on some level (although he's usually still an abusive asshole.)
He can either be Faux Affably Evil, Laughably Evil, just a Monster Clown, or some combination of the three.
At least one such incident implied he would be interested in Batman... but only after he was dead. Again this may only have been a tactic to get under Batman's skin or truthful admission. The readers will never know for certain.
His plot in The Killing Joke is to put Jim Gordon through the wringer hard in the hopes of driving him mad. He'll also try to drive Batman over the edge (particularly, drive him to break his "no killing" rule), sometimes by cutting off all of Batsy's human connections.
The Dark Knight reworks it into Driving Gotham To Senseless Violence with wanton acts of destruction or terrorism, just to prove everyone's as bad as him deep down.
Ironically, a 1952 story has the Joker get himself falsely committed to an insane asylum, to question a patient who knew the location of a cache of money. The end of the story has him Laughing Mad due to a prank Batman used to disguise his identity.
He didn't have his signature laugh. This seems to have been a way to "goofy up" the character to make him less terrifying in the days of the Comics Code Authority. Later on, he'd learn to giggle while remaining terrifying.
He actually committed crimes for moneynote , and wasn't really interested in causing chaos or terror for a joke's sake.
Building off of that, his plans weren't really "insane" until the Silver Age (at which point it's not even fair to say this was exclusive to him), nor was there any question of the character's mental stability.
His obsession with Batman wasn't there, much less the idea that he would pass up chances to kill the Bat or learn his identity. This aspect was probably introduced to explain the Bond Villain Stupidity he (and every Batman villain) had become infamous for in the Silver Age.
His clown-like complexion was actually makeup in his early appearances. He even removed his makeup to disguise himself as a cop, which was referenced in The Dark Knight. It's later revealed that the look is permanent after falling in a vat of chemicals.
The Brave and the Bold #111 and #191 have him team up with Batman to clear his name after being framed for several murders. The first instance turned out to simply be a framing the guilty part occasion but the second instance was actually genuine on Joker's part (except the person Joker seemingly murdered turned out to be faking their death).
He also does this with Batman whenever The Batman Who Laughs is involved (specifically in the Dark Knights: Metal series).
He abruptly ends a partnership with Red Skull when his Nazi affiliation comes out. Red Skull simply wonders why he is so surprised when he thinks that the Joker would make a great Nazi. The Joker is NOT happy about this, proclaiming "I may be a criminal lunatic, but I'm an American criminal lunatic!" It even provides the trope's image. And yes, folks, even an equal-opportunity murderer like the Joker despises the Nazis!note
The exception is mentioned again in the Last Laugh arc where the Joker immediately refused to join the American Neo-Nazi Aryan Alliance group in the Slab after he was offered membership. Joker: I'm evil and all that, but you guys are just plain mean.
Will not harm dumb animals and doesn't condone it. There's no humor to be had in that. Higher primates apparently do not qualify but a lot more effort went into that one.
While in Arkham with villain Warren White, AKA the Great White Shark, Joker calls him the worst person he ever met. He states that while he may kill people, even he doesn't steal their kids' college funds.
Sees nothing funny about someone parking in a handicap spot when they're not handicapped. However, he does think it's hilarious to hurt them in ways that will make certain they'll always be able to park there.
A girl named Janey Bennett, whose class was studying criminal behavior, became pen pals with the Joker while he was in Arkham. When Janey revealed that her father, the mayor of Motor City, was abusing her (exactly how isn't specified, though it was implied to have been really bad) the Joker broke out and, convinced that the authorities would be of no help, tried to force the mayor into admitting to his crimes and giving him Janey (so that he could find a better home for her) by threatening to contaminate the city's blood supply, going through with it (because the ends justify the means) when the mayor refused to give in to his demands. He originally intended to give her to Batman as well so he could protect her but at the end decided to give her to her mom. Joker: I mean, stealing a city blind is something I can admire... but being mean to one's own daughter... that just makes my blood boil.
For a rather literal form of "standard", the Joker's team-up with Carnage in Spider-Man and Batman: Disordered Minds fell apart in part because the Joker, known for his love of theatrics, found Kasady's desire to get straight to killing boring. Conversely, Kasady didn't like the Joker's flair for theatrics.
The Joker absolutely loathes The Batman Who Laughs, to the point where he drops his usual joking demeanor and is deathly serious whenever directly referring to him, even willing to work together with Batman to face him when it comes down to it. When Lex Luthor goes behind his back to make a deal with The Batman Who Laughs (going against the only condition Joker has for joining his plan), Joker responds by Joker-gassing the Legion of Doom, putting Lex into a series of deathtraps, trashing Lex's Power Armor, and quitting the Legion. In the process, he tells Luthor how he had planned on ruining the Legion utterly on the verge of victory, and as nightmarish as his plan sounded, he claims it is nothing compared to what the Batman Who Laughs is going to do.
While he still gloated about it and found Commissioner Gordon kneecapping him funny after remember that he'd crippled Barbara, the actual act of killing Sarah Essen in the penultimate issue of Batman: No Man's Land is one of the few times the Joker wasn't happy with something he himself did, considering he's seen walking away while scowling afterward, leaves the babies he originally planned to murder unharmed and immediately turns himself in to the police.
Emperor Joker sees the Joker disgusted with a corrupted Jimmy O Lsen tormenting the Superfamily and Batman when they're turned int animals.
Later one he is disgusted when his minions vandalize the Moai on Eastern Island.
Again, when he rescues Lex from The Batman Who Laugh's infected minions in Hell Arisen, the mere mention of his alternate universe rival prompts him to have a very uncharacteristic Freak Out. The Joker: I told you. I told you not to deal with him. You should have shot that thing in the head the second you had it in a cage! It is wrong. It is a wrong thing.
Played more straight in his relationship with Punchline. Only time will tell if it lasts.
There’s also a comic storyline when Hush informed that a dirty cop Office Halmet killed his wife Jeannie. The Joker wanted nothing more than to kill said cop in revenge. Then there’s Batman: Three Jokers where, despite it being being heavily implied he was abusive, the “Comedian” Joker is seen setting up fake tea parties with dolls, clearly trying to substitute them for his wife and child showing that he does miss them and desire to be a family with them.
While The Dark Knight is one of the few times the Joker's clown-like appearance is the result of make-up, he does sport a Glasgow Grin.
While Joker still has the permanent clown look, it's combined with the Glasgow Grin.
While Batman: Endgame would see the skin of his face restored with a chemical called Dionesiumnote , at the start of The New 52, the Joker had the Dollmaker skin his face and then, after he recovered it, spent Death of the Family wearing it like a Leatherface-esque mask. And even in Endgame, his restored face ends up badly burned as the result of the finale battle between him and Batman, though it still ends up restored again.
Gotham sees neither Valeska escape this. After his death in season 2, Jerome (the proto-Joker) ends up resurrected in season 3, but because Dwight thinks his attempt to revive him failed, Dwight ends up cutting off Jerome's face ala Death of the Family and Jerome ends up stapling it on when he catches up with Dwight and while he later has it properly reattached, there's still scars from what happened. Jeremiah, Jerome's twin and the show's true Joker, ends up with the "perma-clown" appearance due to Jerome having the Scarecrow brew something up to spray in Jeremiah's face, but season 5 sees his fateful fall at Ace Chemicals badly scar his face and sear off most of his hair with only stringy patches left.
Averted entirely in Joker (2019), where his clown appearance is entirely makeup, and the worst it gets is painting his iconic smile on his face with his own blood from a car crash. Not even a Glasgow Grin or anything, the blood is from his hand and his face only has a few normal cuts on it.
While Batman is a rather serious character who refuses to kill anyone, The Joker is a rather comical character who revels in death.
Joker's gadgets tend to be rather goofier but much more lethal, such as the Joker Venom that he often uses to kill his victims.
While Batman gets along well with his sidekicks Robin and Batgirl, Joker frequently abuses his sidekick Harley Quinn and has tried to kill her before, not to mention all the times he has been a Bad Boss by killing his henchmen for any reason you can think of, sometimes for no reason at all.
While Batman's backstory is well known, even by the citizens of Gotham who know of the tragedy of the rich Waynes' in Crime Alley, no one knows anything about the Joker's backstory, but most versions he tells are consistent in two things: he was a nobody, and possibly someone poor.
In most adaptations, his voice is high-pitched in contrast to Batman's Badass Baritone.
Why he went by the name the Red Hood has changed over the years: The Killing Joke claims he was a failed comedian driven to crime to support his pregnant wife. The trauma of his disfigurement from jumping in the acid and his wife's earlier accidental death drove him insane. However, even this backstory is questionable, as the Joker himself calls it "multiple choice".
In Injustice 2, an intro with Atrocitus has the Red Lantern wondering what drove the Joker to nihilism.
In the animated series, he claims to have been abused as a child when interviewed by Harley, but according to Batman, it's just another ruse to escape Arkham.
The purple suit and matching pants with either an orange and/or green shirt with a bowtie or tie, remains the definitive Joker look one that many artists and costume designers have given spin on. He is sometimes known for wearing a cool hat but other times goes hatless. Heath Ledger's custom-designed purple long-coat, trousers, blue shirt and green Waistcoat of Style with a tie has likewise become iconic and famous for its contemporary and downright stylish update on the classic look.
The original Red Hood outfit which is a black suit, white shirt, bowtie with an opera cap and a bizarre red dome is also quite famous.
The Hawaiian tourist outfit he wore in the notorious scene in The Killing Joke.
The white suit he wears in Miller's The Dark Knight Returns as well as the white nurse maid outfit with red wig in The Dark Knight is also quite notable.
The Future Joker look from Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker which went with a mime look (black body suit, slicked-back hair) is also quite distinct and unique.
The first issue of Batman with Joker's debut has him described as having "burning, hate-filled eyes" and the moniker, "the harliquin of hate".
The Man Who Laughs had Bruce dosed with a light version of the Joker Venom and he felt his perspective shift into a paranoid vengeance were he felt everyone deserved to be punished for his parent's death just for existing.
Death of the Family had Batman describe how Joker's irises are always narrow when looking at anyone but Batman and that it is usually an indication of negative feelings toward something with Bruce mentioning that his eye are the eyes of someone who hates everything he sees.
In the Justice League storyline "Rock of Ages", Martian Manhunter has to put in incredible effort to reorganize Joker's mind long enough for him to give up the cataclysmic Philosopher's Stone. The briefly sane Joker immediately says My God, What Have I Done? verbatim as he hands it back, before quickly losing his mind and going back to the laughing madman.
The famous example from the end of The Killing Joke, where Batman tries to convince him to allow Batman to rehabilitate him before their vendetta kills them. Joker considers it for a long, somber moment before quietly reflecting that they're both too far gone.
Batman: Cacophony ends with Joker being pumped full of an inhuman amount of antipsychotic drugs to keep him under control while in recovery from a near-fatal stabbing. Batman takes the opportunity to have a relatively-sane conversation with him, though it's somewhat subverted by Joker still being a homicidal sociopath even while heavily sedated.
He even gives multiple reasons on how he came Back from the Dead in Injustice 2 and will go along with whatever his opponent thinks is true, despite being Dead All Along in story mode and only appearing as a hallucination to his ex-moll.
Batman: The Dark Knight Returns sees him kill David Endochrine and Ruth Weisenheimer, who were clearly based on David Letterman and Dr. Ruth Westheimer.
During Knightfall, once he realizes that Azrael isn't Batman, his plan's gone to hell, and one too many criticisms from Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert stand-ins, he kills the stand-ins.
In one of the issues for the The Batman tie-in comic, The Batman Strikes, he terrorizes a stand-in for Conan O'Brien. This becomes darkly Hilarious in Hindsight as the real O'Brien voiced Endochrine in the animated version of Batman: The Dark Knight Returns. In the series proper, Harley's debut had the two of them terrorize a stand-in for Dr. Phil for the climax.
If you want to know how truly terrifying The Batman Who Laughs is, look no further than the way Joker acts whenever discussing him. He doesn't laugh, he doesn't smile. He becomes calm and serious and simply tells whomever he's talking to that the TBWL is "a wrong thing that shouldn't exist". Someone HAS to be scary if the very thought of him makes Joker act like a calm rational sane person.
In Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, the clown has a massive Villainous Breakdown when Terry mocks him for his failed attempts to break Batman.
On the rare occasion Joker gets bored and leaves Gotham, expect everyone to think of him as just a silly clown, until the bodies start piling up.
One issue of the Robin Series had him talking about having Abusive Parents, only for a psychiatrist to tell him it's the seventh story he's told now.
Batman lampshades on this to Harley in the animated series, thinking it's another lie to gain sympathy.
The Killing Joke claims he was a failed comedian driven to crime to support his pregnant wife. The trauma of his disfigurement and his wife's earlier accidental death drove him mad. However, even this could be a lie, as he himself calls it "multiple choice".
It's even discussed in Injustice 2, as Atrocitus wonders what drove the Joker to nihilism. Despite only appearing as a hallucination to Harley in story mode, he spews out multiple theories for his Unexplained Recovery and will say Sure, Let's Go with That in non-canon fights. Was he resurrected by someone, or is he from another universe? Did he escape from either the Source Wall or the Phantom Zone, or is he just an apparition?
Shadow of the Bat #38, Tears of a Clown: He celebrates his anniversary of the day he was a still sane, but hapless comedian, and was thrown out of an exclusive Stand-Up Comedy club for an unfunny act the patrons mercilessly heckled. It was the last straw as he agreed to provide to his family by pulling a job for the Red Hood gang. So he kidnaps all the patrons and reenacts his act with control collars that will kill them when they laugh. Oddly enough, the patrons are hardcore Stand-Up Comedy fans, so they can't remember the number of times they've booed someone. However, even this origin story could be a lie.
It's come to be his primary disfigurement over the original skin bleaching.
In Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, Terry McGinnis exploits this by delivering an epic Boring Insult so the clown will have a Villainous Breakdown.
King Barlowe proved to be a big one in his Thanatos Gambit in the episode "Joker's Millions" of The New Batman Adventures. In a spiteful Video Will, he gives the clown his millions, revealing in his tape that most of it was fake. Expecting the clown to splurge on it, he won't have enough to pay off the IRS, allowing Barlowe to get the "last laugh" after his death, without the Joker coming after him.
Alan Moore's "I go Loony" from The Killing Joke, an in-panel song-and-dance tune that was eventually made into an actual song belted out in Batman: The Killing Joke.
Batman: The Brave and the Bold has "Where's the Fun in That?" from the episode "Emperor Joker".
Batman: Arkham City ended with him covering The Platters' "Only You (and You Alone)", Batman: Arkham Origins had him cover Hank Williams' "Cold, Cold, Heart" and Batman: Arkham Knight had him provide an original composition, "Can't Stop Laughing".
Action Fashionista: This incarnation of the Joker has a wide variety of garish outfits for every occassion — most of them straight from the comics.
Adaptational Attractiveness: Metal teeth, lack of eyebrows, and tattoos aside, he's still being played by the youthful-looking real life Pretty Boy Jared Leto; especially since the last two cinematic Jokers were a creepy middle-aged gangster with a botched face-lift and a filthy, scarred vagrant (even the mentally unwell clown-for-hire doesn't scream Mr. Fanservice one bit). This version looks more like Marilyn Manson.
Adaptational Nice Guy: A very downplayed example. While he's otherwise the same Clown Prince of Crime we all know and love to hate, he appears to genuinely care for Harley, and even throws her out of a falling helicopter to save her life. Almost any other iteration of the Joker would do that to save his own skin or rid himself of her.
Adaptational Skimpiness: This version of the Joker tends to be shirtless a lot more than he has in any other medium. It mostly seems like an opportunity to show off his tattoos.
Adaptation Distillation: Leto's Joker seems to be less of the "evil philosopher" that Heath Ledger portrayed him as in The Dark Knight, and instead seems to be a cross between the garish, larger-than-life Mark Hamill version from the animated series and the Arkham games, and the creepy, deeply twisted Brian Azzarello version. David Ayer had also stated that he looked specifically to the Golden Age Joker for reference, providing reason for many to believe that Leto's Joker is a modern re-imagining of that incarnation.
Advertised Extra: Heavily featured in Suicide Squad promotional materials, barely appears in the film for more than seven minutes. According to Jared Leto, several of the scenes he shot were not included in the theatrical cut.
Ambiguous Disorder: In Suicide Squad, most of the time the Joker seems... not all there compared to Harley. In addition of psychopathic tendencies, the Joker has random bouts of maniacal laughter, confusion, and slurred speech-like patterns. All attributes that stem from punch-drunk syndrome. Considering he has faced Batman one too many times, it makes sense that the Joker's mental stability is finally catching up to him.
However, come Birds of Prey, they broke up, mirroring the comics where they do have an Relationship Revolving Door. It appears to stick, as Harley publicly calls it quits between the two of them.
His tattoos are very reminiscent of the Joker in All Star Batman and Robin.
Ax-Crazy: Like all the incarnations before him, calling him a violent psychopath is one of the biggest understatements you can make.
Bedlam House: Spent some time at Arkham Asylum, where he met Harley. Then he broke free from it with the help of both Harley and his gang.
Chewing the Scenery: An important part of the character is his theatricality.
Cool Car: A bright purple sports car with underglow lights and a "HAHAHA" license plate.
Dented Iron: It's subtle, but the numerous scars on his body and metal replacement teeth in his mouth are clear signs that his frequent run-ins with Batman are taking their toll.
Disney Death: He seemingly dies in the crash of his helicopter... only to come back to free Harley from her high security prison at the end of Suicide Squad.
The Dreaded: In true Joker fashion, everyone is terrified of him.
Establishing Character Moment: One that takes place before he even makes his official debut in the setting - he killed Robin (a minor) and vandalized his outfit to mock Batman over his inability to save him.
Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Insofar as much as the Joker can love anyone, anyway, but he does seem to genuinely care about Harley. Eventually, subverted.
Evil Has a Bad Sense of Humor: He considers the brutal murder of a minor as a joke he played on Batman. When he's torturing Harleen Quinzel, he promises not to shatter her well-kept teeth while flashing his own hideous metal dentures. When Harleen later has him at gunpoint, Joker just says "please don't kill me, I'll be ya friend" in a snarky tone.
Evil Is Hammy: It's not The Joker if he's not Chewing the Scenery. And, sure enough, he does.
Evil Is Petty: The graffiti on Robin's costume seems to imply that Joker murdered him just to prod at Batman. It is confirmed in Suicide Squad that Joker and Harley killed him.
Evil Laugh: It's kind of his thing. One notable example is when he chuckles while surrounded by an arsenal of weapons.
Fake Shemp: Indie rocker Johnny Goth stood in for Jared Leto in Birds of Prey, in the flashback where he and Harley torture and tattoo the big mafia thug Harley later bumps back into.
Foil: To Batman as usual, but with some new additions. After 20 years, Batman became more jaded and cruel, while the Joker somewhat mellowed out and his criminal activity became more professional. Batman didn't settle down until the death of Superman while the Joker grew attached to Harley Quinn.
In Suicide Squad Griggs' smug indifference about his gambling debt immediately becomes pure terror when he realizes the Joker has gotten involved.
He is so feared that even the likes of Black Mask would rather steer clear of him. Harley's enemies only start gunning for her in Birds of Prey when it's become clear that she's no longer with him.
There is an allusion to him in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice ("HA HA HA Joke's On You, Batman" painted across the chest of the dead Robin's empty suit in the Batcave), but he doesn't actually appear.
He gets mentioned a lot in Birds of Prey, but he's only seen very briefly in some flashbacks, always from the back (including footage from Suicide Squad). There is a whole Deleted Scene where he and Harley have a domestic dispute. Harley leaves the house through the window and the Joker throws her stuffed beaver out through the window. In the film proper, she's just kicked out of the house, with no shot of Mr. J.
Greater-Scope Villain: His role in Batman v Superman. Despite not actually appearing his murder of Robin by this point has driven Batman down a darker, more vengeful path that goes against Batman's traditional moral code; the one that the Joker is always trying to prove is wrong. Batman's rage towards Superman blinds him to the possibility of Lex Luthor being the real threat long enough for Superman to die fighting Doomsday. In a way the Joker's actions contributed to Batman's failure.
Guttural Growler: This Joker is noticeably more snarly than previous incarnations.
Handshake Refusal: He doesn't like to shake hands, as Monster T finds out.
Hell-Bent for Leather: Wears a purple crocodile skin duster at some point in the film.
Jerk with a Heart of Jerk: Despite being a homicidal sociopath, he seems to truly love his girlfriend Harley Quinn. Then in Birds Of Prey, he coldly and violently breaks up with her.
Joker Immunity: He appears to die when his helicopter is shot down about halfway through Suicide Squad. To absolutely no one's surprise, he shows up alive and well in the final scene. It helps that he's the Trope Namer.
Knife Nut: And by God, does he have enough blades.◊
Lean and Mean: This Joker, while muscular, is quite lean, especially compared to the heavily muscled Batman.
Love Epiphany: Well, "love" is pushing it, but Joker realizes his affections for Harley when she dives in the chemical bath that ultimately turned Joker into what he is. Symbolic in the sense she was agreeing to join him in madness. Further adding to the complexity of the scene; Joker was tying up a loose end, having used Harley to escape from Arkham. He lead her to her demise and intended to leave her for death but at the same moment realized she had entered his world and his madness. Joker never anticipated the amount of utter devotion Harley would have for him, something inside him just couldn't walk away from her, so he jumped in to save her.
Manipulative Bastard: He manipulated Harley into helping him escape Arkham because she fell in love with him. When she served her purpose, he would have had her kill herself jumping into a bath of chemicals to prove her feelings. He instead saves her from this demise because he has a Love Epiphany in the moment.
Monster Clown: Like the previous film versions, Joker is an Ax-Crazy criminal with clownish makeup. Green hair notwithsanding, his white makeup, red lipstick and absence of facial scars make him look closer to a mime than his predecessors.
Noble Demon: In Suicide Squad, his whole motivation is to rescue Harley Quinn. His commitment is so strong he doesn't even waste time with pranks or petty acts of cruelty. Everything he does is for someone else.
Only Known By His Nickname: He's only known as The Joker, or "J" / "Mr. J".
Outlaw Couple: He and Harley Quinn are lovers and partners in crime.
Sadist: Even though there was only a few select scenes of him, one of them is him torturing Harley. It's disturbingly obvious that he is positively gleeful over it. And he doesn't seem to have lost any sleep over murdering Robin, either.
Pet the Dog: David Ayer confirms that while he did push Harley out of the falling helicopter, his intent was in fact to save her life.
Satellite Love Interest: To Harley Quinn in Suicide Squad. His characterization revolves entirely around Harley, not even getting involved with the main plot.
Scary Teeth: Several of his teeth are made of metal. According to David Ayer, Batman punched his teeth out after he killed Robin, leading him to replace them with metal teeth.
Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Although he has a presence at the start of the film, The Joker appears to have left Gotham City to be controlled by Black Mask in Birds of Prey, with Roman saying that Joker has already skipped town.
The Sociopath: He's chaotic and remorseless, much like his previous versions. Special mention goes to his murder of Robin, which he topped off by spray-painting a cruel taunt for Batman onto the boy's costume.
Tattooed Crook: His torso is covered in jester-themed tattoos. He also has a few on his arms and face.
Villain of Another Story: He mainly appeared in Suicide Squad, but his biggest act of villainy to date — killing Robin — happened some years before Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, in which he doesn't appear. The spray-painted message on Robin's empty suit ("Ah ah ah joke's on you Batman!") in the latter film can't be anything else than his doing.
Where Does He Get All Those Wonderful Toys?: Is seen with a rather impressive arsenal of guns and knives. And even says to warden Griggs, at some point, "I can't wait to show you my toys." note Notably, he manages to hijack the gunship which was sent to extract Waller and the squad so he can rescue Harley.
Would Hit a Girl: In the past, the Joker electroshocks and manipulates Dr. Harleen Quinzel into allowing her to fall into a vat of chemicals, in order to become Harley Quinn.
Would Hurt a Child: He killed Batman's sidekick, Robin, while the boy was an underage minor.
You Gotta Have Blue Hair: His hair is bright green.
"You won't kill me. I'm your best friend..." Appearances:
Zack Snyder's Justice League
"You need me. You... need me... to help you undo this world you created, by letting her die."
The Joker meets up once more with Batman in the nightmarish alternate future where Darkseid has conquered the Earth and Superman turned evil. But things aren't the same anymore between the two legendary foes.
See also the Knightmare page for more on that setting's characters.
Break Them by Talking: He deliberately tries to agitate Batman by reminding him of how many people have died on his watch.
Cop Killer: He wears a bulletproof vest with at least two dozens police badges on it. Whether these were good cops killed prior to the apocalypse or servants of the oppressive regime of Superman after the apocalypse is not detailed.
Costume Evolution: He has ditched his garish gangster suits for what looks like either a medical gown or a butcher gown, complete with orange gloves and a bulletproof vest with a dozen police badges pinned on it. He got rid of his "Damaged" forehead tattoo, let his hair grow and put red makeup around his mouth, looking closer to more common depictions of the character.
Enemy Mine: He and Batman had the worst kind of enmity imaginable, but the Earth being conquered by Darkseid is enough of a Conflict Killer for them to call a truce and work together to try undoing this mess.
Evil Has a Bad Sense of Humor: He utters the line "We live in a society" while gazing upon the devastated landscape in the trailer. This is clearly a Meme Acknowledgement, and it's quite awkwardly used given the context (is there really any society left in this post-apocalyptic world?). It doesn't appear in the actual film, however. The line was improvised by Leto.
Evil Laugh: Even with the world being in such a sorry state and him still being sane enough to acknowledge how bad the situation is, he'll still let some laughs out, even though they sound more subdued than ever.
Evil Versus Oblivion: Even he sees the necessity of teaming up with Batman to try undoing what Darkseid did to Earth.
Future Badass: He survived the apocalypse brought upon Earth by Darkseid and looks like he's geared for guerilla actions.
My Card: He gives a Joker card to Batman as a symbol of their truce. Shall the Dark Knight want to break that truce, he'd just have to tear that card up. The card could be seen strapped on Batman's assault rifle in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.
Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Joker gets a high reminding Batman how costly his mistakes in the past have been.
The Nicknamer: He nicknames Mera "my little fish stick" and Robin "Boy Wonder".
Progressively Prettier: Despite being worse for wear, this Joker is arguably even better looking than his previous appearance, with his over-the-top tattooed gangster image toned down and his androgyny played up. Ironically, this version also more closely resembles the Heath Ledger incarnation.
Thousand-Yard Stare: He has such a stare when looking at the devastated horizon as he starts talking to Batman.
Villain Has a Point: While he’s the one who killed Robin, he gives Batman a minor What the Hell, Hero? for sending “a Boy Wonder to do a man’s job.”
Vocal Evolution: His voice is much softer and higher pitched than it was in Suicide Squad.
ok in my own personal version of spn that could've sustained a slowburn gay relationship in earnest: they first fucked in the 5.03 fanfiction gap. then periodically like hooked up throughout s5. maybe like Once in s6 before the shit with crowley really went down. and all this time they are both aggressively NOT admitting that it's like anything but physical. i think cas is genuinely confused and doesn't rly know how to categorize/understand his feelings but dean is just hardcore repressing everything. purgatory they definitely had some sexual relations but after that it gets super weird cuz dean was more emotionally like Open/raw in purgatory than he might've been otherwise and he's squirrelly about it. meanwhile cas def realizes by then that this is Love love for him. which makes all of s8-9 even worse. i think at this time dean kinda begins to live in like a quantum state of Knowing he loves cas but just not allowing himself to acknowledge it head-on. s9 is hard on his heart and his libido. s10 is a mess for the both of them, as is a whole bunch of s11. they have not been together sexually for like nearly 4 years now at this point. just like insane levels of moping and dancing around it. end of s11/beginning of s12 is the breaking point for them both, when dean is about to go sacrifice himself to kill god and amara and there's that sad farewell "i could go with you" scene, instead of a hug cas just full on kisses the shit out of him in front of like sam and rowena and god and everybody. and dean is like fuck it i'm about to go die. this might as well happen. and like kisses back and maybe cries a little. and then when dean doesn't end up dying..... he has to deal with all that. and they get Together but he tries to hide it from his reagan era mom and it causes some angst. and then cas dies. widow arc plays out the same except the reunion is much more tender and tearful. dean doesn't Not have issues with jack but they actually get to be like, resolved in some way that doesn't get completely trashed by 15.17 lmao. divorce arc is mostly unchanged.
Marvel Part 4
I decided to leave the two parts of the final saga as their own post, because they are truly epic and they deserve to be separate from the rest of the films. Also, the Part 3 post was the longest one so far, covering seven films. The culmination of Thanos’s arc throughout the entire MCU so far is so satisfying, and I do highly recommend watching these two films back to back. It makes the overall experience more exciting and fulfilling, if you can stand sitting through five hours of film in one sitting.
Avengers: Infinity War – Joe and Anthony Russo, 2018
I was kind of nervous to watch this, because I knew what I was in for. And after watching all the other Avengers films, I was very invested. So I knew that I was going to be absolutely destroyed at the end of this movie. That being said, it was very satisfying seeing all the puzzle pieces line up, all the disparate characters following their own throughlines to end up in the same place. I particularly enjoyed the incorporation of the Guardians in with Thor, since they were both in space. Most of the fun in this movie was getting to see the dynamics of the different established characters as they interacted with each other. It was every fanfiction crossover writer’s wet dream. Doctor Strange and Tony Stark and Spider-Man were so enjoyable to watch together, and of course Captain America got to join up with Black Widow again and the two of them are unstoppable. I genuinely like so many of these characters, and seeing them all in one movie was just so great. I think the filmmakers did a very good job balancing all of the personalities and incorporating them in a way that makes sense. I didn’t feel like anyone didn’t get enough screen time, and all of them had important parts to play as the plot progressed. It was an excellent first foray into the big crossover event and set up the following films nicely.
Avengers: Endgame – Joe and Anthony Russo, 2019
I underestimated how much this film would destroy me. Weirdly, the first one wasn’t so bad. But by the end here, I was sobbing. Seeing Iron Man give everything up really did it for me this time. I think it might have been because I had just spent the last week following his journey and his growth. It also could have been because it was getting late and I was tired. Either way, this movie hit me right in the feels. It’s gritty, it’s sad, it’s not hopeful like the first one. They go on this insane adventure with the slimmest chance of success, going through all of time and space, playing the Avenger’s greatest hits. I did love getting to see alternate perspectives of the same events, namely Captain America fighting his younger, more optimistic self. I do hate their version of time travel, but I don’t want to get into it. I appreciate that they made sure that the way things are isn’t going to change, even though some of those changes are weird. Things like Thor gaining weight, or Hulk and Banner merging, or even Tony having a kid. That’s the timeline we get, and it comes with some other cool things like Steve getting to wield Mjolnir (I got chills in theaters, I got chills now). There are almost too many things to mention with this movie, like the catering to fans or subverting of expectations. I want to mention the female superhero splash page moment – I liked it, and I won’t be elaborating. I also loved getting my man Hawkeye back. Finally, I want to mention the ending. We started this adventure with Captain America, and we end it with Steve and Peggy. It’s the perfect cap to the entire MCU.
The way Dean is so obviously infatuated with Cas but is fighting against it because he's Traumatized and he's bad enough at hiding that Sam, other hunters, angels and dekons all notice but good enough at hiding it that Cas never realizes how much Dean loves him. Does this even make sense? I feel insane rn
hmm well for one thing i think dean very much does not realize exactly what his feelings are for cas until pretty late. i’m not sure exactly when but definitely not until season 8 at the absolute earliest and i’m iffy on that. and i think other people definitely are like Right. Wot’s All This Then. but sam knows his brother well enough to know that dean’s in love with cas. maybe he occasionally tries to hint at it but dean’s prickly
as for cas, i mean. it’s not even a matter of hiding it, i think it’s just that cas is very much operating under the (honestly fair) impression that while dean primarily keeps him around for his usefulness which is compounded by dean kicking him out of the bunker when he’s a human in s9. and like dean genuinely treats him like crap a lot -- i think that’s in no small part due to dean’s Trauma and the fact that they’re facing up against world ending shit every two minutes but still -- so it makes sense to me that cas being who he is would base his assessment off of that and not the more positive things. also a lot of the reasons we know dean’s in love with cas, cas has no way of knowing about eg widower arc
-elle @paintedlight 💗
YES. OKAY. HER.
let me tell you a story, paint you a picture —
it's the spring of 2021. you(me), depressed and on the verge of going insane, rediscover the joy of writing fanfic. you've been reading fic for a while now and you're fascinated by the inherent homoeroticism of physical hurt/comfort in fic. you also obsess over the widower arc an unhealthy amount. et voila. this monster is born.
ajgdjdke SORRY. ANYWAY.
i have some stuff written for it but it's all genuinely horrible so I'm not sharing excerpts! BUT!! the idea was essentially this: cas comes back from the dead (in tombstone) but like. his wings are burnt out? think object breaking the atmosphere ykwim? anyway. dean's gone through the wringer when cas was gone and by the time he's back, he's at a point where he's like enough is enough. i will not keep my feelings all hidden and be scared of them anymore because i can't take cas being here for granted. like okay he'll never love me back but that doesn't mean i can't do that enough for the both of us. which. CHEESY IDEA BUT OKAY SUE ME.
Anyway. like. you get it. Cas' got Big Hurt because of the wings thing. and Dean's got Big Emotional Hurt bc of the dying thing. They help each other out. It's all very sad, but also it had this weird sensual quality to it bc i wanted Cas' wounds to have physical manifestations and Dean to help him like take care of them. and like. HOMOEROTICISM YK.
also. i think part of why it's just sitting there is because like. i don't know what to do with it. it exists in this pocket of isolation where I'm just writing wish-fulfillment romantic fantasy moments but i don't think it has the potential to actually fit in with canon anywhere. but okay. we'll see if i can salvage it some time
gafdhdhfk this got long sorry!
this thing we're doing.
The MCU Meta no one asked for
Part 1 (yes this is going to be a multi-part meta I am that petty)
So I’m very salty about how the Marvel movies have gone, for a variety of reasons and as they continue to churn out hot shit that I have to see on my dash every fucking day I decided to write a thing on it. Because fuck Disney and fuck Marvel for ruining something that I have loved my whole life. Now I considered several methods of how to approach this, where to even start unsifting the mega ton crap pile that is the MCU (no I will not apologize it is CRAP and I absolutely WILL explain why.) And I’ve decided chronological order is the best way to go. And the most classic, so here we go.
Everything Marvel Got Wrong In Order From The Beginning
So before I get those whiney crybabies who spit at me ‘Everything Exists in Its Own Universe it’s the Multiverse’ blah blah blah, I’m not gonna be talking about differences from the comics too much. Only in the sense of story structure and narrative. Because more than I am a Massive Marvel Comics Nerd I am also a writer and things like plot and story fucking matter okay. So don’t @ me with your bullshit ‘kay.
Narratively Ironman, the first movie, is more or less perfect. There are a few elements that really matter in a superhero movie and Jon Favreau really hit the nail on the head with Tony Stark and this had a lot to do with RDJ’s performance and passion for the role. A Superhero Movie needs, essentially, three things; Theme, Character and Adversary. Pretty basic yeah? Kind of. Superheroes and Superhero comics are about hope and conquering the odds and success against insurmountable failure. Tony Stark’s story is a story of redemption, and the belief that you can change for the better. Favreau really made us feel Tony’s fury at what he and his company had been made into. His righteous desire to be better, to clean up the mess that Obie and his father and his own foolish negligence had created. The theme was righteous redemption and they sold it to us wholesale and it worked very well.
The Character of Tony Stark, I don’t think would have worked as well as it did without the involvement of RDJ. He really knocked that one out of the park. He conveyed perfectly the juxtaposition of Tony’s arrogance and his self loathing. We as the audience understood his front of cocky genius was to cover his loneliness, his scars and his insecurities instilled by Howard. He was broken, yes, but redeemable and hopeful and essentially good which is really what mattered and we loved him for it.
Obadiah Stane, Anton Vanko and Aldrich Killian are probably the weakest parts of the Ironman narrative. And this issue stems from the larger issue with the Ironman movies which is it’s very clear that they didn’t know what they were getting into with this superhero business. They had no idea it was going to blow up as big as it did and a lot of what happened later was improve. Shoddy improve, I might add. Widow’s entrance in the second movie is overhand and poorly executed, Scarlet’s performance leaves absolutely everything to be desired (shut up I’ll get there) but the real issue I find with these films and the Ironman arc is the incongruity in the second and third film with tying in Howard and SHIELD. In both Comic and MCU cannon Howard is a founding member of SHIELD. And in both Comic and MCU cannon Howard is unrepentantly, indisputably abusive towards Tony to an insane degree. So the weird video where we’re meant to believe that Howard was merely a distant but loving father is discordant with the rest of the narrative and doesn’t fit the Tony we know at all. It certainly doesn’t fit with a man who would choose Obadiah Stane as his business partner. There’s also the matter of Peggy and the fact that Tony doesn’t seem to know her which also...doesn’t make a lot of sense. From all we’ve seen Howard and Peggy were friends. She was also very close with Edwin Jarvis who essentially raised Tony. But we’re meant to believe that she never met or had a relationship with Howards son? Why? Did they have a falling out? These questions are never answered to a satisfying degree. But sure we can just sweep these under the rug of a good action storyline.
Looking at the villains themselves, Ironmonger is a good first villain for Ironman to have. Lots of personal ties, good emotional beats, kind of reminds the viewer of a knock off Lex Luthor. It would have been a stronger choice to use Obie’s son Zeke, the actual Ironmonger and who has a sordid personal history with Tony as an abusive ex. But hey, this is Disney and God forbid we even suggest any of our superheroes could possibly be something other than straight. China might not like us then would they. (pretty sure they don’t like us now but it’s the dollars that count right). Whiplash is a fairly generic Ironman bad guy, Russian eccentric genius with a vendetta against the Starks? Yeah sure. They could have peppered in some more about Howard Stark the Abusive Dad just to avoid confusion but hey, whatever. The Mandarin however is a HUGE Ironman villain and I just...I could have done with some foreshadowing. Some tie ins in the earlier movies leading up to the big bad. It would have fit more. But like I said I understand they were making it up as they went along.
Getting into SHIELD and the inclusion of Black Widow, I don’t have a lot of issue with her writing in the second movie. Like sure, her being assigned as Tony’s new PA, makes total sense. Very Natasha move. But Scarlet Johansson is a terrible choice for Natasha Romanoff. For a plethora of reasons. What reasons are those? Oh I’m so glad you asked. First off the introduction of Natasha Romanoff in the comics was fucking brilliant because the reader doesn’t know it’s her until she decides to reveal herself. Before that all we knew of the Black Widow was that she was russian and had red hair. She was very nondescript prior to that. So Tony’s new PA had red hair, so what, so did Pepper he has a type. She was bubbly and fun and used to be a model and her and Tony’s affair fit very well with his history at that point. And then BAM she’s actually a russian killer lady. It was so shocking.
Now that is clearly what Jon Favreau is trying to do there. The way he writes her in, Tony’s interest, Pepper’s exasperation. It should have been perfect except for Scarlet’s performance being so fucking obvious you could see her from space. She’s a terrible spy. Her voice doesn’t change, her face doesn’t change. Her personality remains as blank as before. She’s not subtle. Because Scarlet is not subtle. She’s not a good actress. Just because you can convey emotion does not mean you can portray a character. In every movie she is in she’s just herself in a new outfit and it is very annoying.
Natasha Romanoff is supposed to be a world class spy. Like raised from the womb spy. Given a modified super soldier serum to increase agility and severely slow the aging process (she’s like 80 something fr). She blends in, everywhere. You don’t notice her until her knife is in your back. She should 100% scare the pants off the viewer in every scene she is in because you never know if she’s being genuine or not. There’s a reason her friendship with Clint is so anomalous and it’s not because people know she used to kill people it’s because people functionally can’t trust her. Scarlet only manages to convey that she’s hot and can kick you in the face. Whoopdie do. Her performance in Ironman 2 annoys me so much because it makes Tony look stupid instead of her look scary. Because only an idiot wouldn’t peg her as the spy the moment she flipped Happy onto the mat. Like come on, you can’t introduce a character as a super genius and then allow him to miss something like that, and then act shocked later when she shows up in a leather catsuit, like obvs Tony gd.
I won’t get into the inherit sexism displayed in the lack of effort given to Natasha’s character. Her writing was shallow, her casting was bad and her storyline so inconsistent and slap shod it actually hurts me. I won’t get into the in depth character study of Natasha and all the many ways Scarlet fails at being her here. Maybe one day, but not rn. Simply put her inclusion in the Ironman arc left a lot to be desired.
In part 2 I’ll dive into Thor, Loki and the first avengers movie. I’ll have to leave Cap for part three cause that’s a lot to cut into and it deserves it’s own part.
The Big Moffat Rewrite: Series 7
Following on from my Series 5 and my Series 6 rewrites
XMAS SPECIAL The Snowmen
The Bells of Saint John
The Rings of Akhaten
A Town Called Mercy
The Slow Invasion
Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS
Asylum of the Cybermen
Nightmare in Silver
Dinosaurs on a Spaceship
Supremacy of the Daleks
Extermination of the Daleks
The Name of the Doctor
· 11 is still a recluse in Victorian London, but because in my Series 6 he left the Ponds instead of losing them, it’s because he’s convinced he’ll screw up if he travels again. After wiping himself from history he’s lying low, not helping because he’s convinced he’ll make things worse
· (also he’s totally wallowing in self-pity because of his self-imposed exile from the Ponds)
· Clara re-convinces him he can make positive change, drags him out of his self-absorption, shows him something new
· Clara gets all of series 7. Moffat originally wanted The Time of the Doctor to be a whole series, so we can fit some of that stuff about the Silence and Trenzalore in here.
· GIVE CLARA A FUCKING ARC – the Doctor takes an ordinary girl who he thinks is special, and accidentally makes her special
· Most people seem to prefer Victorian! Clara to her in S7B anyway, so she becomes that flirty, authoritative character by the finale
· The pieces were already there – her being scared in Cold War compared to her taking charge in Nightmare in Silver, but make it explicit – the Doctor realises he is changing Clara and turning her into the person he met in Victorian London and the Cyberman Asylum
· This sets up her arcs and relationship with 12 – he brings out the liar in her, forces her to become cold and calculating. This is now already happening with 11
The Rings of Akhaten
· Introduce Trisha Lem, the head of the Church of the Silence, here. The best part of this episode is The Speech, but we could easily say that the Silence is presiding over the Long Song ceremony to appease the Old God, taking the place of those creatures hunting the little girl.
· (I imagine the Church pre-Trenzalore as a kind of Shadow Proclamation for religion - presiding over and safeguarding the religious traditions of species across the universe)
· This way Trisha and the Silence’s role as confessionals doesn’t come out of nowhere in The Time of the Doctor
· 11 and Trisha’s relationship being so flirty confuses me - as the head of the Church, 11 must associate her with all the pain the Silence caused River and the Ponds. Instead, he acts really flirty but Clara notices he’s faking it – a reflection of their own relationship?
· Trisha doesn’t understand why 11 is being elusive.
A Town Called Mercy
· Use this story’s framework – a Western where 11 is forced to protect war criminal – and insert River
· Partly bc River and Clara interacting seems super interesting
· River is angry at 11 for ‘replacing’ the Ponds. I also think she’d be competitive with Clara? As she’s scattered all over the Doctor’s timestream, Clara is the only person who really could compete with her
· As an archaeologist expert on the Doctor River knows about Clara, but can’t tell 11 exactly what she is
· Also 11 agreeing with River’s more violent methodology is really interesting and shows how they can feed into each other’s dark sides – think River’s line from The Angels Take Manhattan – “One psychopath per TARDIS, don’t you think?”
The Slow Invasion
· A version of The Power of Three told from the perspective of the Alice character who replaced Craig in S5/6. 11 pops in and out of her life with different versions of Clara
· It’s revealed that 11 has tried to travel with different versions of Clara before, tracking her down all across the universe, but she always, always dies. Our Clara doesn’t know.
· Alice is deeply critical of what 11 is doing. She acts almost as his therapist; he comes over for tea and talks to her about what’s going on.
· Instead of the cubes being alien exterminators, this is a plot buy the Great Intelligence (series 7′s big bad) inspired by the Skith from DWM comic The First and Superman villain Brainiac – i.e. the Intelligence is collecting all information it can about a thing, and then destroys it to stop that knowledge becoming commonplace and therefore losing its value. Specifically, the Intelligence is also investigating Clara (because she keeps appearing across its timeline). The Intelligence’s fascination is a dark parallel to 11’s
· Alice asks 11 what happened to the Ponds, and he reveals they still think he’s dead. Alice tells 11 to go see them (the ending scenes of The Doctor, the Widow and The Wardrobe). She also tells him to start treating Clara like a real person, not a human question mark
· 11 takes Clara to meet them. River is also there, having dinner. The episode closes with them reconnecting
· After The Slow Invasion launch this minisode series about life post-11, with River barging in instead of the Doctor
Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS
· Tie the TARDIS disliking Clara into the series arc – it’s because the TARDIS knows Clara is an anomaly scattered through the Doctor’s timestream. Have a scene in Journey To the Centre of the TARDIS where 11 argues with the TARDIS about it – “Do you know what she is? You do, don’t you? I miss the time when you could talk and just tell me.”
· The TARDIS went to the end of the universe to throw Jack Harkness off, and 11 abandoned Future!Amy in The Girl Who Waited because the TARDIS hates paradoxes – this is the same kind of thing, just make it clear by the finale (Clara even jumps into the time stream INSIDE the TARDIS)
· Clara remembers the events of the episode so she can be be active in the investigation of who she is, (also fixing how the episode undoes the three brothers’ arcs, but still insists they grew as people at the end)
This represents 11 opening up to her and trusting her more
Asylum of the Daleks (retitled Asylum of the Cybermen)
Roll Nightmare in Silver and Asylum into a 2-parter, because the best part of Nightmare is Mister Clever. Both episodes even have the same ‘someone’s about to destroy the planet’ ticking time bomb.
The army fighting the Cybermen kidnap 11 to get him to destroy the Asylum with a bunch of expendable grunts they can afford to lose to a suicide mission.· Clara meeting/interacting with another version of herself is really interesting, so we keep converted Oswin saving them·
Changing it to Asylum of the Cybermen makes more sense thematically
All those people, including Oswin, being converted – the Asylum’s security system is its conversion machinery – attackers become part of the security system. Instead of a nano-cloud, use the tiny upgraded Cybermats·
It would also be scarier (a haunted hospital a la World Enough and Time- botched cybermen > insane Daleks) and would add an interesting layer to Cyberman lore instead of making the Daleks look weak. It can also use old models to explain the Cybermen’s multiple backstories, touched on in The Doctor Falls (”everywhere there’s people, there’s cybermen,” 12 says)·
The ‘subtracting love’ thing makes more sense with cybermen too – instead of Amy and Rory, focus on Clara holding onto her connection with 11 – emphasising their genuine, emotion-based bond over ‘flirty quirky plot device’·
This renewed focus on the Cybermen is good because the last full-on Cyberman story was in Series 2 (in The Next Doctor they’re just kind of in the background), and Moffat is much better at writing the body-horror of the Cybermen than he is writing the Daleks.
Nightmare in Silver
· 11 deliberately lets himself be ‘infected’ by the asylum’s nanocloud and begins conversion in attempt to save the converted Oswin’s mind.
· Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you the origin of Handles, the Cyberman head from The Time of The Doctor: the remains of Oswin’s cyber-converted mind downloaded into a head.
· 11 uses Mr Clever to get information about her - i.e. that she just appeared one day as a fully-formed person without any family. This sets up the other Claras being time remnants.
· It also lets Mr Clever play more psychological games with 11 and Clara – Mr Clever reveals 11 is scared of Clara, putting more strain on Clara having to hold on to her emotional attatchments
· The Cybermen are actively trying to get out. This way we dig into their primary drive – survival at all costs,
· What happens when a Cyberman’s emotional inhibitor is broken, but they don’t die? Driven insane and desperate, and fiercely intelligent.
· I like the idea of the Cybermen like the Xenomorph in Alien; blending in with thoier broken down, mechanical environment, plugging into it and using to separate and play games with the soldiers.
Dinosaurs on a Spaceship
· Replace The Crimson Horror with a version of Dinosaurs on a Spaceship with the Paternoster Gang replacing Brian, the Ponds, Nefertiti and that hunter bloke
· I just really need to see Vastra interacting with her culture OK? Seeing her be taken back to her childhood, opening up to Jenny about it. Her anger, realising what the villain Solomon has done to her people. Use this conflict to call back to and explain how she met the Doctor, how he stopped her slaughtering humans before.
· Clara and 11 go to the Paternoster Gang for help investigating her other selves
· Clara researches and finds her past selves, not only in Victorian London but also throughout the 60s and 70s, when she’s helping the past Doctors – finding this research is how the kids find out she’s a time traveller
· This is how THE DOCTOR REALISES HE’S SEEN HER MANY TIMES BEFORE, setting up The Name of the Doctor’s out-of-nowhere, un-guessable resolution.
· Dark!11 again. Matt saoid they would’ve explored a ‘meaneer’ version if he’d stayed on for series 8. Clara is the perfect way to bring that out as they lie and manipulate each other for their own ends.
DALEK CIVIL WAR STORY
· Progenitor Daleks vs the regular Time War model. Display how the Progenitor Daleks are different - each of them having a different weapon/role etc. The crux of the story is that the Progenitor Daleks are better at fighting the Doctor and come close to killing him, but the other Daleks value their ‘purity’ and survival more
· Maximum Dark!11
The Name of the Doctor
· When 11 rescues Clara she is changed – she retains bits and pieces of her time remnants’ experiences, it’s at once traumatising and exhilarating
The Time of the Doctor
· Whereas The End of Time felt stretched-out (135 minutes) this felt really rushed. Make it 2 parts.
· We see the set-up of Trenzalore and the Church of Silence in the first.
· The second part is the long siege of Trenzalore – we need to see 11 age fighting these monsters, taking his turn being left behind, the tragedy of him slowly losing his memory, focusing on his character
· We can also flesh out the citizens of Trenzalore and Christmas so their safety is important to us
· Let’s see Madame Kovarian and her splinter cell break off from the main Church of Silence and leave to try and kill the Doctor – make her a supporting character
· Then have Trisha Lem explicitly talk to the Doctor about how Kovarian blowing up the TARDIS caused the cracks in the universe in the first place, allowing the Time Lords to get their message out. Instead of a montage, have this be the moment that unites the Doctor and the Silence – they are both fighting to make up for their mistakes and the problems they caused
· We see the many races surrounding Trenzalore form the alliance from The Pandorica Opens