The Future of Fridays (Also a Poll)

Things are getting pretty close to a turning point around here, at least as far as the end of the week posts go. There are two more episodes left in the Woman Called Fujiko Mine series (plus an essay, but that’ll go in a Monday slot), the thing that I was most powerfully determined to talk about since day one. And while I do have plans to do a spotlight on the infamous and unfairly maligned Pink Jacket series (perhaps not all 50 episodes, as I’m pretty positive I’d run out of fresh and insightful quips long before then, but at least 13 – what you’d consider a modern season’s worth), even yours truly needs the occasional break from the great Lupin III.

And so I thought to myself, what a perfect time to ask for a bit of input from my readers. I am at turns baffled and unbelievably touched by how many folks come out of the woodwork to check up on this little blog, whether as subscribers or just the occasional glance. It means a great deal to me, since a writer loves nothing so much (in my experience) as brightening another’s life with their writing in some small way.

With that in mind, I’ve put up a poll with a few options for the next Friday installment (sans the eventual Pink posts). All three are ones I’ll probably do eventually if there’s any interest, but it’ll give me a chance to rank them and get an idea of what people would be interested in down the line. The poll will be open until the last Fujiko Mine post is done. You can skim a brief description of the three options under the cut. Thanks guys, and have a wonderful week!

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The Consulting Analyst – The Feast of Fools

The intro is here.

Token attempts will be made to discuss the other scraps of plot development going on this episode, but let us not pretend your humble analyst hasn’t been counting down the weeks until this episode. This week’s all about one character – the interpretive cornucopia that is Oscar.

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Not sure if idealized memory or really bizarre champagne commercial

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Vrai Writes (Parts of) Books – 12,000 Hour Day

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The heat outside is dreadful, summer vacation has started, and the cavalcade of summer weddings is well underway. I’m pleased all over to announce the release of my short story, “12,000 Day,” as part of Torquere Press’ They Do anthology!

After weeks of putting things off, Devon and Sarah have come down to the big day. The big day for planning the big day, anyway. As Devon runs the gauntlet of flowers, cakes, and dresses, all she can think about is how she got here. How did deciding to spend the rest of her life with the woman she loves turn into a the stuff of reality-show nightmares?

It’s available on Amazon as an individual story or in a collected anthology format. Want to see an excerpt? Check just below the cut, and a pleasant week to one and all.

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The Consulting Analyst – Ghost Town

The intro is here.

I will be forever unable to refer to this episode as anything other than “Lupin Goes to Silent Hill.” Having reviewed it with an eye for explaining what’s actually going on, “The Pretty Exposition Episode” would also be appropriate (if less catchy).

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Not a big fan of snow, Lupin?

Episode Specifics: 13 years before our story begins (that’s roughly 1948, for you poor souls trying to put together a timeline) the Glaucus Pharmaceutical testing plant underwent a catastrophic meltdown, and the town surrounding it was abandoned to rot. Some weeks before our story begins, a mysterious owl asks Lupin to steal Fujiko Mine from a drug cult. In the present, Lupin returns to his employers seeking answers, and winds up drugged and stumbling through more than he’d bargained for.

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Do This, Not That (Dreamworks Edition): The Sequel Thing (How to Train Your Dragon 2 vs Kung Fu Panda 2)

Hey, remember when I said that Dreamworks had risen above deserving kudos for pleasant mediocrity? I did not think we’d be returning to that comment so soon, but then I ended up going to the movies this weekend.

Last week I spent a good deal of time lauding quite justifiable praise onto How to Train Your Dragon for its tightly plotted story and believable world inhabited by likable characters. Its sequel…does not get the same lofty position in this little comparative game. But! Despite what might seem like the intuitive choice, we’re not going to measure How to Train Your Dragon 2 against its predecessor. Same world aside, sequels have a different burden of expectation upon them. Only another sequel will do. Let’s bring out the pandas.

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Do This, Not That (Dreamworks Edition): Writing Tone and Consequences (How to Train Your Dragon vs The Croods)

Once in a while, though not often, the onus of friendship and previously poorly chosen viewing material leads me to the position of watching a movie that would not be tops on my viewing list. In this case it was The Croods (a Dreamworks picture about a prehistoric family, heavy on the ‘dad learns to let daughter live her own life’ theme), and I was probably still making up for the weaker episodes of Samurai Flamenco. And in both Film Friend (who is often quite skilled in the choosing of entertainment) and the movie’s defense, it was hardly the excruciating experience I was expecting: there was probably enough energetic creativity, earnestness, and gorgeous visuals to fill a strong 30-40 minute short film (tragically, the actual running time is 90 minutes). And it certainly didn’t leave me in the same excruciating pain as Shark Tale.

But ever since How to Train Your Dragon and Kung Fu Panda, Dreamworks doesn’t get a pass on pleasantly mediocre, and so I found myself trying to reverse engineer the little niggling bothers that kept jabbing at me. And thus my thoughts kept coming around to two factors: one more specific to stories that write from a strong POV, and the other possible anywhere but particularly relevant to comedies and animation.

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