Here's some production art of the Seal of Rassilon:
Here's Homura with her shield:
And here they are side-by-side. Either someone on the Madoka design team was a Who fan, or that's a heck of a coincidence. (The Coincidence of Rassilon, perhaps.)
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--Bernie Magica: exactly what it sounds like.
Bernie was shocked. "Trump made a contract with you too?"
"Yes," said Kyubey. "When I asked him, his answer came immediately. He wished for a small loan of a million dollars."
Fandom good things:
More Madoka is on the way! No idea what I'm going to think of the plot, but it's going to be lovely. And lend itself beautifully to Princess Tutu crossovers.
Empowered is coming up online! (Legally, even.) The whole first volume is up -- and for those of us who have already gotten nine or ten volumes into the hard-copy version, there's long-winded author commentary as a rereading bonus.
"We invited the translators of the [Ancillary Justice] into Bulgarian, German, Hebrew, Hungarian and Japanese to discuss the process, with particular interest in the translation of gender. What emerges is an insight into the work of translators and the rigidity and versatility of grammatical gender in the face of non-standard demands. Where necessary, translators turned to innovative and even inventive ways to write their languages."
Nonfictional good things:
"Why do so many ex-cons end up back in prison? Maybe they don’t—a provocative new study says recidivism rates are drastically lower than we think."
Thanks, Obama: "Between 2007 and January of 2015, overall homelessness fell by 11%, and chronic homelessness declined by 31%. [...] Homelessness among veterans declined by 35%, and over a shorter span of time — between 2009 and 2015. The number of unsheltered homeless veterans across the nation has plummeted by 50% in the past four years."
"In the days following the mass shooting in San Bernardino, California, a coalition of Muslim-led groups in Southern California and elsewhere around the nation has committed to raising $100,000 for the families of the shooting victims." And they were at $97K when that article was posted.
"Your drunk uncle posting 'Homeless Servicemen Should Come Before Any Refugee' memes on Facebook is utterly full of it. Lancaster County is doing both. It has ended homelessness among veterans in the county and it is welcoming and assisting desperate refugees fleeing ISIS’s brutality in Syria."
Best for last: "Given the cowardly, inhospitable opposition to Syrian refugees that all of these candidates have decided to make an issue, it’s safe to say that not a one of them knows anything about the person that gave Elkader, Iowa its name."
His name was Abdelkader El Djezairi, and when there were riots and a planned massacre of Christians in 19th-century Damascus, he mounted an incredibly hardcore armed defense/rescue/refugee-smuggling operation. Had people crowded in his own house, paid reward money out of his own pocket to get other Christians there, organized his own small army to escort groups of them safely out of the city.
"At least 3,000 Christians were killed before it was all over. Abd el-Kader was credited with saving upwards of 10,000 Christians, including the entire European diplomatic corps."This guy is amazing. Where's his big-budget action movie? (Apparently Oliver Stone is working on a biopic, but it isn't finished, and we could really do with people going to see it on-screen already.)
whose own fanbase is trying to drum her off the Internet for drawing pictures of a fictional sexy 19-year-old eating fruit.
Seriously, fandom, what is going on with you these days? We keep getting these “any dealings with sexuality beyond what I am personally comfortable with are gross and disgusting and should be shunned” outbursts, not from conservative Family Values(TM) adults, but from social-justice-savvy teenagers.
Look, eight years ago, Livejournal tried to go after the accounts of people in Harry Potter fandom who drew sexy teenagers. The pan-fandom backlash was immense. Dreamwidth and the AO3 were both kickstarted by the widespread desire for fandom-friendly websites that would not freeze anyone’s accounts based on their treatment of fictional teenagers.
And teenage me, who had been drawing [atrocious attempts at] sexy pinups of Sailor Moon characters for several years by that point, felt empowered and supported by the idea that fandom-at-large didn’t think I was weird or sick.
Tween me, btw, did encounter things in fandom that I would shrug off (or enjoy!) now, but that were, at the time, shockingly sexual. So I used the back button! I closed the window! (This was before tabbed browsing was a thing. You know, the dark days.) Never would’ve considered approaching the creator and going “this is offensive, take it off the Internet.”
But for the past couple of years we’re getting that. From within fandom. Paired with this stony refusal to consider the fact that people age, people change, people grow. A character is 15 at the current point of the story in Ava’s Demon, therefore you can’t possibly think forward and draw her as a sexy 19-year-old. A character is 11 when she’s introduced in Madoka Magica, therefore you're disgusting if you ship her with any of the 15-year-olds -- what do you mean, you imagine them getting together when she’s older than 11? Don’t you understand that anyone who was 11 at any point in time must remain pure and nonsexual forever and ever?
To say nothing of the depiction-must-equal-endorsement crowd. If you write a story involving child abuse, whoo boy, that can’t be a serious treatment of a real-life issue that some survivors find therapeutic and validating to read -- it must mean you’re a Danger To Real Children, and if you get near Welcome to Night Vale fandom they will doxx you for great justice. (Welcome to Night Vale, like PMMM and Ava’s Demon, is of course a series in which only sweet and uplifting things happen to minors, and they certainly don’t die horribly on a regular basis.)
Look, if you’re uncomfortable with a sexual thing, that’s okay! You have a right to determine your own comfort level. You have a right to boundaries.
But consider that, perhaps, the thing is not Wrong or Bad or Disgusting. This is not an invalidation of your feelings or your boundaries. It could mean that maybe, just maybe, the thing is simply Not Your Thing.
Especially if other people with your issues are saying the thing was helpful. The person next to you in class may be using the same work that’s making you uncomfortable as a valid way of coming to terms with their queerness, and/or their past abuse, and/or their sexuality in general. This indicates that it’s a Thing For Them, and not a Thing For You, and that is okay.
(It doesn’t mean you’re obligated to be one of the people shouting on the battlements to defend it, either. Solidarity is great from those who are willing and able to provide, but if it isn’t Your Thing, it may not be Your Fight.)
Maybe, over the next ten years, it will become a Thing For You. This happens! Some of the adults who are telling teenagers to chill out over this issue are probably adults who have experienced it firsthand.
Or maybe it will never be a Thing For You. That’s okay too. Not everything has to be for everyone. Enforce your boundaries without judgment. Close the tab, delete the bookmark, unfollow the artists, set up your blacklist...without judgment. Step back, and recognize that humanity is a great big beautiful spectrum of contradictory feelings and reactions which do not invalidate each other by existing in different people, and go revel in the things that are within your own personal comfort zone for a while.
Just want to put it on-record that politicette was bawling by about halfway through episode 10, and more or less stayed that way through the finale.
To all the people in my circle who haven't watched this show: y'all should watch this show.