Politics: Aw, bless, the Lib Dems
I heard Nick Clegg on PM on the way home today (you can Listen Again to it from here; the interview starts at 42:50 or so) and it just made me want to hug him. The Lib Dems have obviously spent quite a lot of time coming up with eyecatching distinctive policies to capture the public imagination (the trail for this is "you know what? there should be 25% fewer MPs!") but these are headlines to grab attention for what are actually wonderful proper complicated thought-out policy packages (with stuff about direct party funding and good old PR, which I have always believed in) and Clegg is just far too much of a policy wonk to stay on message and keep it exciting and interesting for anyone except the rest of us geeks. Eddie Mair asks him questions and he just goes off on massive tangents and I just love him for it. All politicians should be like this, but what's actually going to happen is he's going to get ground down by image consultants until he is bland. Woe.
Also, BBC Parliament had a great 20-years-on programme about the road from the SDP/Liberal alliance to the formation of the Lib Dems a couple of weeks back that made me realise that there's probably all this informal social stuff still going on within the Lib Dems based on that that's completely opaque to those of us not steeped in the history of it. Like this whole Orange Book thing -- are the people who were involved in that coming from one particular tradition or another? And on the programme, one of the talking heads said that he hadn't realised for quite a while that Huhne and Clegg were each coming from a different tradition and such. It's like the way the only reason Buffy fandom used the term "evol" is that all the BNFs were from Homicide and stuff, only, you know, potentially more important.
I really ought to join the Lib Dems some time. *wistful sigh of apathy*
Also on that PM, at about 55m, snippets of interviews with American soldiers in Iraq that generally give me a whole lot of hope than I would have expected that to. Turns out travel broadens the mind.
Doctor Who etc.
I've got a paper copy of the IDW comic now, this whole "no imports" thing apparently having broken down completely or never been true or whatever, as there were a dozen or so in the shop completely openly. Of course, I'd already read it thanks to the magics of the Internetz. But I never felt guilty about it because I would have bought a copy if it had been available, and now that it is I have. (My personal attitude to copyright is very ruleslawyery, yus.)
Anyway, I can't remember who pointed it out (drakyndra on !OG, I think? But I'm probably wrong), but the driver of Ten and Martha's adventures in the comic is that they're in search of the perfect chocolate sundae, and this involves them eating one in Aztec times, which means they are engaged like One/Cameca! I totally believe this now. In fact, if you look at the whole three panel recap of their quest to date (dodgy online obtaining means never having to regret not having a scanner of your own):
Shippy. As. Hell. Look at the way they're looking at each other. Plus they're dressed up each time, which is always shippily significant in New Who, apparently. They totally followed through on the engagement by getting married in 1969. *nods*
Books wise, I finished Trading Futures and it was great fun but slight. I bet it would've felt mega-significant and full of Clues if I'd read it as soon as it came out. Anji was good in it, but it did feel like it was written to patch her characterisation and make people stop making her one or both of Evil Thatcherite and Weepy Over Dead Boyfriend Girl. Parkin's books (or at least the ones of his I've read so far, with the exception of Warlords of Utopia which as a fairly standalone FP job doesn't count for these purposes) always seem to have a huge Meta Agenda, and it doesn't always work very well for the book itself. I am now reading Revenge of the Judoon far too slowly, though I was very pleased with this at the very end of Chapter 3:
"You're not just sending me out of danger?" she asked suspiciously.
"I'm just worried I'm sending you into danger," said the Doctor. "At least I know what I'll be facing. You don't!"
Sums the whole thing where the saving-the-world is as important as the looking-good-doing-it for me, yes. Yay for Uncle Terry.
In the other big Who fandom news, I do not know what to make of the S4 finale spoilers. With the show on semi-hiatus for the year after, it feels like all bets are off. I can't see Rusty doing what people seem to think he's going to do though. And bringing back the villain that's apparently being brought back is fail. Having started off with a very successful not-a-reboot thing that was respectful of the show's past without slavishness to it, RTD seems to be at risk of turning into his own Ian Levine. (How's that for being needlessly inflammatory?)
Oh, and feel free to judge me (and I do agree with all the arguments you'd make in doing so) but I am on the anonymeme, I'm not ashamed, and I'm rather enjoying elements of it. It fulfils a social need that persistent-identity online-fandom fails badly at IMO since it only seems to operate at the two extremes of Cult of Nice and Permanent Flamewar. I really haven't said anything on there that I wouldn't say to a person in RL where I could use body language cues etc. to make sure I was doing it the right way. Plus it's generated two separate porn anon memes, which
(The fact that Talk Like Chantho always gets everyone going is lovely, but I wish there were enough people around who'd get it if I started going "GOOD FACT! BAD FACT!" in the manner of
Best. New Comics Day.
Serenity: Better Days #1 Hilariously, "my" Forbidden Planet has about as many copies of this as of all the other new comics combined. (It's not the same with the other Whedon comics. Browncoats must obviously be known to be massively batshit for any new Firefly-related stuff.) I wasn't expecting much from it, to be honest -- being shoehorned into the gap before the movie didn't strike me as the best possible choice, since Those Left Behind had already led straight into it -- but it's actually really, really good. The character stuff is spot on, with almost everyone getting a little moment (my favourite bit of course is Kaylee discussing her crush on Simon) and the trademark weird tilted dialogue is pitch perfect. The plotting is entertaining, too, nice and twisty without being hard to follow, and with a great final panel reveal that promises a really interesting chance to explore the crew in very different circumstances than we've ever seen them before. Now it's going to be five months before #2, isn't it?
Booster Gold and Blue Beetle #7 (That's what it says on the cover folks! I melted.) This is gorgeousness. Rescuing Ted has changed time and they are fighting OMACs while everything goes to shit because things didn't happen the way they were s'posed to, and they both get so many lovely moments and there is handholding and the creators are clearly completely in on the slash and OMGOMGOMG and there is all plottiness too and Hawkman/Green Arrow (OMG Ollie would never cheat on Hal) as well as Booster/Beetle and and and. Also, apparently their JLI stuff is coming out in hardcover (not in the UK yet, or at least not in my UK LCS) which I am going to have to buy, aren't I? Because I never knew their love was so pure until so recently.
Nova #11 and Annihilation: Conquest #5 These were both great, and the Phalanx and Ultron and all that make a lot more sense now, though I am still bored bored bored of the High Evolutionary and Adam Warlock. Quasar spends the entire A:C ish imprisoned providing commentary on this thread of the plot, which is no good at all, and I'm starting to think maybe Moondragon's not coming back after all. But maybe Phyla will get an ongoing out of it the same way Richard did. On the other hand, the Star-Lord team WIN COMPLETELY HERE IN EVERY SINGLE PANEL THEY ARE IN, and their win has been conspicuously lacking previously, so I will wait and see what happens when it all wraps up.
Comic Book Comics The history of comics as a comic. Unbelievably good. I've not read Action Philosophers for some reason, but I'm going to have to pick up the collections.
GLC #22 This almost made me like the Alpha Lanterns idea. Almost. The ish is nearly completely filled with close ups of warrior women types, which started to feel a bit exploitative, but I liked the way the plot worked and the Guardians were being good and IC dickish and the business of Zale recharging herself on her sister's power battery was winly because as we know I am a sucker for the oaths bits of GL. Also, yay, the last two pages picked up on the end of GL #28 so hopefully we're going there soon in GLC. What really wins about the Rainbow Lanterns thing is that it's such a perfect thing for comics to do, with the bold colours and all that, yes.
I read Endangered Species this week, too, now that it's out as a book, because it turns out I am still a sucker for the X Men and their big crossover events. It too suffered from having the High Evolutionary in it, though the tiny bit of Doc Strange was great.
Not appearing in this spampost
I'm behind on Torchwood despite the attraction of it being a PJ Hammond one (I've decided to re-synch myself with terrestrial now that Martha's gone for the sake of getting enough sleep, and I could do with an extra week to get the aftertaste of Something Borrowed out of my system) and as of tonight I'll be two weeks behind on Ashes to Ashes, and don't find myself caring that much. Mitchell and Webb are far preferable; it probably means I'm massively middle class that I like them as everyone seems to hate on them, but I love almost everything they do, most especially Numberwang which is so clearly Mornington Crescent with the serial numbers filed off. (I'm still taping A2A and will catch up at some point. But it's not compulsive the way LoM was.)
(Hmm. People on the flist seem to think PJ has done a shit one, judging by cut text and such. :( )
Anyone know when Big Love S2 is going to hit Five? Or have I already missed it months ago?