Unfavorable Characters-And Why I Like Them

So I was talking with some of my friends the other night about books, hospital of course, hospital because that’s seriously what we do ALL the time (I’m looking at you, Tatiana, Sylvia, Paulina, Megan and Gabby) and we started talking about City of Bones because Paulina is reading it for the first time. (I know, right? Sigh, at least she’s reading it now! Haha) She had already kind of started liking different characters and we were talking about that and I mentioned that my favorite TMI character, besides Jace Wayland (because we all know how I get about Jace Wayland) is Alec Lightwood.

And that started a discussion on the likability of Alec. I seemed to be the only person that really actually liked him. For the most part, there were negative comments about Alec. Its not that they didn’t like him; they just weren’t particularly fond of him. They said he was pompous, and mean and things like that. And they aren’t really wrong. But…I love Alec, and probably for those reasons. And I usually get a sort of incredulous reaction when I express how much I really love Alec.

That’s not really the first time that’s happened either. I tend to like characters that aren’t always the most favorable of characters. I love Alec Lightwood. My favorite HP character is Ron Weasley. I like James Potter, as well. Jessamine Lovelace from TID? Yeah, I liked her too. I liked Pippa Cross in A Great and Terrible Beauty and I actually really like Cersei Lannister from Game of Thrones (from what I know so far…). I also really like Draco Malfoy as well.

I also tend to get a lot of gasps and surprised looks when I say I don’t like a particular character, or that I’m not as obsessed with them as most people are. Like Severus Snape…I don’t like him, sorry. I don’t like him the way the fandom does. I think Alan Rickman is awesome but I’m just not a huge fan. Same with Dobby; that guy is SOOOO annoying, I can’t even handle it. I like Simon Lewis in TMI but I felt he was kind of a stereotypical character and I am not obsessed with him like most of the TMI fandom is. And so on.

So I started to think, why is it that I tend to like the characters that most people don’t pick as their favorite? Why do I tend to be very apathetic toward characters that people go insane over? I really started to think this over. And I came up with some reasons.

They are more realistic. 

Don’t get me wrong. I love Harry Potter. I love Hermione Granger and Jace Wayland and all of these characters but a lot of times, they aren’t the most realistic of characters. Now, don’t jump down my throat just yet. What I’m saying is, they are realistic, but they aren’t the MOST realistic characters of the novel. I prefer characters like Ron, Alec, Draco, James, Jessamine because I believe they tend to represent human nature a lot more than maybe we are aware of or what we want to admit.

Take Ron Weasley as an example.

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I think people like him for the most part, as part of the trio, but I don’t think people are overly fond of him. I know a ton of people who will bad mouth him to the end of time, and they usually bring up the way he acted with Harry in Goblet of Fire when his name is chosen, and then also in Deathly Hallows, when he leaves Hermione and Harry. And I can understand where they are coming from. You can sort of be frustrated and angry with Ron and the way he acts.

However, I think the way he reacts is the most realistic reaction of all of them. Harry Potter, Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley are all extraordinary characters, and they’re all wonderful, brave, fantastic characters. But come on, let’s be real. How many of us, actual seventeen/eighteen year olds would make the kind of sacrifices that they did? I mean, I’m sure there would be a good amount. I know that you tend to surprise yourself when put under extreme circumstances, but let’s face it, teenagers aren’t always prepared for these kind of situations. I think the fact that Ron is tired and hungry and irritable and frustrated is completely normal and expected. I would be. I don’t know how I would be if I was put in the kind of situations that they are. And when it comes to Goblet of Fire? We are all victims to the green monster of envy and jealousy and I think that Ron being angry at Harry is normal. I think its realistic. I think that its the most realistic and genuine reaction, in both of those situations.

They are more relatable. 

Again, don’t all start attacking me. Its not that I don’t think that these other characters aren’t relatable because they are! They totally are. There’s a reason they are the main characters and the ones that people remember. They are completely relatable. But I tend to find those disliked characters a little more relatable.

Let’s talk about Alec Lightwood for a moment.

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What I’ve seemed to notice about those who tend not to like Alec is that he’s pompous, proud, he’s irrational and emotional, and he can be mean, and he does something INCREDIBLY stupid in City of Lost Souls.  I’m not denying that; definitely not. But I can relate to Alec Lightwood so much, more so than probably any of the characters in that book because he is so REAL. He’s eighteen years old, and he’s gay, and he can’t really bring himself to admit that. Its hard enough for someone to come out as a normal teenager and even harder in a conservative, tight knit society that the Shadowhunters have created. Then he has Magnus and I think a lot of his growth in his self-esteem is hanging on that relationship. I think he feels more confident when he has Magnus‘s love.

And yes, obviously Magnus is an immortal being and has previous relationships and love in the past. We do know that, and I know that it is possible for you to love more than one person in your life. But again, Alec is not a very self-confident person and I’m sure hearing about Magnus’s previous loves, and coming face to face with one as manipulative as Camille has to be SO hard on him and his self-esteem. It doesn’t help that Magnus is very close-mouthed about his past. I know he thinks he’s doing Alec a favor by sparing him from details of a past that isn’t important anymore but I think it makes Alec feel worse, and it makes him have crazy, insecure thoughts because he’s insecure. I also think that he comes across as pompous and mean because of his insecurities, to cover up how he’s really feeling.

I know exactly how that feels. I know how scary it can be to come out to people; I know it was for me. I know what it is like to be so unbelievably insecure and lacking of confidence in yourself that you sabotage your relationship because again, I’ve been there. I’ve had the sort of insecurities that Alec does and if you’re already an emotional person, the way Alec is, you’re going to do things that are irrational. I think Alec is a very real and relatable character. I feel like people try to pretend that we don’t have insecurities like that, the ones that make us do those kinds of things, that make us do BAD, mean, or hurtful things. I think its realistic to have a character like Alec who is emotional and irrational and impulsive and making the wrong decisions and making mistakes and messing things up because we all do these sort of things. We all do the wrong things all the time, because we’re human and Alec is a very human character, which is why I love him so much.

They’re a lot like me?

Okay, I don’t mean this in a way to feel sorry for myself or any of that but I’m a book worm. And sure, that’s super cool now. Everyone seems to be reading now but for most of my life, especially through middle school and high school, I was teased hugely for spending most of my time with my nose in a book. And I’m kind of an intense person. I am emotional, impulsive, sometimes irrational and I just FEEL so much, you know? I’ve always been like that. And I’m a person that has never had a ton of friends all at one time. I’ve been unpopular.

So maybe I understand and connect with these characters more than the others because of their unpopularity? I understand their motives, I understand that their loneliness can sometimes make them do stupid things, or come across stupid.

Take Jessamine for instance, from The Infernal Devices. She’s lonely; she doesn’t fit in with the Shadowhunters and doesn’t feel that same pull, the same calling as the rest of them do. She wants to be normal, wants to have a normal life, to marry and have children and escape the life that she doesn’t belong to, not really. And yeah, she betrays people and she’s not a very nice person. But I can understand her motivations and I can understand why she did the things she did. I understand wanting something so badly that she was willing to do anything for that.

This also makes me think of Pippa Cross in A Great and Terrible Beauty, who is often called annoying, spoiled, impulsive, irrational, etc. I completely understand Pippa. She’s powerless, in ever way that she can be powerless. She is absolutely beautiful (okay, so that one isn’t exactly relatable haha) and she’s a tool her parents are using to get out of their debt. She isn’t valued for her mind, for the things she thinks, for her dreams and her wishes. She’s insecure and that makes her biting, mean, a bully. They say bullies tend to be incredibly insecure people. I think Pippa is afraid of not being heard, of being looked over and not feeling important. I know how that feels. I think she also feels like, even though she’s beautiful, she’s constantly in the shadow of Felicity because Felicity is clever and charming and dynamic. I DEFINITELY can understand that because I tend to find friends who are more outgoing and dynamic and more well-liked than I am. Which brings me to my last point.

I understand these characters.

When you really come and put all of these characters, it boils down to I understand them, and understanding them makes them more real, more natural and more genuine. I understand their motives and their emotions and why they make the decisions the do.

I understand Alec. I understand that he is insecure and that he’s impulsive and he’s a teenager with raging emotions and it makes him irrational. I understand the mistakes one can make when they have that kind of personality and those kind of insecure thoughts. Like I said, been there, done that. I’ve made incredibly stupid decisions like Alec, sabotaged my friendships and relationships.

I understand Jessamine, wanting something so badly that you would do anything for it, even hurt those who have only your best interests at heart because you are so focused on that goal that its so hard to pay attention to something else.

I understand Ron Weasley, because I know what its like to be in others’ shadows and to feel like you’re constantly second best to someone else. I know that I could probably not handle a situation like being on the run, trying to take on the biggest villain of all time as well as Hermione and Harry. I would probably be like Ron, I would feel discouraged and hungry and angry and frustrated and hopeless. I would.

I understand Draco Malfoy, who I believe is a product of his environment, a kid who only knows what his father has taught him and I believe that he eventually realizes what he has done is wrong. I believe he is a kid that makes the wrong decisions but changes things before he and his conscience and his soul can be lost forever to evil. I feel sorry for him, and I have fantasies that he became a better and happier person after the war, after he comes to terms with the mistakes that he made and learned from them.

I also understand Cersei Lannister. Okay, not the whole, I’m in love with my brother thing because that’s kind of gross. But I understand that she was basically forced to marry someone that she didn’t love and that she was used, abused and disrespected and that would make any self-respecting woman angry. And all she wants to do is protect her children. Sure, she doesn’t quite go about it in the BEST way possible but I do understand. Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. Cersei was scorned BIG time and I can understand her anger, her need for…revenge and to get what she feels she has earned.

Lastly, I also like James Potter, and besides just the fact that he’s Harry’s dad and without him, we wouldn’t have Harry. I think he was a great man and a great person. I think he had a big head, and was pompous and spoiled and a bully when he was a child because of the environment he grew up in, where he was spoiled and adored by his parents. But I don’t think he was a terrible person and I think he grew up to be a great man, who learned from his mistakes and changed who he was, and became the man that everyone talked about to  Harry.

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So okay, maybe you don’t agree with me. Maybe you still think I’m crazy and I like the weirdest characters and what is wrong with you and all of that and that’s okay! I have read blog posts and articles about those characters that I don’t like, like Snape, and I’ve understood but I haven’t agreed and I’m sure you have done the same.

But that’s just the way I feel. I like those secondary characters that not as many people like. I like those underdog characters that don’t always make the right decisions or say the right things because they are the most real to me, and they are the characters that jump off the page to me.

I am not a perfect person, and I’m okay with that. I come to terms with myself and my personality more and more each day but I’ve been insecure and emotional and impulsive and stupid and annoying and I’ve been mean and I’ve been prideful. So I understand these characters and I understand that sometimes you do the wrong things and say the wrong things and you’re not liked and you lose friends and boyfriends and loved ones and you’re not popular and you’re alone. I recognize that.

I think that so many of these popular characters go through the same things. I do believe that, but I do believe that they tend to do these things in a way that can be admired, or make them to be a struggling hero or a martyr or that sort of thing. I think they often times end up making the right decisions and that they have these redeeming qualities that are more obvious than their flaws. I think these other characters, their flaws are more obvious than their good qualities because their flaws cause problems in the stories.

But I see these characters for their good and their bad and I saw their genuineness and I love them for that. So I’ll stick to liking those characters that may not be as popular as the others. Even if I have to continually defend them, because I like them for a reason, for many reasons, and that’s all that matters right? These characters are real to me, and therefore feel like real friends to me, real people that I know.

So what do you think? What are some characters that you like that some people don’t really agree with? As always, share in the comments. I love to hear from you guys!

The 2nd Annual Harry Potter Roller Skating Night!

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For those of you who do not know (which is probably good chunk of you!), mind I am part of one of the BEST groups EVER in the history of all groups: The Los Angeles Dumbledore’s Army. We are a 21-and over Los Angeles/Southern California based Harry Potter group. I joined in October of 2011 and have had some of the BEST times with them. So many people associate Harry Potter with children but what they fail to realize is that the kids that read Harry Potter when it first came out (like me), are adults now! And there isn’t much out there geared toward us adults…so voila, the LADA! The group has existed for five years now and has put on some seriously cool events, like Avengers de Mayo (a HUGE party where we went and saw the Avengers and ate superhero themed food and superhero games) and a Hunger Games Capitol party to celebrate the release of Hunger Games last month. We’ve had Quidditch picnics, HP birthday teas, game nights, pub night and pub crawls, Triwizard tournaments, beach days and so much.

But a HUGE event for us is the Harry Potter Roller Skating Night. We held out first one last April, in 2012, and over 650 people showed up! It was fantastic! So, of course, we had to do it again this year, and yesterday, we partied hard at the Moonlight Rollerway in Glendale.

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And it was a blast once again! I got my Ravenclaw tie out, put my Ravenclaw bow in, tied on my super awesome Ravenclaw tutu and prepared myself for a seriously awesome night of Harry Potter fun.

There were raffle prizes, and every person who paid to come, whether they were a spectator or a skater, was automatically entered in the raffle. Prizes included all kinds of handmade Harry Potter merch, like bows, cat toys, earrings, Harry Potter candy, and more.

There was a ton of music to skate and dance to, from music familar to us Potterheads from the movies to some Wizard Wrock favorites to top 40 Muggle hits as well. Even though I chose to skip out on the skating this year (last year, I could barely move for days…wasn’t really anxious to do that again haha), I had fun, hanging out with all my friends, and dancing around in my tutu, which got a TON of compliments. Here’s a picture of me, in my tutu.

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If you’re interested in purchasing a super awesome tutu like this (in ANY colors, though I do have a ton of Ravenclaw colors left), please leave a comment below or email me at whatanerdgirlsays@gmail.com!

There was also a TON of other super cool stuff to buy as well, like BUTTERBEER!

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If you’ve never tried Butterbeer, you are TOTALLY missing out! Its delicious stuff. You can buy it in the bottle by Flying Cauldron here on Amazon.

You could also buy a TON of handmade Harry Potter stuff as well!

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This is Miss Tanya, who runs Heroine Habit on Etsy, where she makes all kinds of nerdy themed bows (or any bows, really, she’ll make custom orders!). Here is an example of some of the bows she was selling last night. Also, in the picture above, I’m wearing a Ravenclaw bow she made!

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She also just custom made me an Angels bow for me to rock at the baseball games!

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Definitely check out her store, she has some of the CUTEST bows and headbands :)

Also rocking the vendor tables at Harry Potter Roller Skate Night was SuzAnne and her super AWESOME Sugar Dukes Magical Sweets candy.

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She makes Harry Potter themed candy, and trust me, its delicious stuff. She gave me a Dill Pickle Barrel, basically a root beer barrel but in the flavor of a pickle. Okay, I know that sounds crazy, right? But it was actually SUPER delicious. Here is some of the stuff she was selling last night:

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DELICIOUS stuff, check out her Facebook page here to find out when or where or how you can get your hands on some :)

Also, the Los Angeles Dumbledore’s Army was selling some stuff of our own. Last Saturday, we had a massive craft day and made ALL kinds of Harry Potter wares for the event.

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Yup, thats a Harry Potter pillow :) I helped to make these, and by helped, I mean I ironed and helped pin and stuffed! But hey, I helped!

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We also had a ton of handmade stuff as well, like crocheted little bags in house colors, crocheted hair bows and hair ties. We had house themed earrings and nerdy doggie collars and cat bandanas. We even had SERIOUSLY awesome Harry Potter cat toys (which were tested and approved by my friend Kendall’s cat, Lucius). If you guys are interested in any of these, send a message my way, comment below, and I’ll let you know how to get your hands on them!

Also my mom was there as well, showing off her new dolls as well.

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She’s also made Ginny, Neville, Fred and George, and more. She’s also working on making some Doctor Who ones, Hunger Games, Mortal Instruments, etc. and she’s willing to take CUSTOM orders as well, so check out her facebook page, Ellie’s Quirky CreationsHERE.

Oh yeah! There was also SKATING TOO!

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It was SO hard to get a clear picture because there were SO many many many people and ya’ll were skating SO fast! But there were a TON of people there, and everyone looked like they were having a great time. There were great costumes: a seriously intimidating Death Eater, a couple cute Hedwigs going around, an entire posse of A Very Potter Musical kids, Sirius Black and tons of people rocking the good ‘ol Hogwarts ties.

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A Very Potter Musical people completely with Ron Weasley, Voldemort, Draco Malfoy, Ginny Weasley, Hermione Granger and supermegafoxyawesaomehot Harry Potter :)

Lastly, we had a *secret* special guest, miss Ellie Darcy-Alden, who plays young Lily Evans in Deathly Hallows Part 2. She also had a part in the Doctor Who Christmas Special, The Snowmen. She was a super lovely and sweet girl, and looked like she had a great time as well :)

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All in all, it was a GREAT night and I’m sure everyone who attended had a great time, because it looked like they all had a fun time :) I can’t wait til next year ;)

Much thanks goes out to Miss Adrienne, the leader of our group, and to everyone who helped to put this together (hey, that includes me too!). It was a great event and I can’t wait to do it all again next year :)

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A Very Potter Senior Year Finally Comes Out!

I will warn you before you read: this review is VERY VERY VERY Spoiler-Free :D Enjoy!

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After what seems like a million years, this web Team Starkid finally released their newest musical, more about and the end of the Potter musical franchise. I discovered Starkid about three years ago, sildenafil in about May of 2010, right after A Very Potter Sequel came out. I had just been dumped, BIG time, and I needed a distraction. I had seen this “A Very Potter Musical” thing all over the place; MuggleNet talked about it all the time and people who knew I was (am) a HUGE Potter fan kept suggesting it to me.

And I seriously fell in love with it. Its hilarious!

I know there are a ton of people out there who don’t like Team Starkid, or the musicals, or even just the people involved. And I can see that. The way I have always seen it: you either love it or you hate it.

I definitely love it. I love musicals anyway, of all shapes and sizes, no matter how cheesy they are. I mean, I love the High School Musical trilogy. I LOVE musicals. And someone out there decided to put together a Harry Potter musical? It was a win for me, and it was really important to me during the time that I found it. I think I watched AVPM and AVPS a thousand times during that time period; it really…it really helped distract me and make me happy during a rough time.

So I became a big Starkid fan. I’ve also enjoyed their other musicals as well: Me and My Dick, Starship and Holy Musical B@man!

So when I heard they were FINALLY going to be doing A Very Potter Senior Year…I was really excited. Sad that they would only being doing it at Leaky Con 2012 and there was no way I’d be able to make it. Then when they announced they’d be filming it and screening it on YouTube like they do allll their videos, my excitement grew alllll the way back up again.

And then I heard that basically it would just be a read-through of the script.

Doesn’t that sound boring? I thought, well, that sucks. I mean, I get it. They *actually* got Darren Criss to come back and play Harry Potter and he’s a busy man, and probably wouldn’t have the time to really rehearse the play the way they do with the other musicals. I totally get it.

But it was so much more than I had expected it to be.

First off, the cast? They got EVERYONE to come back, seriously. Darren Criss, Joey Richter, Meredith Stepien, Jaime Lyn Beatty, Lauren Lopez, Joe Walker, A.J. Holmes, Dylan Saunders, Brian Holden, Brian Rosenthal, Nick Strauss, Joe Moses, Britney Coleman, Jeff Blim, Tyler Brunsman, Devin Lytle, Richard Campbell, Nick Lang, Sango Tajima, Jim Povolo, Lily Marks, Arielle Goldman, Corey Dorris, Denise Donovan, Elona Finlay, Chris Allen, Brant Cox, Alle-Faye Monka…almost everyone who has ever been in a Starkid musical, or production, was part of this and that was a big part of why it rocked so hard. Everyone that you’ve come to know and love came back, and become a part of this.

I mean, seeing Devin Lytle as Cho Chang again…or Brian Holden as naked Lupin, Jim Povolo as Goyle, Richard Campbell as Neville, Jaime as Ginny Weasley, Lily Marks as Mrs. Weasley…and then people like Alle-Faye Monka from Me and My Dick becoming part of the Harry Potter musical awesomeness…and Chris Allen from Holy Musical B@man.

AND Ms. Evanna Lynch, the beautiful and talented actress who played Luna Lovegood in the Harry Potter movies, turned up to play Luna in A Very Potter Senior Year.

I don’t want to give away too much, because I want you all to enjoy it.

I will tell you that its senior year, and now that Harry has defeated Voldemort, he just doesn’t really know what to do with his life anymore. He isn’t quite as cool as he used to be, with no one to save, and now he’s desperate to gain some of that fame back. Enter some familiar characters and some characters we haven’t seen before (McGonagall, Hagrid, Mad Eye Moody, Shacklebolt, to name a few, and we are so ready for an amazing musical.

All the new songs are super great, and they even throw in some old, very familar, and very much loved Starkid songs to build up alllll that nostalgia. Of course, there were mistakes and everyone was carrying their script around, but there were all the costumes, and everyone did a great job. I truly, truly enjoyed it.

And it was hilarious. So many amazing jokes and my sister peeked into my room a couple times to see what the heck I was laughing at.

Plus it was a very nice way to wrap up and end the Potter musical franchise. Obviously Team Starkid is still working on other things; they showed a few “commercials” during the musical. But its time to put away the Potter, the same way the books had to end, the musicals had to as well and I think they did a great job with that. Plus it was a nice way for Darren to say goodbye as well. He’s breaking out on his own now, he’s a HIT star on Glee and he’s been on Broadway. Joey Richter is breaking out in the business too, appearing on Jessie on the Disney channel and Glee as well. They’re all growing up, and it was a badass and fun way to end the musicals.

For those of you who would like to watch the musical, the first part is right here for you:

Also, coming up for Starkid: an Aladdin musical about Jafar called Twisted and a graphic novel. SO EXCITED!

What did you guys think of A Very Potter Senior Year? As always, let me know in the comments.

Book to Movie Transitions

Today, sildenafil my friends, I’m going to complain a little bit. I saw this picture online and it made me laugh.

And the fact is, They are not wrong. I would seriously sit through a six hour Harry Potter movie if they put more details. I definitely would. And yeah, I probably would still complain about what they left out. It just got me to thinking. How many times do we go to movies to see the adaptation of our favorite books and come out feeling disappointed? How often do we come out actually feeling satisfied?

Now, I’m not going to be the first one to say that there are no arguments…the book is always, always, always, better than the movie. Always. (Except Chronicles of Narnia but that’s a whole ‘nother story).

Example number one, Harry Potter. Now, if I sit and watch the movies, I have an enjoyable time. I like the movies. I like actually seeing Hogwarts and seeing magic and the uniforms and the classes and Quidditch and its awesome. Seeing Hogwarts gets me teary-eyed every single time. Hogwarts is my home.

But there are sooooo many things that drives me insane. I could go on for pages and pages and pages about the things that are missing. They completely left out the Marauders and the importance of them in Prisoner of Azkaban. They butcher the crap out of Goblet of Fire (don’t get me started on GoF) and they don’t even get into the story of Barty Crouch Jr. (More David Tennant on screen time? I’m down). In Half Blood Prince, where the heck are all the memories, explaining all of Voldemort’s past! Where are the explanations of what the actual Horcruxes are? And in Deathly Hallows, how bout we actually talk about the DEATHLY HALLOWS! We have that awesome animated scene of the Tale of Three Brothers, and there is no ending for the Hallows at all.

But the movies aren’t all bad. Definitely not. I love them, I waited in line for the midnight showings, cried when everyone died (except Dobby…I just don’t like Dobby) and cried my bloody eyes out when Harry uses the Resurrection stone to see James, Lily, Sirius and Lupin. WATERWORKS. The Feels!!!!

And how bout Percy Jackson? Now, I enjoy the movie; its entertaining. But damn, did they butcher The Lightning Thief. For one thing, Logan Lerman plays Percy at, what, 16? Percy should be 12. And even though Logan Lerman is a very very good looking boy, that part kind of bothered me. The girl who played Annabeth was a brunette. Poseidon didn’t claim Percy during the Capture the Flag game. There’s a lot in that movie that drives me absolutely insane. I’m not a big fan of the guy who plays Grover and Pierce Brosnan as Chiron? Ugh ugh.

Both adaptations of Meg Cabot books are HORRIBLE. Princess Diaries and Avalon High, ugh, ugh, ugh. Princess Diaries just doesn’t capture Meg’s voice. Those books are written in diary form and its all about Mia’s voice and how she sees the world around her. Its so funny and sarcastic and amazing and the movie just doesn’t capture that at all. And they marry her off to some random dude, when all us Cabot fans know that she is meant to be with Michael Moscovitz. Ugh. And Avalon High. There was so much wrong with that movie. The very fact that they made Allie (who’s name is supposed to be Ellie!) to be the King Arthur incarnate was just dumb as hell. She’s the Lady of the Lake, and Will is King Arthur. Read a book! Those movies I can’t even watch because of how much they were butchered.

There are movies that are okay adaptations. I liked Hunger Games, I think they followed the story pretty well and I liked most of the actors. I wasn’t really feeling Lenny Kravitz as Cinna but he was great as Cinna. Woody Haralson nailed it on the head with Haymitch. I even liked the three leads for Katniss, Gale and Peeta. Elizabeth Banks for Effie. Not stoked on Donald Sutherland for President Snow but it worked. But I think they failed to capture the characters themselves. We didn’t get to see Katniss and the kind of stubbornness she had and the love she felt for Prim, the frustration with her mother, her debts to Peeta and Gale. The importance of the Mockingjay was forgotten. But the movie was good. I think they got enough of it to make it very enjoyable.

But then there’s Howl’s Moving Castle. Howl’s is soooo much different from the book, oh my goodness. But the movie captures the essence of the book and its an amazing movie. It captures that connection between Howl and Sophie and it captures the magical essence to it. This is a great example of an adaptation.

I also find the more classic movies to be really good adaptations. To Kill a Mockingbird is an AMAZING transition and definitely one of my favorites. Every time I watch that movie…ohmyRowling. Its so fantastic. I mean, my dog’s name is Scout for a reason. Gregory Peck captures the very essence of that novel. He IS that movie.

One of my favorite movies of all time is Gone with the Wind, which is a great movie. Gone with the Wind is an extremely long book and it would be so insanely hard to get everything that’s in that book in the movie. It would be impossible. But they got all the important things and they captured the essence of the film. That was the most important. Vivian Leigh made a great Scarlett O’Hara and Clark Gable is one fine looking Rhett Butler.

I’m nervous about the upcoming movie adaptations. I’m a little nervous about The Hobbit (though, come on, Peter Jackson killed it with Lord of the Rings…GREAT movies), The Great Gatsby, Percy Jackson’s Sea of Monsters, and the Mortal Instruments’ City of Bones. I’m sure some of them will be good and some of them will be bad. But I’ll go out and see every single one of them.

I guess my point is, the more movies that are made, the more we’re going to get angry and frustrated and have complaints. We’re always going to find something wrong with it. We’re never going to be happy with a movie adaptation of a book, never. But here’s the thing, that’s almost a good thing. Sure, we can go to the movies and enjoy it. But we’re always going to want to come home and reread that book that made us happy beyond belief. We’re going to want to experience things they way the author meant them too.

So I like movies, and I like movie adaptions and I’ll continue to go see them. And trust me, I’ll continue to find things wrong with them. But I guess that’s what makes books so awesome. There’s just nothing better than escaping into a book.

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Top Twelve Fictional Places (Oh Why Can’t They Exist?!)

Some of the best things about all these fandoms I’m obsessed with are the awesome worlds that come along with them. I think that’s partly what makes some of these fandoms so damn awesome: the fact that they’re taking place in some mystical, fictional place where amazing things happen. There are so many fictional worlds out there that I wish really existed and there are definitely places that I wish existed. So, of course, I created a list. I had to. I love lists :D and what a better list than one describing all of my favorite fictional places!

WhataNerdGirlSays’ Top 12 Fictional Places 

12. Pokemon World (Kanto, Johto, Etc). 

Pokemon Blue, Yellow and Red are my favorite video games of all time. They were really the first video games that I got into. I adored the show, I collected the cards, I played the game. Of course I did. To this day, I still love watching the show and playing the game (not so much the cards, I just never could understand it haha). I love the world of Kanto. For one thing, you’re ten years old and you’re ready to leave home and go on an awesome adventure. I don’t think I was old enough to walk home from school when I was ten years old! Then there’s all the awesome people, the pokemon, the training, the cool places to go, the battles, and so on. I wish this place was real! I could totally train pokemon! That or I’d just catch them all and stare at them all day because they’re so damn cute.

11. The Kingdom in Howl’s Moving Castle

“In the land of Ingary where such things as seven-league boots and cloaks of invisibility really exist…”

This mostly comes from Hayao Miyazaki and the Studio Ghibli team. They do an amazing job in all of their movies; their animation is stunning and the artwork is beautiful. This is what makes me want to live in Howl and Sophie’s world, known as Ingary in the books. I don’t know that they ever call it by anything in the movies but its called Ingary in the books. Yeah, the kingdoms are a little screwed up in their pointless war, but once that’s all done, I feel like it’d be an awesome place to live. The city where the palace is located is bustling and busy and so fantastically metropolitan. Then there’s the beach front town where Howl’s other shop is located where there’s the vast ocean and street market. Plus there’s magic and fancy clothes and it’d be so fun to do all of that. Oh yeah, and I want a fire demon named Calcifer, voiced by Billy Crystal.

10. Hundred Acre Wood

“Wherever they go, and whatever happens to them on the way, in that enchanted place on the top of the forest, a little boy and his Bear will always be playing.”

 I have a completely unhealthy obsession with Winnie the Pooh for a fangirl of twenty-four. I ADORE Winnie the Pooh. I love the old A.A. Milne stories and I can’t get enough of the Disney adaptations. I will sit on that ride over and over again at DisneyLand and you can catch me singing various songs from the movies at any point in time. Is it no wonder that I think it would absolutely and totally brilliant to live in the Hundred Acre Wood. When I think of the Hundred Acre Wood, I think of childhood. It represents childhood so much; think of the last original Disney movie where Christopher Robin leaves the forest to grow up and go to school. And who doesn’t want to revisit their childhood when it involves adventures with a silly ‘ol bear and a nervous little piglet and a gloomy donkey and a bouncy tigger? I know this girl does.

8. Rivendell/the Shire

“Do you remember the Shire, Mr. Frodo? It’ll be spring soon. And the orchards will be in blossom. And the birds will be nesting in the hazel thicket. And they’ll be sowing the summer barley in the lower fields… and eating the first of the strawberries with cream. Do you remember the taste of strawberries?”

I’d like to say that I would love to just live in Middle Earth, but besides Rivendell and the Shire, Middle Earth kind of scares me, even after its saved. It’s so vast and unknown and there are so many creatures of unknown out there and it seems so dangerous. I like to stick close to home. Hobbits don’t stray to far from home, and some people may not like that much, but I don’t think there’s much harm in that. Of course, I want adventures and fun, but in the end, I love coming home. And the Shire is a quaint little countryside home that is perfect for those Hobbits. Besides, I would fit in sooooo well with Hobbits. And there’s Rivendell, where the lure is just the beauty and mysteriousness of it. Elves are such a mystery, even after all the encounters you have with them. They’re gorgeous (hello, Orlando Bloom in a wig. Hubba hubba). There is something very magical about Rivendell.

8. The Burrow

 

“It’s not much, but its home.”

I am part of a big family. I so know what its like to be a Weasley. There are seven kids in the Weasley family and there are six in my family. I think this is partly why Ron is one of my favorite characters; I can totally relate on the whole big family thing. That being said, the Burrow just sounds like everything I could’ve ever wanted in a home. It has the family together in once place, being a family together. It doesn’t have a forced feeling. It’s a real home, with messes in the rooms and the gardens, and homemade blankets and sweaters all over the place and a homemade dinner every night. Even though the Weasleys are poor, they have the Burrow and the Burrow is their home. It feels like a home. Its where their family gathers to be TOGETHER. Its where Harry gets his real, first experience on what its like to have a home and a family. And that fact that it’s a hodgepodge of rooms and additions makes it that much better. Like everything else Weasley, it’s a little crooked, a little out of place, but perfect in every way.

7. Narnia

“I have come home at last! This is my real country! I belong here. This is the land I have been looking for all my life, though I never knew it till now…Come further up, come further in!”

Now I’ve probably said it about a million times already, but I mean MOVIE Narnia, not book Narnia. My quote is from the books, and don’t get me wrong, I do like the books but well that’s a whole ‘nother blog post. I like the idea of Narnia, as this secret place that the Pevensies escape to and its where they belong and where they are able to become themselves. If the Hundred Acre Wood was childhood, Narnia is that middle ground, where a child becomes an adult. All the sons of Adam and daughters of Eve that pass into Narnia give to Narnia…but Narnia gives them just as much back. I like the idea of being able to find a secret, magical land in the back of a wardrobe where I’m going to have adventures and learn more about myself and the world.

6. Tortall

 

“Does anyone in this land act like they’re supposed to?”

The quote itself explains it. Tortall is a land of its own, where things happen that seem so out of the ordinary. The King’s Champion is a woman, one of the most powerful mages in all the world is a woman, there’s woman fighting, there’s schools for the lower classes, there’s so much. Tortall has everything a fangirl could need with knights and mages and fantastic creatures and all of that, but it’s so revolutionary at the same time. It shows equality and tolerance. It promotes the idea of educating your population, all of it. It has a king and queen, who get to know their people, who act like normal people. Girls are amazing in Tortall; they’re clever and ambitious and powerful, just as they are in the real world. I would live in Tortall, easily. I could become a female knight or a mage (if I had the Gift) or a scholar or a Queen’s Riders or join the King’s Own. Tortall represents a sort of crazy wishful world, an example of what we should be. It’s not perfect but its near enough and King Jonathan and Queen Thayet work their butts off to make it so.

5. Time and Space in The Tardis

 

“Think you’ve seen it all? Think again. Outside those doors, we might see anything. We could find new worlds, terrifying monsters, impossible things. And if you come with me… nothing will ever be the same again!”

The Doctor has a way of pulling you, making you want to go with him, even though its dangerous. And it IS dangerous. The Doctor gets himself into crazy, insane, dangerous situations where your life, his life, a species life, the universe is at stake. And yet, you see amazing things as well. There’s a reason that his companions are so enamored with him; there’s a reason they’re so attached and they find it nearly impossible to leave. The Doctor gives you the entire universe, a life that is amazing and unique and different every single time. You literally have the entire universe in the palm of your hand. Anywhere in time and space.You can go anywhere you’d want to go. I couldn’t even begin to make a list of the places I wished to see. I wish that the Doctor’s world existed. I wish he existed and he’d take me along with him.

4. Camp Half-Blood

“Keeping Young Heroes Safe from Harm (Mostly) For Over Three Millennia”

I’ve been absolutely obsessed with Greek mythology for a good chunk of my life. It’s fun and it’s interesting. It was the religion of these people; these tales were what they used to explain everything, whether it was to do with the body, or the nature or anything. I remember wanting to name my cat “Artemis” once and everyone made fun of me. It took me awhile before reading the Percy Jackson series because I thought of it as a little kids’ series. Mistake one. Harry Potter is a kids series and I ADORE it. And I adore Percy as well. How cool to be a demigod, with a god or goddess as a parent (though in the book, they all seem pissed at their parents) and to have cool powers and save the world. Camp Half-Blood sounds so COOL. I wish I could live there. Its like all my obsession with Greek mythology come to life! Obviously I couldn’t be a daughter of Artemis, even though she was always my favorite, but I’d imagine being a daughter of Athena. Athena seems like a good Ravenclaw counterpart.

3. The Galaxy

“For my ally is the Force, and a powerful ally it is. Life creates it, makes it grow. Its energy surrounds us and binds us. Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter. You must feel the Force around you; here, between you, me, the tree, the rock, everywhere, yes”

I want to be a Jedi. I want to live in the Star Wars universe. I want a lightsaber and a blaster. I want to be Princess Leia. I want to rip Han Solo’s clothes off. I want to fly an X-wing or the Millenium Falcon. I want to race pod-racers. I want to save the galaxy. I want to live by the Force and battle the Dark side. I want to be part of the Rebel Alliance. George Lucas created a wonderful, vast, epic world and who wouldn’t want to be a part of it? The fact that the first movie came out in 1977, over thirty years ago, and still enjoys a crazy popularity just shows how captivating this world is. It has those classic elements of a typical fantasy, with the princess and the “knight in shining armor” with the swords (lightsabers) and the evil empire taking over. It has a magical component, it has the wide old man and the loyal retainers. And yet it is set in this badass science fiction world. Its the best of both.

2. Idris 

“To a Shadowhunter, Idris is always home.” 

Shadowhunters are humans who have angel blood and spend their lives fighting demons, and keeping the earth safe from demons. There are Shadowhunters stationed all across the world to keep it safe but their home is the country of Idris, and its capital city, the glass city, Alicante. It is described in the books as the sort of Jerusalem for Shadowhunters. I want to be part of this world and live in Alicante because I want to be a Shadowhunter and marry Jace Lightwood. I’m half-way kidding with that.There’s something intriguing about a glass city where the world’s most powerful warriors and protectors live.

1. Hogwarts

“Whether you come back by page or by the big screen, Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home.”

“Hogwarts was the first and best home he had known. He and Voldemort and Snape, the abandoned boys, had all found home here. ” 

How much do I really have to explain about this? Hogwarts is my home just as much as it was to Harry and Snape and Tom Riddle. It was the first time I ever felt like I was a part of something. I learned the meaning of good and evil, right and wrong, the meaning of friendship, of love, of bravery, of tolerance, of courage, of happiness and sadness, of gain and loss. I get teared up just thinking about it, just reading those quotes by Queen Rowling. There is nothing in this world that has touched me or changed me like these books have. How could I not want to go to Hogwarts? Its enchanting, and mysterious, and fun and wonderful. It’s every good word that is out there. There is no fictional place in the world of movies and books that I wish was real like Hogwarts. Its real for us. It will always be real for us. Always.

So that’s my list of favorite fictional places. I’m sure there’s about a hundred more that you all are thinking of so share them in the comments! You know I always love hearing from you :D

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