So I got this email from a vendor that I have done business with, advertising a huge font package for a low price, and I open the email and take a look because I am a typeface junkie. (NOTE: junkie, not nerd. This means that I don't actually know all the history or proper and improper usages and all that stuff that the typeface nerds know -- which, honestly, I find kind of fascinating from time to time. "Junkie" means that I have admitted that I am powerless in the Face of Fonts, but having admitted my powerlessness, I now am occasionally able to resist. Also, once you get beyond a certain point, it slows your system so much and so massively inflates the RAM it uses that it's just not worth it. But I digress.)

Anyway, I'm looking through the list of fonts, and one of them is ... Falkencrest. And I am immediately taken back to an earlier day and time. A simpler time. A time when evening soaps ruled the televisual landscape. A time when people actually watched television on Fridays, and you could get a top ten rated show anchoring your Friday lineup. A time of over-the-top excess, bitchiness triumphant, and shoulder pads that could decapitate a roomful of people. A time when a two-minute long (or longer, in some cases) credit sequence was not at all unusual, and wind instruments ruled the credits auditory landscape.

(And, in case you were wondering, "Falkencrest" the font kinda sorta vaguely looks like it might have been in the same family with the type used in the "Falcon Crest" credits, but then they decided that they weren't speaking any more and went their own separate ways. You can see it in the second section of fonts, under "PLUS, 25 new font families added..." on this page)

I didn't even know I remembered this show at all, let alone the credits, until that weird earworm got triggered.

Interesting to see how people cycle in and out of prominence, if that's the right word. I mean, Jane Wyman has every reason not to be working these days, what with having been dead for a few years. Everyone else in that cast is still around, I think, and still relatively hale and hearty, but I haven't heard of most of them in years. Susan Sullivan is playing Nathan Fillion's mother on "Castle" (I still can't quite wrap my mind around the concept that she's old enough for that -- then again, according to IMDB, she's easily old enough to be MY mother, so she looks very good for her age). Lorenzo Lamas is doing ... stuff. (Seriously, I have no idea what most of the things on his IMDB page are, with the exception of the voice of Meap on "Phineas and Ferb". This also means that he spends about two thirds of his time on that show saying "Meap!" in a very high pitched voice that I wouldn't think he could manage without someone doing something very unkind to his nethers.) William (formerly "Billy") Moses has been doing a lot of one-off guest shots, and a few longer term things here and there. David Selby has also done a lot of one-offs and guest shots since Falcon Crest. Jamie Rose, the same, apart from a brief one-season stint on "In2ition" (series canceled after 9 episodes). And so on.

When I went to IMDB to check out the cast and see who's doing what now, this popped up, fresh out of the TV news today:

'Falcon Crest' reboot in the works, according to former stars

As bob is my witless, I swear that I had no idea about that before today, until after I started this entry.

I must admit, I'm kind of astonished. First, Falcon Crest was generally fourth among equals, shall we say. Dynasty and Dallas duked it out for the top (sometimes with actual duking and actual dukage), the Dallas spinoff "Knots Landing" generally seemed to be third, and then Falcon Crest was fourth. Mind, still a top-ten or top-fifteen rated show kind of fourth, but still fourth. And it never had the sort of over-the-top characters that grabbed the imagination or attention like Joan Collins' Alexis Carrington from Dynasty or Larry Hagman's JR from Dallas. Jane Wyman's Angela was properly conniving and somewhat self-serving, true, but she really did generally tend to do things she thought were for the good of her family, as opposed to herself. They just happened to be sort of ... incidentally evil, maybe? Not necessarily done with malice aforethought -- although if malice came into it, that was a nice little lagniappe.

Susan Sullivan says that if her character is involved, it would be as a ghost in the minds of others, since her character was killed off during the series. The problem with that, one would think, is that she's now 30 years older. People who are ghosts in your mind don't age; they stay as they were when you last saw them, for better or worse. So I'm by way of thinking that unless they get archive footage and stick new soundtracks on it, her participation might be deeply problematic.

It is truly weird that these quintessential 80s soaps are experiencing a revival these days. At the time, they were all about the celebration (and occasional bringing-down) of wretched excess -- with roughly equal emphasis on both the "wretched" and the "excess". Most of the people had tons of money, but weren't at all happy. And the people without money were usually involved in revenge schemes against the wealthy people they thought had kept them from being wealthy. Nobody got to be happy for more than an episode or two. And now we're in the lingering aftermath of the Great Recession (and toying with a Greater Recession, thanks to politics), and ... well, it seems like the sort of thing that would go over like a lead balloon. Particularly tone-deaf, in a way. And yet, the revival of "Dallas" seems to be popular.

Strange. Really, very strange.
Via Col.

media relations / fear of an ... archie comics book? really? REALLY? / 2012 february 29


So here's what Archie Comics gets for being the most progressive and interesting comics company today: a threatened boycott for one of its vendors.

[...] You want to know the really funny thing about this? The issue that they're targeting -- the one with not one but TWO gay weddings! (or one done twice, depending on how you view things) -- is over two months old. Life with Archie only comes out once every two months. Issue 16 has already been largely replaced on shelves by issue 17. (In which Veronica -- the version married to Archie -- pretty much loses her freakin' mind, and Mr. Lodge -- both of him -- turns out to be much more than you'd expect. Oh, and then there's the X-Files thing. And anyone who didn't know it finds out Jughead's real name. And both continuities come to a crossroads that DC only wishes it could have managed as well in "Flashpoint". But that's all rather beside the point.) ...

[...] I've said it before and I'll say it again: I think Life with Archie is one of the best, if possibly not the best, titles being published in comics today. They manage to combine the melodrama with a somewhat realistic depiction of the sorts of things that young people go through today -- the Great Recession, although not mentioned as such, has not left Riverdale untouched -- as well as the odd touch of science fiction and fantasy....

Questions? Comments? Boycotts? Babblings?
Media Relations / 24 january 2012 / oscar, oscar, oscar! nominations and predictions, 2012

The thing I like about this year's nomination is that every single major category contains at least one "WTF?" moment. For all the predictability of the Academy Awards, you don't get that quite this consistently in the nominations process.

Overall, the entire nominations slate has a certain WTF? feel. Seldom has comedy been so well or frequently represented in all the major categories. The Academy generally prefers its ART to be VERY SERIOUS, dont'cha know.

So, as a complete outsider who frankly doesn't care about film that much, but loves awards shows and award show politicking, let's take a whack at this predictions stuff for the major categories, just for the hell of it, shall we? Let's shall....

Three entries, two weblogs, one week, more or less. Apparently, on a roll or something. Don't get used to it.
This may wind up being double posted, as the importer from Dreamwidth appears to be having Issues again.

media relations / 12 January 2012 / and the first shoe finally drops

Thursday, January 12th, 2012
By Josh Kushins

In May of 2012, DC Comics will release a “Second Wave” of titles as part of its historic DC COMICS-THE NEW 52 initiative. Six new, ongoing series will build on the shared universe and bold concepts introduced in September 2011 with the renumbering of DC Comics’ entire line of comic books.[...] The six new series will replace BLACKHAWKS, HAWK AND DOVE, MEN OF WAR, MISTER TERRIFIC, O.M.A.C. and STATIC SHOCK, all of which will conclude with their eighth issues in April....

Given sales, I can't say that any of the cancellations surprises me. All but one of them would have been a hard sell, conceptually. I haven't heard much about Blackhawks, OMAC or Men of War -- I don't know anyone who read them, and I didn't care enough to look up the reviews. Everyone I know who tried it, and the few reviews I've read, say that "Hawk and Dove" was outright awful.

"Mister Terrific" was on my pull list, and I can say that ... it wasn't very good, frankly. [...] The one title where the cancellation saddens but doesn't entirely surprise me is "Static Shock." Sad, because it would have been nice if the title had been given a little more time to find its audience. Unsurprised because, if you didn't read the previous Static Shock title or watch the animated series, this title would have been utterly baffling....

(And on a purely webgeeky note: smart quotes in the URL, DC? Really? Surely you know better than THAT.)
media relations / 12 January 2012 / and the first shoe finally drops

Given sales, I can't say that any of the cancellations surprises me. All but one of them would have been a hard sell, conceptually. I haven't heard much about Blackhawks, OMAC or Men of War -- I don't know anyone who read them, and I didn't care enough to look up the reviews. Everyone I know who tried it, and the few reviews I've read, say that "Hawk and Dove" was outright awful.

"Mister Terrific" was on my pull list, and I can say that ... it wasn't very good, frankly. [...] The one title where the cancellation saddens but doesn't entirely surprise me is "Static Shock." Sad, because it would have been nice if the title had been given a little more time to find its audience. Unsurprised because, if you didn't read the previous Static Shock title or watch the animated series, this title would have been utterly baffling....

Questions? Comments? Sabots? Sneakers?
media relations / april 14, 2011 / as the soap settles

[...] Have to admit, the cancellation of All My Children (AMC) makes me sort of sad, even though I haven't watched AMC regularly in eons. I can remember, way way way way back in the mists of prehistory, when I was a young'un, watching the early episodes of All My Children while my great grandmother did ... whatever she was doing. (Hey, I was, like four or five...)[...] I did watch OLTL for a few months a couple years ago. One Life to Live introduced a storyline with two gay men, one of whom was very reluctantly coming out of the closet (Oliver Fish), and the other who had been in love with him in their long ago college days but was now in another relationship(Kyle and the man he planned to marry, Nick). Of course, this being a soap, Kyle and Fish were each other's One True Love so ... good bye, Nick. (Eventually.) And then once Kyle and Fish got together, they even got to, like, kiss and have sex and do everything the straight couples do! And we saw just as much of that as we saw of the straight couples doing the same thing! Those were actually some surprisingly well written and handled stories. The stuff around them ... not so much, actually. And then the ratings tanked, so they blamed the gay couple and shipped them off to Llanview purgatory, wherever that may be. And the ratings continued to tank, imagine that....
Media Relations / February 7, 2011 / da code: a quick take review

So I'm watching The Chicago Code. And the first episode is rather overloaded, to put it mildly. It's really fascinating to see the stuff it gets right and the stuff it gets wrong, and how it finesses the stuff it gets wrong when it can.

For example: there is no way on this earth that Teresa Colvin (Jennifer Beals) would get the job of police superintendent of Chicago. She's far too young and probably far too female ... except that they explain that as her being initially a token, and winding up being the last candidate left standing after the preferred candidate died of a heart attack. She impressed the board and city council with her passion, and so they gave her the job. (Still wouldn't happen, but a good way to explain how it did.)

The victim that kicks off the major investigation in the first episode I have a real problem with....
Media Relations / February 6, 2011 / Red
So I finally got around to watching Red, the Bruce Willis movie theoretically made from the comic book by Warren Ellis and Cully Hammer. And I will tell you right now that the only surviving part of the comic is the "retired agent yanked out of retirement because people are trying to kill him" part of the story; the rest of it is pretty much an original story. Oh, and the mayhem. Not so much the specifics, just the general quantity. Oh, and the CIA building caper, sort of.

NOTE: FROM THIS POINT FORWARD, HERE BE SPOILERS. I don't think you can reasonably spoil a film that's been out for four months, and out on DVD for one, but consider yourself warned. Any road, there's nothing major revealed...

Read the rest of this entry at Media Relations.
Media Relations / September 20, 2010 / new fall tv 2010: book 'em, dano

All I can say is, it's clearly not quite where they meant to go, but the new Hawaii Five-0 is good stupid ultraviolent gruesome fun ... except when it's deliberately utterly appalling, of course....

Questions? Comments? Cigars, cigarettes, Cigarillos?
Media Relations / September 7, 2010 / Oh, Danimal...
I really have no words. Just follow the bouncing controversy, shall we? Let's shall. [...] No, no, wait, it gets better: [...] Wait, it gets even better (for certain values of "better" defined as "Dan Hampton loves the taste of his own foot"): [...] But it turns out that his foot was, as it were, pre-chewed, because either the day before or earlier in the the show than the Katrina remark (it's not exactly clear), there was this gem: [...] It's actually a toss-up as to who is more profoundly offended by Hampton's comment: Cowboys fans or gays (and gay Cowboys fans get the two-fer, of course)....
media relations: red hood done right / August 8, 2010

In which DC Animated takes on the origin story of Jason Todd as the Red Hood and makes it make sense.

To be sure, the DC Animated people had both a signal advantage and disadvantage. Feeling that Jason Todd had been rather badly treated (a vote to kill him off, for heaven's sake, and one that seems to have been mishandled, at that), DC Animated gave Jason's origin story to Tim Drake so that Bruce Timm and friends could tell Jason's story they way they wanted -- only without Jason. Of course, that meant that if they were going to keep the movies in the same universe as the animated series, and they wanted to tell this story, they not only needed to introduce Jason from scratch, but make us understand who he was and how he fit in. After all, if all you'd ever seen was the animated series, and then went to this, your immediate assumption of the start is that the Joker is beating on Tim Drake, and that would be quite wrong.

DC Animated seem to be treating the direct-to-DVD animation as though it were almost its own universe, almost but not quite independent of the storylines they'd established with the various series....
elsewhere/media relations | ask evans for the secret of easy murder
I'm beginning to wonder if, by some alchemy or disaster, the estate of Agatha Christie is in desperate need of money. What they've permitted to be done to the books and stories for Agatha Christie's Marple, the latest series made first with Geraldine McEwan and now with Julia McKenzie in the title role, is really baffling....
Media Relations / Singing Off / May 4, 2010:
[...] Now that [The Sing-Off] has been renewed, however, I really hope that the University of Oregon's On The Rocks tries out and gets onto the show. Why? Mostly because I want to see them do the number below on national television, just because....

(Also, the two guys who sing early lead are kind of cute. And I am very very shallow)

Media Relations: undercover agents / April 4, 2010: ...What sometimes bugs me is that some of the solutions on Undercover Boss are directed specifically at individuals. And it's not that I begrudge them their good luck; it's that the same opportunities are almost certainly not going to be available to other employees whom the president/CEO/COO has not met. White Castle made arrangements for one guy to go to culinary school. Two different companies made arrangements for specific employees to undergo wellness training of various sorts -- Roto-Rooter apparently arranged for one employee to get a home gym, as well as working with a nutritionist and an account at a health foods store. They also arranged for another employee to get a minibus for his amateur kids basketball team -- though, to be fair, that was almost certainly done as a donation to an organization that could use the bus for other activities. Others have gotten various types of housing arrangements handled, because for various reasons, they weren't making enough money to stave off mortgage default. (That usually, and deservedly, gets corrected as well. It's rather surprising the sheer number of people at these companies who are being outrageously underpaid, in ways that the leaders seemingly don't know about.) [...]

I was originally going to title this entry "Undercover agents for the blues", but then I figured both that it would be too obscure and too unfair to the original, which most people wouldn't know about anyway.

So, here, have a cover of the original by the woman with "the best legs in showbiz":

And also, have a copy of the original, too:

By the by, can I just mention how much I hate, loathe and despise LJ's latest code "enhancements"? This entry broke in some spectacular ways, apparently because of a misplaced slash in a tag, and then the edit window text was so mangled that I wound up just deleting and reposting. And their new full-browser-window ads are utterly unspeakably annoying. They want to drive their user base to other places, this is a good way to do it.

Grim Amusements: soldier held over child porn charges
...Granted, we don't get all the facts in this story, I'm sure. And granted again, we need to protect children. I get all that, I really do. But at some point, we have to let a little sanity enter the child porn debate. Sometimes pictures of children are just pictures of children. But as it stands, this man could well lose his career over photographs that even the child's father thought were perfectly innocuous...

Media Relations: the defenestration of leno and nbc's new schedule/ January 15, 2010:
...What the hell was Leno thinking? There's being a good sport, and then there's being a total idiot, and this pretty clearly crossed the line. By the end, Leno was clearly not a happy camper. And he set it up! After it became obvious where this was headed, wouldn't you change a question or two on the fly, do something so that you didn't turn yourself into the comedic equivalent of a volleyball? (Serve, lob, set, SPIKE!) I mean, jeez, guy, do something.

And yet another shoe drops as NBC announces its forthcoming post-Olympics schedule, also known as Life After The Great Failed Experiment....

Grim Amusements: dc court rules against referendum

It's going to be interesting to see what the DC Appeals Court does with this; I would expect another dismissal, myself. And this is as high as you can get in DC without either transferring over to the appropriate circuit court of appeals or the Supreme Court itself. And I can't imagine that the Supreme Court would touch this case...
OK, yes, I admit that I find this entirely too fascinating, mostly because of all the public soap opera aspects. You've got your villain -- NBC -- albeit mostly more titanically stupid than actively villainous ... which is a bit disappointing, really. You have your villain's somewhat unwilling and unwitting ally -- that would be Leno. And, of course, you have the virtuous (sort of) hero (sort of), Conan. You just can't get much soapier.

Media Relations: nbc's late night soap opera gets vicious/ January 14, 2010: ...Last night, Conan got truly vicious and mean about the whole thing in a way that I hadn't thought he had in him, including taking a direct shot at Jay Leno....

For some reason, probably thanks primarily to the title of the article at The Wrap (which is the title of this entry), I've had this song running through my head all morning, so now it's your turn. Though probably most people don't get earwormed by Sondheim, so I really wouldn't be concerned. It does kind of match the tenor of the situation, I'd think. Kind of.

Media Relations: stay klassy, nbc/ January 12, 2010:
...The question is just how much NBC wants to screw over Conan at this point. Considering the rather epochal reaming they've been giving him the past week or so, the idea that they don't "have the stomach" for a long legal battle seems kind of improbable. They may decide to shelve the Tonight show name for a couple of years -- ending something like a continuous 50-odd year run -- purely to keep from having to make a massive payout. After all, part of this whole mess was about NBC wanting to save money at the corporate level, even though they were told and told and TOLD that the Leno show would be ruinous for their affiliates....

EDIT, 10:41pm Central: Getting hung out to dry seems to have unleashed the inner Conan. Watching him go off at NBC on NBC is truly awesome! (It's probably also picking up his ratings a bit.) "If Reid loses his position as senate majority leader, he could wind up with a worse job: he could be the next host of the Tonight show. And then they'd fire him from that, too." Mind, since he basically does seem to be a nice guy, he's not going off anywhere near as spectacularly as someone else might. And watching that for a prolonged period of time might get a bit ... difficult. But for now, really, kind of awesome.
Media Relations: nbc and the shadows of the night/ January 8, 2010: ... Here's the question I'd like to see answered: if NBC really does plan to effectively cancel Leno's show as of the end of the Winter Olympics ... what do they do with the rest of this season? They didn't order drama pilots for this season in large enough numbers to cover the space. They don't have enough comedy shows in reserve to shove back their dramas into the late primetime slot. They let Southland go to TNT -- and I would argue, myself, that it should have been either there or at FX in the first place, but that's neither here nor there. They let Medium go to CBS. So far this season, they let Trauma go, period. That's three shows that they no longer have to plug holes with. The question remains: what does NBC do with that last hour of coverage from the beginning of March through the end of August? (And make no mistake: NBC will need to do something to prevent the normal summer viewing doldrums from absolutely killing any momentum they might build up for next fall.)

... (One of NBC's notable decisions back in the day was cancelling an excellent comedy called "The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd" because it was damaging their powerhouse Thursday night lineup. At the time, Molly Dodd was something like the 13th highest rated show of the season, and LA Law, which followed, was top ten. They replaced Molly Dodd with, I believe, Family Ties or Night Court or Cheers. The next season, LA Law was the top rated show on television.) That said, the one thing that NBC had at the time, which they don't have now, is time and stability. They could afford to let shows that didn't do well initially have some time to find their audience. They had people who got to hang around long enough to tinker with lineups until they worked. None of that seems to be true today; if whatever they do to make things work doesn't work fairly quickly, those people may not get a chance to try again.

And apropos of the above quote, just because it's there and I can, and also because for some reason, I just miss that show a lot some days, a few clips:

The first scene below is more or less when Molly first really starts dating Moss. Their relationship, prior to that, started off rather badly. He was very nearly pathologically shy with her. And then, on their previous first date, her father died, and she walked out of her own apartment without telling Moss she was leaving or what had happened. So things really had nowhere to go but up.

And now, let's meet Molly's mother, in a scene that winds up being really relentlessly relevant:

The thing to know about the two scenes below is that Molly was dating both Moss and Nathaniel at the same time. Sort of. Actually, she'd mostly broken up with Moss, and started with Nathaniel (I highly recommend clip 3), who was a policeman (and also, black -- vide her mother's "rainbow" remark). And then the elevator thing happened.

And that was followed, somewhat inevitably by this:

We didn't find out until nearly the last episode of the series who the father was. (It turned out to be, shall we say, rather obvious.) And, in what somehow felt like an inevitable development, Nathaniel eventually persuades Molly to marry him ... and then is killed in the line of duty (EDIT: by a rogue shrimp -- see comments) on the day of their wedding.

The below, I think, is a very early scene -- not long after her divorce from Fred Dodd (and the audio is, alas, rather horrible):

Unfortunately, it looks like this show will never see the light of DVD. The music rights are apparently terribly complicated -- between Fred Dodd the sax player and Molly's fantasy sequences, some sort of song was in almost every episode -- and Jay Tarses, the creator and first executive producer, is dead (EDIT: Apparently, still quite alive and in his 70s -- see comments), so untangling things enough to actually get it to DVD is more work than it's worth for a 20 year old series that never had that huge a following.

I did, I will admit, have a mad, passionate crush on Blair Brown back in the day. It started with seeing her in "Captains and the Kings" (I also had a thing for Taylor Caldwell books -- she's really rather perfect for tortured teens -- and that particular character is kind of awesome), continued through Molly Dodd, and even got me to go see Strapless (trailer at Video Detective), a movie she did with Bruno Ganz (on whom I also had a mad passionate -- and, given circumstances, somewhat more understandable -- crush) and Bridget Fonda, who seems to have stopped acting since her 2003 marriage to Danny Elfman and subsequent birth of their child. Strapless is essentially a character study; you watch it to see those actors make those characters work, as the storyline kind of gets in the way. (Roger Ebert's review of Strapless, which is pretty much my reaction exactly.)

I will admit that it's also made me very happy to see Blair Brown playing a nicely ambiguous executive on Fringe. Apparently, some old crushes never quite go away. Who knew?

Did you ever run across one teeny tiny small thing in an episode or something that just bugged you so much you wanted to smack the people responsible? And you know it's tiny, and you know it's not meant the way they said it, and you still want to smack them?

In last night's episode of Glee, they made the students pair up with each other to sing ballads to each other, as it would be required at sectionals. Fine and dandy. And the students were paired randomly by picking names out of a hat, which allowed for people to be paired in hi-larious ways. The club has an interesting yet very Hollywood mix of apparent ethnicities -- a black boy and girl, Matt and Mercedes, and an Asian boy and girl, Tina and .... They have, interestingly enough, resisted the temptation to pair everyone up romantically along ethnic lines. So far, so good. For last night's episode, the black guy, Matt, was supposedly out sick, leaving Mr Schuester, the teacher, to pair off with the student who he discovered had a crush on him. Larf riot! And then Tina pulled a piece of paper out of the hat, and said: "Other Asian."




Here's the thing: Glee club only has 12 students. They've been going for several weeks in the show's time. Mr Schu is practically neurotic about trying to be a good mentor to his students. You're telling me that after all this time, he wouldn't know the student's name? Moreover, he wouldn't know how humiliating it would be for that student to have it stated in public that the teacher couldn't remember the guy's name? Mind, it's also possible -- perhaps even probable -- that Tina said that on her own, as an insult to someone who might well have been one of her persecutors. Which ... OK, but in that case, the teacher should have said something. It shouldn't have passed unnoticed. And in either case, quite honestly, it feels vaguely like the powers that be were trying to avoid giving him a name because once he has a name, he'd actually maybe get lines, and the speaking cast is quite crowded already.

I suppose I shouldn't be terribly surprised. They screwed the pooch rather badly the last time they brought up anything like ethnic issues played for comedy, in the episode "Throwdown", but that was easier to get past, since they were trying to make a point -- albeit badly, and the point was actually quite quite wrong -- and the good intentions were practically glittering on their sleeves. (And, in fact, in light of later revelations about Sue Sylvester, the episode makes a great deal more sense ... though the point Schu makes is still quite quite wrong.) In "Ballad", this was just a small moment played straight up for comedy ... and they should have known better. Anyone thinking about it for a tenth of a second would have known better. It's not true to the characters as they've built them, it's not true to the situation, and it's wrong on its face. Plus, it's just plain not funny.

To be sure, last night's episode was wildly uneven. One thing they did right was showing other parents, finally, and how they react to the news that their children are going to have an untimely baby, which the entire school including faculty already knew. Finn's mother was hurt, but supportive; Quinn's parents threw her out. There's also the gay kid Kurt with a crush on Finn, and Finn having the brains of a flea (and, to be fair, being a teenager) has not the slightest idea how to handle it. And the actual crush plot with the teacher and student was handled fairly well, and done in one, which is good. And we will not speak of Mercedes' advice to Puck, which was not only wrongheaded, but possibly also wrong for the character as we've seen her built to date. (She seems to have very firm ideas about what's right and wrong, and to tell someone that they should just shut up about what's true in order to make life easier for someone else doesn't seem in character.) It wasn't, overall, a bad episode, and it had some very good moments in it.

But that "Other Asian" crack ... it still nags, for some reason. It's a tiny, small thing. I know this, I absolutely know it. It just ... vexes me.

It vexes me, you hear?
Media Relations: harlequin is publishing WHAT?/ November 9, 2009:
So Harlequin is going to be publishing Gay and Lesbian romances. And, like, smutty books.

No, really.

No ... really.

Carina Press [...]

... Most likely, to the extent that gay romances get published, they're going to be M/M romance rather than gay -- that is, aimed and oriented at their women readers, rather than at the gay market. Developing a new client base would be massively difficult, after all, and they've had Torquere and Samhain and Dreamspinner and Ravenous Romance and (somewhat accidentally) Cleis Press to show them that yes, there are lots and lots of women out there who will read stories of men in love and/or gettin' it on. And Carina, as long as people know that it's a Harlequin imprint, would be a desperately hard sell to gay bookstores and gay male readers. After all, men have long been conditioned to run screaming into the woods at the very sight of a Harlequin romance, because gooshy books that women like are icky! Icky icky icky! (We men are delicate flowers that wilt at the mere mention of women's literature and/or romance. Be gentle with us.) [...]

...I have to admit, I am rather curious as to how Harlequin's M/M books will turn out. My main issue with the M/M romances that I've read is that the men frequently aren't particularly realistic, but then, I'm never quite sure how realistic romances are supposed to be. After all, they're a fantastical sort of literature, entirely by design. It seems rather pointless to harp at fantasies for not being real. I suppose my particular taste in romantical literature would be for more real men, though. Somehow, that seems to make for a story that works better....


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