“This actually did happen to a real person, and the real person was me. I had gone to catch a train. This was April 1976, in Cambridge, U.K. I was a bit early for the train. I’d gotten the time of the train wrong.
I went to get myself a newspaper to do the crossword, and a cup of coffee and a packet of cookies. I went and sat at a table.
I want you to picture the scene. It’s very important that you get this very clear in your mind.
Here’s the table, newspaper, cup of coffee, packet of cookies. There’s a guy sitting opposite me, perfectly ordinary-looking guy wearing a business suit, carrying a briefcase.
It didn’t look like he was going to do anything weird. What he did was this: he suddenly leaned across, picked up the packet of cookies, tore it open, took one out, and ate it.
Now this, I have to say, is the sort of thing the British are very bad at dealing with. There’s nothing in our background, upbringing, or education that teaches you how to deal with someone who in broad daylight has just stolen your cookies.
You know what would happen if this had been South Central Los Angeles. There would have very quickly been gunfire, helicopters coming in, CNN, you know… But in the end, I did what any red-blooded Englishman would do: I ignored it. And I stared at the newspaper, took a sip of coffee, tried to do a clue in the newspaper, couldn’t do anything, and thought, what am I going to do?
In the end I thought, nothing for it, I’ll just have to go for it, and I tried very hard not to notice the fact that the packet was already mysteriously opened. I took out a cookie for myself. I thought, that settled him. But it hadn’t because a moment or two later he did it again. He took another cookie.
Having not mentioned it the first time, it was somehow even harder to raise the subject the second time around. “Excuse me, I couldn’t help but notice …” I mean, it doesn’t really work.
We went through the whole packet like this. When I say the whole packet, I mean there were only about eight cookies, but it felt like a lifetime. He took one, I took one, he took one, I took one. Finally, when we got to the end, he stood up and walked away.
Well, we exchanged meaningful looks, then he walked away, and I breathed a sigh of relief and sat back. A moment or two later the train was coming in, so I tossed back the rest of my coffee, stood up, picked up the newspaper, and underneath the newspaper were my cookies.
The thing I like particularly about this story is the sensation that somewhere in England there has been wandering around for the last quarter-century a perfectly ordinary guy who’s had the same exact story, only he doesn’t have the punch line.”—Douglas Adams (via revolverwife)
so-i-did-this-thing replied to your post“I can feel it… the inevitability of my breaking down and writing…”
Hermann is, in a lot of ways, the “Knight in Sour Armor” trope, or at least, he is in my head-canon. (A trope personified by Sam Vimes, prob my fav fictional char) I would love to see ficlets of him interacting with the rest of the Shatterdome peeps.
Yes good, all of this - put me down for one of each please :)
geniusbee replied to your post“I can feel it… the inevitability of my breaking down and writing…”
I LOVE THIS SO MUCH PLEASE PLEASE WRITE THESE AUGHH HERMANN IS WHAT EVERYONE NEEDS
augustjustice replied to your post“I can feel it… the inevitability of my breaking down and writing…”
I approve of every gen fic you have outlined herein. (Including Chuck and Mako growing up as awkward pilot aspiring perfectionist kids. DO WANT.) So, just so you know, you should do the thing. You have one reader already built in.
scream ok no properly you guys. I DESPERATELY WANT TO, but I’m also terrified because I have very little love for my writing. Super dull… Big dreams… big dreams…
Also, definitely agreeing with “Knight in Sour Armor!” I need to read much more of Discworld than I have, as the couple I did, didn’t feature Vimes. I feel as though I’m missing out on something pivotal…
I can feel it… the inevitability of my breaking down and writing crappy, gen-Hermann-other people ficlets
Because I am increasingly devoted to the similarities between Hermann and other characters, and want to shake fandom and make them see it and write it for me. Also I have an incredible need for Hermann to be everyone’s cranky science uncle???
like for example raleigh
I’ve definitely babbled about this before, but Hunnam says that Raleigh “loves humanity but hates people” and would rather be left alone in a bar. I JUST ABSOLUTELY SEE THE SAME IN HERMANN, who is on the surface so closed off, so deliberately distancing himself with numbers and misanthropic (or just distrustful of people as a whole) that he won’t even introduce himself when ~Stacker Pentecost~ ///// does the introductions. But, that same guy also chose the Jaegers, the big last fight, trying to WIN, not hide behind a wall. Suggestive of deep-seated hope and love for humanity.
Then Mako Mori, with her restoration of Gipsy, love of tinkering, and aspirations to be a Jaeger pilot. Who is described, much like Chuck, as being a perfectionist without friends. (I also super want Mako-Chuck growing up semi-together as tryhard soldier kids with big pilot dreams.) Please give me Hermann talking Jaegers with her/them, and rooting for them, esp because he couldn’t be the proper soldier/pilot/etc he once wanted? Obv friendless perfectionist would suit him, too.
Throw in his big ol’ authority crush on Stacker and need for his approval, his sliding scale of issues with Lars (depending on how you headcanon that fallout), Tendo being J-Tech, Hermann coding the Jaegers, etc. etc. etc…
i just love hermann a lot and want fic where he’s not-friends with everyone
and idk always kicks ass at cards because you know he’s counting ‘em and has an unexpectedly flawless poker face
“I wanted to show that men and women can be friends without having a relationship,” says del Toro of the relationship between the two main characters Mako (played by Japanese actress Rinko Kikuchi) and Raleigh (“Sons of Anarchy” star Charlie Hunnam). “Theirs is a story about partnership, equality and a strong bond between partners. It’s important for little girls to know not every story has to be a love story and for boys to know that soldiers aren’t the only ones to triumph in war.”—
I think I might I’ve read all Pacific Rim related post on internet and this quote give me so many feels. Guillermo del toro is such a great guy. I should start to work on real life, but Pacific Rim is way much better.
NO deflect darlin im warning you now DONT THINK TOO HARD ABOUT THE PENPAL THING IT. WILL. RUIN. YOUR. LIFE.
but also think too hard about the penpal thing, think about what an awesome backstory it is for these two, and think about how frustrated i am that the fandom didnt LATCH ON TO IT and explore the fuck outta it but then again like i said before ive done that (and continue to evey day) TO THE POINT THAT IVE DESTROYED MYSELF
why are you two so captivating, why is your final coming together both so amazing from a sci-fi standpoint AND a character study point UGH
TOO LATE CAN”T STOP WON’T STOP HOW DO I BE
i mean granted it is of course from the notebook which contains data that does not entirely fit with the finished product / supplemental materials (such as Newton being 45, I think we’ve all just collectively ignored that, yes?)
however while some of the information presented there is in direct contradiction with movie canon (the timing of the kaiju) and arguable contradiction with the comic (lars gottlieb heading the jaeger program? perhaps in a different area than jasper etc?)
like that granted
there’s nothing about them becoming penpals, writing for years, meeting and clashing, then coming to work together for five years, that contradicts anything, and so there’s no reason to deny or discount it, that, at least, has a high probability of being what was on gdt’s mind, whether he communicated it to burn or charlie or not
shit like PASSIONATE AND FASCINATING LETTERS
ENGAGED HIS INTELLECT IN A WAY NO ONE ELSE COULD
i suspect fandom was too busy laughing, incredulous, at how fanfic-y it was, and failed to realize the incredible opportunities there and just JUST I JUST
WORDS DESERTING ME
I WANDER THROUGH THE DESERT OF WHAT THE FUCK AM I FEELING
two ardent geniuses forced to grow up too fast, utterly unable to connect with those around them, finding an equal in letters, writing for years
man how devastating when in person it was like wow nope
i’m just so haunted DID THEY WRITE AGAIN
WHO INITIATED THE PROPOSAL THAT THEY WORK TOGETHER
five years deliberately TOGETHER despite at first glance seemingly at odds subject matter and focuses i justhlfkhmgjstops
why are you two so captivating, why is your final coming together both so amazing from a sci-fi standpoint AND a character study point UGH
You’re the burnt out house and he’s the wrecking ball. You go together like fire and ice - he’s right brain, you’re left brain okay, fine, alright, alright can you stop saying that, yes. You’re a broken clock piece, he’s a broken clock piece, it’s just your pieces are broken in the right parts.
You’re born told you can’t do things - you won’t be an athlete and military star like your older brother and maybe you won’t be beautiful like your younger sister, but god damnit, you’re fucking brilliant (is that your or him, the language isn’t yours) - you build castles, cathedrals, jaegers - walls, a voice offers and you tell it to be quiet - you reach into the universe and pull out numbers.
You look at him and he’s chaos - he’s, he’s spilling out at the edges, bleeding all over. He’s a mess, his science is a mess. He doesn’t introduce himself as doctor, some sort of final, ‘fuck you’ to the establishment, which he works to save, tirelessly. He sleeps less than you and that’s a feat because your bones aren’t built right and they fucking hurt, but his brain isn’t built right and that hurts in its own way.
You have the chemistry of a car crash, magnetized and spinning towards each other on black ice; it’s an execution, baby, he says, you’re the bullet i’m the gun.
Over breakfast, you’ll feel cruel and ask him if he’s taken his medication. He’ll ask if you’ve taken yours, looking right at the breast pocket on your jacket because he knows that’s where you keep them and your hip will throb it’s dull, low ache and you won’t say a damn word.
The end of the world doesn’t happen. It doesn’t happen and you have to learn how to be one, singular entity again because you remember wings and you remember guitar rifts, you remember being larger, you remember being smaller, too. You’re chaos theory, you’re the plot of the Lorenz attractor - wait, who are you talking about, you’re using the plural you. Your body isn’t yours anymore. It’s you, him, and the dead kaiju baby that makes three. That’s not a Lorenz, so maybe it’s just the two of you.
PRONGS THIS IS SO AMAZING I HAD IT IN MY INBOX ALL DAY SO I COULD MARVEL OVER IT AND I HAVE TO SHARE IT WITH EVERYONE I HOPE THAT’S OK
In my opinion, Pacific Rim was a cheesy, only decent movie. What is it that you think is so great about it? I feel like it was pretty entertaining but not exactly a good movie...
That is actually a really good question because it is a very cheesy movie.
I’ll start off by saying that I tend to like cheesy things. And I probably like Pacific Rim more for what it implies, what is in the background, and for what it could be than for what it is. Also, it was very pretty and has a killer soundtrack. Everyone’s hot. Hunnam has some killer abs. Mmmmm. And it was very entertaining. I am all for movies where giant robots punch monsters from another dimension in the face.
More seriously, I very much like the fact that the entire movie is built on the ability to empathize. The jaeger pilots can do their jobs because of their relationships with one another, and the ability to feel and understand is not portrayed as weak but rather as a strength. In fact, the opening narration states that there is nothing particularly exceptional, either physically or intellectually, about Raleigh and Yancy. What gives them the ability to become heroes is their ability to understand one another.
I also love the fact that though Raleigh is arguably the protagonist, the movie is framed as Mako’s story. The movie could have very easily killed Yancy and then spent the rest of its narrative going through Raleigh’s angst and pain, a tired narrative in my opinion because I’m done with watching white men and their angst. Pacific Rim just skips right to when he’s pretty much done with the angst and has reached the weariness stage that would’ve taken other characters the whole film to get to. Instead of having Raleigh come to terms with his brother’s death to properly work in a team as the narrative, the movie instead has Raleigh act as a guide and supporter for Mako in learning how to use her grief and loss as a motivator. Raleigh is cast as an emotional support, and he does not suggest that Mako’s anger and emotions are weak or irrational, but he confirms for her that they could be her strength and encourages her to have them. It allows her to have these feelings, these feelings of anger too, and I just very much appreciate that emotions, a woman’s emotions no less, are just as important as anyone else’s.
Mako, arguably the central character, is a non-sexualized woman of color and it is never stated that her flaw comes from her being a woman. Chuck criticizes her for her lack of experience and points out that he is reluctant to rely on someone who has never logged actual battle time in a jaeger. These are actual reasonable concerns and have nothing to do with her sex. She is never sexualized and suffers no gendered violence. And I love that.
Another thing I appreciated very much about the movie was that it was purposefully cast to include more than Americans. While I think we could’ve used one or two more women to round things out, I love that it was a stated goal of the film to present these battles as a world effort. Because the end of the world, just kinda sorta, involves the whole world.
That was it: a team effort. The movie emphasized that no one person saved the world. In these types of movies, the cocky, brilliant protag who has just overcome all his man-pain saunters off and single-handedly beats back whatever danger it is. Okay, there’s cocky and brilliant Chuck. But Chuck’s entire problem with the Gipsy Danger team is that he feels they are not the right people to rely on and that they are not sufficient enough as teammates. He directly acknowledges that even though Striker Eureka is the point-man, they cannot complete the mission without the help of the other jaeger teams. And that’s the whole thing. It’s also clear that they must often put aside their individual problems, such as the tension between the Hansens and the tension between Chuck and Raleigh and Mako, if these tensions are detrimental to the overall team effort. I think that’s a brilliant message. And the movie makes sure that is it’s only message. It presents a clear theme, and the film is unified in its presentation of it. No where does it contradict this, unlike many other films that are lauded for being complex and thematic when in reality it contradicts and undermines itself in every scene.
There are also more relationships than a bromance and a romantic, if you so choose to interpret the Raleigh and Mako relationship as one. The film presents the relationship between brothers, father and son, father and daughter (adoptive, no less), husband and wife, colleagues, close friends. I know many of these aren’t as prominent as others. But I daresay there is a lot presented about the Kaidonovskys and their relationship in the way they stand next to each and interact. And about the fact their hair is bleached to be the same color. Stacker and Mako’s relationship is so central to the movie, arguably more so than Raleigh and Mako’s. And theirs is presented as though Stacker is reasonable in his fears and reservations, he is also holding Mako back. Theirs is a relationship of mutual respect, support and encouragement, and of letting go. (Oh geez, I’m crying.)
I also appreciate that Mako and Raleigh’s relationship is not necessarily presented as a romantic subplot. It can certainly be read that way. But it can also be read as a close bond of friendship.
I love the fact that the movie tried to address, even very briefly, what many other monster movies may gloss over. What happens to the extremely large carcasses? Well, Pacific Rim tells me, kaiju blood is very toxic to humans and kills a lot of people. So we’ve had to develop ways to neutralize the toxins in the blood and try to clear the bodies out as soon as possible. There are black market sellers vying for the bodies, as there would be in a real-life situation. There are shady deals, cultists. Political turmoil! The film considers the fact that the poor will be pushed to the Pacific coasts while the wealthy move to the, at the moment, safer inlands toward the Atlantic. The hero culture that surrounds the pilots, and while things were good the cartoon-ifying of the kaiju. It tries to present the shift in culture.
The film also has amazing attention to detail. From circuit burns to Raleigh’s incomplete circle of a throne to thinking about the color and texture associations for each character. And it pays attention to the tiny details like that and I always always appreciate that.
In whole, the movie is very cheesy because, and I think I’ve read this somewhere, del Toro wanted people to feel like their children can watch this film. And I commend the effort to present a message that teamwork and empathy is a better solution to a large problem than I find in many movies where one person who is almost unattainably exceptional is the hero. To get that message across, it decides to present it through giant robots and punching monsters in the face, which is something a lot of people are willing to watch instead of all this pontificating about togetherness. It isn’t necessarily trying for originality. It’s just trying to fix flaws and shortcomings in many similar films before it.
For that alone, I’m willing to call it a great movie.