Friday, October 25, 2013

Crossing T's and Dotting I's before "Te Busque" officially begins

I don't have all of the detail necessarily worked out for the story I plan on gearing for future publication.

BUT...
I have made enough progress in the character sketches and the previous storylines that I want to take inventory with this next entry.

Between my two notebooks dedicated to the Rasumusen twins (Scarlet & Ruby) and Amber, I probably only have enough material for 10 typed pages :-P

That being said, I've established several key points.
Scarlet and Ruby's backstory is pretty clear. Scarlet more than Ruby, who I likely will only develop a couple more pages for before she stages her own escape from their Hell.

One where she finds the reason to "stage" the escape, and the escape itself.
If I were to get really adventurous, I could do a couple chapters of her working at strip clubs pole-dancing before reuniting with her sister.

Said reunion likely isn't too far away either.

I haven't gotten a handle on what accent I want her to have, but I've officially introduced Talia into my world.
She came to the restaurant afterhours to discuss her business proposition with the Montiels (whenever any of the girls refer to them in their narration, they call them "the brothers").

It might be something I tweak later on, but when she met Scarlet, she ended up telling her what happened. That her stepfather embezzled the money in her family's savings account and how she couldn't believe she didn't see him for who he was. Even went as far to say that he told her she was the only person he'd sleep with.
She thinks its crazy and unconventional, but Scarlet ends up telling her all about herself.

This degree of openness is what starts to put a wedge between Scarlet and Amber (still Carmen at this point).
Scarlet and Talia find themselves to be kindred spirits, bonding over the fact they want to overcome difficulties they've experienced in their pasts. And talking about it will help them heal and move forward.

Carmen, on the other hand, has refused to come forth with what happened in her past. Her method of copying is avoidance and pretending none of it happened, therefore denying it in the first place. Scarlet is the kind of person who needs to heal by talking about it.

..I'm still kinda worried that Talia's backstory won't be convincing/believable enough :(
It wasn't as if she was forced to do anything against her will and physically harmed...
it might come to the point that I really won't allude to it in my main body of work.

What will be clear is that Talia doesn't trust men enough to allow herself to fall in love... even though that's something she desperately craves. And everyone else around her believes she's not allowing herself to experience love, afraid to break out of this pattern she has herself in... believing deep down, she's unhappy with her life.

Meanwhile, Carmen's 17th birthday is drawing near and she wants to take that opportunity to tell Alejandro how she feels about him as well as introduce the idea of dancing to bring extra business to the restaurant (which is getting closer to being a bar with this change-over/renovation).
I also added her making a comment about her window of opportunity closing and freaking about the possibility of someone "swooping in at the last minute" to steal him away... I might do away with that sentence because the fact it's exactly what happens... that's a little too coincidental to be believable.

It's also mildly pushing it that, up until this point, she'd been sick in bed... explaining how this is the first time she'd seen Talia.
I haven't explained why/how that was Alejandro's first experience with Talia... what's his damn excuse? :-P

Vanessa's also there, but I haven't made any steps to explain her backstory. Still kinda figuring how I want to play that. All I have done so far, for sure, is "she's strapped for cash" so Talia wanted to give her a hand.

Scarlet meets with Carmen, who's visibly upset... with the dialogue, I wanted to get across that Carmen's upset they "stole" her idea to dance for their business... not that she's upset that he's more interested in Talia than her. Because he told her that he'd take her out after she got over her illness... if it'd been 2-3 weeks, it has to be something like mono (don't know who she would have kissed and gotten it from) or pneumonia.

Her thoughts on the dancing were pretty judgmental. Quoting Nelly Furtado's "Maneater" (which is the song that they did the number to), "she was moving her body around like a nympho"... that's how she put it to Scarlet. In the narration, she called her a "slut" and "bitch"... one quote was pretty relentless, went kinda far so I scratched some of it out...
"at least when I dance, I don't make a spectacular of myself like a piece of ass primed for fucking"...

I'm not usually one for cursing, but that's not why I took that back... it seemed a little too harsh and would push her friendship with Scarlet onto the rocks faster than I would like

I'm not exactly sure how the two manners of dance are any different... maybe it's because Talia has zero inhibitions when she dances, so that comes off to Carmen as slutty... maybe it reminds her a little much of stuff in her own past.
She also isn't jazzed about the idea of them moving like that because it would have men believe they're only there for titillation... her experiences have her believe in that fashion.

I also left Talia talking to Alejandro, her starting to smile, leaving Carmen feeling all the more threatened.
Even after where I ended the my last page of the write-up, I realized that I might have jumped the gun a little bit.

Talia only just found out the truth about her stepfather a short time ago, so jumping right into a date with Alejandro would be too soon.

The following are the scenes I have left to write before the story can officially begin (not necessarily in this order):

  • "Showtime"- Talia getting ready to meet Alejandro for their date, only to find him messing around with another girl (my latest idea is that this is an anecdote Scarlet tells Emilia to explain why Talia and Alejandro aren't together)
  • Ruby (1)- a scene where she realizes she needs to put an end to her father's terror
  • "Blown Away"- Ruby calling the cops and staging her father's death with her getting away on self-defense
  • (montage)- Talia finding girls who dance who can contribute to their escort service and them quitting after Carmen (now Amber) pulling the strings
  • (possibly)- a few chapters of Ruby working as a pole-dancer and stripper before the reunion
  • "Love Game"- Carmen plans to come to an audition, but the entry before her is Ruby... who clearly steals the show
  • "Just Dance"- Carmen's defunct audition... Alejandro suggests she come back, but realizing she's out of her league, she has to change her name and come back under her new persona "Amber"
So, really, I don't have much left to cover in the prequel portion of this project.
I have lots of space left in my composition notebooks, but they could be used for further characterization studies as well as choreography notes :shrug: I'm sure I'll find plenty of use for them.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Fooly Cooly: Embracing the Insanity

Other aliases of this animé series include: FLCL and Furi Kuri.

Seeing as I spend a good deal of time on this blog discussing Japanimation or just plain animé, this is a good place for me to go into this series.

OMG, where to begin?

I decided to dedicate an entry to this series because it's making its annual (or bi-annual) return to Adult Swim.
I cannot remember the last time I saw it, but it has been a while. Possibly a year, possibly two years. I don't believe I saw the entire series the last time it aired. More often than not, I always manage to catch episodes one and four, sometimes five and sometimes six. Sometimes three, but last time, I probably missed it.
Episode 2, "Firestarter" is often the one I miss out on, with "Brittle Bullet" (episode 5) close behind.

What is it, exactly?

It's a six episode animé series, I believe, from the early 2000's.

When we premiered it at my animé club, it went down as the most nonsensical thing I'd seen so far at that place.
And for the record, my threshold of insanity is pretty substantial, so for me to bug out as much as I did over episode one "Fooly Cooly". I came back to my dorm with such a headache.

As far as the nonsensical factor of what we watched at the club, the only things crazier than Fooly Cooly were the series, Abenobashi (where I believe the main character transformed into machines), "Gantz" (we got thru  two episodes before everyone else launched a protest...) and this movie "Ninja Scroll" (it had graphic nudity and a couple rape scenes, but what turned the most people off was a scene where snakes came from between a woman's legs)...

That isn't to say that Fooly Cooly handles its content "tastefully" by comparison... episode three has a sex scene, but it's brief and you hear more than you see... or should I say the main character sees very little of it because the door was only open a crack.
In general, though, the gross-out factor throughout the series is minimal compared to the others above.

As to what the series is about, Wikipedia has an AMAZING synopsis that hits on all the key points as well as how the grand scheme of things can be interpreted. (One of those things being that it's a "coming-of-age" story).
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fooly_Cooly

But in my own way, I'll attempt to explain it.

First of all,
They really don't explain ANYTHING about the series until episode five and six. Even then, you kinda have to put the pieces together on your own and keep an open mind.
Beforehand, my advice is just to take everything you see as it is because it isn't meant to make perfect sense :-P

The series stars a boy named Naota. He likes to think he's mature for his age (his biggest turn-off is adults who don't know how to age their age), but details like the fact he hates sour drinks let you know he's still very much a kid.
I had to double-check his age... he's 12 (my choices were either 8 or 10, lol).
After school, he likes to hang out with Mamimi, a high school girl who is dating Naota's older brother. He's away in America playing baseball, but during this time, she calls Naota "Ta-kun," the nickname she has for his brother... seemingly unable to differentiate between the two.

When they're hanging out one day, a 19-year old girl runs Naota over with her Vespa and hits him in the head with her bass guitar. After this quick exchange, she runs off...
all of these actions seem rather random and come out of nowhere.
Naota comes away from it with a bump on the forehead. When he turns home, he finds out that this girl, Haruko is their new housekeeper.

The main plot in each show is all kinds of insanity ensues in Naota's otherwise ordinary life... he has something jutting from his head and when it comes out, it's an alien or robot  that needs to be destroyed. Sometimes Haruko smashes it with her bass guitar. Or Naota gets swallowed up by Kanti (the robot that came from his head and he defeated in episode one) and this merge gives Kanti the power to defeat the enemy.

That's the short, concise version :-P
Any attempt for me to go behind will result in my head exploding...

Aside from the scene where Kanti emerges from Naota's forehead (the first of SEVERAL WTF movements this series is known for)...
what kinda turned me off at first was the degree of language in this series. I was only a college freshman at this point and it's not as if they were dropped f-bombs left and right. It irked me that Naota's father was talking to him about whether or not he's messing around with Mamimi... who talks to their kid like that, he's not at the appropriate age to discuss sex... and he was being very perverted about it.

I don't know when I turned a corner, but the next time I saw the series, I could not get enough of it. In fact, I believe we stayed out all night watching the entire series... the meetings start at 8pm and usually end at 10.

I guess you could say it represents that old part of me that used to stay up late watching Adult Swim at college, sleeping in until noon on Sundays...
Once I made sense of it for myself, I don't know, I love the insanity it. There are too many hilarious quotes to go into, but the funniest episodes are the first and third one. The third is also my second favorite of the series because cat ears are coming out of Naota's head... somewhat appropriate considering he was cast in the play as Puss in Boots. The storyline also involves a possible relationship between him and the "Noveau Rich Princess" in his class, Ninamori. She's the most popular girl in his class, but for whatever reason, she has a crush on him and actually rigged the votes so he would be cast as Puss in Boots with her as his "master"

I may or may not come back with an entry a week after getting back to the series...
I'll have to see if I can even stay up late to watch it at 2:30am :-P I haven't stayed up that late to watch animé in years.
Then again, I remember there being two distinct occasions where I stayed up to watch some InuYasha feature films... those were the days 8-)

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Introducing Talia- a work in progress

It's been a while since my last entry about this project.

When I last stopped, I:

  • resolved Scarlet's first major storyline... getting away from her abusive father (thanks to her twin sister Ruby's efforts)... and putting that part of her life behind her with encouragement from Carmen.
  • Carmen has been settling in at Casa Del Montiel with her new friends/roommates Misha and Michel. She aspires to be with Alejandro, but isn't ready to divulge to him her true feelings.
  • Ruby, meanwhile, takes the brunt of her father's abuse. And someday she will make her own getaway, but not before getting her revenge.
The next logical step is to introduce Talia.
The question is how.

I've played around with a few ideas for the past couples hours.
One of them is that there will be individual reactions. Rumors will float around within the "camp" about Talia. Scarlet will be the first one to actually meet her. Alejandro will see her for the first time when she's performing "Maneater" in a rehearsal. Scarlet and Vanessa will be her back-up. Then Carmen will walk in during this performance, looking for Alejandro (who didn't show up for what would be their first date) and will be devastated when she sees how much he's paying attention to Talia and not her.

Another idea is that Talia and Vanessa will come in together as a package deal.
Vanessa just might be the only example of prostitution in the way most people think of it... girls who are under contract, sometimes kept on a tight leash because they're hooked on drugs...
I'm trying to figure out how much I want to push it, but either way, Talia saves Vanessa from the streets and finds a more suitable venue for her. It's also possible that Talia's stepfather was the person behind Vanessa walking the streets, but again, it makes it less plausible for Talia to think of starting an escort service because this would turn her off to the idea entirely.

How Talia saves Vanessa from the streets is the big question here.

Scarlet develops an amazing report with Vanessa and Talia right away, as if they were sisters that'd been separated their whole lives.

I haven't decided how heavy Talia's exotic accent is yet. But her image is becoming clearer.
She has rich brown hair. It's short, but not nearly as short as Scarlet & Ruby.
Her entire body is in proportion with none of her features being especially pronounced, with the exception of her height, which is around 5'9" (same as Stana Katic, who plays Kate Beckett on "Castle" and is one of my inspirational sources... ironically, Portuguese is not among the accents she can do :-P but that's okay)

The quality isn't very good, but I imagine something like this:

Roughly that length and possibly that color, but I'm not positive what specific shade of brown that is.
The biggest selling point about Talia is her charisma. Something about her makes all those around her fall in love with her... at least that's how it is when she first arrives.
*Years pass and she becomes less sure of herself as things become more routine for her. *Emilia's arrival reenergizes her, seeing as it's the first audition she'd personally sat at since Ruby.
*Two years pass. J.P. arrives and for all those around her (except for Amber and Alejandro, who have their own agendas), they see how this changes things for her. How JP presents to her something she'd been secretly wanting in her life for years and the way she carries herself changes dramatically. The tiniest cracks start to appear in her tough persona and as much as she tries to hide that, they're visible to those who know her best.

"Te Busque" officially begins around the time JP arrives. There are a few introductory scenes featuring the girls and Alejandro (as well as his complicated relationship with Talia).

One final note:
Just as Talia doesn't know the full extent of Amber's past until the 3rd act of "Te Busque," Amber knows very little about Talia's past... namely because she was too busy stewing about Alejandro to take the time to get to know her the way Scarlet and Vanessa have.

For now, I'll end things here.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Bleach, Fan-Fiction and The Big Bang Theory

I first started writing thanks to fan-fiction. It's always interesting to look at the scope of things... how far I'd come in my writing since then.
Heck, even my fan-fiction has changed.

I originally started on it so I can insert myself into worlds that already existed in their own right.
Namely, I loved a particular character, rumors were flying around that another character I could not stand was in love with him... so I interceded so I could have him all to myself.
Granted, it wasn't thought-out extremely well. But I lived in the fantasy that I could control my own destiny.... plus my own world wasn't particularly exciting or inviting.

Then I made friends and had trouble leaving it behind :-P
wrote that fan-fiction series for a long time... I think I stopped when I got to college and inspiration brought me elsewhere.
Given how much the series has changed since then, I'm not sure if my feelings for him are still there... but even though I've matured in most respects, I refuse to let go of my hatred of that other character...
some things never change.

Then my fan-fiction was about my favorite band. Either together or separately, I painted myself into their lives and ended up with one of them.

I'm not positive on this, but I heard years later that what I was writing wasn't technically fan-fiction... not that it stopped me.

InuYasha became another source of inspiration... only this time, as much as I liked the title character, my character's goal wasn't to be with him in a romantic sense and it certainly wasn't to meddle with him and his relationship with Kagome.

Most recently, it was all about Robert Downey Jr... although technically, I wrote about characters he played.
Julian and his "Ally McBeal" character, Larry Paul... the latter, I wrote about using another name, but he was the inspiration. Either way, I wrote about him to give myself some peace of my mind. Bouncing worries I had about myself and my life off him and he'd be there to tell me everything was going to be okay.

...

The past two nights, I've had really vivid dreams, the most vivid I'd had in quite a while.
Last night, I distinctly saw Leonard, Penny, Bernadette and (I'm assuming) Priya... and I was there too, rather than just watching the show through the TV.

Last year was when I really got into "The Big Bang Theory," checked it out in syndication to see what all the hype was about... it was exactly my kind of show. Between the great original characters and the pop culture references, particularly comic books and sci-fi series.

Leonard is my favorite character because as a guy, he would have been my type. Earlier in the series, before he and Penny got together, he felt he could never get a girl interested in him, especially not one as pretty as Penny. Personally, I think he's perfect as he is. Heck, I don't even get why Sheldon and the others joke about him being short.... he and I would be the same freaking height!

:sigh: anyway, in the dream, I believe I saw why he and Priya broke up... although I don't really remember what happened in the dream. I don't think that's how it happened in the show. They broke up because she had to go back to India and the long distance relationship just fell apart.
So after they break up, I'm thinking that he's up for grabs, but he's still in love with Penny. I ask around, trying to get Bernadette alone to ask her advice, but she ends up leaving and I get in a conversation with another girl. I don't know if she's even a character on the series...

I ask aloud hypothetically if he'd be interested in a girl as nerdy as him who likes things like "Lord of the Rings"... I don't know if he caught the hint, that I was talking about myself.

When I woke up, I thought about it and decided that it'd be better not to pursue it. He and Penny are a cute couple. Even if she doesn't completely get him and his interests, occasionally asserting her dominance over him, I don't wanna mess with that. Their relationship is part of what makes the show so good... the other characters make up the other part. ;)

The only downside to the whole thing is that Johnny Galecki isn't visually impaired in real life :-P I only have that degree of attraction to him when he's wearing glasses. It's part of that whole look that makes Leonard who he is. It also kinda sucks how he's let his hair grow out in recent seasons... not quite as attractive with longer looks...
geesh, that makes me sound so superficial.

Come to think of it, I did see Sheldon somewhere in the dream, but I think it was one scene where I dropped that hint and he was totally oblivious to what I was implying.

...

Bleach started a new season last night... it's interesting cuz the past several seasons, I've seen them as separate story arcs taking us away from the main plot of the series... now that Aizen has been dealt with, it's going to be about something else...
from what I gather, the new villain is a random dude in the department of Research & Development that I've never seen before (funny how it's always the characters we're being introduced to for the first time)...

There's an issue with the pathway between the Soul Society to the World of the Living... two of the lieutentants went through and disappeared for a couple days before returning. Several of the captains and lieuetants have looked into the pathway to see what the problem is.

Then Rukia and Ichigo are summoned to the Soul Society... and after arriving, he gets arrested... with only the credits to go back, my theory is that the soul reapers going through the pathway are either being replaced by doppelgangers or they're possessed by some evil force...  Considering one of the stills shows Byakuya looked at a copy of himself, I'm going with my first theory.

And if my math is right, it looks like a year from now, maybe a little before... I'll see the end of the series :( as much as I've wanted it to end (particularly the main plot with Aizen as the villain)... I'm going to really miss it and it's gone. Assuming that they'll stop showing the series, I won't have a reason to keep watching Adult Swim... that's something I've been doing since 2005... so yeah, I'm goinna miss that A LOT.