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This week, in Sequential Tart …

… I have:
~ a review of the first issue of The Wicked and the Divine -
~ a review of the anime Red Data Girl -
~ and a review of the first issue of The Legend of Bold Riley -

(Sorry so late posting this!)



Reblogging not just because special effects are cool but because body doubles, stunt doubles, acting doubles, talent doubles — all the people whose faces we’re not supposed to see but whose bodies make movies and tv shows possible — these people need and deserve more recognition. We see their bodies onscreen, delight in the shape and motion of those bodies, but even as we pick apart everything else that goes on both on and behind the screen, I just don’t see the people who are those bodies getting the love and recognition they deserve.

We’re coming to love and recognize actors who work in full-body makeup/costumes, such as Andy Serkis, or actors whose entire performances, or large chunks thereof, are motion captured or digitized (lately sometimes also Andy Serkis!). But people like Leander Deeny play an enormous part in making characters such as Steve Rogers come to life, too. Body language is a huge part of a performance and of characterization. For characters/series with a lot of action, a stunt person can have a huge influence on how we read and interpret a character, such as the influence Heidi Moneymaker has had on the style and choreography of Black Widow’s signature fighting style. Talent doubles breathe believability and discipline-specific nuance into demanding storylines.

Actors are creative people themselves, and incredibly important in building the characters we see onscreen. But if we agree that they’re more than dancing monkeys who just do whatever the directors/writers say, then we have to agree that doubles are more than that, too. Doubles make creative decisions too, and often form strong, mutually supportive relationship with actors.

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Image 1: “I would like to thank Kathryn Alexandre, the most generous actor I’ve ever worked opposite.”

Image 2: “Kathryn who’s playing my double who’s incredible.”

[ Orphan Black's Tatiana Maslany on her acting double, Kathryn Alexandre, two images from a set on themarysue, via lifeofkj ]

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I’ve got a relationship that goes back many, many years with Dave. And I would hate for people to just see that image of me and Dave and go, “oh, there’s Dan Radcliffe with a person in a wheelchair.” Because I would never even for a moment want them to assume that Dave was anything except for an incredibly important person in my life.

[ Daniel Radcliffe talking about David Holmes, his stunt double for 2001-2009, who was paralysed while working on the Harry Potter films. David Holmes relates his story here. Gifset via smeagoled ]

With modern tv- and film-making techniques, many characters are composite creations. The characters we see onscreen or onstage have always been team efforts, with writers, directors, makeup artists, costume designers, special effects artists, production designers, and many other people all contributing to how a character is ultimately realized in front of us. Many different techniques go into something like the creation of Skinny Steve — he’s no more all Leander Deeny than he is all Chris Evans.

But as fandom dissects the anatomy of scenes in ever-increasing detail to get at microexpressions and the minutiae of body language, let’s recognize the anatomy in the scenes, too. I don’t mean to take away from the work Chris Evans or any other actors do (he is an amazing Steve Rogers and I love him tons), but fandom needs to do better in recognizing the bodies, the other people, who make up the characters we love and some of our very favourite shots of them. Chris Evans has an amazing body, but so does Leander Deeny — that body is beautiful; that body mimicked Chris Evans’s motions with amazing, skilled precision; that body moved Steve Rogers with emotion and grace and character.

Fandom should do better than productions and creators who fail to be transparent about the doubles in their productions. On the screen, suspension of disbelief is key and the goal is to make all the effort that went into the production vanish and leave only the product itself behind. But when the film is over and the episode ends, let’s remember everyone who helped make that happen.


[ Sam Hargrave (stunt double for Chris Evans) and James Young (stunt double for Sebastian Stan, and fight choreographer), seen from behind, exchange a fistbump while in costume on the set of Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Image via lifeofkj ]

I applaud these guys as much as the suit actors in my japanese tokusatsu shows. They do just as much work. 

(Source: stark-industries-rnd)









Wait, is this…? I had never noticed this

realisation of Steve not needing his help anymore

was this really necessary

It’s also Bucky being more than a little upset that they turned his gentle, harmless friend—who Bucky wanted to PROTECT from the horrors of war—into a fighting machine.

was that really necessary

Guys, he’s also royally fucked up, two days off the torture table and desperately trying to keep how fucked up he is from Steve.

He forces himself to walk alone less than five minutes after Steve breaks the straps. Watch this scene carefully and the only time he HAS AN EXPRESSION is when Steve’s looking at him.

Steve just got everything in the fucking world he ever wanted. Bucky is not fucking this up for him.

Good God, my heart.

If Steve thought he’d get his friend back, the carefree, charming, good-natured teasing Bucky he knew, he overlooked that it was already too late back then. Bucky is traumatised, but, like Steve, he doesn’t bleed on other people. Especially not on Steve. (I tip my head to Sebastian Stan for bringing so many nuances and such emotional poignancy to such short scenes.)

Just a couple of self-sacrificing idiots who probably deserve each other. :’)

I also think that Steve is much more capable of accepting Bucky as he is than he sometimes gets credit for in fanfic. And I’ve written him that way too, a little bit — Steve struggling to reconcile the Bucky he remembers with the Bucky he has now. It’s a natural human thing to do. I’m starting to move away from that, though, because in canon, I never really get the slightest impression that Steve is hung up on a past version of Bucky or that he doesn’t accept Bucky 100%, whether the version of Bucky he’s got is the cocky and charming Brooklyn kid, the quiet and damaged war veteran, or the unbelievably damaged Winter Soldier — Steve’s love for him and acceptance of him is pretty much unconditional. (If anything, the real tragedy is that Bucky himself doesn’t seem to realize that Steve still adores him and needs him just as much as he ever did.) Basically Steve’s general tendency not to bleed on people also means that any regret he might feel over the changes in Bucky isn’t something he would be inclined to get all over Bucky; even if it does bother him (which I don’t think it does all that much, except in a guilty “I wish I could’ve helped my friend” kind of way), he’d keep it to himself, or talk to Sam about it.

One reason why I’m so desperate for the next Captain America movie is because I really want to know what post-Winter Soldier Bucky is going to be like as a character, and how he and Steve will relate to each other.

I csn definitely get on board with him being upset here at how Steve has been altered and brought into the very field of horrors he wanted to keep the kid from, and appreciate hiw he leads the rest in celebrating Steve’s achievement, but I think there’s a darker element at work as well. One thing I’ve been finding myself thinking about lately is how hard the change in dynamic must have been on Bucky. He’s used to saving Steve, and now, not only does Steve not need saving, but he’s saving Bucky. I don’t think it’s like he consciously wants to keep Steve down so he can stay Steve’s hero exactly, but as they frm the Commandos, I’m thinking he can’t escape thoughts of how he’s now the weak one. Not that he’s jealous/wishes he had become Captain America himself, but he’s getting a taste of what it was like for Steve before, like when Peggy ignores his advances and he says to Steve, “I’m you!” He’s switched places with Steve and doesn’t like it one bit — remember how, on the train, he snapped at Steve that he could take care of himself?

And maybe he also feels guilty for resenting being in Steve’s former position in their relationship, because if he doesn’t like being the Steve in their relationship now, it could mean he didn’t respect who Steve once was. Maybe he’s wondering if he ever made Steve feel the way he does now, and feels guilty for *that*.

The resentment of switching places oddly also adds a bit of extra triumph to his saving of Steve at the end of the second film, since Steve failed to save him from the fall from the train. At the same time, with what HYDRA did to Bucky, the upside is that he and Steve have the chance to finally be true equals.

(Source: maria-sokoli)





We really need to talk about this scene a lot, because holy wow. The MCU movies have definitely been getting a little darker since the Avengers, but scenes like this? This is pure optimism. Tony is told he can save 4 out of 13, and then he saves all 13 of them anyway, because these people can work together and help Tony save them. 

If a similar scenario had happened in the Dark Knight Saga or Man of Steel, you know damn well 9 out of those 13 people would have been dead. Hell, Bruce or Clark would have been lucky to even save the 4, because DC movies have gone down a route of unrelenting grtty realism that makes good old super heroics virtually impossible. Bruce can’t save the city without faking his own death; Clark can’t save the world without becoming a murderer.

But even in the darkest hours of the Marvel Universe, Tony Stark can damn well save 13 people plummeting to their certain death. Is it realistic? Hell no. But it was an awesome victory that both Tony and the audience needed at this point in the story, and by god it was heroic.

kittenskysong’s tags:

Reblogging for those tags. Because yes. Heroic is doing the right thing because it’s the right thing, even when it’s impossibly hard.

One of my very favorite things about the MCU — aside from the movies being so focused on flawed people doing the right thing, because, yes — is how saving/protecting civilians is such a constant theme in all of the movies. It doesn’t always work, and they don’t always succeed, but they try. It’s important. It matters.

And we also see regular people helping other people in the background, like cops herding civilians out of the way in Avengers or people helping each other out of the overturned bus in Captain America 3.

(Source: tomhazeldine)

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