media log #1


a portrait of the artist as a young man - james joyce

the first of three books read for class! this guy (& the following) was read for a class on 20th century literature, with a natural focus on modernism. prior to reading joyce, we read an essay by virginia woolf wherein she sung joyce's praises as THE modernist writer of all time based on a portrait. she would later walk back on this a little after being less thrilled with ulysses, though maintained the genius in a portrait. and it isn't misplaced. while i didn't particularly like main character stephen (a little ironic, as the work is well regarded as at least semi-autobiographical), i won't sit here pretending it isn't well written. the hard-to-follow nature of the early chapters mirrors the experience of wadding through ones memories extremely well - things blend and mold together and time moves impossibly. i don't know if i have the zeal woolf had to go as far as calling it modernism at its best, but i can't pretend its not well up there either.

this is the part where i was going to put craftmanship aside and just talk about the story but i guess for me the craftmanship was the best part. i think this is a work that would resonate with young men a lot better, given it's a k√ľnstleroman. for the most part i just kind of found stephen kind of whiny and lame. like get out of your head brother, stand UP. most of the book is written in stephen's head, though it shined best through his interactions with other characters. by far the best part is the last chapter, where we follow stephen at university college. i thought i caught some homosexual subtext in his final conversation with friend cranly but brushed it off to my fujoshi habits, so it was kind of funny for me when i went to class the next day and my profressor asked if we found that conversation gay. i can't stop winning.

"God and the Blessed Virgin were too far from him: God was too great and stern and the Blessed Virgin too pure and holy. But he imagined that he stood near Emma in a wide land and, humbly and in tears, bent and kissed the elbow of her sleeve"

the great gatsby - f. scott fitzgerald

like all good north american schools i had read gatsby in high school, but i guess reading an entire book the day before an exam is a horrible way to retain any memories of it whatsoever. when i say i remembered nothing that is not even close to an exaggeration. i did not even remember the huge event at the ending. for the purpose of reading this for class, though, it was pretty ideal and i had fun with it. the antisemitism was weird. every character was horrible in their own way. daisy might be the original manic pixie dream girl. i think the idea that nick may be an unreliable narrator is mostly unfounded. the character nick probably really believed everything he wrote about the people he wrote about, and if he censored anything, it was regarding himself. all of nick's action happens off-screen and without deep detail, so i would allow him the title of "unreliable" on that front alone.

i definitely read it searching for proof of the gay nick accusations and he definitely did fuck that dude at the end of chapter two.

dr. jekyll and mr. hyde - robert louis stevenson

this is the last media i consumed for class (disregarding all the unfinished books ha ha), and by far my favourite. like, i would not stop thinking about this book for days after i finished it. i didn't expect it to be so short. my old grade 12 english teacher had an adage for books like these: they're just a cup of tea and a mars bar. in 2023 i bet it's quite hard to come to jekyll & hyde without knowing something about the plot twist. i always thought it'd be an early example of using DID as a plot device, so i was very pleasantly surprised when it wasn't! and man. this baby can fit so much male intimacy in it. maybe it's just a symptom of being a book with little to no female characters, but it seemed like every single guy in this book had some level of homoerotic subtext with the other. i would argue (and i did, in my class paper) its purposefully. the final reveal can be read as an allegory for any kind of reason someone may live a double life, and i think homosexuality slots in quite well.

that's not really what i want to talk about though. i want to talk about the final chapter and how it sent me insane. jekyll.... my beloved.... him both (1) recognizing his twisted desires as a fundamental and loved part of him and (2) trying to cast them off completely and relieve himself of any responsibility. EXACTLY the kind of guilt-story that drives me bananas. i'm obsessed with it. stevenson you outdid yourself truly.

also, its hilarious lanyon really died from seeing a dude transform lol

spy x family season 2

i don't really have anything intellectual to say about this. it's just so CUTE. this cruise ship arc is my favourite so far. every episode i was screaming and kicking my feet. dan yor ur bobbies. overall, 0/10 needs more damien.

DOGSRED - satoru noda

omg they made hockey gayer

when i first got interested in golden kamuy, i was really upset to learn that noda had written a hockey manga that failed. as a good canadian citizen, hockey has a special place in my heart, even if i don't watch it religiously and just blindly follow the team my dad and brother support. a lot of my childhood was spent in local rinks since my brother always played. and that's one of the reasons that i do think noda hand-crafted this manga for me. reading about a boy practicing at local rinks and playing high school hockey hits on some nostalgia, even if the manga's culture is extremely different. another reason i think noda is speaking directly to my soul is that i went through a figure skating phase, so seeing my two beloved ice sports merged is super fun. i really want to know what kind of jumps rou is doing at all time though so i hope noda starts adding some kind of indicator in the future, ESPECIALLY when he's in hockey skates (because in general that's not super possible, but i'll allow it for you noda)

my favourite character trope is fussy gay too so i would die for rou fr. also, TWO rivals to possibly become lovers????? or for me to at least ship about it????? noda you shouldn't have. i'm so spoiled.

seriously though, i'm really interested to see how rou and haruna addres their backstory (trauma?) and grow from it. the set up is so interesting and i already love their relationship, tensions included. i'm also curious to see the changes made between supinamarada and dogsred. i'm going to wait for dogsred to get further in to avoid any possible spoilers since the foundation is the same, but i'm so grateful noda gave this concept another shot. thanks golden kamuy for my life.

bizarre love triangle '94 - new order