And while we're talking about unhappy endings: Best Beloved and I planned to buy life insurance a year ago. And we, um, didn't, largely because it's hideously intimidating. But we've finally accepted that we have to, whether we would rather just have oral surgery or not, and we've also finally realized that possibly there is a person out there who actually knows about life insurance, who can provide us with advice that doesn't come coated in a layer of ooze. (Why YES, we are in fact afraid of life insurance salesmen. Does it show?) So: life insurance advice, anyone?
The One with the Deeply Symbolic Model Spaceship. No, Really. DEEPLY SYMBOLIC. Don't Stop Believing, by arefadedaway. Star Trek.
I love it when a new fandom hits big, because then you get vids like this. I'm sure there's an official term for them that I don't know, but I think of them as zeitgeist vids, and they are fun. They're like all the enthusiasm and sudden-onset glee - that same first flush of fannish love that keeps people up all night reading stories they know will be terrible because they just Need More Spock, or whoever - rendered in vid form.
Zeitgeist vids pretty much always get me into a fandom. I am helpless in their grasp. I, of course, have not seen this source - the last movie I saw in theaters was Iron Man, and probably the next one will be Star Trek 11 - but it doesn't matter. I am prepared to buy what this vid is selling. Kirk! Just a city boy! Spock! A small town girl! They take a midnight train going anywhere! See, I am already giddy with love and joy and fannish enthusiasm.
It used to be that my OTPs were set in stone by the first five stories I read in a fandom; these days, it's the vids I see before I read even one story, more often than not. And by the end of this vid, and the other - um, what are the official initials for this fandom? It's so new I haven't seen a consensus yet! - anyway, after this and the other zeitgeist vids in whatever fandom this happens to be, I am prepared to ship Kirk/Spock. Unless someone can point me to a seriously bouncy Spock/Uhura or Kirk/McCoy or whatever vid. (And let me tell you how proud I am of knowing those names: SO PROUD, because one of the downsides of zeitgeist vids is that they often leave me saying, "I love you! Whoever you are! You are shiny and awesome, and, wow, I guess I'd better hit the IMDb.")
The One with the Cleanest Medieval Peasant Village I Ever Did See. Beverly Hills, by giandujakiss. Merlin.
It's the old, old story: a small town girl, living in a lonely world - no, wait. Wrong vid. This old, old story is about a small town boy who goes to the Big Shiny and uses magic, often totally inappropriately, and saves the world from time to time, and spends most of the rest of his time falling in love. This is a deeply classic narrative - I dare you say otherwise, given the enormous body of Harry Potter fan fiction I can bring to support my case - and I love it.
And so I love this vid. It was one of the very first Merlin vids I saw, and it made me love the fandom. (Why, yes, I am a sucker for vids. It is not my fault; I blame - I don't know. laurashapiro, actually. She encouraged me.) I deeply approve of young-man-big-city narratives, particularly when the big city has turrets. And, yes, I am in fact talking about Arthur, there, because you can't tell me he doesn't spend a lot of time admiring his turrets, and you also can't tell me Merlin isn't secretly doing the same.
This vid takes fabulous advantage of Merlin's ability to look gormless while simultaneously profoundly judging those around him. I admire it greatly. And the opening makes me smile every single time.
The One That Conveys the Fundamental Joy of Being Able to Stop Time and Teleport, Which Is a Thing You Would Think People Would Just Know, but It's Amazing How Often They Act Like It's a Big Burden. Sawatte Kawatte, by laurashapiro. Heroes.
I think of this as the Happy Heroes Vid. No, really. Every Heroes vid I download seems to consist of a) people getting their brains eaten and then lying around dead with no skull on or b) a girl killing herself (or sometimes just mutilating herself) horribly and bloodily. Sometimes it's both. In the vids, if you don't know the fandom, it looks like Heroes is largely about people using their superpowers to cause tons of bloodshed and draw comic books, and the thing is, you don't need superpowers to do those things. Humans manage that just fine without any special abilities at all! A knife and a pen and you're all set!
Which is why I love the characters in this vid, and am sad that in so many vids they are Sirs Not Appearing in This Vid. The one guy has superpowers and actually does things with them, and I mean things that don't in any way involve anyone bleeding and/or dying horribly. (Okay, he does seem to have a sword, but I bet he doesn't go around lopping people's heads off and having their brains out like some mutant zombie Highlander.) He saves people! He does neat tricks! He has fun! It's like he actually understands what superpowers are for. I cannot help but feel, watching this vid, that the main character of it watched the SF movies and read the comic books, and all the other people in the show grew up on an unadulterated diet of horror.
So I like that. It's a Heroes vid that makes me happy. And even more happy-making is the sheer joy of these two guys together. They are two sides of the same coin, to quote almost every other fandom in this set. They neeeeeeed each other. And when they hug, my heart turns handsprings. It is that simple.
The One Featuring the Most Fabulous Group of People You'd Shoot in Preference to Spending Any Time with Them. I'll Be There for You, by dualbunny. Black Books.
I will be perfectly honest: I have no idea if this vid will work for you if you haven't seen an episode of Black Books. (I myself have seen the first one, which puts me in an unusual and, frankly, uncomfortable place of Actual Canon Knowledge.) But give it a try anyway, and if it doesn't make you giggle, watch the first episode of Black Books and then come back. It's worth it.
See, okay. First, this song. It's - now, it's not like I don't like it, but it's a bit goopy, you know? Whenever I hear it, I visualize a lot of hugging. It is obviously talking about the kind relationship wherein party A automatically has tissues before party B has even started to cry. (And they watch the same sad movie almost every Friday night, so that's not such a huge surprise.) I admire that kind of relationship! I do! Just, you can only take so much of hugging and thoughtfulness.
Which is why I find that song used for these people to be awesome, because they're the kind of friends who, if they settled down to watch a tearjerker movie after one of them had had a big breakup, would end up accidentally setting the crying person on fire. And then Bernard would light a cigarette from the flames.
And, actually, I think that comes through very clearly in this vid whether you know the source or not, so I've changed my mind: I do recommend it for the source-unfamiliar. Just keep in mind that there are three main characters in the show: Bastard, Hapless, and In Any Other Group, She'd Be the Crazy Girl, but in This One, She's the Voice of Reason. And enjoy.