Archive for the 'Guilty Pleasures' Category

I Want to Be Roger Ebert When I Grow Up

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One of the things I do every week is I read Roger Ebert and his movie reviews. I read pretty much everything he writes. Some of it I skim, if I’m in a hurry or if it’s about politics, which I find a little dreary. Most of the time I read all of his movie reviews, and then his blog, and I read the articles done by other reviewers on his blog, but mostly I just read Ebert.

I like the way he thinks and I like the way he writes. I don’t always agree with his opinions on movies; sometimes I’ll watch a movie he’s given a positive review to (like Pan’s Labyrinth) and come out feeling like I’ve been GOBsmacked. What he’s looking for in a movie is not always what I’m looking for. He’s seen it all, so he’s looking for style and subtle subtexts and he’s got his eye out for something really good. When all I want is a happy ending and a good laugh and a nice soundtrack. And if you throw in some orphans who get rescued, then I am there. His reviews alert me to what’s out there, what might be good, and from the content of his reviews, I can avoid those movies that I don’t want to watch. And he’s a damn good writer who is entertaining to read.

I really started noticing Ebert way back, when I was reading a review for a movie he didn’t like very much. I don’t remember the name of the movie, or who was in it, sadly. But I do remember Ebert interjecting with this “And there were Nazis!” comments every now and then, to poke fun at this movie which was so obviously bad that the only villains it could probably think of to put in there were Nazis, even though there aren’t any in the movie. It was so funny, I wished I’d saved it. (If you know which review this is, I’d be very grateful if you’d let me know.)

One of my favorite Ebert stories is about the time when a fellow reviewer by the name of Patrick Goldstein had some negative things to say about Rob Schneider’s movie Duce Bigalow: Male Gigolo that were less than glowing. Schneider, in turn, behaved in a less than professional way, and in the end Ebert stepped up and called Schneider on it, and the result was a very amazing review by Ebert of the same movie to support Goldstein. I remember thinking at the time how fun it must have been to stand up with balls of steel and say what he did.

In the meanwhile, my admiration for his writing grew, and when I grew up I wanted to be like him: smart, funny, insightful, and brave in his writing. This might be part of the reason I started writing reviews for  I’m not sure if I am or have any or all of those attributes that I admire in Ebert, but that’s my goal.

Three years since I started writing for, I’m pretty sure I’m still working on, and will have to continue working on, being smart, funny, insightful, and brave. (Not to mention being better at spelling and punctuation!)  As to which of my reviews reflect any of those qualities, I honestly can’t tell you. When I think I’ve done a bang-up job and written something really amazing, I post it and hear crickets. On the other hand, when I write something hastily because real life is rearing its head and needs attention, I post it and people rave. If I think a review is particularly bland, then someone will take umbrage; if it’s an incendiary review (in my mind), then I get an entirely opposite response. I’ve learned, or at least I think I have, not to expect response A or response B, regardless. My readers and their responses always surprise me, which is part of the pleasure of writing.

So the point of all this is that long about April of this year, I hit a high water mark as far as number of hits my articles were getting. It was like 1,000 hits per article over a week’s time. That’s pretty good for a site like, and very nice for me to see. (All writers like readers, it’s a given!)

One time, I did a review of a Supernatural episode called Point of No Return. (My review was called Faith in the Atmosphere.)  For various and sundry reasons (not all of them positive), this particular review got over 500 hits and 150 comments before noon on the first day. Which is amazing!

Pink Raygun

I was so pleased with myself, and my head was so swelled up that I needed Vaseline to get through doorways. Yeah, and I’m walking around, ta-da!, all puffed up, and then I go to Roger Ebert’s blog. He’d been doing a review of video games and had pronounced them to not be art. To what I’m sure was his surprise, people took umbrage, and the result was that he got lots of hits that day and lots of comments.  (The rule of thumb is…one comment equals around 100 people who read you and didn’t comment.)

So how many comments did Ebert get on the very same day? Take a look….

Roger Ebert

Of course, his count was at the end of the day, but still! 2,343 comments!! And going by my rule of thumb, that meant he got over 200,000 hits. Needless to say, my balloon-shaped ego deflated in about two seconds flat. Poor me! Here I was the hotsty totsy thing, in my mind. If only he’d posted this review days earlier or days later! But who am I kidding. The man gets thousands of comments every single day. And he doesn’t get them by being nice or by holding back, he gets it by telling it like he sees it.

I know what my Dad would say. He’d say, don’t compare yourself to anyone else, just do your best.

So I’m doing my best, trying to improve on what I do, but I still want to be Roger Ebert when I grow up. He is my comment-spiration.

Supernatural Episode Review: The Third Man

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My review for the Supernatural episode “The Third Man” is up at Enjoy!

An excerpt:

More proof of this is Dean’s pleasure at having Sam back at his side. This is amply demonstrated when Sam’s bad boy has been bashed to bits in the angel puddle battle. Instead of commiserating with Sam, Dean says, casually, “Okay, silver lining.” Because, as you can see, if Sam has no car, he must sit in the Sam Seat once again, and join Dean inside the confines of the Impala as the two brothers rocket down the road. I get that Show felt it had to build up to this point in the story line, that they wanted to give us all a momentary concern to up the ante, but really. This is all we want, the rest of it is just window dressing.”

Oh, Hai….

Episodes, Guilty Pleasures, Jared Padalecki, Jensen Ackles, PicSpam, Pink Ray Gun, Supernatural 3 Comments »

Okay, so I’m stuck at home during this early spring blizzard, and noting, with some surprise, the number of posts over at Pink Raygun, following my most recent ep review of “On the Head of a Pin.” While I’m not going to take credit for the discussion that has taken off on its own, I can call myself a facilitator for providing the space. Maybe. Anyway…I got a case of the giggles and made one of these to send to my editor at PRG, because sometimes, you just have to pat yourself on the back.

Oh Hai…

Guilty Pleasure: Shelter Beneath the Mundane

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Shelter Beneath the Mundane by drvsilla.


I’ve decided that I quite like amnesia fic, which is what I thought this was. But it turned out to be Dean in hell fic, that is a story where Dean goes to hell and Sam gets him out. There’s not a lot of hot sex here, but there is intelligent storycrafting, whereby Dean suffers through the fires of hell by imagining he’s still got a purpose. And that is, running a little breakfast place for all those people he was unable to save, and who are also in hell. I quite liked the concept, because it was original and it FITS with how Dean sees himself. He’s one of those who does what must be done. He’s very duty bound, and his way of controlling the pain of hellfire is by doing his duty. Lovely.


Dean began the day’s routine, same as yesterday, same as tomorrow would follow. Coffee first, left to percolate and fill the huge silver urns that lined the back counter; one of them gurgled and he thumped it with the heel of his hand, nodded in satisfaction when it groaned and steadied on. Grill warmed and eggs set next to it for omelets or sunnysides, bacon laid down to pop while it cooked, bread and muffins and rolls in case someone wanted it as a sandwich. Everything else was where it should be – plenty of fruit in the basket next to the register, cinnamon rolls still fresh enough to serve, mints in small tins just because.

Guilty Pleasure: The Dangers of Second Guessing

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The Dangers of Second Guessing by mona1347.


There’s no plot, but sometimes you don’t need one, when it gets this hot. The ep Mystery Spot has spawned a huge amount of desperate Sam stories, which only makes sense, seeing as how the whole experience, which really never happened, changed Sam totally. I mean, it had to, right? So, all the stories following this ep have this sense of panic in them, where Sam can’t stand to let Dean out of his sight. Like ever. There have been one or two that were super good, and had a plot, this one didn’t. But that’s okay, because it was hot and yeah, it made sense, if you could see inside Dean’s head, about how freaky it is to have Sam watching him every minute of every day. Plus, Dean’s not totally jiggy with the whole kissing thing, he’s resistant, but you know, with Sam, what Sam wants, resistance is futile.

Plus there’s lines like this one, showing me just how frantic Dean is to stop and go at the same time:

“Yeah, yeah, let me have you.”

“Shut up,” Dean growls in reply, hand grabbing at Sam’s hair and yanking his head back maybe too hard, forcing their eyes to meet. “Shut up, you stupid shit. You know. You know you always had…”

“I do,” Sam pants, nodding and wild-eyed. “I know.”


Something about Dean calling Sam a stupid shit in the middle of all this hotness felt real to me. He’s pissed off and wanting it and bossing Sam around all at the same time. It’s a nice little PWP here. I enjoyed myself.

Guilty Pleasure: Demons Made Me Spill My Guts Like a Girl

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Demons Made Me Spill My Guts Like a Girl by merrin.


This is a dark, dark fic, too dark, in fact, going all AU and impossible on me. Yet the writing was teriffic so I read the whole thing, shaking my head, not liking the premise, but liking the story and the result, if you see what I mean. So I get to this excerpt and I’m like, yeah. It’s like that.

“Damn it, Sam. I remember what it said, okay? I remember saying it. You’re doing this because you think I want it and I want you to stop. I don’t need this.”

But the thing is, Sam knows Dean, sometimes better than Dean knows himself. And even though some things have changed and there are secrets in Dean’s eyes he’s never seen before and can only guess at the truth of, he knows this. He knows that Dean wants it, even needs it as much as he does, and he plays the one card that always gets them what they both need.

“I do,” Sam says, and Dean’s resistance crumbles like Sam is the Big Bad Wolf and Dean is the house of straw and that’s how Sam finds out Dean kisses like he’s dying, or like he’s being reborn, like he’ll never need to breathe again. Dean’s hands are on his face and his mouth is open, pressed against Sam’s. He’s making the softest, neediest noises that Sam would be duty-bound to give him crap for if he wasn’t making the same noises himself and even if it’s nothing he ever thought of before, it’s everything he’s always wanted.

Guilty Pleasure: Little Black Book

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Little Black Book by jeyhawk.


I’m in the mood, so this guilty pleasure gets posted. It’s not a story, it’s a scene, where while Dean is in the hospital, Sam finds a little book Dean keeps to record all his sexual encounters. Not as tawdry as it sounds, because to Sam, reading the book is finding out more about Dean. While I don’t believe that Dean would keep a record like this (too anal for him), I like the thought of the mystery of Dean unfolding itself before Sam’s eyes. And the fact that, sometimes, Dean does it for money so he can take care of Sam. It’s a sad little treat, quite easy on the eyes.

An excerpt:

“Sam doesn’t know what it means, but he supposes that is all right because he lost track of what they are doing and where they are going a long time ago. As long as there is him and Dean, the Impala, and the soft, hard warmth between them, he knows they’ll be okay no matter where the twisting road of life will take them next. He slides over on his back, letting Dean curl around him with his head on Sam’s chest without calling him a girl even once. He knows Dean needs this, just as he knows that Dean would never ask for it, and that any ribbing would leave him with a shot of Dean’s back as he moved to the other bed.”

Guilty Pleasure: they put me in a cage full of lions; i learned to speak lion

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they put me in a cage full of lions; i learned to speak lion
 by amerella.


I’ve often thought that the Winchester boys were exceptional children at risk. Smart, bright, but in an enviorment that could prove harmful to them, even as it made them tough. Like the title of this fic, if you put a child in a cage with lions, you get a child who can speak lion, who is lionlike. This fic, as well, is mostly Dean’s story, though you can see Sam, who likes to squeeze himself into small spaces, learning to speak lion as well.

The fic is more of  character exploration, with not plot, but it did have some nice images.  The part I liked best is when Dean, having fallen of his bike, waits for his dad to rescue him because he likes how his dad looks when he’s walking towards him, intent on rescue.

Guilty Pleasure: Family Ties

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Family Ties by concernedilly.


Sex, sex, and more sex. I can’t keep up. This story has the usual, the hotness, the touching, the kissing, all of that. It’s a story where Dean wants to experiment with light bondage, and I don’t believe for a minute he would indulge in that. Too many chances for it to go wrong, and I think he’s got enough excitement in his life without that. When he wants to practice with Sam, it doesn’t go very well. When Sam decides to figure it out and then give Dean what he wants, it goes better. Yeah, okay. Hot and stuff. What got me was this line:

“It takes Sam three days and four long blowjobs to forgive Dean for having to put his shirts back on to cover his still-persistent erection, go out into the night and drive thirty miles to an all-night store to get paperclips. That’s the real problem with sleeping with your brother, he thinks: Sam knows all the damage Dean’s ever taken on his arms and shoulders, spent the nights up listening to Dean grit his teeth against the pain, so he couldn’t just leave him tied with his arms up all night like he so richly deserved.”

I liked the realism of the fact that Sam remembers, knows, how many times Dean has been tied up and bashed around and that he can’t really take much more of the same. But if Dean wants to be tied up, Sam will give it to him. His way. Good stuff.  

Guilty Pleasures: And So Awakens Devils

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And So Awakens Devils by concernedlily.


I hate AU, post-apolcolyptic stories. I hate stories where Sam is the Antichrist. I hate stories where Bobby is possesed by a demon. Ug. Ug. Ug. Read this story anyway. It’s fantastic.