Literary Mindfucking

In joyous news, I finally finished a painting!
On the other hand, another painting I was working on at the same time will probably be scrapped and the surface reworked for a series I want to make with the finished piece being the first.

In other news, I was thinking once again about the Golden Compass books, officially called His Dark Materials. Spoilers follow, I now claim no responsibility hereafter.

Granted, I read the trilogy rather late in my young life, as I believe they are intended for young people beginning the tumultuous journey into puberty. The first book is properly written for the intended audience: a young girl, Lyra, lives wild over an immense and ancient college campus; she does what she wants, listens to no one, and commands the respect and allegiance of the city's various street urchins. If you had to be an orphan, wouldn't that be the bitchingest way to do it? And of course, that is but the beginning, my good fellow! Lyra goes on incredible adventures, tells crusty old men what to do, befriends a giant talking bear, and, best of all, she's best buddies with her literal and very tangible spirit animal, who can conveniently change shape to whatever animal she wishes. She saves a butt ton of kids from a horrible institution that evil grownups devised to rob kids of their youth.

Naturally, what young adults' book would be complete without serious adult undertones? The theme snaking under this book, though only becoming apparent towards the end when the plot twists reveal themselves, is a diatribe against the Church. My opinion on that is neither here nor there; I'm not offended by the author's dislike of the Church, though I do question his putting it in a book for such young people.

But AHA! You see, the next two books become increasingly darker, and the overall plot becomes ever more convoluted, until, at the very end of the trilogy you realize the author was working himself up into a frenzy. Finally, the death of GOD! Granted, God is a mere figurehead, but considering what he represents, what would his death mean? The death of the Church? I dunno!

My issue with the books is that, starting in the Subtle Knife, our protagonist Lyra gets shoved aside. She is no longer the wild, headstrong young heroine one is led to like in the Golden Compass. Nah weh, mon. Lyra takes a backseat to WILL, the budding young man! Will becomes the possessor of a totally bitching blade, the Subtle Knife, because every hero's got to have a weapon! Lyra, after consulting the alethiometer (an object that knows the answers to everything) decides that her entire purpose now is to help Will find his father! To resolve his daddy issues of course! She does whatever he says (and shit damn if he ain't a bossy little punkass) and I'll be damned if she doesn't submit to his every whim just as if she were a neat little housewife!

Naturally Will is used to having defenseless women around. He had to support his mother his whole life, didn't he? As I recall she has some kind of early onset dementia or whatever because Will's dad disappeared ten years previous. Funny, isn't it, how the women in these books become either mum puppets or wicked villainesses at the attention or neglect of their male counterparts.

You have to understand, I loved the Golden Compass. That book was great. And I certainly loved aspects of the other books. The guy used the proper formulas to ensure he had a fantastic fantasy-scifi-adventure story. I just think his personal agenda kept reaching up and bitchslapping me.


Really Important Topic

Why are women's shirts and dresses always so cute and well designed on the front, but then so dull on the back? Is it really so difficult to continue that nice beaded neckline all the way around? People check us out from behind too. And backs are pretty sexy. A woman's frontside gets all the attention and pretty stuff, but the back always gets stiffed. Unfair, I say!