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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
What Do You Think Phillapa Boyens Was Referring to As "Feminine Energy?"
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Arannir
Valinor


Oct 9 2013, 9:53pm

Post #76 of 101 (317 views)
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Woderfully out again. [In reply to] Can't Post

I often read your posts and find that this is how I tried for 5 posts to put it in English ;)

Ans sorry I called you Elizabeth in an earlier reference instead of Michelle.



“A dragon is no idle fancy. Whatever may be his origins, in fact or invention, the dragon in legend is a potent creation of men’s imagination, richer in significance than his barrow is in gold.” J.R.R. Tolkien

Words of wisdom that should be remembered - both by critics, purists and anyone in between.


JWPlatt
Grey Havens


Oct 9 2013, 10:07pm

Post #77 of 101 (316 views)
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Bandwidth [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
...including more female characters to give each community the company visit greater band width


This is the best justification I've seen for Tauriel's inclusion. I must say that "bandwidth" is an interesting and probably technically obscure word to use to mean bringing a certain realism to the story. But it is far better justification than including her for cynical reasons like demographics and profit or as a token female which is its own brand of sexism. But Tauriel is more than just balance. She has been inserted into the story to influence events in a way that Tolkien did not write. "Feminine energy" has cast doubt upon the sincerity and motivations of the writers, and Boyens in particular. Tauriel threatens to be an artificial insertion who is forced and not organic to the story. Folks worry of writers losing their way where one decision cascades to the next and it becomes like Percy Jackson, a movie where the common complaint and failure for the audience is that it is nothing like the book.


(This post was edited by JWPlatt on Oct 9 2013, 10:14pm)


Eldorion
Rohan


Oct 9 2013, 10:25pm

Post #78 of 101 (304 views)
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I've gotta disagree here [In reply to] Can't Post

No character development in The Hobbit? That's demonstrably untrue. Bilbo goes through a very archetypal bildungsroman sort of character arc (despite being 50 years old). And The Hobbit was very popular before LOTR was written. In fact, its popularity was the reason why Allen & Unwin asked Tolkien to write LOTR. Sure, it wasn't a global phenomenon, but neither was LOTR itself until 10 years after its initial publication (when it went supernova in the '60s, as you put it).

I know there are a lot of people who want to see The Hobbit presented more in the style of LOTR, but there are also quite a few who do not want this. Hell, there is a sizable subset of the Tolkien readership who likes The Hobbit more than LOTR. We don't tend to hear as much from them because they're usually more casual fans who don't gravitate towards Tolkien forums (though this generalization is by no means universally true). It's been clear from the start what PJ wanted to do with these films, but people are perfectly justified in saying that they would prefer a Hobbit movie that makes adapting the book a higher priority than being a movie prequel.



There's a feeling I get, when I look to the West...



(This post was edited by Eldorion on Oct 9 2013, 10:28pm)


patrickk
Rohan

Oct 9 2013, 10:28pm

Post #79 of 101 (299 views)
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On Gravity [In reply to] Can't Post

I as thinking of the gender balance of the cast and characters across the film (and again careful of spoilers); and no I have no idea of the gender balance of medical engineers around the world, but engineering more generally is rather male dominated; and yes very few films are representations of 'real life' but they do reflect some attitudes and mores of the audience and studios; and so I do think Gravity is an exception to 'some' dominant stereotyes, but perhaps that is just me. .


Arannir
Valinor


Oct 9 2013, 11:32pm

Post #80 of 101 (277 views)
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Only if you ignore... [In reply to] Can't Post

... a lot of threads on these boards alone that argue why Tauriel could (we all do not know) make good sense for the story overall. But I guess I will not have to repeat them again.

I guess even those in favor or at least being positive about Tauriel as a character agree that one has to be careful not to have a domino effect that leads tot far in terms of changes. The "too far", however, is simply interpreted very dfferently.



“A dragon is no idle fancy. Whatever may be his origins, in fact or invention, the dragon in legend is a potent creation of men’s imagination, richer in significance than his barrow is in gold.” J.R.R. Tolkien

Words of wisdom that should be remembered - both by critics, purists and anyone in between.


Avandel
Valinor

Oct 10 2013, 1:13am

Post #81 of 101 (295 views)
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MY feelings are a spectrum of negative at the moment...... [In reply to] Can't Post

Hard to say what Legolas' feelings are, er,
From the AUJ EE thread:

"- PJ drops hints that there will be an elf/ dwarf romance in Desolation Of Smaug. (Kili and Tauriel he later confirms.)"

If this is true, so much for Tauriel being an innovative no-romance-involved character. As how Legolas feelings' play into this scenario?, this is getting really weird.
As for a Kili + Tauriel "thing", just when I thought it was going to be safe and I wouldn't be staring at the screen in more frozen horror than I feel about Smaug
blasting flames or Thorin being threatening with Bilbo or a pack of nasty spiders. If it's true, for me it's more horrifying than having the Great Eye staring straight
at me. And why is PJ picking on Kili this way?

Not that, in a way, I could really BLAME Tauriel for directing her "feminine energy" at Kili, maybe she's tired of all those years and years of androgynous types,
if only she didn't look so much older than him. And probably inches taller. If only it wasn't so trite, unneeded, senseless. For me, forewarned is forearmed,
gotta remember not to eat anything too rich or greasy if I have to sit through a scenario like that. And may the grace of the Valar give me strength.
Don't even want to think about how this could play out in TABA - if it's true, but why would PJ mention anything unless there was a reason?







Ziggy Stardust
Gondor


Oct 10 2013, 1:46am

Post #82 of 101 (286 views)
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To be honest [In reply to] Can't Post

I think they should have just expanded Galadriel's role, if they wanted "feminine energy", instead of make up this character. Cause let's say she is more than just a token, that means she has to have a back story and focus, which can drastically take away focus from the other characters that this story is supposed to be about. I've said it before and I will say it again. I don't care about Tauriel (or Alfrid), I care about Bilbo, Thorin, the Dwarves, Thranduil, I want to know what happens to them, I want to know about their lives. As long as a story carries out well, female audience members will not be offended.


Michelle Johnston
Rohan


Oct 10 2013, 6:42am

Post #83 of 101 (241 views)
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Clarification [In reply to] Can't Post

You are quite right to pull me up yes Bilbo is three dimensional we get to know him and he is changed. I took that as read but he makes a journey with 13 dwarves through some fascinating and deeply interesting elements of Tolkien's sub creation and only once we get toward the end does another character begin to emerge Thorin.

Its worth studying the sales figures for the Hobbit between 1937 and the mid 1960's it sold respectably for a children's book but only took off once the LOTR began to sell in its millions.

I crave others patience as I have said this before but given PJ and Co telegraphed how their adaption was going to work four years ago I am surprised by two things:-

1) That any one is surprised that we are getting a prequel taking the summary story and re imagining it for a family audience rather than 7 year olds..

2) That so many people wanted a straight adaption given the Hobbit in terms of style sits out side the approach of the LOTR and the Silmarillion.

My Dear Bilbo something is the matter with you! you are not the same hobbit that you were.


Eldorion
Rohan


Oct 10 2013, 8:12am

Post #84 of 101 (227 views)
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It doesn't surprise me [In reply to] Can't Post

I mentioned in my previous post that I think PJ has been clear about his intentions from the start (so we agree on that much, at least Wink), but that doesn't change what I would like to have seen from The Hobbit. All three of Tolkien's most famous works -- The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion -- are written in very different styles from each other. LOTR is easily my favorite Tolkien book, but I very much enjoy his other styles as well. And given that I first read TH at the same time as LOTR, I have very fond memories of both and would have preferred that the films treat each story as its own thing. I think that by turning The Hobbit into a LOTR-esque spin-off, the films are doomed be seen as less than the LOTR films, if only because the source material does not provide the same kind of scope and stakes for an epic film trilogy.



There's a feeling I get, when I look to the West...



(This post was edited by Eldorion on Oct 10 2013, 8:14am)


patrickk
Rohan

Oct 10 2013, 9:29am

Post #85 of 101 (211 views)
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I think the word Doomed is a bit much [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I mentioned in my previous post that I think PJ has been clear about his intentions from the start (so we agree on that much, at least Wink), but that doesn't change what I would like to have seen from The Hobbit. All three of Tolkien's most famous works -- The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion -- are written in very different styles from each other. LOTR is easily my favorite Tolkien book, but I very much enjoy his other styles as well. And given that I first read TH at the same time as LOTR, I have very fond memories of both and would have preferred that the films treat each story as its own thing. I think that by turning The Hobbit into a LOTR-esque spin-off, the films are doomed be seen as less than the LOTR films, if only because the source material does not provide the same kind of scope and stakes for an epic film trilogy.

They will each reap $1b+ and so if it is 'doomed' then it is nice way to go. I agree they are not the same and it is a different story and different sensibility but 'doomed' I do not think so


Eleniel
Tol Eressea


Oct 10 2013, 9:57am

Post #86 of 101 (214 views)
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One or the other... [In reply to] Can't Post

I think on e of the biggest "problems" with PJ's approach has been that he has tried to make TH more epic like LotR, but at the same time kept the light-hearted, fairy tale feeling of the book - and in some respects gone even further with the juvenile and the gross. I feel that if you want a LotR-esque Hobbit then that's fine, and it could have worked as a more serious epic with all the DG subplot, etc., added in.. But trying to do that on one hand and keep the child-friendly fairy tale on the other was not always a successful juggling act...IMO, the two approaches don't necessarily make a satisfying whole.


"Choosing Trust over Doubt gets me burned once in a while, but I'd rather be singed than hardened."
¯ Victoria Monfort


Michelle Johnston
Rohan


Oct 10 2013, 10:09am

Post #87 of 101 (218 views)
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The underlying attraction of Tolkien [In reply to] Can't Post

Whilst I confess my joy in Tolkien has evolved and developed over the years where I am now is very very simple.

I have a profound sense of connection with Tolkien's mythology for me it reveals a truth. He then places individuals within the history of middle earth which are entirely relatable so we can journey with them through this world were the gods are closer in and the beginning not so far away.

When I read the late version of Tuor/Turin and the Wanderings of Hurin I see an intimate man centred view of this astonishing world which has even more believability because the characters are rounded and given a full treatment. This reaches its greatest level of achievement in the LOTR. However Bilbo, Thorin and Gandalf make journeys in the Hobbit that are worthy of great attention and prominence and for me The Hobbit book is a wasted opportunity. Now we have several competent (not perfect) middle aged film makers doing just what I wanted.

I would have liked the great man centred stories of Beren/Tuor and Turin told with the same sense of immediacy, Tolkien attempted it he intended it but did not get there, almost with Turin.

So for me I do not want the legendarium offered in three distinctive styles I wish to come to know Tuor,Frodo and Thorin in the same way. The richness of characterisation, the sense of person place and motive where a bright light is shined down into this extra ordinary world for me is where the profoundest satisfaction lies.

My Dear Bilbo something is the matter with you! you are not the same hobbit that you were.

(This post was edited by Michelle Johnston on Oct 10 2013, 10:10am)


Eldorion
Rohan


Oct 10 2013, 3:41pm

Post #88 of 101 (167 views)
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Feel free to substitute another word of your choice ;) [In reply to] Can't Post

It was really late when I wrote that post, so I didn't spend a lot of time pondering my exact word choice. All three films will undoubtedly be financial successes, though AUJ didn't quite live up to the expectations it had as "the prequel to LOTR". But based on the overall reception, there seems to be a not-insignificant portion of the general movie-going public (separate from the Tolkien purists) who weren't as impressed by AUJ as they were with LOTR.

Perhaps this will change with the latter two films (I do expect to enjoy them more now that we're past the story set-up), but the subject matter of The Hobbit simply doesn't lend itself to epic battles and high fantasy struggles for the fate of the world as well as LOTR did. It was always going to feel smaller in scope and less important than the literally world-shaking events of LOTR, which is why I think the disappointment was inevitable for those who wanted a fourth LOTR movie more than a Hobbit adaptation.



There's a feeling I get, when I look to the West...



Eldorion
Rohan


Oct 10 2013, 3:42pm

Post #89 of 101 (164 views)
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Well said; I agree // [In reply to] Can't Post

 



There's a feeling I get, when I look to the West...



Eldorion
Rohan


Oct 10 2013, 3:44pm

Post #90 of 101 (169 views)
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You have every right to want that, [In reply to] Can't Post

and I'm not going to try to convince you to feel otherwise, since it's a perfectly valid opinion. But I hope you can understand why a lot of people love The Hobbit for what it is (in part because it is so different from the rest of the legendarium) and wish that was reflected on the screen. Smile



There's a feeling I get, when I look to the West...



Girdle of Melian
Lorien

Oct 10 2013, 4:44pm

Post #91 of 101 (162 views)
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I guess I am the only one.. [In reply to] Can't Post

And, the battle of Dol Guldur. Let me just say that. It’s extraordinary. So she immediately brings a very powerful feminine energy into the film, and one of the reasons… It’s interesting that you did that, because we did feel the weight of it being a “boys’ own” story. After a while, you’d feel the weight of it. And we did create a character. Her name’s Tauriel, who is an elf. Who is played magnificently by Evangeline Lilly"

...My interpretation of this is that she is going to do something "feminine" during the Battle of Dol Guldur, and since her appearance is quite limited, wouldn't that feminine energy be more during the battle scene? My question was more like that what do you think she will do in battle? Sing, Glow, become an Elf Ninja (lol), use the Phial? Be cloaked, sword or bow and arrow? Move the earth, water, or the plants? What do you think? Also, what is the benefit, other than being older, of having seen the light of the two trees?
GOM

--- that has this opinion on the quote and what was the original post was all about and became something deeper in conversation...lol. So from a Nuclear Galadriel in LOTR we get Crouching Tiger Hidden Elf action sequences? :)



Voronwë_the_Faithful
Valinor

Oct 10 2013, 5:30pm

Post #92 of 101 (153 views)
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Which is, perhaps, why Tolkien gave up on the rewrite [In reply to] Can't Post

One of the things that struck me when I read the fragment of the 1960 rewrite that Tolkien started and then abandoned was the fact that it still kept the overall feel of the original, yet tried to mix in elements that were more consistent with LOTR. That is why it ultimately didn't work, because it was becoming a hybrid that was neither one nor the other. "Not The Hobbit" as the unnamed female friend said. But not LOTR-light, either. More like a jarring mix of the two.

'But very bright were the stars upon the margin of the world, when at times the clouds about the West were drawn aside.'

The Hall of Fire


Bombadil
Half-elven


Oct 10 2013, 7:57pm

Post #93 of 101 (147 views)
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Bomby doesn't care for Turning PB into some sorta.. [In reply to] Can't Post

Villainess...She is doing her job...
It seems people WANT to pick on her,
just like they WANT to pick on Tauiel.

These are two really Beautiful women.
Frown


(This post was edited by Bombadil on Oct 10 2013, 8:02pm)


JWPlatt
Grey Havens


Oct 10 2013, 8:20pm

Post #94 of 101 (136 views)
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Reality [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
These are two really Beautiful women.
Frown

Phillipa seems to be the self-assured sort who, right or wrong, has the strength to stand on her own and return the criticism in spades. We fools only strengthen her certainty that she is wiser and righteous. I doubt she needs protection.

The news is that Tauriel isn't real. But if she were, there's a good chance they would be the same person anyway. See above for likely character description of Tauriel.
Wink

Use of the word 'villainess' is hyperbole intended to make criticisms appear more extreme and less rooted in analysis than they actually are. It happens to employ the same technique of that which the critics are accused.


Otaku-sempai
Half-elven


Oct 10 2013, 8:45pm

Post #95 of 101 (118 views)
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The Sorceress of Mirkwood [In reply to] Can't Post

Speaking of non-canon feminine characters who have been added to the legendarium, here is one that is introduced in The Heart of the Wild, the new sourcebook for the role-playing game The One Ring: Adventures over the Edge of the WIld:

Quote

The Sorceress of Mirkwood

Her true name is Zimraphel. She is of the line of the Black Númenóreans from Umbar. While her kin fell into sloth and decadence, she studied the stars and the mystic arts, hoping to find a way to cheat death. Word reached her in the distant south of a powerful Necromancer in Mirkwood, and she sailed up the Anduin in a black boat to pledge her service to him. It amused Sauron to teach her sorcery, and she hoped that he would give her a Ring of Power. Now that the Necromancer is gone, she fled the wrath of the Wizards and took refuge in the Demon's Tower, in the far south-east of Mirkwood. So far, she has ignored all the entreaties of the Nazgûl to return to Dol Guldur, and plots instead to steal one of their Rings.

Little humanity is left in her. She retains the semblance of her mortal form, but her soul is withered and blighted. She knows more of the inner workings of Dol Guldur than any save the Nazgûl, but has no interest in aiding the Free Peoples. All she desires is a Ring...



Is this an interesting and compelling character? Would she have been a good addition to the White Council/Dol Guldur sub-plot? Additional comments?

'There are older and fouler things than Orcs in the deep places of the world.' - Gandalf the Grey, The Fellowship of the Ring


RosieLass
Valinor


Oct 10 2013, 8:54pm

Post #96 of 101 (132 views)
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We are not obligated to admire someone... [In reply to] Can't Post

...just because someone else thinks we ought to.

I have nothing personal against Philippa Boyens. I've never met the woman. How could I have anything personal against her?

But I don't like some of the things she, and the rest of the scriptwriters, have done to Tolkien's stories. And I'm entitled to say so if I want to.

That doesn't make either one of us villains.

"BOTH [political] extremes are dangerous. But more dangerous are team fanboys who think all the extremists are on the OTHER side." (CNN reader comment)

It is always those with the fewest sensible things to say who make the loudest noise in saying them. --Precious Ramotswe (Alexander McCall Smith)


Michelle Johnston
Rohan


Oct 10 2013, 9:49pm

Post #97 of 101 (108 views)
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A fair point [In reply to] Can't Post

For the movie to travel the gamut of emotions is fine. The great drama of the historical perspective Erebor/Azanulbizar juxtaposed against the delicious intimacy of Bag End works well.
Where AUJ came close to mixing styles in an unsatisfactory way was with the Trolls. For me jeopardy has to be consistent it worked - just but from now on the tone of the films has to be consistent otherwise it will fall between two stools. We can not go back to innocence the stakes have been raised and must stay raised. From now on the the relief should come from from the oasis moments Wood Elves and Lake Town when they are relatively safe.

One way in which the films could fail is if those tonal points you raise continue I suspect they will not.

My Dear Bilbo something is the matter with you! you are not the same hobbit that you were.


malickfan
Gondor


Oct 10 2013, 10:30pm

Post #98 of 101 (110 views)
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I agree to an large extent [In reply to] Can't Post

Personally, although his character arc is much simpler and 'closer to the surface' if you will I have always found Bilbo a more interesting character and frankly likable protagonist than the stuffy near perfect Frodo.

I know there are a lot of people who want to see The Hobbit presented more in the style of LOTR, but there are also quite a few who do not want this. Hell, there is a sizable subset of the Tolkien readership who likes The Hobbit more than LOTR. We don't tend to hear as much from them because they're usually more casual fans who don't gravitate towards Tolkien forums (though this generalization is by no means universally true).

- I never necessarily wanted to see a film of The Hobbit done as per book-I would have been fine with a fleshed children's film in the vein of the book, or a fleshed out serious Hobbit integrating elements of The Appendices as long as it was done well and for good reason (The Hobbit book wouldn't work on its own as modern film), however Jackson tried to do both, and in my mind failed as a consequence, alot of his changes and additions aren't necessary IMO, and Tauriel is one that I have serious concerns about, purely because her character may be transforming the story of The Hobbit in a way never suggested by the book or Tolkien's writing, though I am trying (and failing) to reserve judgement till the film.

I can see what you mean about the way The Hobbit is written. I didn't read The Hobbit till I was 18/19 years after reading LOTR (multiple times), but if anything I actually enjoy more as a read than LOTR-sure it's simple and short, and lacking the prose and power of Tolkien's other works, but for me it is simply a more enjoyable experience-Tolkien is writing purely for fun never forgetting his target audience, in the LOTR, on the other hand (for better or worse) he often gets bogged down in the details and pretensions of his own private mythology.

Does that make me anything less of a Tolkien fan? Do my well thumbed hardback copies of The H.O.M.E and The H.O.T.H count for nothing? I am fully aware of the later backstory Tolkien developed and partially contemplated for The Hobbit, but in my eyes it's not necessary to enjoy the story, and certainly shouldn't be automatically accepted as an excuse to drastically change a story loved in it's current form for 40+ years.

(This isn't directed at you Eldo btw, I've drunk rather alot of caffiene today and I'm terrible for rambling)

I personally have found it a little disconcerting how some people resent The Hobbit for not being something it really isn't (A LOTR prequel) rather than appreciating it for what it primarily is a stand alone children's story, and seem to be think Jackson's approach to the story is one that best reflects the spirit of Tolkien and the wishes of all fans, all the additional material and the mythology of Lord of the Rings being a licence to ignore or ret con The Hobbit as published.

In fact judging by my own personal experience with friends and family, and the reviews I had seen on the net, until I joined TORn I had always assumed The Hobbit was more popular than LOTR amongst the general public!

I guess that speaks volumes for my posting history...


Of course I realize it goes both ways, some are not overly fond of the book or more open to adaptations-totally fine of course, and I'm hardly the best person qualified to critise the movie business. But I do sometimes think my view on The Hobbit book acts as a barrier to posting here or perhaps to enjoying the film, and the 'think positive at all costs' vibe I get from TORn, though not a bad thing of course acts as a barrier to meaningful discussion.

Sorry for the rant, that's why I don't post much.

I don't have much to say.



Ziggy Stardust
Gondor


Oct 11 2013, 1:35am

Post #99 of 101 (92 views)
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To be fair [In reply to] Can't Post

I never said PB was a villianess.


Ziggy Stardust
Gondor


Oct 11 2013, 1:37am

Post #100 of 101 (93 views)
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Thank you! [In reply to] Can't Post

Just because some of us don't like what Boyens has done, doesn't make us villains, and I'm so sick of that attitude, because I've felt like people have been making me out to be the villain (and I'm sure others have felt the same: that they've been made out to be villains.)
I don't want to be a product of the environment, and I'm afraid if this continues, people are going to create monsters.


(This post was edited by Ziggy Stardust on Oct 11 2013, 1:38am)

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