azn_jack_fiend: (Jack smiling)
[personal profile] azn_jack_fiend
I succumbed to peer pressure and listened to the House of the Dead! Some points:

I dislike James Goss' writing for a bunch of reasons I've already ranted about before at length, but what the hell, I'll rant about it some more. He's a lively writer who does good dialogue and he knows how to hook people emotionally, but there's always this weird self-indulgent flippant-but-still-overly-sentimental aspect to it that gets under my skin. Like the Duchess in Golden Age, who went on and on and on, and the fact that the Indian characters were all redshirts, so this play that I loved for setting and creativity ended up inspiring an equal amount of hate. Or how much time female!Ianto spent in Almost Perfect complaining about wearing high heels and then rationalizing wearing them anyway because his womanly feet had shifted into that high heel shape so he couldn't wear shoes that weren't high heels, ARRRGH (yes, I will be complaining about that bit on my deathbed).

- JB's exposition delivery in the beginning was pretty over the top, but he got better.
- GDL's crying... not very good.
- EM was basically perfect, and having heard all of the radio plays and audiobooks except for these new ones, I think she is the best voice actor.
- Feels a bit derivative of Lost Souls (theme of the living entrapped by the dead).
- Snatches of very good dialogue and delivery; loved Ianto's light-hearted "thanks, Jack" near the end in response to Jack's very dramatic line.
- The end struck me as too sentimental and emotionally articulate.  I loved Ianto's very romantic and poetic monologue in "The Dead Line", so it's not that it was too romantic.  "The Dead Line" sold me because it had a fresh approach to the declaration of love moment, but the ending dialogue to House of the Dead just felt... cliched and cheap.  Like they could be any couple, and it didn't have any uniqueness or freshness or poetry or realism for me.

Date: 2011-07-13 05:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I generally enjoyed it and did get a bit teary

but "I love you" / "Don't" is still my canon

Date: 2011-07-13 05:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Yep me too. I'm just going to pretend this sort of happened in a hazy reality type of situation where maybe it happened and maybe it didn't.

Date: 2011-07-13 06:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I got sniffly when they argued.

I love you/Don't is the one I'll always cherish. BUTTHURT IN MY HEART.

Date: 2011-07-13 06:18 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
That was a pretty great argument. I may have sniffled too.

Date: 2011-07-13 06:06 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I liked this until Jack said I love you.

What I hated and loved about CoE was the "Don't" moment, because it captured real love and the pain of losing someone you love, wanting to hold them and telling them not to die and hurt you and make you say things.

I haven't read Goss' other works and your review of Almost Perfect isn't endearing him to me...

Date: 2011-07-13 06:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I loved this, except for the I love you.

Because seriously, when a guy stands down to an alien who is going to take 10% of the children because "I take it all back, but not him", how much more clear can it get that it's LOVE.

When he said "don't", that to me was an even stronger declaration of love than any ILU could have been.

When he goes somewhere he knows he shouldn't be, to see Ianto again at the risk of unleashing whateverthehell that was, that's a strong declaration.

When he chooses to be locked in the Rift forever rather than continue living without Ianto, HOW MUCH MORE DECLARING DOES HE NEED TO DO???

"I love you" is just sort of redundant. Jack is more comfortable with deeds than words.

/not your typical Ianto fangirl I guess

Date: 2011-07-13 06:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I started sobbing like a baby when Jack pretty much shouted "not him!", because IT WAS CLEAR AS DAY. HE LOVES HIS IANTO. HE CAN'T BE WITHOUT HIM.

And then he was broken.

This I love you felt like instead of popping a balloon, they just held on to it and let the air seep out, making that horrible whining noise.

ALSO: When Jack said "I'd never have met the people I met" THAT WAS A STATEMENT OF I'M KEEPING MY ASS RIGHT HERE. WITH YOU. So there. Whatcha gonna do about it? And then they snogged. MWAH.

Date: 2011-07-13 06:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
This I love you felt like instead of popping a balloon, they just held on to it and let the air seep out, making that horrible whining noise.

so perfectly said

Date: 2011-07-13 06:48 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
The 'I love you' in this didn't bother me in the way it would have if he'd said in COE because assuming that you buy that he did love Ianto, of course, I don't really see a person whose lost someone they cared about and feel they have unfinished business with not taking a second chance to try and say and do all the things they might regret not saying and doing the first time around. Especially if the 'don't' was about him being too afraid to say it or too afraid to make the moment real and not just about, you know, him not feeling it.

Date: 2011-07-13 08:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I think maybe my problem with the ILU was more in the placement than the saying. It feels like it should have been part of the argument, to me. I was waiting for it there.

But on the other hand, structurally I suppose, it makes sense that it's the last thing Ianto hears. *shrug*

Date: 2011-07-13 10:28 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I think I agree... it wasn't the ILU itself, it was the predictable pacing of it.

Date: 2011-07-14 03:36 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I pretty much agree about Goss's writing. I felt that the plot was far more gripping and the pacing was much better than that of the other two plays this week, but the characters felt more echoey than anything. I thought the end of Ianto's story in COE was perfect because it was so heartwrenching, and while I don't feel like this cheapened it per say, but it didn't feel like there needed to be closure in this manner.

I enjoyed listening to it, though! Although I missed Eve Myles--she does the best voice acting.


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