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Well you’ve been fun WordPress- Goodbye

Hey y’all. This is my final (ooo)shebop blog. I’ve fallen in love with someone else.  And his name is Posterous.

So I’ve transfered all my blogs from here to my new address: http://amandamoutinho.posterous.com/

I hope you guys check it out! 🙂

Week 12- The Tempest

“Let your indulgence set me free.” Those were the last words Shakespeare ever wrote.

We don’t know as much as Shakespeare as we’d like to know. But I feel the last monologue of the Tempest can give insight into the man himself, because Prospero’s words seem they could easily apply to the playwright himself.

To indulge means to satisfy to yield to the wishes of one.  This line seems like Shakespeare asking the audience to listen to him. This is his final play and he’d like the audience to pay attention to him one last time before he can be free. Maybe Shakespeare felt like his play writing was an enslavement.  As far as we know, we have no proof of the reason Shakepeare wrote his masterpieces. He died roughly six years after the Tempest was written at the ripe age of 52. What was he doing in those years that he wasn’t writing? Was he free to do as he wished? Did he not wish to write anymore?

“Now my spells are all broken,” the first line of monologue. Maybe Shakespeare thinks he has nothing left to offer. With the Tempest, he seemed to go out with a bang. It had romance, comedy, tragedy, politics… everything rolled into one. It’s as if Shakespeare was saying, “Here’s all I got. Now leave me alone!”

The last monologue of the play opens up so many questions to me. Did people pressure Shakespeare to write? Did he feel trapped? In the first few lines he says that he is weak and he begs to be released. He even talks about God and alludes to death as alternate option.

While I don’t know if this speech had anything to do with Shakespeare’s true feelings, I hope he didn’t feel like a slave. He wrote some of the most amazing words ever written. He will always be my favorite author, and my hero till I die.

Week 11- Othello

Was Inception based on Othello…?

No probably not. But there are some parallels in Othello that reminded me of Inception.

The entire point of inception is to plant an idea in someone’s head. Something simple. That will grow into something that will cause the person to act. And what happens in Othello? Iago places a small trinket of an idea in Othello’s mind and Othello ends up loosing control. He becomes so involved in this idea that he kills his wife.

In act 3 scene 3 is when the idea gets planted. Desdemona pleads with Othello on Cassio’s behalf, before this moment Othello has no reason to believe anything is going on. When Iago first suggests there’s something going on, Othello resists at first. Iago asks penetrating questions, hesitates, and acts like he knows something he shouldn’t. By the end of the scene Othello already starts to doubt and get angry with no proof. “I will chop her into messes,” (3.3.201).Why does he jump to conclusions so quickly? His suspicion rises from just one conversation with Iago. This suggests his relationship with Desdemona doesn’t seem to be rooted in very much trust. But it’s funny how it’s just a simple conversation, a simple idea grows into drastic action. (Maybe the opposite of Hamlet.)

In act 4 scene 2 Desdemona is pleading with Othello, and he’s not listening to her. He has become so intranced in this one idea that he doesn’t even find out the truth. Once you have your mind set then everything that happens will play into your mind. The whole handkerchief problem could have been avoided if Othello had kept his cool head and just asked Desdemona what happened. But since this idea grew into something larger he felt he had the whole story when he didn’t have any of it.

So how powerful is one idea. Just an inkling destroyed Othello’s life. That is why I wanted to write this blog. It’s interesting that just an idea can lead to something bigger, which was the reason I thought of Inception.

The Evolution of Degrassi

I guess you can say Degrassi is one of my favorite shows. I’ve watched the show since 2001. (the longest I’ve ever stayed with a show) OK, so I might be a tad obsessed… I may have waited in line for hours to meet Spinner and Jay. I may have multiple seasons of the ORIGINAL Degrassi Jr. High from the 80s. I might even have a season of Degrassi High….

But my blog is dedicated to the ongoing Degrassi: the Next Generation. If you’re not familiar with the show here’s a trailer from the first season:

Good times. Ashley, Terri, Toby, JT before he was stabbed, Jimmy before he was Drake… It’s weird to think how much the show has progressed in 219 episodes.

But Degrassi has not always been a joy to watch. The first few seasons were full of  awwwkwardness, but at the time I was going through the same thing. So it was great to watch. But after a few seasons… it just lost it’s charm. Many people gave up on the series,it was constantly adding new characters and clinging onto the older characters as they went off to college.

The older characters on the show were getting too stale and the new characters just fell flat.  I couldn’t care less about Emma, Liberty, and Manny living together at college (don’t even get me started on their horrible representation of college life…). Ugh. Move on and let those characters go. But at the same time I didn’t want to hear about Clare, Darcy’s nerdy little sister, or Danny, Liberty’s annoying little brother. The younger generation were all such weak characters and didn’t catch my attention.

I stopped caring and barely watched the show. But then something happened this summer:  Every Degrassi Ever Marathon?? Hmmm intersting. All leading up to: DEGRASSI THE BOILING POINT. Six weeks, four new episodes a week? Now that sounds intriguing. So I caught up on the episodes I missed and got excited for the Boiling Point.

And what happened? I FELL BACK IN LOVE WITH DEGRASSI.

It kicked off with a movie where they finally said goodbye to the old characters. While having Emma and Spinner get married was an… interesting turn of events, I’m glad they finally passed the torch of the show onto the new characters.

I LOVE the new season. All Degrassi’s hard work paid off. They introduced these characters years ago and the audience has seen them evolve. Take Holly J. She started the show as the infamous, but never seen, Heather Sinclair’s little sister. She became the girl that everyone hated, taking the Queen Bee crown from Paige. She was completely obnoxious. There was even an episode where Alli makes an “I hate Holly J.” group. But as the show progressed so did her character. Holly J. grew into this senior girl who has a strong head on her shoulders. I love her character. Even through her rocky family life or seemingly perfect relationship with Declan she has survived it all, and done it while looking fabulous. Not only Holly J., all the characters have really grown into their own.

But not only have the characters evolved, so has the overall quality of the show. The fashion is trendy and classy (minus the heinous new uniforms). The cinematography is beautiful. Take the scene in Purple Pills part 2. Fiona’s drunk and her world is spinning, Riley is hopefully looking for openly gay athletes on the internet, and Adam is worried about fighting Fritz. All these storylines intertwine magnificently set to amazing song “Carjack my Heart” by Dance Movie. AndIf you wanna check out the clip here it is around 13:13ish.  Speaking about the music- it’s awesome too. Degrassi has taken some real steps to improve the show and it’s gotten great.

It’s transgressed from a silly little Canadian show that many of us grew up with and eventually gave up on. But this blog is to all of you who stopped watching when it became way to over the top and awful. I”m here to announce Degrassi is good again! It has revitalized itself. I think they can finally be compared to shows along the same lines of 90210 and Gossip Girl. But the great thing about Degrassi is that it has still maintained its integrity, and it’s still relateable. It’s not about millionaire teenagers with unlimited spending budgets spending their time drinking and having sex. It’s about real kids with real problems. Watch it. Love it.

For those of you die hard Degrassi fans, here’s a little treat. The theme song from Degrassi Jr. High. ENJOY!

Week 10- Twelvfth Night

I’ve read this play before and anytime I go back to a play I’ve read I always have many passages highlighted. Well I didn’t even make it through the first line of the first scene of the first act without running into something I like.

“If music be the food of love, play on/ Give me excess of it, that, surfeiting,/ the appetite may sicken and so die. ”

(Act 1, Scene 1, Line 1-2) At the time I read this, I was lovesick and I related to Orsino. In his first speech he immediately becomes a character to relate to. We all have been so in love with someone that we just wallow in our own self pity and love sickness.

Love is one of the most prominent themes Shakespeare. Here he talks about its restlessness. One minute you love something and next minute you don’t. Considering the rest of the play, I don’t really know what Shakespeare is getting at. The character of Orsino really reminds me of Romeo. Romeo beings the play in love with Rosaline and then really finds his true love when he meets Juliet. Same with Orsino, at the end of the play he falls in love with Viola, despite pining over Olivia. Many people believe that makes these characters wishy washy but I believe it makes them human. Often when people are in love, they think about nothing but the other person. But the only way to get over one person is to fall in love with someone else. I believe it’s hopeful.

“Away before me to sweet beds of flowers. Love thoughts lie rich when canopied with bowers,” (Act 1, scene 1).

So go somewhere beautiful and think about love. And when you’re down because the person you love doesn’t love you back, just think that maybe soon you’ll meet your true love.

Week 9- Hamlet

Continued from last blog:

Ophelia insanitary seems to be rooted in Hamlet.  When she comes into Act 4 Scene 5 she’s singing a song that symbolizes her current situation.

“‘Before you tumbled me,

You promised me to wed.’

He answers,

‘So would I ‘a done…

And thou hadst not come to my bed'”

(64- 69). In the song it makes it seem like Ophelia has given up her maidenhood to Hamlet. The girl in the song is distressed because she feels like she was lied to, but the man says he would have kept his promise if the girl hadn’t offered herself to him. So is it that Ophelia is promiscuous or did Hamlet pressure her? It plays into the argument that Ophelia was driven crazy. With my reading of the play I’ve come up with my own theories. I believe Ophelia is portrayed as this innocent fair girl, and Hamlet takes advantage of her. They share a bed, and because bad timing Hamlet [apparently?] goes crazy, and then drags Ophelia down with him.

Part of the reason that it seems Hamlet has gone crazy is because he seems to have had feelings for Ophelia but then completely disregards it.

It’s interesting to think about who is insane? Did Hamlet lose his mind and not care who he brought down with him? Did he cause Ophelia to go crazy? Or in his attempt to achieve his revenge plot did he accidentally cause Ophelia to go crazy? Was it even Hamlet’s fault.

But we’ll never know the answers to all the questions…

It is enough to drive a girl crazy though: you fall in love with this guy. Your family tells you he’s a bad guy. Then he goes insane and goes back on everything he’s said. Kills your dad, then flees. Poor Ophelia.

So maybe she was a dumb girl who let herself get caught up in a self destructive man like Hamlet…

If only Ophelia had a sassy gay friend: