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Monday, December 5, 2016

The Farkle Nutcracker Prince: A Girl Meets World Theory

In Girl Meets A Christmas Maya, while Riley and Maya talk about Secret Santa, one of her pillows is a Nutcracker, placed convienently in the center of the frame.  

The Nutcracker is a wonderful Christmas story, and one of my favorites. 

 I think the narrative has been tied to Riley, Farkle and the BMW assumptions. 

In the story, Clara is a sweet girl with dreams to be a ballet performer. Clara is also known as Marie in the ballet. 
She is very excited on Christmas Eve when her Grandfather Drosselmeyer brings his Christmas gifts. 
After telling the children a story about a young man cursed by the Mouse king, Grandfather Drosselmeyer gives Clara a nutcracker. 

As Clara cradles her new gift in her arms, her little brother grabs it from her and causes the nutcracker to lose his jaw. 

(This sounds very similar to a certain Barry the Bear Bear losing a face, doesn't it?)  

The rest of the children don't appreciate the Nutcracker the way that Clara does. 
As Grandfather Drosselmeyer ties a bandage around the Nutcracker, he promises to fix it, Clara finds one of the doll beds to place the Nutcracker on with care, and she promises to nurse him back to health. 

As the Christmas festivities die down, Grandfather Drosselmeyer finishes his tale and explains to Clara that the Nutcracker is known as the prince of the dolls. He is waiting for a girl to lift the curse, and when she does, he will make her his princess. 
("Who will treat me, like a princess," "Like me!") 
Clara is intrigued by the story, and after she has to go to bed, she returns to the living room, only to see Grandfather Drosselmeyer fix the nutcracker. 

As she goes to see him, something magical happens. The toys come to life, and the Nutcracker is once again forced to battle the dreaded mouse king. 

Clara helps the Nutcracker defeat the evil Mouse King, and he invites her to go with him to the land of the dolls. As she arrives, the dolls greet them and they are treated like royalty. 

In the end, Clara goes back home, and the Nutcracker disappears. 

Devastated, Clara rushes to tell Grandfather Drosselmeyer, only to find that a boy around her age is helping him build more toys. 

In the story, Drosselmier's nephew does not appear until after Clara helps the Nutcracker. 
In the ballet, he is there the whole time. 

This story has many parallels to the "story" of Riley and Farkle. 

Farkle would be the nutcracker, stuck in the Minkus role and taken for granted. Yet, waiting for his princess to save him.
Riley would be Clara, a dreamer with a big heart who promises to care for the Nutcracker Prince and helps him defeat the mouse king. 

It's a very symbolic parallel to the idea introduced in Girl Meets Smackle to never assume, look more deeply and not trust a pretty wrapper. 

Nothing is as it seems in The Nutcracker Prince, and had Clara not believed in Drosselmeyer's story, the Nutcracker would be doomed. 

Farkle's constant confusion of where he stands in Riley's story is related to the curse on the Nutcracker Prince. 
Riley sees Farkle's true value, like Clara saw the hero in the Nutcracker. 

While everyone else takes him for granted, Riley believes in Farkle and she is always there for him. 

We already know in Girl Meets Bay Window that Farkle wants to be the prince in Riley's story who will treat her like a princess. Just as the Nutcracker Prince gave Clara the title of Princess of the Dolls. 

Both Riley and Farkle need to lift their heads and challenge the BMW assumptions. (Like Clara and the Nutcracker Prince defeated the mouse king. 
Once they learn from each other, their story will become clear. 

Friday, November 25, 2016

Moana: A Movie Review

Moana is a beautiful tribute to the Polynesian culture and an epic coming of age tale. 

Since she was born, Moana of Motunui has been drawn to the ocean, but as the chief's daughter she has a role to play. When the island begins to decay, Moana is given a new role, the savior of her people. She must find the demigod Maui and convince him to right a terrible wrong. But Maui is not just any demigod. He is a cunning trickster, who wants nothing more than human praise. 
This task turns into an important journey, with many lessons along the way. 

As Moana tests her limits, learns things that she can do, and listens to her own intuition, she discovers one of the most important things in life, and one of the most difficult. There is power in knowing who you truly are. 

This entire movie was beautiful, from the animation to the music. The eloquent sounds of Te Vaka, and the clever lyrics of Lin-Manuel Miranda add an extra dimension to the tale.  With interesting characters, and a clean-cut storyline, this film is one of the best Disney movies in a long time. The mythology is amazing, and the history compelling. 

I recommend this film to people of all walks of life. It is a voyage of self discovery. 
Five out of five conch shells. 

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Doctor Strange: A Movie Review

Doctor Strange was a magnificent film with incredible special effects and a powerful philosophical story line. 
When Doctor Steven Strange loses the ability to use his hands, his beloved career as a neurosurgeon and his sense of purpose and productivity go with it. Despite the care of Christine, his trusted friend and confidant, Strange feels broken and lost. 
After seven surgeries and physical therapy sessions, Strange becomes angry at the world, and he goes on a quest for answers. He travels to Nepal in search of a place called Kamar-taj, rumored to be a healing sanctuary of spiritual enlightenment. 

He meets a person called The Ancient One, and his perspective is changed by the possibilities of the universe. As Strange learns about the rules of magic, he makes a choice about who he wants to be, and he learns that you can't control anything, except your own perspective. 

Steven Strange was a great character, and watching him grow from an arrogant man into a noble hero is the heart of the film. Benedict Cumberbatch did a wonderful job representing a broken man on his way to healing and purpose. His strength and weakness is his curiosity, and his desire to learn all he can about the world around him. 
Matters of the heart are more complicated, but he relies on his trusted friend Christine to be there for him in his time of need. 

Every character in this film is interesting. The Ancient One was more complex than she appeared, and the audience is left to decide what is wrong and what is right. 
Under the plot of the film, a powerful message about the benefits of failure and the strengths of losing the ego is delivered. One of the most important lessons in life: that it goes on, even when you believe it is the end of the world, and that only you can decide your own limits. 

In terms of the rumors going around about the ethnicities cast in the film, each minority had representation in a well written character. The order of Kamar-taj was universal, with alliances all around the world. Many ethnicities were given representation, and the roles of women in the film were focused on their personalities, and not their sexuality. 

All in all the film was amazing, and I will give it five out of five cups of tea. I can't wait for the next adventure! 

Monday, October 31, 2016

Farkle as Dracula: A Girl Meets World Theory

When Riley and Maya first meet Farkle, he is dressed as Dracula. That's no accident. 
Dracula and Farkle have some things in common. 
For one, they don't have a lot of faith. And two, they fall for the innocent and loving princess in their story. 

In the original novel Bram Stoker's Dracula, the vampire was more than just a blood sucking fiend. He was a count, and he desired power and control. When he lost it all, he cursed God, renouncing his faith in him, and he became an undead (neither dead or alive) and fed off the blood of others. His true love dies, and he believes that Mina is her reincarnation, because she is kind and loving. 

Mina is the wife of John Harker, who doubts himself. She wants to be like her friend Lucy, and she is often related to mentions of light throughout the narrative. 
Before Dracula pursues Mina, he seduces and transforms her friend Lucy into one of his followers.

 But, his pursuit of Mina is very different. He courts her, playing the role of a lover, but when Mina discovers who Dracula is, he is ashamed, and he refuses to transform Mina into a mindless follower. 

He wants to make her his equal, and he promises her eternal love. Mina agrees, but Van Helsing interrupts the ritual. 
When Mina is under the care of Van Helsing and Harker, she feels connected to Dracula, and she wants to save him. Darkness desires light and light desires darkness. 
At the end of the story, Mina makes a choice. She kills Dracula, after Dracula himself begs her to do so. He no longer wants to be between life and death. After driving a stake through Dracula's heart, Mina tells him that she loves him saving everyone from darkness. In the end, Mina returns to Harker, and they live the rest of their lives together. 

So how does this relate to Farkle? Well, Farkle has a lot of doubt in things that cannot be proven. He's cynical about things that can't be explained by science, and he likes to be in control. (He is like Harker in this way)

We see this dynamic from the beginning in the Pilot when he claims that Riley is the sun and Maya is the night. He has already set up the rules for Farkle Nation, which we see the outcome of in both Girl Meets Friendship and Girl Meets Crazy Hat. He wants to rule the world. He desires power. 

But, he also holds Riley in the role of the angel, and often treats her differently than Maya. Around Riley, Farkle is supportive, caring and attentive. Around Maya, he is a major flirt with hardly any substance. 
In Girl Meets Farkle's Choice, Farkle tells Riley, "there is only you." But, he still flirts with Maya, and he eventually steps back. 

He doesn't feel like he's part of the story. His role is in limbo, between the ideal of Lucas and the rules that Farkle himself created. (Neither living nor dead)

In Girl Meets Flaws, we learn that Farkle is ashamed of who he is. This is a reoccurring theme in the episodes Yearbook, I Am Farkle and Girl Meets The Great Lady of New York. 
Riley and Farkle have an emotional connection. They know when something is wrong with each other. Only Riley can reach Farkle emotionally. And, she has "saved" him a few times in Flaws, Yearbook, I Am Farkle, Money, and Great Lady of New York. 

But despite Riley's obvious attention to Farkle, Farkle pushes Riley towards Lucas in New Years. He doesn't believe that Riley loves him, even though both said so in Texas 3. 

So, the allusion of Dracula relates to Farkle and Riley's narratives. 

Dracula represents the dictator side of Farkle, the logical side that wants to be in control. As Farkle denies emotion, he gains more and more power over the characters that he has influenced. 

Harker represents the human side of Farkle, the real Farkle. The sweet, observant and loving guy that has been a part of Riley's life this whole time. Even though he doubts himself. 
Mina, of course represents Riley, who is often the "light" in Farkle's life, who can reach him emotionally.  

Farkle wears turtlenecks because he's afraid of vampires. Why? 

A vampire archetype is a manipulative person. Farkle fears the realm of emotion, and the unknown and illogical world of feelings. He doesn't realize that he has become what he feared. (like Batman) 

Farkle is manipulative. His concept that Riley is the sun and Maya is the night has controlled the Purple Cat World from the beginning. Farkle forced his logic on the two girls to avoid having feelings for them, but those feelings were already there. 

It's obvious. He loves Riley, and he has since the moment he "saved her life". But he refuses to acknowledge that. So, he forces his logic on others (like he did on Riley in New Years). As a result, he walks in limbo, neither part of the story nor not part of the story. Until Farkle realizes what he has done, he won't acknowledge his emotions. And because Riley can reach Farkle emotionally, she needs to save Farkle, from himself. From the idea that Farkle has created (that he is nothing). Only Riley can help Farkle understand love.