Because the Pacific Rim sequel is coming soon, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking. There are certain moments that our lives turn on, when floodgates open, and while you don’t see it at the time, you look back and go, yeah, that was when it happened.
The summer of 2013 was full of those moments for me. I attribute a lot of that to Aless (no but like really) but also to my unconventional schedule at the time and a dissatisfaction at seeing friends (and former friends) excel at the things they wanted to do while I tread water. It was the first official movie season, when I started reading comics and when I realized that if I was going to be “The Fangirl” titular to this blog, I had a lot of work to do, broadening my horizons and being able to speak knowledgeably about nerd topics.
Pacific Rim was a huge wakeup call on that front.
I walked out of Pacific Rim thinking, “I’ve never seen anything like that before.” I loved that movie. Everything about it, with it’s giant robots, and it’s cool looking monsters, and it’s Charlies, both Day and Hunnam, and it’s dumb character names (WTF kind of name is “Stacker Pentecost?”).
Then I took to the internet. Most of the places I hung out virtually loved the movie. (Duh) But they had seen things like that before. In Anime, and Japanese monster movies and even less mainstream Western comics.
Of course they had, because these internet nerds hadn’t spend the first 26 years of their life going, “Oh but I’m not that kind of nerd. I don’t got to comic con or anything, I just like superhero movies…and Star Wars…and YA Paranormal Romance…and Joss Whedon’s entire ouevre… and The Lord Of The Rings…and Harry Potter…and Doctor Who…and pretty much any of the kind of stuff you’re talking about that has casually crossed my path. But I’d never look for it or seek it out, because I’m actually a normal. I like sports and I wear pearls and I watch Friends reruns and chick flicks.” This was the first year that “I AM MORE THAN ONE THING” clicked into full view as my driving philosophy. The part of me that wanted to go to comic con, and obsess about The Avengers was not quite yet peacefully coexisting with the part that loves the Yankees and wants a country club wedding, but it was getting there. (Bridging the gap is the part that studied Literature in college and sees lots of Broadway shows, if you were wondering.)
Pacific Rim and talking about it taught me that I needed to do the work, I’d made a good start, but I need to study if I was going to get good at this. So you guys can be damn sure that if it weren’t for that movie, I never would have recapped Sailor Moon or watched The X-Files, I wouldn’t have read The Dark Tower or finally given Star Trek: The Next Generation a shot. I’d never have absorbed into the world of Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend Of Korra.
So much of who I am came out of that summer and the stuff I took in during that time, and I’ve tried since to stop writing things off as “not my thing,” before experiencing them. Which is why in addition to The Epics Project, I’m reading The Dune Chronicles, and opening my world up to more anime (OMG Inuyasha has eaten my life!) and I’m going try, God help me, to jump back into super hero comics. (It’s so expensive and time consuming though…) Cosplay’s back in my life in a big way this year. My next big bridge is going to be horror. I don’t think I’ll ever be into super bloody torture porn type stuff, but I’m going to open my world to more psychological and supernatural horror movies, since I’ve genuinely liked the stuff I have encountered. Also, I’m going to watch all the Star Trek. Finish TNG, get into Deep Space Nine, Voyager and Enterprise, and then click in for Discovery.