Alias: The Orphan
I liked this, which surprised me, and I'm glad I pushed myself to stay awake through it. Nadia's backstory was great, and she came alive for me finally. The actress kicked ass as the younger version of herself, and I loved the twist with Cesar, that it turned out he *hadn't* killed Roberto despite taking advantage of it reputationally, and was in fact loyal to him to the end--to what seemed a worshipful or even crushy degree.
Great sepia-toned wash of those backstory scenes, or whatever the film technique was.
Sydney didn't have much of a role, and no one else's performance outside of the backstory players grabbed me. Sonia Braga was beautiful.
I'm often behind the curve on discovering stories, so I have to thank sherrold for reccing Yahtzee's Christmas Wishlist Jack/Will story, "The Backup," found in three parts here: pt 1, pt 2, and pt 3.
I think this came at just the right time, though--I mean, I haven't been primed for Alias slash. As with BtVS for a long time, I saw no slash potential (and didn't care, because both shows are amazing even without that factor). But this reinforces something that occurs to me from time to time, which I'd call "What Slash Means to Me: An Essay by Anna S., Age 12."
The deal is, to me, slash isn't always about the porniness of putting pretty men together. The erotic is one fundamental element, but another just as important one is an idea that any two human beings can interact in new and surprising ways. They can combine and separate and recombine, and this idea we have of "canon" is worth discarding when predictability becomes a hobgoblin of our restricted minds.
This is why and how people write stories about Dawn and Clark Kent--or Dawn/Clark--or Lilah and Cordy--or Lilah/Cordy. Or Lindsey/Xander, etc. etc. Recombinant fan-fiction brings people together by way of their common human elements--I mean, it's often a significant factor in crossovers that two characters or sets of characters have something distinctive in common. With Dawn and Clark, it's superhero issues and the existential Wall of Weird that they share, which is what makes Runaway Trains at 3 AM work.
The erotic pushes our buttons, but the human element is what pulls slash out of the gutter that the uninformed think it uniformly resides in.
So anyway, what I love about the above story--"The Backup"--is that it takes canon and reroutes it, showing the possibilities of Will and the uncharted facets of Jack, and how the two of them could come to relate in a different scenario. And seriously: is this *any* more implausible than canon itself? Because, come on. Like few other shows, Alias already pushes the envelope on wacky, jaw-dropping, head-scratching insanity. And irrationality. And ludicrousness. In a way that makes "The Backup" look remarkably sane and reasonable to me. Plus it's hot. I love Will's emotional urgency--that just trips all my triggers.
And now I go, because I have a 90-minute meeting and only two small pieces of chocolate to get me through it. Eep.