Or how I got around reading Twilight and was punished for it, after all. Yes, I finally finished Mocking Jay.
Okay, okay, before we go on: this is going to be riddled with spoilers for The Hunger Games and lot of bad language. If you want to stay away from either of them, this is not the post you're looking for *waves you along
For everyone else... let's jump right in.
First of all: there are a lot of awesome things about The Hunger Games. Like, the world building is astonishing and I loved a lot of the supporting cast like Haymitch, Gale, Finnick, Cinna, even Effie. It's also really exciting and full of suspense and non-compromising in regard to the violence (what? It's a violent premise, so yes, no compromises regarding the violence is a good thing in this case).
Katniss and Peeta. They. Suck. Like, lemons. Lots of, actually. At the end, I wanted to throw the goddamn book at the wall at about every other sentence (as opposed to Hunger Games and Catching Fire. I only wanted to throw it at the wall every other page there). Katniss was annoying me with her angsting and her inability to make just about any decision by her own and Peeta was annoying me with his very presence. Like, every time the name appeared, almost from the first page on he made an appearance.
I was about to say that I don't know what it is about him that made me go all "BLERGH GO AWAY GO AWAY GO AWAY!" every time but I know it pretty well. He's supposed to be the... how could I say that... ah, the mellower part, the one who's mediating and trying to pacify rather than antagonising. The part that's traditionally a female part, and the idea isn't a bad one. Only... you can't make him the
See, that's what put me off the most. All his riding in and saving her without even asking her. What's this, the 19th century? I thought we were over the whole "I'm being a manipulative asshole but it's okay because I'm doing it to save you!" thing. Want to know what I mean? The whole "We're starcrossed lovers!" thing.
The first time he did it in his first interview in the Capitol it weirded me out but I couldn't quite place why that was. The second time he did it, I was actually livid because by then I'd figured out what pissed me off so much. The fact that he made decisions that affected them both on his own without even asking her first or giving her any heads up whatsoever or gave her just some way to have a part in the decision. Would it have been so bad to give at just a little part in the decision making? Because honestly? All this felt almost like dub-con. She was pressed into the role of his lover that she didn't want and she didn't even get a say in it because he was doing it to protect her. I just... I honestly don't have words for how much the whole thing still grosses me out.
Also, can it be? The only decision Katniss made by herself, without being prompted by someone or something was volunteering for Prim during the reaping. All other important decisions seem to have needed some outside prodding, mostly by Peeta. Not even the decision to be the Mocking Jay did she take because she thought about the pros and cons but because Peeta made her do it or at least the footage of him did. I hated him more with every decision she only took because he or something had to do with him somehow pushed her to make it. What kind of message is it that Collins is sending with that? Okay, honestly, I don't even want to know.
Oh, and then the whole "he's better than all of us" thing. Every time Katnis or someone else said that, I wanted to hit something because it just doesn't make sense. He, like, killed at least one person with his own hands and probably had to kill a couple more to be excepted by the Careers in his first Games. How the fucking hell does that make someone better than everyone else? How? Showing and telling fail, anyone? She tells us he's better than anyone and then she shows us that he killed someone? What. I don't even. What?
Oh wait, he was doing it to protect her. Right, that justifies everything, even killing people with your own hands. Sure. Yeah. I get it. Course. That makes everything so much more logical.
I mean. What. I. GAH!
Now, Katniss. Katniss made me want to kick her in the head a couple of times. She felt extremely dumb at times, most of all in Catching Fire. Everyone who hadn't guessed that Haymitch had a very good reason to make Katniss and Peeta take on the allies they had after the first couple pages into the training for the quell, please raise your hand? No one? That's what I guessed. Katniss was the only one stupid enough and there are no words for how much I want to shake Collins for that. What do you mean, necessary to the plot? Really? Making the heroine that's supposed to save the world look dumb as fuck was part of the plot? Jesus. I don't even know what to say to the kind of message that's sending out.
And then Gale. Did she really have to get rid of him like that? I would have even preferred it if she'd just killed him but villifying him just because she wanted Katniss and Peeta to end up with each other and didn't know what to do with him? Blergh. Also, regarding didn't know what to do with him: it actually felt like she didn't know what to do with Gale the entire fucking trilogy. Why did she even introduce him? To construct some love triangle that was worth shit? Really? Did we really need that? Anyone? Did we?
Finally, the whole kids thing. I understood that Katniss didn't want to have kids. She had a really good reason for it and it was one of the traits that made me hate her a little less. And then Collins goes and destroys that, too with her stupid epilogue. Basically, what the epilogue is saying is that it's okay not to want kids... as long as you don't have a guy who wants them. In the end, she only had kids because Peeta wanted them (did I mention yet that I hate Peeta? What, only a million times? Aw, come on) and she was unfomfortable during both pregnancies. Since when is a relationship in which one partner does something they absolutely don't want to do just because the other one wants it, healthy? Since when?
I'm pretty sure once I click "post" I'll remember a thousand more things I hated about the books but let's end this on a conciliatory note. Like I said, a couple things were really awesome about the boods. I adore the world building and I want to read more Johanna (and Gale/Johanna) because she rocks my world. She's like my anti-Katniss and she's... honest. She's a killer and she's broken and she doesn't mince words. She tells people exactly who she is and she still doesn't tell them half of that. Johanna is, as little screen times as she has in the books, a well thought out character and showing a lot more how terrible the Games are than Katniss and Peeta, at least in a way. I wish we'd gotten to see more of her, and Gale and possible both of them together.
Finnick also was a favorite of mine and I resent Collins for killing him. But at least I understand it. However, I missed him in the end and I may or may not have wanted to cry a little when Katniss mentioned his and Annie's son at the end. Yes, his story (his and Johanna's by extension) gripped me and I wish we would have seen more of him and Annie. I also hated it that she made Effie disappear for so long and then gave her a kind of meaningless part in the end. Effie would have been more important if she'd killed her, I think.
All in all, this had a lot of promise and ended badly (no double-meaning intended. Or maybe I had). Not different from SGU, actually... ahem. Anyway. I don't think I'm going to watch the movie because I couldn't stomach Peeta when I didn't have a clear picture of him so I guess I'd embarrass myself by throwing popcorn at the screen every time he appeared if I went to the movies. I'll just keep looking for fic, preferrably Johanna and Gale/Johanna, also Haymitch, maybe Effi/Haymitch and hey, how about Portia/Cinna? Finnick and Annie, of course. Just no Katniss/Peeta or even Katniss/Gale. I don't think I want to encounter Katniss and her indeciveness and angsting and whining ever again. So... again, any suggestions?
PS.: On the plus side, heitidei found a cinema in Berlin that shows The Avengers in 2D! Yay heitidei!