How My Wife Creeps Up On Me And Then Hampers Me And Then Loves Me.

(NOTE: Based on time elapsed since the posting of this entry, the BS-o-meter calculates this is 7.236% likely to be something that Ferrett now regrets.)

As someone who works at home, and likes stuff on in the background, I watch a lot of television – usually Netflix streaming.  And slowly but surely, if the show is good, my wife takes over.
Because she’s not as picky as I am; left to her own devices, she works in silence.  So I put on a show, and if it’s good I start grinding my way through it, episode after episode.  And if it’s really good, then Gini will start making comments – “Oh, that was a nice moment,” or “That was a spectacularly well-written scene.”
This has been happening with Justice League, which is fascinating to watch, as Gini has zero familiarity with this mythology.  I mean, she knows who Superman and Batman are, but has no clue where Wonder Woman came from or who this “Clayface” guy is.  And for a so-called “kid’s” show, Justice League has some really solid plotting – it’s simple, yes, but it’s that much harder to pull off a simple plot.  You can’t compensate with elaborate set design or complex characterization.
Yet somehow, Justice League boils these iconic heroes down to the raw elements of character, making purposeful tweaks to make them more interesting.  Superman’s got a very angry streak, sometimes tempted more to murder than we’d be comfortable with.  Batman’s secretive hubris causes conflict.  The Martian Manhunter’s “my planet is dead” angst is occasionally a plot driver.  It’s not enough to sap their heroism, but it definitely makes them interestingly flawed.
And so Gini is watching with me, and all of this is new to her.  For me, Mongul is old hand, the Warworld is just another tweak.  But to her, she’s never seen anything like this, so Mongul becomes an interesting villain in his own right.  She has zero idea whether Doctor Fate is a villain or a good guy.  She doesn’t remember Aquaman as anything but the prickly monarch of the underwater world.  And she’s kind of excited to be getting this window into my world, hearing my commentary on what “classic” Green Lantern is usually like, but happy to finally see what Childhood Ferrett liked in a way that Grown-Up Gini can love.
But last night came the inevitable point of no return; we sat down and watched two episodes together when we weren’t working, just watching the show on its own merits.  And I knew that Gini had claimed this show as her fiefdom, and I could no longer watch it without her lest I cheat on her in my heart of media-hearts.  This had migrated from a “Ferrett can do solo” to “A couple activity,” which means that I get to watch far less of it.  Gini leaves the house two or three times a day to meet with clients, defend people at courthouses, drop off paperwork.  That’s cutting into valuable Justice League time.
It’s a loss, and a gain.  My next few weeks will be a little draggier at work, because as I won’t have DC entertaining me while I’m refactoring this tangle of spaghetti code.  But Gini and I will be able to share our reflections on the show, and when we’re walking outside and holding hands we’ll be discussing how we didn’t see that Superman being banished to the future would involve such a kick-ass moment with Vandal Savage.
It’s a loss, but the gain is so worth it.

2 Comments

  1. Jerri Lyn
    May 16, 2013

    Netflix just released this YouTube video “Watching Ahead” and it reminded me of your blog post: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qQldnFX_uOQ&feature=youtu.be
    Not that you would ever do such a thing to Gini….

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