skazka: Cropped family portrait-style painting of Cathy and Chris from V.C. Andrews' "Flowers In The Attic". Official cover art. (flowers in the attic)
[personal profile] skazka
Hail and well met, Yuletide author! This is the time of year where traditionally I get really tl;dr talking about fanfic. Please don't feel obligated to write all my listed Likes in one fic or something -- if any of them make a handy springboard for the fic you want to write, go for it.


Some general things I dig:
- historical details, material culture, pop culture
- allegiances and loyalty
- dreaminess
- characters who aren't certain if they can trust their senses/perceptions
- monsters! ghosts, vampires, werewolves, revenants...
- psychological horror
- body horror
- gothic horror tropes
- claustrophobia, doubt, guilt, and decay
- trauma and PTSD
- dirtbag adolescence and teen angst
- adventures, mayhem, and voyages of self-discovery
- road trips
- spooky atmosphere
- cozy atmosphere
- poetry and song
- goofy humor
- queer characters and queer identities
- music
- family relationships and friendships (in all their gnarly, complicated glory)
- partners in crime
- scheming
- dramatic irony
- in-universe documents (letters, manuscripts, musical scores, etc.)
- unusual formats (interactive fiction, poems, etc.)
- continuing adventures and rebuilding friendships
- farces and shenanigans
- parental baggage

Ship-wise, I dig intimacy between friends and allies, and screwed-up bleak bad-guy hatesex, and just about anything between those poles, really. (I love noncon and dubcon, though I'm more into antagonistic/hatesexy angles than established romantic relationships that happen to cross boundaries.) I especially enjoy loyalty kink, sex happening before feelings, enemies-to-lovers, quarrelsome but ride-or-die friendships turned romantic, and characters who just can't stay away from each other.

If you're interested in writing smut: I love body worship, oral, handjobs, frottage and non-penetrative sex, clothed/semi-clothed sex, hatesex and fighting-turned-fucking, breathplay, inhibitions and interpersonal baggage in the bedroom, painful or clumsy but fun sex, characters seeking sex for comfort, characters having sad sex while thinking of other people (especially if it's two people thinking about the same person!), sadomasochism, and historical/time-period-specific sexual practices and norms.

For more specific smut scenarios, I'm part of Yuleporn this year!

(If you're interested in writing darkfic, my Darkest Night letter from this year goes into some more detail about tropes and kinks I enjoy! I'll also be doing Crueltide this year; my prompts are here. For good measure I am also participating in Two For One 2016 if you want to write a crossover and aren't sure where to start. I'd prefer no megafandom crossovers this year, if that's okay.)

As far as nominated characters, you are under zero obligation to include all (or only) my requested characters in the same fic! I'm up for anything in terms of plot and structure: plotty longfic, short and sweet introspection, mysteries, casefic, PWPs, cracky hijinks, five-times fic, etc. Pairing-wise, I've tried to make mention of specific ships I'm especially fond of, including those that extend beyond requested characters, but I'm not monoshippy in any fandom. I dig slash, femslash, het, gen, and anything else you want to bring to the table genders-wise; feel free to write any pairing you like or none at all, as well as multiple pairings, OT3s and poly pairings, etc. Any level of intensity with regard to sex, violence, and other dark stuff is fine by me.

I'm totally on board with AUs, especially those that riff on or echo the original canon events/ setting. Canon-divergent and for-want-of-a-nail AUs are very welcome, as well as alternate settings, alternate time periods (Early Modern? Ancient Rome?) and genre/pastiche AUs (slasher flick, film noir, gothic horror, road trip film…) etc. I love racebends, genderswaps, and transfic, though I prefer all of these not to be 100% didactic or unstinting tales of self-discovery and hardship -- more of a "what if?".

One random note: A couple of my movie fandoms have sequels (and remakes) but my prompts don't take those into particular account. It's simply because I'm not familiar with all of them -- if there's something from those sequels you want to incorporate in your fic as far as backstory, worldbuilding, etc, feel free, but sequel-only characters are likely to be lost on me, sorry!

DNWs:
- sex involving characters under 16
- habitual self harm
- eating disorders
- unrequested incest
- child sexual abuse

Dislikes: teacher/student pairings, all-encompassing formalized/highly negotiated D/s (though informal D/s and other power dynamics are fine), urban fantasy-style werewolf packs/mates/alphas/etc., zombie apocalypses, "kissing practice" tropes, spontaneous "woke up a girl"-style genderswap, unplanned/unwanted pregnancies. Detailed descriptions of needles/medical bloodletting. (Passing mentions and general bleeding are a-okay.)

Alternate universe-wise, I'm not especially interested in modern-day/mundane AUs, omegaverse/BDSM universe AUs, and soulbond marks. For a truly over-specific dislike, I welcome all kinds of vampire action and fun stuff with blood and knives, but I'm squeamish about anything involving carving or branding characters/marks on someone to mark them possessively. (As opposed to just cutting them to make them bleed and go "ow, cut that out" or more general knifeplay, which are both fine.)

In general I'm totally fine with depictions of historical/real-world prejudices and similar heavy subjects -- racism, homophobia, partner abuse, torture, etc. You don't have to strive to include them for any reason if you're not comfortable, but you don't need to strive to exclude them from storytelling either.



Fandoms:

An American Werewolf In London
David Kessler, Jack Goodman

Signup Prompts
[What happens if somebody does take David at his word about the whole werewolf thing? Anything about David's post-mauling predicament and his changing sense of self as a newly minted part-time monster, the mundane grief at the loss of a friend and the supernatural stirrings of his brand-new werewolfism as they both coincide, or Jack's as a reluctant dead guy whose ultimate fate is closely linked to his best friend's. Fix-it fic or fic that makes it all even worse, more uneasy haunting, pre-canon college fic, more European backpacking trip adventures where the plot goes off on a tangent into a different horror subgenre entirely (Wicker Man-esque folk horror? vampires? pod people? something else?) or more late-night werewolf/revenant heart to hearts… is there another set of horror tropes these two could stumble into on their way? The best thing about this canon is that you're 100% justified in writing horror or comedy angles on all this -- goofy companionable moments, backstory friendship fic, and coming to terms with your fate? Freaky body horror, creeping psychological distress, and grody zombie stuff? Or anything in between, have at it.

Long story short, I'd love anything about these two (separately or together) or about their relationship. Something where David dies and it's Jack who survives to get super haunted, or where they're both unlucky American werewolves?

Any ships or gen! I really enjoy Jack/David in any flavor -- collegiate, doomed, corpsey --but I'm up for anything.]


*

I love this movie's killer mix of disarming humor and genuinely skin-crawling primal fears -- its sense of atmosphere and era-specific place (that porno theater!) and its enthusiastic leaning into its own bittersweet goofiness as much as beautifully rendered effects and scares. The relationships in it are genuinely sweet, despite all their weirdness -- and the way Jack and David's friendship continues beyond the grave, totally off-kilter and macabre but also genuinely affectionate and good-humored despite being 90% "you need to kill yourself, seriously", is everything to me.

Right off the bat, what happens if somebody in a position of authority does believe David? (At least far enough to lock him up somewhere he can't go on a rampage, if not quite to the full extent of "I was bitten by a werewolf out on the moors and now I'm cursed to transform into a monstrous beast every full moon".) Or if he does manage to make it somewhere with a sparser density of easily-mauled civilians than the middle of a major city? That might mitigate his immediate issues a little, but… not a lot, necessarily.

You can get as much mileage as you like out of the transformation-horror stuff (maybe even capitalizing on the stuff that we can't as immediately see in the visual medium of film -- David seems to black out for most of his transformations, is there an alternate potential take on how he puts it all together again the morning after?) or in general the great mix of comedy and honest-to-God foreboding and doom this canon has going for it.

I'd love to read anything about Jack's canon predicament -- he's trapped in an especially ghoulish position being both clearly dead and also unable to pass on until David does, so his physical form is deteriorating pretty much indefinitely while his consciousness sticks around. Anything exploring that bind would be right up my morbid alley: Jack continuing to bug David from beyond the beyond, an alternate take on their canon scenes together, etc.

Pre-canon interactions between Jack and David -- in a lot of ways they're quintessential college boys for their era before horror finds them, very funny and very flawed, and the way they allude to that history as friends before tragedy happens really sells me on that friendship. Could trouble have found them before they even left for England? Or could their doomed backpacking jaunt have gone off the rails in some other way?

Or an AU where Jack survives getting mauled, but at a price -- is two werewolves really that much better than one werewolf and one undead revenant? Are both of them then stuck getting trailed by an ever-increasing crowd of their werewolf victims? Because that would suck. Or where Jack lives and it's David trying to hack it at being undead.

Despite being an ocean away from each other, the interactions between David and his family really get to me (the phone call and even David's nightmare, in a way) and anything that bridges that distance would be great. What's that family history like? Jack alludes to some of his own experiences and disappointments now that he's dead -- how'd that go, considered in all seriousness?

What the hell happens if David does make it home again? (I mean… short of everyone in his loving family getting horribly murdered by werewolves, which is darker than even I am willing to go for Yuletide.) How do you get back in the swing of things after getting werewolfed on?

Or anything dealing with the screwy cosmology of a universe with werewolf rules that are in a way pretty classic, and in another way pretty startling and off the wall. The full-on tragedy of the film's ending is a feature and not a bug for me, but if you did want to explore possible solutions to the werewolf predicament besides death, I'd be 100% on board for that. (Enlist Alex if you like!) Intense research library montages/Universal Horror canon trivia quests optional but appreciated.

(Ship-wise, I'd love Jack/David, David/Alex, and whatever kind of uneasy menage springs up when you're cohabiting with your girlfriend but your super dead best friend pops in from time to time to deliver dire warnings.)

Anno Dracula - Kim Newman
Steve Burns, Kit Carruthers, Holly Sargis Carruthers

Signup Prompts
[The super-seedy 20th century settings of Johnny Alucard were a blast for me -- over-the-top Las Vegas wedding chapels, seething 70s-80s nightspots, etc. (Of course if you want to take a spin with these characters in another chronological context, feel free!) So if none of these prompts appeal to you I will totally accept worldbuilding about or exploration of AD-verse North America.

Where have Kit and Holly been together? Where might they have gone if Meinster and co.'s machinations hadn't kicked in? Fic about their history together or their imagined future, the two of them considered separately (are they resentful of each other during their time spent apart? in and out of various reformatory institutions, or just going at it solo? does their apparent psychological link hold up over the distance?) as well as together. (Their previous marriage ceremonies, identity games and mindfucks, the ways in which they contrast and are complementary -- Holly's sharp vulnerability and her propensity for changes, Kit's boyishness and violence, their long string of pseudonyms and alternate identities in the Anno Dracula universe, etc.) There's something really meta about how these two as the archetypal all-American outlaw couple have changed over the years in the AD-verse, and I love that, so anything would make me happy.

As for unlucky Steve Burns -- he sort of lurks on the periphery of Johnny Pop's time at Studio 54 but I was happy to see him anyway and I can't get over the twist AD puts on his predicament in Cruising proper. Newman describes him as a moonlighting cop "with sad eyes and bruises" (which I find really evocative in so few words, wow) and in some ways he seems fully acclimated to his new context in seedy New York nightlife. But in other ways -- his canon double life as an undercover cop, being warm (at least for now) and on the hook to a high-profile vampire, dabbling in Drac, his proximity to the object of his investigations in Cruising -- his position is super perilous. What is he doing there? What will become of him? The presence of vampirism seems like it has the potential to derail New York's BDSM scene -- dip into that if you feel like it.

Any ships or gen!]


*

I really enjoy the Anno Dracula series as both a love letter to all the different canons and characters it incorporates, and as a way of exploring what-might-have-been -- alternate histories, vampire subcultures, and a different pop culture landscape. Newman brings together disparate vampire traditions and the result is a model of vampirism that's complicated, creepy, pragmatic, and really damn entertaining.

All the characters I'm requesting originate from other Yuletide-size canons that I love in their own right -- their storylines are altered significantly by the Anno Dracula continuity (the presence of vampirism, the different political stakes, etc.) so I'd be perfectly happy to read fic that draws on their canons of origin, or that's based exclusively on their presence in AD and not their appearances in other works. I confess to especially loving Anno Dracula's jaunts into other genres or canon pastiches -- Christie-style murder mystery in "Vampire Romance", hardboiled pastiche in "Poodle Springs" -- and if you'd like to try out writing something in that vein for whatever style you'd like (1950s delinquent drama? Brian de Palma thriller?) I'd love to read it.

Most of my prompts this year relate to storylines collected in Johnny Alucard, but if you're not familiar with that one or prefer 19th century settings, feel free to ODAO out or go for worldbuilding. (The section that Burns appears in was formerly released as a standalone short story, "Andy Warhol's Dracula", and is still available online here. )

So, Steve Burns, erstwhile protagonist of William Friedkin's Cruising and now a background player in the chaotic world of Anno Dracula: What the fuck is this guy getting up to when he's not on the clock? The description he receives is pretty sparse, but it's enough to suggest he's already abundantly involved in the New York BDSM scene and already over his head even before dhampirism enters the picture. Is he undercover? Moonlighting in earnest? Just trying to get by? It's not an especially friendly scene to find yourself in in this timeline -- what's it like being queer in New York with vipers in the picture? The identity issues have got to really be something, and identity stuff is at the core of Cruising, so I'd love to flat-out read more about any of it. There's the potential for close encounters with Studio 54 guests real(ish) and fictional alike, or a peek into how the NYPD views vampirism as a social problem.

The killer Burns is pursuing in canon is also part of Johnny Pop's entourage in the AD universe -- is his quarry a serial killer in this timeline too, or has proximity to vampires taken a little of the sting out of his intrusive desire to kill? What's Burns' relationship with Stu as his coworker like -- are they aware of one another? Wary of each other? Given the way the serial killer mantle seems to pass between them in their original canon, I'd be interested in any exploration of the two of them trying to feel each other out or exploring that uneasy common ground.

What does the whole serial killer angle look like in a universe that's so rampantly dangerous to start with? Are the police on the trail of the second coming of Silver Knife, or does the killer Burns is rubbing shoulders with strictly go after the warm? Do either Burns or his serial-killer quarry become a full-on vampire ever, beyond the dribs and drabs of vampiric abilities granted to them from drac use? I love the depictions of what dabbling in dhampirism does for (and to) people, and I wouldn't quibble with a fic that's just exploring that way of getting high, its ups and downs and what it emboldens normally-mortals to experiment with. Its unpredictability takes it out of the arena of safe, sane, and consensual kink (or even safe sex, anachronistic as the term is circa Burns' appearance) and that results in a different kind of fallout, at least as Johnny recounts it. Does Burns get drawn into that? If so, what becomes of him? We get Johnny's POV on the experience as a scornful and aloof vampire donor -- give a glimpse on what it's like to be the one doing the drinking, the mix of affinity and resentment there and the potential for danger.

Holly Sargis and Kit Carruthers (formerly of Terrence Malick's Badlands) seem to be unique among Newman's vampires in that the two are more like peers than superior and inferior, and I find that incredibly interesting -- it seems to be palpably present in not only their interpersonal dynamic as a duo but in their skill set as vampires, especially with Holly's shapeshifting providing her access to Kit's consciousness. They're uniquely capable of personal reinvention in a way elder vampires with centuries under their belt aren't -- Newman identifies that as an American, New World-ish quality, which is really interesting to me against both the landscape of their home canon and every one they're written drawing on. (From Gun Crazy to Natural Born Killers, often quite disparate canons.) While they're functionally equals (by dint of having killed the elder who made them) their relationship isn't all peaches and cream either, and I'd love to see what it looks like when it's going poorly as much as when it's going well.

Anything about their partners-in-crime relationship, the various identities and pseudonyms over the years, and their various travels. Kit and Holly in Badlands itself commit their crimes almost aimlessly -- do these two have any overarching goals during their career of undeath, or ever entertain the thought of having any, even if they don't stick? Existential vampire angst or further pair bonding, near-misses with other vampires old and young, the story of some of their previous marriages, undead down time, or anything about the way they were made into vampires. The short description we do get of how they passed from life into undeath is so evocative and brutal, and I'd love to read more about the specific point where they go from roughly canon-compliant warm renegades to a whole new strain of viper.

I loved the genderfucky, identity-fucky element of Holly's shapeshifting and the way it twins her, sort of, with Kit -- so anything touching on that could be neat. What if the Concert For Transylvania showdown turned out differently? With Holly reasserting herself, or with Kit re-emerging successfully to defend them both? With both of them being destroyed? Can they be destroyed? (If you want to explore how this shakes things up for Kate and later for Geneviève Dieudonné, please feel free; I love Geneviève to bits and wouldn't object to any inclusion of her one bit.)

Ship-wise, go for it -- if you'd like to ship Steve with any of his canon partners and potential-partners from Cruising (Nancy? Ted? Skip? Stu?), or explore his ambivalent dhampiric relationship with Newman's Johnny, or pair him with any of the other denizens of Kim Newman's late-70s/early 80s New York, I'd be all about it. I'd also love Holly/Kit in all its screwiness.

Given the nature of this canon I'm very open to any other chronologically-plausible crossover elements, celebrity cameos, or other fictional characters you want to throw in the pot. If it's good enough for Kim Newman it's good enough for me.

Fright Night
Jerry Dandridge, Evil Ed Thompson, Amy Peterson

Signup Prompts
[Vampire mindfuck central, population: THESE GUYS.

Jerry's had a lot of practice doing what he does -- how is he finding the 20th century? There's a weird genteel quality to him in his interactions with mortals and likewise his own henchman -- but something pretty terrifying is lurking inside him the whole time, something with a ton of teeth that doesn't play so well with others. He's not exactly discreet about what he does either -- does he move around a lot, or has modernity freed him up to carry on more comfortably than before? Is this his first time in the suburbs or what? Has he had other ghouls before Billy Cole?

Judging from how Jerry manages to appeal to Ed/mindfuck Amy/play Charley and his mom like a harp, he's clearly one hell of a predator. What's going on with Ed anyway? Anything with his unbearably hammy sense of humor as well as the undercurrent of resentment he's got going on -- adventures in shapeshifting, whatever becomes of him post-canon, or pre-canon friction between him and the only friends he seems to have. Or dirtybadwrong (or just depressing) Jerry/Ed -- Jerry has all the power and charisma that Ed is lacking in his everyday life, and his approach to Ed is half-seduction and half-appeal to his insecurities

Amy pre- and post-transformation -- how much of good-hearted high schooler Amy is left in vampy face-full-of-fangs vampire Amy? How does she recover (or not recover) from having Jerry get under her skin? Or something where Charley and Peter Vincent don't end up more or less victorious. Can Amy break away from Jerry, or at least escape the long shadow of the whole "lost love" gig?

Or if you want to dial it back on the horror stuff, anything where Amy and Ed reluctantly work together or find some common ground on anything from homework assignments to managing Charley's stubbornness to the best way to off pesky supernatural beings.

Any ships or gen! I especially like one-sided Ed/Charley, weird and loyal Jerry/Billy, screwed-up Jerry/Ed, and screwed-up Jerry/Amy, but you can go to town here.]


*

All the psychological stuff going on in this film is so delicious -- there's a great tension interplay uber-creepy 80s vampire stuff and every possible kind of teenage yearning and longing and suspicion. I love the weirdly affable relationship between Jerry and Billy as his ghoul, I love the sexual ambivalence coming out all over the place and the mix of fear and fascination that Jerry elicits out of both Amy and Ed (and, ngl, Charley too) and I love how completely gonzo and terrifying the vampire effects are despite their roots in more classical vampire media.

I rewatched this movie for the first time in a while and knew I had to request fic about Ed! Evil Ed is so obnoxious, but he really is a tragic figure in an oddball way, and his position in the narrative as an ally, a pest, a victim and ultimately an enemy has a lot of fic potential. What's going on in his life that Jerry can dial in so accurately on his feeling like an outcast? It doesn't seem to be something Charley has noticed in him, despite being his best and perhaps only friend. Post-vampirism, what's it like navigating the world of the undead with only mid-80s horror fan know-how to guide him? His shapeshifting adds an interesting wrinkle to things -- is that something all vampires go out for, or is it useful (even exciting) to go full freaky predator after not being taken seriously for so long? I can't shake the impression that Ed's closeted and that's at least an element of the friction between him and his peers -- any fic exploring that would interest me.

Jerry is a king-size creep and it's kind of amazing. How's he appreciating the 20th century? (In particular the mid-80s, where he seems to be right at home as a swingin' bachelor/godawful libertine with his pick of call girls.) He does a lot of mind whammying and apparent supernatural mesmerism in canon -- is this second nature to him at this point, or is he making a concerted effort to reach these particular mortals? What use does he have for these mildly inconvenient teenagers? He seems to enjoy the finer things in life in his own brutal way, including killing and eating beautiful women, but the neighborhood situation seems so downright suburban -- how would this same basic plotline play out set against the backdrop of another place and time? Past, present, or future. Or anything exploring his undead quirks (the apple!) or the freakiness of his vampire physiology. In some ways he's the quintessential attractive predator and in other ways he really seems to reach in and grab people by their vulnerabilities -- I'd love to read anything exploring his capacity for mindfucks, the terror and desire in play in both the seemingly-benevolent kind like how he appeals to Ed, and the stuff like what he does to Amy. (Both have tremendous creep potential if you wanna go there, but I'm also here for straight psychological horror/vampire politicking/any other angles.)

Amy is enduring her own coming-of-age experience through all this, as much as Charley -- her vampirized makeover is hyper-feminine and super vampy (until her teeth make an appearance, that is) but in her day to day life she's very much not and I'd love to read about her finding a way of expressing herself that isn't about bending to meet somebody else's needs or being warped by Jerry's past. How do you come back from that? What happens if Amy doesn't? (Or a fic where she gets to let her vampire freak flag fly and be both low-key tomboyish and a freaky monster.) Alternately, more fic exploring what happens to her if Charley doesn't end up the triumphant hero. How does she handle that kind of failure from someone who claimed he could protect her? How does she handle being Jerry's consort-for-a-day? How much of the original Amy is left behind or remade? Jerry's whole long-lost-love maneuver with Amy strikes me as super unnerving -- is it a bluff? Has he pulled it before? What happened to Amy's predecessors, and what would happen to Amy if Charley's anti-vampire offensive campaign didn't succeed? Or if that's heavier than you'd like to go, I'd love to read fic about pre-canon Amy just doing her thing as an adorable 80s teen, or her and the guys finding alternate vampire solutions.

In general, I'd love fic that explores a villain-wins scenario -- if Jerry wins, does he really keep Ed and Amy around, or does he kick them to the curb to make their own way in the world? In a Jerry-wins endgame scenario, what are his two new fledgling vampires to him -- minions? consorts? cast-offs? Future rivals?

Pairings-wise, I'm down for any combination of these three, Ed/Charley (especially unrequited), and whatever the heck is going on with Jerry and Billy the ghoul.

Hail Caesar!
Hobie Doyle, Carlotta Valdez, Burt Gurney

Signup Prompts
[Burt Gurney's past (and future) as a serious Communist -- does he have a secret activist past that Capitol Pictures doesn't know about, or did somebody turn him on to the wonders of socialism after he'd already become a contract player? What happens to him after his defection? Does he ever make any Soviet pictures, or do things not go so hot for him in the USSR? What kind of damage control does a studio have to pull to cover up what really happened to one of their big-name dance stars?

Carlotta's genuine sweetness sets her apart in a studio system that's both hectic and jaded -- how did she get discovered? Is there a breakout role waiting in the wings for her? I'd love a second date for her and Hobie, or Carlotta getting her own chance to play unofficial studio fixer to help out a friend or tame some of another unruly star's hijinks. What kind of strings could she pull to get her own project? Or if she is just a Hollywood flash in the pan, subject to audience whims and pushed around by her studio, how might she break out and find her own footing?

The continuing adventures of Hobie Doyle -- drop him into another genre and see how he does. How would he fare with another director? Does Merrily We Dance change hands or turn out box office poison after Gurney's defection casts Laurentz's professional ties in question, or does Hobie get to wrap up his maiden voyage in Serious Cinema? What kind of roles does he get after the whole Future business shakes out? Hobie's range may be lacking, but he's clearly got a lot of heart -- is there any niche he would fit right into beyond singing cowboy pictures, one where his questionable diction won't be an impediment, or is there another position where his ranch hand background will come in handy on set?

(If none of these appeal to you, I'd love any kind of meta fic about the fraught world of the film -- excerpts from a monograph on Soviet cinema, a podcast addressing the life and loves of Carlotta Valdez, an older Hobie trying to hack out his memoirs, etc.)

Any ships or gen! In particular Hobie Doyle is my little black dress and I ship him with anyone, though I'd prefer no catastrophic Hobie/Carlotta breakups.]


*

I love every Coen film I've seen and this one was no exception -- it's definitely an odd duck of a film but as an off-the-wall farce and an extended riff on the highs and lows of classic Hollywood I really enjoyed it. I love the studio politics, all the misbehaving genre stars, the doomed idealists that populate The Future, and Channing Tatum as a queer Communist tap dancer with a dog named Engels.

I'm wide open to fic dealing with pretty much any character's life and times -- Burt Gurney's forays into Soviet cinema? Does Carlotta make it big in dance or find her way behind the camera? Does Hobie end up a one-trick pony after all? (There's some potentially bleak HUAC stuff there considering he's a clean-cut cowboy actor who more or less by chance busted an underground communist study group, but you don't have an obligation to go there.)

Or if what comes next doesn't click for you -- how did everybody get where they are? How did Carlotta get her start? What did Hobie make of the script for Merrily We Dance? Burt Gurney getting his first gig (what's his background in dance like?) or awards season havoc, or further fake-dating-because-reasons hijinks getting muddled up by the phony lovebirds uncovering another conspiracy or scandal. I didn't request Baird Whitlock, but I'd be absolutely down to read fic about him or involving him (along with any of the film's other characters) and whatever really went down in the making of On Wings As Eagles. (How did Burt find out about that anyway? Pillow talk, or through the queer Communist grape vine, or what?) Or any fics you feel like about the making of a movie under Capitol Pictures' aegis -- Carlotta and Burt making a dance picture together? Hobie being plunged into the cutthroat world of big setpiece musicals? What kind of scenario would lead to all three of these kids crossing paths without secret ransom suitcases and Communist plots involved? I love the hidden depths implied in Burt's political convictions, and I love Hobie's willingness to branch out even if he's far out of his element, and I'd love to know more about Carlotta's place in the studio system and her future beyond it.

(Really, any studio hijinks -- crossovers with other fictional Hollywood productions optional but awesome. This part is beyond optional, but I'm familiar with and fond of the Coens' other movies as well, so if you're dying to write a Barton Fink ten-years-later crossover or something I would be very down to read it, just saying.)

This film wasn't exactly No Country For Old Men on the tonal front, but it touches on some heavy stuff -- Red Scare stuff, Hollywood homophobia and outing -- that might reasonably be conducive to a more serious treatment. I'd love that, but my tastes definitely run more toward black comedy with this canon than a totally straight take. (And for what it's worth, Hobie Doyle might be the guy who busts the study group but I'd prefer no fic where he goes full-scale anti-Communist informant. It's not implausible by a long shot but that's more bleak than I'm comfortable with.)

My secret desire with this film is in-universe fake nonfiction -- whether that's movie magazines covering Capitol Pictures' hits and misses, or the Thacker sisters' columns, or excerpts from somebody's 1990s film studies thesis on the oeuvre of Carlotta Valdez, or the long-lost Celluloid Closet chapter on the films of Laurence Laurentz, or a modern-day film podcast in the mode of You Must Remember This chronicling the loves and losses of Hobie and Carlotta, or Burt's further adventures among the Soviets. It can be serious or it can be silly, whatever's your speed, but this seems like a great fandom for pastiche.

Pairing-wise, I am hopelessly devoted to Carlotta/Hobie (and would appreciate a modestly happy ending for their relationship, even if that means an amicable breakup or a purely platonic scheme of casual publicity-bearding) but I'm cool with both of them seeing other people. I ship everyone with everyone else in this movie and I would be down for any pairings or any combination of pairings, at the same time or serially. (Burt Gurney seducing Hobie Doye with socialism? Some Doyle/Gurney/Laurentz triangulation? Carlotta Valdez sharing more than a swimming pool with DeeAnna Moran?)

The Hitcher
Jim Halsey, John Ryder

Signup Prompts
[I'd love to read more creepy cat-and-mouse games and/or serial killer courtship against a desolate American backdrop. Write a different spin on one of the canon showdowns between Jim and law enforcement, or between Halsey and Ryder -- I definitely wouldn't complain if the latter ends up sparing Nash, but otherwise feel free to make things worse or pull a fix-it. This movie really commits to slasher villain-esque competency kink and I'd love to read more of that, being very good at being very bad -- or more of Halsey's own leveling-up in hardiness, being put through the wringer by the universe itself and trying his best to keep it together.

What is going on between these guys? They're effectively strangers but they immediately click during their time on the road, for a very grim value of clicking -- Sleazy knifeplay, nocturnal visitations, or a paranormal angle where Ryder still seeks death but can't exactly be killed -- vampires? ghosts? hitchhiking deities?

Obviously this film hinges somewhat on anxieties around hitchhiking itself -- strangers, drifters, no good deed going unpunished. Take a spin at that, explore what comes next for either of these guys or previous/future experiences on another lonely stretch of road. Transpose their archetypal late-20th-century conflict to another time period/setting, or reverse their roles/power dynamics. What if it were Ryder behind the wheel and Halsey needing a lift? Or Ryder as the not-so-altruistic Good Samaritan and Halsey with ill intentions of his own?

Any ships or gen -- I'd love to read Halsey/Ryder or anything with Nash.]


*

This movie is shamelessly up my alley -- it goes all out on the heightened horror tropes that I love so well, the desolate landscapes, the hapless protagonist who can't make themselves be believed, the borderline-superhuman antagonist with a weirdly personal fixation on the hero… along with a heavy dose of noir tropes and a pretty-much-textual erotic fascination that goes at least one way. And a lot of shenanigans with knives. The scenery is great, the mood is really pared-down and tense, and the interpersonal tension is ridiculous. (Last time I checked, it's also streaming on HBO Now. \o/)

Cards on the table here: the weird hero/villain angle this movie has going on is exactly up my alley, so anything exploring weird fraught interaction between Halsey and Ryder would make me happy. What the hell is up with Ryder? Is he really just a particularly poorly-documented drifter, or is he something else? Anything about his creepy career of previous drifting, or earlier near-misses/close encounters he's had on the road. The cat-and-mouse psychology in this film (even when it goes way over the top in a slasher movie kinda way) is genuinely incredibly creepy for me and I'm open to anything playing around in that -- his death-seeking, his desire to corrupt, and his cheerful willingness to murder people left and right. Where did he come from? Where was he going in the first place?

For a good period of time, the film almost seems to tease that Ryder could be entirely in Halsey's mind, or a sort of alter ego, and I'd love to read fic where that's the place, for all that would mean. Or anything set during the time in which Jim's pursued. I really appreciate that in some ways Halsey's thrust into a really atypical role for a male protagonist -- he freaks out plenty, he starts out trying to do the genuinely decent thing, he's frankly emotional and he even considers/attempts suicide when his situation seems to present no other way out. The menace he faces is particularly personal. I'd love to read anything about what happens to him after that whole ordeal -- whether that's trying to readjust to society with those experiences still casting a shadow over him, or taking to the road himself, or something else.

What if Ryder does succeed in making Jim a little bit more like him? (Whether or not Ryder himself survives that kind of leveling-up in violence, given his death-seeking tendencies.) There's room for slasher-villain courtship rituals, mercy killing, and a whole lot in between. What if Jim had plenty in common with Ryder's more antisocial tendencies before they even met? (This could be a Pick Me Up-style serial killer vs. serial killer conflict, or something else entirely.)

The basic format of this (guy picks up hitchhiker, hitchhiker is super murdery) is classic for a reason and I'd love to read AUs transposing it to different settings or eras. 18th century highwaymen? Dusty 1920s backroads and creepy confidence men? Is there a way to transpose this plotline to another mode of transportation that piques your interest? Or instant paranormal AU, just add ghosts/vampires/wandering deities/other assorted monsters. Or a role swap where Ryder's the one doing the picking up and Halsey and/or Nash are the folks needing a lift, with their own ulterior motives.

Ship-wise I particularly enjoy Ryder/Halsey for great dirtybadwrong and anything with Nash.


The Lost Boys
David, Michael Emerson, Star

Signup Prompts
[Tumultuous boardwalk nightlife, vampire hunting/feeding, gang initiation rituals and running with the pack. How much does David even remember of his mortal life? He's the quintessential dreamy bad boy, daring and more than a little mean, but the moment in canon where he dies is so weirdly vulnerable and poignant. Anything about the apparent contradictions in him, sexy and scary, eternally youthful -- out of the gang he's positioned as the leader, but he's implicitly subordinate to Max, or at least once was at some point. Has he ever considered shaking off that yoke, or gathering up the gang to leave Santa Carla behind and take their show on the road?

Michael's at a great age for self-discovery and figuring out what he wants to do in life, but he's also really vulnerable despite the whole leather-jacket tough guy act. What's he searching for? What happens to Michael if Sam and the Frog Bros. can't save the day? I'd also love an overall-darker take where there's no turning back once the head vampire is removed from the picture -- where Michael's lost for good and Star doesn't have that as recourse to save herself and Laddie. Fic about Michael and Star (together or separately) as vampires, 10 or so years later -- effortlessly cool and free to stay up all night every night, but at what cost? Alternately, supposing Michael and Star do get out and maybe even stay together -- show their experiences in Santa Carla coming back to haunt them, literally or metaphorically.

Anything about Star and how she and David crossed paths, or what it's like to break away -- is she a Santa Carla native or one of the many young drifters who seem to end up there? Her position as David's consort is pretty uneasy -- does she ever get to stretch her wings or explore the stuff that makes becoming a vampire attractive as well as scary? Or more about the triangulation between these three -- how does Star see Michael as the newest addition to the gang and her intended first kill, getting inducted unwittingly into something bigger than he realizes? Michael's attraction to and totally understandable wariness of David and co., or what David sees in Michael -- fresh meat? A new recruit? Or an actual new friend, in whatever capacity he can still desire friendship?

Any ships or gen; I particularly like David/Michael, Michael/Star, and David/Michael/Star as an OT3 instead of a love triangle.]


*

I love the late-summer, festive-yet-sinister, glittery music video vibe of this film so much -- its dreaminess and violence, the gorgeous teen-dirtbag vagabonds making up David's gang, Michael's mingled fascination and anxiety, the sense of danger but also exhilaration pressing in on all sides. This movie taps right into so many coming-of-age preoccupations and fears (wanting to fit in and make friends, falling in love, being in danger from unseen forces, having your mom be in danger!) and I'm pretty fond of a queer take on it too, discovering your sexuality and your fantastic aesthetic all at one time.

Michael comes into that whole milieu as an outsider, closer to being a real adult than Sam for sure but still discovering himself and feeling the attraction of lawlessness and danger. I'd love to see more of Michael's process of induction into the whole vampire gig -- peer pressure may be no great shakes, but it's easy to see how someone would enjoy participating in some of the stuff David's gang gets up to, and a scene of Michael coming to genuinely enjoy some of the creepy stuff they get up to (whether as he starts to succumb to vampire influences, or just discovering something that was already a part of himself, or that he was already vulnerable to) could be really interesting. And if you want to go to town on more vampire mindfucks/tense blood exchanges/feeding sessions/nighttime raids/sneaky late night trysts in the ruins, I'd be 100% into it.

How did Star and David cross paths? How did Star end up in Santa Carla anyway? I know the film kind of plays up her protective relationship with Laddie in a way that teases her being the maternal, big-sister-like Wendy-analogue among the titular lost boys, but every time I see this movie I'm reminded how young she actually is and how easy it would be for a girl with her own yearning for identity and acceptance (and danger, and excitement) to get lost herself in this kind of milieu. Her relationship with David is clearly kind of proprietary, but they don't exactly seem to be having a torrid romance -- what's going on there? What might her burgeoning relationship to Michael look like if it wasn't a jealousy situation but more of a triad? Full-on-vampire!Star with her own girl gang, post-canon Star reacclimating to no longer being a vampire and what she loses as well as gains in that… anything. I'd love to see her connecting with other lost souls on the boardwalk or flexing her vampire skills apart from the guys.

Star's sort of halfway to being a vampire, but David's been one for a while -- when did he wind up in Santa Carla? How did Max rope him in? (I've heard the theory that the origin of Max's vampire coven is in the 1906 earthquake, since that's done a number on the hotel where they reside -- I'd love fic that shows how previous decades of youth culture have influenced the younger vampires, or any little snapshot of them hunting or being hunted in previous eras.) In some ways David seems the most at-home with raising hell, but he's also got a strange quality of melancholy and jadedness, and it's difficult for me to imagine him getting along that well in mortal life. David's such a hellraiser and Max, who made him a vampire, is such a stuffed shirt that it's hard to imagine that was an especially happy encounter or that there's no resentment there. Did David ever think of cutting himself loose?

I love David's interactions with his gang, but those guys are really mysterious to me, so anything exploring their roles in vampire life or how teenage delinquents spend their time when they've got all the time in the world would make me happy. The guys are all boyish and charming and can all be absolute assholes when they want to; what was it like for Star to first enter into that? Anything exploring the web of relationships among the boys -- who bit who? David clearly gets a bit of a kick out of making it feel slightly ceremonious, and there's an element of hazing to the thrill-seeking they engage in. How were the other boys recruited? Who plays favorites? Do they ever talk about what their lives were like when they were mortal? Do their mortal lives ever come back to haunt them anyway? Whether screwing around on the boardwalk or murdering Surf Nazis, they do really seem to care for each other in their way, but it can't be all smooth sailing either -- vampire gang politics and power struggles, interpersonal strife, times where they really do act like a found family, etc.

Ship-wise, I especially enjoy Michael/David, David/Star/Michael, and Michael/Star, but I'm also pretty confident that shit gets weird from time to time among permanently-young permanently-dirtbaggy teenage vampire gang members, so any combination of pairings is fair game. My only NOTP is David/Max, or at least not a fluffy take on it.

Santa Carla is such a specific time capsule of a place and time (not just the decade its' set in but also that free-for-all, end of summer, boardwalk feeling) that I'd love to read AUs where that's explored in a different context. (The 1940s, the pre-counterculture 60s, nocturnal surf vampire AU, 1970s…) Somebody half-jokingly floated the idea of an all-girl AU of The Lost Boys, with all the fabulous 80s costuming excess and lady mullets/hairspray misuse/torrid lesbian leather jacket gangs this entails, and I would read about a million words of that.

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