50 Shades Flunked: Lesson Five
*Note: Luigi will be playing the role of Christian this time in honor of Movember. And also because he has a creepy ass stare.
Okay, so first the answer to our True / False questions. 5A: Mostly True – she’s tied with Christian for worst character ever. 5B: True – this book has definitely caused brain damage. 5C: False – No, James isn’t planning to write a youth novel (as far as I know). But she might put out a fourth book! And there’s already a 50 Shades classical soundtrack out – available on Amazon! Because I know when I hear Canon in D, I always think about kinky sex play. Anyway, fans are clamoring for it! Why? Whyyyyy???. Expect a rain of frogs soon. Frowny faces all around.
As chapter, fuck, chapter five opens, Ana has a freak out because Christian’s not in bed (AnaFail). Nope he’s just sitting in a chair staring at her while she talks in her sleep about absolutely nothing, just like she does when she’s awake. This is not weird at all. I often watch my husband sleep, snoring away all romantically. And it’s certainly not weird for Christian, since he’s a vampire, um, psycho businessman (RedFlag)
Ana recalls how devastated and empty and hollow and in PAIN she was, because for about five minutes, she thought Christian was killed in Charlie Tango, his stupidly named helicopter. (AnaFail) Those were the best five minutes of that book for me. Christian tells Ana not to worry, he’s handling it. Wow, I’d feel secure. I mean, he totally handled that Leila thing – wait, Leila almost blew Ana’s brains out (darn the luck, almost).(RedFlag). But hey, there was the Jack rapist bit – wait, he just called a cab instead of arresting the creep and then yelled at Ana for letting herself nearly get raped. (RedFlag). So, yeah, great record so far(FacePalm).
Ana reflects that she’s had a blissful honeymoon (AnaFail, WTF) with just a few ups and downs, but that’s normal for newlyweds, right? (FacePalm) No. No, moron, it’s not normal for your new husband to chain you up and leave bruises on you.(RedFlag) You. Moron. Shut up. Please. Just. Shut. Up. (AnaFail)
Mr. and Mrs. Psycho go for a ride on the Jet Ski and Ana says “Fair point, well made, Mr. Grey” and I’ve come up with a new deduction for the stupid, repeated phrases. The (AliceScreams) deduction. Ten points off for these. I. hate. them. so. much. Shockingly, Ana mistakes the throttle for the break and flies off into the ocean (AnaFail). It turns out badly. She lives.
They ride home on the plane, first class, which is still soooo tiring for Ana (AnaFail). Christian talks about having a security aid’s balls on a platter. He’s said this before. I think he’s a wee bit too focused on balls, but maybe that’s just me. Christian has to carry Ana across the threshold so he has the brilliant idea to carry her all the way to the 40th floor. Look, idiot, “across the threshold” means carrying her through the door. That’s it. Idiot. (FacePalm) Anyway, to add to the idiocy, Christian comments that Ana has gained weight, which is a brilliant thing to say to an anorexic, especially when you’re so obsessed with her clearing her plate.(RedFlag, FacePalm)
Ana is miffed about this, but then Christian says she gained back the weight since she left him, and a tear falls from my eye, wait that’s snot from my nose, whatevs, and Ana is distracted by his fake anguish. (RedFlag) But you know that’s not going to last. We’re going to hear about this shit for a while, I can almost promise you.(AnaFail)
They have sex (Sexy Times) but fortunately we aren’t shown the entire scene. Ana says she can’t sleep, but Christian has the cure, and we all know what that is (SexyTimes) but once again, we’re spared. I can’t believe my luck. She asks if she can drive his car and he says sure as long as she doesn’t dent it because then he’ll torture her in the Red Room o’ Pain so in other words, don’t fucking drive his car, Ana. (RedFlag) They get to his stupid parent’s house, and there’s a cook-out, and Ana, surprise, gets jealous over the realtor because she’s pretty (AnaFail) and wonders why Christian didn’t consult her on plans (AnaFail). Gee, I don’t know, Ana. Maybe cause he owns you, and you don’t ask your table for advice?
They eat, well, except Ana, who, shock, is still concerned about the “fat” comment. (AnaFail) Christian threatens to spank her if she doesn’t get happy, and wow, threats of getting beaten certainly cheer me up! Good plan there. (RedFlag) Christian plays the piano and sings, and everyone is all moved and shit cause he hasn’t sung before, and all I can picture is that Peanuts kid on his toy piano. Who fucking cares? (BoredNow)
Christian gives Ana the keys to his car, but warns her not to bend it (the car? the keys?) or he will be “fucking pissed”. (RedFlag) Oh, those romantic threats. She starts speeding and Christian threatens punishment again and I’m too tired to redflag him at this point. Another call on the Elmo phone and ‘eh, oh’, they are being followed! I’m so worried. (BoredNow) Ana worries this person might be after Christipoo! (AnaFail) We can only hope! Ana freaks and asks how they know they’re being followed and guess why can you guess? It’s because the Dodge, yup it’s a Dodge following them, has false license plates. Just . . . what? (WTF)
So Ana speeds along, and the Dodge follows, and the security team follows the Dodge, or something, I forget because this makes no fucking sense (BoredNow, WTF) and during this high speed chase Ana reflects on stuff like Sawyer’s first name (who cares?) and whether she’ll get a speeding ticket and whether she’ll look like an asshole (always) and they keep fucking chattering and why won’t they shut up it’s a car chase and finally they turn into a parking garage which totally fools the Dodge which keeps going, proving that life really does work just like in cartoons (WTF).
Christian gives Ana a smiley sticker for her driving and it’s her “undoing” (AliceScreams) and she sobs and they still aren’t really safe cause the security team is still doing their freaking job, but hey Ana wants to do it in the car. (WTF, AnaFail, Sexy Times). And Ana thinks “this is so hot!” and Alice thinks “this is so stupid!” and they finally get back on the road and they find out the subject is female, whoop-te-do, and they finally get home but oh no there’s another guy there who dares to glance at Ana and Christipoo is pissed cause how dare someone make conversation and they get to their room and Ana says that after the car chase and the car sex she really wants rough sex (WTF) and Christian agrees. End chapter!
Final Score: 100 – (37 * 2) = 26 – (2 * 10) = 6
Question Five (Fill in the Blank!)
5A: The next chapter will be one, long, horrible, vomit-inducing sex scene involving Christian, Ana, and a __________.
5B: Christian gives Ana a present. It is a ________.
5C: Later Ana makes a big deal about cleaning the ________.
Good luck! Remember, if you fail, you might be held back and have to read 50 Shades of Crap and write a book report. You really don’t want that. No pressure.
50 Shades Dumber Interviews Jack Hyde
Today we’re interviewing a brand new character, Jack Hyde, who, and this is just a guess, is set to be a bad guy in this book. Which means we’ll probably be rooting for him as well. God knows Leila needs the help.
Alice: Mr. Hyde, so nice to meet you.
Jack: Please, call me Jack.
Alice: Okay, Jack, you have a rather interesting name. Care to tell us about it?
Jack: Well my full name is Jack the Ripper Mr. Hyde Evil Bastard Boss. But really, Jack is much easier.
Alice: Okay, then. So Ana Steele recently came to work for you, right?
Jack: Yes. She was extremely qualified.
Alice: How so?
Jack: She’s hot and stupid. Also, she fetches coffee. What more could you ask for in an editor’s assistant?
Alice: Some editors might want someone who could, I don’t know, edit?
Jack: Pfft. The girl fetches really well. I can tell she’s been trained.
Alice: Yes, by her boyfriend, Christian Grey.
Jack: Ugh, that guy! What does she see in him?
Alice: He ties her up and flogs her and shoves stuff up her hoo-ha.
Jack: I could do that. This Christian Grey is a real jerk. He’s always emailing Ana. It’s annoying. She can’t finish the coloring sheets I give her, and sometimes she’s late with the coffee. Also, she has not responded to my romantic gestures.
Alice: Isn’t it inappropriate for a boss to hit on his employee?
Jack: Hey, I didn’t hire her for her brains.
Alice: Right. So they’ve been emailing each other? That’s a real shock.
Jack: Yes. “Will you move in with me? Can we talk tonight? Can we talk this evening? Can I go to this conference with Jack? No, he’s a sleazeball, unlike me. Blah blah.” And more talk about knickers. What the hell are knickers, and how do you twist them?
Alice: It’s a Britishism for underwear.
Jack: But she’s not British.
Alice: Don’t even get me started. So did you stop the emails?
Jack: Nah, I just print them out and read them alone in my office.
Jack: So she gabbed to Christian on the phone, and she emailed him some more, and she painted her nails, and she huffed the paint because it smells like grape, and I sent her to get my lunch. This made Mr. Hotshot mad.
Alice: And why was that?
Jack: Some psycho chick named Leila is stalking them or something. I don’t know. But he shouldn’t keep her from doing her job.
Alice: Which is fetching you coffee and sandwiches? Is your office located in the 1950s?
Jack: She likes fetching coffee for me. You just ring this little bell and off she goes!
Jack: I wanted her to go to this conference so we could network. You know what I mean? Network? Get it?
Alice: Unfortunately. I’m sure Christian wasn’t happy about that.
Jack: No. And somehow I was blocked from being able to schedule her flight. But no matter, I just gave her extra coloring pages and one of those seek and finds, which kept her working late with me. Then I got super close to her and acted like a creeper. She wasn’t impressed.
Alice: Weird. It works for Christian.
Jack: I know! So I asked her out, and asked her inappropriate questions, and she got all braggy about her boyfriend, and she left. Nevermind that she spent most of the workday arguing with him and being furious about him controlling her, when she could have me controlling her. I have a leash and everything. I’m not sure if her hot ass is worth it.
Alice: I’m certain it isn’t. So did she stay mad at Christian?
Jack: No. They had sex in the elevator and she forgot about it. And then some Mrs. Robinson showed up.
Alice: How do you know all this?
Jack: Well it’s not because I put a camera in her purse.
Alice: I just . . . well. Since Ana’s clearly not interested, are you going to back off?
Jack: Back off? No way. I will have Ana, and I will make Christian Grey pay! Bwahahahahahahahahaha.
Alice: You just turned green and hunchbacked for a second there.
Jack: Uh, sorry. As I was saying, I plan to challenge Christian Grey.
Alice: Great. Make sure you kill him. You should find Leila. She’s already got the gun. Ana might get caught in the crossfire, but that’s the breaks. Just, you know, FYI.
Jack: Thank you, Alice. I don’t suppose you’d like to be an editor’s assistant? I sense a position opening soon.
Alice: Yeah, tempting. But clearly James knows nothing about editing, and you’re a creeper. So, gosh, no. Thanks anyway.
Jack: Curses! Foiled again.
Alice: Is there anyone in this book that isn’t insane or creepy?
50 SoG Recap #1: Two Chapters Unto the Breech
I am now officially two chapters and 34 pages in to this book. I’ve been taking notes along the way with a handy feature on my Nook Color (product placement!!) Most of my notes are short and rather repetitive, just like the text. Stuff like “Creepy” and “I get it” and “I GET IT” and “ZOMG I GET IT ALREADY PLEASE STOP TELLING ME ARGHHHHHHH!) I’ve never read a book for adults that reminded me so much of an episode of Dora the Explorer.
Her first use of repetition comes from her descriptions of Christian. Now I wasn’t a fan of Meyer’s writing in Twilight, but you have to admit that while she spent way too much time describing Edward, she did at least actually describe him. As in features like marble chest, topaz eyes, blah blah blah. That’s better than what James does, which is simply to tell us that he’s attractive. Just take her word for it. Take it several times.
I used the search feature on my e-reader, a handy little thing. Many people would protest doing this, because hey, it’s a long book, someone is bound to repeat a word or two here and there. Here’s what I’ve gotten from a search of the word “attractive” used with Christian. So young, and attractive, very attractive. (Ch1 p.13) Okay, so he’s very attractive. (Ch2 p. 21) Attractive control freak Grey. (Ch2 p.33) I find him attractive, very attractive. (Ch2 p.34) Keep in mind that I’m only using the “attractives” that refer to Christian, and only those mentioned in the FIRST TWO CHAPTERS. The only real details we get of Christian are his grey eyes (get it?), the bizarre misplaced modifier tie with unruly red hair (I’m guessing she meant Christain has unruly red hair), and hands with long fingers.
Speaking of that, what IS her thing with hands? She constantly mentions Christian’s hands and their fabulous fingers. Is this some sort of a fetish? Maybe it’s because my husband is a mechanic, and so his hands are not exactly pristine after an oil change; but honestly, I have never noticed a guy’s hands much. His touch, yes, but his hands? And the long fingers – that just sounds creepy, like something from a horror novel. At one point she even describes Christian’s finely manicured hands. Manicured? If I met a guy who went to the trouble of getting a manicure regulary, I’d probably figure he was batting for the other team. But that’s just me.
Next, let’s damn everything to hell! Damn my hair! (ch1 p. 9) Damn my roommate! (Ch 1 p. 9) Damn her extra-curricular activities (Ch1 pg 9) Damn my clumsiness! (Ch1 p.13) Damn Kate and her curiousity! (ch2 pg18) Damn Katherine Kavanagh! (ch2 p.21) Damn that woman was in the wrong place. (Ch2 p.25) Damn she’s inquisitive! (Ch2 p.24) He’s pretty damn bright. (Ch2 p.26) Damn, he’s handsome. (a two-fer) (Ch2 p29) Damn! Try to be cool,Ana! (Ch2 p.29) Damn . . . have I offended him? (Ch2 p.34) Damn, that’s a lot of damns. Good thing she intersperses plenty of “Crap!” and “Double Crap!” for variation.
You should know that there is a lot of sandstone in Christian’s lobby.
She also wants to make sure you know the names of her characters. It is important that when you first introduce a character, you point out his or her full name, if he or she has one. It is not necessary, however, to do this over and over again. I know Kate, Christian, and Ana’s last names. Please quit giving out their full names. There’s no set word count you have to make.
In case you didn’t realize it, E.L. James is British. We see her first British-isms in these chapters. I don’t get it. If you can’t grasp the difference between British and American English, here’s an idea. Set your story in freaking Britain. Hell, Harry Potter was set in England, and its sales were fairly good. So why did she have to make the story take place in America when she knew so little about it and didn’t want to research that much? It really wouldn’t have made a difference to the story where she had it take place. From what I’ve heard, most of it involves sex in various places that are usually indoors.
Still haven’t gotten to the sexy times. We did have a fascinating scene in the lobby (the sandstone lobby) with secretaries. They offer water. They bring her water. They hop out of their seats. They open the door. They tell her to go inside. They direct her to Grey’s office. Etc. Oh, and they are all blonde, and this bothers Ana, because she has a pathological fear of blondes. I guess.
Ana has a lot of issues, actually. She’s not only clumsy enough to qualify for a handicapped permit, she suffers from other medical ailments too. Heart failure, rapid eye blinking, belly muscles clenching, inability to access a very tiny underused part of her brain (James’s description, not mine, I swear), heart pounding, jello-legs, and heart attempting to escape mouth. At one point she speaks of feeling a current “all the way down to somewhere dark and unexplored, deep in my belly” (Ch2 p.30). Yeah, Ana, I’m thinking you’re feeling that somewhere south of your belly.
Finally, we begin to see the creepiness that is Christian. He starts making connections too quickly. He offers her a job apparently based on her ability to fall into his office, stammer, drop her tape recorder, and ask him embarrassing, poorly researched questions. Considering Ana’s descriptions of various types of heart failure, he has to know that he is making her uncomfortable. And he keeps doing it. He asks her personal questions (“what IS your thing, Anastasia?) He gets angry when another male talks to her – and they’ve barely met. He makes references to taking off his pants in a hardware store. If that wasn’t enough, he goes to Ana’s workplace with a wacky grocery list. Cable ties, masking tape, filament rope, some coveralls . . . what no lime, Christian? It’s so convenient when your future victims help you pick out your supplies!
I can’t wait till Chapter 3. Will we get to see Christian torture Ana and bury her in a shallow grave? I can’t say I would be totally opposed to that idea. Except that I’d like Christian buried with her. Ah, well, I guess I’ll just have to read on and find out.
I’ve decided to quote a favorite line at the end of each entry. This may be my favorite quote of the entire book:
“His voice is warm and husky like dark melted chocolate fudge caramel . . . or something.” (Ch2 p28)