On Midlife Crisis

I’ve got a lump in my breast. It’s probably just a cyst and nothing to worry about. Oddly, I’m genuinely not worried, despite my anxiety over everything else. I always said I wouldn’t worry about a potential cancer, and here we are and I’m not worried at all. A lump in your breast is serious enough you don’t have to worry about it, at least not here in the UK at present. Something will be done by someone and it will probably all be ok. And if it’s not, well, I’ll cross that bridge if I come to it.

It does make you think about life though. How short it really is and how much or how little you’ve achieved. There’s nothing like going to school with a Ted Hughes Award winner to make you contemplate what you’ve done, and while I’m beyond proud to say I sat in the same classroom as one of Britain’s top young poets, there’d be more pleasure in being a successful poet too.

I often look at other writers and think they’re living my best life but I think this is the most acutely I’ve ever felt it. And that’s not professional jealousy. I’ve never been jealous of another writer—writing is so personal it’s pointless to compare yourself to anyone else—but I have been inspired by the achievements of others on many an occasion. I suppose what I feel is that I should have grasped all the opportunities when I was younger, as Hollie must have done, instead of finding myself at thirty-five thinking, I wish I was on Radio Four talking about my poems. I haven’t even written any poems! Well, I’ve tossed off the odd dirty limerick but I’m not sure that’s enough to get me on Woman’s Hour.

But no schoolgirl or boy will ever know what their peers will grow up to be, or how treading water for too long leaves you with no energy to swim to the shore. I’m stuck treading water right now, mostly on the grounds of parental advice. I am deemed to need a period of mental stability before I tackle anything stressful. My father is keen for me to take up writing again, in a different genre this time, but he’d prefer I didn’t go mad. My mental illness is as hard for my family as it is for me.

But he is nudging me onwards. I come from a family of wannabe writers and as I managed to sign four publishing contracts in my short time doing it, I’m deemed a success, of sorts, by him. I’m supposed to start writing my next novel in September and I’ve been discussing a WLW high fantasy novel with my dad, while my mum suggested I write a book about Rupert Brooke (probably so that I would shut up talking about him and write it down instead).

Whatever I end up writing I’m going to need bigger bollocks than I’ve had. I’ll never go back to social media so I don’t know how I’ll promote anything. I might ask my mum to run it for me as she’s obsessed with twitter and made of sterner stuff that me.

It’s not just the promotional aspects. I need to be less afraid of writing and put more of myself into it, and I need to focus on techniques because one of the things I worried about most was that I didn’t have enough grip on the craft, despite having done a module of creative writing at university level and topped my knowledge up later with books about it. I have this intense, and frankly ridiculous, fear of appearing thoughtless and stupid. I’ve no idea why. I behave thoughtlessly and stupidly all the time and should have learned to live with it by now but all the time I’m beating myself up thinking, why didn’t I do better? Why am I not good enough?

And the guilt! Oh God, the guilt. Catholicism has so much to answer for in my mental illness.

The point of all this navel gazing is that I am tired of wishing I’d grasped the opportunities before when I should just bloody well grab them now. But what’s there to grab for? All I ever wanted to be was a published writer and I achieved that goal. I can’t spend the rest of my life sat on the sofa watching Judge Rinder.

So, I’m going to be a bit more brave. I’ve always been amazed at the stuff others are able to brazen out and I think that’s a skill I’d like to acquire. I might study something, I don’t know.  It’s time to have a good think about my future.

And to make a doctors appointment.

 

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Tales of Gentalia

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Anyone who knows anything about me knows I love CB Archer as a writer and a person. He’s my best author buddy, my therapist, my bro, and my ho. And, because I always like to tell the story, plus we just had our two year anniversary *hearts*, I will share once again how we met.

I was tweeting about a batshit MM Romance I’d read and he asked what it was because he knew he had a book way crazier if I was into that sort of thing. While I’m not hot for the monsters like he is, I love to laugh, plus I used to play a lot of video games, so I was here for his books from the get-go.

Then there was a short period of me silently thinking he was just the funniest person in the community because he is all about them sex puns just like I am, and then we started properly chatting one day and became friends!

The Tales were my first introduction to his writing. I read the first five of those and then moved to the Anders Quest as the other tales weren’t out. Since then I’ve read all the Anders Quest, all the Tales, and all the fanfics! A few of which I may have had something to do with…

So these books have a special place in my heart. And this is the last one! This is final pay off, bringing back all the protagonists from the earlier tales for sports and an orgy! Lots of loose ends are tied up, and The Mistress is putting the final part of her diabolical scheme into place. Will she succeed?

These are little stories but they’re thick with jokes. Puns all over the place and so many nods to geek culture and games you won’t be able to count them all. CB takes great pride in his craft and there are callbacks aplenty. You can read the books as standalones but reading the whole series and paying attention to the details is worth it.

He often does freebies if you want to give a book a try. Check out his website for upcoming dates!

Masterpiece. > A bit of fun. > Toss.

On I Saw The Light

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There’s only one Hiddles movie on Netflix currently and it’s this. As I have decided to watch all his movies I thought I’d give it a go, though it’s not the sort of thing I’d normally watch. I don’t like Country music much and I didn’t know who Hank Williams was. It felt a bit Oscar baity when I read about it. I didn’t have high hopes.

However, I thought it was a good enough film and I enjoyed the music. I even knew two of the songs! That Hey Goodlookin’ one and the Cheatin’ Heart one. The singing was good. Hiddles can certainly carry a tune. I didn’t get why everyone was saying how bad Elizabeth Olsen was, though. I’ve heard much worse on X Factor. I am also tone deaf.

I suppose you’d describe the movie as character driven, which is a nice way of saying it didn’t have much of a plot. That’s not normally a problem for me, but I think, given that it was two hours long, it was a bit too choppy and could have been more focused.

I’d also come to expect certain things from Hiddles and was a bit disappointed I didn’t get them. Obviously he delivered a top notch performance, and he’s clearly got a wide dramatic range. The material was more the issue. I’d been spoilt by Hollow Crown and Crimson Peak and Thor, but mostly by the Love Book app, which is such a gem. I only fancy him because I found out he’s a fellow poetry wanker. I’ve only ever seen a few people in the public eye who openly admit to liking poetry so I will stan for anyone who can appreciate a decent bit of verse. But now I want him to do nothing but look gorgeous and read beautiful words in that rich voice he’s got. Its no judgment on his talents or the quality of the film, more proof of the fact I have all the depth of a puddle. No surprises there.

But it was all right. I don’t think I’d watch it over, but I did look up the soundtrack on Spotify and played it for my daughter, who loved it and happily bopped around to it. She now thinks Hey Goodlookin’ is a song about her.

Masterpiece. > A bit of fun. > Toss.

Not sure what to watch next. I checked out his IMDB and he was in Wallander, which is on Netflix, so I might go for that.

On Elegy 19

So I find myself yet again writing about stuff which is not queer. I need to rein the hetero stuff in a bit. But sexy and romantic stuff is on brand for me and right now I want to talk about Elegy 19: To His Mistress Going to Bed, by John Donne.

My mum: John Donne is the best poet.

Me: But have you seen Rupert Brooke’s face?

I think my mum must have done a module on the metaphysical poets because she had a lot of books about them and it seems to be her period. She also recently bought me a book of seventeenth-century verse which I flicked through and found to be suitably bawdy for my tastes, though fair Chloris in her pigsty was a bit too much even for me. So I’ve turned to a small collection of Donne that had been neglected for a long time on my shelf, hoping to find something beautiful and smutty to read. He has not disappointed!

Come, Madam, come, all rest my powers defy,
Until I labour, I in labour lie.
The foe oft-times, having the foe in sight,
Is tired with standing, though they never fight.
Off with that girdle, like heaven’s zone glistering
But a far fairer world encompassing.
Unpin that spangled breast-plate, which you wear
That th’eyes of busy fools may be stopped there:
Unlace yourself, for that harmonious chime
Tells me from you that now ’tis your bed time.
Off with that happy busk, whom I envy
That still can be, and still can stand so nigh.
Your gown’s going off such beauteous state reveals
As when from flowery meads th’hills shadow steals.
Off with your wiry coronet and show
The hairy diadem which on you doth grow.
Off with those shoes: and then safely tread
In this love’s hallowed temple, this soft bed.
In such white robes heaven’s angels used to be
Received by men; thou Angel bring’st with thee
A heaven like Mahomet’s Paradise; and though
Ill spirits walk in white, we easily know
By this these Angels from an evil sprite:
They set out hairs, but these the flesh upright.

License my roving hands, and let them go
Behind before, above, between, below.
Oh my America, my new found land,
My kingdom, safeliest when with one man manned,
My mine of precious stones, my Empery,
How blessed am I in this discovering thee.
To enter in these bonds is to be free,
Then where my hand is set my seal shall be.

Full nakedness, all joys are due to thee.
As souls unbodied, bodies unclothed must be
To taste whole joys. Gems which you women use
Are as Atlanta’s balls, cast in men’s views,
That when a fool’s eye lighteth on a gem
His earthly soul may covet theirs not them.
Like pictures, or like books’ gay coverings made
For laymen, are all women thus arrayed;
Themselves are mystic books, which only we
Whom their imputed grace will dignify
Must see revealed. Then since I may know,
As liberally as to a midwife show
Thyself; cast all, yea this white linen hence.
Here is no penance, much less innocence.

To teach thee, I am naked first: why then
What need’st thou have more covering than a man.

That is thoroughly indecent. It would totally work on me.

John Donne is an almost infamously sensual poet. His love poems are quite special. As a young man he spunked all his inheritance having a good time with the ladies, but when he finally fell in love, he fell hard. He wrecked his career by secretly marrying his boss’s niece (they slung him in jail for it too), but he loved her deeply. It seems he loved her often too because they had twelve children together.

My favourite line is “For laymen, are all women thus arrayed”. Sentiment aside, the word laymen makes me snicker like a fourteen-year-old boy. I’m also particularly keen on “License my roving hands, and let them go/Behind before, above, between, below.” It’s so overtly filthy.  No buggering about with fleas or compasses, or as we have directly below it, America. Not that I don’t admire the conceit, but come on, we now know John Donne likes a bit of foreplay. That’s worth knowing!

The only thing I don’t like about this poem is that I have no idea why this is labelled an elegy. I’m guessing the format of lament, praise, comfort? If anyone with a bit more knowledge of Donne would like to share the answer please do comment. I’ve tried googling to no avail. This is the sort of thing that makes me wish I had a bit more formal book learning about literature. I want to understand every layer!

 

 

On the Avengers Assemble

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It’s Loki day. Yay. I mentioned before that CB and Mr M had tried to explain to me that Loki was a bad guy. I didn’t realise quite how bad he is until I watched this film. He’s a terrifying evil bastard!

At first I tried watching it with my four year old. Ha! Don’t do this. Lots of her friends have Avengers lunchboxes, backpacks and the like so I assumed the Marvel movies were for kids. She only made it through a few minutes of Thor because the lightning storm at the beginning frightened her. When we tried the Avengers she made it through ten minutes before she hid behind me and asked to switch it off.  At first she was just concerned that Loki seemed to have lost his helmet but after a few minutes of watching him she’d had enough. He was too scary for her, and I agreed.

That’s actually the second time the sight of Tom Hiddleston has made her cry. He’s the man who wouldn’t let Cookie Monster have a cookie for, like, a whole minute. What a bastard.

But she LOVES the Lego Marvel Superheroes cartoons and her favourites are Captain America, Spiderman, and the Hulk. In the cartoon they go to Asgard with Thor and stop Loki, who is a delightfully camp, vaguely Stewie Griffinish character and quite funny. She loves playing Avengers too. Sometimes she’s Loki, sometimes she’s one of the heroes. My mum just bought her a Captain America costume so she’s living in that right now.

To sum up the plot, Loki tries to take over the Earth with an army of aliens. The Avengers get together to stop him and Thor turns up to take Loki home. Thor ends up joining the Avengers. They destroy NYC in the process of stopping the aliens and then eat shawarma in the ruins.

I’ve not seen any of the other big Marvel series movies except Thor so it took me a bit to get used to all the characters. I am the only person in the world who genuinely likes the old Eric Bana Hulk movie, but despite my misplaced loyalty to the one true Banner, I thought Mark Ruffalo did a pretty good job and I liked his character. Tony Stark was a prick. Captain America was a sanctimonious goody two shoes. Natasha was entertaining but that Jeremy Renner character she was hanging with was kind of pointless. He’s got no super power, no personality and he doesn’t look where he’s shooting his arrows. Pfft. Rubbish.

I found the whole thing a bit tedious, mostly because the action sequences seemed to last forever and when they weren’t smashing shit up all the egos in the Avengers were having dick measuring contests. They could have chased Loki around more before they captured him, and he could have escaped earlier. I could have stood more younger brother angst and daddy issues too. If he’s going to kill eighty people for shits and giggles and talk to Natasha the way he did then I need something really compelling to make me feel sorry for him!

In Thor he was bad, but he wasn’t that bad. He was clearly bonkers by the end of the film, and as I have been completely bonkers a few times in my life I could sympathise a bit (unlike Loki, I always choose flight over fight when I’m stressed). He seemed a bit lonely and in need of approval which just made me want to give him a hug. And, yes he played a dangerous game and acted a bit rapey and genocidal, plus was generally a tricksy little shit, but he wasn’t looking like he was enjoying it like he did in Avengers. I know upping the stakes is a thing but I didn’t get why he had to be such an evil bastard. I’d start a #justiceforloki campaign after that character assassination the writers perpetrated but I am six years too late it seems.

Evil bastardness aside, there just could have been more Loki in general, and definitely more of him looking like a snack in that fancy suit he wore in Stuttgart. A short back and sides wouldn’t have gone amiss either. That wig? Yuck.

Overall it was alright but I think if I wasn’t so determined to like something that had a large fanbase I could be part of I wouldn’t bother watching the other Thor movies after watching this. I’d have ditched Loki all together were it not for the fact most of the Avengers themselves were so awful I didn’t want them to win either. Bunch of arseholes.

Masterpiece. > A bit of fun. > Toss.

On Treasured Possessions Part 2

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My new books came but they’re not as exciting as the others and are quite plain. Only one ownership signature(and that was Leonard Schuster’s, who Sassoon must have got it from) and no marginalia. They’re all on the lower shelf—everything left of Rupert’s essay on Webster used to belong to Sassoon, and much of the shelf above. I keep mostly valuable War Poet stuff there in my bedroom, plus collections of their poetry and prose. Biographies, diaries, and smaller collections of letters live downstairs.

It made me think how much I treasure some of my other books—ones that will seem less interesting to others but have sentimental value to me. I buy a lot of older books second hand, partly because it’s good to recycle, partly because I’m not wealthy, but mostly because I like giving a home to things that have been loved by someone else. I’ve found some real gems that way.

My youngest aunt died this February (this may seem like an odd digression, but bear with me). She was only fifteen years older than me so it was a big shock. She had an infection which became septic and killed her suddenly. It’s made me think a lot about life in general but also about what happens to your things when you die.

My daughter inherited her Snoopy teddy, which my aunt had owned for the best part of fifty years. You don’t really think about what will happen to your teddy when you die. Her kids didn’t want it so it came home with us instead but I feel like one of them should have taken it. Their mum had looked after it for fifty years after all.

The same applies to my books. I haven’t got a will but am now considering writing one and my collectable books, having much personal value, are probably the only possessions I’ll mention in it. I’d much rather a collector have them than my family sell them to some swanky bookshop on Cecil Court (no shade, I bought a lot of books there before I became a stay at home mum) where they’re valued only as stock. All of the books I’ve bought from Sassoon’s private library were bought by a bookshop in the estate sale in 1991. So these latest ones have been owned by him, then his family, then the shop for twenty-seven years, then me. That’s a long time for a book to go without an owner.

I’d rather they ended up on the shelf in Oxfam where someone might actually buy them. The St Giles branch had books owned by Tolkein’s family last time I was in there. If my daughter doesn’t want Sassoon’s books I’d rather see them there, where another poetry fetishist might pick them up for a reasonable price. It’s comforting to think that something I love might one day go to someone else who is going to love it too.

So I am very keen when I find old volumes and conscious that some of what I buy was well loved before I got my hands on it. Previous owners often add a bit of themselves to the books without realising it and I love that. I’ve bought books, got them home and found poems have been added to collections, relevant newspaper clippings stuffed inside, names and dates. I’m particularly drawn to battered copies that are missing their dust jackets—ones that have been enjoyed often and it shows.

 

The first three are my favourites as they’re from Rupert Brooke collections. I’ve bought six editions of his poems so far and will probably continue to buy them as I find others that tempt me. I find it very hard to say no to a new picture of Rupert and they all come with handsome portrait photographs from his shoot with Sheryl Schell. I also love the extremely rough copy of Picture Show with the Sassoon clipping in it. Before the spine fell off (under my care, I must confess, though it was well on it’s way when I bought it), it had long since lost its sticker and someone had carved his name into the side of it. I’ve kept the spine inside the book.

Obviously these have little more than sentimental value, though the copy of Picture Show was expensive when I bought it despite the condition. A quick check of Abe Books tells me that’s decreased in value a lot too. But I didn’t buy it as an investment! I’m quite tempted to get myself a second copy. Just need to wait for Rupert stuff to lose it’s value now!

 

 

On The Life to Come and Other Stories

This was the second time I’ve read this book. I’d forgotten several of the less interesting stories so, as I previously mentioned, when I came to Albergo Empedocle I got a bit of a shock. After a bit of distance I got up the courage to read the rest and they were as they ever were.

Maurice is one of my favourite books. It is authentic emotionally and the happy ending isn’t inconceivable—Maurice and Alec are brave enough. The queer stories in this don’t all share that and are a bit of a downer in parts.

The Obelisk is my favourite. It’s about a married couple cheating on their partners with a couple of sailors they’ve picked up at the seaside. It’s about female desire and only at the end do we realise the husband’s been at it too. It’s the most amusing, though What Does it Matter? is not a bad farce. I also particularly enjoyed Three Courses and a Dessert, which is not queer but is quite exciting and has a comical ending after the action fails to deliver. I liked the twist James Laver delivered and I did chuckle.

Of the rest, I think Arthur Snatchfold, while unhappy, is particularly good. It’s about a gentleman hooking up with a milkman, later learning the milkman was arrested and covered for him. Dr Woolacott, about a dying boy and the ghost of a soldier, is oddly satisfying.

I feel I ought to include a warning for those attempting The Life to Come and The Other Boat. I think Forster was challenging attitudes, in what we would now consider to be a muddled white person sort of way, but they’re full of racial slurs that some readers may find exposure to upsetting. If you were comfortable reading A Passage to India, you’ll probably be safe to proceed.

If you haven’t read A Passage to India then give it a try. It’s a pretty good book, if you are braced for the era, and was Forster’s last novel to be published during his lifetime. The problem was, what Forster really wanted to write was “sexy” (his word, not mine) gay stories, and write them he did, before destroying them. He felt they held him back. These stories are mostly gay but are decidedly unsexy.

As a bit of queer literary history these stories are interesting, and Forster’s style is very pleasing to me. They’re definitely worth a read.

On Treasured Possessions

I said I’d do a squee post over my Sassoon books and here it is. This will actually be split up into two posts, because while looking at my lovely books from his personal library, I realised I wanted more. So I bought some. And by some, I mean fifteen. And by fifteen I mean OMSQUEE! And by OMSQUEE I mean fuck, that’s a lot of money, what have I done?

They are on the way to me right now and I am looking forward to their arrival. For now though I’ll show off some pictures from my existing collection.

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They’re not terribly valuable individually. In fact, going by the prices I’ve paid for the latest batch I’ve bought, I think these are worth less than they were when I got them, which was around ten years ago.

They’d be worth more if they were important books from his library—things that would have value in their own right without the provenance attached. This is a ragtag collection of author copies of minor publications, books he owned in his youth, books he had foisted upon him by aspiring poets, some religious poetry (he converted to Catholicism in later life), and one book that must have belonged to his wife because I just can’t see him reading Invitation to a Waltz, a coming-of-age story about a seventeen-year-old girl that was published when he was forty-six-years-old.

To me they’re valuable as forgotten pieces of history. I can pick up one book and know that back in 1906, when he was twenty years old, he had the book in front of him, and which poems he’d highlighted (for good or bad I cannot say, but I didn’t rate them). I can pick up another and find myself in the 1930s enjoying his bitchy marginalia about Walter Turner (who was a total nobody. If I had his bitchy marginalia about Robert Graves I suspect I’d have a very decent deposit for a second home). He’s added clippings from newspapers inside some volumes, kept letters in them, cut pages carelessly, and on the author copies he may never have even cracked the spine, just popped them up on the shelf to gather dust.

They are little details in a long and interesting life, the things you don’t get in biographies that are just part of the business of living. Now they’re mine, and I adore them.

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And these pictures are some signed copies I have of Sassoon and Graves. I’ve got other writers, living and dead, but not queer so not worth much of a squee—Nevil Shute, Edmund Blunden, Seb Faulks are probably the most braggable of the others.

As you can see, it’s mostly numbered volumes. The one marked as being signed at Vassar is of interest because that visit is often mentioned in biographies about him. Someone dropped some crockery and the loud bang made him hide under the table because he thought it was a shell.

My particular favourite though is the one that has To Robert Graves written above To His Dead body (Graves was wounded and declared dead. The hospital tent packed his body off to be buried and his parents were telegraphed. It was a day later when they realised he was still breathing). That’s Graves’ hand, though I didn’t know he’d written it in there when I bought the book and got quite a shock when I saw it. Sometime in that book’s life he picked it up and wrote it. It was published in 1917 so I’d imagine somewhere around then. In fact, I like to imagine him in his RWF uniform, a bit scruffier than he ought to be in it, moaning that it’s missing from the book, though A Letter Home is addressed to him. He was quite highly strung (you would be after what he went through, I certainly am after far less) and a bit petty. That’s a good enough reason for him to add it to the book.

That really is my fancy, though. That Graves wrote it has no doubt in my mind, but the when, where, and why will always be a mystery.

On Plum

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I went to secondary school with Hollie McNish, same year group. She was in Evers house, I was in Davies (named for old boys who’d died in the Great War). I probably never spoke more than a few words to her and I doubt she’d remember me. But this book made me wish I’d been her friend all those years ago. Her poetry is wonderful.

Many of the poems are from her teenage years and are superb. Far better than that Byron I posted recently. She wrote about school discos, fumbled teenage sex, Mr Kent… poor Mr Kent.

I picked a copy of this up in the Poet’s Corner in Blackwells and it gives me great pleasure to know her verse is sharing shelf space in that building amongst so many classics. Bravo, Hollie! And it’s well deserved because these are sharp, funny poems about being a young woman—something grossly underrepresented in that space. Periods, breasts, blow jobs, workplace harassment, and motherhood, it’s all there with unflinching honesty.

She’s a braver writer than me, and that bravery has paid off. There’s nothing artificial here, no posing. I really admire that.

So I highly recommend this collection and I’ll be getting her others off the back of it.

Masterpiece. > A bit of fun. > Toss.

ETA: I’ve just been reading about the literary kerfuffle over this book last year and thought I’d chuck in an opinion on it because I was offended when I read the PN Review article about it.

Now, I’m old fashioned, so I get what the hatchet job is saying, to an extent. I like rhyme and meter, and I like beauty. I read a lot of poetry. I’m a pretentious arse who thinks verse is the greatest form of art. But what I normally like, or what that PN Review writer thinks, means fuck all when it comes to what is and isn’t poetic.  Poetry comes in many forms, evolves, follows fashions. Whether a poem is good or bad is moot and usually comes down to it’s resonance with the audience. Hollie resonates with a lot of people, myself included for obvious reasons.

But I’m not giving the book a pass because I happen to be unusually close to it. I think her poetry is good because that’s exactly what it is. She gives good sucker punch! It’s not enough for a poem to be cleverly constructed. Beauty is truth, truth beauty. Hollie’s poetry is true.

Those that ignore the evolution of art, those that seek to denigrate the modern give the rest of us wanky types a bad name. Jog on.

On Crimson Peak

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Crimson Peak was on Film Four last night and seeing as Tom Hiddleston was in it, plus it’s a Victorian gothic horror, plus Tom Hiddleston was in it, plus… some other stuff. Did I mention Hiddles?  I pretty much had to watch it. It’s the law in the Mulberry house now.

I hate being scared but I enjoyed this despite the fact I pooped myself all the way through. The jump scares, the ghosts, the stabbings. Bloody hell! I was hiding behind a cushion for much of the movie, I won’t lie. It was super gross and fucked up in parts. Jessica Chastain’s character gave me the creeps so much and every time she was on screen I was watching through my fingers. I may have nightmares about her.

Mia Wasikowska was great. I love her, she’s super cute, and I thought Edith was a strong character. She held her own and I liked the way she ended up saving McMichael. Also those sleeves. I was living for those puff sleeves. Glamour, darling!

As for Hiddles, he did yet another good line in romantic and sexy (yes, it’s weird AF that he’s fanciable in it, but he is), and again in tortured villain. I’m up to three characters on the Hiddles bingo card now: Loki, Hal/Henry, and now this chap Thomas. I presume this sort of thing is his forte, and I like it a lot.

Scares and gross parts aside, this movie was pressing all my buttons aesthetically and I LOVED it. I’ll definitely watch it again when it’s next on the telly.

Masterpiece. > A bit of fun. > Toss.