Cosmopolitan and the X-Files

In the French October 2013 issue of Cosmopolitan (a fashion/lifestyle magazine for women) some interesting references to the genres of science fiction, agent/spionage thriller/crimi, and film noir can be found, and some pretty specific allusions to The X-Files.
I don’t know if the English and German issues have the same content, because I only bought a copy as a special travel indulgence during our vacation in France. Normally I don’t care a lot about about fashion or celebrity, and I don’t like spending money on magazines about these topics (hey, what are free blogs for?). So it was an even bigger surprise we found the pictures and hints which will be described in the next paragraphs.

The pictures are included for educational purposes only.

The cover of the issue looks pretty ordinary and typical for a women’s fashion mag: Held in tones of white, red, and pink, and featuring a woman wearing a somewhat revealing dress with black lace, herself sporting a classic-chic look. There is a text reference to British style as well, which was the first thing I associated with The X-Files, even before opening the magazine. How so? Special Agent Dana Scully often is shown in a classic look somewhere between old-school office chic and British prep style, at least that’s what I’d call it. If this is way off, please tell me the proper label for her style.
I marked the pages with four colours of sticky page markers – orange for X-Files in general, green for Scully, blue for Mulder, and pink for any other references.

The first pictures P1270584associated with Scully and The X-Files were found in the “So British” section, indeed. The first of these picture shows a petite woman with middle length reddish-blond hair in a tweed skirt and blazer combination hovering in an upright position over a lawn, in classic “alien abduction” pose. The torso and head/neck is rigid and the extremities seem doll-like limp at the same time, eyes closed. Some pages later, a series of pictures again is featuring a women of similar type (with shorter hair, Scully-length) in a darkened, old looking swimming hall. She is wearing differe

nt party outfits, all of them not very revealing and all having black as a base colour, with colourful accent patterns and some glam. The a little rusty and lost looking environment, the poses, and the use of light and shadow allude to film noir and agent movies. In one of the last pictures the same woman in wearing “spacy” looking shoes with a ghost print. Hello there, Mrs. Spooky. All while she seems to be hovering a little above the ground instead of standing firmly, again.

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In the beginning I thought of it as nothing more than a general allusion to certain genres, while my partner was insisting it was a specific reference to aliens and The X-Files, and he said that magazines in themselves were telling stories throughout an issue with their selections of pictures.
My opinion began to change when I saw
– a black and white picture with something looking a little bit like a file cabinet, with the words “THE FUTURE IS LEAVING [brand name here] GO FORTH” written on it; while on the left page a young woman in a white office shirt and shorts with a spooked and yet determined look on her face is shown,
– several pictures of women either looking ghostly and/or hovering, some again reminiscent of “being transported upward” abduction. (The one on the right looks like a ghost version of Samantha, in my opinion.)

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In addition there are references to different science ficiton series and movies:
On a double page, on the left site a kneeling man in shorts/swim trunks which look a bit like boxers (some guys on TV seem to lose their shirts and pants quite often, by the way, this holding true e.g. for Mulder, and for Jacob Black from Twilight) is shown holding a big plush. The plush looks a little like Chewbacca from Star Wars. Meanwhile on the right page a woman is wearing a dark blue and black combination which is reminding me of the Star Treck: The Next Generation uniforms. Some other furry accessories alluding to Chewbacca can the found throughout the magazine, among them shoes, scarves, and coat sleeves. Then there is a picture of two women holding concealer pens like syringes, alluding to the “naughty nurse” concept as well as to medical experiments, which in return allude to alien abduction as well. A general reference to science fiction can be found in a big, double page perfume advertisement, the perfume being calles “ALIEN”. P1270570

This is the most obvious clue about the whole subliminal theme of the issue. The woman in a golden dress on the other page of the ad also made me think of Gozar the Gozerian from “Ghostbusters”, and on a different page another women is shown wearing nothing but strings of jewellery, again reminding me of Gozar in some weird way, or maybe of a Goa’Uld queen from the “Stargate” universe.
Oh, and don’t forget the advertising for an UFO shaped lamp shade made from old egg cartons.

Concerning the agent/spy thriller/crime thread of hints, there is a “making of” of a series of fashion shots, with a text description of the environment as “un décor à la Agatha Christie”. On a page more towards the end of the magazine there is a black and white photography of a woman in “typical” agent/spy clothes as often seen in the show “ALIAS” who is carrying a video camera (a very old model of video camera, according to my partner, so another reference to old shows like The X-Files and, before that, the film noir). Furthermore, in one advertisement a woman is depicted who is forming a gun with her hands, perhaps alluding to Charlie’s Angels, or to cop-centered shows in general.

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So you can see I already had got a lot of hints about a purposeful background story told by the pictures, but then the bomb was dropped: my partner took a look at the very last page inside the magazine and said something along the lines of “look, we know this face!”. One of the two persons on the photo looked like … Agent Mulder, and on his face the typical depressed “Scully is gone” expression. Well, I was already pretty astonished about this “coincidence” when I spotted the name “David Duchovny” in the upper left corner of the page. Yes, as in the original actor playing Fox Mulder in the series. Time for a round of hysterical laughter and a high-five. (Later after seeing some other pictures online I got the impression that the other person on that picture looks at least a little bit like Diana Fowley, Scully’s concurrent in the later seasons.)

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So we came to the conclusion that indeed all or at least most of the allusions are not a coincidence, but meant to be there.

A coincidence is merely the fact that we started watching The X-Files only recently so we could recognize the connection between different pictures and ideas.

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Wedding photos coming soon!

So we rocked the church ceremony yesterday and will be off to France tonight. Photos will be posted on my other blog starfishskiesphotography.wordpress.com as soon as we’ll get them from our friend who did the “big” shooting.

Here are a few snippets from my own camera taken at home, mostly of presents in our bed in the morning because we woke up way too early and couldn’t sleep any more, so we had fun tearing open all the envelopes:IMG_2565 IMG_2573 IMG_2590 IMG_2639 IMG_2612

Favourite Friday: Fictional Couples

In honour of love – and the fact that Darling and I’ll get married in church tomorrow – I present to you:

My favourite fictional couples. So here’s to all the science fiction shippers and lovers of fluff :)

First of all, there’s Sam Carter and Jack O’Neill from Stargate: SG1. It may sound stupid, but most things I know about love I’ve learned from Stargate and the fanfiction around it. And maybe that’s one of the reason I didn’t end up in a ton of typical teenage relationships while in middle school. Thank you, TV. (And yes, they aren’t portrayed as a real couple most of the time, but that’s what made this show attractive for me. I don’t particularly enjoy shows totally centred around a relationship, they just don’t seem realistic enough.)

Next up: Star Treck. Jean-Luc Picard and Beverly Crusher (TNG), Kathryn Janeway and Chakotay (Voyager). I’m pretty predictable, am I? Haven’t watched these shows in ages. Better let old dreams rest.

Yeah, and Scully and Mulder, of course. I wasn’t allowed to watch The X-Files on TV as a teenager (maybe was for the better), but when I found some of the books in our local library I couldn’t be stopped from devouring them. From the beginning on it was clear to me that these two agents were meant to be. Some days ago I somehow got the idea to start watching this old show finally. So far I’m hooked, but it’s a little spooky (see what I did there?) and I’m glad I don’t have to watch it alone. Gotta love these guys. They might have inspired this post a tiny little bit …

I nearly forgot Henry and Rika (aka Jenrya and Ruki) from Digimon Tamers. Hehe. They are so cute together. At least cute enough to inspire cute fanfiction. Can you hear me fangirl? Lol.

Hm, seems I haven’t read a lot of books containing romance recently. So TV and fanfiction has to suffice for now. Oh wait. Rachel and Tobias from the Animorphs series. Still haven’t read the last five or ten volumes. The model and the hawk-boy. Good old times.

This list might be edited in the future.

Love, Starfish

 

 

 

 

Favourite Friday: Accessories

I’m a rather plain dresser, because I like being able to combine my jeans and tops and shoes in many ways without standing out to much. So this calls for some …

Favourite Accessories:

Big scarves made from smoothly woven cotton. I really, really like scarves, because I feel cold at my neck about 90% of the year, because they add flair and layers to any simple outfit, and because they can be used in many different ways: worn as a simple scarf around the neck (obviously), loosely over head and shohttps://starfishskies.wordpress.com/2013/09/06/favourite-friday-accessories/ulders to protect from sun or light rain, tightly around head and neck against the cold, as a poncho or instead of a thin cardigan. Also useful for carrying additional groceries when I have forgotten to bring an additional bag. I own about 5 big scarves in different colours (three different kinds of blue, white, orange with stripes and the ends)  I wear more or less regularly, and several smaller ones are stuck somewhere in our closet but rarely used anymore.

I also have a soft spot for earrings. Together with scarves they really add something interesting to my rather plain standard wear, and over the last few years I collected about ten or fifteen pairs of cheap but beautiful earrings. But because I’m lazy (and because I don’t want them to get ripped out when hugging somewhat clumsy people, ehem … ) I mostly wear (fake) pearl studs at the moment. They are timeless, simple, and a little more dressy than fake stones. If we travel to attend some celebration I can wear them on the train, in bed, and on the occasion itself. I even bought some real pearl stud and a matching pendant for our wedding celebration (one week from now … time is flying!) and hope to get many years of wear out of them. Don’t want to kill too many seashells/oysters just to look pretty …

Second-hand shop find: shoes!

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Well, I never thought I’d ever post a picture of shoes, and even less of shoes bought second-hand. But here we are.

I need shoes that can double as spare shoes for our wedding celebration (don’t want to be stuck in the bridal shoes all night long) and as beach/town wear in France. I had my eyes on a pair of dark blue leather moccasins and wanted to try them on today, but on our way to the mall (had been at the florist’s earlier, normally it wouldn’t be on the way) we came by our local second-hand shop and I saw some white shoes on the “reduced” rack near the door. So I went in, saw this pair of sandals in the style I had been searching for (after I missed the end-of-summer-sale in most shops) – and in my size. They cost me 5€, a tenth of what the moccasins would have cost! (Later on I tried on the moccasins nevertheless, and they weren’t comfortable enough to shell out such a pile of money. But I had some “fun” with high-heels, which is a story for another day.)

And about the France part … we’ll spend our honeymoon (last two weeks of September) in a cozy little hotel at the Côte d’Azur :) Hopefully we’ll find a bit of sunshine there, northern Germany is dark and rainy again.