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2018

25th May

Note: for some context, at least skim the previous "update". Emphasis on some.

While I am still in the "avoid making big and always gonna fail stupid decisions" state of mind, I have made up my mind about FV for the time being. I will go on. The last few months of my illness have left me feeling pretty useless and empty, and I credit the writing spell I had last week to my starting to feel better. I'm hoping that it'll have the same effect. Continuing my work isn't that big a decision, deleting the entire site for two days definitely was. Besides, what has happened has prompted a few changes to the site and series, relatively minor in everyone's but my pedantic POV, that will mean Season Two entries at least need editing anyway. With the thought in mind that I'll get to them eventually, I've spared myself an agonising weekend or week searching through all the old episodes I haven't rebooted yet and removing/editing a lot of musical and/or fourth wall music related scenes.

Before I get back to work though, or attempt to, I've finished the graphical adjustments I said I started a few days ago. You might spot an episode banner that looks different or weird (both?). I've removed some and edited others. If you're someone who doesn't mind looking at them, and have been here long enough so you recognise a few things, you may be able to spot the pattern on what's changed. I don't want to point out what I've done, or why, as it really doesn't affect any storylines* or the particular characters themselves. Banners were an optional fun thing for me to do that maybe, depending on your opinion, prettied up the site and advertised some episodes. I'll still likely do them, I still enjoy making them and like a lot my post-comeback creations, so much that I'm annoyed some had to be edited. But yeah, writing wise, when I get better this'll affect nothing but...

So yes that means once more *Bittersweet is in the early running for a boot since it's filled with a LOT of something I want removing (gosh when I return to its re-read my triggered count's gonna go through the roof), as well as that stupid plot error that enraged me a couple months back. Silver lined excuses, love em. However its plot has had to be slightly amended and it's lost its new banner, oh well. But don't expect it just yet. I'm still planning on getting The Love Spell up first. Speaking of which, I feel confidentish enough to catch you up in Coming Soon. Lets get down to a summary cos as usual this text bit has ended up few more paragraphs longer than I planned.

Site Updates

Coming Soon is up to date.

As mentioned, various episode banners have been edited, if they weren't deleted already. Most of the edits are minor. I think the only truly big change was Aggression's. Five is using a different version of its banner, I'm glad I don't delete any of my castaways these days.

On the 21st the homepage's image was changed.

 

21st May

In the rare chance that anyone stumbled across the site over the last few days, an explanation is in order. Though to be fair, there still is even if you didn't. Either way you've gotten the gist over my last few "updates" far-too-detailed below, so there's no real need to repeat myself, so I only need to expand on it.

Since the last update I sought out another "second" opinion about my condition. It's still anxiety and of course pills were chucked at me. I refused them this time. I have my reasons why. My main one is that until I was prescribed tablets the last time in 2017, my depression was more situational than anything else. The tablets added physical symptoms onto that, that is why I stopped them cold turkey. For months I was fine, pretty much back to normal... With the exception of the laptop incident and family issues anyway (again, situational depression. Not the panic attacks/passing out kind). One of those two lead to stress at work, and the other just added stress full stop, which is I assume the reason why I had nonstop headaches for months Dec/Jan. Something I sought help for, big mistake. Tablets again, tablets which threw new physical anxiety symptoms at me. These ones weren't as easy to come off cold turkey. Long story short, I wasn't sleeping and barely eating, always shaking, heart racing, chest pains, convinced I was dying. It sure felt like it.

That's been going on since March. Last week after my last ditch attempt at convincing myself it's "just" anxiety that has destroyed pretty much any pleasure I had in life left, I was starting to feel a little better. At least my appetite was back, I could sleep without herbal tablets and a stress app playing all night. The trembling wasn't 24/7. The only thing not yet improved was the pain. I didn't expect a recovery overnight so that was fine, I tried to get my life back in order. I started writing again, made plans for things to do, thought about a holiday etc...

I won't get too into the details here as they're still fresh as I write this, and the last thing I need is to flip out like I did. My only concrete plan to get me out of this gutter, something that was overwhelmingly hard and stressful to organise in my state of mind, but once sorted made me happy for the first time since I got sick again. I'd barely had time to revel in it. One day later, yes one bloody day later, everything was ruined. My fun day out that'd given me a buzz for life again had been destroyed, had become a waste of time and money. I know, there's no context for this next part but I've been left feeling heartbroken and betrayed by these events. It also knocked me for a six, making me doubt every decision I made. That included this site, which during a few mad hours I did delete and felt nothing doing so. For a few days I couldn't get out of bed. I couldn't even decide to do that, or eat, or drink.

I dunno how easy it is to explain why something so "small" did this. I just wanted to get better, I worked so hard to achieve this and for reasons out of my control (to quote the messenger; unforeseen circumstances) my attempt to do so was snatched away for no reason told (and then had the wound salted and re-stabbed just today). I took a risk, made a big decision, and it not only didn't work out, it left me feeling like my happiness was unattainable. That every decision I made would hurt me. And it wasn't just this one event when my stupid brain settled on. One was a thought that's been plaguing me for a few months; will I ever be able to move on from FV? I even wasted far too many hours writing my thoughts out on that only a week previously.

Deleting this site wasn't ever meant to be a positive "if I remove the temptation I'll move on" moment though. It was me giving up on everything. Honestly right now, I'm still torn over it. The pain's still raw.

So what now? What's changed? For the moment, the changes that are hard to explain without making me look stupider after this are there's been some graphical adjustments. The splash image has been replaced and I've removed some problematic episode banners. The forum's been closed again. I was only keeping it open for the polls but no one's interested/here. I get it, it's stupid and desperate to have them.

That's it. For now. Maybe. Depending on how I feel much later there might be further changes, it depends. Right now I'm still on edge, I can burst into tears at any provocation. And god, the shaking has obviously come back in force.

I was making quite a bit of writing progress, I'm not keen on sharing on how much or what, as I'm not sure what to do or if I'm going to get my briefly attained mojo back. If ever. If I were thinking of giving up on FV very soon and leaving it as is, I've got to at least get Love Spell replaced. Not because I think it's terrible, there's scenes in it that were moved earlier into Resistance Is Futile, so it's plot hole-ful. After that, we'll see how it goes.

 

10th May

Over a month later than my last "update" and yes I'm still sick. I'm sleep deprived, stressed to hell/anxious, and sore as I write this, which is an improvement. I think full recovery is still a ways to go, and no I haven't a clue why I have an A4 page full of physical symptoms other than extreme anxiety disorder, which is annoying because the only thing that's making me the regular kind of anxious at the moment is being ill for so long *shrug*. A lot's going on in the background. I've been trying to get back into the swing of things, sort of as a distraction from it, by reading, editing and occasionally drafting The Love Spell reboot. It's slow going but at least it's actually going. I'm pretty disappointed that once again I've fallen behind after the good start to the year I had, but I guess if I had forced myself to work during this, I might've only replaced one crappy The Love Spell for another. There's still time for that, I'm not sure it's saveable but it'd be nice to try it when I'm in a better frame of mind.

Anyways, I have a bare basic plan of attack which I'd jinx/ruin by writing it here, as what always happens. I wouldn't expect anything within the next week, but hopefully sometime in May.

For the time being I thought I'd release The Love Spell's Re-Read in advance of the episode hopefully getting it's 'boot. I know I recently preferred to release them after the episode's been rebooted, but it's been a while and I would like to show you why The Love Spell is in dire need of it if you haven't read it, to avoid you having to read it ever. Besides, I'm usually way ahead when it comes to writing these. I believe the Love Spell's for example was written over a year ago. I find they help me way in advance to pick out what's wrong about an episode and have plenty of time to work out how to fix them. I don't really see the harm in having them up "early", even if there are new readers here. As from Interactions onwards, I'm fine with readers checking out the originals (ish, I hate Dimension Jump but my reasons are personal, so without the context it might be okay?) and so there's nothing really left to spoil about the series that isn't already available on the site, except for minor new stuff in the reboots, which wouldn't be mentioned in the "reviews" anyway.

I suppose if you don't read the originals, usually wait for me to reboot them and so don't want to be spoilt, I'd recommend keeping away from this subsection of the site until I catch up (hopefully soon).

God I talk way too much, you know that though. Updates time

Site Updates

Coming Soon is up to date with the minute progress of The Love Spell.

"The Love Spell" has been added to "Marill Re-Reads Season Two". "Bittersweet" has been deleted for now. It'll be finished and released at a much later date, regardless of whether or not I reboot it early. Also in addition to the Love Spell Re-Read I've posted a little thought piece I did while trying to sort through and clean up the mess that is my anxious brain. It'll follow the "review" and is accessible via the Re-Read menu. The piece was inspired by idle thoughts about if Season One did a suitable job of being a first season/introduction to FV, whether Season Two continues its work, improves on it or stamps on it (so far since I'm close to halfway through the season), and what I've re-learned so far about my own work that I'd forgotten about since it was half a lifetime ago for me. Perfectly skippable if you're not interested in that, no harm done I say, but if you are *thumbs up*

 

8th April

Not much to report, I'm afraid. I've been very ill the last few weeks. I'm still not better, today's just a better day. Or it was, but sitting at this computer is for some reason making me very dizzy and foggy headed, so it's probably going to be a quick session. This means that I haven't been able to get anything done. I'm trying not to worry about it too much since the 2018 releases so far have been "early" - what with last year's being last minute/day releases at the end of a month - I've still got enough time to get the planned April release out on time. I am a bit miffed, as I wanted to push ahead into the "good arc" of Season Two sooner rather than later. Oh well.

Something I did on other better days was to skip ahead on my Re-Reads project to check out the episode Bittersweet. I've been debating rebooting it early for a few years now to fix a few issues I remembered it had. Why I thought it deserved special treatment, I haven't a clue after checking (most of) it out. I had it up there with Resistance, but figured it was more like Disconnected; a goodie, ruined by the badly written second half. Thing is I never got to those few issues before I had to bail out in anger. I remembered Bittersweet all wrong. I thought it was a clever(for me) character development arc episode; with said character getting too wrapped up in one aspect of her life that was going well, being blinded by success to the point she pisses off fans of other bands, and instead of her, her friends pay the price. She learns a hard lesson and eventually takes the first step to fixing her life. There's also a really poorly timed cover of a song about cheating, instead its lyrics taken literally to be about being too physically weak to fight off a mob *shrug*

Well I was about 80% right. The character does take the band she's in too seriously, is acting pretty damn awful to at least two other characters, and a third in the later I only skimmed half. The success does start to get to her. The fans of the band who are insulted do go way too far and take it out on half of the character's band. The character calms down somewhat and reaches out to an old friend to make amends. And oh yeah I forgot, while the music is written the best it ever will be before or since (I suppose Rhythm has its moments) the rapid pace of single releases is ridiculous (3 in the top 20 lawl).

What I was wrong about? Good news! The out of place and definitely misinterpreted cheating song wasn't quoted (anymore, I probably edited it years ago), so while it was a bit daft to sing anything at that part of the plot, it's not as embarrassing as seeing the lyrics. Bad news! Despite what I said above, the said character doesn't actually cause the trouble which interrupts her downward spiral and later inspires her ickle step to recovery. She tries to stop it. Instead the one attacked (twice! another wrong thing) did, despite spending the entire episode so far being pessimistic about the band's success and otherwise being a bit nonchalant about it. Meanwhile said character, who has been picking fights over everything and is basically living through her band to avoid her craptastic life, spends the scene cool and collect, being reasonable and uncharacteristically mature at this point in her arc. Then after this she goes right back to being rude and selfish, almost as if I couldn't stomach blaming my perfect angel for what happens to the other two characters and chickened out to make the victims to blame.

It pissed me off, so so much. This one bit ruins the entire story for me. It makes little to no sense. Now this isn't unusual for old school FV, so yes it may seem like I'm overreacting. I probably am. The thing is, Season Two is quite a mixed bag for me. It has so many great moments throughout, plus I credit it for developing James and Jessie into what they are now. It however has some of my worst moments (The Atamit/Territory yuck, the Dimension Jump controversy to name a few), as well as really poor, violent and fakeedgy tryhard "16 year old writes her first fanfic" writing, more so than Season One did which is really weird. Even so, Season Two as a whole is a pretty generic, forgettable season. Bittersweet was one of the few episodes I thought I could safely read through with little complaints, since it was a "band" episode that wasn't bad and had pretty decent character development. Those two things made it a highlight for me. I really thought in the Season Two rankings for the Re-Read, it'd be a competition between this, Resistance and Man Out Of You. I think now Man Out Of You is the only one capable of challenging Resistance, its super rushed ending verses Resistance's slow start? Hmmm. Anyways my memory failed me, and it did try to warn me one day of the truth, so I can't fully blame it.

So yeah, this has angered me enough to consider bumping up the Bittersweet reboot once more. The plot's been ready for a while, the banner's ready, the song choices are ready. I want Bittersweet to be a rare Season Two highlight again. Since it's late season, I dunno if I can wait till next year. This could be me rebelling against rebooting Love Spell, but no worries, I hate that so much more. Whatever I decide, The Love Spell WILL be first. Easyish reboots Interactions and Resistance would be nice to get out of the way too, while Disconnected is a one I'm looking forward to tackling. Time will tell, maybe I'll calm down.

In the meantime. I'll put up the unfinished Bittersweet Re-Read temporarily so you can see for yourself, not that the episode's still there in full or anything *cough*

 

20th March

Quick update today. Nothing much to tell. It's been a slow week, haven't been well enough to do much. It doesn't help that my next task is The Love Spell rewrite so...yeah. Today's just about bringing anyone here up to speed and fixing a few pages, as so;

Site Updates

Resistance Isn't Futile has had a minor story error corrected. If you've read the episode, here's what's been changed (if you haven't, it's not much of a spoiler so it's probably okay to read): There's an Unimatrix Zero scene about 2/3s through where a drone gets infected by the glitch mid fight and ends up rolling into a ditch while singing the supposed recent JT singles lyrics I went to the trouble of tainting my google search history for (thankfully haven't heard the abomination so...). After this there's a mention of a tree disappearing "again" and the drone's position and circumstances changes to revolve around it, despite the only mention of a tree being that's where James leapt out from. This scene was rewritten since I didn't like the original idea. That was the drone merely gets kicked away, no singing or glitching involved, into a tree which disappears while he's leaning on it. It reappears during his fall and he gets stuck inside it. I thought it was a little ott graphic and not really that "fun", so I changed it to what it is now. Not very well it seems. It's odd, cos I remember editing the tree glitching line to just be the most recent example of it happening, but I mustn't have saved it *shrug* and remained as it was during the tree impaling version. It's been edited (maybe) again, differently cos I figured it being a random example of the glitch infecting Zero wasn't "enough" after all that.

Coming Soon updated with the very little Love Spell progress.

 

10th March

It's been quiet on the updates front, and for once it's not because bad things are happening. Sorta. I have been busy most of the month on the premiere for Season Two (again). It hasn't been easy. I was spoilt by an incredibly easy reboot of its Season One half, helped by the fact that it was an okay episode that stuck to its story 90% of the time and wasn't bad in places. The Season Two original though was a disaster and I should've expected a reboot of it to be hard. There was very little to work with, and as I promised when I released "Resistance Is Futile" (or before when I talked about it in the reboot section), there were a lot of planned changes for both parts so I could fix the mess that was Thrown Key Part 2. In short, Resistance Isn't Futile is for the most part a whole new episode, completely rewritten barring a few lines and concepts for 1/2 scenes that are canon and couldn't be changed. You'll (maybe) see.

Next is The Love Spell. Wish me luck please, I'm going to need it.

New Episodes

Reboot Season Two, Episode 01: Resistance Isn't Futile

Site Updates

The usual haunts are up to date in History; Episode Sizes and Log.

Coming Soon has some info about The Love Spell's reboot. In there I also mentioned that I aim to bring back the backup system, which was definitely worth doing and saved my skin last year. My plan, or rather the idea is that I hope Interactions won't take long to reboot since the original has been edited over the years and shouldn't in theory need much doing, and so can be chucked into the backup folder on completion. Then I'd start on the reboot of Disconnected, which I think will take the usual month to write. Once that's done, Interactions can go up and I'd be back on track. However if Interactions starts to take too long, I'll release it when finished and try again with Resistance, then Saturday Night if that fails. The point is I've done okay this year, getting ahead of my usual end of the month release dates, and I'd like to not only get a backup again but also not fall into that trap again. Too stressful if I got too close to the end of the month.

"Thrown Key Part 2" has been added to the new section "Marill Re-Reads Season Two".

 

7th February

Today's been a long time coming. Ten years ago I decided I had enough of the lack of writing I had been doing and decided to rewrite old episodes. Seven years ago after a failed attempt at it, I chose Aggressions to rewrite. Six years ago I tried again with a few Season Four edits on the side. Five years ago Aggression was released and so FV was alive once again after five years of no (completed) releases. Today I release the final episode of Reboot Season One, and I guarantee within a few days I'll be diving straight into Season Two.

Yes I do wonder what I'm doing with my life, haha. Almost every day.

Back on topic, I plan to get Resistance Isn't Futile written ASAP. I'm not too keen on leaving the cliffhanger to be followed by Thrown Key Part 2 for too long, since it wasn't a good cliffhanger resolution even when it was new. The sooner that's resolved, the sooner I get to The Love Spell which'll probably take more time than Is/Isn't Futile combined since I haven't a clue how to fix it. Meh.

New Episodes

Reboot Season One, Episode 29: Resistance Is Futile

Site Updates

With the release of the season finale, the original Season One has been moved into the Originals section of the Episode Archive. Tis a bittersweet day. Well it is for me, heh.

I've been busy updating the History section now that Reboot One is done. I've not finished here yet, but Episode Sizes, Log, and a little bit of Episode Trivia are up to date.

"Thrown Key Part 1" has been added to "Marill Re-Reads Season One".

Note: If you're new(ish) here, currently making your way through Season One and you manage to reach Futile before I start Season Two, I recommend if you want to continue reading either checking out the prequels in the meantime, OR temporarily skipping Thrown Key Part 2 as well as The Love Spell, and start with Interactions. It's not just me complaining about them being poor, not entirely. There's another reason which isn't subjective and worth mentioning. Vague Spoilers for Resistance Is Futile and The Love Spell: The former uses material from The Love Spell (and a smidgen of Thrown Key Part 2 but that's less spoilerific), so if you read them after you'll see repeated scenes basically. Spoilers End. Once Resistance Isn't Futile and Reboot The Love Spell appear, definitely check them out, if only to see if I'm capable of rescuing The Love Spell without retconning everything, ha. It's gonna be quite a challenge.

 

26th January

Quick update. Things are *touches wooden desk* going well. The season finale is coming along nicely, although I have had a couple of days rest due to minor *again touching my desk* hand and wrist pain. I say two days break, but it was really one. Today I've been reading through some episodes I haven't in a while, something I do to spot and fix the mistakes. Checking through Five reminded me about the minor changes I wanted to make to a prequel episode I originally skipped over during its season's Reboot. Half an hour later and it's done. It wasn't as bad as I remembered, so yeah, no problem and since there was little to type, my hands are still having a break. Win win.

Edited Episodes

B4FV Season Two, Episode 06: Broken Wreck (one scene extended, another scene edited).

Site Updates

Coming Soon is up to date with the progress for Resistance Is Futile.

I've reformatted Reboot Caretaker to match the other prequels' style and to fix the nasty colour scheme it was using. Season Four will look a little different too, but only slightly. I noticed that unlike the other seasons, the text and headers above each episode were the same colour. Only they weren't, gold apparently looks the same as regular yellow on this computer/monitor and I assume it didn't on my previous computers. So gold's been replaced. That's about it really.

 

16th January

Apparently today is Voyager's 23rd birthday. Happy anniversary/birthday to one of my favourite shows :)

Well it's already time for the first release of the year. I'll be getting started on the next one, the season finale, sometime around the weekend. I don't wanna let this earlier than usual release get to my complacent head. I definitely can't afford to be complacent now, since my available hours during the weekday to write have been drastically cut down to roughly 40-50 minutes, and TBH I fail to see the point of bringing my new laptop in for that. Especially with the fact that my last one was destroyed in that hellhole, so I don't feel it's worth the risk of that happening again, just for 40 minutes. So what little time I have in the evening, or Sundays, will have to do. It's poor timing, so I can only hope the finale isn't that big of a job and that Season Two doesn't need as much time as One did, cos this job suddenly feels a lot bigger now "strangely" enough.

But hey, can't let productive laptop time get in the way of my sitting around waiting for things to do. Speaking of which, my last break is up and I'm already feeling the 2017 misery tide coming back.

New Episodes

Reboot Season One, Episode 28: Live Games

Site Updates

Home page is finally showing the Resistance Is Futile episode banner that I made back in 2013. Yes. No worries, I didn't make it because I was grossly optimistic and/or naive. I knew it was a few years away when I made it, but I had an image of it in my head and I wanted it done. It's aged okay, though 2013 I spat out some of my best work banner wise (IMO duh) anyway so why wouldn't it?

Live Games' original versions; "VTV Live" and "Voyager's Drinking Game" have been added to "Marill Re-Reads Season One".

The usual History pages have been updated; Episode Release Log and Episode Sizes Ranking. One of these days I need to sink my teeth into the old Episode Trivia for both Season One's, I imagine that's a finale update, bit too late/early now.

Reboot Season One's page has been updated for the (I assume) final time before it's deleted. In there I've written quite a bit about the upcoming finale, so if you're interested please check it out.

 

10th January

Hey everyone, happy new year. 2017's finally over and I for one am thrilled. Last year was pretty rough but I'm hoping to put that behind me and get on with it. Today is a general update; a few pages here and there, some info.

This time last year, even though things were already pretty crappy, I predicted that I'd have finished Season One by the year end. And that was my worst case scenario prediction. I think if the flood hadn't happened in October I would've made it. Unfortunately this means I have to start the new year with the final two of Reboot Season One first. Long story short, if things go as they usually do and disaster-free, Season One should be finished by the end of February.

After that, well, I've been torn between Season Two and B4FV One. I've been trying to rack my tiny brains to figure out the best way to do them both. However I've been wasting my time. The only reason I wanted to do the prequels was because I assumed it would be a quicker job, like B4FV2, and so I'd get more done. The fact is I really feel Season Two would benefit from the reboot far more than it, and it would solve my self inflicted dilemma of how to handle the cliffhanger of Reboot One and Original Season Two's dreadful premiere (and following episode). So until I change my mind (again), 2018 will focus on the main seasons. For the time being, updates;

Site Updates

Coming Soon

Some pages, like this one, have been edited for the new year. Episode Log primarily.

Reboot Season Two's page naturally has been updated.

The Season Two ex-movie The Resurrection has had some edits done to it. I talked myself out of anymore after part 1, no worries, or I would be still doing it. Shouldn't be too noticeable.

I did promise that S2 wouldn't be as excessive as S1, and I still hope to keep my word but I'm not too confident. While episodes like Resistance, Resurrection, Saturday Night, yes even Kiss of Death, are in my "minor edits" pile so far, trash such as Dimension Jump need redoing from scratch and episodes like Love Spell I haven't a clue how to rescue without doing the same, but can't. It's gonna be tough to know how busy this year will be.

Once again I'm talking too much. I'm curious myself as to what this year's going to look like and since I like wasting time too, try to figure out a bare bones/worst case scenario "schedule". If you are too, feel free to watch me jinx myself.

January - Live Games
February - Resistance Is Futile
March - Resistance Isn't Futile
April - The Love Spell
May - Interactions
June - Disconnected
July - Resistance
August - Game Over
September - Dimension Jump (I'm really not keen on this one getting the honour of being released on its 17th anniversary. Getting ahead, or more likely a delay would be welcome)
October - Saturday Night
November - F9 Control Failure
4th December (Anniversary Episode) - above and/or Precise Timings, which would be fitting.

Worst case scenario judging by previous post comeback years is 8 episodes, which means I'll only get up to Game Over. Best case scenario, and that's assuming that all of the Season Two episodes are Season One esque reboots, not B4FV2 edits which were mostly not counted above, would be 13. That only adds The Resurrection to the list, which I hope is only an edit anyway but my recent read through of it begs to differ. I think I can safely use the release list above as a realistic goal for the year.


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