Musings & Rants
67

“Sparxshipping,” a.k.a. Bloom and Valtor. They’re a pairing that’s been popular since the 4Kids days. With opposing poles of the Dragon Flame — a flame of light and a flame of darkness — this couple sounds impossible, yet intriguing. How would good and evil fall in love with each other?

A better-known, non-Winx ship is “Zutara” (Zuko and Katara) from Avatar: The Last Airbender. (I’m not touching the “Kataang vs. Zutara” debate.) Some fans can’t resist the fire-water dynamic between the two benders. Even Zuko’s voice actor, Dante Basco, is a hardcore “Zutarian.”

These couples, “Zutara” and “Sparxshipping” (and technically “Kataang,” too), follow the concept of “yin and yang,” two opposite forces in harmony with each other. It’s the same theme Rainbow used for Aisha and Nex.

Yeah, yeah. They’re “Life” and “Death,” right?

Yes, I know I’ve mentioned that a dozen times. Aisha is “life” in Arabic, and nex is “death” in Latin. But remember in my recent Aisha/Nex post when I said I keep discovering things about this couple? Turns out Rainbow took the yin-yang idea further than just name meanings.

Winx 6X15 - Aisha and Nex windsurfing

Same, Yet Opposites?

Wait a minute. Aren’t these two a lot alike?

Being yin and yang doesn’t mean being different in every way. “Yin and yang” is relative. Object A may be opposite of Object B for a different reason than Object C. It depends on what traits you’re comparing them by.

Water and fire are yin and yang because water’s cold and wet, and fire’s hot and dry. But ice and running water are also yin and yang. Even though they’re both water, running water is liquid and active, and ice is solid and stationary. (Yes, that means Icy and Aisha are yin and yang, too.)

It’s actually more complicated than that. If you’re curious (and you’re a nerd like me), TED-Ed has a short video that explains it better than I can.

Back to Aisha and Nex. Most fans think they’re exactly the same: confident, fearless, energetic, athletic, etc. Yes, they have those traits in common — if they had nothing in common, they’d have nothing to bond over — but some of their other traits couldn’t be any more different.

For example, Nex is flirty. In his debut episode, “The Flying School” (6X03), he strutted up to the Winx and said, “Hey, ladies!” Can you imagine Aisha doing something like that? Yeah, right. In fact, it was something she didn’t like about him when they first met.

That’s just one of the ways they’re opposites, but it’s not as important now that they’re dating. Their other differences affect their relationship now.
Read the rest of this post

Musings & Rants
56

This one’s for you, Nicholas W.! Feel free to make post requests, you guys. I don’t mind at all. 🙂

Today’s topic: the Winx Club villains — “Magix’s shadows,” as Faragonda called them. Rainbow knows how to write good “love to hate” characters instead of boring evil masterminds. Fans love some of them as much as the Winx!

Here’s my Winx villain ranking, from worst to best. (Note: these are just the main villains from the TV show. I won’t include Politea, The Ancestral Witches, villains from the comics, etc.)

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6. TRITANNUS (SEASON FIVE)

*Sigh* What can I say that I haven’t said already? He was just…awful. Boring. Weak. An angsty teen throwing a 13-hour temper tantrum. (I think I have said that before.)

What was his motive, anyway? Did getting passed over for Crown Prince really make him so mad, he decided to take over the universe? If that’s true, no wonder Aisha called him a “psycho!” Or did the magic pollution make him crazy?

Was he even trying to take over the universe, or just the ocean? If the universe domination was his goal, he didn’t think things through. He had the power to turn anyone into a mutant, a perfect tool for building armies of followers. He also had access to a dimension connected to every ocean — thus, every world — that exists.

The plan should have been simple: invade all the kingdoms with legions of mutants. What did he do instead? Sit on a stone throne and raise the tides…in Andros. The water realm.

His defeat was just as lame as his plan. Bloom melted his trident, and his father banished him to Oblivion. He returned in Mystery of the Abyss, but he was nothing more than a puppet for Politea and the Trix.

Tritannus was a joke. I hope we never see another villain like him.

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5. SELINA/THE LEGENDARIUM (SEASON SIX)

A newbie witch with a magic book. Big deal. (And so 2008.)

Well, it could have been a big deal, but it’s ended up being “Monster of the Week” fodder. That’d be okay if the monsters were strong, but they haven’t been. Most of them are weak, too dumb to live, or — in the case of the Calavera zombies — both.

After episode 14, “Mythix,” the plot’s shifted to a series of story adaptations. It’s a cool concept, but like most of Nickbow’s ideas, it wasn’t executed well. Mythix itself has gotten in the way sometimes.

For example, “Queen for a Day” and “Stella’s Big Party” took characters and scenarios from “Theseus and the Minotaur.” But Theseus needed the magic thread to escape the labyrinth, which was built to be escape-proof. Stella could have teleported out at any time with her Mythix wand. If Nickbow had said the Winx couldn’t leave without finishing the story, those episodes would have made sense. Right now, it’s open for interpretation.

Back to Selina. I’m not sure she belongs on this list because she’s not the true villain of season six. You could say the Trix are, but they’re being used just like she is.

The real mastermind is Acheron, the wizard trapped in the Legendarium. Nickbow’s built him up as a shadowy “man behind the man” (er, woman), but will he live up to the hype? Knowing these writers, I doubt it. Read the rest of this post

Merchandise News
19

Attention, American Winx fans! The Complete Original Season 2 and the new puzzle adventure game Saving Alfea can now be yours! Find them at stores like Target, Walmart, Barnes & Noble, Toys R Us, Kmart, and Amazon. Prices vary, so shop around for the best deal!

Winx Club: The Complete Original Season 2

91tEyx2TTpL._SL1500_From NewVideo.com:

The Winx Club is back for Season 2! Follow Bloom and her powerful fairy friends — Stella, Flora, Musa, Tecna, and newcomer Layla — as they return from their summer vacation to begin their second year at The Alfea College for Fairies.

The Trix, a trio of witches, prove to be as challenging an enemy as ever having paired up with Lord Darkar who tries to lure Bloom to the dark side.

With the help of The Charmix, a power-up to the Magic Winx transformation that can only be gained through an act of genuine selflessness or forgiveness, the Winx work to free Bloom from Darkar’s control and stop The Trix forever.

Watch as the Winx Club fights villains in all 26 episodes of the COMPLETE ORIGINAL SEASON 2!

  • 4-disc set
  • Bonus feature: 8-Page Fairy Identity Booklet

Winx Club: Saving Alfea (NDS/3DS)

From LittleOrbit.com:

winxclub-packs-stackedIn order to throw the perfect party, the girls must run, jump and fly their way through their home worlds to gather all of the finishing touches for the school’s anniversary. But their return is anything but welcoming. Thanks to her new Siphonix Talisman, Selina has unleashed hordes of creatures from within the Legendarium. It’s up to the Winx to battle Selina’s creatures and discover how to destroy her all-powerful Talisman, all while making sure the school’s celebration isn’t ruined!

  • Play as Bloom, Stella, Flora, Aisha, Tecna and Musa in both their fairy and human forms!
  • Challenge yourself by completing 32 repayable puzzle levels!
  • Get immersed in the story of the Winx and learn how to use teamwork to conquer even the most difficult situations!
  • Jump, Evade, and use puzzle solving skills to adventure in human form!
  • Transform to float and fight against minions of the Legendarium when in fairy form!
  • Unlock new level hubs by collecting party items and defeating creatures of the Legendarium, driving them out of each world!
  • Make your Winx girls more powerful by gathering the hidden Dragon Flame Sparkles!
  • Find the Hidden Collectibles to unlock secret items!

IMAGE SOURCES:

Thursday Your Say
21

Today’s “Thursday Your Say” is about season five’s villain Tritannus.

What has he done so far?

  • Tried to assassinate his brother
  • Broken out of an Andros royal prison
  • Turned guards and his own family into mutants
  • Drained the power from at least seven Selkie gatekeepers
  • Stolen Daphne’s Sirenix power (and given it to the Trix)
  • Entered the Infinite Ocean to begin his conquest of the Magic Dimension

Not bad. But how does he compare with the past Winx villains:

  • The Trix, who have been the Winx’s archenemies since season one
  • Darkar, who turned Bloom against her friends and used her to steal the ultimate magic
  • Valtor, who nearly became the strongest sorcerer alive
  • The Wizards of the Black Circle, who stole the magic of every fairy on Earth but one

QUESTION: Is Tritannus a worthy villain? Where would you rank him (so far) with past Winx villains?

Musings & Rants
13

Here’s my ranking from best to worst. I hope you don’t take this as my saying there’s been a quality drop in the series…but maybe you think there has been. Feel free to comment!

1. Season One: The Battle for Magix
It had the most action by far. Alfea, Cloud Tower and Redfountain teaming up to beat The Trix and an army of darkness monsters? Bloom and Icy’s duel in a classic clash of opposites? What more could you want? And the stakes were certainly high. The Trix controlled the power that created the Magical Dimension!

The best part of this ending: Bloom wasn’t the only hero. The other (then) four Winx defeated Darcy and Stormy without her, and the students from all three schools proved their power against the monsters. It was a group victory.

2. Season Two: The Winx vs. The Shadow Phoenix
Season two is not my favorite, but the ending was okay. It was better in the original when the Winx had to beat not only Darkar but the Trix’s converged creature. The biggest problem was the last episode focused too much on freeing Bloom from Darkar’s spell. Once she did that herself, using her healing powers (not mentioned in the special), the Winx had already won. Then came the obligatory party at Alfea. Meh.

3. Season Three: Winx vs. Demon Valtor
After watching Nickelodeon’s dub of this episode, I was…confused. I didn’t remember it being so choppy and random. And once again, Bloom was the hero. (Yes, I know the first three seasons were about her, but it’s nice when the others get to shine.) She somehow projected her Dragon Flame into Valtor and fought him from the inside. Or so we’re to believe. It didn’t look like a fight—more like talking him to death. Oh, of course, there was another party at Alfea.

4. Season Four: The Winx vs. The Wizards of the—What? It’s Over Already?
I liked season four, but the ending was so anti-climactic. Why put us through twenty-five episodes of drama to have the Wizards be defeated in three minutes? Then we had sit through more cuteness overload with the fairy pets, another Musa and Riven make up (until next time) scene, and another Frutti Music Bar concert…that replaced the obligatory party at Alfea.

Well, there’s my list. Your thoughts?