|Lets get things moving
Sephyism - Into the Promised Land
To say we need to pick things up here is an understatement and with my return to LJ and SY's recent return it seems the best time to do so.
The big topic then I think is Crisis Core or rather what info has leaked through to those of us who are not idiot wannabe fans who are so desperate to look intelligent they ruin the story for themselves by checking fan translations which can never fully be trusted and copying old topics for discussion.
The big thing with CC is the fact it shows Pre-Nibleheim Sephiroth, the man known as a war hero and the Ultimate SOLDIER rather then the One Winged Angel who killed countless people and almost destroyed the world to become a god.
From what I have seen he does seem talkative yet still withdrawn and introverted. He doesn't seem to have a problem talking at all but would rather carry on and get the job done then stand around chatting.
On a different note, I used to firmly support the theory that Sephiroth's childhood was one of experiments in science rooms cold and dark, but I have since rethought this due to remembering one line said by Hojo in the original game.
"...Always looking down on me like that."
Considering that Sephiroth's lines about Ghast in the flashback scene suggest that for his early childhood at least Professor Ghast was still running Project J and was the one watching over Sephiroth. It is most likely knowing Ghast's kind nature Sephiroth grew up with at least one friendly person in his life, something of a father figure perhaps. Taking that into account along with what Hojo said I think it most likely the lab rat theory is not correct but as with pretty much everything concerning Lord Sephiroth's past it remains ambiguous.
The general consensus seems to be don't talk about Crisis Core until it comes out--yet, people keep talking about it anyways. Why don't you simply stop depriving yourselves and admit that you're ALREADY talking about CC (mostly directed at those who keep saying they don't want to analyze it, yet still do publicly, even if with spoiler tags).
I haven't seen much of CC Sephiroth either, though from what I can see, he's not too much different from Pre-Nibelheim Sephiroth. And for the record, I still don't understand what's meant by a "human" Sephiroth because having a personality doesn't make a character any more or less human, and I dislike misleading terms, and he's not as warm or as sappy as the term "human" implies in CC, apparently. I still also don't understand why some people think he's more "normal" or "heroic" in CC--that would be pretty boring because normal is boring, and we've already seen enough heroes and heroes turned villain characters from other games, books and movies already.
I don't entirely know what to think of the lab-rat theory. I have read people interpreting this concept from fanart and fanfiction, but that's actually how I was introduced to that concept; I never really thought that far ahead--or behind, rather. I'm actually fairly open to any kind of interpretation of Sephiroth's childhood (but not to the point where it's obviously ridiculous), although the one I think Sephiroth had was that it might not be as terrible as being treated as a lab-rat all the time, but to say that his childhood life wasn't terrible at all doesn't quite sound right to me. It doesn't pave the way for how he deals with war in his later life, and to live his life without consistently questioning who is parents are every step of the way is also impossible. If his childhood was so spoiled, it doesn't explain why he's not a brat.
Not sure how much I'll get into the discussion side of things, as I'm a bit rusty, but I'll try my best.
I know some things about CC because I've been working on putting the Ultimania translations up onto a website, but as for the ins-and-outs that are on the Sephyism thread on ACF, it really all loses me. I've no idea what people are talking about or referencing half the time. :(
As for the lab-rat theory, I'd dig up some of my old posts, but I really can't be bothered, but my opinion was generally more of a partial theory to such. I didn't think that he was poked, prodded and tested all the time, but on the other hand I don't exactly think it was all 'happy families' for him either. The whole line from Nibelheim where he says he didn't have a hometown indicates that, because it shows that he didn't have a place to be.
I tend to take a little bit of a view like Tethar, that he had a friendly figure in his life in Prof. Gast. But I don't think he was exactly a father figure either, but perhaps someone who took more of an interest in him and looked after him. I think that his upbringing would have been more along the lines of someone born into a military life. Perhaps some tests in the form of physical examinations and the like, but for the most part a lot of the time spent training and the like. Either way you look at it, ShinRa had high expectations for him, so they would have made sure that he took the right path. His contact with people would have been enough to give him the social skills needed for someone in his position, but for the most part he'd keep to himself. Even Crisis Core says that Genesis and Angeal are his only friends and that he only opens up to Zack after he gets to know him a bit more. So doesn't that right there indicate that he hasn't really been bought up to talk to everyone. But part of being in SOLDIER would have required contact with other members, even if just to give orders or discuss orders given from President Shinra, etc. So it'd be impossible for him to have no social skills, it's just more that he's an introvert rather than an extrovert.