SOLUTION to the last puzzle
I've had a more basic theme, based on a similar idea, for a few years (the theme, encoded in rot13: gurzr ragevrf PUBCFGVPX ERFG, PURRGB QHFG, naq PUVAGMVRFG jvgu gur erirny PURFGOHEFGREF). I wasn't super happy with the puzzle as a whole, so I set it aside for a while. Then, while I was watching this video (slight SPOILERS for the theme) last week, I thought of the theme angle that you see here. Hope you enjoy the puzzle!
P.S. Writing this after the second earthquake in California, which was something. For all the Californians reading this, I hope you're all right!