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V3 Read-A-Thon; I want to go back to V2 - Ruggahissy
Topic Started: Feb 3 2014, 01:15 AM (21,119 Views)
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Paige/EP/Plush, they/them pronouns pls thanks :3
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I'll drop in on this mess.
SotF Characters

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Plush Wants To Read Your Dead Things and your Living Things! As of 8/14/2017, the Living Queue is Closed, and the Dead Queue is Open!
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Emprexx Plush
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Paige/EP/Plush, they/them pronouns pls thanks :3
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I don't understand what I just read.

Gabriel's characterization is kind of all over the place. He goes from cartoonishly villainous to self-aware to cunningly manipulative to gleefully sadistic to suicidially regretful with almost no prompting. He's really lacking consistency or reason, and all of his exposition is very surface level. A series of motivations are supplied, but we never see how they tie together. They don't have any cohesion. On top of all that, he's another classic case of someone who doesn't understand the difference between a sociopath and a psychopath, or any of the other mental disorders he seems to have.

I also found his weird rivalry with Adam Dodd to be confusing and over-drawn. They both monologue like the English Language is having a fire-sale at each other, but I don't really see any reason why. Around Dodd, Gabriel slips into full ham mode, dropping lines like "Well done, 'Mistah Dodd.' But let me remind you, what you're doing is futile. Even if you do make it out of here once again, in the silence of the night, you're always going to hear the screams." It wouldn't be so bad if it wasn't, for the most part, so boring. It lacks a spark of life. All his descriptions and dialogue when he's not being an evil sadistic maniac just read like a vehicle for him to get to the next one of those moments, which is a shame because with more thought there is room for a legitimately interesting character here. If more cohesion had been given to his different elements to explain them, and his writing had been less BRBCHEWINGTHESCENERYDON'TMINDME, there'd be room for a lot of analysis and some interesting dilemmas. As it stands, it's just very disjointed and confusing.

Roll me another, and a stiff drink to go with it.
SotF Characters

the highest honor i'll ever achieve


Plush Wants To Read Your Dead Things and your Living Things! As of 8/14/2017, the Living Queue is Closed, and the Dead Queue is Open!
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Emprexx Plush
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Paige/EP/Plush, they/them pronouns pls thanks :3
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Man. Part of me really wants to love Owen, and as a force of nature I really do, barring his death. He's really fun when he pops into a scene, because of how sporadic and chaotic his thought process is. Watching him try, and fail, to hold up everyone he meets with his BB gun is pretty amusing. In the weirdest way, his spontaneity is very consistent. You don't know what he's going to do, but he never does something just because it would be the most favorable outcome for himself. Things go very badly for Owen, and Ciel deserves kudos for allowing that and not trying to force Owen into a more villainous role.

That being said, there are two things that bother me about Owen. I don't feel like he's a fully realized character because there's no character here. His ADHD is consuming to the point that he just has nothing else going on, and that makes it hard to become invested in him. I feel like this quality was embraced well up until Owen's death, but it's still troublesome and kind of distracting. As noted above, Owen isn't really a character, he's a force of nature. That's not necessarily bad, but it does mean his shelf life is pretty short, and certain things can't be done as well. Owen's death is one of those things. Trying to make me feel something equivalent to personal attachment or emotion for this character just doesn't work, and it feels tonally inconsistent. I would have preferred for Owen to carried through his babbling chaos into death than have an out of the blue clarifying moment between him and a vision of his father. It felt awkward and really took me out of the death. Some people may be into it, but it's not for me.

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SotF Characters

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Plush Wants To Read Your Dead Things and your Living Things! As of 8/14/2017, the Living Queue is Closed, and the Dead Queue is Open!
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Emprexx Plush
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Paige/EP/Plush, they/them pronouns pls thanks :3
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There's really not much for me to say on the subject of Jeff Thorne. His profile is shorter than a lot of posts in V3, and it revolves around the fact that for some reason he wants to be a long distance runner even though he's pretty out of shape. He doesn't have much depth.

His story's pretty short. He runs from a Dodd-collective, shoots at Trish's group, and gets shot back. I don't feel there's a lot of substance to go on here. The sum of Jeff's game can be defined by "He was afraid." He runs from the Dodd group because he's afraid. He decides to kill because he's afraid. He doesn't kill because he's afraid. He panics and shoots Jake because he's afraid. And then, ironically, he's completely 100% okay with dying.

Slide me another round with the next roll, Persy. Make it a double.
SotF Characters

the highest honor i'll ever achieve


Plush Wants To Read Your Dead Things and your Living Things! As of 8/14/2017, the Living Queue is Closed, and the Dead Queue is Open!
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Emprexx Plush
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Paige/EP/Plush, they/them pronouns pls thanks :3
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In this crowd of psychopaths and badasses, Eddie Sullivan is a breath of fresh air for just being completely awkward.

There are parts of Eddie's story that are very over-dramatic, most prominently his border-line obsession with Jodene. However, they're written in such a way that makes it seem like very understandable high school drama. It's the sort of way an anxious, somewhat inept teenager would realistically think in his situation. He kind of becomes the sad sack of the vast majority of his threads because nearly everyone lashes out at him or berates him for how useless he is, and he just kinda internalizes it, which is sad because he's a genuinely good-hearted person who could have been a protective asset to any of these groups. This comes out most prominently in the shoot-out with Harry Tsai, when Eddie shoves down his fear of killing someone to try and protect his allies, and even though he inevitably fails to save Jimmy or kill Harry, it's another piece to push him over the edge.

Ed's next really notable moment is the death of Wade Wilson. This scene took a very unexpected course that ultimately disappointed me, though not for lack of trying from Ed. I have a deep-seated disdain for the repentant psychopath stereotype that crops up so often in SotF, but Ed works with it to create a memorable scene. There's a lot of visceral hatred unleashed on Wade throughout it, but it still has that awkward hesitance that permeates Ed's character to the core, right up to the bitter end when Wade kills himself by Ed's hand. Even killing Wade doesn't bring Ed happiness, which is I feel is a good reflection of his personality as a whole. Ed doesn't deal in goals, he deals in obsessions, and there can be no real satisfying conclusion for him.

The last thing that deserves comment is Ed's brutal finale with Riz. Everything that's weighed in on him over the last few days, every insult and failure and bitter victory crashes in on top of him as he dedicates himself to chasing Riz down and murdering him, and in the process he gives Riz the hardest fight he'll receive in his tenure on the island. This scene was really well-written and has a lot of clear, definable physicality that communicates the combined desperation and determination of both characters superbly. It was a really fitting way for Eddie to go out, to finally let go of his hesitance in the face of the unrelenting chaos that kept battering him and just give everything he had trying to kill Riz before he could hurt anyone else. Riz was his final, fatal obsession.

Good stuff. I don't think I'll find better in V3. But give me another anyway!
SotF Characters

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Plush Wants To Read Your Dead Things and your Living Things! As of 8/14/2017, the Living Queue is Closed, and the Dead Queue is Open!
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Paige/EP/Plush, they/them pronouns pls thanks :3
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Been a long time, apologies.

Alice is just really, really hard to get into, to be honest, and I think the reason why is pretty obvious looking at her profile. Particularly this bit from her Advantages/Disadvantages:
Quote:
 
Advantages: To be honest? Absolutely nil.

Disadvantages: It is obvious that she is neither aggressive in personality, nor physically strong. That along with her timid and passive nature makes her the perfect target for those wanting to kill to win, or simply for fun. Harmless and submissive, she is not in the least bit capable of killing, even if she wanted to, due to her weak strength, shortness of height, and lack of confidence to take the initiative. She neither has the charisma, nor the leadership to lead a group, nor does she have any practical skills that will add to a group’s survival.

Though the fact that she is harmless, and easily pitied will incite others to take her under her wing, she will likely be little more than a burden, not even to be valued as someone to talk to due to the fact that she is so timid. Her lonely existence will likely make her receptive to the smallest gesture of kindness and friendliness, due to her naiveity and trusting nature, which will probably lead to deadly results if there are those who wish to exploit the trust of others. She knows next to nil about SOTF aside from the most basic concept, and is thus ignorant for the most part on how to play the game.

Essentially, Alice is nothing but negativity. In her first thread, there's no real introduction to her character. Her name doesn't even come up in her first post. It's just wave after wave of sadness, anguish, suffering, and hopelessness. Alice's narrative is dominated by pain, disappointment, betrayal, and pretty much every other negative emotion you can imagine.

Here's the thing: That kind of narrative can work. You can write a character whose arc is defined by suffering and see it through well. But outside of her ordeal, there's not much going on with Alice. I don't feel any connection to her as a character. She doesn't have a personality outside of just being very sad and very useless. That may sound harsh, but her own profile says that she has no advantages, that there is absolutely nothing positive or purposeful that can come out of her stay on the island, and that's pretty much accurate to her arc. With that starting point, I personally find it really hard to get invested. This may be the sort of arc that works for others, but it just doesn't click for me. I have no reason to care about Alice's journey because I've already been told she won't accomplish anything, and none of her posts give me any reason to believe otherwise. If she'd struggled against that hopelessness in anyway it might have been a different story, but she doesn't really.
Quote:
 
She struggled to stand...and found that she couldn't even get up, her body was still reeling from the impact of the fall. Why did her clumsiness have to kick in at a time like that?! Tears welling up, she looked towards the door, it was much too far for her to even hope to escape through...

...Alice began to crawl, slinking like an injured animal behind the counter, making a beeline towards the corner it made with the wall. There, she curled up, hugging her legs, and buried her face into her knees, hoping it would all be over quick.

This passage from her first thread is representative of how Alice's story reads. Just a series of mistakes and plodding inevitability. Unfortunately, Alice's hope that it will all be over quickly don't come to fruition and her story drags on for a few more threads exploring the same themes. For me, it wasn't an enjoyable read. I didn't feel satisfied at the end of her story, or like I'd learned anything, or like there was something to reflect on. It just felt rather...miserable, and then it was over.

I dunno. Some people might find this kind of arc compelling, and more power to them. It just doesn't work for me. Alice just kind of exists and walks around as a void of sadness and inexorable tragedy. It feels like I'm jumping in at the end of the story. I needed to know a lot more about Alice and experience her in other lights before the starting point of her story. I needed a reason to care about her. I needed a reason to keep reading other than "It's the readathon so I guess I gotta."

That reason just wasn't there for me this time.

Shoot me another and I'll be quicker about it this round about.
SotF Characters

the highest honor i'll ever achieve


Plush Wants To Read Your Dead Things and your Living Things! As of 8/14/2017, the Living Queue is Closed, and the Dead Queue is Open!
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