sehlat on March 20, 2007, 04:11:02 pm
Can't say enough good about the last panel, except that the driver doesn't look nearly as cut-up as he should  for having his face pushed through his windshield. Susan protecting him?  Awesomely dramatic final moment to this week's segment. Thanks, people!

Keep it coming, please.

Frank Bieser on March 25, 2007, 06:27:03 pm
Glad you enjoyed it.  Yeah, he could have been cut up more, but doing so might have masked the look of surprise on his face.  I might be able to get the art director for the story to comment on this.  In any event, keep reading, the story has many more, and bigger surprises.  This is just the first act after all.  And as always, be sure to tell your friends.

sehlat on March 28, 2007, 03:43:08 pm
I can understand wanting to show the complete tactical surprise on his face. And he did look like a crash victim on the next page. I'm looking forward to the rest of the story and buying the whole thing when it hits print.

nick012000 on April 03, 2007, 03:54:31 am
Frankly, I think she's one of the biggest Mary Sues of any fiction I read. Everything she does succeeds. Nothing anyone else can do can hurt her, and might wind up helping her. She has the adulations of the masses without even trying, and the people who don't like her are either jealous or members of the Shadowy Government Conspiracy.

Stories are built around conflict, and when the heroine is so utterly "perfect" it's impossible to really have any. Throw a challenge at her she can't simply magic away! Show antagonists who aren't utterly evil! Tone down the "the Left Wing is utterly right" rhetoric, too, while you're at it. You're treating it like a blunt club to beat the reader over the head with, and it detracts from the story. I'm surprised she hasn't started bitching about Bush yet.

Frank Bieser on April 03, 2007, 10:48:07 am
Frankly, I think she's one of the biggest Mary Sues of any fiction I read. Everything she does succeeds. Nothing anyone else can do can hurt her, and might wind up helping her. She has the adulations of the masses without even trying, and the people who don't like her are either jealous or members of the Shadowy Government Conspiracy.

Stories are built around conflict, and when the heroine is so utterly "perfect" it's impossible to really have any. Throw a challenge at her she can't simply magic away! Show antagonists who aren't utterly evil! Tone down the "the Left Wing is utterly right" rhetoric, too, while you're at it. You're treating it like a blunt club to beat the reader over the head with, and it detracts from the story. I'm surprised she hasn't started bitching about Bush yet.

I understand where you're coming from, but please consider that we are still only in the first act of this story.  I assure you, there will be conflict.  Susan ain't Clark Kent.   The story is still building.  Be patient, and I think you may be surprised by the turns in the road yet to be travelled.

aditantimedh on April 03, 2007, 10:53:40 pm
Oh, she doesn't need to bitch about Bush.  Bush is irrelevent to her.

And she's only a Mary Sue if you think she's right. 


Frank Bieser on April 07, 2007, 10:25:30 am
Oh, she doesn't need to bitch about Bush.  Bush is irrelevent to her.

And she's only a Mary Sue if you think she's right. 



He seems irrelevent to me too.   ;)


Scott on April 10, 2007, 08:30:10 pm
Speaking as art director, I try not to lean too heavily on artists. This is their story (along with the writer's) and I try to give them plenty of room to tell the story in their own way, and not nit-pick details unless I think it's really necessary. In fact, I did ask for a change to that crash panel -- the way it was drawn originally, it wasn't clear that the driver was coming through the windshield, instead of popping out the driver's side door.

Besides, modern car windshields and windows are made with a type of glass that shatters in such a way as to minimize cutting of flesh coming through them.

Leviathan on May 22, 2007, 08:14:24 am
I do have to say that Supermen and Superwomen don't generally make for interesting storylines...  She probably can't be killed.  She simply rewrites the people she wants to rewrite.  Her major limitations are ethical rather than built in.  Oh, and she does seem to be quite into the whole liberal thing.  Save the world because it won't do it for itself.  Even her sister can't really be used against her.  Someone tries to hurt sis to get at her, she'll just either "gentle" them or kill them.  And her sis doesn't seem to actually be power-free, she just decided to be a normal human.  It isn't established whether she is actually vulnerable or just plays the part so she can feel human and would actually "survive" it in one form or another if "killed".

As far as her being a Mary-Sue, one doesn't have to believe their character is always right to make them one.  They're just idealized wish-fulfillment  Many villains, who the author portrays as in the wrong, have the ability to suffer Mary-Sueism.  Whether one agrees with their character's point of view or not, even I have to admit that at some level I wish I had the power to change the world and set everything free.  Just because your views may not coincide with your character's, doesn't mean it isn't fulfilling vicariously the wish to have the ability to do what he or she does.

In many ways, she's the villain in my own philosophy.  She's a deus ex machina, come to remove the evil from the world.  To set everything "right".  She's an idealist with a lot of power, who aims to impose her ideals on everyone else.  To be the Policewoman of the World.  Even if she were to "save" the world, it wouldn't even be our achievement.  It would be her cheap parlour trick.  If she were to tip things the other way, she would be destroying our chance.  And by being The Superheroine, she makes people dependent on her without genuinely improving themselves.

I will say the story is engaging enough, and the artwork good.  The characters are interesting enough most of the time.  Just that characters like her have me eyerolling every time they just *poof* use a superpower to diffuse a tense situation. 

You know why I didn't like Star Trek: Voyager?  Beyond the bland, politically-correct, whitebread family-values characters?  They never really had any character or story-driven conflicts.  They'd just get into trouble XYZ, and generally figure out some technological solution to their predicament.  Trapped in the event horizon of a black hole?  Easy, release some particle whatevers to find the "hole" you made coming in.  Never mind that's not how an event horizon works.  The character is aging backwards through time?  Why yes, don't follow the natural conclusion and have it be the perfect end to the character...  Just have the doctor in one time period purge the chronoton particles from her.  Predict the Year of Hell?  Then when you get to it, do you actually play it out and have a season of real conflict and tension?  Naw.  A two-part episode where they make it Never Happen.  No real conflict.  Nothing that you're ever really nervous about because they'll always just figure out how to reverse the polarity on the gravometric sensors and make an inverted tachyon cascade reaction that'll collapse their warp field and let you escape.

To cite another example: the archetypal SuperBeing, Superman, didn't start out with that many powers.  Faster than a speeding bullet.  More powerful than a locomotive.  Able to leap tall buildings with a single bound.  The extra powers got added either as an expediency (the animators were sick of trying to show him hopping around) or to get him out of tough jams.  Eventually, they had to start de-powering him just so they could set some challenges again.  He never has to think himself out of any obstacles unless somebody manages to get a piece of kryptonite.  At which point it's "get away from, block, or destroy the piece of kryptonite."  There's no real storyline because you can't hurt him and it's not even worth trying.  Even when he dies, he doesn't stay dead.

Please, if you value the storyline?  Don't let LaMuse turn into that.  Any more than it, really, already has from the outset.  She needs something to actually strive against other than human stubbornness, and her own belief in her infallibility.

aditantimedh on May 22, 2007, 10:58:54 pm
And your interpretation of "liberalism" is odd.  To impose one's will on people is not liberal, not matter how benign.  That's fascism, which has always been inherent in the figure of the superhero and the genre.


Leviathan on May 22, 2007, 11:04:57 pm
I look to the people given the label in modern times, and use that as my definition.  Once a definition is poisoned, I don't try to recover it.  I move on and find new definitions.

And "benevolent" fascism is honestly what is symbolized by most of the genre, yes.

aditantimedh on May 23, 2007, 10:07:52 pm
Except that's still fascism, not liberalism.  The Neocons put the word "liberal" over it to discredit the word and diminish the levels of political debate and essentially kill off Americans' language choices for actual discourse.

if you believe it's liberalism, then you've bought into the Neocons' propaganda and rewriting of the English language in America.

If you believe liberals are trying to impose their will on ordinary Americans, reality does not back that up.


Leviathan on May 26, 2007, 07:32:11 am
I consider myself a libertarian.  I do not use "classic liberal", because when people hear the liberal word they think of socialized medicine and envirofascism.  English is a living language.  It changes over time.  The neocons didn't rewrite liberal to mean the current form of the democratic party.  The democrats did that.  The neocons were the ones that turned it into a near-profane word, while eliminating the important (in my opinion anyway) differences between them and those they say they oppose.

Liberal has come to specify those people who are for government providing everything for us and keeping us safe from ourselves.  If you don't like what it is that is currently, generally, called liberal?  I suggest getting a new label so as to avoid confusion.  If the definition of fascist has become part of the definition of "liberal", it is easier to move onto a better word to define one's beliefs than to try and explain "I'm a liberal, but I'm for personal liberties and the ability to conduct my life as I see fit" every time I would try and define my beliefs as "classical liberalism".  Beat them at their own game, stop letting what has become their label apply to you if you don't in fact want to eliminate business (and most personal) freedom and tax the hell out of the nation.

Rocketman on May 27, 2007, 07:54:24 pm
For a number of years when I tell someone who doesn't know me well that I'm a libertarian, they are often confused by it believing that I speaking about a variation of "liberal".  Understandable considering what passes for political science in public schools nowadays.  I frequently have to clarify by by saying that libertarianism is like being a "Jeffersonian Democract" if the anti-federalist founding fathers were alive today and founded a party.
  It seems to work.  :)

wdg3rd on May 27, 2007, 10:22:50 pm
I just tell people I'm an individualist anarchist atheist.  They want to get an explanation, let the idiots look things up.

I've wasted too fracking much of my life explaining myself.  Those with faith in gods or government can do their own work for a change.

Somebody fix this damed thing.  It replaced F U C K I N G with F R A C K I N G.  Bolding it in this edit because it pisses me off when a machine edits my language (a human editor changing my words depends on the contract).
« Last Edit: May 27, 2007, 10:27:33 pm by wdg3rd »
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Men will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest.  --  Denis Diderot

 

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