Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

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Re: Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

Postby LilMaibe » Fri Feb 24, 2012 9:14 pm

Well, that is your opinion. I'll accept it as such if you agree on accepting mine as just as legit. Can we agree on that?
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Re: Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

Postby raisindot » Fri Feb 24, 2012 9:47 pm

LilMaibe wrote:Andy is an overclichéd bully-stereotype who we never actually SEE do anything to live up to the reputation the narrative tries to give us. There is not a single line in the whole book that actually SHOWS us how he is doing something evil.All we get is other characters and the story TELLING us what an evil and despicable bully he is.


I tend to side with Meebs on this one. Andy is UA's equivalent of the Doug and Dimsdale sketch from Monty Python. His character is largely painted by both exposition and others' stories about him. In the few scenes he's in, he really comes off as little more than a one-dimensional street-level thug. He's not the crazy, potato-worshipping art savant that Mr. Tulip is, or the totally psychotic sociopath Carcer is, or even the over-reaching crazed genius that Teatime is. Other than the one scene with Trevor and his 'dirty tricks' coaching of his football team, he doesn't really come alive as either a character or the true menance and threat to society that he should be. In all fairness, there wasn't a great deal of narrative wiggle room in UA for his character to develop. Nutt was already more powerful than him (having the ability to come back from near death is always a good advantage), so Andy wasn't that much of a threat. Trevor was more intimidated by Andy than actually threatened by him. Juliet and Glenda were never in any danger from him. There just wasn't all that much menace to him.
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Re: Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

Postby high eight » Sat Feb 25, 2012 2:16 pm

That is why he is so menacing in that setting. The banality of evil applies. How many crazy, potato-worshipping art savants have you met? How many sociopaths? OK, now how many street thugs and football hooligans?

The likes of Tulip and Carcer were not needed and they would look damned silly in that setting. What was needed was your basic bone-headed street chav.
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Re: Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

Postby LilMaibe » Sat Feb 25, 2012 2:56 pm

raisindot wrote:
LilMaibe wrote:Andy is an overclichéd bully-stereotype who we never actually SEE do anything to live up to the reputation the narrative tries to give us. There is not a single line in the whole book that actually SHOWS us how he is doing something evil.All we get is other characters and the story TELLING us what an evil and despicable bully he is.


I tend to side with Meebs on this one. Andy is UA's equivalent of the Doug and Dimsdale sketch from Monty Python. His character is largely painted by both exposition and others' stories about him. In the few scenes he's in, he really comes off as little more than a one-dimensional street-level thug. He's not the crazy, potato-worshipping art savant that Mr. Tulip is, or the totally psychotic sociopath Carcer is, or even the over-reaching crazed genius that Teatime is. Other than the one scene with Trevor and his 'dirty tricks' coaching of his football team, he doesn't really come alive as either a character or the true menance and threat to society that he should be. In all fairness, there wasn't a great deal of narrative wiggle room in UA for his character to develop. Nutt was already more powerful than him (having the ability to come back from near death is always a good advantage), so Andy wasn't that much of a threat. Trevor was more intimidated by Andy than actually threatened by him. Juliet and Glenda were never in any danger from him. There just wasn't all that much menace to him.


In addition, IMHO, Andy is a wasted chance to create another neat addition to the 'villain gallery'.
Instead of telling us that he is as much of a threat as Carcer (while not outright, that was the impression the text tried to, well, force on us) the text could have, for example, went and have Andy draw a knife from his old football boots and try to stab Trevor, instead of (the IMHO pretty tame and lame) attempt at kicking him in the family jewels, and have that be foiled by the micromail.
I might have mentioned the above before, I'm not certain.

Or perhaps have us actually 'be there' when that meeting Carter tells Trevor about takes place. Have us actually see that Andy attacked Carter and not just hear that 'andy didn't like what carter said', what leaves open the (if small) possibiliyt that Andy merely threw a tantrum which lead to a brawl and someone else injured Carter. The text itself doesn't make that clear. We just assume that it was Andy because the text, quite frankly, kept hammering into us how evil Andy is.

It's a pity. He could have been a neat villain, to put it like that
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Re: Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

Postby David Brown » Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:09 pm

LilMaibe wrote:Or perhaps have us actually 'be there' when that meeting Carter tells Trevor about takes place. Have us actually see that Andy attacked Carter and not just hear that 'andy didn't like what carter said', what leaves open the (if small) possibiliyt that Andy merely threw a tantrum which lead to a brawl and someone else injured Carter. The text itself doesn't make that clear. We just assume that it was Andy because the text, quite frankly, kept hammering into us how evil Andy is.

I disagree. Sometimes leaving it to the reader's imagination is more effective. If s/he has one, that is.
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Re: Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

Postby Tonyblack » Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:14 pm

David Brown wrote:
LilMaibe wrote:Or perhaps have us actually 'be there' when that meeting Carter tells Trevor about takes place. Have us actually see that Andy attacked Carter and not just hear that 'andy didn't like what carter said', what leaves open the (if small) possibiliyt that Andy merely threw a tantrum which lead to a brawl and someone else injured Carter. The text itself doesn't make that clear. We just assume that it was Andy because the text, quite frankly, kept hammering into us how evil Andy is.

I disagree. Sometimes leaving it to the reader's imagination is more effective. If s/he has one, that is.

And it's something that Terry does a lot. It's one of the reasons I like his books so much. He doesn't spoonfeed his readers.
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Re: Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

Postby LilMaibe » Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:31 pm

Agreed, Tony. Didn't perhaps pick the best scene there. Though, in any case it would have been nice of the text to allow us to use our imagination freely instead of, well, basically telling us what to think about the characters.
It's similar with the orc (i still hate him, but i'll try to be objective here):

Whenever he does something we get descriptions of how impressed everyone is by it. Everyone, (except the evil villain(s) of course) from Juliet and the bledlows up to Ponder and Vetinari How people are left speechless, how they are moved to tears and so on.

Where the story uses lists of clichés to paint Andy evil it uses lists of clichés to paint the orc positive and invoke pity in the reader.

Opinions vary of course, but I felt as if the story tried to give me a pre-made opinion.

By the way: Did H8 accept my offer of truce/peace? I put him onto ignore and the -display this post- doesn't work for me anymore. (must be my browser)

EDIT: On a further note on 'leaving things to the reader's imagination':
Something I always loved about Discworld was that Sir Terry left those things to imagination, that needed no explicit explanation, but explained those things that differed greatly from a realLife concept of the same name. In Snuff it's mostly back to that, but in UA it was rather in reverse, especially when it came to, well, toilet humour. Taste differ of course, but personally I would have prefered to see more of Andy living up to his reputation or even the training coming into actual effect or a little more explanation on how the game rules, old and new, differ from those in realf life, INSTEAD of the text talking about arses, soiled or burning underwear, digestion, people taking a piss etc.
Last edited by LilMaibe on Mon Feb 27, 2012 12:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

Postby high eight » Sun Feb 26, 2012 6:46 pm

LilMaibe wrote:
By the way: Did H8 accept my offer of truce/peace? I put him onto ignore and the -display this post- doesn't work for me anymore. (must be my browser)


I thought we had already agreed to disagree.
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Re: Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

Postby LilMaibe » Thu Mar 01, 2012 7:32 pm

On a final note:
I came to the conclusion when I scratch the orc (I still can't type his name, sorry) from the story I actually like it. When he's gone (and you adjust some of the things that annoyed me which were caused by him) what's left is a decent (not the best, but without said character not the worst) story with a few minor, but excusable stumble bits
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Re: Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

Postby high eight » Thu Mar 01, 2012 8:34 pm

LilMaibe wrote:On a final note:
I came to the conclusion when I scratch the orc (I still can't type his name, sorry) from the story I actually like it. When he's gone (and you adjust some of the things that annoyed me which were caused by him) what's left is a decent (not the best, but without said character not the worst) story with a few minor, but excusable stumble bits


Except that the Academicals don't have a trainer and nobody gets redeemed. OK.
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Re: Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

Postby LilMaibe » Fri Mar 02, 2012 3:24 pm

As someone bugged me to answer high eight:
Ponder would be the trainer and the game would unlikely look any different, except for a random character to replace the librarian in the goal, but as said, it needs only a few very, very small adjustments.
And who exactly is redeemed in the story that it is that important to you that you list it as a possible contra?
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Re: Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

Postby Tonyblack » Fri Mar 02, 2012 8:04 pm

LilMaibe wrote:On a final note:
I came to the conclusion when I scratch the orc (I still can't type his name, sorry) from the story I actually like it. When he's gone (and you adjust some of the things that annoyed me which were caused by him) what's left is a decent (not the best, but without said character not the worst) story with a few minor, but excusable stumble bits

That's like the story Terry tells of when Hollywood approached him to make a film of Mort. They had the stipulation that Death be written out of the book. :roll:
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Re: Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

Postby LilMaibe » Fri Mar 02, 2012 8:09 pm

Just in this case it works. Which is...don't really know what to call it, but it is something that shouldn't be. But hey, as said, without him I like the story (though Pepe still reminds me of the idiots I have been bullied by, but that just on a sidenote)
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Re: Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

Postby high eight » Sat Mar 03, 2012 6:26 pm

LilMaibe wrote:And who exactly is redeemed in the story that it is that important to you that you list it as a possible contra?


Orcs. All of them.
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Re: Disturbing Trend in UA and Snuff: **Major Spoilers**

Postby LilMaibe » Sat Mar 03, 2012 6:46 pm

high eight, I can only ask this of you:
If you truly believe, that Sir Terry is the first person in the history of fantasy fiction to go and try to redeem the race of orcs from the clichés people have of them, please, go and play the Warcraft RealTimeStrategy Games and, even if you might think the books that go with the series 'fanfiction', read them too.
Warcraft is only one example of people going and cast a new light on orcs. Maybe it is even the most popular example.

If you don't like RTS-Games, perhaps the book-series 'The Orcs' by Stan Nicholls is something more of your taste.
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