Jul 13 2009

Kendall’s Review Forum

Published by at 6:08 pm under Review Forums

Please see the comments below.  Thanks!

2 responses so far

2 Responses to “Kendall’s Review Forum”

  1. BlooKazzooon 22 Jul 2009 at 12:10 am

    Well, since I don’t know what to do with my superhero characters and plots; I’ll just basically give a cast of the characters so far and plot ideas I have:

    Jane-[No superhero alias at the moment; actually, none of them do] She is actually a character from an RPG I was on once because I realized I had never played a homeless character and thought it’d be fun; I’ve had her the longest, but haven’t played her in a long time, so her character personality is the one that’s the least developed so far. Basically, Jane’s dad left her mom and older sister Taylor when she was very little. They were already very poor and it was very hard for them to make enough money to live one; Taylor had to quit school so she could take care of little Jane while their mom worked. Things didn’t work out, and they ended up on the street. Their mom went a little crazy and started to use what little money they had on drugs and died of drug overdose, leaving Taylor to take care of Jane. That worked for a little while, until Taylor died as well. Jane was about 9 at the time, and a year or so later was taken in by a superhero by the name of Artemis Phos, a ‘Batman wannabe’ as he’s called by Jane’s friend. He may pop in from time to time, but, right now, he has no real part in any of this. Looking back on the history I had thought out for her, it seems rather Sue-Ish to me and I probably won’t even go much into it. I don’t know…I have a feeling I’ll have to be very careful when mentioning Jane’s past to not make it seem like her past is just there for pure sympathy for the readers. I just think it’ll be interesting, because she was taught to steal at one point in her life and she has a bit of a sympathy for thieves and sometimes questions her choice on becoming a superhero. Her history may even be changed a little…I don’t really know what I’m gonna do with her. 😛 I was gonna make her leader of her little group…but, I’m already afraid she’ll just be a ‘Robin wannabe’ and I really don’t want that to happen.

    Damia-I have no clue how she got her powers yet, but her powers is that she can control plants. I did have an idea she’s really the daughter of Mother Nature but was cursed by an evil witch…but, I’m not sure about that. When I think of the idea in my head, it sounds too much like something out of a Disney princess movie. But every other idea I’ve been having have just sounded like they came right from Spiderman or X-Men, and I really don’t want to steal their ideas. [One was mutant gene, the other was being bitten by a mutant plant…to me, I just feel as if that’s unoriginal and like I’m using another’s ideas] So, basically, she has these powers, but it doesn’t start to show until she’s about 6. Then, somehow, some evil scientist finds out about her powers, and wants to do research on her. He tries to basically buy her from her parents with money, but they refuse. [Like any good parent should :P] He gets mad and kills them both and somehow the dad survives but Damia doesn’t know this. [I’m thinking he likes, knocks them out then sets the place on fire or something like that.] She’s taken and as experiments done on her for years until she finally escapes [I still need to figure out the specifics on how exactly she does this….I’m thinking it might be supernatural if I use the daughter of Mother Nature thing] and then lives in the woods for a while [She can live on dirt, water and sun just like a plant can] until she somehow joins Jane and her friends…how that happens, I’m not sure.

    Storm-I don’t like his name. I didn’t even realize I had stolen his name and power from X-Men…wow. And I’ve seen the movie too and I honestly didn’t realize I was stealing the idea from Marvel. -_- So, I think I’m going to change his powers to changing of weather, to maybe being able to like, shot lightning and water balls at people? I don’t know…this guy just need fixing. Badly. Basically, as of now, I know he’s been traveling around trying to find the perfect place to settle down because he’s parents died and he felt no reason to stay in his old town. I don’t know how his parents died…car crash, maybe. I don’t want it to something too traumatizing, because in my mind he’s rather naive. Trying the superhero thing to ‘try something new.’ Once he’s trapped in all these difficult situations, it’ll change and he’ll start to question why he’s really doing all this.

    Kasim-Powers of telekenetics controlled by anger…yes, like Carrie from the horror movie. I think I may change it that they’re controlled by other very strong emotions and he has to, of course, try to channel these emotions when he’s fighting. He gets his powers somehow, again, I’m not sure [I’m not sure with any of these guys, can you tell? -_-] and at first they start coming slowly, hardly noticeable by his family. Then, one day, his brother teases him and he just snaps…almost killing him. Not sure what to do, his parents send him to an asylum, hoping this may all be some rare mental condition that can be fixed. After almost killing a therapist, Kasim fears for the lives of those around him and escapes the asylum, ending up at the doorsteps of Alice and Jane. [My idea is that they find him unconscious…I need to figure out why, but I’ve had this scene in my head of him waking up screaming and making everything in the room go flying everywhere]

    Alice-Jane’s childhood friend. She’s a witch…and on her, I do know how she got her powers. It’s genetic, because her parents were from another dimension witch is basically the magical version of our world with fairies, unicorns, etc… There was a war between the vampires and witches however that forced the witches out of their homes. [So…yes, in my little world, there are more like Alice…but, not many…a lot of witches died during that war, so only a few escaped] Despite her parent’s discontent, she went along with Jane when she decided she wanted to follow in her father’s footsteps and be a superhero. She’s probably the most ‘normal’ one in the group, as in, she has a pretty stable family, had a pretty normal childhood, etc…

    I also have an idea for a lawyer-turned-superhero which actually came to me in a Jodi Picoult novel [One of the questions in the novel, or at least, it made me ask it, was, “Is the law ineffective so should be taken in your own hands?”] but I know nothing about her besides the concept.

    And my only supervillians at the moment:

    Carolina: Able to turn into any animal…which…yes, is taken from Teen Titans, so I should tweak that a little, probably. She became a thief just for the thrill of it, enjoying causing general mayhem and falls in love with Damia’s dad, who needs a name, creating a Sweeney Todd-ish plot.

    Damia’s dad-[Who still needs a name, poor guy :P] Once a doctor, now a man searching for his daughter and for revenge. Has created a poison that will kill anyone in 24 hours. Uses this, but, also uses knives if he doesn’t feel the person even deserves to live for that long. Probably will take a Sweeney Todd route-as in, having a different name then his original one. [Sweeney’s real name is Benjamin, but he refused to use that name because ‘that man is dead’]

    And that’s it 😛 And now, here are my plot ideas:

    1. Damia figures out her dad is alive, but a villain. In the meantime, the scientist who wanted to research her figures out where she is, and plans to capture her again

    2. Jane goes undercover as a villain to get an inside of the going on’s of a villainous group she and her friends have been trying to stop. She ends up falling in love with the leader of the group and then starts to question if she even wants to be a hero anymore and if she should be a villain. Meanwhile, a young, smitten man in a mask [Not a superhero…it’s just for the effects…and, if he was rejected, it wouldn’t be so bad if he were in a mask :P] has been sending her love notes and a love triangle then forms

    3. Kasim, seeing a villain attacking Alice and almost killing her, attacks this villain, almost killing him. He then leaves the team, scared that his powers will just hurt people like before and joins a team of villains

    4. After interrogating Carolina, a policeman strikes her, instantly being told that he can’t do that. The policeman responds by questioning why a bunch of untrained citizens in costumes can but he can’t. Soon, some then start wondering if superheroes are ethical while some wonder if the laws are simply ineffective and that others should be learning from superheroes. Ya…not sure where that would go, I just got that idea and it sounded cool.

  2. B. Macon 25 Jul 2009 at 11:32 pm

    First things first– the most important thing is finishing a draft of chapter 1.

    Until then, here are some thoughts and suggestions about your synopsis.

    As you noted, Jane’s personality isn’t very developed. Here are some questions that might help you. How did she react to her abandonment and living on the streets? What’s the Taylor-Jane relationship like? Why is Taylor relevant? Why did Artemis choose her rather than any of the other hundreds of kids on the street? (What did she do that got his attention?)

    If Artemis isn’t present in the front-story, I wouldn’t recommend bringing him up much.

    I agree that there is some danger that this character will overlap a lot with Robin. Here’s one possible way to differentiate Robin and Jane: maybe Artemis brought her in with some other goal than just making her a sidekick.

    Damia. I’d recommend being careful with making her the daughter of Mother Nature and cursed by a witch. Those might feel out of place in a story where Jane, Kasim and Storm are mostly realistic and not magical. Here’s something you might consider: Batman’s resident plant villain (Poison Ivy) has a scientific origin story. (She’s a master botanist). That fits in nicely with Batman’s relatively realistic powers.

    What’s her personality like?

    Don’t beat yourself up over the Storm thing. It happens to everyone.

    Storm has a lot of things going on that aren’t quite connected yet. Umm, his parents die. That’s #1. #2, he gets superpowers somehow. #3, he decides to become a superhero. I’d recommend connecting #1 and #2 to make it a bit more coherent. For example, his parents die in the accident that gives him his powers and he feels like it’s his responsibility to them to make sure that he uses them well. Or his parents are scientists that inject him with the superserum rather than give it to the villain. When the villain finds out they don’t have it, he kills them.

    I get the impression that Kasim will feel a bit angsty.

    Alice sounds like Raven. I’d recommend making sure that she has a distinct personality.

    #1 sounds like an okay place to start.

    I’m not very fond of the love triangle idea. First, we already have 5 teammates. If all five are supposed to be main characters, I think you’ll be limited on space to spend on this.

    Speaking of which, I’d recommend bumping the group down to four. Fewer characters usually makes for more development.

    #3 feels too obvious?

    I like #4. However, I think this sort of plot would go farther if the story were a bit more realistic.

    One approach you might try with #4 is that one of the characters on the team is relatively normal and tries to approach superheroics sort of like a cop would. I think that such a hero would be an interesting point in a relationship triangle between a hero that insists on doing whatever it takes to stop the villain and the cops, who are seriously restricted by laws and regulations.

    I notice that the members of your team tend to come from broken or highly unusual family situations. Is there an in-story reason the members of the team mostly have dead or villainous parents?

    4. After interrogating Carolina, a policeman strikes her, instantly being told that he can’t do that. The policeman responds by questioning why a bunch of untrained citizens in costumes can but he can’t. Soon, some then start wondering if superheroes are ethical while some wonder if the laws are simply ineffective and that others should be learning from superheroes. Ya…not sure where that would go, I just got that idea and it sounded cool.

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