Thursday, September 16, 2010
Monday, September 13, 2010
In many pieces today, the author will find it prudent to use a near omnipotent or actually omnipotent figure as the villain. There is logic behind it, as with a godly villain the hero will always be the underdog and always be more sympathetic to the audience. Of course, the main goal in doing this is to allow for the bypassing of character development. If we know he's good, has a tough road ahead of him, and has some human problems, making him have a decent personality isn't really necessary.
However, the gigantic flaw that every movie with an omnipotent villain has is: how does the hero finally defeat the villain? Most of the time, it involves three things. Three extremely improbable occurrences.
Firstly, the villain will not kill the hero during their first encounter, despite killing many of the hero's comrades. This is either due to arrogance or the hero's good luck, but either way it is laughably unlikely. Take, for instance, Clash of the Titans. The main villain, Hades first meets Perseus when he transforms into a fireball and blows up the ship Perseus was on. Perseus's incredible lungs save him from drowning.
The second time they meet, Hades kills several soldiers who are standing next to Perseus. So, despite having ample opportunity to end Perseus's life not once, but twice, Hades instead chooses to go hire some henchmen to do the job for him... brilliant.
Secondly, there just happens to be a weapon that can stop said Omnipotent being. Whether its a magical sword or nectar of life, or in the case of Clash of the Titans, a monster's head. Undoubtedly, this item will be stored in a far off land, and require a perilous quest in which many of the hero's friends will die. Of course, the villain will have ample time to kill the hero during said quest, but will not take advantage of the opportunity himself, instead sending various henchmen instead.
Lastly, there is a final confrontation. In this the villain will have an overwhelming advantage, but rather than, say, immediately kill the hero he will allow the confrontation to drag on until the hero finally figures out a way to win the battle.
This happens in every single movie.
And it makes no sense. Every time, the audience is left wondering "why did he not kill the hero way earlier?"
The thing is, omnipotence can be done right, just look at the Cthulhuverse by Lovecraft, as a primary example of fantastically done gods.
So why aren't movie producers willing to make intelligent plots with believable gods that actually act like gods instead of clowns? You tell me.
Plus, its free publicity for your blog :D
Sunday, September 12, 2010
Friday, September 10, 2010
Sixty-three percent of all US deaths in Iraq have been caused by IEDs, so I guess what happened to my squad should have been expected. I was a private, fresh out of training and ready to help free Iraq from Saddam Hussein. The bomb exploded about thirty yards inside the city limits of Baghdad. Isn’t that pathetic? We died without even completing our first assignment. Apparently, the bomb was buried in the road, so when it exploded most of our vehicle was torn to shreds and we were flipped several times. I got a chunk of shrapnel lodged into my brain.
This is a story I wrote two years ago, in my Junior year of highschool. I consider it to be pretty mediocre, but some of you may enjoy it. At the very least, I hope it will show how much I have improved over the past few years. Please feel free to comment.
Today, Bron becomes a priest. Today, for the first time in his life, Brom is given the honor of glimpsing the figure of the wiseman. This is an honor reserved solely for the priests, who must dedicate their lives to interpreting his words.
Bron dresses in the fine white toga, which is the pride and joy of priesthood. The toga will become Bron’s greatest responsibility in life, as only one is given to a priest, and if it is ever stained, he will be exiled from the priesthood. After donning his garb, Bron is escorted through the temple, past fine marble statues and altars made of pure gold. At the far end of the temple, there is a curtain, dyed a majestic crimson. The curtain is pushed aside by attendants, and Bron lets out an audible gasp. The wiseman is no older than he, twenty-two winters of age at most. He has a handsome, childish face and a thin build, and he sits on a bed of lush silk blankets. “Oh, mighty wiseman” begins a retainer “this is the newest priest of your order, he shall follow you till his death.” Bron prostates himself before the wiseman, in awe of the spectacle. The wiseman opens his mouth as if to speak, and then “BRAAAWR!!”
“The wiseman is satisfied with you.” says the head priest.
Bron already knows this, a major portion of priestly study is dedicated toward learning his language. The wiseman has never spoken as the other humans do, and according to the elders who had found him so long ago, he speaks the language of the gods. What he had said roughly translated to “thank you for deciding to help with the great cause of spreading the will of the gods throughout the land.” Coincidentally, “BRAAWR” meant “he shall be killed and his corpse dragged throughout town as an example.”
The curtain is drawn back, and Bron is led away to his new quarters. He will not see the wiseman again for several years. His job now is that of a scribe, faithfully writing the words of the wiseman as transcribed to him by an older priest. Bron works at his job very diligently, but he is troubled. He swears that the wiseman winked at him before he was obscured from view, and can’t shake the feeling that there is something suspicious about the wiseman.
Many summers passed, and Bron faithfully translated the wiseman’s words. He soon advanced through the priestly ranks, eventually proving himself to be the most capable ever, and advancing to the rank of Head Priest at the young age of twenty-seven summers. It was at this time that a great strife fell upon the land. A plague of locusts had swept in from the north, and was devouring all the plant life across the realm. The plague was moving south, and expected to reach the villages near the temple within a month. Bron came to the wiseman, as he had done every day since he became head priest, and asked what could be done to stop the plague. “BLARG! GRAAAAWR! KSASHHKKA!” The wiseman violently clawed at the air with both hands.
“Of course!” thought Bron. Such a simple answer for such a terrible problem. The wiseman was truly a genius. Bron had the priests throughout send out a message throughout the land: “all citizens must take the blankets from their households, and cover the edible plants with them. Weigh down the blankets with rocks, so that they will not be taken away by the wind. When the plague comes, stay indoors and it will pass.” The citizens did as they were told, and the locusts passed through the land. Since there was no food, they disappeared as quickly as they had come, and the people were saved.
Bron eagerly told the wiseman the news.
“You know, I can’t tell if you guys are geniuses or idiots.” Said the wiseman.