November 8, 2007

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This is a great little article, and I have to give Tim Kring props for being a man and admitting the failures of the show.  He pretty much hit all of them on the head – except he forgets to mention that the future evacuation/vaccination story is not super interesting because we saw something VERY similar last year – that said – if that was the only thing wrong with this season I’d be a pretty happy girl.

In case Tim Kring’s people are scouring the globe for brilliant thoughts on how to get us back on track, here’s a little list from me, the 1979 Semi-Finalist…

1.  KILL A LOT OF CHARACTERS.  The Wonder Twins should be the first to go, preferably painfully; West – really painfully; and either kill Micah’s cousin or replace her with a new actress or a new writing staff and lose the accent while you’re at it, she is just painful to watch, though her power is interesting.  Kill Nikki/Jessica (LONG overdue).  You have a beautiful canvas of characters.  Why overpopulate it with poorly developed new characters?  As fans we are so over the whole “learning about new characters” thing.  Maybe we could meet a new character or two over the course of the new Season, but five new “heroes” and another half dozen plus supporting characters in the first couple episodes?  Huge mistake.  Go back to the characters we love and let them grow and change.  Trust what you’ve already created. 

2.  Lose the accents.  They’re great when done well, but they’re not being done well, and when every third character has one they lose their “specialness”.  Let Adam Monroe keep his, it’s the only convincing one anyway, and toss the rest.

3.  Bring back the old Claire.  She was occasionally whiney and bratty in Season 1, which is to be expected, she’s a whiney/bratty teen, but she’s out of control and unlikable this year. 

4.  Pull back on the sappy drama and exposition.  Show what is happening to these people instead of letting them run off at the mouth with poorly written and poorly performed solioqy’s…it didn’t work for you the first season, and now it’s happening at a frightening clip this season and is working even less. 

5.  Utilize your best actors.  I know there are plans for Kristen Bell, make them better and bigger.  While her role weeks ago was small and was a little cheesy, she’s a talented actor and did a better job of saving the bad writing than some of your less talented new actors (Wonder Twins, Copycat, etc.).

6.  Never send Hiro off on his own like that again.  He’s a great character, but he’s best in a lighter and somewhat comical role.  His bravery and idealism was refreshing last year…bring that element back to the character.  Let him grow in a more natural way. 

7.  Stay away from romance unless you hire some people who really can handle it, both onscreen and in the writer’s room.  The romance has been the stuff of ridiculous after school specials and harlequinn romance.  Truly, it’s been painful to watch.

8.  Last but not least, stop being afraid of your powerful characters.  I know you have limits on budget and graphics etc., but there are plenty of clever ways to still allow your powerful characters (Sylar, Peter, etc.) to spread their wings on the show, without giving them annoying cliched amnesia or de-powering them.  Don’t be afraid, instead get creative.  Fortune favors the brave my friends.

I’m hanging in there, especially after reading Kring’s article…but please…implement change…save this show!

The drawing on this one is a little uneven (well even more uneven than usual)…especially in the first two panels…I tried a new technique…it didn’t work…what can I say?

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I wrote the least last night (had to catch up on my comics, both reading them and writing them), but I ended up picking a couple sentences strewn together.  I know that’s cheating…shut up. 

11/07/07:

Words Written:  388

Best Sentence(s):  I wish I could explain what it feels like to be me.  Have you ever tried walking on the sun and found that you not only could, but that it made you even stronger?  It is as if the heat and flames seep through your skin and power you up like a nuke, radiating off of you in waves of pure power.  That is what it feels like to be me.  Everyday, all the time.  Walking around like a god.  You can’t ever understand what it’s like to be me, because you can’t even imagine that, can you?

Okay.  I get through these nights of “writing” knowing that most of these “best” sentences will not make it to the final draft, and also in realizing that it has definitely gotten my brain sparking in a new way.  Plotting ideas/concepts (my worst writing enemy) have definitely been firing off more frequently in my brain the last few days, so while the sentences remain crappy, at least the ideas are starting to flow.  There is hope!

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I often dream of meeting Dave Eggers, as he is a writing god to me.  However, sometimes when I think about meeting Dave Eggers I become concerned that he would actually find me silly and inconsequential and then I think perhaps I am better off just dreaming of meeting Dave Eggers than actually meeting him.  That way the dream that he and I are twin souls that will have some great laughs can stay alive…if only in my deluded mind. 

I have been itching for (and honestly looking all over New York for…what’s wrong with you New York!) Eggers and McSweeneys (and Manguso and Unferth’s) new book titled 145 Short Stories In A Small Box.  I finally got my greedly little hands on it last night (thanks Adam!) and found it to be even more delightful than expected (and I haven’t even read any stories yet – we’re just talking packaging people).  Anyway, there is a little one page insert by Dave Eggers and it’s the kind of brilliant little fluffy thing that again reminds me that if and when I finally meet Dave Eggers I will simply blush and faint, and then just lay there unconscious while he feels uncomfortable and is forced to walk away from the “scene” I’ve created.  He’s just too brilliant for me to stand that close to…and remain conscious.  And if I lose consciousness then I don’t have to worry about saying anything stupid that will make him think I am silly and inconsequential… instead of being those things I can just be ‘that ridiculous girl who fainted’.  Anyway, I’ve pasted the text from the insert below in the hopes that you too will find it brilliant and you will run out immediately to get your own copy of 145 Stories In A Box (and all the other McSweeney’s you can get your hands on).  According to Eggers…pick up at least ten, although he doesn’t specifiy that you can only buy McSweeney’s books, it certainly doesn’t hurt…and at least then you know you’ll be getting “the right kind of books”. 

Thankfully for me (and less for my credit cards) I pick up WAY more than ten books a year…so maybe that will give me a better shot with Mr. Eggers when our paths eventually cross…

 ”THE NEW RULES”  by Dave Eggers

“I don’t know why it came down to me to tell you about this, but anyway, here goes:  if you don’t buy at least ten books a year, you’ll be struck by lightning, or maybe a bus.  It’s the new rule.  Yeah.  You’ll probably be sent a more official notice in the mail pretty soon, but for now, you’re hearing it from me.  Ten books a year, or the bus or lightning, each of them very painful and likely deadly.  Is the rule a bit harsh?  Well, maybe.  Some people might think so, but then again, those people won’t be with us very long, because anyone who complains about the rule will be disemboweled by bears.  Again, not my idea – I’m just the messenger here! – but that’s the way it is.  I don’t know whay you’re worried, though.  Just buy the ten books a year and don’t whine about it, and you won’t be struck by anything or have your insides ripped out by a grizzly.  Doesn’t seem so complicated, really.  Also, make sure you buy the right kind of books, or else someone in a cardigan will push you off a building.  Again, nothing to worry about:  just buy the best kinds of books, not the bad ones, or else you’ll be looking over your shoulder pretty much forever.  And you can’t read that way, anyway, so it all works out.”

I say again BRILLIANT!  And oh so funny.  That Dave Eggers, what a character.  What a laugh he and I are going to have someday…assuming I’m conscious.