History Main / FourLinesAllWaiting

20th Feb '18 7:48:17 AM Vir
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* ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}'' focuses on one character - or, sometimes, one entire facet of the GeodesicCast - at a time. Every character has a storyline, and all the storylines are [[KudzuPlot hopelessly tangled together]] in space as well as [[TimeyWimeyBall in]] [[AnachronicOrder time]]. The [[LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters sheer number of characters]] and [[AndNowForSomeoneCompletelyDifferent tendency to switch the point of view]] [[CliffHanger at inappropriate times]] doesn't help much either.

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* ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}'' focuses on one character - or, sometimes, one entire facet of the GeodesicCast - at a time. Every character has a storyline, and all the storylines are [[KudzuPlot hopelessly tangled together]] in space as well as [[TimeyWimeyBall in]] [[AnachronicOrder time]]. The [[LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters sheer number of characters]] and [[AndNowForSomeoneCompletelyDifferent tendency to switch the point of view]] [[CliffHanger [[{{Cliffhanger}} at inappropriate times]] doesn't help much either.
20th Feb '18 7:47:42 AM Vir
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* ''VideoGame/TheNightOfTheRabbit'': has three different main plots running simultaneously ([[spoiler: Jerry's quest to become a wizard, The lizards plot to take over [[GhibliHills Mousewood]] and the threat from humans to the forest.]]) which it actually manages to balance quite nicely until the [[EndingAversion the final chapter]], where the second plot is wrapped up without much fanfare, the third is dropped completely save for a SequelHook, and the first suddenly becomes the only plot that's relevant.

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* ''VideoGame/TheNightOfTheRabbit'': has three different main plots running simultaneously ([[spoiler: Jerry's quest to become a wizard, The lizards plot to take over [[GhibliHills Mousewood]] and the threat from humans to the forest.]]) which it actually manages to balance quite nicely until the [[EndingAversion the final chapter]], where the second plot is wrapped up without much fanfare, the third is dropped completely save for a SequelHook, and the first suddenly becomes the only plot that's relevant.
20th Feb '18 7:46:54 AM Vir
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* TheNightOfTheRabbit: has three different main plots running simultaneously ([[spoiler: Jerry's quest to become a wizard, The lizards plot to take over [[GhibliHills Mousewood]] and the threat from humans to the forest.]]) which it actually manages to balance quite nicely until the [[EndingAversion the final chapter]], where the second plot is wrapped up without much fanfare, the third is dropped completely save for a SequelHook, and the first suddenly becomes the only plot that's relevant.

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* TheNightOfTheRabbit: ''VideoGame/TheNightOfTheRabbit'': has three different main plots running simultaneously ([[spoiler: Jerry's quest to become a wizard, The lizards plot to take over [[GhibliHills Mousewood]] and the threat from humans to the forest.]]) which it actually manages to balance quite nicely until the [[EndingAversion the final chapter]], where the second plot is wrapped up without much fanfare, the third is dropped completely save for a SequelHook, and the first suddenly becomes the only plot that's relevant.
9th Feb '18 6:15:13 AM jimi13
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Added DiffLines:

* TheNightOfTheRabbit: has three different main plots running simultaneously ([[spoiler: Jerry's quest to become a wizard, The lizards plot to take over [[GhibliHills Mousewood]] and the threat from humans to the forest.]]) which it actually manages to balance quite nicely until the [[EndingAversion the final chapter]], where the second plot is wrapped up without much fanfare, the third is dropped completely save for a SequelHook, and the first suddenly becomes the only plot that's relevant.
23rd Jan '18 11:42:49 PM NESBoy
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** Basically, when ''Heroes'' is good, you get TwoLinesNoWaiting, occasionally dipping into ThirdLineSomeWaiting. When it gets bad, it jumps into "everything happens at once and nothing makes sense." Basically, ThirdLineSomeWaiting is a tightrope that easily lets you fall into FourLinesAllWaiting.

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** Basically, when ''Heroes'' is good, you get TwoLinesNoWaiting, occasionally dipping into ThirdLineSomeWaiting. When it gets bad, it jumps into "everything happens at once and nothing makes sense." Basically, ThirdLineSomeWaiting is a tightrope that easily lets you fall into FourLinesAllWaiting.this trope.
21st Jan '18 6:49:13 PM bwburke94
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** Volume 5 ends up slowly but surely merging the plotlines together and by the halfway mark, only one plotline has yet to be connected to the overall plot.

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** Volume 5 ends up slowly but surely merging the plotlines together and by the halfway mark, only one plotline has yet to be together, with all of them connected to the overall plot.plot by the penultimate episode.
5th Jan '18 11:54:07 AM ChaoticNovelist
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** This might be because of their poor track record with multiple plots. Such as the invasion of Konoha where the 3rd Hokage and Orochimaru were stuck in the same combat pose for weeks, or in the Rescue Gaara Arc with Naruto and Kakashi never actually catching up to Deidara until literally the last few episodes of the arc, despite spending at least 10% of every episode beforehand showing them slowly advancing.



* ''Film/AvengersAgeOfUltron'' was criticized for trying to give each Avenger their own individual character arc, which result in the majority of them being underdeveloped or badly executed.
* ''Film/BatmanVSupermanDawnOfJustice'' came under critique partly because some viewers felt that trying to be ''Man of Steel 2'', a Batman solo film, and set up the Justice League at the same was to ''Dawn of Justice's'' detriment.
* A major criticism of ''Film/SpiderMan3''. Having to deal with Sandman, Venom/The Black Suit, Harry Osborn, and the romance between Peter and Mary Jane left the movie feeling more than a little cramped. Ultimately, there wasn't enough time for any one plot line to be handled as it deserved to be.
* Also a major criticism of ''Film/TheAmazingSpiderMan2'' [[http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/the_amazing_spider_man_2/ from]] [[http://www.avclub.com/review/amazing-spider-man-2-suffers-excess-plot-villains--204029 many]] [[http://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2014/05/the-amazing-spider-man-2/361552/ critics]] who felt that the film tried to cram in too many villains and subplots to its overall detriment.

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* ''Film/AvengersAgeOfUltron'' was criticized for had a single main storyline (Ultron's EvilPlan and the Avengers trying to give each Avenger their own individual character arc, which result in stop it) but also had other, smaller, arcs like Bruce and Natasha's budding romance, Tony's attempts to prepare the world for another AlienInvasion, and Thor getting a prophetic vision of doom for Asgard. The majority of them being underdeveloped or badly executed.the focus is on the first which means the others have so little development they feel tangential.
* ''Film/BatmanVSupermanDawnOfJustice'' came under critique partly because some viewers felt that trying to has a number of objects. They include: be ''Man of Steel 2'', a Batman solo film, and set up the Justice League by hinting at many other heroes and the same was to ''Dawn coming of Justice's'' detriment.Darksied.
* A major criticism of ''Film/SpiderMan3''. Having to deal *''Film/SpiderMan3'' included dealing with Sandman, Venom/The Black Suit, Harry Osborn, and the romance between Peter and Mary Jane left. It left the movie feeling more than a little cramped. Ultimately, there wasn't enough time for any one plot line to be handled as it deserved to be.
* Also a major criticism of ''Film/TheAmazingSpiderMan2'' ''Film/TheAmazingSpiderMan2'': [[http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/the_amazing_spider_man_2/ from]] [[http://www.avclub.com/review/amazing-spider-man-2-suffers-excess-plot-villains--204029 many]] [[http://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2014/05/the-amazing-spider-man-2/361552/ critics]] who felt that the film tried to cram in too many villains and subplots to its overall detriment.



* Weber's Literature/{{Honorverse}} is even worse about this. By ''At All Costs'', the eleventh book of the (main) series, we've got:

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* Weber's Literature/{{Honorverse}} is even worse about this.often uses this trope. By ''At All Costs'', the eleventh book of the (main) series, we've got:



* Essentially anything Peter F. Hamilton writes, ''Literature/PandorasStar'' in particular. It is over 900 pages of seemingly unimportant plotlines and occasionally entire chapters of flavour text. Thankfully it's to set up the second, and much more action-packed book in the series.

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* Essentially anything Anything Peter F. Hamilton writes, ''Literature/PandorasStar'' in particular. It is over 900 pages of seemingly unimportant plotlines and occasionally entire chapters of flavour text. Thankfully it's to set up the second, and much more action-packed book in the series.



* Can you say "Creator/MichaelCrichton?" Good luck keeping track of all the plotlines in ''Literature/{{Next}}'' without a Character Sheet.

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* Can you say "Creator/MichaelCrichton?" Good luck keeping track of all the plotlines in ''Literature/{{Next}}'' without a Character Sheet.



* A common complaint of ''Series/StarTrekVoyager'' Season Two. You had the Maquis vs. Starfleet plot, Kazon/Seska plots, Paris pretending to be a jerk to get thrown off, is there another Caretaker out there, etc. A key factor of BetterOnDVD.

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* A common complaint of ''Series/StarTrekVoyager'' ''Series/StarTrekVoyager'''s Season Two. You Two had the Maquis vs. Starfleet plot, Kazon/Seska plots, Paris pretending to be a jerk to get thrown off, is there another Caretaker out there, etc. A key factor of BetterOnDVD.



* ''Series/WetHotAmericanSummerFirstDayOfCamp'' has Beth trying to save the camp from toxic waste, an EvilCorporation and UsefulNotes/RonaldReagan, Gene and Gail's on-again-off-again wedding plans, the Katie/Andy/Blake LoveTriangle and rivalry with Camp Tigerclaw, Victor and Neil's [[ShoutOut virginity-losing]] [[Film/AmericanPie bet]], the Ben/Susie/Claude/[=McKinley=] LoveQuadrangle and ComingOutStory, [[HotScoop Lindsay's]] undercover investigation, the Coop/Donna/Yaron LoveTriangle, and Kevin's attempts to fit in and impress LoveInterest Amy under Coop's tutelage. And that's just the ''major'' plotlines, all crammed into only [[ShortRunner eight episodes]], most of which are introduced in the first episode and few of which find any closure before the last. As a comedy, [[TropesAreNotBad it all works out fairly well]], with most scenes playing out as short vignettes or sketches that are enjoyable without much consideration for whether they do much to advance their associated plotline.

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* ''Series/WetHotAmericanSummerFirstDayOfCamp'' has Beth trying to save the camp from toxic waste, an EvilCorporation and UsefulNotes/RonaldReagan, Gene and Gail's on-again-off-again wedding plans, the Katie/Andy/Blake LoveTriangle and rivalry with Camp Tigerclaw, Victor and Neil's [[ShoutOut virginity-losing]] [[Film/AmericanPie bet]], the Ben/Susie/Claude/[=McKinley=] LoveQuadrangle and ComingOutStory, [[HotScoop Lindsay's]] Lindsay's undercover investigation, the Coop/Donna/Yaron LoveTriangle, and Kevin's attempts to fit in and impress LoveInterest Amy under Coop's tutelage. And that's just the ''major'' plotlines, all crammed into only [[ShortRunner eight episodes]], most of which are introduced in the first episode and few of which find any closure before the last. As a comedy, [[TropesAreNotBad it all works out fairly well]], with most scenes playing out as short vignettes or sketches that are enjoyable without much consideration for whether they do much to advance their associated plotline.
21st Dec '17 4:02:44 PM RedScharlach
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* The graphic novel ''Tricked'' bases its entire story around this trope; there are six lead characters and each has various levels of intersection with each other. It's spaced out well though, as each chapter switches it's lead, each lead follows a specific order, and there's no skipping a character (though each chapter may not be equal in length), until the very last chapter (and the epilogue) which is a free for all of the six stories smashing into each other.

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* The graphic novel ''Tricked'' bases its entire story around this trope; there are six lead characters and each has various levels of intersection with each other. It's spaced out well though, as each chapter switches it's its lead, each lead follows a specific order, and there's no skipping a character (though each chapter may not be equal in length), until the very last chapter (and the epilogue) which is a free for all of free-for-all with the six stories smashing into each other.



* The first ''Film/{{Transformers}}'' movie has this. Besides the Autobots vs Decepticons, there is the military plot, the Sam and Mikela teenage romance plot, the Sector 7 conspiracy plot, and the mostly pointless HollywoodHacking plot with the [[MsFanservice hot]] NSA agent.

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* The first ''Film/{{Transformers}}'' movie has this. Besides the Autobots vs Decepticons, there is the military plot, the Sam and Mikela Mikaela teenage romance plot, the Sector 7 conspiracy plot, and the mostly pointless HollywoodHacking plot with the [[MsFanservice hot]] NSA agent.



* ''Literature/TheWheelOfTime'': It started out juggling the threads well enough, but as the series went on, the unbelievably large amount of characters bogged it down to a snail's pace. Add in the SeasonalRot with Robert Jordan's growing focus on political maneuvering and CostumePorn, and it's a wonder when things happen. Book 10 deserves a special mention for being largely the reactions of every cast group to a single event. Book 10 is over 700 pages long... and the event in question occured in ''the previous book'', where it was the main plot of that novel so already dealt with in some detail. There's a reason fans hate it.

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* ''Literature/TheWheelOfTime'': It started out juggling the threads well enough, but as the series went on, the unbelievably large amount of characters bogged it down to a snail's pace. Add in the SeasonalRot with Robert Jordan's growing focus on political maneuvering and CostumePorn, and it's a wonder when things happen. Book 10 deserves a special mention for being largely the reactions of every cast group to a single event. Book 10 is over 700 pages long... and the event in question occured occurred in ''the previous book'', where it was the main plot of that novel so already dealt with in some detail. There's a reason fans hate it.



* Essentially anything Peter F. Hamilton writes, ''Literature/PandorasStar'' in particular. It is over 900 pages of seemingly unimportant plotlines and occasionally entire chapters of flavour text. Thankfully it's to set up the second, and much more action packed book in the series.

to:

* Essentially anything Peter F. Hamilton writes, ''Literature/PandorasStar'' in particular. It is over 900 pages of seemingly unimportant plotlines and occasionally entire chapters of flavour text. Thankfully it's to set up the second, and much more action packed action-packed book in the series.



* The Polish young reader book, ''"Cyryl, gdzie jesteś?"'' (Cyryl, Where Are You?) begins with three threads at once since chapter one, and blooms into as many as ''eight'' plot threads at once, sometimes jumping between them one sentence at a time. Also, two of the threads ost distant from the main plot are [[PaintingTheMedium marked with a different font style]]. When the characters from these two plot threads come together near the end of the book, their font styles briefly meet in a single paragraph.

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* The Polish young reader book, ''"Cyryl, gdzie jesteś?"'' (Cyryl, Where Are You?) begins with three threads at once since chapter one, and blooms into as many as ''eight'' plot threads at once, sometimes jumping between them one sentence at a time. Also, two of the threads ost most distant from the main plot are [[PaintingTheMedium marked with a different font style]]. When the characters from these two plot threads come together near the end of the book, their font styles briefly meet in a single paragraph.



** The format is such that you have multiple characters with powers dealing with the day to day implications and difficulties thereof. Their troubles can grow to be so isolated and insular it's a wonder they interact ''at all.'' Occasionally, these characters do meet and then go on their way due to a strange kind of "fate interconnectedness" [[YouAllShareMyStory (a bit of a show theme). ]]

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** The format is such that you have multiple characters with powers dealing with the day to day implications and difficulties thereof. Their troubles can grow to be so isolated and insular it's a wonder they interact ''at all.'' Occasionally, these characters do meet and then go on their way due to a strange kind of "fate interconnectedness" [[YouAllShareMyStory (a bit of a show theme). ]]



** Basically, when Heroes is good, you get TwoLinesNoWaiting, occasionally dipping into ThirdLineSomeWaiting. When it gets bad, it jumps into "everything happens at once and nothing makes sense." Basically, ThirdLineSomeWaiting is a tightrope that easily lets you fall into FourLinesAllWaiting.

to:

** Basically, when Heroes ''Heroes'' is good, you get TwoLinesNoWaiting, occasionally dipping into ThirdLineSomeWaiting. When it gets bad, it jumps into "everything happens at once and nothing makes sense." Basically, ThirdLineSomeWaiting is a tightrope that easily lets you fall into FourLinesAllWaiting.



* Subverted in ''Series/{{Farscape}}'' in its third season by splitting John Crichton into two people, and then sending each copy on a different ship with part of the crew. For much of the season, episodes alternated between the two crews, allowing the show to more manageably juggle episodic and arc plots. [[spoiler: Ironically, the copy of John Crichton involved in the more arc-oriented episodes was the one who ''didn't'' survive.]]

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* Subverted in ''Series/{{Farscape}}'' in its third season by splitting John Crichton into two people, and then sending each copy on a different ship with part of the crew. For much of the season, episodes alternated between the two crews, allowing the show to more manageably juggle episodic and arc plots. [[spoiler: Ironically, [[spoiler:Ironically, the copy of John Crichton involved in the more arc-oriented episodes was the one who ''didn't'' survive.]]



** As of the end of Season 4, the series is currently following the Lannisters and Tyrells at court in King's Landing, Stannis' court at Castle Black, Daenerys' court in Meereen, Tyrion and Varys bound across the sea, Jon and Sam with the Night's Watch, Sansa and Littlefinger in the Vale, Arya bound for Braavos, Bran and his companions with the three-eyed raven, Brienne and Podrick in the Riverlands, and Roose, Ramsay, and Reek at Winterfell. Naturally, the finale of Season 5 involved resolving or wiping out several of these ongoing plots in one episode.

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** As of By the end of Season 4, the series is currently following the Lannisters and Tyrells at court in King's Landing, Stannis' court at Castle Black, Daenerys' court in Meereen, Tyrion and Varys bound across the sea, Jon and Sam with the Night's Watch, Sansa and Littlefinger in the Vale, Arya bound for Braavos, Bran and his companions with the three-eyed raven, Brienne and Podrick in the Riverlands, and Roose, Ramsay, and Reek at Winterfell. Naturally, the finale of Season 5 involved resolving or wiping out several of these ongoing plots in one episode.



* Happens in the first season of ''Series/LukeCage'', where the ''four'' [[BigBadEnsemble main villains]]--Cottonmouth, Black Mariah, Shades, and Diamondback--all had their own plotlines that did not always directly affect Luke's. [[spoiler: Cottonmouth, seen as the most compelling of the villains, doesn't even die by Luke's hand, but is killed by Mariah]]. And Shades never even meets Luke in the entire season. Granted, this is arguably justified because all four of them are normal humans whereas Luke has SuperStrength and NighInvulnerability, so any direct fight would have ended very badly for them. This is the reason Diamondback's plot involved finding means to kill him.

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* Happens in the first season of ''Series/LukeCage'', where the ''four'' [[BigBadEnsemble main villains]]--Cottonmouth, Black Mariah, Shades, and Diamondback--all had their own plotlines that did not always directly affect Luke's. [[spoiler: Cottonmouth, seen as the most compelling of the villains, doesn't even die by Luke's hand, but is killed by Mariah]]. And Shades never even meets Luke in the entire season. Granted, this is arguably justified because all four of them are normal humans whereas Luke has SuperStrength and NighInvulnerability, so any direct fight would have ended very badly for them. This is the reason Diamondback's plot involved finding a means to kill him.



* ''ComicStrip/{{Doonesbury}}'' has been running with this trope for the last 30 years. It was originally focused on a group of college kids living together in a commune, and only occasionally strayed from that setting. But in the mid-80's, creator Garry Trudeau decided to abandon the SlidingTimescale and have the cast graduate. All of them moved to different parts of the country and took on different jobs and roles. Rather than abandon any of the characters, Trudeau continued to focus on ALL of them, switching between their various plotlines from week to week. As new characters were introduced, many of them would also strike out on their own and be given storylines. It's gotten to the point where a reader could follow the strip for years without having any idea what many of these characters have to do with each other. Lampshaded in one strip where Zonker asks why anyone would read this comic strip when "most 18th century Russian novels are more comprehensible."

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* ''ComicStrip/{{Doonesbury}}'' has been running with this trope for the last 30 years. It was originally focused on a group of college kids living together in a commune, and only occasionally strayed from that setting. But in the mid-80's, creator Garry Trudeau decided to abandon the SlidingTimescale and have the cast graduate. All of them moved to different parts of the country and took on different jobs and roles. Rather than abandon any of the characters, Trudeau continued to focus on ALL of them, switching between their various plotlines from week to week. As new characters were introduced, many of them would also strike out on their own and be given storylines. It's gotten to the point where a reader could follow the strip for years without having any idea what many of these characters have to do with each other. Lampshaded in one strip where Zonker asks why anyone would read this comic strip when "most 18th century 18th-century Russian novels are more comprehensible."



* ''Webcomic/SchlockMercenary'' finished an arc which was itself part of a bigger arc during which the Toughs were split into four commands; each command got it's own arc, and arcs after the first would occasionally have a caption stating where, temporally, these events were taking place relative to the event that ended the larger meta-arc. It took well over a year, and this is a ''daily comic''.

to:

* ''Webcomic/SchlockMercenary'' finished an arc which was itself part of a bigger arc during which the Toughs were split into four commands; each command got it's its own arc, and arcs after the first would occasionally have a caption stating where, temporally, these events were taking place relative to the event that ended the larger meta-arc. It took well over a year, and this is a ''daily comic''.



* The ''WesternAnimation/AmericanDad'' episode "Finances with Wolves" has Francine starting a muffin kiosk at the mall, Stan giving Klaus a human body, Hayley caught up in a group of hippies that want to tear down said mall, Steve and his friends seeing a scary werewolf movie, and Roger adopting a wolf that causes trouble for an unsuspecting Steve. However, despite having five or six seperate plot threads, the episode manages to juggling them by making them all highly interwoven. For example, the start of Hayley's story (land development drives the local wildlife away) causes a critical moment in Steve's story (Steve gets attacked by a wolf), which is heavily connected to Roger's story. Similarly, Klaus, Stan, and Francine ultimately all have the same story, but they begin at seperate points. Also, most of the stories resolve themselves in a single location.

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* The ''WesternAnimation/AmericanDad'' episode "Finances with Wolves" has Francine starting a muffin kiosk at the mall, Stan giving Klaus a human body, Hayley caught up in a group of hippies that want to tear down said mall, Steve and his friends seeing a scary werewolf movie, and Roger adopting a wolf that causes trouble for an unsuspecting Steve. However, despite having five or six seperate separate plot threads, the episode manages to juggling them by making them all highly interwoven. For example, the start of Hayley's story (land development drives the local wildlife away) causes a critical moment in Steve's story (Steve gets attacked by a wolf), which is heavily connected to Roger's story. Similarly, Klaus, Stan, and Francine ultimately all have the same story, but they begin at seperate separate points. Also, most of the stories resolve themselves in a single location.
29th Nov '17 9:50:55 PM Psyga315
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* ''WebAnimation/{{RWBY}}'' in Volume 4. Due to the events of Volume 3, the titular team has been separated and the show is dealing with the four in different plots - Ruby and the remains of Team JNPR trying to find Cinder to get back at her for the destruction of Vale, Weiss being stuck in her home in Atlas with her abusive father, Blake running away with Sun Wukong joining her, and Yang and her father Taiyang trying to get the former to get out of her depression.

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* ''WebAnimation/{{RWBY}}'' in Volume 4. Due to the events of Volume 3, the titular team has been separated and the show is dealing with the four in different plots - Ruby and the remains of Team JNPR trying to find Cinder to get back at her for the destruction of Vale, Weiss being stuck in her home in Atlas with her abusive father, Blake running away with Sun Wukong joining her, and Yang and her father Taiyang trying to get the former to get out of her depression. There are also two plotlines focusing on the villains and introducing a new character.
** Volume 5 ends up slowly but surely merging the plotlines together and by the halfway mark, only one plotline has yet to be connected to the overall plot.
2nd Nov '17 8:19:03 AM skotavatar
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Added DiffLines:

* ''Literature/DanceoftheButterfly'' presents several distinct plotlines, though they do all come together in the end.
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