Moving on from the back and forth, I concur that Largo's rewrite is considerably better than the original. I would be glad with either a variation of it (preferably containing an added description of what crimes Bateman claims to have committed) or the rewrite I attempted going on the page. Either one is, I feel, a significant improvement and will not encourage others to post bad examples. The link to Unreliable Narrator
in the writeup that Largo did is key, as I think it'll make it clear that the problem is whether we can trust Bateman, rather than if he's heinous enough, etc.
Anyway, I'm going to try and go through some more literature examples over the course of this week (though regretfully my schedule is tightening up). If some more people wanted to weigh in on the Millennium Trilogy
and any of the others I've already posted about that'd be great, as I've only gotten one or two opinions so far.
EDIT: Found one already.
"In Crime and Punishment, another novel by Dostoyevsky, Svidrigailov has few if any redeeming qualities, seeing how he tries to rape Dunya, among other things. Luzhin almost looks nice in comparison to him(although completely and unambiguously lacking in redeeming qualities). He does have a Pet the Dog moment, when he leaves his money to Sonya - and then blows his brains out with a revolver."
Let me count the problems here. Only one crime is mentioned, with no context for how bad that is by the setting's standards. There's a comparison to another character, who also isn't described (meaning the comparison is useless), and there's a comment about Pet the Dog
, though whether it's meant to be attached to Luzhin or Svidrigailov I do not know. Is anyone going to be real sad if I axe this one quickly?
EDIT: I think I mentioned before that someone needed to look at the Honor Harrington series examples. Since They're right beneath that last one I posted, I think I'll just put them up here.
"* In Honor Harrington
, David Weber
does Even Evil Has Standards
very well, with honorable enemies who put Honor Before Reason
and really aren't that bad. However there are some exceptions:
: I think we've had quite enough of those kind of trials. Goodbye, Citizen Chairman.
- Lord Pavel Young is a self-entitled, cowardly rapist who despises the heroine for getting ahead by being heroic (despite being low-born). It's implied that his father was the same - and his grandfather was worse. He does, however, receive a Karmic Death at the hands of the heroine.
- Still, the unrivaled position of top Complete Monster of Honorverse goes to a one-book character: Andre Warnecke from Honor among Enemies. He is a revolutionary from the Chalice Cluster of Silesian Confederacy. A Smug Snake as well as a Complete Monster, he did not have any of the justifications of others. Nuking a city? Saint Just did that to save his ass, cold-blooded as it may be. Warnecke did that to prove a point. Torturing prisoners and raping women? Masadans were religious fanatics who did this to POWs. Warnecke's men did that to the civilians of the world he took over, who had no defence, and the crews of the defenceless merchant ships they captured, for entertainment. By the end of his part, you loathe him so much that him getting his comeuppance at Honor's hands and his hanging by the citizens of Sidemore does not even begin to soothe your rage."
First of all, the entries for Saint-Just (nice Meaningful Name
by the by) and Lord Pavel are both pretty weak, listing only a few crimes and giving no context. Secondly, they don't sound like much compared to our man Warnecke. Even his entry, though, has problems, as it's written in the tone of "and he's SO much more EVIL! than anyone else." Is anyone here actually familiar with the series? Because I'm out at sea here.
From a Brandon Sanderson
novel we have:
, there's Tonk Fah, who has a running gag of going through pets at a phenomenal rate - until we learn the reason for that is: he can't keep himself from torturing any animal that comes into his possession to death. Brandon Sanderson has explicitly confirmed him as a genuine sociopath."
Relying on Word of God
is bad, as is the fact that he apparently only kills animals. On a sidenote, the start of Sanderson's entry goes on about how he normally writes more complex antivillains
. Seeing as that's just going to encourage the Anti-Villain
or Complete Monster
dichotomy we've been trying to ditch, I'm altering that to say "complex villains with understandable motivations."
"Krait, the Psycho for Hire from Koontz's The Good Guy
, counts as well. The scenes narrated from his point of view actually make him more nightmarish."
One line, no context. Someone also needs to take a look at the entry for Victor Helios from Koontz's Frankenstein
series, because the entry is over long, nattery, and argues with itself. He qualifies from the sounds of things, but it could read a lot better.
"Nefarian Serpine, from the Skulduggery Pleasant series of books. Geez, where to begin with this guy? He was The Dragon of an evil wizard who started a war to revive Eldritch Abominations, and he killed the protagonist's family then tortured him to death. However, after the guy somehow manages to come back to life and leads his side of the war to victory, Serpine double-crosses his old buddies by becoming The Mole and selling everyone out to get his own ass out of the fire. This, just so, many years later, he can get his hands on a super-powerful MacGuffin
to start everything from scratch and kill everyone who even looks at him funny. It doesn't help that he only uses said MacGuffin
on real powerful people because it kills them very fast and painlessly, while he prefers to kill everyone else in the most slow and painful way possible.
- Serpine looks like The Messiah when you compare him to the Faceless Ones though..."
Anyone familiar with this book/series? Are the Faceless Ones worse? And if so, are they worse enough to cut Serpine? Or should we just be cutting the one throwaway line about the Faceless Ones since again, one line, no context?
Seriously the number of one-line entries on this page is bad. Can we at least agree to cut all one line entries?
edited 30th Sep '12 5:21:40 PM by AmbarSonofDeshar