Marie D. Suesse and the Mystery New Age! starts as a clichéd Mary Sue fic with only one exception: the Lemony Narrator
is aware of Common Mary Sue Traits
. However, TMNA! is not a parody but a deconstruction of Mary Sue fanfics. Is it really what it claims to be? I answer to that later.
TMNA! starts as a typical parody. The ironically named main character Marie "Mar" D. Suesse starts as an ordinary girl who falls in OP world, eats a Devil Fruit and meets obvious Mary Sue characters. (Edit: A re-writing clears my main complaints about the story's beginning and its aimlessness.) After the unoriginal premise is over, the plot kick starts and the reader realizes the real genre of the story: mystery / suspense.
I’m not kidding you. The reader is as confused as Mar is when she stumbles onto pieces of an incomplete puzzle shortly summarised as WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON? The story becomes surprising dark, filled with well-written action and suspenseful scenes. When the final reveal comes, I need to facedesk because of my own stupidity since suddenly all foreshadowing and tiny hints make sense. The ending is written beautifully and even the Genre Savvy Lemony Narrator
feels like a snarky friend.
Mar is a good Action Survivor
even though she is
a sixteen year old teenage girl. However, her so called crew is much more interesting. The reader is soon introduced to amazing OC characters: a Bunny Ears Lawyer
, a Dark Action Girl
, a Badass Abnormal
and a Badass Normal
Phalanx is a great writer but her narrative choice is a Broken Base
. Narrator’s snarky remarks make an emotional mood whip lashes and genre shifts from drama to parody and back.
The Mystery New Age is a well written fanfic despite its poor start and unconventional writing style. The story started as a writing challenge of sorts and bloomed into a plot-driven mystery. But does it succeed in its goal to deconstruct Mary Sue stories? Hell yes! I don't want to spoil anything so let's just say that even if a character has a multitude of Common Mary Sue Traits
, she can be an interesting, sympathetic and well-written, round character.
I recommend TMNA! to the genre savvy fans of action, drama and suspense. 9/10.
(Edit: before the re-writing 8/10.)