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Assume, in a hypothetical work, that the author has always intended for a particular twist to happen, but that the twist was set up poorly and had little to no buildup. Is this still a Shocking Swerve, or is it a different trope?
Since this trope is about spoilers and plot twists, should we just unmark all spoilers?
A plot twist that makes no sense given what was established by the narrative? Why is this on the subjective tab? This isn't an audience reaction, it can't be an audience reaction when it was named by a person on a show where it happened! Don't try to play the negativity card either, the only reason this is considered a "bad" trope is because Vince Russo overused it in two national promotions, WCW and TNA.
It can be viewed positively too. The Shield turning on The Authority made little sense and was only done to make fans happy. Making fans unhappy being the only reason the Shield existed, but it was a shocking swerve that made fans happy. Whether anyone likes it or not is the audience reaction, not the swerve itself. Similarly, a shocking swerve can make sense later down the road when given viewers are given new information, such as when Jimmy Jacobs sided with Kevin Steen after ROH Showdown In The Sun. Not sure anyone liked that one, but the ROH bots had to agree Jim Cornette and Delirious pulled it off better than Russo.
As a matter of fact, this seems like the typical Vince Russo blame shifting. People reacted negatively to his shocking swerve? Well shocking swerve is subjective, even though Tony Schiavone is confirming these are indeed shocking swerves every other week. Every criticism of Vince Russo as a writer who abused a trope loses less value because shocking swerves are not really tropes a writer uses, just fan reactions, all evidence to the contrary.
Whether it "makes no sense" can lead to fan debates. That's why it's YMMV.
I just think the trope needs a better name
Also removed the Wizards First Rule example:
This isn't a Shocking Swerve. It's not even a twist. It's just bringing in a new villain and dealing with the plot it added. It's like saying that Boba Fett and the bounty hunters are a twist.
Removed the following from the M. Night Shamalan example:
Neither of these are shocking swerves. Signs made it obvious from early in the film that the aliens were real, foreshadowed the weakness, and neither of these are impossible or impractical from what was established (also the wife isn't psychic, but rather implied to be passing on the Word of God)
In the Village, the twist has some subtle foreshadowing and while might be somewhat out of the blue, definitely fits the story so far.
I haven't seen Happening so I'm not sure about that one.
Similar to the Mintberry Crunch example, wasn't Who Shot Mr. Burns a parody of this tendency?
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