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Old 02-21-2017, 02:02 PM   #301
Krutch
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I submitted my pilot "Undertow" to Black List. I'll post the results when they come back. I'm a little torn about this one. I have a feeling they're going to tear it a new one but on the other hand, Undertow is exactly the kind of show I feel like I'm designed to write for. It's in the same vein as Buffy and Smallville with more of an X-Files vibe on the horror.

So, we'll have to see how it goes. Fingers crossed for good feedback.

(I also submitted to an agency. Hoping that goes well, too)
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Old 02-28-2017, 06:25 AM   #302
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Got my first critique on Undertow. It's not as bad as I was dreading but I was still hoping for a little bit better. This is my baby, after all I'll post it below to anyone curious.

=====


Strengths
This is an incredibly unique world and premise for a pilot, and Astrid is a layered, young female protagonist. One of the coolest things going for the script is how we see Astrid go from a thieving vagabond in the beginning to a more humbled and good-willed young woman. Obviously she also gains some very interesting superpowers, but the parallel arc surrounding her emotional growth is tracked very well. The relationship that Astrid has with Sam is endearing. It's a perfect set up, for Sam's character, that we know he lost a daughter (because we saw it happen). Astrid fills a void that is missing in his life, and their interactions always feel organic and full of tension, yet containing some mutual respect. The plot takes a thoughtful turn when we see Odell swoop into Sam's life as well. This idea of having both Sam and Odell influencing this orphaned, now special, young girl is an exciting bit of drama to add to the premise. The sci-fi/fantasy aspects to this project don't come off as derivative within the genre whatsoever. Travis is a creepy antagonist, and definitely keeps the audience on their toes, across each act, as it's never that predictable that he would ever be able to be defeated. The little twist with Emma, when we get the hint of the parasite entering her, is an impactful subplot/cliff hanger to open up.

Weaknesses
The teaser is pretty heavy handed right now, and could use for some shortening. As it is, this is a bit of a slow paced pilot, and adjusting the long teaser, and cutting back on some of the overwritten conversations will speed up the story, and make it come off as more suspenseful and polished. Cutting a few pages in length shouldn't be too difficult as there is room to trim from the teaser, in particular. Consider showing less of these characters, in the past, before the tsunami, and looking for a more efficient way to develop their characters early on. All of the opening in the past, and then the entire addition of the Travis versus Chad and Vikki sequence, takes too long to get through. It would be interesting to get a more substantiated subplot out of Sam. His relationship to Astrid opens up some great potential for the series, but getting to know his character a little more, and what some of his motivations and personality traits are, would give the audience more to engage with. The twists at the end with Odell knowing more than we thought works, but his character is also coming off as pretty one noted. Try to go in and show him interacting with more characters (than there already are) in this world, to improve his subplot and set up for the finale even better.

Prospects
This is an impressive pilot, due to the unique premise and the overall natural screenwriting ability when it comes to character development and dialogue. The plot, in the 1st-final acts is paced pretty well, but the teaser is tedious in its current state. It would be interesting to see even more of the setting shown in this pilot. Having the characters interact with more people in the town, outside of their group, to show the overall state of the town, would be interesting to see. The town is such a major mystery and like the bible notes, also works as a character in itself. With that in mind, dive further into the development of the setting to give an even clearer understanding for how this place looks and feels. The budget would need to be pretty big to pull this off, but it does a great job of combining the superhero, drama, and sci-fi genres. At the very least, with some tweaks to the weaknesses, this script should prove to be a strong writing sample.

=====

I still have another review coming at some point, so when I get that back, I'll post it here as well.

Thinking about the weaknesses listed here... I kind of agree. I always knew the Teaser was a bit overstuffed; I just thought I managed it as well as I could have. Maybe getting rid of Gavin's scenes would help pick up the pace. I could get rid of Odell's as well but I feel like he's too important to the story to just make it about Sam exclusively. I also wanted the time-jump to the present to establish the teen tone of the story since there's none of that going on in the pre-tsunami scenes.

Still... they make some good points. Hmm.

Fingers crossed for a better review next time.
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Old 02-28-2017, 05:56 PM   #303
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Small update: An anonymous industry reader decided to read and rate Undertow, putting it in the top ten screenplays of the month, which lands it on the front page. Huzzah me...!

The other paid reading just downloaded it today, so I should probably get my next review within the week.
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Old 03-03-2017, 02:36 PM   #304
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Aaaand my second review is in, which doesn't help me, since it pretty much the exact opposite review of the last one. Great

=====


Strengths
The pilot introduces a stimulating concept centered around the experience of a young outsider as she acclimates to a strange, coastal community and the mysteries that seem to be drawn to the shore. The cast is diverse and large, providing ample narrative potential for future episodes and deeper exploration into the pilot's offbeat location. The world itself is original and strikingly unafraid of combining genres in an interesting, surprising way: from mystery to fantasy, from horror to superpowers, the premise prides itself on an expansive world capable of supporting numerous realities.

Weaknesses
The pilot is off to a solid start but requires further development before it will jump off the page as a successful product. Most notably, the script is overwritten and struggles to maintain momentum under the weight of unnecessary descriptive sections and scenes that carry on long past their usefulness. Taking a pass to streamline the pilot, focusing on maintaining only that which clearly establishes the world, characters, or central plot, will better help distill the writer's intention. Overall, the characters are underdeveloped. Because of the large ensemble and the mysterious nature of the plot, an editing pass to ensure characters are memorable and compelling will help sustain audience interest.

Prospects
This project has much potential after a few creative tweaks are ironed out. As mentioned above, the writer consciously creates a diverse world led by a strong, young female protagonist. The budget needed to produce this show could be expected to hover high above average, taking into account the various special effects demanded by the premise. This project would do well to target Streaming Platforms like Netflix.


=====

This feedback doesn't help me at all. Now I'm frustrated.

Awesome kick off to a Friday night
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Old 03-12-2017, 08:50 PM   #305
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So I FINALLY finished up the new chapter of Love Is Shell, which was a monster to write. Climaxes are always tough, and fight scenes are hard enough even when it's NOT the "ultimate showdown" of the story. Hopefully I managed to make it exciting enough and threw in enough surprises that it won't be too predictable or bland.

Here's a link for those interested:

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/9377718/32/Love-Is-Shell
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Old 03-14-2017, 03:34 PM   #306
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I'm starting to read the latest chapter and it's awesome so far, Duckie, though I haven't even finished it yet and it may take me some time to do so. But it's good so far.

I FINALLY have Game of Lies fully outlined so all I have to do is type chapters up and post them. I have seven up so far and hope to get more up as time and other stories permit as I have others I want to work on as well. I am also in the process of doing a fourth story in the series called After the Lies that takes place five years after Game of Lies ends so I can't wait to get that up and running. Still working on it though.
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Old 05-03-2017, 09:04 AM   #307
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So we've had The Ones That Got Away in the running over at Dimension Films and it finally just fell through. Honestly, Dimension was kind of the Hail Mary pass so just to see it make it all the way to the head offices and be in talks with them the past few weeks has been awesome. The fact they were seriously considering it for a theatrical release shows it can likely sell elsewhere. We've reached out to a name director we know who has promised to take a look at it next month when he's out of post production. In the meantime, the rights have reverted back to us, so we're playing the pitching game again. Yaaaaay.

Also about 55 pages into my next screenplay, Ethan and the Eight Legs. I'm writing this one just for myself though; have zero plans on ever filming it. Just something to keep my mind creatively active.

How's everyone else doing?
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Old 05-03-2017, 12:17 PM   #308
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Going well! Just posted the next chapter of Love Is Shell on Sunday. It was another from Don's POV, where he has a heart-to-heart with Mikey on the Astral plane. Their issues with each other finally get resolved, leaving Leo as the only one left with a rift to mend with Mikey. I'm already started on the last(?) chapter before the epilog. But I have a second tale in the works, this time featuring Bishop, the Mutanimals, and some faces both new and old. (Hint- "Lady Shredder" makes her debut!!) Someone is out to destroy the Hamato clan in the name of vengence- this time PUBLICLY!!
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Old 08-05-2017, 09:38 PM   #309
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Okay I have a problem. I am trying to introduce my version of the Mutanimals for the chapter I am working on, and I need some input. I have Hob and Rockwell so far; Slash and Leatherhead were already introduced earlier and will join them later. But I need four mutants that I can add to the group. I have Alopex, Sally, Herman, Mondo, and Man-Ray as possible additions. Does anyone have any other suggestions or ideas which of the ones name I should go with? Mona Lisa is already joining the turtle clan (as Raph's mate) so I'm not sure if Alopex would fit the direction of the story but I DO want at least one more female mutant. I just don't plan on having her in a relationship with Raph as seems to be the norm. This version of the Mutanimals will be a bit like the IDW version in their outlook but also sort of a "hero" team like in Nick. Help! I'm wracking my brain on who to use!!
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Old 08-06-2017, 12:39 AM   #310
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MsMarvelDuckie View Post
Okay I have a problem. I am trying to introduce my version of the Mutanimals for the chapter I am working on, and I need some input. I have Hob and Rockwell so far; Slash and Leatherhead were already introduced earlier and will join them later. But I need four mutants that I can add to the group. I have Alopex, Sally, Herman, Mondo, and Man-Ray as possible additions. Does anyone have any other suggestions or ideas which of the ones name I should go with? Mona Lisa is already joining the turtle clan (as Raph's mate) so I'm not sure if Alopex would fit the direction of the story but I DO want at least one more female mutant. I just don't plan on having her in a relationship with Raph as seems to be the norm. This version of the Mutanimals will be a bit like the IDW version in their outlook but also sort of a "hero" team like in Nick. Help! I'm wracking my brain on who to use!!
If all you want is a female mutant there are a couple options. You could usd Koya, but seeing as how she's mostly a villain it might not work. There's also Mezcaal, future Raph's wife from Archie. She's kind of a blank slate, so you could use her for whatever you have in mind. Then there's Venus, but I'm not sure you'd want to use her.

Other mutants you could use are Ace Duck, Muckman, classic members: Mondo Gecko, Dreadmon, Jagwar (you could also use the new female version of him), and Wingnut/Screwloose, just to name a few.
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Old 08-06-2017, 03:08 PM   #311
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Hmm. Well I actually need four mutants- for a scene where the turtles have just (spoiler alert!) killed Saki and are basically ransacking the Technodrome. As I said I want at least one to be female- I don't really know enough about Jagwar or Mezcal to have any clue where they might fit in. I already have two cats, with Hob in the Mutanimals and eventually Tiger Claw as an enemy. Sally I can at least get a feel for, but I think I'm leaning toward Alopex in spite of the potential for fan shipping.
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Old 08-08-2017, 09:40 PM   #312
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Okay, need some feedback before I go all-in here. For the scene I'm doing, which involves Leo, Leatherhead, and Mikey's "girlfriend" finding a lab full of mutants Shredder had created (with Tokka, Rahzar, and Slash tagging along after learning of their "boss"'s death- I'm using the TMNT II versions of Tokka and Rahzar as being very young) and so far I have Hob, Rockwell, and I've decided on Alopex as a third- mainly because I had already hinted at her in an earlier scene with Shredder commenting on turning the OC into a fox. Still need three more mutants in the lab, so how do Mondo, Herman and Koya sound? After thinking on it, Koya could make an interesting addition, replacing Pete as aerial support, especially if I tweak her background.
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Old 08-09-2017, 06:13 PM   #313
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I've never heard of Koya, but I think that would work if you want to use her as an addition because it would give some variety in using familiar faces and not so familiar faces to the group.

As for my muses, they just haven't been on par as of late and I'm just not in the mood to write at the moment though I know I have to get the latest chapter of Tales of a Pizza Delivery Boy up soon in case there's a new episode on Sunday. I blame it on real life and not being able to read stories for the time being due to that video thing on FF. So frustrating! It will come back to me though. I know it will as I already have an idea for the latest Tales chapter. I just have to get the motivation to write it.
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Old 08-09-2017, 07:14 PM   #314
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She is the falcon henchmutant from IDW. One of Shredder's followers along with the hammerhead shark Bludgeon. But I was thinking that with few adjustmenta to her background she could be pretty cool as a Mutanimal.
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Old 08-09-2017, 08:05 PM   #315
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Duckie helped me a little bit with this issue, but I've run into another.

I'm working an Obligado fanfiction where he helps a linguist translate an ancient Utrom text that will potentially decide the existence of a leader, who is in aggressive debate on if he's real or mythical.

It's all an excuse for them to explore Utrominion, but there's one big problem I have:

Why would an archaeologist be attending a linguist on something that should be all on her? And then there's little filler issues I'm having trouble with as well. I have ideas for locations, but having a reason for them being there isn't doing well for me.
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Old 08-09-2017, 08:18 PM   #316
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Still wrestling with that one? I can relate. Between the current scene grinding to a halt, and the next story being largely dependant on the characters I introduce here, I am a bit stuck myself.

I think an archeologist helping makes sense, as most archeologists also study anient languages of the cultures they study in their career. An Egyptologist for instance would need to be able to read the hieroglyphs so having him there could help just by having a second set of eyes to help translate.
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Old 08-09-2017, 08:33 PM   #317
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But I don't think they'd be travelling with the linguist to the nearest speakers of the language they're trying to translate. The only reason I can come up with is that Nalmar would either invite him along, or he just wants to meet the Cavern Utroms for the first time, or maybe even both.

Then there's the issue of actually building their relationship to its peak, especially with their difference in age.
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Old 08-09-2017, 10:34 PM   #318
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Hmm. I like both reasons for having him along. Maybe she invites him with meeting them as her "hook"? And as for the age difference, maybe she could see him as someone she admires/secretly has feelings for and that could be her "real" reason for inviting him to begin with? Perhaps she sees him as an older and wiser male mentor figure and a more experienced companion. If he is largely unaware of her feelings, she might use the trip as a means to get closer while he tries to figure out why she asked him to come. Just a thought anyway. But it could add a lot of emotional depth for both.
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Old 08-09-2017, 10:41 PM   #319
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Well, they would have literally just met when they start the trip, and it's definitely something I want to build over time. She even has a one-night stand with someone at some point, but I'm not sure how that location fits in the story at this point, since they're not collecting parts of a broken tablet anymore.
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Old 08-10-2017, 04:08 AM   #320
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PM me with more details; maybe I can offer some ideas.
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