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[ red_a02 ] Shuzhen – The first episode was a lot of fun, cos it had an interesting cocktail of sexual tension and smooth fight choreography. This episode is like the awkward aftermath...
27 Aquarius 13 18:13
[ vermilion_2 ] YAPX – I understand that most of your stories are dialogue-based and heavy on retorts and counter-retorts. This one felt unnecessarily circular. It starts with a cool premise: a killer/villain/vigilante uses Lent to swear off something that should be second nature to him (I suppose), and then talks about a story. The link between the two (giving up killing & the story) isn’t a 100% fit. Maybe instead of “let me tell you a story”, it could be “hey, you see I even passed a guy up for death today!” or equivalent. Something to drag Lorelei into the banter and the premise. // That’s my only complaint. I’m not a big fan of dialogue-based stories, but I can make a exception for this.
14 Aquarius 13 08:03
[ 130204 ] YAPX – Good pace, good characters, great dialogue. The thing I like best is a combination of the three: how you build up their pseudo-relationship through all that back-and-forth exchange. Somehow, you craft a unique, strange relationship: from any one point in the story, both of them are manipulative, victimised and hypocrites - though not all at once. // On word choices, I felt you could change the word “janitor” (“cleaner” or “uncle” would’ve given a different, but more acute local flavour to it). Mostly because, it’s connotes an added level of difference through: class. Whether or not you intended it, by portraying the “janitor” and “student” you bring out the fact that he’s stuck there socially in all sense of the word. It made the part where he says he reads books during weekends completely out-of-context and weird. // Also, there’s too much “sliding” in and out of the room. Not sure if that’s intentional repetition, or just a lack of other words. // I thought that the girl’s own background is pretty compelling. Even after everything, I can’t tell if she’s speaking the truth. Because I’m all for unreliable narrators and characters, I can still find her well-thought out. But other readers might lose patience or wonder at her sudden change of heart at the final moment.
04 Aquarius 13 08:48
Six Lives is about six Singaporean folk who’d at some point learn that “communicating is more than just about being understood”, or something thus.
It’s pretty well done, which I’m personally thankful for. Here’s a quick summary of the characters. I’ve forgotten their names, so I made some up.
Serena is the Girl, and she’s getting married to Dan. She gave up her expensive education to teach tuition and bake. The character is based on someone who gave up their expensive education to work in a design house.
Dan is a banker with a Dark Secret. He likes to drive fast cars. Unlike the alpha male that one would expect from a banker who likes to drive fast cars, his blog reads like a lovelorn little girl’s (quote “that is her love talking”). Possibly, his Dark Secret is that he is emo and likes to cut himself.
Someone who gave up on the Singapore Dream and follows her own path, and an investment banker. Very relatable characters. Fortunately, there is –
Ah Beng, the token Singlish guy, who writes in Singlish but uses proper capitalisation, so we’re talking Colin Goh Singlish, not STOMP! Singlish. He is Dan’s brudder. They drive fast cars together. Poor Ah Beng wants a promotion, but that’d mean he’d have to communicate with Ang Mos – Oh noes! – and he feels sad because, unlike Colin Goh, he cannot bring himself to not use Singlish when typing, even though he is competent with grammar. He is, for example, more readable than this guy.
Beng represents all of us, the poor Singlish people who will never be able to progress in the world because our English is teh suxxorz. We feel his pain. We, too, are constantly denied opportunities to advance in our careers because we cannot speak proper English, and the Chinese and Indians cannot speak Singlish.
Blair is Serena’s BFF. She is a total bitch. She corrected poor Ah Beng when he said “cut queue”. She is that atas girl who will never find a boyfriend because she thinks she’s all that. She reeks of desperate loneliness. Her blog post is something poetic about a thunderstorm. So yeah, poseur bitch.
Jenny is Serena’s sister, a fresh grad who couldn’t get a job. She’s worried about it. Totally shooting the campaign in the foot, she is an English grad (true to life, though).
I’m assuming the last guy is the Token Minority (unless Dan’s Dark Secret is that he’s the Token Minority). His name is Norman, so he could be the Token Green Goblin. Whatever he is, he’ll hook up with Jenny.
Something like that.
I like the concept. The main story can be viewed on one page, and you can visit individual blogs (with About Me pages even) or follow Twitter streams if you want more. That’s fun; like an ARG, but without the commitment an ARG demands.
The execution doesn’t do it for me. The first “conversation” (in a comment thread) has Serena public announcing she is setting up a secret blog that Dan is not allowed to read, and Dan then setting up a retaliatory secret blog. I know the theme is “what we have here is a failure to communicate”, but gosh, what kind of person does that? Nyah nyah, I know something you don’t.
Also, she could be pregnant, but she won’t talk to Dan about it. She also doesn’t want to say why she wants to bring the wedding forward. Dan is, of course, perfectly fine with this. Perfectly fine for your girlfriend to make plans for you without even an explanation.
So, to summarise –
Pussy-whipped Emo Boy with Dark Secret, Girl who won’t communicate, Girl’s sister, Girl’s Total Bitch BFF, Emo Boy’s BFF and Mysterious Guy.
624 words / 1660
“All human actions are equivalent… and… all are on principle doomed to failure.”
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