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where bad!fic is torn to little tiny pieces
"Endless Waltz" by lady-mobscene (chapter 1) 
17th-Jun-2006 09:07 pm
「stock」★ your aura captivates me。

Endless Waltz by lady-mobscene reviews
zutara Katara, Zuko, Sokka, and Sokka have made a band...Zuko is the insomniac industrial goth guitarist and Katara is the vocalist a cross between Fall Out Boy and Marilyn Manson WOOO!
Avatar: Last Airbender - Fiction Rated: M - English - Drama/Romance - Chapters: 1 - Words: 267 - Reviews: 5 - Updated: 4-2-06 - Published: 4-2-06

There are so many things wrong with just the appearance of that fanfic that I don't even know where to start.

The Summary
There is only one substantial sentence in that summary: "Katara, Zuko, Sokka, and Sokka have made a band...".  And she had Sokka's name in there twice, instead of one of them being Aang!  Just comes to show how much time she put into the summary.  As for the rest of it, there's nothing really substantial, and it just seems to be her fangirling over some bands, which the reader may or may not know about.

Oh, and I'm dying to know what a cross between Fall Out Boy and Marilyn Manson sounds like. 

Rating: - I can't deny the fact that it caught my attention.

The Plot
Now, I can't deny the fact that band!fics appeal to me.  In fact, I have an unfinished one on my other account.  But, see, the thing is, it has to be interesting.  It has to be well-developed.  It has to be believable.

And this?

This is not.

There is no introduction.  None, nil, nada, zilch.  The fanfic opens with this:
"We need a name for our band," Sokka said from behind his drum kit his knee still jerking on the kickdrum. Aang plopped himself down on the ground and stared at his bass.
Uhm... what?  Yeah, thanks for telling us where the characters are, and thanks for telling us what time period this is set in, and if it's A/U or not!  For all I know, our beloved Avatar characters are floating around in white space, while Sokka's jerking off his knee on the kickdrum.  And Aang just comes out of nowhere to plop down next to Sokka.

Then, there is this atrocious paragraph:
"Is it just me...or is Zuko starting to look more and more like Mr. Manson everyday?" Aang said. Everybody stopped to look at Zuko. His black hair, covered the scarred part of his face. His nails were black. He replaced all his Fire Nation clothes for black platform boots and black clothes from the 30's and 40's.
There are so many things wrong with that paragraph that I don't even know where to begin.  First off, you are telling us that Zuko & co. are currently in OUR universe by alluding to "Mr. Manson", or Marilyn Manson.  Okay, I can deal with that.  THEN, you say that Zuko had replaced his "Fire Nation clothes" for a more goth, industrial outfit.  That means that Zuko & co. are still in the Avatar universe.  Uhm, WHAT?!  Really, you don't NEED to link back to the Avatar universe here.  Just say what he was dressed in now!  The reader can do his or her own comparing.

Finally, your descriptions really don't describe an "industrial goth".  Everything except for the platform boots is decidedly EMO, as you will see from my icon, which I made as a joke—and your description matches it perfectly, I'm sad to say.

Plus, the industrial/Goth movement didn't even begin until the 1980's.  In the 1930's and the 1940's, everyone was still conservative-as-pie.

So anyway, Zuko & co. then decide on a band name—Endless Waltz (someone's original *coughGundamWingcough*)—and Zuko, needing to—I quote—"redo [his] nail varnish", decides to go upstairs to his bedroom, implying that the rest of the band is in the garage, or in some other recording room in his house.  Katara then calls and asks if she can come over.

Isn't she already over?  I mean, you never said that they left, so it's automatically assumed that they are still twanging away in Zuko's garage, while he's upstairs falling asleep instead of redoing his "nail varnish".

Rating: - I would've given you five s if it weren't for the fact that your fic is, at least, something different from the rest of FF.Net.  But still—GET YOUR STINKIN' FACTS STRAIGHT.  If, in 267 words, you manage to screw up the details of your own fic, how do you even believe that people would be WILLING to read more, if they aren't confused as hell already?!

I think all my sentiments can be summed up in one single image, and it is this:

In 267 words, you manage to completely DESTROY some of the greatest characters that I have ever seen.
  • Katara has been transformed into some psychopathic, homocidal, easily-irritated bitch who threatens to rip out her brother's "knee joint" if he doesn't stop kicking the drums and who punches Aang—AANG!—for videotaping her.
  • Zuko is some shallow IDIOT who apparently has the memory of a goldfish, as he goes upstairs to redo his nails, then falls asleep instead.  OH WAIT.  Saying that is an insult to goldfish.  I'm sorry, goldfish.  Plus, Zuko has now begun answering the telephone with the greeting, I quote, "Yellow."

    And I thought it couldn't get any worse.
  • Sokka is some flat, two-dimensional character whose only purpose in the fic is to jerk off his knee to piss off Katara.  He can't stop because it "feels so good".  And that, pretty much, sums up Sokka's whole existence in this chapter.  Please, just stop.
  • Aang, I admit, does retain a little of his playfulness, in that he's videotaping Katara for no reason at all (nevermind where the videocamera even CAME from).  And he decides to "chimm" a suggestion for a name—"the Avatar State".  His sole purpose appears to be to draw the reader's focus to Zuko's transformation into some bad, cheap imitation of Goth (Dear Diary: Mood: Apathetic).
Please, if your SOLE PURPOSE of writing this fic is to twist the Avatar characters into some cheap Goths, then please, go elsewhere.  Make up YOUR OWN characters that look exactly like the Avatar characters and name them names like "Zooko" and "Aeng" and "Kutara" and "Socka".  If you REALLY want to use the original characters from Avatar, then please, respect their personalities, and keep them in character.  Otherwise, what's the point?!

Rating: - I won't even BEGIN to question why Zuko's peacefully there, other than for the twisted, nefarious purposes of the author.

Spelling: - Pretty good, except for the fact that Aang "chimmed" in an answer.

Grammar: - There's this one dot, you know, called the "period", and it's quite useful for ending sentences.  And he likes the attention.  SO USE THE PERIOD.  PUNCTUATION MARKS ARE YOUR FRIENDS.

Style: - Your only redeeming factor is the fact that this fic is still readable.  You seriously need to work on descriptions.  I would like to know where the characters are, what the atmosphere of the place is, and the expression on everyone's faces, including the one on Zuko's when "Ding Dong...Zuko got himself an idea."  And you really need to work on your transitions; don't just play with the characters as if they're dress-up dolls for you to play with, acting out your fantasies.  Now that you've posted your fic online, for everyone to read, you are not only writing to satisfy yourself, but to satisfy your readers, as well.  So respect them, and give them the privelege to know what the heck's going on.  Really, I've seen 100-word drabbles with more detail than this.

Overall Verdict
I am honestly interested in the idea of the fanfic, in that, if you tagged "A/U" in this somewhere, it would be just the teensiest bit better.  In the hands of a better author, I would have been interested in why Zuko came to join the other three, how the four of them develop their characters, and the juicy scandal that always accompanies bands.

But with the idea in your hands?

Please, just stop.

18th-Jun-2006 10:59 pm (UTC)
I could take that concept and write it better. Sweet gods that sounds terrible and you wasted how much of your day reading it? Wow, you are braver then I. Heck I would nto have made it past the bad characterizations.

Soldier on.

Blessed be.
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