1.Zuko is not afraid to fight.Draco runs away every time he sees danger in front of him.
2.Zuko became a capable firebender because his uncle taught him well.Draco got all the good marks at Hogwarts because he was Snape's favourite.
3.Zuko's girlfriend,Mai,is definitely cooler than Pancy Parkinson.
4.Zuko is capable of redemtion.Draco is not(those who think he is are really mad ficwriters).
5.Zuko treats his friends as equals.Draco thinks of his friends as of his servants.
6.Zuko can fight without bending(by using swords).Draco can only run away if he doesn't have a wand.
7.Zuko's dad is the №1 baddie in the story.Draco's dad is just the same cowardly nobleman as his son.
8.In the beginning,Zuko is an uncertain person with a struggle in his soul,while Draco is just a proud,cowardly and bratty(in a lack of a better word) aristocrat.In the end,Zuko is an ex-villain,who found peace after becoming good,while Draco is still a proud,cowardly and bratty aristocrat.
9.Zuko foollows his heart.Draco follows his fears.
10.In the end of A:TLA,Zuko becomes a Fire Lord.In the end of HP,Draco is still a proud,cowardly,bratty aristocratic ferret.
I know this thing trolls Draco fans,but forgive me,I'm just telling my opinion. I got the idea when I had a conversation with ,and we both agreed Zuko from Avatar:The Last Airbender is more badass than Draco Malfoy from Harry Potter.And then I realised I want to explain why. So,both chars are really popular among the female half,but actually,if I had to choose between Zuko and Draco,I'd rather prefer Zuko.Why?Because unlike Draco,he has some good in him(yes,unlike many girls,I like good guys),and he is capable to redeem.You say Draco is also capable to redeem himself,I say:that's nonsense!Stop turning him into next Sirius Black,and look into the eyes of the truth!Draco is a spoiled brat,and turning him good is bloody OOC!!!Yes,I admit his actor counterpart is kinda handsome,but don't forget the difference between the character and the actor who plays him.Also,Zuko never got higher grades,or more praise just because he was a favourite,his mastery over bending was a result of hard work.And after all,Zuko is not as cowardly as Draco.
"Carl, there's a dead human in our house!" My best friend-and roommate-Carl, was in the kitchen, doing the dishes, which was odd, because Carl never did the chores. He shuffled over and poked the dead body with his foot. "Oh...hey...how did he get here?" Blood was pooling on the floor, from multiple stab wounds in the dead man's chest. His lying tone was obvious. I stared at him, alarmed. "Carl, what did you DO?!" He waved a hand nonchalantly. "Me? I didn't do this." "Explain what happened, Carl!" I said angrily. These kinds of things seemed to happen whenever I went out... "I've never seen him before in my life!" Carl protested. "Why did you kill this person, Carl?!" "I do not kill people. That is..." he couldn't help glancing back towards the kitchen. "That is my LEAST favorite thing to do." I sighed. "Carl, tell me exactly what you were doing before I got home." He frowned and shifted uncomfortably. "Alright. Well, um, I was upstairs..." "Yes..." "I-I was sitting in my room..." "Alright..." "Reading a book..." He paused, as if unsure to continue. I waved a hand. "Go on..." "And then this guy walked in..." There was a sinking feeling of dread in my chest. "Okay..." "So I went up to him..." "Yes..." "And I, uh...I stabbed him thirty-seven times in the chest!" Carl finished with a hopeful smile. There was silence. Finally, I said in a hushed tone, "Carl, that kills people!" He blinked. "Oh. I didn't know that." "How did you not know that?!" I demanded furiously. His face fell. "Yeah, I'm in the wrong here. I suck..." I realized something else with a start. "What happened to his hands?!" I stared in horror at the handless corpse. "What's that?" Carl looked up. "His hands. Why are they missing?" "Well..." Carl pointed to the kitchen. "I kinda cooked them up. And ate them." Well, that explained the dishes. "...Carl!" He shrugged apologetically. "Well, I was hungry, and you know, when you crave hands-" "Why on earth would you do that, Carl?" I interrupted. "I was hungry for hands, give me a break!" "Carl..." Carl grinned and wiggled his eyebrows at me. "My stomach was making the rumblies-" "Carl!" "-that only hands would satisfy!" "What is WRONG with you, Carl?" I asked, horrified. Why did I have to have a cannibalistic roommate? He frowned and counted on his fingers. "Well, I kill people...and I eat hands." He held up two fingers. "That's two things!"
Just something that popped into my head one day (the descriptions of what Carl and Paul would be doing...) Interestingly enough this adaption turns Carl into a cannibal... This original idea IS NOT MINE! This is just based off the video by FilmCow (Jason Steele) called Llamas with Hats. ([link]) If you haven't watched them, you should! There's four episodes.
For a while now, I have been keeping an eye on you and what you do around this website. I have to admit, I don't like the things I've seen so far. You have uploaded scanned manga, or other scanned images, screenshots, re-coloured screenshots and other images you have found from the Internet. Sometimes you have the decency, if one can call it that, to try and edit the image, so you have done at least something to it whether it is a simple (de)motivational poster or maybe an interesting collage of your favourite cartoon or game character. Too bad, the editing does not make it entirely your own work, since DeviantArt's rules are quite harsh on the matter of copyright law.
You know, there are members, who often like to help people out on the matters of breaking rules. They usually politely point out that you've done wrong and help you to fix things before it's too late. For the worst rule-breakers the administrators might strike a ban-hammer. And then they might make another account and get banned for ban-evading and so on Unlike the popular belief and whatever your friends say, these people pointing out your mistake are not jealous of your amazing skills (of copying and pasting). Nor are they trolls, or cunt-fags, or shitbags, or bunch of whiny losers. They are just trying to help you.
I'd also like to address the excuses you typically use. "Others do it, too!" is old and does not work. I'd like to see you using this in court. Besides, many wrongs do not make it right. These "others" might also steal and murder, would it still be okay to do, since "others do it, too"? "I credited the original artist." Honey, it does not work like that. Read the rules of DeviantArt, any member of the Thiefbusters-group or Damn-Army-group can show you the right link. You see, DeviantArt automatically gives you the copyright, when you upload something. And you simply can't wipe it off with a comment like "TheAwesomePopularArtist made this!" Also, there is one other excuse you usually use: "I just wanted to share!" Honey, this is an art-site, not a site dedicated for sharing pretty pictures. There are tons of other sites just for that, and they have no trouble with the copyright law, since they have a different set of Terms Of Service.
There is actually just one thing that hurts my feelings the most. It is the lack of your appreciation, considering that most of us want to help you out, so you won't get banned. Just because we don't agree with your views on the common rules, it does not give you the permission to toss muck and shit at us or come calling us names, whine, bitch and moan, because rule enforcing people are mean and jealous of your works those insignificant little edits, colour-overs and collages. I hate every little call-out journal, hateful comment and all those so-called friends, who are helping you to bring us down and throw more muck at us. You should be angry at your friends; after all, it was them letting you upload three hundred and more stolen images without telling you it was wrong in the first place.
So. You're welcome for the help, and fuck you, too.
Yours Sincerely, MiaTheBadger
PS. I am in your gallery, reporting all the violations I see. Happy now?
Paul: Carl, there's a dead human in our house! Carl: Ooh, hey, how did he get here? Paul: Caaaarl, what did you do? Carl: Me? Um, I didn't do this... Paul: Explain what happened Carl! Carl: I've never seen em' before in my life. Paul: Why did you kill this person Carl? Carl: I do not kill people, That is, That is my Least favorite thing to do. Paul: Tell me Carl, exactly what you were doing before I got home. Carl: Well, I was upstairs... Paul: Mhm, okay... Carl: I was in my room, reading a book... Paul: Yes,go on... Carl: and well this guy walked in... Paul: Okay... Carl: So I went up to him... Paul: Yes... Carl: and I, uh, I stabbed him thirty-seven times in the chest.
Paul: Caaaaaaaaaarl, that kills people! Carl: Um, oh, I Didn't know that... Paul: Carl, how could you not know that? Carl: Yeah, I'm in the wrong here, I suck. Paul: What happened to his hands? Carl: Whats that? Paul: His hands, W-Why are they missing? Carl: U-Uh, I, um... Kinda cooked em' up and ate them...
Paul: Caaaaaaaaaarl... Carl: I-I was hungry, and well you know, when you're craving hands that's... Paul: Carl, why on earth would you do that? Carl: I was hungry for hands, give me a brake! Paul: Caaaaaaaaaaaaaarl... Carl: My stomach was making the rumblies... Paul: Carl... Carl: That only hands would satisfy. Paul: what is wrong with you Carl? Carl: Well, I kill people and eat hands, th-that's two things.
Llamas with Hats
Voiced by - Chris Alex and Jason Steele
Created by - Jason Steele
I Copied this dialog as I watched the video, I own NONE of filmcow or its Affiliates
"We wear our ninja on our sleeves" "Lump Off Mom!" "Holy Cow" "Mathmatical" "Algebriac" "Gunther who told you, you could fly?" "Will call em slappy d's" "I'll see you in the Nightosphere you sick freak" "Oh yeah I'm having a fun time" "I'm going to rescue the babies from the fire, Only... the...babies" "Tree trunks, get those hot buns in here girl" "Don't squeeze me, I'll fart" "No touchies" "Powers like, theeeese!" "We should beat him up, until he starts making since" "Dangit, Leonard if we don't talk at the same time nobody can understand us" "No worms on the bed!" "reliable?....rats!" "and I've seen some stuff that would really make you say like what, "like what?" "Oh, these aren't just ordinary nuts" "You should have stuck to your dieeeeeeeeeeeeet" " I should not have drink that much tea" "and BOOM!, we catch him with princess on his hands" "we thought humans were extinct" "whack whack"
I do not own any of these quotes. All credit goes to Cartoonnetwork and Pendleton Ward.
These are quotes from Adventure Time characters Finn, Jake, LSP (or Lumpy Space Princess), Ice King, Princess Rainicorn's parents, Princess Bubblegum, Marceline the Vampire Queen, and Gunther, Archie the gravedigger, and other Adventure Time characters.
Past midnight in the main kitchen of the Montrey mansion...
"I don't understand why you can't find a nice, normal-"
"Human boyfriend," she finished. "Y'know, I don't think you're anyone to lecture about dating within one's species."
"We've been over this a thousand times; I am human."
"Uh-huh. Right. You should really see yourself when you say that, you ever tried saying it into a mirror? 'Cuz it looks pretty funny."
"Damn it, Penny," he hissed, "I was born and raised, for a forty full years, human- that's longer than you have been. Then this," he spread his webbed claws, "happened. And it's surface only, and you know it. Unlike this, this..."
"This being is a bizarrity! He's not a year older than you, he's not a decade older than you, he's not twice your age, he's twenty times your age! "
"Yeah, but look: he doesn't remember any of that, he's just like any other person, he only remembers so much, just the last couple years-"
"You mean decades, decades and decades; you said he remembers the Quetarro War."
"That's nothing!" The glatni tossed the dishcloth into the sink. "You said he had memories from as far back as the Brindlington Revolution! You really want a boyfriend who grew up wearing silk tights and powdered wigs? My gods- Penny, that was before electricity."
"Well he wears shades and Converse now, he works all week on the computer now, he's ten times more tech savvy than the both of us," she said, pulling open the fridge with a vengeance.
He stared at her. "That's not the point. You do realize you're dating a man who is almost four hundred."
"Thirty-two." She tossed her head.
"And even if he was, he's still too old for you." The big amphibianesque creature paced the kitchen floor, arms folded behind him, long tail sweeping the marble. "Moreover, as I understand it, he's immortal." He stopped and looked over his shoulder. "That's bad, Penny."
"Pray tell why." She snatched up a jar.
"That doesn't bother you? You'll age together for a while, eventually he'll die, he'll come back, 'twenty-eight' again as I understand it, and you'll be, what? Seventy? Eighty? With a thirty-year old husband? Then you can be the one who looks 'funny.'"
She vaulted onto the countertop, digging bad-temperedly through a cabinet. Cornelius leaned against a counter, one clawed hand massaging his eyes. "I'm just saying you're making a mistake. You're only twenty-three, there are plenty of men out there, whatever you're feeling now you need to think about this and don't embark on something that's only destined for disaster."
She excavated a dusty jar of peanut butter from the depths of the cabinet, wrenched the lid off and smelled it. "Big brother advice given. You can be done now."
Cornelius blinked. "What? What, you don't want me to give a damn about you?"
"No, Cornelius, me you can give a damn about; it's the boyfriends you need to take a chill pill over."
"I do note you've broken up with them all."
"And you called it, huh? To be completely honest, Cornelius," she fished a butter knife from the dishwater, flicking it dry, "you know how hard it is to keep a boyfriend once they realize who I am? A Montrey? From that stupid rich old family up in Aagiea? They start acting like idiots, like I'm some run-away princess." She stabbed the jelly jar. "Some run-away princess worth millions, it really brings out the moron in people, big money. Then I tell them I was actually disowned, then they start poking around about why, tell me I'm a freak for walking out on that life..."
"They weren't bad guys," she went on, "they were just... weak. The thought of living, well, here," she waved a jelly-spotted hand in the air, "in some big amazing mansion and soon that was all they talked about. Or not. Some of them just freaked out, didn't want some huge-scale commitment they thought I was coming with... the easy ones were the ones who just, left." She muscled the lid tightly back onto the jar.
"You know what I love? Coming back to this damn place and just having a sandwich. A peanut butter and jelly sandwich." She turned around with such on her plate.
Cornelius blinked his half-blind eyes straight ahead. "Strawberry jam," he said.
"Damn straight." She jumped up onto a counter, sat, and raised the sandwich aloft. "This, is me. I was born to eat caviar, I was raised to eat caviar, I throw up at the smell of caviar, and I choose... this sandwich." She took a bite and shut her eyes. "In the same way 'ou are shupposed to be a monster but insish on being an aristro-" she swallowed, "an aristocrat, I am an aristocrat who insists on being a little monster. And if I want to live in a messy flat with my insane friends and have four snakes and dye my hair and get a nipple piercing-"
Cornelius started. "Wha-what?!"
"Just checking you're listening," she grinned evilly, "and date outside the genome, that's who I am and that's it, okay? Like you, four-meters of blue, finned human. If my brother can be glatni, I think my boyfriend can be a shapeshifter too."
Cornelius sighed and resumed pacing. "That's not the point I'm concerned on."
"OH, give it up! Yeah, he's like three-hundred something, or thirty-two, or whatever, but you know what? He's outside of time, Cornelius, it'd be as unfair to put an age on him as it would to put a collar on you; he's not what he appears, you have to meet him and get to know him and the who he is inside, and I have and we've seen that we're of the same maturity, how could a tally of years mean more?"
"Ah. So he's taken four centuries to reach the maturity levels of a twenty three year-old, fantastic."
"That's not what I meant."
"It's the curse Penny, let me be blunt. And it's not like that one freckled werewolf fellow-"
"Right- not like he just got it, not like he stepped into the wrong place at the worst time..." he trailed off, studying the fins along one arm. "That," he muttered, "I'd understand. But! This is a morality curse, Penny, he did something to deserve this-"
She jumped down from the countertop. "Nonono-- don't you even start; that was over three-hundred years ago he's not even remotely the same person that he was and he knows it, I know it, and so do you."
The big monster took a half step backwards from his incensed sister. "I- alright. Alright, granted. But see here: he's still got it. And he's not like me," he said cocking his long head sideways, "it's not just," he made a sweeping gesture to himself as a whole, "surface only. The curse affects his mind, it controls him, he's not only a monster in form he's a monster inside."
"He says he hasn't eaten anyone in cen-tur-ies," she growled, glaring upwards.
"Well I thought you said his memory was pat-chy," the glatni towered over her.
"Why can't you accept that he's telling the truth?"
"Because I'm a politician and it's my calling to be skeptical. Have you seen him on one of these transformations?"
Penny climbed back onto the counter. "Yes, actually. I first met him in cursed form, big room, full of people. Didn't even know he was a human at the time. And I've been around him during his bouts a whole ton of times since, he's absolutely harmless."
"Then let me be more specific. His transformations begin with a sort of attack, like a classic were-"
"Where are you getting all this information?"
"I've been doing my research. Have you witnessed him in that state?"
"No." She bit into her sandwich.
"Aha," Cornelius said quietly. "An uncontrollable hunger, he says? His curse, the very distillation of a deadly sin? Twisting him body and soul into a gargantuan creature of unending appetite... Yes, that sounds very safe."
"I've known him for seven months now, if he was any kind of trouble we'd know about it."
"Do you think so, Penny? You know how many crimes go unsolved in Elarg alone, how many 'mild-mannered' people turn out to be madmen, how easy it is to cover your tracks if you have half a brain and possibly four-hundred years to practice?"
"You've hardly even met him."
"Sometimes it takes someone outside the situation to see with rationality, and you have described quite clearly to me a being who is unstable in the utmost with the brawn to do his worst. Would you date a grizzly bear?"
"Eric is not a bear."
"You're right. He's the deadly sin of gluttony incarnate, forgive me, much better."
"He hates it, you know. He's been trapped like this so long, it's not even his fault anymore. He says an eternity of shame is bearable with the right set of mind and of friends, and he says right now that friend, is me." She bit her lip hard. "I don't know how you made it to your age single, I'm half your age and I'm dying to not be alone."
"You're not alone." A clawed hand settled on her shoulder.
She shrugged him off. "Would I substitute for Diana, Cornelius? Could I take her place? You're there for me, I know. I know. But you know damn well what I'm talking about, and I think this is my guy. Yeah, he's older than electricity, yeah, he's been saddled with this crazy curse, but, I've never met anyone like him. I," she paused and looked up at the head looming over her shoulder, "I want to be with him." She laughed a bit shakily. "A lot. For as long as I'm around. You know the feeling."
"Look, I am being careful. We've hung out a whole lot, we've gone and done and seen all kinds of stuff together, he's really mostly just another guy. And I know that scares you as much as anything," she patted his snout, "but give me the credit that I know how to take care of myself. I know you'd step into my life if something was wrong, lord knows you try it from time to time, but how many times have you actually had to bail me out of jail or pull me out of some ditch or something? Never? Hey, I love you, but I'm doing fine. Trust me that nothing bad's gonna happen. 'Cause, like always, I'm going to do this with or without your support but if you could try real hard to bear it this time and this time especially, I'd appreciate you being on our side for once." She smiled. "We'd love to have you."
One pale eye regarded her for a moment. It shut with a sigh. "I'll give him a shot..."
"But I'm not agreeing to anything until I meet the man, so I think we should give him the test, then, if you think you're serious about this one," he said loftily. "Bring him over. See if he passes the 'rich-girl mansion test' and also the 'rich-girl's-elder-brother-is-a-major-senator-slash-ambassador-slash-part-time-monster test.'"
"Oh, he's seen the mansion."
"He's been over like eight times now. He thinks the best bit are the kitchens, naturally." She giggled. "Kitchens in the plural, mind you, he was much impressed. And he knows all about you, we had The Talk."
"And what," the glatni said drily, "is that?"
"All the buttons basically. And that you're not contagious or a man-eater or anything. I think everybody's got all that by now but I think they like to be reassured before they meet you in person."
"'Sides, he says he's been over five times your size on some of his transformations-"
"Whoa, whoa, whoa- stop. Stop. You're making this trusting thing hard again."
"What would make it easier?"
The ambassador paced to the sink, idly caught up a bubble on his claw and contemplated it. He clicked his tongue. "Dinner. Next Saturday. Here. The Old Parlor. Me, you, this Thedrial fellow, and Diana. That woman is an uncanny judge of character."
"Which is shocking," Penny said tipping her empty plate into the bubbly sink, "seeing as she's marrying you." She scampered out of the way of his swat. He gave her a wry smile.
"Dude, I'm callin' him right now. Hee, you won't regret this!" They walked together towards the staircase.
"Your very words about those sea cobra hatchlings. Fantastic pets they turned out to be, very cuddly..."
"Hey. I'll do my best to keep Eric out of your bathing pool but I got no promises."
Sounds of their mutual snigger rebounded back down the staircase.
The very first thing that happened after I moved Eric Thedrial into the Altalamatox storyverse last summer, and I mean like within a half-second, like a brick in the face, was Penny Montrey leapt on him and they decided they should very definitely become a couple as soon as possible and before the creator can get wits together again and interject. I have to agree with them, they do make a likely pair. However, complications. I thought I'd try prodding Penny the other day to find out how serious this is before I okay'd anything, of course Cornelius found out about this about a split second after me and has since put a big clawed hand around my throat whenever I go to consider it. Sorry mate, you know your sis's gonna do what she wants.
After you read... A note on Eric because I know I don't talk about him much. He's the only remaining survivor of my brief attempt a few years ago to make characters based directly on the classic seven deadly sins (because it's been done to the point of cliché and I enjoy retooling clichés). I always thought gluttony was the most harmless of the so-called sins, I had to ponder on it for a couple weeks to convince myself how and why stuffing your face to excess was exactly a damnable offense. I think I got it figured out and if I ever write about him I'll explain. Poor Eric, he probably landed the most silly/embarrassing of the sins but was the most pleasant personality-wise, it's probably why he survived. I may or may not revive the other six one day, if I do I'll most likely be ninja about them and nowhere near as blatant as with Eric. Or not. Who knows. If you're new, Eric in his cursed shape shows up at the end of this.
It was quite a sight for Mamori to see her fiancé struggling to get comfortable in the narrow train seat he was in. He fidgeted, and got up a couple of times, growling in annoyance and mumbled profanities that grew louder and louder, causing the others in the train to scoot as far away from him as possible. She could only watch sympathetically as she felt partly responsible for Hiruma's discomfort. "You really should try to get some rest," Mamori spoke up.
"Yeah, well, sleep would come easily to me if you remembered the fucking sleeping pills," Hiruma replied with annoyance.
"I'm sorry, but we did rush after your game and I had to pack for the both of us. You haven't slept for over 48 hours now."
"I don't think I can fucking sleep," Hiruma scowled as he sank into his seat.
Mamori sighed, knowing how Hiruma was hard to handle when he had this attitude on. "Are you nervous because we're going to visit your father? We won't reach there in the next two to three hours so--"
"I don't give a fuck about that fucking old man. At this point, I don't know how you managed to convince me to take this trip."
"It's because we're engaged now, Hiruma-kun. And I think it's only right that we see him. Now get some sleep."
Hiruma let out a frustrated sigh as he closed his eyes, but the obviously disturbed expression on his face made Mamori bite her lip. Despite how annoying he could be at times like these, she knew it was because he was under a lot of pressure. She tried to remember anything that could help him sleep better, anything simple...
Then one idea came up, and it made her blush. "Oh..."
Mamori noticed Hiruma had not fallen asleep yet, but was watching her worried expressions intently. "It's nothing," she assured him. "But I remembered this trick Suzuna told me that helps people sleep better."
"Oh?" Hiruma grinned, knowing that if it's a suggestion from the Fucking Skates, it would be interesting. "What's that?"
"You could... sleep on my lap..." Mamori quickly looked outside the window, knowing Hiruma's expression would be close to devious at this point.
And deviously smirking he was. "Are you fucking serious?"
"Well, it's worth a try! And it's better than watching you fidget so much. But I suppose sleeping on my lap isn't possible seeing as the train seats have hand rests and I don't think it'd be comfortable for you. So..."
Hiruma urged her on. "So?"
"Just... rest your head on my shoulder then. If it doesn't work, we'll figure something else that might help."
Hiruma cackled in amusement. It was an amazing opportunity to tease his fiancée, something he enjoyed doing very much. But as his mind could barely function at this state, he decided that he'd just comply for the heck of it. Crossing his arms, he leaned his head close to Mamori's shoulder until it finally rested there comfortably.
Mamori was surprised by Hiruma's lack of complaints, but kept silent for a few minutes as she felt his weight on her shoulder, the train gently rocking them. After a while, Mamori finally pulled up her courage and whispered, "Hiruma-kun...?"
But Hiruma didn't reply. In fact, his head felt heavier on her shoulder and she could hear his steady, calm breaths much louder.
Feeling rather content, Mamori gently leaned against Hiruma, placing her head on his and smiling. Closing her eyes, and letting herself be gently swayed by the train, she couldn't help but think how rare it was for Hiruma to display such vulnerability, and how comfortable it felt to have him this close, like it was normal, and it had always been so...
Until she felt someone shake her and, to her embarrassment, realised she had fallen asleep. The conductor told them that they have reached their stop and Hiruma was now wide awake, looking at her with his familiar grin that seemed rather mischievous. "Well..." he said as he got off his seat. "That trick was a little too effective, yes?"
This is a prize fic for ~FrozenHealer for winning Second Place in last month's prompt! The prompt given was "Sleep" and it reminded me of this SenaSuzu story I have in mind but haven't had the chance to write cause I'm still too obsessed with HiruMamo more... hurr... So this story is somewhat based on that idea I had.
I really hope this is okay! If this isn't what you wanted, please let me know and I'll work on a new one right away!
You asked for it and you got it: more ranting! Today, we'll be talking about the new pups on the block of overused cliches and broken tropes.
A trend lately is to have werewolves born as humans and have their first change in their teenage years. There's a few reasons for this, the most significant of which seems to be so that normal, everyday high school students can suddenly discover that they're werewolves as a wish fulfillment fantasy (see my last essay for an in-depth rant about my high school werewolves). Yet, there may be a more subtle reason: because big scary werewolves aren't so scary as puppies. Instead, they're likely to be adorably awkward: chewing on furniture, transforming at inconvenient times, biting their friends, etc.
That's what these tropes are - the new puppies running around underfoot. Despite being relatively new to the genre, they've already overstayed their welcome. To keep the puppy metaphor, for most of these tropes, it's not that they're inherently bad, but that we need to help them "grow up" into imaginative, engaging tropes. Aside from the problem of identical werewolf costumes, the biggest problem most of these tropes is that they're pushed to an annoying extreme or just used too often within the same work. Playing with a puppy for an afternoon is a lot of fun. Having that puppy in the house who pees on the carpet, cries at night, and destroys everything within reach? Not so much.
Cirque Du Loup Garou
Although I'm a big fan of practical effects (as is most of the werewolf community), one of the major advantages of CG is that it allows for fluid motion of the beast. This is especially valuable for werewolves who walk upright on digitigrade legs, which tends to look very stiff and ungainly when performed by actors in costumes. So I say that if a werewolf movie gets a big budget and a good special effects coordinator, I'm all in favor of a good mixing of practical effects and CG.
Unfortunately, this hasn't happened. It's not just a question of budget and an over-reliance on CG, but this trope. For whatever reason, directors have decided that it wasn't enough for a werewolf to just run around. Since CG let them literally do anything, werewolves started leaping from rooftop to rooftop like flying squirrels, vertically leaping fifty feet or more, and platform jumping with skill that puts Mario to shame. Granted, humans and wolves are very agile creatures, but the typical CG werewolf's movements seem more along the lines of a particularly energetic squirrel given cocaine and a jetpack.
On a related note, werewolves have also been climbing up walls and walking on the ceilings a lot lately. I have absolutely no idea why. At least the bouncy ball werewolves are jumping around to get somewhere, but these SpiderWolves walk on the ceiling for no particular reason. Most of the time they just seem to do it to look cool. Frankly, it just looks stupid. Here's a safety tip: drywall will NOT support your weight. If you've ever hung anything heavy up, you know that you have to look for studs because typical household walls can't even support the weight of a framed painting, let alone a 200-300 pound werewolf.
Could it be done better?
I could totally get behind a werewolf with actual training in parkour doing moves that might be reasonably expected. That would actually be awesome - especially with a heroic werewolf involved in a cool foot chase. Bouncy ball werewolves hopping up skyscrapers? SpiderWolves walking up walls? No thanks.
Super Duper Human Senses
In recent years, werewolves have been given ludicrously powerful senses - the sort where they can hear a quiet conversation a couple hundred feet away. Despite the fact that wolves don't have senses this acute, perhaps we can justify it. After all, werewolves do have something magical that allows them to violate the Laws of Physics, so maybe that same power gives them super-hearing. But here's where things get tougher: when the werewolf also has those senses in human form.
I could give a long, boring lecture about how senses work and why human ears are below-average compared to other mammals and human noses just plain suck, but I'll spare you. Long story short, most people know that canine ears and noses are naturally a lot sharper and it chips away at suspension of disbelief when human senses have insane capabilities. It definitely doesn't help that when werewolves do have super senses, they're wildly inconsistent. Minor characters, especially bad guys, don't seem to have them at all and won't be able to detect the hero hiding behind a wall, despite the fact that they can smell a breath mint ten miles away. The hero too may use his or her senses sporadically rather than all the time as those of us with "normal" senses do.
Although the use of super senses is sporadic, the disadvantages of having these tends to be outright ignored. Rookie werewolves don't feel disoriented by the fact that they suddenly hear and smell everything. Despite the fact that whispering a hundred feet away sounds like shouting, gunfire never deafens anyone and the werewolf has no trouble at rock concerts and noisy parties.
Could it be done better?
It could if it were scaled back a bit. It's not unreasonable that werewolves have slightly improved senses in human form, provided that it's nothing overboard. It might also be interesting to see a werewolf disoriented by their overpowered senses and deafened by loud noises. Regardless, it is absolutely vital to be consistent. Werewolves' senses can't just cut out and come back when the plot says so.
Are you a skinny nerd? Do you suck at sports? Are you likely to remain a virgin forever? Do you wear glasses? Is your hair poorly styled? Well, we have a cure for all that - and more! Just one little bite and you'll go from loser nerd to jerkass jock! Get the girl, become a lacrosse star, attract men... even gay men! Lycanthropy is the answer to all of your woes! So sign on today and be cursed... with great hair, rockin' abs, and good fashion sense!
WARNING: Side effects include devouring family members and romantic adventures with poorly characterized members of the opposite sex.
Yep, you guessed it - I'm talking about the tendency of werewolves, whether cursed or "cursed" to suddenly go from gawky nerds to the sexiest jock in school. This is first and foremost a wish fulfillment cash-in, especially since it happens almost instantaneously after being bitten and before transformation. It's often justified as "having a fast metabolism" or the "allure of the beast," but astute viewers aren't usually fooled since they can tell that the 20 year old Calvin Klein underwear model isn't a skinny teenage dork just because he's wearing glasses and a pocket protector. Could it be done better?
Maybe, maybe. It depends on what exactly is happening. If it's a matter of weight loss, it could be possible for that to happen over several weeks - though I'd also like to see this lightning fast metabolism deconstructed. Fine, a fat guy loses a bunch of weight and is happy. What happens to a normal human? Fast metabolisms are also likely to make the werewolf insatiably hungry, which may be a serious downside. I guess I could kind of understand vision correction since the werewolf would look silly running around with glasses, though I do wish that Werewolf Lasik wasn't so common.
Ginger Snaps did a great take on this. Sure, you get a werewolf makeover, but it comes with some rather ugly physical side effects.
And it goes without saying that there is absolutely no reason for the werewolf to suddenly get better hair and fashion sense... unless he or she has a fairy godmother.
Curse of the WhineWolf
You've just become a werewolf. You will now live to be 1000 years old, are nearly impossible to kill, can shapeshift at will, have enhanced senses, heal injuries in minutes, and will never get sick. The downsides? You have to get rid of your silverware and learn basic anger management. Your response to this?
"WHY AM I CURSED????"
Hollywood seems to believe that viewers like whiny heroes, but I think that they're sadly mistaken.
If that wasn't obnoxious enough, take a look at who's whining and who's not. Remember my complaint in Werewolf Pet Peeves 1 about how "man = pure good, wolf = pure evil?" (If you haven't, go read it) The same concept applies here too. Any werewolf who considers the curse to be a blessing (even if they're right) is likely a completely evil psychopath. Any werewolf who accepts the curse is morally ambiguous at best, but probably just a lower-level villain who needs to "see the light" and "fight the evil inner beast." And of course, any werewolf who complains constantly about the "horrible curse," is guaranteed to be a good guy. Although the writers are usually trying to show that the WhineWolf is very worried about being human and the safety of others, it's downright annoying when being a werewolf is clearly awesome and he or she just won't shut up and enjoy it.
Could it be done better?
Let me add a disclaimer: sometimes, lycanthropy is genuinely a curse. The werewolf should be upset if he or she turns into a mindless, bloodthirsty monster or if the disease has seriously debilitating physical or mental effects - or worse, will outright kill the werewolf. Even so, the whining needs to be kept to a reasonable limit and shouldn't be so constant that the werewolf is too busy being emo to find a solution.
Personally, I find a werewolf who stoically bears the curse a lot more sympathetic than one who won't stop whining about it. And when the "curse" is actually a totally awesome blessing? Sigh... no, Jacob, you have absolutely no excuse to whine about being an immortal, superpowered shapeshifter with perfect abs.
Send in the Clones
What's twice as good as one werewolf? Two of them. What's even better than that? A whole pack.
Since real-life wolves rely on numbers and cooperation, why not werewolves? The original the Howling decided to present an answer to that question and in its wake, movies began to feature wolfmen... and wolfwomen to a much lesser extent (see Werewolf Pet Peeves 1 for my thoughts on that topic). Some were good (Dog Soldiers), some were bad (Skinwalkers), and some appear to have been made under the influence of powerful narcotics (Company of Wolves). Yet all is not well within the werewolf pack sub-genre. The problem is that making werewolves, whether through practical effects or CG, is not cheap. In theory, making two costumes should be an economy of scale, but it's not nearly as efficient as you might guess. The crew has to make two entirely different designs that are distinguishable from one another, may have to make the costumes mechanically different, have to hire and train a second creature actor, and now have another continuity issue to manage. CG makes it a little easier, but it still means animating an all-new or mostly new model that has to be distinguishable from the original werewolf. Three or more werewolves only compounds the problem and if you've got a whole pack, you may need a dozen lycanthropes. That's a big, expensive request and it's bound to look awful if done on the typical werewolf flick's budget.
So how do we get that economy of scale back? Simple - make all of the werewolves clones of one another. In general, when multiple werewolves are used, there are two to four costumed actors playing several different werewolves. It may be that only one werewolf gets close-ups while the others are lower quality background monsters. The fact that the werewolves all look the same may be played for drama since one cannot be told from another and humans may kill their loved ones along with "evil" werewolves. Yet anyone familiar with wolves knows that they rarely look identical when two are placed side by side.
There's a closely related version of this where werewolves are fundamentally identical aside from their coloration and jewelry. Even in werewolf art, it's very common and about 90% of werewolf original characters have the same "athletic" build - males have fuzzy pecs and furry six packs while females have trim, lightly muscled builds with reasonably large fuzzy boobs.
Could it be done better?
Let me be honest and say that I understand why this happens. That doesn't mean I have to like it. Here's some food for thought:
TWILIGHT DID IT RIGHT.
Yes, Twilight. As much as I rip on it, I have to admit that they handled this very well and are leading the charge against Hollywood's werewolf cloning. The werewolves (or shapeshifters if you prefer) are different colors, different sizes, different builds, and even have slightly different faces. Bella can't walk and chew gum at the same time, but she can easily tell them apart.
So when you're working on your werewolves, try to make them stand out using something other than a palette swap and some accessories. Because Twilight did it right and so can you.
Another essay, another five ugly werewolf tropes. Stay tuned to this account for even more!
Part 1: Werewolf Genre Pet Peeves: [link] Part 2: Werewolf Genre Guilty Pleasures: [link] Part 3: Werewolf Genre Pet Peeves: Stale Cliches: [link] Part 4: Werewolf Genre Pet Peeves: Annoying Puppies: (you are here)