A Mary Sue Rant

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You know what I mean. Mary Sues. They are the bane of any fanfic writer in any fandom all over the world. And what bugs me is that no one seems to know how to define one and ends up making one due to being fed misinformation about what the hell it is anyway.

It is NOT simply someone who has cool hair.
It is NOT simply someone who has a cool name.
It is NOT simply someone who has a cool gadget, style, appearance, etc.
It is NOT simply someone who has a few canon friends, or knows some awesome skill, or has a tragic backstory.
AND IT IS MOST CERTAINLY NOT SIMPLY A TERM FOR A CHARACTER WITH SOME TRAIT YOU DON'T LIKE.


You'd be surprised how many Mary Sues qualify as such due to having a sheer lack of inherently good qualities. This happens because of that last thing on the list, where people who are supposedly defining what a Mary Sue is instead shoehorn stuff they just don't like onto their list of Sue-ish traits. This generally results in people trying to avoid creating a Mary giving us absolutely no reason to like their character despite how they're always at the center of literally everyone's attention. For example, take a character who's about as attractive and incredible as a Greek god if not more so and is loved by virtually every sympathetic character in the story. Definitely a Sue. You'd think that simply making them a pathetic, overweight slob (that everyone still loves) will do the trick but nope. Instead you've created an Anti-Sue, which is what happens when instead of creating a stereotypical Mary Sue with every good quality known to man who is loved for it, the writer creates a Sue with every bad quality known to man who is loved anyway. Which, to be frank, is even more unreasonable, since at least it makes some sense to worship perfection, even if the perfection itself is equally unreasonable.

Essentially, no one knows what they're doing anymore.

So here's the baseline:

NO CHARACTER IS NECESSARILY A MARY SUE UNLESS THEY ARE CONSTANTLY THE CENTER OF ATTENTION AND/OR HAVE A SERIOUS LACK OF REDEEMING/DEGRADING QUALITIES, OR ONE OR MORE OF THOSE QUALITIES OVERWHELMS EVERYTHING ELSE ABOUT THEM.

A Mary Sue is constantly breaking the laws of the storyverse without any good explanation, everyone else reacts to them like they're the most perfect thing since sliced bread, and it's pretty clear the author isn't doing this on purpose to make a point. And the reactions don't have to be positive, either. Generally any character the author likes is portrayed sympathetically and sucks up to the Mary while any character the author hates is portrayed unsympathetically and wants to kill Mary with fire :iconkillitwithfire::iconmarysueplz: Mary won't simply have a dark and troubled past, she'll (I'll assume she's female but keep in mind that Sues can be male) have a Deus Angst Machina with constant contradictions and no effects on her or anyone else whatsoever. She won't simply have awesome hair, she'll have awesome hair that no one else in canon has and is specifically impossible in canon with her circumstances. She won't simply be critical to the plot, she'll be thousands of times more vital than the actual main character, to the point where the universe would collapse without her. And she's too good for this sinful Earth. She's not simply related to a major character, she's responsible for everything we know and love about them. She's not simply good or bad, she's the most perfect/shitty thing in all the multiverse.

Oh and she tends to be hopelessly static (and maybe even flat for bonus points). She can go around experiencing everything the verse has to offer, but what will that do? It's not like she'll...oh I don't know, LEARN anything from it or shit. When the whole thing is over she's still the same eternally perfect piece of bad writing we had at the beginning of the story. Gets caught breaking the law? Apparently she was right to do it, even though she wasn't. Hell, she'll probably be totally fine breaking again, right? Did she totally humiliate the Big Bad's ass (during which time he totally hates hers) and then get him to pull a Heel Face Turn (as in make him turn good, for those of you unfamiliar with TV Tropes) despite that last part? Did I mention he's now kissing her butt five times a day? Yeah, sure, give her points for the part about turning him good but that thing with turning him good doesn't even make sense. Why does he not still hate her guts for humiliating him so much? Oh yeah, because she's always right and he really deserved it. Even if he was an anti-villain who didn't even have malicious intents to begin with. Or let's say she gets handed the ending of "I Have No Mouth And I Must Scream" (the original short story) long enough for a Deus Ex Machina in the form of a random fleet of aliens coming down, saving her (somehow), and destroying the supercomputer AM. You'd think she'd be traumatized for life by the time they save her, right? WRONG. No, actually, a cheesy (probably intended to be heartwarming) conversation or two later she's back on her feet chatting people (um, aliens) up like it never happened and will never happen again (because apparently, it literally can't). Angst? What angst? And don't try calling out the creator for it either 'cause all you're gonna get for doing that is "OMGWTFUDARECRITCIZEMAIPRESHOUSMARYSUEUMUSTDIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11111" (See? They can't even spell 'precious' right.) Heaven forbid they go as far as to make Mary the Creator's Pet and take the whole center of the universe thing up to eleven (if that's even possible) just to shove it in all your faces, no matter how many people get angry because they recognize the character is a Sue.

So yeah, the universe revolves around Mary Sue, she has a serious lack of either good or bad traits, something that will most certainly never change, and it's not even intended. That's pretty much all you need to know. AMI IS OUT, PEACE!
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CatalinaT's avatar
Most traits are okay, but "thinks too fast" isn't necessarily a flaw and she needs more character development. I suggest editing those things and putting a little more info and you're good to go. Also, I like how her hair isn't overly crazy and realistic :) but try to describe it a little more:is it wavy? Held back in a bun? Braids? Pigtails? French braids? Hair extensions? Ponytails? What shade of brown? Also, what color is the hoodie and shorts? Do they have any specific designs to them? If not, where did she purchase them, and how long has she had them. Also needs an eye color. But I like how she's doesn't need love, like most demons, since realistically demons are the opposite of love. So good job on that :) 

Constructive criticism 💜