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Powerful, Not Mary Sue
By Novadestin   |   Watch
618 212 10K (1 Today)
Published: March 21, 2010
© 2010 - 2019 Novadestin
This stamp was made because I am so sick and tired of people looking at characters that are powerful or that have been used over a long period of time and calling them Mary Sue solely because they are powerful or have a bunch of stuff going on in their history/life. Yes, sure, they have the potential to be... so does EVERYTHING ELSE! Don't just assume something because you're too lazy to learn why the character is powerful or to learn about the character's history.

I have an RP character that I've been playing for something like a DECADE so umm YES, her history/life/personality/etc are going to have a lot of crap going on. But, the fact that every single aspect of her being, including her birth, has been role played out thoroughly doesn't seem to matter much to these people. They just want to look at one simple thing and act all superior when they are plainly showing their ignorance.

I also just "adore" how these people come across one of these characters and pick out all these little bits of info and lace them together to "prove" that she is a Mary Sue. Bit of truth for ya: ANYTHING can sound Mary Sue when you do that. If I went and said: "long brown/black wavy hair down to the middle of her back, pretty but not gorgeous, tall with a nice figure and long legs, eyes that are both brown and green, intelligent in several fields, shy but has a large group of friends and is good with people, rarely gets into trouble but has had a highly troubled past etc, etc..." yeah, starting to sound pretty bad all bunched up together like that now isn't it?

Never mind that I am talking about MYSELF here (go ahead call me a Sue, I dare you xD). Never mind that I do indeed have long wavy hair (YES, it is naturally brown and black!) and look pretty, etc because I actually maintain myself. Never mind my eyes ARE both brown and green (central heterochromia, NOT hazel!). Never mind that I am intelligent in several fields because I actually read and do research ALL THE TIME. Never mind that I do have a lot of friends, even though I am shy, because SHOCK! I'm actually a likable person, which makes me very good with people. And, never mind that I rarely get into trouble because SHOCK AGAIN! I don't (usually hehe) go looking for it, even though my past has been a dark one.

See? Description, details, reasons, actually knowing what the heck you're talking about DOES matter! Until you can get that through your thick head, yes, I am going to completely ignore your so called "critiques." I don't take advice from ignorant people.

Stamp template by Kencho Thank you my dear :D
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Comments (167)
Swaggie--Vortex's avatar
Swaggie--Vortex|Hobbyist Digital Artist
Happens to me also! My persona is a demigoddess though she isn't that strong..
(She has weaknesses like her depression and betrayals are)

My pal, :iconchibiotakushipper: blocked me just because she thinks my Little Miss persona is a Mary Sue, but she's fucking not
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Tondori3456's avatar
Mary sues aren't just powerful, but they're PERFECT. there's a difference. a Mary sue is perfect at everything without proper explanation how and not only that but other characters would always fall in love with her. add to that the Mary sue has no flaw other than "I care too much"

superman is powerful but he isn't perfect. there are comics and animated movies where superman is powerful but he is stubborn because of that power, he doesn't trust anyone that they can get a job done because they can get harmed and aren't as powerful as him.
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FrostyWolfter's avatar
FrostyWolfter|Hobbyist Digital Artist
I've seen this happening way too often, especially with the new trend of "critics" and "ranters". Just gets on my nerves that people go to someone's page and start talking shit, whilst being completely oblivious to what their words mean. A Mary Sue is a perfect character to an annoying level; people need to understand being powerful =/= being perfect. Sure a character can have a stupid amount of latent power, but if they can't use it at will they're still labeled as Mary Sues, and that's just idiotic.

Honestly, I do have a few characters that fall on the definition of mary-sue; I also have a bunch of them with tragic stories, mental illnesses, disabilities and I don't see what the problem is, adds variety to the cast.
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ScreamingMatt's avatar
ScreamingMatt|Student General Artist
Actually, most of the time it does. Now, this is just my opinion, but most Mary Sues and the male equivalent are powerful and absolutely perfect. I can literally go to any of, even my own, old, shitty OCs and they'd be powerful and have backstories with war and depression. I'm not saying that because your character is powerful and shit that she's a Mary Sue, she probably isn't. People could take my OC, Karma, who literally has the most normal backstory and make him sound like an overused character. People are mean, dude, and you're going to have to learn to take critiques and insults gracefully. Being on dA for around twelve years, you should know this by now. If you're sharing things to the internet, you're going to get everything ranging from compliments to insults to critiques. Suck it up, buttercup, and dance by them.
Sorry if this seems passive aggressive, I tend to word things like that, don't take it too personally. -Mac
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Novadestin's avatar
I think you missed the part where it says "does not auto equal". Also, your assumptions are way off. And, I'm not taking it personally btw this is just short because I'm about to pass out zzzzzzz night!
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AbsoluteFanTrash's avatar
AbsoluteFanTrash|Student Digital Artist
I have a powerful OC, and my friends, with the REAL Mary Sues are like "THAT'S A MARY SUE" Bitch, please.
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Novadestin's avatar
It can be hard to see your own faults and bad behaviors, so don't judge them too harshly ✌
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AbsoluteFanTrash's avatar
AbsoluteFanTrash|Student Digital Artist
I guess you have a point. It just bugs me when my characters are considered "Mary Sues" when they're not.
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Novadestin's avatar
Of course it does, it would bug anyone if that wasn't what they were intending, but the only think you can do is explain your perspective on the topic (which is obviously different from theirs) and hope they take the time to listen and consider what you have to say so that there aren't any more annoyances =P That's something you should also do - I'm not saying "they're right" by any means or anything like that (I would have no idea lol), but even with negative feedback, we as writers need to consider it and try to understand where it is coming from. If it's obvious crap, then it's crap and don't let it bother you too much, but even though you might think something is obviously a certain way doesn't mean you've actually put it all down on paper in a way that others can get that same message, you know? The never ending writer vs reader struggle haha
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LeRevengeSquid's avatar
This is so true
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Queen-of-Ice101's avatar
Love this stamp. I'm so tired of seeing reviews and comments ragging on a OC simply because it's a OC and then pulling random facts out if their butt and stringing them together to present "proof" that your OC is a Mary Sue or a self insert. Another stamp for my page:D
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9fanforever9909's avatar
9fanforever9909|Hobbyist General Artist
My OC is powerful, and someone called her a Mary Sue.
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mlpfan212's avatar
mlpfan212|Student Artisan Crafter
omg cant people tell the difference between powerful and overpowered 
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QueenObscurePairings's avatar
QueenObscurePairingsEdited |Professional General Artist
I LOVE YOU!...Its people who don't want to think anymore. The moment you have detailed plot, even if a character is shit or great...they will call him/her a sue!  I have come across badly written characters and stories that make no sense..but their characters themselves are good characters, and their plot just needs their holes patching up.. I think sues are not even real. It's just retards wanting to use that, who feel well read, and when they are not! Thinking throwing around fancy wording, author slang makes your creditable..and now eligible to review anyone...  HELL! Even am not well read, but I know a few things...  but let's pretend the word sue/meaning was never out there.....People would now just say "YOUR CHARACTER IS SHIT..." OR "YOUR CHARACTER IS GREAT" Case in point, the word sue  should be deleted from authors/readers memory all together, and from the face of this earth.

AND AM SICK OF TRIED IF THE WORD SELF INTEREST! WELL DAH! We write what we love and know about. And all our characters are piece of us in the end..The Villains, the heroes, the sub characters..That is why I think most fanfics suck..only the real owner of said characters can right them properly..unless said fanfic is written by a fan who has same morals and life expediences, on goings as said author of original characters, He/she will most likely write them to cannon, or at least properly.   Like I LOVE SHERLOCK HOLMES! And for laughs I do very odd crossover/what if...roleplay with friends..I know our writings are not cannon or even on plot...But we do this for run, we still love him and can fake writing him, the other characters..somewhat..as we still love the fandom and the era it is set in.  We still share some similar traits to Doyle, but not the actual writing skill and clever wit he had that aided him, when creating the puzzles and clues, and the inter-workings for Sherlock's mind...

That is why most novels fall, because of this sue shit. Authors are scared of now being accused of making  their characters self interests. They will still write things that interest them, yes..but hold back the trait they like in people and themselfs, then instead write in personalities they have yet to meet (so they have no real point of ref, or life expediences of said personalities, maybe only what they saw on other TV shows, films or books..but that doesn't help)  or hate to be around..and it will fail..  When you do self interests, even the personalities you've never met, can help you wing it..as your adding in the known stereotypes of said character personally..But with your twist on it as your putting your view/thought into said character.. So the EMO kid, you never met, lets say..? You can work on using stereotypes for  your writing, but may give him/her a twist that is apart of yourself..that still can coexist in the emo mentally and bam an original emo character. As no two people are a like so tossing in a stereotype mentally, with your own view on the world...and there be no other emo like that..as you made him/her up. That can help you fake it, if your in pitch, true. I say get refs first...But still...self interests are needed. 

But let's be clear here, when is any OC really a self-interest?  You create an OC that is your alter ego, counter part...with all things you want to be, as well as what you are really, but mentally..then physically.  Am over weight and am sad about it..so i make all my characters fit/trim..right there not a self interest anymore...you see my point...' Sue'...' Self interest' are all  useless words...we waste brain cells trying to explain these fake terms...or give credence to them, when real writers never would..
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Novadestin's avatar
"Real writers", if we're talking about the actual publishing world (which I have worked in) and not the online minefield of fanfics and OC arguments, usually have NO IDEA what 'Mary Sue' even is - like, you mention the term and they go, "Sorry, what?" It's a completely fanfiction based term (just like the equally bullshit "tropes")  that has no barring in the "real world". So, you're right, "real writers" don't give credence to such things and it's only pretentious holier-than-thou online writer types that get all bent out of shape about it because they think it has more weight than it really does. Grammar Nazis are the same way... just one of the many differences between the actual publishing world and the online writing world =P (Razz)
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QueenObscurePairings's avatar
QueenObscurePairings|Professional General Artist
Yea. Granted I try to write my best and my form my words right..sure. It is nice to have one of those Nazis on my back to help me write better..but they always so rude and mean and elist. It so rare to find nice one.
It just happened two Grammar Nazis are my good friends, and are nice and caring they just irked by bad spelling. They will not go and troll bully and person like some..either they just walk away lol or nicely offer to help prove read haha
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Novadestin's avatar
See, I wouldn't call your friends Grammar Nazis, just people who like 'proper grammar'. For me, the term "Grammar Nazi" is reserved for people who do go out and try to force their views on everyone else by bullying and such. But, that's what's great about language and grammar in the first place: it's flexible, it evolves. People can have different ways of communicating using the same words, and the only important thing is that we take the time to really understand what someone else means rather than just what we think they are saying ^^
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AngellStarCake's avatar
If powerful meant Mary Sue, then Haruhi Suzumiya would be the queen of the Mary Sues :P

If a character is balanced in traits and flaws, and has an explanation of why she/he is so powerful, then everything is ok. One of my OCs, whom I'm not naming, has enough power to destroy the entire solar system if he/she wants to, but he/she absorved the power of others of his/her own kind so most of this power isn't his/hers. Of course this can happen in a fandom, but one of their motivations, other than revenge, is that 'no other being can be stronger than them. EVER.' Selfish, huh XD
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mlpfan212's avatar
mlpfan212|Student Artisan Crafter
having red lips does not mean your a mary - sue
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Birdramon260's avatar
my oc can control goddamn flames but isnt a mary sue
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mlpfan212's avatar
mlpfan212|Student Artisan Crafter
yup you are right my friend
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LadyOwen49's avatar
Being overpowered is one thing, being very bland and only exist to fulfill a fantasy is another
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anonymous's avatar
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