An excerpt from my script review for Archenemy which will be available 01/11/21:
4.) Dialogue and Description
First and foremost…
Hamster’s intro dialogue? Not great, especially when he’s trying to convince Melissa to give him a digital reporter job.
It kind of reads like…
(Part of me hoped Melissa would reply, “Yes, because I’m awake and speak English.”)
Second is the description.
Parts of it weren’t bad, but then the style would undo anything good that was done.
For instance on page 2:
…a BLACK HOLE, a swirl of inconceivable power…
And a decent establishing intro shot of the black hole and what we think will be the super power origin, but then we get this…
The title SLAMS onto the screen, aggressively letting us know—the STORY has BEGUN and you BETTER PAY FUCKING ATTENTION.
Now, looking back, it’s probably because the writer didn’t do his job creating a comprehensive story, but starting an intro like this?
It’s insulting to your reader, because you’re overhyping your script.
You know what will get a reader to pay attention?
Writing a good story.
Do your job properly and you won’t need to employ cheap tricks like this, because if your writing is crap your instructions will fall on deaf ears and tired eyes.
Notice how many drafts there were on page 1.
It’s important to remember it’s your job as a writer to keep all your shit straight.
Character names, location changes, etc. if you change it in a later draft you damn better make sure that change carries through to the end of your story.
And don’t cut corners either…
Although minor, there were two issues that caught me off guard.
In one scene, Max saves Indigo and Hamster, taking the bad guys El Camino. Next scene they’re cruising down the street in a Camaro.
Now…earlier in the script there was a Camaro that Max had an altercation with. Was it really a typo meaning El Camino? Did the trio trade up to a cooler car?
We don’t know.
Next, and maybe more important, is a scene where Max burns part of his old Chromium City costume, that being the tattered and dirty cape.
It’s this scene where he’s committing to be a hero on this version of Earth and without any real super powers.
“Deep down he’s still a Hero!”
The moment was kind of touching, as close to character building as we got, and meant something to Max, Hamster and even Indigo.
Then as Max is barging into the rec center on page 70:
…cape flowing out behind him…
From a fight sequence that’s meant to come across as cool because it’s in slow motion.
(Which we’ve seen before and felt like I was reading a bootleg version of The Matrix.)
By doing so you completely undid any arc you set up for your main character earlier.
The importance of continuity, regardless of how trivial the error might be, is the same argument made for eliminating typos. By not doing it, you’re implying that you don’t value the reader’s time, and if you don’t value theirs, what incentive is there to value your story?
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