this is getting dull...

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this is getting dull...

Postby boi-yo on Fri Feb 10, 2006 2:05 pm

I'm really getting sick of the current storyline, the gender-switching party. this chapter has been going on for ten months!! For what boils down to a pizza party! I think they took about a month to pick out clothes for each other! There's no tension or drama anymore, and it's getting boring.

I read this comic because I like the charecters and the story is compelling- you really want to know what happens next. I hope we get a bit more of the school uniforms storyline soon, the Uronyms or those mysterous ghost secret agents. I do actually love this comic, but I hope this storyline wraps up soon.
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Postby Tuitsuro on Fri Feb 10, 2006 2:13 pm

Personally, I`m quite enjoying the current storyline and feel that it's not boring at all. Dan's showing us some real character depth! You're welcome to your own opinion about it though, but you shouldn`t complain just because the comic isn`t going the way you want. ;)

Welcome to the forums though; if you want you could head over to EGS-Mayhem, there's usually something interesting going on there; and of course post in the introduction thread here if you want! :D
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Postby Sqauto on Fri Feb 10, 2006 2:17 pm

Only Dan knows when it will finish. But I would like to point out that the very reasons that you gave about why would hate this current arc, are what make EGS such a strong webcomic (btw, it is a week after Painted Black that this arc takes place).

I really do like it, as it is allowing the charaters to really develop, and to discover new things about themselves (relationships, views of others, etc).

As to the other stuff, Dan plans to have that. Just later on (much later on). So I say leave Dan to what he has planned, as if he cuts back on the story to get to all the things you like about EGS. Then you are removing what hmakes it so great.
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Postby Tenshisama on Fri Feb 10, 2006 2:22 pm

Some people like action, some people like character development. I personally prefer character development, especially mixed with humor.

So, personally, I don't care how long this story arc goes, so long as we keep learning things about the characters, and they keep saying funny things.
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Postby 10.0.0.1 on Fri Feb 10, 2006 2:22 pm

EGS is great for both action and character development.
If you are have trouble with the currant story then just read the archives one day at a time.
The party may be taking a long time but I think is very enjoyable to watch the character interactions.
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Postby DarkShive on Fri Feb 10, 2006 2:58 pm

This story is character development and interaction overload. I want all of these eight characters to feel strongly connected afterwards. Before the party, there were points where some among the eight were only connected to others among the eight by association with someone else in the eight.

...yes, that sentence made perfect sense.

Anyway, I want things at the point where, for example, Justin calling up Tedd for something as trivial as hanging out wouldn't seem weird.

Once it gets to the point where all of these characters are truly connected, the stories that follow will have much greater potential, basic character things that require much explanation now will be a given, and secondary characters will be able to get more screen time.

There will actually be two sets of primary stories going on at once sometime after the party, which makes sense given two schools and eight main characters. At the same time, with all the character connections in place, the two primary stories will merge when the characters are outside of school, and then seperate again, etc.

Personally, I think this story arc has been one of EGS's most interesting and funny story arcs. There were points when setting up the arc when I've given in to the temptation to make things too angsty (drama is SO much easier to write than humor), but I think I've gotten better at avoiding angst-overdoes.

I would count the immortals and Mastermind at the start of the party as a strike against me, but as I've stated in the past, people would be all like "why didn't Mastermind try something during the party?!" later on if Mastermind hadn't.

And yes, I've decided to refer to that shadow character as "Mastermind" for now on an official-like name basis. Mastermind's backstory is a good while off, but it will explain a great many things via the magic of retconned--er, carefully planned since the beginning of EGS storytelling.

Anyway, I haven't eaten in many hours and I've been sitting at the computer working all that time, so I barely know what I'm typing just now. I hope it was half-way coherent. In conclusion, I will simply say that these long story arcs are one of many reasons why I hope to be able to bring back NP soon. I'm satisfied with this story from a writer's standpoint (it's not like PB where I needed an alternative), but the desire is totally there from a readers standpoint.
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Postby Demonic Duck on Fri Feb 10, 2006 3:00 pm

Personally I think EGS could do with a bit more action over character development. That's not to say I think it should be all action, but if things moved just a tad faster than they are at the moment, it would make me happier. Although I'm very glad that the demonic duck is beginning to take on a character of his own now :).
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Postby Sky Render on Fri Feb 10, 2006 3:15 pm

Really, the party storyline is a bit of EGS returning to its expositional roots. If you read through the earlier stories, pretty much everything before Painted Black was pretty laid-back and exposition-driven. Very little actually "happened", per se, save during the Sister story arc. I rather like how this story's been going, particularly with the leveling out between the drama and humor of the comic. Lots of drama can be nifty, but only in reasonable quantities; too much, and it loses its edge. Of course, that's true of humor too, but it takes longer for humor to wear down.
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Postby The Wanderer on Fri Feb 10, 2006 3:17 pm

Personally, I think this story arc has been one of EGS's most interesting and funny story arcs. There were points when setting up the arc when I've given in to the temptation to make things too angsty (drama is SO much easier to write than humor), but I think I've gotten better at avoiding angst-overdoes.

Having seen what angst/drama overload can do to a comic, you have my COMPLETE support and thanks for choosing to do things as you have, Dan.

I will admit that I, too, was among those who believed Dan was stalling with all the stuff before Sarah transformed. But that is the only place thus far where I've had any complaints about the speed of the storyline. I LIKE this story.

As Dan said, and as I believe one Jennifer Diane Reitz said some weeks ago, by going to this party these characters now have something that binds them together, something separating them from all who AREN'T at this party. Before, they were merely people, some of whom only knew some of the others through association. After this, they'll be a GROUP.

Anyway, I still have no complaints about the storyline, because it still seems, to me, to simply be more standard EGS-type stuff. Yeah, it isn't "Sister" and it isn't "Pitch Black" but so what? It's our crew, being themselves in their crazy world. This story seems no less content-full than any other, to me.

Now, those who have only recently found a comic tend to read through the archives voraciously, and then hit the current update with a crash, and suddenly find themselves stuck waiting for updates that (in their eyes) USED to come as fast as they could read them. Of course everything suddenly seems slow, dragging, and utterly different from what came before. But it ISN'T. Wait a while and then go read the archives again, including the stuff that was put up since you found the comic. You'll find that actually flows just as well as what came before it.
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Postby DarkShive on Fri Feb 10, 2006 3:43 pm

I defend the comics leading up to Sarah's zappy from an archive standpoint, but taking update-pace into account? That portion was HORRIFICALLY slow. It becomes quite apparent when one observes the calender for November and December of 2005.

I think what's missing from this story are character antagonists. Every character present during this arc, with VERY few exceptions, is a protagonist. There is conflict, and there is character development, but there's no adversary to face. As much as I love this arc, and don't want to muck it up with an villian, the lack of antagonists is a valid point against it. It's also a point for it, but it's all a matter of taste.

There will be antagonists to spare in the upcoming storylines, however, and they will have to face villains again. Since I want to focus on humor more than drama, they're likely not to be as murderous as Damien (with one big exception, of course).
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Postby boi-yo on Fri Feb 10, 2006 3:44 pm

I'm glad Dan Shive took the time to explain himself about this storyline- sorry if I came across as whinging.

I've been reading this comic from since about the beginning of the painted black storyline, which had me skipping homework to read. I guess I don't get the same thrills out of this story. Sorry man, them's the breaks. And I've been experiancing this story one update at a time, which makes it seem like we're going at an especially slow crawl.

So yeah. Chalk my tedium up to webcomic seven-year-itch. The only thing that actually irritates me was the demonic duck making an appearance at the party. I liked it so much better as a running gag.
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Postby DarkShive on Fri Feb 10, 2006 3:59 pm

boi-yo wrote:The only thing that actually irritates me was the demonic duck making an appearance at the party. I liked it so much better as a running gag.

I can understand that. I prefer expanding on him, as I would be bored after the "on strike" gag with the duck and just not use him except in filler (where he already has an established personality in my mind), but I can totally understand how others might prefer him as just a recurring gag.

BTW, is that an odd mentality? I often not like something but still acknowledge that it's good, and like something while acknowledging why it's bad. It makes sense to me, but I've had people give me confused looks when I say stuff like "I didn't like that movie and never want to see it again, but it was really well made and there are many I would recommend it to" (which was essentially my review of the "War of the Worlds" remake).
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Postby Demonic Duck on Fri Feb 10, 2006 4:08 pm

DarkShive wrote:There will be antagonists to spare in the upcoming storylines, however, and they will have to face villains again. Since I want to focus on humor more than drama, they're likely not to be as murderous as Damien (with one big exception, of course).

Excellent. Antagonists are good :). Well... good, but in an evil way :evilgrin:.

DarkShive wrote:BTW, is that an odd mentality? I often not like something but still acknowledge that it's good, and like something while acknowledging why it's bad. It makes sense to me, but I've had people give me confused looks when I say stuff like "I didn't like that movie and never want to see it again, but it was really well made and there are many I would recommend it to" (which was essentially my review of the "War of the Worlds" remake).

*Mutters* the only person I'd recommend that film to would be an arch enemy... but right now, I don't hate anyone enough to put them through that... Hehehe... :lol:
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Postby boi-yo on Fri Feb 10, 2006 4:20 pm

DarkShive wrote:BTW, is that an odd mentality? I often not like something but still acknowledge that it's good, and like something while acknowledging why it's bad. It makes sense to me, but I've had people give me confused looks when I say stuff like "I didn't like that movie and never want to see it again, but it was really well made and there are many I would recommend it to" (which was essentially my review of the "War of the Worlds" remake).


I don't think it's wierd, but it is refreshingly rare. Most people arn't quite so objective and fair.

Personally, I try to warn people away from the movies I like. I realise people don't quite have the same tastes as I do.
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Postby 10.0.0.1 on Fri Feb 10, 2006 4:21 pm

DarkShive wrote:BTW, is that an odd mentality? I often not like something but still acknowledge that it's good, and like something while acknowledging why it's bad. It makes sense to me, but I've had people give me confused looks when I say stuff like "I didn't like that movie and never want to see it again, but it was really well made and there are many I would recommend it to" (which was essentially my review of the "War of the Worlds" remake).

It is not so much odd as hard to explain to some else.
finding value in something you do not enjoy and finding fault in something you do is something I can do as well.
To someone that does not think that way it sounds very strange.
I like the drama and humor you put into your comic world, it really makes for an enjoyable read.
DarkShive wrote: There will be antagonists to spare in the upcoming storylines, however, and they will have to face villains again. Since I want to focus on humor more than drama, they're likely not to be as murderous as Damien (with one big exception, of course).

you big tease :D giving us just enough to speculate on without any solid facts to back up competing theories, nicely done.
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Postby Circe on Fri Feb 10, 2006 4:24 pm

DarkShive wrote:I think what's missing from this story are character antagonists. Every character present during this arc, with VERY few exceptions, is a protagonist. There is conflict, and there is character development, but there's no adversary to face.


Well, there are antagonists - they're just not people. Plato (I think) once identified the basic plotlines that drive stories:

Man vs. Man
Man vs. Nature
Man vs. Himself
Man vs. God(s)/Fate

I could be a little off on this list, it's been a while since I did a lit & writing minor in college :).

In the current arc, a lot of the characters are in Man vs Himself mode. Justin struggling with his feelings for Elliot, Nanase with her closet, Susan with her preconceived notions, Grace with her depression and self-doubt. Tedd is probably more in Man vs Man mode -- trying to keep everyone together to make Grace happy, as is Ellen -- who is trying to get Nanase to let her in. Sarah isn't really struggling with much (or at least she wasn't until he began to realize how hot fElliot is ;)).

Having said all that, Man vs. Himself doesn't usually lead to a lot of action by itself. That's why a lot of movies have a flawed protagonist struggling with their inner demons while they face off with a life and blood antagonist. The typical Hollywood ending has Our Hero at last overcoming their own faults in order to defeat the Evil Villian (tm).

Too much Man vs. Himself can lead to soap opera. I don't think we're there and I personally don't mind that the current arc does not have a fast moving plot. As you have pointed out, Dan, this is about establishing charcters and the relationships between them and humour. It makes sense given where the characters are. You could argue that some of this could have been done while they faced some external antagonist and that certainly would have made for more action -- but then how could you have all the bouncy, semi-innocent fun of the gender swapping party?

I think most EGS fans care enough about the characters that they're willing (even eager) to trade in action for the sort of awkward/silly moments that the party has brought us, not to mention the tighter relationships between the characters. In a few years, I'll bet that people point to this party as the time that EGS really began to grow and develop as a story, because there are all sorts of plotlines being generated for the future.

Ummm, sorry, someone left that soapbox standing there and I couldn't resist ;). Getting down now....
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Postby psycho_BUNNY on Fri Feb 10, 2006 4:31 pm

DarkShive wrote:Once it gets to the point where all of these characters are truly connected, the stories that follow will have much greater potential, basic character things that require much explanation now will be a given, and secondary characters will be able to get more screen time.


Makes sense on many levels.
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Postby 10.0.0.1 on Fri Feb 10, 2006 4:37 pm

Circe wrote:...
I think most EGS fans care enough about the characters that they're willing (even eager) to trade in action for the sort of awkward/silly moments that the party has brought us, not to mention the tighter relationships between the characters. In a few years, I'll bet that people point to this party as the time that EGS really began to grow and develop as a story, because there are all sorts of plotlines being generated for the future.
Ummm, sorry, someone left that soapbox standing there and I couldn't resist ;). Getting down now....

I know I am enjoying the character development here, even the "delay" in Sarah's TFing. It gave us an insight we would have missed otherwise.
I agree that seems to be a pivotal plot point, they have been through a lot together and faced possible death and now they can bond as a group.
Fighting a monstrous psychopath is good to bond a group, but it is these relatively calm moments that build lifelong friendships.
While it might agonizingly slow now Dan is more concerned with the archive reading and rightfully so.
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Postby ProfessorTomoe on Fri Feb 10, 2006 4:45 pm

DarkShive wrote:
boi-yo wrote:The only thing that actually irritates me was the demonic duck making an appearance at the party. I liked it so much better as a running gag.

I can understand that. I prefer expanding on him, as I would be bored after the "on strike" gag with the duck and just not use him except in filler (where he already has an established personality in my mind), but I can totally understand how others might prefer him as just a recurring gag.


I like him as is. He's got great comic relief potential, sort of in the way of the Jeremy/Susan relationship but with a talking Demonic Duck instead of a hedgecat. It'll be interesting to see whether or not he has the same level of interaction with the others. Hmmm...

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One Duck to distract them all make them look behind them.


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Postby Estelendur on Fri Feb 10, 2006 5:07 pm

DarkShive wrote:... and secondary characters will be able to get more screen time. ...


Does that mean we might get to see more of Noah? :D
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Re: this is getting dull...

Postby peragrin on Fri Feb 10, 2006 5:07 pm

boi-yo wrote:I'm really getting sick of the current storyline, the gender-switching party. this chapter has been going on for ten months!! For what boils down to a pizza party! I think they took about a month to pick out clothes for each other! There's no tension or drama anymore, and it's getting boring.


Um if you think Ten months is a long time for a story that gets 12 updates monthly then you really need to get a clue. Though the story does seem to drag that is only because of the frame rate you perceive. The first episode was 4 years ago. Back then Dan updated daily. If you expand the story lines out Dan isn't going any slower than he did back then. it just seems that way. Over those 4 years only some 5-6 weeks have past by for this group. Weeks. Your summer vacation. That's it.

I don't mean to sound mean. But EGS is a slow moving story. I applaud Dan's ability to keep the time frame realistic to characters.
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Postby thisisntnotjt on Fri Feb 10, 2006 7:18 pm

Bah, I like this story line; it's a nice relief from the dramatic science fiction that has been a primary aspect of EGS from the beginning. What's great about the current story line is that it focuses on the other aspect of EGS that makes it great, i.e. the romantic comedy drama script that hooked me from the very beginning.
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Postby FerretBob on Fri Feb 10, 2006 7:27 pm

ProfessorTomoe wrote:One Duck to fool them all, One Duck to blind them,
One Duck to distract them all make them look behind them.


Hey Double D, I expect to see this in your sig... :D
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Postby Mr. Bushido on Fri Feb 10, 2006 7:42 pm

I too must admit my shame in wishing this storyline would hurry along some v.v
I think that's because this is the first storyline of EGS I've read through, and I've reread my complete archive of webcomics on my HD at least twice and the current storyline isn't done yet, plus I'm very eager to see the effects of this party in "the real world" and how the characters will interact with each other after it's over and they return to their "normal" lives. I hesitate to ask, because I'm pretty sure of the answer, but how much longer do you suppose it'll go, O Shive-sama? "As long as it takes" is my guess :P
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Postby Serendipity_EGS on Fri Feb 10, 2006 9:15 pm

I come at this having only started reading EGS fairly recently (November-ish), and I have only really read this currant storyline, from when I started, and I have not yet got round to reading all (or even a major part :oops: ) of the archive (though I am going to! I really am, very soon! Plus, I've ordered the books! So i'll read it all soon! :nervous: ).

So, i approach this not knowing much of the past (yet), and I want to say that it is this current storyline which has drawn me in; its let me learn about the charaters, laugh a lot, and think a bit too! I love the currant storline, it lets me see whos interacting with who, and why, and I feel i have got to know the characters! For me, the lack of action isn't a problem, the pacing isn't a problem, its let me in gently, and I have found the stories to be funny, and at times moving, powerful, and personally emotional (eg this one especially, and this is without knowing much of the past).

Truth be told, i am a bit nervous to read the older comics, as I don't want to see characters I have become very attached to be hurt, physically or emotionally, even though I know it turns out alright (or else there would be no party!) Well, thats my turn at Speakers corner up! (Sorry about the rant! Just my POV! :nervous: )

NB This is second go at this, wish first attempt had got through - feel I put it better when fresh! :grumble: )
A Elbereth Gilthoniel!

Current supplies - 1 shiny wrapper from an eaten cookie, 1 squirrel teddy, 1 very-beloved-and-precious TF Gun, 4 cans of unlabelled soda, (2 minature catperson, 2 fairy), Brain bleach, brain glue, 1 rusty hacksaw, 1 red-stripy scarf! Huzzah!

Justin: Along the way they will face peril, and meet many, many handsome Elves.
Nanase: You are aware that there's no way Dan will let you narrate again after that, right?
Justin: Why? Elves are Cool!
(See here)

My characters: Serendipity, Serenity and Amaranthus! And my (bad) Fiction thread! And hardly used DeviantArt page!
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Serendipity_EGS
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