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  1. #16
    The Nature Boy AnakinFlair's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jetengine View Post
    Alot of it fans.

    People whining about SW were because after Abrams gave us a remix of ANH everyone expected TLJ to be a remix of ESB, instead it was radically different and people went ape.

    However sometimes it IS directors/writers botching it ala DCEU where they just didnt understand their characters

    I'll bite.


    For the Star Wars Prequel trilogy, I think it was a bit of both. I think that fans were wanting Disney to make stories based off of the EU they had spent decades reading, while Disney and the directors they hired wanted to tell new stories based in the universe with brand new characters. As a fan, in theory I have no problem with that. But what fans got angry about- and I think rightfully so- is how the characters they brought back were used. Fans had spent decades wanting to see Luke Skywalker: Jedi Master on the big screen, and instead they gave us Luke Skywalker the hermit, which was a huge disappointment.

  2. #17
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    GoT: I have no problems with the ending. The execution was horrific. I don't think I'm alone in that sense--don't misunderstand my anger at the bad storytelling that I didn't like the result.

    Xena: The head writer felt that in order for his character to get her redemption, she needed to die. I fundamentally disagreed with that assessment, but whatever. I still enjoyed the series.

    If there's money involved, *and* you care about it, then you absolutely need to take your audience reaction into consideration.

    The lady that wrote the "Divergent" series killed off all interest in her franchise when she killed off the main character. That was the story she wanted to tell and if she's happy about it then great. But she left money on the table.

    Star Wars: A little different (to me) in the sense that Rian Johnson took over Part 2 of the franchise writing characters that weren't his own and following a story he didn't start. He was so determined to tell the story he wanted to tell that he ended up alienating the people who enjoyed the first and expected "more of the same". Can you subvert audience expectations without losing your audience? It's a tricky thing. Then you can say Abrams did the same thing in the 3rd, where he threw out a lot of the second movie.

    As someone who was a casual viewer of How I Met Your Mother, I enjoyed the ending. I had no idea the outrage over the finale until later on. Apparently I missed a lot of character growth and stuff that happened since then. It sounds like if that was the planned ending all along, they spent an entire season basically "fooling" the viewing audience into thinking it was ending one way and then going with the original direction. (Which they didn't want to do because people had figured it out) Also supposedly a lot of scenes that made the transition better was left on the editing room floor.

    I enjoy Wrestling. In most cases, the plot is simple and the storylines predictable. But that's ok--the journey is the exciting part to me. I don't care if I can guess the ending, I enjoy seeing how they got here. I would argue that while reading a story, the reader or viewer should have a handful out outcomes in their heads, one of which is true. I do think that too many writers like to pepper M. Night Shyamalan twists into their stories but don't have the skill to do it.

  3. #18
    Extraordinary Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    Dany flipping her shit and doing Kings Landing 9/11 isn't completely out of thin air, she's definitely set up to go either way. They just rushed the development over too short of a time, and didn't do an adequate job of conveying how she's worse some others. Yeah she is entitled and has her eye on the prize, and tends to react with "burn baby burn" when dealing with people she hates, but the show usually framed that with triumphant music and against bad people. Yeah she seemed satisfied when her abusive brother met his horrible end...but Sansa had the same look on her face when she fed Ramsey to his dogs. Arya gleefully chopped up some dudes and baked them into pies and fed them to their father before cutting his throat. Yeah they all deserved it, but so did Dany's brother and those Dothraki leaders she burned in the hut who were going to gang rape her. And the slavers. She also freaked out when Drogon burned one child by accident to the point where she locked the other two up, going from that to burning women and children takes some more careful character work than we got.

    Also not helped is that her advisors, mainly Tyrion, are pretty useless. They keep telling her to calm down, she listens then things get worse, and she gets results when she doesn't listen to them. Fan favorite character Olenna telling her to be the Dragon Queen is also gonna get a "hell yeah!" moment from the audience. She burned Randy and Dickhead or whatever their names were because they betrayed Olenna and it resulted in her death, and she cannot appear weak especially in that time period. She later gets hit with back to back things any reasonable person would be upset about: she lost two dragons who were like children to her, the Northern people whom she allied with are hostile and xenophobic toward her even before she exhibits too many warning signs, fights alongside them and loses a lot of her forces, loses two people who are very close to her (Jora and Massendei), Jon rejects her and Varys betrays her. She's not "gOiNg MaD qUeEn," she's just pissed, and it's kind of insulting that they try to paint it that way. It's not paranoia if they are actually out to get you, and Varys tried to poison her. There's no going back once she becomes full Dragon Hitler, but they clearly had a story target they needed to hit and didn't care so much how they got there. The ultimate message between her and Cersei is that women with power = Bitches Be Crazy. Except Sansa, who squeaks by with the North, but had to get raped to be a powerful player and ruler*. Dany going crazy in the books will probably be much more authentic, as we will have her POV chapters and hopefully much better pacing.

    That's before we got into the other problems of the final season. I guess we shouldn't be surprised that the show that resolved the Night King stuff in one episode, turned Arya into ultimate anime ninja waifu and had the Bad Pussy in it shat the bed.

    *Can't wait for the books to come out and have Sansa reach the same point or better WITHOUT needing to get raped.

  4. #19
    Astonishing Member superduperman's Avatar
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    I once read an interview with someone who worked in one of these studios about why so many of these movies turn out bad and one of the things that they pointed out was that a lot of people just throw in their two cents just to keep their jobs. They don't know anything about these franchises or really care. They just want to justify their big paycheck. That's how you get the infamous story of someone wanting to hire Julia Roberts as Harriet Tubman. Not knowing who she was. The studios who own these franchises aren't run by fans. They're run by guys whose biggest concern is shareholders and people who might have seen the original franchise once when it came out. It's not a secret Snyder didn't like Superman. One rumor said that the head of Paramount once asked why they weren't seeing a dime from Star Wars because he didn't know the difference between it and Star Trek. Disney plays it safe with everything. So of course their Star Wars is going to go back to the original trilogy well.

    In terms of George Lucas, it's obvious he wants to make kids movies. That's basically what the original trilogy was supposed to be. So that's what the prequels were. Everyone forgets he had a lot of handlers the first time around. What I think he didn't grasp was that the old school fans wanted something for them. That clearly wasn't his intention. That having been said, do you really think the head of Disney knows anything about Star Wars outside of the names of the main characters? Or the head of WB about Superman other than seeing the first two movies and wanting to do something different so theirs stand out? These studios have a lot of plates in the air. Kevin Smith talked about this on his podcast once. They approached him about rebooting Superman and he point blank asked them why they didn't just go to DC comics itself? They made a point to say to him that there's a difference between the movie division and the comics division.

    I don't know what JJ Abrams history with Star Wars or Star Trek is but I can't help but think that there was a lot of studio interference from people who don't know anything about these franchises.
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  5. #20
    Astonishing Member AndrewCrossett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by titanfan View Post
    Xena: The head writer felt that in order for his character to get her redemption, she needed to die. I fundamentally disagreed with that assessment, but whatever. I still enjoyed the series.
    That was my first experience of fandom outrage at a bad series ending. Especially since it directly and fundamentally contradicted all of Xena's character growth over the course of the series. But still a great series, and since it was like the 4th or 5th time Xena died it wasn't that hard to imagine it being undone in the future. That girl died more often than a Winchester brother.
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  6. #21
    CBR's Good Fairy Kieran_Frost's Avatar
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    This is an interesting situation to discuss. I think there are two things going on here:
    a) fans failing to separate how they imaged it, and give what it actually was a fair chance
    b) the series (or film) intentionally setting up an expectation then not delivering.

    I don't think the second one happens often, mostly in these discussions I see the first part being the bone of contention. So for example I was so, SO EXCITED for Kill Bill vol.2 (2004) and me and my friends had discussed how it would go down, based on the formula of the first time (anime style, pop art samurai goodness). Budd would die by the gun, Elle by poison, Bill by the sword (as they were killing people by their weapon of choice); there would be mass armies and huge showdowns in very dramatic scenarios full of crazy colours and pop. That didn't happen. So I was briefly disappointed, as I wasn't expecting the second part to be western/kung-fu inspired. But once I let go of what "could have been" I found huge appreciation for what it became instead. And I'm glad it was different, and not more of the same. It's also important to note the film never promised me part II would be more of the same. I did that, not them. It wasn't an unreasonable expectation, but nor should I blame them for not delivering on something they promised

    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewCrossett View Post
    Some fans do get too in love with their own mental fanfic -- especially when romantic relationships are involved -- and get resentful when the canon doesn't turn out that way. That's on them... but in a weird way, it's all part of the game.
    Yes AND NO. One of the reasons I disliked how When Marie was There (2014) played out, was because they spent the entire movie setting them up as lovers, then last minute brought in a platonic relationship that made no sense with everything we had seen. Sometimes the fault for that lies with the production.
    Last edited by Kieran_Frost; 05-19-2020 at 01:32 PM.
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  7. #22
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    Looking over the responses and thinking a bit more myself, I think there’s some points to make:

    1. Ironically, in order for expectations to be disappointed, the product needs to have experienced goodwill and love first, and the most vicious disputes between creators and fans require extreme success in the first entries.

    No one’s going to be disappointed in a brand new property that flops before anyone can understand its potential or engage with its cast of characters; expectations, whether in detail (what you think/hope happens for your favorite character) or in a broad sense (the level of competency you expect to be in a story’s execution, need to first be raised and cultivated before they can be disappointed.

    This is why it actually *is* fandoms fighting over the property, and not just an argument between lovers and haters. It also creates a weird thing where, yeah, a single product can accidentally set a standard it later “fails to meet”; if an criticism is about execution, it probably has something to do with a previous entry setting such a high bar for execution that an otherwise acceptable concept comes off as schlock.

    Game of Thrones suffered from the fact that fans had seen epic yet well-orchestrated battles before, had seen characters commence self-destructive decaying character arcs, and nuanced and intelligent surprises that actually worked very well in hindsight, and had even seen show-only developments that were equally high quality (Hardhome). The Battle for the Dawn just wasn’t quite up to par with those other conflicts, Dany’s heel-turn just wasn’t as organic as it could be, and a huge chunk of the finale felt like just bullet-points without much heart or thought behind it.

    How I Met Your Mother had set a standard for character arcs and build up in its final season... which then clashes with everything rushed and “obligatory” in its finale.

    Star Wars... well, Star Wars had a single creator craft a story where the plot did genuinely build on itself with each entry and act as a force-multiplier for resonance and drama. Having the last three movies in the long Saga arguing with each other and undermining each other damaged all three.

    It’s also why so many great endings “stick the landing” as their greatest achievement. Breaking Bad, Avenger’s Endgame, Avatar: The Last Airbender, etc., all manage to match their previous standard of writing in just about everyone’s opinion - which means they cash in on everything people love about the product.

    2. Often-times in long-form storytelling, major decisions carry certain realities, risks, or potentials that need to be realized by creators. When a creator is aware of those realities, risks, and potentials, they can do almost anything; when they don’t, they might deliver a massively deflating property, which is never really the goal.

    This may sound obvious, but certain storytelling choices have a weight to them, or a perspective that needs to be reviewed when constructing your story. Do it well, and it can let you do almost anything: George R. R. Martin knew what perspective and weight the Red Wedding should have, and managed to justify every last horrible detail to it in his books, and the show followed through on it, while Avatar: The Last Airbender knew how anti-climactic a Dey’s Ex Machina could be... but smartly allowed Aang to have two separate moral victories over Ozai before he pulled out energy-bending, and tied energy bending into a great four episode character arc for Aang as well to justify it, and Endgame did something similar with Thanos and time traveling.

    In contrast, a lot of the more... combatively-argued-over franchise products seem to have choices made without being aware of some of the risks or downsides, and no attempts to “compensate” for them.

    HIMYM was going to end with Barney and Robin separated and Ted pursuing Robin again... which is *not going to work* with a whole season setting Robin and Barney up, unless you do serious, hardcore preparation for it.

    A more mild example would be Iron Man 3 with the Mandarin; having Sir Ben Kingsley act as a wonderfully creepy and threatening villain, ostensibly leading a recurring antagonistic faction from the previous two films, only to pull a bait-and-switch, is offering one idea before substituting another... and while Aldrich Killian and Extremis were decent conventional Iron Man villains, having them be such conventional Iron Man villains after teasing something more frighteningly different with Kingsley’s “Mandarin” just kind of undermines both ideas.

    The Star Wars Sequel Trilogy just made some decisions without ever thinking them through to the end, a problem started by TFA but exacerbated and wrenched open by TLJ before kind of ex-sanguinating the entire story in TROS.

    Broken!Luke is not a concept that people were against... but Luke being *that* broken, and then dying after *so little* of a comeback, and doing *nothing* for Rey’s story? Those are major risks you NEED to compensate for - Rey not getting “the rub” from Luke means she needs something else to work with, Luke dying without restarting the Jedi Order puts the payoff of ROTJ in limbo, and the general appeal of Rey and Luke teaming up us being discarded, so what’s the back-up?

    Similarly, and in my opinion more egregiously, the concept of a Rey being drawn towards Kylo Ren in a pseudo-love story across two films has some rather serious issues from TFA that NEED to be addressed; failing to do so risks making their relationship an abusive one that the films are nevertheless elevating and celebrating... which is sadly what happens.

    3. These kinds of missteps are more identifiable because of the “deflating effect” they have; well executed subversions, inversions, and aversions of audience expectations just engage more people, while botched ones end up leaving people less interested.

    That is to say, I think if a product sees incredibly diminishing returns, even if it still technically makes a profit... I’m more inclined to think that shows a failure on the part of the creators than on the fans.

    Martin could kill off half the Stark family, and it worked so well people watched even more of the show and read more of the books; D&D turned more of the villains bad, but it didn’t work, and caused disengagement with the characters.

    The Russo Brothers first killed off half-the-universe with an over-powered villain, yet got more people engaged to the point they could have the heroes become OP for a while and kill the pillars of the franchise off and *still* guarantee butts in seats for years to come; Shane Black pulled a double blind with the Mandarin, and his film had negligible impact on future Marvel movies and a new Mandarin is set to arrive.

    George Lucas stumbled on AOTC, but still homered on ROTS enough to launch multiple cartoons and spinoff properties and keep the brand strong, even as he made his main character a child killer; LFL managed to kill off all three OT leads and switch out a black male lead with a white male lead, and suddenly finds itself without nearly as much interest as it had between TFA and TLJ, whether for the new characters or the old ones.
    Last edited by godisawesome; 05-19-2020 at 01:32 PM.
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  8. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by titanfan View Post
    As someone who was a casual viewer of How I Met Your Mother, I enjoyed the ending. I had no idea the outrage over the finale until later on. Apparently I missed a lot of character growth and stuff that happened since then. It sounds like if that was the planned ending all along, they spent an entire season basically "fooling" the viewing audience into thinking it was ending one way and then going with the original direction. (Which they didn't want to do because people had figured it out) Also supposedly a lot of scenes that made the transition better was left on the editing room floor.
    I'll tell you this, any one who watched How I Met Your Mother for every episode who didn trealise where it was heading just wasnt paying attention. Season after season had Ted going on about how he loved Robin. the Mother barely features and when she does, the obviousness of what happens to her becomes so painfully explicit its unbelivable people didnt see it.

  9. #24
    Astonishing Member jetengine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AnakinFlair View Post
    I'll bite.


    For the Star Wars Prequel trilogy, I think it was a bit of both. I think that fans were wanting Disney to make stories based off of the EU they had spent decades reading, while Disney and the directors they hired wanted to tell new stories based in the universe with brand new characters. As a fan, in theory I have no problem with that. But what fans got angry about- and I think rightfully so- is how the characters they brought back were used. Fans had spent decades wanting to see Luke Skywalker: Jedi Master on the big screen, and instead they gave us Luke Skywalker the hermit, which was a huge disappointment.
    See at that point its clear that Disney had dumped the Legends material so expectations are moot. Plus alot of the anger is ridiculous expecting luke to be in stasis emotionally and mentally.

  10. #25
    Astonishing Member David Walton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AdventureBliss View Post
    I'll tell you this, any one who watched How I Met Your Mother for every episode who didn trealise where it was heading just wasnt paying attention. Season after season had Ted going on about how he loved Robin. the Mother barely features and when she does, the obviousness of what happens to her becomes so painfully explicit its unbelivable people didnt see it.
    Yeah, I think the finale was a poignant send-off and not unexpected.

    I think if anything, the problem came from the show going on long enough that the ending was obvious and they tried too hard to sell the idea that Ted and Robin were never going to make it work. This coupled with the usual sitcom antics where character behavior gets more erratic and often unlikeable in later seasons. The last season was just treading water to get where they were going, they really should have ended one year earlier. They lost a lot of goodwill heading into the finale.

    But if you mostly ignore the last season and jump into the finale...it's actually really, really good. And you can see where it had been set up from day one.

  11. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewCrossett View Post
    That was my first experience of fandom outrage at a bad series ending. Especially since it directly and fundamentally contradicted all of Xena's character growth over the course of the series. But still a great series, and since it was like the 4th or 5th time Xena died it wasn't that hard to imagine it being undone in the future. That girl died more often than a Winchester brother.
    I think if they flipped the final storyline and ended the series with the episode they played right before (where Xena and Gabrielle are reincarnated in the future), it would have helped a lot more. But in either case, I think the Xena fanbase has cooled on the outrage and the disappointing finale doesn't really hurt the overall enjoyment of the series.

    I could be wrong--but I don't think it will be the same with Game of Thrones. 10-15 years from now it will still be known for that horrible ending, and will overshadow a lot of the good that came before it.

    I do think that if I were to get called on to write the new Star Wars or Star Trek (and I would never because I'm not a writer), I absolutely do think you are writing with the audience in mind. You can't tell the story you want to tell if it won't make any money. To this extent, if your audience really wanted characters X and Y to get together you need to do it or spend a lot of time why showing it wouldn't work. If character Z gets super popular and is selling a lot of merchandise, and has kids dressing up as him in cosplay, I'm probably not killing him off with 3 more parts to go. It's your story, but at some point you're not writing just for you.

  12. #27
    Extraordinary Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by titanfan View Post
    I think if they flipped the final storyline and ended the series with the episode they played right before (where Xena and Gabrielle are reincarnated in the future), it would have helped a lot more. But in either case, I think the Xena fanbase has cooled on the outrage and the disappointing finale doesn't really hurt the overall enjoyment of the series.

    I could be wrong--but I don't think it will be the same with Game of Thrones. 10-15 years from now it will still be known for that horrible ending, and will overshadow a lot of the good that came before it.

    I do think that if I were to get called on to write the new Star Wars or Star Trek (and I would never because I'm not a writer), I absolutely do think you are writing with the audience in mind. You can't tell the story you want to tell if it won't make any money. To this extent, if your audience really wanted characters X and Y to get together you need to do it or spend a lot of time why showing it wouldn't work. If character Z gets super popular and is selling a lot of merchandise, and has kids dressing up as him in cosplay, I'm probably not killing him off with 3 more parts to go. It's your story, but at some point you're not writing just for you.
    I think the problem is that GoT was heavily serialized and always building towards a climax that could make or break the whole thing. In this case, it broke.

    Xena had serialized storylines, but also a ton of stand alone episodes that were meant for syndication. Even the storylines tended to be divided into different arcs that had their own endings. So the finale can't really retroactively ruin the whole thing. Buffy is sort of similar. It is more of a serialized soap opera than Xena, but has good jumping off points. Its last two seasons were overall a huge letdown, but you could say stop at season 5 and or even earlier at season 3 and have a satisfying story.

  13. #28
    Extraordinary Member Zero Hunter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AdventureBliss View Post
    I'll tell you this, any one who watched How I Met Your Mother for every episode who didn trealise where it was heading just wasnt paying attention. Season after season had Ted going on about how he loved Robin. the Mother barely features and when she does, the obviousness of what happens to her becomes so painfully explicit its unbelivable people didnt see it.
    The thing is they spent 3 or 4 season showing us that Ted and Robin were just not a good couple. They were toxic to each other. They were two very selfish people that were horrible together every time they tried. Then in the latter season they actual showed them growing beyond that and being better people. Pretty much every relationship Ted had outside of Robin was better than the Robin/Ted one They took their time and built up Robin and Barney and making that couple work. Then because they had this preconcieved idea they came up with 10 years ago they undid all that to try and make Ted and Robin a thing again at the very end. It was a case of the writers being too in love with this one idea to realize the characters they created had moved past that ending years ago. It was made even worse by spending a while season on Robin and Barneys wedding only to say "oh by the way this whole last season was pointless because they broke up soon after".

  14. #29
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    You haven't served your audience well if you only give them what they expect.

    On the other hand, sometimes the audience just expects it to go away, and justifiably so.

  15. #30
    Astonishing Member AndrewCrossett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by titanfan View Post
    I think if they flipped the final storyline and ended the series with the episode they played right before (where Xena and Gabrielle are reincarnated in the future), it would have helped a lot more. But in either case, I think the Xena fanbase has cooled on the outrage and the disappointing finale doesn't really hurt the overall enjoyment of the series.
    I agree about flipping the finales. And with A Friend in Need it actually makes quite a bit of difference if you watch the director's cut where Xena is with Gabrielle in the final scene on the ship, instead of Gabrielle by herself. It leaves you with the feeling that yeah, this is just gonna be a speed bump. Death is not a career ending injury in the Xenaverse.
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