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Decoy Tuyet Inconsistencies


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#41 Offline Katuko

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Posted Dec 05 2013 - 03:03 PM

Where are you getting the idea that corpse removal wasn't working right, in general? In all the quotes I just reviewed and posted in the new official topic, the only one that seems to possibly mean would appear to refer to when the back of the head of the giant robot was smashed. The Tryna was on Matoro's face before that (he died before that).

We are talking about corpse removal because Alt!Tuyet's corpse was apparently left in the Pit ever since the Cataclysm, and there were plenty of dead Rahi there too that Matoro could reanimate.
 

Also, this idea that the Tryna is useless if the RS works perfectly continues to forget that there is a time delay. It isn't made useless by the RS. It's just that someone would have to die recently for it to have a corpse to use (if the RS never left corpses long like Altuyet).

[...] 

Also, the fact that the mask got a name seems to imply that it was known in the MU before (likely to the Makuta, if not others). Think about it -- a Makuta is likely to wear this, at least since they went evil, since they could temporarily convert enemies into allies by killing them and reanimating their corpse before the time limit was up. (As in to fight other enemies.) Or even more likely, immoral mask-users serving the Brotherhood (since Makuta have so many powers of their own).

The time limit does give it some merit, I admit.
 
 

As for not liking it, to each their own, but personally I don't like the approach that requiring thought = annoying. Bionicle has always been supposed to require work to understand, and I have really enjoyed trying to work out all the details of this one. Plus it opened up so much plot potential. :)

It is not about "requiring thought", it is about the concept undermining the impact of character deaths. I am glad that Greg at least stated the thing doesn't work right and is intended for a zombie-story of sorts, for having the dead characters alive again just like that just cheapens the feeling of Lhikan's sacrifice etc. to me. From the characters' point of view they were gone for a long time, but as a reader I have seen too many silly comic book revivals and rebirths etc. to care for another one being spontaneously introduced.
 

1) If the giant robot has to act as a sender up to the RS (which would explain why the teleportation only works one way), and if direct or indirect physical contact with the giant robot through protodermis is needed, then beings in Mahri Nui area are most likely not to go. Hydraxon might have been touching ground when he died, but Tuyet might have floated free for a while and missed the time delay point. Many other corpses might also have been floating in the water.

Or the system was just too broken in that area period. The "head" system under the Island of Mata Nui was still intact when Jaller died (though his revival didn't happen by Red Star, so I guess the point is moot) while the chest section under Voya Nui was ripped out.
 

2) Interference from the energy from Karda Nui. Hydraxon might have died just before Voya Nui punched through, or before the interference got strong enough.

Since the shields around Karda Nui block all forms of teleportation, a hole in the machinery that generates the field may indeed cause some energy interference.
 

3) If the Order knows about revival possibility and does something to Pit prisoners to ensure they can't be detected, so they won't appear on the RS. This may even be highly likely and would also explain why Hydraxon was revived.

If the Order take such steps to exclude them from the revival system, they would have to know the details of it, I imagine, and I don't see that as very likely. Though I do recognize the threat of a villain knowing they have a way to "respawn". Stick a fork in your brain during feeding time and beam down to the surface from the Red Star a day later.

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#42 Offline fishers64

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Posted Dec 05 2013 - 03:12 PM

 

3) If the Order knows about revival possibility and does something to Pit prisoners to ensure they can't be detected, so they won't appear on the RS. This may even be highly likely and would also explain why Hydraxon was revived.

If the Order take such steps to exclude them from the revival system, they would have to know the details of it, I imagine, and I don't see that as very likely. Though I do recognize the threat of a villain knowing they have a way to "respawn". Stick a fork in your brain during feeding time and beam down to the surface from the Red Star a day later.

 

 

But wouldn't it be easier, if there was a time delay involved, for Hydraxon or Maxilos to just smash them to bits, ensuring that they wouldn't be revived? (All those Cordak missiles...)

 

(Also not sure that the revival thing was ever public knowledge. Pridak and Co. viewed their armies as a finite commodity. Once they died, they were dead.


Edited by fishers64, Dec 05 2013 - 03:14 PM.

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#43 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Dec 05 2013 - 06:10 PM

We are talking about corpse removal because Alt!Tuyet's corpse was apparently left in the Pit ever since the Cataclysm, and there were plenty of dead Rahi there too that Matoro could reanimate.

That part was in reply to fishers saying:

 

But the mask was created by the Ignika after the revival system broke, correct? I'm not 100% on that, but it could be built by the Matoran after the revival system broke. Like the Mask of Undeath, which was totally made after the revival system was busted, because otherwise it wouldn't be needed.

But we have no quotes confirming that the revival system (assuming we're not talking about the Sendback) broke, until one quote evidencing that corpses might stay put after Teridax's death (Karzahni's body appears to be an example).

 

BTW, about the Mask of Undeath, the time limit at least applies there too, plus it's possible it would cause the time limit to never start counting down until the Undeath charge ran out. Incidentally, it's also possible the Tryna could force a corpse to stay around, suspending the countdown until the user lost focus on the mask (instances of power usage have time limits of their own), and the countdown would continue where it left off, but who knows. Either way, both masks have their uses even with the RS, because of that delay.

 

Basically I was asking what fishers meant by "revival" system there and if there was a quote actually confirming that corpses stopped being removed in general prior to Teridax's death that I'm not aware of. :)

 

Note that assuming Jaller would have been revived eventually on the RS, the quotes confirming that the revival he did get did what it would have done tell us that the time delay must be fairly long. It lasted during Takanuva's entire journey to the Mangaia, and Hahli's journey on foot to the Kini Nui and back again to the Mangaia, plus some of the rest of that battle. That's probably way longer than the time limit on the Tryna itself, and plenty of time for an undead corpse to accomplish a lot if the user got near to their goal before their death.

 

About Rahi deaths, though -- it's very possible for a lot of Rahi to die recently, but I haven't yet had time to review the exact quotes for if those were ancient deaths. I thought there was something about ancient corpses, but I may be misremembering.

 

It is not about "requiring thought", it is about the concept undermining the impact of character deaths.

Eh, that's been floated before, but I still can't agree. Revival is a valid route for stories to take, especially if it is tempered by all kinds of ways it can go wrong. Besides, these are characters who were revealed, well before this, to be essentially "nanotech" in a giant machine. The GBs would have seen it as preservation of machine parts (to some extent); it only affects character deaths indirectly. Basically, if such a thing makes plot sense as this clearly does (the basic idea, I'm not saying there aren't apparent inconsistencies), then stories should be allowed to explore it, IMO.

 

Short answer -- they still died and it means the same as it did for the universe as we saw it. Plus, many of them did die permanantly, and others could have died afterward. Also there's the "put yourself in their shoes" angle. If I lived there, I wouldn't want to deny revivals just so the deaths could have "impact." Using that argument, although Greg himself has applied it for Matoro, requires some suspension of disbelief, and we'd have to ban something it makes sense the GBs would do for out-of-story reasons alone. Me no likey. :P

 

And that stuff goes to why I say it's about work to understand. If you assume without thinking it through that it undermines the weight of something, but then think it through and realize it actually gives it more meaning, that can help us like it. :)

 

I am glad that Greg at least stated the thing doesn't work right and is intended for a zombie-story of sorts, for having the dead characters alive again just like that just cheapens the feeling of Lhikan's sacrifice etc. to me. From the characters' point of view they were gone for a long time, but as a reader I have seen too many silly comic book revivals and rebirths etc. to care for another one being spontaneously introduced.

Sure, but it wasn't spontaneous at all. We'd been wondering what happened to bodies for a long time and they never did go the easy route and just say "here's a graveyard". It was thus hinted at all along that something was up. Also, it isn't really fair to judge one story by totally different stories' bad executions, and just about anything in Bionicle can be compared to things done poorly in other stories.

 

Besides, Jaller 2003 utterly nuked any chance of future revivals being "spontaneously introduced." :P

 

[Edit: Okay.... I miiight as well add that I had already theorized it. I suppose it's obvious because my fanfics have had someone get revived (I won't say who; readers will know :P). I came up with a specific system to make it work for the Paracosmos. When it was revealed as the RS, my reaction was more like "I KNEW IT!" Actually, the only thing bad about it for me was I was trying to be mysterious about it in my fanfics (how it works and how effective it is there are still secrets, other than that the character I used it for has only a small number of lives), and I was a little disappointed that the canon beat me to the punch before my big reveal. :P

 

By no means was it unexpected if you were paying close attention to certain clues. I only haven't mentioned this before because when this reveal was so new I didn't want to draw attention to a big secret in my fanfics, lol. And I didn't quite think through that the secret's already kinda out with that one guy. But then, that too shows the same thing here. Jaller (and Takanuva) got revived. It definitely opens the door for any revivals later and fans really should have been aware the whole time that it was possible.

 

If anything, this reveal actually only added impact to certain deaths like Matoro. Prior to the RS reveal, it was possible as far as we knew for some to be revived by some unknown means similar to how we didn't see Jaller's revival coming until it happened. But with this reveal, we learned that some deaths were absolutely final. To see it as robbing something, you have to have assumed that something, which isn't canonically accurate.]

 

Or the system was just too broken in that area period.

Makes sense too.

 

If the Order take such steps to exclude them from the revival system, they would have to know the details of it, I imagine, and I don't see that as very likely.

All they'd need to know is that revivals are possible, and how to prevent it. Mata Nui could and perhaps likely did tell them this much. No reason to know it involves a booster pack satellite. IMO there's a clue for this in the quote about Tren Krom not being revivable due to being "entirely organic", even though he would seem to be made of protodermis. There may be a specific implant in biomechanical beings that is needed (beacon, or something). Removing it in Pit prisoners would solve the problem easily.

 

Hey, that makes me think of yet another possibility -- waterlogged implant stops working? :P Or the mutagenic water could mess it up.


Edited by bonesiii, Dec 05 2013 - 06:26 PM.

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#44 Offline Katuko

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Posted Dec 05 2013 - 07:37 PM

Besides, Jaller 2003 utterly nuked any chance of future revivals being "spontaneously introduced." :P

I must be honest: I loathed the revivals then too, though Jaller's was better than Takanuva's because the former had the most powerful being known at the time performing the deed - and Makuta was thought to be almost equal to Mata Nui in power, being his "brother". :)

Dead beings being teleported away and the revival actually not being done properly is a good plot; but like with a lot of other ideas there are good and bad ways to write it. The serials, I felt, tossed in a lot of things that are just suddenly there, after the storyline pretty much ended. Suddenly we have Alt!Terdiax which is introduced as Teridax's direct opposite, but he doesn't get to do anything except smash a random evil Toa in the face with a hammer before the universe is saved anyways. He had zero impact on anything at all, hammer pun notwithstanding. Suddenly we have Tuyet, who was killed both in the Core dimension and in an alternate one - with the corpses of both "on-screen" - turn out to actually be alive because there was a different Alt!Tuyet that died in her place! Suddenly we have the possibility of several named characters being alive after all, despite the story being filled with a heck of a lot of loose threads that should probably be tied up first instead of re-introducing characters whose "line" ended.

Death and revival was done in Dragonball Z. It worked the first time, because the heroes discuss it before going through with the plan of having Goku sacrifice himself, and they know revival will only work once per person. This allows the secondary characters to make the same gamble later, and they have a moment where a character does make that ultimate sacrifice by being permanently killed - he had already been revived before. This works, for the most part. Goku returns in time to defeat the villains and revive those of his friends that are possible to revive, with the wish-granting Dragonballs needing a cool-down of 1 year (and travel to retrieve them from unknown places all across the globe) before they can be used again.

Then comes the next season, and we are introduced to a set of Dragonballs that can actually ressurrect people as many times as you want - they just cannot do more than one at a time. Ok, we then see the heroes forced to deal with the problem at hand before they spend weeks/months after the series to revive those who died. But after this, the Dragonball revival started being used over and over, to the point where character death was never an issue with anyone but the characters themselves. Death lost its meaning. Power levels lost their meaning too, after the creators started chucking random high numbers around for every new villain.

So far, BIONICLE has had "three" revivals. The latter "two" were Takanuva (with little explanation behind it) and the batch of Red Star people. The first was Jaller, revived from his mask. It was kind of hand-waved that this was only possible because Takutanuva had so much energy to spend. Still, it did undermine his death for me, just like I generally dislike when we have "fake death" scenes in cinema. He died for a reason, but then he came back and no loss was taken by the heroes. It works when a character is either immediately revealed to be alive (like when Takua falls off the lava cliff at the start of the film) or when the method of bringing the character back takes up a lot of time in the plot. To mention Order of the Stick again: they make a big deal out of Resurrection being both very costly due to a need for diamonds to power the spell, and it is hard to do because few clerics have the required skill to perform the spell at all. If you lose the corpse it is pretty much impossible in that world, and most people die permanently due to a lack of clerics and a lack of resources.


In that way the issue I have with BIONICLE is perhaps not the revival itself, because even when it was shown to be possible back in 2003 it was said that you could only do it within a short time span after death, and only with a massive amount of energy to pour into the Kanohi of the deceased. The Red Star kind of changes that, in that revival becomes automatic and guaranteed for anyone who is not disintegrated. Getting someone back from the Red Star has also not been in story focus before it suddenly cropped up in a serial, so it may just be too much information at once. Maybe if the serial had run its proper course the details would be revealed more gradually, and in a better way than it is when the story concept is just suddenly dumped in our laps. As it is, I view the Red Star reveal to be an interesting concept executed pretty badly; for the sake of making fans happy with old characters returning, or just for having a zombie story in space.



Regarding the actual intel we have, you can revive a body regardless of injuries. I took that to mean that there is no specific part of the body that is needed, especialyl since merely the Kanohi can be enough to revive someone. They also do have spirits that can detach from their body, which I have assumed is the most important part to be pulled/beamed towards the Red Star in order to attach to the new body. The rest is just scrap to be recycled. So I don't think the Order could just remove a chip to make people unable to revive, I think they would have to actually delete them from the Matoran Universe "people archive" (or add a Karda Nui shield around them or something) so that the Red Star would not detect their spirit.

Question in that regards: Matoro's body was confirmed to be lacking a spirit whenever he went for an Iden walk, allowing Makuta to possess the body. Mata Nui survived as a spirit even after death made it temporarily detach from his body, and the body's revival was meant to pull it back in before it was too late. But what happens if Matoro activates his mask and goes spirit-walking for months? Would his spiritless body get grabbed by the Red Star, or is the physical mask still active on his being as part of his brain activity or whatever? When Hahli sees Matoro with her mask, does she see a vague energy form, or does she actually see a Matoro-shaped hologram of sorts?

Edited by Katuko, Dec 05 2013 - 07:47 PM.

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#45 Offline Exitium

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Posted Dec 05 2013 - 08:43 PM

I was unaware (or maybe had forgotten) that Hydraxon had been revived.  (I didn't trust BS01 on this because it seems to assume that many characters were revived even though they weren't confirmed).  Assuming he was revived, that would seem to suggest that the existence of the alternate Tuyet's corpse was not due to her location but rather something intrinsic about her.  As I mentioned in the first post, it's possible the Red Star only recognizes beings from the prime universe, although I'm not sure what would mark someone as being from one universe or another.  Overall, Tuyet's story seems particularly muddled because I think Greg liked her character so much that he kept writing her back into the storyline in a way that didn't mesh well with what had already been established about her.  There was no reason for her to come back, and the decoy plot twist was a bit of a cop out in my opinion.

 

Regarding the Red Star revival reveal as a whole, I'm inclined to agree that it was a negative addition, and like Katuko, I did not like how casually the first movie handled death and revival.  Part of what fascinates people about death is that it is permanent.  Stories that deal with death by examining what it would be like if death were not permanent can be done in a mature and thought-provoking manner, or  in a way that merely cheapens death and does nothing to make us reflect on our own mortality.  I don't object to revival on principle, merely the way it was done in Bionicle, especially with the Red Star.

 

 

And that stuff goes to why I say it's about work to understand. If you assume without thinking it through that it undermines the weight of something, but then think it through and realize it actually gives it more meaning, that can help us like it.  :)

 

I hope that you're not implying that those of us who disagree with your opinion, bonesiii, have not thought this through and are therefore wrong; there is room for intelligent people to disagree here.  While it makes sense logically that the Great Beings could be capable of reviving the dead, it would have just as logical to have made them incapable of doing so.  (Personally I like this idea better, because it would show that even the Great Beings, the creators of all of the technology in Bionicle, cannot overcome death.)  Stories certainly should be allowed to explore revival after death, but that doesn't necessarily make them better stories, especially when it's tacked onto the end like an afterthought as it was in Bionicle.  Matoro's permanent death might have been more interesting had we known its significance at the time or if the temporary nature of death had been explored earlier in the story, but it wasn't.  The revival plot was a missed and poorly-executed opportunity.  

 

While the characters may have not known that they were not truly dying, we as readers/viewers do, and that is what matters.  There's an emotional difference between "Lhikan died to protect the legacy of Metru Nui" and "Lhikan was critically injured but healed and trapped in another location to protect the legacy of Metru Nui."  Lhikan may have thought he was sacrificing himself, but did he really?  Note that Bionicle could have gone an interesting route with this and had Vakama and Lhikan meet up later as Turaga, but instead Greg opted for the uninteresting "zombies in space" approach.

 

For comparison's sake, let's take a look at the main death scenes in the first two Bionicle movies.  Both Lhikan and Jaller died in almost the same way: they stepped in to take a blow aimed at the hero, and their deaths helped that hero realize his potential.  (Reflecting on this now, I'm surprised I never realized how similar they were.)  Jaller's death was ultimately more forgettable because he came right back a few minutes later.  Lhikan's death was more interesting because with his death, Vakama was forced to step out of Lhikan's shadow and become a true Toa himself, and in doing so he truly inherited Lhikan's legacy and leadership of the Matoran of Metru Nui.  Both may have thought they were making the ultimate sacrifice, but I challenge anyone to make the case that Jaller's death was more interesting or pivotal to the story.

 

Now of course it turns out that Lhikan didn't actually die and is safely on the Red Star.  Admittedly, he was removed from the story, so his death did alter the status quo (unlike Jaller's) but I maintain that his revival and the possibility of return alters our understanding of death in Bionicle dramatically.  We don't know what happens after death in the real world, and dealing with that mystery (and that possibility that we may never see people who have died again) is one of the most important parts of being human.  Good stories tell us something about what it means to human.  Mediocre ones merely entertain us.  The Red Star reveal had all of the drawbacks of revival plots with none of what makes them interesting.


Edited by Exitium, Dec 05 2013 - 11:33 PM.

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#46 Offline BobaFett2

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Posted Dec 05 2013 - 09:21 PM

A bit of an aside/value statement: I think that the Takutanuva revival was clearly a one-time thing as he was essentially the ultimate being, a fusion of light and shadow, and his revival didn't detract much from the significance of his act, in my eyes. Jaller was clearly doing something truly brave.

 

Personally, I think that the Red Star revival thing was a bad idea - I loved the star as a star, and I can understand it as a propulsion system (even if it doesn't make sense), but as a revival? Yes, in the grand context of things, it does make some sense; however, it just isn't interesting (to me). I love the idea of it being inhabited, but...eh. I don't like it. Simple as that.


Edited by BobaFett2, Dec 05 2013 - 09:21 PM.

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#47 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Dec 05 2013 - 10:18 PM

Jaller's was better than Takanuva's because the former had the most powerful being known at the time performing the deed

No arguments there, not to mention Takanuva's was very unclear and contradicted by the book version.

 

Dead beings being teleported away and the revival actually not being done properly is a good plot; but like with a lot of other ideas there are good and bad ways to write it. The serials, I felt, tossed in a lot of things that are just suddenly there, after the storyline pretty much ended

Also no arguments, although every year tossed in tons that was suddenly there. IMO what's going on here probably has a bit more to do with the fact that Bionicle's main plot had ended, and the decision to try to continue it online-only was obviously not thought through well, versus the specific things that extra, incomplete part did. Nobody's disputing that it was pulled off poorly due to this. But it is possible to see it as a great addition to Bionicle, if your tastes are such that it's possible, as with just about anything. :)

 

Not sure why we're talking about Dragonball Z all of a sudden, but I'm short on time so had to skim. :P BTW, personally I felt none of the alternate characters should have entered the core dimension, even if Takanuva's journeys themselves were okay. Not sure how to explain why that doesn't appeal to me, except that it does make you wonder why not just grab the third giant robot from some universe where the GBs finished it and fix everything. :P (Of course, I suppose you can argue against all of this -- like that would be cruel to that universe. But yeah. It's a much cleaner story if Greg's no-time-travel rule had also applied to crossovers.

 

But anyways, we're supposed to be talking about the Red Star and Altuyet. :P

 

So I don't think the Order could just remove a chip to make people unable to revive

But you're comparing this to the Kanohi revival system. We don't really know how all this works, but a Kanohi by itself will probably not be detected, as for example Lhikan's Kanohi didn't disappear, even though it's confirmed he was revived. The theoretical implant would be what the teleporter to the RS actually locks onto. :)

 

Question in that regards: Matoro's body was confirmed to be lacking a spirit whenever he went for an Iden walk, allowing Makuta to possess the body. Mata Nui survived as a spirit even after death made it temporarily detach from his body, and the body's revival was meant to pull it back in before it was too late. But what happens if Matoro activates his mask and goes spirit-walking for months? Would his spiritless body get grabbed by the Red Star, or is the physical mask still active on his being as part of his brain activity or whatever?

A tricky one (which BTW may belong more in the new official topic than here :P), but here's some of the relevant bits from Greg's quotes there:

 

a being who died inside Mata Nui would be teleported to the red star where their essence would be transplanted into another body and they would be sent back

"Essence" might be the "spirit" or "imprint" we heard of before with the masks, similar to how antidermis is called an "essence" and also energy even though it's really gas.

 

I would add more, but that darn battery is dead. Later, folks!


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#48 Offline fishers64

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Posted Dec 05 2013 - 11:07 PM

Basically I was asking what fishers meant by "revival" system there and if there was a quote actually confirming that corpses stopped being removed in general prior to Teridax's death that I'm not aware of. :)

 

No, I'm not aware of any. Admittedly my reply there was poorly worded; I was referring to the sendback system only. My point was after death was viewed to be permanent, the Tryna and the Mask of Undeath would be more widely used/more likely to be created/etc. That was the point. 

 

The subtle effect of having "dead" enemies not come back might even inspire more violence and disruption in the MU, and distantly avoid a lot of the stuff that happened. The belief that death is permanent - or at least means that you can no longer act in a certain world - has a tremendous effect on how a society operates. The mask powers are just the tip of the iceberg. 

 

Anyway, I think a lot of possible explanations are emerging for the Tuyet thing, from mutagens to water to energy surges to the Order of Mata Nui. I don't think this is a valid reason to claim the RS revelation is a mistake. It's not a sloppy plot revelation - it's an open door to more explanations. This topic identifies one of those things that needs explained, but just because an explanation is needed does not mean that the thing that causes an explanation to be needed is bad. (What's wrong will a good old S&T theorist topic every now and again? :))

 

In short, mystery is not a bad thing. In fact, solving a mystery (like the RS) that opens more questions is something that I consider to be a good thing when reading or writing, or just in life in general. If what you're learning isn't opening more knowledge gaps that need filled, then you're not really learning anything anyway - you're just memorizing stuff. 

 

(I have spent too much time around this forum, and I have read one too many bones posts. But the last sentence is something I've observed, something I know from too many years spent memorizing stuff and not really learning anything useful, and so I'll stick with the other points anyway. As far as I know, they are true.) 

 

Admittedly, none of this is an excuse for bad writing. But people's memory is a finite resource. Expecting Greg to keep track of every little thing every time he wants to solve a mystery is a little silly, especially when we have explanations that can explain it. It feels like a cheap cop-out to me: when you don't like having to explain stuff, blame the author. 

 

(Except I don't think that the dislike is all about having to explain stuff. People just don't like the reveal, and then use "having to explain stuff" as an excuse to rain on the theorist parade. I don't understand that at all. This is the Bionicle Storyline and Theories forum. Yeesh.)

 

I'll stop ranting now. But this just keeps coming up around here yonderabouts, so yeah. Next time I can quote myself. :P


Edited by fishers64, Dec 05 2013 - 11:23 PM.

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#49 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Dec 06 2013 - 01:16 AM

First lemme quote this from fishers' post:

 

Anyway, I think a lot of possible explanations are emerging for the Tuyet thing, from mutagens to water to energy surges to the Order of Mata Nui. I don't think this is a valid reason to claim the RS revelation is a mistake. It's not a sloppy plot revelation - it's an open door to more explanations. This topic identifies one of those things that needs explained, but just because an explanation is needed does not mean that the thing that causes an explanation to be needed is bad. (What's wrong will a good old S&T theorist topic every now and again? :))

 

In short, mystery is not a bad thing. In fact, solving a mystery (like the RS) that opens more questions is something that I consider to be a good thing when reading or writing, or just in life in general. If what you're learning isn't opening more knowledge gaps that need filled, then you're not really learning anything anyway - you're just memorizing stuff.

You totally stole my thunder. Seriously, I had that argument lined out point by point in my head, almost. I agree, very strongly. BTW, Greg said something similar with what inspired that mini-contest about those kranalike things... I forget the details but it's on BS01 somewhere. Point is, when you see an apparent inconsistency, you can choose to stop thinking, assume it can't work, and complain -- or you can get constructive, have fun with it by choice, be realistic and understand that complex stories will run into things like this, and come up with an explanation. :) If you ask me, pretty easy choice to make.

 

 

Continuing from where I left off with Greg quotes to the question of "what happens if Matoro activates his mask and goes spirit-walking for months?" (Iden):

 

Matoro and the Makuta did not come back, for a simple reason. None of them have bodies anymore. The body is what is teleported up (which is why you don't see BIONICLE graveyards) and then either repaired or a new one is made to house the consciousness.

"The body is what is teleported up" being the key point. There's others but I'm sure yall can see them for yourselves and this topic's supposed to be about Altuyet and the Tryna. But, if the body is still there, and that kills Matoro, technically this wording seems to mean he should still be revivable. But again, we just don't know enough to be sure of that. His "spirit" may dissipate and the body could be revived from the memories left in his brain (and/or mask), would be my guess, but I could easily be wrong.

 

Or it may be that after a certain point Iden users are pulled irresistably back to their bodies and there's no risk of this scenario happening. A question for Greg. :P

 

When Hahli sees Matoro with her mask, does she see a vague energy form, or does she actually see a Matoro-shaped hologram of sorts?

I'd have to re-re-recheck, but I just read this part a few days ago because that's roughly where I'm at in my retelling and I'm fairly sure she could recognize him.

 

Now had time to read the DBZ analogy more properly. This appears to be the key part:

 

But after this, the Dragonball revival started being used over and over, to the point where character death was never an issue with anyone but the characters themselves. Death lost its meaning.

But wouldn't we all agree this is not an apt analogy for the (current state of) the Red Star?

 

He died for a reason, but then he came back and no loss was taken by the heroes.

I just can't agree with that. It can't ever be that simple, especially when losses aren't permanent. And in 2006, Jaller's death had a major effect on him. But, I'll assume by "no" you didn't mean that literally and not beat a dead horse. :P

 

 

 

 

To Exitium, lemme get this out of the way first:

I hope that you're not implying that those of us who disagree with your opinion, bonesiii, have not thought this through and are therefore wrong; there is room for intelligent people to disagree here.

What do you mean by "wrong"? We were talking, there, about a matter of taste, and if someone honestly dislikes how something was done, that's not wrong. I would hope I've made that crystal clear so many times to the point of being annoying how often I repeated it. :lol: That said, when I initially dislike something, but then later think of a way it makes sense, it tends to change my tastes about it, or if you like, "it will grow on me." Of course, I intentionally try to give things the benefit of the doubt to maximize pleasure, too. :P

 

But the point is, don't take offense to the advise to be sure to think things through but rather ask yourself honestly if it might be the case because let's face it, it happens to all of us. Yeah? :) In this case, it really doesn't matter because if you still end up disliking it, oh well, the world keeps spinning. Still, a good exercise for other matters in life, and nothing wrong with finding ways to like things more. ^_^

 

And yes, it is possible to come at fiction misunderstanding how it's intended and have that make you dislike it in a way that arguably isn't really fair. When that comes to a criticism posted online, people should be aware we  can critically analyze that criticism itself, and judge whether we think it is really fair -- so far as authorial intent goes. Just as constructive criticism of a story should be taken seriously, constructive criticism of a fan's reaction may benefit that fan if heshe is open-minded about it. :) It should be taken merely as something to try, though, because your tastes ultimately will be what they will be and won't necessarily match others'.

 

And again, keep in mind we all agree it stinks that the story telling this got cut off that way. Although I would have to say I was enjoying the post-"end" serial chapters we did get quite a bit more than a lot of what filled space in the serials just before it (2009 mainly). Just a few chapters but it got us thinking on here way more than a lot of what went before, interestingly.

 

I was unaware (or maybe had forgotten) that Hydraxon had been revived.  (I didn't trust BS01 on this because it seems to assume that many characters were revived even though they weren't confirmed).  Assuming he was revived

Confirmed in this Greg quote:

 

Does this mean there are two Hydraxons alive now?

Yes, one up there, one down here.

 

 

As I mentioned in the first post, it's possible the Red Star only recognizes beings from the prime universe, although I'm not sure what would mark someone as being from one universe or another.

Well, it could be as simple as a beacon implant not having quite the right code if that universe had slight differences. Or, some science fiction has had the idea that there's something fundamentally "unreachable" about the very energy making up other dimensions. I think Doctor Who did something like this (though my bad memory may be wrong even though it was only last year that I first watched that lolzorz). Like, the quantum wave frequencies of everything would be slightly different, and possibly not register as matter to the teleporter of the core universe (which would have a lot to do in quantum-dimension theory with why crossovers are not happening all the time, but that's a long story).

 

Overall, Tuyet's story seems particularly muddled because I think Greg liked her character so much that he kept writing her back into the storyline in a way that didn't mesh well with what had already been established about her.

I've gotten that sense too, though I've got nothing against that in principle. Just not as fond of this particular use of her again. Maybe it's just that she added to the "peripheral complexity", and that's widely recognized to be one of the biggest things that went wrong with Bionicle's later years. On the other hand, I can't find fault with the plot logic of why she would stay around. I would just prefer alternate universes not to be involved in this one, methinks.

 

There was no reason for her to come back, and the decoy plot twist was a bit of a cop out in my opinion.

The decoy part, sort of yes. I mean, given that the Order had the tech, no. But Greg didn't have to give them the tech (although it's kind of hard, once you establish that cross-dimensional travel is made possible with protodermic powers, to explain why Mata Nui's special Order wouldn't have a limited version of it). But there was reason for her not to be in the actual Pit and thus not die (thus, "come back"). The Order definitely would have wanted to know the secret to the Nui Stone. It's Helryx's nature.

 

Regarding the Red Star revival reveal as a whole, I'm inclined to agree that it was a negative addition, and like Katuko, I did not like how casually the first movie handled death and revival.

???

 

Okay, I gotta say this. I'm all for being very cautious not to offend people who have different tastes, and I respect that you guys are trying to say, and maybe just not wording it quite the best way, that you didn't like it. For whatever reasons. That's cool. Make sense

 

But have some of you considered that just as you may feel offended if we seem to disrespect your tastes, it's also possible to be careless in how you post your dislikes, and how that comes across to those of us who liked it? I say this because I honestly don't know how it's possible -- again not trying to insult, of course, but understand and yes honestly wondering if you are "inaccurate" on this -- how it's possible to watch the same movie I did, paying attention, and think death was handled "casually" in Mask of Light? Nor was Jaller's revival handled casually, although I will grant that Takanuva's may warrant that a little. (If that's all you meant then no further objections, just hoping for a clarification. :))

 

I thought that in general, even for the most part with Takanuva, it was handled very seriously. Jaller's death impact was felt very keenly, clearly, by Takua/Takanuva, and the others, and his revival was wonderful. Also, even though Jaller had just been revived, the emotion with "Get out of there!" and the mask of light coming sliding out was very well done. (It's the unclarity of the method and missed opportunity for emotion there, of Takanuva's revival I didn't like, which I've tried to fix in my version of course. :P) Whether you like the way it was handled is one thing, but to state apparently inaccurate things in your attempt to express that dislike is puzzling at best.

 

Not that I get my feelings hurt by such things but I'm speaking as a moderator and having had a lot of experience in this area. :)

 

Part of what fascinates people about death is that it is permanent.

Actually people technically come back from death all the time in hospitals, or what is sometimes deemed death. And if the memories are physically intact, or backed up somewhere in science fiction stuff (which Bionicle clearly falls way within the genre of, although it's somewhat science fantasy, by the definition Greg said that it's all science even if you don't always know it), no real reason it has to be. Star Trek has had things like this; someone's memories downloaded into a computer comes to mind.

 

This is why I bring up that regardless of what your tastes are, it's also important to honestly recognize the genre of fiction you are following. Fiction like Bionicle is not limited to exact real world things like for example CSI. Just as people don't get teleported away from a hospital and then right back (as RS was intended) or just disappear and maybe someday get freed from wherever they were freed, people likewise don't pick up swords, aim them, and shoot beams of ice. So I don't get why suddenly real life has to be an ironclad rule about death when we've got magical masks on people's faces. :P

 

See where I'm coming from there?

 

I don't reject to revival on principle, merely the way it was done in Bionicle, especially with the Red Star.

Here's the thing, though -- it wasn't really done. We learned about it through "behind the scenes" content under totally unique circumstances that make it really impossible to fairly judge how it would have been done. Even with Mavrah, we had never been 100% sure he'd actually died, and were not until Erebus's reveal topic.

 

So if you're going to judge this one, I think you have to make concessions for that. Of course, then there's the take, which I would totally get, that Greg just shouldn't have gone there -- either finish the serials or never reveal it, and I can sympathize with that. But selfishly I'm still glad we get to puzzle all this out! It's fun, way more fun that what realistically would have just been silence.

 

While it makes sense logically that the Great Beings could be capable of reviving the dead, it would have just as logical to have made them incapable of doing so.

Not without radically altering the nature of Bionicle so that they didn't design a giant robot (a reveal most people loved BTW, making this an unwise change), didn't make AIs from scratch, and wouldn't have had access to basic backup and restore systems that chances are most of us have on the very devices we're using to have this conversation!

 

I'm having a hard time seeing how that would even be logical, quite frankly. Unless Bionicle had just ended in 2008 with Mata Nui awakening as planned and being some titan living inside the MU, which admittedly is possible. But far less fun or interesting. :P

 

(Personally I like this idea better, because it would show that even the Great Beings, the creators of all of the technology in Bionicle, cannot overcome death.)

If you mean with everything else how it is, like there was some kind of a curse upon death that even they couldn't overcome, I'll admit that's a cool idea. Maybe fanfic fodder. :)

 

But then, that would also displease other fans who wanted the possibility of revival, so maybe not the best idea. :P

 

BTW, IMO it's not really proper to call the things we're talking about "death" in the sense you mean. It's a secret hospital reviving people after a short time who weren't converted to maggot food yet (admittedly this analogy breaks down with Greg saying "any body" works, but not entirely), and the hospital workers say "CLEAR" and it works; they wake up... and then find out they're trapped in the hospital. But beings in this universe CAN die for real as the word really means and be totally gone, like Matoro. The method is different from restarting a heart with electricity, but that's peripheral. It's still just preserving of life, a last chance to avoid death.

 

So actual death -- once you're totally gone, comparable to a day after you die in the hospital, or when all that's left is the skeleton -- CANNOT be overcome by the Great Beings. You've got what you wanted. The boundary where you can come back (always possible in real life, just not as much) is just shifted a little and the explanation altered (from the older masks thing).

 

The trick here is only that it was kept from us until after the story ended. It's that part that we're really talking about; that some fans assumed "death" was death, despite plentiful evidence to the contrary. In hindsight, better hints could perhaps have been given, but then how do you not hint too clearly and spoil the surprise, right?

 

Matoro's permanent death might have been more interesting had we known its significance at the time or if the temporary nature of death had been explored earlier in the story, but it wasn't.  The revival plot was a missed and poorly-executed opportunity.

I'm not sure if you were aware, but on here it was common knowledge that beings who wore masks could theoretically be revived, and commonly theorized that it was a "spirit" (or imprint) on the mask. I recall it being made pretty clear, both by his mask being destroyed, and the wording (though I've yet to review this part) that it was absolutely permanent.

So what you're saying was already true, just in a slightly different way than the RS. All the RS really did was alter our perception of the normal potential for revivals. This was established with Jaller's death, and then Takanuva's.

 

And in both cases, if you miss the revival time you're gone for good, so this is why I say it's more similar to a hospital revival.

 

Of course, I certainly intend to try to take advantage of some of these missed opportunities in my version. :P

 

While the characters may have not known that they were not truly dying, we as readers/viewers do, and that is what matters.  There's an emotional difference between "Lhikan died to protect the legacy of Metru Nui" and "Lhikan was critically injured but healed and trapped in another location to protect the legacy of Metru Nui."  Lhikan may have thought he was sacrificing himself, but did he really?

Absolutely yes. I'm getting the impression you might not have followed many past RS-revival discussions on here because most of the points you guys are bringing have been brought up and hammered out already, this included. Even if you know there's a chance you might get revived and then a chance you might survive, and then maybe a chance you might come back -- heck, even if you had seen people getting revived just fine and teleported back all the time, you still know there's a first time for everything. Be honest, would you want to be the one just after the last guy who was lucky enough that the system didn't break for? Stuff breaks down, so somebody's gotta draw the short straw eventually.

 

It would lessen the sacrifice slightly perhaps, but I'm more talking about the apparent hyperbole when you leap from that to a binary "it's either sacrifice or it isn't" approach.

 

On the other hand, with things as they are, it's quite possible you increase the sacrifice. "There are things worse than death."

 

instead Greg opted for the uninteresting "zombies in space" approach.

Hey now, we didn't get to see it done. "Our own counsel we will keep on what is interesting." :P

 

 

Isn't it really more interesting than "they're just gone... yawn"? I'm not saying your idea can't be even better, per se... although are they mutually exclusive? For Lhikan to meet up with anybody he would have to get away from wherever he was revived. If he can just walk away, IMO that's inherently less interesting than if you have to fight to get back to "life". And after all that struggle to get there, wouldn't it make the reunion only more meaningful?

 

For comparison's sake, let's take a look at the main death scenes in the first two Bionicle movies.  Both Lhikan and Jaller died in almost the same way: they stepped in to take a blow aimed at the hero, and their deaths helped that hero realize his potential.  (Reflecting on this now, I'm surprised I never realized how similar they were.)

To the part in parentheses, I had a similar reaction a few months ago in reviewing. It was clearly formulaic, but I'm kind of amazed they somehow kept us from noticing, apparently, lol. Probably had something to do with how it was connected intentionally; the mask from Lhikan going to Jaller. We were all focused on that, rather than looking at each movie superficially. Which may be a brilliant strategy! Or just dumb luck, but hey.

 

Jaller's death was ultimately more forgettable because he came right back a few minutes later.

And yet that scene has been, to fans judging by their posts, among the most memorable moments in Bionicle history. And frankly I don't get the vibe that Jaller's death was robbed of anything by the revival. If there are people whose brains are wired so that you feel that way, I can't judge, but it was not evident at the time as far as I recall. Most everybody I've seen comment on that movie mentions how well done his death sequence was, and it's only been since the RS reveal that some have now retroactively said they didn't like it because he came back -- that idea comes across as not having been thought of until it could be used as support for the anti-RS arguments. I could be remembering wrong though as always lol. Might be some rose-tinted nostalgia glasses on my face. :shrugs:

Or maybe it just wasn't expressed until now. But memorable, that scene clearly was, to a lot of people.

 

Lhikan's death was more interesting because with his death, Vakama was forced to step out of Lhikan's shadow and become a true Toa himself

Well, the formulaic point still stands here to be fair, but how does this not apply to Takua realizing he was to become the Toa of Light and becoming the hero, rather than just the "real Herald"? They're different, but this only helps in general, avoiding the formula somewhat. But if you see how Lhikan's death forcing the hero to become responsible works, why not Jaller's death which did that too? (And came first.)

 

That said, I would personally not pit different people's noble deaths against each other per se like it was a contest. :P It sort of is because it's in fiction, but yeah. Or, there's the angle that, if Lhikan's death topped Jaller's, isn't that good since it came second? The alternative is Jaller's topping Lhikan's for you, which means the movies "got worse." Pros and cons to anything; that's kinda what I'm driving at.

 

Both may have thought they were making the ultimate sacrifice, but I challenge anyone to make the case that Jaller's death was more interesting or pivotal to the story.

More? Again, why must it be a contest? But they seem pretty equal to me. The case, if I wanted to say his was more pivotal (just to play... Advocate?), is easy. For Takua, he had to BECOME a Toa because of this, and didn't even know for sure such a thing was possible. But I must say I object to the challenge somewhat, because it is not logical to argue, "one death is less pivotal than another, therefore that death shouldn't happen." That's merely comparative logic, and doesn't change that we found Jaller's and Lhikan's deaths BOTH to be pivotal and interesting and touching, meaningful, sad, inspiring, etc. etc.

 

And since you're bringing this up because we knew Jaller's revival in the same movie but not Lhikan's until a Greg quote reveal, I don't ever remembering feeling that Jaller's death was somehow less meaningful (or interesting or pivotal) because of the revival, than Lhikan's. If anything, it was that very thing that made it fascinating and even more important, because I read stories with suspension of disbelief, and who in their rights minds can't empathize with the desire to cheat death? And there's how it changes Jaller afterwards, which is way more interesting than just dodging a bullet generally, or just going away for good.

 

You know, if you read the 2006 books, they're kind of a polemic against this attitude that it's anywhere near realistic to see death as meaningless if you come back.

 

Go back and re-read the narrated thoughts of Jaller. Keep in mind this is the same author here. (Another reason I can't agree with the idea that we couldn't see this coming, although I don't wanna put Katuko's words in your mouth, not sure if you didn't too.) It had a profound effect on him. Heck, he became leader of one of the two most crucial Toa teams in history because of it -- arguably the most, because in the end the Ignika actually reactivated the giant robot, not the Nuva.
 

Now of course it turns out that Lhikan didn't actually die and is safely on the Red Star.  Admittedly, he was removed from the story, so his death did alter the status quo (unlike Jaller's) but I maintain that his revival and the possibility of return alters our understanding of death in Bionicle dramatically.

 

Every new thing in a story alters our understanding of that story universe, and the more significant, the better it can be if it appeals to your tastes. Admittedly, the worse it can be if it doesn't, but that cannot always be helped, because like it or not, tastes do vary from person to person. (Which BTW is a good thing, although some arguably unwise choices of outlook or missing some details may cause unnecessary dislikes, to some extent.)

 

BTW, was "did alter the status quo" a typo for "didn't"? For some reason I'm not getting what you meant there. Also, both of course dramatically altered the status quo (as did their revivals), but I presume you mean one more than the other and I'm not sure which you meant or why. Suspect, but words are best not placed in others' mouths, and this is getting way long.

 

 

fishers, thanks for the clarification in your first paragraph -- yes, agreed. And both probably were mixed after the Sendback "broke" (assuming it ever worked, which Greg's original reveal quote seems to imply it may have never worked, but later quotes opened up the possibility without answering it). But the issue, of course, is how long the corpses remain, since they continued to disappear regardless of whether Sendback worked.

 

 

By the way, another point I meant to bring up earlier, but yet another clue we had to the possibility of a standard revival system was that Greg often put strong emphasis on the idea that "if there's no body, always assume they can come back." Greg's extremely clever at subtle hints, often so clever it goes over most people's heads and goes unrecognized, but that's part of the draw because those of us who spot them get to feel smart; this may have very well been yet another instance. This combined with his continued refusal to show graveyards, despite that dead bodies could be shown in LEGO's violence policy, in general, and a graveyard is hardly graphic, should have been seen as major evidence that something was up (and was by me).

 

True, bodies were seen, but the point was that it was so often hinted that they disappeared. And after Jaller's revival, the door was opened wide for those disappearing bodies to be revived somewhere all the time. It was actually fairly thinly veiled.

 

Could we have placed it to the RS? Before Gali's seeing beings up there, probably not, though who knows. After that, eh... I didn't and I don't think anyone did, but then lots of things with hints in mystery stories get untheorized before they happen; that's always a hit and miss art, and shouldn't mean that the reveal shouldn't come. Also, standard caution that we're still not 100% sure something (even if vague at first) was planned, nor more importantly how early the RS tie-in was.

 

 

 

 

Agreed with your other points too. Phew, caught up!

 

 

Edit: Minor correction to the idea that there were three revivals; it was four (at least) -- Jaller, Takanuva, Matoro (on the 777 stairs, with red lightstones... I have mentioned this many times but forgot above... writing my version now :P -- this was yet another clue, and one that actually could have connected revival to the RS for us in theories), then the RS wave of revivals. There's also the sort of undead guardian guy of TSO.. Sentrakh was it? And of course the Tryna and Mask of Undeath also further clue us in (in that latter case, clue yall in since it was my idea :P) that real-world death is not to be assume here. But those weren't as clear; I think Matoro is the only other clear example but could be wrong. It's a big story.

 

Also, another point -- the actual number of characters either confirmed or believed to have come back, who we are familiar with, is really tiny. Have a look at the list in the new official topic, folks. And of those, we don't know if most are still alive now.


Edited by bonesiii, Dec 06 2013 - 02:56 AM.

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#50 Offline Katuko

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Posted Dec 06 2013 - 09:12 AM

Anyway, I think a lot of possible explanations are emerging for the Tuyet thing, from mutagens to water to energy surges to the Order of Mata Nui. I don't think this is a valid reason to claim the RS revelation is a mistake. It's not a sloppy plot revelation - it's an open door to more explanations. This topic identifies one of those things that needs explained, but just because an explanation is needed does not mean that the thing that causes an explanation to be needed is bad. (What's wrong will a good old S&T theorist topic every now and again? :))
 
In short, mystery is not a bad thing. In fact, solving a mystery (like the RS) that opens more questions is something that I consider to be a good thing when reading or writing, or just in life in general. If what you're learning isn't opening more knowledge gaps that need filled, then you're not really learning anything anyway - you're just memorizing stuff.

I have enjoyed many plot reveals, such as Makuta's true nature being explained a bit more in detail, and the bits about how Toa stones work and a lot of inor answers gotten from Greg. I like having mysteries revealed gradually, with more questions asked at every layer. The tunnels under Mata Nui had me intrigued for the entire first part of the storyline, for example, because it was obvious that there was something more hidden in the metallic depths.

I just don't like how the Red Star revival was revealed. I feel it's such a thing that could have been more explicitly hinted at earlier, because even when the Star zapped the Toa Inika into existence it just felt like it was related to "destiny" in general; what with the star-signs and the beam. Corpses disappearing was interesting, but the notion of having people fully restored - memories and all - in the star is a bit 'eh' to me. True, Greg has said the thing is malfunctioning, but Mavrah and Gaardus both seemed fine enough. Small sample size at the moment, but it's the only ones we have right now. If Lhikan stumbles out as a half-zombie mess, I might be more happy with the twist. At least then he has been suffering and not just been sipping Bula Berry Juice in a recliner while waiting for the teleporter to get fixed. :P
 

Admittedly, none of this is an excuse for bad writing. But people's memory is a finite resource. Expecting Greg to keep track of every little thing every time he wants to solve a mystery is a little silly, especially when we have explanations that can explain it. It feels like a cheap cop-out to me: when you don't like having to explain stuff, blame the author.

I usually don't blame the author for things I dislike, but I feel that the serials were genuinely rushed in the way they revealed things. This is understandable because the line was ending and Greg's time for writing was declining as well, but see points like Alt!Teridax and you see why some twists simply didn't work out. Essentially, introducing too many new characters/plotlines and then not following up on them does leave room for a few more years of official story... but when that official story is ending for the time being it might not be the best idea. We have the entirety of Bota Magna and the missing Great Beings to clear up, plus the Dark Hunter leader vanishing with mysterious vials in hand. We have several powerful beings teleported away to meet "Lifer" - as bones call him; as well a Velika wanting to kill them. Lots of questions to be asked and cleared up there.
 

(Except I don't think that the dislike is all about having to explain stuff. People just don't like the reveal, and then use "having to explain stuff" as an excuse to rain on the theorist parade. I don't understand that at all. This is the Bionicle Storyline and Theories forum. Yeesh.)

I just don't like the way revival has been described so far. It actually explains more than it causes questions, because it answers "why do corpses disappear" and reduces it to "why do some corpses remain" - something that can already be stuffed under "it is malfunctioning" for lack of a better explanation right now. I have participated in discussion about the Red Star without trouble, I accept its existence, but I don't like the plot twist it brought.
 
Sci-fi is all about explaining in the end, fantasy tends to leave mysteries. BIONICLE is pretty much Fantasy Sci-Fi, so it can do both, no problem. I just want it to flow well.

  

"The body is what is teleported up" being the key point. There's others but I'm sure yall can see them for yourselves and this topic's supposed to be about Altuyet and the Tryna. But, if the body is still there, and that kills Matoro, technically this wording seems to mean he should still be revivable. But again, we just don't know enough to be sure of that. His "spirit" may dissipate and the body could be revived from the memories left in his brain (and/or mask), would be my guess, but I could easily be wrong.

It intrigues me for the same reason: The body is said to be the thing teleported, but the spirit/essence is what is needed for revival to work within the MU. As I mentioned I assume the spirit will stick to the body for a while after death, maybe it just has a preference for the mask because that is the most personal and energetic object most Matoran carry. Unless the spirit actually dissipates and dies permanently when the body gets grabbed, I think it would just be forced along. Makuta was able to trap Mata Nui's spirit at will when he was controlling the MU, so the system seems to be in place to move spirits around.
 

Or it may be that after a certain point Iden users are pulled irresistably back to their bodies and there's no risk of this scenario happening. A question for Greg. :P

Actually, I find this the most likely, now that you mention it. While it hasn't been used much in canon, for those Kanohi that have just one "setting" for their power (such as Invisibility) the difference between Great and Noble masks have been said to be power duration rather than power magnitude. It led me to ask about how the mask acts when it "expires"; if it is primarily a fatigue of mind or if the energy in the mask actually has to "cool down" for a while. I don't recall getting any specific answer, but I think we can assume that "spirit walk" only has one setting (your spirit is disconnected or it is not) and that eventually you would hit a max duration for the power.
 
 

But wouldn't we all agree this is not an apt analogy for the (current state of) the Red Star?

Yes and no. Yes, I agree it is not at this point yet because we know that "came back wrong" is a thing that Greg was planning to write about. The thing that makes me iffy is that the confirmed revivals so far have not mentioned any faults. Mavrah was fine, it seems, and Lhikan plus Hydraxon have been confirmed alive but "stuck". If they are revived perfectly they have essentially had their deaths reversed, which doesn't directly cheapen the story's importance of death like Jaller/Takanuva's immediate revival did, but it opens up the possibility of far more dead characters being up there too. Sidorak, Botar, etc.

If the revival count is kept very, very low - preferably limited to just Mavrah, actually - then the Red Star plot may salvage itself in my eyes just yet. If too many characters show up just for the sake of having them back, I will just roll my eyes like I did when Core!Tuyet walked back into the plot.
 

I just can't agree with that. It can't ever be that simple, especially when losses aren't permanent. And in 2006, Jaller's death had a major effect on him. But, I'll assume by "no" you didn't mean that literally and not beat a dead horse. :P

I meant that being sad for 10 minutes about Jaller's death, and 10 seconds about Takanuva's death, is far from the same impact as Vakama having to deal with a dead Lhikan for the rest of his life. And despite Lhikan having been dead for so long - his character's purpose essentially spent - my main problem with the revival is as mentioned that it wasn't hard at all. It just kinda happened and yay we're happy now. It's not like in Dragonball, where they spent a full season specifically on preparing for the hero to return; and it's not like in Order of the Stick, where they had to quest for 300 strips just to finally bring corpse, payment and cleric together in the same place; and it's not even like in BIONICLE itself, where Jaller's revival needed Takutanuva to basically suicide or Mata Nui's revival needed Matoro's life force to be consumed as fuel.

Placing the Red Star as this automatic revival station that has actually managed to bring back previously dead characters is a plot twist that is teetering on the edge of just being fan service - bringing back popular characters for the sake of bringing them back. It's something you see all the time in comics, though there the plot will be even more absurd just for the sake of allowing a character to be killed for drama and then return. For this reason I do hope the Red Star is now completely offline due to the MU's destruction, so that it serves as a reminder of yet another thing that went wrong with the Great Beings' setup but doesn't change anything about how death is perceived in story.
 

That said, when I initially dislike something, but then later think of a way it makes sense, it tends to change my tastes about it, or if you like, "it will grow on me." Of course, I intentionally try to give things the benefit of the doubt to maximize pleasure, too. :P

I've had some time to let the Red Star grow on me. :P I didn't like the sudden city feeling we got in 2004, but that grew on me quickly. 2005 never grew on me at all; still don't like it overall. The Red Star seems to have set itself into the "dislike" category, but I do try to keep it in my posts anyways when discussing storyline.

I do get the notion that you're not fond of bringing characters from alternative universes into the main storyline, bones, and I wholeheartedly agree there. It's much the same beef I have with revival, essentially: If it can be done so easily, it starts making us ask the uncomfortable questions of "why don't they do this all the time?" or in a worse scenario (such as mainstream comic book death-and-revival stories): "why does the author have to to keep using this plot twist?"
 

And again, keep in mind we all agree it stinks that the story telling this got cut off that way. Although I would have to say I was enjoying the post-"end" serial chapters we did get quite a bit more than a lot of what filled space in the serials just before it (2009 mainly). Just a few chapters but it got us thinking on here way more than a lot of what went before, interestingly.


???
 
Okay, I gotta say this. I'm all for being very cautious not to offend people who have different tastes, and I respect that you guys are trying to say, and maybe just not wording it quite the best way, that you didn't like it. For whatever reasons. That's cool. Make sense
 
But have some of you considered that just as you may feel offended if we seem to disrespect your tastes, it's also possible to be careless in how you post your dislikes, and how that comes across to those of us who liked it? I say this because I honestly don't know how it's possible -- again not trying to insult, of course, but understand and yes honestly wondering if you are "inaccurate" on this -- how it's possible to watch the same movie I did, paying attention, and think death was handled "casually" in Mask of Light? Nor was Jaller's revival handled casually, although I will grant that Takanuva's may warrant that a little. (If that's all you meant then no further objections, just hoping for a clarification. :))

See, those triple question marks are what some of us latch onto as having opinions pounded down. ;) It's an expression of disbelief, as in "I can't believe you would think this???", and that does set some of us on edge.

I do not think the death scene itself was "casual", but the revivals at the end were. Jaller dies, they say some sad words, and Takanuva goes to beat Makuta now that It's Personal ™. This is a very good build-up, and I was very surprised when BIONICLE actually sprung the death scene on me. Takutanuva is described as being immensely powerful. Resurrecting Jaller was unexpected, but within his power (and does make the fusion collapse from exhaustion immediately after). What kills the mood for me is that right afterwards, Vakama picks up the Mask of Light and just kind of casually revives Takanuva with no explanation given. After having seen this ending, the previous deaths do not stand up as being quite as good on the second viewing.

In other movies I have watched, death scenes usually keep their impact even on the second, third and fourth viewings. When Lhikan dies in Legends of Metru Nui his death does have that effect still. I do still feel sorry for Vakama when Lhikan dies in front of him, and I know that the death must have been taxing him for a long time afterwards. Jaller... I dunno. He died, yes, but he was back very quickly. Takanuva's revival is still the one I dislike, though, because it had no reason to be there. He could have slid out from under the gate like in the book version, or he could have actually died permanently (repaying the favor Jaller did him, by sacrificing his life once his purpose of defeating Makuta was fulfilled).

Because now, with the way they did it, I keep wondering if they can paddle across the Silver Sea whenever someone dies and stick their mask on that symbol for the same effect. Thankfully the device has never been mentioned again, because if it had it has the same potential to cheapen death as I fear the Red Star might.


To sum up:
Lhikan's death: Good.
Jaller's death: Good, though the revival is so-and-so depending on how you look at it.
Takanuva's death: Reverted even before the significance of it sinks in, so I call it bad.


Whether you like the way it was handled is one thing, but to state apparently inaccurate things in your attempt to express that dislike is puzzling at best.

I must ask what you think is inaccurate. We have watched the same movie, but some of us feel that reviving a character at all ultimately cheapens the worth of the death when viewed in hindsight; when the possibility of revival is not introduced until right as it happens. It's like watching a movie and the suddenly you go "wait, whaaaat?" in that tone ou know where you're not entirely certain if you like the development or not. Not the "ah, of course, that is awesome!" kind of reveal, and not the "that's stupid!" kind of reveal, just the... "eh?" kind of reveal. :P

Actually people technically come back from death all the time in hospitals, or what is sometimes deemed death. And if the memories are physically intact, or backed up somewhere in science fiction stuff (which Bionicle clearly falls way within the genre of, although it's somewhat science fantasy, by the definition Greg said that it's all science even if you don't always know it), no real reason it has to be. Star Trek has had things like this; someone's memories downloaded into a computer comes to mind.

As I mentioned earlier, there are good ways to handle death, and there are bad ones. A good way of ding it is to keep the character in a coma for a long time while other characters angst about it. Maybe give them a long-lasting injury too, that's a good trade-off for surviving. Another good way is to mention that revival is possible, but not allow it to be done willy-nilly, so that dead characters usually stay dead. BIONICLE has been very good about that, because despite Jaller having been revived there was no apparent way to repeat the act (I generally ignore Takanuva because I found that revival thoroughly bad). The Red Star is now a giant super-battery of resurrection, so unless everyone except Mavrah is a stuttering wreck after being revived I think it will be one of the bad ways to handle the return of a character.

Fiction like Bionicle is not limited to exact real world things like for example CSI. Just as people don't get teleported away from a hospital and then right back (as RS was intended) or just disappear and maybe someday get freed from wherever they were freed, people likewise don't pick up swords, aim them, and shoot beams of ice. So I don't get why suddenly real life has to be an ironclad rule about death when we've got magical masks on people's faces. :P

So actual death -- once you're totally gone, comparable to a day after you die in the hospital, or when all that's left is the skeleton -- CANNOT be overcome by the Great Beings. You've got what you wanted. The boundary where you can come back (always possible in real life, just not as much) is just shifted a little and the explanation altered (from the older masks thing).


Yes, that is correct. It's because this story involves the typical dramatic take on death, where killing a person is supposed to be an extreme and final act, that making death less permanent is a bad idea to me. When you injure a character, stasis field them, teleport/mind-control/whatever them, they are temporarily out of the story; both the characters and the readers know that. But they can return. Death is far more important in stories because it is maybe the only way to permanently erase a character from the story. Resurrection changes that if it is not limited enough. Therefore Jaller's one-time revival was done decently enough, but the potential of having Lhikan appear "just like that" in the Red Star would be bad for me.

I have mentioned both Dragonball and the webcomic Order of the Stick twice now. They both have methods of bringing people back to life, but both are limited. The Dragonballs can only grant a resurrection wish once per person, and they are hard to find. Plus, every villain would also want them to grant a wish to themselves -- such as ultimate power or immortality. For this reason, the Dragonballs were kept as a plot device that could not just be gathered at any point to fix everything; despite later seasons of the show falling into that writer's trap. Order of the Stick shows that despite people being raised from the dead relatively often, there are still ways to permanently kill someone - even rend their soul irrevocably to bits - and some characters disintegrate corpses just to make revival next to impossible.

That is really what it boils down to: Death is the end of the line for a character, and the emotional impact relies on how we perceive the actions that happen on-screen. In a series where death is permanent, the death itself is the biggest emotional moment. In a series where death has been revealed to be non-permanent, other actions constitute the actual emotional part. For example: If the heroes have no way to reach a cleric in time for Raise Dead to work, that is the emotional moment, when they sit there with the corpse and realize that the time window has expired. When a character gets killed and everyone knows the Dragonballs won't work on him anymore, that is the emotional moment compared to when a revivable (sp?) character dies. And finally, when resurrection is both cheap and simple, then doing something like nuking the respawn point can be the shocking act of villainy that turns a "regular death" into tragedy.
 

Here's the thing, though -- it wasn't really done. We learned about it through "behind the scenes" content under totally unique circumstances that make it really impossible to fairly judge how it would have been done. Even with Mavrah, we had never been 100% sure he'd actually died, and were not until Erebus's reveal topic.
 
So if you're going to judge this one, I think you have to make concessions for that. Of course, then there's the take, which I would totally get, that Greg just shouldn't have gone there -- either finish the serials or never reveal it, and I can sympathize with that. But selfishly I'm still glad we get to puzzle all this out! It's fun, way more fun that what realistically would have just been silence.

In the end I guess we're just on two different sides of the fence: I would rather have gotten a full explanation or the promise of a finished story in the future, instead of the reveal and then nothing. We know revival is possible, but we now sit here and bicker a bit about how it will affect the story. I have a negative outlook on resurrection - because it is too easy with a working Star that anyone can teleport to now - and just hope the thing is dead broke. :P

Isn't it really more interesting than "they're just gone... yawn"? I'm not saying your idea can't be even better, per se... although are they mutually exclusive? For Lhikan to meet up with anybody he would have to get away from wherever he was revived. If he can just walk away, IMO that's inherently less interesting than if you have to fight to get back to "life". And after all that struggle to get there, wouldn't it make the reunion only more meaningful?

It would if we had actually had a serial devoted to Lhikan's terror on the Red Star. ;D

I read another webcomic, Unsounded, which has a very grisly outlook on revival. The main character is a person who has been revived... but he is undead. His body is rotting, and he had to flee his homeland for fear that his new "horror hunger" would make him eat his family alive. The nature of his undeath is still being revealed, but because it was a major factor of the entire story so far, it sits better with me. BIONICLE too can go the route of having revived people being anomalies and forced to struggle with "came back wrong" scenarios, but the reveal so far was too sudden. Like, it started off well with Mavrah and the allusion to strange things in the Star, so Greg's reveal of what the plot was supposed to be may be the worst factor, actually.

I will grant you the point that the story can actually go "the right way" from this point, it's just that it's unlikely to continue and thus I'm stuck arguing over what we have... which I don't currently like. Shame, really.

 

You know, if you read the 2006 books, they're kind of a polemic against this attitude that it's anywhere near realistic to see death as meaningless if you come back.
 
Go back and re-read the narrated thoughts of Jaller. Keep in mind this is the same author here. (Another reason I can't agree with the idea that we couldn't see this coming, although I don't wanna put Katuko's words in your mouth, not sure if you didn't too.) It had a profound effect on him. Heck, he became leader of one of the two most crucial Toa teams in history because of it -- arguably the most, because in the end the Ignika actually reactivated the giant robot, not the Nuva.

While I agree Jaller's death was not bad, I can not say I have really "remembered" it occurring at all after the movie. I have not had the opportunity to read any of the books, sadly, but I know that the revival made me forget about Jaller's sacrifice - and the significance behind it - a lot earlier than I forgot Lhikan's or Matoro's.
 
 

By the way, another point I meant to bring up earlier, but yet another clue we had to the possibility of a standard revival system was that Greg often put strong emphasis on the idea that "if there's no body, always assume they can come back." Greg's extremely clever at subtle hints, often so clever it goes over most people's heads and goes unrecognized, but that's part of the draw because those of us who spot them get to feel smart; this may have very well been yet another instance. This combined with his continued refusal to show graveyards, despite that dead bodies could be shown in LEGO's violence policy, in general, and a graveyard is hardly graphic, should have been seen as major evidence that something was up (and was by me).

It's a common trope in stories that unless a corpse is seen, the character is under the effects of Schrödinger's Cat: It can either be alive or dead, you don't know until they actually reappear or are confirmed dead. For that reason I will not be surprised to see the Muaka from MNOG show up again (the one that fell off a cliff), but I would be very surprised to see Lhikan back... at least up until the Red Star reveal.

True, bodies were seen, but the point was that it was so often hinted that they disappeared. And after Jaller's revival, the door was opened wide for those disappearing bodies to be revived somewhere all the time. It was actually fairly thinly veiled.

I disagree. Disappearing corpses was always a bit mysterious, but they struck me more as being "melding with the life stream" or something than I ever considered them being alive again. Why? Well, merely my good-will towards the authors not having sacrifices such as Lhikan's result in a revival just a day or so afterwards. In fact, if I had thought back then that Lhikan "survived" the fight with Makuta because his body disappeared, I would likely have felt it to be as cheap of a plot twist as I thought Takanuva's survival was.
 

Could we have placed it to the RS? Before Gali's seeing beings up there, probably not, though who knows. After that, eh... I didn't and I don't think anyone did, but then lots of things with hints in mystery stories get untheorized before they happen; that's always a hit and miss art, and shouldn't mean that the reveal shouldn't come. Also, standard caution that we're still not 100% sure something (even if vague at first) was planned, nor more importantly how early the RS tie-in was.

MNOG2 was tied with the plot of Mask of Light. The telescope was present, and could potentially have had some mysterious hints to its true nature. Maybe Lhikan's spirit star could have merged with the Red Star in the sky when he died, as another strange hint of what could be happening. Maybe Alt!Tuyet's body could have had some sort of branding that related to the Star or the Order, to mark it as an exemption somehow.

The reveal that Mata Nui was a giant robot was an extremely big twist that was well executed. Hard to guess, but sufficiently hinted at throughout the years. The Red Star has been a device of prophecy and has been related to Toa coming into existence, but nothing about it has suggested that it actually draws in dead bodies.
 
 

Edit: Minor correction to the idea that there were three revivals; it was four (at least) -- Jaller, Takanuva, Matoro (on the 777 stairs, with red lightstones... I have mentioned this many times but forgot above... writing my version now :P -- this was yet another clue, and one that actually could have connected revival to the RS for us in theories), then the RS wave of revivals. There's also the sort of undead guardian guy of TSO.. Sentrakh was it? And of course the Tryna and Mask of Undeath also further clue us in (in that latter case, clue yall in since it was my idea :P) that real-world death is not to be assume here. But those weren't as clear; I think Matoro is the only other clear example but could be wrong. It's a big story.

I left the 777 stairs out because we have still not had it confirmed that his death there was related to the Red Star, since Greg had apparently not thought of that twist yet. I forgot Mata NUi being revived by Matoro, though; that is another case of revival being possible but requiring massive energy (and a sacrifice) to do so.

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#51 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Dec 06 2013 - 11:23 AM

Yes and no. Yes, I agree it is not at this point yet because we know that "came back wrong" is a thing that Greg was planning to write about. The thing that makes me iffy is that the confirmed revivals so far have not mentioned any faults. Mavrah was fine, it seems, and Lhikan plus Hydraxon have been confirmed alive but "stuck". If they are revived perfectly they have essentially had their deaths reversed, which doesn't directly cheapen the story's importance of death like Jaller/Takanuva's immediate revival did, but it opens up the possibility of far more dead characters being up there too. Sidorak, Botar, etc.

This is why again it pays to read all the quotes:

 

So does that mean Botar was too damaged to be saved by the Red Star?

No, it simply means that either a ) he reappeared someplace we have not seen him yet, or ...b ) He was sufficiently messed up by the experience of dying and coming back that he doesn't know where he is and isn't focusing on getting back.

 

Does option B often happen to people? How aware are they of their circumstances?

Well, the folks encountered on the red star thus far did not seem too together to me.

 

Do the "revived" MU Residents in the Red Star have any memories of their "previous life"? (to simplify: do they remember anything in their life before they "died"?)

They should remember everything. That's the intent. But the process of being brough back to life tends to be very traumatic, so it takes a while to get one's thoughts unscrambled

True, he was not definitive, but clearly the faults tend to be psychological, and Greg seems to view them as the norm, not the exception -- he just didn't get a chance to tell about it. There may also be physical errors in the process too, but the only one we saw, Mavrah, didn't have enough lines to show us what happens

 

I wonder, though, if Greg is implying that the Kestora themselves go through the process? If dying on the RS gets you revived again, they might have died any number of times, and that might have a lot to do with their looney-bin status. And it does sound temporary in general (perhaps for the Kestora, due to repeated occurance since they're basically everybody's enemy, it becomes more permanent?), but it's something.

 

I meant that being sad for 10 minutes about Jaller's death, and 10 seconds about Takanuva's death, is far from the same impact as Vakama having to deal with a dead Lhikan for the rest of his life.

And so is dodging a bullet far from the same, but that happens in these stories all the time and I don't see people complaining about it. Sometimes we haven't even known if they did dodge a bullet (Mavrah himself is the prime example.) Consistency in reaction is kind of what I'm focused on here. Again, if it's just a taste thing, then there's really nothing left to say probably, but the logic being used to try to explain that taste is so far not working for me as it appears "consistently inconsistent" if you will. :shrugs:

 

One note, though: people have complained when a bullet is dodged unrealistically, like "Well someone had to save you" but that was from the Hordika animations and it was clearly the genre they established for most episodes of it and I wouldn't blame Greg for that one. :P But people don't say that the lesser impact (or not in the same way to be more accurate -- having Jaller still alive arguably may have more impact, but agreed it's not the same of course) of a rescue means that rescues shouldn't happen. It's more about if the rescue is plausible, and clearly this "rescue" IS.

 

Placing the Red Star as this automatic revival station that has actually managed to bring back previously dead characters is a plot twist that is teetering on the edge of just being fan service - bringing back popular characters for the sake of bringing them back.

I get that part of it, but that's why I'm focused on how this is logical in-story (at least again the basic motivation for the GBs to do it). Of course, that also applies to rescues, and technically even to "self-rescues"! But something you should consider is that since it seems the main motivation for these anti-revival arguments is also a personal taste -- you don't like the theme being used so often or you don't like how it's done, then NOT doing it would also be a fan service and thus ironically you end up making, indirectly, the very argument for it to be done anyways even if some fans don't (completely) like it. ;)

 

Glad you say it has grown on you... I'll try not to say much more here as nobody wants another twenty superlong posts lol...

 

See, those triple question marks are what some of us latch onto as having opinions pounded down. ;) It's an expression of disbelief, as in "I can't believe you would think this???", and that does set some of us on edge.

My point is that works two ways. When I see the vast majority of fans appearing to agree with me that his death wasn't casual and then someone saying it clearly was, it can come across as "pounding down" our view. Especially when it's stated like a binary, "it's either casual or serious" thing. But again, I assume it was just word choice and won't take it too seriously. :)

 

Just a little sensitivity is all I'm asking for, and ask yourselves if what you're about to say is really fair before you say it. ^_^ (Again, I can take it either way, but I say this partially because sometimes I've noticed that some who say such things then act upset if I behave in a similar way toward them, which quite frankly is an unfair copout -- not accusing you two of that, but just be aware of the risk of it. I'm trying to make sure yall get how what you're saying can come across, since how I came across was called into question. :) Make sense? You react to my "???" but how is that anything but a natural reaction to "casual"? Not that you said it, but yeah.)

 

I get the comparison of revivals, in general, to the dimension-borrowing problem too. All I'm saying is the RS isn't willy-nilly anytime-come-back, but just like the quick hospital revival thing in real life, and we just didn't know about it yet -- a very unreliable thing that only works under the right conditions and then only in a short time period. (Yes, I know the amounts are different, but again, that's perfectly valid in this genre as I think we are agreed.) Tuyet's dimension-borrowing feels much more willy-nilly to me; there were missed opportunities to show serious downsides to the practice (which I'm toying around with trying, if I even have room for it...).

 

some of us feel that reviving a character at all ultimately cheapens the worth of the death when viewed in hindsight

No, I think everybody agrees with that, Greg included, if we might not always think that wording is fair though. Somewhere he said that it is why he didn't want to let Matoro be revived (incidentally, it would be awesome if we could get this quote; I thought it was in one of Erebus's topics but apparently it was before the RS reveal?? Unless I'm blind). Where that argument breaks down for me, and how we've always addressed it in these topics since the reveal is, it assumes that only the "worth of the death" matters in a story; there's multiple factors, always, and the benefits of a revival can outweigh this. Everything done in a story always has pros and cons, of course -- it's the "if this con shows up it gets different treatment than others, ignoring benefits" feeling (though all the clarifications yall're saying noted) of these complaints that bugs me. :shrugs:

 

Primarily, this is a character-based story. The impact of deaths on the story in that light have been explored. They have reached their potential. Lhikan's revival for instance allows character to be explored even further. That can be a very good thing, though with all the cautions of course. Basically I just think it's all about exploring new "emotion space" and "headspace." If everybody just dies permanently all the time, that can get as old as if everybody revives at the drop of a hat. But if a story is free to explore both, that can be way more meaningful. :)

 

 

Okay, a little out of order, in that vein:

 

Lhikan's death: Good.
Jaller's death: Good, though the revival is so-and-so depending on how you look at it.
Takanuva's death: Reverted even before the significance of it sinks in, so I call it bad.

But is this the full measure of what affects you? Because there's also the angle, which I strongly suspect most human beings will naturally feel, that Takanuva's death can be even more satisfying for the "different space" of knowing there's hope he's not permanently dead. It creates wonder mixed with fear which can be a very pleasant reaction for people. If you aren't wired to feel it like that (I wouldn't put words in your mouth, call it a question :)), then okay, to each his own. But I wouldn't be able to relate to it, because it feels way oversimplistic to me, almost foreign to how a human with suspension of disbelief follows a story. :shrugs: Make any sense?

 

Again, with caution that I agree it wasn't handled as good as it could be. (Incidentally, not really spoilers for me to add that in my version, the energy in that device is stated to be entirely depleted then so it can't be used again. I don't think MOL would have space to mention that but perhaps a later story could have.)

 

As I mentioned earlier, there are good ways to handle death, and there are bad ones. A good way of ding it is to keep the character in a coma for a long time while other characters angst about it. Maybe give them a long-lasting injury too, that's a good trade-off for surviving. Another good way is to mention that revival is possible, but not allow it to be done willy-nilly, so that dead characters usually stay dead.

While I agree with most of this in principle, be careful with just making lists of approved things a story can do well and things that are definitely bad. New stories, I've noticed, have a tendency to take the very things some have claimed can't be done as a challenge and end up doing them enjoyably. And if you only have a few allowed ways to do something, then that becomes the cliche.

 

I would say that a good way is a way that appeals to the majority of the fans (and the author, etc.), however they can accomplish that, and is character-based. And Bionicle doesn't always match up to its potential on either count, but it does try way more than most stories in this genre, and this counts IMO.

 

To the permanence point (again a discussion that has been hashed out already in old topics) -- yes, and in real life, the inability to aim a sword and shoot ice is generally permanent too. Until it's not. :) I'm not making light of your perspective -- you're correct, but that's not all that matters; there's good to be had out of a revival too. And that's the basic point.

 

And there goes that battery plus I'm out of time anyways. Later. :)

 

 

 

 


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#52 Offline fishers64

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Posted Dec 06 2013 - 11:30 AM

@bones: Yeah, sort of expected that. I'll find something to disagree with you on later. :P
 

[...]

I just don't like how the Red Star revival was revealed. I feel it's such a thing that could have been more explicitly hinted at earlier, because even when the Star zapped the Toa Inika into existence it just felt like it was related to "destiny" in general; what with the star-signs and the beam. Corpses disappearing was interesting, but the notion of having people fully restored - memories and all - in the star is a bit 'eh' to me. True, Greg has said the thing is malfunctioning, but Mavrah and Gaardus both seemed fine enough. Small sample size at the moment, but it's the only ones we have right now. If Lhikan stumbles out as a half-zombie mess, I might be more happy with the twist. At least then he has been suffering and not just been sipping Bula Berry Juice in a recliner while waiting for the teleporter to get fixed. :P

I don't think there is any Bula Berrys or recliners up there. Most of the answers on the subject have implied that the whole situation is pretty trumatic. There's murderous dissecting Kestora, possibly Visorak and Sidorak, dozens of dead Makuta rahi, Mavrah's petting zoo, and so on. It's not a picnic. It freaked Kopaka, and the Ice Toa isn't easily rattled. 
 
I think the thing in bold is the real point of contention. FTR I am somewhat indifferent to the whole thing in terms of preference - I just think it makes sense with the story and (I think that) arguing with what the story is and makes sense is pointless. :shrugs:

 

As for the "lack of hints" I'll concede that having the mystery revealed this way out-of-story after the serials ended strikes me as clunky and wrong too. The serials were not handled well in this respect as reveals were concerned. But that is not a reason to eat the reveal itself as illogical, because it isn't. 
 

Yes, that is correct. It's because this story involves the typical dramatic take on death, where killing a person is supposed to be an extreme and final act, that making death less permanent is a bad idea to me. When you injure a character, stasis field them, teleport/mind-control/whatever them, they are temporarily out of the story; both the characters and the readers know that. But they can return. Death is far more important in stories because it is maybe the only way to permanently erase a character from the story. Resurrection changes that if it is not limited enough. Therefore Jaller's one-time revival was done decently enough, but the potential of having Lhikan appear "just like that" in the Red Star would be bad for me.

Well, yeah, the whole "Toa do not kill" thing. And Lhikan was erased from the story - even if he appeared undamaged, it would still have an impact. 

 

That is really what it boils down to: Death is the end of the line for a character, and the emotional impact relies on how we perceive the actions that happen on-screen. In a series where death is permanent, the death itself is the biggest emotional moment. In a series where death has been revealed to be non-permanent, other actions constitute the actual emotional part. For example: If the heroes have no way to reach a cleric in time for Raise Dead to work, that is the emotional moment, when they sit there with the corpse and realize that the time window has expired. When a character gets killed and everyone knows the Dragonballs won't work on him anymore, that is the emotional moment compared to when a revivable (sp?) character dies. And finally, when resurrection is both cheap and simple, then doing something like nuking the respawn point can be the shocking act of villainy that turns a "regular death" into tragedy.

*Velika points missile at the Red Star*

 

*Red Star explodes*

 

Why can't this work in Bionicle too?


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#53 Offline Exitium

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Posted Dec 06 2013 - 01:14 PM

bonesiii, I'm sorry if I came across to you as offensive, that was obviously not my intent.  The Red Star reveal was controversial because many people didn't like the implications it had for the story.  What I have objected to is the way people have dismissed those who have that opinion as not having "thought it through" or merely whining about inconsistencies rather than objecting in substance.  Those of us who don't like the revival have perfectly valid, thought-out opinions for doing so.  We also recognize that those who disagree with us do as well; I was merely trying to voice a mature criticism of this plot that you may or may not agree with.

 

I agree with your calls for sensitivity, and of course I was not trying to be insensitive.  My apologies if my previous post was worded poorly.  So in the vein of sensitivity, let me point out where I think your comments could have been more sensitive of my views, and then I'll add some clarifying remarks at the end.

 

And yes, it is possible to come at fiction misunderstanding how it's intended and have that make you dislike it in a way that arguably isn't really fair.

 

Regardless of author intent, I think my criticism is still valid, and to suggest that it is not is unfair.  What I'm pointing out is the opportunity the story had to go some very interesting directions, which it decided not to do.  That disappoints me, for reasons I've already explained.  I haven't "misunderstood" the story, I'm simply pointing out how I think it could have been better (in my opinion, of course).

 

But have some of you considered that just as you may feel offended if we seem to disrespect your tastes, it's also possible to be careless in how you post your dislikes, and how that comes across to those of us who liked it? I say this because I honestly don't know how it's possible -- again not trying to insult, of course, but understand and yes honestly wondering if you are "inaccurate" on this -- how it's possible to watch the same movie I did, paying attention, and think death was handled "casually" in Mask of Light? Nor was Jaller's revival handled casually, although I will grant that Takanuva's may warrant that a little. (If that's all you meant then no further objections, just hoping for a clarification. :))

 

I thought that in general, even for the most part with Takanuva, it was handled very seriously. Jaller's death impact was felt very keenly, clearly, by Takua/Takanuva, and the others, and his revival was wonderful. Also, even though Jaller had just been revived, the emotion with "Get out of there!" and the mask of light coming sliding out was very well done. (It's the unclarity of the method and missed opportunity for emotion there, of Takanuva's revival I didn't like, which I've tried to fix in my version of course. :P) Whether you like the way it was handled is one thing, but to state apparently inaccurate things in your attempt to express that dislike is puzzling at best.

 

I think Katuko has done a good job explaining why Takanuva's revival was casual and poorly executed.  As for Jaller's death, I remember thinking that it was a "Disney death" from the first time I saw the movie ten years ago.  The writers needed Jaller to sacrifice himself, but they wanted a happy ending and didn't want to lose the character, so they brought him back.  

 

There's a certain emotional weight that comes from the finality of death.  It's not just about sacrifice; it's about the fact that those who survive have to go on dealing with the other's death.  How we handle that is an important part of being human, and overcoming the permanence of death has to be justified in the story.  Any time authors make death less permanent in a story, they rob it of some of its emotional weight.  So I chose the word "casual" to mean that the reasons for Jaller's revival were not enough to justify it in my mind.

 

The important thing to emphasize here is that these are my opinions.  I never stated it in a binary fashion, as you seemed to have interpreted it.  I'm sorry if that was unclear.  However, you have responded by calling my opinions "careless," "inaccurate," and "puzzling."  Opinions cannot be inaccurate, and I find it odd that your calls for civility came on the heels of your lack of respect for my valid and articulated opinions.

 

We obviously have different opinions on several matters here, and we are both right to explain our opinions and respond to others'.  We'll obviously never convince the other, but that is not my goal.  My goal here is simply to get others to understand why some of us have mature objections to the way the Red Star was handled.  Just because these arguments have been raised before and you have responded to them does not mean the issue has been resolved.  The topic of whether this was a good or bad addition to Bionicle cannot be resolved, and it is pointless to try to show definitively that it was "good" (or "bad").

 

So now that it's been established that we won't agree on that normative point, let's clarify what I said so that my points don't continue to be misrepresented.  

 

I'm not sure if you were aware, but on here it was common knowledge that beings who wore masks could theoretically be revived, and commonly theorized that it was a "spirit" (or imprint) on the mask. I recall it being made pretty clear, both by his mask being destroyed, and the wording (though I've yet to review this part) that it was absolutely permanent.

 

I was indeed aware, but I think there was the general impression that there was no way consistent way to revive the deceased being, so Jaller's revival was the exception, not the rule.  We also theorized that the imprint faded over time, and Jaller was only revived because Takutanuva revived him so soon after his death.  Death was already effectively permanent in almost all cases (unless you happened to be around Takutanuva).

 

That said, I would personally not pit different people's noble deaths against each other per se like it was a contest.

 

The point of comparing the two was to show how revival can lessen the impact of death to some people.  It's not a contest at all, but looking at the aftermath is instructive.  We'll never know how Takanuva would have handled Jaller's death had he not been revived, even though that's a struggle that everyone faces in their lives.  Jaller's revival created a "happy ending," in a story already filled with black-and-white notions of good and evil (which I always thought was a minor weakness of Bionicle, but that's just me).  In contrast, Lhikan's death was symbolic of the passing of the torch from the Toa Mangai to the Toa Metru.  Vakama had leaned on Lhikan for guidance and never thought of himself as a Toa, but with Lhikan's death, Vakama had to assume that mantle because there was no way Lhikan could come to his rescue.  There a certain poignance to Lhikan's dying words, "This is my lifetime's journey; yours lies beyond" because Vakama knows he'll have to make that journey without Lhikan there to guide him.

 

Now, it's true that in this case, Lhikan did not come back to help Vakama, but the possibility of his return robs his death of its finality, which is a fundamental part of why death fascinates us and why it's so difficult to accept.

 

BTW, was "did alter the status quo" a typo for "didn't"? For some reason I'm not getting what you meant there.

 

No, that sentence was correct.  Lhikan's death alters the status quo because he was teleported to an inaccessible location, so it did have an impact on the story.  Jaller's death (and subsequent revival) did not alter the status quo because he came right back as if nothing had happened.  Even though the result is the same, there's a different emotional impact when someone gets written out of a story because they're dead than because they simply won't interact with the main characters anymore.

 

Overall, I think I would have been much more interested in the way death was handled if we had been introduced to it at the start.  It would have been a part of our understanding of the story, and the comparison of the Red Star deaths with the actual deaths of Matoro and such would have been more interesting.  Seeing how characters conceptualize the Red Star (do they see it as an afterlife?  do they find comfort in knowing they'll see their lost friends again?) could have been interesting.  But instead it was added in at the end in a clumsy way.  This isn't entirely Greg's fault , since his story was cut short before he could do anything with it, but I still think this change either should have been with us from the start and handled in an interesting way or not brought into the story at all.  I recognize that not everyone agrees, but I also believe that it is perfectly valid to have these opinions.  I hope I haven't offended anyone :)


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#54 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Dec 06 2013 - 03:44 PM

So in the vein of sensitivity, let me point out where I think your comments could have been more sensitive of my views, and then I'll add some clarifying remarks at the end.

 

Quote

And yes, it is possible to come at fiction misunderstanding how it's intended and have that make you dislike it in a way that arguably isn't really fair.

 

Regardless of author intent, I think my criticism is still valid, and to suggest that it is not is unfair.  What I'm pointing out is the opportunity the story had to go some very interesting directions, which it decided not to do.  That disappoints me, for reasons I've already explained.  I haven't "misunderstood" the story, I'm simply pointing out how I think it could have been better (in my opinion, of course).

I don't have time to say much now but wanted to say to this -- that's not really what I was talking about there. :) All I said is it's possible, and something each person has to ask themselves. That is not a dismissal but a challenge to consider if perhaps your outlook could improve -- and by "improve" I mean, maybe there's a way to look at it that increases your enjoyment, even though it can never erase that you had the negative initial reaction and that that reaction was valid. Make any sense? :P

 

Anyways, we've probably gone far enough off-topic on this. Most of the rest of yall's points on this I think I've gotten my basic response across by in the parts I've mentioned. I'll focus the rest of this reply on in-story plausibility and such things rather than likes and dislikes -- at the end of the day, each person is entitled to their own emotions, and that's the most important thing. Advise to find a way that has helped others among us to experience less negative and more positive can only be that -- just advise, not absolutely certain, and it should only be taken positively, or neutrally, IMO. If it doesn't work for you, then simply disregard. :)

 

I would rather have gotten a full explanation or the promise of a finished story in the future, instead of the reveal and then nothing. We know revival is possible, but we now sit here and bicker a bit about how it will affect the story.

Two problems with this statement (as I read it :P) -- first, it is positive and fun for me to think through how one reveal affects the rest of the story. Although it's always different each time, in essence this has been what a huge portion of the discussion, the most entertaining and interesting discussion, in S&T has always been about. Why must the only option be "bickering"? Why can't we enjoy the thought experiment, the puzzle of it?

 

Second, considering how complex that story is, as I mentioned in the official topic, it was IMO very wise, perhaps necessary, for Greg to be cautious not to try to give a full absolute explanation of every detail. Besides that that would rob us of more chances for theorizing which is half the fun of Bionicle's story, it's smarter to wait and let us think through some of the major problems that could come up, and if you ever try to paint in the corners, have a chance to do it with less risk of contradictions.

 

I have not had the opportunity to read any of the books, sadly

Alright, well, that probably has a ton to do with why we're perceiving the storyline differently. 2006 essentially was the books and it was Jaller's main time for all the most important character-based reactions to his death. That may have something to do with why I never forgot his death. Although there's also the whole key relevance of it to Takanuva. But anyways, I'm not talking about likes and dislikes here, only that this would influence knowledge about what it is we're really discussing -- the nature of the beast of the Bionicle story as it was intended by the author(s). :)

 

Disappearing corpses was always a bit mysterious, but they struck me more as being "melding with the life stream" or something than I ever considered them being alive again.

Well, that is essentially how the Matoran perceived it:

 

How did MU inhabitants react to dead corpses disparitions? What was their interpretation of that?

They were becoming one with the Great Spirit

 

I left the 777 stairs out because we have still not had it confirmed that his death there was related to the Red Star, since Greg had apparently not thought of that twist yet. I forgot Mata NUi being revived by Matoro, though; that is another case of revival being possible but requiring massive energy (and a sacrifice) to do so.

Right... so that's five (counting the RS as a 'wave', though technically a reveal of what had already happened). Five events, I guess.

 

No, Matoro's death on 777 is not directly related, but I wouldn't go so far as to say that Greg "apparently" hadn't thought of that twist, because of the red lightstones in that room. Or, it's possible he later used that to connect to the idea of the also-red RS doing revivals. Either way, it's at least thematically related, but the RS didn't actually do anything there as far as we can tell, since there was no teleportation. Also, the device seems to work differently (a point my protagonist mentions in the retelling) since Matoro arguably was disintegrated.
 

but the notion of having people fully restored - memories and all - in the star is a bit 'eh' to me.

 
I think the thing in bold is the real point of contention.

Do you mean the "all" part? Because it seems clear the memories themselves are fully restored.

 

*Velika points missile at the Red Star*

 

*Red Star explodes*

 

Why can't this work in Bionicle too?

Lol, that gives me a crazy idea as a possible alteration to my plans (not this, but something a liiittle similar). I'd have to add chapters though... hm... we'll see. But that would be pretty awesome IMO.

 

Explosions are, after all, the answer.

 

As for Jaller's death, I remember thinking that it was a "Disney death" from the first time I saw the movie ten years ago.

If that's all you meant, then no objections -- but ALL of the Bionicle movies are "disney movies" in that they are clearly firmly in the "kid's movies" supergenre (though perhaps a subgenre of being way more serious than many). I mean, obviously Takanuva's acting the moment he turns into a Toa is lousy, and could have seemed way less like he'd forgotten about Jaller for a moment. He could have been at least a little angry in how he defeated the Turahk for example. But while it's a "disney death" -- that is valid within that genre, and let's face it, this is a LEGO story, aimed at kids, that we're all talking about here. Hard to see what the alternative could realistically be.

 

I just wouldn't call that "casual" but it's semantics, whatevs. :P You clarified that you didn't mean it in an absolute sense, so no worries. Just saying maybe not the best word choice, but dead horse perhaps.

 

I was indeed aware, but I think there was the general impression that there was no way consistent way to revive the deceased being, so Jaller's revival was the exception, not the rule.

Pump enough energy into it and have a being or machine to regulate it (something intelligent enough in the right way). That's the consistent way -- the methods could vary, yes, and it's very expensive. But still, it was a rule. It being expensive of course is part of the rule, so I know what you mean about it being an exception. But it's a consistent way and we understood how it worked, at least on here. :shrugs:

 

No, that sentence was correct.  Lhikan's death alters the status quo because he was teleported to an inaccessible location, so it did have an impact on the story.  Jaller's death (and subsequent revival) did not alter the status quo because he came right back as if nothing had happened.

That's what I suspected you meant. See, this is where I just can't relate to what comes across as saying the "status quo" in a story is just about whether somebody's alive or dead. And where, apparently, lack of knowledge may be affecting things, because I don't see how you can read the 2006 books for example and think it was "as if nothing had happened." Jaller arguably went a little nuts as a result of it, and struggled to handle it properly, plus it inspired him in other ways.

 

My point is, just like I don't like it when fans say "that guy died and I like him so I don't like this" -- because it kinda makes the story be about whether a character is around or not so fanfic writers or roleplayers can feel more justified in imagining them still around -- a fan service... I also don't like the idea that if the guy does stick around that's all that matters.

 

It's a character based story, and that's what really matters. The "status quo" is in the psyche, the soul and emotions how they are changed by events. A revival is just as, if not arguably more, a radical alteration in the status quo that really matters as a death. Yes, in different ways and nobody's saying it doesn't undo something. Of course it does.

 

Now you probably agree with all this anyways and I'm just nitpicking but it's what I thought was worth bringing to the discussion just for emphasis. :)

 

Overall, I think I would have been much more interested in the way death was handled if we had been introduced to it at the start.  It would have been a part of our understanding of the story, and the comparison of the Red Star deaths with the actual deaths of Matoro and such would have been more interesting.

Well, then you may like how I'm doing it in my version since I am forced by some/most readers knowing this not to act like death is necessarily final. Of course, I can't say much about it yet. :P Just wrote a major part that involves this knowledge in fact, as the leadup to Matoro's total death is coming and my protag knows it.

 

 

 

This isn't entirely Greg's fault , since his story was cut short before he could do anything with it, but I still think this change either should have been with us from the start and handled in an interesting way or not brought into the story at all.

All I can say to that is that it's supposed to be a mystery story, and by definition all mysteries are hit and miss, unless you are super confident you know your audience perfectly, and I don't know how anyone not telepathic could be. Heck, sometimes we don't even know ourselves until it happens. Greg's always been clear that it's part of the system that some will not like any reveal, but it's intended to have reveals. :)


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#55 Offline Katuko

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Posted Dec 06 2013 - 04:45 PM

EDIT: Man, two more posts while I was trying to get this one online. I'll have to look through the above later, I guess.


True, he was not definitive, but clearly the faults tend to be psychological, and Greg seems to view them as the norm, not the exception -- he just didn't get a chance to tell about it. There may also be physical errors in the process too, but the only one we saw, Mavrah, didn't have enough lines to show us what happens

I wonder, though, if Greg is implying that the Kestora themselves go through the process? If dying on the RS gets you revived again, they might have died any number of times, and that might have a lot to do with their looney-bin status. And it does sound temporary in general (perhaps for the Kestora, due to repeated occurance since they're basically everybody's enemy, it becomes more permanent?), but it's something.

Maybe they committed suicide a few times to test the system, I dunno. Hey, if you respawn and are mildly insane to begin with, why not?
 

I meant that being sad for 10 minutes about Jaller's death, and 10 seconds about Takanuva's death, is far from the same impact as Vakama having to deal with a dead Lhikan for the rest of his life.

And so is dodging a bullet far from the same, but that happens in these stories all the time and I don't see people complaining about it. Sometimes we haven't even known if they did dodge a bullet (Mavrah himself is the prime example.) Consistency in reaction is kind of what I'm focused on here. Again, if it's just a taste thing, then there's really nothing left to say probably, but the logic being used to try to explain that taste is so far not working for me as it appears "consistently inconsistent" if you will. :shrugs:

I am still unsure where you think my taste is inconsistent. I am on board with revival when done well, and I dislike it when it just comes out of the blue. "Done well" is variable. I can get on board with Jaller's revival, and the 777 stairs being a test from the Great Beings. I can get on board with the Red Star existing, but I would not be happy if Lhikan/Hydraxon/Sidorak/etc shows up like Mavrah with no apparent fault in them. I disliked Tuyet parading in after being confirmed dead and gone before, her death essentially ret-conned right then and there for the sake of having her back. That is the kind of "revival" I do not like, whether it is actual resurrection or not.
 

But something you should consider is that since it seems the main motivation for these anti-revival arguments is also a personal taste -- you don't like the theme being used so often or you don't like how it's done, then NOT doing it would also be a fan service and thus ironically you end up making, indirectly, the very argument for it to be done anyways even if some fans don't (completely) like it. ;)

No, not really. Removal of fan service (such as bringing characters back because they are popular) is not fan service to those who do not want them back, it is more in line with simply keeping the story the way it was headed before fan service entered the picture. Not suddenly deciding "wait, we want this character back, let us invent a reason why they survived". Having the Red Star recycle resources is a good idea, but having it recycle them so perfectly that the character may not have died at all would be bad, in my eyes.

And yes, I realize they have most likely come back wrong. I am hoping and expecting that holds true for every resurrection, but the few quotes we have do not confirm Lhikan's status, for example, just that he is "alive". Until Greg confirms if he's a damaged zombie or a full-worthy being still, I guess we must just wait and see. You're right in that there's not much point in debating that any further before we know whose tastes are actually being offended at all. :lol:
 

You react to my "???" but how is that anything but a natural reaction to "casual"? Not that you said it, but yeah.)

I have a tendency to analyze stories from a writer and reader's point of view before the character's, because in the times where we do not connect fully to the character, we are more like an outside observer. In the big battle of Dark Mirror, for example, lots of characters die, and those involved in the conflict are naturally horrified when an ally dies. But for us who read, we know these are "just" alt versions and we don't care as much. The writer, unfolding himself in an alt universe, can also take the liberty to kill off popular characters on a whim, because once Takanuva leaves this dimension will just be a faint memory compared to the "main story". I rejoiced in that battle scene, because people died left and right from having superpowers tear into them. It showed us what would actually happen if Toa didn't have the self-imposed code not to kill. I was also glad it was not part of the main story, because who died and who lived seemed determined almost at random.

That is what I mean by "casual death", though. It's a death that is written in for the sake of having death, but with little to no long-lasting consequences. Jaller's death caused character change in Takua so that he could become Takanuva and save the Matoran people. But what did Takanuva's death do? Just about nothing, I would say. The scene works the same whether he narrowly escapes his doom by leaping out from the collapsing fusion, or if he is momentarily buried in rubble but crawls out of the broken fusion's armor to everyone's rejoice. He did not need to explicitly die and be revived the same way Jaller needed to die and be revived. The revival from Vakama's doings happens without any obvious expenditure of resources. Again from the writer's standpoint, the difference is between "someone has to sacrifice their life energy to revive another" (which was kept with the later usage of the Mask of Life) and "just place the mask here and it's done for you".

"Casual" in fiction is a term I use when it appears the plot is formed a certain way just because it would be dramatic, and that it otherwise breaks from the expected norms. Something that happens with no real foreshadowing or after-the-fact explanation. As I understand it, similar reasoning is why Greg chose to write it in a different way in the movie novelization, though he later changed his mind and said that Takanuva did actually die; while no one really had problems with Jaller's death/revival in the first place because there was an actual super-being who could conceivably produce such a fantastic effect.

 

Tuyet's dimension-borrowing feels much more willy-nilly to me; there were missed opportunities to show serious downsides to the practice (which I'm toying around with trying, if I even have room for it...).

Indeed, the problem with alternate dimensions is often that there are too many that are too easily accessible. Stories that have just one parallel world can afford to spend more time on the characters of each. For every new dimension and alternate version of a character, the lines blur and each character becomes less "worth"... if I can call it that.

I read a short story once, where a fantastic dimensional travel device let regular people experience alternate timelines. "What would happen if I didn't have my cup of coffee this morning?" "What would happen if I went to a different school?" "What would happen if my mother never died in that car accident?" Problem was, some people - after excessive dimensional traveling - killed themselves in their original dimension. Why? As the protagonist discovers, these people eventually realized that because no choice they ever made actually had real consequence - because any number of dimensions would exist where the choice was made differently, and each of those dimensions were as real as their "original" one - they saw no reason not to try to die. 50 alternate versions of yourself will live on, so just do a 5-story dive to the asphalt and see what's beyond, right?
 

Where that argument breaks down for me, and how we've always addressed it in these topics since the reveal is, it assumes that only the "worth of the death" matters in a story; there's multiple factors, always, and the benefits of a revival can outweigh this.

Correct. The worth of the death can be high, if the character doesn't know revival is possible, even if the audience does. This is because it signifies something big and emotional in the character. They think they will die, and they choose to do so. In other works of fiction, death can be used as a gamble - such as late in Dragonball. Characters sacrifice themselves in futile battles more easily, because they can be revived, but they know it is far from certain if no one else survives either. The last person standing will not sacrifice themselves, and will panic. The villain Cell had the ability to regenerate from any tiny bit of DNA left over -- he never seemed to care when he got injured or "killed". To that character, death was nothing. To the viewers, death was nothing when it happened to Cell after the first time either.
 

Primarily, this is a character-based story. The impact of deaths on the story in that light have been explored. They have reached their potential. Lhikan's revival for instance allows character to be explored even further. That can be a very good thing, though with all the cautions of course. Basically I just think it's all about exploring new "emotion space" and "headspace." If everybody just dies permanently all the time, that can get as old as if everybody revives at the drop of a hat. But if a story is free to explore both, that can be way more meaningful. :)

Each character can only die permanently once. It can not "get old" in that way, simply because each character needs to be unique for us to care about them in the first place. Killing nameless characters ("Red Shirts") with little personality will naturally have just as little impact as constantly bringing back dead characters would. We don't care about the nameless goons on the Enterprise, but we care about Captain Kirk and Spock. If the character can get revived, death do not phase us as much anymore, and the threat of permanent death or came-back-wrong scenarios are necessary to keep death a Big Deal.

If the character never returns, we can miss them, like we do with Matoro. Matoro was there since 2001. He was a character we didn't know all that much about, but he was there. Then he dies, permanently, and saves the world in the process. Other characters may do that, perhaps, and we will always have Toa of Ice, but they will not be Matoro. The Toa Mahri won't care if you give them a new Toa of Ice, they will not suddenly forget Matoro. That is what is important: Matoro can not be replaced. To the characters and the readers, the loss of Matoro is important. If we hypothetically bring Matoro back... I would not really like that, no matter if I liked Matoro, and no matter if the earlier impact of death had "run its course", because his death has been stated to be permanent.

What could work for me, if we have to bring someone back, is for Vakama to learn of the Red Star and then obsess over it for half a serial. Then he goes up there, locates Lhikan, angsts over Lhikan being a tortured zombie mess, and then either discovers some way to "fix" him (repaying the sacrifice that happened so many years ago) or mercifully terminate him (coming to terms with his death and giving him rest). I am saying that if Lhikan is alive "just like that", and it's used as either a cheap bring-back-popular-character story or a cheap-horror-trick story, it will not work.
 

But is this the full measure of what affects you? Because there's also the angle, which I strongly suspect most human beings will naturally feel, that Takanuva's death can be even more satisfying for the "different space" of knowing there's hope he's not permanently dead. It creates wonder mixed with fear which can be a very pleasant reaction for people. If you aren't wired to feel it like that (I wouldn't put words in your mouth, call it a question :)), then okay, to each his own. But I wouldn't be able to relate to it, because it feels way oversimplistic to me, almost foreign to how a human with suspension of disbelief follows a story. :shrugs: Make any sense?

Let me be honest: I am scared of death. Here in real life I do not buy into any story we humans have about death, except the fact that we can't know until we die ourselves. Death in fiction is a bit strange, because we "know" what happens to characters. They are either gone from the story forever, or they hang around as ghosts or revived clones or whatever.

In fiction, I care about death depending on how it is handled, and what I know about death in the series beforehand. If a character dies, I want bringing them back to be a heck of an ordeal if it's even possible; unless easy death and revival is a major part of the series to begin with.

I want to mention Order of the Stick here again, because it mentions resurrection spells as cheap for some characters, but a real ordeal for most everyone else. Death is simple, in that world, at least for most species. If you die, you go to an afterlife. The afterlife varies, as some just chill with their deceased family members, some return as ghosts with unfinished business, and yet others get revived. One of the main characters comments on this, after being resurrected. His friends had a cleric around, who could raise someone from the dead as long as they got the body and diamonds to fuel the spell. When they saw their friend fall in battle, they anguished over it, but was certain that as long as they won the battle, they could get him back. Cue them losing the battle, and having the group split up during the chaos. At this point it was never certain how they would be able to do a proper resurrection, because the body was deteriorating and the only cleric with enough power was miles away. It took months (both in and out of comic) to have everyone re-unite with the proper resources to perform that one resurrection, despite resurrection being a well-known possibility to everyone in the world.

After returning, he has a discussion with his girlfriend - a sylph - where he brings up the point that maybe this is why humans are so rash at times: Even if they die, there is a vague chance they might return, and if they don't they at least know they end up someplace they deserve. Sylphs, on the other hand, will never return. When they die, their spirit melds into the world it came from. That spirit is gone forever, and no resurrection is possible. They conclude that this is most likely why sylphs are pacifistic and other races are not -- because to the people of this comic, dying forever with no afterlife is just... unthinkable.

In BIONICLE, I imagine things would be very different if the Red Star is confirmed to work (properly). With teleportation powers ahoy, dying would no longer be an issue for many people. Even though it might be hard to arrange for a send-back, would Botar have even cared, I wonder? If he died once, got resurrected the proper way, and teleported back down, he would not have to worry about death again. We would not have to worry about his death again, unless he explicitly faced someone wielding disintegration powers.

Random question time! If you die of old age, can you still be resurrected? D&D (which Order of the Stick is based on) states that you cannot resurrect someone who has exceeded their natural lifespan, with the consequence that they also get resurrected with the body in the same state of age as it was before they died.

 

Again, with caution that I agree it wasn't handled as good as it could be. (Incidentally, not really spoilers for me to add that in my version, the energy in that device is stated to be entirely depleted then so it can't be used again. I don't think MOL would have space to mention that but perhaps a later story could have.)

An acceptable solution. Being able to store energy over the years and use it to fuel a single resurrection per charge does sound plausible with what we know, but the device will still have to be described well enough to not feel like a cop-out invented just for that scene.
 

While I agree with most of this in principle, be careful with just making lists of approved things a story can do well and things that are definitely bad. New stories, I've noticed, have a tendency to take the very things some have claimed can't be done as a challenge and end up doing them enjoyably. And if you only have a few allowed ways to do something, then that becomes the cliche.

It's true, but again: Just an idea is not always enough, if the performance is bad. Good ideas in bad stories can be rewritten into good stories; I just want to read the good story and not the bad story. ;)
 

As for the "lack of hints" I'll concede that having the mystery revealed this way out-of-story after the serials ended strikes me as clunky and wrong too. The serials were not handled well in this respect as reveals were concerned. But that is not a reason to eat the reveal itself as illogical, because it isn't.

Well, I have been using the reveal for what it's worth by mentioning potential revived characters and the limits of the system etc. I have just gotten the vibe that even if the serial continued, it might be using the entire concept in a kind of cheap way, and not exploring it to its fullest like we do by picking it apart in long forum topics. We write the equivalent of ten serials for every time a big discussion pops up, it seems. :)

 

*Velika points missile at the Red Star*

*Red Star explodes*

Why can't this work in Bionicle too?

It can, and I almost think that is what he plans to do. Maybe not with a missile, but as a Great Being he can probably shut it down somehow.

Edited by Katuko, Dec 06 2013 - 04:48 PM.

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#56 Offline fishers64

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Posted Dec 06 2013 - 05:14 PM

 

 

but the notion of having people fully restored - memories and all - in the star is a bit 'eh' to me.

  
I think the thing in bold is the real point of contention.

 

Do you mean the "all" part? Because it seems clear the memories themselves are fully restored.

 

 Yes, I meant the "all" part. In context, perfect restoration with no lasting damages. Katuko seems to think that death should have some sort of impact, and that the psychological stuff of waking up in the RS with a bunch of insane wackadoodles and murderers isn't enough of one, not to mention being removed from the story for a very long time. 
 

 

*Velika points missile at the Red Star*
 
*Red Star explodes*
 
Why can't this work in Bionicle too?

Lol, that gives me a crazy idea as a possible alteration to my plans (not this, but something a liiittle similar). I'd have to add chapters though... hm... we'll see. But that would be pretty awesome IMO.
 
Explosions are, after all, the answer.

 

 
It works well here! I think the Red Star's demise, done right, would make for an amazing story with a lot of emotional impact. It's just one more opportunity that this reveal opens. :) (I have another fanfic idea that runs in this vein too, but it is probably very different from what you have in mind. I won't spoil it.)
 
I think the major thing that bugs people about this reveal is that a whole bunch of "dead" people might walk back into the story unharmed. That's my point, that is doesn't necessarily do that. They are NOT back yet. They could end up exploded, murdered, or just trapped up there forever. And even if they do get away. they will not be the same people. Ever. Again. 
 
* * *
I agree with Katuko and Exitum on this point: people do have a right to dislike stuff.

 

(I also find that without likes and dislikes, there would be fewer of these debates, which I enjoy. The problem is illogic based on dislike, not dislike itself, although even liking something can produce illogic.)
 

Maybe they committed suicide a few times to test the system, I dunno. Hey, if you respawn and are mildly insane to begin with, why not?

Or maybe the GBs used them as test puppets. Could happen.
 
 

If the character can get revived, death do not phase us as much anymore, and the threat of permanent death or came-back-wrong scenarios are necessary to keep death a Big Deal.

I think there is still a threat of that. Disintegration, explosions...SM natives not included in revival. All these stories that you're giving me have a much bigger capacity for revival than the Red Star, and I take it that you like them. I guess it would be more a sudden introduction of revival, even a little bit, into a story filled with what you thought were permanent deaths?

 

 

As for the "lack of hints" I'll concede that having the mystery revealed this way out-of-story after the serials ended strikes me as clunky and wrong too. The serials were not handled well in this respect as reveals were concerned. But that is not a reason to eat the reveal itself as illogical, because it isn't.

Well, I have been using the reveal for what it's worth by mentioning potential revived characters and the limits of the system etc. I have just gotten the vibe that even if the serial continued, it might be using the entire concept in a kind of cheap way, and not exploring it to its fullest like we do by picking it apart in long forum topics. We write the equivalent of ten serials for every time a big discussion pops up, it seems. :)

 

Granted, three or four minds are better than one. Except in this case, we don't know the answers and Greg does.
 


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#57 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Dec 07 2013 - 01:15 AM

Removal of fan service (such as bringing characters back because they are popular) is not fan service to those who do not want them back, it is more in line with simply keeping the story the way it was headed before fan service entered the picture.

This assumes it was intended to be in the picture or that if it was, it "entered." Stories are always about pleasing the fans, and also change is necessary. My only point was, do not be so quick to assume that because something doesn't appeal to your tastes, it was done for out-of-story reasons such as what you called fan service. (Obviously I assume we both agree that the label could be confused for "pleasing fans" which is good, but we're talking about like the fans who just don't want their favorite character to ever die and don't care how that hurts the story.)

 

You keep saying that you want it to be all about being done well, which makes sense, but then I also hear you and others saying things like "I dislike it when it just comes out of the blue" -- but what if that could be done well? I mean, if "X event cannot be done well" is your principle, then why worry about doing things well in the first place? This is what confuses me. Other times I hear things like "revival cheapens death", seemingly arguing that thus the revival shouldn't be done. Is this just trying to emphasize a small part of it and I'm just not seeing that, so it isn't mean to say the revival shouldn't be done? Or is it a rule against an event regardless of how it's done or how it affects the characters, in a character-based story?

 

I realize the two of you making the most points on this may have very different perspectives I may be confusing. Anyways, again, more questions posed out of curiosity. :)

 

And yes, I realize they have most likely come back wrong. I am hoping and expecting that holds true for every resurrection, but the few quotes we have do not confirm Lhikan's status, for example, just that he is "alive".

Well, just the experience of dying and then finding yourself still alive would likely always have a serious psychological effect, regardless of the means or quality. But main thing I wanted to say is, other than the psychological effects, why must there be an absolute? Why do they all have to mess up? It sounds more like at least for a while they came back physically alright, but later that probably changed due to the "zombies" thing. I see nothing implausible about this.
 

I have a tendency to analyze stories from a writer and reader's point of view before the character's

I see. Well, that is what I expected, though I am impressed you are honest about it. I would have to say that may be something you could rethink. :P It is supposed to be a character-based story. Personally as an author I invest a lot of energy into writing characters so that readers can engage with them on that level. If I had written, for example, of a guy coming back from the dead, and it seriously impacts his psyche, and many readers really empathize with him, but then somebody says they didn't like it because he was dead, now he's alive, and that "keeps things exactly how they were..." (I know that wasn't your words, though) well, I'd kinda want to bang my head against the keyboard for a few seconds, yanno?

 

It appears you agree with this in principle, though whether it's enough to outweigh it, if your tastes do legitimately make you not engage with the characters first and judge mainly by out-story things, is another matter. Anyways, I've probably ranted plenty on this subject. Food for thought, hopefully -- my simple advice would be to really try out reading a character-based story engaged with the characters primarily. (And in that vein there's certainly plenty of room for constructive criticism. :P)

 

You raise several other points I don't have time to say much to beyond that there's much wisdom in them.

 

Random question time! If you die of old age, can you still be resurrected?

This question was raised before but we don't know. We have generally assumed it's a no.


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#58 Offline Katuko

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Posted Dec 08 2013 - 09:21 AM

You keep saying that you want it to be all about being done well, which makes sense, but then I also hear you and others saying things like "I dislike it when it just comes out of the blue" -- but what if that could be done well? I mean, if "X event cannot be done well" is your principle, then why worry about doing things well in the first place? This is what confuses me. Other times I hear things like "revival cheapens death", seemingly arguing that thus the revival shouldn't be done. Is this just trying to emphasize a small part of it and I'm just not seeing that, so it isn't mean to say the revival shouldn't be done? Or is it a rule against an event regardless of how it's done or how it affects the characters, in a character-based story?

I just mean to say that just about every plot twist can be done right - even the crazy ones - but that having a previously dead character show up again needs some form of explanation. In this case, the Red Star is already the explanation, and having it revealed by marching a previously dead character (Mavrah) back on scene is one way of doing it. In that vein, though, the story would go on to explain how it works via exposition - and that explanation would be the big thing that makes me accept the twist or not. Word from Greg tells us that the Star was built by the Great Beings to recycle the dead, that is acceptable. For my enjoyment of it, though, it still needs to be really well-written. Lhikan showing up unharmed, leaving the star through some small action scene and then being back in the plot without much question would be bad. That is why I dislike Takanuva's revival. In the serials and such after I don't think the death/revival was ever mentioned.

Jaller apparently brooded over his in the books, so that is plus points for Greg to keep it important and not just a plot event in Mask of Light. Basically: How much effort is done in the story to keep it a big deal, is what matters. As an example: If the story establishes from the get-go that people respawn instantly without grief when slain, something else must be there for us to worry about. Otherwise, the ability to truly care about a character when they get hurt vanishes. Black comedy plots therefore kill characters with impunity and often have them show up later without injury because the point of the death is not drama, but comedy. Even then, being immortal can subject you to other pains, such as hurting from an otherwise fatal disease or being forced to patch your own body each time a zombie finger falls off.
 
 

Well, just the experience of dying and then finding yourself still alive would likely always have a serious psychological effect, regardless of the means or quality. But main thing I wanted to say is, other than the psychological effects, why must there be an absolute? Why do they all have to mess up? It sounds more like at least for a while they came back physically alright, but later that probably changed due to the "zombies" thing. I see nothing implausible about this.


Doesn't have to be an absolute, true. I am just worrying that the eventual return of a character will not be given all that much thought due to all the other sub-plots that have similarly not been resolved. Alt!Teridax and Tuyet being the two main characters I consider introduced to the main plot for no real reason.

With the exception of the revival(s) in 2003, which were played up to be exceptionally rare occurrences, BIONICLE has had dead characters stay dead. Now they might return, and that is sort of a system shock because the reveal comes at it "just happening", essentially. An "oh by the way, Lhikan is alive" from Greg, and the fear from me that it will end at that. I guess you could say that this fear stems from the way the rest of the serials were handled, especially Tuyet's re-introduction. While it was stated there that she was not actually dead, her return still feels like she came back from the dead because we saw two of her corpses in separate dimensions. In essence, Core!Tuyet died in her own backstory, and Alt!Tuyet was the "character revival" that let us see more of her maniacal side. Then she died too, and Takanuva left her behind as a chapter to be closed. Her re-appearance was explained in a short paragraph, but it hasn't been given any further thought afterwards. Effort spent on bringing her back is therefore about zero, as far as my out-of-story perspective goes, even if those few sentences mentioned her having to travel for 2000 years.
 
 

I have a tendency to analyze stories from a writer and reader's point of view before the character's


I see. Well, that is what I expected, though I am impressed you are honest about it. I would have to say that may be something you could rethink. :P It is supposed to be a character-based story. Personally as an author I invest a lot of energy into writing characters so that readers can engage with them on that level. If I had written, for example, of a guy coming back from the dead, and it seriously impacts his psyche, and many readers really empathize with him, but then somebody says they didn't like it because he was dead, now he's alive, and that "keeps things exactly how they were..." (I know that wasn't your words, though) well, I'd kinda want to bang my head against the keyboard for a few seconds, yanno?


A well-written character makes me genuinely care for them. As I like to use examples from other stories, I want to mention Unsounded here. Here we meet Duane - walkin' talkin' zombie - having been blackmailed into escorting a young girl named Sette to her cousin's place where she is to collect money that is owed to her father. They do not have a good relationship, and the times they quarrel you can actually relate to both. Righteous anger from Duane's part at being verbally abused, and desperation on Sette's part because she really is in over her head and has no idea what to do if Duane decides to leave. On the way, though, they get tangled up in a plot about human trafficking; which has as bleak of an outlook as it might get. Duane finds a kid left behind in the slavers' hideout, critically injured, who dies in his arms in perhaps the most shocking scene I have ever seen in a webcomic. Just the image of him sitting there in the dark, unable to do anything, and hugging the corpse is... I dunno.

In that scene, I could definitely put myself in the character's place. BIONICLE did the same to me when Matoro died, and earlier (indeed) when Takanuva carried Jaller's body. Takanuva's death, though, never worked for me. There was a moment of silence, perhaps, when I first saw him get crushed, but when he was revived I was more "wait, what?" than anything. I blame this on the magic revival symbol not doing its narrative job properly, and maybe on no book version existing to describe the situation in more detail. :)

This coming from a guy who was scared of the scene where they heal Tahu, because it looked very painful.

 

It appears you agree with this in principle, though whether it's enough to outweigh it, if your tastes do legitimately make you not engage with the characters first and judge mainly by out-story things, is another matter. Anyways, I've probably ranted plenty on this subject. Food for thought, hopefully -- my simple advice would be to really try out reading a character-based story engaged with the characters primarily. (And in that vein there's certainly plenty of room for constructive criticism. :P)


I guess I mentioned this in the paragraph above, but if I do not relate to the events, then that makes me disconnect. I am invested in the character up until then. I relate to Onua when he is trying to talk a mind-controlled Lewa out of attacking him, culminating in Lewa managing to rip the Krana off. I was surprised at Botar being crushed so swiftly, and I rejoiced in Keetongu pounding Sidorak's face in. I didn't feel much of anything when Carapar is disintegrated, because without the books to fill me in on his thoughts he appears to be little more than a random dumb brute who is Takadox's plaything.

I relate to McClane's desperation when he is unable to stop the plane from crashing in Die Hard 2, and his foot injuries in the first film were painful to watch. Slaughter of bandits, though, veer back and forth in feeling. When the scenes are shot as if they are equal - protagonist and antagonist - I get "into it" from the intense shootout and a hope that McClane will not get hurt. In the slightly less realistic scenes, though, it's more of a movie-goer wonder where I don't relate to the character so much as I just want to see him doing something awesome.

And even in very unrealistic webcomics: The villain deciding to fire elementals out of a catapult as a more effective alternative to rocks is funny, and the way it is played out doesn't make me directly fear for any main character even after the city walls start getting torn up. Neither does watching them slaughter their way through a horde of hobgoblins in a scene matching Lord of the Rings's battle at Helm's Deep. That one too, though, veered back and forth between just "action film - Legolas is awesome when he shoots orcs in the face" to "dramatic - will they even survive the night?"
 
 

You raise several other points I don't have time to say much to beyond that there's much wisdom in them.


I suppose I have good Intelligence and Wisdom scores but only mediocre Charisma. :P
 
 

Random question time! If you die of old age, can you still be resurrected?


This question was raised before but we don't know. We have generally assumed it's a no.

I was just wondering because resurrection from the Red Star seems to form an entirely new body, so that the age of the components in the old one would not matter so much.

Edited by Katuko, Dec 08 2013 - 09:24 AM.

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#59 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Dec 08 2013 - 03:32 PM

For my enjoyment of it, though, it still needs to be really well-written. Lhikan showing up unharmed, leaving the star through some small action scene and then being back in the plot without much question would be bad. That is why I dislike Takanuva's revival. In the serials and such after I don't think the death/revival was ever mentioned.

Good answer. Just two points, then. First, since the RS isn't written (as a story) at all (or not the reveal and explain), IMO it's best to simply reserve judgement, ultimately, and realize we have to judge it as if we were members of a story team deciding if we liked an idea for what it is, just the idea, without the execution yet. Since that isn't available to us. Even if it was told, we can't unlearn it. We were given that behind-the-scenes scoop, and now we're stuck with it. Like I said earlier, disliking that we got that inside scoop is fine, but on the other hand, it does appear there was no other way, and I'd rather get it so we understand the story previous as we were intended to, rather than have it remain nothing but a theory for all time.

 

Secondly, I agree it's odd that Takanuva's revival isn't really mentioned, but that is probably for two reasons that do make sense.

 

First, in-story, he "died" as part of a confusing fusion with his worst enemy, and it's quite possible he doesn't remember much of it. There was one scene, I believe, where he was trying to remember Makuta's thoughts about his Plan, but failed. Takanuva as an individual being ended when they fell in the pool and then the next thing he knows light is fading around him and he's standing on that glowing circle overlooking the Silver Sea. While I doubt the others would have to actually tell him what happened, it may have seemed like he was watching it remotely instead of personally experiencing it. Similar to how the Toa Kaita are treated as separate individuals that can appear and disappear. So, it's kind of like Takutanuva died, rather than Takanuva.

 

Second, there was the unfortunate out-story mixup of Hapka's portrayal, and Greg likely did not want to publish a direct contradiction of her version in-story, so casual fans would not be confused and could continue to choose which of the two they prefer to see as real. Doing so might come across as a bit disrespectful, since he was her replacement, and Greg wouldn't do that.

 

In my version the only chance I've so far had to mention it didn't have room, and I was just quoting a line of Takanuva telling Jaller not to die again from the books. But I plan to get into this more when 2008 plot comes around; we'll see how it goes. For now, the above in-story reasoning is my excuse for why Takanuva didn't mention it. I'm sure it was going on in his head, but the narrator of my story isn't in his head so yeah.

 

Also, personally I did connect with Takanuva's death. But yes, the revival could not be understood properly in-story (we had to ask Greg about it, and theorize some things even now) and that is a problem.

 

 

Aaaanywho. Tuyet. :P


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#60 Offline Katuko

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Posted Dec 09 2013 - 08:51 AM

Good answer. Just two points, then. First, since the RS isn't written (as a story) at all (or not the reveal and explain), IMO it's best to simply reserve judgement, ultimately, and realize we have to judge it as if we were members of a story team deciding if we liked an idea for what it is, just the idea, without the execution yet. Since that isn't available to us. Even if it was told, we can't unlearn it. We were given that behind-the-scenes scoop, and now we're stuck with it. Like I said earlier, disliking that we got that inside scoop is fine, but on the other hand, it does appear there was no other way, and I'd rather get it so we understand the story previous as we were intended to, rather than have it remain nothing but a theory for all time.

I do agree with you, but on the other hand I'm a vile little man who will be hissing about the reveal until it gets expanded or forgotten. :P
 

First, in-story, he "died" as part of a confusing fusion with his worst enemy, and it's quite possible he doesn't remember much of it. There was one scene, I believe, where he was trying to remember Makuta's thoughts about his Plan, but failed. Takanuva as an individual being ended when they fell in the pool and then the next thing he knows light is fading around him and he's standing on that glowing circle overlooking the Silver Sea. While I doubt the others would have to actually tell him what happened, it may have seemed like he was watching it remotely instead of personally experiencing it. Similar to how the Toa Kaita are treated as separate individuals that can appear and disappear. So, it's kind of like Takutanuva died, rather than Takanuva.

That does make some sense. Have I mentioned I have never liked fusion characters either, for this precise reason? :P Too much worry about who is in control and how they can possibly cooperate in one body and if any of them are technically still "alive" and themselves while fused. Ghost in the Shell worked up a lot of fuzz about what "being alive" means, and a fusion between a human cyborg and a pure AI did in fact result in a new being -- the seem to remember that the fusion comments on how it feels curious to know that its previous two components are alive, yet dead, at the same time, and that while it feels it has evolved from its former existence into a new type of being, it also has a strange sense of loss. At the very least, it did say to the human's former friend that no, the person standing in front of him was not her, despite looking the part.
 

Second, there was the unfortunate out-story mixup of Hapka's portrayal, and Greg likely did not want to publish a direct contradiction of her version in-story, so casual fans would not be confused and could continue to choose which of the two they prefer to see as real. Doing so might come across as a bit disrespectful, since he was her replacement, and Greg wouldn't do that.

True. I sometimes forget that Greg was not really in charge of writing the book stories until a few years had passed.
 

In my version the only chance I've so far had to mention it didn't have room, and I was just quoting a line of Takanuva telling Jaller not to die again from the books. But I plan to get into this more when 2008 plot comes around; we'll see how it goes. For now, the above in-story reasoning is my excuse for why Takanuva didn't mention it. I'm sure it was going on in his head, but the narrator of my story isn't in his head so yeah.

Reveal that he is not really Takanuva after the death occurs. PLOT TWIST. To quote the Hyperion corporation's respawn stations ("New-U!") from Borderlands 2:
"Hyperion suggests that you do not think about the fact that this is only a digital reconstruction of your original body, which died the first time you respawned. Do NOT think about this!"
Also, it might say: "Greetings, clone-of-the-recently-deceased! Good luck in your future endeavors!"
 
And then Takanuva can angst about it. I use "angst" a lot when describing a story that should be sad. It's not meant to be dismissive so much as succinct.
 

Also, personally I did connect with Takanuva's death.

I suppose you can say I did connect with it for a short while the first time around, but his unexplained revival undermined the character once I started thinking of why he would be brought back in such as quick and brief manner.
 

Aaaanywho. Tuyet. :P

Yeah! I don't like that she is back! :D

Thing is, at the moment we can only theorize the following about the corpse:
- That it was from another dimension and thus not targeted by the Red Star.
- That the Red Star malfunctions sometimes when it tries to fetch corpses, not just when sending them back.
- That the Pit or something else related to it actually blocked the teleportation signal from the Red Star and/or the MU's systems.

What we can do is to discuss whether us having to discuss this is a good thing that enriches the story, or just a result of a badly handled plot twist which will require some hand-waving. ;)

Edited by Katuko, Dec 09 2013 - 08:52 AM.

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#61 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Dec 09 2013 - 05:22 PM

We could always slap together a list of all the options we came up with here and get someone to ask Greg which if any he likes.

 

I for one would like to know especially if it's just something that applies to Tuyet or could apply to others in the Mahri Nui area or to Pit prisoners. Say Pridak gets killed later. Could he be revived? Under any conditions?

 

As for whether it should have been done, again, the fact that we didn't get to see the execution of it likewise seems to me to affect that. If we had, we'd be way more likely to know if the choice turned out to be popular or not. Then, if it was popular, the answer would be yes. :P Even if not, it still does make story sense, so yeah.


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#62 Offline fishers64

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Posted Dec 09 2013 - 05:38 PM

I for one would just like an answer to the title question for this topic - that would clear a bunch of this away. But my knot-cutting blade is dull... and the standard method isn't working either. 
 

As for whether it should have been done, again, the fact that we didn't get to see the execution of it likewise seems to me to affect that. If we had, we'd be way more likely to know if the choice turned out to be popular or not. Then, if it was popular, the answer would be yes. :P Even if not, it still does make story sense, so yeah.

I agree with this. The only way to know how it would affect the story and the readers would be to actually write the story out. And we don't have magic access to all the writer variables that Greg has. (Thus we get all sorts of claims that it would affect the story a certain way, with no evidence or precedent.)
 
:(

Edited by fishers64, Dec 09 2013 - 05:40 PM.

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#63 Online Zox Tomana

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Posted Dec 09 2013 - 05:50 PM

Good night there's a lot of stuff on this one page. I'd thought I'd throw in a cent or two about the cheapened death idea that I haven't seen anyone address yet.

Someone said that the big thing about giving your life for someone is that the choice tends to be a rather permanent thing. I think the point being missed is that while -we- know now that Lhikan was going to be revived all along, -Lhikan- didn't know that. Jaller didn't know that. Assume for a moment that there was a period where the RS system worked properly, that period would be a period of cheap death because the most you get is a quick heal and BAM, back to work. Once bodies start disappearing and not coming back, death becomes a BIG issue. They might be being revived on the RS, but they aren't home. They're in a totally new environment that is apparently rather dangerous on its own. the folks down in the MU have no clue about this second life. They just know that if you die, you don't come back anymore (one might be able to argue this being a good trigger for the development of consciousness in the MU). When Lhikan threw himself in front of the Shadow Hand, or when Jaller jumped on Turahk's Staff, they knew that, if they died, they weren't coming back. We do have a death prior to the Mata Nui Island time to show the characters that dying means you not being in the MU anymore: Mavrah. Yeah, Mavrah is alive, but he died first and didn't go back to the MU. Lhikan would have been aware of this death, the Mata Nui Turaga were aware of this death, and knowing about this death would surely have warned the Matoran (post-Matoran Sphere Mind Wipe) of the consequences of deadly action.

All that to re-say: for the characters, death is/was a very real thing that was not a cheap measure to toy with. Just because -we- know what actually would have happened to the Barraki if Teridax had executed them doesn't mean that the Death Penalty was a light action to take, or that Lhikan being willing to take the hit for Vakama was any less heroic or sacrificial. Hmm, Barraki on the Red Star... that's a dangerous idea.

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#64 Offline toa kopaka4372

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Posted Dec 10 2013 - 01:49 PM

Firstly, thanks for the awesome discussions, everyone. It was an utter pleasure to read. :)  As for myself, my opinion of the RS reveal is a bit of a mixed bag. I can see good things in it but also negative things as well. I think, though, that any of my biggest worries comes from the fact that we haven't actually gotten to see the execution of the reveal. If we could just see the Powers That Be to its conclusion, I think I would be more satisfied. As it is, leaving the serial unfinished like this is extremely upsetting, especially since it was shaping up so well, with an intriguing character in Gaardus, some real suspense with the murderous GB on the loose, and a really well-written mystery with clues as to Velika's objective and the Star's purpose scattered throughout (on that note, there needs to be more discussion on the former ). I'm still hoping that someday Greg comes back and finishes it, otherwise it will probably bother me forever :P

 

Still, I think the few chapters we got of The Power That Be indicated that the story was going in the right direction. You could tell Greg was enthusiastic about this and he was setting it up quite well. Besides, I get the impression that Greg shares a lot of the opinions expressed here, and he dislikes revival without serious consequences, with Tuyet being the exception (even though she never technically died...). His heavy emphasis on Jaller's character after his revival and the serious consequences it had on his psyche makes me confident that Greg would have executed the serial well. Also, he was setting up the reveal as a problem, not a solution.  Just look at these excerpts from it:

 

 

 

“We could keep them,” suggested the third. “Maybe a dissection would tell us why they can’t go back. Of course, we tried that before, and all we wound up with was a mess … a lot of messes, actually … but maybe this time --”

 

The two Toa had gone about a hundred yards when the lights suddenly went out. Now they could hear movement from all around them. There were whispers, too, but they couldn’t make out the words. Kopaka triggered his Akaku Nuva, piercing the walls around him with x-ray vision. In one direction, there was nothing to see but outer space. In the other, he saw things – a lot of things – he could have lived without seeing. When he spoke, his voice was raw.

“We need to move,” said Kopaka. “Now.”

“What’s the matter?”

“You don’t want to know. Grab my hand. We’re finding a way out of this.”

 

 

“It’s not safe out there,” their rescuer said. “But then you probably figured that out. A lot of very unhappy people up here, you know.”

The part about Kopaka being terrified, and the description of what he saw as 'things' is what really interests me. I think its clear whatever was going to happen next wasn't going to be pleasant, and that the people up there...cannot really be described as people. We also have confirmation here that the Kestora have been murdering a lot of the people up here. I think its safe to assume that the majority of the people sent up the RS over the course of the existence of the MU are currently dead, with only the deceased of the last few thousand years there. Whatever the case, its obvious Mavrah is the exception in being fine.

 

Thinking about it, the RS is a perfect example of 'there are things worse than death.' The poeple who are permanently dead are better off than this twisted place, which seems to Karzahni's first real rival as the "most insane place in the BIONICLE universe." :P  If Lhikan is here in that state, A LOT of very interesting possibilities could be explored. The whole situation is actually pretty tragic- the people here have died and have been brought back as monsters with no hope of escape. 

 

In any case, the sheer magnitude of Rahi corpses present throughout the story still bothers me. The Toa Metru came across a ton of them in the tunnels, and Jaller once said something to Hakann about seeing Rahi dead for a month who looked better than he did. I think there's more here than a time delay- maybe its possible some Rahi just straight up never get sent to the Star?


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#65 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Dec 10 2013 - 04:26 PM

In any case, the sheer magnitude of Rahi corpses present throughout the story still bothers me. The Toa Metru came across a ton of them in the tunnels, and Jaller once said something to Hakann about seeing Rahi dead for a month who looked better than he did. I think there's more here than a time delay- maybe its possible some Rahi just straight up never get sent to the Star?

Well, if the beacon implant theory is right, there's a high likelihood that could be smashed due to predation, perhaps higher than for sapient beings. Even possible that later on the Makuta stopped including them, but who knows.

 

 

BTW, to the earlier discussion of the idea that the revivals of the RS were "unexpected" -- there's another line of reasoning I've thought of (yesterday) just out of the blue that really should have clued us in; Hydraxon's "semi-revival". Dekar was transformed physically into Hydraxon, given Hydraxon's memories, and forgot that he was really Dekar. In essence, as Greg said, there are now "two Hydraxons".

 

This should have debunked any illusion we had that revivals, at least by the Mask of Life, were ever really off the table, no matter how long you'd been dead, and actually should show that more likely the RS has constrained that time, NOT expanded it. I say this because in 2007, we were left with only two explanations:

 

1) The Mask of Life can go back that far in time to grab memories for a revival, which opens the door for nearly any revival, or:

 

2) The Mask of Life called on memories recorded permanently somewhere, which likewise could open the door for nearly any revival!

 

One option for the latter was that the mask itself had already thought of bringing Hydraxon back the moment he died and made its own copy of him, saving it as a contingency similar to the later Golden Armor contingency, which would at least limit the number of people this is an option for, but we had no way to know that for sure. Now, the RS reveal opens up the much simpler possibility that the RS can't bring people back after a long time, and the Mask just grabbed the memories from the actually revived Hydraxon on the satellite (minus updates from his life up there). So, for example Altuyet probably can't be revived now, even by the Ignika, and even though she died at roughly the same place and time as Hydraxon.

 

Now I admit I didn't really think of this at the time other than vaguely wondering what Hydraxon's sort-of-revival might open the door to, but maybe subconsciously it had something to do with it. More food for thought. :)


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#66 Offline Katuko

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Posted Dec 10 2013 - 05:15 PM

Until Lhikan is explicitly revealed to be lying on a Kestora operating table, wheezing about merciful euthanasia through his exposed Borg lungs, I shall have to remain skeptical that he would not be mostly fine in a Tuyet-styled reintroduction. :P
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#67 Offline Exitium

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Posted Dec 10 2013 - 05:56 PM

Regarding revival plots in general, I'm not ruling out that they can be done well, I just think there are significant hurdles that the author has to overcome in order to justify doing so.

 

Once bodies start disappearing and not coming back, death becomes a BIG issue. 

 

This, for example, would have been an interesting development that would have justified the Red Star for me.  How did the Matoran react when death suddenly seemed permanent to them?  Watching characters deal with death when they never had to before would have been cool, though probably a little too philosophical for Bionicle's target audience.

 

Just because -we- know what actually would have happened to the Barraki if Teridax had executed them doesn't mean that the Death Penalty was a light action to take, or that Lhikan being willing to take the hit for Vakama was any less heroic or sacrificial.

 

I'll grant that the characters who sacrificed themselves probably didn't think they were going to come out alive, but on the contrary I would argue that our perspective is crucial to how we perceive the story.  Whether or not Lhikan truly died or went to the Red Star permanently doesn't really effect the story, but his being on the Red Star keeps open the possibility, however small, that he might come back.  His sitting on the Red Star is also much less poignant than his death.  Simply put, there isn't any plot devicethat an author can employ that matches the emotional impact of death.  The Red Star or a coma that a character will likely never awaken from (a common plot device) come close, but even they lack the same finality of death.  For some people, myself included, that "cheapened" all the (nonpermanent) deaths in the story.  This is a personal preference, so either it did this for you or it didn't, but judging by a lot of people's negative reactions to the Red Star, I think this was a common feeling.

 

Like I said earlier, disliking that we got that inside scoop is fine, but on the other hand, it does appear there was no other way, and I'd rather get it so we understand the story previous as we were intended to, rather than have it remain nothing but a theory for all time.

 

I'm not saying that Greg should have kept this information to himself rather than revealing it once it became clear that he would never finish the serials (although people might have reacted in a more positive manner if it had been revealed in the story); that part doesn't really bother me.  What bothers me is that the main story was effectively concluded and suddenly the serials started throwing in all this information that had never been introduced, or even really hinted at.  The biggest offender here (outside the Red Star)  is the fact that elemental powers could be turned off.  I don't want to start a debate about that too, but if Mutran and the rest of the Brotherhood knew how the universe operated, certainly they could have turned off a Toa's power.  It seemed to me that Greg was filling the serials with all of the plots he wanted to use but never got around to, so they seemed rather sudden (as opposed to the Big Reveal, which was cleverly and subtly hinted at in a way that going back to the story now you wonder how we missed all the hints).  So even disregarding the way this was revealed via Greg, I think the execution was lacking.

 

I think, though, that any of my biggest worries comes from the fact that we haven't actually gotten to see the execution of the reveal. If we could just see the Powers That Be to its conclusion, I think I would be more satisfied. 

 

I do agree with this, we'll never know what would have happened if the serials had been completed.  A lot of objections people have may have been answered, but alas, we'll probably never know.  What we do know is that Mavrah was unharmed, so it's quite possible a lot of the other characters we thought were dead could have wandered right back into the story.

 

As for Hydraxon, oddly I don't remember his revival bothering me that much in 2007, probably because we knew the original was dead all along so we never had to deal with the emotional shock of his death.  You bring up a good point about memories being stored somewhere, that does make a lot of sense given what we know now about the Red Star, although at the time clearly no one was thinking about the long-term prospects of reviving other characters.  It didn't really have the same impact for me though because I was willing to accept that the Mask of Life could bring Hydraxon because he seemed to be a copy rather than a revival and other characters couldn't exploit the mask to bring back other dead characters en masse.

 

Until Lhikan is explicitly revealed to be lying on a Kestora operating table, wheezing about merciful euthanasia through his exposed Borg lungs, I shall have to remain skeptical that he would not be mostly fine in a Tuyet-styled reintroduction.  :P 

 

I'm inclined to agree, especially given that Mavrah turned out to be fine.


Edited by Exitium, Dec 10 2013 - 11:46 PM.

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#68 Offline fishers64

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Posted Dec 10 2013 - 08:06 PM

Until Lhikan is explicitly revealed to be lying on a Kestora operating table, wheezing about merciful euthanasia through his exposed Borg lungs, I shall have to remain skeptical that he would not be mostly fine in a Tuyet-styled reintroduction. :P

I think he would be more insane and babbling incoherently about random stuff. Not Vezon-style, but probably more traumatic. Especially if everyone came back memories and all...

 

Sidorak: By the way, Vakama turned to the dark side and joined the Visorak horde.

 

Botar: I'm not sure about that.

 

Sidorak: Trust me, he was one of mine.

 

Lhikan: Vakama would never do anything like that! He's a hero! 


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#69 Offline toa kopaka4372

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Posted Dec 10 2013 - 08:29 PM

 

I'm inclined to agree, especially given that Mavrah turned out to be fine.

Well, to be fair, Greg's answers and the description of the Star's inhabitants from the serial strongly imply that Mavrah's the exception and not the norm. He was hiding out  by himself, far away from the other apparently deranged inhabitants, so I think its safe to assume the majority of the people of there are pretty messed up. Greg has already hinted that Botar was messed up by his revival, which is why he hasn't teleported out of there, so...

 

Now that I think about it, what other characters would Greg bring back besides the ones confirmed (Botar, Hydraxon, Lhikan, and Mavrah)? All the Makuta (that's around 14 named characters right there, I think), Matoro, Reysa, Nidhiki, Krekka, Ancient, Tren Krom, Karzahni the plant, Karzahni, Morbuzakh Carapar, Lein, Certavus, and Telluris have been more or less confirmed permanently dead and not on the Star. Who is there to bring back that would really affect the story? Nikila could return, but the way she died is unknown so we can't be sure. The remaining options of characters who could come back, provided the Kestora haven't already killed them, are pretty much Kodan, Ihu, Nocturn, and Sidorak. Not much options, and their return wouldn't be much of an issue. Greg was wise to design the Star so that the most major characters couldn't come back.


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#70 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Dec 10 2013 - 08:50 PM

I agree -- it's easy to think "lotsa people could come back" before you sit down and work through the math of it one by one (as I tried to do for the official topic) but really it's very few. The vast majority are unnamed characters we didn't really know. Nor did we really know Kodan or Ihu much either.

 

The one I think I'm most excited about is Sidorak. It seems like he's the most obvious bad guy, and he might have taken a powerful leading role of the other villains up there. Hope Greg can eventually do something with this.

 

 

Can't help but notice too, that some of you seem to be focused on physical challenges, but these may actually be the least important for a character-based story. Mavrah is only "fine" for sure outwardly (so far as we saw, but seems implied in that Kopaka didn't immediately think something like Jaller and company's reaction to the builder of the canisters in Karzahni's realm). But in what really counts, the psychological damage, who really knows? Likewise, Lhikan can be a perfect physical specimen but it's really his mental and emotional state I'm interested in, and how he overcomes it.

 

Although granted, coming back in serious physical disrepair can have powerful psychological effects as well, such as Locke on LOST. But I figure it varies -- presumably most came back physically okay but others might not. Given that Mavrah appears to have, and his death even came after Lhikan's, Lhikan almost certainly is too, but who knows?

 

Also, the Kestora's attempts at dissecting brains and similar things might have led to some of the "zombie" effects. :P


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#71 Offline Katuko

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Posted Dec 11 2013 - 05:02 AM

The one I think I'm most excited about is Sidorak. It seems like he's the most obvious bad guy, and he might have taken a powerful leading role of the other villains up there. Hope Greg can eventually do something with this.

I will actually keep my mouth shut about Sidorak if his reintroduction can overwrite his portrayal from Web of Shadows.
 

But in what really counts, the psychological damage, who really knows? Likewise, Lhikan can be a perfect physical specimen but it's really his mental and emotional state I'm interested in, and how he overcomes it.

Mental state is not important, because as the Toa say: Being insane is part of the job. :P From this decisive in-story evidence, we must conclude that Lhikan, too, was already mad.
 
 

Although granted, coming back in serious physical disrepair can have powerful psychological effects as well, such as Locke on LOST. But I figure it varies -- presumably most came back physically okay but others might not. Given that Mavrah appears to have, and his death even came after Lhikan's, Lhikan almost certainly is too, but who knows?


Yeah, I've been thinking that they'd come back right, and then the Kestora carved 'em up to check on what could possibly be interfering with the send-back device. It's not clear if they've tried fixing that machinery directly, but I figure they've had a few thousand years to do that already. Maybe failure to gain any progress, even after the deliberate dismantling of living beings, is what drove them over the edge and made them stop caring about who they kill anymore.

Edited by Katuko, Dec 11 2013 - 05:03 AM.

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#72 Offline Chro

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Posted Dec 11 2013 - 12:00 PM

Sidorak: By the way, Vakama turned to the dark side and joined the Visorak horde.

 

Botar: I'm not sure about that.

 

Sidorak: Trust me, he was one of mine.

 

Lhikan: Vakama would never do anything like that! He's a hero! 

... and then fishers made a contribution to the BZP Comedies forum


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"I guess you can't kill what's already dead."


#73 Offline fishers64

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Posted Dec 11 2013 - 12:08 PM

 

Sidorak: By the way, Vakama turned to the dark side and joined the Visorak horde.

 

Botar: I'm not sure about that.

 

Sidorak: Trust me, he was one of mine.

 

Lhikan: Vakama would never do anything like that! He's a hero! 

... and then fishers made a contribution to the BZP Comedies forum

 

You wish. :P My comedy is still very long in development. I keep getting distracted by more pressing concerns.

 

Anyway, that was not meant to be a joke - it's a serious point. The ignorance of dead characters and them not knowing the full story does play a role in how much insanity is going on up there.  


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#74 Offline SilverCor

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Posted Dec 12 2013 - 08:43 PM

Pardon for simply skimming page two, but I just wanted to toss in my two cents on the Tuyet thing. You can't tell me the Order doesn't have a single member with psionic powers. They could have snatched up any alt!Tuyet, imbedded whatever cheap mimic for the Nui Stone they needed, then "fixed" her mind accordingly. 



 

Sidorak: By the way, Vakama turned to the dark side and joined the Visorak horde.

 

Botar: I'm not sure about that.

 

Sidorak: Trust me, he was one of mine.

 

Lhikan: Vakama would never do anything like that! He's a hero! 

... and then fishers made a contribution to the BZP Comedies forum

 

Welcome to the funnies; please leave your sanity at the door. 


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#75 Offline meowmachine

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Posted Jan 01 2014 - 04:00 PM

I always thought the decoy Tuyet was from another dimension where she did evil stuff without ever making/finding the nui stone and she was somehow mentally incapacitated before being put in the pit leading her to be one of the few to not make it out in the great cataclysm. The pit, last I checked, was in the matoran universe. Why decoy Tuyet was not revived is a good question. Also, if Tryna's revival overwrites the personality of the revived being, what did Teridax stand to gain by reviving a mindless Tuyet.


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#76 Offline Pupwa21

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Posted Jan 01 2014 - 04:15 PM

You got to keep in mind that The Pit is a prison, so if the red star worked, They would have them on the loose again, maybe not the same body but they still have the same mind. That's why I think the star didn't take the body.
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