MTMTE characters too whitty/chatty?

Discussion in 'Transformers Comics Discussion' started by Sideswipe80, Jul 26, 2012.

  1. Sideswipe80

    Sideswipe80 Well-Known Member

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    I've been seeing some posters here and on IDW boards mentioning this and I tend to agree. Roberts is a good writer. But it seems like each character is always cracking a one liner or trying to one up another character with a better one liner. I do hope tones this down for future issues.
     
  2. Kraken

    Kraken Is a vegiesaurus, Lex. Veteran

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    Nope.
     
  3. Autobus Prime

    Autobus Prime Transit Former

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    You know a story is good when excessive wit passes for a negative. :D 
     
  4. Strarf

    Strarf Toy Battles Reloaded TFW2005 Supporter

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    Not at all.
     
  5. khopson

    khopson Well-Known Member

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    I like the different characters, but I see what you're saying. In fact, I think some of the dialogue is too "human-like" for robots. For example, I forget who it was, but one of them said "What the hell" towards the end of issue 7. Just seems like Roberts could be more original in this sense (maybe refer the Cybertronian equivalent if there is one).
     
  6. ORIO

    ORIO Plant-Based Bot Super Mod News Staff

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    I can see that, but I enjoy it. The humor is one of the best parts of the book.
     
  7. Gordon_4

    Gordon_4 The Big Engine

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    After what passed for dialogue for the Transformers in other recent outings, the snap, crackle and pop of the writing in More than Meets the Eye is just about the best fucking thing ever. Through this witty and chatty stuff we get a feel for their personalities. Besides, most of what you're describing takes place in a pub, if you've been to the pub with your mates, that sort of behaviour needs no clarification.
     
  8. Silk Spectre

    Silk Spectre The Evil Queen

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    I love it, personally. I love how "real" the characters feel, like in the bar scenes - their personalities jump off the pages. They don't feel stilted or forced.

    There's no TF Prime Optimus in MTMTE, and I see that as a damn good thing.
     
  9. inomuiro

    inomuiro Well-Known Member

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    I see what they mean, but I don't really see it as a flaw. The characters are numerous and varied enough in their mannerism and expression that even if there are more than a few witty ones it doesn't feel excessive, or forced... and even the wittiness has degrees (Swerve's jokes vs Brainstorm's black humor, for example).

    I think the only moment when flippant dialogue felt a bit forced (to me) was in the last issue
    with Fulcrum's whole "not keen on dying... fan of survival... you might find me disarming" thing. But it was the only instance of him being like that, it might have been the anxiety and shock at the situation that made him say whatever passed in his head.

    For the rest, I'm just glad to have this funny streak in the book, it makes the characters' personalities stand out!

    In most of these cases, I take it as the most idiomatic Cybertronian expressions are being simultaneously translated to our human language, for the sake of understanding. But definitely wouldn't mind a more peculiar vocabulary and phraseology being used! I would quite like it.

    Personally, I'm a little irked by the constant use of "minutes", "hours", "days"... I mean, what does "a day" mean in space? A day according to which planet's rotation? :)  I understand this is just for convenience, too... but I would much prefer if they used specific Cybertronian measures.
     
  10. ZacWilliam

    ZacWilliam Well-Known Member

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    No. They're great. There is a lot of wit and humor but 1)it's great and well done and adds to the characterization and 2) I think folks overlook the MANY non witty characters because they don't *pop* out at you as much, but there ARE plenty of them.

    The DjD, Magnus, Cyclonus, Tailgate, Rodimus, Drift, Ratchet, First Aid, and I could go on and on with more are characters that are rarely if ever Jokesters.

    The book has a strong element of humor but not too much at all. I just read Roberts Eugenesis novel from long ago, and there's significantly less humor and wit in that early work and it serves to make his writing significantly more grim and dark. The tone of MtMtE is much more enjoyable for the balance.


    -ZacWilliam, recommends reading Eugenesis just to see how Roberts skills as a writer have grown. You can really see the rough shape of the writer he's become.
     
  11. Kraken

    Kraken Is a vegiesaurus, Lex. Veteran

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    Ah, now talking a little bit too human like, yes that I can live with as a complaint. I would like to see a few more TF:Animated style curses thrown in there.

    Apart from that though, no problem with the banter, any collections of individuals thrown together like they have been will result in banter, especially amongst squaddies or ex squaddies, and he only ever really has one proper smart arse in each 'grouping' Rotorstorm in LSOTW, Swerve amongst the troops on the Lost Light, and Brainstorm amongst the scientists, then Misfire in the WAP crew. Amongst the DJD Tarn talks too much to let anyone else get a word in edgeways.
     
  12. SPLIT LIP

    SPLIT LIP AKA Beve Stuscemi

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    How is this a flaw? That's like saying "MTMTE characters have too much personality? Needs more bland."

    Also it's just the "normal" guys that have this trait, and that's just because they're celebrating peace. Guys like Ultra Magnus are neither witty nor chatty, Ratchet's more snarky than witty, and then you have guys like Tailgate and Drift who are just talkative because they're so upbeat.

    Nobody's more witty or chatty than Swerve, though.

    I'm the opposite. Robot words are so stupid. Why even bother when what you're trying to say is just a punny version for a common phrase? They're 100% pointless. You don't need to keep reminding us every sentence that they're robots, we have the art for that.

    Also, the time measurements aren't a problem. They could refer to a day as in how many hours a day on Cybertron would be. Plus it doesn't make sense that they'd have different words for that since, if they're supposed to be speaking English in-universe then that makes sense anyway, and if they weren't and it's all supposed to be translated or something, why they hell would they not translate their measurments of time? Or rather translate them to words that have no meaning to the reader? Any way you slice it you might as well just go with regular units of time.
     
  13. KA

    KA Well-Known Member

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    A bit, yes.
     
  14. 1984forever

    1984forever Banned

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    Roberts only weakness is his inability to write g1 characters who have established personalities, such as the '84 line up. Roberts has written Ratchet well, but a whole cast of A-list characters would be way beyond his ability. He has flooded his book with obscure blank slate characters in an attempt to hide this glaring weakness.
     
  15. ZacWilliam

    ZacWilliam Well-Known Member

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    Ha. You're funny.

    OP. Rodimus. Magnus. Cyclonus. Ratchet. Kup.

    All perfectly in character.


    -ZacWilliam, and thats not counting the second or third stringers he's done the same with. So pull the other one.
     
  16. inomuiro

    inomuiro Well-Known Member

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    It's only that I don't see why they should have unit measures that last exactly as long as the ones we have. Why should a Cybertronian hour last sixty minutes and not one-hundred, for example? The measurement systems are something that can't be immediately translated from one language to another, if the units refer to different lenghts, while "go to hell" is a pretty straightforward way to translate any generic "go to a very bad place", "get lost", and so on.

    Ok, we can do with the approximation. If one Cybertronian "hour" lasts more or less like a human one it makes sense to translate it like that, we can even decide that the time units are exactly the same lenght, for convenience sake (even if that really feels forced)... and I think too many robot words would quickly become very silly, but I still would prefer if they used a specific Cybertronian system, even with some untranslated words, because it I think it would be sensate.
     
  17. Kraken

    Kraken Is a vegiesaurus, Lex. Veteran

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    Nonsense I'm afraid. I suggest you go and re-read Chaos Theory, and since when have Magnus, Hot Rod, Perceptor, Springer and Kup not been 'established' characters? The Transformers Universe consists of 100's of characters and Roberts delights in getting us better aquainted with them. It's not all about the 84 cast.
     
  18. inomuiro

    inomuiro Well-Known Member

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    Just wondering, have you read Chaos Theory, where he writes Optimus and Megatron, and, well, a whole ship full of A-list characters? I'd recommend it, it's a great read and I think it might change your opinion :) 

    Also, I think all the established characters feature in MTMTE and Last Stand Of The Wreckers are EXCEPTIONALLY well-written, on top of a lot of obscure ones equally well-written.
     
  19. Star Saber

    Star Saber Cybertron 5th Commander

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    Have you seen his username and his posts in General Discussion? Unfortunately, to him, it's mostly about the 84 cartoon cast :p  A bit sad since there's way more to Transformers than just that part of the cartoon series.

    Back to the thread topic though, yes, they're chatty, but they're chatty with a purpose, unlike say Brian Michael Bendis lately on his Marvel titles' characters chatting on and on, barely giving any info or moving the story forward, Roberts at least uses them to give insights to the characters we've barely known despite existing for decades. It's refreshing to see them being given life and personality.
     
  20. 1984forever

    1984forever Banned

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    I had forgotten about chaos theory, the 1st part was great. I suspect the pressure of writing well established characters began to take it's toll on Roberts as the 2nd part of chaos theory crumbled into shit.
     

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