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Karen Starr story

28 Jan 2016 03:40 - 28 Jan 2016 17:38 #46252 by shadar
Karen Starr story was created by shadar
OK, I've submitted the story. Not a very long one, but I'm working on a second part or conclusion since I left a lot of things hanging in part one. Not too racy, but certainly not PG either.

I'm trying to envision what the non-public aspects of PG's life might be like. Which kind of took me down a quasi-tantric path.

Shadar
Last edit: 28 Jan 2016 17:38 by shadar.
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30 Jan 2016 16:00 - 30 Jan 2016 16:03 #46273 by brantley
Replied by brantley on topic Karen Starr story
Amusing, but shows the limitations of pure fan fiction. No room for the kind of complications you cam develop in RAPTOR -- only a teaser about Lex Luthor and the Conner Kent "clone." I guess they might somehow threaten Power Girl in the follow-up.

I always wondered why Superman (or Supergirl) couldn't squash Luthor like a bug, but I guess that wouldn't be "nice." I see the same problem in the upcoming Superman vs. Batman movie, although I think even that isn't as silly as a comic book DC once put out about Superman vs. Muhammad Ali. In a created universe like the AU (There are others out there, though not as well known.), there's a lot more room to maneuver to find challenges for the superheroines.

--Brantley
Last edit: 30 Jan 2016 16:03 by brantley.

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30 Jan 2016 16:44 #46274 by shadar
Replied by shadar on topic Karen Starr story

brantley wrote: Amusing, but shows the limitations of pure fan fiction. No room for the kind of complications you cam develop in RAPTOR -- only a teaser about Lex Luthor and the Conner Kent "clone." I guess they might somehow threaten Power Girl in the follow-up.

I always wondered why Superman (or Supergirl) couldn't squash Luthor like a bug, but I guess that wouldn't be "nice." I see the same problem in the upcoming Superman vs. Batman movie, although I think even that isn't as silly as a comic book DC once put out about Superman vs. Muhammad Ali. In a created universe like the AU (There are others out there, though not as well known.), there's a lot more room to maneuver to find challenges for the superheroines.

--Brantley


The other issue with fan fiction is that readers have preconceptions about existing characters, so when I stretch a character in new and different directions, it turns some people off. Fan fiction is supposed to reveal more of a character, not change that character as I did with Conner. (I just don't like his character in the comics, so I'm hijacking him and making him vaguely villainous as well as dumb.)

But when I create a new character out of nothing, then readers are open to all possibilities.

Shadar

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30 Jan 2016 19:52 #46276 by TwiceOnThursdays
Replied by TwiceOnThursdays on topic Karen Starr story
Since "official" fiction takes all kinds of liberties, I don't hold that against fan fiction. (I just judge it as any other fiction.)

If this were an Elseworld's story it'd be perfectly fine (and I love Elseworlds stories). I think that twisting the characters around is a great way to demonstrate things about the characters.

I really did like this, great characterization on Karen, Conner, and Darren. A great examination of Kara's life (both on and off camera). A good device to see her though the astronauts in the space station. (Also, GREAT use of that PG image.)

I liked the representation of Connor, it does seem like what would happen if Lex had more input into him after he's released, and a valid take on his character. I loved the cognitive dissonance where he heard what Karen said, but immediately discounted it. That was a really great touch.

A nicely evil Luthor too. He would take this Karen Starr, Power Girl _and_ effective business woman as a huge threat. Her company would be challenging him in ways that Superman never would.

All well done. I can't wait for more.
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01 Feb 2016 00:58 #46283 by shadar
Replied by shadar on topic Karen Starr story

TwiceOnThursdays wrote: Since "official" fiction takes all kinds of liberties, I don't hold that against fan fiction. (I just judge it as any other fiction.)

If this were an Elseworld's story it'd be perfectly fine (and I love Elseworlds stories). I think that twisting the characters around is a great way to demonstrate things about the characters.

I really did like this, great characterization on Karen, Conner, and Darren. A great examination of Kara's life (both on and off camera). A good device to see her though the astronauts in the space station. (Also, GREAT use of that PG image.)

I liked the representation of Connor, it does seem like what would happen if Lex had more input into him after he's released, and a valid take on his character. I loved the cognitive dissonance where he heard what Karen said, but immediately discounted it. That was a really great touch.

A nicely evil Luthor too. He would take this Karen Starr, Power Girl _and_ effective business woman as a huge threat. Her company would be challenging him in ways that Superman never would.

All well done. I can't wait for more.


Glad you liked it. Part 2 is coming along pretty fast. A few more days.

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01 Feb 2016 20:13 #46288 by shadar
Replied by shadar on topic Karen Starr story
I've updated the Karen Starr story to prepare for Part 2. The only chapter that has significant and important changes is Chapter Six (previously, the Epilogue).

If you are interested in Part 2, I would suggest re-reading the last chapter to prepare. I've made some substantial changes in Alexa's relationship to both Lex and Conner.

Shadar
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15 Feb 2016 04:36 #46452 by shadar
Replied by shadar on topic Karen Starr story
I've just uploaded Part 2 of Karen Starr.

I've written this in the style of the AU from about 20 years ago. As a result, some of you might like it, others might think its too far out there. Let say it's bold story telling and leave it at that.

Anyway, if it works (or doesn't), let me know. I found the style kind of fun to try again.

Shadar
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15 Feb 2016 23:37 #46468 by brantley
Replied by brantley on topic Karen Starr story
People at SWM are obviously going to be waiting with bated breath for the third part, given that the second seems to be a real bummer.

Mind you, it's done about as well as this sort of thing CAN be done, but it's not my KIND of thing -- the whole business with Darren turned me off, and the rescue of Jody was thus a relief. But will Karen manage to get even with Luthor and Alexa in the finale?

In the comics, I always wonder why the superhero or heroine hasn't long since squashed Luthor like a bug. He has a hold
over Alexa here, but not over Kara as far as I can tell. One other thing I wonder is how Kara got that locomotive, Boeing 747, ocean liner, etc., into the cavern/gym that can be reached only by a narrow passage. I guess it must have been during construction of the complex but, like, nobody (including any construction workers or building inspectors or just passersby) would notice?

Of course, Darren's own elevator doesn't reach the top floor, given his gullibility when he takes Kara's elevator to the Downdeep Downdeep and takes everything Alexa says at face value. I sure wouldn't want to trust a superwoman telling me that I could have safe sex with her as long as she was restrained by cables. The use of gold in AU fiction may be silly, but in context it serves the purpose more plausibly.

Still, the comic book movies get a lot sillier, and fans don't seem to mind. You're way ahead of them, even if you have to stick with some of the conventions. But your RAPTOR is a lot better work, because there you aren't answerable to DC or Marvel or Hollywood.

--Brantley

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17 Feb 2016 16:13 #46474 by shadar
Replied by shadar on topic Karen Starr story

brantley wrote: People at SWM are obviously going to be waiting with bated breath for the third part, given that the second seems to be a real bummer.

Mind you, it's done about as well as this sort of thing CAN be done, but it's not my KIND of thing -- the whole business with Darren turned me off, and the rescue of Jody was thus a relief. But will Karen manage to get even with Luthor and Alexa in the finale?

In the comics, I always wonder why the superhero or heroine hasn't long since squashed Luthor like a bug. He has a hold
over Alexa here, but not over Kara as far as I can tell. One other thing I wonder is how Kara got that locomotive, Boeing 747, ocean liner, etc., into the cavern/gym that can be reached only by a narrow passage. I guess it must have been during construction of the complex but, like, nobody (including any construction workers or building inspectors or just passersby) would notice?

Of course, Darren's own elevator doesn't reach the top floor, given his gullibility when he takes Kara's elevator to the Downdeep Downdeep and takes everything Alexa says at face value. I sure wouldn't want to trust a superwoman telling me that I could have safe sex with her as long as she was restrained by cables. The use of gold in AU fiction may be silly, but in context it serves the purpose more plausibly.

Still, the comic book movies get a lot sillier, and fans don't seem to mind. You're way ahead of them, even if you have to stick with some of the conventions. But your RAPTOR is a lot better work, because there you aren't answerable to DC or Marvel or Hollywood.

--Brantley


Tks for the frank review, Brantley. The goal of this part of the story was to explore what happens when the brilliant but black-hearted intelligence of a Luthor is combined with Kryptonian powers. We see Alexa discovering the forces that drive Lex Luthor, given that a portion of that is inside her. And yes, that gets a bit ugly.

But the overriding story is still going to be that of a hero. Heroes aren't measured by their abilities, but rather for how they overcome extreme adversity. We see Luthor and his two protégés getting bold, and once Kara recovers from the shock of their attack, she's going to fight back in ways we rarely see Kryptonians fight. You can only push a girl born on Krypton so far, and Lex has gone too far this time.

As far as some details go, Kara took advantage of an underground cavern and further enhanced it for her gym. Everything in it was installed before the building foundation was laid over it. When the building was done, she dug a small tunnel into it that runs from the bottom of that elevator. I'm sort of channelling Bruce Wayne's bat cave a little.

Shadar

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17 Feb 2016 17:21 #46475 by brantley
Replied by brantley on topic Karen Starr story
So the cavern came before the building. But even assuming the site is out in the country somewhere, it's hard to imagine nobody noticing the locomotive and the Boeing and the ocean liner being brought in. I suppose there may have been a similar problem with the Bat cave. One thing I remember reading in a book about the Great Radio Heroes was that in the radio version of Batman, the secret tunnel through which Batman drove the Batmobile from his mansion came out in a slum area.

By the way, doing research on superheroes a while back, I found that Doc Savage had a Fortress of Solitude before Superman, so I figure Siegel and Shuster must have read the pulp magazine series.

-- Brantley

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20 Feb 2016 10:45 #46513 by Woodclaw
Replied by Woodclaw on topic Karen Starr story
Okay, I've finally wrapped my head around enough to give this chapter a proper review.

In general this story suffers from a problem that is typical of middle chapters, it feels a little unfinished. It starts in media res and it ends in media res, yet it amnages to stand on his own most of the time. As Brantley already noted there are a few touches of comic book-ness in the set-up of the cave scene, but I think they work in a way. Aside from the Batman homage, I think that they showcase the kind of crazy leverage Kara might get if she need to. She has superpowers, money and brains at her disposal and she's not afraid of using them, although in this case it strikes me as a weird way to do it.
The power stunt are well delivered with a decent spacing, although the cave scene cram maybe a tad too much, luckily Darren's insight works as a spacer.
The one bit that I really found disappointing was Darren's reaction to Alexa. Unless Kara is the most promiscuos woman on the planet (or even multiple planets) the story she tossed Darren's way was fishier than a fhishing boat. Even if Darren could accept that Superman had a secret daughter, everything else she said in the first few lines was so damn unlikely that it killed the scene for me. The general feeling was that Alexa was putting together something that didn't do justice to her, or Luthor's, supposed intelligence. Most of all what struck me as wrong is that Luthor send her in without any preparation, which is the opposite of what such an intelligent person would do in my opinion. As a result neither hers, nor Darren's behaviour in that scene clicked with me.

Now the scene for act 3 is set and I really want to see where this is going.

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20 Feb 2016 18:36 - 20 Feb 2016 18:41 #46521 by shadar
Replied by shadar on topic Karen Starr story

Woodclaw wrote: Okay, I've finally wrapped my head around enough to give this chapter a proper review.

In general this story suffers from a problem that is typical of middle chapters, it feels a little unfinished. It starts in media res and it ends in media res, yet it amnages to stand on his own most of the time. As Brantley already noted there are a few touches of comic book-ness in the set-up of the cave scene, but I think they work in a way. Aside from the Batman homage, I think that they showcase the kind of crazy leverage Kara might get if she need to. She has superpowers, money and brains at her disposal and she's not afraid of using them, although in this case it strikes me as a weird way to do it.
The power stunt are well delivered with a decent spacing, although the cave scene cram maybe a tad too much, luckily Darren's insight works as a spacer.
The one bit that I really found disappointing was Darren's reaction to Alexa. Unless Kara is the most promiscuos woman on the planet (or even multiple planets) the story she tossed Darren's way was fishier than a fhishing boat. Even if Darren could accept that Superman had a secret daughter, everything else she said in the first few lines was so damn unlikely that it killed the scene for me. The general feeling was that Alexa was putting together something that didn't do justice to her, or Luthor's, supposed intelligence. Most of all what struck me as wrong is that Luthor send her in without any preparation, which is the opposite of what such an intelligent person would do in my opinion. As a result neither hers, nor Darren's behaviour in that scene clicked with me.

Now the scene for act 3 is set and I really want to see where this is going.


As far as the lack of preparation by Lex is concerned, I saw that as a feature. He's trying to awaken that "Luthor-ness" that he created in her (given he seeded her brain development with his when she was an embryo). In that regard, he succeeds. She finds a way, and she does it with the violence that is so typical of a Luthor.

Of course, this isn't SF but pure comicbookism, so I didn't try to explain how he "seeded her brain" or how her mother wound up with Superman's seed or anything else, like the 747 and the portion of an ocean liner in the deep, deep basement that nobody else knows about.

Hopefully Kara can rise above all this in Part 3 and prove that she truly is deserving of the "S" symbol, even if she doesn't wear it now. Alex and Conner need to be dealt with, but to stick with comic book continuity, Lex somehow slips away, as always.

The bigger question is what happens to Karen Starr now. Haven't figured that out yet. Obviously, the open secret of her alternate identity, dangerous as that was to begin with, is now out of the question. And given the way she looks, can she change her name and fit in as an ordinary human in some other way?

As far as Kara's promiscuousness, I pulled that directly from the most recent book she was in. Which has now apparently ended. The comics showed her hiring men because she was attracted to them. I've seen men to that with attractive women in the tech industry (1990's version) and then sleeping with them, but DC had tried to turn that around. That was the version of Kara I drew upon. So yeah, she not only sleeps around, but she uses her influence in ways that would be wildly inappropriate in 21st century business.

And yes, Darren had a few character flaws. He was too intoxicated on Kryptonian power to think straight, among other things.

Humans have never done well in the company of "gods'.
Last edit: 20 Feb 2016 18:41 by shadar.

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