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At what stage do you call it a transformation?

07 Apr 2020 07:38 #67431 by Woody
I've been pondering this lately mainly due to Woodclaw and how he tags my stories. Firstly; happy with the tags Woodclaw dont change them

Most if not all of my stories have some variant of a transformation in there. I like writing them and a like the idea in general. My transformations generally however aren't of a physical nature but more a costume reveal and an indication that power levels have been increased. 

For me I'm just not a big fan of fmg growth transformations; they have a place dont get me wrong.

So this is my question. Does a transformation need a metaphysical element or are costume changes sufficient to convey the action occurring?

Note: this is just a small insight into my insanity caused in part by isolating.  Stay inside and stay safe everyone

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07 Apr 2020 08:37 - 07 Apr 2020 08:54 #67432 by Monty

Woody wrote: I've been pondering this lately mainly due to Woodclaw and how he tags my stories. Firstly; happy with the tags Woodclaw dont change them

Most if not all of my stories have some variant of a transformation in there. I like writing them and a like the idea in general. My transformations generally however aren't of a physical nature but more a costume reveal and an indication that power levels have been increased. 

For me I'm just not a big fan of fmg growth transformations; they have a place dont get me wrong.

So this is my question. Does a transformation need a metaphysical element or are costume changes sufficient to convey the action occurring?

Note: this is just a small insight into my insanity caused in part by isolating.  Stay inside and stay safe everyone


Thanks Woody. The best has to be Lynda Carter's Diana Prince transformation into Wonder Woman. All other transformations pale into insignificance really, and she keeps her wonderful slim figure

E.T.A I'm guessing Diana's transformation is metaphysical, either way, she is a goddess when she does her spin!.
Last edit: 07 Apr 2020 08:54 by Monty.
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07 Apr 2020 10:47 #67437 by Zenta
If changing your outfit to signify getting super powers doesn't count as transformation, then somebody needs to tell Japan the bad news about their transforming heroes.

Which is to say, I don't think you need a metaphysical transformation.
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07 Apr 2020 11:18 #67439 by Woodclaw
Replied by Woodclaw on topic At what stage do you call it a transformation?

Woody wrote: I've been pondering this lately mainly due to Woodclaw and how he tags my stories. Firstly; happy with the tags Woodclaw dont change them

Most if not all of my stories have some variant of a transformation in there. I like writing them and a like the idea in general. My transformations generally however aren't of a physical nature but more a costume reveal and an indication that power levels have been increased. 

For me I'm just not a big fan of fmg growth transformations; they have a place dont get me wrong.

So this is my question. Does a transformation need a metaphysical element or are costume changes sufficient to convey the action occurring?

Note: this is just a small insight into my insanity caused in part by isolating.  Stay inside and stay safe everyone


In general, the transformation tag requires one of the following conditions:
  • The change being a major plot point and not just a device to get in or out of costume
  • Some major physical modification
  • The main character having a power and an unpowered state

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07 Apr 2020 12:01 - 07 Apr 2020 12:45 #67440 by Monty
Here is a good transformation by David C. Matthews on DCM of his character, Dyna. Hope he doesn't mind me posting!



E.T.A. I thought I better add a link to some of his great work.

www.deviantart.com/davidcmatthews

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Last edit: 07 Apr 2020 12:45 by Monty.
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07 Apr 2020 13:45 #67441 by Woodclaw
Replied by Woodclaw on topic At what stage do you call it a transformation?
Taking a more in-depth look at our current tag list there are 4 transformation-related tags:
  • Transformation
  • Costume Change
  • Muscle Growth
  • Breast Expansion
Plus the Shapeshifting tag from the powers section.

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09 Apr 2020 21:11 - 09 Apr 2020 21:57 #67530 by MisterK
So, my own superhero, Bonnie Boring/Ms. Infinity, is a shapeshifter, and she transforms herself from a slim not-quite-5" tall Bonnie into a tall, model-pretty Ms.. Infinity. However, I've talked this over with her. (What? You don't have conversations with your characters?) Anyway, she's adamant that it does NOT have to be a change of body to be a "transformation." She's a huge Wonder Woman fan, and yes. That spin is a transformation. So is the lasso change. So is the costume under the clothes trick. Even Batgirl putting on her costume is a transformation, and she has no powers. 

So that's the official Ms. Infinity stance on it.
Last edit: 09 Apr 2020 21:57 by MisterK. Reason: Fixed a typo.

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09 Apr 2020 22:51 #67536 by shadar

MisterK wrote: So, my own superhero, Bonnie Boring/Ms. Infinity, is a shapeshifter, and she transforms herself from a slim not-quite-5" tall Bonnie into a tall, model-pretty Ms.. Infinity. However, I've talked this over with her. (What? You don't have conversations with your characters?) Anyway, she's adamant that it does NOT have to be a change of body to be a "transformation." She's a huge Wonder Woman fan, and yes. That spin is a transformation. So is the lasso change. So is the costume under the clothes trick. Even Batgirl putting on her costume is a transformation, and she has no powers. 

So that's the official Ms. Infinity stance on it.


In other words, if your characters aren't convincingly real to you, with a personality and point of view that makes them interesting to have in-depth but imaginary conversations with, then they aren't ready to be in a story. 

In the best stories, your characters tell you what to write. 

Shadar

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09 Apr 2020 23:00 #67540 by MisterK

shadar wrote:

MisterK wrote: So, my own superhero, Bonnie Boring/Ms. Infinity, is a shapeshifter, and she transforms herself from a slim not-quite-5" tall Bonnie into a tall, model-pretty Ms.. Infinity. However, I've talked this over with her. (What? You don't have conversations with your characters?) Anyway, she's adamant that it does NOT have to be a change of body to be a "transformation." She's a huge Wonder Woman fan, and yes. That spin is a transformation. So is the lasso change. So is the costume under the clothes trick. Even Batgirl putting on her costume is a transformation, and she has no powers. 

So that's the official Ms. Infinity stance on it.


In other words, if your characters aren't convincingly real to you, with a personality and point of view that makes them interesting to have in-depth but imaginary conversations with, then they aren't ready to be in a story. 

In the best stories, your characters tell you what to write. 

Shadar


Well, let's be fair. Everyone writes differently. I'm sure there are many fine writers who DON'T do this..

But yes. Not only do I talk to Ms. Infinity, but she really gives it to me. She has no patience for my dad jokes.

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10 Apr 2020 00:25 #67547 by Idylls

shadar wrote:
In other words, if your characters aren't convincingly real to you, with a personality and point of view that makes them interesting to have in-depth but imaginary conversations with, then they aren't ready to be in a story. 

In the best stories, your characters tell you what to write. 

Shadar


I know the feeling. I "talk" to my characters to internalize how I'll play them. And sometimes their personalities rub on to me. I even learn from them. 

And sometimes they scare me too. Especially the depraved ones. I don't always play good guys. To think they're part of me.

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03 Mar 2021 01:11 #70619 by junkman
I will be honest; if I clicked on a story with a "transformation" tag and all it had was a costume change? I'd be disappointed. Maybe not a popular opinion but that's how *I* would feel.

Personally, I would want a "transformation" tag to be applied only to physical transformations (unless there are more specific tags applied after). Other sites have a tag specifically for "mental transformation." I like that differentiation.

I think overflowingbra's SQL search function is one of the best I've seen.  If I want to find stories with female muscle growth but I'm not interested in reading incest stories, for example, it's easy peasy.  That's a great model, imo.

Those are my two cents, for what they are worth!  

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03 Mar 2021 01:40 #70620 by tsuper
I prefer both a costume change and a physical change but costume change from old comics are transformations too

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05 Mar 2021 01:26 #70638 by TwiceOnThursdays
Replied by TwiceOnThursdays on topic At what stage do you call it a transformation?
I guess I'm in the camp that a transformation has to be a change of state .. but that change can be physical or mental.

Wonder Woman's spin or lasso changes are transformations to me because there is a physical alteration of her clothing.  Ms. Marvel/Captain Marvel (after she and Carol joined into the same headspace) is a transformation, even if it's likely just swapping out clothes to/from some kind of dimensional space.  (In fact, like many here, it's like the Lynda Carter spin into Woman Woman is the text book example.)

In the first issues of Ms. Marvel where Carol and Ms. Marvel are different personalities -- so solidify a transformation. ;-)

And something like Captain Marvel/Shazam or the Hulk are obviously transformations.

But Batgirl changing costumes isn't a transformation to me, it's a costume change.  Even if after a second or two there isn't any difference between what she did and what Wonder Woman does.  Just how I see it. ;-)

That doesn't mean you can't make a costume change BE a transformation, if you show how someone doing so alters them.  Batgirl finally admitting to a loved one she's Batgirl and changing in front of them... that'd be a transformation to me.   A hero accepting their role as a hero, and cementing that by putting on their costume to offically done the role would work too or even if they fell from the path and putting the costume back on is the signifier that they're back.  I guess the change there is metaphysical.  But that would mean that most changes after that would likely just be a costume change.

Now if Batgirl putting on her outfit truely became someone else, it's a transformation.  Even Batman (in most tellings) seems to be the same guy in private if he's Bruce Wayne or in the Batsuit.  And Babs always seems the same to me (it's why I'm glad DC finally saw the light and she's "Oracle" all the time now even if she'll sometimes put the suit back on.

OTH, the recent DC Animated Video Batman: Soul of the Dragon, Richard Dragon keeps ribbing Bruce that he needs to put his costume on so he can be ready -- because Bruce Wayne and Batman fight differently (even if everyone around knows they are the same).  (BTW it's excellent, lot's of 70's mood, it's a great Batman story and a great sign of what you can do if you don't worry about continuity and just tell a Batman story. I think one of  DC Animated's best movies in years... and they set a high bar. )

Shadar's comment the other day that he always thought that Superman and Clark and Supergirl and Linda were "different people" would make their changes transformations (at least for him).

Certainly Christopher Reeve demonstrated this in the movies.  He could be Superman wearing Clark's Clothes but .. he can't be Clark in the Superman outfit.  That was a pretty nifty bit of acting.  He really sold that Clark was more than merely an act.

Maybe most who view the costume change as a transformations see the hero as a different person or count it as a metaphysical change?  I don't know, I just know that a mere costume change doesn't seem to cut it for me.  If a story was tagged a "transformation" but just had a woman putting on her super-hero work clothes to go do her super-hero job, I'd be disappointed.  But, like in all things in life, that's, like, just my opinion.  In no way do I think this is the only valid way to view the topic, it's just mine.  I'm not even claiming it makes sense. ;-)














 

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05 Mar 2021 04:20 #70640 by shadar
A mental puzzle on defining transformations... I use the example of Linda/Supergirl.  

Say you are holding a fragile but valuable artifact while standing in front of Supergirl. It slips from your fingers and falls. Supergirl would easily catch it and hand it back to you by pure reflex. She can perceive and react and move faster than any human, so she does.

Now, replace Supergirl with Linda. Given that Linda fully inhabits being human, her reaction time would be more human-like, and therefore the artifact would hit the ground before she could grab it. 

If you accept that change in character, then it adds credence to the Linda to Supergirl changes as transformational.

This isn't to say that Linda couldn't use her abilities by force of will to catch it -- nothing is stopping her from doing anything she could do as Supergirl. But her unconscious reflexes would be detuned so as to not give herself away. This could apply to many aspects of her persona. 

As I see it, if something as fundamental as one's reflexes change, then we are talking about a transformation between different personas/persons, and not just a costume change. 

Shadar

 
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05 Mar 2021 17:02 #70641 by lojack
I think I see it as a change that allows for activity not possible before. While technically this would apply to regularly working out to get stronger, the actual 'transformation' is the difference from the original start state.

Our girls change though are more fun! The activity then is flight, bursting out of clothing (big for her britches/tops) basking in the feathery caresses of armor piercing rounds... :) 

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