Hello, all!here (about an hour late :P), signing in to review by .
At first glance, here's what this story looks like: A predictable, uninteresting story about some Avatar with a stupid name who's gonna travel the world to save it from some cliche villain that no one really cares about when they read the story.
Once you look deeper into it, here's what the story looks like: A somewhat predictable yet still intriguing story detailing the life of some avatar who travels the world and, inevitably, save it from a heart-stopping antagonist who makes you tremble with h
iser every word (also meeting a familiar old witch along the way).
So, with The Legend of Mel, you get what you see (somewhat). The plot is unremarkable, and terribly overplayed, yes. But is it so terribly overdone that it's not worth a second glance? Two words: Hell. No. Of course, I had fallen under this impression, and I was not looking forward to reading and reviewing this fanon. And let me tell you, I should be slapped and forever banned from reading fanons, because I was dead wrong. So, let me answer two questions you'll have about this fanon right off the bat.
Q: Is this just another fanon about an avatar before/after Aang?
Q: Should I turn back now? Is this story not worth my time?
Of course, I always begin my reviews by giving a brief overview of the plot. The story follows the life of Mel, the avatar succeeding Korra, and his veluptuous crush, Hope. Told from a first-person point of view (which can get a bit confusing at times; more on that later), this fanon also tells the story of Fire Lord Zuko's granddaughter, the Fire Mistress/Witch (the title depends on the region), who is arguably even more power-hungry than Ozai, Azulon, and Sozin. Of course, Mel has one goal: stop the Fire Witch. And along the way, he'll need the help of Hope, Yangchen, and an all-too familiar face.
Plot (x4): 6.0 x 4 = 24. It sucks that the fanon idea is so overdone; that alone cost the story 3 points. Aside from the lack of originality, however, very rushed substance, sometimes confusing point of view (talked about further in the "writing" section), and an extremely fast-paced storyline contributed to this mediocre score. Still, strong twists, believable (aside from the rushed factor) dialogue, and decent explanations make up for the flaws pretty well.
Writing (x4): 6.6 x 4 = 26.4. Matey is a pretty good writer in his own right, and his style is largely unique. However, there is a lot of repetitive sentence structure in his writing, first of all. So often, I heard, "And that's when something unexpected happened," or, "He suddenly knew [x]". Try to avoid that as often as possible. Otherwise, I heard a ton of very choppy sentences. While not quite this bad, it sounded something like this:
Mel started running. He felt tired. He wanted to stop and breathe, but he couldn't. He kept running.
Sounds pretty choppy, right? Anyways, all I can say is try to combine sentences more often. Next, as I stated earlier, the POV can get somewhat confusing. Jumping from chapter to chapter, changing narrators each time is quite a challenge, and sometimes it's hard to tell who the narrator is (without using the message at the top, anyways, which you don't want to rely too much on). It's a good idea to start a chapter with something that indicates, right off the bat, that this is the narrator, no questions asked. By this, I mean say something that only the character narrating would say; perhaps they're talking about someone else in a particular way. It doesn't really matter, so long as it's clear. Finally, and most importantly: slow it down. Don't be afraid to take time and delve into each event, and explore it, and don't just let one sentence recap something. On this note, longer chapters could improve the writing considerably, as well.
Creativity (x3): 4.5 x 3 = 13.5. A fanon about the avatar after Korra. Right there, major point deduction. Otherwise, things that happened were pretty out of the ordinary, even for this sort of fanon. Matey does a nice job with such a story; but that doesn't change the fact that it's a story about Korra's successor.
Action (x2): 7.4 x 2 = 14.8. The action that we get is pretty decent and well-described. However, everything, even what could take up an entire page in a word document, is packed into one, maybe two paragraphs. In other words: Yet again, rushed.
Character Portrayal (x2): 9.1 x 2 = 18.2. All three new main characters have very clear, defined personalities, and we get a glimpse--not giving away too much, but still giving out a little something--of each one's past. Nice job here, Matey. All that I'd say is make sure the dialogue works; sometimes, it sounds a little weird with their personalities.
Realism (x2): 6.5 x 2 = 13. I could totally see the PLOT happening, and all things that were unclear were promptly explained. But throughout this review, the word "rushed" has popped up, and it's gonna pop up once more: everything was incredibly rushed. Five paragraphs per chapter, and it's as if each of the characters is just skimming through everything. Slow it down; it would benefit the fanon a great deal, Matey.
Engrossment (x2): 8.0 x 2 = 16. I felt like I was actually in the story, very many times. And when I didn't, I was still pulled in. Not bad. Not bad at all.
Grammar, Spelling, etc. (x1): 9.5 x 1 = 9.5. Nothing major to distract from reading; just the occasional mistake. Still, I could do without it, but this wasn't a problem at all.
Final score: 125.8/200, simplifies to 6.29/10.
What does The Legend of Mel have? Great characters, an ability to suck you into the story, decent writing, and great plot twists.
What does The Legend of Mel lack, and how can Matey improve it? Less. Rushed. The pace of a fanon has the ability to make or break a fanon, and while it doesn't break it right now, slowing it down could make this fanon a million times better. Anyways, otherwise, just pay attentiont o everything I said in the writing section, and you'll be fine. Also, try to read over each chapter. The occasional mistake doesn't hurt, but a fanon's a lot better without 'em.
Is A:TLOM good, and would I recommend it? Yes, and it depends on who I'm talking to; if they don't mind reading after-Korra fanons, then yes. If they do, then no.
Tee 06:04, April 2, 2012 (UTC)