Sunday, January 30, 2011

Cardboard Romances

Sherlock Holmes, House MD, Resident Evil: Degeneration, and Final Fantasy X. What do they have in common?

That's right~! Terrible romance side-stories made of cardboard and spackle. You may wonder why I count the plot of FFX as a "romance side-story", and that's because I hate Tidus almost as much as a much more prominent videogame reviewer I could mention. It's a side story because nobody plays to see the stupid tosspot protagonists make googly eyes at each other, they play for the stodgy JRPG battle system and neat-looking monsters. (At least that's the only reason I can think of).

Why do writers feel the need to stick bad romance plots into every story? It seems to be a mostly American thing, and I can't figure out why for the life of me. It's incredibly absurd, and never looks good.

"Oh look, a guy and a girl that laughed at each other's jokes. The end of this movie will be a wedding." Does that thought sound vaguely familiar? It'd be more surprising if two people smiled and laughed at each other in an action movie and then spent the entire movie as "just friends". You guys know that a wedding doesn't mean it's a happy ending, right? It just means you're sequel baiting for a terrible romantic comedy somewhere in the future.

And while we're on the subject, girls like me who make blogs like this hate romantic comedies. So I probably won't review any. When I --a typically non-movie-goer-- can sit and tell you who will kiss who by the end of the movie, you aren't writing a shocking twist when the male hero surprise-kisses the heroic female. It's the twist for the braindead kids sitting there who only want to see tired movie stereotypes.

Next time you want to write a romance, how about an end monologue like this:

"So. The war was over. It was time to go home. We were rushed to pack, and I lost a medal in the move. It wasn't the loss that bothered me. What bothered me is... That cute blond in the mess hall I only spoke to once?...Well, I lost her number."
[scan through packing montage, pan to a view of the lunch lady singing on stage, walking off, then finding a bouquet of roses with a label listing it "From Dave" with a picture of the hero nearby, and his number on the card]

It's more subtle. Not great (especially not since it was written over the course of one minute) but it wasn't bad. And it wasn't an end-movie kiss.

Sorry for the post-delay, the last week was just kinda tough on my schedule. I'll try to post on Wednesday again and find some kind of schedule for the blog.
Have a good future Valentines' day, everyone!

Edit: I would like to remark that the addition of Sherlock Holmes was entirely for the recent movie, not any other part of the franchise, and that a bad romance does not make a bad series. (I actually like the Sherlock Holmes movie quite a lot.)

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