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Author Topic: EP225: A Hard Rain at the Fortean Café  (Read 13889 times)

heyes

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Reply #25 on: November 28, 2009, 12:36:13 PM
I really enjoyed this one, but there were just a couple of weird very British vocab choices that didn't jive with the story.  The one that comes to mind is referring to the "trunk" of the car as the "boot".  I dunno maybe they say it in Canada as well, and maybe in her day Amelia would have said such, but by this point in the timeline of setting... she should be saying trunk.

I know, minor point, right? But it can make a difference.

Still I very much enjoyed it!

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eytanz

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Reply #26 on: November 28, 2009, 05:54:09 PM
I really liked this story - it's weird, combines a lot of different things, but at the same time, it's an effective mystery/cop procedural. I do agree with some of the previous comments that Amelia Earhart's identity didn't really play a role - she really just existed to serve the conceit of "a character who mysteriously disappeared solving a mystery many years later". But that didn't bother me while I was listening, just later.



Scattercat

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Reply #27 on: November 30, 2009, 05:36:40 PM
Normally, cloning famous dead celebrities is a surefire way to make me bored.  Ditto bringing up "the Greys."  I guess I'm just not into Fortean stuff, though I wasn't previously aware there was even a category for it.

This story made me cringe when I realized who Marilyn was, but as it went on I found myself really enjoying the plot and the characters.  I think having Amelia was a big help; she's an interesting historical figure who doesn't get enough airtime in stereotypical "weird" plots.  Mostly the story was just very well done; it was less the usual conspiracy-theory nonsense and more an old noir piece, and noir is made of win.  I find the idea of world-spanning conspiracies to be uninteresting, but here, the conspiracy was just a part of the background noise, accepted by everyone for what it was and worked around as bureaucratic nonsense is always worked around.  I was reminded vaguely of Sergei Lukyanenko's "Night Watch" series, where the world of the supernatural is just another corrupt institution.

The ending was very satisfying; they tied up just enough loose ends to give it proper closure and left enough open that it didn't feel contrived (as mysteries - especially mysteries about government conspiracies - often do). 

I enjoyed this one a lot.  Two thumbs up.

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Ocicat

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Reply #28 on: November 30, 2009, 11:55:36 PM
No thumbs up from me, I fear.  Seemed a bunch of weird for weirdness sake without much of a point.  Just kind of self indulgent stuff for Fortean/X-Files fans, of which I am not.

Mostly I just kept getting hung on wanting actual details or realistic explanations.  Like, so there are Marylin clones, fine, I'm down with that.  If they want to keep a low profile, how come all their IDs have variants on Norma Jean?  Not a good way to keep on the down-low.  Yet despite this, Ameila fails to track down any while they are alive.  However, once they are killed, she gets notified.  Why do they stand out as Maralyns so much better dead then they do alive?  And why is the killer so good at tracking them if Ameila is so pathetic that she's never seen a live one?

Oh ya, I'm not supposed to care.  I'm just supposed to say "oh, cool, Marylin clones". 



Scattercat

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Reply #29 on: December 01, 2009, 02:01:36 AM
Well, presumably Amelia hasn't started a "vintage porn" operation and advertised for people who could impersonate dead celebrities.  Seems like a good way to find desperate female clones of Marilyn Monroe, but not really within the scope of whatever organization Amelia is with.

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eytanz

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Reply #30 on: December 01, 2009, 08:56:13 AM
No thumbs up from me, I fear.  Seemed a bunch of weird for weirdness sake without much of a point.  Just kind of self indulgent stuff for Fortean/X-Files fans, of which I am not.

Mostly I just kept getting hung on wanting actual details or realistic explanations.  Like, so there are Marylin clones, fine, I'm down with that.  If they want to keep a low profile, how come all their IDs have variants on Norma Jean?  Not a good way to keep on the down-low.  Yet despite this, Ameila fails to track down any while they are alive.  However, once they are killed, she gets notified.  Why do they stand out as Maralyns so much better dead then they do alive?  And why is the killer so good at tracking them if Ameila is so pathetic that she's never seen a live one?

Oh ya, I'm not supposed to care.  I'm just supposed to say "oh, cool, Marylin clones". 

Actually, I think the story handles all that, but subtly. In addition to Scattercat's very good point about why the killer was better at finding them than Amelia, we never were told if the Marilyns knew they were Marilyn clones. The one at the end probably figured it out, but the murdered ones may never have. They just probably knew they resembled her, and had similar personalities. I don't think they are deliberately trying to stay on the low-down so much as just living out their lives in small towns because that's where they grew up. Did they choose their own names? Or were the names given to them by whoever created them in the first place? Maybe whoever did that just had a bad imagination for names, or maybe he/she wanted to leave clues for someone.



Gamercow

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Reply #31 on: December 03, 2009, 01:53:33 PM
I'm going quote myself from the Uncanny Valley discussion:
Quote
The gauge in my head that measures amount of dry, detached, cynical, sarcastic, world-weary, judgmental, snarky narration I hear is pegged at maximum due to the last few months of EPs.  She canna take much more of this, captain.  Not that this was bad narration -- I  thought it was very appropriate.  It's just that there have been several stories read with this voice lately.

I have found that to be true as well, and for me, it links back to Kate Baker.  In some stories, her narration style works.  In others, it does not.  She did not read this one, though to be honest, I thought it was her in the beginning.(I listened to the intro separate from the story this time)

The story begs some interesting questions. Such as: Who owns your DNA? You? Your parents? Your family? Your country? Some commercial enterprise? If I can get a piece of a supermodel's hair off of a hairbrush or from her trash, can I clone her and keep her as my love slave locked up in my basement? If I clone myself and have sex with it is that rape or incest? Could a good defence lawyer make a reasonable case that I was only having sex with myself and so how could this be a crime?

Maybe it's good that we can't do this stuff (yet) and we should move as a culture to develop protocols and legal mechanisms about how to handle these issues now before it gets to be a problem. Are we smart and or wise enough to?  Hmmm..... ???

There's a great story idea in there, KenK.  It may have been done already, but I haven't heard it. 

As for this story, I found it solidly in the meh zone.  The premise was okay, and the overall mystery was okay, but I found some of the Fortean-ness to be a bit forced.  Seemed to be more concerned with nudges and winks than actual plot. 


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cercle

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Reply #32 on: December 03, 2009, 09:02:05 PM
No, I didn't like it. It's just not good enough.  As an editor I would send this back and tell the writer to work on it.  Don't get me wrong : it's a great premise and it has a lot of potential, but it just doesn't lived up to its promise.  The world in which it is set isn't fleshed out as it should be, so that after a while I couldn't care less.  Not a job well done. Also, it's a wacky set up, so don't be so serious about it. Film noir ? Sure, that's OK if your setting lives up to it. But this ? Have fun with it, don't make as if it's important.
The reading ? Not great. Reading stories for an audience is not easy, and there have been some good ones, but this is not one of them.



Loz

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Reply #33 on: December 10, 2009, 08:27:29 PM
I would slightly disagree, though only in as much as while the framing premise was okay, the actual case they were investigating inside didn't really interest me, the elevator pitch of this is quite good, 'Amelia Airheart investigates the killing of clones of Marilyn Monroe' but it doesn't really get fleshed out into a decent story, there's no real personality to any of the characters.



Unblinking

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Reply #34 on: January 15, 2010, 05:54:37 PM
I really enjoyed this one!  The idea of so many clones of a single celebrity just wandering around trying to live their lives was a really good one, and having someone tasked with dealing with just this one aspect.  It was fun to try to figure out the identity of the murderer--in the end it appeared to be one of the Marilyns which was a really nice touch.  I had no idea who Joe was supposed to be, and Amelia didn't really seem Amelia-like, but overall I really liked it.

This could've been a lost episode of the X-Files.  I love X-Files so that's a compliment.  :)



LaShawn

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Reply #35 on: January 28, 2010, 06:00:23 PM
The story begs some interesting questions. Such as: Who owns your DNA? You? Your parents? Your family? Your country? Some commercial enterprise? If I can get a piece of a supermodel's hair off of a hairbrush or from her trash, can I clone her and keep her as my love slave locked up in my basement? If I clone myself and have sex with it is that rape or incest? Could a good defence lawyer make a reasonable case that I was only having sex with myself and so how could this be a crime?

Thank you, sir, for officially blowing my mind.

As for the story, I liked it. I was in the mood for a good noir celebrity clone story. :-)

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Adriegefoern

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Reply #36 on: May 06, 2019, 11:38:21 AM
Hello. And Bye.