Friday, November 14, 2008
And now for something completely different
Normally, I do not visit the website FanFiction.net. I tend to despise fanficton in general, and this website in particular, due to it being an ocean of mediocrity dotted with cesspools mainly of the Rule 34 variety. True, there are some islands of goodness here and there, but they're very small ones.
And then there is the shining beacon of supercompressed carbon called "Family". To summarize quickly, it's an Animaniacs-based fic that takes a look "behind the scenes" at the lives of the Warner siblings before, during and (at a later date) after the filming of the show. What the author does is take the concept of ToonTown from Who Framed Roger Rabbit and run with it, adding concepts of her own that will often make you blurt out "How did she think of that?", creating a world as detailed and real as your own neighborhood. While the language of the narration is frankly unadorned and pedestrian, what it lacks in style it makes up and substance, conveying in simple words the depression and the despair, the love and the laughter of the characters, whose backstory has to be read to be believed--and once you read it, you'll believe nothing else. The brain simply refuses to accept that it's all a work of fiction.
This story has the capacity to make you laugh and cry, sometimes at the same time, and regularly leaves me with a grin plastered on my face for hours after reading a chapter. Indeed, some plot points and twists continue to do so whenever I think about them. This is the work of a genius.
After first discovering it a few months back, it's safe to say that I'm completely addicted to it. When I first chanced upon it, I began reading mildly, as every other good fanfic I have read before and since was either too short or petered out before reaching completion. Then, after 15 minutes of nonstop amazement, I glanced at the vertical scrollbar to see how much farther this went... and it was only a fifth of the way down the page. And this, mind you, in a story that was already about 25 chapters long. So, when I saw that the author was still active when more chapters were added, my happiness knew no bounds. Each successive update has been a cause for celebration. So just imagine my joy when, along with the latest chapter, she has also begun a companion story called "Friends"--now I get to read double the awesome! In fact, when I saw it, I started to cheer out loud at the computer screen, and boy howdy was I lucky I was alone in the house because I was ecstatic.
And as if all this wasn't enough, how about some proof that you can have your cake and ice cream too: high-quality illustrations of different scenes and/or situations in the story found by total accident on DeviantArt.com (a website I detest even more than FF.net, because it's a visual medium, and--as I learned the hard way--there's no filtering for what I regard as objectionable content. When I access it, it's in the manner of a man about to swim in the biggest, most spectacular pool ever, except that there are schools of piranha inside, and he has no idea where they are. The idea is to tread carefully, and minimally. Which is a shame, because there really is some mind-blowingly good stuff hiding amid the dreck there). Follow the links in the journal of the author's DA account.
So hurry on over to the FF.net profile of The Middle Warner Sibling and read! Read! Read! I'd advise you to try and savor it at a pace of one chapter per day, except I know that you won't be able to control yourselves. In fact, I'll permanently add the "Family" story to my Links List (http://www.fanfiction.net/s/3703685/1/Family). That's how good it is.
This has been an incoherent public service announcement. Thank you and good day.
Labels: something completely different
I'm betting, though, that the average quality of the FanFiction.net offerings has increased dramatically since the Harry Potter series finally wrapped up. ;-)