2 comments on “People May Be Idiots, But Don’t Push Your Luck

  1. What bugged me as a kid was that it was totally obvious that Clark Kent had the physique of an Olympic athlete, but was passing himself off as an unathletic desk jockey. This did not stop me from devouring umpteen Superman comics in all their variations.

    It’s funny how quirky suspension of disbelief can be. FTL spaceships, no prob, but a detail like no fire-suppression equipment can throw me right out of the story. Ditto a character who steps inexplicably out of character for the sake of the plot. Willingness plays a big role, I think. Also, if a story fits a familiar narrative pattern, we don’t ask so many questions, like “Oh yeah? Darth Vader is really Luke’s father? Get outta here.”

    • I definitely agree about the contrivance of characters acting out of character for the sake of the plot; this can really aggravate me. I remember the first time I read The High Lord by Trudi Canavan. My favourite character dies near the end because he makes a stupid decision that made no sense, given that the author had established over the course of 3 books just how smart and resourceful he is.

      I’ve always had the feeling that Canavan decided from the outset that she wanted to kill the character at the end, which is fair enough, but it happens in such a contrived way it’s just not very believable. I’m still upset about it.

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