I am not a professional editor or critic. All the opinions in the following review are just that; opinions.
Thank you so much for taking the time to submit a formal review request for your item "Meet the Parents
. Although I'm not sure that I liked it as well as the first one you sent with me, I was delighted to see that you're still working with the project and I hope that this review can help you with that.
WHAT I LIKED:
What I liked best about this one is that it offers a different tone that the first one.
I will admit I was a little disappointed because my favorite aspect of the last Guardians piece you had me read was the setting, and this focused a lot less on the world and on the lore surrounding it. That being said, it was nice to see you try to focus more on answering questions about the characters and their personal histories.
It felt a bit more serious when it was looking at the relationship between the protagonists and their parents. I didn't really know anything about the parents in the first Guardians and it was a more somber tone when you addressed their falling out and the consequences of that.
It's something that I think should be expanded upon in future drafts -- not only dealing with what happens after David and Rose leave, not only showing the apologies, but also explaining the fall out more clearly, really tapping into the potential of that emotional scene.
I also think you did a spectacular job in the stage directions showing emotion through character actions, moreso than with dialogue. David looking down and his shifting posture during his conversation with his mother was actually more powerful to me than the dialogue.
I still feel like your characters need some work. There has to be a reason for the audience to root for them, or at least be engaged by them, and that's something I was lacking.
Rose is still not likable in my opinion, and David is far too passive in dealing with her. They were the only two characters that stuck out for me (again) in the piece because they were the most distinct. I wish they had been most distinct in a more positive way.
One of the reasons I think the characters don't stand apart from one another is because their motivations are all similarly selfish and unclear. Even the adult characters act immaturely and have similar patterns of speech as the younger characters, who seem to do whatever they want with no real long-term plans.
I do have a few suggestions:
The first is trying to explain motivations better. This is a huge challenge when writing scripts, because so much of a character motivation is internal. I think one way that would become clearer for the audience is by informing them more of the past that leads to Rose and David becoming estranged from their parents, perhaps in that same apology scene.
The second is just a writing exercise. When you're writing dialogue for a character, consider their age, gender, background, etc. and think of someone else you know who shares those traits. Try to emulate that manner of speech.
The third and final suggestion I believe I also mentioned in my last review; try to highlight good qualities of your protagonists. David clearly has a sensitive side, maybe try to tap into that a little more. Try to find something redeeming about Rose as well, maybe.
I'm glad to see that you're still working on this.
I think it was a great idea addressing the pasts of your characters, but I do hope that you dig a little deeper and show off those characters from a sympathetic angle in the future. There's still a lot of potential in this world, and I think there was potential in this storyline as well, but the characters are really what make a story shine.
I hope that this was helpful, and will be happy to help in any other way I can.
Best of luck with this, and future installations.
My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!" .