Author at The Place of Our Legacy

Blood Ties (Stargate)

Reviewed by Kathryn A on 18th May 2000 (1)

This story had a very good portrayal of Jack - and a not very good portrayal of Daniel. Well, the Daniel was fine at the start, but in the second half, I just could not see it. Who stole my Daniel and made him into a guilt-ridden sod? He did what he had to do; there's a world of difference between killing a dangerous enemy and being set up to betray someone to their death. Even though I can see why the author set it up that way, for the sake of the symmetry, for the sake of making a point - it isn't worth it if you have to distort the characters in order to get there. But I did like the Jack.

Doppleganger (Stargate)

Reviewed by Kathryn A on 19th May 2000

Now, this was the story that I read the other two for, because it was listed as being a sequel to them, and, indeed, it does refer back to the events of "Take Me Home" briefly. Doppleganger-type stories can be quite interesting, because you get to either (a) see how well friends know each other and/or (b) what a situation looks like from outside, and since I like things that make the familiar seem strange, I thought it was worth a try.

This one is not bad. A sort of exercise in appreciating what you've got. Though I think the others should have realized a bit sooner that something odd was going on. Except, of course, that those three conversations all had to happen. But... maybe the duplicate didn't have to speak quite so much like Data? Well, I suppose it's hard, trying to have a balance between being so like the original that nobody notices, and being so obvious that it is a duplicate that you wonder if everyone is thick. I mean, in Tin Man, the duplicates were such exact duplicates that they didn't realize they weren't human. The rationale of this duplicate made sense... its purpose meant that it wasn't as exact a duplicate as those in Tin Man - not mentally. But surely its speech patterns would match the original just as much as its facial expressions did?

Stylewise, the flashbacks were a bit confusing, because it wasn't clear whether any given scene was in the "present" or in the past - even though the actual idea of doing that is a good one. It gives us a dramatic opening, and draws us in right away.

Another problem I have is the one that seems to happen far too often in SF - the process of copying information does not automatically erase the source. Even if that information is brain-patterns and memories. I can see why it was used here, for the sake of drama, but... I would have liked an explanation to justify its use in this manner, why this process of copying is destructive.

Lastly, Part 7 is a needless epilogue, written, I expect, because the author wanted the happiest of all happy endings, rather than the bitter-sweet ending we got at the end of part 6. IMHO, that rather spoils it. It completely changes the mood, too, because of the introduction of a certain deus-ex-machina character who seems to be all over the map, characterwise. I expect it was also written because the author wanted to explain everything, let the readers know everything the author knew. None of that is needed. The story would be much stronger if part 7 wasn't there. But I liked the thing that happened at the very very end of part 6. (smile)

Take Me Home (Stargate)

Reviewed by Kathryn A on 18th May 2000 (2)

There is one word for this story: melodramatic. There were some good ideas and fleetingly delicious phrases, but - bah! - it almost made me laugh, how completely over the top the characters' reactions were. Jack was the worst (he snaps, he has a mental breakdown, he is sobbing in a corner, because he is so upset about what has happened to Daniel) but even Sam could not escape unscathed, having a few paragraphs of guilt-trip because she isn't hovvering by Daniel's side instead of doing her job. Fortunately the author did not attempt to get inside Teal'c's head. The melodrama wasn't just in the character reactions though, it came first with the descriptions of what was happening:
    "Colonel O'Neil, DanielJackson is no longer in the room with us. I think perhaps it would be wise to see where he has gone."
    Oh, they were going to go after Daniel, all right. A whole lot faster than they had figured.
    For those words were no sooner out of Teal'c's mouth when from somewhere down one of those distant corridors, they heard a harrowing sound.
    Someone was screaming.
    Daniel was screaming.
    Jack was moving, tearing out of the room and toward the terrible sounds at breakneck speed.

You can almost hear the sinister music and the bwa-ha-ha!. I don't reccommend this one.