7 May 2015

Unruly - The Great Jennifer Round-Up Chapter 6 - Commentary

Last week, the Unrulies discovered that "Nothing Good Happens at 4AM".  Welcome to the commentary for Chapter 6.  Please read the chapter first before continuing.

Fire alarms are great for causing confusion.  Having been through far too many at one apartment building, you get one of two reactions - the quick evacuation or the ennui of an yet another alarm.  I lived on the 20th floor.  After the first few, I stopped going down unless I smelled smoke.  Not helping, when I worked at a government department in one of the taller buildings in the city, floors were evacuated based on distance from the floor reporting the alarm.  The further away, the later the evacuation.  I have a delayed reaction to alarms now as I wait to see what the floor wardens do, at least at work.  Laura doesn't have the delayed reaction.  Most of the time, if there was a fire, it was either in her makeshift lab or her father's rivals trying to shut him down.  Kristie, despite being a Jennifer for at most six weeks, has the Academy figured out.

As mentioned last week, Kristie is a magician of sorts.  I haven't locked anything down yet about how magic works.  Most of it is from working from Laura's point-of-view.  She has no idea magic exists and would be shocked that it does.  Why include magic?  I have mad scientists, megalomaniacal school girls, and a school rivalry that makes the Cold War look tame.  Why not magic?  That said, I should have had one of the Unrulies in Laura's dorm be a magical girl of sorts.  Bad planning on my part, but one that can be fixed in later chapter.

Not everyone at the Academy has the same level of loyalty that Caitlin does.  Vamsi has her reasons for bailing, but she doesn't have the same desire to defend the Academy that Caitlin has.  I'm about to start a Vamsi-focused episode to get into those details.  Autumn's reason for leaving are more based on her fear of the Headmistress.  Ms Stone has placed certain limitations on Autumn's computer access, some of which Vamsi has already broken just by providing a laptop.  The North Korea reference was explained in the previous episode, The New Girl; short version, Autumn is wanted there for serious computer crimes.

Outside, Skye and Jenn are out doing a bit of reconnaissance.  The scene was inspired by The Lost World: Jurassic Park (aka Jurassic Park 2), with Skye in the role of the velociraptors.  Jenn, though, gets right to the prey's weak spot.  Worst thing one can do to a kid, threaten to tell her mother what she did.  Juliana chooses wisely.

The scene with the juniors let me put Caitlin in the role of a commanding officer, or at least her idea of what a commander is.  Danielle is being treated unfairly.  She did what she could with what she had.  Rules Three and Four were broken, but the other juniors also broke them without trying to make amends.  The scene also demonstrates how writing during NaNoWriMo can go at times.  There is always the need to add to the word count, even if the story is thought out ahead of time.  If anyone accuses Unruly of being thought out, this scene shows otherwise.  Yes, I am referring to the booby trap.  Yes, it's a horrible pun.  No one complained about Quoth in Chapter 5, though.

Back at the dorm, Jenn has left a surprise for Caitlin.  Autumn does have a point; Juliana isn't the first girl left tied up in her dorm.  Caitlin wouldn't have all of Juliana's teeth removed; she isn't cruel, just efficient.  The threat should be enough to get the Jennifer to talk.

On the dreaded fourth floor, where the magic labs dwell, Laura is still stuck.  No water, no bathroom, and only a Jennifer for company.  Fortunately, Laura doesn't see Jennifers as a mob but as individuals.  Kristie has even noticed it.  Kristie also misses the life she could have had if she weren't at the Academy.  The witch is still young enough to buy into the "traditional" approaches of dating, where she's the one asked out.  A few more years at the Academy will show her that the tradition can be subverted for her benefit.  Laura is finding that out herself, though that was completely unexpected from my end.  The school Laura is trying to remembers is AM Farewell, named after Moody Farewell, one of the early settlers who backed Oshawa as the name for the community.  When I say named after, I mean, I named the fictional school after; none of the schools mentioned in Unruly are real.

Tomorrow, Chapter 7, "New Threat".
Also tomorrow, over at Psycho Drive-In, the news round up for April and May.
Saturday, over at MuseHack, Phantom of the Paradise.
Also Saturday, check out Comics Bulletin for comics-related reposts of Lost in Translation.

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