23 Jul 2015

Unruly - Basketball Night in Canada Chapter 10 - Commentary

A visit to the lair of the Jennifers and Verity returns.  Welcome to the commentary for "Carly Thinks This Chapter's About Her".  Please read the chapter first before continuing.

The chapter title is a reference to the Carly Simon song, "You're So Vain".  I wasn't expecting that sort of confluence to occur when I first named Carly, really, but it worked out here.  Carly first appeared back in The New Girl Chapter 7, during the Diet Coke and Mentos plot.  Her importance in Unruly has increased since then.

When I started the chapter, I had no idea where to begin.  Caitlin's investigation was grinding to a middle, but I had pumped all I could from it without further information she didn't have the means to acquire yet.  Then it dawned on me - Verity.  Verity needed a bit of attention, and I'd been heading towards a St. Dymphna connection anyway.  One of the more interesting bits, at least from my view, is that Verity's roommates don't get along as well as Caitlin's.  There are some underlying currents of mistrust there.  Only when they have a mutual enemy can they work together.  Good thing Caitlin exists.  The discussion let me slip in the information that Carly may have new help, and I know who it is.  At some point, there may even be a reveal.

Caroline's little pony was one I looked up.  I knew the name - Lyra Heartstrings - but I had to confirm her colour and cutie mark.  There is no official plush of Lyra, though finding someone who will take commissions for unique ponies isn't a problem.  Mackenzie's poetry is another callback, this time to The New Girl Chapter 7 and Chapter 4 of this arc.

Caitlin's name-dropping might be confusing.  Joel Powell is related to Bree Powell, the girl the Unrulies first talked to and was spotted at the mall by Skye and Laura.  Richard Sullivan was the first indication of Carly's last name.  Having names come up naturally is an issue at times.  Just dropping a full name can be awkward, especially when the point-of-view character wouldn't know it.  At the same time, it'd be nice to get the name out there.  The plot does require the last name, so Autumn blanking was a good enough way to get the info out.

More callbacks with the Jennifers.  Laura suggesting Caitlin open the door refers back to the trap Autumn set off in The Great Jennifer Round-Up Chapter 3.  Laura's first use of "Parlay?" also appeared in that chapter and comes from Pirates of the Caribbean.  Caitlin's Aero bar bribe first appeared in The New Girl Chapter 5.  Yay, continuity!

For a group of girls that were supposed to be nameless, the Jennifers got fleshed out.  The Great Jennifer Round-Up helped there.  While the rest of the school just refers to the first year girls by the collective name, Laura has made a point of remembering each one.  Jenn was the only planned named Jennifer, the Jennifer of Jennifers, but there's a nice little community building up in the basement.

Tomorrow, the new Unruly episode, Chapter 11, "Common Ground".
Also tomorrow, over at Psycho Drive-In, on hiatus.
Saturday, over at MuseHack, still on hiatus.
Also Saturday, check out Comics Bulletin for comics-related reposts of Lost in Translation.


  1. The Verity idea was a good way of shaking things up. They're mostly background characters (except Mackenzie), so it got my attention. (I'd even forgotten about Verity's advantage of twintails!) Of course, it seems they'll be attacking the wrong side of the triangle to start.

    I did miss the Powell connection; I'm terrible with names. Speaking of which, very nice lampshade hanging on Laura's inability to handle school names at the end of the part there. The "speaking French" was also funny; continuity is working on your side. How's the cast page idea coming? (Hm, and is the next episode taking place at the neutral coffee shop?)

    1. They're background characters, but they're part of Caitlin's motivations. Verity is always an option when I write myself into a corner.

      I figured there'd be someone with problems with names. Since this is serialized, having someone say who is who helps. Laura's personality solidified with that and her paying attention to the names of the Jennifers and the twins.

      The more continuity I get, the easier it is to get some scenes done. It's the same with Lost in Translation. If I can bring back a reference, it makes the current writing easier. And, well, there's a payoff coming up with that.

      The cast page is slowly coming together. There's a lot of cast, though I may cut a few characters out if they just have one line or just a mention. (Good catch!)