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Complete Backwards with Purpose by Deadwoodpecker - M

Discussion in 'The Alternates' started by Skeletaure, Sep 7, 2008.

  1. Stan

    Stan Order Member

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    Er- apologies for bring up ancient history and all, but surely at one point you did like this fic?


    Do I love this story? Yes. But I'm biased because it was because one of the first fics I read (I've also reread this multiple times since), and I'm also biased because it has plenty of themes I like. I like canon pairings, I like canon characterizations, I especially like stories that can stick to canon themes of love and sacrifice while telling a good story, and this is the only story in the fandom other than The Phoenix and the Serpent that does that.

    It has plenty of other elements I like. Deadwoodpecker is the only author that manages to keep the Weasleys in character and yet manages to convincingly put them in odds with canon Harry. The change from canon feels natural, and there aren't many fanfiction authors that can do that. It also manages to make Sirius and Snape friends (best mates by the end, even) without it seeming excessively jarring. All characterizations are canon, and the characters are three dimensional and convincingly written.

    (And the Pre-teen HG is one of the best parts. Even the 2008 DLP anti-Ginny Nazis admitted that one of the best moments of the story came from it.)

    I think the major issue people have with the story is that the plot is too close to canon. That is true. While the story has elements of mystery and major subplots that were never there in canon, the basic framework remains the same for most part. It doesn't bother me in the least (many of my other favorites -- The Changeling, On the Way to Greatness, A Call to Arms do this as well) and I think there is enough new material to go around, especially after you get past the first handful of chapters. The Book of Albus is completely new material, so there's that.

    I will also put in that this fic is incomplete without reading the Book of Albus as well, so most of the reviews/ratings in this thread don't do the whole story justice, really. Much of the stuff that was unclear or wasn't explained becomes known only in the sequel/side-fic, and it is BWP and BOA together that show one of my favorite aspects of this story -- Deadwoopecker's ability to pay attention to tiny, seemingly insignificant details and bringing them up as plot-points later on. BOA also shows how a single change would create a huge butterfly effect with completely unintended consequences, and once again the consequences feel naturally plausible, and that is the mark of a good writer.

    So, to sum up, excellent technical writing (even its most ardent detractors would give it that), excellent characterizations and some really memorable moments. The plot is excellent and intricately constructed too, but it requires patience (and reading the sequel) to realize it. This will always remain one of my favorite stories of all time.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2015
  2. Innomine

    Innomine Alchemist ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter

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    Hahahaha. Ok. Definitely don't remember writing that review. I reread this about 6 months ago and my last impression was based on that.

    I don't remember either read through enough to comment on the matter though, so I'll step out of this discussion.
     
  3. Ched

    Ched Da Trek Moderator DLP Supporter ⭐⭐

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    I re-read it only about a year ago. I felt that it still held up, with my primary complaint being that there was far too much Weasley-based drama. There's things to point out that are pretty meh, but overall I feel it's worth a read if you haven't given it a go yet. You can always stop in a few chapters.
     
  4. brad

    brad Third Year

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    One of the best 'redo' stories out there, although the author's intense focus on the absolute perfection and prurience of her H/G pairing exceeds safe saccharine levels for most of the tale.

    Yes; at times it made the plot something of a farce, having the characters repeat a traumatic sequence of events for superficial reasons (the reality being that the author presumably just wanted to 'stay close' to the original story).

    The author's slavish adherence to Rowling's canon also made for an amusing meta-twist at one stage when she admitted in an author's note that she misread one of the cruxes of Deathly Hallows. You know the HP canon's got troubles when even those who sing (and write) its praises get it wrong! :)
     
  5. Garden

    Garden Supreme Mugwump

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    The characterization in the fic, as well as the overarching meta-plot of time travel, are done well.

    But the fact that the story follows canon so closely, regardless of its reasons, make me ambivalent about the story. I'd rate it:
    3.5/5
    -->
    4/5
     
  6. DemonicInfluence

    DemonicInfluence Fourth Year

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    I felt BWP was extremely frustrating. Like others have noted, the characterization was great. However, I felt the events, especially the scenes where Harry reveals the truth about his time traveling were very obnoxious and grating. In my opinion it's a 3/5.

    However, the sequel was actually just amazing in my opinion. Maybe it was because I had to grind through all of BWP, but suddenly the story had way more agency and the conflict felt realer, despite me knowing the end result. Maybe it was just Al being more relatable.
     
  7. Shinysavage

    Shinysavage Madman With A Box ~ Prestige ~

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    I read BWP and TBOA fairly recently, and I'd agree with the general consensus that BWP is entertaining enough without being particularly special. TBOA was better, but since the sequel to that is incomplete (abandoned?) it all finishes on a rather unsatisfactory note, imo.

    Yellow Submarine is excellent though, if harrowing.
     
  8. Ched

    Ched Da Trek Moderator DLP Supporter ⭐⭐

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    Well, the author updated. And by updated I mean all three stories with the same message.

    It bugs me that some people have so little sense when it comes to things like this. First, this smacks of holding chapters hostage for reviews. Only instead of reviews, it's followers. Which might translate to money somewhere down the line. Judging by the more recent reviews it's turned a lot of followers off the story.

    What I don't get is why the author wouldn't just... finish the chapter that's halfway complete, post it, and then add an A/N saying "Hey guys, I'd really appreciate it if you'd like/follow this thing. It'd help me out a ton and I'd be super grateful, thanks!"

    They'd probably have about as many people go and do it, and they'd have avoided pissing off a portion of their fanbase. I mean, there's apparently only two chapters left.

    I don't plan to follow/like, but it's not out of morals so much as I just don't like to follow random shit. Putting this here in case any of you are interested enough in an update to buy into that. Cheers!
     
  9. SweetSouthernGal

    SweetSouthernGal Muggle

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    I've read this story before and enjoyed it a lot. I've reread it a few times, which I don't do with many stories but this one was worth the extra reads. It's one of the more detailed/intricate back-in-time stories. Furthermore, it shows that even with the foreknowledge you can't predict/prevent everything, and that your behavior will appear suspicious to people not in the know. I struggled with being upset with the Weasley family in this story (minus Ron and Ginny, that is) but understanding their feelings with their limited knowledge. I really liked Sirius and Remus (though I was annoyed with Sirius at first) but I was surprised by how much I enjoyed Snape in this story since I diislike him intensely in canon (and consequently most fanfics).
     
  10. Caldazar

    Caldazar Squib

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    What-If Stories that don't deviate from canon even if logic dictates that they should are one of my pet peeves. Still, I've never had the impression that the plot of BWP turns absurd or stays too close to canon. The relationship between the Weaselys and Harry is quite well executed - even if the reasons for keeping them in the dark are a bit thin.
    Is one of the few stories that I've read more than once and I can definitely recommend it.
     
  11. brad

    brad Third Year

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    I think that's exactly what it does do - in both respects - turn absurd and stay too close. If I'm remembering correctly.

    Don't they all agree that Ginny must be possessed again by the diary - deliberately allow herself to be subjugated to the soul of the evil dark wizard, with all the risks that such entails - for some abstract artificial reason?
    That's the biggest example of the author's reluctance/inability to deviate. Although another equally huge display of her shackles to canon results in Harry gearing up to exploit a 'Master of Death' get-out-of-jail-free card which she thought Rowling had incorporated within Deathly Hallows ... only to realise afterwards that she'd made a mistake in her own comprehension of that terrible plot-hole-saturated novel. (It's amusing when authors who take great pains to adhere to the HP canon - the pairings, the plot, etc - still trip over Rowling's bad writing.)

    Thin, yes, but it wasn't so thin that I didn't enjoy what the author made of it. Unlike the scenarios I mentioned above.

    Although the Weasley friction was based on a level of promiscuity and licentiousness from Harry & Ginny which made me nauseous. Many other (tasteful) 'redo' fanfics steer clear of the sex when their back-in-time heroes are occupying very young bodies.
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2015
  12. Oddball8

    Oddball8 First Year

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    This is another series of stories that I read and really liked in HP fandom because again it does something really original other than just pretending to do something really original!

    If you forgot about this story it's probably worth reading it again but if you didn't then basically what happens goes something like this!

    /\/\/\/\/\/\/\

    Canon happens, like it happened in canon, except I think it worse than canon near the end and Hermione died. But mostly canon. Maybe it was written before Deathly Hallows?

    Harry, Ron, and Ginny are depressed and middle aged I think, like 30. They decide to go back in time and fix things, which is fairly normal for a Harry Potter time travel fic.

    But! Where it gets cool is this... they go back in time, and then ITS NOT THE SAME! There was an article or something that made the Wizard World less enamored with Harry, and now things are different! And not just because of that, but other things are snowballing, and it becomes clear that someone else is messing around in the timeline!

    So far that feels somewhat original, if only because three people went back in time and when they got there then things had been messed it.

    But what really draws this for me is the sequel where we realize who was going back in time (it's Albus Potter) and why (Harry died because of a curse), and other stuff.

    It's layers on layers of time travel. LAYERS ON LAYERS.

    Are there any other stories that do that? Not just time travel, but layers of it like that? Time travel, but someone else already traveled, and then maybe a bunch of someones or a bunch of times? There's another fanfiction about it where tons of time travelers are all at Hogwarts and Neville was weird and depressed while Harry was oblivious, but I'm more interested in original fiction that does this!

    Is there original stuff you guys know about that has LAYERS AND LAYERS of cool time travel stuff so that everything gets convoluted up?
     
  13. Aatroxia

    Aatroxia Muggle

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    This is a fairly well written fic with a relatively refreshing time travel twist. However as Oddball8 said it was the sequel that was truly interesting.
    Both stories combined I think they're easily worthy of a 4/5.
     
  14. Hawkin

    Hawkin Chief Warlock

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    First, you should use spoiler tag [ spoiler ] [ /spoiler ] when revealing such important plot point.

    Second, I suggest reading Timely Errors by worfe . It's not the same thing, there aren't plenty of people traveling, but you'll see what I mean when you reach the end.

    Outside of fanfiction, I suggest watching the 12 Monkeys movie (and TV series) which has a lot of time traveling involved.

    If you want more rec, I suggest asking in the appropriate forum here for fanfic and here for other media.
     
  15. Oddball8

    Oddball8 First Year

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    Thanks for the recommendations Basilisk! Is it really important to use spoiler tags when it's for a story this old? I thought that after a certain amount of time had passed it'd be okay to just discuss major plot points without resorting to that.

    Twelve Monkeys eh? Okay I can check that out! Sounds pretty awesome, actually. Here's a link to it on IMDB if anyone is curious! I'd ask more about the LAYERS in it but I don't want to derail the thread!

    Back to another thread I shall go! ...with purpose! :D
     
  16. Hawkin

    Hawkin Chief Warlock

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    Well, how would you feel if I told you the end of 12 monkeys (1995) now ;)
     
  17. Zeitgeist

    Zeitgeist High Inquisitor

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    The story still holds up. I haven't read the sequels because I'm not a big fan of their protagonist, but hey, it's a good Time-Travel Fic. A bit long, but after a long line of Ginny bashing and/or Saint Ginny, finding a human Ginny with flaws and likeability was so refreshing that I gave this fic a 4.5/5.
     
  18. zelcore

    zelcore Squib

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    I have actually read the fic a few times, and it has to be one of my favorite time travel fics, second only to maybe harry potter and the nightmares of future's past. The sequels I haven't read in a while, but I think that they were decent, although they made the whole timeline a bit more convoluted. Overall though, I really liked the fic and its sequels.
     
  19. The Wasp

    The Wasp First Year

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    I've read this story maybe 8 or 9 chapters and found it kinda boring. But most on this site seem to really enjoy so I'll give it another shot. From what I gather Harry and Ginny are a power couple in this
     
  20. cucio

    cucio Groundskeeper

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    A few weeks ago I started to receive alerts from FFN about Deadwoodpecker updating her fics.

    I get the impression she is trying to wrap up her fanfic writer days: slapping some rushed, half baked endings on her unfinished fics, pushing out some archived stuff...

    It ain't pretty. If, like me, you enjoyed BWP alright back in the day and are curious about its planned ending... well, sometimes curiosity is best left unsatisfied. It's the old dilemma: what's better, an unblemished but unfinished work, or a shoddily finished one?

    I'll raise my glass to a pair of stories with a clever plot and some powerful dramatic scenes, to what its third part could have been, and wish the author well in her future endeavors.
     
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