Hello! I was just wondering if you have any ideas on """dale pike's""" Within the Narrative? I don't know what to think of it, because the writing style doesn't seem like fanfic to me and there's enough levels of meta-y things to drown me in. if mofftiss wrote us fanfiction I am going to explode
oh god ‘Within the narrative’ killed me. Oh God. Okay, deep breath. I’ll do the same as I did for ‘The One Word Test’ here, just go through and pick out the most relevant quotes for me as I go along.
THIS JUST ANALYSES THE INTRODUCTION ‘CAUSE IT GOT LONG. If folk are interested, I could try and pick apart the whole fic if I don’t die from the attempt sos adhflslhgsjlf.
Hope this helps! From the beginning, then?
Okay, so first we have the weird tagging system- why is the fic tagged as both a Tragedy and a Comedy? Well, because of this opening quote from The Three Garridebs: “It may have been a comedy, or it may have been a tragedy. It cost one man his reason, it cost me a blood-letting, and it cost yet another man the penalties of the law. Yet there was certainly an element of comedy. Well, you shall judge for yourselves.” See this post by @teaandqueerbaiting!
^I take this to mean we’ve got our ‘comedy’ Garridebs in The Final Problem, the cheap dangling Garridebs brothers gag. We’re still waiting for our truly emotional, true Garridebs scene between John and Sherlock.
Then, we come to the summary and opening notes to chapter 1:
Right, who on earth is Proper Dave? See this and this post by @may-shepard @laughing-at-the-darkness and @221bloodnun. Proper Dave is a character from the Doctor Who episode Silence in the Library, written by Steven Moffat and directed by Euros Lyn, who also directed The Blind Banker.
Proper Dave is a PILOT (ooh little on the plane in TFP: ‘the driver’s asleep!’) He’s called ‘Proper Dave’ in contrast with another crew member named ‘Other Dave’ because ‘Proper Dave’ was there before him.
It’s never twins, Watson.
I’ve not watched this episode but basically for some reason Proper Dave “acquires an extra shadow”- this means the villains of the episode are attacking him. The Doctor tries to save him but fails, leaving Proper Dave’s “data ghost” to echo his last thoughts: “Hey, who turned out the lights?” Side-note: if this is the 4th favourite fic, I wonder where Proper Dave’s 3rd and other fave fics are… ;)
Now, what about the “A boring story” bit? I cannot for the life of me find the quote, but I remember Steven once describing The Three Garridebs as “a very boring story”- clearly tongue in cheek as it’s one of the most iconic moments of ACD canon, even saying in his own foreward to the stories that “you’ll be blinking back tears when the moment comes.” (x) Tagging @waitedforgarridebs in case she knows where the quote is, the resident Garridebs expert. ;)
“about the stuff between the lines.”- well, we’re all very good at finding that. <3
And the notes. Of course, nothing is certain, but to me these only become worthwhile and genuinely funny if you see them as written by someone who’s…well… very much an insider on the show. “Series 4 and 5 spoiler alerts”- that’s very presumptuous of you. ;) Saying they’ve deduced things correctly, including what they’re “probably” going to call the Watson baby– this is so funny if at this point they genuinely hadn’t decided what the baby was going to be called lmao.
Then we get one of the most bizarre meta introductions I’ve had the pleasure of reading:
“Most people think they know what’s going to happen. Perhaps you’ll dismiss this narrative early, thinking it is boring and banal and not worth the distance to that innermost cave. Or perhaps you’ll be too easily impressed and think this is a great story.
Perhaps you’re just looking for a cheap thrill. Well, this one has thrills, but they don’t come cheaply. The Powers-That-Be never gave me any trigger warnings, so I’ll give none to you, save this: Here there be dragons.
In any case, we’re going to follow the rules. Stories have rules, of course, just like chemistry, like biology. Like gravity. Perhaps—if you are an omnivorous reader yourself—you know that there are certain rules that a good story must never break.
It turns out that we’ve been wrong… and right… all along. That’s the beauty of it. That’s what makes this a good mystery.
Back up a bit. Ready the players. Set the stage.”
Why, why why is this so meta. Why does it read like a set of instructions. It’s so out of place for a fic. Why is either “dismissing the narrative early” or “being too easily impressed” such an apt summary for some reactions to The Final Problem? The stage is set, the curtain rises. Here be dragons.
We know “the rules” of this story- and we know that The Final Problem broke all of them. Steven and Mark themselves have said the episode was deliberately full of “transgressions.”
They’ve been wrong….(The Final Problem)…and right (every other episode) all along. The mixture makes it the mystery. We need to- and have solved- that mystery: why it was wrong. Because it didn’t end with John and Sherlock together. The rest of the true love story is yet to be told.