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March 7, 2003

Marching Mary Sues
Posted by Teresa at 08:44 PM *

To quote from the site where I found this item:

Have you ever longed to insert yourself into your favorite show? With MaggieFic’s Handy-Dandy Mary Sue Generator, you can! Just click the buttons to create a Mary Sue that anyone would be proud of. You’ll be shagging the main character of your choice, saving the world, dying nobly to save another, or bringing together your favorite pair of star-crossed lovers in no time.
If this power could be used for good, it wouldn’t be this power. (Posted in honor of the Just Checking comment thread.)
Comments on Marching Mary Sues:
#1 ::: Andrew Brown ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2003, 04:58 AM:

Laugh at me all you will, but I don't know what a "Mary Sue" is. Can someone explain?

#2 ::: James D. Macdonald ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2003, 09:42 AM:

A "Mary Sue" is a character who is actually the author.

#3 ::: Alan Bostick ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2003, 11:56 AM:

So Breakfast of Champions by Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., is a Mary Sue? Andy Breckman's song "Railroad Bill"?

(Yes, I know what you mean; you just didn't say it. ;-))

#4 ::: cd ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2003, 12:26 PM:

Pat Pflieger's paper Too Good To Be True: 150 Years of Mary Sue has a thorough description of the phenomenon in question (and I found it pretty fascinating reading to boot).

#5 ::: Holly ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2003, 12:27 PM:

So that's the term for it. Few months ago, my group workshopped the first book of the Oort Cloud Trilogy, which featured as its hero a mild-mannered computer debugger/code writer who happened to run into a beautiful scarlet-haired mysterious woman with violet eyes and a strange ray gun, who drove a cargo-van-shaped vehicle that was capable of landing in a shopping-center parking lot at 6 p.m. on Christmas eve without anyone noticing. The violet-eyed beauty not only needed the help of our mild-mannered hero to escape from the intergalactic thugs who were trying to kill her, but upon being rescued she decided that this debugger-extraordinaire would be an invaluable asset to her top-secret government employers. Go figure.

#6 ::: Holly ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2003, 12:50 PM:

Huh...reading the Pflieger paper just made me realize: the reason Star Trek: Nemesis was so bad was because Picard, Data and the bad guy were all THREE Mary Sues.

#7 ::: Alison Scott ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2003, 01:09 PM:

OK. Sue Mason sent me this. Don't blame me. Blame her. You'll need to work out your own names though. Er, possibly not work safe.

#8 ::: Dave Bell ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2003, 03:28 AM:

Well, tht's Aunty Sue for you....

Note that the page seems rather browser-sensitive

#9 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2003, 09:55 PM:

"Mary Sue"s tend not just to cast the author but to put hem into a blatantly improbable wish fulfillment -- the sort of thing that makes Stranger in a Strange Land's Jubal Harshaw look like somebody you could run into any time.

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