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  • #31
    This is why I don’t understand your post about collaborators.

    Collaborator, colleague, co-worker, adjacent writer?" All of them have different meanings. Only one of them has any possible connection to WWZ.
    I posted something about how JMS worked with other writers and his behaviour with them... yet rather than talk about the behaviour, we’re quibbling over a word. That type of argument inevitably leads to a dead end.
    The reason I posted was because I was hoping someone could convince me that JMS wasn’t behaving poorly with his crew and coworkers. Yet a lot of the thread has avoided talking about behaviour and talking about the date instead.

    I do wonder if the topic itself is flawed, someone (usually me) holding up a quote where I feel he is shifting the blame, or throwing someone under the bus, then someone else posting an alternative interpretation.
    I wonder if finding examples of him behaving well, would be more constructive.

    The two I can think of, Michael O’Hare obviously, in that situation he took the ‘blame’ rather than redirecting it. Also with Spider-Man, didn’t he briefly take responsibility for someone else’s plot?

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    • #32
      Originally posted by ToonPatrol View Post
      This is why I don’t understand your post about collaborators. I posted something about how JMS worked with other writers and his behaviour with them... yet rather than talk about the behaviour, we’re quibbling over a word. That type of argument inevitably leads to a dead end.
      JMS has only done a very few collaborations. The Wachowskis for Sense8. Bryce Zabel on a proposed Star Trek TOS project. Maybe a couple of others but they're not coming to mind right now. Larry DiTillio was a co-worker. To the best of my knowledge, JMS has never had anything but good to say about him. Sometimes he's declined to answer questions about another writer's scripts, but that's not at all derogatory. 'Adjacent writer' is the closest of your terms that has any meaning, though 'subsequent' would be a better choice. Like it or not, words have meaning and we have to know we're talking about the same things before we can actually have a conversation. In the case of WWZ, they tossed his script and created something with no resemblance to the book. Even Max Brooks, when asked, would only say how much he liked JMS' scripts and stayed quite silent (that I saw) regarding Carnahan and the other writers.

      The reason I posted was because I was hoping someone could convince me that JMS wasn’t behaving poorly with his crew and coworkers. Yet a lot of the thread has avoided talking about behaviour and talking about the date instead.
      Yes, and no. Any point about the date was to point out that JMS owed different things to a production at different times, due to professionalism. While something is in production and for a period of time after release, if there's anything negative to be said, professionalism dictates silence or a glossing of what one might want to say. After a certain point, and I don't think there's any guidebook for this, speaking plainly is more acceptable. In the first instance, one is protecting the property. In the second, one is protecting artistic integrity. There's no conflict there.

      I do wonder if the topic itself is flawed, someone (usually me) holding up a quote where I feel he is shifting the blame, or throwing someone under the bus, then someone else posting an alternative interpretation.
      I wonder if finding examples of him behaving well, would be more constructive.

      The two I can think of, Michael O’Hare obviously, in that situation he took the ‘blame’ rather than redirecting it. Also with Spider-Man, didn’t he briefly take responsibility for someone else’s plot?
      Definitely Michael O'Hare. He kept the secret despite a huge amoutn of backlash for years. Spider-Man, in the 'Sins Past' story, Gwen's kids were supposed to be Peter's but Quesada made him change it to the Green Goblin. For this and the later instance when Quesada took over to make the Mephisto deal, JMS has always ackowledged that it was entirely Quesada's perogative to do so. How many months of pressure and questions did he endure about Crusade and the shut-down and egregious notes? For TMOS, does it count that he never confirmed or denied the truth of the well-substantiated rumors that WB wanted to recast the existing parts for 'name' actors' and that ne never said anything negative about the group who'd commissioned the script even when it dead-ended? When you read the bio, you'll see the times that he left a job or almost did when somebody he was loyal to was treated badly.

      But again, you'll think it's quibbling but what you seem (to me) to think is 'behaving well' is staying silent despite the fact that he's online for the specific purpose of answering questions. I completely disagree. You also seem to equate 'reasons' with 'blame' and that's not workable either.
      "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

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      • #33
        I just ran across this while looking for something else. This isn't strictly germaine to this conversation but definitely seems related.

        Jan


        unread,
        Jul 29, 2003, 6:34:46 PM



        to
        <snip of ranters ranting>

        You know, folks, this is a case where JMS is damned if he talks to us and
        damned it he doesn't.

        CRUSADE - Might I remind you that JMS had troubles with TNT for *months* before
        we ever heard a word from him? Even when the memo purported to be from them
        with 'suggestions' for 'improving' Crusade became public and everybody clamored
        at him he never said anything about what was going on. Only after it was over
        and beyond repair did he tell his side of things. Considering all of the
        speculation going on, who wouldn't?

        RANGERS - What's the beef here? He made a pilot and pick-up was contingent on
        ratings. It didn't get the ratings needed in the East because of sharing the
        same male demographic as the 'Football Game of the Century (that week)' and so
        wasn't picked up.

        B5 GRAPHIC NOVEL - the last word we had from JMS was on January 25 when he
        responded: "It's in need of some spare round tuits...." Funny, that just
        sounds like he's been busy. Personally, I never heard of a due date.

        RISING STARS - Again, he's damned if he speaks and damned if he doesn't. He
        kept silent for *months* in the face of post after post after post (and I don't
        want to think how many emails) badgering him over it. He STILL didn't say
        anything here, he merely verified what was said in an article and pointed us in
        that direction *because we'd kept asking!!!!!*

        JEREMIAH - Once again, he's kept silent for months. None of us had ANY hint
        that there was anything wrong until Comic Con. How many 'Where's Jeremiah, JMS'
        posts have there been? And now he speaks up and gets lambasted. Heck, even if
        he hadn't we knew pretty well that a third season was unlikely simply from the
        delay in airing it.

        Somebody mentioned compromise. Joe gave us some examples of changes he made on
        Crusade. You know little things like a whole episode that wasn't originally
        planned? With a (gag) really cool fistfight and a race to find public domain
        riot footage? How about the rewrites he did on each episode numerous times???
        I've got the scripts to prove it was done even if I don't have the 'notes'
        requesting the changes. Let me tell you, they look a whole LOT different from
        the B5 scripts where there were fewer colored pages and fewer different colors.

        If you folks don't like that JMS remains true to the story and demands
        professional treatment, feel free to go back to watching 'Mutant X' and
        'Andromeda' where the 'compromise' is so blatantly obvious and the rest of us
        will continue to support the quality of TV that Joe brings to the screen.

        He's always been up front that he'll walk rather than betray his stories and
        I'm all for that. He's also shown us nothing but honesty and integrity. Why is
        it a 'fault' that he demands the same of the people he's in a business
        relationship with?

        Jan
        "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

        Comment


        • #34
          you seem (to me) to think is 'behaving well' is staying silent
          Certainty not. That almost seems like a false dichotomy, staying silent is good, speaking is bad. However it’s far from binary.
          The statement about the VFX seems to be false. That’s not a simple speak/silent choice. There is an entire spectrum, from silent, to speaking and misremembering, to misinformation, accurate but simplified, accurate with precise detail and so on.

          I don’t think anyone would say utter silence is good. However I believe some of the VFX team have said they would prefer he said nothing than something inaccurate. That doesn’t seem like an unfair request.

          Comment


          • #35
            Originally posted by ToonPatrol View Post
            I don’t think anyone would say utter silence is good. However I believe some of the VFX team have said they would prefer he said nothing than something inaccurate. That doesn’t seem like an unfair request.
            In general, I think that when he answers a question, he's being as accurate as his memory and expertise allow. Most of the time the VFX folks might have a better memory than JMS simply because they have a far narrower focus. How well do you remember meetings you were in even a year ago, much less decades?

            Once again, I'll say what I did in the beginning: He's just a guy. He didn't volunteer to be anybody's role model.
            "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

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