EXT: A BRIDGE OVER A RIVER NEAR HOLLYWOOD (?) - NIGHT.
CHRIS HUNTLEY approaches the bridge. He seems tired and
depressed. He stops at the middle of the bridge an bitterly looks at the water. He says to
CHRIS: All the troubles at SSI... Sometimes I wish I'd never
Suddenly, SYD FIELDS appears right besides him.
SYD: Hello, Chris.
CHRIS: Eh.... Syd Fields?
SYD: No, I'm your Guardian Angel. I just took an image you
could identify easily.
CHRIS: Of all the people I can identify you chose Syd
SYD: Whatever. I've come to show you how would the world be
if you've never existed.
Syd pulls a small "watchman" TV out of his pocket.
CHRIS: What is this?
SYD: Low budget, this is a re-make, remember? Turn it on.
Chris turns on the TV. An commercial appears on the screen.
It shows an erupting volcano and captions in super that say the following:
"HOW CAN I KNOW IF MY EX-HUSBAND IS AN ANTAGONIST OR A
"WHAT SHOULD BE MY LIFE'S GOAL AND MY LIFE'S
PREREQUISITES? (PAGE 11)"
"HOW CAN I DEFEAT MY CRITICAL FAULTS? (PAGE 67)"
The captions fade and a out of the volcano comes a book, it
says on it's cover:
"DRAMANETICS. BY MELANIE A. PHILIPS"
VOICE ON TV: Dramanetics. By Melanie A. Philips. Pick-up a
CHRIS: (Terrorized) What's this? Dramatica is a cult! And a
crappy one,for that matter! My worst nightmares are true!
SYD: It gets worst, look.
Syd changes the channel. CNN appears. The image is some kind
of semi-military compound on Texas. FBI men surround it. There's smoke coming out of some
windows and shots fired everywhere. An reporter broadcasts:
REPORTER (on TV): As the fifth day of the
"Dramatica-siege" approaches,the self-called "Dramatica-Discussion-List
Army" gives no signs of surrendering. These E-mail-Subscribers turned Cult- Fanatics
keep saying that they -quotes: "...will die before accepting another Copy Protected
Software..." end quotes.
On the screen, we see a heavily armed
"guerrillero" coming out of the compound, he lifts his rifle and yells defiantly
GUERRILLERO: Tortilla! Fajita! Salsa! Burrito Supreme!
Captions in super translates: "LET'S KILL
He falls to the ground. Wounded by the FBI.
CHRIS: Who's that?
SYD: Well, that's Armando. Melanie's theories turned him
into a guerrillero instead of a writer.
CHRIS: That's so sad!
SYD: Not that much. You should've seen his writings.
CHRIS: But I don't get it. Melanie is so smart. Why
everything turned so bad?
SYD: Ah, you said you wished you'd never existed. Without
you, the "Dramatica Creation Story" had no Obstacle Character; and you know
that:"left to her own devices, a Main Character (Melanie) will not willingly
CHRIS: Where's Melanie? I want to see her!
SYD: I cannot show you that. I can only show you the OC and
CHRIS: What do you mean OC and SS throughline? You said
there was no Obstacle Character in this story.
SYD: That's right. When you have no Obstacle Character, The
OC and SS throughlines show you all the pitfalls and potholes that the Main Character
could have avoided if she have had an Obstacle Character.
Syd changes channels to weird, alternate versions of
"Star Wars" and"Silence of the Lambs" in the first, Luke is using the
computer on his ship and misses by a mile the core of the Death Star; in the second,
Clarice Starling is being degraded to a desk job on the F.B.I.
SYD: If you remove the OCs, Luke Skywalker would be a lousy
pilot and Clarice Starling would never have found Buffalo Bill. But the OC and SS
throughlines show the public how those two Main Characters could have succeed.
CHRIS: But what happens in stories where a MC succeeds IN
SPITE of the Obstacle Character?
SYD: It doesn't matter. A Main Character cannot arrive to a
destination designated by a storyform if she doesn't have an Obstacle Character. Thisis
gonna sound too "Butterfly Effect" but, what are the chances of Dr.Kimble wining
the fistfight with Dr. Nichols if it wasn't for Sam Gerard?Kimble would still be a pussy
physician unable of hurting a fly.
CHRIS: You're not talking about mere storyweaving, aren't
SYD: No, I'm talking about an Obstacle Character that is
encoded as aVOID. His paths and impacts are there in the storyform, but since there's no
one to take them to effect, the OC is encoded as a void.
CHRIS: So, when the Obstacle Character is completely,
absolutely, definitively absent...
SYD: You use the OC throughlines to SHOW THE OTHER WAY. The
one that theMC is NOT taking; and you make clear to the public that THAT WAY SHOULD HAVE
BEEN TAKEN in order to arrive at the story's final destination.
CHRIS: And if, suddenly, in the middle of the story that
completely, absolutely, definitively absent Obstacle Character appears?
SYD: You should have prepared his entrance. His impact
should be so great that in a very short time he makes the MC turn and take all the roads
she didn't took.
CHRIS: And how do you "show the other roads"? How
do you prepare an OC entrance so he can make-up for his absent time?
SYD: That depends on the writers creativity. For example,
when Melanie decided to proclaim herself High Priestess of the One and Only Dramatica Cult
Syd pulls out an screenplay, searches the page and reads
SYD (reading): "...She comes out to the balcony. Opens
her arms to salute the cheering crowds, and with a single movement makes them silent to
say:'I shall now proclaim myself High Priestess of the One and Only Dramatica Cult because
I still haven't met anyone who have had a nightmare about cults and stuff'..."
CHRIS: Uh... "because I still haven't met anyone who
have had a nightmare about cults and stuff"?
SYD: Did I told you our dialogist sucks?
CHRIS: Well... I suppose is time to say "I wanna live!
I love my life" and all that, isn't it?
CHRIS: One question, though.
CHRIS: Didn't you went a long way out of the road just to
prove a point?
SYD: Eh... I kind of always do.