Apr. 14, 2004: comments on final draft of Ep. 73
From: Peter Laird
To: Lloyd Goldfine
Here are some notes on the final draft of Ep. 73.
1.) Re: the following:
"*FOOT GESTAPO CAPT.
You are in violation of Curfew. Throw your weapon behind you and lay face down on the ground …"
I still think "Throw your weapon behind you" sounds weird and stilted, and is inferior to the standard "Drop your weapon".
2.) Re: the following:
We’re going to try again, Mikey.
*ONE ARMED MIKEY
You got a plan?
Maybe. And, we’re going to need Leo and Raph."
I still think Don's last lines here are awkward and I will suggest again changing them as I suggested earlier ("I'm working on it. But... we’re going to need Leo and Raph."). It's not a big deal and the episode won't fall apart with the lines as is, but it bugs me -- the way I read this exchange, Don first says something VERY definitive ("We're going to try again"), then Mikey asks him if he has a plan, and Don replies hesitantly ("Maybe") but then follows that up with another definitive statement ("We're going to need Leo and Raph") that indicates (at least to me) that in fact he DOES have a plan. Even if it's a half-formed plan that doesn't have all the details worked out or all of the participants as yet committed to it, still it IS a plan... and Don shouldn't say, when asked if he has a plan, "maybe".
3.) I don't understand why my suggestion about replacing the second usage of the word "gulag" with "prison" (when April is talking about Casey's fate) was not used. Again, not a big deal, but I think it would help comprehension among younger viewers.
Also, I realize that it is probably way to late to put this into the story, but as I was rereading this section, I thought it would be cool if one of rebel leader April's young helpers/followers is a young (teenage?) boy or girl who turns out to be hers and Casey's child. Maybe the kid could be looking at Don with wonder, and April says something like "For years he's heard stories about you... but he never thought he'd get to meet the famous Donatello..." And maybe Don sees something of Casey and April in the kid, asks April about it, and that's when April tells him that it is hers and Casey's kid, born some time after Don mysteriously disappeared.
4.) The "instant happy" reunion of Raph and Leo with Don is still in there, apparently unchanged. It completely goes against the tone and logic of the story that these two Turtles -- apparently even MORE bitter and disaffected than Mike -- would see Don and immediately give him smiles and hugs. If it is a question of not having enough time to go through another "coming to comprehend the situation and accept Don's presence" thing like we did earlier with one-armed Mikey, it would be simple enough to show them beginning to display their anger at Don for staying away for so long, and then have one-armed Mikey jump in and cut them off with a line like "We don't have time for this! And you guys need to know something about this Don..." Then cut to sometime later -- maybe they're now sitting around a table drinking tea out of Master Splinter's old tea set (snif!) -- either just as or just after Mikey has finished his explanation... perhaps a thoughtful Leo is asking "So... are you "our" Don... somehow moved forward in time... or a completely different Don from another universe?" And as Don helpfully begins to launch into his complicated theory of space/time/dimensions, Raph groans and yells "Enough! As far as I'm concerned, he's gotta be the real Don -- he's makin' my brain hurt just like in the old days."
P.S. I had the pleasure of watching the rough cut of the first "Big Brawl" episodes yesterday -- wicked cool! I think this arc is going to be really neat. I hope Stan has seen it -- young Usagi is a hoot, even if he doesn't say anything. And I love the animation of the Gyogi -- he reminds me of various entities from "Spirited Away".