Friday, 11 July 2014

While You Were Dancing - The Who & What



John Henry "Two Tone" Fisher is the main character in "While You Were Dancing" and, despite his name, is not based after me. I'm neither of average height, nor do I have naturally white hair, and his name actually comes from two important Catholic figures in Blessed John Henry Newman and St. John Fisher. I wanted to give him an important name that actually has meaning to which he has no inkling of, which goes with much the rest of the story.

If you know much about this story, then you probably have noticed something very apparent with the names. That being, what is with the names?

I find we have a big problem in this society with calling something what it is. We make up stupid slang all the time, we deal with political correctness on a daily basis, and we change terms to match whatever we want at any given moment. If words are ultimately meaningless to these people, then why wouldn't names be, too? After all, that can be changed, too.

But life is about more than just what we make of it. There's plenty out there we don't think about, see, or hear on a daily basis.

Two Tone has a job, he had a girlfriend, and he wears nice new clothes. Sounds like the recipe for success, doesn't it? But, as many truths in life come, the slow descent into irrelevance and alienation in his life from those who thought he knew slowly whittles away at him. It is only on one night in a desperate bid to reclaim his life that it comes upon him that it's over. Throughout "While You Were Dancing", Two Tone spends his time walking through what's left trying to find what he needs to do in a world as lost as he is.

He had a pretty rough past and moved beyond it (more like, fell out of it), though, as the story goes on it is revealed that there are pieces of his old life that still rub him wrong and they might be a key for him to understand exactly why he is where he is.

Then there are the others.

A-Rail doesn't have much of a role in the story, as you've probably noticed. Probably because he doesn't really have much of a role in Two Tone's life. Had they been closer, he most likely would have stayed.

Martin is a character that came to me as the only obvious type of older person that would talk to someone like Two Tone or his gang without either being scared of them or looking down on them. Someone who had a rough youth of his own . . . and possibly a vision of who Two Tone could become.

The leader of the group, Jet, is one going down the same path as Two Tone, only his solution is the polar opposite. When the chips are down Jet is usually the first in a fight, but for some reason, things are different now. Possible wars brewing overseas catch his attention more than what is going on in his front yard.

On the other end is Scotty, a former member of the gang who can't see beyond the blinders in front of him. There are fires all over town, random gang attacks, a rainstorm that won't quit, and troubles overseas, and yet he's worried about his own comfort above all. We don't learn much else about Scotty, due to Two Tone's dislike of him, but I would have liked to learn more about him. Oh well, there are other stories.

There are other absent characters shown in flashback or vision, but they don't have much character to elaborate on due to this. Lotte and Delano we might see again someday, but Two Tone's mother probably won't. A woman who cares more for herself and her invented identity than any semblance of the past, she deliberately left her son flailing in the dark, and is not there when she could help him the most.

Last, is the man named Benjamin. I don't really know a lot about Benjamin. He is a character that has shown up time and time again in my stories and I've never been able to figure out why. All Benjamin is, is a man who went to far down a road we might see in a later story, and was unable to turn back. By the end, his rage and emptiness was all he was left with is a shadow of who he was. The man in gray gave him a gift to help him rule the city he loved so much, and the mysterious figure kept his word. Who is the man in gray? Well, he's no friend of anyone. Especially not Benjamin. By the end he no longer even had his name left.

That covers the characters in "While You Were Dancing", a group of individuals with no sense of community or awareness, and are eventually made to make a choice between the light or the dark. A choice we all have to make everyday.

Next week I'm going to try something lighter. That's right, I'll be talking about the soundtrack.

Yes, the soundtrack.

You'll see what I mean.

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