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|Humour:||6||Hi Magic, hope you’re well. There are some really good ideas in here, but at the moment I think it looks a bit rushed, and this is really holding it back in my opinion. The first half of the article, for example, seems a bit contrived. The whole premise of the subject simply forgetting where they've been and where they're going - but knowing that they have to go into this house - is odd, and unfortunately, clunky. It also seems random because it isn’t particularly vital to the core of the article either, any number of equally irrelevant set-ups would have sufficed. It doesn't look like you've put much thought into it to be honest, as many of the lines seem hastily thrown together and are unrelated to the subject matter (which is supposed to be hypnotists). The scenario doesn’t make sense - why, for instance, would the subject be going to pay his mortgage in a creepy old house? And how come the creepy old house suddenly turns into a nice little woodland cottage? I thought you said it was in the middle of a dark and dreary street? And why on Earth does the guy suddenly start worrying about having left his water running? Is this some hypnotism in-joke that I’m not getting, or is it just random? Inexplicable things like this aren't particularly funny, it just makes the author look lazy and noncommittal. It gives the impression that you didn't really have an idea, and just made everything up as you went along. Ultimately, it's more confusing than funny. If you can, try to relate as many of your jokes as you can to the theme – which as we both know is hypnotists. It might work better if you went for a more traditional approach to visiting hypnotists - perhaps the subject could go to see one on stage, or privately to tackle a medical/psychological disorder? The latter might work well in conjunction with the denouement you have now. This would certainly help with the flow and consistency, which at the moment the article is greatly lacking. It should also provide a good platform for more jokes – relevant jokes at the expense of the subject matter. Look at it from this point of view, if you click on an article about hypnotists, you want to find jokes about hypnotists, not a random story about houses that suddenly change and people with memory loss.
From then on, I do quite like the whole feeling of "going under". The swinging watch is one of the very few moving .gifs I've seen that doesn't annoy the hell out of me. I suppose it's because it serves a valid purpose. I also quite like the long, freeflowing visual section, and not just because it was my idea. Your images are probably a bit more tasteful than mine though, so I guess that's good. I suppose I should suggest that you try to make it look a little different if you can, simply so others don't dismiss it as a cheap imitation. It doesn't really bother me, creative commons and all that, it might mean the other users take the article a bit more seriously. Another tip I would like to make is that you try to make this section more closely resemble the process of hypnotism, because right now it's just a bunch of colours. Now I've never been hypnotised, but I don't imagine it's anything like how you portray here. Where's the gentle voice saying "you're getting sleepy... you are now completely under my power... when I snap my fingers..." and all the other easily recognisable stuff like that? It’s like I’ve already said: keep your jokes relevant, research the topic if you have to; right now it reads like it’s been written by someone who knows nothing about the area.
The ending itself is pretty good in my opinion, but there are little things that stop it from being as funny as it could be. I really like the line about him being mugged and the implication that he's been bummed by the hypnotist, but I suppose as a punchline it fails because the set-up isn't as concise. The final line about him being "fucked" sticks out awkwardly too. I guess I don't like the sudden crudeness, and seems a bit tacked-on. I wonder if there's a better way to conclude the article than this? It's definitely something to have a think about. Considering hypnotism clichés, maybe the victim could also think he’s a chicken, or something?
|Concept:||6||The concept is ok. I do really like the idea of the subject going to a hypnotist who abuses his power, but I think you could get more from it. I suppose it would be nice to see some more subtle references to other victims of the hypnotist at the start - say for instance if the hypnotist's operating room could be filled with clues to his shady nature; other people's clothes, wallets, something like that (but funnier obviously, that's just an example of how you could achieve a sense of foreboding. I think something like this would be much more effective than references to dark streets and creepy houses, that's all a bit too obvious and unfunny). Might I suggest again that you read a little more about hypnotism? At the very least check out the Wikipedia article, you might get some more ideas of the different facets and clichés of the practise, which would help you go into more depth here (certain questions, like why the subject is there in the first place, are left noticeably unanswered). It would be great to see some more textual content in here. Take a look at other largely visual articles like 2001:A Space Odyssey and Dreaming to see what they do - all of them have large text sections amongst the images. If you can do something more like that, rather than just a lot of pictures with a few captions, I think the article could go from being good to great.
The other thing that may well ruin it, I'm not sure, is the fact that it's in second person. Second person can be very difficult to make funny, and it generally just comes across as being a string of bland insults directed at the reader. You don't fall into this trap as badly as most other writers do, but at times I found myself wondering why you had gone for this style. Did you simply want to mock your reader? If so it isn't particularly effective. One of the reasons I don't think second person works is that you have to make too many assumptions about the person reading it. You suggest that the reader might be going to pay their mortgage, all the while I'm reading it and thinking "I don't have a mortgage". Hell, I don't even have a wallet. Do you see how this can distract from the humour? It’s supposed to be aimed at me but the description is totally off. Obviously this is your call, but you should at least consider putting this in first person, even if you decide against it.
|Prose and formatting:||8||Your prose is generally fine, at least what little there is of it. One of few problems I noticed in regards to this is where you say "beaconing you in", which is not a phrase - I think you mean "beckoning you in". Another is in the part where you talk about leaving the water on, and you say you hope someone "does that for you". Obviously I know what you mean here, but grammatically it doesn't make sense – what do you hope they do? You can't say "that" to refer to it because you haven't previously mentioned the action to which the word "that" refers - which I'm guessing is turning the water off. Do you see what I mean here?
The formatting itself is quite nice, I personally think it would look better without the bold, which in my opinion makes all the text look a bit blocky, but again that's your choice.
|Images:||8||The pictures are all visually pleasing enough. As mentioned, I don't really get the first two of the two houses, but I'm guessing you're just being deliberately contradictory. The one of the hypnotist himself is quite funny, despite the fact that he doesn't look anything like a hypnotist (then again, what do hypnotists actually look like? I'm probably just picturing the Svengali stereotype), but whatever the case I suppose it's creepy enough. I've already spoke about the rest of them really, so I guess there isn't much else to add.|
|Final Score:||34||So to sum up, I think the main thing you need to do here is sort out the set-up, right now it's so very random and rushed. It might also be worth seeing what you can do to differentiate it from BabyTV too, although that isn't a major problem (to be honest a lot of users have probably forgotten all about it by now). And finally, some more depth to the whole thing would certainly help a lot. If there's anything I've said here that you want me to explain better, or if you want my opinion on anything I might have missed, please let me know on my talky page and I'll try to help. I hope the review is ok.|
|Reviewer:||--Black Flamingo 13:53, April 9, 2011 (UTC)|