Uncyclopedia:Pee Review/Lyre

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edit Lyre

I just created this article; it has a few good pictures, some pretty funny content, and I'm hoping that it will reach FA status someday. Please give advice. Regards.PericlesofAthens 19:28, 8 August 2009 (UTC)

I'll book this one Pericles --El Sid, the lazy oneparlez-vous franglais? 21:28, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
Awesome! Thank you.--PericlesofAthens 22:51, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
OK I was going to do it tonight but I'm sitting in bed and it's nearly 1am so I think I'll get some kip and do it tomorrow afternoon/evening. I had a good look at it and I'm actually quite excited about doing the review now, I like what you're doing and how you approach it. More tomorrow --El Sid, the lazy oneparlez-vous franglais? 23:42, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
Humour: 7 Overall the concept is good and there are plenty of laughs but I do feel the humour could do with being a little more subtle and less random sometimes. For example, I don't think Socrates needed to have his method of death changed, its just a bit crude and random as it is, you can just change the wording so that its still authentic but is funnier and relates more to his new fondness of lyres (perhaps hemlock was considering a truth serum or something ;)). Also you could reference some moments from mythology/history which would link without having to make actual events up, like the Sirens, who would use lyres to deceive the sailors. I would also change translation of chinese (since, although I can't be certain, I don't believe they use pronouns - I'd try "strings sing wrong/suspicious/seductive song" instead).In addition, the Chinese authority's anecdote is a bit crude, I think the lyre players should be writing songs that would underpin the nature of each of the accused's philosophy and not just seem so random (Confucianism considers obedience to be important so this one is ok, but it could be worked on, the Sun Tzu one definitely needs to change, I'm not so keen on Oscar Wilde references, especially when they seem so random and implausible, instead make them criticise some aspect of Sun Tzu's military strategy or try to bring an accusation of hypocrisy in there). I feel some of the cultural jokes could be more sharp, occasionally. Essentially, just look out for real cultural phenomena in Chinese/Greek/Renaissance history and try and explain them using the lyre hypothesis, or mix the two approaches of random and half-truth up a bit, keep it balanced. You do this very very well for the Spanish Conquest section, this is what I mean, application of the theme to real history. Unfortunately it feels sometimes like you are just coming up with new scenarios to insert the same jokes, which is a shame because the formatting is so brilliant and the authenticity is very well done, it's a bit like you wrote it and were looking for ways of making a lyre lie, rather than looking for examples you can twist to make the lyre the cause. It is safe to assume however that at least 2/3 of the humour you have left is absolutely fine though, unless it fits under something I have already said (I'm just being very pedantic). I would concentrate on applying the basic formula to some key historical/cultural/mythological events while adding another couple for each section as support. Keep in sections that introduce a new variation on the theme (like the Byzantine lyre) and remove repetitions (like the adultery theme). Look for new ways the lyre could be deceitful, describe it's deceit (or link the origin of its deceit to something like the Orpheus tale from Greek Mythology, perhaps something happened down in Hades or something that made the lyre deceitful - or perhaps it is inherently deceitful, you could link it to the Pandora's Box story in a way here). Orpheus and Greek mythology in general should be emphasised more in the Greek section too. I would suggest linking the birth of political arts (state propaganda, court musicians) and so forth to the lyre too, try and make the link between the poetic side of Greek culture and the philosophical. Finally, lol yes link the fall of the lyre in Western Europe to Christian morality and then link its return (deceptively as a guitar, or otherwise) to the decline of Christianity. Also justify things a little more to make it funnier (like say why it existed in Scandinavia, something to do with the lack of papal control due to paganism in the early years, and protestantism later maybe). When you say "the Welsh are known for their lying", what are they known for lying about? This is an opportunity for a joke/anecdote in my opinion and you should take it up. I find the concept of lyres in their original form a little jarring in the modern section right at the end, so I might consider re-appraising it, unless you argue that they somehow got back into fashion by deceiving their users that they are a novelty or 'retro' instrument, and hence "cool". I would suggest perhaps that lyres no longer have an active part to play in our culture because we have found other ways of lying and it has become deeply engrained in our culture, legal system and politics. One of these options anyway. I found "pathological lyre" absolutely hilarious btw.
Concept: 9 Lyres are a very good instrument to choose for satirical purposes due to their association with various mythologies and cultures and their standalone status (they seem quite distinct from other stringed instruments). Obviously they also offer puns, all of which you pick up on well within the article. What I also like is your attention to authenticity, I think article do work best when you introduce them with all the facts and such things as etymologies and the actual physical workings of the instrument and its relation to other instruments, as you do. The historical approach is good too, especially since I am interested in ancient history myself, the attention to realistic-sounding anecdotes is particularly charming for me, although, for some, realism may benefit while humour may lose out (especially more subtle humour). The only criticism is that sometimes it feels like you are focusing a little too much on this lyre/liar pun, which can be a bit tiring, In the final modern section, can you not include some more anecdotes or, try to explain that the lyre has evolved into something else but continues to deceive us, or now we have some lyricists (give examples), who continue the great tradition of lying? This is a good opportunity too. In addition, I think the pronunciations break up the flow a little occasionally (only when you're just inserting IPA that doesn't need to be there, like the Persian lyre, unless there is a joke, in the case of the Chinese lyre). Overall it might just be a little too long.
Prose and formatting: 9.5 Don't link to wikipedia too much. Only when it's an absolutely new concept that the reader would do well to read up on, particularly if it is a type of obscure lyre, but not for every empire and civilisation. Don't overuse the "what a...!" exclamation too much (at all actually, I know you only use it twice, but it doesn't fit with your tone, in my opinion). Go easy on the footnotes too, I know you're trying to make it seem authentic, but you might be going a little too far, a little too excessive (stick to 5-10 footnotes if possible, maybe a few Ibids with references to different chapters).
Images: 7 I would delete the last picture and move the first picture (which is very funny) to the end, assuming that you mirror the lying theme in the text (perhaps the last one I talk about under "humour") because otherwise it ruins the academic approach you take and would do better being a kind of absurd finale. The other pictures are perfect, they reflect the scholarly approach you are taking very well, but I might suggest changing the captions a little for a couple (the orpheus one doesn't to be so blatant, you can make subtle hints at things instead). Although the pictures are not humorous in themselves, if you are looking for an authentic scholarly feel, I would leave them (and perhaps get rid of the two modern ones, except that I quite like the .gif one for some reason), or replace a couple of them with photoshopped version, or just pictures of lyres in films/tv/art that might be more easily to parody. Especially if there is one in something like National Lampoon, um... Monty Python, Rome, a photo of a theatre production of Medea or Oresteia or whatever. It's not particularly good I admit, but there is a painting by Gustave Moreau about Orpheus [1] that makes it look like he was decapitated by a lyre, or a lyre-player, which could be used if you needed, you could even spin off about how this is commemorated in Western art as a guardian against the lyre and hence why lyres stopped being used here I guess. It's quite weak I suppose, but you could use it in passing if you like or if you have no alternatives.
Miscellaneous: 8 More or less averaged. Apologies for the length of some of my review sections btw.
Final Score: 40.5 Right, I like the concept a lot and the way you approach it. I feel you need to branch out a little bit, make it feel a little less repetitive and cite from other sources directly into your article (for example, include a couple of lines from Lucian or some Taoist fable or something) and just be a little bit more subtle about your humour occasionally. This review definitely has potential to be featured and I really can't wait to see what you do with it next because I'm very impressed with the degree of authenticity you are devoted to. Don't delete or replace anything unless I have specified it, or you feel it fits under a category I have criticised, and don't think I am critical of more than about 20% of it. Just concentrate on refining it (note: this doesn't mean making the article shorter necessarily, just making it so the reader doesn't feel like there is unnecessary detail, perfecting what you already have) and take in some new perspectives. Giving alternate causes for real events in history is always fun, just spin a new story using the events of history as they already are ;)
Reviewer: --El Sid, the lazy oneparlez-vous franglais? 16:11, 9 August 2009 (UTC)

In addition, sorry that it might seem a little lacking in focus, I wrote this over the space of an hour and a half while being continually distracted - but wanted to be as informative as possible so ultimately left everything I had written in - which might make it difficult to follow sometimes. I also wrote it originally as a list of notes, so apologies if there might be a couple of incomplete sentences I missed out on there. At the very least, there might be a few good ideas for you to include in your new version :) --El Sid, the lazy oneparlez-vous franglais? 16:11, 9 August 2009 (UTC)
This is a very thorough, thoughtful, and outstanding review. I was not expecting something of this caliber! You systematically combed through the entire article and investigated every possible means to improve it. You pointed out several flaws and weaknesses in structure and repetition of themes which would otherwise not have been very obvious to me, even after I had reread the material several times! I will take your advice to heart. Regards.--PericlesofAthens 16:48, 10 August 2009 (UTC)
The one and only disagreement I have with your analysis is the suggestion to remove the Jack Bauer picture. Although adding nothing but genuinely historical and purely academic images would fit well the consistent theme that this article is serious and scholarly, the caption used for the Jack Bauer picture is just too irresistibly good to remove! It's so simple, yet so incredibly funny, because he is aggressive, right in your face with a gun, and deeply offended that you would have the nerve to call him a lyre!. Lol. I know that it has nothing to do with the written material of that section (even if loosely connected to the discussion of Western lyres in modern times), but I wasn't willing to create an entire section on Jack Bauer just to include it. Since you seemed to like the Hillary-Clinton/Donald Sutherland image of them calling each other lyres, which is located in a section that has nothing to do with Clinton or Sutherland (i.e. "Construction and design"), I hope you won't mind the inclusion of the Jack Bauer pic. Regards.--PericlesofAthens 17:00, 10 August 2009 (UTC)
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