Talk:Mary Sue

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Bella Swan in the See Also section[edit]

Bella Swan is listed in the see also section but is not refrenced at all anywhere else. I agree with whoever listed it though, Bella is the greatest example of a canon Sue I've ever seen. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 24.252.106.82 (talk) 08:09, 7 August 2008 (UTC)

I agree with you. In fact, I once added a section on Bella Swan, since she is, after all, the most prototypical "Mary Sue" in the history of professional literature. However, the segment kept getting deleted by rabid "Twilight" fans, so I eventually gave up on it. It's too bad though, because having an article on the "Mary Sue" phenomena without referencing Bella Swan is like writing a history of World War II without ever mentioning Germany. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 209.33.202.98 (talk) 16:02, 13 April 2009 (UTC)
It's not just rabid Twilight fans. This article should stay away from listing specific examples unless they are referenced elsewhere. You need to cite a published book or a magazine article that specifically uses the words Mary Sue to describe Bella (and I'm sure there must be at least one). The difference between Bella and Nazi Germany is that Nazi Germany's involvement in WWII is an undeniable fact; Bella being a Mary Sue is a matter of subjective judgment. --Bluejay Young (talk) 15:29, 25 April 2011 (UTC)

Are we REALLY to the point where one of us has to make a blog entry about Bella Swan, just so someone else can "cite" it?[edit]

I'm Jewish. Every other Jewish person reading this knows exactly where I'm going with this already, but let me explain for the rest of you: In Jewish Rabbinical circles, nobody will take you seriously unless you cite another Rabbi when making a claim. For example, Rabbi A might say "eating pork is okay if it saves a baby's life", but no other Rabbi would accept it unless Rabbi A said "Excuse me, I meant to say that Rabbi B once said that eating pork is okay if it saves a baby's life". It seems to me that this is the point we're to with Wikipedia. We're all pretending that we can't state the obvious unless some doofus has made a Blog Entry somewhere backing up what we want to say.

The fact that people keep wanting to add Bella Swan to this page has nothing to do with "hating Twilight". In fact, classifying a character as a "Mary Sue" isn't necessarily a "bad thing" or an "insult", it's just a description. The people that want to add that particular character mainly want to do so because THAT'S WHAT THE CHARACTER IS. Yes, the books and movie are popular. Which is, of course, why the character is receiving attention.

Here's another example: Let's say that you were doing a Wiki entry on Superheros, and somebody wouldn't let you cite Spawn, because "Superhero is a term jointly trademarked by Marvel and D.C., and therefore Spawn cannot be cited as a Superhero". You'd think it was silly and stupid, right? And pretty much a disservice to Wikipedia, given that Spawn was one of the most popular and influential Superheros of the 90's.

In any event, I wish all of us could just get over the whole Fanboyism thing. Bella Swan should be referenced on this page because the character is the most high-profile example of the archtype. Keeping the character off because "fanboys love her" or "fanboys hate her" is just plain dumb. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 209.33.202.98 (talk) 16:21, 13 April 2009 (UTC)

Unlike 209.33.202.98, I'm not going to make any gross generalizations about why editors add or remove references to Bella Swan; instead, I'll just say why I remove them: because they're never referenced. Any of them. Ever.
Wikipedia isn't a list of things that everyone knows—or at least it shouldn't be. It should be a compilation of what's been previously published by verifiable reliable sources. When you can find a reliable source that says that Bella's a Mary Sue, feel free to add that to the article (hint: blogs are explicitly not reliable sources). Dori ❦ (TalkContribsReview) ❦ 22:53, 13 April 2009 (UTC)
"When you can find a reliable source that says that Bella's a Mary Sue" How about the Twilight books themselves, are they reliable enough for you? 202.89.137.147 (talk) 15:47, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
You'll probably never find a reliable published source that Bella is a Mary-Sue though. Most people agree that she is a Mary-Sue, but that's just a matter of opinion, isn't it? So where would one go to find a reliable source stating that she is one? I could write an article stating that, but it probably wouldn't be considered a reliable source. Even the fans of Twilight will admit she is one... —Preceding unsigned comment added by 99.249.132.108 (talk) 09:14, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
If a verifiable reliable source can't be found for a statement, that's usually a tip that it's not something worth including in an encyclopedia. OTOH, if something is commonly known, someone should eventually mention it in a usable source. For instance, this article in today's SJSU Daily Spartan. Consequently, I've added it to this article, and because it has a source, it's likely to remain. Dori ❦ (TalkContribsReview) ❦ 22:24, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
Unfortunately, that link doesn't succeed - it is an opinion posted in a student newspaper, not a proper critical analysis of the concept. --Ckatzchatspy 23:07, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
Imo, that source completely supports the statement that "original characters in role-playing games or literary canon are also sometimes criticized as being "Mary Sues"". In that article, she's an original character that's being criticized as a Mary Sue, yes? The article doesn't say that it's solely about litcrit theory (f it was, it would be considerably shorter and should include {{litcrit}}). And pretty much anything that uses the phrase "Mary Sue" will be someone's opinion. Dori ❦ (TalkContribsReview) ❦ 23:38, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

If you actually read your own Wikipedia article on "Mary Sue" you'll notice that Bella Swan actually fulfills the criteria listed in this very article. Therefore, she is technically a "Mary Sue". 202.89.136.172 (talk) 00:46, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

And if you read WP policies (such as WP:V or WP:RS), you'll see what can be added is what's independently verifiable. "Meets the criteria" isn't what matters. "A published academic paper says she meets the criteria" is. Now, as to whether this article should allow statements published by verifiable reliable sources outside of the litcrit world—ah, that's another discussion altogether. Dori ❦ (TalkContribsReview) ❦ 03:40, 17 July 2009 (UTC)
So you're saying Bella Swan isn't a Mary Sue because nobody else has published anything stating that she's a Mary Sue and therefore it isn't "official" that she is one. 203.211.77.193 (talk) 10:32, 18 July 2009 (UTC)
Because, obviously, someone is going to publish an "academic paper" about how a character is considered a Mary Sue. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 69.31.152.140 (talk) 22:55, 1 August 2009 (UTC)
Academic papers about fan fiction, including the Mary Sue concept and citing examples, already exist. That isn't the point. The point is that Wikipedia has rules for what can and can't be included, and the subject of this article is extremely subject to personal interpretation. Wikipedia wants writers to cite "notable" third-party sources, like books or magazines that anyone can get access to. (Not just published academic papers) So if the Newsweek book reviewer wrote up something on Twilight and used the words "Mary Sue" in describing Bella, I would think that it should be allowed. The example given of an opinion published in a student newspaper is iffy, because is a student paper "notable"? But no, it doesn't have to be an academic paper as far as I know. --Bluejay Young (talk) 10:59, 13 November 2009 (UTC)
Well, I don't really care about Bella Swan or anything, but I agree that her inclusion would make sense. Simply stating "because 'Bella Swan is a Mary Sue' cannot be found in any official document, we cannot include her in the Wikipage," is silly. "Mary Sue" is not an official term. You won't find it in the official dictionary, so why would any official document it use it? Furthermore, what is considered an official document anyway? I found a review in the paper the other day (yes, the actual newsprint) for the second movie, and in the article the critic explains the character as, well, a Mary Sue. He/she doesn't use the term, of course, for said reason above, but he/she essentially describes exactly that which a Mary Sue is. You will not find exact official documentation on Bella's Mary Sue-isms, nor will you of any character, but I believe this is as close as you could possibly get.Milkman7777 (talk) 21:37, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
I didn't mean that kind of official document: I said notable, which on Wikipedia means accessible books or articles on the subject. The word "documentation" means something a little different from, say, the dictionary or the Constitution. The actual term "Mary Sue" is used by a handful of reviewers, who are cited in the Wikipedia article, and I think in this case that's the kind of documentation and "notable" sources Wikipedia wants to see. I'm not wild about their standards in some cases, but there you are. --Bluejay Young (talk) 07:22, 11 January 2010 (UTC)

Between the novel "Twilight" and the Wikipedia article on "Mary Sue", it's apparent that the article succinctly describes the character of Bella Swan as seen in the novel. So either the novel itself isn't a reliable source, or Wikipedia is unreliable. Which is it? 202.74.194.57 (talk) 06:39, 22 February 2010 (UTC)

The issue is not whether we think the novel's description of Bella Swan matches Wikipedia's description of what constitutes a Mary Sue. To look at a description, particularly one as subjective as this, and decide a character meets that description would constitute original research. As others have already stated, what's needed is a reliable source that explicitly states that Bella Swan is a Mary Sue. —tktktk 01:52, 24 February 2010 (UTC)
There's nothing "original" about it, Wikipedia has already done all the research in this very article. 202.74.194.57 (talk) 04:36, 27 February 2010 (UTC)
It's original research because we would making a statement that the sources did not. Specifically, it would be synthesis of published material that advances a position. In other words, we would be combining the book's description of Bella Swan with another source's description of a Mary Sue to advance the position that Bella is a Mary Sue. —tktktk 03:16, 28 February 2010 (UTC)

Projection[edit]

The difficulty with finding objective sources for this kind of thing is that, precisely because the concept is an author and maybe reader projection, both author and reader are often sensitive about any such suggestion. For example, the entire concept of ego projection directly counters objectivism. This pretty much limits any research into these areas to those journals or other publishing portals that already preach to the choir. For Wikipedia purposes, it might be simplest to wait until the first wave of popularity blows over -- it always does -- at which point the question can be approached without quite so much emotional investment. - Tenebris —Preceding unsigned comment added by 207.112.29.43 (talk) 05:56, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

General Usage?[edit]

This article seems to only draw references to Star Trek. Is this term in general usage or is it only known to Star Trek fans? If so, then shouldn't it be described as such? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 192.158.61.141 (talk) 18:27, 12 July 2010 (UTC)

The term DID come from the Trek fandom, but it's not exclusive to it.--raganbaby_6 01:52, 10 December 2010 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Raganbaby 6 (talkcontribs)

Criticism[edit]

"Litmus tests have also been criticised for increasing a character's rating for trivial attributes, such as having the same gender as the author (there are only two genders to choose from), being a teenager (even if the character would be LESS believable had they been older) or for the author pretending they are the character (which is in fact useful for better characterisation)."

Shouldn't this page note that almsot all mary sue tests are intended to be taken as asking questions against established canon? Words like "unusual" in these tests mean unusual in context. The example about sci-fi and fantasy settings making high mary sue scores is incorrect because it assumes that a test-taker took the test incorrectly - you're supposed to mark things that stand out in the canon: having magical powers, for example, doesn't stand out in a fantasy setting where most characters have magical powers, so a test taker should not mark it even though it's technically correct.

As for real poeple such as Bono being mary sues according to tests; it should also be noted that a fictional character in a fanfiction-type setting with the same attributes is usually poorly recieved regardless of whether or not such people actually exist. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 99.16.250.139 (talk) 08:07, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

Sure. But there are MS tests which actually want you to count any original character with magical powers, even in a setting where magical powers are normal. More to the point, in actual practice the Mary Sue police often pounce on any original female character as a Mary Sue. And yes, any fictional character in a fan fiction setting with let's say Bono type attributes is "usually poorly received", but especially if they are female. And the real question is why? Why are such characters downgraded? Why are they assumed to originate only in immature fantasy -- especially if both the character and the author are female? --Bluejay Young (talk) 09:00, 21 June 2010 (UTC)
Why? Because people automatically assume that its author insertion without taking the time to look into things. There is no deeper meaning here, its all assumptions and most of the time its just people following the bandwagon of what happens to be the current target of the Mary Sue callers at the time. Actual Mary Sue or not never really mattered much, it is usually more 'I dislike your character so I am just going to call them Mary Sue and then try and then try and justify it with some meaningless subcategory' etc etc. You're giving most to much credit. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 69.246.106.234 (talk) 18:55, 4 October 2010 (UTC)

So very true. I've seen people viciously attack young authors who clearly aren't skilled yet, and now the term Mary Sue has enabled a bullying culture, with so many people mindlessly jumping on the bandwagon. I've seen so many young authors stop writing altogether because the "mary sue police" were so NASTY to them, and so the writers never even get a chance to improve. Pretty hilarious when some of the most popular characters today, like Batman, James Bond, Goku, Riku and Cloud Strife more then fit the criteria and yet these mental midgets are pleasantly oblivious to it. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 118.208.251.57 (talk) 04:26, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

You may be interested in the articles I've cited at the bottom of this page then. Another thing that happens to young writers is they start thinking they are only supposed to create characters who are dull and unattractive. When these types of characters meet with approval from the Sue Police, that creates and reinforces a whole new set of stereotypes. I'm not a fiction writer, just an editor, but I can see how fan fiction has changed from the 60s to today. --Bluejay Young (talk) 18:04, 30 July 2011 (UTC)

Regarding the "sub-concepts"[edit]

From what I can see, that part of the article seems to be lifted out of tvtropes.org, I'm just sayin'..... 202.8.230.82 (talk) 17:38, 9 August 2009 (UTC)

I think actually tvtropes may have gotten it from this entry. The subconcepts part has been around for several years. Only way to be sure is to check the dates each was added to its respective wiki, I guess. --Bluejay Young (talk) 10:31, 13 November 2009 (UTC)

Example[edit]

I think Chuck Norris from Walker Texas Ranger be a Gary Stu. 67.140.50.81 (talk) 01:17, 21 January 2010 (UTC)

How about James Bond? And many of Austen's protagonists? This article desperately needs some examples that normal readers will have heard of. Greglocock (talk) 00:50, 21 March 2010 (UTC)

You're still not getting it. If you say "James Bond is a Mary Sue because his actions and attributes fit the description of a Mary Sue", that is circular reasoning. Wikipedia standards are asking for documentation from notable sources, and they have a very specific definition for what they term a notable source. It has to be a book or magazine article, not just any magazine either but things like Newsweek and Popular Mechanics. I mean, it has to be something that anyone can get like in a library or something. You give citations so they can find it. This is what normal readers need to have heard of. You have to have a book or article or television documentary that uses the words "Mary Sue" in describing him. Like Pierce Brosnan is being interviewed and Barbara Walters says "A lot of people nowadays feel that Bond's adventures are too fantastic; compared to today's more realistic action heroes, Bond is a Mary Sue." Something like that.
There is a blog with a terrific essay making a case for Mary Sue shaming as a form of bullying, but I can't use it because Wikipedia does not allow you to cite blogs. ETA: In fact, there have been several major discussions[1] [2] [3] [4][5] [6] [7] in online fandom in the last six months or so about the detriments of Mary Sue paranoia, the Mary Sue police, etc., but I can't use any of it. --Bluejay Young (talk) 03:39, 1 June 2010 (UTC)
Why don't you use James T. Kirk? On p. 97 of Enterprising Women by Camille Bacon-Smith, it says "Other fans have noted that James Kirk is himself a Mary Sue, because he represents similarly exaggerated characteristics of strength, intelligence, charm, and adventurousness. They note that the soubriquet 'Mary Sue' may be a self-imposed sexism -- she can't do that, she's a girl."
In fact, I just went and put the full quote in the reference to Kirk under Criticism, to make it clear what I was talking about. I also think you are more likely to find notable critiques of the Earth's Children series that call Ayla a Mary Sue. --Bluejay Young (talk) 21:46, 30 May 2010 (UTC)
I disagree with the viewpoint that all Mary Sue stories are female empowerment: Bella Swann, a character widely agreed to be a Sue, has almost no identity apart from being Edward's love interest. Pretty much the same goes for Ebony Dark'ness Dementia Raven Way of My Immortal, only with Draco Malfoy. Mary Sues aren't necessarily female empowerment, and a story including female empowerment doesn't necessarily include Mary Sues. -72.73.35.238 (talk) 21:03, 14 June 2010 (UTC)
The point is that people are finally bringing up the fact that a lot of stories with or about empowered women are being unfairly accused of being a Mary Sue. None of these people are saying there is no such thing as a MS or that every story labeled MS is really about powerful women. Anyway, My Immortal is an obvious put-on, it shouldn't even be used as an example because it was written as a gag. --Bluejay Young (talk) 08:34, 21 June 2010 (UTC)

The character Ayla could certainly be called "empowering" for women in a way - definitely "Up Women" particularly given the very narrow confines given to women in the fictional Neanderthal setting she's supposed to have grown up in - a woman can't say "no" to ANY man (mate or otherwise) for example. Nevertheless Ayla is as classic a Mary Sue as Wesley Crusher - except her character is better developed (and a more sympathetic one IMO). Also how “empowering” is it to make out that ONE woman seemed to invent just about everything, and domesticate not just dogs but horses too? Surely it’s a bit too OTT to be credible. Enough is written about Bella without me adding anything, but both she, and the rush of "fan fiction" which started the original "Mary Sue" story in the first place was all about the mushy fantasies of adolescent girls which were more than just being a lieutenant at 15 and ½, but also about “getting her man” (in one sense or another) – usually Kirk, Spock, McCoy or all three as mentioned in the article. I am not really sure this sort of obsessing with a male character is all that “empowering”! Perhaps female characters are more closely checked for “Mary Sueness” than their male counterparts would be – although since it was the proliferation of female “Mary Sues” in Trek fan fiction that sparked the term, it is understandable that people would be sensitised into thinking “not another one”.

As for Kirk. He has some “Mary Sue” traits. He always seems to win his battles; always gets the girl (they actually keep throwing themselves at him) etc. However he cheated to get past the Kobiashi Maru (a real Mary Sue wouldn’t do this) and Spock tends to solve a great many of the problems that beset him. He’s a young Star Ship captain (he was 34 at the start of TOS) but it isn’t an unbelievably young age – there are a number of examples of naval captains who got the job at that age or younger. Spock would be a better candidate – he has the Vulcan neck pinch; funny ears; a green pallor; is exceptionally strong; and solves all sorts of problems, including ones outside his areas of expertise such as telling McCoy how to finish off the operation to reconnect his brain!

I don’t think that Bond qualifies as a “Mary Sue”. He may have been the fantasy projection of Flemming – but if you read the books, Bond is much more vulnerable and has things far less his own way in them. The other 00s tend to get the glamour assignments, and he tends to get beaten up a fair bit. He’s a fantasy figure, but there is a difference between that and a “Mary Sue”. He doesn’t invent Q’s gadgets as well, for example. I don’t think Jane Austin’s characters qualify either. She wrote romantic “chic lit”, and, yes, the women all seem to face some sort of “tragedy” (usually about going down in the world financially), but they are not unbelievably gifted, and don’t do improbable things – like get appointed to Parliament even though women are officially barred, or “advise” the Prime Minister, or get proposed to by the Prince Regent, or invent nitro glycerine in between to attending balls where she was the acknowledged belle. Wesley Crusher “wonder boy” always fixes the Enterprise when it breaks down when La Forge fails. No matter how clever you are, you still need time to learn things, and you can’t know all the technical details at a glance just because you have tremendous aptitude for physics. Crusher goes from the “suspend your disbelief” scenario to the simply ridiculous, and with a fairly one dimensional character too. I think that’s the essence of a “Mary Sue”

Sure. The problem is finding books, magazine and newspaper articles, etc. that bring up the points you mention and use the term "Mary Sue" in discussing them. The only thing I would question is the idea that the term "Mary Sue" was sparked by so many of them popping up in stories. Actually, there weren't that many at the time Paula Smith coined the term. There were a handful of very prominent ones, and they got to be prominent because they appeared in some of the first Star Trek fanfiction novels. See The Misfit by Sharon Emily and the Sherrith McRaith stories, beginning with The Affirmation by Sheryl Roberts.
Now, I can't bring this up in the article itself, but there is a lot more to the origins of the "Mary Sue" concept than just dewy-eyed little neos writing themselves into their favorite Star Trek character's bed. Paula Smith had a definite agenda when she came up with that term. To explain what she did and why would make this page way too long. Send me a PM if you want to know. I would also encourage you to read Mary Sue at Fanlore. --Bluejay Young (talk) 18:04, 30 July 2011 (UTC)
I definitely agree this article needs more examples outside of star trek, because as I was reading it, that would have helped increase the understanding of it. The Bella Swan example is good, however there are also some good examples of male sues in fantasy fiction that people may be able to source criticisms of more easily. Rhonin and Krasus from R A Knaak's World of Warcraft writings are very commonly criticized. Drizzt Do'Urden is another popular character you maybe able to source accusations of sue-dom. If anyone was wanting to try to add examples (I'm not going to myself because I fear I would do so incorrectly and draw the ire of moderators, so I'll leave it to someone with better Wikipedia skills than I) I would look at them to start. 124.148.252.77 (talk) 10:44, 9 August 2010 (UTC)
It needs examples outside of fandom, that is, science fiction and fantasy, video games with stories to them, and the fan fiction writers thereof. It has to be mainstream. It has to be something non-fandom people would have heard of, which is why Twilight is such a perfect example. That is about as mainstream as it gets. I am genuinely amazed that no mainstream publication has used the term "Mary Sue" in a book or film review of Twilight. I'm sure there are Mary Sue-like characters in Lost or Mad Men or that Lindsay Lohan has played a Mary Sue-like character in a film, but until Time or Newsweek or the Saturday Evening Post runs a review that uses the words "Mary Sue" to describe those characters, we can't cite it here.
I did a Google news archive search for "Mary Sue" and found a lot of real people by that name, and one example of a politician (Chuck Webb) accused of "Mary Sue Syndrome" -- by which they meant running such a lackluster campaign as to blow the huge lead he had. I have no idea what that's about. When I typed in "Mary Sue Syndrome", I found myself on salon.com, where author Laura Miller earnestly advised other writers to "Beware of Mary Sue". This would have been fine -- it was her column, not a blog -- except that she didn't cite a single example outside of "Trekkie's Tale", instead giving us the usual "You all know what I mean by Mary Sue, you all know her when you see her" cop-out. A reader (handle: tomreedtoon) commented to another article, citing Glee as an example of Mary Sue syndrome, but that can't be used.
I did find one reference to "Mary Sue" in a mainstream context, that being Stieg Larsson's Blomqvist. The only other mainstream sources I was able to find which mentioned "Mary Sue" at all, were sneering newspaper articles on fan fiction which gave the impression that all fan fiction was graceless smut written by 14-year-olds. --Bluejay Young (talk) 19:55, 23 August 2010 (UTC)
Here. When you are trying to ascertain how to cite examples of Mary Sues on this article, look at this. That's really similar. The article writers cited the names of artists and critics who were quoted in articles in major newspapers (which they put in the references) as using the words "chocolate box" to describe peaceful, pleasant art like some of the Impressionists. --Bluejay Young (talk) 04:42, 14 September 2010 (UTC)

Anyone else thinks that all the main characters in Enid Blyton books are Mary Sues?. Even as a kid, I use to hate the lot of them(Famous Five, Secret Seven, Retarded Nine), so much so that I would subconsciously sympathize with the antagonists. Don't have any sources to cite though. Actually, It is as obvious as gravity; It doesn't need any sources. We should just redirect all Enid-Blyton-related articles to Mary Sue. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 111.92.64.20 (talk) 17:46, 6 April 2011 (UTC)

I agree that Enid Blyton's stories (particularly her moralizing fairy tales) can be extremely annoying, but you need to find a discussion board to vent your wrath upon the late unlamented authoress. If you find a book or magazine article (not a blog or Livejournal entry) that uses the words "Mary Sue" to describe what Enid Blyton does in her stories, you would be more than welcome to cite it in the main article. I keep combing the net for mainstream references. --Bluejay Young (talk) 12:32, 20 April 2011 (UTC)

I don't think the 'Famous Five' characters fit the "Mary Sue" criteria. Only Julian would possibly qualify. They're all still at school; none have exceptional intelligence; none have superb physical prowess; and they certainly never “get her man” or “get the girl” at all, much less every time. Blyton’s work are children’s stories, Noddy is a toy for heaven’s sake. Should “he” be considered a “Mary Sue” due to the improbability of a talking, thinking Toy who can drive a car? As annoying as Blyton’s characters can be, they are annoying in ways that aren’t quite “Mary Sue”. Hermione Granger is a much better “Mary Sue” candidate, particularly the way she’s portrayed in the movies. In the books she didn’t know what a “mud blood” was being “muggle born”, just knew it “sounded really rude”, but in the movies she knew all about it, even though it was clearly not a term that would have been put in her school books. I don’t think I would call her a “Mary Sue” either. She’s very clever and talented, but is hardly perfect.

Clear “Mary Sues” are the obnoxious Wesley Crusher (I particularly hated the “nanites” episode); Nancy Drew (many of my female friends used to complain about how she was “so thin, soooo good looking” and how although she was in high school, she was always going out with College guys, and leaving her fat and frumpy friend in her wake); the Hardy Boys (the Hardy’s and Nancy Drew are more adolescent fiction than childrens’); and, of course, Ayla, the cave woman feminist hero of the Earths’ Children series. Ayla invented, well practically everything really. She lived 35,000 years ago: her parents were killed in an earthquake when she was five, and she was taken in by a passing band of Neanderthals after narrowly escaping being killed by huge cave lions! She had blond hair whilst the Neanderthals had dark hair (check 1), was forced by them into their view of the subordinate position of women; and gets raped by the chief’s son. When he takes over, he has her banished and she is forced to leave behind her son (and his). Together with being orphaned that gives a very tragic background (check 2). Nevertheless she wins over the shaman, the skilled medicine woman and the original chief, just as she subsequently wins over all the important figures (except a few villains) she meets when she is forced away. She then proceeds to become the greatest of medicine women – knowing all the herbs, including effective oral contraception, and invents surgical stitching, plus is the one who discovers the link between sex and reproduction. She domesticates the dog, the horse, invents the bridal and the travois. She also invents the flint and pyrites form of making a fire, and is really behind inventing the spear thrower. And so it goes on (check 3). Also, because she grew up with Neanderthals who were very physically strong (fact) she had to work very hard from childhood making her exceptionally strong and fit (check 4) and the author Auel imagines the Neanderthals also have some kind of ancestral/race memory, which means Ayla has to develop a phenomenal memory merely to keep up. (check 5). She also teaches herself to use the sling which the Neanderthals can’t use properly as their arms won’t swing as easily (strangely her later love interest who could use it well had never seen one until he met her) and becomes the “best in the world” at it, able to fire TWO stones in a “rapid fire” (not even sure if that’s possible) (check 6!). Whilst all novels would have to involve some form of “wish fulfilment” on the part of the author (or exorcising their demons), Auel seems to go quite far with Ayla and it seems to get worse as the series progresses.

Ayla has already been discussed in considerable detail and I think we're all in agreement about her, especially after the final book in the series. I picked up a Nancy Drew not long ago and was amazed at how Sue-ish she was. However, we need to find a place to let off steam about characters we consider Mary Sues (I could write you a paragraph or two about what I think of Menolly, not in Dragonsong, but in Dragonsinger). This space is supposed to be for discussing how to improve the article. Believe me, some verifiable, reliable source is bound sooner or later to link the name "Ayla" with the term "Mary Sue" at which point either I or someone else will cite it within the article. --Bluejay Young (talk) 18:12, 30 July 2011 (UTC)

The male characters from Earth's Children series are no different than Ayla, in being idealized characters representing human advancement in a whole era. This is totally incompatible with the concepts of a Mary Sue. It is also incompatible with the supposed intents, and the reasons it is negative, unskilled, or otherwise undesirable. Also, many of the minor characters also have exceptional abilities. As far as the nonsense comparing Ayla being physically different than the Neandertals, that only is the first book; the vast majority of the story she is interacting mostly with other modern humans, and she actually has typical looks for a person from her geographical region. That is explored in a number of different ways, from her being seen as very ugly by the neandertals, to being an exotic beauty in different-looking modern human areas, and then being recognized as having a local look towards the end. So it is a rather unskilled assessment on a variety of levels to try to put her into that box. Mary Sue doesn't mean triumphant idealism. As for Wesley Crusher, I think he is more likely a sarcastic and cynical internalization and capitalization of the actual high popularity of Mary Sue characters, rather than some reflection (cited by a broken link) of the producer's personal fantasies. 2001:470:1F04:3DF:0:0:0:2 (talk) 06:25, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

References[edit]

  1. ^ If I Could Scratch Five Words from the Fannish Lexicon on Heretic Loremaster, 2009-03-05.
  2. ^ Mary Sue on Fanlore and Misogyny in Fandom on Fanlore.
  3. ^ Why I Can't Stand the Mary Sue Police by Niqaeli on his/her Dreamwidth journal, 2010-04-09.
  4. ^ Storming the Battlements or: Why the Culture of Mary Sue Shaming is Bully Culture. By Boosette on his/her/their Dreamwidth journal, April 10, 2010.
  5. ^ I'm no longer comfortable with the term "Mary Sue." By goldjadeocean on his/her Dreamwidth journal, April 10, 2010.
  6. ^ Mary Sue at fanhistory.com. (scroll down)
  7. ^ In Defense Of Mary Sue: She's Not The Enemy by dubonnetcherry on her Livejournal, October 15, 2011.

Tall Poppy Syndrome[edit]

What's the connection with Tall Poppy Syndrome?Autarch (talk) 19:21, 15 October 2010 (UTC)

It's like the "nail that sticks up will be hammered down" saying. --Bluejay Young (talk) 19:23, 27 November 2010 (UTC)
Could you elaborate on the connection with the subject of the article? Autarch (talk) 23:23, 30 July 2011 (UTC)
Mary Sue = Portrayals of people with outstanding qualities are discouraged in fan fiction. Tall poppy syndrome = In real life, some cultures discourage people from displaying outstanding traits -- gifts or talents that set them apart from their peers. --Bluejay Young (talk) 17:05, 17 November 2011 (UTC)

Removed tag[edit]

I took off the 2008 tag because the article has improved a great deal since then. --Bluejay Young (talk) 15:26, 25 April 2011 (UTC)

Aaaaand somebody has put it right back again. Oh well. --Bluejay Young (talk) 02:26, 21 May 2011 (UTC)

Removed bias[edit]

I changed up a bit of wording just slightly to remove some bias from the article. Mary Sue is not completely synonymous with author insertion and the article needs to reflect that the two being linked was a later -and not at all universal- development which had nothing to do with Paula Smith or the original usage of the term. I also added a reference which features an interview with Paula Smith. Novadestin (talk) 19:52, 30 January 2013 (UTC)

Rational for removing the "criticism" section.[edit]

Wikipedia shouldn't set the precedent of publishing pages-long long feminist critiques of literary tropes. every literary trope has a pages-long feminist critique, and those belong in the feminism portal. If we're allowing this criticism of the idea, why not allow the defense? And why not allow the counter to that defense? This kind of thing is unbecoming an encyclopedia. It belongs in an academic paper or the feminist literary criticism portal (which is vast. We should not open up the can of worms that is integrating that section into the pages of the concepts they criticize.) The idea that the shape of rocket ships is inherently patriarchal because they look like penises is not on the Saturn V page, so why is this here?— Preceding unsigned comment added by 208.120.240.47 (talk) 18:10, 3 February 2013 (UTC)

→ link to the text we're discussing
Reasonably-sourced critiques of how this term is applied or even abused in the real world should be included here. Your cartoonish rockets are patriarchal because they look like penises example is a bit of a straw man (or straw feminist I guess) argument because the criticisms included here are not about abstract and subjective literary concepts, but in real-world concerns about how the term is applied in what may be a stereotype-based bias against female characters or women authors, which (by the evidence given here) seems to affect how writers actually write. Would you feel better if we removed the term feminist from that section and just went with

The "Mary Sue" concept has drawn criticism from both amateur and professional authors.

? I'd be fine with that. / edg 01:25, 4 February 2013 (UTC)

The problem is, no matter how you introduce it, the section as currently written isn't appropriate for an encyclopedia. The *idea* that the Mary Sue concept can frighten authors into submission is important, but with the section as it is including it ruins the article's neutrality. It's a quick definition of Mary Sue and then many many paragraphs condemning the very concept. Wikipedia can't get stuck in the "teach the controversy" quagmire, or every article will be 1/10th about the thing itself, and then 90 percent post-modern criticisms. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 208.120.240.47 (talk) 05:56, 4 February 2013 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Wikipedia is not a dictionary, so there's nothing wrong with "a quick definition" followed by relevant, non-defining information. Literary concepts should be subject to criticism, especially when there seem to be real-world effects. And "neutrality" does not demand that no criticism or effects can be described simply because people might debate that something is "bad" or "good". One can reasonably say that Mary Sue characters are an annoying cliche in fanfic without contradicting the concern that the term applied broadly (or misapplied, whether with good intentions or otherwise) can have unfortunate consequences in the acceptance of writing that may be valuable.
The term Teach the controversy has come to mean ideological bullshit being given weight equal to the opposing consensus of thoughtful people well-educated in the subject matter. I don't believe the Criticism section suffered from this problem. I will agree that similarly sourced criticism about the problems with Mary Sue characters (either the fanfic cliches or the issue of author insertion) were under-represented, and the article would benefit from a bit more of that. And I don't see how that becomes a "quagmire".
I don't believe the criticism section at it was entered was necessarily in final form, but I believe such a section improves this article, and that it was off to a good start. / edg 12:18, 4 February 2013 (UTC)
Restored. / edg 15:18, 4 February 2013 (UTC)

Cleanup[edit]

Criticism section[edit]

Criticism still needs work, both for tone (This book says X, but term paper by so-and-so says Y) and fixing the sourcing (Is "Smith" supposed to be Paula Smith, or Camille Bacon-Smith?).

A few changes so far:

  • Camille Bacon-Smith is published in an academic press, so her work seems worthwhile.
  • Chander & Sunder are a bit obscure, and writing about the subversive potential in re-purposing intellectual property—in other works, fanfic, not Mary Sue in particular. I removed their paragraph.
  • Johanna Cantor appears to be a zine writer or editor. Probably only useful when quoted through Bacon-Smith (or some similarly credible critic).
  • Repeated references to "Smith" look like they are referring to Paula Smith, who may not be notable outside fanfic circles. Hopefully they really refer to Camille Bacon-Smith.

I'll visit a copy of Enterprising Women at Philly's public library so I can straighten out the sourcing. I'm now seeing the term Mary Sue used frequently outside the subject of fanfic, so there should be more scholarly mention, but "mary+sue"+fiction Google Scholar lists only a few mentions that look minor, with some heavily paywalled. / edg 18:31, 4 February 2013 (UTC)

I think this section needs a bit of cleanup again. Nowadays, "Mary Sue" doesn't just get affixed to female characters or used as a "shut down" tactic- it's become a valid criticism of any character that's unbelievably over the top. I also think we need to have more than just feminist takes on the subject.-RomeW (talk) 04:25, 29 April 2015 (UTC)

The problem has only grown. The criticism section is a mixture of tangentials and non-notable academic criticisms. It's longer than the body of the article now. "Mary Sue" is commonly used to describe major characters, male and female, that are "over the top". This relatively small article in counterpose to a laundry list of post-modern and feminist critiques is in flagrant violation of WP:NPOV.

Lede section[edit]

Also noticed: the primary definition in the lede section is from a book on career building for young adults. Better than nothing, could use a more literary source, especially for such an important part of the article.

Lede is not up to WP:LEDE standard either. / edg 16:26, 5 February 2013 (UTC)

Comparison to Selective Service[edit]

This quote by Edith Cantor ("in terms of their impact on those whom they affect, those words [Mary Sue] have got to rank right up there with the Selective Service Act.") is really over the top and sexist. Can this be removed, or is there another quote that would serve the same purpose without being offensive? 209.253.226.1 (talk) 21:37, 13 May 2013 (UTC)

"In Fan Fiction"?[edit]

The opening line gives the impression that the term only applies to fan fiction, however the article itself mentions several critics who have used the term to describe non-fan fiction characters. I would argue that the opening line should be changed to better reflect what the article actually says.67.234.54.93 (talk) 06:09, 9 August 2015 (UTC)

Labelling canon characters as Mary Sues[edit]

I added the following to the article, but it was reverted by @Altenmann: with the edit summary "Nonsense". I don't understand why it was reverted, because it is academically-sourced discussion published in a peer-reviewed journal of applying the term "Mary Sue" to well-developed female characters as a badge of shame. I would appreciate it if it could be reinstated in the article. --211.30.17.74 (talk) 04:06, 5 December 2015 (UTC)

It has been suggested that the tendency to label a canon character as a "Mary Sue", such as Nyota Uhura in the Star Trek 2009 film reboot, is a result of slash fiction fans resenting time spent on developing female characters on screen which 'take away' from emotional bonding between two 'slashable' male characters.[1]

We don't publish every random opinions from every primary source published by unknown people. This is encyclopedia, we publish well-established information. You are welcome to add something about this when you can replace your "suggested" with "commonly recognized", or at least when someone else cites this opinion as having merit.
An additional problem is that the article is behind the paywall, so I cannot verify whether you correctly rendered the article. In particular, the statement "is a result of slash fiction fans" is rather extraordinary and as I suspect overgeneralized. - üser:Altenmann >t 18:26, 5 December 2015 (UTC)
On the other hand, if the statement were not so categorical, e.g., restricted to slash subset of trekkie fandom, then it would make sense, because for them female stars are nuisance. Something, "slashers tag Uhura as Mary Sue because Uhura unslashes the slash."- üser:Altenmann >t 18:43, 5 December 2015 (UTC)
Concluding, I am taking back my opinion "nonsense", but it took me quite some effort to understand the grain of truth in the statement. Can you quote the original article here, for verification of the context? - üser:Altenmann >t 19:07, 5 December 2015 (UTC)
Hi @Altenmann:. Thanks for the reply, I really appreciate it, and your retraction of 'nonsense'. There are a few things I'm still not clear on, though. Why is it not suitable to cite material that's been published in a peer-reviewed academic journal, particularly when there's a notice at the top of the page saying 'this article needs more citations to reliable sources'? Why can't I add one academic article and let someone else add another, without having to survey the "Mary Sue literature" myself? That seems to go against the spirit of Wikipedia:Editing policy: "Please boldly add information to Wikipedia, either by creating new articles or adding to existing articles, and exercise particular caution when considering removing information." Later on that page, it stresses that while sourcing is important, perfection is not required. Removing reliably-sourced information because I did not add enough of it seems counter-productive.
Scodari has published before on the topic of Mary Sue and slash, in:
  • Scodari, Christine (May 2003). "Resistance Re-Examined: Gender, Fan Practices, and Science Fiction Television". Popular Communication. 1 (2): 111–130. doi:10.1207/S15405710PC0102_3. 
Do you have access to that article?
Here's a quote from Scodari's "Nyota Uhura's Not a White Girl" article, I hope it helps:

Most male screenwriters are unlikely to project exalted versions of themselves onto female leads, but fans began justifying their distaste for fictional female protagonists by proclaiming them Mary Sues. This occurred when Major Samantha Carter of Stargate SG-1 (1997–2007) was situated as confidante to her commander, Jack O’Neill, whom traditional slashers pair-bonded with another male principal. Although there was never a romance between Carter and O’Neill, these fans begrudged Carter the screen time and heroism they felt rightfully belonged to the male duo they reckoned as the core of the show (see Scodari 2003). Consequently, if canonical homosociality between men is a catalyst for traditional slash, it is not threatened merely by male/female romance, but by a female character’s centrality in the narrative. p.343

So you can see that the concept of Scodari saying "screen time spent on female characters is begrudged by slash fans" is not a matter of my interpretation. If you want to split hairs about 'begrudged' and 'resented', I was searching for a synonym for 'begrudged' so that it would not be considered plagiarism.
Scodari goes on to discuss Henry Jenkins' (and others) negative reaction to Uhura's relationship with Spock, which I've covered briefly in the Kirk/Spock article, and tried to cover here in my initial addition.
Uhura was one of two examples of "developed female character=Mary Sue in slashers' eyes" she gave in the article, so it can't be rewritten as you suggest to portray it as being specific to Star Trek slash fandom. To Scodari, the problem is broader than Trek slash fandom - it is endemic to modern science fiction slash fandoms. (Stargate SG-1, Farscape and X-Files seem to be the ones she's studied, besides Kirk/Spock.) Why 'modern'? Modern science fiction media place more emphasis on developing complex, persistent (not one-shot) female characters. To expand on Scodari's example of Uhura, Uhura has been used in much of the publicity for the film series, and she is more of a rounded character than she was in the TV series - at one point in the 2009 film, she saves everyone's bacon by translating a message that the ship is going to be nuked (and yet, Uhura is labelled as "Mary Sue" even when standing next to Kirk, who is commonly known as the Maryest Sue that ever Sued...), and Uhura has romantic agency in the films which would have been impossible to depict in the 1960s. Those complex and persistent female characters get scenes with the lead men, who really should be seeking to bond with (insert slashable guy here) and yielding more slash-fodder. I look forward to your response to my questions above, and I hope that Scodari's work can be added to the article to help broaden the article's coverage of the Mary Sue concept. --211.30.17.74 (talk) 22:44, 5 December 2015 (UTC)

Thank you for your detailed answer. re " it can't be rewritten as you suggest to portray it as being specific to Star Trek slash fandom. " - "Start Trek" in my statement was non-essential. What is essential is that the issue, as I suspected, is related to a narrow category of fandom. And your explanation and quote confirms my suspicion. Long story short, here is my version which IMO more faithfully renders the fact you wanted to add:

Chrfistine Scodari, a researcher in media studies from gender perspective, noticed a tendency within slash fandom to label major female characters (eg. Nyota Uhura in the Star Trek 2009 film reboot) as "Mary Sues" because they "take away" screen time from "slashable" male characters.

Tho major changes: attribution (because it is not a widespread opinion) and clear indication of the scope of the noticed tendency. Please feel free to edit my English and style (I might've been overly terse) and re-insert the changed version into the article (it is your authorship anyway). - üser:Altenmann >t 18:48, 6 December 2015 (UTC)

Now commenting on your "Why is it not suitable to cite material that's been published in a peer-reviewed" - The question is incorrect (kinda why you didn't stop beating your wife). First of all, you are not citing, you are interpreting. Your interpretation may be a 'bona fide' mistake, that's why I requested an exact citation. Second, peer-reviewed sources quite often publish erroneous information and dubious opinions; heck, even outright nonsense. Our guideline to cite from WP:RS reliable sources actually means "do not cite from non-reliable sources", but it does not mean "treat WP:RS as the mostest ultimatest unquestionable wisdom". - üser:Altenmann >t 18:48, 6 December 2015 (UTC)

re:'this article needs more citations to reliable sources' - the tag actually says "This article needs additional citations for verification", i.e., it needs more citations added to the existing text. - üser:Altenmann >t 19:14, 6 December 2015 (UTC)

Thanks for your rewording, @Altenmann:. I've had a go at re-adding it to the article. I've been rebuked before for adding in-text attribution because the author didn't have their own article on Wikipedia. Are there any guidelines as to when it's suitable to add in-text attribution, as opposed to just in the citation? I don't mind explaining the edit or providing a short quote - it makes me more aware of how to explain things clearly when I add sources, and we have discussed how to make it more clear together. I do mind having it robot-removed with a one word explanation, which seems to be against the editing policy. I find it really discouraging, particularly when I tried to do things properly when I added the material. By the way, Scodari's earlier paper and basic conclusion (that slash fans sometimes "uphold the hegemony" (by diminishing female characters while promoting guy-guy bonding)) has been included in literature reviews, so Scodari does seem to have some traction as an 'anti-slash' perspective. I was not only adding Scodari because she is a RS - I was adding her because her point was logical and novel, and it broadens the article's perspective of what the Mary Sue label is used for - to justify dislike of prominent canon female characters, by slash fans. I added it here because I thought that the tags and the less-developed nature of the Mary Sue article (when compared to the slash fiction article) might make it more welcomed. The Mary Sue article needs more citations added to the existing text, but it also needs more citations in general. The following describes Mary Sues as part of Écriture féminine, and might have some useful references which could be used to expand this article. Thanks again Altenmann for being willing to work with me on the addition of Scodari's work. --211.30.17.74 (talk) 21:18, 6 December 2015 (UTC)
  • Bonnstetter, Beth E.; Ott, Brian L. (October 2011). "(Re)Writing Mary Sue: Écriture Féminine and the Performance of Subjectivity". Text and Performance Quarterly. 31 (4): 342–367. doi:10.1080/10462937.2011.602706. 
  • re:because the author didn't have their own article on Wikipedia. - There is no and cannot be such a restriction. In fact, attribution, with author's credentials necessary exactly because we don't have author's bio in wikipedia. Credentials are essential, to show that the author is cited within their area of expertise. As for missing author's bio, unfortunately wikipedia populist ciriteria for notability strongly disfavor scientists in favor of pornstars. Can you give me the link to the discussion where you have been rebuked? All depends on the context. For example, I would also object to the text, like, "According to John Random Professor, the Earth is a planet of the Solar System" (exaggerating). - üser:Altenmann >t
It was Talk:Trans-Pacific_Partnership#Compatibility_with_the_SDG - in this case, after another person backed up my point, the person who removed my text helped find additional reliable sources discussing the novel point that I was trying to make with the one source I'd read, and so I re-added the point with numerous sources stating it. --211.30.17.74 (talk) 22:04, 7 December 2015 (UTC)
Yes, that's what I thought: "Considering that this is an issue that has been discussed by many people from all fields" - the issue was well-discussed. Whereas in our case I don't think many made a similar notice about Masy Sue vs. slash, and Scodary was most probably the original author of the non-trivial observation (although my knowledge is limited). - üser:Altenmann >t 16:40, 8 December 2015 (UTC)

@Wing gundam:, I'm not sure how you're interpreting the above discussion as 'heavily against' the inclusion of Scodari's work, and as being against NPOV. As I explained to @Altenmann:, Scodari's conclusions from her 2003 paper are cited in literature reviews. --211.30.17.74 (talk) 11:05, 22 February 2016 (UTC)

Rey[edit]

I think that the whole reference to Rey being a Mary Sue should be taken out. She is an orphaned, late teen or twenty-something scavenger who is barely scraping by. And is living on some backwater, undeveloped planet that nobody cares about and has no one to ever care whether she exists. Definitely not the overachiever-type usually portrayed by a Mary Sue. I saw the movie and I did not feel that she really seemed that adept at using the force by the end of the movie. Rather clumsy and limited uses. Certainly not like stopping blaster bolts in mid-flight, throwing lighting bolts, or levitating ships. Part of the problem here is that we want our heroes to be better than us, but not to the point of being absurd. Hard balance to strike. Nyth63 03:36, 2 January 2016 (UTC)
That's a great observation -- "we want our heroes to be better than us, but not to the point of being absurd." I would like your permission to quote this in the Mary Sue article at Fanlore. But the point of including the mentions of Rey is not whether she really is a Mary Sue or not. As you point out, it's a hard balance to strike, and Mary Sue is an extremely subjective value judgment. Some people react to Rey as one, some like you do not. The point is that the term "Mary Sue" and its meaning were discussed in notable (albeit online) publications -- not blogs or fansites. That is what people working on this article have been looking for for years (as you've seen reading this talk page). As you can see, a second author disputes that Rey is a Mary Sue, and this has renewed debate over the concept in places where everyone can see it. --Bluejay Young (talk) 09:12, 2 January 2016 (UTC)
Feel free to use the quote, no need to attribute it, just please don't claim or imply to be the source. Anony mouse would be fine. I read the article you linked and followed to Mary Sue Litmus Test. All the more reason that Rey should not be listed here as she would score very low on the grading scale. Nyth63 04:06, 7 January 2016 (UTC)
Thank you! No problem, if you read a little more on fanlore you will see that there is a great respect for quotes from anonymous fans. As far as Rey being included here, the point of citing articles about her is to provide notable sources for the use of the term Mary Sue. We are not saying here that Rey is one, but that film reviewers, in the types of publications that can be cited on Wikipedia, are using the term "Mary Sue", with definition, and discussing whether she is one or not. There have not been very many uses of this term by appropriate sources. One way to make sure that an article will not come up for a deletion review is to make sure it's backed up with notable/reliable sources. --Bluejay Young (talk) 15:14, 8 January 2016 (UTC)

References

  1. ^ Scodari, Christine (September 2012). ""Nyota Uhura is Not a White Girl": Gender, intersectionality, and Star Trek 2009's alternate romantic universes". Feminist Media Studies. 12 (3): 335–351. doi:10.1080/14680777.2011.615605. 

I don't think there's anything notable about the discussion about "Rey" in Star Wars VIII being called a Mary Sue that warrants a huge section, or even a mention, in this article. Other than being recent, why is it worth mentioning as opposed to the hundreds of other times the term gets tossed around? BoosterBronze (talk) 16:36, 11 April 2016 (UTC)

Because the term, Mary Sue, which is what we're talking about here, was used (with definition) in notable, mainstream publications. That it referred to Rey or Star Wars is inconsequential. The point is not who is/isn't a Mary Sue. It's that with the discussions about Rey as Mary Sue we now have citations to notable sources. --Bluejay Young (talk) 04:21, 22 August 2016 (UTC)

Roddenberry as Wesley[edit]

In the "Variations" section, it says "Indeed, there is speculation amongst fans and academics, mainly pejorative, that Wesley was a self-insertion character for Gene Roddenberry." Roddenberry himself stated that he based Wesley on himself, qualifying that with he is not as smart as Wesley. I don't remember which interview that was from, but in his son's documentary, Trek Nation, Rod Roddenberry interviewed Wil Wheaton. Wil said that at a convention, Gene defended him, telling the crowd that "I based Wesley on myself, so if you say you don't like Wesley, you're saying you don't like me". That's as close as I can remember off the top of my head. So it's not quite a case of self/author-insertion since Wesley isn't an idealized version of Roddenberry, but rather a little better or smarter version of Roddenberry.

So if this the quote can be verified by someone who has Trek Nation, would that be appropriate for updating that sentence? –RRabbit42 (talk) 03:36, 5 April 2016 (UTC)

"Allusion" section[edit]

Hi. I am the individual who has been attempting to remove the Rey section on the Mary Sue page. I believe the section is completely out of place in the "Allusion" section. I could be used as an example in an entirely new section, however I still believe there are problems with using such an odd singular example. No other examples of a Mary Sue are used nor are other controversies discussed except for those dealing with the origins of the term Mary Sue as related to its original creation in the Star Trek community.— Preceding unsigned comment added by MordredRed (talkcontribs)

@MordredRed:First, you should _not_ remove properly sourced material, whether you agree with it or not. Second, you should not edit war, when there is not consensus that your removal is proper. You should be the one to discuss it here at the talkpage. I have tagged you for editwarring at your talkpage. You removed the tag, and continued to edit war here. If you continue to edit war, I will be happy to report you.--Kintetsubuffalo (talk) 05:47, 27 July 2017 (UTC)
@Kintetsubuffalo: Hi. Sorry I didn't see that you moved this to the talk page. I just saw that you removed it from your page and thought you had no interest in discussing the issue with me. I saw the tag for the editwarring and tried to discuss on your page earlier. I removed again because I assumed you did not wish to talk with me. My point is the same as the one I made previously as stated above. What do you believe is wrong with the way I am thinking?— Preceding unsigned comment added by MordredRed (talkcontribs)
@Kintetsubuffalo: Nevermind. I now see how this page works and its purpose. I will be using it then. Sorry for the bother. No need to respond to me further.— Preceding unsigned comment added by MordredRed (talkcontribs)
I have undone your comment about a critic's lack of involvement in a project-involvement is not germane to critical commentary.--Kintetsubuffalo (talk) 06:43, 27 July 2017 (UTC)
@Kintetsubuffalo:The previous writing was confusing since it did not specify whether the individual was involved in the production of the film. Further specification makes the reading clearer.
Perhaps you would prefer if I instead cited/linked some of his works instead. This would accomplish the same goal.

Mary Sues in the fictional city/country/world/universe/whatever?[edit]

Do we think whatever Mary Sues are roleplayed in the fictional media? 124.106.141.70 (talk) 22:35, 10 August 2017 (UTC)

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