Wikipedia:Good article reassessment/Todd Manning/1

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Todd Manning[edit]

Article (edit | visual edit | history) · Article talk (edit | history) · WatchWatch article reassessment page
Result: Not listed. While the article is good in many aspects, there are issues that need to be resolved before the article can be listed. These issues have been detailed and acknowledged. Jennavecia (Talk) 02:25, 25 September 2008 (UTC)

I made intense improvements to this article after it was failed during its first GA review. I did not nominate it that first time for GA and saw the flaw in it having been nominated that time. Once I read the GA review, however, I took care of most of the concerns that were basically implied to be all this article needed in order to be listed as GA. There were only three concerns the GA reviewer had a problem with that I did not completely change. What were they? The GA reviewer had a problem with the first quote, feeling that it may be copyright infringement. I stated that I felt that the first quote was appropriate, and not really going against policy; there are other decent articles that have quotes of that length and are seen as appropriate by experienced Wikipedian editors. The GA reviewer also had a problem with two of the references (really four, but the reliability of two of those references was never in question; it was rather the other two). I explained that those two references are primary sources.

After further improving this article, I nominated it for GA for a second time, and I waited for quite a while for it to once again be reviewed. I came to Wikipedia today, checked on it, and saw that it was failed without even having been put on hold to suggest improvements and without an explanation on the talk page as to why it was failed (though I saw this reviewer's reasons in his GA review). I addressed that much to this GA reviewer. This is simply not a B-Class article anymore, and is hardly in any worse shape than many GA articles I have seen on Wikipedia. I feel that the GA reviewer was mistaken to fail it. It is not so much that he failed it but rather quick-failed it due to what he sees as sploppy prose. I feel that it should have been put on hold asking me to improve the prose, especially since it only has a minor problem regarding that. In fact, I am off to go improve the prose now. Flyer22 (talk) 17:33, 20 August 2008 (UTC)

My comments on the article in the state it was in when I reviewed it are at Talk:Todd Manning/GA2, and some further conversation on my quick fail at User talk:Jclemens#Todd Manning. I have no objection to being overruled, especially since it looks like Flyer22 has been busy making improvements to the article. At the time I reviewed the article, I thought the prose was failure quality, rather than hold-and-give-detailed-feedback quality. If I was being too hard on the article, my sincerest apologies. I've only been doing GA reviews for a few weeks, and if the community consensus is that I should have placed the article on hold, I will humbly apologize for not doing so in this case, and do so in similar cases in the future. Jclemens (talk) 23:08, 20 August 2008 (UTC)
No need to apologize for your review. The three examples given in the second GA review show that the article wasn't ready to pass GA. That said, I bet that Flyer will be able to bring the prose up to par in short order. Majoreditor (talk) 03:08, 26 August 2008 (UTC)
Yes, I have taken care of the three examples Jclemens pointed out in his GA review, as stated on his talk page. As I stated there: "Sure, I was lazy with the prose and did not read over the article as much as I should have before nominating it, but going back over the article, I still saw few problems with it. The prose you pointed out in your GA review I just took care of not too long ago. It was that simple. I noticed other prose problems along the way. It was that simple." I also improved a lot more of the prose since his GA review, and added a new section (the latest one to the Controversy section) that I feel is decently written. Any other tweaks needed for the prose, or not so much needed but that would help improve this article, I would definitely appreciate hearing, and would take care of as soon as seeing them mentioned here. Right now, though, it seems like I will just have to nominate this article for GA again. Flyer22 (talk) 06:25, 26 August 2008 (UTC)
The article is informative and well-cited, but still suffers from uneven prose. An example: Making the character Victoria Lord's younger brother gave the writers a significant amount of story to work with. Majoreditor (talk) 22:55, 31 August 2008 (UTC)
Okay, I'll take care of that later today or tomorrow. But the bad prose has been taken care of. As for any more uneven prose (which I don't see as bad), I will be sure to take care of that as well very soon. But, really, parts of this article can still be cited as having room for improvement. I mean, we're not talking about whether this article is ready for Featured Article status, of course. Though, honestly, even some of those articles can still be improved. We're talking about whether this article is now good enough to be given Good Article status. I feel that, besides more needed tweaking, it is. I've looked over enough listed good Wikipedia character articles, like Harry Potter (character), to know that I am not that far off, or even actually off. I've been studying a few good and featured character articles as well, not just looking over them. I am definitely for improving this article as much as it can be improved. Flyer22 (talk) 00:32, 5 September 2008 (UTC)
  • Comment this is probably a case for listing it again, noting the recent changes, rather than GAR, but that's just my thoughts. It doesn't look like the backlog on either page is going away. Protonk (talk) 03:16, 12 September 2008 (UTC)
  • Endorse fail. After reading the above comments, I was hoping to be able to copyedit this and recommend listing, as suggested by Protonk. Sure enough, the prose does need work, for which a good tonic is User:Tony1/How to satisfy Criterion 1a and Strunk's maxim: "Vigorous writing is concise". There are some long noun phrases, some sentences that try to do too much, and some overly complex language. A couple of examples:
    • Initially designed to be a ruthless, cunning and one-dimensional villain, throughout the years Todd has evolved into a complex character, often selfish and acting the villain but also passionate about protecting his loved ones and even showing kindness and a conscience.
    • As Todd's popularity with viewers grew, and as a solution not to have to kill off what had become perceived as a monster, executive producer Susan Bedsow Horgan and head writer Michael Malone chose an option that was highly controversial at the time — the decision to complicate their character, ensuring that he was not a one-dimensional rapist.[8][13] When, after attempting suicide, Powell confessed to raping Marty and was publicly forgiven by Marty herself, Todd was set for revenge when he and fellow rapist Zach received eight-year sentences behind prison as compared to Powell's three months of jail time. Todd made a vow that he would be out of prison in three months as well.[8] To carry out this vow, Todd was written to escape by "drugging himself, waking from a coma to leap from a speeding ambulance, and then reviving himself again by stabbing a knife through his hand while rolling his eyes heavenward and exulting, 'Pain. Pain is good'".[8]
This would be not too hard to fix, but after reading the article, I share the unease that that the reviewers express about the unencyclopedic style. For instance, people rarely "say" anything in this article; instead they "relay", "elaborate", "detail", "relate", "cite". The prose has the linguistic dexterity of a thesis, not the factual directness of an encyclopedia. This would also be an easy problem to fix, were it not for the cause: large portions of the article have not just the style, but the character of a media studies thesis, and are analytical. More precisely, this analysis is taken from a media studies paper of Jennifer Hayward (reference [8]), which is cited 36 times, without once mentioning her name. That's a big no-no on Wikipedia and goes against WP:NPOV and WP:NOR.
For instance, the section on "Specific writing", which should be the character equivalent of a plot summary, is almost entirely sourced to [8], and packed with analysis. It is great analysis, and I actually think the article is a fantastic piece of work. It is just not encyclopedic.
This can be fixed too, but it requires reworking the article significantly. Wikipedia can (and should) cover scholarly analysis, as long as it is presented as such. That requires a section on "Critical analysis" (or something like that), which reponds to the sentence "Todd has been... alluded to and studied in books" in the lead and attributes the opinions and analyses to the scholars who have written about the character. Such a change is too substantial for a GAR, so I endorse the fail, and recommend renomination once the article is reworked. Geometry guy 14:52, 20 September 2008 (UTC)
  • Endorse fail. The last fail was appropriate, evidently, and once the article is ready for another review, a new nomination (ie, GAN not GAR) then will be appropriate. --Una Smith (talk) 19:11, 20 September 2008 (UTC)
  • Comment. I did not write the entire lead of this article, which is probably why I did not feel it needed any more work. I am far more critical of myself. In regards to using words like "relay", "elaborate", "detail", "relate", "cite" is because simply using the words "say" or "said" over and over again, without substituting anything else in place of those two words, is quite redundant and rather one-note. In writing, we are taught to change it up. It does not have to be "Howarth said" or "St. John said" every other line, nor should it be. There is nothing unencyclopedic about using the words "relay", "elaborate", "detail", "relate", and "cite". If anything, that is more encyclopedic. It is not like I never use the words "state" or "stated". And the Specific writing section? I would have that be a plot section, except that I do not really see it as one (though it crossed by mind as being plot); it is more of an insight section, about how Todd went from a monster to a not-so monster. As mentioned (and as the title suggests), it has more to do with writing than plot. And as I stated on the talk page of this article, I already have plans for a sourced plot section. It will also be written in real-world fashion, with insight into certain storylines, but it will be more like a plot section than some analysis one.
  • As for everything else Geometry guy said, I get his point. I'm completely okay with the fail of this article being endorsed until I have reworked this article as Geometry guy has advised. Thanks for saying that it is "a fantastic piece of work"...I suppose. Flyer22 (talk) 09:43, 21 September 2008 (UTC)
I think it's a procedural issue and really no big deal. The article didn't meet GA, it was failed, it is being improved, when you are ready it will receive a fresh review. No problem, right?. Everyone's goal here is to get articles up to GA, and sometimes fail is a shorter route to that goal than on hold. --Una Smith (talk) 01:45, 22 September 2008 (UTC)
  • I agree that the article needs a bit more time and attention. I have confidence that editors like Flyer will eventually rework the article so that it meets GA criteria. In the meanwhile, I endorse fail. Majoreditor (talk) 00:03, 23 September 2008 (UTC)