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Drabblecast 034 - The Suit

Posted: Sun Oct 21, 2007 3:34 pm
by normsherman
Image
Feature: The Suit by G.W. Thomas

I watched him traverse the crowded room. He seemed physically different. It was not his attire, for that was unchanged. He was in the same ice-cream white suit....

Drabblecast 34

Posted: Mon Oct 22, 2007 4:05 pm
by Kevin Anderson
I love the narrative changed at the end. It went from straight narrative to one that was responding to phantom questions. The transition was smooth and somewhat creepy. But I loved the dialogue best – elegantly written, with accents that tagged the characters superbly.

I also enjoyed the poem, but what defines a poem? Just listening to it, I would have sworn it was a short story. A well written short story, but a short story.

Posted: Tue Oct 23, 2007 12:50 am
by Derm
Nice story, and good characterisation. I liked the build up, but I felt it could have ended just before the first person stuff without loss of impact. This last isn't a criticism as I don't think the ending harmed the piece.

As to what defines a poem, the answer you get to that question varies depending upon whom you ask. My stock answer is: mathematically structured text; this can mean a rhythmic structure, or imagery interlinking in a pattern. Prose poetry muddies the waters nowadays, and I must admit to not understanding how it's, in any way, poetry - for me, this term is like watching a noun getting brutally murdered. That's not to say I don't like some of the prose poetry I've read, I just call it prose; except just there in the eleventh and twelfth words of the main clause of this sentence, of course.

Posted: Tue Oct 23, 2007 12:54 pm
by Philippa
I enjoyed this story a great deal, it really crept up on me - but only because I was listening on my iPod and didn't catch the name of the story or see the image on the podcast page until afterwards - what a giveaway! I'm always so disappointed when the title gives away the punch line, feel cheated of my surprise, and I suspect the visual clue would have left little room for suspense.

It's particularly irksome if the climax is otherwise fairly unpredictable. I like to be in the same confused and incredulous state as the protagonist, amplifying the horror of the reality when it is revealed - and happily I was for this story! Just a pet peeve...

Posted: Tue Oct 23, 2007 8:06 pm
by Mr. Tweedy
Idea and execution were both very cool, as was Norm's (as usual) excellent reading. I was surprised by the end, despite the title and picture. I has assumed the suit was just a symbol. That it itself was the corrupting, diabolical entity had not occurred to me.

I really liked the update on the sell-your-soul-to-the-devil theme. Rather than the devil coming to claim him at an arbitrary date, the devil claims him piece by piece, starting at the moment of the deal. Very clever and very creepy.

My only objection is that the very end did not make sense. The narrator, knowing what The Suit is and does, would surely not be so stupid as to put it on himself. Would you put on the suit, having 1.) watched it kill the previous owner and 2.) having heard said owner swear vengeance on you immediately before bequeathing you the suit? I mean, duh! The silly ending deadened the impact of the revelation that preceded it.

So, if you eat LOTS of doughnuts, can you keep yourself fat enough that the suit can continue to eat 100 pounds of flesh per year and not kill you?

Posted: Tue Oct 23, 2007 8:06 pm
by normsherman
I'm a big fan of Lovecraft- this story very much fits that old form. Narrator runs into a strange circumstance or person, becomes obsessed with trying to figure things out and when he does he gets himself in trouble. They are usually set up like this, as if being interviewed. It's a great formula (and works even better when the narrator is onto some massive, multi-dimensional beast from hell living under the ocean).

As for the poem- yah, the idea of prose poetry confuses me too. This one seemed more like a poem on paper (ideas in three group lines) than it did in audio.

Posted: Tue Oct 23, 2007 8:25 pm
by normsherman
I dunno, when I was first reading this story I figured out pretty soon that the fat guy was getting powers from the suit- I hadn't considered that the title gave anything away, it seemed like the suspense was seeing what would happen to him. The suit was wearing the fat guy- things are bound to go bad.

Yah, I wonder about that ending. I got the impression that the narrator didn't believe a word Rivers was saying, that he was crazy. But he seemed fixated on the suit too- like the suit was drawing him to it.

Posted: Tue Oct 23, 2007 9:28 pm
by Mr. Tweedy
That could be.

"It might have killed him, but I can handle it."

It's plausible that someone would have that attitude.

Posted: Tue Oct 23, 2007 11:50 pm
by normsherman
[quote="Mr. Tweedy"]

"It might have killed him, but I can handle it."

quote]

That, or maybe he didn't really believe it, just thought Rivers was crazy.

"What a loon. At least he gave me all his stuff, (must have been cuz I called the ambulance and saved him.) I even got his badass looking suit"

I think the suit was a master of persuasion. It apparently "talked" to Rivers and sold him on the deal- I can also buy the idea that even if the narrator did believe River's crazy rantings the suit would have been able to talk him into an "agreement" also.
Neat parallels, selling adverts, selling cars, selling your soul

Glad there's another forum for you to post in now Tweedy, there will never be enough!

Posted: Thu Oct 25, 2007 10:31 pm
by strawman
How about a redo where the guy auditions for The Biggest Loser? Or Jared does the Subway commercial in the suit...

Posted: Sun Apr 06, 2008 4:18 pm
by Chivalrybean
normsherman wrote:I'm a big fan of Lovecraft- this story very much fits that old form. Narrator runs into a strange circumstance or person, becomes obsessed with trying to figure things out and when he does he gets himself in trouble. They are usually set up like this, as if being interviewed. It's a great formula (and works even better when the narrator is onto some massive, multi-dimensional beast from hell living under the ocean).

As for the poem- yah, the idea of prose poetry confuses me too. This one seemed more like a poem on paper (ideas in three group lines) than it did in audio.
I have read lots of Lovecraft, and I didn't thing The Suit was Lovecraftian at all... a killer suit just doesn't seen to fit for me in the Lovecraftian genre, although the style does in a way match, there is no unspeakable blasphemous horror. Doesn't mean I didn't like the story, because I did like it.

I write what I call "prosetry" sometimes... it sounds beautiful, but without a meter, it just isn't a real poem. Here's a quote that fits:
Samuel McChord Crothers wrote:A prose writer gets tired of writing prose, and wants to be a poet. So he begins every line with a capital letter, and keeps on writing prose.
When I took a class, to be an actual bona fide poem, it needs a meter. Doesn't have to rhyme, but pretty words, rhyming or not, doesn't make a poem. That doesn't mean writing pretty words that mimic a poem is 'wrong' in any way, it just isn't technically a poem, but DrabbleCast isn't technically drabble, but hey, it still is a great program!

Posted: Sun Apr 06, 2008 10:34 pm
by normsherman
Yah, didn't mean the subject matter was particularly Lovecrafty, but I still got the impression that the author was writing with ole HP in mind.

Good quote! :-)

Re: Drabblecast 34- The Suit by G.W. Thomas

Posted: Fri May 20, 2011 2:41 pm
by Unblinking
I wish the title hadn't telegraphed the reveal, but other than that I really liked this one.
Finally a good answer to the question "What's eating you?"

Re: Drabblecast 034 - The Suit

Posted: Thu Apr 04, 2013 9:47 pm
by sandrilde
I agree with unblinking - the entire story was in the title and the ending was super predictable...

BUT actually fairly well told and it held my interest.