Writing Good SWAT Kats Fanfiction: Staying In Character

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Re: Writing Good SWAT Kats Fanfiction: Staying In Character

Postby marhawkman » Fri Mar 10, 2017 12:25 pm

Heh, this reminds me of just how little backstory most of the characters have. 22 minute eps with at least half of that devoted to flashy action sequences. Maybe 2 minutes for back story per ep?
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Re: Writing Good SWAT Kats Fanfiction: Staying In Character

Postby Kooshmeister » Fri Mar 10, 2017 11:35 pm

Indeed. Most of what we "know" about the characters is based on pure intuition and our own interpretations. That said, this thread is pretty dang decent, so far. SinianThisCait
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Re: Writing Good SWAT Kats Fanfiction: Staying In Character

Postby marhawkman » Tue Mar 14, 2017 4:13 am

about Rex Shard: did they explain why he went to prison? his greedy nature and general behavior makes me think jewel thief or something.
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Re: Writing Good SWAT Kats Fanfiction: Staying In Character

Postby Kooshmeister » Tue Mar 14, 2017 7:18 am

Shard: What kind of a fool do you take me for, Talon?
Talon: The kinda fool servin' a nine-life sentence.

The "nine lives" joke aside, this would imply he's a lifer, suggesting he committed a particularly heinous crime, like murder. However:

Lem: But the Warden's willing to shave some time for testing that stupid thing.

The two statements seem like they contradict each other. Looking up life without parole on Google got me this:

The Truth About Life Without Parole: Condemned to Die in Prison wrote:Unlike death penalty cases, however, LWOP sentences receive no special consideration on appeal, which limits the possibility they will be reduced or reversed.


So it's possible to have a life sentence reduced. But very unlikely. So there are two possibilites:

1. Talon was being sarcastic; Shard has a finite prison sentence which Meece is offering to reduce.
2. Talon was being serious; Shard is a lifer, and Meece's offer of a reduction is a once-in-a-blue-moon golden opportunity he's dangling over Shard's head to elicit his cooperation.

Either is possible.

Another issue with this is, can wardens reduce your prison time? Isn't that up to the parole board and the courts? I thought a warden is in charge of is the prison itself, not how long you stay there. Maybe Meece has some pull with parole review, but I think that's about all he's able to do (unless laws there work differently, or Lance Falk thinks wardens have more power than they really do). Oh, well, the offer was probably bogus anyway.

In any event, I've gotten way off topic from the original question about what Shard did to end up in prison. Maximum security prisons are generally used for violent offenders. So he probably committed a particularly violent assault or robbery, possibly even a murder (not all murderers get life sentences, after all). Shard's readiness to (as far as he knows) kill everyone he can (literally) get his hands on suggests someone who used to committing violent acts and who may have killed before. While I try not to judge people based on their appearance, Shard definitely looks like the kind of scrappy, bare knuckle fist fighter type who's seen his share of fights and committed many violent acts. He's a little past his prime, but pretty muscular without much flab yet; you just look at him and think "tough." And then there's his demeanor and personality, which are very uncouth, rough and unrefined.

If he's a thief, it's of the armed robbery variety, as opposed to anything more exotic like a jewel thief. Not saying jewel thieves can't be big, uncouth scrappers, he just strikes me as being more of a run-of-the-mill thug.
Last edited by Kooshmeister on Wed Mar 15, 2017 10:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Writing Good SWAT Kats Fanfiction: Staying In Character

Postby marhawkman » Wed Mar 15, 2017 10:27 am

Ah, very good analysis.

Wardens do have pull by default AFAIK, they can't TELL the board what to do but they're the person the board looks to for information about whether the prisoner shows signs of being worth parole. It's possible Meece discussed it with the board prior to talking to Shard.

Now I'm curious.... what about the Gemkat was so dangerous that they wanted to use a prisoner to test it? Were they worried it might malfunction and crystalize the user?
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Re: Writing Good SWAT Kats Fanfiction: Staying In Character

Postby Kooshmeister » Wed Mar 15, 2017 11:22 pm

marhawkman wrote:Now I'm curious.... what about the Gemkat was so dangerous that they wanted to use a prisoner to test it? Were they worried it might malfunction and crystalize the user?


Meece was already using prisoners as labor to mine the diamonds, so I figure when it came time to test the device, it just made sense to hand it to one of the prisoners in the work program. Not necessarily because it was dangerous, but because it was grunt work the prisoners were already doing. And, on the off chance it was dangerous and might malfunction somehow, a "disposable" convict is a more suitable operator for the machine than Greenbox himself, or any of the guards.

I suppose Meece could've gotten a third party unconnected to the prison and its mining operation, but I think because he was already spending so much of the diamond money on the prison's upkeep and wanted to keep as much of the rest for himself as he could, he chose the cheaper route of using someone from one of his already existing pool of volunteers. Why hire someone and pay them to test the device when you've already got manual labor at hand who can be bought with promises of a reduced sentence?

And why Shard specifically? Two possibilities. One being simpler than the other. First, the simple one: a prisoner's a prisoner and he was just the guy who happened to be scheduled to dig there that day. But this doesn't account for the offer of a reduced sentence, meaning there was a reason the offer (bogus or not) was made, leading us to the (slightly) more complicated possibility.

I doubt that anyone thought that if the Gemkat 6000 malfunctioned, the device would do to the user what it did to Shard, but safety concerns may have still been a factor on top of it being cheaper to use prisoners instead of paid labor. I doubt Meece or Greenbox actually chose Shard, though. It's possible he was simply the only one willing to do it. Even if Greenbox assured the the other volunteers it was safe, even guys who arguably have nothing to lose are gonna be hesitant about testing unproven technology; the thing, as depicted, is basically a laser jackhammer. They're not scientists, but they have experience digging and working underground, so they might be thinking, what effect would it have on the mine's stability? Greenbox could tell them all day that the risks are minimal and they'd still be hesitant.

So it's likely Shard was the only one who they could persuade, and even then only with promises of a reduced sentence. This makes me think the offer of shaved time was not Meece's idea, but a request (demand) Shard himself made; he may be a thug, but he isn't stupid, and his willingness to be the test operator means he has Meece and Greenbox by the b--I mean has them in a position where he can demand pretty much whatever they're able to give him within reason. The old "What's in it for me?" routine.

This might explain why Talon and Lem are so contemptuous of him (and the machine in general). They think it's dumb and isn't going to work, and here's the one guy their boss could get to test it out and he wasn't willing to do it for free, and on top of that here he is being a smart-aleck even after got what he wanted (or thinks he did). I'd be annoyed with the guy too.

If true, this makes Shard's anger at anyone but himself extraordinarily hypocritical; not only did he cause the accident, but if I'm right, he agreed to do it in exchange for a demand being met, however reasonable the demand was. Ergo, except for him being in prison, no one forced him to operate the device. Quite the opposite. Of course this is all just theory.
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Re: Writing Good SWAT Kats Fanfiction: Staying In Character

Postby marhawkman » Sat Mar 18, 2017 3:40 pm

Also, the device didn't really malfunction Shard was messing with it and broke it while trying to steal gems from it.
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Re: Writing Good SWAT Kats Fanfiction: Staying In Character

Postby Cody Furlong » Tue Apr 04, 2017 3:58 pm

Are we going to see profiles for the Dark Swat Kats? Also n Commander Feral's You mention that he was seen without his coat on doing paperwork at his desk, a being the most undressed. However in the episode with Madkat, he is seen at his home, in a t-shirt and sweat pants.
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Re: Writing Good SWAT Kats Fanfiction: Staying In Character

Postby MoDaD » Tue Apr 04, 2017 5:05 pm

Cody Furlong wrote:However in the episode with Madkat, he is seen at his home, in a t-shirt and sweat pants.


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Though, that seems to be an odd piece of trivia :lol:
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Re: Writing Good SWAT Kats Fanfiction: Staying In Character

Postby EricoBard » Wed Apr 26, 2017 11:39 am

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Dark Kat- Before Dr. Viper was reborn, before the Metallikats were created, before any of the other supervillains the SWAT Kats faced off against ever existed, there was a towering monster of a kat with purple fur and clad in robes of black and red. Taller than every other kat alive and with a voice as deep and commanding as the mountains, Dark Kat was the indirect cause of Chance Furlong and Jake Clawson quitting the force after Commander Feral's high-handed treatment...and to this day, remains one of their most troubling adversaries.

The origins of Dark Kat are unclear; Rumors, of course, exist about him. Some claim he is a former Megakat City judge, others that he is a kat who succumbed to dark magics that transformed him to his current, disfigured stature. Some believe he is a deposed tyrant from some distant nation, washed up on the shores of Megakat City and its surroundings. Similar to a more famous comic book villain, Dark Kat's origins are never clearly stated, leaving it up for discussion and argument. Yet one thing is clear; Whoever Dark Kat was, wherever he came from, the entity that he is now represents a much greater threat than anything that came before. In a sense, Dark Kat was the Herald of the coming age of chaos that Megakat City and the SWAT Kats would find themselves embroiled in. And he might yet prove to be the Herald of their demise.

Dark Kat's talents seem to be numerous, which makes tracking his point of origin that much harder. He is a skilled engineer and technician. He created not only his eponymous Fear Ship and the powerful energy shielding apparatus that protected it, but also a hidden volcanic lair full of deathtraps, at least two different weapons of mass destruction in two different realities, and an enormous Spider Mech capable of converting Energy to Mass...a feat feasibly possible with our current understanding of science, but still technologically out of reach. He has a devious intellect, and appears to study both his enemies and his temporary allies very closely, the better to predict their moves and countermoves. One of his most famous lines is, "I anticipated this...", after which he reveals a countermeasure that nullifies the effort. He is as capable of psychological warfare as the physical, engineering a plot that left Razor shaken and the SWAT Kats neutralized for a significant amount of time and allowed his forces to finish collecting the necessary parts to his Spider Mech. He is also capable of ignoring obvious short-term gains for his long-term goals, such as when he used the stolen military plans Hard Drive collected to further a more pressing agenda. He has also proven to be remarkably hard to kill or capture; He has survived being shot down at least on one occasion, escaped burning and exploding bases without difficulty, and escaped prison after his capture at the conclusion of his failed partnership with Hard Drive without any reported difficulty. His size and strength is such that he can pick up both SWAT Kats without any detectable strain, crush their Glovatrixes single handedly, and can even backhand Commander Feral with enough force to make the brawny tom see stars. He does not appear to be invulnerable, as T-Bone can lay into him well enough in close quarters combat, and he was captured at least once. There is a high possibility that his knack for surviving every failed operation has more to do with a talent for planning clean escapes than some supernatural or super-kat endurance or invulnerability.

For all of Dark Kat's technical and strategic genius, he is not without his flaws. The aptly named villain is as treacherous as they come, and carries a streak of prideful hubris as wide as he is tall. Whenever Dark Kat has worked with others, he always considers them subordinate to his own position of authority, and their desires secondary to his own. When working with Hard Drive, he was easily able to enfold the thief hacker into the fold, first by fear, and then later through charismatic persuasion and the use of Hard Drive's more pedestrian desires. His partnership with Dr. Viper and the Metallikats was far less successful, as Viper's own goals and treachery proved to be his equal, causing their union of evil to collapse for a time. As a result, aside from these two instances, Dark Kat prefers to work alone, hinging on the idea that there can be only one ruling head in charge. In addition, the technical genius of Razor's endless supply of specialized missiles seems to forever have an answer for whatever dire machination the terrorist and supervillain can create. His Fear Ship's energy shielding was shorted out with a Megavolt Missile, and his Spider Mech was short-circuited from the inside out through an effective combination of burrowing Mole missiles and then Drill Bit missiles to surround the thing's legs with water, and then penetrate its heavily armored, waterproof exterior. Also, the Mega-Bomb that he created to annihilate Enforcer Headquarters in downtown (Which would have taken a significant portion of downtown with it, given the nuclear armament), in spite of being rigged with all red wires, was still within Razor's technical prowess to disable in a terminal velocity freefall. For as much as he claims to be able to anticipate the movements of his enemies, the SWAT Kats always seem to find a solution that he did not foresee.

Dark Kat has at least two factions of subservient warriors under his command: The imp-like Creeplings, who are numerous and expendable and hopelessly devoted to him, but lack higher intelligence; and his Ninja Kats, a group of masked underlings skilled in martial arts and who all have purple tails and possibly full purple fur underneath their uniforms. The Creeplings are seen in multiple episodes, indicating that Dark Kat relies on them as a cheap workforce and military for his day to day operations. The Ninja Kats, on the other hand, are seen only in the episode Razor's Edge, possibly due to the more technologically complex nature of the thievery and operations required of the Spider Mech. Where he attained these two groups is never touched on; for the purposes of the show, they are merely the muscle carrying out the works of his genius criminal mind. As such, any explanation into the origins of his workers falls solidly into the category of the unknown; full of potential, and full of dangers as well, should the series authors ever give a solid answer to the unasked question.

Some have postulated that the Creeplings are supernatural in origin, and that they are in some way linked to Dark Kat's unique size, stature, and coloration, like demonic servants catering to the whims of a revived demon lord. Others believe that they are natural in origin, like a band of pink flying Oompa-Loompas that Dark Kat located, retrieved, and bent to his will. As for the Ninja Kats, they could possibly be a band of mercenaries hired to serve him, or they could also conceivably be a group of brainwashed Cultists; their tails all being purple lends itself more to this second explanation more, as alteration of physical appearance to conform to group expectations is a step above the uniform they all wear.

Dark Kat, being the first villain that the SWAT Kats went up against, also has the distinction of being one of their worst, if not THE worst. Whereas Viper wants to transform Megakat City into a twisted, mutated paradise based on Darwinian survival of the fittest with himself at the pinnacle, and the Metallikats are in it for the money, Dark Kat's own future aspirations are appropriately enough, darker. In his first chronological appearance, the flashback mission where Chance and Jake still flew with the Enforcers, he was attempting to bomb the Enforcers HQ with seemingly normal munitions to knock it out of commission. He later goes after it with a custom-built nuclear device, uncaring about the greater damage to surrounding structures and civilians, committed only to destroying it utterly and completely. After being foiled by the SWAT Kats, he turns his considerable intellect and focus on eliminating them instead, and after that fails, he goes so far as to attempt a Hail Mary play by uniting with the other villains to destroy them, and the city's mayor and deputy mayor in the process. Following his defeat there, he is not seen again until Razor's Edge, where a series of high-technology thefts perpetrated by a group seemingly unconnected to him are all but a buildup to the creation of his city-destroying Spider Mech, a weapon so powerful and versatile that, he believed, even the SWAT Kats couldn't stop him. The trend in his actions and his pattern is one of escalation, and in movements in the shadows that are not recognized for the danger they are until he has unfurled his latest master plan. First, he went after the Enforcers, the protectors in the way of his rule. Then, he went after the SWAT Kats, then Megakat City's leadership. Finally, he settled on outright destruction as the solution. Given how rarely he appears in person, one can surmise that after every defeat, he re-evaluates everything; his methods, his means, and his goals. His final goal, of course, is the complete destruction of Megakat City as it is, and the rise of a new criminal metropolis that he rules. The process between the start and ending product is what changes. Having failed with a Giant Robot-styled superweapon, and keeping in mind his past patterns and actions, it is easy to understand why someone would look to the future with a sense of unease and trepidation. As he has used escalation after every failure, he might well decide to just destroy the entire city and literally start his criminal empire from the ground up. Viper desires life to rule in Megakat City; a biologically twisted life ruled by him. Dark Kat seems more than willing to rule over a wasteland of graves and ashes.

What To Avoid With Dark Kat: The only constant one finds with Dark Kat is his unwillingness to cooperate fully with others. Having failed twice when working with Hard Dive, Viper, and the Metallikats, it is unlikely he will ever make another attempt. In the alternate reality where he was paired up with the Dark SWAT Kats, he was also conceivably linked to the evil Deputy Mayor Briggs as well; here again, one must keep in mind that his alliances were ones of convenience for his own personal goals, even if he never came out and said it blatantly, in every occasion where he interacts with someone else, he ranges from abusive to deviously placating. Everyone Dark Kats works with is expendable, in his eyes.

Beyond that, the shape of his machinations seems limitless. Even his goals appear flexible. Loosely styled after Sherlock Holmes' infamous literary nemesis, Professor Moriarty, Dark Kat defies traditional explanation and predictive models. A criminal mastermind? An unappreciated technological genius? A terrorist hellbent on anarchy? A nigh immortal, Vandal Savage-like entity pushing katkind to its full potential through suffering and pain? A reborn demon walking in the skin of an unwitting sacrifice with an army of Hell at his back? It is possible that Dark Kat has even greater aspirations than the mere domination of the ruins of Megakat City. You can literally put up a pegboard covered in ideas from genocide to cult worship to complete nuclear annihilation, throw a dart, and whatever you hit can be his next scheme. Having graduated from merely trying to wipe out the Enforcers to trying to turn the city into rubble with a giant robot, his pattern of escalation means that anything is possible. The silence of his absence is what causes the greatest tremblings of fear, because there is no telling what he will try next. All we know is that he will keep trying, and that each plan will be more devastating, more terrifying, than the last. Dark Kat is a villain with nothing to lose and everything to gain.

If there is a Big Bad among the baddies in Megakat City, it is Dark Kat. You always save the worst for last.
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