Alternate universe?

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Alternate universe?

Postby Crescent Pulsar R » Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:56 pm

(Pardon me if this should be in the Ranma forum, but I felt that it should go here instead of there, since this concerns fan-fiction, not the series it's based on.)

I've come across a surprising amount of fan-fiction stories where, in the Tendo home, the bathroom is upstairs, and/or the living room furniture is Western (usually high tables with matching chairs, or a couch). Would that be considered enough to make the story an alternate universe, if the changes made to these common settings are never explained? I suppose it's not out of the question that the furniture is possible, since they do have beds in the girls' bedrooms, but what about the bathroom?

I'm well aware that this kind of issue can simply be swept under a rug, because it's not really important when you take into consideration a lot of other things about the series, where changes would be scrutinized with a lot more stringency. What about the technical side, though? How many unexplained changes can you make, before something becomes an alternate universe? Is it only when the changes are blatant or extreme enough? Or is it so sensitive that any work of fan-fiction could potentially be considered an alternate universe?

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Re: Alternate universe?

Postby Sunshine Temple » Wed Feb 09, 2011 9:06 pm

This could go to Ranma... but on the other hand is it unique to Ranma as a series?

Any Fanfiction can get this problem of writers being divorced from the original source. So this could be seen as a more meta issue.

Especially given the media shift from visual (manga and anime) to text. This is very true with visual things, and moreso with stuff like set design.

From room locations and geography a lot can be screwed up if you don't do alot of legwork: watching the source material to doing your own research on the subject.

The question of alternate universe depends on how much is changed. As even the most rigorous continuation of a given anime is still an adaptation (sound and video to text).

I guess it lies with how nitpicky one is being and with how blatant the goofs are.

Though I will say that setting screwups are more forgiving than characterization screwups (and that's a whole other kettle of fish).
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Re: Alternate universe?

Postby Spokavriel » Wed Feb 09, 2011 9:28 pm

Most of the time the bathroom is depicted as being down stairs but in the Cats Tongue pressure point the reactions when Ranma cries out makes it apparently seem to be up stairs. It isn't the only time where it gets reactions hinting at an upstairs location.
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Re: Alternate universe?

Postby Wyrd » Wed Feb 09, 2011 9:44 pm

I have a file somewhere with pictures of the official layout of the Tendo home. I can try to find them and post them here if you are interested. The furo most definitely is not upstairs, but there are a couple of unnamed small rooms that could be a half-bath(just toilet and sink) upstairs.

My personal rule of thumb is it becomes AU when you change a major detail about the past or change a primary element of the series. A Ranma x SM cross(or any cross) need not be AU as long as the core details of the two series remain substantially the same. There is very little that actually contradicts between these two. Even making Ranma a Senshi isn't enough to violate SM canon, as, contrary to what has been said in many fukufics, there were at least 4 more Senshi who weren't active, for 'four planetary asteroids,' so there could quite easily be more. He need not even be a Senshi of a planet/dwarf planet in the Sol system, or he could be made one over the course of the fic.
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Re: Alternate universe?

Postby Lioconvoy » Thu Feb 10, 2011 12:27 am

Spokavriel wrote: Most of the time the bathroom is depicted as being down stairs but in the Cats Tongue pressure point the reactions when Ranma cries out makes it apparently seem to be up stairs. It isn't the only time where it gets reactions hinting at an upstairs location.

Er, I don't think their reaction make it seem like it's upstairs. Sure they're looking out, but not nessarily up.
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Re: Alternate universe?

Postby PCHeintz72 » Thu Feb 10, 2011 12:49 am

This is actually several issues.

1. Any fan fiction autmatically has to be considered AU and non canon, thus things changing like school days or room layouts are the norm.

2. Different canon continuities of the same series often have different room layouts.

3. Even within a single canon continuity, room details can be messed up by the creators... I've personally seen major detail messups in Tenchi, Ranma and Negima, just to name 3. Akane Tendos room in manga even changes complete configuration within the same book. Negima anime has rooms moving location and portals changing walls and going to different rooms., Tenchis house and expecially dock layout changes several times, though that at least has the partial explanaiton of occasional rebuilding needed due to damage.
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Re: Alternate universe?

Postby Dumbledork » Thu Feb 10, 2011 2:40 am

I don't really see why it should matter where the furo is located. Just place it wherever you need it for your story. Take the Simpsons for example. The geography changes all the time except for Flander's house which ias alwys next to the Simpsons'
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Re: Alternate universe?

Postby Wyrd » Thu Feb 10, 2011 11:24 am

The furo should not be upstairs because of the weight of all of that water. Furos are much larger than a Western bathtub, and can weigh upwards of a ton when full. It is possible to put one on a higher floor, but doing so requires a great deal of structural reinforcement. Just about any house that has one will have it on the ground floor for these reasons. In Ranma in particular, the tendency to have people going through and otherwise destroying walls and structural supports makes the idea of having the furo upstairs much worse.
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Re: Alternate universe?

Postby Ellen Kuhfeld » Thu Feb 10, 2011 11:57 am

Not only that! In earthquake country, you want your house to have a low center of gravity.
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Re: Alternate universe?

Postby Cheb » Thu Feb 10, 2011 12:56 pm

Not only is it downstairs. It's an annex! As I remember, the changing room is still a part of the house, but the furo room sticks out,it has three outside walls. With this, you don't have to worry about any leaks making the house itself (a wooden house!) wet.
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