Reviews for True Heelers Season 2
Silver.Silhouette.19 chapter 1 . 12/11/2012
Hi Sam,

I hope you’re well. I’ve noticed that it’s been about a year and a half since you last updated, which on this site usually means that the story won’t be continuing. I just wanted to thank you for posting such a well written and entertaining story, which not only increased my appreciation for the show itself, but also put onto paper a relationship I had always hoped to see in the show. I think I will always prefer your version of how the show might have continued after 2005, and am really grateful that you took the time to write it.

I think you have a real talent for writing, particularly in communicating the emotions and perspectives of your characters. I think you have the capability to write some really good fictional stories, and hopefully one day I might see some on a bookstore shelf.

Once again, thanks for writing, and all the best in the future.
Silver.Silhouette.19 chapter 11 . 9/18/2011
Hi Sam,

It was really great to read your latest update. This chapter was a lot more light-hearted than your usual ones, which was good in that it showed that in between crises, normal things are happening, relationships are fluctuating or stabilising, and that life isn’t running at full throttle 24-7. I really liked the way you introduced Charlie Clarke into this storyline. Having never seen him on the show before, his mannerisms definitely shone through in this story and it was quite entertaining. Did he seriously talk like that on the show?

I am really enjoying the whole Nick/Zoe storyline at the moment. I’m very curious to see where you’ll take this, because unless Nick finally faces up to things, I can’t see their relationship recovering, which would probably mean Zoe leaving, which would really shake up the story. And that would be sad because I really like Zoe’s character. Regardless of what happens, I look forward to seeing you further explore this storyline.

It was good to see Dash starting to gain some level of acceptance of Phoebe’s death, and to see her acknowledge that while her life would never again be what it was, it would still be worth living. I think you really brilliantly captured that sentiment in this line:

“This wasn't the life she wanted or had ever expected to find herself living, but it was the one she had and she intended to enjoy it.”

This was a particularly important moment in this update, because one of the biggest traps I’ve noticed fanfic writers tend to fall into after writing a character death is giving the people most affected by the death a minimum time period where they are lost in angst, and then suddenly have them bounce back at the end of this time like nothing ever happened, with a token line every couple of chapters or so about how much they’re suffering. Throughout this entire chapter, it was obvious that Dash was struggling, and that she was transitioning to a new way of life, which completely avoids that cliché, and realistically deals with her grief. So kudos for writing that so well.

I’m really looking forward to reading the next chapter to see where you take your series next. So far it has been incredibly captivating and enjoyable to read, and there is still so much unchartered territory in character relationships that can give rise to a whole host of new storylines. From your description, the next chapter sounds like its going to be a very good read. Happy writing, and I can’t wait for the next update!
The Brunette Bullet Girl chapter 11 . 9/7/2011
Ha!

Loving this season of TH so far! I can't believe that there isn't many ppl reviewing this! I totally love it! In season one I was a little hesitant in reading it cause it was so long, but then after I got out of hospital after having all my wisdom teeth removed I started reading this whist watch BH! Lol

But it had me hooked! I totally adore Amy as a character and I have to admit, I swear that you actually wrote her lines in the show, that's how accurate you are in writing her, better than I am at the moment! LOL

Anyways, I love the bit where Amy was on the phone with Charlie Clark! LOL PRICELESS!

She shot him a filthy look and answered it. "Hello, Mt. Thomas CID, Senior Detective...no, this isn't PJ Hasham...look, who is this?" She rolled her eyes. "Alright, alright, Mr. Clarke, can you just slow down, I can't understand a word...look, we'll be out there shortly." She almost threw the phone down in frustration.

PJ was grinning with amusement. "Charlie Clarke, I take it?"

"He was hysterical, I've got no idea what he was even on about," she replied. "He was going on about his wife...quite frankly, he sounded like he'd just swallowed a thesaurus."

He chuckled. "So our Charlie's just being himself, then?" He suddenly tried to preoccupy himself with his disorganised piles of paperwork. Realising that Amy was glaring at him, he looked up slowly. "Yes?"

This part had me in hysterics! I always thought he had swallowed a thesaurus! Anyways can't wait to read more! Love it, especially since I have just finished watching BH again for the 4th time! True Heeler's is like the seasons that never were!

Dannielle

(RyanThorpe AKA LOST_MUFFIN)
Silver.Silhouette.19 chapter 10 . 12/15/2010
Sam,

Wow. Just wow. That was so well written! And so incredibly sad!

I really enjoyed reading this latest update. Your characters continue to resonate with me, seeming very realistic in their interactions with others and reactions to different situations. Personally, I always enjoy your stories the most when they have an Amy/PJ focus. However, that said, their lives can’t be full throttle 24/7, and I think it was a great idea to have a story with someone else as the focus for once, with the two of them just a minor side story.

I think the most difficult thing for a writer is making the choice to kill off one of their characters. In many fanfics, I’m often disappointed that characters seem to be killed off for no greater reason than simply that they were becoming an inconvenience for the author to include in the story. You can often see the author’s relief practically screaming out from their story once they dispose of a character and they no longer have to deal with them in their writing. This is usually most obvious in the aftermath, where they move on from the character’s death in perhaps an obligatory vague couple of sentences about a funeral, before permanently closing that door and moving on with the story, almost as though that character’s existence has been completely amputated from their story. What I love about this episode is that you dealt with Phoebe’s death in such a respectful way. It’s clear that she wasn’t just some generic character who could be easily disposed of, but a character who was intricately connected to every other character in your fic. She wasn’t a character who needed to be killed off, because she was full of possibilities for future storylines. So the fact that you chose to kill her really shows maturity in your writing ability, as it will now allow you to explore new storylines to a greater depth than you otherwise would have been able to.

I think a good move on your part was having Phoebe die of an asthma attack, rather than murder. The fact is that children do die of asthma attacks, and while there was nothing good about her death, it made me feel a little better in knowing that she may not have died as a direct consequence of her abduction, and that she may have died anyway. It seemed to leave some chance at redemption for April’s husband, which seemed to me the only good thing that could have come out of such a horrible situation.

And Adam leaving! I didn’t see that one coming. The way you wrote that scene left no doubt in my mind that leaving Mt. Thomas was the most logical path for him to follow. It really seems like he’s gone for good, and if he is, good on you for being strong-willed enough to let go of a good character to move the story in a new direction. Still… I’m really going to miss his role in your series! I guess that shows that you’ve done a really good job at weaving him into your story.

As for Nick and Zoe… I think that storyline has been very realistic and well-written to date. After the deaths of their two sons, of course they would have a rocky time, and for anyone to suggest otherwise would be ridiculous. I seem to be commenting a lot this time around about your ability to make bold moves in your writing, and I believe that having Zoe walk out on Nick is just another example of this. Many fanfic writers fall into the trap of having relationships remain completely unshakeable through anything and everything that comes their way, without ever showing each of the people involved in the relationship acting as individuals. In these cases, you always see the whole “we’ll make it through this no matter what” mentality really shining through, and while this is an admirable attitude to take and would really reveal the strength of a relationship, it fails to explore the complexities in the emotions each character is feeling and how they react as individuals, and only shows how their relationship fares from the ordeal.

In having Zoe walk out on Nick, you have shown that you don’t fall into this category of writers. The fact is that Nick was completely disregarding Zoe at a time when she needed him more than any other, and sooner or later, something had to break. I think this now opens up a large range of possible storylines for you to explore, and will allow you to properly explore the foundations of their relationship. If you intended for the two of them to reconcile and get back together at some point in time, you’ve now allowed yourself a few episodes in which you can explore the tensions and volatilities in both their characters and relationships, and perhaps in Nick’s case, delve into his past to start really dealing with the deaths of his wife and daughter. I really think this is a chance for you to take your writing to another level, moving to a new level of complexity in your writing style far beyond some of the initial complication/resolution storylines you used at the beginning of your series (not that I didn’t enjoy those episodes, of course).

Once again, I can’t help but notice that Ringo seems to be developing nicely in the background of the story, and I really look forward to the day when his character is at the centre of a storyline, and not just a side story. Just a thought, but down the track, lots of episodes into the future (assuming, of course, that you write a lot more episodes- fingers crossed! :D) I think that a relationship between Dash and Ringo would be an interesting one to explore. Obviously, not right away, because Dash’s world has just come crumbling down, but she will need someone to help her through it, and during the storyline when Adam returned to town, Ringo really seemed to fill that role.

This may seem like a stupid question, but who is Charlie Clarke? I only really watched Blue Heelers from about season 11 onwards, and am just now starting to watch some of the earlier seasons. Is he a character from the original series, or someone you’re introducing?

There was some incredibly powerful writing in this episode, and I look forward to reading more of your work again soon. I really hope you continue to update this story in the future. It is always a pleasure to read, and it seems each time you update, your writing exceeds all my expectations. Well done!
Silver.Silhouette.19 chapter 9 . 4/24/2010
Sam,

I apologise for the delay of this review. I have been well and truly snowed under with work, and am only just starting to get on top of it. But rest assured that whenever you publish a new episode, I’ll try my best to get a review out as soon as I’m able.

This has been by far my favourite episode to date. It was just amazing, and I loved every second of it. The depth with which you explored the character’s emotions was phenomenal, with Amy of course being the highlight of this.

I thought the Ringo sidestory was fantastic, further developing and giving great insight into his character. I’m curious to see whether you’ll bring Emma back in. She had a very strong presence and I think her personality would clash with just about everyone else at the station. I can’t say I was at all a fan of her, which has nothing to do with a flaw in your writing ability, and all to do with the kind of person she was portrayed as. What she did to Ringo was absolutely awful, and she didn’t seem to show any remorse. But sometimes it’s good to introduce characters that aren’t liked at first, because eventually, as you develop them, they start to grow on readers. Sometimes. If she came back and hurt Ringo again, it would have to be 2 strikes and she’s out for me! It seemed at the end that you may have left it open for her to come back; given she never contacted Ringo, there’s some unfinished business there. So I’m really intrigued to see whether you reintroduce her into a later episode. I reckon that would provide some interesting storylines, even if only side stories.

Nick was really brilliant in this episode. He really stepped into his role as the supportive big brother that Amy needed. I especially loved the scene where he went to confront PJ in the remand centre. I thought it was particularly powerful that his anger on Amy’s behalf overrode his concern for his best friend, even if only temporarily. I also thought it was great that you focused on his life as a policeman, and didn’t show any of his home life. Given the way things were left between Nick and Zoe in the previous episode, I got the sense that things were stewing away under the surface. Having read the description about breaking points in relationships featuring in the next episode, I couldn’t help but think that Nick and Zoe would be the most likely couple to suffer in their relationship. Omitting their relationship from this episode entirely, and then coming back to it in the next, would be a really effective way of showing their struggles. A sign of a really good writer is one who can allude to something without specifically having to say it. Throughout this episode, whenever I read about Nick, I couldn’t help but wonder where Zoe was, and how she was doing. I think that, if you are going to explore their struggling relationship, failing to mention Zoe really showed the isolation between the two of them, which is really great writing. But if that is where this is going, I really hope that their entire relationship doesn’t break down. Their marriage has always seemed to me an important part of the story, and I really hope it doesn’t fail now.

In this episode, Mark really shone through as a leader. The scene where he visited PJ in the remand centre, and welcomed him back at the end really epitomised the kind of fatherly leader he has become. The Chris/Mark relationship also adds an interesting twist to the story. For some reason, I never really considered Chris as a relationship type of person in Blue Heelers, given her role as the mother of the team… but the idea is gradually growing on me.

I loved the fact that you brought Bill Lapscott back into the story. I was always a fan of him on the show, and this was a time when Amy really needed someone in her corner. The conversation between Bill and Amy is really pivotal to Amy and PJ’s relationship, as Amy is the kind of person who tends to keep things to herself, and only really confides in others when at breaking point. It was great that you had Bill, a psychologist, spell it out for her the way he did. It would be great to see him introduced into the story again in the future.

And also, of course, there’s Damian. I really thought it was a good move to introduce his role in Amy’s life into the story, given that has never really been an avenue explored by the show or many fanfics. I was pleased to see that Amy, at the beginning, didn’t really have any lingering negative feelings towards Damian as she did Brendan. It seemed for once she might have had an ally when she was a teenager. But then, of course, the truth came out, and she was betrayed once again. She really hasn’t had very good luck with many relationships in her life, has she? Her relationships with PJ and Nick seem to be the first ones not filled with letdown and betrayal.

I absolutely loved how you explored PJ and Amy’s relationship in this episode. It was really effective that they only spent time together at the beginning and end of the episode, leaving it to characters like Bill and Nick to expose the tensions and fears in their relationship. The ending scene was fantastic, where PJ for once was the person in the vulnerable position in their relationship. I also really enjoyed the part where PJ came back into the station. That is exactly how I would imagine him acting! Very well written.

My absolute favourite part of this episode was the flashback, and the way in which you contrasted Amy’s present thoughts with those of her past. The scene very eloquently summarised just how far Amy has come since her uncle was charged with murder. Having her stand in the same position, but with a husband moving to her side really enforces the idea that she is finally beginning to recognise that her life has moved on and she is surrounded by people who love and care about her. I particularly loved PJ’s comment about there being more than one type of family. There was a similar scene on the show Bones where one of the two main characters told the other that there was more than one type of family, and that their colleagues were their real family. I loved the comment then, and I still love it now, especially with PJ being the one saying it.

I hope you don’t object to a little bit of constructive criticism, but I think there is one area in particular where you could improve your writing. I’ve noticed that sometimes you use “minutes” instead of “moments” when talking about periods of time passing. I could only really find one that stood out for me in this episode: “Mark frowned for a minute before finally nodding.” I wasn’t really sure if “minute” would be a realistic measure for this particular conversation. I remember I have been distracted by this in the past, in that you have used “several minutes” of silence during conversations where it seemed more natural for it to be “several moments”. Sometimes, no doubt, several minutes of silence may be appropriate. But I have noticed a few times now that you have used minutes in places that really stood out for me, and I think that by using minutes to measure those pauses too often, it weakens the passages where it may actually be realistic for there to be minutes of silence. However, if it was your intent for those to be minutes rather than moments, I apologise.

Your writing was really fantastic in this episode, so really well done. I’m enjoying this series more and more with each episode, and I can’t wait for the next one!
Silver.Silhouette.19 chapter 8 . 3/17/2010
Hi Sam,

Been reading your “True Heelers” series for absolutely yonks, and now that I’ve got an account thought I owed you a damn good review, so I hope you don’t mind the length.

Both series 1 and 2 are absolutely sensational, and have been a pleasure to read. The intriguing storylines, excellent characterisation and relationships have made this one of the best fics I’ve read.

Your grammar is almost always flawless, which is fantastic, as bad grammar in fics can often detract from the quality of the story. It’s always refreshing to find an author who values good grammar, and has an extensive vocabulary, so really well done.

No doubt you’ve heard this before, but your commitment to keeping each character aligned with their personality in the actual series has been excellent. One thing I really can’t stand about fics is when the characters are so different from their canon selves that they might as well be given another name, so it’s been great seeing you develop each character based on their personality in the show.

The Amy/PJ relationship is for me the highlight of the story. When I watched the show, I was always praying that the writers might have developed something there, so when PJ left, I lost a lot of interest in the show. I’ve never really been able to understand the Amy/Alex pairings in fics, or even the Amy/Jonesy pairings, really. So it’s been fantastic to see someone so passionate about exploring the Amy/PJ relationship, and you’ve done such a brilliant job.

You’ve really pinpointed all the major clashes that they could experience, whether due to Amy’s abuse, or PJ’s ex-fiancees, and you’ve dealt with them in a realistic way. I love that you’ve recognised that Amy’s abuse is something that will always affect her to some degree, and that it isn’t something that just “switches off” one day, and she can live unburdened forever after, like I’ve often seen in other Blue Heelers fics. While that would be ideal, it’s just not at all realistic, so I think that shows you’ve got a really good understanding of the human psyche.

I started reading “True Heelers” when you first posted it years ago, and since then, I’ve really noticed the maturation in your writing style. I think a really good move was sweeping out characters like Alex, and re-introducing characters from the “old station”, Nick and Dash. By doing that, you didn’t need to work as hard to create the sense of camaraderie, as you were building on some already firmly established relationships. I have to applaud you on your ability to weave new characters into the story, in particular, Ringo. I was just thinking back to the show the other day and did a double-take as I realised that he was never in it. He has a very strong presence in the story, with such a strongly built backstory. So that’s a really awesome effort to be able to create a character that is as much a part of the station as Mark or Dash.

That in itself should be evidence of your improved writing style. But there’s also been a greater depth to your more recent storylines, particularly the Raymond Hunt attack, the deaths of Nick and Zoe’s sons, and the return of Amy’s uncle. Through these events, the relationships between the characters have really been exposed and shown to be incredibly well developed. The way each character has been affected by trauma was incredibly realistic. In particular, the way you led up to the return of Amy’s uncle, and the affect each of these events had on the decline of her composure was outstanding.

I’d have to say there is really only one aspect to the series that is slightly unrealistic. Amy seems to have morphed into a lightning rod for absolutely anything that could ever go wrong! Of course, these situations are where your writing ability really flourishes, and I’m not trying to say give her an easy run. It’s just when you think about all the things that have gone wrong for her since the start of “True Heelers”, and before that on the TV show, you have to wonder whether all that could really happen to one person. But given her job, and the way in which she throws herself into it, the thought that she could be targeted so often is really not all that unbelievable.

That said, this has been an absolutely amazing series you’ve written, and it really is the highlight of my day when I find out you’ve updated. The Amy/PJ relationship is just fantastic, and I can’t wait to see what storylines you come up with next.
Stars2008 chapter 4 . 2/18/2009
Well at last i have finially finished reading up to chapter 4.

I love how you have a different storyline/episode for each chapter. I hope everything gets better for Amy. She's had a rough time since coming back to Mt Thomas. A lovely twist with Adam and Dash too, at least she knows the reason why he left! I swear it was Louis who punched (or whatever he did) to Amy :P

Hopefully the wedding comes out to be perfect and that nothing will go wrong.

I cant wait for your next update, it sounds very interesting!

Please update soon!
Sez01 chapter 4 . 1/3/2009
Wow, I jsut spent 3 days reading this story and the first series and I have to say they are both amazing! I like the way you've gone about it having each chapter as episodes. I'm really enjoying the storylines you've created, but I feel for Amy; she definitely hasnt' had an easy ride since her return to Mt Thomas with almost every disaster involving her in some way. Hopefully with the wedding coming up soon she will have a bit of a break and a bit of happiness.

I hope you update soon; I'm really enjoying the story!
Lozza-bear chapter 2 . 4/24/2008
I loved it Sam!

I'm glad Amy and PJ are going to be okay though. You wrote PJ's emotions really really well.

A nice twist with Adam coming back to Dash. And really sad story about the tsumani too :( I can't wait to see what Dash does about Adam.

Update soon! :D
alizadavid chapter 1 . 4/22/2008
hi, i really enjoy reading your stories but my favourite character, Matt Graham, doesn't seem to appear in many. Can you write a story involving him? Your stories are great, keep it up.

ally :-)
RosalieTheBeautyQueen chapter 1 . 3/31/2008
that was realli gud!

whens the next chapter coming?

x x x
Lozza-bear chapter 1 . 3/15/2008
omg that was great Sam! :D

I read the first series and loved it, but didn't geet to reply to it. I hope that you can get this next part up soon, but whenever you're ready :)

Loz