Reviews for A Shoulder to Lean On
A Passing Reader chapter 1 . 11/5/2015
I remember reading this fanfiction years ago, and meant to drop a review. After scouring the internet for it, so much time later, I've finally decided to not be a bum and give it the proper critique it deserves (based on memory, so if I've missed something or incorrectly recalled something, let me know!).

The Good Stuff: I review a TON of fanfiction. Literally, a ton. It is, to me, one of the most important literary outlets of our time, and the life's-blood of a fandom. Out of the hundreds of thousands of works for nearly as many separate fandoms and franchises, THIS FIC was one that I remembered the most, because it managed to do some things that I'd honestly never seen before, the most impressive being...

#1: The introduction of an OC that was actually LIKABLE and served a PURPOSE. This may not seem like a big deal, but oh man, it is. I instinctively hate OC's. If they are mentioned in the summary, I will often flinch away from the work without reading it, because by design, most of them are ill-fitting and take away too much attention from what the fans originally came for...the main characters. NOT some gal/guy that could morph into a Sue and steal the spotlight. The Medic from the KG (and I'm sorry, it's been so long that I don't remember his name!) is one of the best OC characters I'd ever come across - like, in my TOP THREE of any fanfiction ever, because he is used sparingly, serves a specific purpose to both Torn's development and the plot, and is truly and honestly likable. The writing around him was so relaxed, and flowed as though he were an actual character in the franchise.

#2: Silent Daxter. The first few chapters of this story were spun gold to me, because it focused on a different kind of relationship between a pair that usually never gets the spotlight, and not in a romantic way. I remember reading another story where Daxter was told to shut up nearly every 3 sentences, and couldn't figure out why it bothered me. Yes, he's loud, but he also served as Jak's voice since the series began. Therefore, without anyone to speak for, the first few chapters of Daxter being SILENT somehow managed to speak entire VOLUMES. I LOVED the idea of him retreating so far into himself that he became, essentially, an animal; the implication that, with the most important tether in the world to him gone, he had given up on everything, even himself. The interaction between Daxter and Torn without dialogue was a tricky and ambitious idea that was handled with such ease that, by the time he DOES speak again, it honestly felt kind of like someone interrupting in the middle of an art gallery. Or farting in church. (Shhh!)

#3 Torn's development. This guy never gets a break. He's got 99 problems, and likewise is so removed from anything that he can't understand WHY he doesn't understand, can't seem to grasp the obvious that everyone else can so clearly see. He's imperfect; he's an asshole; and through nursing Daxter back to health, is given a lot of time to think. To go from initially despising Daxter to forming the grudging sort of mutually-respectful, quiet bond you would with a stray cat was a beautiful progression for him, and though he didn't seem to think he was making any progress, the audience could see that he really was.

The Not So Good Stuff: Honestly, this is probably more of a nitpick. The story's strength came from it's slow and quiet pace; it's delicate and unique relationship b/w Torn and Dax. So when Daxter starts talking again, it's meant to be a crowd-pleaser - nothing wrong with that - and the humor is legitimate, but the suddenness derailed the story for me. In my opinion, if this had taken a bit longer, and the ramifications of his best friend's death given the time to, not just "wear off", but actually HEAL, this would have been a stronger telling. And don't get me wrong, the banter between the two was impressively in-character, memorable, and oftentimes, priceless ("Eat your bug."); Torn unintentionally assuming Jak's role by having Daxter ride on his shoulder (and if I'm remembering it right, helping to channel the Dark Eco?) was also a brilliant move. But again, the broken silence really threw a lot of that off. Daxter changed the dynamic by speaking as though he were perfectly fine and nothing built up from the past few chapters had ever happened. In time, this would have been less distracting, and flowed much better further down the road. His, AND Torn's, return to the human race after so long should have felt rewarding, for both the character AND the reader.

Conclusion! Taking Daxter around on missions implied a series of adventures/misadventures, where the new dynamic of "Torn and Daxter", instead of "Jak and Daxter" could be explored, was again, a brilliant idea, that I feel should have been more prominent as the story progressed. How would this team succeed/fail in comparison to the original duo, or when they were both solo? What advantages and disadvantages would we see? There was no need for the typical fanfiction routes to be taken (that somehow always manage to derail a good fic, no matter the fandom. Weird.) - like making Daxter a human and needing to save him, thus leading into fan-service / ship-service (so sick of seeing this one). What made this story stand out in the sea of so many others was its ambition to deviate from the norm, to feed the fandom ideas they'd never considered, and give something new and fresh and full of possibilities.

I was in awe of the multi-chaptered version, and I wish it were still around. Hearing that it's in the midst of a rewrite makes me so happy, and can't wait to read it when it's done! :D
Guest chapter 10 . 6/5/2014
Aw, it's too bad that this seems to be done with. Whatever, I personally enjoyed reading it very much. I'm afraid I can't really judge on OOC-ness one way or another, I'm pretty out of touch with the games myself. Gah, I really wanted to know WHY Daxter wasn't with Torn anymore. Too bad. Well, it was really a great read, so thanks for writing what IS here.
Guest chapter 10 . 9/23/2013
TV Tropes recomended this fanfiction. And its awesome if you continued it. It's such a waste of a perfectly good premise. Nice job and very well written.
Psychotic Chipmunk chapter 10 . 6/23/2013
PLEASE PLEASE continue this! PLEASE! I love this story, I think it's amazing!
thread chapter 10 . 3/6/2013
You are a very good wrighter. i liked how torn was thinking ways to get the baron mad. I say you should continue on with this story.
DarkEcoFreak chapter 10 . 3/3/2013
Aww it's not finished! I really liked was there was of this story (even though Jak "died")! You should really continue this!
Laurho chapter 10 . 12/3/2012
Aww. That's so depressing...
And sad that you haven't updated in forever. Double depression D:
Guest chapter 10 . 7/11/2012
I'm pretty sure all of the cutscenes are on YouTube, if that would help you with the characters.

This is a really great fic so far. Keep up the good work!
999 chapter 10 . 6/24/2012
Please update soon. I can't wait for everyone's reactions when they discover that Daxter was originally an elf!
Oblique Strategies chapter 10 . 6/16/2012
I read all of the present chapters before starting this review, so this is my summary of all of them.

You write very well; I think your main strength is your choice of descriptive writing, using periphrastic language to describe the characters. Sometimes it is like reading Old Icelandic poetry, which is full of it! As a descriptive writer myself, this sort of stuff really appeals to me.

Your chapters are quite littered with grammatical and spelling errors though, which is your main flaw. It's not unreadable, which is good, but as a prescriptivist I advise you to better check your chapters before uploading.

The story is progressing well. I'm surprised that Tess has not showed up yet. I hope she appears at some point.

Well done, and keep up the writing.
FYI chapter 1 . 6/14/2012
Just a warning to all, a group called Critics United is currently going around and mass reporting on Any story they deem to be breaking FF rules. This includes, but is not limited to: stories with MA or above rated content, though now they're claiming any kind of lemon is breaking the rules, Songfic's, and any stories with polls, authors notes, or otherwise in place of an actual chapter update, you could even end up accidentally put your story into what they view as being the “incorrect category” and they’ll report you for it. These stories are being deleted with little to no warning given, often within hours of one of their members locating it. If you want try to help stop the "cleansing" of this site and protest their bullying go to: www . change petitions/ fanfiction-net-stop-the-destruction-of-fanfiction-net and sign the petition in hopes of helping to stop the destruction of FF . net.
Bookworm Gal chapter 10 . 6/11/2012
Things just keep progressing from bad to worse for Daxter. I hope that someone, regardless of it is Torn or Jak back from the dead, shows up to help soon.
OrangeSkye2772 chapter 10 . 6/7/2012

bloody raptor chapter 10 . 6/4/2012
Well Daxter's screwed
bloody raptor chapter 9 . 3/27/2012
Please continue
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