|Reviews for Once a Pirate|
| Guest chapter 1 . 1/6
I rather be a pirate then live in an orphanage too kit so i don’t blame ya. Also baloo and Rebecca really need to realize their constant bickering is hurting kit.
| MadisonAva1 chapter 1 . 4/24/2020
I really like the scene where Baloo asks Kit if being a pirate is better than being in an orphanage. There is a lot of depth to that. Baloo assuming that Kit didn't really want to be there and Kit not wanting to say that he did. I've always felt that was the case. Kit may have changed his mind later in life, but in that time and place he absolutely wanted to be an air pirate. And we can only assume that he participated in it and was probably good at pirating!
| RemTar85 chapter 14 . 4/20/2020
Okay, so here we have the alternate ending, where Kit decides to go with Karnage instead of with Baloo. How does it fair? I find that it starts out on the right track, and it's fun to see things happening from Karnage's point of view early on (as well as later on). The emotions are strong here and continue strong, though I must admit that it's during a particularly strong emotional moment that I find the one flaw with this AE, so I may as well get it out of the way.
One of the biggest strengths of the early part of this AE is Kit's guilt and sadness over leaving Baloo behind, and you portray that very well, as you also display when Kit catches Karnage doing a happy dance over the fact that he legitimately wants to use getting Kit back as something to rub in Baloo's face and Kit becomes furious. All of that is portrayed really well, but after the big moment, the hug followed quickly by the other hug, Kit's understandably super happy, but then he also just kinda sorta forgets about Baloo and everyoone and everything he left behind, it doesn't come up again and it feels abrupt. Especially because the story displayed that Kit had grown out of being a criminal, he didn't like having to steal and cheat anymore to get ahead and also actively dislikes the pirates except for Karnage, to the point he didn't even care about their well being when the Vulture crashed during the battle with the dragon. It always read to me that Kit doesn't want to be a criminal, he just wants to be with the very first person he considered to be family. So to see him be happy and willing to go full criminal again after a couple of hugs, especially since Baloo and the fact that they will eventually run into him again is not really brought up anymore.
But that to me is the only negative here, because everything else works very well in the "what if" kind of scenario. The emotions, the character interactions, seeing things from Karnage's POV (the bits of him trying to write in his diary were hilarious), moments like Kit piloting the Vulture just to show he can but then screwing up anyway, and Will being nice to Kit again (for a one scene joke character from the cartoon, you made him shine in the two scenes you gave him). Those character interactions are, arguably, your strongest suit as a writer. Standout moments being Karnage and Kit looking at each other on that rope ladder and Karnage saying "I got you" all awe-struck, Karnage muttering under his breath what is technically an admission that what worries him about the prospect of Kit flying is Kit getting hurt, Karnage finding that old entry in his diary on how angry and hurt he was and then just rips it off because he's happy Kit's back.
And of course, there's the hugs. Those were such a huge moments, not just because they genuinely happened, but also by their reactions of shock at first, Kit's sheer and utter happiness, Karnage's complete shock at the strongest moment of fatherly instincts kicking in to the point he has no clue how to react except to try running away only to com back and threaten Kit to tell no one, Kit not caring and hugging him, the two laughing as Karnage starts giving in and hugging back even though he keeps asking Kit to stop. That whole sequence was so good and heartwarming, and it made me wish we had seen it somewhere in the story with the canonical ending, it's one thing I felt was missing from the story, just a genuine hug between father and son, as they more than clearly come to see one another as, especially when even here at one point Karnage calls Kit "son", which is also a bit of a bummer that Kit never refers to Karnage as "dad" at any point, since he does it to Baloo all the time with the "Papa Bear" name. Genuine huge, the "dad" thing, even a simple "I love you" from one or both, those would've been great, but the lack of them doesn't detract from what we did get, neither in this alternate ending nor the whole story in general.
So, that's about it, final review. Overall, this story was quite an experience to read. It grabbed me, it hooked me, it thrilled me and it made me very happy, especially nowadays. As a reader, I thank you very much for all the hard work and effort you put into this for everyone to enjoy.
| RemTar85 chapter 13 . 4/19/2020
So, as I said, last chapter was the calm before the storm. Well, this chapter wasn't a storm so much as a hurricane. So much stuff happened here. Where to even begin?
Guess we may as well go with the battle. Because holy moly, what a battle. It felt like a big-time Hollywood blockbuster, the Iron Vulture and Karnage's crew against the dragon, and then Richter all psycho making things extra difficult too. Richter was so persistent, and having Karnage and Kit try their best to take him on together was cool, especially when Karnage decided that he was not going to kill someone like that because he didn't want to lose Kit's respect and affection, show the boy that even a criminal like him can be a better man. Richter's own blind desire to kill Karnage was his own undoing, and yikes, was his demise seriously gruesome, I did not expect it to be so hardcore. Of course, the battle wasn't ended yet, because that dragon was so persistent. The chases into the volcano, the bombarding, everything had this grand feel to it, up to and including the dragon's also gruesome demise and the subsequent big-time change to the landscape. Just awe inducing.
And then there were the interactions too, as always. Kit and Karnage still snap and snipe at one another, but by this point there's no doubt about the fact that they truly and genuinely care about one another again, not just from their saving each other's lives yet again, multiple times at that, but mainly and most noticeable when Baloo and Rebecca finally make it into the Iron Vulture, Baloo and Karnage having that stare-down, both furious at one another as they argue over Kit, with Karnage holding the boy to him downright protectively. It was nice to see that protectiveness keep popping up, from pulling Kit down at the lake when the soldiers shoot, to yanking him along to evade Richter's grenade, to outright hugging Kit to him when their fighter plane's about to crash on the trees, it was all great. And after all is said and done, down by the lake (and nice to see Rupo appear again), that heart wrenching decision Kit has to make really tugs at the heartstrings, as he finds himself in the unenviable position of having to choose between his two father figures. And yet as much as it hurts, I personally believe he did make the right decision. As I said in a previous review, Kit has a family, a home, a normal life, which is just a far healthier environment to grow up than, well, being a criminal surrounded by other criminals, breaking the law, putting their lives at risks during those heists. The ending is still just as heartfelt, with Kit having to come to terms with his decision, having to move on, but then also keeping his handkerchief for good this time, it was really sweet.
Any flaws, other than the occasional grammar mistake (some Spanish bits were a bit off too)? A few, in my opinion. To start, I feel we didn't get enough Baloo and Rebecca throughout the story. Some small bits throughout some chapters of their searching for Kit would've been nice to see, though even in this last chapter they felt underutilized. The explorers themselves also just seemed to be written off rather unceremoniously after they started out as such important characters; a final scene with them would've been nice, especially since Tyler and Kit really bonded in the early story and it would've been cool to see them interact one final time. Also, what happened with Sadie? He got knocked out by Richter as the Vulture was taking off and we never heard from him again. And finally, after Kit's decision to stay with Baloo, he not getting to see Karnage again except for hearing the Iron Vulture cause a ruckus, it felt a bit abrupt of an ending to me. I think maybe a final scene, an epilogue where Karnage manages to talk to Kit in private so they can both come to terms with Kit's decision would've been such a nice way to close the story, since it would fit into things like how just because he chose the healthier life he can have with the family he loves, Kit can still love and care for Karnage despite not staying with him, while it could also be the final piece of Karnage's character development, that in loving Kit as the son he never had, it would also mean doing what's best for him, in this case acknowledging that Kit can and will do well in Cape Suzette and respecting Kit's decision to stay with Baloo instead of Karnage. But that's just my opinion.
So, overall? Wow. Just wow. This wasn't just a story, it was an experience. Fun characters, staying true and loyal to the source material while expanding it well, great action, greatly executed dramatic and heartwarming moments, and finally not just exploring the whole Kit & Karnage thing, but going beyond it in a way I never expected anyone to be able to manage, but you did it gloriously. Now it's just the alternate ending left to read.
| RemTar85 chapter 12 . 4/18/2020
This was probably the most light-hearted chapter yet, like that calm needed before the big storm, and it was very welcome. Moments like Kit trolling Ratchet for his and Karnage's amusement, Kit keeping quiet about what really happened to the rock and comforting Karnage about its loss, Will being genuinely friendly towards Kit, those were all great. But of course, it's Kit and Karnage's relationship that provides the feels. To see how that first day went for Kit being with the pirates, his idolizing Karnage and how much Karnage felt good about it and dropped his guard, letting himself be kind and friendly to Kit, then fast forward to the present and their talk.
That talk was the best part of the chapter, so many feels there. The two of them acknowledging their falling out but yet being able to move past it, with Karnage saying "Sorry" to Kit, even if it's just one word, the fact that he finally and genuinely apologizes for how much he hurt Kit, and Kit's happy reaction to it, it's very heartwarming. Then also moments like Karnage genuinely keeping Kit's handkerchief and also leaving his room as it was when Kit left, Kit still getting to heckle Karnage but all in good fun and genuine caring, Kit thanking Karnage for saving him from homelessness, Karnage genuinely wishing for Kit to trust him, Karnage saying that he saw his young self in Kit and essentially admitting that he wanted to be like a father to Kit but didn't really know how. The bit that most stood out to me, though, was when Karnage just brags about himself only to follow that up by telling Kit in all honesty that Kit makes him even better; by golly did that grab my heart and gave it a big squeeze.
And you even manage to add in some conflict to boot, namely Cape Suzette, the fact that Kit has a normal life there, a happy life with friends and, more importantly, a family. Karnage now clearly wishes for Kit to stay with him, and Kit once again has come to really care, maybe even love Karnage, and the feeling is clearly mutual, but Kit still has his life and family and friends in Cape Suzette. Logic would dictate he return to Cape Suzette, as it would be better for him, a healthier life without the inherent dangers and risks that come with being a pirate, especially for someone so young, but ultimately, whatever decision Kit makes, it means he has to leave someone behind. I wonder and look forward to how that will be solved, and hope that the result is something everyone can hopefully live with. On to the next chapter, then.
| RemTar85 chapter 11 . 4/18/2020
So after the very heartfelt ending of the previous chapter, this one does start out with some animosity from Karnage towards Kit still there, but yet we quickly move into them having to work together to take on Richter, and they do make a really good team, it's quite cathartic to see Richter be taken down a peg. This does make me wonder how he made it there and where the other explorers are, but I'm sure it'll come up later.
Then we move into the city where things do become a lot more light-hearted. Seeing how much leaving the pirates has changed Kit really stood out, he's not only lost some of his pick-pocket touch, but also his desire to steal, even from bad people, has clearly waned to certain extents, and yet we see he can still trick people like a pro, whereas we get to see Karnage in his element, he shines and stands out in a place full of thieves. The situations were fun, and it's also amusing to see them go from their usual dislike and snarking at one another, to that moment on the plane where they share a laugh like they're friends again. Just their interactions in general are so engaging, and it's a bummer that the story's approaching its climax, since it's been a thrill so far.
| RemTar85 chapter 10 . 4/17/2020
Yeah, not surprised with Karnage's decision to just take off with the loot, he's still a greedy pirate after all. But then came the river and everything after it, and wow, that hit right in the feels, really hard. Kit and Karnage have been saving each other's necks since they ended up in the jungle, but this went beyond that, as Karnage essentially brought Kit away from the jaws of death, making it all the more significant.
And then it gets even more potent on the feels, to go from the incredibly heartwarming moments of Karnage leaving the treasure behind, just carrying Kit and not stopping until he finds shelter and safety for the boy, and then just his pure happiness at realizing that Kit's hugging him, to the sudden shock of hearing Kit affectionately utter Baloo's name and not Karnage's, his heartbroken reaction at not just realizing that it's not him that Kit's longing for, but also the guilt that finally, after all this time, hits him at how he finally realizes it's his own fault he lost Kit's love and affection because of his own arrogance and greed, likely not even realizing just how much Kit meant to him until now. This is powerful, and you're so good at conveying it all.
Though I must say, before all that happened, if there was one thing I was wondering is why Kit and Karnage never told the explorers that Richter actively shot at Kit with the intent to kill and it was essentially sheer luck that Kit survived. Nevertheless, that's just a minor nitpick for me, the story so far is just far too good. On to the next chapter then.
| RemTar85 chapter 9 . 4/17/2020
That underground area sounds like quite a sight to behold, and it's great to have the explorer team back. So now there's dragons, which is easily the biggest yikes factor in the story yet; Richter seems like such a force of nature to actually manage to take one down. The banter between Kit and Karnage keeps being fun, especially now that it's become rather more light-hearted as they get along better and showing that those feelings of caring for one another are coming back.
| RemTar85 chapter 8 . 4/17/2020
Gotta say, I was having this feel of possible dread regarding the little girl, so what a relief to see she made it. You really ramped up the tension in this chapter, what with the spiders, the varan, even the piranhas, and the time in the village with food, company and a place to rest was a breath of fresh air and welcome respite after all Kit and Karnage have been through. Great job also on showcasing that, for all his weirdness and bluster, Karnage is genuinely smart and competent. And also quite noticeable, Kit and Karnage are starting to actually get along, which is quite nice to see how that's developing. Overall, this was another great chapter.
| RemTar85 chapter 7 . 4/17/2020
I won't deny that I was never a Talespin fan. I tried to like it, but it was just not my thing, and yet I would watch every episode that had Don Karnage in it. I found him to be such an entertaining, amusing character, an absolute show-stealer that had more depth than it seemed at first glance. So, thinking of him lately for whatever reason, I see your fic's synopsis and decide to give it a shot. Needless to say, I am hooked. You've put so much effort into this story, you nail the characters, the setting, the addition of Bagheera is inspired, Tyler is a very engaging and likable original character.
But of course, the main meat of the story is Kit and Karnage stuck together. The show never took advantage to explore things between them, their past together, their resentment, whatever good moments they may have had in the past, and to see you do that and go beyond by giving backstories, it's incredibly engaging and nuanced. These chapters during the storm especially really hit hard, the character depth, their talks, the flashbacks, everything works in such a nuanced way. It's a superb story so far and I'm ready to jump in on the next chapter.
| Dawn Karnage chapter 14 . 11/10/2018
This was great! Thank you so much for writing this. Have you considered writing one shots from Karnage's point of view? Myself personally would be interested to see your take on his thoughts during events like when he saved Kit from falling. Or when he tried to have Kit killed in Plunder and Lightning. Plus any additional ideas you have. You're really good at capturing Karnage's mannerisms and its great to read.
| OonaFairy chapter 14 . 9/29/2018
Your fan fic was awesome! Love how you kept everyone in character. Also so glad you wrote that alternate ending! Karnage was right, it's not the treasure it's the freedom and adventure! Who wouldn't choose that (alongside the fabulous Captain Karnage, of course)! :)
| WrittenOnTheSubwayWalls chapter 14 . 8/19/2018
Nothing but applause. Beautifully written! I don't know which I love more. Kit would thrive either way, I think.
| Selyne Nightshade chapter 14 . 8/12/2018
You have no idea how thrilled I was to see this after all this time. I just watched the Don Karnage episode of the new Duck Tales with my little cousin and was heartbroken that Jim didn't voice him. So you definitely made me feel better. So thank you very much. Is there any hope that you'll write more? As I've said before you have nailed these characters to a point I feel like I'm watching the show again. You know exactly how to make me laugh and cry with these guys and it's a wonderful feeling. Like being a kid again. As much as I loved the original ending I definitely appreciate the alternate one too. I did always wonder that 'what if' question and you did not disapoint. Maybe you could write a story about Kit and Karnage adapting to their new understanding. Karnage did debate about leaving Cape Susett so Kit wouldn't feel guilty. Anyway thank you again for bring back my childhood and hoping for more, Selyne
| DonKarnageFan chapter 14 . 8/11/2018
Thank you, thank you, thank you! I LOVE Don Karnage and there just are not enough stories about him. I love both endings. I really hope you write more or continue with this. You've NAILED Don Karnage perfectly. I literally felt like I was watching one of my favorite shows again. So thank you!