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Author Topic: Group Re-read 2.0 #5 The Predator  (Read 1129 times)

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Offline RYTX

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Group Re-read 2.0 #5 The Predator
« on: November 26, 2011, 02:54:36 PM »
Synopsis
What you see isn't always what you get...
Marco was never interested in being an Animorph. The danger, the fear-he's had enough troubles in his life already. In fact, he's ready to be done with it-one last mission, and then he's out. But life is never that simple. One more mission is one more close call. And if he gets out of this one, he can't leave the team. Marco has a reason to fight...

Questions
   1. Now that we've had a better look at him, what do you think of Ax as an addition to the team? How does he handle his first mission, going out in public, and his first hand at combat?

   2. Marco's mother is the host of Visser One. What do you think of this plot element, and the effects it must have on Marco? Much later, this factor will be attributed to Marco's involvement in the team via the Ellimist. Why does having a relation to this Yeerk make Marco compelling to have on the resistance?

   3. What are your thoughts on Marco's dad, and his two years of grieving? What about his remarkable turn around just after Marco learns the truth about his mom?

   4. This is our first look into Yeerk military structure. What did you think of the hostility between Vissers One and Three, particularly how Visser One sabotaged Visser Three in this book? The divisions and "private armies" seen on the mother ship in this book aren't really seen again. Should more of the Yeerk system been revealed and used in the story?

   5. What does Marco playing superhero to keep old people from being robbed say about him? Is this something would expect from the character who has spent weeks protesting the lifestyle of  the Animorphs?

   6. He's paranoid, sarcastic and never stops complaining. What is Marco's role in the Animorphs? What important insights and contributions does he make to the effort? Could anyone else fill his role?

   7. On that note; what do you think of him planning to leave the team? How would his (and for that matter Ax's) absence have changed things had they sent Ax home and Marco resigned?

   8. In this book the Animorphs undergo on of their most terrifying experiences: the ant morph. What do you think of the portrayal of this animal in this book and throughout the series? Do you think Applegate's descriptions of its abilities and attitudes were accurate or exaggerated? What do you envision the experience of being an ant to be like? Do you really believe it is just a piece of a whole? How does the notion of being without self strike you? Would the experience be that terrifying? What about the ferocity with which the ants attack?

   9. How do you think you would handle being in Marco's situation, learning someone you love was taken from you? How would this affect your resolve against the enemy? Would you seek to make the fight more personal, or still seek your personal benefit by winning the war at large? Would you want, and be able, to keep this a secret from the people who matter most, your family, and comrades at arms?

   10. Have you recently read the original, the reprint (Scheduled for market release this Thursday!), or did you do this from memory? If you've read the reprint, how do feel about any changes?

   11. Anything else?

Answer, ignore and submit your own questions and comments as you please; but remember to vote!

Next week: #6 The Capture

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Offline yunyun

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Re: Group Re-read 2.0 #5 The Predator
« Reply #1 on: November 26, 2011, 03:07:01 PM »
1. I think that he could have handled it better. If Cassie told him before not to talk to strangers, maybe he could have taken a hint about that with the yelling? But other then that he seems pretty useful. He keeps track of time at least
2. It's pretty good to add to the plot. That makes it so all the characters have a reason to fight and all are willing to fight
6. I don't think anyone else can fill his role. I don't remember anyone else mentioning that they're ruthless
7. That would have made an advantage for the yeerks i guess. 2 helpful people gone
10. Did this from memory. So I'll have to edit this when I'm done reading the reprint since I forgot some stuff in it.
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Offline Liberal Tobias

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Re: Group Re-read 2.0 #5 The Predator
« Reply #2 on: November 27, 2011, 11:47:51 PM »
Quote
   2. Marco's mother is the host of Visser One. What do you think of this plot element, and the effects it must have on Marco? Much later, this factor will be attributed to Marco's involvement in the team via the Ellimist. Why does having a relation to this Yeerk make Marco compelling to have on the resistance?

Having a relation to THAT Yeerk makes it more compelling in the sense that the stakes are that much higher. As opposed to Tom, who never got past Sub-Visser (right? I can't remember), Eva's Yeerk was the cat's ass. He couldn't even hope that Eva could be freed without a significant victory against the Yeerks, whereas it's still unlikely, yet conceivable, that Tom could. I think it really plays into Marco's character. He's such a strategist, and sees things in such big-picture terms, because thinking big-picture was the only way to rescue his mom.

Quote
   3. What are your thoughts on Marco's dad, and his two years of grieving? What about his remarkable turn around just after Marco learns the truth about his mom?

Pretty basic, really. I know it's convenient, but sometimes people in depression just get fed up with it and take control of their lives and move on. It's not easy, but it happens eventually.

Quote
   4. This is our first look into Yeerk military structure. What did you think of the hostility between Vissers One and Three, particularly how Visser One sabotaged Visser Three in this book? The divisions and "private armies" seen on the mother ship in this book aren't really seen again. Should more of the Yeerk system been revealed and used in the story?

I think that everything that I care about, in terms of politicking through the Yeerk system, is revealed through Visser. That said, I love that Visser One sabotages Visser Three. It shows how the aliens, even with their advanced civilizations and technology, are still prone to petty, "human" emotions. Also, everyone would die if not for Visser One, and THAT'S NO FUN.

Quote
   5. What does Marco playing superhero to keep old people from being robbed say about him? Is this something would expect from the character who has spent weeks protesting the lifestyle of  the Animorphs?

I think it's a good scene for him, because "Not My Problem" and "Ruthless" Marco is shown to have compassion, even if it's wrapped up in shallow superhero fantasies. Marco is probably the most complex character (unless you want to count Tobias), and it adds a layer to Marco, even if he tries to hide it from us in his narration.

Quote
   6. He's paranoid, sarcastic and never stops complaining. What is Marco's role in the Animorphs? What important insights and contributions does he make to the effort? Could anyone else fill his role?

Marco's role is to be Cassie's Yang. While Cassie seems to slow things down by obsessing over (sometimes annoyingly minor) ethical questions, Marco's role is to see past the small questions in terms of achieving their objectives. While you can say that he is ruthless because of it, and perhaps fairly, but while having that mindset in a leader could be a bad thing (see Alloran in the Hork-Bajir Chronicles) there's no doubt that there is value to having that outlook on the team in the form of and advisor, which Marco basically is.

Quote
   7. On that note; what do you think of him planning to leave the team? How would his (and for that matter Ax's) absence have changed things had they sent Ax home and Marco resigned?

I think every character is irreplacable, and Marco's motivations to drop out are pretty pure- he wants to protect his family, and that motivation stays consistent after he discovers his mom is Visser One.

Quote
   8. In this book the Animorphs undergo on of their most terrifying experiences: the ant morph. What do you think of the portrayal of this animal in this book and throughout the series? Do you think Applegate's descriptions of its abilities and attitudes were accurate or exaggerated? What do you envision the experience of being an ant to be like? Do you really believe it is just a piece of a whole? How does the notion of being without self strike you? Would the experience be that terrifying? What about the ferocity with which the ants attack?

I guess we'll never know if it's an accurate description, but it is important that it's portrayed that way, IMO. When juxtaposed with the dolphin morphs of The Message, and the bird morphs throughout the series, it's a reminder that nature, and morphing ability, can be a quite scary thing. It goes to show that morphing isn't all fun and games, even if they were in a world without Yeerks.
« Last Edit: November 28, 2011, 12:00:56 AM by Liberal Tobias »

Offline RYTX

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Re: Group Re-read 2.0 #5 The Predator
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2012, 02:02:28 PM »
   1. I really like Ax in this book. He's painted as very idealistic and naive about fighting, which I found annoying, but it works, cause Marco's right there to shut him down. I'll save his taste stuff for later, but he makes a good addition if for nothing else his tech skills and gags.

   2. First thought was poor Marco, but at least now he's compelled into it, and you can be sympathetic to his involvement. It's very horrible thing to have all your hopes tied up to the source of your agony. Amazing he never went nuts. The tie in has only just started making sense to me: Let Marco and Edriss link through Eva, enabling a covert operation-which is Earth's only chance. I mean the literally JUST started making sense to me. That's probably one of the only connections I like for the Ellimist part in forming the team.

   3. Of all the parents, I like Peter best-once he comes around. The grieving is touching and disgraceful all at once: but disgrace wins out-when you have stuff to do, do it. Sitting around crying for yourself disgusts me. Him coming out of it when he does is a little too convenient, but like I said, I like him after this, so I guess I'll forgive that bit of fate.

   4. That these two are enemies is nice. That we never see their history together is lame. V1 at least is decent politician, but more than discrediting V3, I find it wonderful the can of worms it opened to call her a traitor. The yeerk system we see for the rest of the series is so disorganized, almost laughable, really wish that it's intricacies were developed and laid out as the series goes on

   5. I take it as a "bad ass with a heart of gold" stint. Solidify him as a good guy for all his whining and fear. Not critical in getting to know him, I think most of his actions convey that, but not out of character.

   6. Marco has a very interesting place, really I think Cassie could do his part, she just never would. I think he's very good at evaluating character and sizing up situations which are his primary contributions right now. I think Tactical Officer describes him well, though he can fall out of line too quickly.

   7. Though I understand his desires to get out, I'm still not inclined to absolve him of the choice. Marco's absence would have been damning, though perhaps not critical from the larger perspective. Losing Ax would have killed them. I doubt he'd have more success with the fleet at home, and without his skills, they'd have lost half their information and abilities.

   8. This is one of the 2 worst portrayals in the series. Go poke an ant, see if it is at all automated in it's response. The idea of being part of a whole is frightening yes, I just don't believe that's what the ants mentality is, any more than any other animal. The attack seen was gripping, I will give ants determination, though I can say for fact the don't always attack foreigners, but definitely not a way I would want to go out.

   9. Again touting the dualism of my mind, this would strengthen and destroy me. I'd be hell bend on revenge, I'm afraid do something stupid. But at the same time I'd rationalize that I had to win on the large scale, probably first to be of any assured consequence. I think I'd have to try the latter approach, but my biggest concern is it would freeze me up. I could keep it from civilians, they couldn't help and would likely hurt if they knew, but I disagree with him keeping the truth from the others Animorphs: even if they couldn't help him directly, it's a fact that deeply affects the team through him-and it makes them more likely to hurt by not knowing.
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Offline Tim Bruening

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Re: Group Re-read 2.0 #5 The Predator
« Reply #4 on: July 17, 2015, 01:18:08 AM »
When Visser 3 put the Animorphs in the holding cell, why didn't he have cameras in the cell and in the hallway to warn of escape attempts?

Why didn't Visser 1 put cameras in the escape pod she sent the Animorphs to in order to find out what they look like when demorphed?