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DVD Commentary track meme 2

For today's DVD commentary, [personal profile] avidrosette asked for a scene from Ciudad de Estrellas (fandom: The Fast and the Furious): The scene starts in the middle of the story, on page 110 of my download, with the line "Tanner studied Toretto as they were explaining the wire to him, taking note of what he paid attention to, what he brushed off." This is the scene that takes place in the surveillance van, where Tanner and the other cops are interacting with Dom as someone on their side for the first time. It starts in Tanner's mature, insightful, somewhat distrustful pov, as he observes Dom and Brian&Dom, and continues in Dom's pov. It's a wonderful moment of character revelation - a turning point at the dead center of the fic - and I found it really satisfying and memorable even at this remove.

It's been so long since I've looked at this story that I had to go back and read all the stuff leading up to and after this! But I do kind of remember writing it now. One of the things that was going on there was that I didn't see Tanner very much in F&F fic, or if I did, he was usually an antagonist for Brian and Dom or the generic grumpy boss cop we see all the time, and in Ciudad I really wanted him to be a part of the story, to get beyond him as Brian's beleaguered boss. Since he's helping them on this little escapade, at some point he'd be confronted with the relationship between Brian and Dom and have to figure out whether to shut things down or continue, knowing that they'd be compromised--so of course it was easier for him to just ignore it and continue with the operation.

I love Tanner's sarcasm and his world-weariness, but he's also a pretty insightful guy, as we saw in the movie when he's talking to Brian out by the pool. And so he's kind of acknowledging in that scene that Brian's compromised, Brian has that "you can't keep a beautiful wild thing in a cage" (which was one of my favorite lines to write in that whole story) problem going on, but he's starting to also understand Dom in a way he hadn't before. He's getting that Dom is a lot more complicated than he'd just assumed, and seeing the way prison has shaped him, and so that cop's disdain for the thug criminal is being filed down in the surveillance van. And in the POV switch, Dom can kind of see that, too, except he doesn't know that he wants to admit it. It's hard for him to admit that a cop can be a good guy, despite his feelings for Brian, but he has to confront it there, possibly because his adrenaline is up from being startled by Muse.

I felt like they HAD to change, both of them, for the story to go forward. As fun as writing them as antagonists is, it doesn't do much to propel the story if no one changes or has their preconceived notions altered, and since the story is plot-centric, they needed to see things in each other (maybe the things Brian saw in both of them) so that when the big crisis came, they could handle it together in a way that would make sense. I don't think Dom could really fit back into the world of that story if he didn't start at least in some small way to see Tanner differently, and I don't know that Tanner could really be the mentor to Brian that Brian wanted him to be without being able to look at Dom with different eyes.

I hope that makes sense! I don't know if it does, but it was awfully fun to think about again after all this time, thank you for asking!

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avidrosette
Apr. 16th, 2015 11:30 pm (UTC)
Yes! That is so insightful! It makes sense structurally, too: the scene is located in the precise middle of the story, and the two halves of Brian's life are meeting in the middle. It's the transitional moment from the first half of the story, which is marked by separation / fragmentation, to the second half, which is marked by unity / wholeness, a coalescing foundation for happiness. Very cool! Thanks so much for answering. Good luck with your Cap fic!
gwyn_r
Apr. 18th, 2015 04:40 am (UTC)
Thank you! I'm so glad you asked, it was really fun to revisit it and think about my boys again.
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gwyn_r
Apr. 18th, 2015 04:41 am (UTC)
I don't know why, but every time I get majorly into a fandom, I write a novel. And you really have to structure if you're going to do that. Why I torture myself, I don't know.
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