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 Post subject: Straussberg Story Arc
PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 10:43 pm 
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Since, I've listened to it on the AIO Club recently, I'm kinda curious what everyone thinks of the Straussberg arc from several years back.

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 Post subject: Re: Straussberg Story Arc
PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 10:52 pm 
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I really like it. I feel like the Odyssey writers did a good job at attacking difficult opinions and views about divorce while exploring each character's perception of what was happening and how they dealt with it mentally. Overall an enjoyable arc I'd say.

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 Post subject: Re: Straussberg Story Arc
PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2017 6:39 am 
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I enjoyed the Straussberg saga as well. "Life in the Third Person" was a masterpiece.

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 Post subject: Re: Straussberg Story Arc
PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2017 10:38 am 
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I like it. It's not my favorite arc by a long shot, but it was well written and fun to listen too.
I'm also really glad they covered the topic of parents separating, because it is just so common these days....

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 Post subject: Re: Straussberg Story Arc
PostPosted: Tue May 16, 2017 4:48 pm 
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Just finished listening to this again. I have mixed feelings. I really love the darkness and realism that is throughout the saga, divorce isn't just this far off terrible thing sinners do that ruins kids lives, but its something close to home and real and dark. I especially love it didn't happen to one-off characters, but a real family we already knew and loved. I liked the different aspects they showed, with the one kid doing his rebellion thing (totally-not-drugs flower killer), the other trying to get God's attention, a neighbor family trying to see how they can help (Family Next Door is an amaaaaazing episde. The Washingtons are <3 and it's just sad happy goodness). The darkness and realism attracts me greatly in shows, and that's what I really appreciated in this arc.

My only problem is the divorce and then conclusion. The reasons for the divorce of the Straussberg's is not stated (other than "they argued over little things", "stopped praying", and "don't want to stay married anymore"), but the show almost gives off a "minor things they could work out if they tried" vibe. Of course, arguments/etc. are one of the top reasons for divorce (from a study I just found), but there are a lot other reasons for divorce too. Darker reasons. I know that Odyssey probably wasn't going to say either parents were abusive or unfaithful, and I suppose I'm fine with the choice they made for the divorce. However, I feel many Christians seem to think "silly reasons" is why most people want a divorce, which isn't always the case. I feel kids could listen to this and think "Anyone who wants a divorce just needs to pray and talk to their spouse more," which is a terrible reaction/view to have when abuse and other people are involved in a marriage. This adds to my negativity towards the conclusion, which seems a bit "pray more and it'll be better" - esque, but it makes it's points too.

What also really angers me is that they could have had the Straussbergs leave the show in a perfect ending but THEY DECIDED NOT TOO. :x Mandy had one more (ONE MORE, that's it) freaking episode, and all it was was a cute episode with Trent. Although, who knows if Trandy would happen if they moved. o_0 But I guess it had to have anyhow since we know the future. =p

Anyhow, I like it. *nods*

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 Post subject: Re: Straussberg Story Arc
PostPosted: Tue May 16, 2017 5:13 pm 
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Isaiah the Ox wrote:
What also really angers me is that they could have had the Straussbergs leave the show in a perfect ending but THEY DECIDED NOT TOO. :x


What exactly would have been perfect about that? I mean, I get that it would be a good way to show that the Straussberg family is strong together no matter where they're located, but them remaining in Odyssey is a good symbolic way of showing them redeeming their situation. For storytelling purposes, both of them work.

Isaiah the Ox wrote:
Mandy had one more (ONE MORE, that's it) freaking episode, and all it was was a cute episode with Trent. Although, who knows if Trandy would happen if they moved. o_0 But I guess it had to have anyhow since we know the future. =p


She had three more: "A Capsule Comes to Town", "A Class Reenactment", and "BTV: Live". But yeah, considering that it's already been confirmed that Trent and Mandy end up married, it would've happened whether she'd moved or not. Might've been more romantic that way, but I'm also fond of the "best friends know each other their whole lives and fall in love" trope. Both work for me, really, although they'd probably need to have given closure on that issue in a different way in Album 50.

And if they don't bring back my kids...! :x :mad:

Isaiah the Ox wrote:
Of course, arguments/etc. are one of the top reasons for divorce (from a study I just found), but there are a lot other reasons for divorce too. Darker reasons. I know that Odyssey probably wasn't going to say either parents were abusive or unfaithful, and I suppose I'm fine with the choice they made for the divorce. However, I feel many Christians seem to think "silly reasons" is why most people want a divorce, which isn't always the case. I feel kids could listen to this and think "Anyone who wants a divorce just needs to pray and talk to their spouse more," which is a terrible reaction/view to have when abuse and other people are involved in a marriage. This adds to my negativity towards the conclusion, which seems a bit "pray more and it'll be better" - esque, but it makes it's points too.


Honestly, trying to address every aspect of divorce through this one series would have made it less of a story addressing an issue and more of an after-school special PSA kind of thing. Could they have talked about that? Yes, but like you said, the most common reasons given for divorce really are the sort of things that can be worked through—arguing, "falling out of love", marrying too young, unrealistic expectations for the relationship, that sort of thing. I also think kids are smarter than you're giving them credit for. We had insight into both Rachel and Stephen as characters, kids will understand that neither of them were abusive toward each other or unfaithful, and then see the situations around them and realize that those situations are different from the one they saw.

To me, the message wasn't "pray more and things will magically get better". The message was one about putting faith and trust in God, and obeying Him even when you don't feel like it or want to take control of the situation yourself. The message was that God can redeem anything, and yes, it was a message about the power of prayer and trust in the Lord. Kids need to hear more of that than they need to hear downer endings. We already have a downer in Connie's parents' situation; we didn't need another one for Mandy.

(Not saying it's not a good topic to address, mind you. Just not in this particular arc. If they were to address that, I think it would need to be from the child(ren)'s perspective, especially one going to church and hearing that divorce is wrong but also knowing that one parent was abusive to the other. That would have to be very carefully handled, although I don't doubt the team could pull it off if they really tried. And I wouldn't object to it being a man who was abused by his wife, just to shake things up a bit and bring some light to the very salient issue of female-on-male domestic violence.)

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 Post subject: Re: Straussberg Story Arc
PostPosted: Sun May 21, 2017 11:38 am 
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I love this story arc, imo. It is probably one of the most serious topics AIO has done this, but the other topic was in The Ties That Bind. Unlike that arc this one doesn't bumble through the subject, it goes straight to the heart of the issue.

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