Thursday, June 24, 2010

Wicked or "Don't Trust The Guy You Tried To Murder Yesterday"

First of all, I would like to say a Happy Second Anniversary to our little Fear Street
blog! Two years ago, L.K. and I decided to indulge our secret love of terrible 90’s
horror fiction and share it with the world! Since then, we’ve read almost 150 (!!) Fear Streets and had almost 100 000 hits on Shadyside Snark. All thanks to you people who enjoy reading about Fear Street too! Is it too much if I bake a cake today?

Moving on… to Wicked. The 10th book in the Seniors series revolves around Marla Newman’s need to please her mother. Marla needs to be valedictorian to finally impress her mother! What someone should have told her long ago, is that if her mother doesn’t like her by now, at age 18, probably nothing Marla does is
going to change that. Just sayin’!

I actually didn’t remember the prologue until I was looking back through my notes, and it’s kinda surprising because the prologue is pretty creepy! Melanie Anderson (not a senior so we already know she doesn’t matter) is getting ready for the day when she sees two girls appear in the mirror. No, they aren’t in the room with her, just in the mirror. She seems to know them and is freaked the eff out! Melanie tries to escape her room, but runs into a magical silver wire… that slices her head off. “Sliced it off so neatly, so clean – her body ran another two or three steps before it even realized the head was gone.” Shudder! Also, can anyone verify that? I don’t think that can really happen… although I’ve heard of people’s faces moving after they’ve been decapitated. Blech. Not the way I wanted to start my morning.

Alright, enough with the disgusting decapitation. Marla is competing with Kenny Klein for the spot of Valedictorian. They’re sitting near each other in the cafeteria, right before they’re suppose to face off in a social studies debate. Clarissa Turner has the unfortunate luck to accidently spill some ice tea on Marla. And Marla FREAKS the fuck out. Like screams at Clarissa for being SO stupid and yada yada yada. I mean, we all think that when someone spills something on us, but we’re not crazy enough to yell about it in front of the whole school. As Clarissa walks away, Marla thinks about how sweet it would be if something terrible happened to Clarissa. Just then, Clarissa slips and falls in her food! Marla is pleased, like the psycho she is.

Two girls approach Marla after the cafeteria incident. Roxanne and Elena tell Marla that they saw what she did to Clarissa – she has the POWER to affect people with her mind! Since they are lowly juniors, and Marla thinks she’s totally awesome she blows them off as crazy girls and goes to the debate.

Reaming out Clarissa had some unfortunate side effects for Marla though, as now all of Clarissa’s friends hate her. Ahhhh girls in high school. We…pretty much never grow out of that. Josie Maxwell and Trisha Conrad are all up in Marla’s face too. Right before Marla and Kenny are set to debate, she notices that Roxanne and Elena have come into the auditorium and are going to be watching the debate. Kenny goes first and speaks eloquently and passionately, and basically owns it. Marla could have taken him down (she thinks) except when she tries to come up with a rebuttal… she can’t make any noise! Well that’s not true, she can burp, but she can’t talk or say anything! Marla’s day doesn’t get much better. After her disaterous, and gassy debate speech, she receives a lower mark on a French test (85%) and then Josie, Clarissa and Trisha play a recording of her debate (non) speech over the intercom system!

Marla is SO steamed about all this that she…makes a “People I Hate” list. Of course she does. #1 is Kenny, then it goes on until basically everyone at Shadyside High is named. Productive! She may as well named it “People I will shoot first when I finally snap!”

Later that day, Marla dreads telling her mom about her bad French test, but a funny thing happens. When she pulls it out to show her mom (she’s 18 and showing her mom her homework? Really?) the test says 98%. Marla decides she must be more out of it that she thought!

Just when things were turning around for Marla, she gets to school the next day and finds that someone found her “People I Hate” list and tacked it to the school bulletin board. Well, that’s the price you pay for being crazy! Marla is worried that people will start hating her. I think it would help her cause if she didn’t constantly think to herself “I’ll show them! I’ll show all of them!” because that’s what crazy villains think, right before they blow something up.

Marla knows that Josie Maxwell tacked it up, and decides to get some revenge by throwing her clothes (black leotard and baggy black jeans BTW) into the school dumpster while Josie is in gym class. Marla is predicatable shoved into the dumpster by a mysterious force. And if falling into a dumpster doesn’t sound like a fate worse than death, then I invite you to come over to my dumpster. Because just the thought of going near it makes me want to cry.

Marla is finally approached by the two girls, Roxanne and Elena again after she gets out of the dumpster. Apparently, they were SERIOUS about being witches and really want her to join them. They discuss how there needs to be three of them, since their last third “isn’t around anymore” (Melanie Anderson, anyone??) Marla agrees to meet them in the Fear Street woods that night.

So they really are witches. When Marla gets there, crazy magic happens, and they get Marla to sign an ancient pact (written in an ancient language) in blood. Let me tell you kids, that is NEVER a good idea. No good has ever come from using your blood as ink. Trust me. After numerous scary witch-y things, Marla wakes up in her bed.

Everything goes Marla’s way the next day. She looks better, does better on tests, and tells her new found witch friends that she feels up to doing something “outrageous”. They suggest she takes her energy out on someone on her hate list. She decides to make Trisha Conrad’s skirt rip and fall off (underlying issues?). Roxanne and Elena don’t think that’s good enough though. They want to punish the girls that were mean to Marla! So they use their power (and Marla’s somehow) to push Josie Maxwell through a glass door. Josie survives, but is really cut up.

Marla wants to leave the pact (already?!) but apparently, pacts signed in blood are pretty binding. Like forever binding. Marla is unhappy but realizes she has to go along with it. That is, until she finds out that she needs to kill someone within the month or else the “Dark Forces” will kill her. Marla freaks out even more, and tells the girls she won’t go through with it. Roxanne and Elena spend the next day freaking out Marla but having objects change into snakes, and people around her generally become possessed. Marla was pretty easy to convince, because she quickly decides she’d rather kill Kenny Klein that risk having a rope turn into a snake again! (Not all snakes kill you know, MARLA)

Marla goes over to Kenny’s house under the guise of studying for French. It’s pretty cute because Kenny obviously has a crush on Marla (who else would help their rival study). It becomes less cute when Marla attempts to strangle him to death with her power. She can’t go through with it, so Kenny is all “WTF did you just try to murder me!?” Marla break down and tells Kenny the whole truth about the girls and magic and how she needs to kill someone. He doesn’t seem as upset as I would be about the fact that Marla could kill ANYONE, but chose him. In fact, he decides to help her solve her little evil witchcraft problem.

Marla asks the two girls to Fear Street woods the next day, because Kenny (who can obviously read ancient languages) has discovered that these blood pacts never have a “need-to-murder” clause! The girls must be lying! Why would we trust Kenny? As it turns out, the girls are much more powerful than her, and Marla ends up being frozen into an ice cube before Kenny can even come out of his hiding spot!

The four of them end up having a pretty epic (by that I mean LONG, not cool) fight scene that is interspersed with Kenny and Marla making out. Elena dies first, by being thrown into a giant pit that opened up in the earth. Kenny eventually sets Roxanne on fire but since that STILL didn’t kill her, Marla shoves her into the pit again. Kenny and Marla are so happy they committed murder against two of their classmates and go home.

Question: Why does killing the other two matter? Doesn’t she still have a pact with the “Dark Forces?” Marla doesn’t seem to think so. Turns out she’s dead wrong! Kenny rushes up to her before school the next day, saying he did more research and found out something more…turns out if you kill someone who practices the Dark Arts, you DIE exactly 12 hours later. Which happened to be at that exact moment, and Marla is sucked into a pit that opened up in the earth. YEAH! That’s how it ends! Maybe Kenny actually knew about this, but didn’t tell Marla as punishment for trying to KILL him the day before? I like ending better.

Another question? Why didn’t that happen to Roxanne and Elena when they killed their former third partner, Melanie? Just asking R.L…. Okay, this book wasn’t the best. It was crazy, but not THAT crazy. I was kinda hoping that after Marla killed the two girls they would discover that it was all a practical joke that Marla took too seriously. I like that ending better too. So I give Wicked 32 fake-endings-I-like-better out of 57. I was looking for more out of the last few books of the series!

Just two more left! L.K. and I have decided that as a special treat for you guys, we’re both going to read the last Seniors book and post our own separate write ups. So we can compare exactly how much each of us leaves out, fudges over, and forgets. Oh yes, and also so we can compete about who is funnier. Vote for me!


Anonymous said...

Re: Decapitation, my understanding is that the muscles spasm for a while but don't actually do anything meaningful.

As for this book, wow. It is indeed pretty crazy. Sudden witches out of nowhere, casual murder, people tumbling into pits that open up in the earth for no reason... this sounds like it'd be great if it weren't also for the fact that it sounds like it was made up as it went along.

Also, two write-ups of the last Seniors books? Ambassadors, you're spoiling us!

HelenB said...

This is so freaking nuts, I love it. None of it makes any sense! And the main character actually dies! Good times.

Congrats on your two year blogoversary! \o/

Broken1again said...

i didnt notice that: how the other girls should have died for killing the first girl they had with them!! So true!! and honestly I didnt like marla and i wanted her gone a long time ago..then she became kind of nice towards the end so I felt a little sorry for her when she died..but oh well she was a bitch lol

Peter LoCasto said...

I can't believe I'm trying to find logic in an R.L. Stine book, but I'm gonna guess they were able to get away with killing Melanie on the chance that she hadn't signed a pact with them yet. Was there any confirmation that she did? They probably tried to convince her to join by showing all the cool stuff they could do.

RecallerReminder said...

To me makes more no sense those witches thought they could use someone so much selfcenter as Marla for this...
Im disaapointed Kenny didnt died in this one. I kinda hated that character even if is cute...