Reviews For Second Best

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Reviewer: Patrick (Anonymous)
09 Nov 2009 2:24 pm
Entertaining. I really like the dialogue, the characterizations, the friendships.

I got into the story so much that I started wondering about picky stuff, like how Rodney would have had enough time to hack the banks, hire private investigators, track down which loan sharks to pay, where to rent a car, etc. It's almost like Rodney had a time machine as well as a magic mirror, because Elizabeth and Radek didn't seem to have missed him (or Teyla or Ronon) when they went on their adventure.

Anyway, the point is, if I wasn't believing your story, I'd never have had any of those questions. Congratulations on making me believe.

Author's Response: Oooh, good points! I like to think Rodney spent a lot of time watching each universe before deciding which one to finally enter with a view to approaching John. But yeah, I sort of glossed over that bit, eh? So glad to know that didn't affect your enjoyment of the story--the fact that you were engaged enough to wonder about these things is really a compliment indeed--thanks!
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Reviewer: monanotlisa (Signed)
19 May 2009 11:16 pm
I really, really love this 'verse - and wow, Vegas came early! Kudos to you.

Author's Response: It's funny you should say that--I actually haven't seen Vegas yet but when I saw the promos for it, I had to say I noticed the similarities...:-) You really made me smile here--thank you!
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Reviewer: Ansku (Signed)
29 Mar 2009 3:28 pm
Still great :)

Author's Response: Aw, thank you very much!
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Reviewer: jackie_brown (Anonymous)
15 Jan 2009 9:49 pm
I really enjoyed this!

Author's Response: Thank you! I'm so pleased to hear this and that you took the time to let me know. :-)
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Reviewer: Shaddyr (Signed)
17 Feb 2008 7:17 am
I read this the other day - it's a very emotional piece and I had to really think about how I felt about it.

I wasn't sure, at first, that I could buy Rodney doing this. And that if I did buy Rodney getting another John from another universe, I could accept that he wasn't *really* mentally unstable.

It became much easier to accept once it was established that this was an AU, and that made me reconsider why.

The more I thought about it, the more I realized that I could believe it; Rodney, as self-centered as he can be sometimes, really would do anything to keep the expedition and his city safe. Including doing something completely insane that may very well sacrifice his emotional and mental stability.

I am grateful you wrote a Rodney who was stable enough to handle the stress of having a Not!Really!John! back. I'm glad that Casino!John had so much of what made John *John* and didn't act like a total ass or take advantage or Rodney the way he could have.

I loved Ronon's reactions; je t'adore the scene where John is awed with the knives in Ronon's hair, and when Ronon almost squeezes the life out of him when they 'find' him again.

I love it that he makes them tell Lorne.

I *LOVE* it that Cadman *knows*.

Really awesome story. Thanks for sharing it!

Author's Response: Wow! Thank you for your really detailed and thoughtful review!Yeah, it had to be AU all the way for me for the reasons you mentioned. And Not!Really!John is the best and most fun descriptor for Jay that I've had so far. :-)
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Reviewer: Leah (Signed)
06 Feb 2008 5:09 am
This is my second time reading this fic, so I should probably tell you how much I enjoyed it. :)

Like some of the other reviewers, I also feel badly for Jay, who isn't the original Sheppard and will have to live with that, as will those who know who he truly is. But, I also got the welcome point that Rodney knew who he wasn't the John Sheppard he had first fallen in love with, but he loved Jay anyway, as a similar but different person. That was well done. At least this John will have a small family who know and accept him for real, if you know what I mean....

I also wanted to thank you for making the universe of the dead John another AU--I'd forgotten that on the first reading, but it was comforting to know that 'our' SGA didn't lose John, though Aiden's fate hardly turned out better, poor thing. I also got the sense that the original John in the HopperVerse was sadder than 'our' John, more fatalistic, perhaps, and I think much more self-hating than the John we know from canon. Certainly the way Octavius described him reacting to his own death made me think it came as a kind of relief. In an odd way, that was comforting too.

Anyway, I really enjoyed this story, and would dearly love to read a remix where it's an AU John going after an AU Rodney. I do hope you'll encourage that bunny. :)

Author's Response: I am so glad you enjoyed this story and also took the time to leave such a detailed response! You're right, the HopperVerse John was a sadder and more fatalistic person--and his thoughts couldn't help but influence Jay some when Jay decided to assume John's life. I *did* do the reverse treatment (just recently, called 'Second Fiddle')but so many people wrote and told me how they felt badly for Jay that I decided to give that universe another visit too. I'm close to finishing a first rough draft and hope to have it available to post in a few weeks--working title 'Second to None' ;-)
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Reviewer: purrfus (Signed)
07 Jan 2008 7:17 am
Note – Sorry this is another long story. Don't beat up on yourself, that's our job.

Down on his luck and sinking was a surprise.

The stripping really shocked me – not that he would but that I was torn between cheering him on and falling out of the chair laughing.

The way you describe Ronon makes me wish this was John / Ronon.

Atlantis' reaction to John was lovely. John storming into the Rodney and Elizabeth's argument was hysterical.

'Build a bridge and get over it' Love it; my mom and my boss use this all the time, and I've never heard it anywhere else before.

The Home Depot is so cool - especially to me because my brother works there and refers to it as the Home Despot.

The Koyla confrontation – for the character it took some amazing balls, for the writer a truly gifted imagination and some talent to bring the vision to life.

I knew it would end eventually, but I really really didn't want it too.

Author's Response: Oh dear, 'Home Despot' would have suited Rodney well as a descriptor, wouldn't it? I'm so glad you enjoyed this story--I have a weak spot for it and would revisit this universe if I could only come up with another story idea! You made my day with your feedback though (and maybe even started the wheels of thought turning again!) Thanks!
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Reviewer: Ansku (Signed)
03 Dec 2007 10:05 pm
I love it :)

Author's Response: Oh thank you!
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Reviewer: angellec (Signed)
22 Nov 2007 1:22 am
Sorry I did not let you know earlier what a awesome AU you created both exciting and sad that Jay will have a smidgen of doubt.My favorite part was in the hopper when Jay said he didn't matter and Teyla Gibbsmacked him. Also his relationship with the city who made her opinion known.Simply one of the best.

Author's Response: Gibbsmacked! I love it! Had not heard the phrase before but knew instantly what you meant. Thank you for your review!
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Reviewer: atymer (Anonymous)
01 Nov 2007 8:11 am
Exciting adventure and great interaction between Jay, his city, his team mates and his Rodney.

Author's Response: Thank you!
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Reviewer: reviewperson (Signed)
21 Oct 2007 7:35 pm
I have mixed feelings about this story. On the one hand, it was great and engaging and interesting. But then on the other I'm left feeling bad for John 2.0 and for everyone in the city. I mean, he's left to a life of pretending to be someone else and of deceiving an entire population. And as much as he feels at home, that's just gotta suck some of the time.

But really, the fact that I'm contemplating this and feeling for the characters just means you've done a good job as a writer. :)

Author's Response: I have very mixed feelings about this story too (as in almost didn't post it). The problem you identified is one of the reasons I set the story in an AU. I have a feeling John 2.0 will never be able to entirely shake the feeling that he is not the first choice. I'm glad you can empathize with them though! Thanks!
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Reviewer: Argosy (Signed)
19 Oct 2007 7:48 pm
I love when authors can do a great mchep story that is still plotty and a great adventure. So great, thank you! (How many times did I just say 'great?')

Author's Response: Three, I think. That's got to be a record for me...thanks! (big smile on this end)
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Reviewer: queixo (Signed)
19 Oct 2007 4:41 am
very nicely done

Author's Response: Thanks!
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Reviewer: Manic (Signed)
18 Oct 2007 9:58 am
That was great! Funny and sad and very in character. But crap, it's 5 in the morning and I need to get up in 2 hours.

Author's Response: Ouch! I am really sorry (flattered, but sorry)!
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Reviewer: Laura_trekkie (Signed)
17 Oct 2007 9:33 pm
This was splendidly complex. Not so much in the plot, because that was straight forward, but more for the personal feelings created.

On John's part there was the mix of guilt and uncomfortableness at not being who everyone thought, but merely an actor in his place, the anger and sadness that those feelings cause, coupled with the incontrovertible evidence that he made those who *were* in the know uncomfortable. Like he said himself to Rodney, he was the colonel's ghost, a shade of the man who was and the John Sheppard from the casino was gone, erased by the endless coaching in Colonel Sheppard's life. I felt bad for him at times, because none of it was his doing, yet he got the fallout anyway. I was glad to see him making inroads into forging his own friendships with the team.

Then there were the others. I could understand their anger at Rodney for doing something so unnatural as to just fetch a new John and expect it all to work fine. Yet I could also see the longing that made them all hope for it to succeed. The loss and longing was obvious in Ronon's hostility, Teyla's choice of name, even Rodney's use of 'John'. Again, it was great to see them starting to get to know Jay as himself and not just seeing John's shadow, accepting that he might react differently than they expected and to stop expecting it, rather than get angry over it.

Of course, my main focus was John, or rather Jay, and Rodney, how Rodney was so obviously in love with John and how that made dealing with Jay both easier and harder, and that was without the added complication of the vaguely angry sex that sealed the 'death' of Jay. It was heartbreaking to see Rodney think he'd got what he'd longed for only to suddenly realise that that was it, that he'd made Jay too much in John's image in the end. It was a great relief then, when, at the end, Jay finally understood that he was more than a ghost to them all and that Rodney saw *him* and *wanted him*.


Author's Response: okay, you realize your review is ten times better than the material itself, right? I'm sitting here going "huh, she thinks I did all that on *purpose*..." :-) Thank you very much for your detailed and explicit review. It will be hard to stop smiling the rest of the day, but I'll try.
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Reviewer: IDMike (Signed)
16 Oct 2007 11:06 pm
Very nicely done. Just enough subtle little reminders to keep "AU" in your brain. Loved the big confrontation scene!

Author's Response: Thank you! You made my day!
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Reviewer: the_cephalopod (Signed)
16 Oct 2007 10:05 am
Oh, yes - please do that
*nods encouragingly*
I'm happy to talk plot if it would help... :) cep xxx

Author's Response: Cool!
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Reviewer: Anonymous (Anonymous)
16 Oct 2007 7:41 am
Amazing! One of my favorite AU crossover stories. Jay really does become his own character even as you can see Sheppard in him SO clearly. It's an impressive line to see walked.

The small changed details really worked for me as well, such as how Ford died and the 'hopper's. If you ever touch on this universe again I'd love to see some more interaction between Jay and the city. That was such a great dynamic, and just... meant so much. To see him welcomed by his home. Awwwwww. ^^

Author's Response: Wow! Thank you for such a great review! I hadn't really thought about more stories in this particular universe but now you've got me thinking...:-)
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Reviewer: Mystic (Signed)
16 Oct 2007 1:26 am
I love your long stories, so do NOT stop writting them. This was very good and original, great job. I enjoyed it very much and I enjoy a nice long read where I can sink back and enjoy the story. Keep up the great work.

Author's Response: Your review made me smile! I'm so glad you enjoyed it--I had my doubts about this one. Thank you very much!
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Reviewer: Nightstorm (Anonymous)
15 Oct 2007 10:05 pm
This was a well crafted, plotted and most enjoyable story. I heard each voice and they rang true. I could see John turning into this Sheppard if things had played this way and not the other. Yes, please write more!!!!!

Author's Response: J does have that mile wide destructive streak, doesn't he? And without the team to ground him, well, I can see lots of bad endings there. Thank you very much for your review!
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