Hark! A Modern Storyline Pattern–Part 2

Last week, I posted a mini-version of Romeo and Juliet. I would hardly call it a “version”, though. Nothing like the original masterpiece by Shakespeare.

Every hyperlink I put into that post led to stories—stories (be it movie or book) that carry the same storyline. The same aspects. The same message.

I love going to the movies. I’ve always wanted to see the newest blockbuster as soon as it’s released. But as I see and watch these movies coming out…I’m beginning to see the same conflict: daughter vs. Dad/Parents/Authority.

We all loved The Little Mermaid (1989) when Arial fell in love with the human prince and went against her father’s commands to get what she wanted. 


It’s a classic Disney movie. I’m not trying to put it in a negative light. I still love it. But come 13 years later, another film released: Hotel Transylvania. Of course the happenings and circumstances were different from The Little Mermaid (vampires and scream cheese; rather than human legs and singing crabs). But the basic conflict was the same: Mavis fell in love with Jonathan, but Dracula’s against it, so Mavis gets mad and Jonathan gets mad and everyone’s mad because “Dad is being ridiculous”.

I hate when people spoil movies for me, so I’m not going to tell you what happens.

But do you see a pattern here? 13 years later, we’re still seeing “child vs. parents” scenarios. It’s one of the most common storylines today.  Rapunzel escaped from the tower (Tangled, 2010). Bella has sex with Edward (The Twilight Saga, 2008-2012). Ariel Moore (Footloose, 2011) still hangs around with Ren McCormack. It’s so redundant it’s almost funny. I just remembered Gnomeo and Juliet (2011) as I was writing this.

Some of the stories I mentioned in my last post similarly involve daughters simply wanting freedom. Cinderella, Aladdin, and Flicka were a few I mentioned. Brave (2012) is also one. (LOVE that movie by the way. Definitely recommend it.)

Do you see the pattern? I won’t go into all that “society influence” drama, but surely you get the idea. I think that people start getting bored when you used the same storyline over and over. I’m certainly tired of it. Even if they shake things up a bit, (like changing Ariel the Mermaid into Mavis the Vampire), the conflict is still pretty apparent.

Moral of the story? Try and shake up your story options. A wise man once said, “Nothing is new under the sun…” I would agree, but that doesn’t mean there’s no hope! Broaden your creativity! Create scenarios and possibilities! They are endless!

Wanting new stories and inspiration,

~J.L. Cordova