It was the best of times if was the worst time times. Ok, let’s face it Major League may not be a literary classic but it it does have a plot and follow a classic s story line. Our hero. Jake Taylor is down in the dumps and manages to pull himself up along with a team of misfits up for the bottom (of the standings) and defeat the bad guy (the White Sox) and gets the girl. Along the way Jake and the team overcome obstacles and end up stronger because of it.
To help you better grasp the complex plot line I have developed a series of graphical representations of the story.
Vonnegut’s approach to storytelling
Vonnegut’s approach to storytelling was the graph the the good fortune and ill fortune on the Y access and the beginning to end of the story on the X access the high’s and lows can be seen. Note, you may need to click on the image to view the key plot events.
Pixar’s 22 Rules To Create Appealing Stories
Let’s shift gears a little here, away from Vonnegut to Pixar. Pixar compiled a list of 22 Rules Pixar Uses To Create Appealing Stories. It’s evident that the character’s in major league followed many of these rules. Some of the rules are impossible to verify without speaking to the writers.Rule number 8, “Finish your story, let go even if it’s not perfect. In an ideal world you have both, but move on. Do better next time.” was one of the rules that requires as least some knowledge of the writer’s intent. The interesting thing about this is that Major League was written with a different ending than what appeared in the theater. Apparently, the “bad guy”, the owner, was actually supposed to secretly be a “good guy”, who was being mean to the team to motivate them to unite against her. It sounds like the writers finished a story that was not perfect then went back and fixed it.
A story spine is a technique used to give stories their shape. I will provide an example of the Major League story spine.
Once upon a time, there was a washed up old ball player named Jake Taylor.
Every day, he drank too much and played baseball on a no name team in Mexico.
But one day, the Cleveland Indians called him up and asked him to come to spring training.
Because of that, he flew up to Cleveland and attended spring training and ran into his ex-girlfriend.
Because of that, he made the team and played baseball with a rag tag bunch of ball players and perused his ex-girlfriend.
Because of that, he managed to find ground with the ball players and unite the team together.
Until finally, the team wins the pennant and he gets the girl.
And ever since then, he lived happily ever after with his girlfriend, or at least we are left to think that.