Daniel Suni

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Daniel Suni was a fanfic author and essayist from 1999 to 2000, noted for his strong prescriptivist beliefs.

Biographical Information[edit]

Finnish by nationality, Suni frequently consulted English-language dictionaries while writing his fanfics.

Fandom History[edit]

Suni's first foray into fanfiction was "End, Weekend, End," written in September 1999, a comedic script that he kept as close to canon as possible. In the forward, he stated "My ambition when I started to write this was that, if this script would have been turned into an episode, nobody would know that it hadn't been written by someone of MTV's people." He quickly won praise for his efforts, and followed up in November 1999 with a similar scripted fanfic, "Hotter than Hades." C.E. Forman was credited as being a strong influence on his tone and structure.

Suni's next fanfic, "How Deep It Goes," would be dramatically different from his first two. Written in prose, in six parts, it involved Daria pondering the meaning of life after the suicide of a classmate. This would be the first of two prosefics that Suni wrote.

Suni followed up with "A Lousy Deal" in December 1999, which resembled his earlier works. However, not long after Season Four premiered, Suni wrote his second prosefic, "A Sick, Sad Goodbye," in which Daria and Jane lamented the downward spiral of their favorite show, which represented Suni's growing dissatisfaction with the direction of Daria.

Controversies[edit]

Suni was a fanfiction prescriptivist from the beginning, but as the months passed, he became more vocal in his opinions. He considered only scripted fanfics that maintained all of the elements of the show to be the only acceptable fanfics, and that anything that deviated from the series should be dismissed. He held C.E. Forman's writing up as the gold standard of fanfiction writing, irritating authors whose works were not completely canon. In February 2000, Kara Wild wrote a rebuttal essay, "The Off-Canon Approach," pointing out amongst other things that even C.E. Forman did not stay perfectly on canon.

However, after Episode 4.01, "Partner's Complaint," aired on MTV, Suni became aggrieved by the show's direction, which he felt was pulling away from its roots as a sharp satire. Soon after writing "A Sick, Sad Goodbye," he followed up with a lengthy essay, "Cynic's Complaint." In the essay, he detailed how, in his opinion, "Partner's Complaint" betrayed the show as a whole. His opinions sparked a fierce debate amongst the Daria fans. While several defended the character development route that the show was taking, others sided with Suni, claiming that the show was losing its edge.

In order to illustrate how a Daria fanfic and episode should progress, Suni wrote "Satura Tota Nostra Est" in April 2000. Suni kept the characters close to canon, as usual, allowing only slight character development for Mr. O'Neill. He would follow up this effort with another lengthy essay in May 2000, "On Comedy, Drama and Emotional Involvement or, Vivisection of a Dying Show."

By this point, many fans had grown tired of Suni's negative opinions, and C.E. Forman finally responded with a satire of Suni's first essay. Forman's essay, "This Show Sucks," poked fun at the notion that Season One Daria was "true" Daria, since the first season was very different from the black and white pilot, "Sealed with a Kick." His essay was met with enthusiasm by most of the fans, but some felt that it was unfair to single out Suni just for having an unpopular opinion. Forman and Suni began debating at length during the summer of 2000 on the Outpost Daria Message Board, until the entire Outpost Daria site went dark due to a misguided "foxing". Once Outpost Daria was resurrected, without the message board, Suni saw no reason to stay further, and soon left for good.

External Links[edit]