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In the Genes

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Review of chapter "In the Genes" from dulcinea
Review:
While I think the idea of possibly having a "slayer" gene related to the "ancients" gene could be an interesting base of a story, your techno-babble scares me. It would probably help if you had a real geneticist or biologist help you with the techno-babble part since a lot of things are off. For example, your metaphor of adaptive convergence of wings as a set rule, is not a rule so much as an observation. Wings are not the result of a single gene, but rather a large series of genes. For all you know, the same homeobox sequence could be used to set the patterning down for all three sets of wing types, thus causing them to share the same gene at at least one locus. Also, there are just as many cases where genes are in one population, silenced by a mutation, and then repaired by the reversal mutation. It's a rare event, but given the vast number of basepairs in all organisms, even a rare event happens pretty frequently. That's why building phylogenetic trees of species needs to be checked on multiple genes, just in case a reversion, or many reversions, has occurred. And just as odd as it is to believe that the one mutation it would take to make an "ancient" would happen in Colonel O'Neil, there is no good reason why it wouldn't happen either. Probability indicates it's unlikely, but not impossible, so why question it? Everyone on the base having it would be weird; just Jack, not so much. Also, if the "slayer" gene is rare, that doesn't mean that 1 in 10 million women have it, literally. It's more likely that there are pockets where it would be more highly expressed than others; sort of like how color blindness over all is rare but is more common in some areas like Martha's Vineyard. A phenotype like "super strength" would likely be selected on when it pops up, so you'd expect to find small islands of slayers. However, the way slayers are called - popping up all over the world in very low densities- indicates if it was genetic, it would likely be the product of multiple (normally neutral) genes all having to fall into alignment (possibly including the sex chromosome) before a slayer phenotype would be expressed. Also, I think you're using mutation sort of weird. If it's the product of an immediate change, it's a mutation, but if that same mutation gets passed along in a population for generations (like you're claiming) it's an allele, or possibly genotype. Anyhoo...
The characters are in character, and the basic premise might be okay, you just need to watch out for over-techno-babbling when you're channeling Sam.
Comments from author:
Hi, thanks for the honest feedback.

I know the science part is not as precise as it should have been and the terms are not as accurate as they could have been but I was trying to keep this at a level that would hopefully be understandable for a high school student, I feared that using the 'proper' words at some points would have made it too hard for the average reader to follow.

As for the parts where I bent genetics a little to suit my needs (I know there are quite a few instances of that), well, let's just say that that's poetic license and I don't do it anywhere near as much as the show itself (let's face it, SG-1 is a show where neither Sam nor the Asgard can tell the difference between radius and diameter and where an ancient alien device includes constellations that didn’t really exist before the XX century... and don't even get me started on the archeological, liguitic and anthropologic aspect of things).

Also as for over-techno-babbling this, most of the science is now behind us. I tried to have it mostly on the first two chapters to set the story up, now I fully intend to move away from it.
Review By [dulcinea] • Date [21 Nov 05] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Chapter 2: Girl Power" from SuziJ
Review:
Interesting beginning! Would a woman with two Ancient genes would be a potential? I think so. And on top of that, because it is post-Chosen, they are now activated. This story promises to be interesting.
P.S. While is is a little science heavy, I don't believe you could have avoided it and still explained your story's premise.
Comments from author:
Glad you liked it, and I tried to squeeze the science into the first two chapters but after that things start moving forward.
Review By [SuziJ] • Date [21 Nov 05] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "In the Genes" from TarnishedGold
Review:
This is an excellent story idea. I think you need to "Dumb it down" a bit and break it up a little, sounds more like one big Willow babble. I love the idea & look forward to more.
Gold
Comments from author:
Hi, glad you liked that and yet I'm well aware that this is a bit science heavy... the problem is that dumbing it down would have been out of character for Sam (who I do see as achieving something close to a Willow-babble when excited).
Review By [TarnishedGold] • Date [20 Nov 05] • Rating [8 out of 10]
Review of chapter "In the Genes" from NoLifeKing
Review:
Can I say that I like Sam's tech-babble? Yes I do! :-) Interesting point of view. I wonder what the genes will do in a woman? Will it be the Slayer potentials?
Can't await for more of this! :-)
Comments from author:
Glad you liked it... and chapter 2 has just been uploaded, I hope you'll enjoy it.
Review By [NoLifeKing] • Date [19 Nov 05] • Rating [10 out of 10]
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