Imagine a story about alcoholism which results in all kinds of awful results because everyone refuses to believe that Father Ted could possibly be an alcoholic. Even though that's clearly a story in manipulation or fixed attitude, if you simply remove the problematic activities (e.g. Father Ted never takes a drink), then you've solved the problem.
Asking what the OS story is about is kind of the same thing as asking what domain its in.
What a story is about is not an indicator of the source of conflict within that story.
This is a huge mistake many people make when working with Dramatica. Domains are about inequities, not about stories.
Alcoholism is not a problem–until you, as an Author, make it a problem. You make it a problem by showing some kind of inequity.
In the above example of “Father Ted never takes a drink”, you state that the problems manifest in Activities. Well, if they do, then yes–stopping those activities would resolve the issue.
Everyone refusing to believe the Father Ted is an alcoholic presupposes some kind of inequity. There is no inequity within that statement from a Dramatica point-of-view.
If in To Kill A Mockingbird, we remove all the problematic activities, then we get rid of the trial, of people interfering with each other, . . . etc. Who cares if people are still racist at that point? Most anyone I know who's had to deal with systematic discrimination largely doesn't care what's in people's heads – it's the things they do as a result that creates the problem.
The activities of the trial and of people interfering with one another are not shown to be problematic in To Kill A Mockingbird, so removing them wouldn’t make a difference. The racism is shown to be problematic, so yes, removing that would resolve the situation.
Of course, most movies aren't so strict in one direction or another that everything we see in the OS is either internal or external. To Kill A Mockingbird is rightly assigned an internal domain for the OS, but pretty much everything we see going wrong on the screen in the OS looks like an external activity.
Because it’s a movie. Everything is externalized.
What everything looks like is not what Dramatica is concerned with. Dramatica is concerned with identifying the inequity shown to be motivating problems within the various perspectives.
In Civil War, take away the problematic activities that we've seen on the screen and you still have aliens, monsters, and super-terrorists. If you say, well, we just take those away too, then you're defining a world that doesn't exist in the context of the movie: you're changing things that exit before the movie itself starts.
Aliens, monsters, and super-terrorists are not problematic in and of themselves, especially within context of Civil War–the narrative in question. The activities of super terrorists are problematic. It all comes down to presupposing conflict without it actually being shown.
Yes, so if we have two or even three viable domains in which the answer comes out as "maybe", we need a means to reduce down to one. If the heuristic for doing that isn't believability or viability, then what is it?
Well, this is precisely the problem: I can see reasons for it to be in at least three of the domains. Having rewatched it again a couple of nights ago, my instinct now is that the simplest way to describe the problem is: "Superheroes are being manipulated into fighting each other."
You reduce it down to one by successfully arguing the other three Domains at the same time. You can always make an argument for one Domain at one time. It’s when you do all four at once that you quickly figure out which one is the “right” one.
Yes, my answer suffers from the same problem in terms of the litmus test. In essence, if all problematic Activities stop, then you've always removed the problem, just as if nobody cares about what's happening anymore, you've removed the problem.
Super simple example of a litmus test for a Fixed Attitude:
In Doubt you can remove all the kid touching and there would still be a problem: the nun’s belief that the priest was touching a kid. Kid touching is not problematic in the narrative of Doubt, the belief that a priest is guilty before facing trial is.
You have to look at the narrative presented, not what you think is personally problematic.
No matter what you do, the movie tells us there's still going to be civilian casualties. So what does solving the inequity really look like?
What’s going to be is not problematic, what is problematic is problematic. What’s going to be problematic may be problematic for the characters, but it’s not problematic as far as the story is concerned.
There are civilian casualties. Stopping innocent people from dying is the Goal setup to resolve that inequity.