I'm inclined to agree: a guy stuck in a well is in situation, period, full stop. As Jim said, the inequity – the thing that unbalanced was previously the norm – was getting stuck in the well, and therefore it's situation. Period. Full stop.
So the heuristic this sets up in applying Dramatica's domains to throughlines would be that the nature of that throughline's inequity – the thing that changed the status quo – defines the domain. A guy who gets stuck on a spaceship is in situation. A guy who was already stuck on a spaceship but has now lost his mind and can no longer tell fact from fantasy is in Manipulation.
Absolutely correct, but here I'm assuming the other throughlines will be added to the story. I just didn't want to get lost in the weeds of "you have to look at all four throughlines" because the point of the question is to discern whether some scenarios must be in a particular domain.
Definitely. It tells me that if I have an MC throughline about a guy stuck in a well, then I can't have an OS throughline about people being stuck in a town beneath a giant dome. Both throughlines are clearly in Situation and thus would break the Dramatica model of story – that the story itself would likely run into problems because both throughlines are, at that broadest level, about being stuck in a place. (Note, I'm not talking about a story with an OS about people feeling stuck in a town because they view it as a dead end.)
Okay, but that's categorically different from Jim's response.
I'll go through your examples here:
Not the same thing. I'm talking about a story in which a guy gets stuck in a well, not a story in which during chapter one he gets stuck in the well, in chapter two he gets out, and then the rest of the book involves his reputation.
So far as I can tell, from Jim's response (and I'm sorry to keep using poor Jim's name in vain here), that would still have the MC in Situation. The inequity is that he's stuck in the well. Take him out of the well, and his life goes on as it did before.
Again, that may be true, but it's contrary to the previous assertion. Also, I think it would be highly problematic in terms of the notion of a grand argument story requiring four domains, because it makes it almost impossible to identify a story that has four throughlines (OS, MC, RS, IC) but does not give them unique domains – you'd be able to just say, "well, because a town full of people living under a dome is situation, I'm treating the MC being stuck in a well as manipulation." It means the notion of uniquely applied domains is irrelevant – one can just fudge it in the interpretation after the fact.
I know that movie like the back of my hand, and I'm not at all convinced that Malcolm is a be-er. While he may seem passive on the surface, that's not a function of him preferring to adapt himself to his environment – it's because he's a ghost. He never tries to adapt himself internally to his inability to act upon the world – in fact, he does everything possible to make a difference externally. He's determined to save Cole (an external solution) in order to make up for failing to save his previous patient.
We could, of course, argue it until the cows come home, but the fact that it "fooled a lot of people for a long time" is a pretty good indicator that the model is not especially good at producing an objective determination about a film – that it ends up being a matter of gradual consensus. At some point any analytical tool has to be able to produce the same result even if different (sufficiently trained) people apply it.