The Emancipation of Limits

A. PAJ (Page) Turner

Book Cover

GENRE

DRAMA FUNNY ACTION CRIME DETECTIVE MYSTERY SUSPENSE/THRILLER POLITICAL

    Core Theme

    POWER

    TIME PERIOD

    Future

    COMPARABLE TITLES

    SOUTHLAND, BOARDWALK EMPIRE, LOCK STOCK AND TWO SMOKING BARRELS

    CHARACTER LIST

    RICHIE TOMLINSON – 43, A FORMER ARMY OFFICER WHO RUNS A CRIMINAL OUTFIT TO INVEST MONEY BACK INTO THE BLACK COMMUNITY.

    MAURICE – RICHIE'S RIVAL SINCE HE WAS IN SCHOOL AND NOW BOTH A POSSIBLE PARTNER AND A POTENTIAL LETHAL THREAT.

    FELIX NAVARRO – THE LEADER OF THE MEXICAN CARTEL THAT SUPPLIES RICHIE'S DRUGS, SOMEONE WILLING TO KILL ANYONE WHO OPPOSES HIM.

    KAP – 50, RICHIE'S RIGHT HAND MAN AND CLOSE FRIEND.

    DAMAWI – THE WOMAN WHO RUNS RICHIE'S DOWNTOWN CLUB AND A ROMANTIC INTEREST.

    KOLAX – MAURICE'S MAIN HITMAN, WHOSE KILLINGS AND WHOSE FATE BECOMES ENTANGLED IN RICHIE'S OWN

    Logline

    Richie, a visionary and an entrepreneur, returned to Chicago to help build businesses in the black communities. He provided better opportunities for his people by recreating the success of Black Wall Street using profits from the drug trade.

    Target Audiences

    Age: 18-34,35-54,55+

    Target Gender: Universal

    Setting

    CHICAGO, IL

    Based on a True Story

    No

    Publishing Details

    Status: Yes: self-published

    Publisher: A. PAJ TURNER

    Year Published: 2020

    Starting Description

    The story setting begins in the bathroom of Richie’s high rise luxury condo, contemplating on his success and reflecting on his life. He snaps out of it to celebrate his birthday with his pleasure for the night, Zuri.

    Ending Description

    Richie and his team survived the extreme measures his connect takes to solidify their ties to the business by attacking his vulnerabilities. Unknowing his connect turned Richie over to the FBI before his demise.

    Group Specific

    Blacks, Latinos and Caucasian

    Hard Copy Available

    Yes

    ISBN

    978-1-7356931-0-1

    Mature Audience Themes

    Extreme Violence, Language/Profanity

    Plot - Other Elements

    Meaningful Message,Twist,Happy Ending

    Plot - Premise

    Overcoming Monster/Villain,Rebellion Against 'The One',Internal Journey/Rebirth

    Main Character Details

    Name: Richmond A. Tomlinson

    Age: 43

    Gender: Male

    Role: Logical

    Key Traits: Masculine,Confident,Complex,Funny,Visionary,Romantic,Skillful,Selfless,Sexy,Villainous,Aspiring,Aggressive,Sarcastic,Unapologetic,Leader,Engaging,Seductive,Heartthrob,Educated

    Additional Character Details

    Name: Felix Navarro

    Age: 55

    Gender: Male

    Role: Antagonist

    Key Traits: Villainous,Narcisstic,Aggressive,Uneducated,Criminal,Blunt,Power Hungry,Skillful,Greedy,Leader,Unapologetic

    Additional Character Details

    Name: Felix Navarro

    Age: 55

    Gender: Male

    Role: antagonist

    Key Traits: Aggressive,Badass,Masculine,Villainous,Narcisstic,Crazy,Criminal,Power Hungry,Outspoken,Engaging,Greedy,Manipulative,Leader,Insecure

    Additional Character Details

    The author has not yet written this

    Development Pitch

    The Emancipation of Limits is not just a story about selling drugs. The message is much deeper than that. The characters love for his community, the success of recreating Black Wall Street, his journey along with the “why”, is just as appealing as the story of MLK, Malcolm X and other black leaders who gave their life for the betterment of their people. This character possesses the same ideology, but, with a military background who moves towards his goals under the radar. His experience in leadership, worldly conflict, selfless service along with decision making skills makes it easy to root for him and his team against the elements of the drug game and the street. This story has been labelled as if Power and New Jack City had a baby with a black movement to emancipate that low and invisible ceiling black communities had to bear for centuries. This as a TV Series would explode into the homes of the African Americans, Latinos and Caucasian people, not just for entertainment purposes, but education as well.

    Genre

    MATURE AUDIENCE, DRAMA, THRILLER

    Brief

    Richie Tomlinson is a former army officer with an drug dealing operation that funds a growing empire of entertainment and black owned businesses around Chicago. When enemies from rival gangs and within his own threaten everything Richie launches a blood-soaked operation to seize control once and for all.

    Overall Rating

    GOOD

    Point of View

    THIRD PERSON

    Narrative Elements

    Authors Writing Style: GOOD

    Characterization: FAIR

    Commerciality: GOOD

    Franchise Potential: FAIR

    Pace: GOOD

    Premise: GOOD

    Structure: GOOD

    Theme: FAIR

    Accuracy of Book Profile

    The development pitch gives primacy of place to the book's message, which sets up expectations very different to the fast paced, ultraviolet story to follow in which the message is largely in the background. The short summary needs to be replaced. Maurice is the true antagonist of this story, not Felix Navarro. It is Maurice that Richie has been battling all his life and who's demise ends this chapter in his life. It is in his dealings with Maurice that's Richie's character is truly revealed.

    Draw of Story

    The unfolding mystery of who is going to get killed and what the consequences of that violence will be.

    Possible Drawbacks

    The misogyny is constant, gratuitous and often stomach turning, even from characters we would expect to root for. While it makes sense that these characters might not be proclaimed feminists, some of them such as KAP and Tech have little as characters beyond their lewdness towards women. Women make up fifty percent of TV viewers, you can't expect them to watch this. There are many, many characters and keeping track of all of them is difficult at times and will be a challenge in an adaptation as well.

    Use of Special Effects

    THE STORY RELIES A LITTLE BIT ON SPECIAL EFFECTS

    Primary Hook of Story

    The hook is trying to invoke a moral queasiness and uncertainty of watching terrible things happen and wondering if they are doing it for the right reason, while also providing the action of a classic shoot-em-up.

    Fanbase Potential

    Possibly, there's always been a consistent appetite for crime based drama that keeps viewers guessing as to who is going to get killed next.

    Awards Potential

    Not likely. While the setting and subject matter have certainly can resonate with awards voters this book focuses on primarily on action and violence and less of the effect of that violence. This is closer of Fast and the Furious or early Guy Ritchie than Training Day or Traffic.

    Envisioned Budget

    MEDIUM BUDGET

    Similar Films/TV Series

    SOUTHLAND, BOARDWALK EMPIRE, LOCK STOCK AND TWO SMOKING BARRELS

    What’s New About the Story

    The 'mission', the goal of a drug dealer giving back to the community is not an entirely new concept but investing to make themselves truly independent is the most interesting wrinkle this book presents. However, this idea is too often just a catchphrase thrown around to justify the violence when it could be a full storyline in it's own right.

    Lead Characters

    Their ruthlessness and willingness to stop at nothing is both compelling and disturbing.

    Uniqueness of Story

    No. This lacks the depth to be considered a gem. Richie as a character is a complete fantasy. His life is great and it gets even better. He has no weaknesses and no doubts about the questionable tactics of his mission. If you agree with his mission than he has no flaws either. There's depth glimpsed, most often in memories but it's barely scratching the surface when exploring the lead character is an absolutely necessity.

    Possible Formats

    TV Series - Cable, TV Series - Streaming

    Analyst Recommendation

    WORK IN PROGRESS

    Justification

    There's a lot of raw material here that has the potential to play out over a long time. However there is also a lack of depth in needed areas. Particularly 'the mission' which is the justification for all of this violence is given short shrift. Even for an anti-hero, Richie and his crew present relatively little to root for. The sex and violence is plainly visible but most of the nuance and insight exists almost entirely in the characters' thoughts and memories so bringing those out to show the audience is critical to achieving the truths this work seeks to enlighten. If the goal was just sex and violence then the work would be done, but since it clearly aspires to and has the ability for more, then more is needed to reach it's potential. Explicitly presenting a drug dealer who has people killed as a greater leader than Malcolm X and MLK Jr. is going to be a hard sell to put it mildly.

    Tips for Improvement

    More depth. More character development. More conflict about the morality of what they are doing, which will in turn make an audience think about the issues at play. Less women bashing and objectification.

    Brief

    Richie Tomlinson is a former army officer with an drug dealing operation that funds a growing empire of entertainment and black owned businesses around Chicago. When enemies from rival gangs and within his own threaten everything Richie launches a blood-soaked operation to seize control once and for all.

    What We Liked

    Powerful emotional moments of truth. Unexpected twists and turns. Exciting action sequences.

    Film: A fast paced, bloody and twisting tale of power and hope. This story presents the drug fueled violence in America's bloody reach in an action packed thriller that will keep people guessing, get them thinking and leave them changed.

    TV: A complex web of shifting loyalties and ceaseless desire for power creates a constantly tense world where no one is safe. The variety of causes and victims of the violence throughout Chicago shows a world of hope trying to breath through the cracks of despair. This can make people think and ask tough questions about what real change would take.

    Key points: Emotionally powerful moments. Suspense and rising stakes. Twists and turns. Complex web of shifting loyalties. Resonant premise.

    Synopsis

    For Richie 'Swaggazine' Tomlinson, it feels good to be a gangster. He runs an entertainment empire with a club and comedy shows in downtown Chicago, he is also the head of a drug dealing operation with reaching to central America and inside the Chicago PD.

    He says he's on his way to being legit. In the meantime his crew murders a low-level dealer, who worked for Richie's rival Maurice, and was passing counterfeit cash. His death leads to a police investigation and Maurice orders his hitman Kolax kill two others to cover loose ends. One victim is Jamal, a school friend of his lieutenant Spree. Spree goes to the hospital and stays with Jamal's mother as she dies of cancer. The police have Kolax as a suspect.

    Richie goes to Belize to handle a drug shipment from the cartel that's larger, when they are supposed to be getting smaller. While there Richie explains to a visiting Spree his master plan, he's taken over most drugs in Chicago, demanded that the gangs put some of the profits back into the community and killed those didn't comply. Black businesses are popping up with no connection to crime. Now Richie wants to do the same thing to Maurice's outfit and have Spree take over in his place.

    Richie flies to Mexico and tells Felix Navarro, the head of the cartel he traffics for about his intended replacement, for when he's legit, an army buddy named Chris. Felix immediately tries to turn Chris against Richie, but Chris doesn't yield to the pressure.

    Richie holds a meeting with Maurice's contacts to spread the extra drugs, but Maurice announces his new number two, Kolax's cousin Karimah. She has tipped Maurice about Spree's collusion with Richie. Maurice shoots Spree in the head. Richie has the body cremated, what he does with all his victims.

    Javari, Damawi's nephew, is killed when he's in a convenience store being robbed and is mistakenly shot by the police. The cops on the scene are try to frame Javari with a planted gun. Richie intercepts Damawi before she attempts to murder one of the store robbers from the shooting. Instead she befriends Jordan, the abused girlfriend of one robber, and gets her to turn on him and help her start a new life.

    At his retirement ceremony from the army Chris and his wife are killed by a car bomb set by Felix's men. Richie and crew go to St. Louis and send Maurice photos of a dead Kolax, payment for the new contacts.

    Felix sends an envoys to Chicago to make a deal with Maurice about replacing Richie. Richie goes to Colombia to connect with Felix's supplier. Hitmen try to kill Brick and Damawi, but he kills them and they learn about Felix's double-cross. Another hit man is still on the loose.

    Richie meets the Colombian drug lord, Mr. Gamboa, who has already murdered Felix. They agree to be direct partners but when Richie lands back in Chicago Maurice has already unleashed the whole criminal underground on him and his crew.

    The Mexican hitman breaks into Richie apartment, but Richie kills him in a fight. KAP gets shot and hospitalized. Richie and Damawi hook up. After Colombians take out a hit crew, Richie fakes his death with one of their phones.

    Richie surprises Maurice at his place and brings out Kolax who they didn't actually kill. Kamirah kills Maurice and they take him to be cremated.

    With this round of battles over Richie's empire is in his control. Some people get out of the game, money is sent to the relatives of the deceased and a new day in Chicago's black community is at hand.

    About The Author

    A. Paj Turner is a former Chief Warrant Officer in the US army and a longtime former resident of Chicago.