Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

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Re: Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

Postby danslepoubelle » Tue Nov 27, 2012 11:56 pm

Twitcher wrote:... But that "unpopular person elevates the downtrodden" thing has been done to death. Watch "Revenge of the Nerds." Watch most any "underdog makes good" comedy. Karen broke that mold. And we knew who Karen was from the beginning. She had a mercenary attitude, and kept it throughout. We were even given a reason why: She learned it from watching her mom, and she couldn't seem to comprehend anything else, at least in the beginning. Karen was neglected, yes, but it certainly wasn't purposeful: Rather than being treated as an inconvience, we see that her mother felt guilty for working long hours, and shared meals with her as a way to spend time together. What bothered me most about the comic as it ran was that in its effort to subvert expectations, it reinforced old ones that we learned in high school: Don't associate with the uggos or undesirables, they ain't worth it! The lack of "variety" in Belleville High may have been the reason for Quiltbag's "crowdsourcing".


The Aggies were all undesirables before they banded together (aggie was only friends with duane, Lisa had no friends, Fred and Daphne only had each other). They all were pretty attractive and socially competent so it's weird they didn't have more friends, but I guess they felt they couldn't be themselves in other cliques, or something.
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Re: Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

Postby brasca » Wed Nov 28, 2012 12:01 am

Twitcher wrote:... But that "unpopular person elevates the downtrodden" thing has been done to death. Watch "Revenge of the Nerds." Watch most any "underdog makes good" comedy. Karen broke that mold. And we knew who Karen was from the beginning. She had a mercenary attitude, and kept it throughout. We were even given a reason why: She learned it from watching her mom, and she couldn't seem to comprehend anything else, at least in the beginning. Karen was neglected, yes, but it certainly wasn't purposeful: Rather than being treated as an inconvience, we see that her mother felt guilty for working long hours, and shared meals with her as a way to spend time together. What bothered me most about the comic as it ran was that in its effort to subvert expectations, it reinforced old ones that we learned in high school: Don't associate with the uggos or undesirables, they ain't worth it! The lack of "variety" in Belleville High may have been the reason for Quiltbag's "crowdsourcing".


It is different when the person seeking to elevate the downtrodden fights dirty. In all those other underdog tales the people might do some morally dubious things largely for the sake of laughs, but they never actively seek to destroy their rivals. Aggie believed she was fighting the good fight, but aside from periodically squabbling with Penny or sabotaging a soda can her actions really didn't damage Penny's clique. Karen and her gang didn't have any qualms about that.

You do bring up a good point about how this comic subverted expectations, but I think the Omegas represented an underclass that had been burned one too many times and turned resentful while Aggie and her clique which were hardly the most popular kids stayed positive. Moreover, the omegas and I include Karen had their differences. In spite of everything Duane reached out to Charlotte and she was improving until Cyndi set her off. While her actions lead to her incarceration she didn't strike back at Duane. Aggie reached out to Helen, but she and her gang never seemed to understand just how insecure she was and at the first sign they might abandon her started hanging out with the wrong people. Karen might have been grateful for the work Penny and later Aggie put in to making her over, but she probably realized she was also being used as a pawn in their conflict and wanted nothing more to do that. And in all honesty she had every right to be her own person, but I digress. As for Tharqa we never really got to know her that well and I wish we had so we could better examine her motivations. On the one hand she was comfortable enough in her own skin that she didn't care what anyone thought, but unlike Karen she might have grown so accustomed to people judging her on her appearance that she rebounded any ridicule with some of her own and feel justified that everyone was against her so she might as well have fun paying them back whenever possible. Considering how she was at the school reunion she's probably the only one who never really changed.
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Re: Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

Postby mindstalk » Wed Nov 28, 2012 2:08 am

danslepoubelle wrote:
Twitcher wrote:... But that "unpopular person elevates the downtrodden" thing has been done to death. Watch "Revenge of the Nerds." Watch most any "underdog makes good" comedy. Karen broke that mold. And we knew who Karen was from the beginning. She had a mercenary attitude, and kept it throughout. We were even given a reason why: She learned it from watching her mom, and she couldn't seem to comprehend anything else, at least in the beginning. Karen was neglected, yes, but it certainly wasn't purposeful: Rather than being treated as an inconvience, we see that her mother felt guilty for working long hours, and shared meals with her as a way to spend time together. What bothered me most about the comic as it ran was that in its effort to subvert expectations, it reinforced old ones that we learned in high school: Don't associate with the uggos or undesirables, they ain't worth it! The lack of "variety" in Belleville High may have been the reason for Quiltbag's "crowdsourcing".


The Aggies were all undesirables before they banded together (aggie was only friends with duane, Lisa had no friends, Fred and Daphne only had each other). They all were pretty attractive and socially competent so it's weird they didn't have more friends, but I guess they felt they couldn't be themselves in other cliques, or something.


It's not always clear; we don't get a complete view of their lives. In particular note that while Duane seemed to be Aggie's only close friend, she did play scrabble with the Omegas.
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Re: Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

Postby thebitterfig » Wed Nov 28, 2012 6:07 pm

RE Glasses.

Yes, it's clear to probably any of us on the forum into girls that Fan Glam Penny is still hot. However, we're also not Penny's targets. Sure, Duane would, but would a Rich, a Stan, a Braz, an Omar skip classes for a girl with glasses? I think she's trying to attract a certain subset of boys who largely are quite shallow, unwilling to consider anyone apart from their own narrow standards.
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Re: Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

Postby TCampbell » Fri Nov 30, 2012 8:52 am

I'll take most of the blame for not really getting around to a nice but "classically unattractive" character. I mean, I could say Katy-Ann has an explosion of freckles that'd send a more neurotic person to the tanning salon, but that'd be somewhat disingenuous: she's clearly got a lot else going for her, physically. And the sweet, shy, Reubenesque girl from "Mister Smiles" was too little, too late.

I will say, though, that Gisele clearly just likes to draw attractive people: you won't generally see her designing anyone who's not "from central casting" unless the story specifically requires it, as it did with Helen and Kiley of Menage a 3. And Kiley is a beauty who's merely fixated on her body's sole imperfection, whereas Helen just needed to ditch the terrible hairstyle and the Coke-bottle frames (check her out in "Interventions," there's nothing wrong with her underlying structure there). Only Tharqa really manages to be repulsive, and she's a Randy Milholland design. So when I started "promoting" characters whom I'd not expected to get a lot of screen time, Gisele's inclinations had determined their look. Jason's got more of an eye for people's imperfections, and his design of Fred, Daphne and Lisa might've been different if he'd gotten to them first.

FWIW, I've had Lasik and definitely feel it was an improvement.
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Re: Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

Postby Alice Macher » Fri Nov 30, 2012 9:14 am

TCampbell wrote: And the sweet, shy, Reubenesque girl from "Mister Smiles" was too little, too late.


Yeah, Weezy seemed like a pleasant and friendly sort. Wouldn't have minded seeing more of her.
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Re: Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

Postby timemonkey » Fri Nov 30, 2012 2:43 pm

It's weird how fond I am of Weezy given how little she appeared or did.


Oooh, new spin off possibilty: The Weezy Chronicles!
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Re: Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

Postby CEOIII » Fri Nov 30, 2012 11:10 pm

timemonkey wrote:It's weird how fond I am of Weezy given how little she appeared or did.


Oooh, new spin off possibilty: The Weezy Chronicles!


I'd read that. Maybe her and Karen become close friends. BIG GIRLS UNITE!
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Re: Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

Postby Valerie » Fri Nov 30, 2012 11:48 pm

CEOIII wrote:
timemonkey wrote:It's weird how fond I am of Weezy given how little she appeared or did.


Oooh, new spin off possibilty: The Weezy Chronicles!


I'd read that. Maybe her and Karen become close friends. BIG GIRLS UNITE!


I don't see that ending well...
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Re: Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

Postby CEOIII » Sat Dec 01, 2012 12:09 am

Valerie wrote:
CEOIII wrote:
timemonkey wrote:It's weird how fond I am of Weezy given how little she appeared or did.


Oooh, new spin off possibilty: The Weezy Chronicles!


I'd read that. Maybe her and Karen become close friends. BIG GIRLS UNITE!


I don't see that ending well...


Not Karen during the Mockingbird storyline, Karen post-Popsicle War. Karen around the time we first saw Weezy. Lord knows she could've used a friend at that point.
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Re: Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

Postby timemonkey » Sat Dec 01, 2012 12:24 am

CEOIII wrote:
Valerie wrote:
CEOIII wrote:
timemonkey wrote:It's weird how fond I am of Weezy given how little she appeared or did.


Oooh, new spin off possibilty: The Weezy Chronicles!


I'd read that. Maybe her and Karen become close friends. BIG GIRLS UNITE!


I don't see that ending well...


Not Karen during the Mockingbird storyline, Karen post-Popsicle War. Karen around the time we first saw Weezy. Lord knows she could've used a friend at that point.

Problem is, Karen never actually reformed, she was just beaten. She's also shown that she's willing to throw away genuine affection for power. Poor Weezy deserves better than that. Maybe Karen can become friends with Marshal?
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Re: Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

Postby Zanosuke Kurosaki » Sat Dec 01, 2012 12:29 am

timemonkey wrote:
CEOIII wrote:
Valerie wrote:
CEOIII wrote:
timemonkey wrote:It's weird how fond I am of Weezy given how little she appeared or did.


Oooh, new spin off possibilty: The Weezy Chronicles!


I'd read that. Maybe her and Karen become close friends. BIG GIRLS UNITE!


I don't see that ending well...


Not Karen during the Mockingbird storyline, Karen post-Popsicle War. Karen around the time we first saw Weezy. Lord knows she could've used a friend at that point.

Problem is, Karen never actually reformed, she was just beaten. She's also shown that she's willing to throw away genuine affection for power. Poor Weezy deserves better than that. Maybe Karen can become friends with Marshal?


Uh... There's kind of a logical disconnect to your idea there, y'know.
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Re: Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

Postby timemonkey » Sat Dec 01, 2012 12:54 am

What disconnect? If someone's going to try and be friends with Karen it might as well be the person who she'd already established a caring relationship. There's a risk she'll toss hima way but everyone would have to deal with that and she at least does care for him to some degree.
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Re: Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

Postby Zanosuke Kurosaki » Sat Dec 01, 2012 1:04 am

timemonkey wrote:What disconnect? If someone's going to try and be friends with Karen it might as well be the person who she'd already established a caring relationship. There's a risk she'll toss hima way but everyone would have to deal with that and she at least does care for him to some degree.


The disconnect is that they broke up and he wanted nothing more to do with her, and yet you're suggesting they can be friends again. That was kind of a rather major plot point, that he finally figured out how long she'd been using him and lying to him, but did it far too late to salvage anything of his friendship with Aggie (and by extension, any of her friends, too.) So uh... how, exactly, are they supposed to be friends after that? Because I'm quite confused here as to how you think that's possible. :shock:
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Re: Re-read week 8: The Mockingbird 11 - 15

Postby timemonkey » Sat Dec 01, 2012 8:04 am

Zanosuke Kurosaki wrote:
timemonkey wrote:What disconnect? If someone's going to try and be friends with Karen it might as well be the person who she'd already established a caring relationship. There's a risk she'll toss hima way but everyone would have to deal with that and she at least does care for him to some degree.


The disconnect is that they broke up and he wanted nothing more to do with her, and yet you're suggesting they can be friends again. That was kind of a rather major plot point, that he finally figured out how long she'd been using him and lying to him, but did it far too late to salvage anything of his friendship with Aggie (and by extension, any of her friends, too.) So uh... how, exactly, are they supposed to be friends after that? Because I'm quite confused here as to how you think that's possible. :shock:

There's always forgiveness, Marshall's supposed to be a really great guy, even if we never actually saw him be one, and Karen did admitt to having severe issues several times so it's not outside the realm of possibility. We never really saw either of them much after the popscicle wars so we don't klnow how they felt about each other once they'd calmed down and thought about things.
I mean, Daphne turned on Sara over a rumor and believed she could eb a rapist and they still stayed friends and then hooked up. Aggie speant over a year harassing Penny, to the point where she was pretty mucha bully, and they became friends and hooked up. So it seems like the only person on the cast who is beyond forgiveness was Stan....for some reason I never understood.
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