What? What? WHAT? (9/13)

The teenage years. Friendships, crushes, growth... and hating. Lots of hating.

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Postby isobel on Wed Sep 13, 2006 7:43 pm

I second ivy-chan's post. It also reminded me of the strips in "Crushed" where Aggie faints and Marshall goes postal on her when she comes around. He tells her she's got to take care of herself, because no one else will. That, combined with his excess of maturity and independence, suggest to me that the boy's got issues. His not wanting sex just might have more to it than we know yet.
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Postby RentACop on Wed Sep 13, 2006 8:45 pm

Is this the comics first instance of ass?
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Postby TheTeague on Wed Sep 13, 2006 9:07 pm

I have no problem with Marshal's lack of desire for sex. Whatever works for him works. But he is NOT respecting Karen as a person by continually telling her (non-verbally) that he doesn't find her attractive. If he or anyone else DOES claim that he's doing it out of "respect" for her, than she's only being reguarded as "just another girl" and lumping her in with a stereotype than actually paying attention to her fractured personality.
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Postby Tarlia on Wed Sep 13, 2006 9:44 pm

StarKruzr wrote:No, it isn't crazy. Don't you people have any sense of adventure?

What is with this bizarre and oft-repeated concept in this forum of a red-blooded American teenage male being "scandalized" by HIS GIRLFRIEND coming into the shower with him?

If Marshall is reacting like this, he either has the sex drive of a brick or is gay. Sorry, kids. No way around it. In either case, Karen shouldn't be with him. I think THAT much is becoming abundantly clear: they are extremely poorly matched.


If the roles were reversed, and she was "scandalized" by HIM coming into her shower, would you assume she was gay or had the sex drive of a brick, too?

What is it with this assumption that all straight teenage males MUST want to have sex?
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Postby Fen on Wed Sep 13, 2006 10:33 pm

Marshall has the sex drive of a brick. He's seen Karen, and a lot of ladies that probably look better than Karen, in her underwear(i don't care if it's acceptable to wear that at the gym. I don't see the difference between a girl dressed like karen is, now, and one in a bra and panties.). It's his job, and he is used to it. And he also has the moral standards of one. So he will be pissed.

We're talking two virgins here, one that is desperate for sex. No, they will not shower together. Either they do it(unprotected, of course. Marshall will dissaprove of this too) or they don't. And they won't, that's clear.

Why is it wrong for one to not desire sex? Really.

And I hate Karen. Why? Cause I find myself in her former stereotype(the Chubby girl, that dresses unfashionable and gets mocked. oh, and wears glasses) and I'm doing fine by myself. I'd never become like she is now, a greedy, attention-hungry, snob. And she can't be chubby. really. Look at her clothes. She mostly stuff that only look good on perfectly slim people.

Ever since she lost weight she's lost every moral value she had. And I really can't figure out how Marshall and her could form a couple.

Michelle looks just...I don't know. Do you see her eyes? They just start begging for pity. And the dress...And the way Stan looks at it. it's sad, really.

Charisma's panel is quite disturbing.

And regarding the other people in the showers, Do people really hang around butt-naked in the States? over here if the showers aren't covered then yeah, if we have no choice we'll take a shower eventually, but as soon as we get out(or while we're still in) we cover ourselves. Oh, and I'm guessing there's more than one shower. I wonder what would've happened if Karen walked in on someone else.
Last edited by Fen on Wed Sep 13, 2006 10:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby isobel on Wed Sep 13, 2006 10:35 pm

TheTeague wrote:I have no problem with Marshal's lack of desire for sex. Whatever works for him works. But he is NOT respecting Karen as a person by continually telling her (non-verbally) that he doesn't find her attractive. If he or anyone else DOES claim that he's doing it out of "respect" for her, than she's only being reguarded as "just another girl" and lumping her in with a stereotype than actually paying attention to her fractured personality.

The thing is, I'm pretty sure he's explained to her that it's sex he doesn't want, not her. He's said-- that we know of, lord only knows what's happened behind the scenes-- that he wants to be with her for a long time (which, now that I think of it, implies sex when they're suitably "gorwn up," whatever that means), and that he feels he is currently too young for sex. These imply that he's clearly differentiating sex from Karen the desirable girl. As to her fractured personality, well, we don't know how much he knows. I'd imagine that she's kept her past and her current worries under wraps so as to project a confident, desirable, sexy, mature front to the world. That's certainly consistent with the Karen we know; this is the girl who literally drowned her childhood self. Just a couple points to think about.
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Postby TheTeague on Wed Sep 13, 2006 11:08 pm

isobel wrote:
TheTeague wrote:I have no problem with Marshal's lack of desire for sex. Whatever works for him works. But he is NOT respecting Karen as a person by continually telling her (non-verbally) that he doesn't find her attractive. If he or anyone else DOES claim that he's doing it out of "respect" for her, than she's only being reguarded as "just another girl" and lumping her in with a stereotype than actually paying attention to her fractured personality.

The thing is, I'm pretty sure he's explained to her that it's sex he doesn't want, not her. He's said-- that we know of, lord only knows what's happened behind the scenes-- that he wants to be with her for a long time (which, now that I think of it, implies sex when they're suitably "gorwn up," whatever that means), and that he feels he is currently too young for sex. These imply that he's clearly differentiating sex from Karen the desirable girl. As to her fractured personality, well, we don't know how much he knows. I'd imagine that she's kept her past and her current worries under wraps so as to project a confident, desirable, sexy, mature front to the world. That's certainly consistent with the Karen we know; this is the girl who literally drowned her childhood self. Just a couple points to think about.


Still, what he's doing is like saying "Of course I value your opinions, but just shut up for now, ok babe."
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Postby StarKruzr on Wed Sep 13, 2006 11:27 pm

ivy-chan wrote:I dislike the assumption that if a young male is presented with a naked young woman, all rational thought goes completely out the window and everything escalates to sex, and if this does not happen, the young man is clearly gay. (Leaving out asexual altogether, which embitters me in a different way.) Marshall has made his feelings on this matter as clear as possible, he doesn't want to have sex, he doesn't think he is ready. Shockingly, I knew a few guys in high school who were going to be celibate until marriage. They're rare, but they're around, and still amazingly not gay.

Now, Marshall may just get an erection, or he may be angry enough that it won't happen until later, but physical responses aside, his mind might very well be in charge enough to tell her to get out. He can be morally offended, betrayed, hurt, and/or angry without being gay. He has standards of behavior, and that's fine. Let him react as a person, and not as the stereotypical image of a hormone-driven teen.


He's being presented with his girlfriend, who is naked, and whom he supposedly is attracted to, and she's soaked from head to toe with him in the shower. "WHAT are you DOING?" is not a normal reaction to this, WHATSOEVER. Perhaps "Karen!" or "Honey!" followed by nervous laughter. Not... outrage.

No teenage male is going to be "morally offended" by his girlfriend doing what Karen did -- unless he is asexual or gay.

Your gender-equality indignance is misdirected, trust me on this.

Ollie, have any of those guys expressed clear interest in women? Have any of them even had girlfriends, or are they still stuck in nerdy celibacy (and I use this term as "lack of ALL sexual contact including KISSING) which, because they can't escape from it, they must embrace as part of their identity as a way of gaining control over it?

Tarlia wrote:If the roles were reversed, and she was "scandalized" by HIM coming into her shower, would you assume she was gay or had the sex drive of a brick, too?

What is it with this assumption that all straight teenage males MUST want to have sex?

No, I wouldn't. I would assume she was female.
Sorry, folks, I know this isn't a popular thing to say, but -- SURPRISE! -- men and women have different ideas about sex and approach it differently.

Also, the assumption is not that they -- imperative -- "MUST" want to have sex, but that they DO want to engage in SOME kind of sexual activity.

Marshall, had he been a straight, NORMAL teenage male, could have seized upon this event to show Karen what he WAS comfortable with in terms of sexual activity, be it "heavy petting" or any number of other things that could have been quite satisfying for her. We didn't have to see it in-frame, either -- obviously.

Fen wrote:Ever since she lost weight she's lost every moral value she had.

Has she? Has she decided that it's acceptable to kill people? Has she decided it's now acceptable to cheat on tests or steal? No. She was trapped in a mental and emotional box which you AND I understand quite well and is currently dealing with the consequencs of being freed from that box.

Regarding locker rooms: meh. I strip at my locker, walk to the shower, wash, walk to the dryer, dry, walk back to my locker, get dressed. Most of the other guys do too. It's nothing any of us haven't seen before. I even know a couple of gay guys who go to the same gym and it's never really bothered me that they might "look."

My point in all of this is that Marshall Has Issues, and his behavior towards Karen is bearing that out.
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Postby Trollroot on Wed Sep 13, 2006 11:47 pm

From the emphasis of his works, stressing "What" and "doing", he is not pleased.

There may be a spanking in Karens near future.

Given the acoustics in a gym shower, everyone still changing will hear that though, even if she does manage to bite her lip :-?

I think it is fair to assume that most young males will react sexually in that situation. At that age, their drives peak, they have little experience in restraining those drives, and society offer massive approval for giving in.

That is a lot of emotional vectors pointing in the same direction.

Their peers will be lying about their own sexual experiences, and telling them it is the greatest thing on earth as well. And "virgin" is not a term of approval when applied to a young man by his peers.

That said, Marshall is obviously not the average young man.
Perhaps he was prosecuted as a five-year old for kissing a girl in the sandbox? Or maybe he is from a home broken up by infidelity?
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Postby iRobot on Thu Sep 14, 2006 12:39 am

StarKruzr wrote:No teenage male is going to be "morally offended" by his girlfriend doing what Karen did -- unless he is asexual or gay.


BS!

When I was a teenager (being both male and heterosexual), I was quite idealistic when it came to romance and sex and I turned down a lot of sex before turning 20. How is idealism "asexual" or "gay?" It's not.

If a girl that I was dating could not respect the decision that I was not ready for sex (after having explained that to her), I would have been quite miffed, myself. And probably break up with her. Sex is matter of consent on all parties concerned--not just the one who's really horny....

It's not right for a guy to pressure a girl into sex, what makes you think it's okay for a girl to pressure a guy into sex? Double standard much?
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Postby oddtail on Thu Sep 14, 2006 1:16 am

iRobot wrote:
StarKruzr wrote:No teenage male is going to be "morally offended" by his girlfriend doing what Karen did -- unless he is asexual or gay.


BS!

When I was a teenager (being both male and heterosexual), I was quite idealistic when it came to romance and sex and I turned down a lot of sex before turning 20. How is idealism "asexual" or "gay?" It's not.

If a girl that I was dating could not respect the decision that I was not ready for sex (after having explained that to her), I would have been quite miffed, myself. And probably break up with her. Sex is matter of consent on all parties concerned--not just the one who's really horny....

It's not right for a guy to pressure a girl into sex, what makes you think it's okay for a girl to pressure a guy into sex? Double standard much?


I couldn't agree more. I didn't do much dating in HS, and perhaps I am being a hypocrite here (I think I'm not, however), but I don't think I would happily accept an opportunity to have sex if I were in that situation.

I'm *clearly* not asexual and I'm quite certainly not gay (to be fair, I guess that perhaps I'm bisexual, but still most of my sexual interest is in women - that's for sure; but, I'm straying from the topic).

I just believe that sex should "mean" something. It's not a good idea to do it until one is ready for that. Some people want to wait until marriage, or until they are sure they love someone, or at least until they are comfortable enough with the other person.

And I *know* I'm not the only guy like that. I can think of quite a few people with a similar approach. They have all kinds of reasons for it, too (bottom line: not only religious reasons - these are in fact quite rare among my friends - are involved here).

Some guys just don't want to play the mating game, they want to make love. As corny as it sounds.
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Postby Deref on Thu Sep 14, 2006 1:19 am

You guys are too analytical. I just want to see what happens! :P
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Postby Trollroot on Thu Sep 14, 2006 2:36 am

A cliffhanger tomorrow, I expect.
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Postby Mirablu on Thu Sep 14, 2006 3:27 am

*blink* What's so hard to believe about him being upset? He's made it clear that he doesn't want to have sex. Karen's propositioning him in the shower is hardly respecting his wishes.
Even if it were something else-- "please leave my computer alone", "please don't feed my cat any of your fish sandwich", "please don't throw this away"... anything at all-- he probably would have still been upset. (At varying levels, but still.)
Even if "you just wanted to check one site", "he looked so hungry and was so happy to have a bite", or "it smelled weird". While it may not be something that you care much about, it could be very important to the other person.
Maybe that means Marshall needs to find a point of compromise, too-- but that doesn't dismiss Karen's conduct.

Anyway-- I like the poses in the fourth panel. They're so simple, but there's just something about them.
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Postby Yuko no Slayer-Dryad on Thu Sep 14, 2006 3:59 am

Take a good look at "Karen" in the last panel. Doesn't she appear a little....Less there to any of you? It may be because it isn't Karen, but another character who we were told would come closer to the foreground in the Character Names arc with black hair the same length as Karen's, who got to Marshall first.

For that matter we know next to nothing about Marshall's background beyond his relationships with Aggie and Karen. This may be a bigger plot twist than any of us ever expected.
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Postby Sebastian on Thu Sep 14, 2006 5:05 am

StarKruzr wrote:
Fen wrote:Ever since she lost weight she's lost every moral value she had.

Has she? Has she decided that it's acceptable to kill people? Has she decided it's now acceptable to cheat on tests or steal? No. She was trapped in a mental and emotional box which you AND I understand quite well and is currently dealing with the consequencs of being freed from that box.

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Postby Sebastian on Thu Sep 14, 2006 5:07 am

TheTeague wrote:Still, what he's doing is like saying "Of course I value your opinions, but just shut up for now, ok babe."


"I'm a convinced vegetarian but I kill and eat this rabbit raw because I value your opinion." :roll:
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Postby stregascozzese on Thu Sep 14, 2006 5:53 am

Take a good look at "Karen" in the last panel. Doesn't she appear a little....Less there to any of you? It may be because it isn't Karen, but another character who we were told would come closer to the foreground in the Character Names arc with black hair the same length as Karen's, who got to Marshall first.


Thing is, that looks like Karen's outfit that's folded up on the ledge next to the shower. I suspect Karen and Cyndi wouldn't have the same outfit. Mind you, they might - and if Cyndi found out it would double her humiliation if/when Marshall rejects her!
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Postby SAGG on Thu Sep 14, 2006 6:33 am

Deref wrote:You guys are too analytical. I just want to see what happens! :P


Is this Deref?! THE Deref from PPMB? :D
Thanks.
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Postby StarKruzr on Thu Sep 14, 2006 8:35 am

Sebastian wrote:
StarKruzr wrote:
Fen wrote:Ever since she lost weight she's lost every moral value she had.

Has she? Has she decided that it's acceptable to kill people? Has she decided it's now acceptable to cheat on tests or steal? No. She was trapped in a mental and emotional box which you AND I understand quite well and is currently dealing with the consequencs of being freed from that box.

"I'm pretty now. Pretty people get to do what they want"


That I will give you. I stand corrected on that mark.
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Postby atristain on Thu Sep 14, 2006 9:32 am

Everyone here has very valid points, and very interesting ways to approach the same situation. I like this opportunity T and Gis to show us character development on some "sideshow" characters in the strip. Despite your beliefs, we're going to learn a lot from this characters in the way they're going to react on this situation.

I don't mind a person (boy or girl) enjoying their sexuality in any way they desire, but aside from Karen doing it for the wrong reasons, (because she can) she's doing it at the wrong place at the wrong time. (Marsh's workplace with a lot of MALE people around, and after her BF stated verbally he was NOT ready) Your sexual life is of no concern to others, but this will end in a show for other people even if Marsh rejects her. She's putting Marsh in a place he doesn't want to be. He's not the kind of guy to say "Hey, let's do it, even if we have eyewitnesses, I don't care".

If they were alone and in other place, and he had felt different this would be completely different. You need two persons to agree to have a relationship. What we've seen is Marshall is not OK with everything he sees in Karen, but he keeps a lot to himself, thus letting Karen bullies him. If she crosses the line after the one thing he stated a position, this will cause all kind of trouble between them.

I think this is a lose-lose situation for Marsh. If he goes with it, he's going to be in BS with his boss, and all the guys will give the word around. I he rejects her, all the guys will acuse him of being guy and other stuff. No matter the way he works this, he's going to be in trouble thanks to Karen.

And about Karen and morals, who said she had them? She was just a girl who was presented with the opportunity to change her life around 180
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Postby isobel on Thu Sep 14, 2006 10:06 am

Sebastian wrote:
TheTeague wrote:Still, what he's doing is like saying "Of course I value your opinions, but just shut up for now, ok babe."


"I'm a convinced vegetarian but I kill and eat this rabbit raw because I value your opinion." :roll:

Eeeexactly. Marshall has made clear why he is not sleeping with her. He has said, point blank, that he does not feel mature enough for sex. Now, I understand Karen feels hurt, and I do think Marshall needs to listen to her (which I think he does), but in this situation, it's down to Marshall. If he is not ready to have sex, he is not ready to have sex. This isn't a little matter like compromising on what movie to watch or having dinner with her parents when there's a good game on TV, this is big. If she can't leave the boy alone, well, that says some stuff about Karen that should send up warning flags.
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Postby TheTeague on Thu Sep 14, 2006 10:07 am

Sebastian wrote:
TheTeague wrote:Still, what he's doing is like saying "Of course I value your opinions, but just shut up for now, ok babe."


"I'm a convinced vegetarian but I kill and eat this rabbit raw because I value your opinion." :roll:


He doesn't have to eat the meat, just a little forking will do. :)

Karen is insecure, selfish, and overbearing. She doesn't respect Marshal's feelings about sex. She bases her entire self worth on her new appearance and wants it validated with a little groping.

Marshal is a tease. He talks about being in love with her, but only treats her as "just friends" and ignores her needs. He's using his power in the relationship to force his principals on her.

Maybe if there was a comprimise like he could "just stick to vegitables" while she was allowed to "eat some meat" with other guys on the side while the two are dating, but that wouldn't give her what she needs (to feel like a desirable woman to Marshal). Everyone needs to feel wanted.
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Postby Sebastian on Thu Sep 14, 2006 10:16 am

TheTeague wrote:
Sebastian wrote:
TheTeague wrote:Still, what he's doing is like saying "Of course I value your opinions, but just shut up for now, ok babe."


"I'm a convinced vegetarian but I kill and eat this rabbit raw because I value your opinion." :roll:


He doesn't have to eat the meat, just a little forking wil do.

Karen is insecure, selfish, and overbearing. She doesn't respect Marshal's feelings about sex.

Marshal is a tease. He talks about being in love with her, but only treats her as "just friends" and ignores her needs. He's using his power in the relationship to force his principals on her.

Maybe if there was a comprimise like he could "just stick to vegitables" while she was allowed to "eat some meat" on the side while they're dating, but that wouldn't give her what she needs (to feel desirable). Everyone needs to feel wanted.


Evidently Marshall definition of vegetarian is not as much as flexible as yours. Ok, maybe he and Karen could find a middle ground, but I'm sure the best way to try convince him to do that is not bringing him to dinner in a meat-only restaurant without asking him before like Karen is doing.
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Postby TheTeague on Thu Sep 14, 2006 10:31 am

All I'm saying is that they're both pulling the same dirty trick on each other, just in different contexts.
They may be wrong for each other, but they certainly deserve each other.

And I predict that next after entering the shower, Karen finds out that Marshal wears a medival chastity belt. So instead of commenting on it or realizing he means business (or rather "no business whatsoever") she gets her cell phone and calls a locksmith to come to the men's locker room. Benny Hill style hilarity ensues.
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