What is with the unrealistic male characters?

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

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Postby daanton on Sun Oct 08, 2006 9:46 am

This may have been touched upon already, but: perhaps Marshall just doesn't see Karen as a sexy thing or as a sex object. Thus his reaction to her.

:cry: And please be gentle with me--I'm still trying to regain the full shape of my head after having had it bitten off too many times by unfeeling forum users from here and from other forums in cyberspace....
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Postby ria on Sun Oct 08, 2006 10:41 am

heh.

I see it as one of many possibilities.

I just don't like the insistence that it (or "he's gay!" or "that's not a realistic reaction for a guy at all!") is the ONLY option. You aren't insisting that, so -- no worries :)
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Postby StarKruzr on Sun Oct 08, 2006 10:46 am

daanton wrote:This may have been touched upon already, but: perhaps Marshall just doesn't see Karen as a sexy thing or as a sex object. Thus his reaction to her.

:cry: And please be gentle with me--I'm still trying to regain the full shape of my head after having had it bitten off too many times by unfeeling forum users from here and from other forums in cyberspace....


If that's the case, why is he with her? Why aren't they just friends?
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Postby Tarlia on Sun Oct 08, 2006 11:49 am

I'm pretty convinced there's a reason Karen keeps staring at Marshall's lower regions, which seems to add to her confusion. His body is willing so why doesn't he want to?
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Postby RisingPhoenix on Sun Oct 08, 2006 4:47 pm

Ostracee wrote:
Well, if you didn't want it, you wouldn't be having it without some form of duress...so it is just sex you don't want.
Duress is usually interpreted as slightly more severe than 'reason to do something you don't want.' I mean you could say torture makes you uncomfortable, but uncomfortable fails to capture the full meaning of torture the same way 'something you don't want' fails to capture the full meaning of duress.

RisingPhoenix wrote:So, every single relationship you were in, you started having sex right from the start? In high school, did you end up in bed with all of your girlfriends? Even in college? A romantic relationship doesn't become sexual until it does. While six months is a bit long, it's not unheard of. Just because they're dating doesn't mean he's interested in sex with her, yet.
I have dated people without having sex with them. I can categorically state, without doubt, I have never had a relationship with someone I am uninterested in sex with. If someone has had a relationship with someone they are uninterested in sex with, they were fundimentally lying - either to themself, or to the other person (neither of which is a good thing).

If he's interested, and wants to wait for some reason he should articulate the reason. Look what she did when he did articulate the reason - she listened, and waited. He said she wasn't old enough. Did she pressure him? NO! She waited, because she understood his reason.

Now she's old enough, and it turns out he lied to her. She's not the one at fault. He is, for lying.
As someone who's had "sex she didn't want" I can tell you that while it's not the textbook definition of rape it can have very damaging effects on you, your self image, yadayadayada.

Or are you gonna claim I don't have intimacy issues now and those weren't caused by my exes forcing things on me I didn't really want?

P'shaw.
I'm going to be honest here. If you were unable to articulate to your exes why you didn't want these things, and remained with someone who wasn't respecting your wishes in these matters, there were already problems before they did what they did. I doubt dating assholes helped anything, but fundimentally, if you were willing to remain with them, and do things you didn't want to do to remain with them, there were significant issues before then.

Now if they physically forced something on you you didn't want, or applied external pressure (threats towards a job, home, place to live, etc.) that's rape, and they deserve to go to jail.
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Postby iRobot on Sun Oct 08, 2006 5:50 pm

RisingPhoenix wrote:I have dated people without having sex with them. I can categorically state, without doubt, I have never had a relationship with someone I am uninterested in sex with. If someone has had a relationship with someone they are uninterested in sex with, they were fundimentally lying - either to themself, or to the other person (neither of which is a good thing).


This is me agreeing.

If he's interested, and wants to wait for some reason he should articulate the reason. Look what she did when he did articulate the reason - she listened, and waited. He said she wasn't old enough. Did she pressure him? NO! She waited, because she understood his reason.


Whoah. Backup. He said that they (both) were kids.

Now she's old enough,


She's still the same age (maybe a few months older) than she was when he said, "we're just kids." So why is she now old enough?

Even if she is (inexplicabely), she's only half of the "we" equation. Is Marshall, by his own standards, old enough?

and it turns out he lied to her.


No, he didn't. You're relying on misinterpretation (whether intentional or unintententional) to draw that conclusion.
Last edited by iRobot on Mon Oct 09, 2006 6:47 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Freemage on Sun Oct 08, 2006 6:39 pm

Tarlia wrote:I'm pretty convinced there's a reason Karen keeps staring at Marshall's lower regions, which seems to add to her confusion. His body is willing so why doesn't he want to?


I addressed this, although it's reasonable for Karen to not understand it, given her lack of actual experience:

In essence, the significant bit of the male anatomy is virtually independent from the brain. Thinking in any way, shape or form about sex (including how much really don't want to be having sex right now) can induce a full-blown erection. Likewise, any strong emotion can induce (embarassment, anger, etc) can induce a hormone-dump with the same result.

All of which is about ten times more true for an adolescent male.
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Postby Tarlia on Sun Oct 08, 2006 10:14 pm

Freemage wrote:
Tarlia wrote:I'm pretty convinced there's a reason Karen keeps staring at Marshall's lower regions, which seems to add to her confusion. His body is willing so why doesn't he want to?


I addressed this, although it's reasonable for Karen to not understand it, given her lack of actual experience:

In essence, the significant bit of the male anatomy is virtually independent from the brain. Thinking in any way, shape or form about sex (including how much really don't want to be having sex right now) can induce a full-blown erection. Likewise, any strong emotion can induce (embarassment, anger, etc) can induce a hormone-dump with the same result.

All of which is about ten times more true for an adolescent male.


I know that, but Karen probably doesn't.
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Postby atristain on Mon Oct 09, 2006 2:36 pm

Tarlia wrote:
Freemage wrote:
Tarlia wrote:I'm pretty convinced there's a reason Karen keeps staring at Marshall's lower regions, which seems to add to her confusion. His body is willing so why doesn't he want to?


I addressed this, although it's reasonable for Karen to not understand it, given her lack of actual experience:

In essence, the significant bit of the male anatomy is virtually independent from the brain. Thinking in any way, shape or form about sex (including how much really don't want to be having sex right now) can induce a full-blown erection. Likewise, any strong emotion can induce (embarassment, anger, etc) can induce a hormone-dump with the same result.

All of which is about ten times more true for an adolescent male.


I know that, but Karen probably doesn't.

You forgot another reason to reach a full erection: Need to pee.

Perhaps Karen entered at the worst moment, and Marshall, being the gentleman he is, was surprised by Karen entrance when he was starting to perform that bodily function, and because he didn't want to look at him in said compromising position, he contained himself up to the point where he's "p*ssed for bein unable to take a p*ss"...

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Postby solemnitude on Sun Oct 15, 2006 12:02 pm

I'd just like to make one statement on the general discussion of stereotypes and whatnot.

There seems often to be the impression that there is "the norm" and individuals that stray from it. I don't wish to argue that norms don't exist - of course they do. I personally am not likely to go out tomorrow wearing a purple cape, a pink tutu, and a top hat. (though wouldn't it be cool if i did?)

But while there are certain norms, societal standards, etc., it's a very loose notion. And insulting to hold fictional characters of any variety to something that NOBODY can conform to completely.

Early on there was discussion of stereotypical males. "types", really. Duane and Rich, as examples. For a long time in the occident, personality was considered in this way. As a type. I believe I would be classified under "melancholic", though I don't know enough about the practice. Montaigne, and Shakespeare to follow, showed a different perception of personality. There may be trends, yes, but everyone deviates. Nobody is completely predictable.

Nobody is completely the stereotype.

To me it's clear that Marshall is "atypical", as in deviating more than most from societal trends. I also think that Stan is very typical. And that his behavior with Michelle does not negate this in the least. First of all, so what if he was surprised? Second - EVERYBODY will at some point act differently from what is expected. Deal with it.


and just a note: it's as easy to show an atypical character as it is to show a two-dimensional stereotype in art. It takes more intricacy to show the deviations from the norm in characters that are, for the most part, what would be considered normal. And I'm not talking Hollywood deviations where the macho partier miraculously falls in love. I'm not talking change - I'm talking the everyday quirks of personality.

What I find interesting is how gender is utilized to promote the idea of types and stereotypical behavior. We have such an overly complex and conflicted view of personality, and yet all of that can be pushed aside when the issue is gender. Also, the emphasis on trauma. Certainly environment and experience shapes us, but that doesn't mean every deviation has to be the result of some traumatic experience. There seems to be this tremendous fear, somehow, that maybe our norms aren't so solid after all.
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Postby Tarlia on Mon Oct 16, 2006 7:32 am

solemnitude wrote:*snip*


Welcome.

I like you.
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Postby Saint_37 on Mon Oct 16, 2006 7:49 am

And since you do, that's probably the only post solemnitude will ever make! That's always how it goes.
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Postby atristain on Mon Oct 16, 2006 7:54 am

*Trying to hop in the welcom wagon*
*Tripping at the last minute*
*Breaking several bones in the process*
Welcome.

Ditto on what Tarlia said.

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Postby iRobot on Mon Oct 16, 2006 9:06 am

Hullo! Wlcome aboard. :)
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Postby solemnitude on Mon Oct 16, 2006 1:34 pm

wow, thanks for the lovely welcomes ...

I do intend to keep posting, though work often has me pretty much whipped. (If i were sensible, I'd either be asleep now or writing comments on inter-ethnic relations, but oh well.)

...

No bandaids, darling, sorry, but maybe if we pour some vodka on there, after a while you won't feel a thing. Sorry for tripping you, it's a habit i picked up in the subways of Berlin.
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