I TOLD you Karen + Urology = Perfect Together

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

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I TOLD you Karen + Urology = Perfect Together

Postby Papuasblya on Sun Oct 22, 2006 11:15 pm

I take back everything I said about her. This girl is AWESOME. You go girl, show us how to breathe through your ears...
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Postby ria on Sun Oct 22, 2006 11:21 pm

OK, let's make the conversation easier here, instead of splitting it between threads :)

isobel wrote:AGH, WTF KAREN?!

Okay, can anyone defend this? She might have admitted she was insecure, but she just sexually assaulted him. She had an expression on her face in the last panel that was far from loving, concerned, or even mischievous. This was straight wrong, and I think she knows it but doesn't care. That was the last time I will cut her slack, because this is too fucking much for me. Anyone else wants to excuse her or make bitchy little assumptions about me, cool, but I am officially off Karen as a human being who deserves my sympathy and hope.


ria wrote:See, in a relationship where sex is already a regular thing, this could be iffy (could be fine). Right now, when he has expressed strong reservations to any sexual activity (that's putting it lightly) -- augh. I don't know.

I think Karen is sort of trying to put herself in the first situation, and ignore all the mitigating factors that make this a Bad Idea.

Depends on how Marshall reacts once he gets past the initial "whoa" stage he's in right now. His brain will take hold at some point. But, uh, I would be taking back that "I won't leave you" now. If it were me.
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Postby Raitoo on Sun Oct 22, 2006 11:27 pm

Sexual assault is sexual assault. He already said he didn't want it. Just because he's a guy and she's needy--that doesn't make it acceptable at all.
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Postby Papuasblya on Sun Oct 22, 2006 11:35 pm

Raitoo wrote:Sexual assault is sexual assault. He already said he didn't want it. Just because he's a guy and she's needy--that doesn't make it acceptable at all.


He said he didn't want sex. What she appears to be proposing is not sex. Bill Clinton said so.
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Postby Ostracee on Mon Oct 23, 2006 12:11 am

"Proposing"?

Your definition of "proposing" seems to be sneaking up from behind, pushing a ring onto her finger, and saying "you will marry me."
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Postby Sebastian on Mon Oct 23, 2006 12:34 am

I dunno , personally I think this is a point for her, in a way.

Or at least she have a point.

I mean, we knows what he want, but what about what she want? Now at least they are trying to see if they can find a compromise.

Yeah, she is a little extreme, but i think this strip goes in Karen "plus" column.
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Postby Trollroot on Mon Oct 23, 2006 1:33 am

Run Karen, run like the wind.















That guy is seriously disquieting, and your all alone in a deserted building with him. Get out now.
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Postby Freemage on Mon Oct 23, 2006 1:35 am

Re-posting here:

Honestly? Karen does seem to be giving him a hand-job, and in truth, the way she did it was a bit much, given the circumstances. However, I'm looking at ALL the panels, here.

Panel three is obviously occurring fast enough to be a surprise, but not necessarily fast enough to make the towel misbehave. Odds are, she is at that point giving him a fairly healthy grope, but pausing there.

Panel 4 is the key, though. She's looking up at his face, not his cock. She's smiling. Why? Because he's giving her some sort of visual confirmation that this is actually acceptable. I'm suspecting that Marshall (whose own relationship experience is likely limited to Karen and "You-Know-Who") hadn't even seriously considered the possibility of intermediate stages.

The last panel is a look of mischievous triumph, and nothing more. Karen's happy because she 'got what she wanted'--but a big part of that was figuring out, herself, what it was that she wanted. She wants to know that she is an object of Marshal's desire. He's just confirmed this for her, quite directly.

And to be brutally honest, once 'when' is reached, I think Marshall might be a bit more clear-headed and able to explain things more coherently. As excited as he was, unfortunately, non-sexual conversation becomes... difficult.
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Postby El Durazno Muerte on Mon Oct 23, 2006 1:36 am

Call me provincial, but I'd be more inclined to see this strip as a plus for Karen if she didn't make a grab for his genitals ten seconds into their heart-to-heart.

I wouldn't be surprised if he *did* leave now, not that it's necessarily the best thing to do. In fact, it would almost make me like him more, since it would be a definite break in his Mr. Perfect facade (not that we haven't seen a few of those already.)

A common theme of the Karen/Marshall threads has been Marshall's need to communicate with her and explain his reservations... but as much as they need it, it really doesn't look like Karen's that interested in communicating, either.
He says he doesn't want sex and explains himself (however "weird" his explanation might be) and she jumps him in the shower. After he's firmly rejected her advances without abandoning her, she snatches his manhood. By this point, saying anything more must seem pretty futile.
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Postby Sebastian on Mon Oct 23, 2006 3:56 am

El Durazno Muerte wrote:Call me provincial, but I'd be more inclined to see this strip as a plus for Karen if she didn't make a grab for his genitals ten seconds into their heart-to-heart.

I wouldn't be surprised if he *did* leave now, not that it's necessarily the best thing to do. In fact, it would almost make me like him more, since it would be a definite break in his Mr. Perfect facade (not that we haven't seen a few of those already.)

The way I see it even if he leave, it is still a good thing for Karen, that is the moment of the truth , where we find if they can find a compromise or not, and if they won't maybe it is better for everyone if they break up, even if just for a while.
A common theme of the Karen/Marshall threads has been Marshall's need to communicate with her and explain his reservations... but as much as they need it, it really doesn't look like Karen's that interested in communicating, either.
He says he doesn't want sex and explains himself (however "weird" his explanation might be) and she jumps him in the shower. After he's firmly rejected her advances without abandoning her, she snatches his manhood. By this point, saying anything more must seem pretty futile.

I see what is doing as a form of comunication, even if maybe a little too direct, She is saying "ok, you don't want to have sex, but what about *this*"
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Postby Nekodromeda on Mon Oct 23, 2006 4:55 am

GAH! My sympathy for Karen has been getting lower and lower until this strip, which brings it to about nil. Marshall's made his point VERY clear, and she's done nothing but ignore it or straight-out act against it. She's had no respect for his wishes, insecurity or no. Their conversation should not have had to happen naked on a shower floor after she attempted to have sex with him in a (relatively) public place.

The last few panels? I don't see any sort of redeeming qualities in it. She's grabbed his penis, even in the midst of a conversation about WHY HE DOESN'T WANT TO HAVE SEX, and then tries to pull a cutesy face to make it "all better", but then turns around and has the very grin of the devil on.

She says she doesn't understand. Maybe, if she stopped obsessing about her own wants and TRIED to understand, she would.
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Postby Rebochan on Mon Oct 23, 2006 5:38 am

For people who do not see why this is a problem...

Imagine Marshall had just tried to force himself on Karen in the shower. After she finally managed to get him away from her, he talks her close to him again and then immediately runs his hand up her towel and grabs her vagina.

Why is this borderline rape if Marshall does it and not Karen?
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Postby SirBob on Mon Oct 23, 2006 6:11 am

Freemage wrote:And to be brutally honest, once 'when' is reached, I think Marshall might be a bit more clear-headed and able to explain things more coherently. As excited as he was, unfortunately, non-sexual conversation becomes... difficult.

Or he'll be even more pissed off. Just 'cause he looks like he's enjoying it doesn't mean he's consenting. The male sexual response is largely autonomous, and on a hair-trigger to boot; you can bring a guy to arousal and climax even if he's actively resisting you. That's actually one of the biggest reasons most guys don't report sexual assault - they tell themselves that they must "really" have wanted it after all, because the alternative is to admit that their body went and enjoyed itself without their permission, and that just creeps 'em out.
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Postby Tsarevna_Erin on Mon Oct 23, 2006 6:25 am

SirBob wrote:
Freemage wrote:And to be brutally honest, once 'when' is reached, I think Marshall might be a bit more clear-headed and able to explain things more coherently. As excited as he was, unfortunately, non-sexual conversation becomes... difficult.

Or he'll be even more pissed off. Just 'cause he looks like he's enjoying it doesn't mean he's consenting. The male sexual response is largely autonomous, and on a hair-trigger to boot; you can bring a guy to arousal and climax even if he's actively resisting you. That's actually one of the biggest reasons most guys don't report sexual assault - they tell themselves that they must "really" have wanted it after all, because the alternative is to admit that their body went and enjoyed itself without their permission, and that just creeps 'em out.


I'm sorry, but where is the "actively resisting" going on?

I ask, because I am a rape victim, and the way "rape" has been flung around in threads dealing with this arc has angered me so much that I decided to register for this board. Karen is being thoughtless, maybe, and selfish, perhaps, but she's not "raping" Marshall. She's on her knees, not against a steady surface, and can be dislodged by a swift push. Marshall has already stormed out of one confined space - the shower. If he wanted the proceedings to end, they could end. He's not under "Imperio" nor is he tied down, nor is there a knife to his throat (a nasty bit of business, that).

He has said no sex. She has asked if she could touch him. Apparently, the answer is yes. He might be passively resisting, because he's already said no. But actively? Actively would be what he did in the shower - i.e., keeping her hands off him.


Karen needs to grow up. She is simplistic in her thought processes. She is used to being thought of as the ugly girl, and she believes that beautiful people get what they want. I wonder what she'd say if she could see what's going on with the beautiful Penny and Michelle in their respective hunts for sex. Karen's thinking is that if she's such a hot chick, why isn't she getting laid. Marshall has explained, but she doesn't understand. I honestly believe this. I don't think Karen can understand why a hot guy with a hot girlfriend wouldn't want sex. She needs to expand her horizons a little. I think she has the POTENTIAL to be very good for Marshall (Aggie is a boring trull in my opinion, and Charlotte? Uh. No.), but she's getting in her own way by refusing to stop and think. Maybe Marshall SHOULD leave. Karen needs a rude awakening (much as I love her), and losing a good man might provide that kick in the rump. I'm not at all in love with her smile in the end panel. I really think this may end badly, and that saddens me.

That aside, I find it interesting that we get more insight into the possible identity of "You Know Who." Karen mentions that she doesn't consider Marshall her "man-ho." That makes me think Marshall was involved in some Mrs. Robinson action, maybe. Could it be that woman whose house he brought Penny to when she fainted on the running trail?
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Postby SirBob on Mon Oct 23, 2006 6:37 am

Tsarevna_Erin wrote:I'm sorry, but where is the "actively resisting" going on?

He's had about four seconds to respond to this turn of events - and having one's naughty bits seized without warning would give anyone pause. Give him a moment. :p

(Besides, he's already shoved her away from him a couple of times. Exactly how many times does he have to physically dissuade her before her refusal to acknowledge it "counts"?)
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Postby JK9000 on Mon Oct 23, 2006 6:54 am

Gah. I don't like this at all. I'd like it alot better if Karen, you know, asked before she went ahead grabbed him, but as it stands she's sill forcing unwanted sexual advances on him. Which is a bad thing. Always.

The only way this could be bareable is if there is indeed some sort of unseen consent Marshall's giving in panel 3, which I admit seems very possible. It still wouldn't be very good, in my mind, because you really should ask before, not during.

As for me, the last two panels just convince me the whole sobbing-on-the-floor-poor-me thing was nothing but a show. Otherwise, she seems to have recovered remarkably fast.

Man, and people were all bustin' Marshall's chops for keeping his distance on Friday. See? this is why he didn't give Karen a hug. 'Cuz she doesn't want hugs, or to feel reassured, or anything but some variety of sex.
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Postby Tsarevna_Erin on Mon Oct 23, 2006 7:15 am

SirBob wrote:
Tsarevna_Erin wrote:I'm sorry, but where is the "actively resisting" going on?

He's had about four seconds to respond to this turn of events - and having one's naughty bits seized without warning would give anyone pause. Give him a moment. :p


On this, we agree. She didn't give him a chance to get a word in edgewise before she went for the gold. But once there, he had plenty of opportunity to say "when" or simply shove her and hightail it out of there.

(Besides, he's already shoved her away from him a couple of times. Exactly how many times does he have to physically dissuade her before her refusal to acknowledge it "counts"?)


Please tell me you're joking about this. If you're being assaulted, you kick, punch, scream, do what it takes to get away. Period. If you are unable to, either because your life is being threatened with a weapon to your throat and/or you are being held down by someone who is twice your weight, that's one thing. Karen is not forcing him. In the shower, Marshall had no problem being proactive in keeping her away. If you want to make the argument that she's worn down his defences, fine. But it's still not rape, and if he has a way out of there, just as he had a way out in the shower, and is allowing her to touch him, then I can't necessarily blame Karen for assuming that he's implicitly giving her permission to continue. I do know that some rape victims go into catatonic states to avoid dealing with the trauma of their assualts, so they "lay" there and it seems as if they are aquiesing to the assualt. I just don't see that going on here.

That doesn't make what Karen is doing a good thing. But to equate this with rape angers me a great deal.
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Postby sordideuphemism on Mon Oct 23, 2006 7:48 am

He said no. She grabbed his genitals in an attempt to commit a sexual act - whether a hand job or a blow job is immaterial.

Let me focus on the first and most important part: He said no. Any sexual activity she attempts past that point is rape. We haven't seen his reaction yet, though, so let's call it 'attempted rape' - and definitely 'sexual battery'.

Rape is not accomplished simply through physical force. Coercion is rape too. So is taking advantage of someone with a mental or psychological defect which renders them unable to say no. So is taking advantage of a minor. From what we've seen so far, Marshall may well be in amongst the psychological department.
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Postby oenone on Mon Oct 23, 2006 7:55 am

Tsarevna_Erin wrote:He has said no sex. She has asked if she could touch him. Apparently, the answer is yes. He might be passively resisting, because he's already said no. But actively? Actively would be what he did in the shower - i.e., keeping her hands off him.


also? what they're doing is called negotiating boundaries. karen's being pushy, but she's not hurting him or threatening him or getting insulting.
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Postby RisingPhoenix on Mon Oct 23, 2006 8:06 am

I don't know if anyone on this thread has noticed this, but Marshall is built. The chances of Karen forcing him to do anything against his will without serious drugs involved are nil.
Rape is not accomplished simply through physical force. Coercion is rape too. So is taking advantage of someone with a mental or psychological defect which renders them unable to say no. So is taking advantage of a minor. From what we've seen so far, Marshall may well be in amongst the psychological department.
You see, this is semantic sliding. We go from duress to coercion to taking advantage.

Taking advantage of the fact that Marshall is horny to have sex with him doesn't make it rape.
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Postby JK9000 on Mon Oct 23, 2006 9:01 am

RisingPhoenix wrote:I don't know if anyone on this thread has noticed this, but Marshall is built. The chances of Karen forcing him to do anything against his will without serious drugs involved are nil.
Rape is not accomplished simply through physical force. Coercion is rape too. So is taking advantage of someone with a mental or psychological defect which renders them unable to say no. So is taking advantage of a minor. From what we've seen so far, Marshall may well be in amongst the psychological department.
You see, this is semantic sliding. We go from duress to coercion to taking advantage.

Taking advantage of the fact that Marshall is horny to have sex with him doesn't make it rape.


I wouldn't call it rape, no, but I also wouldn't call it okay. It's wrong, and Karen's wrong to do it.
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Postby Tsarevna_Erin on Mon Oct 23, 2006 9:39 am

sordideuphemism wrote:Let me focus on the first and most important part: He said no. Any sexual activity she attempts past that point is rape. We haven't seen his reaction yet, though, so let's call it 'attempted rape' - and definitely 'sexual battery'.


I still think that's sort of sketch, but sexual battery? Well ... no. I still disagree, but I don't think it's as patently ridiculous as calling it rape.

Rape is not accomplished simply through physical force. Coercion is rape too. So is taking advantage of someone with a mental or psychological defect which renders them unable to say no. So is taking advantage of a minor. From what we've seen so far, Marshall may well be in amongst the psychological department.


Except, we have no evidence of that. Marshall is not two years old, nor is he physically handicapped, nor does he seem to be mentally deficient. Charisma may have questionable judgment, but I doubt she'd hire a person with diminished mental capacity to train people working with heavy and potentially dangerous equipment.

He obviously has intimacy issues, but that doesn't equal psychological impairment to the point where he can't be held responsible for his actions or non-actions. He was fine with telling her where to go when they were in the shower. Now, his actions may seem ambiguous, at best, to Karen. Should she have left well enough alone? Yes. Definitely. I really do hate this arc, because Karen is acting like such a hound throughout it and I LIKE her. But this circles back to my point about Karen being almost embarrassingly simplistic. To her, a hard-on indicates just what it seems to indicate - sexual arousal. To her, a guy standing there and allowing her to stroke said hard-on without pushing her away indicates just what it seems to indicate - that he's really digging it. Her expression in the next-to-last panel is the key to this entire strip, I think.

I don't think she'd have that radiant smile if Marshall were grimacing in pain or looking angry. AGAIN, this does not necessarily mean that he is digging it, just that I could see how Karen, who has little experience in this sort of thing, might take his silence and inaction as a rebuttal of everything he said in the shower.

I really think this may be the beginning of the end for these two, and that saddens me, but I'll deal if it means that Karen grows the fook up, finally. Though I will stop reading if Aggie winds up with him. :/
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Postby CEOIII on Mon Oct 23, 2006 9:43 am

Alright, we've learned a few things over the past few strips.

1. He's been burned. Maybe by a black woman; "Man-Ho" isn't a term I hear white women use.

2. HE DIDN'T JUST LEAVE HER THERE! Good to see he's willing to keep the communication lines open.

3. She acknowledges she's "insecure". And she says what a LOT of poeple on this forum have said; Marshall's "we're just kids" line was, to say the least, out there.

4. This isn't all about her. She's not saying "I want you to make me scream your name" she's saying "I want to make you feel good." And no, having a girlfriend that wants you, and wants you to want her, usually isn't that complicated.

The last few panels: Speaking as an "owner/operator", no guy reacts like that if a girl puts her hands on his naked thigh. Trust me, she has "taken hold."

The next panel is very telling (and INCREDIBLY well drawn, you girls are good). That's not a look of mischief, or lust, that is hope. That look says the one thing Karen's wanted to say for quite some time. "HE IS ATTRACTED TO ME! I'M DESIREABLE! I'M PRETTY! WOOT!"

Is this objectionable? After his "hands off" in the shower? I think, at this point, anything short of Marshall picking up a blunt object and cracking Karen in the skull is an appropriate response.

He could immediately say "WHEN!", grab his clothes, storm out of the shower and out of her life, and it'd be Karen's fault for being too forward. (She is "just touching", which in and of itself isn't crossing too many lines, but with Marshall's unknown past trauma, it could be the proverbial spine-snapping straw.)

He could say "Um.........m-maybe just touching........f-f-for now. Just for.......now" and close his eyes while she works him like she's trying to get a truck with a stick-shift out of a mudhole. (BTW, this is a very weird relationship if they haven't hit the "touching" stage yet. But again, Marshall's past.)

He could lift her off the ground, carry her back into the shower, and the next few word balloons could be Karen singing, "SWEET MYSTERY OF LIFE, AT LAST I'VE FOUND THEE!"(Least likely of the group, but it's an option.)

Once again, with his balls in Karen's hands, the ball is in Marshall's court. He can waive her home.........or he can cut her from the team.

Wednesday's strip should be very telling, assuming we stick with this storyline. *SUBTLE HINT*
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Postby Freemage on Mon Oct 23, 2006 9:48 am

JK9000 wrote:Gah. I don't like this at all. I'd like it alot better if Karen, you know, asked before she went ahead grabbed him, but as it stands she's sill forcing unwanted sexual advances on him. Which is a bad thing. Always.


Sadly, despite what is routinely said in college date-rape lectures, "No," doesn't always mean no.

The only way this could be bareable is if there is indeed some sort of unseen consent Marshall's giving in panel 3, which I admit seems very possible. It still wouldn't be very good, in my mind, because you really should ask before, not during.


Oh, I'm not saying that Karen's done a GOOD thing, here. I'm saying that calling it 'rape' or even anything similar is absurd and diminishes the concept.

As for me, the last two panels just convince me the whole sobbing-on-the-floor-poor-me thing was nothing but a show. Otherwise, she seems to have recovered remarkably fast.


Actually, considering the massive hormone-dump involved here, the rapid-fire emotions are pretty much par for the course. I can't help but notice a certain degree of similiarity between Panel 4 and this strip.

Man, and people were all bustin' Marshall's chops for keeping his distance on Friday. See? this is why he didn't give Karen a hug. 'Cuz she doesn't want hugs, or to feel reassured, or anything but some variety of sex.


"Variety of sex" is a key phrase, here. As I said above, I honestly think that Marshall may never have grokked the notion that there ARE varieties of sex (and Karen, I think, hadn't really, either; the prior conversations were very clearly about putting the hammer in the toolbox). They got to what may be a good place by a very bad road.
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Postby willow_41z on Mon Oct 23, 2006 10:22 am

It's interesting that she's gone from trying to satisfy her own insecurities by seducing him to trying to gratify him, though. I wonder if she realizes the change?
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