Back-up Outlet 01/05/07

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

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Re: And the board says????

Postby iRobot on Fri Jan 05, 2007 9:26 am

Sassy-fras wrote:I had to do some research, but after looking through a psyche book, reading a few philosopher's theories and analyzing my own interpretations of today's comics...my conclusion is simply this....

.... I laughed. It's funny. The end. :D


I'm with Sassy. I read it, I laughed. To paraphrase Freud, sometimes a comic's gag is just a gag.
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Postby Trajedi on Fri Jan 05, 2007 1:46 pm

Look it's just Aggie thinking about something she COULD do to Penny. Doesn't mean she did or will.

Hell, I find it rather funny. I must say in my HS days it would have been one funny thing to do... More likely to a friend.

But I say again it was just Aggie's thought.

But since we are on the topic of over analyzation of Aggie I must say this is a Mature thought of Aggie's. She realizes that her actions toward Penny are nothing more then an Outlet for something.
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Postby JackFairy on Fri Jan 05, 2007 1:53 pm

If the soda prank is a joke, then okay, I can understand random revenge fantasies. But it wouldn't surprise me if it happened for real, because Aggie's pulled stuff like that before. And while this is relatively harmess, I think that her previous pranks were rather less so.

And I still say only "relatively." Is Aggie going about trying to actively destroy Penny's life? No. But she hardly has to be a super-villain for me to be disgusted by her actions or motivations. If this happened, rather than being a fantasy, then the point of it is--Aggie gets off on making Penny feel bad. She likes hurting other people. Ok, so it's "hurting" them in very small ways, but that's still what it is!

Also, imagine the last panel of this comic with a different cast of characters. Let's picture Penny as just some random kid, male or female, whichever, whom you don't know. Picture Aggie as a burly boy, chortling over the incident. This comic is inspired by Archie? Seriously, that's your regular Archie bully panel. Sure, low-grade as far as bullying goes, but it is bullying. And I think most of you, if you'd have spilt soda all over yourselves in highschool, and then found out it was on purpose because someone wanted to humiliate you, would have felt pretty awful about that.

...and really, her being 16 is no excuse. That's middle school behavior she's exhibiting.
Last edited by JackFairy on Fri Jan 05, 2007 2:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Magick Lorelai on Fri Jan 05, 2007 1:59 pm

Again,I reiterate, these are High School girls. Penny's behaviors are more mature than people realize. How do you think people in power got there? The same kind of planning and backstabbing that she does. It's called immature now, because it's limited to high school politics, but trust me, these are amazingly mature tactics. Admittedly, her free-spending is a bit of a problem, but no one's perfect. ;)

I'd love to see Aggie with Marshall. It's one of those romantic fantasies, where the handsome, charming, sensitive young man falls for the outsider rebel, but reality doesn't work that way. I'd rather see Karen get knocked down a peg for her dishonesty and backstabbing, learn that Marshall can probably handle the truth, and start behaving with a bit more class.

What happened to Karen is a case of "Ugly Girl Gets Pretty", in which the emotional stunting of feeling ugly results in ugly behavior to those who then appreciate her new looks. Chubby girls aren't always the hero, and Karen is showing how newfound confidence can be taken too far. A lot of people have been disenchanted with Karen because of her behavior. I think she's still very much redeemable, we just haven't gotten there yet.
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Postby JackFairy on Fri Jan 05, 2007 2:02 pm

Except Aggie isn't an outside rebel. She's a small time bully who happens to think she's an activist.
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Postby isobel on Fri Jan 05, 2007 2:41 pm

Calling Aggie a terrible person and a bully is the easy way out. We've seen her support Helen after Charlotte's little episode, stand up for what she believes in in a non-violent fashion, and try to reach out to Penny when Sara told her Rich was making her into a wreck. A two-dimensional bully doesn't bother with that. A high-school girl with some problems occasionally plays a prank on someone she doesn't like, and an exploding soda is more of a gag than a terrible plot to hurt and humiliate someone. It's immature, yes, but everyone is now and then in high school-- even the people who claim to be exceptions to every high school generalization out there. She's not any worse than any other character we've seen, and better than some. Charlotte's prank was intended to be utterly ruinous, Penny went to Karen's party for the express purpose of knocking her down a peg, Karen treats people like things and sexually assaults her boyfriend, Sara buys presents to change and manipulate people, Stan treats people like game pieces, and his hero Rich isn't any better. Everyone in this comic has screwed up at least once, through malice or immaturity. That's what makes them so much more believable than stereotypical bullies, rich girls, nerds and hippies.
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Postby sun tzu on Fri Jan 05, 2007 3:17 pm

Dammit, I hate it when Aggie dissappoints me like that.
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Re: And the board says????

Postby petala on Fri Jan 05, 2007 3:23 pm

Sassy-fras wrote:I had to do some research, but after looking through a psyche book, reading a few philosopher's theories and analyzing my own interpretations of today's comics...my conclusion is simply this....

.... I laughed. It's funny. The end. :D


Hahaha, I think you're right. :D
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Postby atristain on Fri Jan 05, 2007 3:58 pm

Sorry to burst the bubble of the Aggie haters, but if you read carefully the archives, that prank happened only in Aggie's imagination, for sure.

Yes, I agree she has issues with Penny, but she only plans against Penny, and she doesn't bully against anyone else.

"Why does they don't kiss already?"

Shut up Sahra!

Anyway: That would lower her status between the Omegas. (if Lisa and Daphne are considered Omegas) Aggie always played her cards with style. She gained the respect of their classmates because she never played something as childish as this prank. This prank is tasteless and moronic.

She has worked so well that even one of the Alphas (Sahra) approached her because she thought that Penny needed help with Rich, and more than 40% of the students voted for her.

This isn't Aggie style at all. If you think different, you and I have been reading different comics.

And about the Archie comment, this is the kind of prank Archie and Reggie pull against each other frequently, and they play always on the same team.
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Postby Little Wood on Fri Jan 05, 2007 5:03 pm

I think that the fair question to ask now is whether or not Aggie plans to do this after the idea popped up. Either the outlet for her is to merely think of pulling the prank on Penny, which I would be very proud of her if that were the case, or she plans to pursue the prank into reality in which case I would be disappointed in her, but I wouldn't go so far as to hate her or call her a bully; it would just be a bullish act.

Sure, Penny isn't perfect, but I still stand by what I said about her social maturity.

And by the way, what the heck is all this badmouthing about Aggie being an activist about? What kind of relevance does this have to her thinking about pulling a prank? It's as though peace activists are supposed to be these pure angelic beings that would never make an immature mistake. You guys do know Greenpeace, right? They're not perfect, but I still believe in what they do.

Oh and as to mention the least, I don't think Aggie would ever even be capable of pulling off a prank like that;
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Postby Aris Katsaris on Fri Jan 05, 2007 5:28 pm

Bullies tend to mock/play pranks on those they consider the weakest and easiest pray.

Aggie mocks/thinks of playing pranks on the person who is viewed (and also views herself) in the top of the social ladder.

It seems to me that the motivation is completely different. The one is cruelty towards the weak, the other is taking the perceived snob down a peg.

Not that Aggie isn't childish and immature. But her cruelty towards Penny doesn't ring to me at all as indicating the psychology of a bully.
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Postby Little Wood on Fri Jan 05, 2007 5:59 pm

No, you're wrong.
Bullying has nothing to do with your social status. Bullying can be committed by anyone to anyone. Just because she wants to embarrass someone of a higher class does not make this act (if it were to happen) any less immoral than it actually is.

That's almost like saying that it's ok for a Native American to beat up a white guy because of what his ancestors did. Penny didn't do anything to Aggie for a long long while. She may speak rudely to her, but Penny rarely if ever approaches Aggie. What the heck are you saying here? That it's ok for Aggie to demoralize Penny's social status just because she's on top and Aggie isn't? That is no different than any ordinary high class bully beating a nerd because he refuses to do his homework.

Don't take this personally, but your statement bewilders me.
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Postby Chrysee on Fri Jan 05, 2007 6:15 pm

Wait wait, why is anyone thinking Aggie didn't just actually do that? I think it's pretty clear she did.
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Postby Aris Katsaris on Fri Jan 05, 2007 6:33 pm

Little Wood wrote:No, you're wrong.
Bullying has nothing to do with your social status. Bullying can be committed by anyone to anyone.


Shall we need to resort to the Free Online Dictionary?

Bully: A person who is habitually cruel or overbearing, especially to smaller or weaker people.

The mentality of the bullies drives them against the weak. The mentality of Aggie drives her against what she perceives as powerful.

I don't care if you call it equally *wrong*, the point is that the mentality seems to me utterly different to that of a bully.

When people throw yogurts against prime ministers, few call them "bullies". But if people threw yogurts at e.g. homeless people, they most likely would be.

You can condemn both actions, but they're not driven by the same motives, and they're not caused by the same mentality in a person.
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Postby Ollie_Vera on Fri Jan 05, 2007 8:10 pm

Hooh, boy. I hope it's just her imagining it, because if Aggie pulled that shit in MY school, she'd get her ass kicked in more ways than one. And everybody would think less of her and her friends as well, because stunts like that are not cool.
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Re: Back-up Outlet

Postby Shadrach on Fri Jan 05, 2007 8:24 pm

Again, I ask: where was the outrage over what Charlotte did, which was much worse?

I sense there's some thinly-disguised liberal-bashing going on here.
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Postby Little Wood on Fri Jan 05, 2007 8:33 pm

Uh huh, nice try. But does Aggie really see Penny as someone "powerful" or someone "weak"? To Aggie, Penny is a challenge, and she accepts that challenge...mildly so childishly unless this act comes into action. However, because she constantly pursues that challenge we can conclude that she has enough confidence her being better morally, personally, etc. Aggie thinks she's better than Penny. We can all conclude that no matter what. On that basis, we can also conclude that Aggie thinks less of Penny than she does herself otherwise she wouldn't bother Penny or her friends.

As stated in bullying.org;

Bullying is when a person or group tries to hurt or control another person. There are lots of different kinds of bullying, and they all hurt. Sometimes bullying means hitting, kicking, pushing, shoving, or making someone do something they don't want to do. Sometimes bullying is using mean words or threats, calling someone names, or saying bad things behind their back. Bullying can even mean making someone feel unsafe or scared, leaving them out of games, or making them feel they're not important.

Why do people bully?

There are lots of reasons why people bully.

Bullying is a behaviour, it is something people learn. Bullies may also be bullied themselves, or they were bullied at one time or another in their lifetime. People bully because it makes them feel superior to others. They might get power and strength from bullying others. People bully to get attention. They think that it makes them popular, or that bullying may be a way to fit in. Bullying doesn't make someone popular or cool, it just makes them mean. People who bully are often scared about something about themselves, so they try to scare others to hide their feelings or pick on others so they won't get picked on first. People who bully are unhappy and they take out their unhappiness on others. People who bully feel little or no responsibility for their actions, and often feel the need to control others and may always feel the need to win. People who bully may be jealous of the people they are bullying. People who bully are unable to understand and appreciate the feelings of others. People who bully always choose the one person they know they can win against (basically bullies are chickens). People who bully are excellent observers of human behaviour.


Now, this doesn't say everything about Aggie, but it gives a hint. She has issues and she has to find a different method of coping unless she chooses to only use her imagination, which is both harmless and healthy.

Oh no, but let us review that definition (the one I prefer from dictionary.com): a blustering, quarrelsome, overbearing person who habitually badgers and intimidates smaller or weaker people.
Note that it says nothing about social positions. Penny is obviously weaker than Aggie in some aspects and those aspects are very important and dear to Aggie. Thus she will obviously choose Penny as the "weaker" target.

'Kay, I'm done. Hope that helped. I'm ready to be pwned again. :P I like a friendly argument
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Postby LeonardC on Fri Jan 05, 2007 8:35 pm

Aris Katsaris wrote:
Little Wood wrote:No, you're wrong.
Bullying has nothing to do with your social status. Bullying can be committed by anyone to anyone.


Shall we need to resort to the Free Online Dictionary?

Bully: A person who is habitually cruel or overbearing, especially to smaller or weaker people.

The mentality of the bullies drives them against the weak. The mentality of Aggie drives her against what she perceives as powerful.

I don't care if you call it equally *wrong*, the point is that the mentality seems to me utterly different to that of a bully.

When people throw yogurts against prime ministers, few call them "bullies". But if people threw yogurts at e.g. homeless people, they most likely would be.

You can condemn both actions, but they're not driven by the same motives, and they're not caused by the same mentality in a person.


This is a really good point. And I think it also makes for a response to Kitsuiko's comment that she would hav been really hurt by this. Penny is an alpha, and one of the things that puts her there is confidence. She's not going to be mortified by this sort of thing, just annoyed. If you did this to someone like Helen, she would probably go hang her head in shame, as Kitsuiko described - and for that reason, it would be real bullying, and be a really vile thing to do. Worst case scenario for Penny is that she's taken down a social notch or two, but nothing she can't recover from. And even THAT seems unlikely - notice that in the panel, the only people who see this are Aggie and her accomplices, who already don't think highly of Penny in the first place. So yeah, even if she did this for real, I don't think it's a big issue.
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Postby LeonardC on Fri Jan 05, 2007 8:37 pm

Magick Lorelai wrote:On a somewhat related note, I don't think Aggie is going to be able to win over Marshall yet. Beyond him already being in love with Karen, beyond the potential of them becoming step-siblings, Aggie just is not emotionally mature enough to handle a relationship. Her feelings for Marshall, though strong, are still just a crush. She doesn't really know him well enough to truly love him. Even if she had the clear way in, I doubt he'd be interested in her just yet, not until she's had some personal growth.


Yeah, 'cause we know Marshall really goes for emotionally mature people who respect others' feelings.
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Postby Kia Purity on Fri Jan 05, 2007 8:39 pm

Is it clarified ANYWHERE that it is her imagination only and this is not occuring later in the past (or in the future?) because that's what's causing all this mess.

Either way, imagination = good. Actually doing it = not so great. We had stupid stink bombs all the time when I was in high school and I was so not impressed with the morons who set them off due to having an insanely great sense of smell.

Pranksters in high school just really sucked because they never think about the consequences of their actions.
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Postby Little Wood on Fri Jan 05, 2007 8:45 pm

Is it clarified ANYWHERE that it is her imagination only and this is not occuring later in the past (or in the future?) because that's what's causing all this mess.


I kind of assumed that it's her imagination because she's referring to thinking of an outlet. She may have done it, may have not.

Yeah, 'cause we know Marshall really goes for emotionally mature people who respect others' feelings.


Well, he may learn his lesson and back away from Aggie...I think he'll need some time-out after Karen anyway. Who knows.
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Postby isobel on Fri Jan 05, 2007 9:50 pm

Chrysee wrote:Wait wait, why is anyone thinking Aggie didn't just actually do that? I think it's pretty clear she did.

I figured that the "back-up outlet" comment being in the thought bubble of the third panel meant she was envisioning it, since it seems weird she'd be thinking that as she was pulling a prank on Penny before this conversation. I'd think that at the time, she'd be thinking something snarky rather than analyzing her actions in the same words she's using with Nick.

Also, FWIW, I don't think she'd necessarily soda-attack Penny or anything that physical, but that it's just an easy way to represent "I can go bug Penny." I mean, every other time she's used Penny to blow off some steam, it's been by annoying her with snarky comments (When she met Karen and Penny in the mall, and when she's trying to get over Marshall), which is kind of hard to convey in a two-panel hypothetical situation. But that's just me, and lord knows Aggie's not always the pinnacle of maturity when it comes to handling emotional problems.
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Postby JackFairy on Sat Jan 06, 2007 1:18 am

I think she did it. We saw her imagining getting a tattoo--then we see her pulling this stunt, seemingly in "real life." The continuing narration is just a normal comics device.

There was no outrage about Charlotte because we're *supposed* to dislike Charlotte and that act. No one ever said Charlotte was a person to admire or love. Aggie, however, is one of our protagonists. You may be sure that if Penny does something bad to Aggie, people will be all over it too.

As for someone thinking this is a one-off for Aggie--come on! Remember her introduction? Penny and her friends are walking by, minding their own business, chatting between themselves, and then Aggie has to come in and insult them, when they had nothing to do with her. Totally not cool, and again, in my school, that would be seen as bitch behavior. It's also usually the type of action more ascribed to "popular girls" in teen movies.

Then Penny gets a summer job and Aggie comes by solely to harass her, get her in trouble, and potentially even get her fired.

Then she leaves school in the middle of the day to biy an outfit just like Penny's just to embarass her--personally, that's the "prank" of hers that gets me the most hot under the collar, because UGH. That should be against everything that Aggie's activism stands for. It is such a shallow, petty, priviledged, consumerist action. She basically threw away $300 or so just to upstage Penny--and I just hope it was her own wages, not her daddy's money.

And as for bashing on liberals, I should say that I'm a socialist artsy ex-gothy vegan. Part of my problem with Aggie is that I don't buy most of her "liberalism" as sincere at all.
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Postby Richter on Sat Jan 06, 2007 3:53 am

Still, she never crossed the line into physical attack. dunno. Might well have been her just imagining it. Then again, she is an extremist, so you never know.

But let's not forget she has a nice side to her too.

And Jack ... you seem to have more than a bit of Aggie in yourself, too. "Worse than Hitler", eh? ;)
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Postby blazelust on Sat Jan 06, 2007 4:09 am

I am amazed at the people who are taking a gag in a comic this seriously, and who are thinking way too deeply into the (possibly fantasized) prank of a teenager.

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