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Author Topic: Are there any truly unsympathetic MALE characters in this strip?  (Read 34988 times)

Method of Madness

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But this thing, flirting with Marigold, is something neither he nor she has a clue about how to handle with maturity.

Fixed.  He matches she, and "neither he nor she" is a singular subject.
Zero taking the singular form (like "neither is") has and still does seem wrong, since 0 ≠ 1.  It's the one grammar rule (that I can think of) that I refuse to follow.
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pwhodges

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Think of it as an expansion of "neither has a clue".  It's common that an apparently plural modifier of the subject can make the singular verb seem uncomfortable; the same happens in the form "neither of them has a clue".  Allowing the plural verb in at that point is not uncommon, though; I don't correct it out of text-book strictness (which I disapprove of), but because it actually seems wrong to me (because I feel that keeping the logic of language consistent helps comprehension in the long run).
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"Being human, having your health; that's what's important."  (from: Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi )
"As long as we're all living, and as long as we're all having fun, that should do it, right?"  (from: The Eccentric Family )

jwhouk

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Exactly my point, although I have to say Dale is often more mature than most of the cast.  But this flirting thing is something neither Marigold nor Dale have a clue about handling with maturity.

There we go.
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Method of Madness

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Think of it as an expansion of "neither has a clue".  It's common that an apparently plural modifier of the subject can make the singular verb seem uncomfortable; the same happens in the form "neither of them has a clue".
See, that seems wrong to me, too.  I would definitely use "neither have".  I'll put it this way, would you say "both has a clue"?  Because that's the same thing, "neither has/have" = "both do not have".
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DSL

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I'd say, " both have clues," or " both havethe clue," depending on whether multiple peope had awareness or possession of the same clue. In the ase of the singular "neither," I think of it as an implied (one): "Niether (one) has a clue."
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pwhodges

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"Both" is plural; "neither" is not.  But I'll leave that there - the main reason the original sentence felt wrong was the mismatch of "he and her", which was the essential correction.
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"Being human, having your health; that's what's important."  (from: Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi )
"As long as we're all living, and as long as we're all having fun, that should do it, right?"  (from: The Eccentric Family )

tomart

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Exactly my point, although I have to say Dale is often more mature than most of the cast. But this thing, flirting with Marigold, is something neither he nor her have a clue about how to handle with maturity.


It's your  first  sentence that I quibble with;  more mature?  

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Daaaaaaaaang!
« Last Edit: 15 Jun 2011, 00:53 by tomart »
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Method of Madness

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"Both" is plural; "neither" is not.  But I'll leave that there - the main reason the original sentence felt wrong was the mismatch of "he and her", which was the essential correction.
Yeah, the he and her correction was necessary.  But technically, "neither" should not be singular or plural.  But since there's not a third option, it makes more sense to treat "neither" as plural, and "plural" in the grammar sense as meaning "not one" (rather than more than one), since singular explicitly means "one".
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Quote from: Polonius
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MR ARCHIVE-FU MADNESS
Does anybody really know what time it is?
(╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻

pwhodges

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We're getting mixed up over which word is the subject in the specific case at hand; the subject is one of "he" and "she".  The surrounding construct: neither...nor... (like either...or...), is merely a means of presenting alternative subjects.  The verb must then agree with each  subject individually (i.e. in our case be singular).  In a case where the alternative subjects themselves disagree in number (either he or they), grammarians disagree - some say the verb must then be plural, and some that it should take the number of the nearest subject (I'd say the second, but normally put the plural subjects after the singular ones anyway).

There's a good account of this (because it mostly agrees with me!) here.
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"Being human, having your health; that's what's important."  (from: Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi )
"As long as we're all living, and as long as we're all having fun, that should do it, right?"  (from: The Eccentric Family )

Thiefree

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I don't believe that any of the male characters are inherently unsympathetic. If they seem that way now, it's probably just because we don't have enough information. Have you ever disliked somebody at first, then grew to like them as you got to know them better? There are reasons to empathise with every well-rounded character. It's a testament to Jeph's writing that none of us can agree on a wholly unlikeable one.
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Method of Madness

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Actually, you may have convinced me for "neither", since the is/are doesn't refer to the neither itself, but to the singulars within.  However, using the singular for "none" is where I draw the line.
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They call me Mr. Madness.

Quote from: Polonius
Though this be madness, yet there is method in't.
MR ARCHIVE-FU MADNESS
Does anybody really know what time it is?
(╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻

pwhodges

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Sure - that's different.  But consider "none" as short for "not one", and that works too.
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"Being human, having your health; that's what's important."  (from: Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi )
"As long as we're all living, and as long as we're all having fun, that should do it, right?"  (from: The Eccentric Family )

Method of Madness

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"none" as short for "not one"
Not gonna lie.  My mind is blown.  (Seriously, I never realized that "none" is a contraction).  But would you say "there is zero" or "there are zero"?
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They call me Mr. Madness.

Quote from: Polonius
Though this be madness, yet there is method in't.
MR ARCHIVE-FU MADNESS
Does anybody really know what time it is?
(╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻

DSL

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I'd say: "There ain't any."
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pwhodges

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(Seriously, I never realized that "none" is a contraction)

The Shorter Oxford shows "none" as a word in its own right from Old English times (nan), derived initially from Old Frisian (nen), derived in turn from Old Norse (neinn = ne + an meaning not one ); but I think my point stands.

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But would you say "there is zero" or "there are zero"?

"There are zero somethings"; but contrast with: "there is no something".  Presumably I am considering the "somethings" or "something" the actual subject (I need to go and think about the correct parsing of those!  Please bear in mind that English is not my subject - but it was my mother's.).
« Last Edit: 15 Jun 2011, 14:54 by pwhodges »
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"Being human, having your health; that's what's important."  (from: Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi )
"As long as we're all living, and as long as we're all having fun, that should do it, right?"  (from: The Eccentric Family )

akronnick

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I'd say: "There ain't any."

I'd say: "There ain't no."
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DSL

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Yeah but tat's a double negative, and those just jam your camera.


Now, two negatives make a positive. It can be shown two positives make a negative.
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akronnick

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Depends on whether you're adding or multiplying.


And I ain't got no camera.
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Akronnick, I can think of no more appropriate steed for a Knight Of The Dickbroom than a foul-mouthed, perpetually shouting, lust-crazed bird with a scrotum hanging from its chin and a distinctive cry of "Gobble gobble gobble".   --Tergon

questionablecontentfan

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Okay, so. Dale is neither creepy (well, maybe slightly) nor mean. He is just playfully flirting with Marigold--yes, flirting. He likes her, and maybe she likes him too. Like Mari, Dale's kind of awkward, and might not have had much luck with girls (like Marigold's had rough luck with guys), so his flirting looks like meanness. I hope he shows up in the story again, there's definitely something there.

Edit: ooh, ooh, what if he somehow showed up at the party and asked Marigold to dance??? Ok, yeah, not likely, but I can hope.

And Jeph may not like writing arseholes, but he certainly likes to write bitches.  :evil:


 :-D
« Last Edit: 30 Jun 2011, 17:59 by questionablecontentfan »
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wrwight

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wow this thread has twisted all around every sort of subject.

First: OP, I appreciate your decision to disagree with some of the replies, but I don't think you appreciate their decision to disagree with you. Not including Steve in your list of "proposed unsympathetic male characters" is pretty much just censoring others' opinions because they don't match your own. I mean, it is only a proposed list, right?

Now, my opinions: I like Steve, but I think if I had to choose an unsympathetic character, it would be him. He's a pretty well fleshed out character, so of course he has redeeming qualities (no one is purely evil), but he seems rather self-centered a majority of the time. He has had exceptions. Anyway, I don't think I actually contributed anything here that wasn't said already. I just wanted to agree with it.

Dale is not creepy. This is a matter of opinion, because depending on your point of view, he certainly seems creepy. Since we have very little background on him, there's a lot of assuming about his motives. He may or may not be flirting, but he is almost certainly being playful. I know people who are hardcore WoW nerds (this is not meant as an insult. I was married to one, as well as having several acquaintances on my old server when I played that fit this category. I was pretty addicted for a while as well), and I would say you kind of have to use a different standard of "normal" when applying motivations to Dale and Marigold. You also have to have more information to go on than we do, so really it's open to speculation at this point. I'm kind of basing a lot of my opinion of him on his rapport with the rest of the cast, which seems fairly normal. It's likely if he were really a creeper, they would be more hostile toward him.

English lessons: I think this tangent is winding down, but as pertains to double negatives, I like to think of them like multiplication, if you consider "positive" to be the same as "not negative" in the context of language. Then again, I'm from the south, so I have a tendency to ignore certain grammatical rules (or at least relax them), kind of like drunk Faye. It just comes out sometimes.

I think I've covered all points that I care to cover.

TLDR: Censoring=bad, Dale=good, English=math
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questionablecontentfan

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Yeah, Steve is a dick, basically. I never liked him.
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Josie's on a vacation far away, come around and talk it over
so many things that I wanna say, you know I like my girls a little bit older
I just wanna use your love tonight--I don't wanna lose your love tonight

annietiger

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Aw, why so much Dale hate? I love Dale! I guess I understand the "mean" rivalry sort of flirting -- some people just prefer to lightly rip on their friends and such. I'm waiting for a Dale/Marigold storyline to develop once Marigold has come out of her shell a bit more. Seems to me like Dale has mad respect for her since she is so good at her MMOs and perhaps, a bit threatened? I guess that's why he rips on her. And besides! Dale must be pretty alright if he knows about the secret menu! http://www.questionablecontent.net/1640

I don't think there are any truly unsympathetic male characters, and very few female characters. The only one that really comes to mind is Marten's ex, but that's for a different thread.

And yeah, Steve is kind of a douche, but he's a bro...that's to be expected. I think he's the most unsympathetic (major) male character but, ah. It's been said before, we all have friends like Steve.
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questionablecontentfan

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Oh, and Angus is a dick for what he did to Mari. Absolutely, 100 percent.

"We're just friends." Yeah, which was not even Mari's decision in the slightest, but all yours, asshole.

And then the way he tried to be like "Well, why are you attracted to me, I mean I don't even blah blah blah and blah" as if it would make him feel better to think that she never had any good reason for being attracted to him. As if she HAD to have a reason.

Angus is still a dick, so I guess it's appropriate that he got with Faye.
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Josie's on a vacation far away, come around and talk it over
so many things that I wanna say, you know I like my girls a little bit older
I just wanna use your love tonight--I don't wanna lose your love tonight

Near Lurker

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"We're just friends." Yeah, which was not even Mari's decision in the slightest, but all yours, asshole.

The fuck?  He's a dick because he turned her down as gently as possible?  So what, he didn't have the right to turn her down at all because you identify with her rejection?  And you don't think months of living together with nothing happening between them might have given him the wrong idea?
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questionablecontentfan

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He's a dick because:

He rejected Mari and went right for Faye without even letting the fucking tears dry from Mari's face...

He did lead her on, and nothing will convince me otherwise...

He tried to find reasons to feel okay about rejecting her, like saying "well, why do you suddenly like me now, you never did before..blahhhhh blah"

He didn't even really talk to Mari after it happened, he just let her languish for days and eating nothing but Pocky and be miserable.

And more reasons that I will think of some other time but no, there's no way that what he did was right.

Whether I identify with it or not is irrelevant, I'm not bringing myself or my life into this, this is a comic discussion board to discuss characters. Angus is not real and I will say about him what I please.
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Josie's on a vacation far away, come around and talk it over
so many things that I wanna say, you know I like my girls a little bit older
I just wanna use your love tonight--I don't wanna lose your love tonight

pwhodges

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The strips only give glimpses of the characters' lives.  We can conjecture what happens at other times, but building up a complete scenario as you are doing can easily turn into fan-fiction.  Your desire to see the life of the characters in this comic as unpleasant in various ways is getting a bit tedious, I'm afraid.

Frankly, I feel this was never really a good thread anyway.
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"Being human, having your health; that's what's important."  (from: Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi )
"As long as we're all living, and as long as we're all having fun, that should do it, right?"  (from: The Eccentric Family )
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