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Author Topic: WCDT strips 4346 to 4350 (7th September to 11th September 2020)  (Read 5769 times)

Farideh

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Sorry, no poll.
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beeawwb

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How long until somebody else registers soft.men as a joke / not actually as a joke?
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Farideh

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Poor Renee, I feel sorry for her. It is quite frustrating if it seems that people aren't trying to help themselves.
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DaiJB

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So, no Monday body for May  :-\ 
Oh well, it's probably to be expected - I think someone forecast last week, something about two weeks of alternative strips and evil laughter from Jeph?  :wink:

Re the new strip - does anyone else get the impression that Renee is being uncharacteristically whiny? It's understandable, of course - Renee is kinda stuck in a loop of unsatisfying one-date hookups, while she helps out Elliot (who is the subject of her own unrequited crush!) - but does it strike anyone else as being a bit out of character?
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Theta9

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Before he embarked on his long solo career, Robyn Hitchcock fronted a band called The Soft Boys.

The Soft Boys - "Give It to the Soft Boys"
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Farideh

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It doesn't strike me as being 'out of character', but more like 'Jeph fleshing out Renee's personality'.
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shanejayell

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Nothing wrong with giving side characters depth. :D

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What strikes me is that the interruption/resumption of this conversation happened in a weird spot. Why couldn't this strip have been posted before we cut away? It feels like this would have been a natural conclusion. I can barely remember what they had been discussing now.
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I get that Renee's frustrations are sort of peaking and that character development is a good thing, but could she have phrased that a little more kindly? I know if I were in Elliot's shoes right now, I would be feeling uncomfortable and very guilty.

Then again, maybe he does need to feel a little guilty. He relies on Renee for kind of a lot when it comes to relationships. He could stand to be more independent.

But, original point--Renee could have been a little less blunt about it.
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chris73

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Ok so this came out of nowhere. The impression I got of Renee is that she likes inserting herself into her friends issues and at the risk of sounding old fashioned maybe hook ups organised on line isn't the best way of getting a spark with someone, if thats what you really want

This strip is about as subtle as a sledgehammer
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chris73

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Quote
I get that Renee's frustrations are sort of peaking and that character development is a good thing, but could she have phrased that a little more kindly? I know if I were in Elliot's shoes right now, I would be feeling uncomfortable and very guilty.

Yes well thinking back to when Renee had Elliot take his shirt off kind of puts this into perspective for me
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I get that Renee's frustrations are sort of peaking and that character development is a good thing, but could she have phrased that a little more kindly?

Wait, is this a complaint about Renee or about the writing?

Whenever I see this confusion of in-universe and out-of-universe considerations, I feel like I am reading DM of the Rings or Darths and Droids.
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Sorry, no poll.

The only one I could think of was based on May's "Sweetie. Honey. Baby darling."
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I get that Renee's frustrations are sort of peaking and that character development is a good thing, but could she have phrased that a little more kindly? I know if I were in Elliot's shoes right now, I would be feeling uncomfortable and very guilty.

Then again, maybe he does need to feel a little guilty. He relies on Renee for kind of a lot when it comes to relationships. He could stand to be more independent.

But, original point--Renee could have been a little less blunt about it.

It's Renee. It's in character.
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Farideh

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Well, Renee isn't subtle, so this response fits in well with her character. She'll probably feel guilty about it later.


Also: what they said  ^^^^

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Oenone

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I do think it’s got to feel awkward to give romantic advice to the person you’ve got a crush on, who’s got a crush on your best friend and your best friend’s new friend, all the while knowing they don’t like/ feel a spark with you. That she’s not being MORE blunt about boundaries is actually what’s strange to me, not that she’s being blunt.
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I get that Renee's frustrations are sort of peaking and that character development is a good thing, but could she have phrased that a little more kindly?

Wait, is this a complaint about Renee or about the writing?

Whenever I see this confusion of in-universe and out-of-universe considerations, I feel like I am reading DM of the Rings or Darths and Droids.
I have no problem with the writing. I just don't like Renee that much. She speaks bluntly and almost aggressively in most situations, which is often not a good thing and results in hurt feelings. It's definitely in character--I just don't agree with said character.
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BenRG

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I'd suspected for a while that Renee's life is pretty unfulfilling for her. She's been trying to cure her sense of loneliness and lack of intimate connections by way of random hook ups and found (really unsurprisingly - the hit rate must be very low for this outcome) that it wasn't happening and, indeed, most of her partners were only interested in the next hook-up.

Then she finally and unequivocally opens up to Elliot only to learn that her feelings aren't reciprocated. Right now, she must feel more than a little hopeless about her emotional future. Will she always be the bridesmaid and the reliable friend?

I now find myself wondering if Elliot will recruit Clinton and Brun to help Renee. That could go well or it could go badly. It will most probably be both!

How long until somebody else registers soft.men as a joke / not actually as a joke?

I'm expecting one of Jeph's friends to persuade him to make that one of his alternate URLs and soon.
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Sorry, no poll.
Oh NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO !!!!!!!!! :-o

(I tend to ignore those)


The only one I could think of was based on May's "Sweetie. Honey. Baby darling."
But that was just a hint at the next romance ! :wink: :-D
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Carpe Diem

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Seems odd to see her complaining about being” the mom friend” While she is very quick to insert herself into Elliots issues.

Also yeah, knowing she has a crush on him and told him to take his shirt offnis kinda icky
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BenRG

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Also yeah, knowing she has a crush on him and told him to take his shirt offnis kinda icky

I think that people do miss the context that, prior to this, Renee never really had acknowledged to herself that she found Elliot attractive. So, whatever negative motivations she had weren't in her conscious mind. As soon as she realised what she'd done, her reaction was flight and denial.

What was also interesting was Elliot's confused initial reaction. It literally never occurred to him that going half-naked in front of Renee could have any kind of sexual element to it. That was the 'torpedoed at launch' thing for Renelliot from the Elliot side - He literally could not mentally interpret the incident as any form of intimacy.
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chris73

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Quote
Seems odd to see her complaining about being” the mom friend” While she is very quick to insert herself into Elliots issues.

Or Bruns for that matter
« Last Edit: 07 Sep 2020, 13:39 by chris73 »
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MrNumbers

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This kind of came out of nowhere to me tbh

Like on the one hand I get how it could make sense for the character, but we've established her still having a lot of hookups and throwing herself as matchmaker at her friends. She hasn't given Mum-Friend vibes off at all to me - which is less a factor of what she's been doing and more how she's been shown to be doing it.

I think there are elements of the character here that'd be interesting to bring more to the fore - being unsatisfied in her flings, wanting a more traditional courtship relationship - but the "I am the mum friend" thing is... weird. Because it's undoing the parts of her character that have been very pro-active until now. It undoes a lot of her agency to say that instead of being a person who throws herself into being that, it's something she feels is being pushed on her, or a burden.

So, instead of revealing more depth to her, it's kind of undone what I previously understood about her in a way that makes her less interesting to me.

Elliott being on Soft Boy forums is top notch though.
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Carl-E

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This kind of came out of nowhere to me tbh

Like on the one hand I get how it could make sense for the character, but we've established her still having a lot of hookups and throwing herself as matchmaker at her friends. She hasn't given Mum-Friend vibes off at all to me - which is less a factor of what she's been doing and more how she's been shown to be doing it.

I think there are elements of the character here that'd be interesting to bring more to the fore - being unsatisfied in her flings, wanting a more traditional courtship relationship - but the "I am the mum friend" thing is... weird. Because it's undoing the parts of her character that have been very pro-active until now. It undoes a lot of her agency to say that instead of being a person who throws herself into being that, it's something she feels is being pushed on her, or a burden.

So, instead of revealing more depth to her, it's kind of undone what I previously understood about her in a way that makes her less interesting to me.

Elliott being on Soft Boy forums is top notch though.

You never saw a pushy mom? 


I think Renee's self image is the mom who's always trying to "make things right" for her... offspring.  Maybe a little tiger-ish, but definitely the type who's going to ask, "So why aren't you seeing anyone right now?" 


To her, that's what a mom does. 



Which may explain a lot, actually...
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brasca

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I can see why Renee feels this way.  I don’t think there’s anyone to ship her with.
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Mr Intrepid

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My take on this particular strip is that its setting us up for a new arc.  Adding on to the current Clinton/Elliot  situation, perhaps inserting her or Brun into the
Mix.  One we get May situated and her story branches into the AI Healthcare issue, with Roko, with more Sven action.  Eventually we'll move on to other arcs.
When you think about it, the large cast of characters affords Jeph the time to write and fine tune his storylines.
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Oenone

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I think some points for her being the mom friend would be making sure Brun has a place to stay, being someone who has had to help Brun navigate social situations, organizing her and Brun’s housing search, and being the person who gets Elliot out of his inactive romantic rut.

I know a lot of forumites don’t like Renee, but at least in my opinion, she does a lot of mental/emotional labor for other characters and they don’t seem to do the same for her.
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Oenone

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And I forgot she makes sure Brun eats more than just day old baked goods.
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And I forgot she makes sure Brun eats more than just day old baked goods.

Seems to me she should be having this "Yeah yeah I'm the MOM FRIEND" mild outburst with Brun and not Elliot then???
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And I forgot she makes sure Brun eats more than just day old baked goods.

Seems to me she should be having this "Yeah yeah I'm the MOM FRIEND" mild outburst with Brun and not Elliot then???
One; she actually likes being Brun’s “mom” and two; Brun probably would not understand exasperated venting as rhetorical and might leave to spare her the trouble.
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Reaver

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And I forgot she makes sure Brun eats more than just day old baked goods.

Seems to me she should be having this "Yeah yeah I'm the MOM FRIEND" mild outburst with Brun and not Elliot then???
One; she actually likes being Brun’s “mom” and two; Brun probably would not understand exasperated venting as rhetorical and might leave to spare her the trouble.

So since she helped Elliot with this one thing he gets to be the vent punching bag?????

IDK I just feel like this was a bit too soon of a mood change, where she went from jokingly helping Elliot and pepping him on/making unwanted jokes about Basalisk's bread fetish to suddenly " >8C Yes I'm the mom friend"

I feel like I got a bit of emotional whiplash.
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Mr_Rose

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And I forgot she makes sure Brun eats more than just day old baked goods.

Seems to me she should be having this "Yeah yeah I'm the MOM FRIEND" mild outburst with Brun and not Elliot then???
One; she actually likes being Brun’s “mom” and two; Brun probably would not understand exasperated venting as rhetorical and might leave to spare her the trouble.

So since she helped Elliot with this one thing he gets to be the vent punching bag?????

IDK I just feel like this was a bit too soon of a mood change, where she went from jokingly helping Elliot and pepping him on/making unwanted jokes about Basalisk's bread fetish to suddenly " >8C Yes I'm the mom friend"

I feel like I got a bit of emotional whiplash.
Elliot’s been her emotional punching bag for years; he either likes it or doesn’t know how to get her to stop.
As for the other thing, moods can totally whiplash like that. I’m not sure that makes it good storytelling but it’s definitely realistic under the right circumstances.
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badbum61

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Why couldn't this strip have been posted before we cut away?

Because then Jeph wouldn't have been able to use it to forestall revealing May 3.0 and frustrate the crap out of us, bwahahaha!

Although personally, I did want to know what cereal Steve was eating this morning...
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chris73

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And I forgot she makes sure Brun eats more than just day old baked goods.

Is Brun incapable of making these decisions for herself (is she "useless") or has Renee decided that Brun can't function without her help (has Brun moved on from school)
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Farideh

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As far as I can tell, Brun is more than capable of taking care of herself. She lived on her own up until the moment the bar burned down (which was where she lived). She stayed with Renee for a while, who helped her settle into a new routine. Brun needs her routine, after all. They started living together permanently after Brun told Renee that she likes being around someone who understands her, so while Brun can live alone, she doesn't want to at the moment.

Brun isn't useless, and Renee isn't pushy (in this respect). They just found an arrangement that works for both of them at this point in their lives.


EDIT TO PREVENT DOUBLE POST:


May 3.0 is here! Seems like the transfer went off without a hitch. She'll be able to reach the top shelves now :D
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shanejayell

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Tall May will take some getting used to. Nice looking tho.

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I for one welcome our new May overlord
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Man, I need more caffine! I could have sworn May said "I have an office managment utility now!"  It took me a good 20 seconds to re-boot and re-read. I thought for a moment that she'd decided she wanted to work in an office!? :psyduck:
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Farideh

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I like how her hair and skin tone changes in the first couple of panels - May has customized herself.
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shanejayell

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Man, I need more caffine! I could have sworn May said "I have an office managment utility now!"  It took me a good 20 seconds to re-boot and re-read. I thought for a moment that she'd decided she wanted to work in an office!? :psyduck:

I saw that too, then went, 'Orifice?!'  :lol: :laugh: :-D

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Well, at least we now know May's favourite sitcom.

(click to show/hide)
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Oenone

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I mean, she’s probably having the discussion because she wanted/wants to date Elliot, but she feels like he only sees her as an advice giving maternal figure. That’s the role she played for him when he was pining over Padmé and it’s the role she’s playing for him now. I don’t know that he’s a good friend for her to have until she sorts this out tbh.
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I like how her hair and skin tone changes in the first couple of panels - May has customized herself.

For some reason, the old Windows boot-up music played in my head...

https://youtu.be/qnuTAa8LQiA
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Oh, not this one?

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May's longer "whoa" as she looks around for the first time makes me realize that her old chassis was probably substandard in ways other than its durability. Her sensory suite was probably also low quality, and this may well be May's first time seeing the world with senses the same or better than those of an average human.

Oh, not this one?


Oh, no, that's the sound May is going to assign using her new management utility for when something is inserted into the frontmost one.

Sven's in for a surprise.
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Am I the only one who wanted May to keep her face?  I'm OK with the hair (because people change their hairstyles all the time) but even a person with a nose job still looks the same.   She looks like a different person now.
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Add me to the list of people who read that as "office management" 3 times. I wasn't getting the joke. Why would May care about office management? Hasn't she had enough of offices? Why would she want to manage them? And then, well, "never mind." </Emily Litella>
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I like how her hair and skin tone changes in the first couple of panels - May has customized herself.

I take it, May's new body has the same set of chromatophores as Roko's. But I wonder whether that color change was subconscious because embodied May has always been a "blue robot chick", or because she actually changed it to what she's used to..



Am I the only one who wanted May to keep her face?  I'm OK with the hair (because people change their hairstyles all the time) but even a person with a nose job still looks the same.   She looks like a different person now.

Comes with the territory of a different model of chassis. Maybe Union Robotics can change it a little bit, but that probably would void the warranty.
Now I'm curious how a substantially better quality body feels to May, and whether she'll ever get any dissociative issues because unlike Roko she hasn't been born into a body.
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May seems to be taking the new body well.  And door frames are now her enemy.

As to chromatics, it might be a thing with AI bodies as to whether or not they're "inhabited", as Momo's original chassis was also a washed out color after she'd transferred out of it.
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