23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

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Cortez
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Re: 23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

Post by Cortez » Sun Jun 24, 2018 1:38 am

TCampbell wrote:
Sat Jun 23, 2018 2:48 pm
[But the answer to "when will they realize this is empty, meaningless sex" is "never, because it isn't and never was."
If that was true, DiDi wouldn't have been so quick to go to Lynn for sex.

If she truly loved Zii, she wouldn't have strayed.

And Zii seemed ready to hook up with Gary in the last few strips.

It seems more like what DiDi and Zii have for each other is lost.

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Re: 23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

Post by SiliconDream » Sun Jun 24, 2018 6:52 am

JoybuzzerX wrote:
Sat Jun 23, 2018 10:41 pm
You're not wrong. She is not Demisexual. She's been hot and bothered by the looks of people. She just hasn't been able to orgasm with someone she doesn't feel a connection to. Though, even then, it doesn't seem to be an instant thing. Didn't Zii have to work at it too?
Conversely, DiDi got very turned on very fast when Yuki spanked her, and there was no emotional connection there whatsoever. Matt might have been able to get her off as well, if not for all the comedic mishaps that kept interrupting them. So she doesn't come off to me as "demi-orgasmic," even.

Actually, if there's a common thread in her turn-ons, I think it's loss of control. She gets closest to orgasm when she either trusts someone enough to relax and let them do the work, or she's forced into letting them do the work ala Yuki.

Prydonian
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Re: 23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

Post by Prydonian » Sun Jun 24, 2018 6:54 am

TCampbell wrote:
Sat Jun 23, 2018 2:48 pm
DiDI's cruelties are accidental; her kindnesses are deliberate. Sure, she's dense as osmium, especially when she's got the prospect of an orgasm to cloud her perspective, but add a few IQ points and that was probably me in my early twenties, too.

But the answer to "when will they realize this is empty, meaningless sex" is "never, because it isn't and never was."
That’s... disappointing. I admit, I have for some time suspected that the authors’ intentions with regard to these two characters were more sympathetic than any reading of the text would suggest, but the notion that their relationship is anything but hollow and toxic is a genuine shock. For DiDi... “dense” and “accidental” only cover so much. Sure, these are comic strip characters and their natures are a little exaggerated, but her willingness to transfer her affections wholeheartedly to anyone she thinks will help her climax isn’t just dense and naïve, it’s emotionally defective. I’d say it’s got a few things in common with Borderline Personality Disorder, but even that’s giving it far too much credit. I thought she was being deliberately written as a completely selfish person who would, by the end of the strip, have to realize that her behavior was abusive. The idea that she’s anything else... I’m sorry to be so bluntly critical, but I just don’t think it’s been conveyed by her actions on the page.

With Zii at least I can just barely - just barely - stretch to believe that she has genuine feelings for DiDi, though they seemingly arrived suddenly and from nowhere, and would be based on a complete lack of shared interests or life experience. Perhaps she’s been deliberately concealing them; I could see that. Sort of. But the idea that DiDi reciprocates, much less that they have anything approaching a genuine relationship, man, that’s just a step too far.

That said, my biggest worry now would be Gary. All the little red flags I’ve tried to ignore all along about how the strip treats him are suddenly a lot more persuasive... I had been hoping for a happy ending for Gary, the one really sympathetic character, to compensate for the parade of disasters that is his life, but now I’m genuinely questioning whether that was ever in the cards. It’s possible that his relationship with Peggy - wherein a heterosexual male allows himself to be anally penetrated because he’s too polite to say no and learns to love it - is just a metaphor for his life.

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Spidrift
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Re: 23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

Post by Spidrift » Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:41 am

Mmm-hmm. I personally have no problems with the idea of a happy ending for DiDi. This is a comedy; happy endings all round are, technically, traditional, and I try not to hate lines on paper. My problem is seeing how she can ever get there in the time available.

A lot of the problem is that her problems aren’t deliberate or malicious. Someone who’s simply a bit selfish or unthinking can, plausibly, learn better and start to reform. We’ve had a pretty good example with Zii, who suffered a severe reality check when the band broke up, worked out that the cause of this was her own faults, and is making a serious attempt to become a better person. Good for her, round of applause — and the potential for all of this was always part of her character. DiDi, on the other hand, is a fundamentally broken person. She’s always been given whatever she wants (if people were able), her bad behaviour has always been forgiven, and she’s never learned to form proper relationships with other people, because the boobs got in the way. This has turned her into the accidental monster of selfishness that so many readers understandably if pointlessly love to hate.

Frankly, I think that the team have written themselves into a corner with DiDi, and I don’t anticipate a satisfying conclusion for her story.
Prydonian wrote:
Sun Jun 24, 2018 6:54 am
That said, my biggest worry now would be Gary. All the little red flags I’ve tried to ignore all along about how the strip treats him are suddenly a lot more persuasive... I had been hoping for a happy ending for Gary, the one really sympathetic character, to compensate for the parade of disasters that is his life, but now I’m genuinely questioning whether that was ever in the cards. It’s possible that his relationship with Peggy - wherein a heterosexual male allows himself to be anally penetrated because he’s too polite to say no and learns to love it - is just a metaphor for his life.
Gary’s life used to be a parade of disasters, but honestly, now? Get real. He’s got good friends, his dream job, a bunch of sexual (and other) experiences under his belt, a party trick which ensures that any woman will come away from a sexual encounter with warm feelings towards him, and the ability to talk to women as human beings. He’s actually already got his happy ending, though he understandably wants to crown it with a serious relationship. He may end the comic in a stable happy relationship, or he may end up setting out into the wide world walking tall with a half-smile on his face, but either way, he'll be fine.
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Prydonian
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Re: 23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

Post by Prydonian » Mon Jun 25, 2018 5:29 am

Spidrift wrote:
Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:41 am
Gary’s life used to be a parade of disasters, but honestly, now? Get real. He’s got good friends, his dream job, a bunch of sexual (and other) experiences under his belt, a party trick which ensures that any woman will come away from a sexual encounter with warm feelings towards him, and the ability to talk to women as human beings. He’s actually already got his happy ending, though he understandably wants to crown it with a serious relationship. He may end the comic in a stable happy relationship, or he may end up setting out into the wide world walking tall with a half-smile on his face, but either way, he'll be fine.
Hmm. Fair points (except “get real,” which was a touch unnecessary). I think you may be overselling the happiness of his life a little - most of the time, as he recently observed, his sexual exploits are more like things that happen to him than with him. He has developed a normal human amount of confidence, yes, and a good job, so yeah, he’s not exactly miserable, and we’ve seen definite, positive character development. Good friends? Maybe. I guess what I’m getting at is that a proper relationship has always seemed to be the thing at the end of his quest. No matter how many exciting experiences he’s had, they’ve always seen him dragged along, helpless and wide-eyed, in someone else’s wake. His sexual encounters are more tragic than satisfying; he gets used for one thing and his own desires are rarely a consideration. Recently we saw him take the reins of his own life, and that was great. I’ve just been assuming he’d finally attain the one thing he’s always wanted and be more than a sympathetic ear and a tongue for someone.

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Spidrift
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Re: 23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

Post by Spidrift » Mon Jun 25, 2018 7:53 am

Actually, he never said anything about wanting a stable relationship until recently. He was prepared to take one if it seemed to be what was on offer, but when he started, he just wanted to get out of the mopey rut he was in then. he wants one now, and good luck to him, but I don’t recall him setting that as a specific goal until that post-coital conversation with Peggy.

And his sexual encounters mostly seem to be moderately satisfying for him at the time, and certainly not tragic. (I don’t think that word means what you think it means...) The porn stars and Traci have used him rather badly, for sure, and the thing with Peggy started out as an imposition, but even he now uses the latter as a marker for how far his life has come on. (It works fine on its own terms, he’d just like something deeper.) The encounters with people like Kiley and Senna tended to leave him with a (slightly confused) smile on his face. He still tends to be passively obliging, but that’s Gary being Gary.

And there’s no “maybe” about him having good friends. There’s a whole list of people he can talk to, who share his interests in various ways, and who’ll do him favours when he needs help. They’re all comedic weirdoes with a large closet full of issues each, of course (except Jung, who has his act together), because this is Ma3, but he’s not alone and he’s not unloved.
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TCampbell
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Re: 23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

Post by TCampbell » Mon Jun 25, 2018 1:06 pm

worldshaking00 wrote:
Sat Jun 23, 2018 10:24 pm
Even reading the strips @TCampbell referenced, I am still not convinced that their relationship is strong.
Well, I never argued that. Any relationship that can be thrown into crisis by a single misplaced word ("ouvert/open") is in a state of quantum uncertainty about its success or failure. It's just this "totally loveless" thing that throws me. DiDi has said she loved Zii on at least two separate occasions, too.

DiDi is not like you or me. Her intellectual limitations and her selective experiences (never being dumped before Kiley, only just learning what a "rebound" is, etc.) have given her a fairly... unique perspective on relationships. When she learns a new tidbit, she's generally quite excited about it, and that's a point in her favor: willful ignorance would definitely doom her to the same old patterns. But beyond all the little factoids she's picked up, she still has trouble understanding how vulnerable sex and love make most of us.

Any sort of ending for her depends on addressing that one way or another, either by showing her learning what she needs so that she and others can be happy or by showing her as incapable of that. But it seems to me that many commenters judge her as if she is like you or me and just claiming ignorance out of spite. And, well, no.
Gil Hamilton wrote:
Sun Jun 24, 2018 1:08 am
Panic? What panic?
If Peggy's first line of dialogue here does not read as panic to you, then I don't know what to tell you. Yes, she calms down fairly quickly, partly because of her strength of character and partly because she has a giant Amazon protecting her, but she still asks DiDi to talk to her so that panic doesn't recur.

I'll admit I went too far on one point here: I'm going to walk back my interpretation that she called Aishani instead of emergency services directly. I do still think that Aishani would cover for her in a jam, but you may be right about the dispatch, and in any case, Peggy would opt to risk being brought in rather than unnecessarily endanger her patient. However:

I'm not sure what encounters y'all have had with the law and/or EMTs in the past, but it is a lot easier for someone to slip away in the short window of time before emergency vehicles show up than some of you seem to think, if you know such vehicles are on their way. You'll forgive me if I don't give specifics here, but my knowledge of this is not purely theoretical. Stabilizing someone for that amount of time, if you are a trained medical professional, is not unbelievable either, though of course it depends on the injury.

Peggy was just nearly killed because of whom she was dating. She felt like coming forward as a witness in a police station represented less safety than fleeing on foot and taking her chances. I wish I could say that feeling were uncommon. But her feeling of personal risk is now fading, so what will she do going forward?

To see if I can clarify my earlier comments, the Penny and Aggie story involved clear and present danger to a classmate. There is no analogous aspect in the situation Peggy is facing. The only parties involved here are Bianca and the assassins.

Peggy has found out that her old friend is involved in espionage. Is it espionage for a government Peggy supports? I think it'd pretty much have to be, otherwise even I couldn't see Peggy failing to blow the whistle on her. Of course, Peggy would only have Bianca's word on that, but even now, based on what she feels she knows of Bianca's character, she may have decided to trust Bianca on that point. And the assassins seemed like they were perfectly fine with killing Peggy as well as Bianca, so that encourages Peggy to trust Bianca over them, too. At any rate, she doesn't owe them anything more than trying her best to save their lives.

What, then, is her responsibility? To go to the police or to keep what she knows to herself?

Better question, I think: Why was Bianca contacting Peggy, anyway, if she was involved in espionage and at such personal risk? She may or may not own her place ("You actually settled down?" "I could be convinced to make it permanent") and it may or may not be under an assumed name, but there would certainly have been the chance that Peggy would identify her or put her name on social media or do one of a dozen other things that might've compromised her. That strikes me as much more of an unresolved issue than anything Peggy's done, here.

I am, of course, only one-third or so of the decision-making process behind Ma3, and it's entirely possible my next talk with Gisele and Dave will address these questions. But TBH, I would've found it significantly more unbelievable if Peggy had gone straight to the cops.

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Spidrift
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Re: 23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

Post by Spidrift » Mon Jun 25, 2018 1:27 pm

TCampbell wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 1:06 pm
DiDi has said she loved Zii on at least two separate occasions, too.
Forgive me if I treat DiDi as about as reliable a narrator as a baboon in an orange hairpiece. It’s long been a running joke that she can stun the likes of Kiley or Peggy with the sheer unfathomable depths of her gormlessness.
Better question, I think: Why was Bianca contacting Peggy, anyway, if she was involved in espionage and at such personal risk?
For what it’s worth, which is probably zero... Well, I was assuming that she wasn’t expecting a wetwork squad to drop by this very evening. She may, say, have thought that she had her trail better covered than was the truth. But anyway, as you yourself have said, people have an amazing capacity to think of their unique personal experiences as “normal”. Bianca may have difficulty adjusting to the idea that not everyone can take this stuff in their stride. Especially if the other person in question went along with her lesser craziness in the past.
I am, of course, only one-third or so of the decision-making process behind Ma3, and it's entirely possible my next talk with Gisele and Dave will address these questions. But TBH, I would've found it significantly more unbelievable if Peggy had gone straight to the cops.
Whereas my bet is that trying to make sense of the gunfight scene and its aftermath is a fool’s errand. I reckon that it’s all just a honking great plot device, dropped in largely on a whim. (And I mean, Ma3 is so logically plotted most of the time.)
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Re: 23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

Post by TCampbell » Mon Jun 25, 2018 5:18 pm

Spidrift wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 1:27 pm
(And I mean, Ma3 is so logically plotted most of the time.)
You got us there.

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Re: 23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

Post by Udyr » Mon Jun 25, 2018 6:18 pm

TCampbell wrote:
Sat Jun 23, 2018 2:48 pm
Udyr wrote:
Sat Jun 23, 2018 11:21 am
I seriously hope some sort of karma will happen, but who knows. I guess being in a loveless relationship only based on sex alone when wanting something more is a punishment alone. Gary should just tell her the truth- 'he happened to spot them out of the cafe when he was doing an errand (even if the errand was to 'not spy' on her) :))
For a very long time now, I have felt a disconnect between what seems to be the general consensus in the forums and the views that I think Gisele, Dave, and I hold when it comes to the character of some of our characters, particularly Zii and DiDi. I think we tend to see their actions through a far more compassionate lens than y'all do (and I know I'm generalizing here, but I don't have the time to go case-by-case).

If you're reading Ma3 in hopes that DiDi falls into an open manhole in the last strip, followed by a cry of "Aaaagh! Les alligators sont partout!" and a few crunching sounds, then I'm afraid we're going to disappoint you. DiDI's cruelties are accidental; her kindnesses are deliberate. Sure, she's dense as osmium, especially when she's got the prospect of an orgasm to cloud her perspective, but add a few IQ points and that was probably me in my early twenties, too.

Zii is a more complex case because she does have the experience and intelligence to understand that following her impulses has harmed both others and herself. I do admit that some reader response probably improved her development in terms of inspiring us to give her more accountability. She's working on changing. It's not easy.

The narrative that the relationship between them is "loveless" baffles me. The mere fact that DiDi seems to be demisexual (which would probably have been an issue with Lynn) would seem to contradict that. I realize we probably didn't show enough of their non-sexual bonding after the Overlord arc to set this up, but I have to wonder what evidence, if any, would sway opinion toward the relationship being genuine at this point. That should not be taken as a spoiler-- they could stay together, they could split. But the answer to "when will they realize this is empty, meaningless sex" is "never, because it isn't and never was."

If you're reading and enjoying the strip, then thanks. If you're doing so despite (or because of) loathing any or all of our characters, then thanks again, but I don't know how much we'll have to say to each other. To me, the MA3 cast has its good points and bad like most people, but there aren't any I consider hate-worthy.

Except Nathan and Yvan.
I think the disconnection indeed seem to be an issue in webcomics in general since readers do really read stuff differently, i totally get what you mean. Being the artist does give you a different relationship and you do get more insight into them than as a reader, I write/draw comics too so im too familiar with the issue, especially with the build up thing with Zii and Didi. Readers in general can see things that isnt there, or they can just see things that IS there without knowing context. Also some pull their own experiences into it. I personally don't hate any of them nor want anyone to fall into an alligatorhole, and so far all we've seen is Didi willing to run to another person for sex- its easy to jump into the conclusion from a readers point that its a bad relationship but its also probably easy to speak too soon as its a webcomic and we get time to speculate :))
I do wholeheartly enjoy the comic and have followed since the first page, i got caught in the heat of the moment when writing that comment you replied to and it sounded alot meaner i realised reading it now than it was intended to be :-\
eeeek!

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Re: 23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

Post by Cortez » Mon Jun 25, 2018 7:11 pm

TCampbell wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 1:06 pm
DiDi has said she loved Zii on at least two separate occasions, too.
She also said she loved Kiley. And again, only because she got her to orgasm. So it feels more like she confuses love with lust.

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Re: 23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

Post by Spidrift » Mon Jun 25, 2018 8:53 pm

Udyr wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 6:18 pm
I think the disconnection indeed seem to be an issue in webcomics in general since readers do really read stuff differently, i totally get what you mean.
I wonder if the problem here is to do with the comic having two writers and an activist sort of editor. There's nothing wrong with that in itself, but if the three of them discuss some feature of a character long enough and in enough detail, they may decide that the feature is well and truly established -- and forget that they haven't, you know, shown the readers that thing.
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TCampbell
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Re: 23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

Post by TCampbell » Mon Jun 25, 2018 10:09 pm

Udyr wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 6:18 pm
TCampbell wrote:
Sat Jun 23, 2018 2:48 pm
Udyr wrote:
Sat Jun 23, 2018 11:21 am
I seriously hope some sort of karma will happen, but who knows. I guess being in a loveless relationship only based on sex alone when wanting something more is a punishment alone. Gary should just tell her the truth- 'he happened to spot them out of the cafe when he was doing an errand (even if the errand was to 'not spy' on her) :))
For a very long time now, I have felt a disconnect between what seems to be the general consensus in the forums and the views that I think Gisele, Dave, and I hold when it comes to the character of some of our characters, particularly Zii and DiDi. I think we tend to see their actions through a far more compassionate lens than y'all do (and I know I'm generalizing here, but I don't have the time to go case-by-case).

If you're reading Ma3 in hopes that DiDi falls into an open manhole in the last strip, followed by a cry of "Aaaagh! Les alligators sont partout!" and a few crunching sounds, then I'm afraid we're going to disappoint you. DiDI's cruelties are accidental; her kindnesses are deliberate. Sure, she's dense as osmium, especially when she's got the prospect of an orgasm to cloud her perspective, but add a few IQ points and that was probably me in my early twenties, too.

Zii is a more complex case because she does have the experience and intelligence to understand that following her impulses has harmed both others and herself. I do admit that some reader response probably improved her development in terms of inspiring us to give her more accountability. She's working on changing. It's not easy.

The narrative that the relationship between them is "loveless" baffles me. The mere fact that DiDi seems to be demisexual (which would probably have been an issue with Lynn) would seem to contradict that. I realize we probably didn't show enough of their non-sexual bonding after the Overlord arc to set this up, but I have to wonder what evidence, if any, would sway opinion toward the relationship being genuine at this point. That should not be taken as a spoiler-- they could stay together, they could split. But the answer to "when will they realize this is empty, meaningless sex" is "never, because it isn't and never was."

If you're reading and enjoying the strip, then thanks. If you're doing so despite (or because of) loathing any or all of our characters, then thanks again, but I don't know how much we'll have to say to each other. To me, the MA3 cast has its good points and bad like most people, but there aren't any I consider hate-worthy.

Except Nathan and Yvan.
I think the disconnection indeed seem to be an issue in webcomics in general since readers do really read stuff differently, i totally get what you mean. Being the artist does give you a different relationship and you do get more insight into them than as a reader, I write/draw comics too so im too familiar with the issue, especially with the build up thing with Zii and Didi. Readers in general can see things that isnt there, or they can just see things that IS there without knowing context. Also some pull their own experiences into it. I personally don't hate any of them nor want anyone to fall into an alligatorhole, and so far all we've seen is Didi willing to run to another person for sex- its easy to jump into the conclusion from a readers point that its a bad relationship but its also probably easy to speak too soon as its a webcomic and we get time to speculate :))
I do wholeheartly enjoy the comic and have followed since the first page, i got caught in the heat of the moment when writing that comment you replied to and it sounded alot meaner i realised reading it now than it was intended to be :-\
Don't worry about it too much. We've all been there. :-)

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Re: 23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

Post by Fluffy » Tue Jun 26, 2018 12:42 am

Cortez wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 7:11 pm
TCampbell wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 1:06 pm
DiDi has said she loved Zii on at least two separate occasions, too.
She also said she loved Kiley. And again, only because she got her to orgasm. So it feels more like she confuses love with lust.
Let's not forget that moment of - what? - forgetfulness? when Lynn asked about Didi's relationship with Zii.

And - considering that first link Campbell supplied - for someone who said she loved Zii and would never hurt her again, it's going to be interesting to see how Didi responds to Zii's explanation that her earlier comment about an open relationship was in regards to being honest with each other and not a blessing to have a side piece.

If we see that interaction, that is.
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suranae
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Re: 23-06-18 Gotta little ketchup

Post by suranae » Tue Jun 26, 2018 3:35 am

I don't believe that zii or Didi really love each other because they really don't know what true platonic romantic love is.

Love is a constant sacrifice, putting another at the same level or before your own needs. It's not a thing your can earn. It's a thing given for the wildest reasons.

The are certainly affectionate towards each other but that doesn't have to be love. What they are is friends. You guys haven't actually shown a lot of them together on panel being friendly or with dialogue that shows the trust necessary being built.

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