what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

General discussion about the nineteen episodes of "My So-Called Life". Note: Our episode guide can be found here.
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Re: what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

Post by Superjesus » Jul 15th 2011, 5:25 am

Yeah, just reading through old posts leaves me pretty stunned how much hate there is for Jordan on this forum - conversely, how much Brian is put on a pedestal because of some arbitrary idea that he's "better for Angela." Why exactly I've never been able to figure out. Catalano may not be a perfect match - but his flaws are easier to fix than Krakow's in my not very humble opinion.

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Re: what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

Post by Natasha (candygirl) » Jul 15th 2011, 8:14 am

I just re-read this thread and I don't see any Jordan hate or putting Brian on a pedestal in this discussion at all.

As for fixing Brian or Jordan, i don't think Angela (or anyone, for that matter) should go into a relationship with the idea that they can fix the other person. That's usually a recipe for disaster.

I was thinking about who had already narrated and why I did or didn't enjoy it to help me see who I would like to have narrate another episode. I liked Brian's narration (as well as Angela's, which probably goes without saying) because I liked hearing what they thought, which was not always obvious from their actions.

I didn't enjoy Danielle's narration but given the purpose of the entire Weekend episode, that's not surprising. But more specifically, her internal monologue didn't give me any new interesting information. Her attitude was always pretty clear so her monologue just verbalized what we already knew about her: she looked up to her big sister and wanted to be included.

My conclusion was that I would like narration by someone whose thought process or internal voice would be revealing or give me more insight into their character. Part of the reason that Brian's was so fascinating is that although we knew a lot about him, his narration showed us some of his inner turmoil and explained some of his motivation. For that reason, I think that the rest of the Chase family might not be as interesting because we have already been exposed to so much of their lives and interactions with each other.

Although I agree with Jody that narration from Jordan might break the mystique, I'd be interested to hear some of his thoughts. I know he seems like a what you see is what you get kind of guy, but in his dealings with Angela he wasn't always quite so obvious. What was he thinking when he stayed at the loft and deliberately avoided meeting her parents? Yes, he said she made too big a deal out of things, but I think there was more to it than just that.

Sharon talks to much that what you hear is what you get, and Rayanne is not shy about sharing her thoughts so I don't know that their narrations would have been that revealing. I think Ricky would have been an interesting narrator, and I would have liked more from Brian.
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Re: what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

Post by Jody Barsch* » Jul 15th 2011, 8:32 am

Really well-put Natasha. I agree about Danielle (although I like the phrasing of the line "My life is, different people kicking me out of different rooms", but yeah, we didn't need her to say it to know it, or she very well could have said it aloud). Rickie's would be good. And your points about Jordan and what could be gained are right on.
What about an episode narrated by TIno? Not really; there's no need to jump the invisible cat.
Natasha (candygirl) wrote:I just re-read this thread and I don't see any Jordan hate or putting Brian on a pedestal in this discussion at all.
I think he met in the forum in general, which in some threads I'd say is pretty accurate.
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Re: what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

Post by Mutajon » Jul 16th 2011, 5:16 am

I agree with candy girl, Rickie would be my first choice for another narration. It just seems like a lot of the time he's trying so hard to please/protect others, while inside he's feeling completely different from his actions. So it could be very interesting to get a peek to his internal world. Plus there's this huge issue of his internal struggle with accepting his sexual identity and place in the world which would also be great to get insight to.

I would have also like and episode from one of the teachers (Katimsky?) point of view. It would be nice for a change to see how teachers view the teenagers rather than the other way around. To me it would be interesting to see how much a teacher is aware to the (different) personalities of his/her students, how he views their behavior etc...

As a particular example, I would have loved the "Resolutions" episode to be narrated by either Rickie or Katimsky.
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Re: what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

Post by Superjesus » Jul 16th 2011, 10:35 am

Natasha (candygirl) wrote:I just re-read this thread and I don't see any Jordan hate or putting Brian on a pedestal in this discussion at all.
I think he met in the forum in general, which in some threads I'd say is pretty accurate.[/quote]

That's pretty much what I meant.

For Angela to even consider Brian as a viable boyfriend, he needs to grow up a lot. For all his intellect, Krakow lags - considerably - in the areas of emotional maturity and intelligence. We see this throughout the series - classic example is his treatment of Delia just because he gets some notion in his head that Angela wants to go to the dance with him as her date.

Jordan, on the other hand, basically just needs to learn to open himself up more. I agree with candygirl that it shouldn't be Angela's (or anyone in a relationship, really) role to try and "fix" the other person - but the more time they spend together and the more confidence he develops in his ability to express himself to her (tutoring can also help in this regard) he will improve. Brian, on the other hand, has a much longer road to travel.

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Re: what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

Post by BuffaloLawnmower » Aug 27th 2011, 7:05 am

I would have liked to have seen Graham, Rickie, Rayanne, Patty, Sharon, and Jordan narrate, in that order. Maybe Tino :-p.

**

As for the Jordan vs. Brian sentiment on this forum, since that was mentioned, I tend to feel that the posters are evenly divided. Me, I like Brian better than Jordan, but, when it comes to who should be with Angela, I'm "team neither". I tend to feel really bad for Brian, because I can (sometimes even still do) relate to him quite a bit, but even I have to admit that he has some moments when he's a complete jerk, even if it is because he's acting out or is fed up with people using him. I think that most people here seem to see both the good and the bad in both Brian and Jordan.

**

Also, as to the idea (I've seen it I think on at least two threads) that Jordan is "easier to fix" than Brian: I have to (politely and respectfully) disagree. Jordan has a lot of issues and baggage, as does Brian. I'd say that they have equal amounts of maturing to do, but they need to grow in different areas.

Jordan's attitude that sex is "expected" and his notion that it's all right to pressure someone into sex are unacceptable. To be fair, though, I think that he is starting to learn to respect women more through knowing Angela, but he does still need to grow in that direction. I also would say that he needs to take school more seriously, continue to get help for his reading/literacy problems, and to become a little more responsible and dependable--not to the point that he is flat or one-dimensional, but, again, so that he learns to respect other people more and to be more considerate. He also needs (like Rickie) to find his own voice instead of going along with what his friends think or borrowing the voices of others (though to his credit, he is just starting to do that when he takes Angela's hand in "Self-Esteem", but he allows Brian to speak for him in "In Dreams Begin Responsibilities"). Jordan will also have to make the conscious choice to not repeat his family's patterns, which will be very difficult: it is sad but true (as has been pointed out) that many who grow up in a bad home turn into the people who mistreated them. He will have to make the choice to break the cycle and will have to be fully committed to the uphill battle of overcoming his environment.

Brian's first big obstacle is to let go of his feelings for Angela and to accept that she cannot reciprocate his feelings (much easier said than done). This big problem tends to aggravate other problems. He will never be able to have a successful romantic relationship with a woman unless and until he finally accepts Angela's rejection and rejects her as well (as a romantic partner, anyway). My hope after seeing the end of the last episode is that the letter incident will be the catalyst for him to finally give up on her and move on, that he'll finally say to himself that he's had enough, even though it might take a very long time for him to do that. The angst that he feels over being "the good guy" but still not being loved or appreciated causes him to be rude and unkind at times, which just further alienates him from people. As with Jordan, Brian has a cycle to break, and he must take it upon himself to do that (and to keep the cycle broken). He also needs to find other sources of self-worth aside from academics (I think that photography could be a good way to do that; he could grow from expressing himself creatively instead of holding things in or keeping them to himself). Brian also has to find ways to draw people to him who will appreciate him, and to act in ways that cause people to respect him rather than use him.

Neither Brian nor Jordan will ever be perfect; both will stumble and fall on the way to getting where they need to be, and might even stumble and fall at times once they get there. Both of them have gifts to offer as well as demons to fight.
Last edited by BuffaloLawnmower on Aug 27th 2011, 7:55 am, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

Post by BuffaloLawnmower » Aug 27th 2011, 7:22 am

saintsandpoetsmaybe wrote: [...] If only we could have more seasons to see these characters grow; they are all characters who are deep, complex, and somewhat enigmas.

I actually think there are a lot of characters in My So-Called life who leave us feeling ambivalent where we would usually be totally sure-footed and confident in our opinion of them. [...] I think it is very hard to place Angela firmly at the positive side of the spectrum. Even though we are predominantly given her narrative, her experience of the plot's events, we could still view Angela as being far from being morally and ethically perfect. [...]
I agree. Angela is probably one of my least favorite characters in the series, to be honest. I don't hate her, and can relate to her at times, but I don't always like her. In the episode "On the Wagon," she really seems to ignore or else be completely oblivious to how Rayanne is feeling because she's so focused on Jordan. I can't always relate to Rayanne, as I am very different than her, but in that episode, I really 'got' how Rayanne was feeling. I've felt the same way when friends have treated me as Angela treated Rayanne. That episode showed Angela not really being a great friend. It also made me more sympathetic toward Rayanne and caused me to see her in a 'brighter light'. Angela is also a bad friend to Rickie when she goes after Corey Helfrick; she is so mad about Rayanne 'umming' Jordan, but until Rickie points it out to her, she aggressively pursues Rickie's love interest (while trying to look like Rayanne with the braids and trying to act like her by claiming to drink). Angela doesn't even seem to really have any true feelings for Corey; he's like her rebound guy. Angela is really cruel to Brian in how she uses him. She isn't always nice to her parents or her sister; she isn't really nice to Sharon at the start of the series, either. I've often wondered what people see in her and why she has so many people who really love her. That said, though, I don't necessarily think that she always acts like this intentionally: I think that she honestly isn't super-aware of other people's feelings. She's more self-centered than intentionally malicious.

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Re: what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

Post by Jody Barsch* » Aug 27th 2011, 1:01 pm

BuffaloLawnmower wrote:Jordan's attitude that sex is "expected" and his notion that it's all right to pressure someone into sex are unacceptable.
You're making really good points, just have to keep the record straight, Jordan said accepted, not expected.


BuffaloLawnmower wrote:He also needs to find his own voice instead of going along with what his friends think or borrowing the voices of others (though to his credit, he is just starting to do that when he takes Angela's hand in "Self-Esteem"
Really really true. And even that didn't happen before Shane gave his go ahead or encouragement (we'll never know which it was). (It's my impression that more than finding a way to assert his own voice, Jordan needs to figure out what he wants. That's clearly not the issue with "In Dreams", but with things like leaving Tino's party etc. he's so ambivalent he doesn't have a voice to assert -- stay or leave, he doesn't care because he's disengaged with both).
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Re: what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

Post by Jody Barsch* » Aug 27th 2011, 2:00 pm

BuffaloLawnmower wrote:Angela is probably one of my least favorite characters in the series, to be honest. In the episode "On the Wagon," she really seems to ignore or else be completely oblivious to how Rayanne is feeling because she's so focused on Jordan. ... Angela is also a bad friend to Rickie when she goes after Corey Helfrick; she is so mad about Rayanne 'umming' Jordan, but until Rickie points it out to her, she aggressively pursues Rickie's love interest (while trying to look like Rayanne with the braids and trying to act like her by claiming to drink). ... Angela is really cruel to Brian in how she uses him.
Wow. I love Angela. Sometimes I cringe for her, but that makes me love her all the more. I definitely agree that she's not infallible, but that is truly one of my favorite things about the show. I never looked at "On the Wagon" being about Jordan. I've always taken her at her word and seen it about Her reservations about Rayanne.
This has nothing to do with Jordan, or the fact that we broke up or, or anything, that's what's so weird, it's something between Rayanne and me...I-I can't even describe, but it's there, and it's been there for, like, a while, since that night w-when you had to drive her to the hospital.
This itself may not be very fair, but I can't fault Angela for this, sealing with substance abuse with someone you love is unthinkably difficult and complex. In some respect, Angela may have "had a...wish, or whatever. To punish [her]. An unconscious wish. (You've heard of them, right?)" because, in a way, Rayanne's OD violates the implicit contract made between the girls in the Pilot episode -- nothing gets too dangerous or 'real' -- nothing will happen that can't be polished over with a good story, and that Rayanne will always "watch out for [her] ... always be there for [her], so, don't worry, 'kay?" (Angela never imagined Rayanne needed watching too.) Again, this doesn't make her perfect, but I don't judge her for it. (I think the reluctance to inquire about Rayanne joining the Embryos was partly to protect Rayanne from the boys' likely rejection, and partly not wanting to suggest something to Jordan that she knew he wouldn't take seriously, but she does in the end ask.) Her treatment of Rickie I won't defend. Angela had tunnel vision and had limited access to non-Brian Krakow non-threaening boys she could approach. I don't know that I agree that Angela's cruel to Brian. (I wonder though, if some of her harsher, non-justified treatment of him is a way to discourage his unwelcome amorous feelings that she must on some level sense are there.)
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Re: what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

Post by Mutajon » Aug 29th 2011, 7:20 am

Jody Barsch* wrote:
BuffaloLawnmower wrote:Jordan's attitude that sex is "expected" and his notion that it's all right to pressure someone into sex are unacceptable.
You're making really good points, just have to keep the record straight, Jordan said accepted, not expected.
That's true, but to keep the record even straighter I think that in order to really get Jordan's attitude towards the subject it's appropriate to quote his entire "scene":
"Because you don't get it, ok? (referring to Angela)
You're supposed to, it's accepted! It's what you're supposed to do!
Unless you're, like, abnormal.
"
So in other words, he does say (twice! and very unambiguously) that it is expected (and also accepted)...
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Re: what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

Post by Jesses_Girl » Sep 10th 2011, 11:52 pm

I'm surprised people aren't saying Rickie. I think he's one of the most intellectual characters on the show. He's always giving everyone advice and i would've liked to hear what he actually thought about certain situations. Just because he was always the sweetheart and uplifting, there could've been an entirely different thought going on in his head.

I also would like to hear more about his life, we go to Reyanne's home and Brian's home and learn about their families and where they came from. It gave us more info into why they are the way they are, but we never got that with Rickie.

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Re: what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

Post by Mutajon » Sep 17th 2011, 4:27 am

Mutajon wrote:I agree with candy girl, Rickie would be my first choice for another narration.
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Re: what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

Post by Gargelkark » Sep 18th 2011, 2:54 pm

Funny, I just e-mailed to Sascha saying that, back in 1996, I felt like Angela was really losing a lot of sympathies during growing up. She lost that unique something, that she had in the beginning of the show. She let that go over all the Jordan thing.

I also felt like Brian in fact had already started to give up on her. Maybe he was only able to write that letter for Jordan because he already felt like it wouldn´t make any difference anymore. Still, he did it to make her happy. He was still deeply in love, but also starting to care about himself.

Angela really was on her way to become a moron. In that last scene, it was her who let Jordan pull her into the car like, in the beginning, Brian let her pull him into any s..t she needed him in. Miss Chase was on her way to become a loser.

Things would not have become better with her in the second season. Her parents would have gotten in trouble, she would have become desperate and would have tried to make Brian help her in that situation. At the same time, she might have recognized that it is not a girl´s job to heal a handsome dumbass but be with someone who makes her happy. Still, she might have stayed with Jordan so that she could have avoided to admit she made the wrong choice and also to stay, at least, able to present tht sexy boy to the world as her own.

No, ladies and gentlemen, Angela was not on a good way there. Brian was.

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Re: what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

Post by Mutajon » Sep 19th 2011, 1:01 pm

Ummm... I think this last post belongs in another thread. :?
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Re: what other characters would you have wanted to narrate?

Post by Rainey's_Mischief » Sep 25th 2011, 12:44 pm

To add my 2 cents on the Jordan or Brian discussion, I don't see her with Brian at all. I don't believe she would have gotten with Brian if the show continued on. I think she and Jordan would have had a chance if she would have just told him in the first place, "Look i'm a virgin and I'm not ready yet. Give me some time and don't pressure me." He may have been understanding and things wouldn't have ended so abruptly. I wish the writers would have given their "relationship" more episodes.

To answer the original question: I would have loved to have heard an episode narrated by Jordan.
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