Angela's "relationship" with Jordan

General discussion about the nineteen episodes of "My So-Called Life". Note: Our episode guide can be found here.
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Angela's "relationship" with Jordan

Post by molkoshake » Jan 8th 2003, 4:31 pm

I never really understood why she thought she had some sort of relationship with Jordan, and in the episode where he "ums" Rayanne and they are talking and he's all like sometimes I really think I know her...HOW??? I mean these two had the most inane and short conversations ever....

Just needed to say that...But yeah would everyone agree that they had NO relationship>????


Anyways...Me stop rambling
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Re: Angela

Post by fnordboy » Jan 8th 2003, 5:04 pm

molkoshake wrote: Just needed to say that...But yeah would everyone agree that they had NO relationship>????
I would completly agree. Except, in her head she really thought she did.

That has always been my biggest problem with the show. This whole built up thing about their "relationship" when one never really existed. A lot of the times I couldn't feel sorry for her in the way you are supposed to (or was intended) when I would be sitting there going (WHAT RELATIONSHIP?!?!?! :? )

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Post by Natasha (candygirl) » Jan 8th 2003, 5:21 pm

Again, I must state the obvious (I am starting to sound like a broken record) - they're high school kids which means they are still figuring things out. Jordan's lack of communication allowed Angela to project her fantasies upon him. The above quote by Jordan illustrates that he was doing a little projecting of his own.

Despite the fact that Jordan initially claims that Angela talks too much, she doesn't communicate her feelings to him very often or try to discuss their relationship. If you think about every interaction they have, it is obvious that they are interested in each other but they rarely verbalize it (with the exception of when they argue, possibly because they feel safe discussing what is past, i.e. "Admit it...that this happened, that you have emotions," "So are we supposed to say something, like, official?") - they talk about superficial things like the dance, the band, guys who make snow, coffee, etc.

Even when they talk about personal matters (like Jordan's reading skills or Angela persuading Jordan to attend class), they leave a lot unsaid. The "unsaid" leaves a lot of space, a blank canvas if you will, where they can paint a picture of what they perceive to be the truth. They both interpret the other's actions and create scenarios in their heads which do not always fit reality.
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Post by lizardcub » Jan 8th 2003, 5:37 pm

But they made out in the boiler room!!!!!!!!

If that's not a sign of a serious relationship, I don't know WHAT is.

ETA (Edited to Add): I was being fascetious in this post...but I do think they have a real relationship, albeit not the most healthy one, and not the most serious one either.

K-man, I've been with my boyfriend for a year, we have a very serious relationship, and he has never called me other than to make plans, and even then only the kind of plans that require cell-phone calling rather than emailing me later that day (like, the "where are you now?" sort of plan-making). That's because he has an aversion to talking on the phone. And I have never seen a likelier candidate for such an aversion than Jordan Catalano. Just a thought.
Last edited by lizardcub on Jan 8th 2003, 6:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by K-man » Jan 8th 2003, 6:16 pm

HMMMMM. Well.....I don't know that I would totally agree that the boiler room exactly means a serious relationship. Just my feeling. Candygirl you do make a good arguement FOR their relatoinship but I can also see the side that says none exists, or at best exist on the periphery. One example I would throw out there is in On The Wagon ( i think ) when Jordan calls Angela from the rehearsal to complain about RayAnne, and Angela replies with surprise, "You just never called me before". (or somehting like that) I think that is the only time in the series we actually see Jordan call angela....no?. If there was a relationship, I think there would have at least been regular or semi-regular phone conversation. And in Strangers in the house, when under the bleachers, even before Shane appears, Jordan doesn't seem too compassionate toward Angela's problems/pain. Awful cold behavior for a boyfriend . Just an observation.
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Post by fnordboy » Jan 8th 2003, 7:31 pm

If there is a relationship it is completely imagined on her part. I don't know if Angela specifically ever said "boyfriend", but I am positive she thought of Jordan as her "boyfriend". Jordan on the other hand always thought of her as a girl. He may have loved her as implied, but you do not have to be in a relationship to be in love.

There are two ways I have(do) looked at this:

One. Angela has the idea that by making out with someone you are now an "item" which is not the case at all in reality. As is clearly shown by Jordan's actions towards her for most of the show. It is your typical cliche of how teenage girls view interaction between the opposite sex. But cliches are born of some fact. We all knew girls at one point in our lives growing up that create this false reality. And we all knew some guys who did the same.

Even when they are in his car when he is letting her drive. That is like the first definite semblance of an actualy relationship (but not enough to convince me (and clearly others) that there is one). To me I view that as they are just hanging out. Even though there is no real relationship, there are some perks.

Two. That we as the viewers were jsut supposed to accept that they were in a relationship now, even though we never ssaw the real beginnings of it. This is one part that always confused me. I always wondered (and still do) "did i miss something?". Is it just understood now that they are together. If that is the case than the really brings the show down a notch for me, it shows me that it wasn't as well crafted as it is perceived to be (IF THAT IS THE CASE), which i HIGHLY doubt.

My true feeling about the show now is that Angela is growing up at this point. This is the first time in her life that she has to come to terms with such emotions and how to handle them, as well as such situations. She is leaving the fantasy that she created after the initial "messing arounds" with Jordan and now has to build a relationship from it. I think that is the point that the last episode ends at. She is at the crossroads of does she go forward and start (not continue) a relationship with Jordan now, of course now with the added mix of how she feels, or may feel, about Brian (or yet again, how she may perceive herself to feel).

I think she may be a little too old for that, especially in my experience. When I was growing up people were ahead of that part of there 'coming of age'. Some of course weren't. I think that TV and Hollywood always do that though, make crucial life events take place slightly to late (agewise) than they actually do in real life.

Ok this post got too long and probably doesnt make any sense since I was interrupted several times at work while writing this. I will reread it later and probably clarify some things.

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Re: Angela's "relationship" with Jordan

Post by NIGHTJESSI » Jan 9th 2003, 4:35 am

Maybe it's the hopeless romantic in me, but I did see Angela and Jordan as having a relationship for part of MSCL. Granted, much of MSCL dealt with Angela fantasizing about being with Jordan and obsessing over him when he was being a bit distant.

But in the end, Jordan was the one who took Angela's hand to walk down that hallway. For high school, that's a pretty public statement that says, "Hey! We are an item." And the fact that he and Angela actually had a conversation about things being over means that there was something going on in the first place that transcended just infatuation with each other.
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Post by SanDeE* » Jan 9th 2003, 11:53 am

fnordboy wrote:She is leaving the fantasy that she created after the initial "messing arounds" with Jordan and now has to build a relationship from it. I think that is the point that the last episode ends at. She is at the crossroads of does she go forward and start (not continue) a relationship with Jordan now, of course now with the added mix of how she feels, or may feel, about Brian (or yet again, how she may perceive herself to feel).
Right on! I am sort of going through the same thing right now. Maybe starting a relationship with someone I was previously "messing around" with. (Of course, it's a bit easier for me since we live in different cities.) It feels both good and also bad. Angela should keep in mind that Jordan will start asking for sex again. Will she be ready for it then? And now with Brian. Brian seems like he'll be a little bit clingy. I'm assuming he's never had a girlfriend before.

I just thought of something (although it's probably been said before). In Dancing in the Dark(? I think-correct me if I'm wrong) Angela is in her room with Rayanne and Rickie, saying, "Maybe I'd rather have the fantasy than even him." Do you think that perhaps Brian feels this way about Angela? Has he built her up in his mind to be the end-all-be-all of all girls? I liked the part in the beginning of Resolutions where Brian resolves to get over his crush for Angela. I've been there too!

When I first watched the shows on ABC, I was rooting for Jordan to get Angela. But now, watching them again on DVD, I wish Brian would get her. Brian seems like he could be a better boyfriend boyfriend than Jordan.
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Post by Natasha (candygirl) » Jan 9th 2003, 3:11 pm

Kristin wrote:In Dancing in the Dark(? I think-correct me if I'm wrong) Angela is in her room with Rayanne and Rickie, saying, "Maybe I'd rather have the fantasy than even him." Do you think that perhaps Brian feels this way about Angela? Has he built her up in his mind to be the end-all-be-all of all girls?
Although Brian has built Angela up to be the Ultimate One, I think that he is far more realistic, as evidenced by his statement in Self Esteem (when they discuss the Shakespeare sonnet in Katimski's class). He knows she isn't perfect because he has seen all the stupid things she has done in the past few months (as well as all the stupid things she did while they were growing up - I'm sure sixth grade provided a pile of evidence), but he likes her in spite of, and perhaps because of, her flaws. He knows that she is human and real, not just a fantasy constructed in his head.
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Post by Megs » Jan 9th 2003, 5:56 pm

I agree with candygirl. He loves her because she's not a fantasy girl. He loves her because she's real. He might have built her up a little in his head, but he seesher in a way that Jordan doesn't. He has seen her change and grow, and despite of all that, he loves her anyway.
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Post by SanDeE* » Jan 9th 2003, 11:21 pm

This thread is great! Why does Angela have to be so harsh to Brian? I don't really understand this. I have friends that I've known forever. The angry feelings between Angela and Brian is the only part of the show (as far as relationships go) that is really unrealistic to me. As much as I can relate to Angela through most of the episodes, when I see a scene in which Angela is mean to Brian, I want to say, "Brian what are you doing?! Forget about her!" I never thought I would side with the akward neighbor boy so much. I guess I've found my soft spot. I love the romantic (even physical?!) tension between those two. I love in Father Figures, when Brian takes off his sweater and gives it to Angela. What a hottie! (Okay, that was slightly OT.)

Due to my particular personal boy situation at the moment, however, I'm rooting for the Angela/Jordan relationship. I watched a few episodes today, and I can completely relate when Angela says, "It's so unfair! I think about him all the time and he gets to be the one with other things on his mind." (close enough.)
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Post by Megs » Jan 10th 2003, 1:13 pm

That's one of my favorite quotes in the series. It's not just the words, it's how she says it.

"But that's the part that's so unfair. I have nothing else on my mind. How come I have to be the one sitting around analyzing him in like microscopic detail, and he gets to be the one with other things on his mind."
"I have all these dreams where I know exactly what to say. And you tell me, you know, that you forgive me."

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Post by Natasha (candygirl) » Jan 10th 2003, 5:37 pm

As non-relationship-ish as Angela and Jordan's situation is by the time the Betrayal occurs, what I find even more humorous is Angela's take on their "relationship" in Why Jordan Can't Read:
I think...I'm finally over him... Like, I admit how I was...overpoweringly attracted to him, or whatever, but you know, I point out that he could have handled things differently, and he really did not know me at all. Even though he acted like he did, and...you, you know, yeah...I was somewhat obsessed with him, at one time, but you know, I...not anymore. Because I've, like, moved beyond that.
She wrote a five page letter "contain[ing] every feeling I've ever wanted to express about Jordan Catalano" when all that had happened was them looking at each other in the hallway and two introductory kisses outside of Brian's house? Conversation-wise, so far he has asked her what day it is, they discuss the sex rumor, he advises her to scalp her Dead tickets, etc - in other words, nothing of consequence.

So in those superficial conversations, when did he ever act like he really knew her? And how should he have handled things differently? I mean, maybe he shouldn't have planted one on her in the car or he shouldn't have told her that they might as well have sex since everyone already thought they had, but it isn't as though either of these instances caused worldwide destruction :wink:

Based on the fact that she already imagined that she had a relationship with Jordan that merited a five page letter, it isn't too surprising that when things progressed to making out in the boiler room she thought she was making the transition to Couple/Relationship mode.
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in my opinion...

Post by Lindsay » Jan 10th 2003, 9:24 pm

the relationship really started AFTER they "broke up." But honestly, even though when I hear Angela saying things like "I had someone....and I lost him....." I sometimes wince, at the same time I completley understand.


Must add: In the choice between Brian/Jordon, does anyone agree that even though a girl may KNOW that a certain guy would treat her better, she just CAN'T think of him like that. I don't know if Angela could ever ACTUALLY like Brain "like that."

one more thing.....

I absolutley love (since I seem to be defending Jordon here- even after watching pressure last night) when Angela is all worried about Rickie in the Christmas episode, and Jordon offers to take her to see him and reaches for her hand as they walk away. Ahhh...... and it seemed to be second nature for him- finally!

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Re: in my opinion...

Post by SanDeE* » Jan 11th 2003, 12:22 am

Lindsay wrote:In the choice between Brian/Jordon, does anyone agree that even though a girl may KNOW that a certain guy would treat her better, she just CAN'T think of him like that. I don't know if Angela could ever ACTUALLY like Brain "like that."
I agree, but I don't think it has anything to do with how Brian compares to Jordan in how they treat Angela. I have a few male friends that I've known since we were all babies. Although we've all admitted to having little crushes on each other sporadically (well, except for the guys on each other!), now I can't look at them without seeing a brother. That's what has happened: They are my brothers now. Even though I recognize that they are handsome and wonderful men, I can't even phathom starting anything remotely romantic or physical with them. It sicks me out!

So here's the part of the show that I don't understand (and I know it's just because of my personal experience with life-long friends of the opposite sex) - Angela and Brian are not like brother and sister to each other. Me, I would expect they'd feel like that about each other. And even some of their quarrels and quick tempers with each other are sort of sibling-ish, I find it tough to believe that Brian has romantic feelings for Angela.
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