Angela and Rayanne: True friends??

General discussion about the nineteen episodes of "My So-Called Life". Note: Our episode guide can be found here.
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Angela_Catalano
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Angela and Rayanne: True friends??

Post by Angela_Catalano » Aug 10th 2004, 5:39 pm

Im not sure if anyone has talked about this subject yet, I couldnt see that they had, but I could be wrong...

What do you guys think?? Was Rayanne a true friend to Angela, Was Angela a true friend to Rayanne??

My opinion on Angela is typical to any teenage girl. I think Angela always chose the boy over the best friend. She usually (later in the series) makes Rayanne feel second best. She likes Rayanne, but after the whole Overdose thing, she just lost some interest in the friendship.

With Rayanne I always feel that she really cared deeply for Angela..(maybe too deeply) She always wanted to be the center of attention with Angela. Just instead of telling Angela how much she valued their friendship, she would do crazy things to draw attention to her self. She alway wanted Angela to think she was cool. As far as Rayanne sleeping with Jordan, I think she just did it for the attention she would get.

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Post by kandykiss19 » Aug 11th 2004, 1:59 am

nooo not eveeeenn!
angela never ditched rayanne!! it was just a couple of times she was with jordan. Its just that rayanne was so like obsessed with angela she felt lonely.
Or i guess rayanne isnt use to it cause in her sitauation guys dont stick around with her to be friends like jordan did with angela.
I dunno they have this like inside connection that does make them good friends.
Rayanne was a true friend even tho she did jordan. come she was drunk. but like look how much she looks up to angela and cares about her.
Well, either sex or a conversation, ideally both.

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Post by angel_food » Sep 1st 2006, 10:00 pm

i think there were a number of times angela was a semi-lousy friend. how about when right after she was betrayed by rayanne and jordan, she decided to go after corey, who ricky had liked? and ricky even pointed this out to her.
also, after finally having something of a relationship with jordan, she did a really half-assed job of helping rayanne out with getting a gig with jordan's band, and basically decided to make jordan more of her confidant than rayanne was.
i think one of the best parts of the show is the way the flaws of a character are mirrored through the other characters. rayanne is villified, because it's easy to villify her; she's the bad girl. but angela is nowhere near as pure or innocent as even the people on the show would like to think she is. she comes from a better home, which affords her more advantages, one of which is a more ironclad reputation. people (on the show and watching the show) need to believe in angela's goodness -- it makes their worlds make sense.

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Post by luvjordan » Sep 5th 2006, 12:41 pm

Rayanne and Angela became friends because Angela had a need. This was not the kind of friendship that she had with Sharon or even Brian, which evolved over time and shared intimacies. Angela specifically sought Rayanne out for the purpose of making some radical changes in her life. Clearly, she knew that Rayanne had an in with Jordan (at the very least, her relationship with Tino) and that Rayanne was experienced enough to mentor her through her metamorphosis. Rayanne, who is an attention-seeking, narcissistic, co-dependent, compulsive personality thrives on being the center of attention, which she would obviously be to a girl who wanted to be discipled by her. It's a mutually beneficial/destructive relationship. Rayanne is as good for Angela as she is bad. She helps Angela to break out of that middle class suburban rut that she wanted out of, but at the same time Rayannes erratic behaviour and disregard for personal safety takes Angela a little too far off the path. Even Rayanne's attitude toward sex, which presumably, is one of the reasons that Angela sought her out (more experience = good mentor), clashes with Angela's moral code. Angela is Rayanne's vision of normalcy and innocence, which she craves, but it's this very normalcy and innocence that keeps Angela at a distance when Rayanne is the least balanced, leading to rejection that compounds Rayanne's issues. I have no desire to vilifiy Rayanne's character. I think she is one of the more interesting characters on the show and give the show a nice dose of reality. She's not a villain, she's a victim.

I agree that Angela is not the sweet, innocent person that she may be believed to be by some, but she is selfish and manipulative in the same ways that most 15 yo's are. There is nothing pathological about her character. Rayanne, on the other hand, is pathological on so many levels. She is not capable of the same depth of committment or attachment that Angela, Sharon and Brian are. The instability of her home life, coupled with the addiction make her ill-equipped to have the kind of friendship with anyone, that we would like her to have with Angela. In Rayanne's mind she will always be the victim and will percieve life through those eyes. Every situation will be about her or the fact that she is not in some way included (Angela & Jordan's relationship). She's an attention junkie and if you're not feeding that beast, you become the enemy. Angela stopped feeding that beast when the OD occurred. Angela's pulling back from Rayanne at that point was more about an inability to cope with such a serious issue than it was about being a bad friend. Angela had not been equipped to deal with a life-threatening issue like overdose. I believe it was at this point that Angela realized that she was standing on the edge of a precipice, holding Rayanne's hand and decided that this reality was just too real, hence a retreat. For a little while Angela allowed herself to be defined by Rayanne and in relation to Rayanne. Once Rayanne crossed the line (OD'ing), Angela was no longer willing to give Rayanne that place in her life. Even her "half-assed" support of Rayanne joining Jordan's band, was more about, "What chaos will she wreak that will damage Jordan's trust in me?" than it was about her being a friend. Angela realized that Rayanne is a time bomb and she just didn't want any of the shrapnel affecting that particular relationship. Bottom line: they're all 15 and dealing with their own stuff, so the people they call friend are the folks who can help them deal with their stuff or meet a need on some level.
"I call her Red..."

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Post by Jody Barsch* » Sep 5th 2006, 6:03 pm

luvjordan wrote:Rayanne and Angela became friends because Angela had a need. This was not the kind of friendship that she had with Sharon or even Brian, which evolved over time and shared intimacies. Angela specifically sought Rayanne out for the purpose of making some radical changes in her life. Clearly, she knew that Rayanne had an in with Jordan (at the very least, her relationship with Tino) and that Rayanne was experienced enough to mentor her through her metamorphosis.
I don't really see it that way. One, I think Angela was/is freinds with Brian and Sharon because of circumstances, Brian was her neighbor and Sharon is the daughter of her mother's best friend. I also think that although Angela knew that she was ready for a change, which influenced her opening up to forming a friendship with Rayanne, but I don't believe she sought her out for that purpose. But this of course is open to interpretation sice we never heard or saw how the duo came about. (I imagine them having a class together, Angela observing Rayanne and deciding she like how she lived outside of people's expectations, and then maybe there were some small conversations or class jokes, and Rayanne, who might otherwise have looked right past Angela, saw in her qualities that she liked, and the friendship grew from there... Whew, that was a run-on!) I definitely don't think Angela sought Rayanne out because of her connection with Jordan. People do do this I know, I myself only started hanging out with the people on my actual floor in my dorm freshman year in college when there was a boy who I wanted to get closer to, but I don't think that was the case for Angela. I'm not sure if this is what you meant, but I think that the choice of mentor through the metamorphosis was subconscious.
luvjordan wrote:It's a mutually beneficial/destructive relationship.
Word.
luvjordan wrote:...but it's this very normalcy and innocence that keeps Angela at a distance when Rayanne is the least balanced, leading to rejection that compounds Rayanne's issues.
Wow, realy well said. That's totally it.
luvjordan wrote:She's not a villain, she's a victim.
I agree she's not a villian, but I'm not buying that she's a victim.
luvjordan wrote:Angela ... is selfish and manipulative in the same ways that most 15 yo's are. ... [Rayanne] is not capable of the same depth of committment or attachment that Angela, Sharon and Brian are. The instability of her home life, coupled with the addiction make her ill-equipped to have the kind of friendship with anyone, that we would like her to have with Angela.
I'm sorry to be repeating myself, but I'm loving your posts: well said.
luvjordan wrote:In Rayanne's mind she will always be the victim and will percieve life through those eyes.
Where do you see Rayanne seeing herself as a victim?
luvjordan wrote:I believe it was at this point that Angela realized that she was standing on the edge of a precipice, holding Rayanne's hand and decided that this reality was just too real, hence a retreat.
Mm,hm.
luvjordan wrote:Bottom line: they're all 15 and dealing with their own stuff, so the people they call friend are the folks who can help them deal with their stuff or meet a need on some level.
I'm going to think about that one...

Great posts! It's nice to see the Show fourm active!!!
Kickstart The Riches movie!

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Post by stburr91 » Sep 6th 2006, 10:17 am

I'm not sure that Angela initiated her friendship with Rayanne. The writers made it clear in the show, that Rayanne always wanted to be Angela. Something about Angela appealed to Rayanne. I think this appeal caused Rayanne to initiate the friendship. Just what this appeal is, (Something I will touch on in my next fanfiction.) could be a whole new topic in and of itself.

Angela has come a long way from where she started from in the pilot episode. A lot of these change are from being friends with Rayanne, but also Rickie. As far as she has come, I think she hasn't come as far as some other fans think. Some people have said that Angela no longer needs Rayanne, or that she has grown beyond Rayanne. I don't believe that is the case. I think Angela, Rayanne and Rickie still have a lot to learn from each other.

Steve

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Post by luvjordan » Sep 6th 2006, 12:52 pm

I've been posting but never really expected to start a conversation. This is great. No one in my circle of friends (aside from my husband- my Jordan, by the way) remembers watching the show or if they did, definitely don't have the affection for it that I do.

I don't really see it that way. One, I think Angela was/is freinds with Brian and Sharon because of circumstances, Brian was her neighbor and Sharon is the daughter of her mother's best friend.

This could be definitely be the case, except that my mom has very close friends with daughters my age and we've never been friends. The neighbor boy that I lived next door to for like 18 years and went to school with, never became friends with me. Funny enough, when we were both in our late 20's he made it clear that he "had it for me," as Brian would say, since we were pre-teens. But beyond the basic pleasantries at the bus stop or the occasional run-in at school, we never really spoke. By that time, I was married and pregnant and he was living with someone. So, circumstance sets the stage, but doesn't guarantee that the relationship will grow or last. These three have been friends for 10 years. The fact that Brian is a boy and that Angela's parents are not particularly close to his parents makes the longevity of their relationship even more significant.
I also think that although Angela knew that she was ready for a change, which influenced her opening up to forming a friendship with Rayanne, but I don't believe she sought her out for that purpose. But this of course is open to interpretation sice we never heard or saw how the duo came about....I think that the choice of mentor through the metamorphosis was subconscious.

I guess my interpretation of this came from the pilot, where Angela talks about how she needed to be friends with Rayanne and that she thought she would die if she couldn't be friends with her. This made me think that Angela actively sought out the relationship. Next is the line where she talks about how Rayanne told her that her hair was holding her back. This made me think that Angela saw Rayanne (in a very conscious way) as a mentor for making this change.
I imagine them having a class together, Angela observing Rayanne and deciding she like how she lived outside of people's expectations, and then maybe there were some small conversations or class jokes, and Rayanne, who might otherwise have looked right past Angela, saw in her qualities that she liked,
I definitely agree with your assessment of how Angela viewed Rayanne and how they may have encountered each other, providing an opportunity for a friendship to develop, but I still think that Angela actively pursued this. Angela's awe of Rayanne's extroverted personality directly fed the attention beast and validates her, which is what she desperately seeks, oddly enough in the most normal of people (notice the interactions with Patty and Graham). Angela's apparent innocence is something we come to realize Rayanne craves and is herself in awe of, however, I don't know that it was the initial draw for Rayanne. I think the attention seeking and Angela's willingness to be her audience is what drew Rayanne to Angela.
I definitely don't think Angela sought Rayanne out because of her connection with Jordan.
My impression of the whole Rayanne-Jordan connection was that whether or not Angela was actively usinng Rayanne to get closer to Jordan, she definitely knew that Rayanne had that connection and I don't think that the value of that connection for future use was lost on her.


I'm not buying that she's a victim.
Yeah, I struggled with the best way to state this and I think maybe there was a better way. By calling her a victim, I mean a victim of her own undoing and her own poor choices. Not a victim in the sense of "society has failed her." Personal responsibility is definitely high on my list and I really hate excuses, but I guess, I see her as this really damaged person who can't seem to find her way out of her own mess.
Where do you see Rayanne seeing herself as a victim?
Okay, this came from a few places, 1) In betrayal, she seems to see herself as the loser. She can't seem to understand how much her betrayal meant to Angela or how Rickie might feel about such a deeply personal betrayal even if he was not the one betrayed. In "Dreams" she b****es and moans about how she has no friends and can't seem to understand why her friends are distant. It's all about her and her pain. A lot has been written in the fan fiction about how she never apologized to Angela for what she did. She not only didn't apologize, she basically told Angela to get over it and made it about her. To her credit, she made some valid observations about the situation. Neither Rayanne or Jordan were particularly considerate of Angela's feelings or well being throughout the show, so losing them, while painful, would not in the long term amount to a very great loss. But the fact remains that Rayanne was too busy whining about what this incident cost her and how it hurt her to have the commond decency to say that she was sorry for hurting Angela. Even if she felt like Jordan was no great loss, the trust that Angela had for Rayanne was. Rayanne is completely oblivious to this .

She is definitely narcissistic and has a tremendously difficult time trying to see outside of herself. Not uncommon traits for her personality type. While this could be a function of age, I would contend that it is more directly tied to a character flaw. Again, maybe victim was not the best descriptor to use.

Great posts! It's nice to see the Show fourm active!!![/quote]
Thanks. I sometimes think I just go on way too much, but there is some much to the show and the characters that you can't say it all in 4 sentences. This show would be great for an undergraduate psych or social work course. Any professors out there?
"I call her Red..."

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