Discussion in 'Fan Town' started by keltena, Feb 6, 2017.
Reboot is part of why I'm religious, tbh.
I can't do the genocide route because I get way too attached to fictional characters and thought Toontown was a real thing when I was pushing double digits.
Speaking of Games Where the Player Is A Character, I almost wish One Shot would become the new craze so I could popcorn.gif at people fighting about which ending is the only morally acceptable one.
my interpretation of underfell and what i usually see it as isn't really like that. instead, it's more like... yeah, everyone in underfell is more sharp-edged, more broken, more malicious, but they are still people and still worth saving. like, yeah, not saving them is easier to rationalize than not saving the undertale monsters, but saving them is still an option and still worth doing. it's harder but the difficulty doesn't mean that you can't try and it doesn't mean that you are guaranteed to fail. and the genocide route is still sad and devastating for the underground. that's what i get from it, anyway.
O boy... now you're going to see me 'getting too serious about Claptrap', which I am told a lot. I'm worried I'm going to sound like I'm judging someone by getting In Depth about him, but everyone's cool I just... I am one of the few people who Would Die so Claptrap got a proper arc and slightly more sensitive treatment in the franchise. If someone prompts me to talk more about Claptrap, this inevitably busts open some door in my guts so the ESSAY I just wrote is more a matter of Claptrap being simulataneously 1. a very personal character for me and 2. an SI of mine.
Well... Man, for me I take Claptrap very personally because I think Claptrap has 'all the traits of someone who's autistic, except slung into a character marked as 'intended to make you feel uncomfortable and ashamed'". I do think if someone had worked with Claptrap he'd be 'less the way he is', in the sense... he's been alive for like, 8 years, and he's one character where we actually have a very acute timeline of pretty much his entire life? And since we know this, we know he's been abused and (generally speaking) told he was born wrong since his birth. Like! No one's even really been his friend, he's just been more of a tool for them really. Which... as someone who was an autistic kid it took me til I was a teenager to parse any shit at all about social interaction so I look at this and I'm like... yeah I sincerely think if someone seriously treated Claptrap more affectionately and talked to him about boundaries and what made them comfortable and uncomfortable without like, just telling him to go die the dude would be better in parsing that kind of thing. In BLTPS he tells us that the BL1 Vault Hunters were the best friends he'd ever had 'because no one had ever been that nice to him' and he cries without realizing it. Dude has highly implied suicidality throughout the games. He has no social nuance, and every time he slips up the cast kicks him for it. He's this ... blend of being simultaneously hyperconscious of himself and being unaware of what he can do to make people's impressions of him better (autistic ping, autistic ping...), and continually doing the thing he doesn't want to do. Idk if you played BLTPS, but a lot of people tell Claptrap to straight up die / abuse him / overtake his autonomy throughout the game in skeevy ways.... and it's like. Hm.
I feel the games a lot of the time ignore things they've done with Claptrap to make more 'and Claptrap will be lonely forever' jokes, or even ignore characters that have gotten along with/do get along with Claptrap and change them so they hate him later because it's funny. My thing is, the dude can't catch a break not just because he's socially awkward - which he is, but because the writing staff literally hates him. The universe is literally made to hate Claptrap because no one could possibly like him and the writers will eventually make everyone who likes him hate him because characters that autistic socially awkward deserve to be hated. Anthony Burch (one of his major writers) has said "“I hate Claptrap. I hate writing lines for him, I hate writing scenes with him in it, I just hate him.” which pretty much means I have guaranteed myself a lifetime of pain.
Tbqh, I feel such a deep well of pity and... in a sense nurturance, that I do not understand fandom's disposition towards him or why the writers feel so confident that they can say things like:
"You’re meant to oscillate between pitying him and hating him just as much as everyone else does," says Burch.
Of course, my major issue isn't even fandom's disposition - it's that when I say 'Claptrap is abused a lot in game for what are essentially social gaffs / I kind of feel Claptrap's writing has issues / Claptrap's role in the story hits some ableist notes sometimes, especially with the genocide of everyone like him because they're 'annoying'.... that I have had most of the responses be 'well he's a robot. A ROBOT. a COMEDY ROBOT.' I have people say this to me, I have people - more than once, which is a lot considering I rarely talk about this to people outside of my SO - screenshot messages of me talking about Claptrap to mock them and the idea that you could take this character seriously. I know that every time I talk about Claptrap I am taking a major risk in having people take me seriously about it - and the amount of people who do take me seriously. is very small. There is a meme like quality to Claptrap and hating Claptrap that suddenly makes people disregard anything I could have to say.
Idk... [gently asking, and I mean... a seriously gentle tone here as in... I know I just wrote a bullshit wall of text about my SI but think it's cool if you feel different]... did you get that he deserves to exist from internal soul searching? Which I can guess is fair to say because characters often clash against some squick or something that doesn't sit quite right with us! Or just, you know make us feel a certain way. Or do you think the narrative says it? I'd disagree on that considering how he gets his autonomy overriden a lot w.o much commentary around it, but that's a fair personal interpretation to have.
Also: I totally agree with you 100% about Sans and I actually think he's more interesting when he's just a depressed dude and isn't someone who has godly powers but rather 'the powers of vaguely guessing and being depressed about it'.
Also, separate note: I remember I originally felt a little bit bitter at Underfell for similar reasons to adisagestar but then my SO was like 'I really like this AU because it's as if all the characters dressed up at Hot Topic and were a bit edgier but you befriend them anyway'. Idk, it made me put it into the terms of... what if all the characters were like a Flowey you had to befriend: all horribly broken people who could be better. I do have some issues with how the AU gets handled still in the general public (I have found 1, just 1 person who does Underfell Asriel in a way that I consider pleasant) but I have this general fondness for it due to that.
Dear Star Wars fandom,
I do not care what you or Karen Traviss have said, the Mandalorians are a religious culture. Religion doesn't necessarily mean worshiping gods and having organized monasteries. It may involve those things, but it doesn't require them. Having a concern with gaining a soul and maintaining that soul via following of laws laid down by your ancestors for a shot at joining an oversoul is a religious concern, though. Treating Dar'manda people with suspicion or hatred is a religious act. Training your children and ensuring they know Mando'a so that they aren't Dar'manda is a religious act. Even declaring your gods to be unfit to worship because they aren't providing to the clan and then killing said gods in a war is a religious thing. Specifically it is part of a mythology. Not all religions need mythologies and there are several ways in which myths may be written, including in non-religious fashions. This is just a statement that the Mandalorians have a base of mythology. The killing of their gods and the Rage of the Shadow Warriors are both part of that mythology. As a result of how it reflects and interacts with their spiritual concerns regarding souls, honor, and the afterlife I feel these myths qualify as religious, at least in part.
Dear Star Wars,
Your conception of most races, including the highly open to everyone in the galaxy Mandalorians, is far, far too monolithic. This includes your religions, such as the Jedi Order. Your fanbase has, in many cases, only persisted in having these grand monoliths. The anthropologist in me cries about this, especially where it concerns the Mandalorians.
God yes, especially the ones who pretty obviously got their entire EU planet-of-hats schtick from one line in the OT. "Many Bothans died to bring us this information" -> "BOTHANS ARE A RACE OF SPIES"
Like I don't really mind the idea of certain cultures being super hype about certain professions. Because that does happen. Arab cultures are really fucking into their sons becoming doctors, for example, leading to a shit ton of doctors. But it's when it is absolutely fucking everyone and in a fucking vacuum of sameness that it starts to drive me mad. It's not wrong to have rodians love operas, because culturally rodians really love operas and theatre in general. What's wrong is when every last one of the little bastards has to and has to be a bounty hunter. And especially when we don't even really show any variety in those operas or views on bounty hunting. Wtf.
What I am saying is that rodians need to have like wildly varying schools of thought on how drama works. And for some of this to end up with dead people. You are shot over your shitty drama theory.
There are riots in rodian neighborhoods over Bertholt Brecht.
@Charlie i wish i was as good at wordsing about my special interests as you are, when people talk to me about claptrap the best i can express is "he is my son and i love him". I agree with your claptrap feels, i like him for a lot of the same reasons.
I will say that most if not all of the borderlands characters kinda come across as universally treated like shit/villainized/made fun of for being different regardless of their actions, claptrap is just the most extreme case. And he didnt even do anything! Aside from the inac thing but that wasnt his fault either.
@Deresto i marked your comment a winner because honestly you just made me feel incredibly relieved about that essay I wrote up there. thank you very much. a feeling of Visceral Relief.
idk I have my moments when I have nothing to say either, but i have spent an unfortunate inordinate amount of them thinking about that boy and well, I guess I came into this thread to gripe a bit about him so I'm Stocked on feelings regarding him haha.
I know Borderlands can be like that with the characters.... I'd say a character who gets harshed on major in fandom is Lilith. I guess my major gripe is that other characters get taken seriously at least, and people don't... mock me for caring as much when it comes to other characters? Iunno. I feel Borderlands has such a silly cast that if you can take anyone seriously, it should happen here.
This is sort of a general one, but it consistently makes me feel so uncomfortable that I've unfollowed blogs over it more than once, so: for some reason the Discworld fandom has this weird habit of completely over-the-top lionizing of the characters, and writing posts about theoretical crossovers where the Discworld characters completely trample EVERYONE from some other franchise as if they're in god mode. Sometimes it makes some sense, but a lot of times it doesn't, and it just keeps happening.
Honestly, I don't think you did get 'too serious'? Some of these points are ones I hadn't actually thought much about.
Hm. I hadn't read him as being autistic-coded? Buuuuut it would probably help explain why being around him gets my shoulders up around my ears and why I'm uncomfortable spending more time dealing with him than I have to. I'd read him as being coded as That Guy.
I've played parts of the pre-sequel. I haven't played all the way through it yet. I will admit that I had assumed that people have tried to explain to him about boundaries and about what makes them uncomfortable about his behaviour? And he just...couldn't stop doing the thing. I mean, he does get that if people respond to him with violence, they are probably unhappy about something? And Moxie almost always responds poorly if he tries to hit on her; I'm not sure if it's that he's a robot that makes her uncomfortable, or how he's hitting on her that's skeeving her out, but she's really not comfortable with his behaviour towards her, and yet he does not stop trying to hit on her. And I don't know why it is that he doesn't stop, but. Yeah.
Which is why I assumed that he was being written as a version of That Guy - the one who, despite repeated explanations, won't stop hitting on people who're not comfortable with being hit on; who creeps on everyone he considers attractive; who behaves like he's socially awkward but doesn't improve when people respond poorly to him doing X, and persists in not improving when people go 'hey, don't do X, that's not cool'; who clings to anyone who can't manage to pry free of him.
I agree that it seems like people Claptrap's interacted with before and managed to get along with at least for a bit don't...usually still like him much when we next see them interact. I assumed that the reason why the Claptrap series of bots (asides from Claptrap himself, who escaped) was gotten rid of wasn't just because they're "annoying", but also because of the DLC from BL1 where suddenly robot ninjas (or...something? I have not actually played that particular DLC, I was still stuck on getting the zombie DLC done when it came out and I wanted to do them in order, but I do remember that it was basically labelled as 'and then the Claptraps became Done With This Shit and rose up against us') and that the removal of the Claptrap series was an in-game response to the Claptrap rebellion. Which made sense to me, because I didn't see any way that Hyperion was going to sit and let a robot series that had rebelled go unscathed for that, no matter how justified the rebellion might have been, and they probably would've used "oh, everyone found that series of robots annoying, so we recalled them and made the series obsolete" as an excuse rather than admit that any of their products have the capacity to go "fuck this, we're done" and start a rebellion.
I don't disagree with how you're reading Claptrap? I hadn't considered reading him that way, and I'm not sure I see him that way even now, but I'm actually horrified that someone would deliberately try and mock you about how you interpret a character.
I'm not sure if the narrative says it? I feel like it's implied, in that I'm recalling (but may be mis-remembering or reading things that weren't meant to be there (yay, death of the author!)) that there's a lot said around the topic of personal autonomy and whether or not it's okay to override someone else's because you Know Better or you have information they don't, and a fair bit about how you can't actually just pick and choose who you treat like people and who you don't if you want to be actually decent. Which adds up to "just because Claptrap's weird and uncomfortable to be around, that doesn't make overriding his personal autonomy any more acceptable than overriding Angel's autonomy was", to me? I will note that my instinctive reaction to "does Claptrap get to exist" is "of course he does, he's a person" so go with that where you want, I guess?
Yeah, I mean, the Sans fight already shows that he's reasonably powerful? (A heck of a lot more powerful than Chara-the-narrator would like you to believe, certainly.) He doesn't need to be all-knowing, he can be just 'pretty good at piecing things together after god knows how many times Flowey reset things and then you doing the exact same bullshit'.
(Edit: Missed a quote-bracket, and oh god I made a wall of text. Sorry.)
(Edit2: ...and then I broke the quotes again, but in a different way. Should be fixed now.)
The claptrap dlc was about a modded claptrap (specifically the first one you met) who was reprogrammed by Hyperion into the inac (interplanetary ninja assassin claptrap) to kill vault hunters. Inac, having new bloodthirsty tendencies and a newly instilled general hatred of humanity saw how other traps were being treated and reprogrammed them as well and started the robolution.
Theres also a lot of robo zombification of other dlc bosses and general lackeyes, like a robo knox and robo psychos and such, as well as various specialized claptraps. Its all very cute and funny.
Inac is also the claptrap we play as in the pre sequel and the last claptrap left in bl 2. I got kinda pissed off when i played tps because when you pick inac you get like three or four pop up warning boxes asking you if thats what you meant to select, as a "joke" and its annoying as shit seeing as inac is actually the most fun to play and has really entertaining dialogue (although i havent tried aurelia or body double jack yet)
I'm probably just sensitive on this because I've been told before when I reply to people that I take the fun out of it by getting too longwinded, and well... this particular subject has always raised a lot of issues for me in the past. Thank you though.
1. BLTPS isn't a great source of info for Claptrap unless you're playing/playing with Claptrap, much like the other MCs. Minus Claptrap's big old DLC of course.
2 (aka, the rest of my answer)
I mean... if people respond to you with violence, you might get that they are unhappy but you probably won't get why they are unhappy. That's a bit of intuitive leap he lacks. Uh... I will say part of what made me feel like. Deeply distressed for Claptrap and a little viscerally ill is the violence he is on the receiving end of... When we start Borderlands 2 we know he was abused by Flynt for a long time. We hear Claptrap's voice get played out when we go to beat Flynt up for him. We know Claptrap actually got set on fire and had pokers shoved in his eye for fairly normal questions ("IT WAS JUST A QUESTION MISTER FLYNT!!"), so it's safe to say it could probably be kind of confusing what exactly constitutes... 'making people unhappy'.
Before Bl2... well, we have BLTPS where his teammates are all murderers for hire wherein he's like. A brainwashed friendmaking machine, and he's actually?... Idk BLTPS Claptrap is actually pretty pure. He asks things at the wrong time and stuff, the usual autistic chatter, but he's.... pretty innocuous. I could talk about the developments he makes between Presequel, Bl1 and Bl2 in detail lol. I've played parts of the pre-sequel, read a lot of the text and watched the DLC but I haven't played all the way through it yet. But Bl1 Claptrap is actually kind of terrified of people in general because they use him for target practice, and clings to the player to protect him. Idk... I will say Claptrap is a character who suffers physical abuse like, pretty much... his whole life. And since BL can't keep anything consistent with Claptrap, ever since that joke 'I actually can't feel anything' line they've made multiple references to how Claptrap totally actually can feel pain afterward.. and beforeward. Ironically, even within the same game (BL2) "Slower and In High Intensity"
I think by Bl2 he's kind of like... forgive me.... I can't think of it any other way.... 'a bitter overcooked cinnamon roll'. Like, Claptrap in Bl1 and BLTPS makes a lot of social gaffs but isn't particularly rude that I can remember? Claptrap in BLTPS trusts a lot of people who are very nasty to him, in that highly oblivious 'I believe the best in people way'... BLTPS thoroughly examines how Claptrap tries to see the best in people and call them his friends even when they're nasty to him. It. Idk man there's some pretty painful stuff in his DLC.... and in BL2 he's had them all stab him in the back and leave him for dead.
The dude has like... this hugely horrible history regarding social interaction where there is no proper space for someone to have gently and kindly sat him down, especially since he is... well a Claptrap. Advertised as "Man's New Best Friend", like a dog.
Are we talking about Moxxie's rejection of his birthday invite? Or... If I'm missing some scenes, feel free to fill me on because I'll talk about that, but if there's more to it than let me know. I mean I wouldn't doubt Claptrap's awkwardly hit on her, but if it's just the birthday invite... With Moxxie I don't think she explicitly says he hits on her? I mean. Claptrap will whisper to the player if you do a mission for him that he 'loves you'. Dude is quick to crush on people. Writer's notes on him are 'we thought it would be funny if there was a helper robot who was instead desperate for your love and affection'. I think even if he totally didn't hit on Moxxie, his affection might be obvious? Moxxie says to you "give Claptrap my platonic affection, don't want him to get the wrong idea" but... I'm not sure if that implies she's ever had a conversation with him about it, or that he's even directly said anything as much as implied it. "Moxxie say anything about me?" is the only prompt I remember from Claptrap about that and it's pretty general but I feel I might be missing a scene or something so lmk.
I will say the writer's write Claptrap as more sexual in Bl2 than any other Bl game, and... this has lead me to some theories but I feel I'd be getting deep into my more personal Claptrap mindspace then - I have some cohesive ideas about why Claptrap would develop narratively like that involving a sexual precociousness associated with some events, BUT... I think the legit reason for that is the writers realized the sexual allusions Claptrap made in BL2 weren't that funny when they were writing BLTPS and TFTBL.
Like, regarding people Claptrap's interacted with... By the end of Claptrap's DLC Athena asks Claptrap for forgiveness for something she's done to him. I won't get into the 'what' bc youre playing it (imo the apology is a bit weak considering), but Athena is asking Claptrap for forgiveness. Janey is someone who reads and tests out children's novels she's planning to write on him. These characters obviously see Claptrap as affable and someone who's gone through something pretty horrifying... fast forward to TFTBL and Athena and Janey are both disgusted to see him, which is like. Just incredibly jarring writing at that point.
Well... minor spoiler for BLTPS: the reason Claptrap units get destroyed is that Handsome Jack thinks they're annoying and hates them. Why Claptrap himself escapes is sort of explained in the game but I'll leave that for you to find out if you're playing it? Not sure.. Like, it's a personal thing. We all know Handsome Jack. But his thing is that he fucks around with Claptrap and once he's done with him he thinks he'll just get rid of all Claptraps. It's... an upsetting scene. There's also a DLC all about Claptrap's childhood trauma and phobias and fears and how his biggest fear is 'other people's loneliness' which is probably part of why he never shuts up (I say this lovingly).
I will say that Bl2 Claptrap's paranoia that Jack is coming for him specifically seems justified at that point since he knows Jack personally and Jack disliking the Claptraps was the reason they're all dead. Last of his kind and all.
Ironically, I don't think it's about me as much as it is 'anyone taking Claptrap seriously'... but realistically it does hurt a bit.
I think the narrative does a really good thing with Angel (who... honestly get a pretty good arc considering how it ends) while ignoring opportunities with Claptrap because he's a machine and a 'funny little robot'. Like there's a lot of little things you do with Claptrap where it's... like even when you get that 'upgrade' for him, you shove it into him without asking and even though he's thankful after he kind of freaks out at first. I will say, there's probably no character who gets his boundaries violated more consistently over the course of the franchise than Claptrap.
I mean... [joke] how can you learn to respect boundaries when everyone is constantly modding you, brainwashing you, using you as a tool and violating yours?[/joke] well I see that as a bit significant to him too, but yeah. Claptrap has his autonomy overriden... a lot. In his first DLC... In his last DLC... all of BLTPS... etc. Idk I like all Claptrap content, but I think that the Claptrap Revolution was treated as a joke when they have some serious points to make (aka being living servants) also isn't quite in favour of Claptrap's autonomy there either. I think the thing is just, it gets violated a lot without any commentary opposing its violation so it's kind of like... 'hmmm borderlands'.
Yeah, I don't think it's fitting either because if Sans knew absolutely everything he probably would've... idk, talked to Flowey more and been more interesting to Flowey.
I mean the dude has a lot of 'I can tell by the look on your face' lines which are just, funny and interesting. I think knowing Everything makes him too powerful... and I think the fact he's frustrated by things he sort of knows, but doesn't know in entirety is interesting.
(also im like... if you want a character who knows everything and is depressed about it... we could always talk about flowey more guys)
oh hey so @glitterchance left a huge trail of likes through the Fanfic Gripes thread and it reminded me of these posts I made a while back which need crossposted to this thread:
i am kinda ??? about his "i can tell how many times you've died fighting me by the look on your face" lines, though. like, how? what kind of allistic witchcraft even is that shit? far as i know, there is no facial expression that means "i have died ten times, exactly ten."
just... how the hell is he always so... accurate, in-universe?
I read that line as mainly boast/intimidation.
It's possible he could have an idea of vaguely how many times. I mean, someone looking at a death match is probably gonna have hella facial expressions, even if they're very subtle. It might well be possible to make a pretty good guess as to whether the person has died never, a few times, a lot, or over and over and over oh gods make it stop.
ETA: And as far as I'm aware, there are no specific facial expressions for any of those things. It would be heavily dependent on context and how well you understand the specific person.
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