dreadedcandiru2: (Default)
As I type this, I do so in the knowledge that it has been nine years since Elly was told of Liz and Anthony's engagement. This means that it is nine years since what should have been the happiest time of her life because having Lizardbreath marry her own smug, demeaning but safe insensitive, entitled clod husband meant that she truly did live in the best of all possible worlds. The problem is that Lucy Van Pelt might just have been wrong about which person is the Charlie Browniest Of Them All because I don't see the Elly of 2017 as being any happier than the one thinking horrible thoughts about children because her half-assed under-parenting blew up in her face again.

This is because I don't think that Elly is capable of being happy with anything for all that long. I should think that by the time Liz presented her with a grandchild, Anthony would have started to lose his appeal because he reminded her of all the things about John that still annoy her. Mind you, she wouldn't have to deal with parents who told her marrying someone like John means exactly that but she'd still have the fear of someone saying that. Also, there is still the problem that would continue to vex her: a youngest daughter who still doesn't seem to realize where home is and who really loves her....along with ANOTHER set of in-laws who make hateful comments about her lack of self-awareness. Add in a dead husband to complain about and you can see why Elly is still screaming at everyone.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
As I said yesterday, an unheralded milestone of sorts is about to reached when April turns twenty-five years of age in about two weeks time. While most of us and probably most of the readership might be wondering what a young adult April might be doing with her life, Lynn displays next to no curiosity about the subject owing to ending the strip in a manner that more or less froze the kid in place wondering where Liz and Anthony were running off to. After all, the point of the strip seems to have been all along to sort of continue the cycle of having a crappy marriage between fundamentally incompatible people being held together by obliviousness on his part and denial on hers; speculating as to the future of some interloper that wants Liz to feel bad about flaking out about Uncle Jasper's harmonium is a lesser priority.

As I've said before, this is almost a good thing. For starters, we're spared having to watch a boring retread of the irritating courtship arcs of her older siblings, irritating bullshit about how adventure and curiosity are things that must be outgrown, worship of a fair-haired moron who is better for her because John and Elly know who the demeaning and churlish imbecile is and Elly having almost no involvement in the wedding because a vain halfwit thinks that mothers have to take a back seat to the bride.

We also get spared having to realize that Lynn's super-impossible happy future for the characters is a crazy lie. As [livejournal.com profile] josephusrex suggests, it's likely that April's chances of being a latter-day James Herriot are rather poor owing to her patented Patterson piss-poor study habits, love of binge drinking when not supervised and low demand for anything other than 'person whose job at the animal shelter involves cleaning out the cages'. As she struggles through grad school and has to endure abusive calls from John about how she shouldn't talk that way to her insistent irritant mother, April will be wishing that she didn't have the Patterson habit of drinking her way through life.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
As we all know, the Pattersons really don't like to lend people money if they can at all avoid it. They seem deeply suspicious of generosity because they fear being taken advantage of and, well, have the sort of favor bank mentality that is at war with the very idea of being generous in the first place. This is why when Mike and Liz were in university, they grumbled about how just floating the kids a loan to tide them over would mean that they wouldn't learn the value of a dollar. They also complained that since their parents couldn't afford to do certain things, the fact that they could shouldn't really mean much and, as always, witlessly complained about how the dollar doesn't stretch as far when it's not being spent on their needs.

Now, take that tendency to witlessly begrudge children money based on the fact that their parents couldn't pay their way through life and add in the fact that they're now a bunch of old soaks who don't want the young to latch on to the money they magically deserve for living to be sixty and apply it to the fact that without an allowance, April would have to work two jobs and subsist on ramen and canned spaghetti to get through university. While Mike and Liz complained about how their course work got in the way of getting gooned at the local tavern, April's social life clearly consisted of "wake up, attend classes, get to work, study, fall asleep, get woken up at an absurd hour to endure witless phone calls about partying on Mommy and Daddy's dime, get two hours sleep, lather, rinse, repeat." This 'getting woken up' bit will, of course, be based on the fact that since John and Elly drank themselves stupid, April has to be because that's just what college kids do.

Of course, it won't just be John and Elly who, despite what their treacherous, lying and wrong eyes and ears tell them, insist that someone working herself to death because her idiot parents cut off the flow of money to save her from being a spendthrift is the mindless party girl Liz was. Mike and Liz will also insist on this as well as engaging in the angry denial of the obvious fact that when Pattersons play family politics, the Martian is meant to lose and love it. The Pattersons don't want to admit that they've assigned April the role of black sheep because her presence mildly inconvenienced them because they don't want to admit that they haven't the blindest idea who she is and can't be stirred to care. Not having a clue who people are seems to be a thing amongst boomer asshole parents and it's currently rocking Nancy DeGroot's world. More on that tomorrow. 
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
It occurs to me from time to time that it's almost a good thing that the character letters and strip ended when they did. The reason for this is the I-quit-motherhood arc from April 2008. As we know, we'd spend most of the week watching Connie and Elly blather about how haaaaaard it was being a loving parent and how haaaaaard it was waiting for Liz and Anthony to get married only for Elly to blow her stack and John to offer to adjust April's attitude because she didn't let herself get sidetracked into eating when she had a ton of homework to do. Combine that with the distinct hatred they had for admitting that they couldn't close the books on parenting after the Settlepocalypse and we're dealing with a rather ugly senior year for the Martian Picky Face Princess owing to the following horrible factors:

  1. Deliberate Obliviousness On John's Part: As we all know, John has made a career of not understanding what stresses his children are under for much the same reason he studiously avoided understanding that Elly felt trapped and frustrated. The reason for that is that he feared the One Great Truth of life in the Patterson's world: there's a villain who makes life worse for everyone because of his insatiable desires and imbecile entitlement and he's it. This means that he can look at a child clearly struggling with keeping her grades up and dealing with parents eager to shove her out the door and see an antagonist instead of a victim.
  2. Petulant Ignorance On Elly's Part: What makes John's blinding himself to April's problem because making a stereotype of her is easier and doesn't require more of him that stupid advice is Elly's being the same angry idiot who couldn't identify her own mother in a police line up that lurched onto the page in 1979. We can expect more tantrums and more idiocy from the testy nitwit.
  3. Eva and Gerald Being Crouching Vermin: If she isn't going to spend her dwindling free time worrying about her status with Gerund, April can count on legitimate grievances being met with logical fallacies.
  4. Obtuse Siblings And In-Laws: She can count on Mike, Liz, Dee and Assthony spouting pure-D gibbering about counting on her fingers when she talks about the stress she's under.
  5. Victim-Blaming By The Asshole Fanbase: As we know, Lynn seems to have attracted reactionary scum who yearn to see John 'settle that horrible brat straight' when April reacts like a human being to fascist parenting by boomer assholes who blubber mindlessly about how she should grovel forever for forgiveness to be eternally withheld because she killed Farley.

While this IS awful and I'm glad we didn't see it, it should be said that Lynn's depiction of her post-secondary career would probably have been banned by the Geneva Convention.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
The really irritating thing about most of the male characters in the strip is not that we're dealing with what Jean is about to call male chauvinist pork-butts of the worst sort. We know that John really doesn't much budge from his initial perception that hormones had to be why Elly felt discontent with her lot in life because the alternative is admitting that men like him make sure women like her get a raw deal. What we lose sight of it that the only substantive thing that he taught the bundle of mommy issues he calls a son is that for some reason, women seem to not know a good deal when they have it. Mike's retcons not only paint us a picture of the sort of man-child whose misadventures Steven Page has based his musical career on, we also get to see that he's got a couple of wrong ideas about women. Take, as by way of example, his peevish comments about how poor Anthony is being cut off at the knees:

Dad tells me that Anthony's marriage problems are taking a toll on him. He looks tired and he feels he's failed. Therese is busy traveling, taking courses and climbing up the corporate ladder. There's no glass ceiling as far as she's concerned - just mirrors, and she likes what she sees. Therese is a sharp woman who tried to be something she isn't. She wanted the stability of marriage but not the sameness. She never shared Anthony's vision of home and family, although for his sake she tried. Instead of talking things out and working toward a solution, she has become distant and more devoted to her career. She's rarely home these days and Anthony expects to have to make plans for a future without her.

Distilled down to its essence, what Mike is saying is that to be fair to Anthony, Therese would have had to live the same lie all her life he expected Elly to. Thirty-five years might have passed since he'd wondered if he did Elly a favour by making her a mother and still, he desperately wants the answer to be yes. The alternative would be to admit that he actually did ask more of a fragile narcissist than could be delivered and moving on with his life. Since this can never be, we can well imagine that the same person who delighted in slandering the Kelpfroths will pursue legal action when someone writes the hilarious story of some pathetic, delusional zombie with mother issues who pissed his pants when asked to make a simple decision and ran home to Mommy to cry.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
As I type this, I do so knowing that Mike and Lizzie's abandonment issues are clouding their judgment as regards where Thelma Baird is to found dead in her sleep next June. We see someone in her eighties who simply can't live on her own any longer and who wants to live out her days in some sort of dignity. To children whose nightmares involve the fleeing legs of a mother who blames them for not being good enough to stay with, the idea that someone is ditching them is one that does not sit well. Once again, a friendly face is going away because of some reason that probably has to do with them being bad kids or something. This is sort of a bummer because the kids need to know that not all adults are screechy, judgmental and unyielding imbeciles like Elly with her aversion to cooking food kids might like to eat and also to making them feel like something not scraped off of a shoe.

The reason that I mention this is that we're about fifteen years away from Elly being an old lady who has to be sent to an assisted living center because she's too old to live in the Tiny Train House on her own. While there will be a period in which she's used as a sort of living trophy to see who's loved more, at some point, she'll have to go to the seniors complex so as to wait things out until she meets her cremator. This is where her being a stand-offish, brittle, short-tempered, screechy and unsympathetic old dolt comes into play to almost make one believe that justice can be done in this world. That's because she will never have a Mike or Lizzie beg her to not leave them. The children of tomorrow will be somewhat relieved that the scary, angry old woman who sweeps porches all day long with the same broom she flies around on all night is going to go away and not gobble them up after boiling them down in her cauldron.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
As we know, Liz's personality has been pretty much been warped by fear of the outside world. She clings to parental figures and surrogates to protect her from any number of vague, unknown menaces because when her personality was starting to gel into the shape it would have for life, she was haunted by a shape of dimwitted malice that struck without warning or provocation and was never really put in its place. Since Elly couldn't fix the stupid that is Michael, she ended up with a child who feared being alone because alone is when the monster gets you. As Liz grew up, this developed into a vague discomfort with the fact that all of her friends seemed to be slipping through her fingers. Since she shares being negative with her mother and brother, the conclusion she came to was that they only pretended to like her.

Imagine putting someone with a fear of the outside world and a free-floating dread that people who actually like her are really laughing at her in a setting where everyone is living amazing lives without her and leaving her in a sort of dry dock of being a frustrated, isolated and confused wife and mother who finds that all the things she'd have earned by marrying the man her parents like are lies. The Liz of the present day is quite probably in the same horrid and self-willed Hell that Elly is in the reprints. She's not especially good looking, she's not a nice person, she doesn't really understand children, her husband treats her sort of like a joke and sort of like a servant, her life isn't really going anywhere and her children don't really respect her. Point that at friends who are doing better and you've got a recipe for a really bad mood.

About the only thing that can save her from the horrible realization that her limitations as a person doomed her to living the same half-life as her mother is the sort of denial of the obvious that her dad preaches as a sovereign cure for existential crises. By convincing herself that people who don't want to be her actually do, she might have a good reunion. This will put her at odds with an Anthony who knows that they don't want to be him but that's okay because he doesn't want to be them because that's risky but it'll look the same so they won't realize how different they are.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
As we know, Lynn loves to justify her obsessive need to pair Liz off with the sunken-chested avatar of humorless god-awfulness that is Anthony with the following self-aggrandizing comment about how smart and perceptive she and Elly are:

He’s the kind of kid that a girl’s mother would point out. “See him? Wait twenty years and he’ll knock the socks off any jock in the city! That’s the kind of guy who’s going to do well in whatever he chooses to do, and by golly—when he’s got a little gray in his hair, he will be so handsome that every woman at your twentieth high school reunion will wonder why they didn’t beg him to go out with them when they had the chance!” Mothers know these things.

The problem is that Elly sees Anthony as being a scrappy go-getter who'll do well in life because people on television who look like him are just that. What she doesn't realize and never actually will because the man is too blasted ashamed of his past to really talk about it is that he's a damaged, two-for-flinching sort who gravitated towards her and her family because they represent not rocking the boat and not kicking him out on a whim like he fears his father would do. A charitable reading of his biography suggests that he and Therese got behind a marriage neither of them actually wanted because it was too dangerous for both of them to really stand up to their parents. Therese made more of a go of it than he did but his passivity wore her down. He's comfortable in his little niche working for Gordon because, like Liz and her family, Gordon represents the stability Anthony craves more than life itself. He might not live the most spectacular life but a quiet life with no jolts or surprises is to him a life without regret. As for his being handsome, Elly's standards are sort of low because she married John so, yeah, Anthony will look pretty good. He'll have a great reunion. I just wish I could say the same for his wife.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
As we pretty much all know by know, the 'romance' between Anthony, Liz and Therese is Lynn's attempt to show how great it was that she had an emotional affair that destroyed her first marriage because she perceived Doug as trying to boss her around and make her into nothing more than a mindless appendage of himself. As we also know, her attempt to assure people that it was okay Anthony did that was cool because he's a man failed because horrible behaviour is horrible behaviour no matter who does it. Just as it isn't really all that funny if a woman beats the shit out of a man, it really isn't okay if she pulls the same crap Anthony did.

What we also know is that Rod and Lynn seem to have spent an inordinate amount of time at cross purposes because she had to have things her way and really doesn't seem to have especially trusted him or especially cared what made him happy. Given that Lynn and Anthony are pretty much the same, it could well be that while John and Elly believe their daughter to have had a happy ending dancing away with a swell guy with a good head on his shoulders, the truth is less reassuring. It could be that Francie is currently a target of opportunity because Anthony just plain ain't around when Liz is in a dumping mood.

Given that Liz doesn't like making waves and doesn't like to consider evidence that's predicated on her having blundered into making a huge mistake, this sort of messy situation could probably last for years until Anthony simply goes too damned far and breaks one promise too many. By that time, it's pretty much a given that the two people who spend most of their free time telling her how great Anthony is and how bad Paul and Warren were for not dropping everything to run to her like they're supposed to would be more or less ten pounds of combustion fragments in ceramic jars some place. Since John and Elly were really the only thing keeping Liz from straying, she'll simply disappear from his life leaving a helpless, confused man to be cleaned up after by someone else because they won't be around to tell whine about how ungrateful she's being.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
As we know, the Mike and Deanna of the Declining Years took turns being the Lynn that strong-armed her family into moving to Corbeil on a whim. We started out with her pressuring Mike to give up the evil job in the evil city that was clearly going to kill him so that he could become her kept man. Once his insanely implausible writing career took off, they switched roles so that he could provide for both of them and she could gladly give up the evil, pressure-filled and unfeminine job as a pharmacist and run her sewing school of embracing and not denying her female nature.

The problem I have with this arrangement is not just that we're dealing with Lynn using her characters as a means of blathering away about how certain jobs are just for men or her fear that people will be as ready to cheat on her because they got bored as she was. The problem that I have is that it seems as unsustainable in print as it was in her real life. First off, let's remind ourselves of the fact that Mike is more like a very lousy and distracted sitter than he is any sort of father. Lynn might harrumph about what a great dad he is because he does what a good father does and bring in lots of money and that's all he's supposed to do but, well, having an overworked mother and a tetchy ghost who seems to have internalized Elly's need to shoo him away because agreeing with her on that finally gets him the approval he craves for parents is really going to do a number on Meredith and Robin. It's sort of obvious that at some point, they'll learn to stop bothering him and, eventually, stop resenting him. He'll think that they're close but the one who moves away will just be someone being kind to a stranger they used to know once.

The one who stays, of course, will be taking care of someone who's functionally an invalid because not only will he have forgotten any sort of life skills, he'll also be wondering why the Hell his marriage collapsed just because he put off his own retirement plans because crazy people wanted to take creative control away from him. He gave Deanna his name, he gave her a sewing school and he gave her fame so wanting to feel like a person instead of an appendage to a flawed creator isn't going to compute. Eventually, he'll make stupid noise about how he did it all himself despite the fact that his epitaph should be "You didn't build that."
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
As we're about to be reminded, Marian has the wonderful habit of 'helping' Elly by rearranging her house to suit her own needs and treating her adult daughter like an incompetent infant in front of her own children while smiling vacantly and refusing to see how that might constitute a problem. As I've said before, it took pretty much forever for the old doll to admit that Elly knew what the Hell she was doing. This is seen as being a bad thing because the premise is that Marian should have had more faith in Elly's alleged ability to effectively parent.

This leads us to the constant pillorying of Evil Mira and her evil toys-not-time-despite-providing-both philosophy for undermining her own marginally competent daughter's attempt to become the Abominable No-Woman as she says "No" to running, "no" to talking and "no" to anything that isn't sitting until the awful, evil, scary and wrong feeling in Meredith and Robin's limbs that tells them that it's good to seek stimulation goes away and she can rest and Mike can no longer whine about being disturbed. As it was with Marian, Mira is seen as a monster because she's slightly more on the ball than Deanna cares to be.

The reason that I mention this is that when it comes Elly's turn to do what she did during Liz's childhood and bombard her with useless and counter-productive suggestions, whine about how no one cares about her sacrifices, cut her off at the knees and savagely reduce her ability to be an effective parent, everyone who isn't a stupid Martian princess who'll never know how the world actually works will babble idiotically about what a wonderful thing it is that Saint Elly saves the day. Haters like us might hate and state that things are only wrong if someone who isn't Elly does them but Lynn's kind of idiot will know 'better.'
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
Continuing merrily on from yesterday's assumption that Mike sees it as Robin's rightful destiny to inherit the Pattermanse, it should be obvious as all Hell that he intends to make it quite clear that any obviously invalid claim that Meredith might make to have another family usurp him and deny him his birthright must be squashed a-borning. This, I think, will be accomplished by the subtle masterstroke of ensuring that she, like Elly and Liz before her, is never really allowed to win her childhood. This means that we proceed from a world in which Elly became a frustrated mess owing to a combination of Jim's pants-soiling terror of a world where men like him were redundant and Marian's need to for blind, unthinking conventionality to a world of Liz becoming a passive, ignorant fool owing to a combined desired from both parents that she be that way to a new, horrible world in which Mike wishes to avenge himself on all the people who denied that he is the center of everything and his need to be catered to all the freaking time is noble and good and right and he isn't a selfish, thoughtless, spineless whimperer obsessed with not a Hell of a lot.

What this all means is that any relationship issues his children might have will be made far worse by his unfailingly taking the side of whatever male is involved. Should Meredith want very much to not deal with the same crude behaviour he inflicted on every girl luckless enough to date him, he's gonna be all about how mean she's being to a good guy and how she's selfishly and crazily letting the women's lib that made Elly crazy enough not to want to waste her life catering to a monstrous little turd get in the way of the truth that she's a reward for Anthony 2.0 having a penis. Eventually, he'll make an assholish comment about how the new and wrong values that call him a swinish, misogynistic jackass have driven her away for no reason he can admit to without implying that it's his own God-damned fault for not being able to share like a person is supposed to in the first place. Of course, by the time Robin is thirty, peak oil and the death of the family car will make suburban living untenable so inheriting the Pattermanse will be a difficult sell.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
Having gone over yesterday's thing in my mind, it seems to me that it isn't going to be sufficient for John to merely be killed off in a 'comically' grotesque fashion. I really don't think that Lynn's wounded pride will be happy with just killing Rod's avatar in such a way as to deprive him of any sort of dignity. What would probably also happen is that John would end up getting killed forever by means of that wonder weapon called retroactive continuity. Were the strip still a going concern, I should think that most of us would be besides ourselves with disgusted glee as an army of other women emerged to boast about helping him make a big fool out of Elly. Plausibility would go by the wayside so that Lynn could hammer home how no one must sympathize ever with the cheating cheater who made poooooooooooooooooooooooor Elly live a lie all those years.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
As we all know, Lynn has gone on record as saying that were the strip to have continued or were it to be revived, one of the first things that would happen is that John would end up dead. What's more, his death wouldn't involve quietly passing away in his sleep or a simple heart attack or anything dignified. The angry little kid in Lynn would not be satisfied with anything less than the least dignified exit possible for the avatar of the horrible cheating cheater who cheated on her.

This leaves us with the question of who ends up having to deal with Elly and the Tiny Train House after the Fiberglass Chicken Head Of Great Justice turns John's domepiece into guacamole. It seems to me that since we'd be dealing with a situation in which April had mutated into the same sort of glorified walk-on as Phil and Georgia owing to Lynn not knowing what to do with her, we'd be looking at a scenario that mirrored Lynn's real life. Were the strip still a going concern, Elly would find a new purpose in life telling Liz how to raise the grandbaby she'd thouightfully presented her and how best to deal with the sass coming from the Weird Frenchy Girl about how weak, soft, lazy and dependent boomer idiots like Grandma Patterson think that they deserve to eat every meal and drink every drink because they never learned to live on their own.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
As we saw last Sunday, Elly's paranoid dread that everyone is plotting to ruin and humiliate her because they hate her and want to laugh at her wretched suffering even takes the form of assuming that inanimate objects are part of the Great Big Plot To Keep Her Down Because EVERYONE Wants To Destroy Her. It would be bad enough had she been the only person who let her fear and mistrust rob her of happiness, peace of mind and getting to know people who could have enriched her life. What makes it worse is that her witless habit of raising her children to see one another as competitors in a horrible war to the death has done the same damned thing to them.

The most tragic example of this is that Mike, Liz and April lost out on getting to know one another growing up.  While Michael might think that he knows who Liz and April are, he hasn't got two clues as to who they are, what they want and why they want it because he sees them as being what his fear of having everything taken away from him and being lectured about being a horrible child who's a huge disappointment that Elly and John regret having make them into. Trying to sit him down and explain to him that Liz only does all the crazy crap she does because her sullen dickwad older brother hates sharing would be futile because he doesn't realize that they should never have been at war in the first place.

Similarly, Liz has yet to realize that instead of being the Son who will always shine in her eyes, Mike perceives himself as fighting for his very life against a usurper who clearly must hate him and want him to suffer and bleed and die alone and unlamented because she doesn't see the poor fool Mike really is.

Thirdly, no one sees April as the universal target of scorn and harrumphing about being a princess she is. Instead, some idiot makes a facile non-sequitur about how April fools all of us which highlights how they've bought into Elly's insane, self-serving ranting about how the Martian deliberately arrived to ruin everything because she hates her pooooooor mother.

The only real solution to the problem that I see is for Elly and John to die as quickly as possible. Having the final, desperate fight over belongings Jim kept Phil and Elly from having would clear the air and get three broken people to see one another clearly for the first time.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)

Now, before I get to what I think would have to happen in the real world, let's review all the things that make it seem to Elly as if her alleged hard work and fictitious sacrifices have paid off or are about to:

  1. The defiant son who honestly thought that he had the right to decide what career he should have is not only the author she needs him to be, he's grateful to her for steering him onto the right path.
  2. The middle daughter has learned that it's better to have a dependable man who treats you like crap than a good man who expects you to wait for him and that the outside world is a scary, cruel place that only seems to be attractive.
  3. The youngest daughter who ruined her poor mother's last chance at making a real difference is about to learn that her mother has always loved her and known best.
  4. Her children are married to or are about to be married to people who are only too happy to remind them of what they owe their parents.
  5. When she and John pass on, their friends will help the children with whatever financial problems might arise.

What this translates to in English is that she's successfully sabotaged her children because she's too blasted vain to realize something she and John refused to acknowledge as regards who owes whom what. While the two self-absorbed poops might have conned themselves into thinking that since they did their children a huge favor by not leaving them on a doorstep for other people to raise and are thus owed things in return, the World just plain does not work that way. The simple fact is that since they brought Mike, Liz and April into this world, they have a responsibility to their children and the rest of us to raise them to be functioning members of society; anything that they might get in return is not thus a requirement but a bonus that they shouldn't have expected.

This is what has always sort of appalled me about the way the strip ended. The need I have to see the wicked punished for their crimes and misdemeanors makes the Strip of Destiny an unsatisfying conclusion. The image that appeals to me is John and Elly staring out the window of the Tiny Train House wondering why everything went so horribly wrong after Liz got married and when they can expect to hear from their children again.

dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru)
While it might be sort of morbid to contemplate a horrible custody battle over Françoise's remains and just plain idiotic to have to trudge through an annoying pile of crap custody battle in which the Pattersons are made out to be the victims, both things are far and away preferable to what will probably really happen. What seems most likely was hinted at when Becky finally admitted that she turned her back on fun and friendship to follow an evil, distracting star that made her believe that she was better than the Pattersons. It would appear that the evil distracting star that makes Thérèse think that she should challenge Liz's behaviour is the need to be approved of by her evil misogynistic nineteenth century abomination father. As Assthony's Liography teaches us, she would have settled down with some sort of street theatre mime but was instead stuck in a marriage of inconvenience with Pornstache so as to cement a business deal between caricature horror monster fathers.

Given that Blandthony's Liography ends with our boy wishing that some day, Thérèse would find happiness, what seems to be destined to happen is that like everyone who isn't a Patterson, she'll rebel against the grasping, self-serving vermin she calls parents and settle down with her Twoo Wuv. As a reward for admitting that she was too good for her own good and that Liz had every right to cling to Anthony like a starving octopus and especially that she was crazy and evil and wrong to believe in the myth of post-partum depression, she'd end up being given Françoise as a reward for admitting that Elly ha sempre ragione. While the simpletons and drones who fear people who imply that they've settled for less comfort themselves with the lie that people who want them to feel bad are really just jealous, regular people would probably vomit in terror and disgust.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru)
One thing that we've all noticed about the Lynnsights that mention parenting of late is that we're being asked to take Lynn's side in a quarrel she's having with Katie about how much access she's allowed to her grandchild. It doesn't seem to matter to Lynn that she could never find the time for Katie and Aaron when they were growing up because she seems to be possessed of the foolish notion that she can make up for half-assed underparenting by a facile apology and half-assed overparenting of Laura. Since the idiot is doing something people call "cramming to get into Heaven", whatever reasons Kate might have for not allowing Lynn to do what she wants are obviously irrelevant. Since Lynn would still be using the strip as a means of beating people over the head, we can expect certain things to happen.

The first thing that would happen is that Lynn would retcon who Jim and Marian were. In the original version, the two of them were praised for keeping their grandchildren at arms' length and shutting down any attempt the kids might make to bond with them. Since the role of grandparents would shift from being "people who interfere with my parenting" to "excellent people like me", their wonderfulness would express itself as being a second set of parents.

Next, we have to contend with Lynn's need to state that outsiders are always scary and wrong. This would surely take the form of Lynn becoming the exemplar of giving her grandbabies toys, time and attention while Mira and Clarice Caine would be the ones who would sit on their arses drinkin'coffee while Elly's grandchildren played in traffic and drank drain cleaner.

We could also expect to see Elly and Connie whine about how Elizabeth selfishly and irrationally followed the bad advice of selfish people who don't want Elly to win even once by not letting Elly swoop down and give her grandchildren the attention she never seemed to want to give her, Mike and April when they were growing up. Any sort of indication that this is in any way hypocritical on Elly's part would be explained away in a silly, self-serving fashion that whines about how adult children should just get over being treated like monsters who want to destroy their mother because said mother no longer believes that to be the case decades afterward.

Finally, the baby would love Elly more than any other character and would regularly spit, tinkle and defecate on John Patterson. That'll teach Rod to want to try to be a part of his grandchild's life!!
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru)
Of course, there is another way in which Anthony losing custody of his daughter because some "biased" jury and "quite clearly corrupt and incompetent" judge listened to Thérèse's "outlandish and scurrilous lies" about how he's an emotionally abusive creep-head married to a negligent, verbally abusive drunkard of marginal intellectual capacity makes him and Liz unfit to parent a Beanie Baby and took little Frenchy Girl away to become a snooty-faced weirdo who calls the Pattersons self-serving hayseeds. Said horrible thing is once she shows signs of being brainwashed into thinking that being treated as if she were a human being whose needs need to be taken seriously is a good thing when being treated like a monster who wants to drain Elly's substance produced such an excellent creature as fat-assed lush Lizardbreath, Pornstache will up and decide that he wants a complete family now that he's got himself a hoooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooome. Since Lynn would need to hammer away at the theme that people who make her feel as if she's in the wrong are actually extra-bad people who want to ruin her life, we can look forward to Liz being akin to Connie or Georgia and not even being able to oops any more babies. This will somehow be blamed on the Evil Career Woman's malice and a triumph for her campaign to keep Liz from being loved by her worthless arsebucket parents or some such drivel.

What it will not be seen as is what it is: a pathetic loser who pissed a good thing away so that he could chase a teenaged fantasy like a chump. If he'd grown the God-damned Hell up like everyone else, he'd actually be the rather cool dude Lynn described him as being. Instead, he's a whining, sunken-chested, dickless wonder who traded away the good life for a silly dream and the wonderful future of spending his life balancing Mike "He has to unzip his pants to count to twenty-one" Patterson's books. Similarly, Liz would stand revealed not as the saintly victim of the malice of an anti-life monster but as the same sulking little child who, having been forced to obey a social norm that was inconvenient, blames the victim of her swinishness for her own blindly stomping away in a blind rage because she can't punish someone for wanting her to feel bad about barging in where she shouldn't be.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru)
As we know, the title of the upcoming third treasury is "Making Ends Meet." What bothers most of us is that the title clearly implies that the Pattersons are behind the eight-ball financially. What the outside observer sees when they look at John is a man who can easily afford to buy sports cars, stereos, vacations and, yes, even hobby businesses for the bored housewife who doesn't really have to work in order to cover the mortgage. It doesn't seem to make sense to imply that the two of them are still struggling just to get by unless there's some sort of hidden factor that somehow or other complicates things.

Unfortunately for all concerned, we get a strong hint as to what that X factor is Wednesday when John reminds Elly that once again, she's so eager to spend her paycheque, she's done so once already. As I said before long ago, Elly seems to not really be able to think coherently about large sums of money; while she can imagine what can be done with the small change she pulls out of people's pockets, once she has to contemplate a sum larger than one hundred dollars or so, she turns back into the little girl who needs a daddy to save her from spending herself into oblivion. We also have to contend with the irritating fact that when Elly witlessly dropped out of University to play house with her equally stupid husband, she did so without realizing that just because she was no longer a student, that didn't mean that her student loans didn't need to have to be paid back. Given that oversight (which, I should think, was as astonishing as finding out that no, bank managers aren't going to be 'reasonable' about it) and the fact that John stupidly expected whatever measly salary she made typing papers and waiting tables to support both of them until he got hired somewhere, it makes sense to assume that it took until April damned near drowned for the last of his and Elly's debts to get squared away. What really hurts is the realization that his two older children are as good at math and smart with their money as Elly is; this means that he has to own their horses because they're too stupid to be trusted with them. Too bad that the people he trusts to take care of them after he dies have tinsel where spines should be despite his belief that they have the head for business his kids lack. Were they have to married people whose firmness of character didn't frighten and anger him, they wouldn't end up spending their lives treading water financially.


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