but because of the way he was written as a plot device

Like I’m sorry but Molly Hooper is almost 40 years old? What 40 year old woman spends her days slicing lemons and pining over gay men for seven years? What 40-year old woman’s ultimate wish is to have said gay man say “I love you” to her even while knowing he doesn’t mean it? GOD DAMMIT take up a hobby! Go for a walk! Have some self-respect!

It makes me so fucking furious because I know that it’s not Molly’s fault that she’s written that way, and it’s not Loo’s fault that she has to play Molly that way. It’s mofftiss’ misogynistic writing to make her a pathetic lovelorn mousy fucking plot device when WE KNOW she’s so much more than that.

But GOD it’s so fucking goddam unrealistic that a beautiful, intelligent, accomplished, GROWN FUCKING WOMAN would EVER act this way for a man. ANY man. Or would hold onto these unrequited feelings (that she FOR SURE KNOWS are unrequited) for this many years. Like…it’s actually ridiculous to even consider for me.

If Molly had “fallen” for Sherlock at 15 and she was 22 now….okay. I believe she could still be hung up on him due to age and lack of life experience. But this isn’t the case with our Molly. There is NO WAY a woman of Molly’s age would act THIS way after THIS long.

It’s like mofftiss took every bit of strength and agency and self-possession Molly had or developed over the years and flushed it down the toilet for the opportunity to use her as a wet rag plot device once again. Why?? Whyyyyy????

It’s interesting because we’ve never had jrot write Clexa. Every episode that’s been credited to him has had NO direct clexa interaction. This was the first. And you can clearly see from the way she was written in this episode, that this is how he always saw her. A plot device. A pit stop. The one dimensional fantasy character that exists to help the hero on their noble quest and sacrifices themselves so the hero can move forward. Just a blip on the radar.


Everyone else on the writing team (production and directors as well) was developing Lexa as a multidimensional character, layering her, developing clexa, giving them true meaning, making it a real and true relationship with powerful characters, but jrot never thought of it that way and didn’t have anything to do with it. The minute his “idea” came in to take over with the AI plot we saw Lexa instantly erased and she become a plot device, flip her dead body over, cut out the AI, and ooooooohhhhh let’s all pay attention to that now!

Lexa in the finale (while ADC and Eliza did a great job in showing the affection and love and relief between the two to the best of their ability) was just written as a plot device to help Clarke out in the ‘matrix’ for a few minutes. “It’s a firewall.” Jfc. Really. Lexa’s gonna talk about firewalls and ALIE and software updates? She was written in to give Clarke a little boost along her journey, something for the fans to go “yay! lexa shows up!”, and it was so painfully obvious. He didn’t even believe they warranted an “I love you” parting until after shit went down with 3x07 and then ADR’d and edited the fuck out of this episode to try and ease some of the backlash. Sorry, but no. In his mind, Lexa was the little fantasy creature in an epic adventure quest to help the hero out in their time of need and when her job was done, she outlived her usefulness once again, and she was gone.

I’m not upset about it really because a) I already grieved for Lexa and b) it was SUCH a poorly written/edited episode that it’s almost comical. I mean, COMICALLY BAD. So I can’t take it seriously. But in Jrottenburger’s mind, Lexa was never anything more than someone to give Clarke a little boost over the fence.

I thank everyone on that writing staff who saw her as more and wrote her accordingly despite their boss’ shortcomings and utter lack of vision/creativity.

Clown Theory

I think that, towards the end of Homestuck, Gamzee isn’t even a character. He’s a Clown.

I capitalize that because having read a lot of the stuff Hussie’s written, I’m fairly certain that in the context of his works a Clown can be considered a proper noun that represents a particular archetype of an (almost) mindless chaotic trickster. I know that a lot of people felt left down after Gamzee was left in the fridge with no redemption thrown his way, and indeed after he didn’t seem to have any character development or even a coherent character past Act 5; I think it all makes a lot more sense if you consider Gamzee as a character to have essentially been written out of the story as he morphs into a Pan-like trickster plot device; a sort of one dimensional vector for chaotic evil and plot progression by carrying out tasks for Lord English like a sort of automaton. He shows a little bit more character perhaps in the interaction where he taunts Terezi, but to be honest that’s almost just for the mechanical purpose of causing her as much pain as possible than anything too genuine on his part (other than his utter clown rage - the Rage aspect itself probably has a lot to do with Clowns tbh).

Clowns represent this weird space in Hussworks where they kinda always embody this concept, which is why clown motifs are so firmly baked into Homestuck, and Gamzee is the resolution of that trickster spirit. I mean, a few other characters have some degree of clown in them, but none of then go so purely trickster-avatar as Act 6 Gamzee does. Heck, there’s even an argument to be made that aside from being merely an archetype, the Clown is actually a distinct uncanny entity, that follows is own warped physical laws in addition to their own one-dimensional trickster schtick. We didn’t get much of a coherent reason for Gamzee’s immortality - his ability to go about his tricksterism no matter how much ammunition was unloaded into him - except for the maxim “you can’t keep down the clown”, which I think lots of people felt was a cop-out. Well, I tend to think that it was actually an entirely literal explanation; Clowns cannot be killed - Clowns can and will remain a pure elemental force for tricksterism, and usually for evil. It can’t be helped - the most you can so do stop them is chain them up in a fridge; it’s the only way to win.

So yeah, that’s how I make sense of what Gamzee’s deal is. It’s probably his aspect that allows him (or is geared to allow him) to go so effortlessly Full Clown. I’m not sure if I think that the Clown itself is always necessarily evil; it often functionally is, at least in Gamzee’s case, but maybe that’s specifically because his clown-embodiment is an expression of Rage-through-Clown, whereas maybe other clowns would take different sorts of (narrative) fuel. I also suspect that Clown might be a submeaning of the Bard class, meaning that even if they don’t go full Clown like Gamzee did, they might be predisposed to Clown traits and have risk of going full clown, almost in the same way that some players are “tempted” with going Grimdark due to their classpect.

Hey, wasn’t Cronus the Bard of Hope? Maybe this was a partial factor in why his character was shallow and fairly obnoxious, although that might be reading a little too much into Cronus, who was after all largely a joke character in his brief appearance. But then again that might even back up my point.

I expressed a natal certain on this theory on my blog once, and there was a little bit of a negative response to a rejection of a Gamzee characterization which applies more depth to his actions. I think part of the appeal of Gamzee to a lot of people lies in his troubled past, and in perhaps relating to his apparent struggle with his issues (often seen as, specifically, mental health issues). This is a perfectly valid interpretation of his character, of course, and indeed I can see all of these things in Gamzee myself, at first; but in terms of his later development, I see them more as being the basis that eventually leads to him going Clown (and in doing so losing much of that depth as he submits to the archetype). That in itself is an interesting thing for me, and is at least in my mind the best way to characterize what was happening with Gamzee’s development across Homestuck. Although, simultaneously, I can understand why such a perspective might be disappointing to somebody who is looking for or who wanted more character-centric depth in Act 6 Gamzee.

I’m not going to lie. I 100% wish The Flash was actually the Iris West show, and that the Westallen romance was secondary to the plot because it was a show about Iris’ life and career and family and friends, and Barry had to fit into it instead of the other way around.

Unfortunately, that’s not what I’m dealing with. The Flash is a television show conceived by men and written for (mostly) men, in which the women appear as mostly plot devices or motivations for male characters. (For example, it’s not lost on me that the second Jesse decides she needs to find herself away from Harry, she literally disappears from the show. They don’t care about her journey unless it’s about her dad.) More than that, this is a story about Barry and how the other characters can service Barry’s plot.

Caitlin falls for “Jay” just so that Barry can be betrayed by a dude he spoke to like twice. The one time Cisco saw his family last season, it was so he could be forced to give up Barry’s identity. Joe exists primarily to support Barry - hell, he didn’t even get to reconcile with his estranged wife of twenty years onscreen.

I guess where I’m going with this is that each character on this show only gets a few precious scenes per episode (if that) to do something other than exist in the background of STAR Labs spewing science words or support Barry emotionally. Iris this season spent a few episodes just standing in the background, a few episodes with family drama, a few episodes at CCPN writing or avoiding stories, and now a few episodes contemplating her romantic past and future. 

This isn’t materially different from what’s going on with the other characters. Everyone other than Barry (and Harry to some extent, who gets an entire throughline this season about his daughter even though it comes back to betraying or teaming up with Barry) exists primarily to support him. The only difference is the roles they fill in his life: Joe is his father figure, Harry is his mentor, Cisco is (unfairly because he could be a hero in his own right if they let him) his tech guy, Caitlin is his doctor. Even Wally has primarily been framed by what his place in the family means for Barry’s place.

And then there’s Iris, who is his best friend and future wife. She fills the romantic role, but outside of that she gets those few scenes of family and work. This last episode, Iris’ “plot” consisted of two scenes and was romantic in nature, yes. But she also helped the team during Barry’s race with Zoom and then faced off against Hunter with a gun. Just like Caitlin also helped the team, but had to deal with her romance with Hunter and invoke that romance in her plea to him before being kidnapped…because of her romance.

This is so long so I’ll leave it at this: Iris is not suddenly “just” a love interest. She’s only just now getting back to being the love interest and the show is playing catch up because they ignored that part of her story for twelve episodes. We should 100% keep fighting for her to get more relevant screentime and for her to do more at CCPN that matters (like connect the public to the Flash or save the day through journalism!), but any issues with her treatment do not stem from her being Barry’s love interest. They stem from these writers not knowing how to handle A) women in general, B) black women specifically, and C) any character who isn’t Barry when they are existing outside of Barry’s sphere of influence.