Author Topic: Serpico and Farnese: Two Poorly Conceived Characters  (Read 20400 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline yota821

Re: Serpico and Farnese: Two Poorly Conceived Characters
« Reply #50 on: December 29, 2007, 10:41:46 PM »
That's not what I wrote at all.  Their changes in response to these events are what's unrealistic.  One can't really argue any further beyond that; you seem to accept these developments as reasonable, I don't. 

Well you said:

That's probably the end of the issue though; I see those events as being unrealistic, whereas you (and presumably others) don't.  I enjoyed the exchange.

So I figured you were talking about the events.  My bad.  :ganishka:

Quote
That's an understandable difference in opinion.  The internal monologues you mentioned are irrelevant; I never accused Miura of being lazy, so of course he'll create some quasi-justification for the characters' changes. 

He could also have changed Nina into a tough, morose character during the same arc, with some more internal monologue as justification. 

Neither development is the least bit logical or consistent though, at least for me.

As for the internal monologues being irrelevant, can one honestly be convinced of Guts', Griffith's, or even Casca's change in character without their own internal monologues?  Much of their growth can be see from these internal conflicts with their own consciousness and the reality besetting them, and by throwing away all that development in Farnese and Serpico I can easily see why you're having a hard time accepting their maturing process.

As for Nina, she had her own character growth as well, everything from her turn around of being a depressed coward to a person who was given some hunger for life (thanks to Luca), as well as her decision not to stay with Luca because of her wish to become a more mature person, and not be overcome by envy or jealousy for Luca's personality and will.  That is probably one of the most dramatic changes in a person in the Berserk universe.
I'm just a poor, wayfaring stranger.......just moving along to the next habitation of demons.....

Offline Bekul

Re: Serpico and Farnese: Two Poorly Conceived Characters
« Reply #51 on: December 29, 2007, 10:53:23 PM »
Have you contributed a single on-topic post to this discussion?  Looking through your posts here, it all seems like a bunch of passive aggressive, off-topic commentary about "fascinating personalities", "you haven't read the manga", or "you've clearly been proven wrong". 

There wasn't a single sentence in anything you wrote that pertained to the focus at hand.  If you can't think of something on your own, then simply don't post, troll. 

Huh?  :???:

Um, hmm. Well, aside from pointing out the on-topic facts that I have already contributed that pertained directly to the focus at hand, um...

Hmm. Well, if nothing else, if you'd like, I can contribiute to the understanding of some terms that you seem to be having some confusion with - not just you, but that many people can have trouble with. Clarity of meaning of words is something that often clouds discussions, and for if nothing else, defending myself against being called a passive-aggressive troll, I'd like to take a moment here:

Passive Aggressive: Passive-aggressive behavior refers to passive, sometimes obstructionist resistance to following authoritative instructions in interpersonal or occupational situations. It can manifest itself as resentment, stubbornness, procrastination, sullenness, or repeated failure to accomplish requested tasks for which one is assumed, often explicitly, to be responsible. It is a defense mechanism and, more often than not, only partly conscious.

Troll: An Internet troll, or simply troll in Internet slang, is someone who posts controversial messages in an on-line community such as an on-line discussion forum with the intention of baiting other users into responding emotionally.

*shrugs*

Again, for clarity sake - what exactly is inconsistent or illogical about the development of Farnese and Serpico as characters? It's obvious that you consider what is seen by various members of the board here as self-evident to be incorrect. Greater understanding of the disconnect you're experiencing will help us to understand your position, and aid communication of why exactly the reasons for your thinking, for example, 'Their changes in response to these events' are unrealistic, is wrong. For an example, the internal monologues of Farnese and Serpico explain precicely the reasons for their character changes. Dismissing that out of hand as irrelevent, when it is in fact neccessary to the explanation, is rather odd. Perhaps we're misinterpreting your reasoning?

Offline CnC

  • Of the Abyss
  • *****
  • Posts: 5076
  • Karma: 2
  • Gender: Male
  • Ad Oculos
Re: Serpico and Farnese: Two Poorly Conceived Characters
« Reply #52 on: December 30, 2007, 12:51:15 AM »
Have you contributed a single on-topic post to this discussion?  Looking through your posts here, it all seems like a bunch of passive aggressive, off-topic commentary about "fascinating personalities", "you haven't read the manga", or "you've clearly been proven wrong". 

There wasn't a single sentence in anything you wrote that pertained to the focus at hand.  If you can't think of something on your own, then simply don't post, troll. 

He and others have had more relevant things to say than you so far (well, ok, maybe not pippin  :troll: ).

-----
That's a pretty strong statement, but unfortunately, it's not supported by any facts, something which you seem to struggle greatly with.

Support the statement that you skip information, make false opinions, then throw temper tantrums with facts?  Normally that would be argumentative, but you make it too easy:

example 1: skip information:
 
since Farnese's character doesn't change at all during that period, besides the occasional confused facial expression.  The visible change occurs around the beginning of the Millenium Falcon arc, once she decides to join Guts's party.   

example 2: make false opinions:
Also, what's her purpose in the group, besides feebly trying to protect Casca, and failing miserably at it, in the process forcing some other character to save both of them?   

example 3:throw temper tantrum:
Unfounded arrogance aside, what you just wrote is a pointless collection of words,
...
while reciting completely meaningless, irrelevant factoids
...
This quote is so funny on so many different levels. 
...
I'm sure you don't have a monopoly on the truths of the Berserk universe. 
...
but I'd hope that this type of elitism isn't considered cool or trendy here. 

Granted, this is only in the first two posts you ever made in thread.  There are some other gems further down if you don't remember those, either.
----
Speaking of temper tantrums, kid, I think this is a great example of that;

http://www.skullknight.net/forum/index.php?topic=8595.msg144124#msg144124

Like I said before, I could embarrass you very easily if my goal was to insult you, but I'll let the mods handle it instead. 

Oh yes, imagine my embarrassment in quoting you calling yourself an idiot.  By the by me and DirectDK are mods, you must mean the admins.  I wouldn't count on them rushing to support your claims that two central characters in the story aren't well thought out enough for you.

That's not what I wrote at all.  Their changes in response to these events are what's unrealistic.  One can't really argue any further beyond that; you seem to accept these developments as reasonable, I don't. 

I see Yota beat me to the quoting punch on those.   :serpico:
However it is funny to see you don't even remember reading what you wrote.

Anyways, once again you succeed in bringing nothing new to the conversation.  We get it, you don't like Farnese or Serpico. 
Rather than provide any real facts to support your dislike you'd rather start a thread based on opinion, have everyone call you out then demand that THEY prove to YOU that you don't have any real facts to support your dislike.  Fuckin' brilliant.
 :ganishka:
I'm sick of following my dreams.  I'm just going to ask where they're going and hook up with 'em later...
- R.I.P Mitch Hedberg
CnColors!

Offline Bacongod

Re: Serpico and Farnese: Two Poorly Conceived Characters
« Reply #53 on: December 30, 2007, 01:16:30 AM »
I usually don't get involved in these types of posts.  They are opinion arguments, and the opinions of people vary greatly, and are impossible to change.  I work a lot, and find such discussion futile.  That being said:

Red devil, your problem with Farnese seems to be (this post is tedious and repetitive), what you refer to as "illogical character progression."  You find it hard to believe a persons very character could change in such a brief period of time?
You have clearly never had your girlfriend of three years dump you because of your opinions of her buckwheat pancakes.  People in the real world change rapidly, extended social interaction is my evidence of this.  Comics are an embellishment of the real world, people run faster, they are stronger, some of them are even witches.  Seems logical that their personalities might change faster.   
Trauma on a massive scale can change a person, seemingly overnight.  To see evidence of trauma on a massive scale, see page 52, volume 17.  Farnese seems to suppress this event until the final pages of volume nineteen, which leads to page 105 of volume twenty, "The world I recognize... comes crashing down in ruins."
I know, only two pieces of evidence to support Farnese and her magically changing personality.
There is one other thing.  It doesn't support Farnese per se, it only shows you as a poor judge of character.
You stated that Conan is a one dimensional character.  This shows glaring evidence that you haven't read the collected Robert Howard writings of Conan, and that you tend to judge books by their cover.  This isn't about Conan, so I'll keep it brief, but through Conan, Howard showcased the duality between the barbaric and civilized natures of man.  Conan expresses a vast array of emotion and thoughtfulness,  not to mention the stories cover an enormous block of his life.  That alone proves depth of character, but if you'd like I can (elsewhere) give you the titles of specific stories.

As for Serpico... well... I don't have anything to say about him.  He kind of seems like a nonce to me. 

Offline RedDevilFC

  • Quarantined
  • Of the World
  • *
  • Posts: 24
  • Karma: 0
  • This avatar is totally illogical.
Re: Serpico and Farnese: Two Poorly Conceived Characters
« Reply #54 on: December 30, 2007, 11:41:35 PM »
This shows glaring evidence that you haven't read the collected Robert Howard writings of Conan, and that you tend to judge books by their cover.  This isn't about Conan, so I'll keep it brief, but through Conan, Howard showcased the duality between the barbaric and civilized natures of man.  Conan expresses a vast array of emotion and thoughtfulness,  not to mention the stories cover an enormous block of his life.  That alone proves depth of character, but if you'd like I can (elsewhere) give you the titles of specific stories.


Go for it; I used to read the later Tor Edition Conan stories by Perry, Roberts, Jordan, and Carpenter like a fiend, but not the Howard originals.  Still, while the former represented Conan as many things; intelligent, sympathetic, even funny, he had absolutely no motivation or desire. 

He simply went along with whatever events occurred to him, and as such, you could write him into any scenario. 

Which, incidentally, can be said for Serpico and Farnese.....

Offline Bekul

Re: Serpico and Farnese: Two Poorly Conceived Characters
« Reply #55 on: December 31, 2007, 12:11:45 AM »
Eh, the later Tor Edition Conan stories by Perry, Roberts, Jordan, and Carpenter, compared to the Howard originals, would be as if, for example, Berserk was remade by Marvel or D.C. as an American Superhero comic. I'd still be Beserk, sorta, just as the Conan stories not written by Howard are still Conan stories, sorta, but at the same time, vastly far removed from source.

Offline Forest Wraith

  • Of the Interstice
  • **
  • Posts: 259
  • Karma: 0
  • Gender: Male
  • Evil is born when we lose power over ourselves.
Re: Serpico and Farnese: Two Poorly Conceived Characters
« Reply #56 on: December 31, 2007, 08:14:42 AM »
What a thread I missed. I'm really glad I was out visiting my extended family when all of this went down. At least that's something worth having missed this for.
The cold season drifts over the land.
They all huddle in the brown corners.
Some would settle for less.
The castles were all empty, asleep
Long awaiting their King.
Beckoning round the bend.
-Opeth: Karma

smoke

  • Guest
Re: Serpico and Farnese: Two Poorly Conceived Characters
« Reply #57 on: December 31, 2007, 09:38:33 AM »
Really long thread. Got through page one and couldn't stomach it anymore.

I'm just going to say that DevilFC or wtfever wants some very shonen exposition to explain dramatic change.

FARNESE: Wow, I'm a somewhat insecure and troubled person who used to put on a facade of absolute faith and harshness so that I could compensate for my guilty conciousness for having a burning-people-fetish. However, my faith was slowly broken apart by my repeated encounters with the Black Swordsman and the supernatural events that surrounded him until I realized that my faith was not a surefire comfort and not an absolute answer. I was intrigued by the Black Swordman's conviction and much of the foundation for my life had crumbled beneath me. That being the case, I chose to follow him. Having then, something of a vaccuum of belief and dedication in my life, I decided to take up magic. And so, by being humbled and shaken and having my entire worldview broken apart, I have become a much different person.

SERPICO: Oh yeah?

FARNESE: Yeah.

SERPICO: Cool. I always wondered why you pulled a complete 180 for absolutely no reason, and why you were such a worthless uninteresting character.

FARNESE: Speaking of, I've been meaning to ask you...

SERPICO: Stop. I know what you're going to say.

FARNESE: ...

SERPICO: (sigh) Okay. I'm humble and dedicated to you. That doesn't undermine my reasons for attack Guts, it strengthens them. I am an interesting character because I typically do not vocalize my exact intentions whenever there may be some ambiguity around them. It's hard for some people to understand.

FARNESE: Totally, dude.

SERPICO: Speaking of, y'know what's annoying?

FARNESE: What?

SERPICO: When people demand "facts" or "proof" in something as unscientific as a story. Especially when the very "proof" you're offering them is nuance and subtleties which, by definition, aren't explicitly stated, and therefore can't be recalled with any kind of citation.

FARNESE: Yeah. That is pretty lame, isn't it.

SERPICO: I guess not all trolls type with their faces.

FARNESE: Scary thought.

SERPICO: Indeed.

*Atomic explosion*

Offline Aazealh

  • 髑髏の騎士
  • Administrator
  • Of Terror
  • *****
  • Posts: 18403
  • Karma: 624
  • Gender: Male
  • そうはいかぬ
Re: Serpico and Farnese: Two Poorly Conceived Characters
« Reply #58 on: December 31, 2007, 05:50:46 PM »
Well, what a thread do we have here. My post comes late, but I think the way our members handled the matter here was already more than enough. However, since people have repeatedly brought it to my attention, I'm making the effort. After having read it all, I must say it's clear to me that if anyone is at fault here, it's RedDevilFC. I hope you will not take it badly (although with the recent developments I guess it's too late for that), but I think you have exhibited here most of the defaults you attributed to others.

You've been very aggressive, and while CnC's tone might have seemed patronizing and untactful to you, please try to keep in mind that you were pretty bold with your assertions in the first place, and that you didn't explain nor justify anything you said yourself. Added to that is the fact that such discussions have taken place before, and that they are laborious and mostly uninteresting to people that have been around for a while. Writing paragraphs upon paragraphs to explain things that practically every reader finds evident when reading the manga is often thought of as bothering, especially if you've already done so half a dozen times in the past. Not to mention that searching for old threads on the forum could save people the trouble of reiterating what is considered common knowledge. I don't think CnC's replies to your post were devoid of interest for the most part, in fact he did hit the point a lot of times as far as I can tell. Much like yota821, Triple Life, Bacongod or many others did (On a side note, very good contributions guys, they were a pleasure to read! If only all forum posts could be like those, all would be well on the Internet.). CnC did make an uncalled for post, but that's not like it annuls the rest of what he said. And you have been a hypocrite too, for constantly decrying his rudeness and arrogance, while copiously insulting him and displaying an incredible arrogance and condescendence yourself (overlooking what he said that was of value in the process). It's not really like you've been very nice or amiable. Rather, I think other people were very nice and patient with you in this thread given your contemptuous and presomptuous behavior, even more that one would have expected. However, that didn't prevent you from discarding most of what they said without giving it much thought.

Obviously this sort of attitude doesn't help in creating thoughtful conversations, and indeed I don't think the discussion that took place was very interesting in itself. Baseless assertions were made and stated to be hard facts, people replied with valid points that showed why those assertions were wrong, and were met with a wall of denial that didn't embarrass itself with any concrete argument. You did not provide any point, argument, fact or anything of the sort yourself; you merely asserted what you believed and then acted as if it had any sort of authority that required a very serious disproval to be contested. I'm afraid this is just not how things work. The burden of proof is not on other people. In this case, while I understand how it can be seen as humiliating (wrongly so as it's definitely not shameful for someone new to the series to have missed some elements), it seems appropriate to me that people would recommend someone to re-read the manga while paying more attention to details. Having read every episode doesn't mean much if one hasn't given them enough consideration, much like thinking Zepec, Zondark, Bazūso or any other from the vast majority of characters in Berserk are three-dimensional doesn't matter much as long as one considers Farnese and Serpico (main characters) to be poorly conceived. You were right to call it lazy, because it is, but it's also understandable and more or less justified. It involves a lot less effort on everyone's part than painstakingly explicating every single panel and line would. More so since your opinion isn't backed up by anything here, your posts in this thread mostly being a collection of statements that nothing proves true but your own belief that they are. It may seem blatant for me to say so, but for someone who apparently doesn't even own the volumes, I think you should show a little more humility before telling others to go re-read the manga themselves. What have you been reading exactly, what translations have you been using? Or do you read it in Japanese directly? No need to reply of course, I believe I already know the answer.

Anyway, this isn't an attack on your person and I sure hope you won't take it as such; rather I'm trying to point out what went wrong to you so you might understand the reactions you were met with. And please rest assured that I'm not being partial, I think a lot of members could vouch for that fact. Now that this has been said, let me go over the heart of the problem, which is your surprising problem with the characters of Farnese and Serpico. As you have noticed, you are indeed the only one to be thinking like you do, which could have made you consider the possibility that you have a problem with the way you perceive and understand these characters and the story surrounding them, but seemingly didn't. Originally I had thought of replying lengthily and line by line to whatever had been said in the thread, but upon reading it I discovered that excellent points had been made, meaning that the real problem didn't lie there, or at least not just there. It would have been a waste of time to merely reiterate what had already been said point by point, and you guys had already been quoting yourselves enough as it was, so I decided to concentrate on your difficulty to perceive and interpret character traits correctly.

There are a few reasons for your misinterpretation, I believe. The first of which being that you are clearly biased against the characters. You don't like them and it shows. This seems to taint whatever thought you form about anything related to them. Maybe this is because they remind you of some people you know, and that you think are relevant in comparison to them. That would be a second reason, and if so this isn't true: whatever stupid acquaintances you may have are not a valid basis to form an opinion on Berserk characters. Just like Guts is an exceptional individual that isn't comparable to some tough-guy you play bowling with, Farnese is exceptional in her own way and isn't comparable to your friend Bob's depressive ex-girlfriend. A third reason is your strange obsession with things not being logical or not making sense. What is your basis for saying so, other than your own arbitrary decision than it is? Again, is this based on your own experience of the world (or lack thereof)? Are things not logical because that's not how you think people should act? Honestly and without meaning any offense, I believe it would be extremely pretentious of you to think so. From what you've said in this thread, you don't seem to be versed enough in such matters to be able to speak with any kind of authority on the subject. Your experience isn't impressive, nor very pertinent, and a lot of truths you have repeatedly asserted as if they were undeniable are actually plain wrong and the result of your ignorance. In short, you are vastly overestimating your real world experience. Not to mention that like you've been told, people's reactions don't have to be logical and often aren't or at least don't seem to be, they're emotional. But that's not even a point worth pursuing here because with everything we're shown and told in the manga, the characters' evolutions seem really quite logical. Lastly, I think you have probably been missing or misinterpreting things in the manga, maybe because of your mindset and preconceptions toward certain characters, maybe not. I am also aware that you likely didn't have access to fully reliable material when you read the series, as you should be. I think this showed most when you mentioned how Isidro has redeeming features because he's funny and can take down a few enemies. Hopefully that isn't all of what he represents to you.

Now obviously, if you just want to call the characters "poorly conceived" and aren't willing to challenge your own conceptions, others won't be able to do it by themselves, no matter what they tell or show you. It's a matter of good faith here, if you aren't ready to reconsider and check/think again about what people are pointing out to you, then it's a waste of their time to do so. Oversimplifying things and making blanket statements while essentially repeating what you first said whenever someone responds to you just can't get the discussion anywhere. Let's take for example what you said about Farnese's character development up to volume 21 amounting to "confused facial expressions". I would say that it is at the same time very pretentious and very reductive. Not only does it denote a deliberate lack of consideration for the character (and the author by the same occasion), but it also proves that you have been overlooking the very elements that would help you understand what you are missing. In such a situation, how could you possibly expect people to make efforts to explain things to you? Or even to take what you say seriously? Disregarding entire arcs does not exactly speak in favor of your good comprehension of the story.

Now, I'll address some other points you seemed to have problems with, though I think they've been answered very well already:

You often said that Farnese became an almost completely different person after volume 21. That's not the case. She didn't really change into a different person, it's just her behavior and how she copes with her problems that are now different. It's all clearly expressed and detailed too, so it's not like it should come off as a surprise. I think all in all it's a pretty realistic evolution for the character, one that correctly grasps the psychological processes involved and accurately yet originally depicts them in this most unusual context. She was the same scared, unskilled, clumsy and cowering little girl all along, someone that needed affection and attention at crucial times and didn't get any. The pivotal traumatic event she suffered during her childhood is the time she finally went out of her house to see the spectacle she was exposed to through her room's window from up close (that says a lot about how uncared for she was, really). There she discovered a most perverted way to hold off her fears, and clutched to it desperately as she was just a little kid. And as time went on she continued masquerading and hiding herself behind this mask she had composed. But did she really believe all of this, deep inside her mind? The scene of her possession by a specter in volume 17 clearly shows that she didn't. She was always very fragile mentally behind that facade of arrogant confidence, during all that time, and that showed everytime something didn't fit in her little world. This is why I think it was very logical for her to return to her true self in the end. The events she went through made her realize that the mask she had been wearing was not protecting her from the world. Acting as a capricious, unforgiving, cold-hearted leading woman couldn't shield her from her fears. So she discarded that mask, and tried to follow Guts' example: fighting back openly, as herself, instead of cowering and parading as a different person.

You ask why would shocking events inspire a positive change in Farnese? Because it opened her eyes about the world and tore apart the thin veil she had cast upon it to hide from her fears. Like others have said before, I can't stress enough how very eloquently it's all put in the manga. Summarizing it in two paragraphs doesn't do it justice. So when you say that her world views had nothing to do with her problems and the changes that occurred in her, you're sorely mistaken, and basically showcasing that you do not understand what they were all about. There's also that comparison you made about why Mozgus or the heretics didn't change into caring, kind individuals. Well that's because they weren't such individuals in the first place. Farnese's behavior was a result of her traumatic childhood coupled to her extra-sensitive personality. It's really a clumsy parallel you're making here, and a pretty bad example too (Mozgus and the heretics not being particularly prone to changing their views after witnessing supernatural events). It's not too far from asking why Farnese is a well developed and complex character and why some random guy isn't. That's just how the author made the story, and it's beyond the point. Aside from that, I think it's worth mentioning that they were challenged by the supernatural events they witnessed anyway, even Mozgus was pretty shaken (he had all those confused facial expressions). The difference is that he was a fanatic and his faith was everything to him, while Farnese didn't really believe in the Holy See's teachings in the first place and just turned to them because she was afraid (and additionally, they didn't go through the same things at all; had the events each of them was exposed to different, the results would have certainly also been). And while we're on the matter of changes underwent by characters, I'd also like to point out that Nina did undergo a meaningful change herself, unlike what you said. I don't think it's too hard to see either, she understood what her problem was and had the courage to move on by herself. Another thing you mentioned: that nobles during her youth or Mozgus while at Albion were distressing Farnese just like Guts did. I'm sorry but the nobles didn't really distress Farnese, and the only example of a duel we're given is actually rather justified. The noble in question was speaking ill of Serpico and Farnese didn't want to leave it unpunished. As for Mozgus, he and his little world of torture did distress her, that's true, but on a much lower scale and in a different way. It can't even compare to what she experienced with Guts, especially since it didn't challenge her world views. And please note that it wasn't so much Guts that distressed her, but more the events that took place around him.

To conclude all this talk about Farnese, I would like to address your claims that she's of no use to the group. This is simply not true, and basically all the characters in the group have acknowledged her usefulness at some point. Moreover, no one else can replace her, despite what you seem to be believing. Not Isidro, not Schierke, no one. They don't have what it takes to do it, and are less effective and reliable than she was even at her worst. There's actually a whole episode dedicated to this fact (251, and some more in 252). It's not like taking care of Casca or random other everyday life stuff is an easy thing that deserves no consideration. Remember why Guts let his companions accompany him in the first place? It wasn't to help him fight off undeads, because he doesn't need anyone's help for that. No, it was to take care of Casca. So going by that logic, Farnese's really the most useful person in the group as far as he's concerned. There is no need for a justification on a battle-worthy scale. Anyway, Farnese has proven herself useful many times since volume 23, which is where your harsh description seems to be stopping at (as if everything had to serve an immediate purpose or to show results instantly). Hell, she's even fought off some Pishacha by herself (saving her father's, brother's as well as Roderick's lives, among other things) and did save Casca's life more than once. She got the group a ship, too. That was no small feat. If your point limits itself to saying that she couldn't protect Casca from falling off a rooftop while in the middle of a storm, well, all I can say is that a certain man couldn't protect Casca from falling off a ship and into the ocean, and there was no storm nor any enemies around. Surely this makes him worthless. And while on that parallel, I could point out that Guts changed from a "mean guy" to a "nice guy" in between volume 1 and volume 32. Poorly conceived!

Now concerning Serpico. You have been saying that his character is contradictory, but you've mostly contradicted yourself while repeatedly qualifying him (you say he's dependent, then independent, I'm afraid he can't be both). In any case, he's not independent, and he's not tough either, nor carefree, nor remarkably powerful or intelligent. And I wouldn't say that he's simple either, which might be part of your problem in understanding him. It certainly is more difficult than for Farnese, mostly because he has gotten a lot less character development, and that some of it is rather subtle. I think the "intelligent" part is worth stressing because you seemed to insist a lot on it, as if he was exceptionally intelligent compared to other characters in the manga. It's not the case. Guy's not a genius, and it has shown times and times again. And he's also not always laid-back either, in spite of what it looks. All of this should be evident for anyone having carefully read the manga.

You have a problem with how he went and attacked Guts on the cliff. You seem to think this is very different from everything he's done ever before and after. Obviously, you must have overlooked the time he tried to kill Guts in volume 17. Viciously, by surprise, in the back. It was because he knew he stood no chance against him in a fair fight. Yet he still tried to kill him for Farnese. Same thing on the cliff. He didn't just decide to go there because he hated Guts. He did it because of Farnese. It's in the manga, in plain sight. Nothing complicated, nothing contradictory. He perceived Guts as a threat for Farnese because she stated it herself, asked him to kill him, and showed signs of great uneasiness after her encounter with him.

To go into more detail in what you said, your comparison between the event on the cliff and his early duels with nobles is really completely ignoring the context and missing the point. It's not like those superficial cuts he let his opponents inflict him during his duels were a big deal, and in getting hit instead of brilliantly defeating them like Farnese ordered him to, he was already defying her authority and acting on his own for what he believed to be her best interest. He preferred to keep a low profile despite her persistence in asking that he humiliates other nobles. I think you're showing a lack of reading comprehension here, and this is reinforced by the fact that your descriptions of him don't seem very accurate.

Then there's your problem with how he can have weaknesses while still being skilled and talended in other ways. You know, because to be realistic, anyone deemed strong has to be flawless. Right. In truth, there's nothing contradictory in the fact he's weak in many ways. People are strong in some respects and weak in others. In fact it's all well explained and logical and it makes plenty of sense and it's really quite realistic. Aside from the fact he was actually her servant for most of his life (like, that was his job), you yourself mentioned his dependent personality. Shouldn't that be enough of a clue? Someone can be devoted to another person, yet be brilliant in many ways. There are so many such examples in our world. Not to mention that Serpico often took upon himself to do what he thought was good for Farnese without caring much for her opinion. In Vritannis for example he was consciously trying to make a choice in her place while knowing very well that it wasn't what she wanted, and probably even that it wasn't the best for her. Like Triple Life pointed out, Serpico so far has needed Farnese, because without her he has nothing. No purpose, no goals, no interests. To find his real identity is going to be the big challenge for him in years to come. And to me, the fact you seem to be oblivious to all of this shows that you are greatly confused and mistaken about his motivations and personality in general.

And to finish, some quotes taken here and there (because I love quotes and just can't help myself!):

he burned his own mother at the harpy's zealous insistence.

As it's been pointed out, you're really misinterpreting the scene here. This is basically a flagrant proof that you didn't understand what you read.

does Guts's role with the Hawks ever really change?  He was always Griffith's ace; the tremendous warrior who hacked away everyone on his path to a kingdom, the same mindless role that Zodd now occupies. Guts eventually realizes this, and leaves to pursue his own goals.

Guts' role did change from his first meeting with the Hawks to the Occultation. And as you've been told, he didn't leave because he realized his role was mindless. Nor is Zodd's role (or Zodd himself) mindless, far from it. It seems to me that you have been missing some finer points and details while reading those parts of the story.

And yeah dude, I know that his leaving stems from the conversation with Charlotte.  That scene has only had about a thousand flashbacks to it in the manga.

But knowing it stems from that doesn't change the fact what you said was completely wrong. And I'd like you to tell me more about those numerous flashbacks and their repartition in the story. They're everywhere, it seems.

I turn 21 two months from today, but if you asked me at the age of 16, I would probably reply that Pippin was a badass, stoic hero, in the mold of Conan.  

Now, I realize that characters like Pippin or Conan aren't really anyone at all; they're one-dimensional and wooden.

This is really a poor analysis of both Pippin and Conan. Pippin wasn't an extremely developed character because he was quiet, but he actually had a lot of strong scenes, and certainly wasn't "one-dimensional and wooden". As for Conan, Bacongod pointed it out already but you really don't seem to know what you're talking about here.

Argue with facts and specific episodes

A very good advice, but that can't have much weight if you don't follow it yourself.

Lord Mozghus

"Mozgus" is spelled without a 'h', and you don't need to call him "Lord".

Wylad

It's Wyald.

the Incarnation of the Femto.

Femto is the name of a character. It's "Femto", not "the Femto". What's that even supposed to mean? And Femto wasn't incarnated during the Eclipse, the term used then is simply "born". The incarnation took place when he took upon a new form and a new body as Griffith.

In other words, she should still be a bitch, even if she no longer believes in the Catholic Church.

Yeah, right, the "Catholic Church". :schierke:

Well, like everything in any fictional universe, it can be rationalized, but it's just too convenient, and too much at odds with the "real" approach taken throughout the first 20 odd volumes of the manga.

This is a pointless collection of words, as you would yourself say. It's false, ignorant, and doesn't even make sense.

I feel that the pair is misplaced as characters in Guts's party.  Even as characters in the manga itself, they're fine, just not as comrades of Guts.

So here you are contradicting what you've been saying all along. Basically your only problem is that they're in Guts' band, because otherwise they'd be fine and you would have no problems with them. I think this touches upon the real problem here: despite your correct use of the English language and rather verbose ways of expressing your opinion, as well as your pseudo-intellectual tone, your qualms with the characters are really just that Farnese can't slice down 10 trolls in one swing, and that Serpico's a fag that can't keep that bitch in her place.

Hopefully, this modest intervention on my part will have helped you understand the error of your ways. I apologize in advance for its briefness and lack of elaboration, but I'm certain you will understand that going more into details would have been both tiring and likely useless. In the end you might still believe that you are right, in spite of everything that was said in this thread, but honestly that would only mean that you do not possess the intellectual faculties needed to properly comprehend the manga. Not simply concerning the two characters in question here, but everything else as well.




This having been taken care of, I'd like to take some time now to comment on some of the interesting posts in the thread (this is the only interesting part of this post, and does not really warrant any replies since I'm sure we're all in agreement anyway):

As for Serpico [...] what is sure is that his views on the situation between Farnese and Guts don't change at all, up until he and Guts' second duel in Vritannis.

I don't think it's completely exact to say that they didn't change at all. It's clear to me that Serpico understood that being in the group was a good thing for Farnese, even though he remained defiant toward Guts. A good part of what prompted the duel in Vritannis was the fact Guts got the armor and couldn't handle it. What happened on the beach was a sort of second crisis in my opinion, in that Guts became an actual threat as opposed to just a subversive character that was perceived as a bad and possibly dangerous influence. When Farnese returned to her family, Serpico saw an opportunity for her to avoid a life of danger and live in a privileged environment. Added to the new threat that was the armor and to his old grudge against Guts, that gave him enough reasons to have this last try at splitting from the group. And I think it's important to point out that this last duel was probably as much for him (if nor more) as it was for her, even though he might not have realized it himself. He clearly saw that she was unhappy to have left the group, and that she was forcing herself to go through it, but he didn't speak up and even tried to stop their reunion on his own. I think that says a lot about him and his personality, and it shows that he's not such a simple and sheepish character, in spite of how he sometimes acts.

How could it not change her?  Having lost everything she held dear (her religion, self-assurance, and to a certain extent her utter reliance on Serpico) she had to change or go completely insane.  She needed some stable ground to redefine herself, and that stable ground was Guts.  Upon Guts she form her new self, a new identity if you will (although that may take it a bit too far).

While I agree with most everything you have said in this thread yota821, I don't really agree with the notion of forming a completely new self. To me it's clear that her actual, real self was there all along, buried under the rest. It's shown and stated times and times again in the manga and I think the difference matters here, because people often tend to be mistaken about the very visible change in her character. Probably just a matter of wording here, but I wanted to point this out. :)

So, she hooks her emotional wagon to Guts. She kneels at his feet, begs him and cuts her hair in a fit of passion.

Nitpicking here too, but I don't think Farnese really cut her hair in a fit of passion. She seemed very calm (almost gloomy) and acted as if her decision and resolve had been well thought-out, which I think was the case.

Like I said, her world view, i.e. her wanting to get attention and such, was shattered.  Perhaps she sought him as a replacement at first, but that soon changed when she realized she was just as useless and pathetic as she was before.

I don't think she sought Guts as a replacement for her former faith. Rather she explicitly states several times that she wants to follow his example, that she wants him to be her guide and show her how to survive like he does. I think the whole concept is very different, and that it already showed that she had really changed.

one can argue that Serpico's skills could have been vastly more powerful and incredible had he not submitted himself beneath Farnese.

Actually, I don't think I'd say that. Rather to me, Farnese was a great motivation for him in many ways, and she forced him to excel in many domains while he wouldn't necessarily have, had he been alone. You see, I think there's more than just a submission aspect to their relationship. Serpico is a rather flawed individual, and I think that Farnese had as much of a positive influence than she had a negative one on him, and maybe even more. She gave him a goal and toughened him, but also probably played a part in the cunning, sensible and sensitive man he has become.

I usually don't get involved in these types of posts.  They are opinion arguments, and the opinions of people vary greatly, and are impossible to change.  I work a lot, and find such discussion futile.

That is understandable, of course. But you see, the problem here and in many other cases is that there will always be people to think that their opinion are facts, with their self-confidence being so strong that actual facts cannot stand before them. Likes and dislikes can be irrational, they are based on individual tastes and experiences. However, trying to assert that something is actually how one thinks it is without providing any hard fact or evidence and while going against plenty of hard facts and evidence is wrong. And people doing it will be systematically told that they are wrong.


Anyway, again, very good posts guys, you were all so pertinent and to the point... Brings a tear to my eye. :judo:

Offline CnC

  • Of the Abyss
  • *****
  • Posts: 5076
  • Karma: 2
  • Gender: Male
  • Ad Oculos
Re: Serpico and Farnese: Two Poorly Conceived Characters
« Reply #59 on: December 31, 2007, 06:26:20 PM »
I apologize in advance for its briefness and lack of elaboration, but I'm certain you will understand that going more into details would have been both tiring and likely useless.

...hah!

You're right tho, there's no way I have the patience to respond at this length to every challenge by the new guy
So kudos to you. :badbone:
I'm sick of following my dreams.  I'm just going to ask where they're going and hook up with 'em later...
- R.I.P Mitch Hedberg
CnColors!

Offline yota821

Re: Serpico and Farnese: Two Poorly Conceived Characters
« Reply #60 on: December 31, 2007, 06:46:55 PM »
Good post there, Aaz.  Maybe that post will convince to him at least entertain the possibility that his views aren't quite right.  Like I said in another thread, though I was frustrated throughout this discourse I enjoyed re-reading the manga and extrapolating upon the relationships between the characters.  :guts:
I'm just a poor, wayfaring stranger.......just moving along to the next habitation of demons.....

Offline Oburi

  • Falconian
  • Of the Abyss
  • *****
  • Posts: 2729
  • Karma: 59
  • Gender: Male
  • All praise Grail
Re: Serpico and Farnese: Two Poorly Conceived Characters
« Reply #61 on: December 31, 2007, 07:12:32 PM »
Great post Aazealh. That's actually what I was going to say but it looks like I don't have to now. Thanks  :guts:

Quote
While I agree with most everything you have said in this thread yota821, I don't really agree with the notion of forming a completely new self. To me it's clear that her actual, real self was there all along, buried under the rest. It's shown and stated times and times again in the manga and I think the difference matters here, because people often tend to be mistaken about the very visible change in her character. Probably just a matter of wording here, but I wanted to point this out.

When I first read the manga I could almost see and understand what people meant about the Farnese personality change, almost understand. But upon rereading the manga it IS clear that Farnese truly was the same person all along (the miracle of rereading). You can tell Miura really plans out his character development far in advance, which makes rereading all the more fun.

Offline Rhombaad

  • Old Fart in Training
  • Falconian
  • Of the Abyss
  • *****
  • Posts: 4193
  • Karma: 43
  • Gender: Male
Re: Serpico and Farnese: Two Poorly Conceived Characters
« Reply #62 on: December 31, 2007, 08:24:50 PM »
I'm actually pretty thankful for this thread as there were numerous things that I missed regarding Farnese and Serpico's characters while reading the series.  I can't wait to go back and reread it now with this new information in hand. :guts:

Offline Aazealh

  • 髑髏の騎士
  • Administrator
  • Of Terror
  • *****
  • Posts: 18403
  • Karma: 624
  • Gender: Male
  • そうはいかぬ
Re: Serpico and Farnese: Two Poorly Conceived Characters
« Reply #63 on: January 01, 2008, 02:08:54 PM »
Good post there, Aaz.  Maybe that post will convince to him at least entertain the possibility that his views aren't quite right.  Like I said in another thread, though I was frustrated throughout this discourse I enjoyed re-reading the manga and extrapolating upon the relationships between the characters.  :guts:

Thanks. I hope you're right about changing our little friend's mindset. And I agree that an impromptu re-reading of some parts of the manga is always great. :guts: