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partner555

Story Monday April 2 2018

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26 minutes ago, partner555 said:

Okay, Magus has valid points, but I disagree with his conclusion. He should be asking MainUniverse!Ellen about what she wants rather than assume things.

 

I just hope that in the next strip, Ellen wakes up and make a counter-argument to Magus.

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I'm so over this dude thinking he knows what's best for everyone. Just totally done. If he were gone forever in the first panel of the next comic, I would consider that a satisfactory resolution to his character arc.

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This is definitely one of those moments where if I was faced with that kind of reasoning, I'd question if what I did was right as well...

I'm pretty certain Magus/Ellen is thinking about how he'd feel if in our Ellen's situation, that even if given the choice of "would you like to stay this way or be a man again" Ellen would likely choose to stay that way, because Elliot has been known to think about others before himself, so it's easy to assume that Ellen had been putting what others would think if she was an exact duplicate of Elliot and that influenced her into remaining female and differentiating herself.

The thing is though, Ellen has taken a look at everything Elliot's done and was clearly not proud of a lot of it which was why she always tried to get Elliot to be more introspective. Essentially, after the shock wore off, Ellen would have realized she had the chance to change the things she felt was holding Elliot back. Elliot's since realized that and has been making an effort to change things about him as well. Yeah Elliot was initially perturbed about being female, but since then he's grown to enjoy and even love it. He still considers himself male by default but he's really just "meh, it doesn't bother me either way", Ellen could very well be the same way, though preferring to be female by default.

Magus also clearly hasn't taken into consideration everything that Ellen's done not only for herself, but for others, the fact that she's in a relationship and what might happen to that relationship if Magus got his way. Making Ellen a man like this would strip all of that away which would likely be more of a shock than the initial experience of being turned female.

10 minutes ago, onfurtherreview said:

I'm so over this dude thinking he knows what's best for everyone. Just totally done. If he were gone forever in the first panel of the next comic, I would consider that a satisfactory resolution to his character arc.

Magus isn't evil, but he clearly isn't thinking straight, he's making assumptions that Ellen being the person she is now was his fault despite all the good stuff that Ellen's done. It was his actions that created Ellen and by his logic, even though Ellen shouldn't exist at all, killing her isn't the answer but her creation was still flawed and he feels obligated to fix that. As Dan's said though, Magus is being rushed into jumping to conclusion not only by his emotions that have piled up for the past 3 years (he had been stuck in limbo for nearly 2 years prior to Ellen's creation), and he's probably also rushed for time, maybe he's expecting Abraham to show up at any moment? Or maybe just expecting the guards to show up? I dunno.

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I'm trying to decide if my conclusions about Ellen would be the same as Magus's if I had only the information Magus has.

I'm leaning, yes. (Though not his conclusions on actions - but, so many external factors are making him rushed and ill-informed and clouding his vision, so I can't hate him.)

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Posted (edited)

www.egscomics.com/index.php?id=2480

So why can't Magus have this discussion with Ellen?

Wait until she recovers from what Sirleck did, and then ask her what she wants to do?

Quote

In commentary, Dan Shive said

"Side note before rest of commentary: Magus does have a reason to feel rushed. The next page will address it."

Magus has spent YEARS in limbo.  What could possibly be so urgent that he can not wait a few more hours?

I very much want to see this "Explanation".

Edited by Pharaoh RutinTutin
Posted before I was finished writing

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8 minutes ago, Pharaoh RutinTutin said:

Magus has spent YEARS in limbo.  What could possibly be so urgent that he can not wait a few more hours?

Well, as I pointed out, Abraham might be expected and Magus doesn't want to have to deal with him.

Also there's probably the worry about what's happened back home, and whether Terra's alright, like I've said previously, Magus was sent into limbo just as Terra's beam was about to hit him so he's likely assuming that Terra's thought the worst had happened and she killed him. Plus there's the matter of who sabotaged that item in the first place and what they've been able to do with Magus out of the way. So I can understand the rush to get home.

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Why do I get the feeling that Tedd's spell's ability to reset default forms was intended as foreshadowing relevant to this?

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3 minutes ago, ssokolow said:

Why do I get the feeling that Tedd's new spell's ability to reset default forms was intended as foreshadowing relevant to this?

So Magus throws a magic tantrum, and Tedd just fixes everything in the morning?

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2 minutes ago, Pharaoh RutinTutin said:

So Magus throws a magic tantrum, and Tedd just fixes everything in the morning?

Not necessarily. 

My memory of the details is hazy, but there might be another option that'd be better for narrative purposes.

Did Tedd have to use it on himself for the spell's outcome to be controlled by the target's desire? If not, then it'd be a great way to "prove to the readers" that Ellen is happy the way she is.

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Tedd's spell is only ever permanent when used to swap genders of the user of the spell. The wand Tedd made should be plenty for Ellen to swap back in case of the worst.

Since then Ellen would be the caster.

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Well, looking at the commentary, there goes my prediction that sex-change transformation isn't universally accepted in his universe.  My alternate prediction is that there are people fighting against gender norms in his universe, and some/most/many of them see sex-change transformation in general as a problem and are opposed to it in general—roughly the equivalent of TERFs.

Probably not necessary, but my counter to Magus's argument (besides the obvious 'he should ask her and not just transform her'): He's assuming that she cares about having a male form (and that her gender identity is male) because Elliot went out of the way to untransform himself; but that only shows that he desired to untransform himself at that time, and doesn't prove that it's due to gender identity reasons.  My suspicion for a while has been that Elliot's desire not to have female forms is entirely for reasons unrelated to gender identity (in particular, magic secrecy, inconvenience, the fear of what others will think about it, and the fact that it's just not something he cares about), and therefore is something that can change (and of course has started to change).

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10 minutes ago, Aura Guardian said:

Tedd's spell is only ever permanent when used to swap genders of the user of the spell. The wand Tedd made should be plenty for Ellen to swap back in case of the worst.

Since then Ellen would be the caster.

To be honest, I'd forgotten about that wand altogether. (My fault. Mucked up my sleep cycle and trashed my memory retention for the period it was covered in-comic.)

The wand would be even better, narratively, since:

  1. It ties in with the whole "magic will become more commonly known" thing that was just decided.
  2. It would foreshadow that, given time, the decision by magic to not change may result in availability of gender spells comparable to in Magus's world.
  3. It would drive home that Magus and Ellen are different people with different lives, cultures, and desires.

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21 minutes ago, ssokolow said:

It would drive home that Magus and Ellen are different people with different lives, cultures, and desires.

Unfortunately, Magus is exhibiting behaviors that would seem to indicate that Magus alone knows what is best and right.  Evidence and the opinions of others are irrelevant.

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Posted (edited)

So many points to argue here! Whee! I feel I've gone to the Argument Clinic and didn't have the bad luck to draw John Cleese to argue with.

However, for my first post in this topic, I'd like to address the fact that now is an extremely silly time to be arguing. Our trio is in a building that's been created as a trap which is now equipped with the added hazard of re-activated artifacts. Less fighting and more running away, guys!

Actually, that last sentence would make a pretty good next line for Ashley.

Edited by Tom Sewell
nitpicking

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11 minutes ago, Pharaoh RutinTutin said:

Unfortunately, Magus is exhibiting behaviors that would seem to indicate that Magus alone knows what is best and right.  Evidence and the opinions of others are irrelevant.

I meant drive it home to the readers. (ie. Remove any doubt in their minds that Ellen is happy as-is.)

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Magus does have a fair point about the possibility of Ellen trying hard to convince everyone, including herself, that she's happy as a woman because she really doesn't have any choice about it.  In fact, Ellen has said outright that differentiating herself from Elliot is the source of a lot of her personality traits that differ from Ellot's.  We, and Elliot, have the advantage of knowing Ellen well and being pretty sure we can tell the difference between protesting too much and actually liking how she is now, but that doesn't mean Magus doesn't have some pretty good reasons for thinking that's the way Ellen would be reacting to things.  Even Elliot looks like he's considering the possibility of Magus being right.  Note, considering, not agreeing with,

Of course, Elliot's first comment is likely to be that they need to talk with Ellen before transforming her, so she can talk Magus out of it, which is likely how we get into Magus's reasons for being in a hurry.

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I would say the main mistake that Magus is making is that he considers himself to be the baseline Ellen when the baseline for this Ellen is Elliot, which would alter the situation in ways that he probably can't process right now.

The secondary mistake is that they're wasting time arguing inside of a warehouse filled with active hoob-joobery.

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Still would like to wait for Ellen's response, the moment she regains consciousness.

After all, rule number one, you could really never experience what someone else is experiencing.

1 hour ago, weirdee said:

The secondary mistake is that they're wasting time arguing inside of a warehouse filled with active hoob-joobery.

The hoob-joobery gives me the heebie-jeebies. :demonicduck:

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6 hours ago, chridd said:

Well, looking at the commentary, there goes my prediction that sex-change transformation isn't universally accepted in his universe.  My alternate prediction is that there are people fighting against gender norms in his universe, and some/most/many of them see sex-change transformation in general as a problem and are opposed to it in general—roughly the equivalent of TERFs.

It may not be as bad as one would think really, like sure, the culture there is geared towards jobs being gender-centric but it's entirely possible that if someone were to choose to remain of switch to the opposite sex for a particular job, no one would be like "OMG you can't! It's not proper!" but rather instead be like "Well that's fine, just be aware that you won't be getting any special treatment because of it". Magus though, because Terra is his friend. is likely to be worried that her decision would end up getting her hurt or worse, like "you'd be better off in real world situations if you became a man with me."

 

Also, I didn't realize it when I made my first post in this thread, but when before Grace's birthday, when Tedd was saying that Grace believed that transforming Ellen would be bad, that could be seen as blatant railroading and further justify Magus' belief that Ellen didn't have a choice in the matter. I had thought that maybe it was Ellen's choice, that she had suggested that she remain female for the party herself so that she could get with Nanase as well as carry out her karaoke plan.

 

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My initial reaction (before even reading the commentary, let alone this thread): "So, Magus, I'm still waiting for the part where you say that what you're planning on doing will allow her to change sex at will, and/or (preferably "and") actually ask her before doing anything..."

Incidentally, this strengthens a hint of a suspicion I had reading the previous comic that Magus was a transgender man before changing sexes, but despite having the perfect solution to such problems his world isn't any more respectful towards the transgendered than ours generally is (in fact it might be worse). Changing sex is seen a sacrifice one makes for the sake of one's work, not something one does because one wants to. The "upper body strength" explanation sounds like an excuse because it is, cooked up to explain his transformation to those who he felt wouldn't understand that he always felt like a guy.

7 hours ago, Pharaoh RutinTutin said:

So Magus throws a magic tantrum, and Tedd just fixes everything in the morning?

Well, Tedd can fix a physical transformation - but (assuming Magus actually uses a permanent-sex-change spell) since Elliot and Ellen don't know about Tedd's wand, until they have a chance to talk with her they'll think Ellen is stuck with her base form being male. That could be somewhat traumatic for her, particularly considering how being female is part of the foundation of the life she spent so much effort building for herself; even if she consoles herself with the fact that she has access to a number of ways of changing back to her original form temporarily, it'll be the cause for some introspection.

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2 hours ago, Scotty said:

Also, I didn't realize it when I made my first post in this thread, but when before Grace's birthday, when Tedd was saying that Grace believed that transforming Ellen would be bad, that could be seen as blatant railroading and further justify Magus' belief that Ellen didn't have a choice in the matter.

So Magus knows this? I guess he could because Helena and Demetrius were watching Elliot rather than Tedd, or Grace, or Ellen, but it kinda smells like a sneaky retcon on Dan's part if that becomes canon. I think you are exactly right that Magus would use this to bolster his argument for "fixing" Ellen, but that doesn't automatically make this a good argument.

Magus has powerful magic--but is he a Seer like Tedd? I think pretty obviously not or he would have at least had a clue that that "Bon Voyage" potion was booby-trapped. Tedd has always been a Seer, so his intuitions about our magically-created Ellen should probably be trusted more than Magus'. Why is our Ellen different from all other Ellens? Of all the universes we know about, the Moperverse is the only one that has both an Elliot and an Ellen native to it thanks to (drum roll, please) Magic Itself.

And returning about the "wisdom" of Ellen "Magus" Dunkel and Elliot "Wierdness Magnet" Dunkel stopping the action for even more argument, things that are possibly more urgent:

  • Their in a facility designed to lure in and trap intruders
  • Ellen "Recently Possessed by an Aberration" Dunkel should probably get more attention now than being argued over.
  • Quite possibly dangerous magical thingies all around them
  • No one is watching the car. Maybe the reason the guard's car is missing is that instead of sneaking into the building, someone stole his or her car.
  • Fnord

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> "Having to be transformed regularly if he wanted to be consistently male"

Does Magus not know about enchantment duration being indefinite if the enchanted person wants it? It could still be dispelled, but how common would that really be? I don't think we've actually seen an enchantment get dispelled ever in all of EGS (not counting consensual "zap back to normal" transformations).

And that's not counting the recent change allowing temporary transformations to become permanent just by maintaining them long enough.

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Just now, Tom Sewell said:

So Magus knows this? I guess he could because Helena and Demetrius were watching Elliot rather than Tedd, or Grace, or Ellen, but it kinda smells like a sneaky retcon on Dan's part if that becomes canon. I think you are exactly right that Magus would use this to bolster his argument for "fixing" Ellen, but that doesn't automatically make this a good argument.

Magus was aware of Ellen's second life dreams, if he didn't hear about it when Ellen was telling Elliot, then he must have heard Ellen telling Grace, incidentally though, the "I asked Grace if it'd be ok to tell everyone this way" can be seen as evidence that Grace telling Tedd that Ellen needed to stay female was Ellen's idea all along, for the purpose of being able to show people what the second life dreams were about. But even if it was Ellen's idea to stay female for the party, Magus could still assume that Ellen was only humouring everyone by remaining female because Magus didn't stick around long enough to see the rest of Ellen's story and motivations for doing what she did.

 

Just now, Tom Sewell said:

Magus has powerful magic--but is he a Seer like Tedd? I think pretty obviously not or he would have at least had a clue that that "Bon Voyage" potion was booby-trapped. Tedd has always been a Seer, so his intuitions about our magically-created Ellen should probably be trusted more than Magus'. Why is our Ellen different from all other Ellens? Of all the universes we know about, the Moperverse is the only one that has both an Elliot and an Ellen native to it thanks to (drum roll, please) Magic Itself.

Thing is Tedd can only see the effect of magus as it's being used, he was looking at Elliot when he first touched the diamond and was pretty quick to explain what had happened so he certainly saw what the diamond did (and could very well reproduce it now), though not fast enough to keep Ellen from believing she was going to die in less than a month. I don't think he would know exactly what Ellen was in terms of if she was a man trapped as a woman or if becoming a man again would be bad for her though, it feels like he just took Grace's word for it because Grace is smart and why would she lie about something like that (unless Ellen asked her to lie about it for the purpose of her second life reveal plan).

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