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The Crazed Spruce

S01.E09: Enemy Khlyen

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Not caring for people you hook up with is rather like not caring for people you don't hook up with: Both may be fairly common attitudes but they seem to be strange things that people have gotten used to, rather than being understandable. Dutch would be kind of messed up if she can't feel affection for a bedmate, or if she thought feeling affection for someone who reciprocated that with loyalty was somehow disqualified as a romantic partner. Dutch of course could be a loyal partner to Johnny without desiring him sexually and want D'Avin sexually, then feel a bond from making love. Resenting or despising sexual partners seems to be all about puritanical shame, guilt and self-hatred. Dutch/D'Avin romance is perfectly compatible with the Dutch/Johnny partnership, just as Johnny's partnership with Dutch doesn't exclude a relationship with someone else...so I conclude that Johnny loves Dutch, who doesn't love him back that way. 

 

Standard disclaimers, but even though all three leads are so cool that they don't have any normal mortal weaknesses, the show doesn't think anybody is as awesome as Dutch. The show isn't much about Killjoys, which isn't much of a premise without more human characters. The show appears to be making itself on what's coming to the Quad. And in that story, Johnny and D'Avin are assistants while Dutch is the predestined hero, the literally chosen one. 

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My favourite sort of romance is best friends who fall in love with each other so I can't deny the appeal of Dutch and Johnny one day seeing each other differently, and D'Avin/Dutch makes that idea a bit icky. 

 

I think it's highly possible Johnny was attracted to the woman in the bloody wedding dress but the more he got to know her it became clear she needed a friend a hell of a lot more than she needed a bedmate. The friendship stuck, the physical attraction didn't.

 

Or maybe it did but Johnny pretends it didn't, the writers could go any way they like with it. Either way I don't think Killjoys needs a romance plotline this early. 

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Not caring for people you hook up with is rather like not caring for people you don't hook up with: Both may be fairly common attitudes but they seem to be strange things that people have gotten used to, rather than being understandable. Dutch would be kind of messed up if she can't feel affection for a bedmate, or if she thought feeling affection for someone who reciprocated that with loyalty was somehow disqualified as a romantic partner. Dutch of course could be a loyal partner to Johnny without desiring him sexually and want D'Avin sexually, then feel a bond from making love. Resenting or despising sexual partners seems to be all about puritanical shame, guilt and self-hatred. Dutch/D'Avin romance is perfectly compatible with the Dutch/Johnny partnership, just as Johnny's partnership with Dutch doesn't exclude a relationship with someone else...so I conclude that Johnny loves Dutch, who doesn't love him back that way.

 

I'm not sure what makes you think that having sex without developing a lot of affection is a recent development or a "strange thing that people have gotten used to, rather than being understandable"  it has a long history.

 

As I said earlier people can want to keep different parts of their lives separate because of various traumas etc.  The notion that Johnny has to love Dutch and wants a sexual relationship seems to me to be the common but false assumption that comes from an overly sexualized view of all relationships.  And it has nothing to do with puritanical shame of self-hatred.  It just has to do with an openness to a variety of relationships between the sexes.

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All the standard disclaimers about mileage varying and your being entitled to your opinion and all that stuff, but I had to dig really deep to find a statement I disagree with more strenuously than I do this one. He's every bit as beautiful as she is, and he's also every bit as awesome as she is.

 

I agree with this 100%. Johnny is the true catch of the show to me. Sure, I think he's good-looking but it's more than his looks. He's a good person who is fiercely loyal and supportive to anyone he cares about. He's the guy who stayed home to care for his (presumably drug addict) mother when everyone else left. He's the guy who'd take his best friend across the galaxy in a heartbeat to protect her. Who'd risk his own neck to save his estranged brother. Who risked his life to save Pawter and the others without hesitation. Johnny is rock solid in my book. Dutch or any woman on the show would be lucky to land him. Or man, for that matter. I'm down with a bi Johnny.

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I think it's highly possible Johnny was attracted to the woman in the bloody wedding dress but the more he got to know her it became clear she needed a friend a hell of a lot more than she needed a bedmate. The friendship stuck, the physical attraction didn't.

I like this idea. Everything doesn't need to be a love story.

I'm weirdly reminded of Trainwreck where the women - after a night with a really nice guy who calls the next morning are freaked out to the point of calling the police to report him as a stalker. Dutch has separated love and sex to the extreme.

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Dutch has separated love and sex to the extreme.

 

Definitely, and as someone else posted, girl's got baggage!!  She basically uses the physical act of sex as a drug to numb her emotions the same way Pawter does the jack.  

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I think the scene where they cut to Dutch mindlessly screwing some guy kind of sums it up. Sex is something she does with random people, not with people she likes. In my opinion, she needs to deal with her baggage before she really starts trying to be in a relationship with anyone. 

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...a long history.

 

...The notion that Johnny has to love Dutch and wants a sexual relationship seems to me to be the common but false assumption that comes from an overly sexualized view of all relationships.  And it has nothing to do with puritanical shame of self-hatred.  It just has to do with an openness to a variety of relationships between the sexes.

The long history is how people got used to it, but the notion that sex excludes a genuinely deep loving relationship is really screwed up. 

 

But Johnny is not open to other relationships. (Strictly speaking, you're not even talking about Killjoys any more.) He's not even very open to a sibling relationship. As of this moment, the show has written his effort to save his brother's life as a colossal mistake which he bitterly regrets. And while Johnny doesn't "have" to want a sexual relationship with Dutch, most people want sexual relationships with someone other than the dominant hand. But not Johnny, not on the actual, on screen show. In principle, Johnny can have his intense and close relationship with his partner, just like every other buddy pair in cop shows. (And Killjoys by the way is a future cop show.) But..trying to say Johnny isn't in love with Dutch is like a Southland fan trying to claim Tom Everett Scott's character wasn't in love with Regina King's. Or a Warehouse 13 fan claiming Pete wasn't in love with Myka if you want to switch genre comparisons. 

 

As for the "overly sexualized" remark, I'm now convinced that a lot of what's going on here is the positive desire to see a sexless love affair between Johnny and Dutch. I'm afraid I must still think this is in its own way kind of perverse, stemming from puritanical self-hatred. But that is merely my best judgment and should not affect anyone's viewing pleasure. Indeed, the only way it possibly could is by convincing someone. And after all, what is the worst that could come from that? You might then think Killjoys has incorporated Unresolved Sexual Tension into its premise. This is kind of cliche and I think dramatically weak because the elaborate nonsense contrived to keep from resolving the UST isn't convincing. Well, Killjoys won't be the first or last series to bang away at UST for no good reason. 

 

There is a lot more to the show after all. It is amazing how much the characters like to live with lights shining directly into their faces, or have them put out some ghastly bluish shade that makes me think they are not real people aware of their surroundings. I mean, in what future will people really want that?

Edited by sjohnson

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At this point I'm not sure if sjohnson is the oldest person alive to have figured out how to use the Internet or he or she is just trying way too hard to justify hardcore shipping Dutch and Johnny.

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I admire the show for trying to be different when it comes to all the dynamics between the lead characters. [snip]

 

Viewers do expect romance - but I don't think 'Killjoys' has truly delivered until this episode's scene where John remembers first meeting Dutch (and Lucy). I'm sure there will be more of that further down the road along with plenty of complications (though I doubt those have much to do with D'avin, that card has been very sucessfully played already) - provided we get to season 2.

 

Me too!  And I think you're right about the romance issue, and it looks like this is the dichotomy they're are trying to set up:  Primal sexual attraction between Dutch and D'avin, but without much of a romantic angle or trust.  And an emotionally deep, long-term romantic relationship based on mutual trust between Dutch and Johnny, but without the sexual component.  I am cautiously interested to see what they do, because I do appreciation how much they appear to be purposely trying to challenge conventional (outdated) thinking.

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At this point I'm not sure if sjohnson is the oldest person alive to have figured out how to use the Internet or he or she is just trying way too hard to justify hardcore shipping Dutch and Johnny.

The show is shipping Dutch and Johnny while making it sexless. That's on screen, even if you haven't got whatever it takes to see it. It's a matter of opinion I guess whether a sexless love is better than the usual dirty kind, but I can't see how holding a different opinion on that warrants getting snide about personalities.

 

Wynterwolf and misslucas are positing that the show premise is a story line where Dutch's psychological traumas are responsible for an unhealthy distortion of her emotional relationships and she's going to get better. This is also opposed to the prevalent (I think) view that the Platonic nature of Dutch/Johnny is the cherry on top. But I'm not sure we can really see the Chosen One plot as compatible. The episode title Enemy Khlyen takes off on Enemy Mine, where two mortal enemies become reconciled after all. And the reveal of Khlyen's frenemy status is already accomplished, I think. And she is evidently going to be the superhero who saves the Quad. Superheroines, as I suppose I should say, don't put out as a rule, as I remember it. Quite aside from the whole Romanov thing being kind of well-used, it seems to me there's no fit at all. Movie Black Widow, despite the name, doesn't mate and kill.

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sjohnson, I don't think she will get "better" in this regard anytime soon (and maybe not ever).  That doesn't mean I think she can't still have positive sexual relationships, but I don't think the rule books will necessarily apply here.  

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He, I hardly ever talk about Dutch because she's *puts on crash helmet* the character I'm the least interested in. That she's got issues is pretty clear but I don't remember ever claiming that she'd get better by twu luv. I have far less rigid view on Dutch and John than that would imply. They've found an easy-going balance in the land of friendship which is not the same as a forced platonic relationship. But with the arrival of D'avin, Khlyen and whatever else is coming that balance has been disturbed and it remains to be seen what follows.

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I think the scene where they cut to Dutch mindlessly screwing some guy kind of sums it up. Sex is something she does with random people, not with people she likes. In my opinion, she needs to deal with her baggage before she really starts trying to be in a relationship with anyone. 

 

It was more than just the mindless sex scene at the beginning of Ep. 8.  Recall that in Come the Rain she also explicitly admitted that she regretted sleeping with D'Avin because she doesn't sleep with people she cares about. Additionally, in Ep. 3, Harvest, when John was trying to convince Dutch to accept the warrant to help his prostitute friend find and return her husband, Dutch chided him that being friends with the people he sleeps with is just weird.  

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The long history is how people got used to it, but the notion that sex excludes a genuinely deep loving relationship is really screwed up.

 

Now who is not talking talking about Killjoys.  And logically the person who is insisting that only some sorts of sexual relationships are not screwed up is drawing on popular puritanical themes more than people who are arguing that human sexuality is plastic and we should not be declaring that some things are "screwed up."

 

But Johnny is not open to other relationships. (Strictly speaking, you're not even talking about Killjoys any more.) He's not even very open to a sibling relationship. As of this moment, the show has written his effort to save his brother's life as a colossal mistake which he bitterly regrets.

 

 

This isn't true.  Johnny had some sort of ongoing sexual/affectionate relationship with the woman whose husband was leaving her to be arrested when he skipped out on his work permit, he was interested in the young women he met when he was working in those fields in the same episode, and he certainly was interested in Jenny during the vessel episode (who the show predictably killed off).  I don't see the evidence that he regrets saving his brother's life.  He still feels ties to him.  He may not want his brother in the team but I doubt he is the first person who is ambivalent about siblings.  That seems pretty common.

 

Personally, I think that there is less UST there than you do.  But I agree that to the extent that the show is pandering to people who think that they should have a sexual/romantic relationship it is bad writing.  It seems to  cut against a lot of the other interesting ideas in the show about alternative ways of living.  But maybe they hate themselves for ever imagining that there might be personal relationships different from the conventional wisdom.  :)

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I like to think of Dutch and Johnny like Shawn and Gus from Psych.  No matter who else enters their orbit, romantic or otherwise, they're always going to be the others most important relationship. 

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I personally don't find either potential romantic pairing offensive or one more desirable than the other.  For me the best scenario would have been if none of them hooked up, but that bridge has already been crossed.  I wish they wouldn't have introduced this plot point at all because it's becoming more about who Dutch should be with rather than three people having adventures in space.  When you don't care about the outcome of Dutch's love life, it makes for some boring television.

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I'm not sure what the discussions re: Johnny/Dutch/Davin are now about but I think we're at the point were the discussion isn't really about the episode and it should probably move to a "Relationships of Killjoy" thread or something. 

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How is Turin still alive?  Does he have the same nanites as Khlyen to survive stab wounds?  Is there some sort of RAC internal body armor?  Inquiring minds want to know!  

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I personally don't find either potential romantic pairing offensive or one more desirable than the other. For me the best scenario would have been if none of them hooked up, but that bridge has already been crossed. I wish they wouldn't have introduced this plot point at all because it's becoming more about who Dutch should be with rather than three people having adventures in space. When you don't care about the outcome of Dutch's love life, it makes for some boring television.

I like relationships in shows (when done well) and wouldn't mind at all having a romance to root for and even I think this storyline is boring as hell. I'm much more interested in the politics of the quad, what's going on at the RAC, and Dutch's past. Still, I don't think the inclusion of romance make things inherently bad or boring, but this one is just not working and there are more interesting issues that they hardly have time to address in just ten episodes.

Edited by cynic
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Even if you regard sex as a simple recreational activity, like tennis or golf, I'm pretty sure it would be weird not to be friends (or becoming friends with) your tennis or golf buddies. It may be better to regard opponents in card games for money as not being friends, but that seems like a screwed up way to think of sex. Personal judgment of course. 

 

Try as I may, a married woman working as a prostitute seems exactly like the kind of sexual release you go for if you don't want a relationship. 

 

I have no idea what baggage Dutch could be carrying that would forbid full-spectrum relationships. Keeping it Platonic with Johnny certainly hasn't kept her previous life from coming back and putting him, as her partner, into jeopardy. I think in general looking down on people who you have sex with doesn't give you any benefit beyond projecting guilt and shame. 

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To me, the fact that Dutch would not even consider Khlyen as possibly her father despite having thought about him for so long and coming up with the latest plan indicates that she likely knew her father and/or saw him at some point and Khlyen just didn't look like him. Also, if she is the only survivor of one of the families and what Khlyen wanted was to keep her alive and safe, her being a Killjoy, no matter how well-trained, is not the best option. She could get in any number of situations, like be blown up with the ship or receive bad intel and get mowed down by overwhelming ranged forces or anything really. Plus,

In Episode 7 when Dutch ends up jail on Westerley and Dell Seyah Kendry bails her out, Dell calls Dutch 'Yalena' and Dutch wants to know how Dell knows that name.  So Dutch's real name is definitely not public knowledge -- or on her official records.

It also is not game changing knowledge. Dell uses that information as a power play, and intends to keep using Dutch. If Yalena were really important, I'd have expected some talk about an alliance or claiming her rights or whatever. Unless it's a combo, really, with Khlyen having some information that would restore Yalena to some rights Dell wouldn't expect her to have due to her family's disgrace.

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Also, if she is the only survivor of one of the families and what Khlyen wanted was to keep her alive and safe, her being a Killjoy, no matter how well-trained, is not the best option. She could get in any number of situations, like be blown up with the ship or receive bad intel and get mowed down by overwhelming ranged forces or anything really. 

 

I don't think Khlyen's primary motivation is to keep her alive and safe, I think it's to turn her into a weapon.  So being a Killjoy would be good training for that.  

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^ Definitely. But he does need her alive and unharmed (to a degree that would affect her performance) so that, to me, always said that the timing was more important than the risk. This episode he said that her taking a level 5 warrant indicated she was ready. Since she had killed people before, and obviously still does when she wants to, I wonder if the issue here is that she was ready to kill people on contract/command again. This seems to be important for Khlyen, even though he knows how he could blackmail her and did so before.

 

Another tidbit in this episode: it sounds like she is needed for something quite complex on a large scale, not an assassination job, no matter how difficult. She needs her team when it all goes down, and that line was not the only time it was hinted that things were coming to some boiling point. Between this and the earlier tensions between RAC and Company men, the Resistance on Westerly, the Leith groups, and the power games played by the Qresh Families, there are plenty of options for open conflict to start between major players with the RAC serving the interests of one over the other (trying to fight for continued neutrality seems unlikely at this point).

 

I'd like to see them test Johnny and Pawter, but only if she gets clean. Don't want him with a drug addict. That won't end well.

I think Jakk is a lifetime addiction. You can't get clean. IIRC, this was mentioned in a previous episode where they met an addict waiting to die, and I think also explains why her family is providing her with the drug even though they'd have the resources to get her clean and, in time, leave Old Town for better places.

Edited by Crim
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Anybody else think that handcuffs that open when you spill water on them are kind of silly?

This! I was wondering if hair guy (Turin?) wanted D'avin to escape, or if that was just a really lazy plot contrivance.

 

I like all three main characters. I don't really care who ends up sleeping with whom, I just want more episodes. (And more Fancy, please.)

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I'm actually still trying to figure out what the deal with those handcuffs was. It was such a random thing to add.

I thought it was thrown in there to show that he could escape whenever he wanted but was just waiting for the signal.  A way to show how talented he is.  But I agree it seemed sloppy writing.

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I thought it was thrown in there to show that he could escape whenever he wanted but was just waiting for the signal.  

 

Yeah, I thought that was pretty clear, but it was how he got out of them that had me baffled... were they electronic somehow and spitting water on them short circuited them?

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Yeah, I thought that was pretty clear, but it was how he got out of them that had me baffled... were they electronic somehow and spitting water on them short circuited them?

That was my assumption.  Although as someone said upthread having electronic handcuffs that can be shorted that way is pretty stupid.  What if your prisoner goes out in the rain?

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Hee! Maybe they don't usually use them outside.  :-D    Yeah, I don't know... I'd like to hear the intended explanation for them, or if it was just a brain fart on someone's part.  

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The handcuffs emitted a strong electric shock when D'Avin shorted them out with the water.  In addition to demonstrating his resourcefulness, I believe the escape was also intended to show his particular strength, resolve and overall toughness, and the implication was that lesser men would have been incapacitated or totally knocked-out. Note in the last scene of Ep. 9 where D'Avin holds Dutch on the bed, he has a burn mark across his entire wrist.  

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That would make sense, but if that's the case... did they visibly spark when he doused them?  I don't remember seeing that, I thought they just... came apart.  It would have made it more clear to me, at least, if we'd seen or heard something more overt.    I'm all for the little details, but maybe this was a little too subtle.  

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That would make sense, but if that's the case... did they visibly spark when he doused them?  I don't remember seeing that, I thought they just... came apart.  It would have made it more clear to me, at least, if we'd seen or heard something more overt.    I'm all for the little details, but maybe this was a little too subtle.  

 

The handcuffs definitely both visibly and audibly sparked, and D'Avin gave a tough guy grimace and grunt.

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The handcuffs definitely both visibly and audibly sparked, and D'Avin gave a tough guy grimace and grunt.

That makes it a lot more sensible then. I suppose the notion is that if you try something you would be electro-shocked. But D'avin is beyond that pain threshold. Thanks.

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I guess you'll just have to watch Ep. 9 again online. :P

 

Ha!  You know me too well already!!  And yes, sparks and flames!!  But I see why I didn't catch it the first time, because I was focused on what he was doing with his mouth, and the sparkage blended in with the lighting for the rest of the room.  It was actually a cool effect, but I did totally miss it the first time through.  

 

And since they were on a space station, there probably wouldn't be much risk of the cuffs getting wet by accident (unless, of course, there was a convenient glass of water nearby).  

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The show is shipping Dutch and Johnny while making it sexless. That's on screen, even if you haven't got whatever it takes to see it. It's a matter of opinion I guess whether a sexless love is better than the usual dirty kind, but I can't see how holding a different opinion on that warrants getting snide about personalities

.Its not about "whatever it takes" it about interpretation. Unless you have some insider knowledge you cannot say for sure what "the show" is doing.  Your simply seeing a Johnny/Dutch bias within the show. I think the show is shipping everyone right now. Its a pretty common first season tactic. Throw everyone together and decide on who sticks after renewal. That's my opinion and you are welcome to disagree.  However you might want consider that I am not one to roll over and declare myself converted  so its might be best to agree to disagree.

 

That was my assumption.  Although as someone said upthread having electronic handcuffs that can be shorted that way is pretty stupid.  What if your prisoner goes out in the rain?

 

I suspect the thinking behind these cuffs is the electronic locks can't be picked like traditional cuffs. They might also be adjustable so the trick of dislocation your thumb wouldn't work either. Or you know the writers had an idea and didn't put half as much thought into this stuff as we do.

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I guess I also don't have what it takes to see a sexless shipping of Dutch and Johnny. I see them as best friends with no sexual tension between them.

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Well, I see a tremendous tension between Johnny being ubercool and having a limited sexual drive satisfied by the rare random hookup. I mean, the show keeps saying Johnny is a really nice guy, but why does the future redefine "really nice guy" as someone who reserves all serious emotional attachment for their cop buddy/business partner?

Edited by sjohnson

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Well, I see a tremendous tension between Johnny being ubercool and having a limited sexual drive satisfied by the rare random hookup.

So someone has to want lots of sex in order to be cool/ a nice guy?

 

Not everyone wants to have sex all the time...

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Knew Khlyen was level 6! The show is not good with hints when every episode was like Level 6 is a myth. Anyways, I really can't wait to see the showdown that is on its way between the Priest/Resistance and the Company. Which side will the RAC take since they pride on the fact they take no sides? 

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So someone has to want lots of sex in order to be cool/ a nice guy?

 

Not everyone wants to have sex all the time...

You must find it very strange that so many people want to be in relationships assumed to include sex, like marriage or cohabitation, or spend so much time trying to get into such relationships. I'm glad you know so many men admired for having a low sex drive, it brings one hope for greater tolerance for diversity in the world. As for the many movies and TV that depict so many cool dudes as sexy and good at getting it, perhaps you should argue with Hollywood. "Cool" and "sexy" can be used as synonyms, so maybe you should be arguing with the English language as well.

 

Really at this point people are basically saying Johnny sticking to a married hooker is irrelevant to his characterization as a nice guy. Seriously?

 

Of course Dutch can be friends with Johnny and not want a sexual relationship with him. Why doesn't anyone else? Because he's taken, in love with Dutch.

Edited by sjohnson

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You must find it very strange that so many people want to be in relationships assumed to include sex, like marriage or cohabitation, or spend so much time trying to get into such relationships. I'm glad you know so many men admired for having a low sex drive, it brings one hope for greater tolerance for diversity in the world. As for the many movies and TV that depict so many cool dudes as sexy and good at getting it, perhaps you should argue with Hollywood.

No, I don't find the norm strange, but I do appreciate diversity. I don't think the two are mutually exclusive. And I (and I don't think I'm alone in this...) applaud media depictions that go against the Hollywood "norm." Personally I don't think the Hollywood stereotypes are anything to aspire to. I like Johnny as a character, and I think he's pretty cool regardless of whether he ends up hooking up with Dutch/ wants to hook up with Dutch/ hooks up with anyone else, etc., etc.

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Rewatching…

D'avin: You're a creepy little dude. 

Alvis: Thank you. 

This exchange! Their expressions and delivery. I love this show. 

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