THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by Joyfulldreams » Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:18 am

TH4NK YOU B3N wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:15 am
Joyfulldreams wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 12:08 am
GT: And years ago i used to joke around with him that we would probably be totally into each other if he was a girl.
GT: But of course that was before i started to realize he was probably serious about those feelings for me regardless.
I never would have guessed. Not that I’ve spent much time contemplating issues related to gender. I’m pretty secure in my expression of masculinity, and...

You know what? Fuck this. I don’t owe anyone an explanation of any sort on this topic. I’m confident with who I am, what I am, my gender, as well as my understanding of the concept.
Did Dirk contemplate gender or not? Idk, I'm just kind of sad. I wish Dirk (real Dirk, not the Brain Ghost) and Jake could be gay and nonbinary together.
Me too, friend. Me too. Here let me post some stuff from Act Omega the thing where I write the canon I want to see in the world.

Image

Oh, the universe where these kids actually learn how to communicate how they feel to each other.

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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by SbIUsedToKnow » Sun Dec 08, 2019 6:56 am

Joyfulldreams wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 12:08 am
Very long post.

Yeah this is all true.

Re: 'Dirk is abusive/toxic because Bro' from another thread:
Bro is an adult gay man who grew up as an orphan in 80s~/90s~ in Texas. Who the fuck knows what happened in there. Not actually asking a question here, just something I find interesting to think about.

This brings me up to the "AR is not Dirk/AR is exact equivalent to Dirk/all actions of the AR can be attributed to Dirk". Those are all partially true, I guess. This is one of my favourite themes of homestuck, actually. Nature vs nurture brought to extreme measures because we happen to have several literal clones/time travelers/alternate selves to play with the concept and hammer the point home.

The deal with Dave/davesprite, AR/Dirk, vriska/(vriska) is THEY ARE the same character, in the way of "if we put character X through situation Y, they would behave like X", but not in the way of "bro abused dave, thus through transitive property, Dirk abused dave" but more like a built in AU "if you took 13 y/o Dirk, put him inside a computer, isolated him from outside stimulus, made him an unimportant/second rate dirk, took away his friends who either don't believe he is a real Dirk or even a real person(looking at you Jane) with real feelings (looking at you Roxy), not to even mention completely destroying any possibility of being in love with his crush, this is how Dirk would respond." He would act out, he would hate his creator/father/himself. He would punish his creator through antagonizing him and his relationship with Jake.

But. But the AR is still Dirk. He wouldn't be able to hurt his friends (Jane and Roxy, he is content being her rp buddy just to talk to her), in the end he mostly hates and only hurts himself (Dirk). Remember unite, synchronize? It wasn't orchestrated by Dirk, but by the AR. It wasn't part of Dirk's story, but the climax of ARs character arch. The kiss wasn't for Dirk, it was for the AR to terminate his relationship with Jake, in a way, to terminate his relevancy to the story. Kiss goodbye the spotlight.
What does he do next? Gets merged with a sweaty troll. It's sort of what Hussie does to irrelevant characters.

But you might notice, Dirk, the bad-parent Dirk, took all of ARs actions and took responsibility for them. He doesn't acknowledge that in front of the AR, no no, AR is too much of a Dirk to deserve coddling, but to everyone else (Jake, Dave, Jane) he is ready to take all the blame and tie his own noose.

For you see, AR is just enough Dirk for Dirk to hate (himself), but too much of someone else (3 years is a long time), too much of his own person, for Dirk to feel comfortable to kill off.

Dirk believes he deserves to die, for the good of his friends. Dirk believes he has the right to take his own life (and probably that other select people have this right too... we see this point in atleast... 4 occurrence in the story? And twice he goes through with it, so those are no empty words). But he isn't able to kill Hal, which arguably would solve at least 2 of his problems and would make one of his friends happier, because he believes that Hal is enough of his own person that he deserves agency and respect for his existence. He doesn't believe he has the right to kill Hal.

This shit up there (act 6 act 1 to 4-ish? All the way untill Dirk/AR rooftop conversation) is why I believe Homestuck is a masterpiece because Jesus fuck that's a Lot, and this whole moral existential quandary flies over a lot of people's heads on the first couple of reads. (I got this on my fourth read) It's like with every read there is more layers you discover, because last time you were too preoccupied with this other stuff that was happening.... Go play SOMA everyone. And then go read Homestuck again because it's Good actually.

Disclaimer: Epilogues are a cool "what-if" fanfiction. Very entertaining fan fiction, just as promstuck or that huge, dense DaveBro fanfic V wrote that I gave up on in the middle. The writers themselves don't feel confident about them and instruct people that it's "dubious" canon, even they know it's garbo. Compare them with act 6 and you see it's 95% low-effort OOC edgy-for-the-sake-of-edge garbage and those 5%... were done better in other fanfiction you can just find on AO3. Homestuck ended with the Credits.

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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by nonsenseMnemonic » Sun Dec 08, 2019 11:05 am

TH4NK YOU B3N wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:15 am
Did Dirk contemplate gender or not? Idk, I'm just kind of sad. I wish Dirk (real Dirk, not the Brain Ghost) and Jake could be nonbinary mlm together. I mean, I wish Dirk were some flavor of trans in general, but you brought up Taz's medium articles so I guess that's why I'm going with that one right now.
I honestly really love the trans Dirk interpretation (/headcanon) because I think the focus on heroism + stoicism comes from a masculine ideal, and the idea of both striving for that, and being punished by it, coming from a trans guy feels meaningful to me.
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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by thorondraco » Sun Dec 08, 2019 1:21 pm

Joyfulldreams wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 1:37 am
thorondraco wrote:
Sat Dec 07, 2019 11:18 pm
Joyfulldreams wrote:
Sat Dec 07, 2019 11:11 pm
EXCUSE ME I'M WRITING AN ESSAY TO DISPUTE THE IDEA THAT DIRK IS LITERALLY EVER MANIPULATIVE OR ABUSIVE EVEN ONCE EXCLUDING THE EPILOGUES. Like seriously I am legit looking for instances of Dirk, in the comic, doing anything actually awful, of Dirk doing anything actually manipulative, or actually abusive, and I'm coming up almost completely empty. The dude is barely so much as even MEAN.

The AR is a totally different ballgame but I'm talking about Dirk and I swear to god if someone tries to come at me about how they are the same person or whatever my essay is going to get that much FUCKING LONGER. ABOUT HOW DIRK LITERALLY ADDRESSES THIS MULTIPLE TIMES. AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA.
The semi molester robot, forcing Jake to kiss his severed head, kinda strongarming the relationship, his barely repressed narcicism. And generally having a bad habit of needing to be in control somehow.

We see the real bad stuff from Bro and his abusive 'warrior training' that actually hamstringed Dave's ability to be a hero cause he has mad ptsd from living like that.

What we are seeing in the Epilogues is Dirk deciding to no longer have any restraint on his actions and doing what he wants. Likely for the sake of, in a Bro like manner, making everyone else strong. He chose to be the villain, chose to ultimately die, but not before he complete his objectives. And giving into his temptations and power fantasies are a means to that end.
1. Y'all are really tripping on the fact that Jake described the brobot as 'tender' and despite the fact that that was 90% because Jake is a repressed bi and not because Dirk somehow intended for it to moves on him???? Like, wrestling is an intimate thing to do with another dude no matter what way you slice it. There's no way to make wrestling not homoerotic to some degree. Jake said he liked wrestling, and wanted to wrestle, so Dirk made a robot that would wrestle with him, because he could not physically wrestle with him himself. Jake's the one that got cold feet, god forbid Dirk not be able to literally read his mind about what he actually wanted?

The AR is the one who taunts Jake about it to make him even more uncomfortable, in an effort to brute force Jake into acknowledging the Homo, which is the shitty thing. Dirk however, did not do that.

2. Dirk did not force Jake to kiss the severed head. The AR is the one who orchestrated the entirety of Unite: Synchronize, INCLUDING that. Dirk is so far in over his head he loses complete control over everything that is happening, and the AR tells him to 'leave the synchonizing to me'. Jake also correctly surmises that it was the AR who orchestrated that whole scenario.

3. 'Kinda strongarming the relationship' how? Where did you get this idea that he did that on purpose? The fact that he blames himself for it after the fact? Dirk constantly talks about how there are other factors independent of himself that act without his control or his consent, but how to any outside observer it looks as if all of these separate moving pieces are part of some kind of overall machination he has going on when they are super duper not. He can't say they aren't him, though, because technically they are byproducts of mistakes he has made, and as such he wants to take responsibility for them even when he had basically no reasonable amount of control over the situation at all. The AR is the hyper-aggressive asshole who does the 'strongarming' at Jake because Dirk refuses to do anything out of being paralyzed with fear and indecision, so AR thinks he's 'helping' by forcing the matter. Dirk can't say the AR is WRONG about Dirk's intentions, because he isn't, and feels like it would be irresponsible of him to completely disavow everything the AR does, so he doesn't. He can't just shut the guy off either, because he feels responsible for creating this life that is a separate consciousness with like, rights and stuff, and it would be inhumane to just turn him off. The brobot acting in weird ways Dirk didn't intend because the AR either tampers with it or because it's just another splinter that acts weird or whatever is also not really in Dirk's control, even if it looks like it is, but he can't exactly say it ISN'T him because he doesn't want to admit how NOT in control things are and also because it is technically sort of him!!! Which is why he says that he "bullied himself into bullying jake into liking him" because it was just a whole lot of shit Dirk had very little say in making it harder and harder for him to figure out what the right thing to even DO is.

Also can we please acknowledge the fact that Jake isn't actually some innocent babu who is naught but a victim? HE'S the one that led Dirk on, that knew about Dirk's feelings for a longass time and said nothing, and yes, please also note HE LIKED DIRK AND DIDN'T NEED TO BE BULLIED INTO ANYTHING, BECAUSE HE ALREADY WANTED TO DATE THE GUY, HE JUST FELT WEIRD ABOUT IT BECAUSE HE WASN'T COMFORTABLE WITH HIS SEXUALITY. Jake has agency!!!! He likes to pretend he doesn't but he super duper does!

4. NARCISSISM?????

IN WHAT UNIVERSE IS DIRK STRIDER A NARCISSIST? He is the exact opposite of a narcissist???? You know he's joking when he talks about how great he is at stuff, right?? That's just him covering up for insecurities??? Like an edgy teenager would do??? Because he is an edgy teenager??? Just go ahead and call every memelord 16-year-old boy a narcissist, then I guess. Jesus christ. Narcissist. Really.

5. Bro is not Dirk, Bro is also an adult who took on responsibility for a child who is dependent on him. Dirk is a teenager who should NOT be held responsible for all of the other people in his life, and yet constantly finds himself thrust into situations where he kind of has to or else everything falls to shit. Of course, things falls to shit anyway, because Dirk is a teenager who should not be responsible for his peers in the same way an adult is responsible to a child.

6. The AR is Dirk letting go of restraint and just being a shitlord. Like, we already got that. And the epilogues are unnecessary and don't deliver literally any kind of satisfying story because we just decided to do a 7 year jump to the very end of his devolving character arc and then expect people to just not notice I guess??????
Its said as much that Dirk kinda strong armed the relationship a bit.

Also Lilhal man. Lilhal is hated so much by Dirk cause he is a representation of his thoughts and narcissism. Not cause of his ai nonsense, but because he expresses the negative traits Dirk desperately tries to isolate and hide.

Thing is Bro is Dirk. An instance of dirk at least.

In the end it seems like all these negative versions of dirk might have impacted that dirk. Or maybe dirk just made the decision to embrace his inner demons for a purpose.

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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by nonsenseMnemonic » Sun Dec 08, 2019 1:33 pm

thorondraco wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 1:21 pm
Its said as much that Dirk kinda strong armed the relationship a bit.

Also Lilhal man. Lilhal is hated so much by Dirk cause he is a representation of his thoughts and narcissism. Not cause of his ai nonsense, but because he expresses the negative traits Dirk desperately tries to isolate and hide.

Thing is Bro is Dirk. An instance of dirk at least.

In the end it seems like all these negative versions of dirk might have impacted that dirk. Or maybe dirk just made the decision to embrace his inner demons for a purpose.
Okay, so part of the reason Dirk doesn't like Lil Hal is because Lil Hal is a manifestation of the things Dirk hates about himself. But is that something that reflects poorly upon Dirk's character? Would you not also hate a living manifestation of the worst parts of your 13-year-old self? Lil Hal is a representation of Dirk's self-loathing and self-punishment, a form of external introspection. The fact that Dirk hates him doesn't mean that either of them is bad, just that they're hurt.

Bro is an instance of Dirk, but not a damning instance. We're all capable of becoming bad people, most of us just don't have the chance to face that possibility so head-on. I don't think Bro is a strong argument for whether or not Dirk was destined to be a toxic person, and I think it makes sense to look at them as different people -- not completely disconnected from each other or anything, but certainly with separate circumstances that led to separate decisions and outcomes, which may or may not be how the other would've responded in the same situations.
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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by Joyfulldreams » Sun Dec 08, 2019 1:56 pm

I think this quote from Taz's essay on this subject is good.
OptimisticDuelist wrote: What we’re left with, then, is actually a philosophical debate between two perspectives. What’s truly most important to your identity — the person you’re naturally predisposed to be, or the person you choose to become?

Should Dirk forever understand himself as inherently broken in some regard, fundamentally “bad”, but with the potential to rise to “Decent”, like he’s currently doing? Or is Dave right to judge Dirk based primarily on his own words and actions?

I would agree with the latter notion. The reason why is simple: the argument that a person’s Ultimate Self can be inherently good or inherently bad, and that a single splinter of that Ultimate Self should have to reckon with that reality, is functionally identical to the idea of Original Sin.

It means that there’s something intrinsic to Dirk that is corrupt in some way. That he’s deeply tarnished, in a way his friends are not, and he should keep an eye out for his harmful actions to a degree greater than others do, because his capacity for Badness is Just That Big. There is a level of sin inherent to his person that Dirk feels he has to atone for under this understanding.

And considering that we’re talking about the only explicitly gay character in the entire comic, that…isn’t a narrative I particularly like for Dirk. Especially when so much of his personal turmoil revolves around being unable to make his friends happy specifically because of his sexuality.

He’s feels guilty he can’t give Roxy what she wants, guilty he wants Jake romantically, and guilty he wants Jake romantically AGAIN, but this time because he knows Jane also likes him. Pretty much all of his conflicts with his friends feature his sexuality, and both theirs and his own inability to talk about it in a healthy way.
And note: this was written years before the epilogues were a thing. Isn't it hilarious how the epilogues DID just decide oh, whelp, guess Dirk's Ultimate Self *IS* just an inherently horrible, tainted, sinful and irredeemable piece of shit! He's a manipulative predator! WOW. THAT'S NOT KIND OF FUCKED UP TO DO TO YOUR PRETTY MUCH ONLY CONFIRMED GAY MALE CHARACTER, ACTUALLY? I hope I don't need to explain all the reasons that is insanely fucked up.

Also may I note that Dirk isn't the only character with an alternate self whom they immediately hate? Rose hates Jasprose the moment she comes into existence. She has all of Rose's worst qualities turned up to 11, and Rose hates her so much she can barely stand to look anybody in the eye whenever she's around. And yet, we don't use that as evidence of Rose being some inherently horrible person deep down, who is only just seconds away from being nothing but a toxic influence on everyone in her life.

It's almost like everyone has bad qualities, and when they are highlighted and put under a microscope, they are bad, and people don't like them. It's almost like everyone is both good and bad, and the most important thing is what you choose to be and what you choose to do. It's almost like literally everyone has the ability to be toxic to people in their life and having that potential is not unique to Dirk and it doesn't make Dirk inherently a worse person than anybody else. It's almost like everyone talks about Dirk like all there is to know or think or care about him are the worst parts of his personality, and nobody seems to give a shit about all of the amazing great qualities he has, even though there are many of them and they are wonderful. It's almost like it's kind of fucking fucked up that this is the situation that "semi-canon" has decided is the best and most interesting path for their most explicitely gay male character. Because it's super novel to have people discussing whether a gay dude is inherently tainted or not, and all the ways in which he is horrible, and was always doomed to be horrible. It's almost like it's kind of fucked up for the Big Brain take to now be "how stupid were you to ever think or hope that this guy had the potential to be a good person with healthy relationships. Don't you know it was always going to be this way?"

It's kind of fucking fucked up for the epilogue's "message" to boil down to "hey. have you ever made mistakes? have you ever been a toxic influence on the people you care about most in your life, no matter how hard you try? do you struggle with how you perceive yourself, especially your gender and sexuality? have you struggled with self-hatred or even suicidality? do you think you're a bad person? are you terrified you'll never be happy because there is something inherently broken about you, also possibly related to your gender and sexuality? well--YOU'RE RIGHT! You ARE a bad person! You WILL hurt everyone you care about! Your struggle to be better is pointless and will end in failure! And because this is so obvious, we won't even give you a character arc to directly show the ways in which you might fail, because those ways are all of them, or at least matter so little that we think it's pointless to even talk about beyond just barely acknowledging it off-screen! We're just going to skip to the part where you fuck up and are horrible forever, because how silly were you to ever hope for anything different. Fuck you! Everyone is going to talk about how all those bad things you thought about yourself were always true, and how nothing good you did ever mattered, or was actually secretly horrible too!"

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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by calamityCons » Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:25 pm

Honestly, this is the biggest reason why Dirk in the epilogues and HS^2 is a kick in the teeth and absolutely not what I want. At some point I really want to like, take Homestuck's implicit homophobia and toxic masculinity to task, because there's a lot of evidence of people being vilified or boring for having gay feelings, many homosexual romances are pussyfooted around unless it's f/f, there's shit treatment toward Jake and Tavros for "being weak" and putting those two through emotional hell "for their own good" to "toughen them up" is really disgusting. Vriska and Terezi are allowed to be absolute terrors on their own friends because they "have" to do bad things in order to be heroes.

There's a lot of really discriminatory and outdated/off-color humor in Homestuck and when it presents things like realistic abusers or the nature vs nurture debate it falls on its face because when the abuser is female it's "funny," when a victim or survivor is male it's funny and you're supposed to hate Jake and Tavros for not being strong enough to fight back, lol what wimps. Compare that to the way male on female violence is treated, and it's clearly and unironically awful and series.

It really sucks, because Homestuck had initially very progressive aspects to it, such as the differing personalities and unique characters of John, Rose, Dave, and Jade. And back when Vriska was actually held accountable for her shit and was given a Just death, it was making some pretty bold statements about how dangerous female abusers can be. AND, it had a lot of potential to show how someone who you think is abusive might just be really awkward, and desperately trying to not hurt people because he's been told from all angles that he is, in fact, evil, and everything he tries winds up hurting SOMEONE. Based on the evidence Joyfull shared, I'm even more pissed at Homestuck's tonedeaf and confusing approach towards themes like romantic partner abuse.
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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by thorondraco » Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:38 pm

nonsenseMnemonic wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 1:33 pm
thorondraco wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 1:21 pm
Its said as much that Dirk kinda strong armed the relationship a bit.

Also Lilhal man. Lilhal is hated so much by Dirk cause he is a representation of his thoughts and narcissism. Not cause of his ai nonsense, but because he expresses the negative traits Dirk desperately tries to isolate and hide.

Thing is Bro is Dirk. An instance of dirk at least.

In the end it seems like all these negative versions of dirk might have impacted that dirk. Or maybe dirk just made the decision to embrace his inner demons for a purpose.
Okay, so part of the reason Dirk doesn't like Lil Hal is because Lil Hal is a manifestation of the things Dirk hates about himself. But is that something that reflects poorly upon Dirk's character? Would you not also hate a living manifestation of the worst parts of your 13-year-old self? Lil Hal is a representation of Dirk's self-loathing and self-punishment, a form of external introspection. The fact that Dirk hates him doesn't mean that either of them is bad, just that they're hurt.

Bro is an instance of Dirk, but not a damning instance. We're all capable of becoming bad people, most of us just don't have the chance to face that possibility so head-on. I don't think Bro is a strong argument for whether or not Dirk was destined to be a toxic person, and I think it makes sense to look at them as different people -- not completely disconnected from each other or anything, but certainly with separate circumstances that led to separate decisions and outcomes, which may or may not be how the other would've responded in the same situations.
Guess it depends on how Dirk reacted to their memories becoming part of him. Or even if him succumbing to his inner demons had anyhthing to do with them at all. There are theories that dirk's ultimate self includes lord english or doc scratch, if not both.

Far as we know it has nothing to do with either. The ultimate self awakening allowed him to learn something that made him like 'fuck this shit' and concluded the best course of action is to become the ivllain and draw his friends towards this discovery via that. Force them to become stronger in order to counter him. Strong enough to counter whatever the fuck he learned.

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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by Joyfulldreams » Sun Dec 08, 2019 3:18 pm

I'm going to talk about Dirk's great qualities now because I love him and it makes me so fucking sad to think that this is what he's reduced to.

1. Dirk is one of the most hardworking people in the entire cast. He says that he does "too much" and "gets carried away", but I see that he's passionate and never half-asses fucking anything if he can help it. He always put so much effort and so much of HIMSELF into the things he does, especially into the things he does for other people. Dirk always tries his best, at everything. How good his 'best' is at any given moment varies wildly, but that's the case for everyone all the time. He's just a sweetheart who tries so, so hard. HE TRIES SO HARD.

2. Dirk is extremely empathetic. In nearly all of his conversations with all of his friends, and in fact with most people, he has an uncanny knack for just knowing people's truth and caring about that truth. He knows that Jake is smart and emotionally intelligent, despite how hard Jake tries to pretend that he isn't, which is why he ends up so confused by all of the mixed signals Jake gives him. He knows that Roxy's drinking is a real problem for her, something that neither Jake nor Jane seem to really understand at least early on, but is paralyzed on what to do about it (and incredibly guilty over that fact) because he feels like he doesn't have a right to judge Roxy because of how unhappy his gayness makes her. He understands that Jane is in a bad situation with how she's been brought up and that talking about these sorts of things without any concrete proof would just alienate her and make her feel like she's being messed with.

3. Dirk's sense of responsibility can get in his own way more often than not, but it's a noble trait in of itself. The biggest truth and reality of the alphas is that Jane pretends to be the "mom friend" when in reality, Dirk is the most Mom Friend character there IS? He is CONSTANTLY worrying about his friends, their safety, their EMOTIONAL NEEDS. During the alpha's pre-entry there are a million and one things happening simultaneously and Dirk is insanely busy with drones and cherubs and robots and shit on Derse, but he still makes talking to Jane and making her feel better about Roxy exploding her room a priority, as well as making Roxy feel better about his feelings toward her as best he can even when she is being extremely shitty to him on multiple levels, AND even though he is currently freaking out over having committed his first murder and not knowing what to do about it! (DD, on Derse). He absolutely would have checked in on Jake, too, if he'd literally had the time, which he didn't. AR also frequently got in his way, preventing him from doing that properly. He cares A LOT about how he friends feel, and about keeping them safe! Which is a lot of responsibility he heaps onto his own shoulders, and it's way to much to expect from him, and of course he messes up when that many important things are riding on you. He's only a fallible human.

4. Dirk is smart!!! He's a smart cookie!! He thinks deeply and intensely about things, almost certainly too much sometimes, but I think being as thoughtful and observant and intelligent as Dirk is is a good trait! In fact, he's so observant and thinks so hard about things that it paralyzes him more often than not. It's hard to make decisions, or come to concrete conclusions, when you have a fairly deep understanding of all of most of the complicating factors involved. Which is why he's so into philosophy! And it's a bummer for him that none of his friends care about this like he does and it makes him feel even more lonely and isolated. Which is why he made the AR. One of the biggest mistakes of his life, and it was just because he was lonely and wanted somebody to talk to about the things he's most passionate about. Somebody who would understand.

FUCK I MADE MYSELF SAD AGAIN. He's just. He was just so lonely, guys. 8C He just wanted to make a connection with SOMEONE. Hell, fuck, it's sort of a lot like Karkat tricking himself into thinking he was somehow his own kismesis. The idea that you're so isolated in your own head the only person who could possibly understand you on the deep level you yearn for is yourself. HE JUST WANTED HIS FRIENDS. 8'C

HE'S SUCH A GOOD BOY FUCK I'M GONNA CRY THINKING ABOUT DIRK STRIDER AGAIN.

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Post by TH4NK YOU B3N » Sun Dec 08, 2019 5:03 pm

I'd rather read Dirk as AMAB these days. I know you can disregard the epilogues, but if I were a trans guy (I am) I would have contemplated my gender quite a bit and still be confident enough in it. And, honestly, I really like Roxy and how they transitioned later in life. It explains why Roxy kept hitting on Dirk, I guess? Unconsciously trying to find validation? It's kinda cringe, but gender feelings aren't always going to sublimated in healthy ways. If I accept Roxy as transmasculine I sort of have to go with AMAB Dirk.

Also, I don't actually ship Jake English and Dirk Strider? I meant it more in that yearning sort of way, what could have been. It's not something I want to see in a continuation of canon.

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It was always bad, imo. Doomed to not worked out. Do you know why, in Homestuck proper, we only see Dirk copies interact with Jake rather than Dirk himself? Because that's the Dirk he loves. Jake loves the idea of a domineering, assertive, hypermasculine Dirk. The grand gestures, the drama, the romanticism, the adventure. These are traits Dirk considers to be toxic and abusive, the parts of him that he's afraid of and wishes he could change. That can get to you, when people like you the way you are but don't support where you want to go. Also, Brain Ghost Dirk feels no jealousy when it comes to Jake's attraction to women. I think that's too much to ask for. And you don't go askin' people to go opening up about their feelings if all you're going to do is dismiss them with a lazy reassurance.
nonsenseMnemonic wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 11:05 am
the focus on heroism + stoicism comes from a masculine ideal, and the idea of both striving for that, and being punished by it, coming from a trans guy feels meaningful to me.
(tangental, but this reading contributes to how I think Dirk isn't so much "striving" to fit masculine ideals as he is imprisoned by them. irony poisoning isn't stoicism.)

The Pre-Retcon Vriska and Terezi got together as ghosts, and that was sweet, but I understand why it's best for Terezi to give up after wasting six years of her life doing fuck-all. Similarly, I could see Dirk and Jake being healthy for each other, but there's a point of no return where you can't even be "just friends" because every single interaction has become loaded with meaning. Even if neither of you are bad people.

At one point, when Jane and Dirk were talking post-Trickster, they discussed the possibility that they wanted things to work out with Jake because they were lonely and Jake was the only himbo around. I think this is why there's a significant number of DirkJohn shippers? A DirkJohn server made Taako Adventurezone say "Vriska did nothing wrong," so I'm assuming it's significant.
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Re: tfw your boyfriend cheats on you with his tulpa of you

Post by Joyfulldreams » Sun Dec 08, 2019 6:01 pm

TH4NK YOU B3N wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 5:03 pm
I'd rather read Dirk as AMAB these days. I know you can disregard the epilogues, but if I were a trans guy (I am) I would have contemplated my gender quite a bit and still be confident enough in it. And, honestly, I really like Roxy and how they transitioned later in life. It explains why Roxy kept hitting on Dirk, I guess? Unconsciously trying to find validation? It's kinda cringe, but gender feelings aren't always going to sublimated in healthy ways. If I accept Roxy as transmasculine I sort of have to go with AMAB Dirk.
I'm definitely not qualified to talk about the whole Dirk and gender thing but at least personally I've had a lot of friends who made me fall in love with transmasc dirk. And....uh. I don't see why accepting transmac Roxy would mean transmac Dirk couldn't be a thing? In fact I think the idea adds a whole lot of depth to Roxy + Dirk's whole issues, especially with Roxy's harassment. Just a whole 'nother LEVEL of complexity to add to these kids' already fraught relationships.
TH4NK YOU B3N wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 5:03 pm
It was always bad, imo. Doomed to not worked out. Do you know why, in Homestuck proper, we only see Dirk copies interact with Jake rather than Dirk himself? Because that's the Dirk he loves. Jake loves the idea of a domineering, assertive, hypermasculine Dirk. The grand gestures, the drama, the romanticism, the adventure. These are traits Dirk considers to be toxic and abusive, the parts of him that he's afraid of and wishes he could change. That can get to you, when people like you the way you are but don't support where you want to go. Also, Brain Ghost Dirk feels no jealousy when it comes to Jake's attraction to women. I think that's too much to ask for. And you don't go askin' people to go opening up about their feelings if all you're going to do is dismiss them with a lazy reassurance.
Uuuuhhh. I sort of think you're just flat-out wrong, here? Like. I genuinely don't understand what reading of the text gives you the impression that Jake literally in any way likes the domineering, assertive, or hypermasculine parts of Dirk's personality. Especially because the AR is the version of Dirk that exemplifies those traits far above and beyond what Dirk does, and Jake HATES that fucking thing. He insists that it ISN'T the real Dirk, not the one that he KNOWS would never act the way the AR does to him, and as far as he's concerned the AR is not HIS Dirk.

This reading of why only Dirk copies interact with Jake is...bizarre. It isn't even completely true, anyway, since the real Jake and the real Dirk do actually exchange words during the trickster arc. The point is that the two can never actually just sit down and have a conversation with each other without SOMETHING getting in the way. There is always some element keeping them from speaking directly and honestly to each other. It's not because that's the version 'jake likes', it is a narrative device to explicitly demonstrate the effects of their profound COMMUNICATION ISSUES. The whole PROBLEM with the alphas is not that any of them are fundamentally broken, or fundamentally toxic, or bad for each other. It's just that none of them are able to just fucking TALK to each other properly, and Jake and Dirk are the worst offenders because they literally DON'T ACTUALLY TALK DIRECTLY TO EACH OTHER, EVER.

The real things actually getting in the way of Dirk and Jake talking to each other honestly about their feelings are fear and uncertainty. Jake doesn't feel ready to talk about the romantic tension between them because he's quite hung up on both his sexuality, and also feeling conflicted over juggling the affections of multiple of his friends without wanting to upset anyone. Dirk doesn't feel like he can clear the air about things because of similar reasons. This awkward thing they refuse to talk about but both know is there hangs between them the entire time, making it impossible to communicate, and manifests as all of these other versions of Dirk literally getting in the way and preventing them from speaking to each other.

Other reasons the idea that Jake likes this hyper-masculine version of Dirk, other than his interactions with the AR, are that Brain Ghost Dirk pretty much....debunks that immediately??? Like. There is a lot going on, but it's clear to ME that above everything else Jake sees Dirk as a knight in shining armor. He is his automatic escape route, his savior, his protector. He's a protector in the form of Brobot that stops him from getting murdered by monsters and helps him feel safe enough to roam about his island, and he clearly doesn't see the robot as any kind of significant aggressor, because when Jake IS being aggro'd on by crockertier Jane he starts crying and talking about how he wants to feel safe, and the place he felt most safe was evidently on his island, and where the presence of the brobot was merely a 'feisty' one, and this feisty robot effectively eliminated the monsters he was so terrified of as a child as a source of fear completely. Dirk is a protector and an escape for Jake, too, romantically--when pressured by Jane's romantic pursuit, which he describes to Roxy as 'unrequited' immediately upon confirming they are real and not just in his imagination, he basically uses getting with Dirk as his escape route from having to deal with Jane's feelings at all.

And above all, in the game over timeline, when Jake is at his most vulnerable and most afraid, is when he manifests Brain Ghost Dirk into reality. When he's being verbally assaulted by Jane in Derse Jail, that's when he manifests a version of Dirk in his own head to be there to make him feel safer. He so connects Dirk with safety and security that he does it pretty much subconsciously. AND. When Aranea forcefully powers Jake up with Hope Powers, when he is at his MOST VULNERABLE and when all eyes are on him and the attention is unwanted--he has the power to make pretty much ANYTHING HE COULD POSSIBLY WANT a reality, and what does he do? He makes a version of Dirk to protect him. A version of Dirk that still calls him his boyfriend, despite the fact that they literally just broke up, despite the fact that Jake was THINKING OF breaking up with Dirk all damn day, showing that down to his core he still sees Dirk as his boyfriend. A version of Dirk that quotes the Princess Bride, a movie that is the exact kind of romantic cheesiness that Jake would be totally into. And the Princess Bride is a romance story about a girl name buttercup and her farmboy Westley, who does for her whatever she asks with just the words "as you wish" and serves as her valiant protector against unwanted romantic forces. It's pretty damn clear to me that in Jake's mind, he is Buttercup, and Dirk is his Westley. Hell, even in ANOTHER LIFETIME, as Grandpa Harley, he decorates his house with Orange Knights, symbolizing that even in another fucking lifetime his mental image of Dirk is as his valiant Knight and protector.

There may be some elements to that which involve toxic masculinity, there may be certain parts of that which are unfair to Dirk. But in my opinion it's ROMANTIC AS FUCK. Especially because Dirk is desperate to be needed in the way that Jake feels like he needs him, and maybe that dynamic would need to change as they grow older and Jake doesn't feel as afraid anymore, but like. God. Dirkjake is so fucking romantic, god, just kill me, I DIDN'T EVEN BRING UP THE GODDAMN LANTERN!!!!!!!!!!!!

YOU KNOW THE ORANGE LANTERN THAT EXPLODES WHEN JAKE KISSES HIS SEVERED HEAD FROM THE SHEER INTENSITY OF HIS FEELINGS? HOW JAKE'S LOVE AND SUPPORT LITERALLY EMPOWERS HIM TO DO THE THINGS HE THINKS HE'S INCAPABLE OF? HOW JAKE BELIEVES IN HIM AND IN HIS ABILITY TO BE GOOD DOWN TO HIS VERY CORE EVEN WHEN DIRK CAN'T BELIEVE IN HIMSELF???? HOW DIRK TRIES TO MODEL ALL THE BEST PARTS OF HIMSELF AFTER DAVE, A KNIGHT, AND RATHER THAN JAKE SOMEHOW ENCOURAGING ALL OF THE WORST PARTS OF DIRK'S POTENTIAL THAT HE HATES, HE IN FACT ENCOURAGES THE BEST PARTS OF HIMSELF? THE ONES DIRK LIKES THE MOST, BECAUSE THEY ARE MODELED AFTER HIS IDOL?

GOD I'M GONNA CRY.

I'm SO DONE with gay romances being doomed to be 'tragic'. How both gay men in women can never REALLY be together because somehow the tragedy of their lives is more 'interesting' and 'realistic'. I'm just sick of it.

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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by TH4NK YOU B3N » Sun Dec 08, 2019 9:51 pm

Joyfulldreams wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 6:01 pm
I'm definitely not qualified to talk about the whole Dirk and gender thing
I wasn't disagreeing for more discourse. I wanted to clarify that, when I speak of trans Dirk, that the direction would be transfeminine rather than transmasculine. That significantly changes the meaning of my posts.

I could elaborate on what I mean by ftm Roxy and mtf Dirk going hand-in-hand, but it'd end up being pure Epilogue meta. I know you're not interested in that so I'll explain my reasoning in a post that isn't directly responding to you.

The rest is a long post that isn't broken up by quotes from other people or Homestuck and you started speaking in all caps one point, which is kind of scary even if you're just fangirling. I'll look at that another time.

But there's one thing I noticed when I skimmed:
since the real Jake and the real Dirk do actually exchange words during the trickster arc.
Why does Trickster Jake count as real Jake? I mean, that Jake really does love Dirk in some way, but he, like the other tricksters, are completely unresponsive to Dirk's depression.
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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by Joyfulldreams » Sun Dec 08, 2019 10:44 pm

TH4NK YOU B3N wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 9:51 pm
Why does Trickster Jake count as real Jake? I mean, that Jake really does love Dirk in some way, but he, like the other tricksters, are completely unresponsive to Dirk's depression.
I mean they are real in terms of being literally the physical people with their physical mouths talking into each other's physical ears? As in it's not Jake talking to the AR or to Brain Ghost Dirk or to a memory of the real Dirk who also turns out to just be Brain Ghost Dirk but like. The actual, original dude. That's the only time in all of canon we actually see them exchange words. Every single other time, the Dirk Jake is speaking to isn't actually Dirk. How they feel about each other at that point doesn't change the fact that they are...physically...themselves?

It's definitely not a meaningful or honest conversation by any means. It's sort of impossible to actually have a meaningful or honest and open conversation about your feelings under those circumstances, which was obviously the point. The only time they actually speak to each other (that we see), there's more bullshit in the way keeping them from actually communicating.

Also uhhh sorry about the all caps I was really just fangirling over how beautiful and romantic the orange lantern was. ;___;

As for why he's real Jake, like...just because they became trickters doesn't mean they suddenly transformed into completely different people? They were just. High??? You don't become not you when you get high.

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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by magnanimousLad » Mon Dec 09, 2019 6:52 am

I have very little to contribute other than saying that I am deeply enjoying this pre-epilogue Dirk appreciation. People who said Dirk was a more interesting villain confuse me. Furthermore, I've always felt rather skeeved out by the notion that Dirk, or indeed, any character, is such an intrinsically bad person that the platonic ideal of their existence is practically a supervillain. For a story about characters attempting to beat the odds against and subvert pre-destination, there's something existentially horrifying about that notion. Plus, as has been said before, he's the only one who got this treatment within the story. Makes me feel more bad for him than anything else, really.
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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by nonsenseMnemonic » Mon Dec 09, 2019 11:41 am

magnanimousLad wrote:
Mon Dec 09, 2019 6:52 am
I've always felt rather skeeved out by the notion that Dirk, or indeed, any character, is such an intrinsically bad person that the platonic ideal of their existence is practically a supervillain. For a story about characters attempting to beat the odds against and subvert pre-destination, there's something existentially horrifying about that notion.
I'm not convinced at this point that Ultimate Selves are a real thing, or that this is the platonic ideal of Dirk. I think he thinks it is, but that he's got no idea what he's talking about. HS^2 especially has made it apparent that he's really deluding himself about how great he is, and I think that follows through better if Ultimate Selves are a construction of Dirk's own ideas about himself, and not an actual compilation of his splinters or manifestation of his True Self.
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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by TH4NK YOU B3N » Mon Dec 09, 2019 12:18 pm

When I was in the shower, I realized that, no, Brain Ghost Dirk can become Real Dirk sometimes, which means they're still connected. I don't think it's because they're the same dude, but because BGD is a Dirk splinter. I had the wrong idea, thinking that the other Dirk selves were from other timelines. I mean, they are, but they're also from other minds. Only Jake has a Brain Ghost that's, uh, not physical, tangible? But everyone who knows of Dirk has some sort of concept of him stored in their minds. And, as a creator, he's mega famous. Fame's literally corrupting him. There's all those little people who think he's abusive to Jake because they don't know anything about their private lives. But I think it's the other God Tiers who have the most influence over Dirk.

One example is God Tier Rose Lalonde. She associates Dirk Strider with Doc Scratch, the fun uncle. That's why Ultimate Self Dirk is treating Rose like a limp puppet, even though that doesn't happen with anyone else. blah blah like doc scratch and andrew hussie gtg

Homestuck's all about paradoxes, so here's what's up:
The Minds of others shape Dirk's Heart, which lead to Dirk to become the kind of person to manipulate others Minds.
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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by Joyfulldreams » Mon Dec 09, 2019 2:48 pm

The only instance of Brain Ghost Dirk becoming Real Dirk is the instance where Jake got knocked out after being dragged away from Derse and initially created Brain Ghost Dirk in the bubbles as a dream figment. He then followed Aranea into that large dream meetup with various characters. At the same time, Jane and Roxy have both been killed by two different instances of the Red Miles. Dirk got knocked out earth, and then only operated as his Dream Self, who was ALSO knocked out by falling rubble.

At the same time Dream Dirk was knocked out on Derse, Jake woke up, but Brain Ghost Dirk remained in the bubble somehow. Since both Dirk and Dream Dirk are asleep, that means that Dirk then dreams...as Dream Dirk...in the bubbles. Where you manifest in the bubbles as a dream figment, it's usually through a memory or interaction with someone else. It just so happened that Brain Ghost Dirk was already in the bubbles, though, and because of Dirk's weird innate connection to other versions of himself, when he began dreaming, his dream figment took the place of Brain Ghost Dirk in that bubble. The interesting thing is that he, presumably through that kind of weird dream logic you get where things just make sense in dreams, retained Brain Ghost Dirk's knowledge of what had been going on in the bubble prior and who everyone was, despite the fact that real Dirk had no way of knowing any of that. And this knowledge was JAKE's knowledge, NOT Dirk's.

Brain Ghost Dirk is in many ways a combination of both Dirk and Jake as a single entity, their...LITERAL brainchild. He is explicitly just part of Jake's own subconscious that Jake has given Dirk's face and mannerisms, because engaging with his own thoughts and his own knowledge directly is something Jake routinely stops himself from doing. Creating a proxy in the form of the person he feels he knows best and who knows HIM best is only natural. But in some perfect storm of the cross section between Jake's hope-bound nature and Dirk's heart-bound nature, Brain Ghost Dirk is actually more his own individual than he is just a Dirk splinter.

Anything Jake imagines in his head and believes in hard enough is just a little more real than anything somebody else's imagination might conjure up. (This is presumably why BGD remained in the bubbles even after Jake woke up.) And because the thing he is imagining is Dirk, and he believes in Dirk so strongly and knows him so well, as Brain Ghost Dirk points out--it's a fairly authentic imagining. And Dirk's nature means that anything that presumably draws from Dirk's Ultimate Self is inherently more...authentic Dirk and, in some nebulous ways, connected to all other versions of Dirk through that Ultimate Self. Brain Ghost Dirk doesn't stop being Jake, though, just because he is Dirk, is the thing. He is, effectively, both people at the exact same time. He is Jake's mind, with Dirk's personality, basically.

He's also like the physical manifestation of how strong their feelings for each other are, a conjuration of how desperately Jake wants Dirk to be there for him and how in turn Dirk wants to be there, but can't, because of all the bullshit in the way. So instead of having the relationship fizzle because of those communication issues their feelings are SO DAMN STRONG that they just LITERALLY CREATE A NEW NEARLY-SENTIENT BEING TO FACILITATE THEM BEING TOGETHER. God, is that just. Romantic as fuck. Get yourself a man who loves you so deeply he creates life from his brain just to keep having you with him.

Other than my dumbass DirkJake fangirling I do actually kind of like that Pygmalion effect idea a little. Even if at the same time, I think unless it's actually executed properly, it easily serves as yet another excuse to characterize Dirk inconsistantly. People need to decide if Dirk acting like he did in the epilogues was Actually How He Was All Along, or if he is acting differently from how he normally would because of his various splinters merging with him or because meta bullshit or literally any other outside influence. It can't actually be both. Or, it can, but that is bullshit and a copout and renders the idea of consistent characterization literally meaningless and shouldn't be lauded as literally any form of good writing just because it's Meta.

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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by calamityCons » Mon Dec 09, 2019 3:47 pm

It has now become clear to me from reading this thread and considering the points made, that Dirk is probably the least consistent character, or, put another way, too many disparate and completely different characters arbitrarily have the same name.

One thing that I couldn't stomach very well during the aftermath of Collide on Tumblr was the meta posts saying that it really didn't matter if Bec Noir survived and falls in love with Ms. Paint or if Spades Slick does it, because I had been under the impression that alternate versions of characters are unique characters in and of themselves. They have different bodies, different experiences, and shoot off in different narrative directions. But apparently, these infuriating tumblr posts were right, because the current behavior of Dirk Strider in the Homestuck Epilogues and HS^2 asserts that Dirk has ascended to his Ultimate Self, which means Li'l Hal, Lord English, Bro Strider, and any other alternate universe version of Dirk has merged together and become a COMPLETE ASSHOLE.

Brain Ghost Dirk seems to be completely separate from Ultimate Dirk, because he's just a figment of Jake's imagination brought to life. Like an Imaginary Friend from Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends: Jake imagined a Dirk to speak to, and thanks to his powers as Page of Hope, Brain Ghost Dirk came to life. This Dirk hasn't gotten absorbed into Ultimate Dirk. And apparently, the Dirk Strider who has a physical body that went god tier and loves his friends is weaker than all of his other splinter selves, and they all overpower Nice Dirk's personality and desires with their own bullshit puppetmaster nonsense.

I don't know where I'm going with this post, I'm just feeling a lot of indignant rejection and ire toward Dirk due to all of this really painful and stupid nonsense the narrative is going through and pretending it's Very Smart and Meta.
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#ReviveSpadesSlick #WVForNarrativeRelevance

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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by Rob » Mon Dec 09, 2019 4:22 pm

Joyfulldreams wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 1:56 pm
And note: this was written years before the epilogues were a thing. Isn't it hilarious how the epilogues DID just decide oh, whelp, guess Dirk's Ultimate Self *IS* just an inherently horrible, tainted, sinful and irredeemable piece of shit! He's a manipulative predator! WOW. THAT'S NOT KIND OF FUCKED UP TO DO TO YOUR PRETTY MUCH ONLY CONFIRMED GAY MALE CHARACTER, ACTUALLY? I hope I don't need to explain all the reasons that is insanely fucked up.
Dirk's heel turn in the Epilogues need not be a result of succumbing to corruption. I read it as Dirk making the conscious decision to become the `bad guy` of the narrative. It's clear from his actions in the Epilogues that he believes in the primacy of canon. For there to be more canonical works there must be some sort of conflict. Dirk creates this conflict in order to save his friends from what sees as equivalent to death. He has no qualms about doing what he knows will be read as terrible things not because he is himself evil but because he is acting in service of his ideals.

DIRK: The point is, playing myself up as a villain figure in this hacky rap pageant has nothing to do with getting people to dislike me. Besides, everyone loves a good villain. When they boo, they don’t really mean it.
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Re: THE DIRKCOURSE THREAD

Post by Joyfulldreams » Mon Dec 09, 2019 5:13 pm

calamityCons wrote:
Mon Dec 09, 2019 3:47 pm
It has now become clear to me from reading this thread and considering the points made, that Dirk is probably the least consistent character, or, put another way, too many disparate and completely different characters arbitrarily have the same name.

One thing that I couldn't stomach very well during the aftermath of Collide on Tumblr was the meta posts saying that it really didn't matter if Bec Noir survived and falls in love with Ms. Paint or if Spades Slick does it, because I had been under the impression that alternate versions of characters are unique characters in and of themselves. They have different bodies, different experiences, and shoot off in different narrative directions. But apparently, these infuriating tumblr posts were right, because the current behavior of Dirk Strider in the Homestuck Epilogues and HS^2 asserts that Dirk has ascended to his Ultimate Self, which means Li'l Hal, Lord English, Bro Strider, and any other alternate universe version of Dirk has merged together and become a COMPLETE ASSHOLE.

Brain Ghost Dirk seems to be completely separate from Ultimate Dirk, because he's just a figment of Jake's imagination brought to life. Like an Imaginary Friend from Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends: Jake imagined a Dirk to speak to, and thanks to his powers as Page of Hope, Brain Ghost Dirk came to life. This Dirk hasn't gotten absorbed into Ultimate Dirk. And apparently, the Dirk Strider who has a physical body that went god tier and loves his friends is weaker than all of his other splinter selves, and they all overpower Nice Dirk's personality and desires with their own bullshit puppetmaster nonsense.

I don't know where I'm going with this post, I'm just feeling a lot of indignant rejection and ire toward Dirk due to all of this really painful and stupid nonsense the narrative is going through and pretending it's Very Smart and Meta.
Now you're getting it. These are my five stages of grief as a Dirk stan right there, ugh, I just. Ugh. And it's like. Sure. If you want that to be the story I guess, fine! That can be compelling, a tragic story of all of the goodness in a man being stomped out by the echoes of the mistakes he's made. But that's not what they wrote. Again, they didn't even bother to give him an arc. If Dirk is supposed to be some sort of tragic figure, sure. Fine! I don't like it but that can be a story you write. But they DIDN'T write it. They SKIPPED it.
Rob wrote:
Mon Dec 09, 2019 4:22 pm
Dirk's heel turn in the Epilogues need not be a result of succumbing to corruption. I read it as Dirk making the conscious decision to become the `bad guy` of the narrative. It's clear from his actions in the Epilogues that he believes in the primacy of canon. For there to be more canonical works there must be some sort of conflict. Dirk creates this conflict in order to save his friends from what sees as equivalent to death. He has no qualms about doing what he knows will be read as terrible things not because he is himself evil but because he is acting in service of his ideals.

DIRK: The point is, playing myself up as a villain figure in this hacky rap pageant has nothing to do with getting people to dislike me. Besides, everyone loves a good villain. When they boo, they don’t really mean it.
I...think you're kind of missing the point? The point is that Dirk making that decision is not something he would normally do. That belief is also not all that consistent with his characterization in the comic proper. Dirk 'having no qualms about doing what he knows will be read as terrible things' is literally the antithesis to who he was in the comic proper. His whole goddamn THING was how he was trying desperately to not do terrible things, to make mistakes, to hurt people intentionally or unintentionally. In order to make the decision to do the things Dirk did for literally ANY reason, it inherently means that he stopped caring about being good and stopped caring about the feelings of the people he loves, and literally became the thing he was previously terrified of becoming, the thing he was terrified that he already was. Thus, he SUCCUMBED.

Also, just because a bad guy has reasons for doing a thing doesn't make them not bad? Just because they're INTENTIONALLY being bad and may even have good intentions doesn't make them not still bad! In fact, that kind of makes it worse. I don't think that was the point you were trying to make but I'm honestly just kind of not sure how anyone can think "oh, he didn't suddenly become bad, he just suddenly started intentionally doing bad things for reasons" makes any sense at all?

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