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Thread: Has Bart become the Meg (Family Guy) of the show



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  1. #31
    Grappling with Local Oaf Beggs's Avatar
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    Indeed, that vulnerability and likeability isn't there. My biggest problem with her current characterisation is that she's written more like a snarky, cynical teenager. It goes hand in hand with a push to be more "edgy" in the vein of Family Guy's misanthropy, and it's a bad fit for the characters and show as a whole. Like I said, Family Guy isn't really pulling it off anymore either, and it's meant to be their bread and butter.
    A little less Generic than before.

  2. #32
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    Bart has always been the family martyr with Lisa he can't be better then her, because she can't handle it. when ever he get's money he spends it on the family, yet none of these things are ever mentioned or even remembered. first he was the bad guy for lisa, then marge, but now that they are trying to villinize him to make homer sympathetic it seems it's not going to be long before an episode just flat out says that Bart has to be abused for his abusers benefit.

  3. #33
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    I'm bringing this thread back with a thought I've had for a while about Bart and how he's turned into a Meg-like character on the show.

    For all the direct comparisons with Meg, I'm also getting the feeling that he is also the Jerry Smith ('Rick And Morty') of the show. Maybe it's not as apt comparing the two since Jerry is an adult, but I can draw clear pararells between how the two are treated on their respective show. Jerry is definitely on the naive side, has confidence issues and comes off as childlike and impulsive at times, not too often thinking things through before doing them and can be an jerk on occasion. He is not incredibly bright but has a pretty good heart and has his moments of being thoughful and intelligent (most of these aspects I have seen in Bart). Sometimes he even feels like the most sensible one (and almost certainly the most likeable).

    Still, much like Meg and Bart on some occasions, the rest of the family seem to resent him. Much of the series is him getting shunned, bullied or humiliated in one way or the other, being treated as worthless and gets no respect. Even when he does something good or clever, the series (and the rest of the characters) cannot bring themselves to actually give him a point and compliment him, instead ending up being cruel jerks to him in some form. He often get the short end of the stick, essentially being treated as this useless loser who deserves nothing good (and he's often Flanderized as idiotic and gulllible for the sake of making the others seem superior).

    So yeah, I think calling Bart the Jerry of the show could be applied just as well as Meg. Both of the latter have it much worse than Bart, but still, if the writers don't keep things in check it could escalate to something as bad.
    Last edited by CousinMerl; 12-20-2019 at 01:28 PM.


  4. #34
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    ... Realistically. Had a hard time putting my finger on it but that's a good term for why a ton of the harsher humour (and for that matter, pretty much any modern THOH) really either falls flat for me or is just plain miserable when I really enjoyed characters like Hans Moleman. Or why strangling didn't bother folks as much before but now... I don't think it's been done in a while because so many objected to it. The incidents, and the payoffs, are played too realistically and on top of that, feel way more fueled by spite than just "having fun". It's kind of ironic really, since Itchy and Scratchy's whole joke is on how horrifying it'd be if the slapstick in Tom and Jerry had more realistic consequences.

    Like most moments with Moleman, his many misfortunes are downright cartoony and the joke is often in how over-the-top his deaths are, full of things exploding for little to no reason (a running gag I miss to be honest). Either that or outside of the initial impact a lot of the physical comedy being shrugged off like Bart getting slammed by a door in Lisa the Vegetarian, he's just fine moments later compared to, say, the bit with Abe in Daddicus Finch where he's knocked out cold. Or how later strangling moments actually had Bart gasping for air afterwards or afraid of it happening.

    And the other thing is, like with Meg and presumably Jerry it's not about having a proxy for funny and unfortunate situations but just someone in the writing room really hates them, I guess you're supposed to hate them too and enjoy their suffering, with no real joke attached. Bart's not even the only Meg on the show in that regard, he just seems to be the only one that doesn't work with everyone for. And it'll get to the point where they'll actually seem to make things less funny for the sake of sheer spite. Like the infamous bit in "Go Big or Go Homer", that could have been funny or a lot less painful if Bart was just shocked and appalled, embarrassed, confused that someone's defending Homer or... well just about anything but being reduced to tears... but that's the most spiteful choice and they even have Lisa lauging at it to hammer it in.

    Or in certain other cases even write in plotholes or otherwise contrive or fail to make sense just to shit on a character or a group of them. Keeping it on Bart, the ending to E-My Sports comes to mind. It doesn't make sense that everyone suddenly hates Bart for something Homer did while taking advice from Lisa too far but that's the one that ends off worse for Bart, as if being screwed out of a victory wasn't enough.

    To an extent Bart's always been a bit of a buttmonkey but he'd usually be able to at least shrug it off or even make a save (like the comeback to the Pyjamas bit in "Lisa on Ice") and when things where played more realistically like his first encounter with Nelson, it was at least for sympathy. Or at the very least being badly beaten and afraid wasn't the entire joke like the "fight" in Daddicus Finch. Bits like that just feel like the writers are just expressing flat hatred and even with characters I don't care about or otherwise dislike, that's just uncomfortable to sit through.

    At least to their credit, Bart gets some positive moments... honestly more than I can say for most of the others who are stuck in a similar role, so I guess at least someone up there likes him too.
    Season 31 just sucked.


  5. #35
    blocks your path CousinMerl's Avatar
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    I'll probably jinx this now or something, but for the most part Bart has had it pretty good this season (31) so far (aside from that one scene in 'Go Big Or Go Homer'), not having had many of those bad moments of being treated shoddily by the show and his family, has had a lot of good and positive scenes, an fairly decent portrayal without any exaggeration and for the most part been able to shrug bad things coming his way off.

    Unlike Meg and Jerry, like you imply, does have some respect in the writer's room (and I'm thinking that more than someone likes him, which seem to be pretty obvious). He does not almost constantly get pushed down, berated and belittled in some form and that's why I don't think the Meg comparison is perfect, even though it is a nagging problem. It's really on and off and depending on the writer.

  6. #36
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    Well it's better than 30 so far in that regard (there, said something nice about S31) but then maybe that's just because it's spread out more. Like I said, he's not the only character that gets treated so badly.

    Then again, maybe it's been that Bart's not had a lot of relevance in the season thus far outside of the premiere. I think in most of them he's had about 2-3 lines, tops. Or maybe it is because people complained, I don't think the strangling bit's been done in a while and it might be on a similar note.

  7. #37
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    I’m starting to get the impression that Bart’s treatment is actually worse than Meg’s. Stay with me not in the severity but in the execution. The main complaint with Family Guy is that the writers keep talking about serious topics they have no knowledge of and basically acting like they do. That is why we have episodes where Meg accepts being the family’s punching bag. Then the very next episode is about how abuse is wrong while still blaming the victim. Family guy is torture porn Bart comes across like a genuine abuse victim.
    It’s the carrot and the stick approach.

    Bart is marge’s special little guy yet she never takes his side so matter what happens or how severe, burns hitting him with a car is worth five dollars, lisa crippling him is his fault because it wouldn’t have happened if he wasn’t better then her. She’s also the first one likely to give up on him.

    Lisa doesn’t acknowledge bart as her brother until she needs something from him, since the very beginning of the show whenever he does something nice for her she acts like it’s the first time its happened. Also as long as she isn’t personally responsible she doesn’t seem to value his life.

    this works both in universe and out. Bart is a brat no one can argue that but their dynamic is starting to look like the old shorts. At the start of the series they were basically even. If bart ever went to far in their rivalry he’s feel guilty, apologize and make it up to her, if lisa went to far bart would win in the end. I’ve started this before first they did away with Lisa receiving punishment. So not only does she give as good as she gets she also reacts disproportionally to whatever bart does to her. Then they drastically made her physically stronger them him to the point where she is able to lay him out in one punch. Finally there is her being the favorite and him being the unfavorite (but you’re the good one, marge’s before mentioned reaction to bart getting crippled). Bart is a jerk but with her overwhelming advantage it’s hard to see her as the victim and him the bully.

    Barting Over is the perfect example of Homer and Bart’s dynamic. Homer tries to play off Bart’s emotions to convince him to drop the lawsuit, but the moment it looks like he’s won he start’s bragging about how he’s going to abuse Bart even more. And they are starting to do with Homer what they did with Lisa i.e give him the sympathetic pov. Homer shows a calious disreguard for his some there are episodes like when he is in jail where he actually gets sad that he can’t abuse him, and last season even tried to murder him yet because bart address’ him by his name your supposed to feel sorry for him and the rant in go big or go homer was retaliation for disrespecting homer.

    The difference is that the family guy writers don’t know what they’re doing even though they do it for the same reason (they don’t know what to do with him anymore) the simpson writers do.

    To that end he does bare seminaries to Jerry also like Jerry a lot of his problems come across as a result of low self esteem. Like bart Jerry’s abilities sky rocket when he gets positive reinforcement or at least isn’t constantly shit on. The comics go further into this.

    I think the future episodes are the more family guyesq



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