1. J.T. Woody

    J.T. Woody Book Witch Contributor

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    What are some plots tropes/themes that would be weird....

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by J.T. Woody, Nov 17, 2018.

    ...if roles were reversed?

    Some things are romantic when its coming from a woman, for example longingly looking out of the window at the attractive next door neighbor, or keeping a diary about your crush and what they like/do.
    But it would be creepy if, say, a man was doing the gazing and seen as stalkerish if he kept a journal about the woman he liked.

    What I'm getting at is, I was daydreaming at work (as I often do) and I came up with a romantic plot involving a widower who gets to know and falls in love with a divorcee based on the books she checks out/returns (patrons leave a lot of things in their books when they return them, and I think its pretty cute).

    THEN i started thinking..... "wouldnt that be creepy and kind of stalkerish?" which got me thinking that it would be seen as totally ok and romantic if it had been the woman falling in love over those things.


    (also, idk if this should go in "Discussion" or "Plot" but either way, I'm curious about what you guys think)
     
  2. Hammer

    Hammer Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I have seen many movies where a besotted female takes a good sniff at an item of her man's clothing - that could be pretty weird in reverse.

    Many girlfriends have taken t-shirts from my wardrobe to wear as night attire; again pretty creepy if I tried to squeeze into a blouse or a boob-tube
     
  3. Stormburn

    Stormburn Contributor Contributor

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    I believe that it's a wonderful premise!
     
  4. The Dapper Hooligan

    The Dapper Hooligan (V) ( ;,,;) (v) Contributor

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    Well, for you maybe. It's all about confidence, and I bloody kill it.

    Also, there's a fine line between romantic and creepy that I think can be judged on three factors :reciprocation and obsession and proactiveness. It's less creepy if a guy gazes out of a window at someone he has a crush on if it's plausible they're going to do something about that crush, the crush either reciprocates his feelings or it's plausible they would, and if the crush doesn't reciprocate, or the guy finds himself unable to ask them out, then he's willing to drop the matter entirely.
     
  5. exweedfarmer

    exweedfarmer Banned Contributor

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    BUT!!! That's the whole purpose of bartenderesses. They bring you beer, they smile, and you get to dream all over them. So long as it never goes past dreaming it's perfectly fine and quite common.
     
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  6. Azuresun

    Azuresun Senior Member

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    I don't know if anyone else remembers the movie My Super Ex-Girlfriend, but when I saw the trailer, I remember thinking that if you flipped the roles (woman being terrorised and harrassed by a much stronger man who considers himself above the law and refuses to accept the breakup) then the premise would make for a damn good horror movie.
     
  7. Rzero

    Rzero Reluctant voice of his generation Contributor

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    Are you familiar with the term "creep shaming"? It's like slut shaming, a set of double standards designed to make someone feel terrible about themselves for behavior deemed acceptable in the opposite sex. Obviously there are truly inappropriate and creepy ways to behave around women, but I've heard female friends and acquaintances call a guy creepy just for introducing himself. Unfortunately, being seen as age inappropriate, unattractive or even just nervous and awkward can get a guy labeled "creepy" regardless of his intentions. There isn't even a female analog for that. So to an unsympathetic female or even popular opinion, almost anything unrequited can be creepy. This is not something all women do to all men, and I'm not a men's rights warrior or anything like that. It's just a thing that exists in society, and reciprocity seems to be the key factor.

    For the purposes of a story, a method often employed in rom-coms is to blame it on the best bro. We don't hate the male as much for lying about himself or extensively researching his crush if it's a team effort. Why? No idea. But if the guy's looking over his friend's shoulder as the friend lies all over a dating app for him or deep stalking a girl on Facebook, the audience is fine with it, even though it's going to bite him on the ass by the third act. If he's alone on his computer doing the same, it's going to be an entirely different kind of movie.

    (And please, everybody, don't kill me for bringing up creep shaming. It's the sort of thing that sparks a lot of ire when a man uses it to excuse behavior. That's not what I'm doing, and acknowledgement of the fact that it happens does not justify or downplay the plight of any woman who's experienced far worse things. Two things can be bad without one taking away from the other.)
     
  8. The Dapper Hooligan

    The Dapper Hooligan (V) ( ;,,;) (v) Contributor

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    You mean like Fatal Attraction?
     
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  9. angelkevin

    angelkevin New Member

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    Well,i think the creepiness factor really depends on the attitude that the person has and timing.For example,i think you should start with him making small conversation about the books she likes,helping her around the library and the like.Then simply go on with the developing relationship,but keep the pace slow and steady,use small gestures of kindness and keep the shyness going until they're both at a comfortable point with one another.
    I feel like men making kind gestures has sort of been soured for pretty much everyone because of Nice Guys,because it always feels like there's a "catch" when a guy is nice.(Because let's admit,they're pretty common nowadays.)
    It doesn't help that people think that the "insane girlfriend" trope is funny,making a lot of creepy behaviour if the genders were reversed (Like breaking your partner's things.) become funny or quirky.
     
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  10. Azuresun

    Azuresun Senior Member

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    Um, yes? I didn't say there were no stories with women stalking and harassing men, just that it's much harder to imagine the inverse being presented as comedy.
     
  11. BayView

    BayView Huh. Interesting. Contributor

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    This may depend on the POV you're using. If it's the POV character doing the creepy stuff, you can make it less creepy by showing the internal thoughts and using some humour and self-recognition of the behaviour. If it's not a POV character? Trickier.
     
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  12. The Dapper Hooligan

    The Dapper Hooligan (V) ( ;,,;) (v) Contributor

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    You mean like There's Something About Mary?
     
  13. EBohio

    EBohio Banned

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    There's an Anais Nin short story (sorry I can't think of the title of it right now), where a woman with a secret crush on a guy got a kick out of ironing his clothes. Even though all she is doing is ironing, it is pretty erotic. It is not stalking or creepy.

    I can't think of which story it is and I lost my copy of the book, but it is in her collection of short stories "Little Birds".
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2018
  14. Azuresun

    Azuresun Senior Member

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    Haven't seen it. If you mean to say "I can think of some movies that disagree with your point", you could simply list and discuss the specifics of them in a way that doesn't come off as being so pointlessly snarky.
     
  15. The Dapper Hooligan

    The Dapper Hooligan (V) ( ;,,;) (v) Contributor

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    You really should. Investing in some cultural capital is always a good choice.
     
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  16. Rzero

    Rzero Reluctant voice of his generation Contributor

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    The first several seasons of The Big Bang Theory come to mind. "Lovable nerd obsessed with unattainable girl" is usually more endearing than creepy... in fiction.
     
  17. Laurin Kelly

    Laurin Kelly Contributor Contributor

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    Yeah, I think whether it's a man or a woman, it's really important to establish that romantic attention is welcome and has a realistic potential for being reciprocated. I like to see this play out through banter, shared smiles and looks, and the besotted showing interest in the other person's true interests and personality traits as opposed to idealistic pedestal placing.

    It reminds me of Adele's song "Hello", although that one is more about estranged lovers than a burgeoning crush. But really:

    Hello from the other side
    I must have called a thousand times
    To tell you I'm sorry for everything that I've done
    But when I call you never seem to be home


    Honey, it's not that he's never home - he's not answering on purpose because you're being super fucking creepy and you need to stop calling this dude like, yesterday. He doesn't want your pining, or your pain, or your apologies and you need to MOVE ON. I don't find that song romantic or sympathetic because it's sung by a woman, I think it's just as stalkerish and boundary-crossing as if it had been sung from the POV of a man.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2018
  18. jim onion

    jim onion New Member

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    Women approaching men is always a pleasant surprise and deviation from the meticulous and mundane norm, but I don't know if that qualifies as "weird".

    Although, one might put a spin on it: the female MC isn't used to having to approach men, and neither are her friends, so they're terrible at it which might result in them coming across as "weird".
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2018
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  19. Iain Aschendale

    Iain Aschendale Lying, dog-faced pony Marine Supporter Contributor

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    Like the way people play Every Breath You Take by The Police at weddings, thinking it's romantic. It's about a stalker...
     
  20. Iain Aschendale

    Iain Aschendale Lying, dog-faced pony Marine Supporter Contributor

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    When Harry Met Sally. Imagine if Meg Ryan had played the sexually voracious one, slut-shaming would have taken over and Harry probably wouldn't want anything to do with her. Not endorsing that view, but the culture runs that way.

    And now I have the image of Billy Crystal faking an orgasm in a diner in my head....
     
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  21. J.T. Woody

    J.T. Woody Book Witch Contributor

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    OMG i really want to start writing now, haha!
    sadly, I must push it to the wayside until I am done writing my final's paper :cry:

    Keep the discussion going! I was watching this one drama where the girl was super obsessed with this guy. She'd make him lunches, wait in front of his home to walk him with him in the mornings to the bus. it got to the point where he started leaving earlier so he wouldn't have to come in contact with her. HOWEVER, when someone else got interested in her and she started to fall for him, other guy got jealous and wanted her attention again.

    Its romantic watching it.... when when you think about it, its weird AF. And if roles were reverse and it was the guy stalking her..... the series would take a different turn (PS. the girl got annoying, so I stopped watching after a few episodes, so I dont know how it ended)
     
  22. cosmic lights

    cosmic lights Contributor Contributor

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    Giving a guy flowers? I did that once. He cried hahahaha
     
  23. Iain Aschendale

    Iain Aschendale Lying, dog-faced pony Marine Supporter Contributor

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    Oh Holy Lord Enlil...

    When I was in the Marines, one day as I was coming to afternoon formation, the 1st Sgt called out to me "Asch, you've got a package in here." When I got into the company office I didn't see any boxes, then 1st Sgt said "It's the pretty one," and I noticed the vase of roses on his desk.

    "Can I get it after formation, 1st Sgt?" I asked him.

    He smiled. "Oh hell no, I don't want those things cluttering up my desk. Take 'em with you."

    So there I was, lined up with everybody else, holding a bouquet of roses. Which the platoon sergeant took full advantage of, running me through the manual of arms. "Port..ROSES! Left shoulder, ROSES! Right shoulder, ROSES!"

    Good times....
     
  24. Some Guy

    Some Guy Manguage Langler Supporter Contributor

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    Let you not delude yourselves. Woman is predator. The Lioness is the ultimate hunter, and stalks her prey, captures, and devours it. How she goes about it is the difference. The difference is subtlety, and instinct. She has always known what she's doing, for a million years. We bumbling morons are gazelles! We think it's our idea, and never see it coming. We may learn some of the art, but we are not the art.
    My MC (poor moronic bastard), gets blind-sided by three felines in highschool. He gets devoured after college, fully aware, by an exotic female that uses him at whim, then casts him aside til her next whim, and he would take her back every time.
    Then, he meets the love of his life. She asks him out first. :eek: HEA.
     
  25. matwoolf

    matwoolf Banned Contributor

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    What's wrong with being creepy?
     

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