The Order of the Stick: Utterly Dwarfed
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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Default How do we feel about Therkla?

    Anyone remember the half-orc ninja girl who had a huge crush on Elan but was otherwise a mostly unrepentant bastard?

    Alright, I've shared how I feel about her- huge crush on Elan but otherwise a mostly unrepentant bastard. How do y'all feel about her?

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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    I liked her. She did what she could to make peace, and even though she was an assassin she still tried to help people, even to the point of needlessly going out of her way to do so. Sure, she wasn't a good person, but I really enjoyed her stories.
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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    True, she wasn't *good* by any stretch, but I think it's a hard ask saying she was plain Evil either. If she hadn't been employed by as big a douchebag as Kubota was who knows what she'd have done?

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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    I thought she was an interesting take on a character who is a pretty moral person but has no investment in being a hero. Kinda like V but on a much smaller scale. She's not really motivated by any higher cause - mostly, she just wants to survive. But she does consistently stick her neck out for others even when it's not in her best interest, and seemed to be on a genuine path to siding with the good guys towards the end, after Kubota makes it clear he has no interest in pursuing a non-violent option in dealing with Hinjo. Shame it just wasn't in the cards for her in the end.

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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    Yeah, she was True Neutral, I'm pretty sure.

    I liked her as a character too, but I also feel compelled to point out that she was only convinced to abandon her loyalty to Kubota once it stopped being good for her. Even when Kubota's men held Elan hostage, she still wouldn't act against him until he forced her hand by refusing to cut his losses and still get away with everything he's done so far.

    Iunno, maybe I'm just not particularly sympathetic to her particular brand of Neutrality.
    Last edited by HorizonWalker; 2019-09-23 at 10:28 AM.

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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    I'm not really clear on where she crossed the line into "bastard" or unrepentant. That seems unusually harsh. She was doing what she had to do to survive, and the side story in Snips and Snails shows she avoids killing if she can.

    What did she do that was "unrepentant" or makes her a bastard? (Unless you're using bastard in a form that's much milder than the typical usage, which would be equivalent to calling her an {scrubbed})
    Last edited by Peelee; 2019-09-23 at 10:37 AM. Reason: scrub-a-dub-dub

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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    I feel like the backstory in GDGU went a long way to explaining why she was willing to throw away her job/life for some guy she really didn’t know.

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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    Quote Originally Posted by factotum View Post
    True, she wasn't *good* by any stretch, but I think it's a hard ask saying she was plain Evil either. If she hadn't been employed by as big a douchebag as Kubota was who knows what she'd have done?
    Eh, she still graduated at the top of her class in Assassin School.
    Quote Originally Posted by KatsOfLoathing View Post
    I thought she was an interesting take on a character who is a pretty moral person but has no investment in being a hero. Kinda like V but on a much smaller scale. She's not really motivated by any higher cause - mostly, she just wants to survive. But she does consistently stick her neck out for others even when it's not in her best interest, and seemed to be on a genuine path to siding with the good guys towards the end, after Kubota makes it clear he has no interest in pursuing a non-violent option in dealing with Hinjo. Shame it just wasn't in the cards for her in the end.
    Imean, Elan also thought she would side with the good guys, but all she wanted was for everyone to compromise.

    Quote Originally Posted by NerdyKris View Post
    I'm not really clear on where she crossed the line into "bastard" or unrepentant. That seems unusually harsh. She was doing what she had to do to survive, and the side story in Snips and Snails shows she avoids killing if she can.

    What did she do that was "unrepentant" or makes her a bastard? (Unless you're using bastard in a form that's much milder than the typical usage, which would be equivalent to calling her an {scrubbed})
    Tootally agree on this.
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  9. - Top - End - #9
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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    Quote Originally Posted by NerdyKris View Post
    I'm not really clear on where she crossed the line into "bastard" or unrepentant. That seems unusually harsh. She was doing what she had to do to survive, and the side story in Snips and Snails shows she avoids killing if she can.

    What did she do that was "unrepentant" or makes her a bastard? (Unless you're using bastard in a form that's much milder than the typical usage, which would be equivalent to calling her an {scrubbed})
    She's still a professional assassin who was personally loyal to Kubota until shortly before her death. She was also perfectly willing to let the orcs kill Elan's friends, until he convinced her that he'd be sad if they died.

    There was also a whole lot of trying to push and guilt Elan into dating her, which was kinda creepy and not cool. Her last words were basically "I'm staying dead because you won't date me," with an implicit "This is your fault" thrown in for flavor.

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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Eh, she still graduated at the top of her class in Assassin School.
    So she's good at killing people and wanted to maximise her opportunities in life, I'm sure we'd all do the same...right?

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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    i liked her as a person. though her loyalty to Kubota was definitely a problem. Call it a toxic relationship, call it working for the wrong people, call it whatever you want, it was pretty bad.

    to be fair she did kinda seem like she'd be fine with several Azurites and other friends of Elan's dying, which is a bit of a red flag. So she's definitely got some bad in her. that could perhaps be attributed to being raised by Kubota though, perhaps given time she'd come to care more for people who aren't her, Elan, or Kubota. If there was time, and if things hadn't escalated as quickly as they did, i'd imagine that she would've made a pretty good hero and ally to the order.

    Would be interesting to see an AU story where Elan went with her offer of "Be with me until Haley gets back, then you can return to her and i'll back off" thing. Always wondered how that would have turned out. At first glance, i'd imagine Haley and Therkla might actually be able to get along on their own, maybe give Therkla some personality that didn't revolve around loving or being loyal to a man.

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  12. - Top - End - #12
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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    Like I feel about Gilda in “Rigoletto.” Entertaining, but not as progressive as perhaps the author hoped. She was a character designed to die for love, so we could see how it affected some man.
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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    I liked her. Was sad when she died. Alignment wise, yeah, probably Neutral, but I feel like she was on the merry road to Chaotic Good before the journey was tragically cut short.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phhase View Post
    I liked her. Was sad when she died. Alignment wise, yeah, probably Neutral, but I feel like she was on the merry road to Chaotic Good before the journey was tragically cut short.
    She was True Neutral, (or at least that's what The Giant was aiming for, which from what I heard was more clear in Spoiler Alert)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fish View Post
    Like I feel about Gilda in “Rigoletto.” Entertaining, but not as progressive as perhaps the author hoped. She was a character designed to die for love, so we could see how it affected some man.
    Pretty much this.

    She did have potential. A conflict between her loyalty to Kubota (in a society where honour and loyality can be a person's entire morality concept) and her conscience would have been very interesting.

    I feel like she might have been a test run for the plot arc that will eventually be given to the Monster in the Dark: Raised to do evil, by an evil master, but redeemed by having met a truly good person.

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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    Therkla is a very sad character. A girl with very low self-steem, who despite being a crack ninja was unable to value herself. She fell prey to Kubota, who as an evil manipulator inmediately understood that the loyalty of a girl like Therkla, who had never been picked to play in the cool kids team, was easy to gain just by paying her a little attention, make her feel chosen, when truth was she was just another disposable ninja for him.

    She projected in Elan all the qualities she was unable to recognize in herself. That was her true drama. She didn't need Elan's love. She only needed to believe in herself. At the end, she choose death as she thought that without Elan, she wasn't worth anything.

    She was a tragic character whose story provides an important lesson for life: Never seek in an idealized significant other the validation you have in yourself.
    Last edited by The Pilgrim; 2019-09-24 at 03:51 AM.

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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    I strongly disagree with everyone who thinks she was used/corrupted by Kubota; she knew what she was she knew what she signed up for, and Kubota himself actively hid his more nefarious evilness from her.
    Last edited by Peelee; 2019-09-23 at 04:24 PM.
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  18. - Top - End - #18
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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    I think we hardly got to know her real character relative to many others. But, that said, Spoiler Alert (from Good Deeds Gone Unpunished) is one of my favorite OOTS stories.

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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    I had very little sympathy for Therkla and I wouldn't consider someone like her to be in any way "neutral" if I encountered them in reality. I didn't find her storyline particularly interesting either, and I thought it was annoying that 90% of her character evolved around an unrequited crush on some random guy she'd never met. One of the weaker parts of DStP, imo.
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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    "What is a Therkla?"

    Therkla was one of the more interesting parts of that book. If she hadn't died, I would actually have seen her as Persistent Secondary Character (tm) material, kind of like Hinjo or Bandanna (who may yet be medium-lived, but eh she's been in plenty of things). However, while she did exist, Therkla was a good character.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schroeswald View Post
    She was True Neutral, (or at least that's what The Giant was aiming for, which from what I heard was more clear in Spoiler Alert)
    Interesting that the oracle is TN yet serves Tiamat
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    Quote Originally Posted by mjasghar View Post
    Interesting that the oracle is TN yet serves Tiamat
    "Being an Oracle for an Evil god is what I do, not what I am"
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  23. - Top - End - #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Squire Doodad View Post
    "Being an Oracle for an Evil god is what I do, not what I am"
    What he is, instead, is someone who'll take anyone's money in exchange for prophecies.

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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    Quote Originally Posted by HorizonWalker View Post
    What he is, instead, is someone who'll take anyone's money in exchange for prophecies.
    Well, not anyone's.
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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    Fine enough character whom I was moderately sympathetic to although ultimately I find her indecision to be something of an immature fatal flaw so relating was tough. In general I think the first half of DSTP is probably the weakest part of the OOTS narrative (once the actual narrative gets underway, that is).

    Quote Originally Posted by factotum View Post
    True, she wasn't *good* by any stretch, but I think it's a hard ask saying she was plain Evil either.
    Indeed, she is canonically True Neutral.

    I don't have any strong feelings about her, appropriately enough.

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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    She was a good character and I liked her a lot, but I think her crush on Elan to the extent of not wanting to be ressurected just cause he didn't wanted to be her boyfriend was kinda silly, and it just seems like Rich wanted to get rid of her but had to find a way to work around ressurection. I enjoy her, but I think I'd enjoy her much more if her agency wasn't all centered towards Elan, which I guess was meant to parody how romances used to glorify dying for love, but I honestly don't think it's that good of achieving that cause it's ultimately played very straight. And I just feel her death felt too utilitarian as to progress Elan's development, and I'd have prefered ifi she actually were the one that confronted Kobuta after realizing he was just using her.

    I'm glad she got to do her own thing in Spoiler Alert though, which was a very enjoyable story
    Last edited by Morgana; 2019-09-24 at 06:28 AM.

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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    I liked her better in the GDGU story.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ruck View Post
    Indeed, she is canonically True Neutral.

    I don't have any strong feelings about her, appropriately enough.
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    Default Re: How do we feel about Therkla?

    I liked her fine. She was kind of a fool, the kind of teenager-Shakespearean-fool, but she died on her own terms, which is something I can respect.

    I see her as a different take on Haley's storyline, as in "what if a Haley fell to the Dark Side?". I don't think the Giant made Therkla fall in love with Elan just cause, I think at the very core Haley and her have something in common other than a crush for Elan's buttocks.

    Quote Originally Posted by HorizonWalker View Post
    There was also a whole lot of trying to push and guilt Elan into dating her, which was kinda creepy and not cool. Her last words were basically "I'm staying dead because you won't date me," with an implicit "This is your fault" thrown in for flavor.
    I agree with first sentence, but not the second. The first is obvious but I kinda "justify" her because that's the way she is accustomed to. It's Kubota's Way (TM) 100%. I think her last words had a hint of irony behind, since she already knew Elan's answer was No either way. I think the message the Giant was aiming for was that Therkla didn't knew "good" in life until she met Elan, so letting yourself die when you lose the only good in life is a valid option (specially since death is just the beginning in the OOTSverse).

    Therkla's character revolved around having a harsh life and what that can make to essentially "non-evil" people. She wasn't good not because she didn't want to, but bc she didn't know how, IMHO. People that only know war and schemes have little chance of realizing people's lives are worth more than a couple of coins and favors.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Pilgrim View Post
    Therkla is a very sad character. A girl with very low self-steem, who despite being a crack ninja was unable to value herself. She fell prey to Kubota, who as an evil manipulator inmediately understood that the loyalty of a girl like Therkla, who had never been picked to play in the cool kids team, was easy to gain just by paying her a little attention, make her feel chosen, when truth was she was just another disposable ninja for him.

    She projected in Elan all the qualities she was unable to recognize in herself. That was her true drama. She didn't need Elan's love. She only needed to believe in herself. At the end, she choose death as she thought that without Elan, she wasn't worth anything.

    She was a tragic character whose story provides an important lesson for life: Never seek in an idealized significant other the validation you have in yourself.
    This is why I see her as a Nega-Haley. For all their awesomeness, both have trusting issues and a self-loathing side. One was raised by a thieves clan, the other by assassins. Both had problematic father figures. Both found redemption through Elan. Problem was Therkla thought she owed Kubota, while Haley always tried to pay her debts and get rid of all attachments to her mentors. There was also the issue of her race, which I think was no detail for the Giant's creation of the character. I totally agree with the Pilgrim, btw.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
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