On the subject of Wanda and Jillian

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On the subject of Wanda and Jillian

Postby Weimann » Tue May 12, 2009 9:25 am

First of all, hi! I'm a new reader of Erfworld, having just recently plowed through the archives, and since i'm posting here on the forums, it must have hit a spot :) It's really a lovely comic, one of those few cases that actually manage to make you uncertain about which side to cheer for. Not to mention the personal interactions between characters. Which gets me to subject.

Much like that yellow guard who watched over Wanda's interrogation of Jillian, I have a million questions on that. The basics are explained by the comic: Upon the fall of Faq, Jillian joined Ansom's forces and his offensive on Gobwin Knob. She was taken prisoner and held in Wanda's care, until broken free by Ansom. This pattern was repeated many times, until this last time, when Wanda attempted to use her as an insider agent. Pressed by Charlie's Archons, she broke through Wanda's Suggestion spell, confessed her love for Ansom via Thinkagram and proceeded to croak the dragons in an awesome fashion. Later, she brought the dragons to Gobwin Knob, where she confronted Wanda, who literally and metaphorically shot her down. After that, we have not had any interaction between Wanda and Jillian.

I might have missed something in that resumé, and if so, please point it out.

The way I see it there are two ways to interpret the course of action.

Theory 1
This suggest that Wanda started working her spell early, slowly gaining hold on Jillian and subordinating her to Wanda's will, that is, her appearent sadomasochism is something that Wanda induced on her. Then, when the spell broke, the magical bashlash hit Wanda and, due to her insufficient Thinkamancy skills, rendered her unresponsive. Later, Wanda shot Jillian out of the air because it was appearant from her questioning that Jillian was no longer in a subordinated position, and therefore useless to Wanda.

That theory does hold water well, and it does fit with the facts laid out elsewhere in the comic. Jillian is a strong, self-reliant woman who is not afraid to take a stand for her beliefs, often disobeys direct orders and has herself stated how she doesn't like Ansom's commanding persona. Such a personality fits ill with the sadomasocistic kink it is implied she has developed with Wanda, and the notion that "she likes it", as she has stated, can be attributed to the Suggestion spell. It's also been made clear that she can indeed appreciate less exotic kinds of love, as implied on Ansom's flying carpet above the lake (I have no proof they did the deed, of course, just pointing at the possibility). The rest of the explanation would fit well with this scenario; Wanda's blankout can be attributed to her non-optimized handling of the Suggestion spell, and her later actions clearly enfore the conclusion that whatever feelings might have been between Wanda and Jillian, they were directed from Jillian to Wanda, not the other way around, and fabricated and enhanced by a Suggestion spell.

Theory 2
This theory proposes that when Jillian was taken captive the first time, she was interrogated by Wanda and found to have a kink for being handled in this way. Seeing the opportunity, Wanda continued to have Jillian captured at several points, reinforcing her subordination and the feelings towards Wanda, almost certainly aided by Suggestion spells, but with Wanda also building up a compassion for Jillian. When that spell broke, she suffered a magical backlash due to inept handling. However, she was also devestated by the choice her playmate had made, choosing Ansom over her. The combined trauma rendered her unresponsive. When Jillian later came to confront Wanda, she gained clearification on the feelings of her partner and in scorned wrath shot Jillian out of the air.

This theory does sound a bit more on the farfetched side, but it IS concievable. A person is a complex thing; it is quite possible for Jillian to have been both in love with Ansom on an emotional level and attracted to Wanda's physical treatment at once. Wanda never explicitly states that she is controlling Jillian solely through Suggestion, and when the spell breaks in the fight over the lake, she hotly protests croaking Jillian. She even defends herself when jillian comes to confron her: "but you LIKE being controlled!" She could easily have genuinely believed that, or but misinterpreted the extent and situations it applied too, and is now angrered that her long time would-by playmate is so different from what she though and that she doesn't know her at all beyond a purely physical level.

My opinion
When I read through the archives, I naturally leaned towards the second theory. I think it seems likely; a person who has "torture and interrogation as hobbies" would surely warm to a repeat victim. As for their respective staus now, it's harder to tell. Jillian is almost certainly hurt by the liberties Wanda has taken with her mind (if not her body). Wanda is harder to read; she could be hurt as well, her pride at least. Time will tell, I sincerely hope; we just cannot be left hanging on such an intriguing piece of... uh, intrigue!
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Re: On the subject of Wanda and Jillian

Postby SteveMB » Tue May 12, 2009 10:26 am

First, welcome to the forum!

The situation is certainly ambiguous enough to support multiple interpretations. One factor that might complicate things is that we know that Jillian and Wanda were both inhabitants of Faq prior to its fall, which raises the question of what relationship they had back then. At the very least, Jillian believes (erroneously, as it turned out) that she knows Wanda well enough to be sure that she couldn't possibly have freely chosen to follow Stanley.

As for Jillian having a submissive kink... how better to rebel against an unwanted role as heir to the throne and presumed future ruler?
Is this a real holy war, or just a bunch of deluded boopholes croaking each other?
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Re: On the subject of Wanda and Jillian

Postby lovelyluthien » Tue May 12, 2009 10:41 am

While I agree with your second theory (and would like to add that it is not at all unsual for submissive persons to be strong-willed etc. in 'real life'), I fear that we will indeed be left hanging on this subject. It would be more politically correct to leave the situation open, and less likely to offend some people. But ... maybe the authors will surprise us? *flashes ingratiating smile in that direction*
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Re: On the subject of Wanda and Jillian

Postby Lawence of Awabia » Tue May 12, 2009 11:41 am

I definitely think it's the second theory, rather than the first.

One minor (or not so minor) point...Wanda didn't shoot Jillian out of the air. She vaporized all of the other units that were with her, but left Jillian pretty much unscathed. She's hurt that Jillian chose Ansom over her, but not so much that she actually wants Jillian dead.

Now that she's turned Ansom inter her own plaything, probably very much as a kind of revenge for being scorned, I think any feelings for Wanda that Jillian had are gone for good, and she'll be out for blood.

I could even see Wanda thinking in a misguided way that she's done Jillian a favor; "Look, I've brought him back to you. It was the only way!" What she won't get is that her new Decrypted Lackey is NOT Ansom, not really, and what she did is probably worse in Jillian's eyes than if he had been left dead.

Or not. I'm often surprised by how things work out in this comic. It's what makes it awesome.
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Re: On the subject of Wanda and Jillian

Postby Pointyleaf » Tue May 12, 2009 3:05 pm

I'm not sure of all their backstory (it seems implied to me that they've had some kind of relationship for quite some time), but I'm pretty sure that the suggestion spell was only used in the latest interrogation. Wanda grabs a scroll (presumably suggestion) only after Jillian says "the very easy way", and the whole bit on the tower where Jillian says that Wanda went too far might best be read as "went too far this time", since they've had dalliances before.
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Re: On the subject of Wanda and Jillian

Postby Weimann » Wed May 13, 2009 3:57 am

One factor that might complicate things is that we know that Jillian and Wanda were both inhabitants of Faq prior to its fall, which raises the question of what relationship they had back then.
Huh. I should have remembered that.
One minor (or not so minor) point...Wanda didn't shoot Jillian out of the air. She vaporized all of the other units that were with her, but left Jillian pretty much unscathed.
Oh, my, I didn't notice that at all! I guess I was captivated by the plot. I should probably go back and reread the archives in a while, just to see if I missed any more things ^^
I'm not sure of all their backstory (it seems implied to me that they've had some kind of relationship for quite some time), but I'm pretty sure that the suggestion spell was only used in the latest interrogation.
That's quite possible. Nothing stated in the comic can disprove it, at least. That would only serve as proof of the second theory.
While I agree with your second theory (and would like to add that it is not at all unsual for submissive persons to be strong-willed etc. in 'real life'), I fear that we will indeed be left hanging on this subject. It would be more politically correct to leave the situation open, and less likely to offend some people. But ... maybe the authors will surprise us? *flashes ingratiating smile in that direction*
There might not be a completel storyline dedicated to Wanda and Jillian (although I'd really like it if there was), but looking at how things stand now, further confrontation seem almost unavoidable. Jillian hasn't had her revenge on Stanley for ruining Faq, and now she has further cause for vengence against Gobwin Knob, for killing Ansom and possibly for decrypting him. When she finds out, she isn't likely to be happy with Wanda, either, since both of her loved ones work for her hated enemy right now.

So I hope there will at least be some further information revealed, if not the entire backstory :)
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Re: On the subject of Wanda and Jillian

Postby Weimann » Wed May 13, 2009 7:47 am

And, by the way, do we know what Wanda means here? It could be about Jillian, of course, but does she really compare her playmate with 2870 units' lives? It's either beautiful or plain scary.

Also, it's been established that Wanda is serving Stanley out of her own choice, but how come she didn't switch sides to Ansom? I mean, Ansom had an Arkentool, and Jillian was on his side. It seems like the smart thing to do.

It might also imply that they didn't know each other back in Faq. If they did, Jillian would likely have tried to free Wanda from captivity rather than messing around as a Barbarian.
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Re: On the subject of Wanda and Jillian

Postby SteveMB » Wed May 13, 2009 9:49 am

Weimann wrote:It might also imply that they didn't know each other back in Faq. If they did, Jillian would likely have tried to free Wanda from captivity rather than messing around as a Barbarian.


Jillian's account indicates that she didn't know what had become of Wanda until her first capture after joining the RCC.
Is this a real holy war, or just a bunch of deluded boopholes croaking each other?
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Re: On the subject of Wanda and Jillian

Postby Mikalyaran » Wed May 13, 2009 8:53 pm

Weimann wrote:Also, it's been established that Wanda is serving Stanley out of her own choice, but how come she didn't switch sides to Ansom? I mean, Ansom had an Arkentool, and Jillian was on his side. It seems like the smart thing to do.


1.) It's not Ansom's choice. He is a Chief Warlord not a ruler. Sure he would have some influence but...
2.) He doesn't like croakamancy. Not one bit. I don't think he would have if it were his decision. If she tried to join Jetstone I bet he would use his influence to try and make sure she wasn't allowed to join.
3.) He, and likely his ruler, don't seem the types to be as easily manipulated as Stanley. In GK she has a lot of influence thanks to Stanley's strokable ego. In Jetstone?
4.) Stanley is attuned to his artifact. Wanda serves fate magic. It seems like they guy who is already attuned to an Arkentool is the guy to hang around with. This one isn't as solid though since we don't know how Ansom got it or how Charlie got his tool and attuned. It might just have been a bit of chance and timing. Maybe if she had known about Charlie having the arkendish she would have joined him (im postulating she didnt know about Charlie until after joining Stanley since if she knew before it follows that she would have tried working with Charlie. Maybe she did try though?)

Thats all I can think of right now. I think they are pretty solid reasons why she wouldn't have ended up with Jetstone.
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Re: On the subject of Wanda and Jillian

Postby Weimann » Thu May 14, 2009 5:01 am

Yeah, the new comic explained a lot about that particular point :P
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