Originally posted by Shiny, concerning Fry's worst girlfriend:
I see Fry’s “worst” girlfriend, not as being the worst as a match for Fry (none of the ones in the poll are remotely compatible in any long term way), but as being the worst person
of all Fry’s love-interests.
I’d say it’s certainly between Morgan and Michelle. Now, I love
Michelle as a "bad guy," and I actually like "Cryonic Woman" a lot because I find her so funny in a "worst-case-scenario-girlfriend" way. (I don't know of anyone who can top "Stop
standing UP for yourself, Fry!" for sheer blatant awfulness that's also hilarious; even Alkazar making Leela sort his naked celebrity photos doesn't approach that, considering the circumstances she's put Fry in at that point. ) Plus I really like the actress's voice, for some reason; I find her whole "what-happened-to-me-after-you-left" monolog enjoyable every time I watch CW, which is odd, because I never usually like something that lacks all trace of our main characters (except for Fry's disembodied repetition of "sorry" ), so I guess it's because of her voice and the exaggerated hint of tramatized whinyness in her performance...something about it is "just right," y'know?
Anyway, ripping on Michelle is one of my favorite hobbies (much to DavidA's annoyance
) and I consider her the biggest loser of all Fry's gf's. However, if I'm asked to say which was "worst" as a gf, I have to have a good look at how much damage they tried to do to Fry and his friends.
It’s still between Morgan and Michelle. Petunia was pretty bad, but all she did was steal some food and go about her business. Edna was too clueless to be “worst,” she was obeying her species’ weird biological dictates, and was in a situation she was not equipped to deal with psychologically; in other words, she was totally out of her depth (sorry
). There was nothing wrong with Umbriel or the Liubot other than physical constraints, and the woman from the Hip Joint was just a whoopie partner, not a “love” of Fry’s (and it looked like both parties probably enjoyed themselves and did no damage, so I don’t see a problem there). The radiator woman led Fry on a bit and then he got burned, but she was just lonely, and Fry did the pursuing and has no one else to blame.
Morgan and Michelle are the only ones who actually set out to hurt people to get what they want. I don’t want to let my feeling for Michelle as “the villain I love to hate” cloud my judgement here, though; let me look at it objectively.
Let's see. Michelle was lonely and scared and feeling very out of place. Of course, she hardly gave the 31st century any chance at all; she came there to escape her problems, and she wanted to run away again as soon as her new life proved to be the slightest bit challenging. Which makes her a coward, not evil, but she wasn’t content just to slink off on her own: she wanted to drag Fry away with her
, despite knowing full well that he fit in fine and was happy where he was, just so she wouldn’t have to be alone. That kind of pure, unheeding selfishness DOES make her evil, in my book. Also, no doubt she felt Fry would be easier to “convince” of things (read: manipulate) if he was away from his support system; and if she took him from the environment he knew, he would be as lost as her, and would then have nothing else to cling to but her (as she had nothing but him at that point). In other words, she wanted to drag Fry down to her situation so she could have a companion in misery. Ignoble, yes? And, when her choice proved disastrous, she lifted not a hand
to build the shelter, instead ordering Fry to do it(!), and shut him up by accusing him of “whining.” When they found people to help them, she risked what little safety they had and got Fry to go through a risky ordeal just to win HER some status and power - again, doing nothing for herself, let alone for anyone else, and actively endangering others to get whatever she wanted.
Now, Morgan was just after some dirty sex (pun intended); nothing wrong with that. She told Fry up front what she wanted and didn't try to deceive him. She looks miles ahead of Michelle so far. However...she flagrantly misused her position as Acting Bureaucrat, demoting Leela (for no real reason - perhaps she sensed that Fry has a thing for her and was quashing the competition?), assigning Bender to distasteful tasks to get him out of the way, and promoting Fry through sheer cronyism, all things that damaged Planet Express as well the people employed there (except Fry). To cover her ass, she deprived Bender of his personality, which considering the “humanness” of robots in her time, is truly evil (it’s rather like Whatshisname Lockhart in the second Harry Potter book, wiping peoples’ memories to get ahead). When Fry and the rest of our heroes thwarted her, she fired Fry and was obviously about to do more terrible things to Planet Express, for nothing but petty revenge and pique at being so thwarted. All in all, she was utterly cynical about her job, caring nothing for efficiency or order on their own, but using them (and everything else around her) as a means to get what she, Morgan, wanted to have.
So which one of them is the more evil?
When I look at it all spelled out like that, I have to say that I respect
Morgan more. She is straightforward in her evil; she knows what she wants and sets out to get it, and doesn’t ask anyone else to get it for her. However, she was willing to hurt not just Fry but also to “kill” Bender, to torment their friends, and also she clearly wasn’t worried that she might ruin Planet Express (Leela, who’s actually competant, reduced to serving under the autopilot? Recipe for disaster right there) in the process. By the sheer broadness of her radius of damage, Morgan would win. Also, she doesn’t appear to be deluded about her own motives; she knows what she does is wrong and chooses to do it anyway. She chooses evil of her own free will.
Michelle seems to believe her own bullshit to some degree; she appears to think she can make Fry happy (as long as he makes HER happy first, of course). Therefore her evil is less a matter of choice. She also inflicts damage on fewer people - only on Fry, really.
But the level of damage she tried to inflict on Fry is truly horrendous. If she had her way, Fry would be reduced to both an emotional cripple and an emotional crutch; the two of them would hobble around together, unable to survive alone, feeding off each other like a pair of leeches sucking each other’s blood. To Michelle, Fry must be deprived of all other friends, all comfort, and all sense of belonging, just to be a comfort and a more compliant companion to her. The fact that she doesn’t seem aware of just how evil she’s being mitigates her evilness a tiny bit - but as with all deeply manipulative, selfish people, you definitely get the sense that deep in her heart, she knows very well that what she does is wrong - but as long as she suffers no consequences, she doesn’t care. Also, when she does encounter consequences, she can convince herself it was someone else’s fault, thus evading any responsibility for her own life as well.
This doesn’t mean I think she’s totally evil and can never be in the right; I think that, in the guy she married who dumped her, she found someone even more manipulative than she, and got bamboozled. I can feel a little sorry for her, but since she refuses to take any action for herself - instead trying to make another human being into a puppet for her own desires - I have no respect for her at all.
Therefore, I find Morgan to be more consciously evil, and her evil to be larger, with a greater scope of destruction; and I find Michelle’s evil to be more personal but thus more petty and much more contemptible.
So (you all scream at me) which one do you think is the WORST? The bigger evil, or the more personal evil?
The personal. I adore Fry, and I can’t help but take attempts to hurt him on a personal level. I have never been as aghast watching Futurama as the first time I watched CW and thought they’d actually emerged in the year 4000 - HOW were even the brilliant Futurama writers going to get Fry out of THIS one? was my horrified thought. And my relief when it turned out to be a foolie was so profound it was noticeably physical - I actually felt my chest muscles relax and allow my lungs to breathe more deeply. I’m a TV veteran; I know the patterns and cliches and am very rarely suprised by plot developments, but this one penetrated my world-weary TV addict’s instincts and really “got” me.
And so (to utterly fail at making a long story anything remotely resembling short): for almost depriving Fry of everything he cares about to feed her own neediness, Michelle gets my vote as Fry’s worst
Bless her deliciously evil little heart.