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Author Topic: Esther was being built up for a major role  (Read 877 times)
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SpaceGoldfish fromWazn

Urban Legend
***
« on: 08-04-2020 19:25 »

I absolutely fell in love with Ruth and Esther, but especially Esther when they were first introduced.   Esther has far and away one of the most striking and distinctive character designs of any fembot, but of any character in the show.  And she and Ruth were fun, charming and highly memorable characters despite their very brief apperances.   Unlike Bender's generic floozy characters, Ruth and Esther were distinct from Bender's many floozies from the get go: they were presented as contradictory and complimentary characters, rather like a younger, begninger, jewisher, prettier version of Patty and Selma, perhaps showing a glimpse of how Patty and Selma were as young women in their twenties or thirties.

However, like Selma eventually established her own personality away from Patty and while Patty remains as abrasive as the viewer as she is to characters in the show, Selma eventually becamse a character portrait of a deeply lonely, sweet natured woman whose life has pretty much passed her by despite her best efforts, and has missed on many of the things she desires most, namely exactly what her younger sister has.

Ruth n' Esther are surprisingly wholesome characters, and while Patty essentially dominates Selma and Marge ignores her, Ruth is very protective of Esther.    There are a number of reasons why Esther makes a big impression on the viewer even more then Ruth does:

Esther's character design is far more distinctive and when contrasted with Ruth, your eyes are naturally drawn towards her.    It's kind of like Roxie Hart vs Velma Kelly: in dark, film film noir (both characters seem to drawn inspiration from Film Noir), your eyes will naturally be drawn towards light colours, same as eyes are drawn to darkness in daylight scenes.   Esther's colour palette makes her stand out in dark night scenes almost like Venus on a dark night.   Unlike the more confident Ruth, Esther has buttery yellow blonde hair in a stylish bob, catlike blue eyes, soft pink lipstick, and her favourite colours to wear are peachy pink and pinky peach.   Both Ruth and Esther have very communicative eyes and very expressive eyes, Ruth has her lower eyelid drawn much more then Esther, which she uses to express annoyance, displeasure, interest, ect.   Esther communicates more using her upper eyelid, and her eyelashes, fluttering them.   While her eyes are usually drawn half closed, Esther often opens her eyes completely wide, to show vulnerability or anger.    Esther also bares a strong resemblance to a robot Marilyn Monroe.  

IN just about every dramatic shot of the two characters, the eye is more naturally to lead to Esther for several reasons:

Esther is drawn in a way that is not only radically different from other fembots, robots or even any other character in the show.    The lines on her mouth suggest an overbite, but not in the way typical of Matt Groening's characters, the lines to suggest her teeth make her resemble something like Clara Bow or Tara Markov of the original Teen Titans of the Judas contract.   Ruth is more typical of the design of attractive fembots, while Esther is more of an unconventional beauty, which combined with the character quirks they were careful to show in her few appearances, make her extremely endearing, in ways similar to the episodes that showed Selma's more vulnerable and charming side.     Esther, combined with her stereotypical awkward voice contrasted with Ruth's typically more sexy italian Jewish side.   While Ruth looks like an italian jewish girl, Esther seems more inspired by german and French jews.    I would not be surprised if her last name turned out to be something like Lorelei, Brunhildr, Woglinde, Rhinegold or ect.    

Two more  significant things I noticed about Esther's design that I don't think I have seen anywhere else on the show:

Esther's mouth changes dramatically between shots.  Her mouth is typically heart shaped, the opposite of resting bitch face, but more resting sweetheart face.    At first when I saw her and noticed this,  I was watching a very crappy stream and thought this was a stylistic choice, and that the gag was that her mouth changes but is never shown changing.   When Esther is happy her mouth becomes a big smiling heart, but it can quickly become a frown or a grimace or turn around to make a sad face.   Ruth in contrast has a static mouth, and all her communication is done with her eyes, facially.   Esther communicates with her entire face, her eyes and lps.  To play with jewish stereotypes, rather then having massive schnozzes, Ruth and Esther have no noses at all.

The other thing I noticed is that most characters on the show, especially the robots are drawn with lines and squares and angles, while Esther is mostly drawn with soft elegent curves, to contrast even further with the more angular and tough Ruth.

Esther's name is also significant.   She is named after the greatest heroine in the bible and the torah, the brave and beautiful and wise princess who saved her people from genocide with her beauty and wits and charm, and whose epic deeds are celebrated in Purim.   Esther is also the Hebrew equivalent of Stella, in that her name means star.   It is also the name of a number of famous women and a few New Yorkers or people associated with NY too, from Baby Esther the black inspiration for Betty Boop, to Esther Greenwood, Sylvia Plath's heroine who unravelled utterly after an ill-fated internship in New York, to the famous synchhroined swimmer and more.      

Okay.

So what were they planning for this character, and for Ruth?  Why did they go through the trouble of fleshing out much of her personality and making it a surprsiingly sweet and wholesome one, and put her in the focus of so many dramatic scenes, something they don't even do for Ruth?  

My theories are.

Ruth and Esther were being considered to be hired as PE employees.  They both went to vasser and have dreams of stardom.   Esther seems like she would make a great nurse.

We first meet them canonically in Bots and Bees.  Ruth was shown before in minature form, but its unclear if that was her shrunk, or simply if Ruth is a mass produced robot.    This is the episode that firmly establishes that some robots are built and others are born.    Ruth and Esther both suggest they are born rather then built.    They are the most human robots we have seen so far: they kvetch about temperature, and shown high enjoyment for blintzes to the point that they are concerned about weight gain, saying they will splitz a blintz instead of having one each.   Born robots are technically a metal based lifeform: we have seen the evolution of mechanical life in A Clockwork Origin.   We have shown they have organs, or at least digestive and reproductive systems.  Perhaps Ruth is built, but Esther was made, and they are distantly related, hence their similar body shapes and high heel feet.   Esther as a mechanical lifeform has much more possibilities as a character then a built one, in that her various parents and grandparents could all contribute.   Imagine if Ruth was born too, and could literally use her breasts to cook snacks for herself, as her bubby was a toaster or an easy bake oven.   Imagine if the reason why Esther likes drinking seltzer too much is if Lisa was her great grandmother, and if she doesn't drink enough seltzer she will die.  

My personal theory is that Bender's increasingly sociopathic and self sabotaging behaviour is because he is still mourning the loss of the only woman he ever truly loved, the Countess.   Bender seems to be the robot version of a chubby chaser, but while he is physically in lust with characters like Bev, Shippy and Crushy, he can only fall in love with a fembot with a strong moral compass.   The Countess?   The Countess is the only fembot who has shown to love Bender for who he is, and accepted him unconditionally and forgives him.    Since AFTR, Bender has deeply been mourning the death of the only woman he loved, so the point he self sabotaged his highly promising relationship with the lovely Angelyne.   Angelyne was designed to have her trashy appearance, dubious line of work and highly sexual deep voice contrast with her personality: Angelyne was defined by her sweetness, gentleness, maturity, honesty.... everything that Bender wants in a fembot wife, to the point that he deliberately sabotaged things with her.     He also ruined things with One That Got Away 3 with Ship who also adored him and again he broke things off just when he bagain to fall in love with her too.   And if anything was going to happen with Fanny they certainly won't know that he ruined things with her by banging her daughter.

I notice in every single shot where Bender interaects with the two, it's Esther who he seems drawn to more, due to her similiarities with his previous Great Loves.   Neither Ruth or Esther seem to like Bender's personality very much: they showed more concern and worry when Ruth accidentally really hurt Fry, and when he was evicted with a boot they became oddly silent, and when he called them skanks, neither Ruth nor Esther seemed like they cared for that remark very much.   I often wonder if the reason why Bender doesn't want Fry dating robot women, is because robot women seem attracted to male tenderness, which is something they are far more likely to find in human males.   Fry was designed to be unconventionally attractive and actually rather sexy for a female/gay male audience.  Meanwhile alien women find Fry extremely desirable, and judging from the satisfied struts the Amazonian women did out of the snoo snoo chambers, they clearly did not have to fake it, that was a man who knows how to please a woman very quickly the bigger the better.

Fry has said he has aalways wanted to bang alien babes and have a robot for a best friend.   We have never seen how robot women interact with him, but I did think it interesting that Bender's lady of the night in TLPJF seemed like she genuinely wanted to play with him.  What if the reason why Bender's floozies never turn up again when they are not hookers (Ruth and Esther seem like they are escorts: I get the vibe that Ruth is noveau riche while Esther is either old rich or like Amy wealthy but not independently so: Ruth does escorting because she finds it fun to do or to piss off her parents, while Esther genuinely needs the money.)

We've never seen how Fry feels about fembots or how fembots feel about Fry but Liubot?  Liubot's love grew from programmed love to genuine love: Liubot fell in love with Fry: there is genuine adoration at watching Fry be himself.  

What if Esther wasn't being set up as a love interest to Bender because she really doesn't seem that interested in him at all, and neither Ruth or Esther seem to like Bender's personality, yet they are very much up for saving animals and seem like they genuinely care, which is very are in this show.

So what if Esther was being set up as a love rival to Leela?   Maybe Ruth is in love with Bender who is in love with Esther who is in love with Fry who is in love with Leela?

The show never really explored what The Other was.   "She must be the Other."   What if we were having a Mysterious Voyage of Fry, in that Fry and Nibbler had to find out who his Other was.    What if the Other was not Leela.... (screw that shiksa harpy) but was in fact Esther?   What if the ending of Overclockwise was

Leela slaps Fry.  Fry looks sad.  

Fry reads something and is outraged.   Leela is gobsmacked.   Fry slaps Leela.   Have we ever seen Fry strike anyone?  Sweet, sweet Fry?  Ha.   What if Leela cheated on Fry or it turns oput she was repeadly cheating on him?   Sure.  Leela dumps Fry in a heartbeat to the point she is even shittier to him then when they were not dating.  

What if them smiling is them knowing they will come through it

Or they will both become friends but they will find romantic happiness with other people.  What if Leela ends up with Zapp or Shaun, but Fry and Esther are truly Born To Be Together?

Esther was born with a silver spoon in her mouth (literally) and has a heart of gold (literally, her robot heart is plated with rose gold.)  

Just don't call her trashy if you know what's good for you.   Esther had been called much nastier words in her debut canon episode, but that was a lot of emotion for trashy.  

Hope yall enjoyed.   I'm doing lots of comics about Fry getting fired and kicked out his apartment, only to find Ruth and Esther are attracted to his potential, sensitivity, talent, wit, hidden genius, boyish charm, sweetness and childlike playfulness and friendliness.   All the tings Leela finds offputting Ruth and Esther find delightful.

What if Fry and Esther fall in love, only for Ruth to fall in love with him too?  

Also the first canon thing said to them as a pair is Whose Your Hot Dumb Friend?   He seems to be saying it to Ruth, but it seems to be directed at Esther.  

More to come later.  
SpaceGoldfish fromWazn

Urban Legend
***
« Reply #1 on: 08-04-2020 19:34 »

Another reason why Esther's name suggests significance, like Turunga Lila.

The Book of Esther, along with the Song of Songs (!) are one of the only two books in the entire Hebrew bible, that do not mention god.   If Fry and Esther's wedding song is Aso Sprach Zarathustra..... dun dun dun DUHN DUHN DUHN DUHN duhn. 

Also its nice to see them stop typcasing Tress McNeille.   Esther seemed like a really fun character to play and it gets annoying that they only seem to let her do three voices little boy, generic young lady and grumpy old woman.   Esther is clearly a Tress voice, but the accent and very distinct speech style make her one of Tress's most unique roles on the show.
SpaceGoldfish fromWazn

Urban Legend
***
« Reply #2 on: 08-04-2020 19:37 »

God helps those who help themselves.    Esther, despite her obvious vulnerability and endearing awkwardness and shyness, very much stands up for herself.

Also I think Esther is the ONLY robot character on the show whose lips I see changing shape.   I watched the Bots and the Bees on Amazon and I saw Esther's lips quickly changing shape to show happiness, sadness, annoyance, anger, indifference, coquettishness, shyness.      Also another reason why I think someone needs to introduce Fry  to this broad next time Leela dumps him, she seems to be related to a rockemsockem robot.    What more could Fry want in a lady?
SpaceGoldfish fromWazn

Urban Legend
***
« Reply #3 on: 08-04-2020 19:44 »

Congratulations Fry!   Esther's extremely wealthy, she probably has other characteristics...

Look how angry Bender got when Bev started bullying Esther.   While he was very much staring at their VERY LARGE tiddies, he seemed to panic the second he realised that the lovely, sweet young fembot (both Ruth and Esther were shown to be far sweeter and smarter and sassier and classier then their appearances would suggest and that there is far more to both then meets the eye) there was pure panic on his face.    Then an angry hatefu*k with Bev, who is far more typical of the big built booty beauties he goes for.

Bender was angry at Fry (even though Fry had every right to be where he is)…. because he delieberately took Ruth and Esther there, because he was hoping for a foursome.   Why would he avoid the apartment and go get it on with two pretty young lassies when the angry and unpleasant Bev is there?

He was trying to avoid Fry, bcause he knows that Ruth and Esther are going to be far more into Fry then him.   Oddly enough, Fry is the only character Bev seems plesent to.   Bev seems like she genuinely enjoys having Fry around, as he seems to be the only character who takes the time to hang out with her.   It's very easy to interpretate Bev's repeated antagonism towards Bender isn't because she's a bad mom, or because of sexual tension, because Bev likes Fry.   She likes hanging out with him.   Nearly every single angry remark she makes towards Bender is after Bender mistreats Fry in front of her.   Fry brings out Bev]s softer side and she seems very protective of him.   This is something her own son can't do.    Bev is nasty to Ben because he reminds her too much of his evil hateful father.    Bev seems genuinely pleased to see Fry and seems pissed off when Bender is nasty to him.   It could be Bev simply doesn't want Bender fucking with her meal ticket, or because being nasty to Fry genuinely angers her.
SpaceGoldfish fromWazn

Urban Legend
***
« Reply #4 on: 08-04-2020 20:39 »

Im making lots of art of Ruth and Esther and comics about their relationship and adventures with Fry.    Ruth reminds me very strongly of my Jewish Italian relatives (as does Esther) but for some reason I think of Esther being Austrian or French: for some reason she reminds me of a mermaid, and everyone knows rhinemaidens, sirens, mermaids and nixies all speak german, mein gutt. 

In my headcanon Esther is the Countess of Cederhurst, and is very land rich money poor old money, while Ruth is noveau riche and very wealthy.   

Ruth's full name is Ruth Vashti Violet Katzenjammer Goldenblatt, while Esther is naturally far more elaborate.   Countess Esther Sylvia Greenwood Lorelei Ondina Woglinde Wellgunde Flosshilde Hildegard Pescha Peche Estella Venus Greenburg Katz Rosenburg Rhinegolde VII.   I even made cocktails based around Bombay Sapphire: a Baby Esther is made with peach ice tea, vanilla ice cream, peach schnaps, apricot juice, strawberry pimms and coconut,while a Baby Ruth is based around pomegranites, lavender and violets.   In the art I do I use flowers of the Rosa family to symbolise Esther, especially peach blossoms.   For Ruth I symbolise her with violets, but also lavender, snake's heard fritillaries.    Ruth is symbolised by the viola family as well as the rosemary family, while Esther I use the mallow family such as hollyhocks.   
SpaceGoldfish fromWazn

Urban Legend
***
« Reply #5 on: 08-04-2020 20:42 »

The reason why Esther had so many dramatic close ups and camera angles?   It's because we are seeing her through Bender's eyes.   The Bots and the Bees implies that he is meeting one of them for the first time.

Notice how Bender reacts when Esther walks by him, and notice his line of sight throughout the episode when she appears.    Ruth seems more into him, but everything he does in the episode implies he only has eyes for Esther, even if he has to hire her as an escort.    
SpaceGoldfish fromWazn

Urban Legend
***
« Reply #6 on: 08-04-2020 21:04 »
« Last Edit on: 08-04-2020 21:38 »

Rewatched the scene.

Ruth actually seems very interested in Bender.   It's very quick and blink if you miss it, but Ruth's body language completely changes when Bender is involved.   ALso when Bender is making out with the two of them and Esther pulls him away, Ruth clearly gives a disappointed "eh...." in the middle of her giggling, and while her facial expression doesn't rally change, she genuinely looks sad.  

Also another significant moment in what feels like a while pile of unfired Chekov's Guns.   When Bender calls both Ruth and Esther skanks, neither of them look pleased by that remark.  Ruth's pupils witch to Bender, as if she is beginning to realise how much of an asshole this guy is, to not just her and her friend but to his friends.  Ruth and Esther both seem like they want a nice boy to take home to meet mommy and bubbe, and Bender is every mothers nightmare at their daughter (or son, Bender seems curious) bringing home.

Also another parallel between Patty and Selma and Ruth and Esther: Selma is naturally a blonde.   

Now when Bender calls them both skanks, Esther's reaction is more ambiguous.   She merely lowers her eyelids.   Since the robot character faces are naturally designed to be less easy to read then the human and organic characters, there are multiple ways you can read Esther's expression.  Is she thoughtful?  Annoyed?   Either way her line of sight is not aimed at Bender or Ruth.

Why?

Because we are looking at these three characters through Fry's perspective.   Bender is glaring at him.   Ruth is staring at Bender beginning to realise this guy is bad news and she and her friend need to get out.

Who is staring right back at him?

Esther.   You see Ruth and Esther might be escorts or con artists.   Ruth is genuinely attracted to him, while Esther generally doesn't seem that into him.   When talking to Bender Ruth becomes very feminine and flustered, to the point she leans protectively against Esther which is a role reversal of how they normaly behave.    Their behaviour towards Bender when meeting him seems to be less "hey hot stuff" and more "here seems like an easy mark, let's bang him, rob him, then go get some latkes.    Only Ruth is genuinely attracted to him, while Esther seems more like she's going through the motions.
Esther flirts and flutters her eyelashes at him, but it seems more like her attempting to real in some easy cash.   

In a very Pricinpal Charming move.    Only this case Patty is very hetrosexual while Esther wants something else and something more.

Esther fluttering her eyelashes felt very affected, but her lowering her eyelids in a way that almost seems like her square pupils are dilating.... this is how Esther reacts when she sees a man she is very genuinely interested in.

Both Ruth and Esther act with shock when Ruth pulls Fry's ear.   Why are they silent?  Shocked?  Sorry?  Fry looks like he was in complete agony and then looked sad and frightened.   Ruth's reaction is not that of someone who genuinely tried to hurt someone as hard as they could: she's too shocked to apologise.    Or it could be both bot gals are thinking

"Say, who is this handsome, boyishly cute human gentile?  Bender never mentioned he had a hot human boy living with him."   Between Bender referring to them as skanks and witnessing his poor treatment of a close friend was enough for the two of them, and were ready to walk out the door.    Their silence was a combination of shock, disgust, embarrassment, concern and disgust, and perhaps stunned at Fry's cute personality, charm and good looks.     It doesn't say what happened, but I would say they both wanted to find Fry and try to cheer him up: Ruth wanted to apologise for hurting him, and Esther... well Esther wanted to now if he would like to get a drink with her sometime, or at least have a threesome with her and Ruth. 

iMAGINE the look on Bender's face if Fry strutted in to work the next day with lipstick all over his face, several hickies on his neck, a very smug, hair and clothes ruffled, pleased look on his face, and Ruth and Esther hanging contentedly and adoringly off each arm, and Fry suavely lights up a cigarette for each of them.     Imagine Leela's expression too.      Only way I could think it would be fnnier if Bev rolled in contentedly sucking a cigarette while remarking that Fry was not only a shower, he was a hell of a grower too, and he has pleased her better then any manbot who has ever existed, while Ruth n'Esther go "Immmhmmmm.  The boy does indeed do, very good snusnu."  Implying Fry gave all three women the very good seeng too they needed, much to the disgust and jealous of Bender and Leela.   Then Bev who has been put in such a fantastic mood by Fry's skills as a lover, says drinks are on her and pours out drinks for all and asks if her little creamsicle is gonna give her and her two new friends (who clearly she judged unfairly) a repeat performance.    It would just be funny to see the three of them getting along because Fry gave them the best sex of their lives. 

Ruth: "You know Benduh, I never had me a bat mitzvah."

Bender: "So?"

Esther: "Turns out we didn't need one.  Fry made us women last night."

Bender: "What... what... wait.... FRY!  How... you... metal fever.... robot sisters dating humans..."

Bev: "Say gals, I'm sorry I called you robosluts last night.  I misjudged you.  I just felt so insecure that I lashed out and I'm sorry"

Ruth: "Don't sweat it Bev."   

Esther: "Yeah, everybody makes mistakes.  No point crying over spilt applesauce." 

Bev: "Aw sugah, thank you.   What can I get you....."

Ruth: "Wait for it....."

Bev and Esther: "A SELTZA!!!!" 

Fry: "Hey Bev can I have...."

Bev: "Put that coinpurse away, sugah!  No man has ever pleased me like you did last night!  You'll never pay for slurm again if you keep giving me the goodstuff, honeyboy."

Fry: Ummmmm

Esther: Aw look, he blushing, the cute little goyim!  My bubbe would love him!

Ruth: Mine too!

Bender: HONEYBOY! 

Ruth: Never have I seen a human boy packing such heat.  I tell yah, I watched this Roopauls something something race or something or other, and he has what is referred to on the show as a "meaty tuck."

Esther: Very meaty.  Like a schnitzel.  And best part of all, he's European! 

Bev: What do you mean, dumplin'?

Ruth: Esther likes her mens unsnipped.  She likes some skin on the sausage.   

Bev: Oh I never seen an uncircumcised one before, but, now I ain't ever going back!

Fry: Uhhh…. ladies please.

Bender: Yeah, you hens cut out the cackling in a place of work...

Ruth: Says the guy who tried to throw an orgy last night.

Bev: Good thing our little cream filled creamsicle

Ruth: So much stamina, he didn't let go until he'd satisfied all three of us.  More then I can say for someone (makes champaigne uncorking sounds)

Bev: Yeah, tell me about it.

Bender tries to pull Esther off Fry.   Esther cuddles onto Fry as tightly as she can, snuggles into his ear and kisses it.   She glares at Bender and tightens her grip.

Esther: I am very happy to take their word for it. 
SpaceGoldfish fromWazn

Urban Legend
***
« Reply #7 on: 08-04-2020 21:47 »

Okay.   The scene where Esther acts to lower the lights.   We are seeing it from Ruth's perspective.    What is she seeing?

Esther effortlessly charming a man Ruth is interested in without trying.   Esther seems like she wants to earn some cash but isn't proud of it.   Ruth wants the lights on because she wants to see Bender and look at her the way he's looking at Esther, while Esther isn't proud of what she's about to do and wants to hide her shame.   

There are four characters we see in this scene, five if you count Bev.   Bev's unpleasant attitude towards Ruth and Esther when they have done nothing to deserve it, is because she genuinely enjoys hanging out with Fry, and is upset and angry that Bender chased away someone whose company she enjoys, and maybe because she is hoping to try and seduce him.   All these two characters have done is piss each other off, and honestly.... it feels like two people fighting over the same man.   

Bev and Bender are both similar in they self serving and sociopathic, but Fry brings out their gentle side.   Bender is pissed off at Bev for chasng away the woman he's nterested in (Esther) and Bev is pissed off at Bender for chasing away the man she's interested in (Fry.)   

But the key note is we see Esther through the perspective of three different character directly.

First we see Ruth's sad, envious perspective.   The resigned nature of it and hurry to turn off the lights makes me suggest that nearly all of the men Ruth is interested in naturally prefer Esther to her and the sad part is Esther is not interested in these men.   

Then we see her through Fry's perspective.  His line of sight goes straight past Ruth's shock, Bender's disgust and annoyance, and Esther starting back at him, thoughtfully and with interest. 
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