Forum › Virgins' Empire discussion

joined Mar 8, 2016

A) Aggressively pursue someone who broke up with you for cheating while expressing no contrition whatsoever and despite the fact that they are in a relationship and they have made it quite clear they don't want to get together with you

I think everyone is forgetting the ages of the girls involved here. They were in middle school when they were going out. "Cheating" at that age constitutes what - kissing someone else? Sure, it's emotionally impactful, especially during those hormonal years, to feel "betrayed" by the person you like. But she's not a homewrecker, she's a kid who is very immature. Also, Shizuka is not in a relationship. The two of them like each other clearly, but since the early unrealistic chapters (where they're taking their shirts off in school) they haven't done more than flirt and hold hands. That doesn't make you "taken."

B) Touch that person in sexual ways with no respect for their boundaries or consent

You are absolutely right here. In real life this would be absolutely unacceptable. This is ecchi manga world, though, where unfortunately "no" usually means "yes." That is its own set of issues, one that you just end up kind of ignoring if you like adult manga but aren't into nonconsent. I don't feel the groping was drawn because it was particularly in character or realistic, I think it was there for service value. As OnT has gone on the service factor has gone way down, but every so often Kishi decides he has to spice up a chapter to keep the fanboys happy or whatever.

C) While at the same time taking advantage of the emotional vulnerability of a different girl solely for the sake of stroking your own ego

I don't think she's taking advantage of Mayu. Mayu is a straight girl who was hurting because she was broken up with and Kaoru offered to be her friend. Mayu admires her in the standard crushing-on-a-cool-sempai way.

Chinatsu%202
joined Jan 27, 2016

A) Aggressively pursue someone who broke up with you for cheating while expressing no contrition whatsoever and despite the fact that they are in a relationship and they have made it quite clear they don't want to get together with you

I think everyone is forgetting the ages of the girls involved here. They were in middle school when they were going out. "Cheating" at that age constitutes what - kissing someone else? Sure, it's emotionally impactful, especially during those hormonal years, to feel "betrayed" by the person you like. But she's not a homewrecker, she's a kid who is very immature. Also, Shizuka is not in a relationship. The two of them like each other clearly, but since the early unrealistic chapters (where they're taking their shirts off in school) they haven't done more than flirt and hold hands. That doesn't make you "taken."

B) Touch that person in sexual ways with no respect for their boundaries or consent

You are absolutely right here. In real life this would be absolutely unacceptable. This is ecchi manga world, though, where unfortunately "no" usually means "yes." That is its own set of issues, one that you just end up kind of ignoring if you like adult manga but aren't into nonconsent. I don't feel the groping was drawn because it was particularly in character or realistic, I think it was there for service value. As OnT has gone on the service factor has gone way down, but every so often Kishi decides he has to spice up a chapter to keep the fanboys happy or whatever.

C) While at the same time taking advantage of the emotional vulnerability of a different girl solely for the sake of stroking your own ego

I don't think she's taking advantage of Mayu. Mayu is a straight girl who was hurting because she was broken up with and Kaoru offered to be her friend. Mayu admires her in the standard crushing-on-a-cool-sempai way.

Yeah this is pointless the mental gymnastics you're going through to absolve Kaoru are just ridiculous.

joined Mar 8, 2016

Sigh. I'm not trying absolve anyone of anything. I just think she's a cool character with some interesting complexity and not the devil incarnate. Substance expressed it well a couple posts back. But yeah, this has exhausted its course as a conversation for sure.

Chinatsu%202
joined Jan 27, 2016

Sigh. I'm not trying absolve anyone of anything. I just think she's a cool character with some interesting complexity and not the devil incarnate. Substance expressed it well a couple posts back. But yeah, this has exhausted its course as a conversation for sure.

Being complex and being a bad person are not mutually exclusive. No she's not literally Satan but I never said she was. I said she was selfish and cruel and manipulative.

joined Oct 12, 2013

I get where Tamahime was coming from to a degree - there were a lot of people crying about how Kaoru is so meen ;_;

but she's still sort of a cunt and I'd hate to see Ichinose getting hurt. Of course, if Shizuka wants her, there's nothing anyone else can do about it.

Ourobouros2
joined Feb 17, 2016

I feel the whole point of this chapter is to put yourself in Shizuka's place and secretly, thoroughly enjoy what's happening to you, while protesting your virtue. That's not everyone's bag, I'm sure, but life's rich tapestry etc.

(edited for sense)

last edited at Apr 22, 2016 4:53PM

joined Oct 12, 2013

I feel the whole point of this chapter is to put yourself in Shizuka's place and secretly, thoroughly enjoy what's happening to you, while protesting your virtue. That's not everyone's bag, I'm sure, but life's rich tapestry etc.

(edited for sense)

If only she weren't so damn sexy.

KittyCatOmaniac
E19418efd5cf90129f366e240e5156b3
joined Sep 12, 2014

Personally, I don't care what sort of place Kaoru is coming from. She blatantly disregards the feelings of the girls she toys with, only showing that she's willing to go as far so as to starve herself in order to get what SHE wants. She's not a 'stupid teenager doing stupid teenage things', she's a textbook example of a bloody psychopath. This is not a matter of looking at a 'realistic' relationship through rose-tinted glasses. Literally everything Kaoru's done or said has been blatantly manipulative, and whenever she's called out on her behavior she just waves it off like it's no big deal. She. Is. A. PSYCHO. I'm not even being hyperbolic here.

Chinatsu%202
joined Jan 27, 2016

Personally, I don't care what sort of place Kaoru is coming from. She blatantly disregards the feelings of the girls she toys with, only showing that she's willing to go as far so as to starve herself in order to get what SHE wants. She's not a 'stupid teenager doing stupid teenage things', she's a textbook example of a bloody psychopath. This is not a matter of looking at a 'realistic' relationship through rose-tinted glasses. Literally everything Kaoru's done or said has been blatantly manipulative, and whenever she's called out on her behavior she just waves it off like it's no big deal. She. Is. A. PSYCHO. I'm not even being hyperbolic here.

Seriously, she shows a pathological disregard for the feelings of literally everyone around her unless it benefits her and it's downright disturbing. She absolutely has some kind of personality disorder.

joined Mar 8, 2016

A "psychopath?" Really?

Here is every chapter she has appeared in:

http://dynasty-scans.com/chapters/virgins_empire_ch42
http://dynasty-scans.com/chapters/virgins_empire_ch46
http://dynasty-scans.com/chapters/virgins_empire_ch51
http://dynasty-scans.com/chapters/virgins_empire_ch52
http://dynasty-scans.com/chapters/virgins_empire_ch61
http://dynasty-scans.com/chapters/virgins_empire_ch68

I defy you to show me one example of psychopathic behavior anywhere in there. The not eating, regardless of whether it's entirely to manipulate the girl who dumped her or whether it's a teenage emo "I just can't go on with this pain" reaction to getting dumped or some combo of the two is textbook teenage overreaction. Flirting with people that you don't want to have a relationship is entirely natural for some people.

She's playing dirty pool with Shizuka, sure, because she thinks the force of her charm alone will win her back. That doesn't make her a psycho, it make her at most overconfident. You are reading WAY too much into a few pages in a manga that is supposed to be about sexy girls doing sexy things. You're supposed to think that her artsy nature and dominant presence are sexy and a good foil to the innocent and cheery kohai, not that she is going to go yandere on everyone. It's like you're not even reading the same story.

KittyCatOmaniac
E19418efd5cf90129f366e240e5156b3
joined Sep 12, 2014

Pasychopath does not equal yandere. I'm not talking about the pop-culture "I'mma kill you all! Mwahahahah!"-kind of a psychopath, I'm talking about the real life definition of a psychopath; someone who completely lacks empathy and thereby has no consideration for anyone but themselves, who is manipulative, incredibly self-centered and has an alarming lack of consideration for potential consequences of their actions. Kaoru ticks off each and every one of those points.

Saying that we're "Supposed to" think of her in a certain way is a null argument. Author's intention be damned, if they depict a character in a manner befitting of a psychopath, then I will think of that character as a psychopath. People interpret artists' work differently all the time. Some people view the relationship in Beauty and the Beast to be heartwarming and romantic, others see it as a weirdly happy ending to a relationship that started in an abusive Stockholm-syndrome situation. The shoe fits either way.

Tumblr_mpynm4dyml1qjj8e7o1_400
joined May 24, 2013

Am I the only one who roots for Shizuka x Kaoru

Untitled2
joined Dec 24, 2013

Am I the only one who roots for Shizuka x Kaoru

I hope so. I fervently dislike Kaoru. She's appeared as nothing but a vain, mental and emotional manipulator. Almost like a predator. I guess it does a certain nuance to this series though. Not that it was needed.

Ourobouros2
joined Feb 17, 2016

I'm not really getting psychopathic vibes. Kaoru's behaviour seems too self-defeating and outlandish, and she's not so much manipulative as she is forceful. I think she'd achieve her (presumed) goals better by courting sympathy and feigning contrition.

I'd tag her as narcissistic, if we're casting about for personality disorders, which I'd rather not.

I had a bully like Kaoru when I was in school, with all the roaming hands and invasion of space that entailed. It went at a slow burn for a while, then escalated rapidly with the addition of alcohol. After an incident which left me temporarily catatonic, she backed off for good. Strangely, I think I came out of the ordeal feeling better than she did. She wasn't evil, just a hormonal teenager.

I heard from others that she spent a lot of time apologising for past sins when she became a young adult, so she's likely a better person than I am now (not a high bar to clear).

I haven't seen her myself. I think well of her, strangely. She gave me a kind of validation, however painful.

Story time aside, I'm not really hoping for Shizuka x Kaoru. I'm hoping Ichinose goes all 'Corruption's Finale' on us and learns to give Shizuka what she truly wants... but I somehow doubt that will happen. I can dream.

EDIT: I can't type. Silly phone keyboard.

last edited at Apr 22, 2016 11:18PM

Sasasasasas
joined Dec 25, 2013

Am I the only one who roots for Shizuka x Kaoru

It's weird because I don't believe they'll end up together, but I still really enjoy their interactions and their relationship, even the messed up parts. So you could say I kind of ship them.

joined Jul 31, 2013

I can't condone Kaoru groping her unwilling ex like that, even if they are close friends besides that, but I think the issues that cause her behavior could feel earned and sympathetic. There are still about as many chapters to be translated as have been released I am interested in seeing what happens. I'm really cherishing this lengthy, substantive yuri series.

Untitled2
joined Dec 24, 2013

I'm not really getting psychopathic vibes. Kaoru's behaviour seems too self-defeating and outlandish, and she's not so much manipulative as she is forceful. I think she'd achieve her (presumed) goals better by courting sympathy and feigning contrition.

She did just that by starving herself, evoking a tearful forgiveness from Shizuka. And given her antics all up to the current chapter, especially around the younger girls, I wager I've gotten the gist of her nature. She's a manipulator.

Ourobouros2
joined Feb 17, 2016

Starving yourself isn't a good way to rouse sympathy. It's more an act of aggression, a way of lashing out. You hurt yourself to hurt someone else who cares about you. It's the kind of behaviour that, even if it forces your target to respond, leaves massive scars in your relationship. Like a lot of self-harm, it's regarded as naked blackmail, even if you're doing it for totally personal reasons.

You could call it manipulative, and it would be accurate, as she's acting to effect people around her, but the psychopath diagnosis implies that she's coldly furthering herself, when she's choosing a very bad way of going about it. She's being cruel and destructive, which is awful, obviously, but it's more likely to be indicative of genuine pain, especially when coupled with self-harm. That potential depth of emotion and feeling is likely what's drawing sympathy from some of the readership here, and the idea that one could be the sole recipient of hidden passion, strong enough to turn someone to the dark side, is very, very sexy.

In practice, of course, I'd tell Shizuka to keep away, or make their relationship, romantic or otherwise, contingent on Kaoru seeing a therapist and getting her screws tightened. As it's fiction, though, I'm just going to be selfish and enjoy this.

Nezchan Moderator
Meiling%20bun%20150px
joined Jun 28, 2012

I'd tag her as narcissistic, if we're casting about for personality disorders, which I'd rather not.

You are indeed wise. Diagnosis via internet is a fool's game at best, all the more so when you're diagnosing a character, rather than an actual human. At best you're second-guessing the artist's intentions.

last edited at Apr 23, 2016 12:02PM

Untitled2
joined Dec 24, 2013

You could call it manipulative, and it would be accurate, as she's acting to effect people around her, but the psychopath diagnosis implies that she's coldly furthering herself, when she's choosing a very bad way of going about it. She's being cruel and destructive, which is awful, obviously, but it's more likely to be indicative of genuine pain, especially when coupled with self-harm. That potential depth of emotion and feeling is likely what's drawing sympathy from some of the readership here, and the idea that one could be the sole recipient of hidden passion, strong enough to turn someone to the dark side, is very, very sexy.

Hmm... I'm afraid I don't share those feelings.

I'd tag her as narcissistic, if we're casting about for personality disorders, which I'd rather not.

You are indeed wise. Diagnosis via internet is a fool's game at best, all the more so when you're diagnosing a character, rather than an actual human. At best you're second-guessing the artist's intentions.

I cannot for the life of me see how self-interpretation of a story is foolish... It's a staple element of literature. Futhermore, what the author intends and what the author portrays are not always the same. And given this is a character-driven story with very little known input from the author on his characters I'd think it would be wiser to apply self-interpretation as opposed to merely soaking up content without independent thought.

last edited at Apr 23, 2016 5:02PM

Ourobouros2
joined Feb 17, 2016

It wasn't interpretation that Nezchan was advising against, it was diagnosis. Diagnosing a mental illness can take months, even years of therapy, hypnosis, perscriptions, tests and referrals. Unless somebody's the walking archetype of a sickness or is described as such in the text, it's normally quite a stretch to diagnose a character based on very limited information. At most you can point out matching symptoms.

You can, of course, draw whatever conclusions you like, but others may think you're overshooting, especially if they've been through the mental health system and think you're trivialising their disorder by reducing it to a few lines of dialogue. If you have personal experience that matches what's happening in the story, then you can draw parallels, but even that's not the same as diagnosis.

Mea Culpa: I've played the armchair analyst game myself before - too many episodes of House and Frasier - but I don't expect anyone to take me seriously. Half of the time, I'm simply projecting my own hang-ups.

last edited at Apr 23, 2016 5:51PM

Nezchan Moderator
Meiling%20bun%20150px
joined Jun 28, 2012

I'd tag her as narcissistic, if we're casting about for personality disorders, which I'd rather not.

You are indeed wise. Diagnosis via internet is a fool's game at best, all the more so when you're diagnosing a character, rather than an actual human. At best you're second-guessing the artist's intentions.

I cannot for the life of me see how self-interpretation of a story is foolish... It's a staple element of literature. Futhermore, what the author intends and what the author portrays are not always the same. And given this is a character-driven story with very little known input from the author on his characters I'd think it would be wiser to apply self-interpretation as opposed to merely soaking up content without independent thought.

Interpretation of a story isn't foolish. Speculating on whether a character has a particular mental disorder when it's not necessarily presented as more than "she's messed up" isn't all that productive though, since it's so heavily reliant on the author's understanding of said disorder and their ability to convey it, if that's even their intent in the first place. Better to analyze based on the character's role in the story and how they affect the other characters than their theoretical mental state.

Purple Library Guy
Kare%20kano%20joker
joined Mar 3, 2013

You can, of course, draw whatever conclusions you like, but others may think you're overshooting, especially if they've been through the mental health system and think you're trivialising their disorder by reducing it to a few lines of dialogue.

I'd have to say that in the case of psychopathy, I wouldn't be too terribly contrite if someone "suffering from the disorder" called me out for trivializing them.
I do take the point that getting clinical is often reaching. I might call her an asshole (cf. "Assholes: a theory" by Aaron James).

Purple Library Guy
Kare%20kano%20joker
joined Mar 3, 2013

You could call it manipulative, and it would be accurate, as she's acting to effect people around her, but the psychopath diagnosis implies that she's coldly furthering herself, when she's choosing a very bad way of going about it.

While I'm not advocating the psychopath diagnosis, I don't really see this argument. Being a psychopath does not imply being a genius--it's perfectly plausible for a psychopath to try to manipulate people and not do a good job of it.

2641afdd-9dc4-4327-a1c3-a5b558c33522
joined Mar 12, 2014

You can, of course, draw whatever conclusions you like, but others may think you're overshooting, especially if they've been through the mental health system and think you're trivialising their disorder by reducing it to a few lines of dialogue.

I'd have to say that in the case of psychopathy, I wouldn't be too terribly contrite if someone "suffering from the disorder" called me out for trivializing them.
I do take the point that getting clinical is often reaching. I might call her an asshole (cf. "Assholes: a theory" by Aaron James).

I would agree that she is a manipulative bitch, but yeah I wouldn't narrow this down to any type of disorder. She's controlling and manipulative but there really isnt enough to go on for anything further then that.

Also that last page omg. The best sandwich~♡☆ hahaha

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