But in one of my classes today we discussed something called Gift Theory, which is actually pretty interesting. What the discussion boiled down to was this: giving a gift creates a bond between people - a community, if it's more than two people, and that gift economies rely upon three obligations. First, you are obligated to give the gift, second the recipient is obligated to accept it and third they're obligated to reciprocate. Sounds kind of weird and materialistic but what it means is that when you give something and then pass the gift along in some form or another then you create a cohesiveness -- links that tie you to other people and suchwhat.
What the hell does that have to do with anything, you wonder? Probably not much, but it just struck me as interesting. Gifts are such a big deal in SV - the giving, recieving and reciprocation - and this made me think of how Jonathan Kent (and Lord don't even let me get started on that man, or my bed time will be pushed back, y'all) broke the chain, and refused the gift community that Lex tried to create with the truck that he gave Clark, or the many small gestures that Clark has refused from Lex. Even those he's accepted - has he reciprocated? Probably not, and reciprocation is a point of honor in some ways.
Interesting, then, that the only character there that behaves 'honorably' is Lex - who is being accused left right and center by Bo Kent of being a dishonorable man. It's an unintended irony, I think, but kind of an irony nonetheless.
See, here's the thing about me, and Clark. I love him, I really, really do. I adore the boy, and have sublimated him to a certain point. I'm also fully aware of his flaws. But these make me love him more in a kind of "Come here let me hug you and then smack you really hard" kind of a way. I mean, folks, he's a sixteen year old boy; he's going to screw up, probably a lot. He just happens to be playing with higher stakes than most sixteen year old boys.
But, even in the grand picture, the boy's got some flaws. I know this. He's obssesive, secretive, gets snappy when questioned, is kind of an attention whore when it comes to certain people, and can be really needy. The big thing, though, is the dishonesty. Here's the thing about that: he's an alien. Think about it. Dude, if I were an alien? I think I'd find it *very* difficult to kind of slip into conversation. "Hey, yeah, so, by the way? I'm the last son of Krypton and you're out of salsa." Granted, the situation is very different with Lex and even Chloe and Lana in that they *know* that freaky things happen, and they keep asking.
And Clark lies. And that's not good. In fact, it's really, really bad. It's betrayal of people who love him, and that's not okay. But it's understandable because he *needs acceptance* so much and think about fear of rejection for admitting your deepest personal secrets *anyway*. That's pretty hard, but imagine, also that you're NOT HUMAN when you sort of were raised to think you are. People are going to think you're crazy or worse if you tell them.
I know this has been much hashed out by other, far more eloquent people, but I just wanted to air some of my Clark-thoughts. And trust me, I have many many many. (The guy's crawled into my brain so far it's ridiculous.) I think he thinks in neurotic little circles, and that he's a lot smarter than he wants people to think and that he is one of the loneliest guys ever. That's why I love him so much, I think - because of the isolation he has while he's surrounded by people.
Granted, the same could be said for Lex, but...oddly? I think I don't feel as drawn to Lex because I almost feel like he's more in the right than Clark is and I find myself searching for justifications for Clark more than I do for Lex. *shrugs* I can't really explain it, but it's always Clark that grabs me and pulls me to a story, even though when I watch the show, it's Lex who I agree with more often than not.
Also, there's the guilt thing. Clark's guilt. Oh, Clark's guilt. Clark's guilt should have it's own trailer. Clark's guilt to come when he realizes what he's done by lying over and over? Doesn't need a trailer. It's got a mansion, and it's called Lex.