Due East Forum

Phira's Weight
dueeast at 9:33AM, July 17, 2007
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I didn't realize till someone said something but there seems to be a mystery concerning how Phira went from kinda curvy at the beginning of Book One to her present weight.

Now everyone probably knows that Phira stopped smoking for health reasons while she was still in Canada, before Book One even began. Quitting smoking leads to varying degrees of weight gain in many, many people. For some people, it's 10 or 15 pounds – for others, quite a bit more. Given that Phira is a young woman and had been fairly active in Canada with her aspiring jewelry and crafting business.

Then she moved back to Texas with her father. She was depressed at having to leave her “home” (again) and she wasn't able to successfully get in touch with any of her old friends. And then she had trouble getting a job.

So although we didn't show anything, the idea we hoped to convey was that Phira was withdrawn, alone and just lying around most of the time doing nothing. She didn't overeat per se, but if you're a couch potato or sleep a lot and what you do eat consists of pizzas and other junk food, you're going to gain weight. Since we know that Phira was in town, unemployed and unmotivated for at least two months, it becomes easier to see how she gained 40 to 50 pounds in a relatively short time.

Does that make sense?

How have you all felt about having Phira, a main character, as a fat character?

Let's get discussing again! :)
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:26AM
TitanOne at 10:36AM, July 17, 2007
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dueeast
Now everyone probably knows that Phira stopped smoking for health reasons while she was still in Canada, before Book One even began. Quitting smoking leads to varying degrees of weight gain in many, many people. For some people, it's 10 or 15 pounds – for others, quite a bit more. Given that Phira is a young woman and had been fairly active in Canada with her aspiring jewelry and crafting business.

Then she moved back to Texas with her father.

That would certainly do it..lol. Quit smoking, and then move to suburban Texas, epicenter of the franchise restaurant universe.

dueeast
How have you all felt about having Phira, a main character, as a fat character?



I think she's quite attractive at her present weight.
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:26AM
SilverWordz at 7:09PM, July 18, 2007
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I think she's quite beautiful now too. She'd be beautiful regardless.

In addition to the stress of her life, it's just nature at work. Once you get to that age, your metabolism slows down, you can't eat irresponsibly like you could when you were younger. Toss in life's troubles, and its a recipe for weight gain.

I can relate to her weight gain and the circumstances surrounding it, so it was actually a natural progression for me to see that. I've always been overweight, but 4 years ago, I quit smoking, lost my job, and lost my father all within months (even days) of each other. Not really paying attention to my weight at the time, and then months later I got on a scale and I'd gained like 60 pounds. Yeah… that was a nasty surprise. I had no idea that I'd gained that much weight. I was a little uncomfortable, but 60 lbs!!! What?!

And really I wasn't doing much differently, just time and circumstances and my motivation had gone down. When you're in a rut, it's easy to sink down and go with the flow, take the easy meal choices, and not really be in the mood to go out and do anything. Depression will do that to you, and I'm really not a person that gets overly depressed.

Now 4 years later I'm finally getting a handle on it, and since December I've taken about 40 of those pounds off. But life is different, just all around better, and I'm super motivated. It was a personal adjustment, more mental than having to do with my surroundings.

Ultimately I think the portrayal of Phira and her struggles, and the resulting weight gain are fairly realistic. While I don't think of it as a main plot point or anything, I"m perfectly okay with her being the way she is. It's a detail that adds to the realism of the story.
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:26AM
Tantz Aerine at 12:19PM, Aug. 19, 2007
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I like Phira. I think she is a strong character. I also like the reasoning behind her weight. It is realistic. I also seem to sense that Phira herself doesn't feel nice about it (though maybe she doesn't feel she can or has the strength to change it).

She has such a strong personality that no matter what her shape and size, she would still be above average attractive :)

Also let me mention that she was not at all easy to put down to a sketch. lol!
 
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:26AM
dueeast at 8:18AM, Aug. 20, 2007
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Hi Tantz,

Phira looks at her weight from an interesting perspective. She gained weight as a result of quitting smoking (since she was in terrible health when she was smoking) and depression from feeling forced to leave the life she was accustomed to in Canada and loneliness once she and Doug got back to Austin. To Phira, gaining weight in order to be healthy (as mind-boggling as that concept may be for some people) was an acceptable trade-off. The security of living longer and feeling better trumped society's negative views of being plus-sized.

It's safe to say she's not thrilled that she's fat but she is thrilled that she's not suffering from respiratory infections and poor health in general. Now that she's got a job, a car (yes, she has a car now. We just haven't been introduced to it yet) and a new place, she's getting more active. And despite the pizza scene in Book Three, Phira can cook healthy (when she's cooking for herself or those close to her).

Don't expect Phira to lose weight or even try to (since you've got a psychology background, you can appreciate what people will do to attain security). But by the same reasoning, don't expect her to gain any more weight, either. She's reached a balance and she can live with it.

Tantz Aerine
I like Phira. I think she is a strong character. I also like the reasoning behind her weight. It is realistic. I also seem to sense that Phira herself doesn't feel nice about it (though maybe she doesn't feel she can or has the strength to change it).

She has such a strong personality that no matter what her shape and size, she would still be above average attractive :)

Also let me mention that she was not at all easy to put down to a sketch. lol!
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:26AM
PurplePeopleEater at 8:46AM, April 5, 2008
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I like the fact that she's realistic. There are skinny, athletic, chubby, and fat people in real life, for various reasons. I'm not the type of person to say I love her character because she's fat, but I do appreciate that the comic, as a whole, includes developed, well-rounded (heh heh) characters, including people with body issues, faith issues, troubled pasts, and all that.
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:26AM

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