(Original Publication Date, 25 June 1991)
Panel 1: We can’t hear what Michael and Martha are saying, so it’s time (once again) to fill in the dialogue:
Martha: Ha! Ha! You think I can’t rest out here in the street. Just watch me lean against this panel.
Martha: Ow! That panel is sharp. I think it cut my bottom.
Michael: Ha! Ha! That’s why I never lean against panels.
Panel 3: When Elly says, “When I was their age, I never did things like that!” John gets a strange look on his face and then in the next panel he just walks away in silhouette. What could John possibly be thinking?
- I don’t think Elly did things like that no matter what age she was.
- I remember when Elly used to flirt with me. Why am I feeling so jealous of Mike? Is Elly wearing her sexy shorts just to torture me?
- Why do I get the feeling that Michael will someday be a videographer of roller derby in Vancouver?
- Yesterday she was complaining about the outfit and today she is complaining about Martha flirting with Michael. I wish she would make up her mind.
- The first two panels we were in shadow. I think I liked it better that way.
Summary: Elly prefers girls who don’t flirt with her son because…she prefers Michael to be with girls who don’t like him? The message is really that a proper girl would be a girl who did not flirt, who was demure and who let the boy be the aggressor. This is just another round of slut-shaming, except this time it is for improper behaviour.
Slut shaming is when women are stigmatized, criticized, and even ostracized because of their actions or mere reputation for being promiscuous, dressing in a provocative way, or basically going against the expected social norms of sexuality for women.