June 2nd, 2007

Sunday, June 3

Panel 1: No, Jim, your therapists. Not Mademoiselle from Armanteers, or whatever you're hoping for. And "ready for bed" means "with Iris."

Panel 2: Ah, jeez.

Panel 3: Okay, this whole thing is going to creep me out, so I'll skip ahead.

Panel 9: Lynn had to have known what everyone would be thinking when she wrote that. Right?

Panel 10: He looks happy, despite not getting what he really wants. Which makes me cringe to think of the effect this therapy session had on him.

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::shudder:: Okay, on to something else. Boy, yesterday's strip sure was polarizing, wasn't it! But I want to thank and commend everyone here for not getting nasty with each other.

And that, I think, is why the strip drew such strong reactions from readers. Remember I said a few days ago that the Pattermanse seems like a very cold place, because everyone in it is out for himself only? Unpleasant. And April's interactions with her friends are rather unpleasant as well. April was nasty to Gerald in yesterday's strip. Luis got nasty with her. No wonder people were choosing sides.

And it wasn't always like this, is the constant refrain. I looked in the collections for a sequence I remembered from when Liz was in her late teens. She was sitting on a tack with Dawn and Shawna-Marie, because she was always driving and they never chipped in for gas. She scowled the whole way to the pizza place, said, "Nothing" when Dawn asked her if anything was wrong, and continued to scowl and sulk all through the pizza and movie. "I refuse to enjoy myself -- that'll show them!" Then Dawn and Shawna-Marie paid the bill.

And that was that. She didn't storm out of the pizzeria, but neither did Dawn or Shawna-Marie curl their lip at her and snarl. Nowadays, someone's always on the verge of declaring war. It's hard to like April OR her friends.