#789 + 790 – hot winter

Wish I had the pencils or inks for this one handy. But in short Valerie did a bang-up job making it what it is. The reflection from the puddles is particularly striking.

People have speculated that Hanna's departure could go either way, with her going home or going back inside. I disagree haha - the latter is too depressing! The umbrella is a guiding light in a world where she is alone, truly alone, her body's sole inhabitant. I saw some hope - is it hope? - in embracing that. Maybe not hope. As the series was coming to a close, it was heavy on my mind that no amount of acceptance, awareness, or permission has any bearing on the inevitable end. It's a cope, as we say in 2020. But implicit in coping is an acknowledgment of the truth, which is what Hanna is stepping into. That is optimistic, to me.

9 thoughts on “#789 + 790 – hot winter

  1. Larry's face in panel 2 is what gives me hope, personally

  2. Holy shit the comentary in this update felt really bleak to me.

    The Intrisic loneliness of the human condition, the indifference of our actions on our ultimate fate, all this is really heavy stuff.

    I have always felt a really heavy dread when a series I love ends, regardless of the media. I think this commentary has finally given me a reasoning why I feel this way. The end of a beloved story is in a lot of ways the death of the characters, so it's natural that you feel like someone you love has died. You are literally mourning their deaths, like they are a friend who has just past away.

    The sentence "As the series was coming to a close, it was heavy on my mind that no amount of acceptance, awareness, or permission has any bearing on the inevitable end."
    it's now stuck on my mind and I am struggling to make sense of it in a satisfactory way.

    1. In my opinion, you have to come at from an existentialist perspective. Hanna is addressing an end, a void. Looking at this as a nihilist, one would despair because there is no meaning. An existentialist would accept the inevitable, accept the end, accept that there is no meaning. And then they would give it meaning. Not your meaning, not my meaning, bit their own meaning.

      A bit darker, but imagine someone with a terminal disease. They will die no matter what they think, no matter if they accept it. They can wail that they weren't saved. They could cry that the world is unfair. They could bemoan the time taken from them and story about themselves that is now lost. The nihilist would stop here.

      The existentialist, once they are done doing that, can determine what the rest of their life will be, what their remaining time will mean.

    2. Often when I finish a story I've loved, I immediately want to re-read it, but then my interest peters out a few chapters in.

      I've finally realized that it must be that what I want isn't actually to re-read–it's to drift away in the center of the story, where the characters are still alive and their story hasn't finished unfolding.

  3. I pondered on her direction for some time when I first read it and it may have taken a few more months of strips before I felt confident that she did head home. The last three panels are beautiful, though. Any chance of seeing the pencilled versions before they were coloured?

    Also, I'm fascinated in whether / how your approach changed once you knew there was a colourist for the strips, and how that relationship altered over time. Did your thoughts on what you could draw develop once you had an idea of where colour could take things? Did you give Valerie hints on what you wanted? Allow her free rein?

    1. Just here to share my deep appreciation that you used the correct version of 'rein' <3

  4. The third panel is one of my favorites in the entire series. It screams Brooklyn to me, a place I only lived for a year, and which was full of pain-in-the-ass bullshit to deal with, but which I also loved so much I still sometimes achingly miss it, over ten years later.

    1. Yeah that's a gorgeous panel. Very "New York I love you, but you're bringing me down".

  5. I love that, in a story full of people getting rained on, it ends with Hannah using an umbrella.

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