#829+ – filling in the blanks

This is the end!! For September! Thanks for reading. The OP site will be pretty quiet until October. HOWEVER, I am working on another OP-related thing, that will be available at Small Press Expo! I'm hustling to have an exclusive minicomic for this show. It'll be an OP story that isn't featured online. So if you or a pal is going to the show, it may be your only chance ever to get a copy! Some Patreon subscribers will also have a chance to see it in digital form. More on that soon. After SPX is my wedding! AHHH! See you in the fall.

85 thoughts on “#829+ – filling in the blanks

  1. Your work makes me so happy, Meredith Gran.

  2. Oh Marigold. Suddenly I don't feel like a pitiful dork for doing the exact same thing. I hope I can be like you when I find my Jane.

  3. meredith, this is the cutest

  4. We are so lucky to get to read this comic.

  5. Incredible. You absolutely nail the look of love in the eyes.


  7. aw gawd is that her heart beating fast?? these two are too adorable S+ couple

  8. Ha-HA! Smooch. I knew it.

    Anyway, *descends from Mt. Olympus, thunderbolt in hand*, I Truly Loved This Arc Thank You For All That You Do But Especially For This

  9. dunno, this ending is kind of disappointing. Maybe it's because we didn't get too see much of Marigold's side after we cut to Jane. This way it was just a mirror of Jane's hesitation with a very similar expression (thinking about blowing the meeting off). I know it was the point that both are vulnerable in this situation, but I was hoping for a more individual variation.
    Plus, Jane gets to stay guarded after we had her dramatic inner monologue (which was brilliant), while we didn't get to see the thoughts that made Marigold change her mind.

    overall I enjoyed the story a lot and felt invested in the pairing, but it fell a bit flat for me on Marigold's side.

    1. We've seen Marigold develop a lot up to this point in her relationships and how she handles them, so I didn't notice that her side wasn't cover as much in this chapter.

      Jane on the other hand hasn't had much of a spotlight since she was introduced, so this chapter was a treat because we got to know her more.

    2. I like this for the exact reasons you don't. We can easily fill in Marigold's inner thoughts, and by not seeing them until now we're placed in the same emotional place as Jane: second guessing ourselves about whether Marigold was serious.

      Look at how many people made worried comments about whether they'd get together. This was really genius writing.

      1. The story started out with Marigold as POV character though. I know the emotional investment of the reader changed after we saw that intense inner monologue of Jane's and that cool way home, but it started out with establishing Marigold's workplace and her identity.

        Then afterwards it was all about Jane and in the end we're just supposed to fill in the blanks with her, or listen to her monologuing it. Some other people even said so that it's a bit presumptuous how much other characters assume about Marigold. So it's disappointing that this storyline does it again.
        We could have stayed in Marigold's emotional place. tbh I never really doubted that Marigold would show up.

    3. I think she's trying to introduce Jane as a third narrator, since usually the story is either from Hanna or Eve's perspective. I welcome it as a cool change of pace.

  10. That turned out to be a surprisingly sweet storyline in the end. And OHMYFREAKINGGHODZ the art. Gorgeous and evocative. And I've some notion of how hard that is to pull off, and you're getting so damn GOOD at it.

  11. I like how it's like they're in their own little world in the pages.

  12. so many feels… I just cried and got sunscreen in my eyes. lol
    I don't know how you do it with simple lines and colour, but this strip was so… cinematic. As a reader, I'm filling in the blanks, and those spaces between frames/film stills are like heartbeats or breaths. But its not the same as a movie, because there's ambiguity between the panels… between 27 and 28 (Jane looking at Mar), what happens? the light changes, her eyes open. Is that the moment when she lets her guard down? I think before that ("I dunno…I guess I was a little uneasy… I'm fine now..") she hasn't really been honest with herself.

    1. i so cried too : ' )

  13. Why is Marigold the only one in the universe with a pointy chin? It's really starting to bother me.

    1. Recessive gene.

  14. This gave me chills. What a great ending for this story.


    I knew I loved her for a reason, I just knew! She's WAY more self-aware now than anyone in the real world or in her comic world gives her credit for. What guts it must have taken to open up so totally in that moment to Jane!
    (although if Jane pulls that guarded shit now and breaks Mar's heart, Imma be PISSED!)

    1. Not gonna lie: I thought Jane was too good for Marigold. I thought Marigold was wishy-washy, too vulnerable, too susceptible to outside influence, too self-deluded. But she's a much better woman than I gave her credit for being.

      Lol, life lessons from a webcomic. Thanks, Mer. Keep on keepin' it real.

      1. Marigold has grown a lot, like people do. A lot of us are still hung up on how she was when she was younger — like Hanna, who also can't believe that Marigold is changing. And we can see on this page, even Marigold herself is worried a bit that this is tied to her old flightiness. But yeah, that self-awareness is how people find more to themselves.

      2. You might have missed something.
        You are RIGHT!
        Marigold IS "wishy-washy, too vulnerable, too susceptible to outside influence, too self-deluded" .

        Its not an accident you think this, Meredith has labored to show us this ( over years ) and how she has tried to grow in spite of it.

        The larger point is that Marigold is not the sum of her worst qualities.

        BUT… You missed something else, the lesson here is every dog has its day.
        This is true for Both jane and Marigold which is why the story is so satisfying.

        The "Dog" here is not the ladies, but the qualities they think are holding them back.

        Its Because of ( not in spite of ) of Marigold wishy-washiness, vulnerableness, susceptible to outside influence, and capacity for self-delusion, she makes a great partner for Jane.
        If they were any less , she likely wouldn't have shown up.

        Janes wants her bad, and values these things for their own sake, If Marigold return her affections. Marigold is the Yin to her Yang.

        Marigold is going to save Jane with some of the very qualities that were holding her back. What were vices or flaws, are now virtues. Thats whats so wonderful about it.
        Marigold will kepp jane from being a burnt out hipster cynic, and Jane will give her confidence which will less her background social anxieties. Its a win-win pairing.

        It goes the other way too. Jane isnt perfect, but her otherwise flaws, make her a better partner for Marigold .

        I wish I could find someone I was this compatible with

  16. Really, really like this. OP is one of my favorite worlds and this comic proves why. I think you are doing amazing things with the medium. Thank you Meredith!

  17. The colour is great in this page, as always. Major props to Valerie.

  18. At first I was unsure about just how organic this whole development has been but I felt like this comic assuaged my concerns, covered all the bases. It's also another great reminder of how far you've come, Gran.

  19. For some reason I was expecting some super depressing ending but instead this was so damn cute and lovely I had a brain aneurysm.

  20. I like how you ended the arc on a similar image to the one you used to start it: A close up of Mar, however she has a way better expression than when it started. Subtle, and really well executed!

  21. The last panel has me worried for some reason. I hope I'm misreading it? What does blue mean, what does looking away meeeeean? x_x

    Whatever it means, I think this is definitely one of my favorite chapters, if not my absolute favorite, so far. Good job to everyone who worked so hard to make it happen.

    1. She's looking away and smiling, so I think that's a good sign. She might just be overwhelmed with the newness and the happiness of it.

      1. I'll accept this truth! I think the blue bg just threw me off. Sad smiles have happened, after all.

  22. I don't know either. Jane's background color changed from blue right when she looked at Marigold, and then Marigold's changed into blue when she looked away. I'm not smart to decipher MEANINGS so I'm afraid this means Marigold's gonna blow this.

    1. The last panel is Jane's POV though. If the darkening color points to anything, it's Jane's cynicism IMO.

    2. I believe the blue means they are “alone” together and the yellow shows up right as we see other people in the room. In the last panel, they are “alone” together again. Please excuse my English.

    3. Even the most amazing moment can only last a moment. Still, they know it happened. They looked at each other; their hearts beat, and the world glowed.

  23. Reading these stories does more than make me remember being young; they make me **feel** young, with the same visceral excitement that came with getting my shit together after a rudderless post-uni drift.

  24. This is just perfect. You managed to depict a heartbeat within the last three panels. Pure awe.


  26. Oh Meredith, you've gone and done it again. Such mastery of rhythm and composition and characterization and… everything. Another flawless victory for Octopus Pie!

    Having said that, I'm not quite sure if we're meant to understand that all the peeps in the fourth-to-last panel just weren't there before, or that Jane and Marigold had been so caught up with each other they simply didn't notice them. I'm gonna go with the latter.

    1. You can see from the empty chairs in earlier panels that they weren't there the whole time.

      1. Yeah, but I'm not sure whether that's supposed to be read literally.

      2. Actually, scratch that. I just realized (duh >_<): the room must be the one that the blue arrow in the first panel was pointing to, so it must have emptied along with the rest of the bar and now it's getting filled with people again.

        (Damn, I'm slow)

    2. I liked how it inverted the kiss scene, instead of the room suddenly emptying after the emotional realization, it fills up. In a way Jane helped Mar push all the rest of the world out and only they were what mattered, and that's what she needed. Mar made Jane aware of the rest of the world, that she wasn't alone and that's what she needed.

  27. how old is marigold and jane? i'm curious

    1. Everybody in Octopus Pie is twenty something. Early to mid twenties in the beginning, mid to slightly late twenties now. Except for the parents and Olly and so forth.

  28. Amazing stuff. It simultaneously makes me happy and makes me feel alienated, which is a personal problem, not a problem with the comic.

    It's funny that this comic lays it all out in very clear language "how this happens," and yet how people meet and fall for each other still seems like an alien language to me. It wasn't always like that, but it is now.

    Not many comics make me think, and not many works of art make me feel like that. My hat's off to you.

  29. This comic makes me nonsense babble out of happiness.

  30. The highest compliment I can give this arc is that it has made me constantly think about my amazing wife, who I met just at the point where I'd given up entirely on dating in New York, because I was so tired of the bullshit that it wasn't even worth getting laid anymore.

    And then there she was, and now it's been nearly ten years, and here she still is, and everywhere we've gone from there, I've never needed anything else. I don't know whether that's the future for Jane and Marigold, but what's reflected here sure feels like what I felt then.

    This is beautiful work.


  32. Oh my freaking Gosh.
    Everything about this comic is amazing. Gran uses the webcomic medium in some of the cleverest ways I've ever seen, and it makes me foam at the mouth how amazing and great this comic can get.

  33. So the kiss began in Brooklyn and ended in Berkeley?

  34. Maybe I'm reading too much into this, but panel 16 Marigold feels like a callback to Marigold's iconic "being a drug dealer" look in http://www.octopuspie.com/2009-05-06/286-what-its

    Now I'm worried that Marigold's gonna get too idealistic and blow this thing with Jane…

    1. Mar might be the most realistic and grounded character in the whole of OP right now. I'm getting good vibes about this relationship.

    2. It a different situation.
      Jane wants the same thing as Marigold. ( unlike Will )
      and Jane wants Marigold. She chose her.
      Jane has a life outside the system, but no one to share it.

      "A Life someone else hasnt chosen for me"
      IS literally the exact same existential crises Jane went through.
      ( during Eves party. "Tell it to the Wisdom Bitch" )

      They want the same thing, but are coming from complementary points of view
      Unlike Will/Marigold, both characters are looking to each other from their best aspects and from a point of emotional self-sufficiency .

      Jane probably had to go through a dry spell to really need someone back as much as she does Marigold. Marigold had to become more her own person , so she could be idealistic without being clingy and needy. Jane needs Marigolds openness and vulnerability. Like pouring water on a dessert.

      Jane said she desperately wanted romance, and now she has it.

  35. High risk, high reward.

  36. I think that the 5th to the last panel, + 6th to the last panel, show Jane's heart beating loudly.

  37. I /will/ take that payoff, thanks. ;v;

  38. I laughed, I cried, I remembered what it feels like to be in love.

  39. Thanks, Meredith. I needed this today.

  40. This arc is fantastic! You know what you're doing, ma'm. You deserve all the praise you get and more! Much more.

  41. Amazing. The pacing is perfect; the dialogue so natural.

    This makes me want to just lay down under my desk and bawl with happiness.

  42. *romantic sigh*

  43. A study in vulnerability: Jane runs from it, confronts it, then hides it. Marigold's initial struggle isn't shown, but she embraces it and shares it.

    1. *applause* Brene Brown would be proud.

  44. As happy as I'm feeling for Jane and Mar right now, it also stings to think that while this is happening, Eve is still an emotional mess.

    Come on, Eve. We're all rooting for you u_u

    1. what? Why is Eve a mess?

      ( Did you mean Hanna ? )

  45. I'm so down with MariJane.

    Man, this chapter really hit me in a soft place. I hope it works out

  46. This comic is always the pick-me-up I didn't realize I needed.
    I think panel 29 would make a nice print.

  47. I cannot believe this art. It is incredibly perceptive, and allows for different interpretations, (even slight ones). I love how it relates to life and desire, not because everything happens to everyone, but because it is how many wish to see and live in the world.

    The kind of thing that is true and untrue at the same time.

    Thank you

  48. Wait, I think they´re in the same bar! hah, took me ages to notice, they´re like in the next room with the arrow!

  49. Wow…this really reminded me of my ex and me. I don't really like to think of the good times, but I guess it's good to be reminded.

  50. I've been rooting for Marigold from the beginning. I've always related to her and knew people's criticisms of her were my own flaws, too. This comic especially… I relate so much. I'm also intense with romantic partners, and own an orange skirt, and have shoulder-length dark blonde hair and a pointed chin, and cry during intimate moments, and find dark women attractive, and try to make decisions with certainty (without the impulsiveness of my younger self). Marigold, you are my spirit animal and I've learned a lot from you. As your self-awareness grows, so does mine.

    I hope readers don't judge Marigold as her past self. People are dynamic; people change. People learn about themselves and reflect and grow accordingly.

    I really have grown up with OP. You know how people say they grew up with Harry Potter? Yeah, except OP is 1000000x better.
    I'm so happy that Marigold found happiness. And so happy at this gorgeous art and this gorgeous story. Thank you.

  51. I finally caught up with this webcomic after a few years since forgetting the name. This series sure has come a long way since "Olly's Organix: The Fukken Shit." (Which still makes me guffaw, btw).

  52. Help: Im confused!!
    can someone explain this to me: I thought Marigold texted she wasnt showing up, and then Jane went somewhere else.

    1. It was Jane who texted she wasn't showing up. We witnessed Jane having cold feet and going home, then changing her mind.

  53. Artistically, I think this chapter contains some of the best work you've ever done, Meredith. Your ability to convey facial expressions through (not in spite of!) stylization, the way you've begun to use color, your skill with paneling, and your increasing comfort with the internet "infinite canvas," have really made themselves apparent recently.

    Reading Octopus Pie has always been a pleasure, but increasingly, I feel overwhelmed by the technical ability displayed on every page, and glad that I've had the chance to see you grow from a good comic artist into a great one.

  54. I like to think this is what my two best friends felt when they fell in love with eachother. I’m so excited to be in their wedding next October. (they’re both women and they’re perfect for eachother. )

  55. I re-read this comic to go to MY quiet place?
    It was such a real thing to read. I really identified with Jane in this storyline-reading it was therapeutic.

  56. If the final chapter of octopus pie isn’t titled “octopus bye” I will be severely disappointed.

  57. Love your art.

  58. Everything about this feels good.

  59. What a beautiful, heartwarming moment. So happy I found this webcomic again.

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