#647 – doesn’t that feel better


67 thoughts on “#647 – doesn’t that feel better

  1. 🙁

    1. thistemporarylifeblog

      I legitimately came here to say exactly this.

  2. Sounds like somebody wants only to be left alone. My how the tables have turned.

  3. stop pretending like life is normal when my life is shattered and laying in pieces around me

    … is what she's thinking

    1. Yeah, that's pretty much what I thought about-Hanna throwing a fit and stuff.

    2. I couldn't help but read that "doesn't that feel BETTER?" quip in a somewhat patronizing tone, as though she is completely sure a single bath would cure Hanna of all her ills.

      C'mon Marigold you know better than this.

      1. I am pretty sure she was saying that to Eve after doing something to the bed…?

        1. Huh! I didn't even think of that because the bubble was in the same panel as Hanna. I also didn't make the connection because I thought they were getting a whole new mattress for Eve. I don't even know what Marigold could do to Eve's bed to make it so much better in the space of 30 minutes without being prepared ahead of time. Flip it over, maybe…?

  4. Hanna is getting self-aware?

  5. therrrrrre we goooo was waiting for that

  6. Yeeaaaaaaaah I been here. "Go away, literally nothing will make me happy, especially not you attempting to make me happy."

    1. And then the slightest sounds become annoying, even just the sound of their voice, and you become more enraged with each passing second they attempt to talk to you.

    2. Mirroring the clique's tries to cheer up Marigold after the breakup with Will, too

  7. Oooohhh I know this feeling.

  8. Mar needs to stop trying to be everyone's mom.

    1. It's okay when Hanna does it to Mar but not okay when Mar returns the favor?

  9. So I used to read this comic when I lived in NYC but dropped off over a year ago… And then I randomly stumbled across it online. And now I'm rereading it again from the beginning. Goddamn it, still so good! ("I'm beginning to see the cracks.")

  10. Oh Hanna… 🙁

  11. Huh, I read that wrong. I thought Hanna was at least partially pissed because she's been there for Eve more than once when Eve was having issues, and now that Hanna is in the dumps, Eve's all "OH YEAH THAT GRADUATION / MAREK LEAVING THING ALSO HAHA MY BED AMIRITE"

    1. I get the feeling that Eve knew Hanna was going to blow up like this and was giving her her space. Also, I'm not sure Eve's very good at comforting people and is probably self-aware enough to know that about herself. I think Hanna would be pissed at everyone/everything regardless of how well anyone handles it around her. This is really tough. :/

  12. A good scream at Marigold. There, doesn't *that* feel better?

  13. Wow, is that the most unhinged Hanna has ever been?

  14. I feel like this little event might have short-term — if not long-term — impacts on Marigold’s progression into the “mature adult life-style” that she’s been pursuing for the past two or three hundred pages. Maybe Hanna’s explosion will put things a little more into perspective and she [marigold] will come to the realization that not everything is so neat and easily put and simple.

    1. Definitely. I feel like this freakout has almost as much to do with this: http://www.octopuspie.com/2013-10-21/627-orbiting… as it does with the breakup.

  15. What is going on in this storyline? Marek and Hanna are breaking up or something because he's graduating? Why? Did I miss something about him deciding to move away or some such? I've enjoyed this comic for a long time but this narrative feels like its breaking down. This seems like kind of a lazy way to change up the status quo of the comic without having to WRITE a real reason the characters of Hanna and Marek would break up. I would have at least liked to have seen this building up before its suddenly just "Marek is graduating so they are breaking up". Like an arc or scene where we see the two of them even TALK TO EACH other about their relationship and what his graduating (and i guess NEEDING to leave) would mean for them.

    1. if you've read up until now you would have gleaned the multiple potential reasons for their breakup– one storyline closes on the note that Hanna knows Marek wants kids and she doesn't, and it's irreconcilable.

    2. It's been hinted that there have been problems and the like, between the "cracks" arc and the talk between Hanna and Eve about differing views on children [Hanna does not want children while Marek does].

      So it isn't totally out of the blue, incompatibility means incompatibility. That's the short answer anyway.

    3. There have been many story arcs, slowly building up, that have built to this. Methinks you haven't been reading long…?

      I don't mean that condescendingly…I'm quite sincere. The signs were all there and it's been mentioned as an issue across several arcs. Much of the commentariat, anyway, has seen it coming for ages. So I sincerely do think that perhaps you have not been reading long.

      Octopus Pie isn't like a one-off funny gag in the Sunday paper. The story arcs are realistic, slow-burning, multilayered, and take time to build to climaxes and denouements in surprising but realistic ways. You can't just go back to the beginning of this arc to see the story – you have to go back several storylines for that (especially the one where they all went camping, but even a few before that).

    4. Hello! I respectfully disagree.

      The fact that we don't know exactly why yet is precisely the point, and to my mind only strengthens the narrative, as it puts us in exactly the same position as Eve and Marigold, allowing us to relate to them, and thus this situation as a whole, much more effectively. It creates suspense (a suspense which has been building long before the last story arc) and this excellent sense of mounting tension. Both of these things lend weight to the culmination of events in this arc, they give it a greater impact.

      All of that would be lost if we knew the fine details beforehand.

      Moreover, we haven't seen every facet of Hana and Marek's relationship. Its entirely conceivable that they had exactly the type of conversation you suggest, just off-panel. Moreover, the fact that they didn't have this conversation could also be seen as an indication of their relationship, the fact that they were unable to discuss these kind of issues so openly. Or perhaps they simply wanted to enjoy the last few moments of their relationship before it had to end? This does happen to people. I have a friend, he's moving to Hong Kong, and this is exactly the situation he's in with his relationship. Neither one of them wants to do long distance so his move will kill the relationship, and they're choosing to allow that to happen, but make the most of what they have now.

      Finally, and I'm sure you've had some experience with this, but things aren't always cut-and-dry. Life is messy, people are messy, and relationships are messy. Sometimes people are inconsiderate, oblivious to other people feelings. Sometimes very important things are left unsaid. It's easy to see what could happen and what should happen and what would make the most sense logically, especially from an outside perspective, or in hindsight, but in practice, things don't always (I would even say rarely) work out that way. In my opinion, I think this story arc is capturing all of that excellently.

      You are of course entitled to you opinion, and I respect that! I don't mean to discourage or invalidate you in any way, I simply disagree.

      Have a good day!

      1. Wonderfully explained!

    5. In a previous chapter, we saw Hanna and Marek talking about how Merek would have to leave after graduation — his Visa runs out, or something like that. He's not from the US and doesn't have legal approval to live here indefinitely.

      Ever since then, it's been implied that some of Hanna and Marek's behavior has been influenced by this impending change — especially the feel of melancholy during that camping trip in the last chapter. Haven't you noticed how Hanna's been WAY less happy-go-lucky for a while now? Eve's known this is coming too: it's one of the impending breaks implied by "I'm beginning to see the cracks".

    6. There have been hints here and there for the last couple of storylines. Marek is Polish, he's in the states on a student visa. His graduating ended his visa, and he has to move back to Poland. They also have different life goals. Marek wants kids, to settle down, Hanna doesn't want that. So his graduating and leaving the country is a logical time to end things, even though neither of them really wanted to.

      Instead of having an explanation of their breakups, Meredith has shown it in snippets of dialog for a while now. I remember back when Marek was camping with the occupy groups, they mentioned that he has the leave the country when he graduates. I don't remember when they talked about having different goals in life and I'm too lazy to look, but I'm pretty sure it was another aside. Anyway, it has been coming for a long time, if you were looking for it. It wasn't the main arc, but it was definitely building in the background.

      I'm guessing we didn't see their breakup from their perspective because Eve is the viewpoint character, and she wouldn't have seen it. Like Marigold's breakup with Will, we just saw the build up and aftermath, because that's what Eve sees.

      1. Hmmm, I guess I can appreciate that we, as the audience, get mostly Eve's viewpoint so we don't know what (or if) Marek and Hanna talked about things.

        I've been reading this strip for a LONG time actually, but I never bother with reading people's comments. When I say this felt out of the blue, I don't mean that I didn't understand the build up (especially in the camping arc) that occurred over the last few stories. I should have phrased that better in my original comment. What I mean is that THIS SPECIFIC timing of their break up (as he graduates) seems arbitrary and out of the blue. Is he moving away to a new job (like eve's ex, hence her dream)? more school somewhere else? did I miss something relevant line of dialogue? I'm left wondering what prompted them to decide that NOW was the time to break up.

        On top of that, I feel like the whole plot line of their relationship ending (which, yes, has been building for quite some time in the real world, but not all that long within the comic) has come across as forced. We don't SEE them struggling with any compatibility issues or decisions about their relationship, we've only been TOLD that they have different long-term hopes (i.e. having kids, anything else?), and that their break up is thus inevitable. And now it has arrived for some reason. Most couples I've known who were aware they had different longterm plans still needed some kind of instigating event to catalyze their breakup (a new job somewhere else, a pregnancy scare, someone cheating or realizing they have feelings for someone else, a fight that for whatever reason brings simmering tension to a boil, etc). This seems like they just decided his graduation was a good milestone on which to call it quits.

        1. As Channa said, they've been there, just somehow not apparent to you. We've been seeing cracks since Occupy. I just went back and reread most of Octopus Pie and noticed plenty of things I hadn't the first (or second, or third) time around – maybe do the same and see if it still feels forced? Anyway I'm pretty sure Marek has to leave due to his visa expiring, though i can't remember where it says that.

        2. … but isn't that the way one usually gets wind of what's going on with one's friends' love life? the protagonist is eve, not hanna. yeah, hanna's her friend, but you don't usually know every single detail about a friend's love life like that (unless you actually do, in which case i'm glad about your friendship). also, it seems only marek thought of his graduation as a milestone to call it quits. he wasn't interested in dragging the relationship any longer even though he enjoyed hannah's affection. hannah, on the other hand, was so attached to marek she'd putt off the family talk until it was just too late for that.

          i really hope i got my point across because i don't know how else i could explain to you a break up where one of the parties was "just not that into their partner." marek discarded his relationship with hannah the moment they couldn't agree on family matters. it was "fated" to end unless they could agree on having kids, which didn't ever happen.

        3. Cat, I do understand what you are saying. Thank you. Your impression of the break up as prompted by Marek makes sense to me. He's not a jerk by nature, but I could definitely see him being, lets say, pragmatic about ending the relationship (even over just the longterm issue of kids) rather than dragging it out even if he still cares deeply for Hanna. He seems like the kind of person to choose a painful but simple break up now over even a couple more years of relative happiness followed by an excruciatingly painful and messy break up if its inevitable.

          I would, however, disagree that we only see things from Eve's perspective as satisfactorily explaining why so many details of such an important event have been left out. Eve as the view-point character is usually true but far from exclusively so. There have been whole stories centered around Will or Mar (whose exact break-up moment we didn't see as I recall, but whose relationship issues were clearly explored) or somebody else. There are even chunks of individual stories that take place when she's nowhere around (like Marek returning his mattress in this very story), so it's not like the audience is strictly limited to seeing what Eve sees.

        4. Just because a character is the protagonist, or even if she isn't, doesn't mean the author of the story can't pick and choose what you, the viewer, can and can't see.

          A lot of times Meredith purposefully leaves information out, even if it's important to fully understanding the story, because life is never fully defined. We hear bits and pieces, and are forced to put the rest together ourselves.

          Many stories and movies make a point at some part of the story to state aloud why something is happening, in order for the viewer to better understand and follow along with what is going on. Yet in reality life rarely does that for us, and by showing incomplete sections of Hanna and Marek's relationship, Meredith is attempting to capture that ethereal beauty and chaos that is the human condition.

          I'm not just making excuses either. She has done this repeatedly, whether with Sean and Marigold, or Park and Eve (can you properly explain why THAT relationship ended?) and is part of her overall writing style.

          The whole point being that since you don't know the EXACT reason that they're breaking up, you feel less in control, just like all their friends do. Meredith is immersing you in the situation, like you're in the story as a part of the group.


    7. also see this strip here: http://www.octopuspie.com/2013-04-10/597-thats-no… that's about as close to explicit as this strip gets.

    8. It's been coming a long time, dude.

  16. Marek's lived in the States since he was a kid:

    Their breakup was on a timer, but it's not because of a student visa. If that were the case, it's not likely that his parents would be at his graduation. Besides, Marek's scholarship is from the PNA, a US organisation run by and for Polish-Americans. Chances are, maybe his parents were the ones who came to the US to study (with him in tow).

  17. I keep reading the previous comic strips about Hanna and Marek's future break-up but I still don't understand how they are incompatible? They seem to have great chemistry together and really care for each other. I especially don't understand this strip: http://www.octopuspie.com/2013-04-10/597-thats-no

    1. All this one indicates is that they both already know they are going to break up when Marek leaves. It doesn't have any discussion about the reasons why.

      I've been looking for the strips where Hanna and Marek talk separately to Eve about children, but I only found one: http://www.octopuspie.com/2011-11-18/494-wooow/ "I know Hanna doesn't like that I'm here…but it is important. This is America to me. The ability to find simple happiness. I need to pay that forward for my children." That actually points to two areas of incompatibility–Marek wants children and Hanna doesn't, and Hanna is a "pull yourself up by your bootstraps" type versus Marek involving himself with Occupy. Like Marek says quoted above, Hanna doesn't seem to be totally willing to "agree to disagree" on that issue.

      And later on in that chapter we see another hint that Hanna knows a break-up is coming (but at this point she doesn't want to think about it): http://www.octopuspie.com/2011-11-18/494-wooow/ Donovan: "People's lives change unexpectedly! No matter how in control they feel. You don't think it could happen to you?"

    2. OK, found an earlier Marek one: http://www.octopuspie.com/2008-07-28/175-upstate-… "Wow! It must be wonderful to live in the suburbs! I want to raise a family up here!" I can't point to anything to prove it but I'm willing to bet Hanna doesn't want to leave NYC either.

      1. this one I found a few pages after one fo your links is pretty telling also http://www.octopuspie.com/2011-12-06/497-thats-a-

        1. You're right, that's the other side of it–good find. Also Hanna's answer "We'll have to [agree], eventually." Sounds like she was probably hoping, or even expecting, that Marek would change his mind about children for her. I don't blame her for that, most people aren't so clear-eyed they won't tell themselves lies sometimes–especially for something they want so badly. But it looks like overall her approach to dealing with her areas of incompatability with Marek was "breaking up with him is much too painful to think about, so I won't think about it and I'll just keep telling myself that everything has to work out." That's why she freaked out at Donovan.

  18. Is it wrong that I feel like maybe Marigold is getting her revenge for the way Hanna tried to 'fix' things with her in the Brownout Biscuit arc? (Yes it is Kate, God)

    Although, that arc also explains Hanna's outburst now in a way; she's maybe thinking that because she's always the one trying to fix everyone else's stuff (and then taking credit where it isn't nec. due) then she should just be able to dust *herself* off and be okay. It's the old Control Issues surfacing again.

    (Also I know it's sad times on OP right now but I find the last panel really funny for some reason)

    1. I may be reading the strip wrong but Hanna has been particularly harsh on Marigold for no real reason, because Marigold's idea of happiness seems tied to an unimaginative and less independent track. But Marigold also went through an ugly break up and despite failing down many times is trying to put herself together into a comfortable place, maybe not happy but content. So to me it seems this undue rivalry is mostly Hanna's doing, because she doesn't want kids and won't ever stop smoking pot and won't ever conform and so she feels (knows) her and Marek were always doomed for the long term but won't analyze herself as to why her idea of happiness and independence is so stringent. I love Hanna when she's calling other people out and fixing other people's shit (I think she does, too), but this the Hannah that just irks me because she's lashing out at people who have it just as hard and aren't really doing anything wrong. Classic control freak, really great until they're really not 🙁

      After this arc I hope we get more Eve, whose moods are always oddly poignant whether up or down, or Will, who is a hopelessly optimistic fuck up (maybe they're just more relatable to me).

  19. Oh no, i hit the end. That means… that means i'll have to wait know! What am I supposed to do with that free time?! D:

  20. Sometimes you just need a good sulk to get through it, and everyone thinks you need to be pulled out.

  21. The commentariat is increasingly becoming an important part of OP these last few story arcs. It's another way in which this strip resembles real life: Things aren't always spelled out, so discussion helps us to understand and accept events big and small. As in life, things are always connected and there is context and backstory for everything. And people will actually go and find links to help connect the dots. I love it.

    (And yes Kate, that last panel is hilarious. Hilariously cathartic)

    1. Somewhat off-topic: I really like the word "commentariat" and will probably use it a lot in the future. That is all.

  22. Dated for 3 years… things where getting serious and we made plans. I had to go and work at my home country because no jobs where available for a foreigner with a degree (not legally at least). So we went the long distance route. Never have I had such a happy and stable relationship like this one, we encouraged each other to follow everything we wanted to be and to be as happy as we could. Then, one day, she cheated. Gave her another chance and cheated again. Never have I felt so stranded like now. I had plans of proposing and moving in with her within a year. So now I'm in a country where wasn't planning to stay, and I have no other option than to stay here for now. Octopuspie really hit home for me today, in good way.

    Thank you for showing me this Meredith, I guess I'm not so crazy.

  23. Considering Marek took the mattress back and she's sitting on a box, Hannah probably doesn't even have a bed. Meredith helping Eve out with her awful mattress is just digging that much more into her. No boyfriend + no matrress = timebomb.

  24. What kind of a bath eases the pain of a broken heart?

  25. Hanna, no, wait!! Just tell her you want some of whatever she's getting for herself and then you'll be up to your bony stoner knees in quinoa and fancy weird cheeses and organic kumquats 'n shit.

  26. I think Hanna's screaming because Marigold has been flaunting her recent success and financial stability by bothering people to let her buy them things and get them in on her new job. Hanna expressed her annoyance with it in the camping arc and now she's just had enough. Expect Hanna calling her out on this in the next page.

    1. I think her screaming has a lot more to do with her and Marek than anything about Marigold, though she may fall back on something to do with Marigold rather than admit her own problems.

  27. It seems more likely that Hanna hasn't told Eve or Meredith that her and Marek split. She prob bottled it all up and now she is understandably flipping out. I would imagine if she told them Meredith would be overly concerned and Eve would at least be buying her drinks and then resuming her role as "the wisdom bitch".

  28. whoops! I mean Marigold!

  29. Sounds like Hannah's 61,000+ hours of being high are over..

  30. sobbing violently

    I went back and reread Occupy after this, and certain lines stood out brilliantly. Not as brilliantly without the panels they're in, though, so like, you should go reread that part. It's so good.

    Marek: "It's important to me. This is what I want to pass on to my children."

    Hanna: "I'm never going to have kids. Everything in my life would be thrown off my parenthood. I've ALREADY found happiness."
    Eve: "But that's good, right?"
    Hanna: "…"

    Hanna, after the police raid: "I should've been here."
    Marek: "You would have hated it. Why would I want to do that to you?"
    Hanna: "So what now?"
    Marek: "We figure out where else to go."
    Hanna: "Can I come with you? I don't wanna be in the way…"
    Marek: "Of course. Stay as long as you want to."

  31. “Nothing”.

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