#648 + 649 – i know you

Hey folks - it's the middle of the month, so I am pushing the Patreon campaign again. Do you like that updates have been steady and plentiful lately? You have all the current Patrons to thank for that! With your patronage, I've been able to focus on comics a whole lot more. In the month of February, OP readers pledged enough so that I could promise 10 comic pages per month. At this point, 12 comic pages per month (roughly 3 a week) is not unattainable. As of writing this, we're over 60% of the way there. More pledges mean more comics for everyone, and less stress for me. So if you enjoy reading new comics, and have enjoyed the 650~ pages I've posted over the years, please consider pledging a buck or two. Thanks!

85 thoughts on “#648 + 649 – i know you

  1. Wow, this story is hitting close to home

    1. I can't remember a moment when it hasn't

  2. This is so fantastic. Just, GAH. Having so many emotions about this as both a fan and an artist right now.

    I hope I can do interpersonal stuff even half this good one day.

  3. jeez hanna, way to shit all over someone else's coping mechanisms.. and kick your own support system out from under you.

  4. Wow Hannah is my sister.

    Which uh makes me Marigold I guess.

    … sometimes you just want to ride the bullshit self-actualization wave and see how far you go with it before you crash horribly all over again, you know? Back me up on validating myself here.

    1. yeah, the trick to actually "making it" when it comes to "fake it till you make it" is being good enough at lying to yourself that you actually believe it. and you can never, ever, let go of the charade, or it all comes crashing down.

      harder than it looks. :/

    2. Actually, "fake it till you make it" kind of works. And it's a pretty common technique prescribed by psychologists, therapists. You think you're not really capable of doing/handling something? Pretend you are. Just kind of make yourself do it. And keep at it. All that "faking" ends up being like practice, and you wake up one morning to realize that you've been doing that thing that you thought you couldn't. And more than that, you can and have been handling it.

    3. No, you're doing it wrong. Spelaeus has the idea. You first have to give up the victim mentality, which is really the hardest part. Once you have accepted that you are master of your own destiny, practice the behaviors you want to cultivate. It's just like anything else. You get good at doing it by doing it, fucking up, getting bumps and bruises, until you get the hang of it. Yeah, you can backslide, but if you do it's way easier to get back to where you want to be. This applies to anything.

  5. sobbing violently

    hannah, you shit.

    1. A bit more subtle than the word I'd use, but yeah she is.

  6. It's a sign of quality writing that I'm not sure with whose side my sympathies lie.

    1. Sides? There's no such thing as sides here. 🙂

  7. Wow, those are some expressive Hannah faces. Kinda sleazy-looking. Pretty dark stuff; y'know, "I liked you better as my pathetic friend I get to feel superior to." Hannah is such a cool character. Um, I mean writing-wise; she's actually acting pretty douche-y right now.

    1. You're putting it better than I could have Ó_Ò Hanna's really gonna regret those words.

  8. Hanna's face, 1st panel; I feel that.

  9. Wow. Hannah needs a mirror, because I don't think she's really talking about Mar.

  10. Panel 5: Marigold's eyes look like her own again. I recognize her more like that (and panel 10).

  11. …fuck

  12. …Oh dear. First Hanna lost Marek, and now I'm pretty sure she just lost Marigold. I'm kind of worried about her friendship with Eve at this point.

    1. Maybe Eve is the one to even things out. Maybe she can take the verbal abuse, and sling back some of her own words that hit a positive spot in Hanna. Who knows.

      1. This looks like a job for the Wisdom Bitch

        1. That and Eve has man troubles too.

  13. As much as I think Hanna's blowing up is not the best move for her right now, I don't know if I could hold it together if a friend who had a bad break up that didn't last that long to begin with throught that theirs could compare to the heartbreak of me and my significant other of multiple years realizing it couldn't be any longer.

    I feel so bad for Hanna.

    1. Just don't compare then. A friend wants to help you, and there were better ways of doing it regardless. Emotions run different for many people in relationships despite the time spent.. The problem is both of them are pretty good liars. Rip the lies from your core and you're left with a very uncomfortable truth.

  14. Jebus christ, Hanna, what the hell?
    Just… what the hell, man?

  15. Sincere e'erbody (me included) seems to be falling on the side of "what the hell Hannah?" I feel compelled to say that Marigold's handling being screamed at/manipulated by a lunatic REALLY freaking well, not even getting mad or anything. Just slightly incredulous, then perfectly insightful and incisive at the very end. Damn, Mar.

    1. Yeah, Marigold's behavior roundly debunked Hannah's belief that Mar's personal evolution is superficial and false. If Mar was only wearing a mask, this is the exact situation that would've ripped it off. She didn't show Hannah any fear or anger… she just expressed her sadness at Hannah's attitude, and quietly walked away. Badass as hell.

      1. Yeah, Marigold has surpassed Hannah now, Marek's gone, hopefully she doesn't fuck things up with Eve or she'll be all out of friends.

      2. That got +39 thumbs? What are y'all 19 years old? A real grownup would have 1) not been so pandering and patronizing to someone grieving a legitimate loss, and b) wouldn't have then walked away from that someone – with a casual passive-aggressive snipe over the shoulder. I don't see much growth in Mar at this point.

        Real friends who are really "growed up" hang patiently with their friends during the hard times. They don't pick at fresh wounds, and they also don't try to make everything nice-nice quickly (like Mar's doing) just because they're uneasy around strong emotion. And they don't cut and run at the first volley of a little incidental psycho-shrapnel.

        Life is sometimes sad. Sad is not a disease. Grieving is a legitmate part of healing from loss. People need time to grieve.

        (And wrt that – I think Hanna's prior application of non-consensual magic/drug amnesia on Marigold after *her* failed relationships is (at least) as disfunctional).

        1. You're wrong Jeff. Mar asked Hannah if she wanted some fucking groceries and stepped away when she realized Hannah was in an irrational state. She didn't patronize her or demonize the notion of sadness. She just wanted to get Hannah some damned groceries.

          Also, she knows not to hover over someone who clearly doesn't want her help and again, she handled being spurned by her friend very well, all things considered.

        2. Yes, real grown-ups are morally obligated to put up with an infinite stream of venom and personal abuse, because sadness.

          The level of moral obligation you are heaping upon Marigold is somewhere most mature adults would reserve for the obligation of parents to their children. I'm not going to slander you, but I'll admit that my first thought upon reading your post is that you are probably one of those insufferably immature souls who expects all of his friends to put up with his bullshit, like everyone is his fucking mom or something.

          Addendum: I'm not saying Mar's approach to helping Hannah was effective, but not everybody is a fucking therapist. Hannah could have asked Mar to leave her alone without the emotional abuse, and depression is not some kind of Get Out of Jail Free card that means you can do or say whatever you want to your friends.

          Double addendum: You might also be one of those dudes who is such a good, loyal friend that, if you were in Marigold's shoes, you would have toughed it out through the pain and abuse and stayed with Hannah until things were cool. So you are either a really good person or a really bad person. Either way, I don't think it is reasonable to hold a person to your standard.

    2. Of course, Marigold started by comparing her breakup with Will to Hannah's breakup with Marek, so I can sort of excuse Hannah for thinking she's a bit delusional.

  16. Claiming that you're better than someone who is worried about you and trying to help you in their own way is the best way to end up completely alone.

  17. Ohhhh crap!
    I hope that this doesn't end the friendship between Marigold and Hanna.

  18. I knew there was a reason I have never liked Hanna.

  19. The Analyst-inator

    This is both horrible and awesome.

    Horrible: Hanna just wrecked another long-term friendship. Also, Marigold doesn't have a lot of pre-Will-relationship friends left: Will's an ex, Sean's awkward, and Marek's just gone. She radically changed after the breakup, and now the old friends who remember who she used to be are fading out of her life.

    Awesome: Both Marigold and Hanna could benefit from this argument in the long run. Marigold is at a point where self-reflection wouldn't be a bad thing. Hiding behind "something fictitious" isn't a good long-term plan for happiness. And, as Marigold essentially pointed out, Hanna still treats her friends like pathetic pets. Maybe with the loss of boyfriend and old friend Hanna will realize why assuming a benignly superior position to her friends is bad for everyone involved.

  20. Every face in this comic is so perfectly drawn. So much character.

  21. Ouch, ouch, ouch.. fantastic writing…

  22. Wow…I was expecting Hanna to blow up and tell Marigold to shut up and leave her alone (with a side of "you don't know what I'm going through), but I wasn't expecting this sort of calculated attack / throwing-in-face of all the secrets Marigold has ever trusted her with.

  23. Ohhhh man.
    How sad. I hope that this doesn't end the friendship between Marigold and Hanna.

  24. Ohhhh man.
    I hope that this doesn't end the friendship between Marigold + Hanna.

  25. The main problem with being the one who always fixes people is that you have to keep all the people around you to be broken in some way. An uncomfortably good demonstration here.

  26. Daaaaayum whilst not realizing it hannah criticizes herself, we’re all weak and strong and broken and complete the whole time, and that’s humans, we don’t have the stronger more experienced than the other, we’re all on and off on strong and weak sides to the point where we all can and can’t support each other, but for the very least we will try, and that’s something, though Mary’s aloofness to the situation could be annoying on the slight, and annoying on the slight plus Hannah’s shitty situation is being slightly amplified. In conclusion:both of em are sad and rude and deserving for friendship and compassion from each other and everyone, I want the gang to like each other 3: I want em all to be happy

  27. Oh, Hannah 🙁 here come the cracks, and they're getting deeper and deeper…

  28. Marigold's remark in the last panel…well played.

  29. Eck wish this didnt ring so close to home. While Marigold is being a little annoying(comparing a relatively short relationship as the 'exact same thing' to Hannas) she is actually right, it did make her stronger, she learned how to deal with those emotions and enjoy life anyways. Sure its not always 100% genuine but then that beats wallowing. Hanna on the other hand comes across as condescending, like Marigolds method of coping is inferior to her old one of relying on Hanna like a crutch. Because it makes Hanna less improtant, she cant dispense 'wisdom' from her lofty established happy life. Whats worse is she is no longer in that happy life and has Marigold trying to move in to try and 'help'(which to Marigold its probablly as simple as 'its my turn' but to Hanna its more like 'where does she get off`?'). Really I think this is Hanna just being so used to being the helper, the advice giver and the supporter that she is completely inexperienced with taking it and especially not from someone she used to consider needing her. Thats my cynical interpretation because its exactly what happened between two friends of mine(who now hate each other) so im done rambling.

    1. _"she is actually right, it did make her stronger, she learned how to deal with those emotions"_

      When you can't explain why a character is right without using clichés (the same clichés she uses about herself, yet!), it's an indication that she probably isn't (or at least not in the way you think she is).

      I'd say Hanna is clearly entirely right about Marigold. It's just that Marigold is also clearly entirely right about Hanna.

      1. As somebody else said above though, when it's just a cruch, it tends to break. Hanna just swung full force expecting a crunch of wood and heard the thud of a solid wall instead.

        I'm fully aware I'm taking the cliché and running it into full metaphor. I don't care.

        But really, just go back and look at Marigold in the earlier parts of this comic. It's pretty obvious she (and everybody else really, cause it's a damn good comic) has changed more then superficially.

        1. I don't see any indication that Hanna expected a "crunch." She doesn't look surprised until panels twelve through fourteen, and then it's surprise at what SHE said, not at anything Marigold said or did.

          And of course Marigold has changed – the above strip would make no sense at all if she hadn't. What she and Hanna disagree on is whether the change was for the better – the answer to which, of course, depends on what you think is a desirable state of being.

      2. Making an argument using a cliche does not make it invalid, especially when it is actually true….to an extent.

        Because im not saying Marigold is entirely in the right here, or even that she has grown as strong as she herself believes. I was trying to make the point that despite it her happiness being a 'fictitious image', because she's clearly not as well adjusted and happy as she tries to appear or convince herself, she has still managed to get her life back on track and move on from her break up.
        She still has a ways to go and it would probablly be best if she could deal with things with out putting on a 'face' but I still believe she grew stronger from her break up.

        Your last point I do agree with, they both made good points in the argument, (Marigold isnt the perfect remade woman I think she imagines herself to be and Hanna is working the 'no one can understand my pain' schtick, with a bit of condescension thrown into the mix) although personally I do find Hanna to come across as more in the wrong here.

  30. Keep making us proud, Marigold.

  31. I feel you, Hannah. I feel you.

  32. Ouuuuuuch…

  33. In Hanna's moving from spontaneous exasperation ("Do you even exist?") to bluster; in the prolonged silence as Hanna's last remark sinks in for both her and Marigold; and in the way Marigold's parting words turn Hanna's around to add another layer of meaning to what's gone on before – my impression reading this strip is of a composer masterfully manipulating harmony until the last chord reveals previously unnoticed possibilities latent in the preceding material.

  34. I like how you can tell Hanna’s hair is still kind of wet.

  35. Never try to help someone after a breakup as soon as they've stepped out of the shower and their hair's still wet.

  36. I find Hanna pretty terrifying right now, actually.

  37. Way to be an asshole, Hanna.

  38. Marigold became a new person.. and it's person that Hanna doesn't like. I can see the cracks.

  39. No one seems to be acknowledging that Marigold has been through A LOT of breakups, not just the last one with Will. I can’t properly remember how many breakups Hanna has been through. A bitty part if her might be annoyed because she was always te one picking up Mar’s pieces after al I those breakups, and now te tables have turned.

    Hanna has a superiority complex, and not reacting better than her friend did in a similar situation is like salt in a wound.

    1. Holy autocorrect, Batman!

  40. I hope that this works out between them somehow and Hannah realizes just how much of a total (you know what) she just was. Go and apologize to her now Hannah, before its too late.

  41. so this is unrelated but im always so confused that nothing ever came of this: http://www.octopuspie.com/2011-12-25/501-mega-hur
    like will just kissed eve and then nothing happened!
    im probably lame for holding out on them being together

    1. It seemed like a pretty platonic smooch to me

    2. It might seem weird, but sometimes you do get in those situations where both parties just forget about it (or pretend that they do). I dunno. FWBO is a weird and delicate relationship.

  42. I honestly don't see how you can be on Hanna's side here. This is a really great strip, and manages to expose a lot of both characters: how they've grown, how Marigold wants to return the favor that Hanna has given her, and a very revealing look at how Hanna viewed that help. Mar is grateful to Hanna, and viewed her as someone who gave her support through a lot of hard break-ups. She clearly trusted her enough to tell her all of those insecurities, and now that she feels like she's growing up and finding her own maturity, she wants to help Hanna get through this as well.

    She starts by trying to establish some common ground- and here I don't think she's out of line. She wasn't with Will all that long, but Mar seems like the kind of person who gives her all in every relationship, and Will leaving devastated her, if only briefly. Mar's been through a lot of break-ups, she understands how it feels. She could have said 'I've been through something similar,' not 'exact same thing,' but that is not what pisses off Hanna. It's not Mar saying that she's been through break-up hell that infuriates Hanna here, just look at how she responds to this. Not: 'What Marek and I had was different', but 'how dare you act like you're strong.'

    Hanna lashes out in this incredibly telling way, at the core of which is: 'you can not be in this position because I pity you, you are inferior to me.' She outright says it: 'you used to welcome my guidance' and 'how can you help me when I feel sorry for you.' To Hanna, being the person who support and helps the other is not an equal relationship, it is superior to inferior- she has never seen Mar as equal to her. She's telling her she liked her better terrified, insecure, and dependent on Hanna. This is a pretty damn huge statement to make. I do think she's going to regret this, but Hanna's superiority complex and her need to feel above everyone else has always been a part of her character, and I am glad to see it addressed in this arc. Marek helps ground her, but without him, she seems to fall into her own insecurities.

    I think Hanna hates feeling insecure and weak, and tries to buoy herself up by comparing herself to others and putting herself in the position of a support system- and some of this is absolutely genuine. But through the whole thing, she's telling herself that she is above all of this romance nonsense. Look at the arc in which she tells Marek she's totally fine with an open relationship, only to freak out violently when other women bid for him, and then spends the night sulking.

    Mar walking out with that incisive comment was just perfect: mature, composed, and proof that no matter what Hanna says, she has moved on and changed and developed past what she used to be. She doesn't need any more dramatic gestures.

    One common thread going through this comic is Eve's fear of change and of people moving beyond her. It's interesting to see Hanna sharing this, fear of change and of other people maturing into someone Hanna can't relate to.

  43. Poor Hannah. No Marek. No Mar. No mattress.

  44. Oh. I'm all caught up. That's… good…

  45. Sometimes you have to start fresh. It's not necessarily a bad thing to grow apart from your friends. Not everyone can be BFFs. It feels like Hanna is one of those people that just needs to restart her life when a new stage of life comes in. Throw out the old, in with the new.

    Yeah, if I had to pick I'd be standing on Hanna's side of the room.

  46. Eve, get in here and fix this!!
    What I also really want to see is a conversation between Hanna and Marek… It doesn't seem like we got to witness the real knitty-gritty of their break up. I simply cannot accept Marek walking out of OP for good.

  47. bam. ;3;

    hits hard, meredith. hits hard…

  48. I love this because reasons.

    Hanna's right that Marigold is, to some extent, faking it (but considering her considerable although often hidden insights and maturity – remember how mature she was about the whole breakup thing when Eve gave her that brownout cookie? – she probably will 'make it') and going maybe a little overboard with her Strong Female Character-ness. She's also right that "I went through the exact same thing" when it was not the exact same thing at all (similar, yes. The exact same thing? NOOOOOO) was a shitty and naive thing to say at that moment.

    And I feel for Hanna in that I think her douchey outburst was more a function of her and her bad mood/bad place in life right now/total heartbreak than it really was about Marigold. She's hurt, she's dyin' – and so like an angry dog with who's been badly injured, she lashes out at the person trying to help her because her anger gives her some feeling of control.

    Although underneath that, Marigold is also absolutely right. The outburst itself was a function of where Hanna is right now, mentally, but the force of what's behind it – a need to be superior, a need to have your stuff together, a need to be in control, something of a lack of sympathy for anyone who is a bit frayed at the edges or having a hard time who isn't her friend or someone she can "fix" (note her total lack of sympathy for the people that the Occupy protesters were representing – the have-nots) – is a HUGE problem and it just, after her getting away with it for years, has come right back around to bite her in the ass, like Game of Thrones but without the dying. And when that attitude – the lack of sympathy for those she can't fix and the need to be superior to those she can by "helping" them, plus her own need for more control than anyone can ever really have over her own life – it was bound to blow up like this. That just had to happen when she became the one who needs help, and she was forced to face exactly how little control she (or any of us, including the folks Occupy represented) has.

    And it could – likely will – cost her this friendship.

    If Marigold forgives her, they'll still have to do a lot of talking outside of the old power dynamic. If Marigold doesn't forgive her, she'd be entirely justified. I'm not sure it's going to work out – friendships die like this and groups of friends get all awkward all the time, and they can't always be fixed. It's good to address this realistically rather than making everything "right" in the end like a sitcom.

  49. I also think Hanna, right up until the moment that Marigold walked away from her, really thought she was doing the 'right thing' by insisting that this new, "self-actualized" Marigold (cliche or not) was not the 'real' Marigold and she, Hanna, was so insightful as to want the 'real' Marigold back. She probably didn't even consciously realize how superior she thought she was.

    And right after she says that, she looks shocked at her own words, like 'oh shit I know how THAT sounds, and it ain't good, is that really how I come across? Is that really how I am?'

    But only Marigold's wonderful line at the end – which was like an extinguisher on Hanna's fire – seems to have (possibly, judging by her expression) shown Hanna that she herself may not be the 'self-actualized' person she thinks she is or at least that she's got a lot of thinking to do.

    1. I think that's insightful about Hanna really thinking she's doing the right thing. The only thing I disagree with is your interpretation of panel 12 (the one where she looks "shocked.") I actually think that's a continuation of the "crazy eyes" from the previous panel. It looks to me like Hanna's geared up for Marigold to fire back or maybe just still kind of "catching her breath" from her outburst, so to speak. She doesn't expect Marigold to walk away.

  50. Hannah's at a low point right now, everyone, if Marigold is truly self-actualized, she'll realize that and it won't hurt their friendship in the long run. Sometimes when you feel bad, you want other people to feel as bad as you.

  51. I've been trying to support Octopus Pie for as long as I've been able to. I buy the books when I can, and I try to spread the word to all my friends
    I'm really thankful that you have an account on this Patreon thing. a few bucks a month is reasonable, and I'm glad I can offer you direct support in a way that isn't associated with a huge overhead cost, like printing and shipping a book.

    Anyway, thanks so much for the story. I'm so happy you're updating regularly, and I literally check back every day for an update, because I forgot what days you update :|.

    That's all.

  52. "I can see the cracks," said Eve. Now we can see them too. 🙁

  53. Pyschology of this is brilliant. THIS IS WHY I LOVE THIS COMIC

    I think their friendship can, and will, bounce back. I *hope*. Hanna is being a douche right now but she's in a bad place, so she kind of has an excuse. Everyone has times when their own needs override their good judgement (just not everyone does it quite so spectacularly as Hanna.) If she cleans up and apologizes later, everything can still be okay. Okay. ish.

    & yeah, i think Mar is doing the best she can. kudos to that.

    (still reeling about Hanna & Marek. NOoooo.)

  54. Whoops so many new pages here!
    There seems to be some trouble with the RSS feed. The last 3 pages in it are 639, 641 and 642. It skipped two updates in February and then just stopped completely.

  55. I think I’m the only one who hates Hannah

  56. I think it's less about being on Hanna's side and more about understanding where she's at right now. I think she believes some of what she's saying, but a lot of it is angry talk that's certainly not right.

  57. Wait, Marek broke up with her?

  58. Man, this is fucked up.

  59. I don't usually comment on old strips, but I feel like I need to defend Hanna here. Hanna reminds me a lot of my friends, in that she has a cynical—yet realistic—outlook, and is burdened by seeing people and things a little more "deeply" than others, for lack of a better word. It's something that can make you seem pretentious, but it's not something that you can drop. Hanna wants real, self-actualized happiness, and to be surrounded by completely candid people. She understands that Mar is like her, and that joining the rest of the world with a corporate job and textbook healthy happiness isn't something that she should be able to live with herself for doing, when she knows that deep down, Mar wants these profound, deep, meaningful things out of life. Things that her current life will never give her (according to Hanna…)

    Hanna is also probably afraid and jealous that it really *is* possible for someone to break through to the other side, and leave this steadfast idealistic cynicism behind, and she can't believe that Mar has done it before her, or that it's actually possible in the first place. Nobody is wrong here, and people calling Hanna a crazy psycho really bother me. I think that Hanna really does know Mar that well, and she really does worry about her. As much as it seems to be the contrary, I think that Hanna's outburst here is deeply rooted in her worrying about Mar, compounded by the anger she feels that she'd break out the fakest of fake happiness lines against her "I know what it's like! I've been through the EXACT SAME THING". She can't believe that Mar is so far gone that she could be so self-unaware. Not only is she losing Marek here, but by Mar saying that, she feels that she lost her as well.

    It wasn't the healthy thing to do, and she's not "in the right", but I agree with Hanna.

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