Saturday, December 30, 2023

Rereading Strong Female Protagonist, part 7

 Link to previous post

Blah blah preamble Strong Female Protagonist by Brennan Lee Mulligan and Molly Ostertag referenced throughout except and unless otherwise noted (i.e. reference to pages of Gunnerkrigg Court by Tom Siddell), you know the drill, moving on.

Chapter 5 page 42

These mercs could invest in a bus, using three huge trucks just to go from A to B screams of fragile masculinity to me. Well, it's not the only thing that does.


They're at least acting pretty professional. You know how many stories I've heard of gun shops where they have jars of mixed bullets on the counter just to point at and say "these were all taken from guns their owners handed to us that they swore were unloaded"? Okay, two stories. But you really can't be careful enough with guns you think are empty. And that probably goes double if you think they're loaded with blanks.

44, 45

There's supposed to be eight of these guys, they look like about four, whatever, three trucks is still at least one too many. Get styled on, babies! And also prepare to die for your crimes.

46, 47, 48, 49

The thing I find odd about this is Mary mixing her workout and murder spree. Maybe it's hard to find any non-horrible private army boys to do this exercise with, or she's just obsessed enough to want to test her skills under the influence of an endorphin rush.

Which, I guess it doesn't have any noticeable effects on her aside from trying to be funny.


"I don't matter," "You matter to me," such an uplifting argument for killing a person!


I hope Ken there was happy with his name and likeness being used for this wacky fun side character. Nah the guidance counselor is not really at fault for looking at the news as just a story providing ten seconds of shared amusement. Thoughtless, sure, but is it harming anyone? Is consuming news media for shallow mindless entertainment worse than doing it order to feel bad, or not following news at all?

Just trying to keep in mind how all the characters have their own stuff going on that makes their decisions make sense to themselves.


Then again, Ken might just be completely unhinged and probably full of shit. Well, we know from Patrick's later revelations mind control is possible, but what are the odds this rando "Puppetmaster" took over a whole city when the world's most singularly powerful telepath doesn't know anything about mind control, and describes it as a purely hypothetical possibility? Compared to the odds of people blaming mind control for bad decisions, psychotic episodes or anything else?

The alt text doesn't even have anything to say on this page. I think it's loudly voicing Alison's thoughts.


Ken's definitely at least somewhat loopy, wow, he's the one whose response to a student who's completely lost for a direction to take her studies is "you could design your own course and study anything you want any way you want." But that could just as well be a lingering confusion cause by mind control or even a statement of beliefs relating to personal freedom I guess.

54, 55

I love the joking robots. The idea of AI developing a running joke, from an actual internalized understanding of humor programmed into them by a supergenius, resulting in wonky-ass random word replacement "jokes" that could have been algorithmically generated by real world computers. Ah, this was a simpler time, before the ongoing techbro scam evolved into capitalizing on investments in algorithmic generation technology which soiled the term "artificial intelligence."


Mostly a bunch of introductions here, and yet what I want to know more about is the story of the wall painting.


I think what Taylor needs is more micromanagement and fewer robots. Mainly more micromanagement. Perhaps Lisa has left the crew a list of devices and where they should go with names that tell them nothing, perhaps they're just super paranoid about anything being a death ray.


Always love a casual, practical use of impossibly superhuman strength.


Aww, the little guys are bad at jokes, they're small.


I'm not frightened by the concept of a thinking machine getting smarter or wiser than any human or just thinking in ways we can't understand, so I don't have much interest in discussing the possibilities of robocalypse arising here. It's mostly cool to learn about Lisa's anomaly to be able to create anything she can imagine.


Judging by this grand introduction and the forthcoming illustrious presentation of Lisa's thesis, "No glory save honor," I suspect it may be what the authors think is the most important of all the comic's important lessons. Or maybe it's just a helpful way of presenting it cause it's a moderately difficult one to fully grasp.

62, 63, 64

I wonder if the bottleneck in developing better "actual" batteries is because of this conceptual limitation, cause we do really take Lisa's batteries for granted. Lighter, cheaper, slower degradation of materials, slower degradation of stored charge, most of all lighter batteries have been badly lacking since like the 1700s and I don't think it's because of some limitation of physical laws. Learning to value the heavy work, the dull, slow, dirty march of progress, would help with a lot of things I think.

Anyway now picture Hector going "but science is hard and boring". ..


Imagine if these doofuses did start a class with this whole premise! Hemmin' 'n' hawin' 101 indeed.


Mystery solved!


I think Lisa's saying more about how her biases and presumptions inform how she thinks Patrick's powers work than offering any relevant psychoanalysis, but still, it's a mystery Patrick doesn't give a good, not-lying answer to.

68, 69

There's so much I could say about the hypothetical conversations I'd like to have with a creation of mine that I think about when reading this, but I'm saving it for a story I'm writing. I think all I an say is this is rather good for two pages of comic. Maybe could have mentioned something about "well that's the origin of the word robot but here it's only meant to describe your origin as an artificial being."


Oh no, Lisa walked right into that one!


"But wouldn't she have backups of those months of coding work?" Not if there's a chance she could produce something that doesn't want to die, wants to inhabit an autonomous body and/or wants to kill everyone, I don't think. Even the bare source code? Well, if it turned out code would compile into that it would be useless, and at that point cutting and pasting bits of it to another project to try and stop it from wanting the things you don't want it to want would probably feel a bit like doing eugenics and Frankensteinian experimental surgery on your own fetuses. Easier to just start fresh.


Being a particularly bad teacher myself, I can only imagine the frustration of trying to teach someone something that was totally, superhumanly intuitive for you to learn yourself. Many, many "I just thought it was sort of obvious"es.


Don't worry Alison, punching the sun is just a metaphor. Unless. . .?

No it's a metaphor for rejecting the superstition of hubris, which belonged in a time when we actually lived in fear of angering divine forces. If you worry about going too far, it's time for a reasonable risk-benefit analysis, not time to remember the lesson of Icarus. Another practical little lesson of the comic.


Now that I think of it, there's a certain logic to Ali's wild conspiracy fantasy that because she's saved the world enough times she gets to do what she wants. If you saved someone's life, at least in a way where they really feel they were about to die, almost anyone would say "Imposing on my time? Asking favors? My skills and resources can be helpful to you? Yes please!" Even if they can only give fifteen minutes of their time on average, to riff on Andy Warhol a bit, if you save just one million people you're set for company for over 40 years. More realistically a significant portion of those million become your loyal army. Maybe not a lot of the world's population feel particularly personally saved by Alison's various actions to prevent doomsday scenarios (seven times over), but if just a small percentage do. . .


I love that simple expression of love in panel 2. Miight even be some pastel paint marauder's coincidental graffiti on the window. And not that I'm not sad about Ali being vigorously heterosexual, but it's still important to recognize platonic and familial love and all that as playing equally important and meaningful parts of a person's life as the overly romanticized sexy kind of love.

And that's it for the good news on this page I guess!


Tandry is such an unlikely name. In my mind I keep correcting it to "Tawdry" and I'm sure I'm not the only one.

And of course here's Furnace, the biggest asshole of them all. I talked before about his infuriating pattern of twisting words and I'm sure it's going to come up again in this chapter where the news just love to report his sensationalized narrative without any reflection or fact checks or contradicting stories, it's just perfectly designed to wind me up.


Aah, perfect moment to touch some grass. The grass around here at this moment is covered by about 150 cm of snow, but I'm doing it vicariously through Alison.


Alison tried Diplomacy! It was a little too late.


Another sort of frightening display of Ali's combat training:

Priority 1: Fight the invisible killer, with any means at hand.
Priority 2: Protect the cute boy's sanity.


Speaking of cool creative superpowered fightin' stuff it's a pity we don't see what Mary's doing for the most part. All we can tell t is that she knows when to stay still and when to deploy distracting illusions (or a distracting dropping of illusion here, possibly) and when to move unexpectedly. How she moves to like, reliably dodge automatic fire, is a mystery, but that she's able to tells us she's really thinking with invisibility and for the most part that's the kind of thing the comic takes pride in showing us the authors have thought about.


Well, she certainly thinks with knives as well. Which is pretty grim come to think of it. There's any number of science fictional gadgets she could deploy for invisible combat that would be as least as quiet and reliable as knives, but from what we see she only ever practiced at stabbing. "I fear the man who has practiced one kick ten thousand times" and that.


Setting up how Mary only targets men who she definitely knows for a fact have raped and got away with it is pretty important but suddenly all I can think of is if the "defense" part of the Department for  Biodynamic Research and Defense refers to making war with or against biodynamics.

83, 84

This seems to be just a huge sidetrack Alison gets pushed into in order to get an independent, unbiased opinion about if it could have been Mary in the room. But it has some fun bits of worldbuilding and medical procedure at least.


"Noted" is probably my favorite line in the whole comic.

The worst thing about the unknowable is that it just shows up as blank spaces under advanced examination. The area around Alison's scar may be the most indestructible thing in existence and, just like Jones, in practice that just means that the material doesn't interact with its surroundings in any meaningful way.

It would be curious to know if Ali's anomaly progresses as much as it does (she will presently learn to fly) because of this reaction to getting hurt or if progressing is just how anomalies tend to work. These people's chromosomes are "unstable" and all.


Hmm why couldn't they just launch Alison into space? At least at this point (uh-oh) she can be completely disabled by even a low end telekinetic as long as they aren't going to lose their shit from a shoe in the face; strength and durability doesn't help her without leverage.

But maybe Doctor R is just kidding. Ha ha cough.

87, 88

Somewhere there's a whole bunch of guys who are angry at and refuse to masturbate to the fictional character Alison because they'll have figured out she can't remove her body hair and looks like a fuzzy adult human without clothes, and that makes me smile.

Okay the funniest part of this scene is still how much Rosenblum is enjoying it.

And what a tremendous line to tell us Ali is proud and happy of her little sister and their fraught relationship may be growing and healing. "Jennifer's stepped up."

89, 90

I think what's interesting here is the conflict between Ali's personally involved perspective and Rosenblum's looking at the bright side of serial murder one, namely, there isn't one. They have this frank exchange of views and nobody has to be right or wrong. Of course Ali is invested in finding the killer after someone gets his throat cut basically in front of her and basically in her name, and of course Rosenblum cares more about the bigger picture she (and Mary) are seeing with a whole different scale of violence happening in the other direction.

My opinion of Mary is the same one I have of Hamas, to delve into current events: It's easy to understand how someone may be radicalized in the face of a world led by people who so aggressively do not want to have to stop profiting from its brutal injustices. As a strategy for forcing people to acknowledge if not address the problem, it may be the only one they have.

And the risk they run is the same: That perpetrating even one tenth of the same reckless, careless violence, the depravity or the cruelty that their enemies who enjoy the favor of society's established power structures do can turn public support against their cause. The resistance has to use proportional force as their oppressor, and "proportional" does literally mean they can only do about 10% as much violence, they can't do any violence of a kind the oppressor doesn't do, and they probably can't get away with doing even half of the kinds of violence they do. If you're the villain, one murder is worse than ten murders and one murder is worse than ten thousand rapes.

And the solution to such kinds of radical movements and individuals existing is to offer more people better choices. Fighting the radicals themselves can only perpetuate or intensify the conditions that foster radicalism. Maybe Alison is wrong in her impulse to simply stop the killer, as noble as that impulse is, but it's hard to imagine how she in her position could realistically consider doing nothing, without even trying to find the killer and trying to talk to her.


Just gotta process things.


Finding a problem you can punch until it goes away is not a healthy or sustainable way to feel like you're in charge of your life, Alison. Well, she knows that. The implication here is that they have talked a lot about precisely that in therapy. Aah, all this rich backstory we only get to see in evidence after the fact.


It might make sense to ask Brad if he can let Mary know Ali is trying to reach her, buut maybe that's a little much to ask. Still, Ali doesn't want Brad to know she doesn't want Mary to know she's coming. . .


Yeah, you do the math. You figure out why Alison would publicly attack Miles (and why she'd do it "near-fatally") and why then arrange to have him killed and why then get on the news as the one who found the body, cause there's no possible way Furnace can make that make sense himself. Does this speech mean anything besides "please ignore that the guy turned out actually was a rapist and that's why the rapist serial killer targeted him"? So full of shit, at this point I think Alison thinks getting interviewed herself and try to get the facts straight would only legitimize his increasingly openly pro-rape tirades.


Yes, Ms Reporter, he is in fact threatening to murder any woman who reports a rape. On television. Promising to murder them, in fact. Somebody's enjoying being above the law a bit too much.

In my headcanon everyone can plainly see that Furnace is an idiot who hates women and immigrants but is actually just all talk and doesn't have the gumption to go on a like, organized hate crime campaign and will only ever hurt people by being bad at using his powers.


Such intrigue.


Dr Evil at this point would grow out his hair to be able to tear it out and lament how Patrick has failed at being a villain so bad even his old murder-happy perfect psychopath mom would be disappointed. NOT sitting in the big chair looking out the window as he receives the hero in his skyscraper lair? Nope, it doesn't occur to him to do these things even as ironic jokes. He just doesn't think like a villain anymore. Apparently.


See it's funny cause Lisa said the same thing, actually I think he's being snarky because he doesn't like that Ali trusts Lisa's ethics more than his.

99, 100

You wouldn't download a brain car dot jpg

Given what we see later on of the structure of Patrick's mind, I wonder if he's as good at copying other people's knowledge, skills, ways of thinking that he thinks he is. He can't read his own mind, he doesn't have the same kind of full picture of himself as he does of others, maybe creating these models he's talking about is like building a car from a memorized blueprint by hand while you're driving it, using pieces of itself. He wouldn't have any way of knowing how accurate he is.


My plan if I had a time machine is going back 60,000 years to around present day Uganda (some more precise time and place would probably be useful to figure out first) and try and teach the first humans that we need to figure out how to get along with each other. If we can do that, if we can decide we're all in this together (to take yet another of the comic's lessons) before we start spreading out all over the world, and if we've got satellite internet to keep in touch and enough food and medicine that we don't need to fight over resources, maybe we can avoid the petty factionalism that has divided our species since, well, at least since they built the Great Wall of China.

Fixing the mistakes of history by killing the right people seems like a very limited way of thinking. Ali is of course distracted and, more key to the scene, everything Patrick is doing here is designed to make Alison stop liking him.


What did I just say about fixing the world by killing people. . .


Sure, Pat might have a point that unshackling Lisa could make her a threat to him, though it sounds more like general worry about an unpredictable factor messing with his plans. And to tie back to what I was thinking about his ability to replicate other people's abilities in his own brain, especially when we're considering a superhuman genius, I wonder if Patrick can even understand Lisa, and if maybe he still thinks he can because he's blind to those blank spaces where his senses can't penetrate. Well, I'd like for her to be better than he thinks she is so maybe I'm pulling all this out of my butt.

104, 105, 106, 107, 108, 109

Overdoing it a bit with the evil monologue, Patrick. That's how you give yourself away after all.


Damn but Hancock was a useless movie. More precisely, two wildly different movies - a fairly creative comedy movie about a superhero alcoholic and a pretty intriguing epic fantasy romance - canceling each other out by occupying the same narrative location. But it has some good moments. I'm thinking of the scenes where Hancock gets angry and sort of makes the ground shake without visibly moving a muscle. Maybe just tapping his toe in his shoe.

Anyway Alison isn't that comically strong but it's still pretty great to send Patrick flying with the sheer force of her rejection.


Or, I guess, the force of her violently surging personal autonomic telekinetic field. But it seems to be triggered by how angry she is so I still count it.


Yeah she figured it out. She figured it out several pages before I did, I was just using the power of rereading.


Why is it so believable that the plot that probably will determine the future of the world turns on a guy's inability to be even a little bit honest and vulnerable at the wrong moment? That is of course not just a moment of weakness, it's what makes Ali realize she's wasting time and lady boners and are giving Patrick more chances than he deserves just for lady boner-related reasons.

Good for her dot jpg lol


Wasn't this what you wanted? To be left alone and not having to open up? Good job on that villainous plan eh.


Patrick in panel 3 is thinking "Because it was rabbit season" and mentally laughing and crying at the same time.


Anyway, to infinity and beyond!


The power of flight is very rare. I don't know if we see anyone do it other than a certain fiery asshole. So given how strange and precious it is it makes the family's reactions that much funnier. From "That's wonderful" to "pff more powers?" to "you gotta hear about these possums in the back yard" in the space of one panel.

That's some quality family-ing.

Also I think Mom knows there's more than the wind in her eyes and happy tears going on. . .


From sad to happy to asshole, what a rollercoaster. Yes, Furnace showing up makes me feel the emotion "asshole."


I mean, now he's pretending to be the casual mass murdering Door Gunner character from Full Metal Jacket, come on.

120, 121

"Don't be a superhero." Lidia got it in one.

Like, I'm trying to be upset at him sterilizing this whole villa, but it was an honest accident caused by rampant insecurity which has kept him from dealing with his increasingly uncontrollable anomaly. I don't think it's as actively malicious as what he said on TV before.


Ah yes, Chris, I keep forgetting Furnace's real person name. It's because I don't care about him. Haha, "perplexing" (aka Libertarian "full Anarchy except with cops to protect me from my slaves" grade) politics, suck it Chris.

By the way, basically every white supremacist is a man with a shitty relationship with his dad. Chris's story is very sad and very believable. (Still, suck it.)


Donald Glover has a bit about all the craaazy ex-girlfriends in the world. (Note: "Crazy" in this context should not be seen as a term for mental illness but rather (admittedly lazily) describing inappropriate interpersonal behavior, bad boundaries, bad impulse control, not keeping promises, etc.) Basically, every guy has a story about a crazy ex-girlfriend, right?  So are women just more crazy than men? Why else don't women have equal amounts of stories about crazy ex-boyfriends? Because if you're a woman with a crazy ex-boyfiend he's going to murder you.

Anyway, back to the Furnace suck-fest. Of course it's all the girls who are just too messed up, it can't be you who's ill equipped for intimate relationships right?

And with a dose of "Everyone wants me to disappear from the public, says man appearing on national television for three days straight."


Yay, back to our beautiful hero going about her ugly business. Well, the discussion on her powers is pretty neat but the action is getting ominous.

The comments here touch on the ethics of the government tracking a whole, specific population of many thousands of individuals. Which, it could certainly be abused, we have seen the gub'mint having an unhealthy interest in their sex lives, but also, we have seen DBRD doctors treating their patients as their patients above all else. At this point in the story it may be well to remember biodynamic people (in the US) are considered victims of a health and humanitarian crisis, and while they have some stricter legal responsibilities than the baseline citizen, they do get free and constant healthcare built around their unique personal circumstances. That's probably the incentive almost everyone needs to elect to keep in touch with the DBRD, concerns about having their anomalies exploited be damned.

Cause, what might be the best part, they seem to have every right to leave the program and come and go as they please. Nobody has been dragged to the doctors as far as we know, even when they were fourteen and no one knew what was going on and it was heavily suggested that parents drag them there there were still kids who never "made themselves known" to the department, as Rosenblum has suggested.

Oops there I go having utopian fantasies again. The comic is just so nice and reasonable.

125, 126, 127

The story of the baboon troop's feminist revolution is of course real, and very symbolic for Mary. If you just kill enough of the worst dudes in the world everything will get better for everyone forever, very possibly. Of course there are some problems with that even beyond the part where when we kill people it makes the policemen flustered and stern (thank you, Queen of Wands) or the difficulty of making some disease or disaster or something target just the right 25% of the population.

For a start, losing that many people will definitely have unpredictable, uncontrollable destabilizing effects on society that will spiral until we lose more of people we wanted to save. The peaceful healthy realigning of social norms would be somewhat lost without a society to have them in. 

But maybe if it happened over a few generations. . .no, wait, murder is still bad.


There's something appealing with the idea of having a totally secret room like this, where Mary can get away with having a whole secret life right under the eye of surveillance. Well, if you're like me, who grew about three cm and gained 25 kg of muscle in under a year just by moving away from home at age 22. My family was never bad to me, maybe neglecting more than anything, but I never could relax for one moment in my entire life until the moment I first locked myself in my own apartment alone.

So, looking at the bright side of the serial murder room.

129, 130

Oh yeah there's a plot happening.


Dislocating a shoulder hurts soo much, and then imagine you've basically never been hurt for the last seven years. Ah but such a credible way to make Alison disempowered and phone-less at just the right time.

132, 133

How observant I am: Figured out now for the first time Alison turned her shirt into a sling. Even with the alt text talking about her wardrobe I'm like "hurr what's clothes?"


The mindgames begin!


Yeah I think if you have to use dehumanizing metaphors for the people you're killing it might not be super cool and positive to kill them. We've already covered the ethics, but I'm more thinking about what Mary is doing to her own soul.


This is the most I've liked Chris in any of his appearances. It's because he's not talking.

137, 138, 139

Whyy must we fight? Okay this is a pretty cool dramatic buildup to get to the line "I came here to save you!"

140, 141

Pity Mary doesn't hear it. Too busy making speeches about her weird presumptions and gender essentialism. Aw but we know her real problem is just being scared all the time, it's hardly worth picking her arguments apart.

142, 143, 144, 145

Have I mentioned that Chris is the worst? Head empty, nothing but self-important indignation. I wonder if his power fluctuation is tied to his anger? And that's why his fire has gotten stronger and more uncontrollable in the last years, as he desperately shrieking has been fighting to stay relevant? There's a good kind of anger that's the emotional response to injustice, and there's the kind of anger that's just covering for fear. . .

Well, now he's killed himself by getting angry instead of trying to figure out what's going on, like where he is for instance. Like what kind of precautions do you think people might have taken to kidnap a person of mass destruction to ensure that he doesn't just blow them up as soon as he wakes up? No? We're just gonna try it and assume they are complete idiots?


This is kind of sweet. The pause to share a little guilt and sadness, maybe even happy that there's nothing more to fight over. And then straight to beginning the disaster response cause they are veteran superheroes.


Justifying doing bad things because "other people do those things too" never works, Mary. Most people go through their whole life without killing another person, and no we don't need to rehash the bold moral choice of doing that, I'm just saying it's better for your mental health. Did you know that out of the American soldiers drafted in World War 2, 50% refused to fire their guns at any Nazis? That was the, you know, Nazis. Turns out killing people is really hard.


Welp, the comic already made some of the same points I did and some of them even better than I did. I probably remember more from previous readings than I think I do.


Could this be the central conflict of the comic? I know it's the central conflict of my life. Torn between the desire to pass through the world causing as little suffering as possible and the desire to give everything I have to change things right now even if it's not perfect.


Nice to have some disaster relief to put your hands into to stop thinking about hate and fear and murder am I right.


I feel like we skipped over a few paragraphs earlier in the chapter. So, Violet moved out of the dorm, I can't imagine because she got any kind of publicity backlash from the Miles affair so I guess just because she felt uncomfortable. Uncomfortable about her roomie being complicit in a rapist getting murdered or getting outed as a rapist? Okay, okay, if we're being charitable maybe it was just the proximity to violence that bothered her. And then she decided she shouldn't have to move since Alison is the one who sucks and passive-aggressived Alison out of the dorm while she was busy being on the news?

With Chris being dead I guess Violet had to step up her being the worst game. Like, there could be ways to have this be a reasonable conversation, but she's just sitting there being too ashamed to speak or look at Alison but insisting that she gets out on the street at this very moment, without borrowing a phone or computer so she can make any arrangements, and take all her stuff so she'll never have to come back, at the end of a very long day, in the rain.

152, 153

But at least, Ali's getting a significant upgrade in roommates. Massive. Astronomic.


There's probably some boring explanation why Lisa can't just release her delightful inventions in the wild without patenting them, so let's just take it as read and be sad that Patrick has a complete chokehold on Lisa's genius and frustrated that Ali can't tell her what's up.


Speaking of sad, owie.


Alright, one point for Violet, she did not specifically set up her ambush after seeing Ali on the news. Now, laying it all out in words, it sounds like the worst day ever. I like how at the end she can hardly get any words out. So damn heavy.

(Don't make a "dam" pun, don't do it.)


Okay this is getting almost too real. Time for cake.

Seriously that epitaph would be the most hateful thing to ever put on a gravestone.


Of all the cool action stuff in the comic's past we never get to see, I feel like the biggest loss is never seeing Lisa wearing her armor.


Yaay, they're bonding. And important emails. And I cannot get over Geoff Green's ridiculous email avatar and AOL speak and horrible jokes. Reminds me, I learned today the US government has a strategic reserve of dad jokes.


Lisa is not having any more than one (1) page of your self-pity, maximum. How I love her.

And there's an idea. A lightbulb moment, if you will. It's so easy to get blown away by that one glorious moment when everything changes, that one spark of light where before there was only darkness. It's so beautiful. 


But ideas are easy. Now begins the work.

162, 163

Okay, a little burst fevered rush of actually getting the idea out first.


They tell you making something is 1% having ideas and 99% having discipline to follow through and do the work, but having connections is also a a huge part of it. . .


Yeah, Valkyrie is not a revolutionary idea. You could even say it's mundane. Just a reasonable, measured step up from women's shelters, using biodynamic powers since they are available. The real strength is just the scope of the organization, that's possible just because Alison is the most famous person in the world; only indirectly leveraging her anomaly. A brilliant first step towards making a difference.


"Ideas are cheap," where have I heard that before? Okay it's a pretty common sentiment, I swear I didn't take that from the comic to put it in my own mouth five pages before. For once.


I've had a pretty long painting of dogs playing poker myself, writing this post. Maybe I'm not saying anything valuable. Certainly I'm not reaching a lot of people. But I'm having fun. On with chapter 6!

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