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Bachelor #1

Much thanks to Bart and Zach from Ramen Empire for filling in for me while I was taking some time off. Vacation ran a bit long, but I'm back. Still plugging away on the next Patreon. I'll have it up as soon as it's ready. Thanks everyone! :D

75 thoughts on “Bachelor #1

  1. Second?

    I’m glad to see these folks aren’t just throwing Ellie to the wolves.

    Still, shed just have Fatfat eat them if they got cheeky.

    1. Wait, does she know him? Han Solo there knows and lusts after Quinn, but I don’t think anyone other than Ian has seen the two of them together.

      1. James was pictured in one of the HS yearbook cutouts during the Lake Hollingsworth talk where the sisters were formally named/introduced as a side effect of the Ellie/Quinn making peace talk (comic Name Dropping, current post date 30 Aug 2013 to be precise, you can see part of his first name at the side too). Seeing how Ellie remembered Ian, she probably remembered James too.

        1. Ah, yes. Thank you, I had forgotten they all went to school together.

          Well, good news for people who love bad news then!

        2. This avvy is mos def Yuno. The one I wasn’t sure about was the previous one I was using when he made the comment.

  2. I just want to know one thing: is Tired Guy paying well enough for this to be worth Ellie’s time, or is this another dead-end to string her along and waste her time?

    I mean, sure, there’s tons of ways this can go bad, but dammit I want to know if it’s at least a lucrative train wreck!

    1. That’s a good point, but I doubt she could be making that much. Her job is to stop Tired Guy from having to refund $60.00 per head. He’s paying Ellie and Durkin to go on a date of (I would assume) at least an hour or two, plus Nena for spending at least part of her time vetting and communicating with users. Even if Tired Guy is paying everyone no more than the Florida minimum wage of $8.05/hour, it’s hard to see how he makes a profit on this arrangement.

      1. It being hard to see how he makes a profit on this arrangement may mean that he doesn’t. We know there’s more going on behind the scenes, just not what it is yet.

        1. A bit of trivia. Even thought the movie CaddyShack was filmed in Florida, the mythical Bushwood country club was supposed to be set in the midwest – in Nebraska I believe. I’m assuming that’s what you were referring to with “Episcopalian priests on a golf course”.

          “I’d keep playing! I don’t think the heavy stuff is going to come down for a few more hours”

    1. I can’t decide if it’s intended to be self-depreciating or if he seriously thinks it’s a good thing to put there.

        1. Not having heard of “Han” as an alternate name for “James”, I’m only reading it as a single-entendre. Now, if his name was John, or Crab…

  3. Isn’t that the guy who was with Ian and Richard at the mall ?
    After meeting with Pumpkin for the first time he might say to Ellie “Pumpkin ? Wow! You sure grew a lot since the last time we meet!” >_<

    1. Based on his reaction meeting Pumpkin, I’d say his reaction would be, “I thought you said you were 15!”

      But he graduated with Ellie. Chances are he noticed her YEARS ago. Maybe even back in fifth grade (though from the picture in the comic Fifth Grade Grudge, only the person blocked by Ellie looks to have his hair color, so that’s speculation).

    2. While James may be somewhat socially inept, he is a giant geek who takes in all the details (at least I think he does, that sort of resonates with me). If anything, he might remark about seeing another blond with similar birthmarks when visiting the comic shop, but I doubt he’d think Ellie was Pumpkin. Heck, with the frequency he was picking up Quinn he probably saw Ellie at one point or another (though with his focus on Quinn he very well could have missed her if she wasn’t right in his line of sight)

      It’ll be an interesting date.

  4. Ellie should cop to knowing James and do this date as an intervention and/or training.

    Also I wonder if James was one of the people who pledged her is soul. I don’t think that would be out of character (for comic James anyway, don’t know real-life James).

    1. Oh no. I just remembered a couple months ago Rusche was asking us for movie mash-ups. I THOUGHT I WAS HELPING MAKE BAD MOVIES FOR PUMPKIN!

      1. Good call. If there’s an upcoming scene with James going on and on in the background that we can’t fully read that Ellie’s ignoring, I think those comment sections have at least 20 panel’s worth of movies for James to be ignored about.

    1. Yeaahh.. not really. I’ll go watch it. I am a Star Wars fan after all. But so far it’s more of a wanting to give the movie a chance than being excited about it.

  5. This whole setup leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

    I have the feeling that a real-life ‘James Blackford’ would end up just that extra ugly bit more disenchanted with the distaff after being used. He wants a woman that he can a)have consensual sex with and b)potentially share his life with, if he follows the pattern of most men on dating sites. Maybe he’s socially retarded, but that’s not a good reason to set up fake dates with him. Much better to do this with a man who’s had some positive reinforcement with women already, someone who isn’t a rejection magnet. Using this kind of man could cause him permanent scarring.

    Ellie is kind of broken product anyway. Nice body, but trying to have an adult relationship with her would probably lead to tears. She’s got way too much rage bottled up. I’m sensing all kinds of train wreck on the horizon; and if there isn’t one, I’d have to credit it to plot physics, not applicable to real-life broken people.

      1. I don’t remember any mention of it ever being centered around the three guys. My recollection is that first arc is centered around Ellie with Quinn a very close second. I don’t remember it being specified, but second major arc I got the feeling would at least still have Ellie as a major character, though not sure for centered. Third major arc was stated to have KK as a central character and take place through the same timeline. I couldn’t find all the references I was looking for, but the wiki isn’t responding and I have this nagging feeling that I had a link to a comment of Rusche’s on Tarra’s bio page which mentioned Tarra’s growth and/or descent into envy being in the second major arc.

        * Comic Ratches (currently dated 11 Oct 2013), author post – states this is the bifurcation point for third arc
        * Comic Pest Control (currently dated 23 Oct 2013), comment by Rusche dated October 23, 2013, 9:47 pm – states KK is a “strip ending character” (I remembered something more but can’t find it)

        I had a couple of other side references, but they weren’t directly applicable and need to get a few other things done tonight so calling it quits at that.

        1. But I thought that it was based on these guys that Rusche came up with as characters. The girls seem to be a major part of the supporting actresses and stuff.

        2. I spend next to no time in chat, have never done the Google Hangout thing, and I won’t touch Facebook. So my information is just drawn from what I’ve seen in comic text, author posts, & comments. I’ve probably missed a few comment pages at times too.

          In other words, there are definitely sources of information out there which I am not adding to my mental archive. What you remember may very well be from one of those.

      1. DDR is the most acceptable form of nerd dancing on a date. Hell, it’s a requirement of you happen to be within 10 miles of a decently functioning machine.

        Serious/real moment to follow, you’ve been warned.

        The state of mind a regularly shy individual might find the self in while playing DDR (or any other dancing type game) is usually more outgoing, as you’ve got to psyche yourself up to doing that stuff in public. If you’re still in the “alright, I can function with other humans!” state of mind, interacting with someone you’d normally be too shy/embarrassed to even look at becomes much easier (gets you out of your shell, in a way). I’m not saying it’s THE solution to ones inability to function around others (especially dates/date potential) but it (or other things that get you so comfortable with yourself that you can get over other uncomfortable feelings for a while [woo brain chemestry!]) can help get the ball rolling, until you’re good on your own.

        Personal experience time: I’ve always been shy/awkward around new people if it wasn’t in an environment where I knew we’d already have something in common (meet at a arcade? Cool, games, easy; meet at a party? Maybe a mutual friend, if even that…crapcrapcrapcrap!). This shyness went at least double for girls (late bloomer on top of that). Anyway, DDR was one of those games I could play pretty well, enjoyed, and got some interesting remarks from others while playing over the years. I was a staple at my local arcades (yeah, there were 2 [past tense of course, they both closed a while back]) and I enjoyed that. I could have fun & entertain others without the awkward initial interactions that I was pretty bad at. After I’d played, I’d still be pumped up, and could easily talk with those watching. Cut ahead a bit, my most recent girlfriend would occasionally frequent the arcades as she had other friends who were quasi-regulars. We had one of our first proper conversations immediately following me playing an extensive amount of DDR. Oncethe ice was broken, everything else became easy. Cut ahead some more (like 10 years) and now I’m married to that same girlfriend (just this past August)

        So, while we joke about it, I can honestly say DDR did help me get married, and that is both absurd & pretty cool in my mind.
        /Serious/real moment

        1. I have nowhere nearly as heartwarming of a story regarding DDR, but I can say a girl I started dating from meeting in ballroom dancing introduced me to DDR when we were dating. I remember the point after we broke up that I finally felt over her in a general sense and nearly immediately deciding that I really did still miss her DDR pads for PS1/2 (which had lived at my place for most of the duration of our relationship). I went and bought a pair for myself soon after that.

        2. )snerk(

          You bought a pair. Don’t say it like that man. While the DDR pads are most definitely inferred, there are too many other things with which an alpha male can use against you in attacking your ego.

        3. I’ve never really cared about alpha male ego attacks, so I don’t worry too much in that vein. If I set someone up for a good joke on accident, then it’s a positive thing for the universe as we all get a laugh (and yes, the phrasing wasn’t intended as a reference to anything but the nicer DDR pads that said GF introduced me to and which are sitting in my living room propped up against the wall near my TV at the moment).


    It’s sort of fitting that James is the first challenger. He has a bit of a Glass Joe vibe about him.

  7. As for Tired Guy and paying the troupe to pull this off? I got the feeling that Esymmetry is jumping the shark tank. I seem to have gotten that he’s looking at a bigger picture than losing individual subscriptions.

    Herd mentality. Not only does he want the guys to subscribe, but he also wants to attract more girls to the site. Kind of like ladies night at a bar. Doesn’t work unless you get some ladies in the door. The more ladies in the bar, the more guys come in, the more is spent on drinks, etc.

    What he’s paying his crew is to grow the website’s overall traffic, and increase profits by not only retaining male members, but attracting female members as well.

    If you hear people enjoying themselves, aren’t you drawn to the scene?

    1. That’s certainly what he’s trying to convince Ellie. He does have at least something he’s concealing from her as well. We’ll have to see what he’s really shooting for later.

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