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The First Roommate

Alternative title: "At least I didn't chop your hair off." So what we really have here is a version of Ellie, that's now far removed from Quinn's rule. She's thought about it. Digested it. And is not in a blinding rage over it. And she has absolutely no reason to spare her feelings. She won't suffer retaliation. THIS is the true character to put her in her place.

79 thoughts on “The First Roommate

  1. KK! It’s small world. Or is part of being Quinn’s room mate that job? It must be buried in the fine print of the contract.

    1. Further thought leads me to the following insights.

      1. Quinn’s bad relations with people are at least partially self fulfilling. She was upset that Ellie would already be prepared to move out (prior to being kicked out) and yet her first reaction when she thinks she’s returning is to call her a retard. This reminds of a few people I’ve known that make themselves extremely unlikable and unapproachable and yet seem honestly confused that more people don’t like them. When this basic hyprocisy is pointed out they to a person retort with “well it’s not my fault they don’t make the effort to get to know the real me” (or some thing very similar).

      2. I can only assume that the room mate Ellie evicted retreated into a drug addled coma to get away from dealing with Quinn. KK left with out confrontation which apparently hurt Quinn. Quinn avoided confrontation with the druggie, perhaps because she “liked her?” And with Ellie she all got all the avoided confrontation back with interest.

      3. I find it amusing that Quinns turtleneck is almost the same shade as her blouse but is darker, making her appear even mor moody. Though I assume she’s wearing it to cover up the bite mark on her arm.

      4. You’re a damn tease for talking about the fat kitty and not showing him in the strip.

      1. Well, let’s look at your comments using Quinn Logic (as I deduce it):

        1. It’s okay when Quinn does it, but nobody else gets to do it. Leaving Quinn without warning is bad, Quinn posting an ad for a housemate without warning the current housemate is okay. Quinn flirting with a guy despite having a boyfriend already is okay, Ellie even talking to Quinn’s boyfriend is bad. Quinn can insult you over and over, even stooping low to really insulting direct accusations of being a slut; yet if you react to this abuse by leaving Quinn, you are abandoning her (Quinn said to Ian “[Ellie] coulda told me… instead of ditching me like this”). Quinn isn’t stupid or evil, so she must just never think about this stuff much. At all.

        Since nothing is ever Quinn’s fault, Quinn must not be very reflective. More evidence she is not very reflective: she was clearly miserable and wished Ellie would not “ditch” her, yet when she thought Ellie was returning she instantly whipped out another cutting insult unprovoked. That’s not the way to mend fences, Quinn.

        Quinn needs someone to really rub her nose in her mistakes and make her realize just how badly she is treating people… oh hello KK, you look like you are in a mood to lecture today.

        2. We don’t know much about the druggie housemate Ellie evicted, other than that Quinn said she wasn’t paying, and Quinn put up with the lack of payment for a while because she used to like her. Quinn never quite kicked out the druggie (“avoiding confrontation”) and also has never really kicked out Ellie… she threatened to pack Ellie’s stuff, but I’m not certain she would have followed through, especially if Ellie had actually paid her. Quinn clearly has a pattern of yelling at her boyfriend, anytime she wants, calling him a moron or other insults, but she hasn’t broken up with him even though she likes Ian. So she wants to have other people around, but mostly so she can yell at them or they can fix her car. (I originally thought the comment “now would be a good time to have friends” might have been a bit of self-examination, but maybe she really was just thinking that she could get the friends to do things for her. Man, I hope KK really chews her out; she needs it.)

        Points 3 and 4, no comment.

        1. I think that Quinn’s comment when her car broke down was more of a Freudian slip revealing what she wants more than an honest reflective statement. Perhaps, even to the point where she was attempting to cut at herself with an insult but in actuality, she was being brutally honest with herself instead.

        2. So what you’re saying is that Quinn and Ellie are/were two sides of the same coin? Ellie had the people skills, but needed to apply the rigor to get the physical resources necessary to lead a decent life while Quinn had the physical resources and/or rigor, but needs to lacks the skills to build positive relationships that will give her the camaraderie she needs.

    2. On the note of jobs, surviving Quinn as a roommate would certainly make managing the mishmash of workers seem easy.

  2. Dang, I wasn’t expecting KK to be Quinn’s first roommate, but it does have a nice poetic ring to it. I hope we get see the continuing fallout of Quinn realizing that she’s not the amazing person she thinks she is.

    Also, I hope we get to see more KK, because she is awesome.

  3. I have to say it *clears throat*

    Dun dun DUN!

    Wow, I NEVER saw this one coming. As much poo as KK can take, as deep and long running as her paitents run, even SHE couldnt take Quinn? That should tell you something, and its not good.

    Whats really sad though is how Quinn seem’s to blame her for just vanishing and not bothering to stand up to her.

    This in turn sort of has me wonder just what kind of home Quinn grew up in to expect people to fight…

    1. Dag nabbit, you should have said, “General, in all my years of covering top secret discoveries with sheets, I’ve never dramatically revealed anything as shocking as this. Dun-dun-dun!”

    2. I just saw something, Quinn seems to be ridiculing anyone who has a crap job. Yet, she has not done that to Ian, completely. She asked if he could ditch the video store, a’la Randal, but he couldn’t. I think that he knew of the “eternal girlfriend status” she was in back then, but didn’t say anything. Or he was playing hard to get. But she has not dissed his DJ’ing. Actually, she seemed to have helped in some small way when she commented on the name and attitude that he had for it.

      I think that Quinn may actually be a shrew, or just shrew-ish to people that do not emotionally confuse her. Ian confuses her, so she’s actually in my opinion honest at that time to every one and herself equally.

      1. Quinn, who has no job, will ridicule anyone who has a crap job. Kind of edgy for someone who doesn’t have to work.

        1. Being a student, is in a sense, a job. Having to put in 1.5 to 2 times the class hours a week for study, getting to class to be on time, getting from one class to another on the other side of campus when you only have ten minutes and fourteen hills that go uphill both ways, labs, writing, re-writing, studying with buddies, partners and et cetera, typing, getting typing paper, and having to deal with a professor that brings in the reality of the business world when having to deal with inane expectations when the margins have to be more than 1 and 1/2 inches and less than 1 and 5/8ths inches. I lucked out on that one, what with two years of typing classes alone, and all of the practice since then.

          Hauling books, art supplies, drafting supplies, portfolios and a myriad of other stuff back and forth from home to school and back.

          And let’s not mention the mooching of supplies, cigarettes and other adult related items. Just the alcohol and food, what did you guys think I meant?

        2. Being a student is indeed useful employ, however, when I was a student, I still had to hold down a job. It was how I payed for college(this was possible in the early 1990s). Quinn doesn’t get to feel superior about other people’s jobs when she’s getting the free ride. And, thanks about the icon, Pat(blush)…

        3. It seems unlikely that Quinn has a free ride – her rent, food, tuition, etc. had to come from somewhere, and it’s unlikely that her source would be indifferent about her squandering it. But that’s beside the point.

          I would amend your comment to say that “Quinn doesn’t get to feel superior about other people’s jobs.” Period.

          If Quinn thinks Ellie’s job is so lousy, what would Quinn have her do? Quit? No, then Quinn’d ridicule her for being unemployed again. Get a better job? What job would be acceptable, in Quinn’s opinion? Or is any job that doesn’t require a degree a crap job? And how easy is it for Ellie to get another job without experience? Maybe Ellie should go to college? How would she afford that without a “crap job” to earn an income? Financial aid? What if it’s not enough? I would very much like to see someone ask Quinn these questions.

        4. Nah, they already established that Quinn’s Dad pays the rent. August 31, 2012 strip had Alex(the dirty hippie) trying to convince Quinn that he should move in, and maybe he should explain it to her father. His rule one is that the applicant be Non-male.

        5. Rent isn’t her only expense. And he’s not paying for her to sit around and troll facebook all day (like Ellie was doing before her parents kicked her out). If she did (treat it like a free ride), Quinn would probably find herself working a “crap job” just like Ellie.

          Nevertheless, it being not-a-free-ride still gives her no right to belittle Ellie for her job.

        6. Ellie would qualify for some assistance now that she’s on her own and more than likely below the poverty line. I’d think that with her being the “Non traditional” student, she could qualify for pell grants and some other financial aid that is not a student loan.

  4. Well this is a complete and total surprise. I have a feeling Quinn is about to get a serious verbal beating, to go with the physical beating she just took.

  5. Did not see that coming either…

    With Quinn’s reaction…could it be she actually kinda liked KK….even if she wasn’t able to show it? She seems quite hurt that KK just “left her”

    I like the turn this is taking :)

      1. Something tells me that you seem to have intimate knowledge of this type of personality. I’m guessing that someone close to you. If I remember correctly, you once wrote that Quinn was based off of someone you once knew. Is this aspect of Quinn’s personality also based off of that someone who inspired her?

  6. Ha ha lifetime!! I love making fun of Lifetime shows.

    Aww, poor Quinn. She actually looks really likable in the 2nd panel. I imagine that when her and Ellie finally become friends that they will talk to each other like that. HA.

    Also, it seems K.K. leaving hit Quinn pretty hard the first time, which is why this time it hurts again, maybe a little worse.

    I’m a little more curious about Quinn’s back story now. Is that something we’ll eventually learn about or something that will remain a big delicious secret?

    either way, love the way everything is going :}

    1. I’m sure KK leaving hurt her. Then she didn’t want to kick out Roommate No. 02 herself – she’d be all alone again. And then she didn’t want to kick Ellie out until she had another roommate in the queue – now she’s lonely again. Abandonment issues maybe?

      Also worth mentioning here is how she didn’t want to break up with Alex until there was some momentum with DJ who-the-hell-is-Ian. Which brings me to my next point: Now that we’ve met the first roommate, when will we meet the first boyfriend? Maybe he, too, is someone we already know? Blind Guy? “Urine Fer Sale” guy?

      1. I would suggest that Army brats either wear their abandonment issues on their sleeves, or bury them just beneath the first layer of their subconscious.

      2. I always assumed Alex was the first boyfriend, if anything the first “official” boyfriend at least. Haha

        1. I don’t really know if there was a boyfriend before Alex, but I can’t help but wonder, considering Quinn’s apparent pattern of relationships. After all, we didn’t know how many previous roommates Quinn had until Tired Guy told us. So who knows how many boyfriends she might have had before Alex?

          Chris. Chris is who knows.

          And while it may concern you which of them might have been “official,” what concerns me is whether or not she officially broke up with any of them.

  7. I can only imagine the conversation between Ellie and KK.

    “Bitch was crazy, so I cut her!”
    “You cut her?”
    “Yeah took the scissors and cut her!”
    “The scissors? What’d you cut?”
    “Grabbed me a big ol’ handful of hair, then SNIP!”
    “Her hair? Snip?”
    “Uh huh. Hair-” *makes scissor snip motion with fingers* “Snip!”
    “B-but this is forbidden. Hair is sacred.”
    “I… I know…”
    “I mean, sure, verbal mockery is acceptable, assuming the subject’s hair is unfashionable or poorly maintained, but the international code of ethics for girl-on-girl combat clearly states that…”
    “I know! ‘Pulling is win, cutting is sin.’ I remember from orientation…”
    “Then do you realize how much trouble you could be in if the high council finds out? Oh god Ellie, what have you done?”
    “I know I know! But… but I didn’t care. Bitch was askin’ for it!”
    “She was?”
    “Yeah, she was, like, really mean and stuff!”
    “Mean, huh? And stuff? Hmm… well I guess it can be overlooked this time. After all, I understand. There was this one girl, an old roommate of mine, who was so terrible that I wanted to cut her hair.”
    “Was… was her name Quinn?”
    *gasp* “How’d you know?”

  8. I really do feel at least a little sorry for Quinn. So lonely and miserable, and almost completely clueless about why. Every so often we see a little glimpse of her more pleasant nature, only to have her squash it as soon as it appears. She is caught in that nasty cycle of “I can’t let people near me because they will hurt me, but oh I want them near.” I have known a variation on that myself (happily less toxic, and well in the past), so I can sympathize.

  9. Crikey!!

    Now we get to see how small the world is getting. Quinn knows of KK and KK. Wow, this blew my mind. At first I thought that KK was there because Ellie was at work and just did not want to go back. (I’ve been there.) But I think that Ellie has better strength of character to do better than that.

    Ian was not the catalyst that was going to kick start Quinn’s maturity on a social scale. But damn, latent passive aggressiveness sure becomes venomous after time. Wait, did I just see long sleeves on Quinn? However, if the fight is the seed, Ian is the fertilizer to the social maturity, then would KK be the catalyst that speeds Quinn into something better. Or could it actually be Jackson. If Mr. Fatty McFatfat was indeed using Quinn’s MP3 player, then I would assume that she bought that tune because of the car ride. And that something in the car ride actually may have made her feel better in some way, albeit unconsciously about herself.

    So, just who is going to help Quinn open her eyes to the truth after someone leads her to it. And just as I thought of that sentence, I had the thought of Quinn doing down to the burger place and getting all bitchy at Ellie, only to have the truth as it is offered to her by Blind Guy. Heh, and Ellie and he would be sitting there chatting until her shift started and Quinn barges in and switches to glowering estrogen on the warpath.

  10. I just noticed, KK does give a damn, but she could not continue to put up with the shrew. The job is no good, you’re not better than me because of your job, what else? You’re boobs are better than mine?

    Could it be that Quinn also has identity issues with her self?

  11. “Stop being YOU” doesn’t sound like the right message in general to direct towards others… kind of of sounds like she wants her to stop breathing in any case

  12. What a suprise to see K.K here!!
    This is really getting interesting, makes me wonder what happend in the past to make Quinn into such a stubborn teenager, i mean, everybody had a period in his or her teens where u thought that “the world is out to make me miserable” all the time.
    It just seems Quinn never got out of it and for some reason refuses to trust anyone..
    If this goes on there’s a high chance the next update shows Quinn slicing her wrists or something couse she does’t want to live anymore…
    I’m also curious what happend to K.K in the past and what her full name is..

    And next time show the cat plz!!

  13. In spite of her “retard” comment, obviously Quinn was not only expecting Ellie to WANT to come back, but expecting to ALLOW her to come back. Or am I reading that wrong?

  14. Increasingly, Quinn reminds me of folks I’ve known who seemed to have the misguided expectation that when they treat people badly constantly, those people will for some reason want to work even harder to gain their acceptance, and are shocked when it turns out treating people badly just makes them not want to stick around.

    Or is it just that it upsets her that all of these people she desperately wants to feel superior to turn out to have other options after all. In a “You are nothing and amount to nothing, how can you possibly not NEED me?” kind of way.

    Maybe both of the above are really the same thing.

    I’m rambling.

  15. More purple clothing to add to my mountain of evidence. One day I’ll figure out your plan and get you.

    So she knows KK. Unexpected, but really cool.

  16. Wow so Quinn is a serial roommate from hell. I really hope she has a good back story as to why she’s such a bitch because if she’s just another 2D character to get fixed by the main character…Well that wold be a shame.

  17. Quinn’s ‘rule’? ‘Guilted for existing’? Look, this is just one reader’s perspective and I offer it because I see a bunch of people commenting. That said, in what way was Quinn ‘ruling’ Ellie? Is the narrative of everyone in the story just going to gloss over the part where Ellie hauls off and physically attacks Quinn-and was in the process of continuing it when Quinn only narrowly got the upper hand? Is the narrative now that Ellie ever said or demonstrated (on screen) to Quinn, “Hey, sorry for that selfish train wreck of my first couple of weeks here when I conned my way in, went into your room repeatedly without permission, used my computer and my clothes and ate my food, and didn’t pay rent up front or (apparently) as I left.”

    I could deal with Quinn being something of a frosty bitch. It’s pretty clear she is. What’s frustrating is the way Ellie gets a white-wash. Did she ever even attempt to square things on those little ‘foibles’ of hers when they first met? That’s a serious question-it’s been awhile since I read the earlier stuff. Is there a *reason* Quinn should have been respectful towards and friendly to Ellie who had, if memory serves, stuck it to Quinn in a variety of amusing ways through her (gradually fading) selfish whimsy?

    I just haven’t seen all of this growth Ellie is supposed to have done. I’m not saying it hasn’t happened, since it may have happened either off-screen or I’ve simply forgotten the strips in which it’s shown. But for this particular reader, this arc doesn’t make sense because the theme seems to be ‘not-so-bad-anymore Ellie takes it to ice bitch Quinn’. Even the former Ms. Quinn’s Roommate botches the high ground: “I’m not here for the drama, but at a sharp word and I’ll proceed to lecture you on what an awful person you are.”

    1. To sum up my personal take, the story seems to be: you don’t have to apologize to people for being a schmuck to them if it turns out they’re an asshole, and it’s not objectionable to attack someone if they mouth off to you. Far from not objectionable, they remain completely at fault.

      1. Well, u do make some good points about Ellie’s behavior when she moved in Raker,but thats not the reason everybody’s on Ellie’s suddenly.
        The reason is that Quinn never accepted Ellie at all and sees her as everything she’s not, Great body,generally able to mingle with ppl ect..

        And the fact that Quinn pretty much yells at her all the time when she got back home and tries to relax and did’t even hear Ellie out about the whole posing thing shows that Quinn still thinks she’s superior to Ellie in everything expect she is’t.
        She’s just a loser who can’t accept reality for how it it.

        And trust me, i know about it, My last boss thought he could yell and abuse his personel and get away with it till i quit after i found a better job.
        He could’t take it at all.
        And Quinn is exactly the same, she thinks she can abuse ppl and tell them they are pieces of shit till they just turn and walk away and leave her clueless.

        1. Weertangel,

          I don’t know if Quinn sees Ellie as ‘everything she’s not’, but body issues and social envy are almost certainly a big part of the initial antagonism. On that level, though, Ellie for much of her life hasn’t done herself any favors in terms of (until recently) embodying many of the stereotypes Quinn applied to her.

          Yes, Quinn’s behavior towards Ellie was childish and unnecessary. I’m not arguing that. I’m just pointing out that there’s a clear narrative up to this point in the story, and that’s that Ellie is the victim here. My point is that she’s not. Even if we set aside the part about physically attacking Quinn, Ellie was a pretty heinous bitch when she first moved in, and for some time afterward. Lying to get the room, using or stealing Quinn’s stuff without permission, inviting dozens of total strangers to help move (openly utilizing sex appeal), not paying any rent. Quinn very likely started off not liking Ellie for some childish reasons, but then Ellie made it easy by giving her a lot of really good ones.

          As for your own anecdotal experience, I can’t speak to that. But as for your boss, the situation really isn’t the same unless you stole from him, avoided work, and lied to get the job in the first place.

        2. Okay, I think that your character analysis has suffered from some omissions here.

          We’ve been seeing Ellie change since her first day. She thought that she could use people endlessly if it seemed to be fun for both of them. I think I’ll call that half a tease. Ellie doesn’t seem to be the type of person who would not mind hanging around with people that she could flirt into moving her stuff for her.

          However, with that said, she didn’t think that it was so awesome when she found her math teacher in her clothes in her room, or the guy sniffing her sneakers a’la Quagmire.

          As far as getting into the apartment, Quinn slipped up with the cat, and that was her fault. However, Ellie did do what Quinn asked in evicting the former renter. It was funny.

          As far as I feel that the character growth has gone, Ellie’s mental abilities have grown in proportion to her cup size since moving out. She’s become maternal, even if it’s to the cat. I have no idea if she was doing Quinn’s laundry as well or not, but she’s being responsible at least to her self in that aspect. Before I go, she did try to continue the appearance of making friends with Quinn when she did get into the apartment.

          She did get jobs to get money, and she kept the job she’s at for at least two weeks when she could have thrown it all away. She turned her work ethics around in less than one day and became a valued employee because of that. While it may be easy to learn how to do all of the jobs there, the ability to keep up with the rushes will separate the keepers from the losers.

          Ellie did continue with her behavior, I believe up to a point. She was addicted to the internet, and we even see that behavior in Alex’s room. There is a distinct difference between Ellie’s attitude before moving in and after moving in. Those stereotypes that you’ve attributed to her from Quinn’s verbal diatribe do not seem to jibe as accurately as you feel that they do. Ellie’s online life was mostly dissing other girls who thought that they were all that and could tell by the numbers on their facebook account.

          There is a distinct difference between someone who wants to have kids in high school and someone who is going to cyber slap around some other wanna be prima donas online.

    2. I don’t think anyone is saying that Ellie is perfect in anyway. I think the biggest issue here is that while Ellie made some minor misjudgments (eating someone’s food and touching their stuff) which it seems were fairly innocent, and it pretty much feels resolved (Quinn never brought that up again either or bugged her about it) it was a one time error and we’ve all done, or had someone do, that. Quinn, however, is making personal (and in my opinion extremely harsh) judgments and definitely thinks she is better than those around her. She obviously doesn’t hear anyone out either, since she narrows in on the fact that she knows better than anyone else so what they say doesn’t matter

      I think what some readers forget WAY too often is that none of these characters are perfect in anyway. They are human and with that comes imperfections. I think most readers have recognized that and that is why Ellie doesn’t get totally nagged on. Because it is realized that she is just capable of being slightly annoying and irritating. I know I can only really speak from my point of view, but to me Ellie’s imperfections are minor if at all understandable in my eyes if you realize Ellie is still an imperfect person (I might have smacked Quinn too if she said that crap about me), minus the issue that you did mention which is that she hasn’t paid rent, while definitely a problem. However I don’t know the whole story as to why she hasn’t since she’s obviously been working hard, and Quinn hasn’t tried to work with her on it either or figure out what is going on. Quinn on the other hand is making harsh judgments that are based solely on her narrow minded views of what people are and what they should be, and I have dealt with those kind of people so often in my life that I’m sensitive to it and therefore I’m on Ellie’s side.

      That isn’t to say that I HATE Quinn. Yeah she is being a butthead but that doesn’t mean that I don’t recognize she has issues (we all do) and that she tries to make people feel guilty over things they have NO CONTROL over (Body type, how others treat them, etc.) as well as making judgments without knowing the full details.

      and Lastly, this is a comic. My comments are usually pretty easy breezy and most of my comments are for fun and I’m just talking to be social and enjoyed the online atmosphere of the comic and its readers. It is easy and requires little effort on my part if I don’t think too hard and analyze every movement. So most of my comments are superficial at best.

      1. Banena,

        I suppose that might be at the root of my difference in opinion: those things Ellie did don’t seem particularly minor or innocent to me. Don’t get me wrong, they weren’t horrid or anything, but nonetheless they would’ve seriously pissed me off. The food thing, for example. Did Ellie imagine Quinn bought that food for her-new, disliked, non-paying roommate? Did she imagine that Quinn thought ‘hey, it’s cool if Ellie opens my door, goes into my room when I’m not there, and wears my clothes and uses my computer without mentioning it at all’ or did she not even consider it? Imagine if Ellie had simply entered a stranger’s house and did so, just because she was a passing acquaintance and they were so unwise as to not lock their front door.

        Quinn never brought it up again on screen that’s true, but the thing is we also didn’t see Ellie every saying ‘my bad’ on it on screen either, so to me these things seem to be a wash.

        Quinn does seem to think she’s better than those around her, even people she hardly knows, and that’s certainly offensive and problematic and Ellie (and her new roommate) are right to be antagonistic about it. My beef is simply this: until *very* recently, Ellie wasn’t very different at all. She had very much the same attitude of superiority and entitlement, and spent most of her time sneering (to herself or openly) at various coworkers. She didn’t make the journey of enlightenment voluntarily-quite the contrary, it was forced on her and only when she was on the brink of homelessness did she finally change her attitude.

        As for body issues, it’s true that it’s not right for Quinn to be antagonistic towards Ellie just because she resents her appearance. I couldn’t agree more. The problem is Ellie’s initial dislike becomes a bit less unreasonable when almost the first things she sees and hears from Ellie with respect to sexuality is ‘here’s a bunch of total strangers to help me move because I’m cute’ and ‘I got through higher end courses in high school through sexual manipulation’.

        My perspective isn’t that the story says Ellie is perfect, and I don’t think I’ve said or suggested as much. My perspective is that the narrative props Ellie up relative to Quinn as much nicer and less objectionable than she (Ellie) is, and that Quinn’s antagonism (towards Ellie) is so offensive that she needs to be slapped around and have acquaintances ‘not here for drama’ tell them what an awful person they are-and then the author’s notes endorse that outlook.

        It feels forced, it feels railroaded, and I tend to gab on about stories I’m interested. *shrug* I’m getting the impression that that’s not gonna change, either-that Quinn’s ‘growth’ if it happens at all will take the shape of ‘jesus I’m a horrible human being, and I was way unkind to Ellie’. I’m interested to see if that impression is accurate or not-it’s been born out so far-and if that happens I’ll likely stop checking the regular updates and just fade out.

        (That’s not, like, a threat or something. OMG a single reader lost! It’s just for people who are thinking ‘shut up already’, for which I wouldn’t blame them.)

        1. They’re both brats. Theyre both spoiled. They’re both negative ions repelling each other. I don’t think either is totally in the right, which I’ve expressed. I don’t intend for Quinn to just have an ephiphany and turn the corner. I intend for her to make a slow progression while still maintaining who it is that makes her her.

          I think losing ANYONE as a reader is a giant loss. But I will never claim to be a literary master of storytelling. So its bound to happen with some whether I like it or not. So I hope you DO keep reading.

        2. The unfortunate truth is that good storytelling is going to lose some readers. As the author, you see how things are going to pan out in the end, you know your characters very intimately, and you have a general direction you’re going with each page. Good storytelling requires those things.

          The audience, on the other hand, starts out as a bunch of confused observers who know nothing, trying to piece everything together based on little bits of information that are presented and digested slowly. Some realize early on that the story is a journey, and resolve to sit back and just enjoy the ride, as they can take comfort knowing they see things more clearly as the story progresses. Others will instead fixate on immediate conflicts, obsessed with determining every outcome before its time, judging the story based on single plot points, and judging characters based on specific actions or attributes.

          As your story and characters become more complex, new conflicts will cause the latter category of observers to oscillate between loving the comic and hating your guts, so as a result you can be sure to lose some of them along the way. But I think that in the end, you’ll be happier with the comic that way.

        3. Good to hear.

          I’ve been putting off starting my own comic for quite some time, but have told myself that whenever I do finally start, that’s the line of thinking I will need so that I don’t get discouraged by the complaining crowd, which will always be there.

          I only hope that whenever I do start I will have the dedication and perseverance that you do.

        4. It really comes down to this.

          Ellie is kind of a brat. Probably an annoying roommate, probably a lot of it can be chalked up to differing backgrounds: Ellie comes from a huge-ass family, so hand-me-downs and shared things are just a fact of life. There’s “your stuff,” but there’s also that huge pool of communal “everyone’s stuff to share.”

          We don’t know what Quinn’s family structure was like but she smacks very strongly of being an only child or someone estranged from any siblings. She’s got a much stronger concept of personal property and ownership than Ellie, and they were bound to clash on that. Sure, it got exaggerated a bit; using the computer is one thing, but wearing Quinn’s clothes was bound to start a house fire at some point and one would think that even Ellie would have considered that before doing it.

          The big difference, and the reason why I’m still part of the “yay Ellie boo Quinn” crowd, is that the two of them have displayed sharply different values and moral character. Ellie violated some fairly strong conventions of ownership by encroaching on Quinn’s things, but has this continued since that initial encounter? Most of us assume that it didn’t happen again; I invite Rusche to clarify on whether Ellie continued on those violations of personal space that are being discussed here.

          We have seen some degree of personal growth with Ellie; she’s still got some rough “brat” edges, but the fast food job has polished those off with admirable speed (which it often tends to do, as I suspect anyone who has worked retail or fast food will tell you). She’s acquired a degree of work ethic that she didn’t have before. A lot of that comes down from the paradigm shift she experienced thanks to Blind Guy, but in the end the choice to change was hers, and she’s taken to it admirably; a week or so isn’t that long, but she’s clearly managed to at least integrate into the environment much better since then. She’s still working doubles, too, which means that it’s almost certainly not down to her simply outperforming the rest of night shift by comparison; she’s at least functioning to some degree during day shift well enough that the day shift manager hasn’t tried to fire her.

          Rambling, rambling, blah. Anyway, we’ve seen evidence of personal growth with Ellie. Much of the comic so far has covered that character arc; it started with getting kicked out of the house, and the harsh realities that started setting in have resulted in real, tangible growth as a character.

          Quinn is much less sympathetic because her character arc hasn’t really gotten off the ground yet, but the leadup to her “redemption” feels more painful because in many respects she just digs herself deeper. Ellie’s worst single action in the comic has probably been her very first; monopolizing the family computer which her younger sister needed for schoolwork, a stupid, selfish act. She was sort of an entitled brat, due to a combination of sheer innocence/immaturity plus a life that has so far been a fairly easy ride.

          Quinn’s worst single action, by contrast, was her blatant and intentional manipulation of Alex when Ian came into the picture. Sure the dirty hippie has hardly been a sympathetic character himself since trying to force Ellie into a kiss, but even so nobody really deserves the kind of treatment Quinn gave him. She strung him along, intentionally pushing him away while she got herself closer to Ian but not pushing him strongly enough that he’d break off their relationship before she was good and ready to do it herself.

          Quinn has displayed traits that are poisonous, self-destructive, and generally highly unpleasant. The longer she goes before reality gets around to monkeystomping those traits out of her, the harder her life is going to be. By contrast, while Ellie has serious flaws, her basic character is much more stable and well-adjusted; most of her blunders have been through immaturity or sheer innocence, and she’s generally seemed to take effort to correct those issues.

          It’s very telling, in particular, that when Quinn was dangling Alex around, Ellie was deeply bothered by it, but Quinn saw nothing at all wrong with her actions. Regardless of their past actions, that episode exposed a very sharp moral contrast between two which left me with the impression of Ellie as a much healthier individual, and that impression has not changed.


        5. I don’t think any of us were cheering for Ellie when she did the annoying things to Quinn. But I for one was cheering for Ellie when she took the blind guy’s advice, walked up to the boss, and asked to work some more; then when asked to work a double, sucked it up and did it. (Her reward was to discover she liked the night work better than the day.) Also, lately she has been working doubles to pay rent.

          She also had a surprisingly understated response when she found out her spherical cat had been duct-taped inside the engine compartment of a car in a strange bid for attention.

          She loses points for assault (especially the biting), and I’m still waiting to see her actually pay some rent. But my point is that we have seen her make a choice to stop doing the worst things she used to be doing and try to improve herself.

          Quinn, on the other hand, has never stopped doing the worst things she used to do… she is still doing them. Her vicious tirade about Quinn eventually taking welfare money to pay for a large brood of illegitimate children… that was really pretty beyond the pale.

          So Quinn’s the star of the current series, and so we are talking about Quinn now. It’s looking like KK will talk some sense to her, and maybe Quinn will make a choice to start acting differently. If and when she does, I’ll be cheering for Quinn.

          I disagree with your “it feels forced, it feels railroaded” comment. We have well-defined characters and we got to this point in the story by Quinn being Quinn. If Quinn stayed like this forever, the comic wouldn’t be nearly as interesting as I expect it will be (because it has been so far).

    1. Fear not, for if the Omniscient of the Acadamia are present, he shall have his comeuppance, for seuth, Seuss? Oh heck.

      Someone is going to have seen him putting that thing up on the board late at night. Probably one of the student janitors, who was so awestruck by the drawing that he/she was transfixed there until campus security came by later early the next morning to see a student worker standing in a pool of water crying about the meaning of the life of Bryan and so long for all of the fish.

      Campus security will have notified the administration because of the incident in which the student worker has had to be committed to the local sanitarium while commenting on space popes and quantum filaments of secular THC attached to the sugar daddies cube. However, when they got the most secure officer in their marriage on site to collect the evidence, it was missing.

      After reviewing the security footage, it is noticed that a dirty hippie was the last individual to leave the building before the student worker showed up for his/her final shift.

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