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Date Written: March 22, 2005
Author: Mr. Pony
Average Vote: 4.2

03/30/2005 TheBuyer: I am going to look at this very, very carefully at least ten times.
03/30/2005 Will Disney: uh pony why did he do that?
03/30/2005 Ewan Snow (5):
03/30/2005 John Slocum: so, okay, that's ava as an old woman? author?
03/30/2005 qualcomm: maybe he could have simply administered the pills necessary for an overdose. why the five, ewan? were you touched by this? fag.
03/30/2005 John Slocum: Snow, when qualcomm called you a 'fag,' it had nothing to do with you. Don't take it personally. Qualcomm uses 'insult' as a way of getting over the hump of uncomfortable, potentially 'frictional' cyber interactions. The anger is actually directly proportional to how much affection he feels for the guy/gal on the business end of the insult. He must really like you. Hi Qualcomm!!!
03/30/2005 qualcomm: no, no, i really meant he was a fag if he was touched by this. you just don't get my code, do you?
03/30/2005 qualcomm (3): anyway, this is pretty, but not very interesting, IYAM
03/30/2005 John Slocum: It's funny, I never get your code in the sack either. Maybe that's why I always hurt you accidentally.
03/30/2005 qualcomm: everyone, when slocum makes references to a homosexual relationship with me, he's not being serious. slocum uses 'gayness' as a way of getting over the hump of uncomfortable, potentially 'frictional' human interactions.
03/30/2005 John Slocum: are there other types of human interactions? Are there other ways to deal with them?
03/30/2005 Litcube: Oh Jesus! Pony, what have you done!?
03/30/2005 The Rid (3): Underwhelmed. Though I like the one panel that shows emotion on The Fyornch's face.
03/30/2005 Ewan Snow: I gave it five because I liked it. Wasn't "touching" or "funny", but merely good. Also, I think they should send the Fyornch down to Florida to take care of that Schiavo jerk.
03/30/2005 Partytime: It appears that the water glass is meant to look nearly full. How could she take all those pills with only a sip of water? I mean old people have notoriously dry throats. My initial thought was, well Ava or Fyorch refilled the glass after the pill popping. But that's the sieve you wanted us to fall into. The keener among us would pass beyond, realizing your true intention. But the glass is empty! Or, wait...is it full? I think you've craftily hidden a metaphor in this short. If we view the glass as full, life is death. As empty, death is life. Duh.
03/30/2005 Jon Matza: I think maybe Ava wanted to be put out of her misery & was making a mute appeal to Fyornchy. Uber artwork (esp panel two), author!
03/30/2005 Partytime (4): Man, you should have Fyornch walk outside and it's all of a sudden Spring. That would be poignant. I like the pretty colors. I can't stop talking. blah blah. goodbye
03/30/2005 Litcube (5): Yes. I was going to say, panel 2 was especially vivid. You’ve set an excellent mood here, Pony. This week has been 'mood week' on acme. I think Ava’s hair, drugs (amoxicillin?), and glasses are an indication that she’s old, and perhaps dying of old age. Artistically, you’ve written just as good a story here as most literary pieces on this site. I also prefer the title 'Last Day' to 'Ava’s Last Day'. I’m very sad right now, by the way. Seriously. I'm rating this based on the intensity of the emotional fucking response I'm experiencing right now. That's right: Emotional Fucking Response.
03/30/2005 Phony Millions: What kind of emotional response, fucker? I didn't get much emotion from this one first time through, I'm curious.
03/30/2005 Klause Muppet (5): This is a good closure to the series. I admire your work author. I guess the F learnt from last time that fucking a dead body won't bring it back to life. Goodbye Ava!
03/30/2005 Litcube: Phonez: Formulating.
03/30/2005 Litcube: [Bloop. Bleep. Bloop. Bloop.]
03/30/2005 Ewan Snow: And qualcomm, I don't see how my sexuality has any bearing on the subject at hand. I happen to have a thing for death bed scenes; they interest me. I know you hate them. You're always like "Death bed, death bed, why won't everybody shut up about their death bed?!" (That's an actual quote, folks!) Not me, I don't think people think about it enough, like Tolstoy says. Also, I hate to say it, but I sort of liked this short for political reasons. I don't like this "culture of life" crap that the republicans are driveling on about, and so appreciate this euthanasia tale, even though I wasn't certain that the Fyornch intended to kill her.
03/30/2005 TheBuyer: I think he not only meant to kill her for her sake but that he also ripped off her face to remember her by but I'm done looking at it very carefully yet. Also notice the water glass through the eyeglasses, it's way off kilter from the thick lenses; very cool little detail.
03/30/2005 Jimson S. Sorghum (4): She looks pretty vacant (ahem). I wondered if she was already dead, or at least dead in the same sense old Ter' is dead.I'm at about 3.5. But I think you deserve the 4, Pony, for being so very brave.
03/30/2005 scoop: "Hey Bill what's going on. Oh so you guys are going to the bar tonight? Sounds like fun. No, sorry, I can't make it. I'm going to be BUSY THINKING ABOUT VARIOUS DEATH BED SCENARIOS. Yeah right, just like Tolstoy said. I agree, people totally don't think enough about that very particular thing."
03/30/2005 TheBuyer: I'm gonna have a def bed. pretty fly huh?
03/30/2005 Ewan Snow: Poor scoop. Are your feelings hurt?
03/30/2005 Ewan Snow: Also, I like how TREE-ish your point is: going to bars with the cool guys versus thinking about death like some kind of nerd. It's true: awareness of one's mortality is the pocket protector of existential experience. Nice work.
03/30/2005 Klause Muppet: I agree with Jimpson. She's already dead. Possibly from the pills. F looking out the window could represent time passing, therefore he's waiting for her to die. Then, once she's dead, he rips off her head.
03/30/2005 Litcube: Phony: I guess I’m a pretty sensitive fucker. We’re used to seeing a youthful, energetic, and carefree Ava. Now she’s old, and it doesn’t look like she can do much besides stare forlornly out the window. This is similar to the feeling I get when I see Bambi and Thumper all grown up. They’ve shed their charm which instils a sentimental sense of longing for the past; we’ll never see them sliding all over the ice again. Secondly, if I’ve read this right, Ava’s old now, and that fact is suggesting to me that her and Fyornch have been friends for quite some time (20’s to 60’s, perhaps). Her best friend of 40 years or so killed her (note: this is sad). Lastly, the autumn setting, for whatever reason, seems to inspire a sense of solemn finality.
03/30/2005 scoop: Hey Snow, I like how SNOW-ish your response is a -- calculated, practiced bit of condescension to deflect any criticism from yourself being a self-aggrandizing douche bloated with hot, stale arrogance. What's wrong big guy? Can dish it out but can't take it? If you would like you can replace “bar” with "poetry reading" or “film festival” or "heroin party" for that matter. Either way your “poignant” observation requires a level of audacity that is alarming. It sure is surprising how a smart guy like yourself can say such inanely flighty things. But I guess it’s not all your fault. Your trying. (5ish I3)
03/30/2005 Klause Muppet: Ava's physical appearance tells us that she has grown old (or perhaps her body is decaying after being dead for a few days). On the other hand, the F does not look any different then the previous strips. Does the F not age? How old is he? Is this an Arwen and Aragorn situation? I'm just trying to make conversation that isn't insulting to one another.
03/30/2005 TheBuyer (5): Klause, I'm starting to like the "she's already dead" interpretation. I'm also wondering if he'll just go on forever like Duncan MacLeod as opposed to that elf thing. The girl elf wasn't likely to go shacking up with just any mortal, she was -really- into that dude, but Highlander had a bunch of families/women and he watched them all die over the years in a variety of ways. Also, I'm a big fag, a big one, so five stars. I don't know thing one about drawings but I really like the colors, broken lines of the borders, the curtain tail sliding just slightly out of the frame, points of view used, and the clarity of the expressions, the big, stupid 'autumn' metaphor, and the onomatopoeias.
03/30/2005 Phony Millions (4): Having read Litcube's comments below and Snow's, reading this through one more time, I get the drift more. You have to stick with Pony a bit.
03/31/2005 Ewan Snow: Scoop, I can take it just fine, thanks. I just thought it was funny that you haven't said a word on the site in a while, and you suddenly show up with such a half-baked bit of sarcasm directed at me. And what's your point? That my post was too "flighty"? Sorry for not sticking to your prescribed level of ironic distance. Please let me know of any further "criticisms", so I can be sure not to deflect them. You're just looking to pick a fight, but I'm not in the mood.
03/31/2005 John Slocum: Oh shit, this is pony!
03/31/2005 John Slocum (4):
03/31/2005 qualcomm: i think this short fails in a couple of interesting ways.

1) as a piece of sentimentality, it's overburdened with cliches. the tone is a cliche. the autumn leaves are a cliche. the curtains blowing in are a cliche. the whole mercy killing trope is a cliche/idiom. i am far too sophisticated to be moved by a bunch of cliches, even if they are prettily rendered. these cliches are unmoving, by the way, because they're manipulative, and obviously so. they're shorthand symbols for feeling that should have the same effect on a person of substance as sentimental music swelling in a movie.

litcube said that the implication of how many decades the fyornch and ava have spent together adds to the sentiment. i disagree. there hasn't been a sufficient accretion of details for that feeling to be there. now, take the final calvin & hobbes strip, where they run out to play in the last panel. that was touching. we'd been reading the strip for nine years, and detail upon detail had accreted in that time. this short is what? the fourth in the series? it's like i've read three calvin & hobbes sunday editions, and then skipped right to the last one ever. it's not going to have much of an effect on me. i'm not saying that you couldn't make a moving, one-off strip. you could, but it'd have to be more original than this.

now, i realize that pony knows all of the above listed items are cliches, so maybe the intention was (also) humor. see point 2.

2) hello. thank you for joining. if there is a joke in this short, i think it is to knowingly take a very cliched scene and inhabit it with the recurring characters you've come to know. but this technique itself is totally timeworn as a humor device. it's the sort of gimmick that a sitcom relies on its 8th season: frasier goes out disco dancing in a white three piece suit (such an episode never happened as far as i know, but you know what i mean). this technique can work if you choose a more obscure/unlikely cliche. eg, when homer is jealous of bart's big brother mentor, and speaks angrily to bart with his back to him as he prepares a glass of whiskey at a sideboard we've never seen before.

of course, pictures are different than words, and the joke/emotion can be in how something is drawn. if that's the case here, i'd like to hear how these drawings move you assholes. or, of course, refute any of the above points. thank you.
03/31/2005 Litcube: I'm nodding slowly through most of your points (especially Calvin & Hobbes reference). Wincing at tough criticism on likening this to cliché. I saw it as effective use of symbolic imagery.
03/31/2005 Ewan Snow: They’re definitely clichés, or at least well-worn short-hand symbols, but I believe they were entirely intentional: here's some autumn leaves and some spilled pills to indicate the end of Ava's life. But I didn't think they were supposed to be ha ha funny, just because they were intentional. It was more of an ambiguous level of irony. As if Pony were saying here's this "touching" scene, you know the story. I found it neither hilarious nor moving, but did find it interesting and enjoyable. And at the risk of being accused of flightiness (the worst fear of a total ditz like me), I’ll repeat that I have a thing for death bed scenes. In this case, the fact that they’re clichés only adds to their interest. I find it interesting that the thing we spend our whole lives desperately avoiding, even though its 100% inevitable, has become a cliché, has its own set of well-worn symbols, and is dismissed as frivolous a subject. In fact, I’d say I liked this one for almost the precise reason you didn’t. I understand that the point I’m making is subtle (or maybe even downright vague), but I’m just trying to explain the appeal of this short to me.
03/31/2005 Dick Vomit: Panel 2 is the best looking Fyornch/Ava panel to date. At least, that's how it looks from here, in LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA.
03/31/2005 TheBuyer: What happened, fall asleep on the bus?