Act 5 Act 2, Part 4 of 32
Pages 2784-2792 (MSPA: 4684-4692)
Welcome to post 31 of this whole big project. Honestly this is just filler text to make the gap between the title picture and the following picture less weird.
I wonder if this picture was deliberately meant to give an M.C. Escher vibe or if it’s just weirdness arising from visual callbacks (in this case calling back to the view up from Terezi’s hive).
Also, we can infer from John’s lack of panic sitting up here that he doesn’t have any fear of heights. Come to think of it, pretty much nobody in Homestuck seems to have fear of heights.
— ectoBiologist [EB] began pestering arachnidsGrip [AG] —
EB: hey vriska!
EB: ok, i still cannot find my nanna up here, so now i am just installing this game.
EB: what are you up to?
AG: John! What the hell. There are so many things wrong with what you just said.
AG: First of all, who told you you could just hassle me without warning like this? That’s not how this works!
EB: why not? you guys do it all the time.
AG: Yes, 8ecause we are trolling you! Those are the rules. We get to 8ug you any time we feel like, and you have to sit there and t8ke it like a chump.
AG: I am too 8usy to 8e fielding your nonsense at the drop of one of your a8surd human hats. I have a ridiculous num8er of irons in the fire. You will speak to me only when I am ready to contact you, is that clear????????
EB: that’s dumb. i’m going to talk to you whenever i want!
Here, John is giving Vriska a status update out of his own will. I thought up some reasons last post as to why John feels the need to keep in touch with Vriska, and it’s still pretty interesting, especially because John is contacting Vriska rather than the other way around.
AG: Secondly, I am very pissed off that you figured out my name.
EB: well, i didn’t know it was your name for sure until you just told me now.
EB: so, haha.
AG: Who told you?
EB: heheh, i am not telling.
EB: a true wise guy never reveals his tricks.
AG: I will find out who told you. And then I will m8ke them p8y.
EB: nuh uh!
Here John is messing around with Vriska. He’s done that with other trolls (especially Karkat), but it still seems pretty indicative of a dynamic between them that he’s pulling Vriska’s strings or whatever. I’m not sure if I’m using the right idiom here.
EB: anyway, i was just wondering if you had a chance to watch that awesome video i linked you to?
AG: What video?
EB: you know…
EB: the one about the renegade hero who busted loose from the slammer to save the day.
AG: John, the way you descri8e movies makes them sound extremely stupid. Why would I want to watch this crap????????
EB: just do it, you won’t be sorry.
EB: i mean, when you are not so busy and have less irons in the fire or whatever.
John’s awful taste in movies is always amusing.
EB: ok, i am starting this game now and saving jade, like a street tough maverick with nothing to lose.
EB: see ya, vriska!
EB: oh, damn…
AG: What is it now!
This is John’s reaction to being bugged by Karkat. Callbacks (in this case to Dave being bugged by Karkat) aside, it’s a bit weird how John reacts like this when he’s warmed up to Karkat and thinks he’s amusingly dumb at worst.
You guess you can spare a moment to watch this terrible video. Why does that nerdy kid have to be so persuasive?
This narration line gives specific mention to John’s skill in persuasion. Vriska watches the video and…
If I remember, Vriska never admits to John that she thinks Nic Cage is super hot. And that’s probably for the best. As I’m writing this, for the first time ever, I’m contemplating John and Vriska sitting on a couch watching a massive marathon of Nic Cage movies. If John opted to join the post-retcon meteor crew, which it’s easy to forget totally could have happened, then there’s no way he and Vriska wouldn’t do just that.
CG: HEY SHITHEAD YOU ARE IN HUGE TROUBLE.
CG: A WORD WITH YOU AND YOUR FRIEND.
EB: oh no.
EB: which conversation is this for you? your second or so?
CG: WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT
EB: i mean…
EB: the second time you have spoken to me?
EB: or first??
CG: JOHN, FOR ALL INTENTS AND PURPOSES, THIS IS OUR TEN MILLIONTH CONVERSATION.
EB: i thought you were going backwards though.
CG: I WAS
CG: GOT BACK TO THE BEGINNING
CG: AND THEN JUMPED AHEAD AGAIN A BUNCH OF TIMES.
CG: STOP BEING SO LINEAR, IT’S GETTING OLD.
CG: NOW I NEED YOU TO JOIN THIS MEMO SO WE CAN DISCUSS SOMETHING IMPORTANT.
CG: CLICK THE AWESOME BANNER I MADE.
John’s reaction to Karkat here is neutral, but Dave’s reaction exemplifies why he and Karkat immediately clash:
CG: HEY SHITHEAD YOU ARE IN HUGE TROUBLE.
CG: A WORD WITH YOU AND YOUR FRIEND.
TG: i thought you were asleep
CG: YES DAVE, I WAS ASLEEP AT ONE POINT.
CG: IT STANDS TO REASON I AM NOW AND WILL ALWAYS BE ASLEEP AT EVERY POINT ON ALL TIMELINES.
CG: THAT REALLY MAKES A LOT OF FUCKING SENSE.
CG: NOW YOU, ME, AND EGBERT NEED TO HAVE A CHAT.
CG: HERE I MADE A COOL BANNER USING SOME OF YOUR SHITTY EARTH CLIP ART.
CG: CLICK IT.
TG: not cool
TG: luring me into your cyber boobytrap with shitty clip art who told you my weakness
CG: IT’LL WORK, WON’T IT?
I think Dave actually meant it when he said that his weakness is shitty clip art. The whole thing about Dave and Karkat is that they annoy each other, even when they eventually consider each other good friends and get over their differences. The sudden apparent absence of rivalry post-retcon replaced with apparently giggling (?!) is part of why I don’t think the idea of them being in some kind of ambiguous relationship makes sense. You know what? In the memo that follows, I’m going to challenge myself not to about how godawful of a pairing those two are.
DISCLAIMER (9/23/2019): As hilarious as this memo is, please take my commentary with a grain of salt. I was in huge denial that Dave and Karkat as a romantic pairing were even remotely viable, which is kind of funny because those two characters are quite clearly in denial too. Makes this whole pesterlog kind of hilarious to read in retrospect, like in a “what the fuck was I even THINKING” sort of way.
CURRENT turntechGodhead [CTG] RIGHT NOW responded to memo.
CURRENT ectoBiologist [CEB] RIGHT NOW responded to memo.
CEB: ok, i am here.
CEB: oh, hi dave!
CEB: what is going on in here?
CTG: some kinda asshole rumpus looks like
Here we can see that John willfully joins the memo, but Dave does only I guess to shut Karkat up?
?CG: THIS IS AN IMPORTANT CONVERSATION WHICH I BELIEVE NEEDS TO TAKE PLACE HERE AND NOW, SO YOU WILL BOTH SHAPE YOUR SHIT UP AND PERHAPS BEGIN TO APPROXIMATE PEOPLE WHO AREN’T EXCRUCIATINGLY RETARDED.
CTG: ok later windbag
?CG: STRIDER FUCK OFF
?CG: AND BY FUCK OFF I MEAN FUCK OFF RIGHT BACK HERE AND LISTEN, YOU INSUFFERABLE PRICK.
CEB: yeah, dave, don’t go!
CEB: i think we should listen to what he has to say.
John does honestly think Karkat is going to say important stuff, but Dave thinks this whole thing will just be stupid.
?CG: SO DAVE, TRY TO KEEP ALL THOSE SICK FIRES CHECKED AND THOSE STOIC LIPS PURSED FOR A GOD DAMNED SECOND
?CG: AND TAKE THIS SIMPLE BIT OF HATEFRIENDLY ADVICE:
?CG: STOP HITTING ON TEREZI IMMEDIATELY, IT’S FUCKING EMBARRASSING TO WATCH.
CEB: haha, dave you’re hitting on terezi? really??
CTG: but whatever he thinks im doing im not going to stop
CTG: the guys jealous obviously he thinks his girlfriend has a thing for me and you know what hes probably right
CTG: but what else is new just another lady from outer space mackin on me whatever chance she gets
How does Karkat know Dave is “hitting on Terezi”? Does he look over Terezi’s shoulder at her computer? Or does he just watch what Dave sees through his iShades?
CEB: karkat, is terezi really your girlfriend?
?CG: GUESS WHAT THIS CONVERSATION IS ABOUT! NOT THAT PARTICULAR TOPIC.
?CG: ALSO GUESS WHOSE BUSINESS THAT STILL ISN’T, FUCKING YOURS, THAT’S RIGHT.
CTG: pretty sure she is
CTG: or he thinks she is or something
CTG: made it pretty obvious when he started ranting at me months ago
From what Dave said here, apparently Karkat trolled Dave at least a little more than just this one time. He said earlier that he will only troll John and Jade, but apparently he’s just that pissed at Dave.
?CG: EVEN IF THERE WAS ANYTHING GOING ON, WHICH THERE DEFINITELY [OOPS TIME TO MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS AGAIN, ASSHOLE!]
Come on Karkat. If she really definitely wasn’t your girlfriend, you’d say so.
CTG: sounds like its time to get a clue she is over you dude
Here Dave gives a bit of semi-sincere romantic advice amidst a huge load of sass.
CEB: what’s a quadrant? how many do you have?
CTG: john god dammit stop embarrassing us
CTG: first of all weve got to be on record here as not giving a shit about that
CTG: second obviously theres gonna be 4 quadrants come on
?CG: JOHN, I TAKE BACK EVERYTHING I SAID ABOUT YOU BEING THE SMART ONE.
?CG: DAVE IS NOW THE LEADER, EVEN THOUGH HE’S A SMUG SHITSTAIN WITH SHADES AND A POKER FACE.
?CG: IF THERE WERE FIVE, THEY’D BE CALLED QUINTDRANTS, GET IT???
CEB: wow, okay!
CEB: who cares, jeeeeeeeez.
?CG: YES, EXACTLY. WHO CARES?
?CG: AS FASCINATING AS A LECTURE ON ALL THAT WOULD BE, IT’S NOT WHAT THIS IS ABOUT.
Although Karkat always puts up an image of a triumphant powerful leader, he freely admits to a fascination with romance.
?CG: WHICH BRINGS ME TO A RELATED POINT OF BUSINESS.
?CG: JOHN, DON’T THINK I DIDN’T NOTICE HOW MANY E’S YOU JUST TYPED THERE.
?CG: THAT’S GOT TO STOP TOO.
CEB: what does?
?CG: STOP TALKING TO VRISKA. I’M FUCKING SERIOUS.
CEB: no way. vriska’s cool, i’ll talk to her all i want!
John freely admits that he thinks Vriska is cool. Is it because Vriska gave him the impression that she does care about him to an extent?
?CG: I DO ACKNOWLEDGE THAT AS MUCH AS IT MAKES ME SICK TO MY VARIOUS BITS OF ALIEN PHYSIOLOGY YOU’VE NEVER HEARD OF, THESE GIRLS ARE CLEARLY FLIRTING WITH BOTH OF YOU PRETTY HARD.
?CG: THE FACT THAT THEY HAVE SWEPT YOU BOTH INTO THEIR SICK ASSASSINATION GAMES IS SADLY WHAT MAKES THIS OBVIOUS.
?CG: THAT’S WHAT THEY DO.
CEB: are you saying that vriska is interested in me?
CEB: like, romantically?
?CG: EGBERT JUST EARNED A FEW BRAIN POINTS!
?CG: HE HAS REACHED A NEW RUNG ON HIS ECHELADDER, “EASILY OUTFOXED BY SIMPLE UTENSILS”
?CG: OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT
CEB: oh man.
?CG: YES LET’S ALL HAVE A GREAT BIG OH MAN OVER THAT
?CG: AND THEN FUCKING CUT THE HORSESHIT FOREVER. SOUND GOOD?
CEB: i’m not sure what to think about this.
Only from Karkat telling him does John realize that Vriska is into him. And he totally rolls with it, like someone told me that the kid I’ve been talking to has a crush on me. I’m not sure how I would react to such a claim from someone.
CEB: dave, what do you think i should do?
CTG: i dunno
CTG: do you like her
CEB: well, like i said, i thought she was pretty cool…
CEB: kinda bossy! but also pretty friendly.
CTG: yeah ok
CTG: but i mean
CTG: anything more than that
CTG: if earth wasnt destroyed and she werent in some other universe on a planet full of unspeakable frothing dipshits
CTG: and she was on earth visiting your town or something
CTG: would you want to ask her to go see one of your dumbass movies
CTG: like the new maconnohey jam where he smirks and like all but deliberately draws the audiences ire like a goddamn magnetron
CEB: um, wow, i don’t know.
CEB: i mean, yeah, sure it would be fun to do something like that with her, i think.
CEB: beyond that, it’s a little confusing!
CEB: i don’t think i have ever actually liked a girl before in that way, so i am not really sure what i am supposed to feel or do…
This bit brings the scene where Dave and John talk about Roxy to mind, where Dave finds it pretty obvious that John is interested in her. This makes me wonder, when John met Roxy, did he catch on and realize she was into him? It’s hard to say; he probably hopes that she’s into him.
CTG: i dunno man doesnt sound like you really got our interests in mind here
CTG: you just sound kinda bitter
CTG: did one of the human ladies reject you
?CG: OF COURSE NOT.
CTG: how did it go did you stand in a quadrant like you were playing four square
CTG: holding a bucket full of flowers or slime or whatever and jade was like no thanks bro
CTG: is that how it went down
?CG: YES, YOU FIGURED IT OUT! YOU ARE A SAVANT OF XENOBIOLOGY DAVE AND I SALUTE YOU WITH ONE OF MY MANY INTERGALACTIC SPACE TENDRILS
?CG: (THAT’S FAKE, I MADE THAT UP TO FUCK WITH YOU)
Here Karkat specifically says he was sarcastic. Dave hardly ever says he was kidding when he’s saying one of his sarcastic things.
?CG: I SEE NOTHING BUT A COWARD BEHIND DARK EYEWEAR CLEARLY DESIGNED FOR WOMEN AND A PAIR OF IMPUDENT LIPS PURSED SO TIGHT IT’LL SOUND LIKE AIR SQUEALING OUT OF A BALLOON WHEN I PUNCH YOU IN THE GUT.
CTG: oh god stop talking about my lips thats the second time
CTG: ok youre clearly gay and youve probably got some issues about it dude
This is might be one of Dave’s weird supposed “sexuality cover up” things like he talked about that one time, joking about homosexuality in order to avoid facing issues or something like that. I’ve said before that I find that repressive stuff sort of weird (not in a good way) and excessive complication-ish, and covering up those supposed insecurities almost seems like retroactive justification for the more sensitive content featured in earlier parts of Homestuck mixed in with some kind of fanservice (hey you can ship Dave with boys now!). But I’m getting dangerously close to breaking the promise I made earlier, which is a lot easier to follow than I thought it would be.
?CG: AND JOHN, PURELY HYPOTHETICALLY, IF ONE OF US IN THE FUTURE DOES MAKE SOME SORT OF SOLICITATION YOU DON’T QUITE UNDERSTAND…
?CG: BECAUSE OF PERHAPS SOME CULTURAL DIFFERENCES
?CG: I MEAN NO ONE IN PARTICULAR HERE
?CG: MAYBE TRY TO UNDERSTAND THAT PERSON MIGHT NOT BE THINKING TOO CLEARLY AT THAT MOMENT
?CG: IT MIGHT BE THE CASE THAT THIS PERSON HAS GOTTEN TOO WRAPPED UP IN A SORT OF CALIGINOUS IDEAL
?CG: AND GET CARRIED AWAY, POSSIBLY SO MUCH SO THEY WERE BLIND TO HOW COMPLETELY FUCKED UP AND WEIRD IT WOULD BE TO PURSUE ANYTHING LIKE THAT WITH ANOTHER SPECIES
?CG: ESPECIALLY ONE THAT DIDN’T EVEN UNDERSTAND THE CONCEPT OF A CALIGINIOUS RELATIONSHIP
It seems to me like Karkat didn’t find trolls and humans being together anything unusual at first, but when he learned about Terezi and Vriska hitting on Dave and John respectively, he decided that both were ridiculous and messed-up pairings and concluded as such for all troll/human relationships.
?CG: WE’RE ALL SORT OF COOKING UP A PLAN RIGHT NOW.
?CG: MY RIGHT NOW.
?CG: WHICH IF SUCCESSFUL, MAY, AND I DO STRESS MAY, END UP WITH ALL OF US MEETING FACE TO FACE.
?CG: AND WHAT I’D LIKE TO AVOID IF AT ALL POSSIBLE
?CG: IS TO HAVE THIS RENDEZVOUS INSTANTLY DETERIORATE INTO A LOT OF REVOLTING TROLL/HUMAN SLOPPY MAKEOUTS.
?CG: THAT WOULD JUST RUIN IT FOR ME, OK?
?CG: REALLY THE ONLY SCENARIO THAT I AM SURE WOULD CAUSE ME TO REGRET SUCCESS. GOT IT?
Karkat being so adamantly against troll/human sloppy makeouts is another reason why he and Dav—oops I broke my promise.
?CG: SERIOUSLY, WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU GUYS?
?CG: I SHOULDN’T EVEN NEED TO BE SAYING THIS.
?CG: GOD DAMMIT, IT’S NOT EVEN LIKE YOU DON’T HAVE ACTUAL HUMAN FEMALES NEARBY FOR ACTUAL BIOLOGICALLY VIABLE MATESPRITSHIPS!
?CG: DO I HAVE TO DRAW YOU A DIAGRAM???
CEB: rose and jade?
CEB: so, uh…
CEB: you want us to like, date them?
?CG: WOULD IT REALLY FUCKING KILL YOU TO CONSIDER IT??????
?CG: I MEAN GOD. WHAT DO YOU EVEN THINK YOU’RE DOING HERE IN THIS GAME?
?CG: YOU’RE CREATING YOUR OWN UNIVERSE TO GO LIVE IN.
?CG: AND JUST HOW DO YOU THINK YOUR SPECIES IS SUPPOSED TO REPOPULATE ITSELF??????????? IDIOTS.
That’s actually a good question. Since about halfway through the trolls’ arc, the matriorb has been touted as the ultimate key to repopulating the troll race. But there’s nothing like that for the humans. I don’t even feel like doing the math to see how much we can get from the eight kids we’ve got until we get inbreeding. A common theory is using ectobiological equipment to clone existing humans. What if John decides to use that to fill the world with clones of all his favorite celebrities?
This is Karkat’s shipping grid, a true artistic masterpiece. I’ll say stuff about the kids’ later reactions to the shipping grid. For the whole rest of Act 5, John takes it kind of seriously and almost shows interest in marrying Rose, but Dave doesn’t care about it at all. But now, it’s a bit of the inverse: John and Rose have both found satisfaction in other love interests, while Dave and Jade at this point aren’t actually out of the question; Dave knows that an alternate version of him dated Jade and was curious to know how that went down.
CTG: thx for the shipping grid bro imma drop everything and go have a baby with jade right now
CTG: no peeking k
CEB: wow, i have to marry rose?
Dave responds with sarcasm, but John seriously ponders the ramifications of this grid. Karkat ends the memo.
Up next is Homestuck’s first big conversation walkaround, a massive exploration minigame known as Alterniabound. What sets Alterniabound apart from other walkarounds is how big it is with so much stuff you could easily miss and crazy easter eggs which largely don’t have much plot relevance. This makes walkaround games like this often feel like kind of a drag, where to get the full experience you need to double-check everything and have it explored. The Act 4 opener in particular is a pretty heavy drag: it’s really complicated and pretty confusing to explore, a lot more so than this one, which is why I like that little stretch of pages that gives the gist of that minigame. After Alterniabound, it’s clear that Hussie decided not to make most of his later walkarounds so large-scale. When I first read Homestuck, I played that walkaround but I didn’t figure out that you could transportalize out of the computer lab and explore other areas, causing me to miss a lot of stuff I only found in my second read.
I will proceed and comment on the whole thing. Here’s how I’ll do it. I’ll say whatever I do in the game and then comment on whatever goes on or is said. If there’s a bit I don’t have anything to say about, I’ll skip it.
First is a bit which is easy to miss: Karkat finishes the memo with Kanaya. Right there I’m bombarded with the weird goofy-looking talksprites of this walkaround game. Alterniabound has weirder-looking talksprites than its successors; Kanaya and Eridan stick out as particularly weird ones.
(Karkat, talk to Terezi)
KARKAT: WILL YOU SHUT UP ABOUT THE DRUBBINGS. PUT THAT CANE AWAY, DAMMIT. IT’S NOT LIKE YOU EVEN NEED IT.
More lampshading absurd things the trolls do. Terezi seems to like calling people out on mocking or forgetting about her blindness (she did that with Gamzee, John, and Karkat), so maybe the cane ties in with that? Or did she get used to having a cane between being blinded and learning how to get around by smelling?
KARKAT: GUESS THAT’S NOT TOO SURPRISING. ANYWAY, I SAW THE DEMON AGAIN.
KARKAT: I THINK I KNOW WHO IT IS.
TEREZI: WHO 1S 1T >:?
KARKAT: I DON’T KNOW HOW IT’S POSSIBLE…
KARKAT: I NEED TO SEARCH FOR MORE ANSWERS BEFORE I KNOW FOR SURE.
TEREZI: STOP B31NG MYST3R1OUS 4ND T3LL M3!
KARKAT: NO WAY. I’M NOT JUMPING TO HASTY CONCLUSIONS. IF IT TURNS OUT I’M RIGHT, THEN I GUESS WE BOTH GET TO SAY I TOLD YOU SO.
TEREZI: TH4T W4S 4N HOUR 4GO! WH4T H4V3 YOU B33N DR34M1NG 4BOUT S1NC3?
KARKAT: I DON’T WANT TO TALK ABOUT IT.
Karkat is Hussie, Terezi is readers. This isn’t the only moment which feels like one character is Hussie, the other is readers.
(Karkat, get lowdown from Terezi)
TEREZI: SO GU3SS WH4T
TEREZI: W3V3 B33N 1N CONT4CT W1TH SOM3 4L13NS FROM TH3 UN1V3RS3 W3 CR34T3D
KARKAT: OK. SO?
TEREZI: DONT YOU TH1NK TH4TS K1ND OF N34T?
KARKAT: NO. IT’S BORING. WHO CARES?
TEREZI: 1 THOUGHT 4S OUR 1NTR3P1D L34D3R TH4T W4S SOM3TH1NG YOU M1GHT W4NT TO KNOW
KARKAT: ALRIGHT, AS LEADER, I RECOMMEND WE DELIVER THEM A DELIGHTFUL GIFT BASKET VIA TRANSUNIVERAL BULGE THRUST.
When we knew Karkat for so long as a troll who thinks the humans are all imbeciles, it’s weird reading what he says here.
KARKAT: NOW IF YOU’LL EXCUSE ME, I’VE GOT A LOT OF IMPORTANT SHIT TO DO.
TEREZI: YOU M34N 4 LOT OF 1MPORT4NT W4ND3R1NG 4ROUND 41ML3SSLY 4ND T4LK1NG TO P3OPL3?
KARKAT: YES, EXACTLY.
Breaking the fourth wall, anyone? Homestuck doesn’t have a lot of moments which are outright breaking the wall, but there’s a lot of leaning on the fourth wall. The TV Tropes page titled “leaning on the fourth wall” came to mind, but I’m not linking to it because I stopped doing that (and even removed most of those links) a while ago.
(Karkat, talk to Sollux)
This exchange is not very long, but it has three “fuck you”s. I like how they immediately descend into arguments like that.
SOLLUX: fuck you and your priimadonna garbage, iim not goiing two break down 2obbiing becau2e you pa22 out at the 2iight of a liittle blood, why dont you man up.
KARKAT: HEY FUCK YOU, I TURN AROUND AND SEE A CRAZY GIRL WITH A CHAINSAW AND A TSUNAMI OF BROWN. IS IT TOO MUCH TO ASK THAT WE NOT TURN OUR LITTLE HIDEOUT INTO A SLAUGHTERHOUSE?
Karkat’s last line here is a bit noteworthy in retrospect given that Murderstuck will be a thing that happens. I wonder if this line was intended to foreshadow that arc.
SOLLUX: uh huh, 2ure kk by the look of 2ome of your future memo2 iit look2 liike youre gonna get pretty wound up by [the humans] 2oon.
KARKAT: MAN, FUCK MY FUTURE MEMOS.
SOLLUX: no way, theyre hiilariiou2, be2t thiing about haviing you a2 a leader hand2 down.
“The best thing about my boss is how I laugh at everything he does!”
KARKAT: THE ONLY GUY MORE IRRITATING AND STUPID THAN FUTURE ME IS PAST ME.
I remember searching for this quote from Homestuck because I remembered seeing it, but I couldn’t find it anywhere. For some reason this line remained in my memory but the fact that it’s from a walkaround didn’t.
(Karkat, talk to Aradia)
ARADIA: have y0u decided t0 tr0ll them yet
KARKAT: TROLL WHO?
ARADIA: never mind
ARADIA: lets pretend i didnt say that and lets als0 pretend it isnt inevitable
KARKAT: WHAT THE FROND BUCKLING NOOK STENCH ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT.
ARADIA: n0thing. its n0t like a decisi0n y0u are ab0ut t0 make will invariably lead t0 every pr0blem we have and will ever face as well as the great und0ing itself
Seems like Aradia has become more sarcastic and cynical than she was back in the trolls’ arc. She isn’t usually this sarcastic, so either this line was meant as a joke or as indication of how she changed after being a robot for a while.
(Karkat, be future Aradia)
You cannot be Future Aradia because in the future, Future Aradia has exploded!
I remember when I was on Murderstuck during my first read, I tried to remember which trolls had and hadn’t died. I specifically remember thinking back to this early in-comic spoiler that Aradia will blow up, and I also remember thinking Nepeta is a lucky bastard that she hasn’t died, which must have meant I didn’t catch the clues that she died or something. I don’t remember.
(Karkat, talk to Nepeta)
KARKAT: YOU HAVEN’T BEEN PULLING YOUR RP NONSENSE ON THEM HAVE YOU? TALK ABOUT A SHITTY FIRST ENCOUNTER.
KARKAT: OK AS LEADER, I FORBID YOU FROM RP’ING WITH THEM.
NEPETA: :33 < but equius already furbid me from doing that :((
NEPETA: :33 < not that i am listening to him, but shhhhh! :33
I kind of wish we saw Nepeta pulling her RP nonsense on the kids. I think she did that with Rose briefly, but it would have been pretty amusing if she had a longer failed attempt to roleplay with some of the kids. All four of them would probably think it’s kind of dumb.
(Karkat, talk to Tavros)
TAVROS: hEYYY, yOU’RE AWAKE,
KARKAT: HEY, YOU KNOW WHAT WOULD HAVE BEEN AN AWESOME TIME TO TAKE THE OPPORTUNITY TO SAW YOUR LOWER TORSO OFF AND REPLACE IT WITH ROBO LEGS?
KARKAT: ANY GODDAMN TIME BEFORE NOW. YOU KNOW, DURING OUR WHOLE ADVENTURE WHEN THEY MIGHT HAVE COME IN HANDY.
Here’s Hussie via Karkat noting a mistake in Homestuck’s storyline, and instead of fixing it, he lampshades its absurdity.
KARKAT: DID YOU SEE HIM?
KARKAT: THE DEMON. WHEN YOU WERE ASLEEP.
KARKAT: HE WAS RIGHT FUCKING THERE. I TOLD YOU TO LOOK, BUT I GUESS YOU WERE TOO BUSY FROLICKING IN THE SKY OR WHATEVER YOU DO ON THAT GAUDY YELLOW MOON.
TAVROS: oH, mAN, yEAH SKY FROLICKING WAS PROBABLY DEFINITELY THE THING i WAS PREOCCUPIED BY,
It’s later revealed that Bec Noir sliced Tavros’s dream self in half. With that in mind, how didn’t he see the demon? Did Bec Noir sneak up on him and slice him from behind?
(Karkat, talk to Equius)
EQUIUS: D –> Are there any other orders you would like to issue to me in a manner that is similarly forceful
KARKAT: I ALSO ORDER YOU TO STOP GETTING OFF ON MY ORDERS. FOR LIKE THE FIVE HUNDREDTH FUCKING TIME.
EQUIUS: D –> Yes, and you will continue to order me to do so. I command it
EQUIUS: D –> …
EQUIUS: D –> I need a towel
KARKAT: GO HAVE YOUR BUTLER GET YOU ONE YOU SNOOTY DOUCHE.
EQUIUS: D –> Aurthour is dead, and so is his ghost
We never find out how exactly the trolls’ sprites died. I think we are to presume that either Bec Noir did it in his troll session rampage or that sprites don’t last permanently. The latter possibility is brought up when John and Jade talk about Davesprite in the Con Air scene, but it’s still kind of ambiguous.
(Karkat, talk to Vriska)
KARKAT: LOOK WHATEVER YOU’RE DOING, STOP. OR PUT IT ON PAUSE. CAN YOU PLEASE DO THAT?
KARKAT: I WASN’T GOING TO BOTHER WITH THE HUMANS BUT NOW YOU’RE MAKING ME NERVOUS. JUST GIVE ME THE CHANCE TO LOOK INTO THIS MATTER, AND THEN I’LL BRIEF EVERYBODY.
KARKAT: MAYBE WITH A SPEECH OR SOMETHING. CAN YOU DO THAT?
It bugs me a little how that supposed speech happens offscreen. I think it’s Karkat ordering the trolls to flame the kids, but that speech seems important enough to be shown. Maybe it’s offscreen because of Homestuck’s persistent avoidance of regular face-to-face dialogue. Even this face-to-face dialogue is facilitated with a video game interface.
(Karkat, talk to Kanaya)
KANAYA: Any Other Orders
KANAYA: Such As Those Which Might Pertain To These Alien Children
KARKAT: YEAH, MY ORDERS ARE THAT THEY’RE COMPLETELY IRRELEVANT, AND WHO CARES ABOUT THEM.
KANAYA: How Are Those Orders
KARKAT: BECAUSE I’M YOUR LEADER THAT’S HOW.
KANAYA: They Are Not Irrelevant
KARKAT: HOW DO YOU KNOW THAT.
KANAYA: Its A Bit Complicated
KANAYA: But I Believe You Should Give Them A Closer Look Before You Decide What To Do About Them If Anything
KANAYA: Perhaps Then An Especially Leaderly Speech Will Be In Order
KARKAT: OK I DOUBT THAT BUT WHATEVER.
Kanaya talks about the humans in a way that suggests that she might have contacted them, though she didn’t contact them until Karkat asked her to. I guess this implies that Kanaya initially chose not to talk to the humans just as she chose not to participate in the memo nonsense.
Then there’s Karkat’s section of the lab, where we take a look at when Karkat created the trolls as wigglers and open some chests as him. Not much to comment on here, other than that the equipment weirdly has 24 tubes instead of just four. It’s kind of ambiguous what the deal with all that is. The exact genetic relations of the trolls are pretty ambiguous, which is yet another glossed-over troll thing. Or maybe because it’s funnier if we don’t know how the trolls all relate to each other. There’s also chests with so much random stuff, which is a good example of Homestuck’s video game satire aspect.
Now time to play as Terezi.
(Terezi, talk to Karkat)
TEREZI: 4R3NT YOU 4T L34ST 4 L1TTL3 D1S4PPO1NT3D W3 N3V3R GOT TO H4NG OUT TOG3TH3R ON PROSP1T?
KARKAT: I DON’T KNOW. I GUESS?
KARKAT: IT’S NOT LIKE WE DIDN’T GET TO HANG OUT PLENTY OF OTHER PLACES.
TEREZI: YOU DONT G3T 1T! TH3R3 W3R3 4LL TH3S3 TH1NGS 1 W4S PL4NN1NG ON SHOW1NG YOU 4ND STUFF W3 COULD H4V3 DON3 TOG3TH3R
TEREZI: 1T W4S SUPPOS3D TO B3 SP3C14L DUMMY
This is another little John/Karkat parallel: both of their dream selves woke up right around the time their Prospit was destroyed and they had a friend who really wanted to show them around.
(Terezi, talk to Aradia)
ARADIA: 0h is that what feferi thinks
ARADIA: thats nice
ARADIA: havent y0u underst00d anything ab0ut h0w parad0x space w0rks
ARADIA: 0f c0urse they are the s0luti0n
ARADIA: but they are als0 the pr0blem
(Terezi, talk to Nepeta)
NEPETA: :33 < terezi!!! so tell me! who is your favorite?
TEREZI: F4VOR1T3 WH4T?
NEPETA: :33 < human kid!
NEPETA: :33 < oh of course, you like akwete purrmusk with the black glasses!
NEPETA: :33 < he is pretty cute, but mine is jade
TEREZI: OH R34LLY?
NEPETA: :33 < yes, i have tried to make friends with her, but so far she thinks i am just teasing her!!!!
NEPETA: :33 < its pretty furstrating. i will purrsevere though
That kind of sucks for Nepeta. She sees someone with a common interest who is jaded (heh) to her group’s sincerity because of how aggravating some of them are.
(Terezi, talk to Tavros)
TEREZI: LOOK1NG PR3TTY COOL T4VROS! >:]
TAVROS: tHANKS, i FEEL GREAT, aND REALLY CONFIDENT SUDDENLY,
TAVROS: lIKE, aS IF rUFIO GAVE ME BOTH THE HIGH FIVES HE HAS, aND THEN SORT OF ONE OF THOSE BRO MASSAGES, aS IF TO SAY,
TAVROS: yOU’RE THE CHAMP, oR THAT KIND OF THING,
TEREZI: DONT L3T 4NYON3 3V3R T3LL YOU RUF1O’S NOT R34L
TEREZI: 1F YOU B3L13V3 H4RD 3NOUGH 1N 1M4G1N4RY TH1NGS, TH4T M4K3S TH3M SL1GHTLY L3SS F4K3!
Here Terezi’s giving positive encouragement to Tavros. He tries to go down stairs with his new confidence but falls down them as you can see when you go to this one part open to all playable characters.
(Terezi, talk to Vriska)
VRISKA: Hey, if it isn’t miss money8ags! How are you enjoying your fa8ulous wealth!
VRISKA: If it was me, I would feel ashamed to get rich that way. 8y having a secret admirer just hand it to me like that, rather than earning it. That’s just me though!
TEREZI: GOD, YOUR J34LOUSLY 1S R1D1CULOUS! NOBODY C4R3S 4BOUT STOCKP1L1NG M34N1NGL3SS TR34SUR3 OTH3R TH4N YOU. W1LL YOU GROW UP???
VRISKA: I guess you’re right. I’m just giving you a hard time!
VRISKA: You know, like the good old days. Don’t you miss our friendly rivalry sometimes?
TEREZI: H4H4H4, FR13NDLY?????
VRISKA: Sure! So to speak.
The weird thing about this bit is that their past relationship isn’t shown here as being very friendly, but later their past partnership is presented to us as a lot more positive. I’m not quite sure what’s up with that, or what’s up with Terezi suddenly returning to being close with Vriska in the first place.
(Terezi, talk to Kanaya)
TEREZI: H3Y K4N4Y4, 4R3 YOU ST1LL OGL1NG H3R?
KANAYA: Is That What Im Doing
TEREZI: Y3S 1T 1S OBV1OUS
TEREZI: WHY TH3 1NF4TU4T1ON W1TH TH4T P4RT1CUL4R HUM4N
KANAYA: I Guess I Find Her Sort Of
TEREZI: OHHHHHHHHHHH??????? >8D
KANAYA: Intoxicatingly Underwhelming
I’m only taking note of this bit because it’s the only time those two characters converse, despite both being major trolls. I’ve seen readers point out this odd lack of interaction—all the other pairs of the trolls who get the most screen time have some kind of notable relationship.
(Terezi, talk to Eridan)
ERIDAN: hey ter can you go givve that four horned mustard blooded land licking sack of rubbish ovver there a message for me
ERIDAN: tell him to put his honey wwhere his mouth is and meet me outside for another duel
TEREZI: 1 4M NOT M3D14T1NG B3TW33N YOU TWO!
TEREZI: S3R1OUSLY, COULD YOU M4K3 YOUR 4DV4NC3S 4NY MOR3 OBV1OUS 3R1D4N?
TEREZI: 1F YOUR3 W4X1NG 4SH3N FOR M3, F1N3, 1… GU3SS 1M FL4TT3R3D???
TEREZI: BUT H3S TOT4LLY NOT 3V3N 1NT3R3ST3D 1N TH3 TYP3 OF
TEREZI: R1V4LRY YOU W4NT W1TH H1M, OK?
For whatever reason, as far as I can tell Sollux/Eridan is a fairly popular pairing. I don’t really understand why that is when it’s clear that the former thinks the latter is an idiot.
Terezi’s section of the game where you go out of the lab has this whole crazy stair network, a lampshadedly simplistic puzzle, and a massive hall of doors to open chests and stuff. You can also play as Future Terezi who has scribbled Dave-related stuff all over her wall art.
Now for Vriska.
(Vriska, talk to Karkat)
KARKAT: JUST… PLEASE.
KARKAT: GO FIND SOME REMOTE CORNER OF THIS LAB, BUILD YOURSELF A NICE WEB, AND SIT THERE PEACEFULLY AND HARMLESSLY UNTIL WE ALL DIE. OK?
VRISKA: Die? Lame.
VRISKA: Karkat, there is a8solutely no chance we are going to die.
VRISKA: Not with my luck! I got all of it, remem8er?
Of course she’s going to do the exact opposite of what Karkat says.
(Vriska, talk to Terezi)
VRISKA: The Scourge Sisters are 8ack in action! Yeah!!!!!!!!
TEREZI: NO W3 4R3 NOT! W1LL YOU STOP W1TH TH4T 4LR34DY???
VRISKA: Sure we are! You’ll find out. Just give it a few hours.
TEREZI: 1 W1LL G1V3 YOU 4 F3W DRUBB1NGS!
VRISKA: Yes!!!!!!!! That’s the spirit, Redglare.
TEREZI: BL4R, PL34S3 DO NOT ST4RT US1NG MY OLD FL4RP1NG N4M3, 1T’S SO 3MB4RR4SS1NG
More oddities considering how they return to being good friends post-retcon. Terezi finds that stuff embarrassing but I think they did do roleplaying stuff of that sort as if it never was bad at all.
(Vriska, talk to Sollux)
VRISKA: Sollux, I never got to simultaneously thank you and reprimand you for tracing that money transfer.
VRISKA: On the one hand, it made Terezi rich, and now she won’t stop lording it over me!
SOLLUX: ok, ii’m pretty much 100% po2iitiive 2he’2 not actually doiing that, but ok.
I said one or two posts ago that I’m not sure if the whole competition between Terezi and Vriska meddling with kids is a real thing or only Vriska misconceptions. It’s kind of suggested to be both? I’m not sure, maybe later stuff will clear things up.
(Vriska, talk to Aradia)
VRISKA: Hey dead girl! How’s 8eing dead treating you?
ARADIA: c0uldnt i ask y0u the same thing
VRISKA: Yeah, sure! If you wanted to 8e technically inaccur8. It would still 8urn though, so touche!
ARADIA: its really weird that y0u keep antag0nizing me
ARADIA: i c0uld snap y0ur neck with a twitch
VRISKA: Yeah 8ut you won’t!
There’s kind of a pattern here going on, where most of the trolls in this walkaround think Vriska is pretty dumb.
ARADIA: what d0 y0u want
VRISKA: You saw the demon up close, right? You fought him! Or at least your doppelgangers did.
VRISKA: What was he like!
ARADIA: what d0 y0u want t0 kn0w specifically
VRISKA: Primarily I’m interested in your take on his weaknesses, tactical disadvantages, stuff like that.
ARADIA: are y0u seri0usly intending t0 fight him
VRISKA: Wouldn’t you like to know!!!!!!!!
ARADIA: n0t especially
“You want information on this big mystery? Fuck you, I’m going to keep teasing you.”
(Vriska, talk to Feferi)
VRISKA: So! You sure seem excited a8out the alien kids. What gives????????
FEFERI: Glub… I wouldn’t say t)(at.
FEFERI: T)(e w)(ole t)(ing doesn’t seem like it’s wort)( getting worked up about, to be )(onest.
FEFERI: Sig)(. T)(ey’re just kind of dull.
FEFERI: Life is dull and uninteresting.
FEFERI: I don’t know, maybe I’m just a little depressed.
FEFERI: You probably wouldn’t understand.
VRISKA: Sure I would! We all have our off days. Hey, if you need someone to talk to, I’m…
FEFERI: Pffffffffffffffffff )(-E)(-E)(-E)(-E!
FEFERI: PSYYYYYYC)(-E )(-E-E )(-E-E )(-E-E )(-E-E )(OO )(OO )(OO! 38D
FEFERI: )(oly crap did I get you good! )(ey, Sollux! Did you catc)( any of t)(at?
FEFERI: A live one jumped rig)(t into my boat! A real suckerfis)(! Woo)(oo)(oo. )(ow do you like t)(at, spider)(ag! Sea dwellers represent!!!
VRISKA: That was…
VRISKA: Surprisingly nasty of you.
VRISKA: I’m impressed!
This whole exchange exemplifies Feferi’s rude side, something that would surely be a big thing about her if she was a major character. But since she isn’t one, it’s just a little quirk to give her at least a bit of depth.
FEFERI: T)(anks. I )(ope I didn’t jeopardize our friends)(ip wit)( t)(at little stunt! 38)
VRISKA: Friendship? I don’t know if…
VRISKA: W8 a minute. Why you!!!!!!!! You almost got me AGAIN!
VRISKA: Have I ever told you how awesome you are, Peixes?
Weird that Feferi of all the trolls is one of the few who doesn’t berate Vriska in this walkaround.
(Vriska, talk to Tavros)
VRISKA: Worst advice you could ever receive. I demand that you spend the next several hours mastering stairs.
VRISKA: Come on, what would that fakey 8ullshit fantasy asshole Rufio say a8out this?
TAVROS: oH, mAN, hE WOULD MOST SURELY BE ALL ABOUT ME CLIMBING LOTS OF STAIRS,
TAVROS: pER THE REASSURANCES THAT i PRETEND HE SAYS, aND ALL THE SELF ESTEEM HE INSISTS ME TO HAVE,
VRISKA: Exactly! Now hop to it, and don’t think twice a8out it, or I’ll know. We don’t want to have to do it the hard way now, do we?
TAVROS: oH MY GOD,
I’ve said earlier that Vriska pretty much gave up on trying to improve Tavros, but this sounds exactly like something she would have said a little earlier when she was doing the fairy seduction stuff.
(Vriska, talk to Equius)
VRISKA: I must say, I am really disgusted 8y how you’ve resorted to following orders from that low class slo8 with the hideous mutant 8lood.
VRISKA: I thought you were 8etter than that! I thought WE were 8etter than that.
EQUIUS: D –> I…
EQUIUS: D –> You’re absolutely right, it’s disgraceful
EQUIUS: D –> I think it is possibly time to admit I have some sort of problem
EQUIUS: D –> I would very much like to honor my position on the hemospectrum and mistreat those beneath me, and yet…
VRISKA: Whoa, alright! I was just messing with you, dude. As if I really give a shit a8out any of that!
If Equius wasn’t a gag character, this problem of his would be a pretty interesting thing to see him overcome. Instead, Hussie decided to make that problem cause his ending.
(Vriska, talk to Kanaya)
VRISKA: Hey, what’s your deal?
VRISKA: I’m talking to you!
KANAYA: What Do You Want
VRISKA: Nothing really! It’s just you haven’t said one word to me since we got here.
VRISKA: In fact, we’ve hardly spoken in weeks! Not since you gave me that nice dress.
VRISKA: That was some pretty sweet chainsaw work earlier. Pretty 8rutal, really! Didn’t think you had it in you.
VRISKA: Hey, you weren’t settling a score with him there 8y any chance?
VRISKA: I’ve got a pretty keen nose for revenge. Could it 8e that you had a thing for him and were upset when he went for me instead? Hmmmmmmmm?
KANAYA: Did He Really Go For You
KANAYA: Thats Not How I Remember It
VRISKA: Yes, I think I must 8e on to something here! Anyway if that’s the case, sorry a8out the 8ad 8r8k!
KANAYA: Could You Leave Me Alone
VRISKA: Hey, which one are you spying on there? Someone new to meddle with?
KANAYA: I Said Leave
VRISKA: Fiiiiiiiine, god.
This is a pretty strong instance of the pattern with Vriska I’ve noted in this walkaround. I guess it might have been an arc thing for Kanaya, realizing that her random crush presumably induced by some teenage hormones is kind of dumb.
(Vriska, talk to Gamzee)
GAMZEE: VrIsKa hEy yOu wAnT To uH…
GAMZEE: ShIt, I WaS AlL GoInG To aSk iF YoU WaNtEd tO HoP In tHe hOrN PiLe fOr a bIt oF MoThErFuCkIn sHuTeYe, BuT…
GAMZEE: I DoN’T ThInK I WiLl cAuSe i’m pReTtY MuCh sCaReD Of yOu, So yEaH.
VRISKA: Aww. ::::)
The interesting thing here is, after Gamzee turns evil, in the post-retcon timeline he might once again be scared of Vriska (who wouldn’t be scared of people who stuff you in a fridge with corpses?); at the very least, he definitely detests her, while most of the others who spent years with Vriska around put up with her.
(Vriska, talk to Eridan)
ERIDAN: god damn vvris wwhys it still got to be so flippin awwkwward like this come on
ERIDAN: wwe used to havve a good thing goin remember our campaigns
ERIDAN: that shit wwas epic wwhere are you evven goin to find a rivvalry like that
VRISKA: It was fun, Eridan. While it lasted.
VRISKA: 8ut it ran its course! I don’t know what else to tell you.
ERIDAN: oh as if im not so ovver it please spare me your disdain mindfang
ERIDAN: im wworkin on findin a neww rivvalry wwhichll make ours look like a kiddie game
ERIDAN: wwhich oh by the wway IT WWAS
I’m pretty sure their former rivalry was literally at least four years ago for them (Vriska mentioned that the nasty Flarp cycle of revenge was “sweeps ago”). How come they’re still apparently awkward? Also, when you really stop and think about the implication that it’s been four years since all that stuff happened, it’s easy to get pretty disturbed. Nine-year-olds throwing each other off cliffs and remotely blowing off each other’s arms?? It’s pretty hard to even imagine this without thinking they’re all deranged.
(Vriska, be future Eridan)
ERIDAN: fuck that fuckin wwitch bleww up my computer
ERIDAN: ok not literally the wwitch as in thats not literally her title or anythin
ERIDAN: the seer i guess
ERIDAN: fuckin lousy no good goddamn rotten seer
I think the multiple times Rose is called a “witch”, like this time, are the closest Homestuck gets to canonically having role inversion, which many fans either love theorizing about or think is absolute bullshit; I mostly think it’s reading way too much into stuff, which many readers are prone to do. Anyway, this probably serves as an indication of how off-the-rails Rose is going.
Vriska’s lab exploration part has this lab with the troll analog of the meteor map from the Skaianet lab and a comically short monster battle sequence. You can be future Vriska, who gave all her boondollars to John. I don’t recall that ever being brought up in John’s conversations with Vriska or anything, so maybe it’s a forgotten thing or something. And then there’s a room with Nic Cage posters showing her comical obsession with Cage, with this whole song mixed from his lines in movies.
God damn that was long. It’s so long that I’ll end my post here. This post only covers 10 pages, and yet it’s pretty massive, just because of that walkaround game, and to a lesser extent, the hilarious memo.
See you next time as we watch Hussie experiment with a new art style and other stuff happens.