Cookie Fonster’s Homestuck Commentary Part 33: Cthulhu Acid Trip Dreams

Introduction

Part 32 | Part 33 | Part 34 >

Act 5 Act 2, Part 6 of 32

Pages 2841-2890 (MSPA: 4741-4790)

Yes, this really is a scene in Homestuck. I promise you, not all of it is an LSD tri—oh wait you should know this, because this post series is made on the assumption that people reading it have read Homestuck.

In which I decide against the “in which blah blah blah” thing because that would be stealing an idea from the blog that inspired this post series, and stealing ideas is a bad habit I’ve had in my creative projects for as long as I can remember; and also because I went fine adding title pictures to my older posts without any text immediately following.

Continuing from where we left off, we see what Jack Noir is up to. He yanks the ninja sword out of the beat mesa record thing, and I wonder where exactly Dave’s bro went. I actually don’t remember. I think he escaped and somehow went to LOWAS offscreen but I’m not sure. I guess I’ll see and find out.

Then comes a famously bizarre and nightmarish flash in which Jade wakes up from her dream. I’ll comment on it with the screenshot method I’ve seen livebloggers use.

I like how deceiving the Prospit loading screen is knowing what really happens in this flash.

This looks like a pseudo-old timey video game.

This flash starts with an eye-melting dream sequence about Squiddles. I think this is meant to give the impression that Jade now has regular absurd dreams? Pretty much everyone has weird dreams, but Jade should probably be a little more weirded out at that. I’m pretty sure she had gotten really used to dreaming on Prospit since she was little, so normal person dreams really should tell her that something’s wrong.

But then again, she’s dreaming, and when you’re dreaming, your mindset shifts to a whole different world. In my dreams, I’ll often have memories of things that didn’t actually happen. So maybe Jade is in her dream mindset or something, just like how she was pretty absentminded while dreaming on Prospit. This actually makes sense in Homestuck’s context; in dream bubble sequences, characters will typically take a while before they can remember stuff.

I know this might just be a tangent about stuff you already know and have experienced, but dreams are a pretty fun topic to talk about because of how weird everything about them is.

Rewatching this flash, I can tell that the zoom-out scene depicted above is meant to tell readers, “Now that Jade’s dream self is dead, she dreams in bubbles in a realm that lies way outside Derse.” But as I’ve seen, readers are more typically just plain confused by this flash, made worse by the fact that when they finish the flash and collect their thoughts, their minds will likely be clouded up by the shock of the scary squidmonster sequence in the second half of the flash. This is a noteworthy flaw in Homestuck. Flash animations meant to convey information will often just seem really cryptic to readers, or seem really inexplicable and confusing. When I first watched [S] WV: Ascend, I thought it was meant to show readers that WV and company are the ones behind Sburb.* There’s a few flash scenes that throw readers off especially often, like Aradia ascending to god tier or the Green Sun being created rather than destroyed. I think such scenes throw readers off because they will often show something happening, but they don’t put into words the reason why or how it happened.

* I should’ve mentioned that in the last Act 2 post, but I guess I forgot to. I totally could add that to that post, but it would kind of ruin the point of mentioning that here so I won’t. Maybe that could be taken as bonus information you could get from reading this blog beyond just my first ten posts or something. I don’t know.

A workaround for that problem might be accompanying the flashes with expository text. Nannasprite’s exposition sequence back in Act 2 seems to me like Hussie experimenting such a medium of conveying information. But in later acts, flash sequences will instead often be followed by exposition dumps explaining what happened in those flashes. The flash I’m currently commenting on is one of the best examples of this: immediately following the flash, Feferi will explain stuff to Jade about the Furthest Ring and what happened in Jade’s dream sequence. Other examples of this sort of thing are Jade giving John a rundown of the events that happened in Cascade about 200 pages after that flash, or Aranea explaining stuff about Lord English in the walkaround game that immediately follows [S] Caliborn: Enter.

Up next, Feferi appears in Jade’s dream, and here readers will typically think “what the FUCK”. I think this scene is meant to show us that people from different sessions can share a dream, but people watching this flash will seem to have trouble getting that, rather thinking Feferi’s a projection of Jade’s mind, which should be impossible because she’s never seen a troll in person.

I should note that I laughed pretty hard at the absurdity of this sequence. That’s when the audio and imagery start to distort, leading to a nightmarish minute-long squidmonster sequence which gradually progresses from this:

to this:

before accompanying the following imagery with giant monster whispers:

This nightmare sequence tends to flush any understanding of what’s going on out of readers, which I think might serve to help make readers feel the way Jade does about this whole thing.

So she wakes up in a really awful mood and talks to Feferi.

Look at that droopy face mixed in with all the goofy stuff Jade used back in Act 3.

CC: Glub glub. 38)
GG: what!!!!!
CC: S-E-E??
GG: see what!
GG: go away 

John, Rose, and Dave have all completely warmed up to the trolls, but here’s Jade still unable to tolerate any of them, made worse by her mood. Jade’s actions in this whole following sequence pretty heavily show us her grumpy side, going way against her giggly girl nature. You can tell by how she says “go away” without punctuation how she’s feeling.

CC: I told you!
CC: T)(ere is not)(ing to worry about at all.
GG: bluhhh what are you talking about….
GG: my head hurts
GG: just stop it, stop trolling me
GG: i hate you all!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

CC: )(oly mackerel, looks like SOM-EON-E woke up on t)(e wrong side of t)(e absurd )(uman bed! 

This contrasts pretty heavily with Jade’s little exchange with Karkat back in Act 3. She seemed a lot more energetic to tell a troll to scram back then than now. Speaking of which, I don’t recall how exactly Jade came to warm up to the trolls. I guess I’ll find out about that.

GG: my dream was horrible!!!
GG: i dont know what that was, i have never dreamed anything like it
CC: Yes, I imagine not! You )(ave spent your w)(ole life dreaming about prospit, no?
GG: oh god….
GG: prospit 😦
GG: is it really gone?
CC: Yes, Jade. It is time to face t)(e facts!
CC: Our moons are gone too. If we wis)( to sleep now, our dreams must take place in t)(e bubbles glubbed by t)(e gods w)(o live in t)(e Furt)(est Ring.
CC: It is t)(e infinite space w)(ic)( divides all sessions, completely unnavigable and unfat)(omable, untouc)(ed by t)(e time or space of any universe in existence.
CC: Its lords are our slumberbuddies now. 38) 

GG: uuuuuuuuugh D: 
CC: Don’t be ridiculous. T)(ey are not as dreadful as t)(ey look.
CC: In fact, t)(ey are quite )(elpful if you know )(ow to talk to t)(em!
CC: Don’t you remember our dream? I was trying to s)(ow you t)(at t)(ere is not)(ing to fear.
CC: But t)(en… you kind of freaked out! )(umans are so M-ELODRAMATIC. 

Here’s the exposition stuff I mentioned a little while ago. Feferi’s practically recapping the flash I just went over.

GG: could you please
GG: not use all those stupid parentheses??????
GG: i can hardly read what you type and its giving me a migraine
CC: GLUUUUB oh fine.
CC: I will suspend my neato quirk just for you.
CC: I hereby renounce the royal mark of sea dweller supremacy in the interest of INT-ERSP-ECI-ES DIPLOMACY.
GG: what about the -E thing, can you stop that too? it is also annoying and stupid
CC: JEGUS JADE.
CC: Look! It is like a cool trident I throw sometimes.
CC: 
Ψoooooo —————E 

CC: How is that not awesome!
GG: meh :\
CC: Okay, you win. I have officially humbled myself before you. Entirely glubbing peasant-IFICATED for your pleasure.
CC: Shall I clip my fins for you as well, your majesty? 

Here’s Feferi’s condescending side again, how she feels like she has humbled herself and stuff in place of the obnoxious royal typing style.

GG: hehehe
GG: ok, sorry for sounding bossy
GG: you seem pretty nice, and you sure do look exotic
GG: i kind of always thought you were all like
GG: a bunch of really obnoxious humans
CC: Well, thank you! On both counts, of being likened to something other than an obnoxious human, as well as on my exotic looks.
CC: For the record, you look pretty awesomely weird too. 

Jade has now realized that among the trolls, at least this one isn’t that bad. Also, here’s another bit of contrast between Jade then and now: she used to be really on top of things with her future knowledge she inexplicably refuses to share, but now she’s really out of the loop on the trolls at this point. I’m thinking back to Jade’s conversation with John where she talked about the stuff she somehow knew would happen but denied that she’s psychic. Jade gets a lot of development away from being the cryptic pseudo-psychic girl in this act.

GG: i remember prospit being attacked
GG: and
GG: falling…..
GG: aaaand
GG: i dunno 😦
GG: do you know what happened?
CC: Hell if I know!
CC: In your pre-death dream at least. Oh, well you died obviously, so there’s that.
GG: fffffff
GG: yeah, i gathered that! XC
CC: All I could see was what happened in your hive.
CC: You were asleep, and then your robot exploded.
CC: And then your lusus saved you! Kind of like mine saved me.
CC: Before she died. 38C 

How exactly did Gl’bgolyb save Feferi? Did it have to do with entering the game or what? I know that later she mentions that her lusus fell into her kernelsprite—is that it? I’m really not sure.

GG: also it was shortly before your friend sent me a weird message
GG: about how my robot was going to explode, and i should talk to him when it happens
GG: this was months ago
CC: Oh? Who was that?
GG: it was the most awful and angry one
GG: i am so sick of him, i really dont want to talk to that pathetic jerk ever
CC: Ah, Karkat. Of course.
GG: thats his name?
CC: Yes, he’s our leader. Why did he want you to talk to him?
GG: hmmmm
GG: thats right, it was about some kind of plan…
GG: which he said me from the future told him about?
GG: i thought it was total nonsense at the time
GG: but
GG: i guess he was telling the truth
GG: so maybe i should talk to him? i dont know 

CC: Glubshrug.
CC: He’s pretty harmless, really. You get used to his yelling.
CC: I do not even process it as yelling anymore. More like a lot of blubbering.
CC: More blubber spills out of that mouth than a gash in a poached whale. 

I guess Feferi is the one who convinces Jade that the trolls aren’t so bad. I don’t remember much how Jade deals with Karkat and warms up to him, I guess I’ll see.

CC: And hey, if you want to take another nap sometime, let me know! They will be more than happy to glub us up another bubble.
GG: NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
GG: i am never going to sleep again!
GG: never never never never never never 

What if Jade does end up refusing to sleep? That might potentially parallel her with Karkat, her patron troll. But as I said in an Act 3 post, John says much later that Jade still retains her sleeping habit. It’s a bit ironic that a character who always wants to make positive contributions to whatever’s going on has such an affinity for sleeping, which I’ve speculated to be Vriska’s mind control experiments rubbing off on her mind when it’s free of influence.

Oh my god, those eyebrows. That’s such a Karkat face.
Also, notice the huge meteor in the sky on the top left.

GG: ok, my robot exploded
GG: now what smart guy!
CG: HOLY SHIT, IT’S HARLEY
CG: COMMUNICATING WITH ME OUT OF NOWHERE OF HER OWN VOLITION
CG: HOLD THAT THOUGHT WHILE I GO INFORM MY DISGRACE OF A CLOWN FRIEND ABOUT THIS TRUE REAL LIFE MIRACLE, IT MIGHT LIFT HIS SPIRITS
CG: I HAVE TO SPREAD THE WICKED WORD LIKE I’M MASSAGING SHITTY SPARKLEDUST AROUND MY NETHER REGIONS TO ASSUAGE A VICIOUS RASH
CG: IT’S LIKE I’M SEASONING A FUCKING STEAK HERE. 

I don’t think we know whether Karkat had this conversation before or after Gamzee watched that ICP video. I wonder if Karkat did indeed try that on Gamzee, or what. We don’t get any dialogue from Gamzee between his conversation with Dave I covered last post and when he becomes full-on evil. I think it’s likely that after his crisis of faith, Gamzee went out of the computer lab and questioned his life choices in private as he slowly became evil.

GG: i knew i would regret this
GG: talking to you is so terrible
GG: its making my headache worse
CG: OH YEAH, BECAUSE TALKING TO YOU HAS JUST BEEN ABSOLUTE EUPHORIA.
CG: DON’T EVEN TALK TO ME ABOUT HEADACHES.
CG: RIGHT NOW THERE’S A LUMBERJACK SPLITTING WOOD ON MY THINK PAN.
CG: HE’S GOT THE FOREARMS OF A CHOLERBEAR, A MOUNTAIN OF LOGS, AND NOTHING BUT FUCKING TIME. 

This is another parallel between Jade and Karkat: both, at this point, are really tired and woke up from a horrifying dream, and are thus grouchy and even grouchier than usual respectively. All four beta kids seem to have some parallels with their patron trolls, though I can’t put my finger on any good ones between John and Vriska at the moment.

GG: i cant believe i fell for this
GG: it was just a setup to troll me some more
GG: why do you go to such lengths to troll me? i just dont understand it
CG: TRY TO BE CULTURALLY SENSITIVE
CG: TROLLING IS AN ACTIVITY THAT SHARES A NAME WITH MY ENTIRE SPECIES
CG: DO I GET ON YOUR CASE FOR ALL THE TERRIBLE HUMANNING YOU DO?
GG: thats ridiculous, humanning isnt a word
GG: and if it was, it would be a nicer thing to do than trolling!
GG: you know what i mean, stop pretending you dont 

Here Jade’s lampshading the absurdity of what trolls do—exactly what I mentioned a few posts ago. As I said, I don’t really get the thing of trolls using their species name as a word with a lot of meanings. I guess it’s just a silly thing that expands on the term “trolling” as it’s used on the Internet.

GG: i mean you are being patronizing and disingenuous to get a rise out of me
GG: and that is really really shitty!!!!!!
GG: i am so tired of it, and i am done talking to you forever
GG: bye karkat, it was awful knowing you! 

I’m pretty sure this is the second time in Homestuck where Jade swears. Just as John starts doing the Vriska thing not long after he first talks to her, Jade ends up swearing in her first decently long conversation with Karkat.

Or does this give a hint at Jade’s hidden depths, with her own ruder tendencies? Act 5 Act 2 has Jade’s psyche explored in quite some depth, showing us some personal issues of her own. This brings to mind how Dave’s personal issues are also explored in depth. But in Act 6 this becomes pretty different: Dave’s issues are later played VERY far—excessively so I would argue—to the point of retroactively making him have even more personal issues and repressive stuff than he already did; Jade’s, however, are practically forgotten about. A common complaint is that among the beta kids, the Derse dreamers get so much more character development than the Prospit dreamers, and I must agree here. Some people argue that John has gotten zero real change and development since page 1 of Homestuck (I disagree but I won’t go on about why), and as I said when I started Act 3, it’s generally agreed that Jade has gotten way too little screen time in Act 6. This is even implicitly referenced in the most recent update featuring Jade as of the Omegapause, when the god tier version of Calliope alludes to Jade’s role in the story as she talks about the space aspect.


This tangent literally arose from Jade saying the word “shitty”. It almost feels like I’m getting comically off-track in my posts, but then again, this post series was always meant to analyze Homestuck in depth.

CG: YOU PROBABLY DIDN’T CONTACT THE RIGHT ME.
GG: what does that mean!
CG: I MEAN FUTURE ME IS PROBABLY THE ONE TO TALK TO ABOUT THIS.
CG: SINCE IT’S ALL NEWS TO ME.
GG: is this another prank
GG: you are seriously the worst at pranks
CG: I DON’T PLAY PRANKS, THAT’S JUVENILE NONSENSE. 

This is another example of Karkat being an inverse of John, who as we know, has an affinity for pranks..

CG: IN THIS CASE, I AM ACCOMPLISHING THE LATTER.
CG: HERE, CLICK THIS AND WE WILL SOLVE THE MYSTERY TOGETHER.
CG: 
GG: 😐

I never realized until now that the following memo where Jade watches Karkat argue with himself was made by Karkat to figure out this exploded dreambot stuff. I guess it diverts from the point so quickly that you forget what it even was for. Doesn’t Karkat know at this point that talking to his alternate self will inevitably lead to a heated fight?

This would be my second choice for this post’s title picture.

CCG RIGHT NOW opened memo on board FRUITY RUMPUS ASSHOLE FACTORY.

CCG: HEY FUTURE ME, WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THIS EXPLODED JADEBOT BUSINESS?
CCG: MUST BE SOMETHING REALLY MISSION CRITICAL, OR JADE WOULDN’T HAVE BOTHERED GETTING IN TOUCH WITH US, RIGHT?
CCG: SOMETHING IMPERATIVE TO OUR SURVIVAL NO DOUBT?
CCG: HEY DOUCHE BAG, ARE YOU THERE
??? gardenGnostic [?GG] AT ?:?? responded to memo.
?GG: oh jeez, why am i doing this
?GG: this is so stupid!
CCG: PIPE DOWN HARLEY, THIS PRACTICALLY DOESN’T EVEN CONCERN YOU AT THIS POINT
?GG: bluhhh youre so funny!!!!! 

If Karkat said that Jade doesn’t have anything to do with this memo, then why did he invite her to it? So she can help explain the robot explosion?

Also, it’s hard to tell if Jade’s being sarcastic when she says Karkat is so funny. She has been in a pretty grouchy mood but it’s been noted several times that Jade generally isn’t very sarcastic.

CCG: YOU KNOW, IT’S REALLY AMAZING HOW BEHIND THE TIMES YOU ARE.
CCG: IT’S ALMOST AS IF YOU’VE SLEPT THROUGH THIS WHOLE ADVENTURE
CCG: OH WAIT, THAT IS ESSENTIALLY TRUE.
CCG: IT WAS HILARIOUS WATCHING YOU GROW UP.
CCG: YOU THOUGHT YOU HAD ALL THE ANSWERS, FROLICKING ALL OVER YOUR ISLAND BEING INFURIATINGLY CHIPPER, BUILDING ROBO-BUNNIES LIKE A MORON AND ULTIMATELY RUINING EVERYTHING.
CCG: YOU WERE SO SURE YOUR DREAMS TOLD YOU EVERYTHING YOU NEEDED TO KNOW.
CCG: AND NOW LOOK AT YOU
CCG: YOU SUDDENLY UNDERSTAND JACK SHIT. 

Karkat specifically notes that Jade being out of the loop thing I mentioned earlier. It’s kind of a recurring thing with this post series, where I make an observation about something, and then a few pages later, I end up seeing Homestuck make note of that observation.

CCG: DO YOU EVEN HAVE ANY IDEA HOW LUCKY YOU ARE TO BE GRACED BY MY DIVINE FURY?
CCG: TO HAVE THE PRIVILEGE OF GETTING TO BE STUDIED AND MOCKED BY ME FOR YOUR WHOLE PATHETIC MISERABLE LIFE?
CCG: DO YOU REALIZE I’M YOUR GOD? YES, YOUR LITERAL GOD, THAT’S RIGHT.
?GG: sure karkat, whatever you say! 

This is the exact same condescending attitude Karkat displayed in his first conversation with John. He gradually warms up to John before he even starts talking to Jade, and at that point I guess he goes back to the same starting place and presents himself as a victorious almighty god, only for that to backfire yet again.

CCG: AND I HAVE TAKEN TIME OUT OF MY BUSY GODLY SCHEDULE TO SCRUTINIZE YOUR POINTLESS EXISTENCE.
CCG: OUT OF THE COUNTLESS TRILLIONS OF LIFE FORMS I BROUGHT INTO REALITY THROUGH ANGRY GRUBFUCK POWER ALONE, I HAVE SELECTED YOU FOR EXAMINATION AND HARASSMENT.
CCG: PERSONALLY I THINK THAT WARRANTS A LITTLE GRATITUDE, AND JUST MAYBE, A BIT OF DEFERENCE.
CCG: A CURTSY, PERHAPS?
CCG: BUT YEAH GO AHEAD AND KEEP BLOWING ME OFF LIKE THE FLAKEY LITTLE TWERP YOU ARE.
FUTURE carcinoGeneticist [FCG] 3 HOURS FROM NOW responded to memo.
FCG: HEY DON’T TALK TO HER LIKE THAT YOU UNCOUTH PIECE OF SHIT.
FCG: THIS IS REFLECTING POORLY ON BOTH OF US, IT’S GODDAMNED EMBARRASSING. 

Here future Karkat responds to the memo not to answer the robot question, but to call his past self out on being mean to Jade. At first I thought, oh Karkat’s just doing this to call his past self out, but then I realized that future Karkat knew exactly how that would happen, which through [incoherent time travel ramble omitted] originated from itself. Stuff being predetermined to happen is nothing new at this point but it’s still pretty mind-screwy whenever you take a moment to think about it.

FCG: I CAN’T BELIEVE I EVER THOUGHT FUTURE ME WAS THE STUPID ONE
FCG: PAST ME IS THE DUMBEST BUCKET OF FESTERING DISCHARGE I EVER FELL ASS BACKWARDS INTO. 

I mentioned two posts ago that I wanted to find when Karkat said that the only person worse than future him is past him, and this is the closest quote I found because I didn’t consider that it might have been said in a walkaround (which is when it was said).

FCG: LOOK, JADE’S NOT THAT BAD OK.
FCG: YOU JUST GOT TOO WORKED UP, AND YOU CAN’T SEE THAT.
FCG: AND NOW ALL THIS FROTHING PANDEMONIUM JUMPING OUT OF YOUR MOUTH IS JUST RIDICULOUS OVERCOMPENSATION FOR YOUR OWN SHORTCOMINGS AND MISTAKES, AND MASKING SOME FEELINGS YOU’RE NOT REALLY IN TOUCH WITH.
FCG: THIS IS ALL SO OBVIOUS, I’M FLUSHING LIKE A MOTHERFUCKER IN EMBARRASSMENT HAVING TO EXPLAIN IT TO YOU, AND EVEN WORSE, REMEMBERING HAVING IT EXPLAINED TO ME BY THE SMART ONE THREE HOURS AGO AND STILL ACTING LIKE A MOIST GLOBE EVEN AFTER BEING SO SOUNDLY SCHOOLFED.
CCG: I DON’T BELIEVE THIS. PLEASE TELL ME THIS IS A JOKE.
FCG: YOU SAID SO YOURSELF, WE DON’T JOKE AROUND. IT’S JUVENILE, REMEMBER.
CCG: I’M GOING TO VOMIT.
CCG: I’M MAKING A MENTAL NOTE TO SLAP MYSELF THREE HOURS FROM NOW, FOR BEING ENOUGH OF A SAP TO START DEVELOPING RED FEELINGS FOR A DUMB ANNOYING HUMAN, IF I’M READING BETWEEN THE LINES CORRECTLY. 

This angry past/future Karkat argument reminds me of another simultaneous parallel and contrast between him and Dave: Davesprite is considerably more open about his emotions than Dave, just like future Karkat vs. past Karkat here, but Dave and Davesprite get along just fine while two Karkats will inevitably descend into a flaming argument.

?GG: future karkat, if you really are future karkat……
?GG: where do you get off thinking you can just suddenly act like were pals because you said you apologized????
?GG: if you want to apologize then great i am all ears! but just mentioning it off hand and then yelling at yourself the same way you yell at me all the time as if i need a knight to come save me from yourself is so lame, not to mention completely insane
?GG: i cant even believe the things im typing here! this is so stupid, talking to two of you at once is the worst thing imaginable
?GG: you treat everyone horribly, even yourself, i cant even fathom how awful it is to be you
?GG: past karkat, youre acting like a bigger jerk than he is and i think you know that! why dont you take his advice and grow up
?GG: as if theres even a real difference between you two. three hours is hardly any time at all, you are the same person YOU FUCKING IDIOTS!!!!!!!!! 

I really like this speech Jade gave to both Karkats on the memo. She’s calling Karkat out on exactly what’s wrong with him.

CCG: OH SHIT
FCG: YES, THAT WAS GREAT. WE BOTH HAD IT COMING, ESPECIALLY HIM. GREAT WORK JADE. 
?GG: stop it!!!!
?GG: ugh, i dont know whats worse, jerk karkat or goofy sycophant karkat
?GG: i cant stand it, whether youre trying to be nice or just being a crazy asshole, you are just so weird!!!
?GG: im through humoring you, i dont even care about this stupid exploded robot mission, whatever that was
FCG: OH RIGHT, ABOUT THAT
FCG: YEAH WE NEED TO TALK
FCG: I MEAN WE HAVE ALREADY FROM MY PERSPECTIVE
FCG: BUT YOU’RE GOING TO BE REALLY BUSY SOON, BECAUSE YOU’RE ABOUT TO ENTER YOUR SESSION
FCG: SO DON’T WORRY ABOUT IT UNTIL YOU DO, THEN JUST HIT ME UP, WE’LL TALK ABOUT IT
?GG: hahaha, FAT CHANCE!!!!
FCG: LOOK I KNOW THINGS ARE WEIRD BETWEEN US RIGHT NOW AND YOU HAVE EVERY RIGHT TO BE MAD.
FCG: ESPECIALLY AT THAT LOSER.
FCG: BUT THINGS WILL CHANGE, IN TIME YOU’LL SEE I’M NOT QUITE SO AWFUL, OK? 

It doesn’t take long for John to realize that Karkat is completely harmless and just kind of bitter sometimes, but Jade thinks he’s an absolute idiot for quite some time. Also, take note of how much Jade swears in this memo.

??? turntechGodhead [?TG] AT ?:?? responded to memo.
?TG: ahahahahah oh god
?TG: dude i cant believe you were just getting on our case about hitting on the troll girls
?TG: and then literally the very next memo you are slobbering all over jade
?TG: thats just perfect hahahaha
CCG banned ?TG: from responding to memo.
FCG rebanned ?TG: from responding to memo

Dave takes a moment to call Karkat out on being, let’s face it, kind of stupid. And past and future Karkat both agree that Dave is a shitbag.

?GG: i also cant wait for past you to past drop dead and go to hell, PAST TENSE!!!!!!!!
?GG: when are those things going to happen?? or will have already past/future happened?????
?GG: i want to put another reminder on my finger so i know when its time to throw a party!!!! 

This sounds so much like something Karkat would say. Remember when in one of my Act 4 posts I went on a tangent to moan about how robotic it is to say that Dave and Rose are always sarcastic while John and Jade never are? Well here’s another example against that. I don’t mean to sound bitter.

FCG: HOW’S THIS FOR A PACT, EVERYBODY.
FCG: PAST KARKAT ONLY TALKS TO PAST JADE FROM NOW ON, AND THE TWO OF THEM CAN BICKER LIKE SHITTY LITTLE CHILDREN FOR HOURS/YEARS RESPECTIVELY.
FCG: AND FUTURE KARKAT ONLY TALKS TO FUTURE JADE, AN ARRANGEMENT WHEREIN ONLY INTELLIGENT DISCOURSE TAKES PLACE BETWEEN TWO CIVILIZED, MATURE, GROWN ASSED ADULTS.
FCG: IS THAT TOO MUCH TO ASK?????? 

Turns out this is pretty much what Jade ends up doing later.

?GG: aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa XO
?GG: i will just ban myself!!!!
?GG: *JADE HARLEY BANNED HERSELF FROM RESPONDING TO THE GRUMPY SHIT HEAD MISERY ZONE, AND IS NEVER COMING BACK*
?GG: pchoooooooooooooooo
[?GG] ceased responding to memo.
FCG: OK, THERE. SHE’S GONE.
FCG: MAYBE NOW YOU GET IT.
FCG: HOW HIDEOUS EVERYONE THINKS YOU ARE, MAYBE YOU’LL FINALLY STOP FUCKING EVERYTHING UP.
CCG: HUH
FCG: WHAT
CCG: I THINK
CCG: I WAS PROBABLY WRONG ABOUT JADE
CCG: SHE’S A LITTLE LESS LAME THAN I THOUGHT
FCG: SHHHHSHHSHSHSHSH
FCG: SHE CAN STILL READ THIS YOU STUPID FUCK
FCG: NOW’S NOT THE TIME TO OPEN YOUR VEINS AND WRITE POEMS ABOUT YOUR FEELINGS 
CCG: FUCK YOU, I’M JUST VOICING A HARMLESS OBSERVATION OK
CCG: IT’S NOT MY BUSINESS IF SOME LUNK HEAD IN THE FUTURE GETS CARRIED AWAY WITH WHATEVER LITTLE THOUGHTS I MAY OR MAY NOT NOW BE THINKING
FCG: I…
FCG: BUT
FCG: HOW COULD THAT EVEN BE A REAL THING I TYPED THREE HOURS AGO, HOW COULD I BE THIS STUPID. 

Shouldn’t future Karkat be happy that past Karkat realizes Jade isn’t that stupid? Or is the cringe at something he typed in the past that strong? I’m pretty sure most people look back on things they did in the past and think it was stupid, and for Karkat it must be so extreme that ruminating about romantic feelings that would later be a pretty real thing must make the cut as something to cringe over.

Also, Karkat is very often touted as disliking himself, but I don’t think hating yourself and hating your alternate self necessarily go hand-in-hand. As I just said, I think most people cringe at stuff they did in the past to some extent, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they hate themselves. Here’s an even better example: in one Calvin and Hobbes story arc, Calvin clones himself and he thinks his clone is a total jerk, but Calvin is as far away as can be from hating himself; he’s totally convinced that he’s a revolutionary genius.

FCG: WE ARE JUST THE DUMBEST FUCKERS WHO EVER LIVED AREN’T WE.
CCG: SPEAK FOR YOURSELF.
FCG: I DON’T EVEN HAVE THE ENERGY TO BAN US.
FCG: I’M JUST LEAVING.
[FCG] ceased responding to memo.
CCG: YEAH
[CCG] ceased responding to memo.

I like the note this memo ends on: both Karkats are exhausted, accept that they’re both idiots, and leave the memo.

Jade consults her reminders and throws away all but one of them because she can’t remember what any of them mean anymore. This is pretty obvious symbolism for Homestuck’s recurring theme of growing up, a theme I’ve seen lots of people bring up. She looks at her house to see John deploying stuff in it.

I remember that for about a week during my first read this was the page I stopped on.
For some reason, going back to this page brings back ALL the memories.

Jade consults her reminders and throws away all but one of them because she can’t remember what any of them mean anymore. This is pretty obvious symbolism for Homestuck’s recurring theme of growing up, a theme I’ve seen lots of people bring up. She looks at her house to see John deploying stuff in it.

This picture above is a bit of art weirdness: the cruxtruder is drawn in the isometric projection that’s used throughout the early acts, but the room in the background is not.

EB: i woke up on the battlefield which was on fire, and had flaming bits of prospit everywhere. 

If this sentence is shown to people who haven’t read Homestuck, they’d probably think “prospit” is a mineral or something. Just a little oddity I noticed.

GG: 😦 
GG: yes, but that was not prospit. that was its moon which was severed by the crazy derse agent 

What Jade says seems a bit nitpicky; usually Prospit and Derse are not thought of as separate entities from their respective moons.

EB: i also got your present, and it saved my life!
GG: really?? 😀
EB: yes, the bunny was so awesome, it was definitely the best bunny i got today.
EB: thank you so much, jade!
GG: ❤
EB: when jack saw it, he flew the hell away. and then the bunny and i went on an adventure together.
EB: does the bunny have a name? i asked him but i don’t think he can talk.
GG: i dont know! i did not give him one after applying the upgrades
GG: i gave her a girls name when i was very young, but now she is a different bunny, and also a boy i guess?
GG: its up to you john, he is your bunny 

What was the girl’s name Jade gave that bunny? Is it named after someone from Squiddles or something? I don’t think it’s ever stated.

EB: also, apparently i am supposed to marry rose. karkat said so.
GG: what!!!!
EB: it is true, it is a fact from an alien. 

I just love how John said that with a straight face. “It is true, it is a fact from an alien.” It’s like he’s a nine-year-old kid from a sci-fi movie who’s been fascinated with aliens all his life.

GG: ugh he is so weird 
GG: you shouldnt listen to him! 
EB: heheh, i did not take him that seriously. 
EB: but karkat is cool, he is angry and funny. 
GG: D: 
GG: he is angry and a huge pain in the ass 
GG: have you ever talked to two of him at once???? 
EB: haha, no! 
GG: dont ever do it! you will get a headache 
EB: that sounds kind of awesome. 
GG: noooooooo, think again 

It didn’t take long at all for John to warm up to Karkat compared to Jade, but then again he wasn’t in a really bad mood from a nightmare about an infinite dark Cthulhu-space.

EB: i’ve got it.
EB: i will name her liv tyler.
GG: ????
EB: the bunny.
GG: 😐
GG: you mean from armageddon?
EB: yeah!
GG: john that is so stupid
GG: but also kind of cute i guess
GG: ok then the bunny will be named after your silly movie star fantasy crush
EB: it’s too bad i can’t marry liv instead of rose.
EB: the girl i mean, not the bunny.
EB: but i guess she is probably dead now, along with all the other glamorous movie stars who come out to shine on the silver screen.
EB: that’s pretty sad. 

This is a really weird time for it to dawn on John that all his favorite movie stars are probably dead. I wonder if during the battleship journey, John wrote fanfiction of his favorite celebrities playing Sburb? He probably did.

GG: how much time do you suppose we have?
EB: i will find out now!

I didn’t expect this bit to be followed by a scene switch. If I didn’t already know what goes down in Homestuck I would’ve been pretty frustrated, but then again, by this point readers are probably used to scene switches like that.

Up next is another little sequence of panels where Jack Noir flies to LOWAS for a second battle with Dave’s bro, giving him his sword. This bit is notable because it shows us that Jack considers this guy to be a worthy opponent. I wonder what the latter was planning to do over there. Was he just exploring, or did he go there through his mysterious knowledge stuff?

I really like the little outer space view in this panel.
Also note the meteor near Earth; it’s almost like Earth’s second moon.

John drops a globe on Jade’s cruxtruder in order to open it, which brings to light the pattern theme that’s so prominent in the early acts. This sequence of pages is almost like a throwback to earlier acts, with the patterns relating to entering the game played out for Jade, and for the most part, not subverted. I think John mentions a little later that this feels so much like old times with deploying stuff around Jade’s house. Just for reference, the cruxtruder pattern goes as follows: John’s is opened with a hammer, Rose’s with a wizard statue, Dave’s with a toilet, and Jade’s with a globe. Remember the Jade pattern breaking count I took back in Act 3? Well, I just thought up another thing that might count. (15?) Among the four beta kids, Jade is the only one who opens her client player’s cruxtruder by accident. It’s kind of a stretch because the noted instance of this pattern is not the one that occurs last, and probably more of Dave’s instance of a pattern than Jade’s. Don’t worry though, later we’ll have a few stronger instances of Jade breaking patterns.

EB: ok, we have 10 minutes and 25 seconds.
GG: hmmmm i wonder what the significance of that number is
EB: why would it be significant?
EB: numbers don’t always need to have significance!
GG: but they usually do! 

This isn’t the first time Jade broke the fourth wall. Remember in Act 3 when Jade (not really) let the reader try playing Memory with her items and regrets breaking the fourth wall, as the narration explicitly states? Homestuck has a lot of lines that might count as breaking the fourth wall, or at least leaning on it.

EB: hey, what do you think we should prototype this fussy little orb with?
EB: heheheh, it seems like so long ago that rose fed mine a clown.
EB: we were just messing around, we didn’t even know what we were doing.
GG: i dont know…
GG: there are so many possibilities
EB: yeah… 

EB: it’s almost like your grandpa put all this crap here knowing we’d have to make that decision.
GG: hmmmmmm!
GG: yes, it sure seems that way
EB: he seems like he was an awesome guy, i would have liked to have the chance to talk to him.
GG: well
GG: maybe you will get that chance john
EB: oh?
GG: yes, as a matter of fact i am sure we will both get that chance!
GG: i once dreamt that we would 

This exchange is really enticing the mystery of what Jade’s sprite will be prototyped with. Through what we know so far, Jade’s promise that she and John will both get the chance to meet her grandpa during the game is very heavily directing readers to the idea of Grandpasprite. And this whole scene’s also implicitly directing readers to the idea of Bec prototyping himself, because both he and Grandpa’s body are next to the kernelsprite, and because of Hussie’s affinity for red herrings. It wouldn’t be unreasonable to guess that Bec and Grandpa will both be prototyped into Jade’s sprite, leading to what I’ve seen people call “Grandpawsprite”.

Arguably, Jade and John’s supposed meeting with Grandpa is still an unanswered question as of the Omegapause. She’s most likely talking about meeting Jake, but if that’s the case, it’s a little dubious whether Jade would recognize him as her grandpa, so it’s not 100% clear. I’m personally unsure if I’d recognize young versions of my parents.

EB: huh…
EB: wait, are you saying we will prototype him?
EB: like i did with nanna, to bring her ghost back to life?
EB: as…
EB: another ghost?
GG: sure, why not!
EB: i guess that makes a lot of sense, actually.
GG: that is what i believe this game is for in part
GG: you got to bring back your nanna, rose brought back her cat, i can bring back grandpa, and dave…
GG: dave got to bring back a dead bird because of course he is too cool to have any dead family members 

This bit where John and Jade discuss the possibility of prototyping Grandpa is one hell of a red herring.

EB: i just messaged [dave], he is not answering. 

The youngest instance of Dave at this point, the one wearing the black suit, is clearly still asleep, but are there really no other Daves running around to answer John? The same goes a bit later where Rose and Jade both pester Dave but get a confused consort instead. Or do all the Daves out there just think friends pestering them is past Dave business?

EB: what do we do about prototyping?
EB: we shouldn’t put your grandpa in yet, unless we want lots of imps and ogres and stuff that look like your grandpa.
GG: augh, nooooooooooooooo

Grandpa imps are surprisingly easy to imagine: just picture an imp, then picture it with Grandpa’s facial features. Maybe with his hat for good measure.

EB: we could put in something really lame, to make all the monsters weaker!
EB: or at the very least, more ridiculous looking.
EB: like one of these weird pictures of blue ladies lying around.

If both of you are OK with Grandpa mixed with a blue lady, then go ahead, chuck in one of those things! That would be a seriously absurd and messed up thing. We’ve had two sprites much later that are of ambiguous gender due to being a combination of a male and female, the former of which promptly exploded but the latter of which is very satisfied with their existence. Someone’s probably drawn Blue-Lady-Grandpasprite or whatever you want to call it.

Apparently he stitched up Cal. Rose is also into knitting so that might be a parallel between her and Dirk?

Davesprite successfully finds his bro and joins him in the fight. This is important because it shows that Davesprite still cares about his guardian to an extent, enough that he wants to catch up with him. This is much unlike how regular Dave, after a year without his guardian, makes it clear that he doesn’t want to meet his kid bro. What’s up with that difference? Davesprite didn’t assume his bro was dead during his timeline, but Dave knew for a fact that he’s gone, so maybe that’s why? Or did it take more than four months for Dave to realize his bro was messed up? Or did living on a meteor without puppets and swords everywhere make Dave realize that faster?

Davesprite choosing to fight with his guardian might support my theory I mentioned last post that Davesprite has more respect for Bro than Dave does.

EB: what is this thing, anyway??
EB: and why is it blocking your transporter?
GG: it is some sort of terrible creature my grandpa hunted
GG: he called it the typheus minion
GG: i always hated it! 

So Jade apparently completely believed her grandpa when he said that was a hideous monster he hunted. Is she like the kind of fictional kid who believes all sorts of nonsense her parents say? In the movie Instructions Not Included, the little girl spent the first seven years of her life believing everything her dad made up about her mom, who is supposedly never with her because she travels around the world saving people’s lives. But this is a pretty bad analogy because in Homestuck her grandpa’s crazy adventure exploits are very real.

EB: typheus?
EB: like the web browser?
GG: i guess so
GG: it is probably a coincidence though
EB: hmm, i don’t know…
EB: if you think numbers always mean something, why wouldn’t browser names?
GG: yeah maybe…..
GG: i guess it would make sense for someone to name a really awful web browser after such a hideous monster
EB: wow, you sure do hate that thing!
GG: well sorry, i just found it sort of a weird and creepy thing to grow up with!
EB: i think it is pretty cool.
EB: and he is actually sort of cute to be honest, :p
GG: :p!!!!!!
EB: oh, and screw you, typheus is an awesome browser!
EB: it is old school.
GG: joooohhhhhn, it is so crappy
EB: typheus is the best and that’s really all there is to say on the matter.
GG: YEAH RIGHT
GG: now is obviously not the best time to have the argument about whose browser is better….
GG: but really john you should upgrade to echidna, its so much nicer 

I love this exchange about web browsers. This is the closest Homestuck gets to directly referencing the fact that the kids’ browsers are all named after their respective denizens. I once saw a theory that Skaianet developed all of those browsers. It’s a little weird how no other time has anyone noted that their denizen shares a name with their favorite web browser. I’d be pretty surprised if I played Sburb with some hypothetical Firefox geek friend and it turns out that my denizen is called Chrome and his is called Firefox. But putting real-life browsers here just doesn’t have the same effect because they aren’t named after ancient Greek stuff, at least not the popular ones.

How does dropping a big stuffed object comically clump up everything?
Also, nice touch: Grandpa’s hat fell on the cruxtruder. What would prototyping a hat do? Is that even possible?

EB: in my foolishness, i came very close to prototyping your grandpa.
GG: D:
GG: john, try to be more careful!
EB: we very nearly had to face our grandfatherly paradox-dad as a last boss.
EB: that would probably be the worst case scenario. 

The dramatic irony is so delicious. Even though said irony is only a thing if you’re rereading, it’s still delicious.

Just got through another 50 pages, so I’ll stop here. See you next time as I extensively, and I mean EXTENSIVELY, comment on a flash which is one of my favorites.

>>  Part 34: Villain Caninification Station

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