Cookie Fonster’s Homestuck Commentary Part 56: SBES Vol. 2 – Of Sports and Snake Monsters

Introduction

Part 55 | Part 56 | Part 57 >

Act 5 Act 2, Part 29 of 32

Doc Scratch Intermission, Part 4 of 6

Pages 3936-4001 (MSPA: 5836-5901) (not in order)

NOTE: SBES stands for Scrapbook Examination Station.

Welcome back to my Homestuck post series. After nearly three weeks without any such posts, I guess it’s time for more scrapbook pages. I will do this selection screen left to right (boring order, I know), so I’ll start with Nannasprite.

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Cookie Fonster’s Problem Sleuth Commentary Introduction

As I mentioned not long ago, I’m starting a new blog post series similar to my lengthy post series commenting on the famed story webcomic Homestuck, but covering its predecessor, Problem Sleuth. I would say it’s based on the success of my Homestuck post series, but that post series isn’t particularly popular at the moment. I would also append that sentence with “(yet)” if there was a non-awkward way to say that while also acknowledging that my posts becoming more popular is merely what I hope will happen.

Although Homestuck is unquestionably Andrew Hussie’s magnum opus, Problem Sleuth deserves some appreciation for keeping a consistent theme and storyline through its year-long run. Homestuck, while unlike Problem Sleuth intended as an “actual story” from the start, started as a command-based story of four teenagers playing a video game but gradually shed many of its original layers, progressing into a tale of gray-skinned aliens and lengthy dialogue and complex plot lines, and then incorporating relationship drama and aging up its characters and regularly going on hiatus to the point where it’s a completely different story from what it started as. This is not to say that what Homestuck became ended up being bad—although some people do think that, I actually like the middle section of the comic the most—it’s more like Problem Sleuth does a better job at keeping a consistent style. Throughout its run Problem Sleuth ran on user-suggested commands and kept its theme of being a video game adventure while still doing a good job at escalating its storyline, something that cannot be said of Homestuck.

Problem Sleuth is so far the only one of Hussie’s four comics on MS Paint Adventures to have a definite conclusion, sealing its role as a story more so than Homestuck which is the one that’s an actual story. Its predecessors of similar style, Jailbreak and Bard Quest, are both left unfinished, while Homestuck is either finished or semi-finished depending on how you look at it (I look at it as semi-finished). As it stands, Homestuck technically has an ending, but there’s a vaguely described epilogue planned as well. There is much debate as to whether Homestuck’s present ending is a good satisfying ending. Many readers, myself included, feel that the ending as it stands does not give a satisfying wrap-up to all its plot threads and character arcs. Some readers, myself still included, think Homestuck’s current ending doesn’t even hit some of the bare minimum requirements for a satisfying ending. Readers also can’t agree on what to expect for the epilogue of the comic, whether it will resolve stuff and possibly even redeem the ending, or if it won’t be of much substance. I personally have optimistic expectations for the epilogue, mostly because it really feels all “look I know Homestuck isn’t good anymore” to think it won’t be much good.

While Problem Sleuth has a solid conclusion, it still is at heart a silly video game parody story of clumsy detectives. But with a decent length of over 1600 pages, it’s still worth giving serious commentary, in what will be my second full read of Problem Sleuth. For reference, my first read of Problem Sleuth was on and off over the course of several months, and was at around the same time as my second read of Homestuck. While I have no posting schedule set in stone yet, I’m thinking of making these posts at a similar rate to my Homestuck posts: generally every 3-5 days, though it can vary. I think it’s reasonable to cover about 100 or more pages per post, similar to how I originally did my Homestuck post series. This means that if things go as planned, my Problem Sleuth post series will contain about 16 posts total and take a few months from start to finish.

List of posts:

Part 1 / Part 2 / Part 3 / Part 4

(more coming at some point hopefully?????)

Progress report on next Homestuck post

My next Homestuck post, which will be the 56th one in my post series, is taking somewhat longer than I hoped. My last post covered 63 pages, and my next post will cover 66 pages; that’s not that many more pages, but those have a lot of long dialogue that takes me a while to get through.

I’d say I’m about 60% through writing my next post. For some details, the post I’m working on covers all the options in these two selection screens. The first screen contains six options, all but one of which have long pesterlogs. I am partway through the fourth of six options in that screen since getting back to the post series three days ago, so I’m more than halfway through that one. The next selection screen has five options, only three with dialogue, and only one with particularly long dialogue. Basically this means I have about two and a half long chunks of dialogue left to cover, plus some shorter stuff. Hopefully I can get it done in the next day or two.

The next post after the one I’m working on will cover only 34 pages and hopefully won’t take too long. After that one there will be only two more posts until I finally reach Act 6!

EDIT (6/29/2016): Now my next post is about 90% done, and I should be able to release it today. It’s going to be really long.

Cookie Fonster’s Vacation Stuff Part 3: Everything Else + Other Updates

(part 2)

So I’m finally back home from vacation now. And I’m kind of sorry that I didn’t make more blog posts after the one about feeding birds. I did consider a few things to write posts about but I just didn’t bother with all that. It’s not that I didn’t do cool stuff, it’s just that I didn’t do things that I felt would make interesting blog post topics. If you want to know, here’s some stuff I did. I went to a super-relaxing warm hot spring pool, hiked around mountains that I got to with a cable car, ate a lot of food, and some other stuff.

The flight home was kind of interesting for a few reasons. The longest of the three flights started 3:30 PM and ended around 5:30 PM because it went six hours back due to time zones. Skipping ahead six hours in the middle of the night is one thing, but skipping back six hours in the afternoon is kind of weird. On the way there, I felt pretty sick after not sleeping for about 20 hours. But this time around it’s kind of different. After a long day of flying in airplanes, I decided that when I get home I would hop right into bed and get a nice well-earned sleep. But somehow I am wide awake a little after midnight writing a blog post in my twenty-fifth straight hour of being awake. I have no idea how such a thing is even possible.

During the vacation, I also thought about my blog posts. I’ve decided to continue my Homestuck posts as I did previously, with a new post every few days. I’m even more hyped than I already was about reaching Act 6 due to some random thoughts I had. But I also had the idea to write a commentary post series on Problem Sleuth, Homestuck’s predecessor. I don’t know when that commentary will start, but I imagine that starting within the next week I might work on Problem Sleuth posts alongside Homestuck posts, with Homestuck posts released more regularly. Before I start my Problem Sleuth posts I’ll write an introduction post similar to my Homestuck commentary introduction post.

I’ll get back to my regular blog posts tomorrow (technically later today), after I get a good night’s sleep.

EDIT: One more thing I forgot to mention. I plan on making a full real-life edited version of Detective Pony, something I’ll be able to feasibly do after I get a summer job and can buy supplies with my own money, stuff my parents would never buy for me.

Cookie Fonster’s Vacation Stuff Part 2: Birds Are Very Stupid

(part 1)

I am in Italy now. I went there yesterday for the first time in my life and I will be there until around the 19th. Since writing my last post four days ago, I spent some time thinking about the next thing I want to write about, when earlier today I did something and thought, this would be a good thing to write about.

My family walked around somewhere for a bit, and at one point we sat on a bench and ate sandwiches we brought. There were some birds there, and we all started tearing off bits of bread and feed them to birds, something I had done before in an earlier vacation. When the first crumb was thrown, a whole bunch more birds came out of nowhere to fight for the food; eventually there was quite a flock of them.

It worked pretty much like this. One of us would throw a bit of bread at the group of birds, and whichever one catches it first eats the whole thing. But when I tried it out with a bigger piece, about half an inch in size, something funny happened. One of the birds grabbed the piece and selfishly flew away with it, as if it’s prized delicious food not to share with anyone else. I did that several times, and each time that same thing happened.

I seriously expected birds to be a bit smarter than this, maybe for each to gather around the piece of bread and start nibbling on it because the pieces of bread were really quite big for the birds, the same way multiple cats eat from the same bowl of cat food. The pieces looked too big for a single bird to store in its beak, but the birds would always fly away with the big piece stored that way regardless.

I think the moral of the story is as follows: never underestimate how dumb animals can be.

Part 3

Cookie Fonster‘s Vacation Stuff Part 1: Airplanes Destroyed My Sleeping Schedule

Now I know I said earlier that I would not make blog posts during vacation. Well, it turns out that I actually will make posts; just not any Homestuck posts. It is only the second day of vacation and I already have a pretty interesting story to tell, so I figured it would make a good post topic. I got access to a laptop to write vacation posts, so I guess that’s what I will do whenever I have something interesting to tell.

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Cookie Fonster’s Homestuck Commentary Part 55: Scrapbook Examination Station (SBES) Volume I

Introduction

Part 54 | Part 55 | Part 56 >

Act 5 Act 2, Part 28 of 32

Doc Scratch Intermission, Part 3 of 6

Pages 3874-3935 (MSPA: 5774-5835) (not in order)

NOTE: Remember, no new posts until after the 23rd because of vacation.

Here’s how this whole 250-ish-page scrapbook section is going to work. I said a while back that I will always avoid doing the selection screens in the normal order. The scrapbook pages, which are in fact the first selection screens, are an exception, not because I will do them in the normal order, but because there is no normal order; from what I can tell, readers do them in various orders. To spice it up regardless, for each of those selection screens, I will go by a different rule for which order to read the scenes.

There are six such selection screens total, each directly following the previous. This post and the next two will each go through two of those selection screens. I was originally going to do something different so that I’d be sure it’s all split evenly since some selection screens take up more pages total than others, but I figured it’s easiest to just split it like that.

For the first selection of scrapbook scenes, shown above, I will do them in order of smallest to biggest picture. This means I’ll start with the one on the bottom left, the Dersite battleship.

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Cookie Fonster’s Homestuck Commentary Part 54: Vriska the Bus Driver

Introduction (now updated!)

Part 53 | Part 54 | Part 55 >

Act 5 Act 2, Part 27 of 32

Doc Scratch Intermission, Part 2 of 6

Pages 3833-3873 (MSPA: 5733-5773)

Just warning you, this post is EXTREMELY long.

NOTE: Sorry about the late post. To make up, this is another really long one. I’ve decided to do only one more post, which will also probably be pretty long. This one took a while partly because I spent the past several days preparing for the SAT and applying for summer jobs, and all that should be mostly out of the way now.

NOTE 2: You probably have no idea what the title of this post is supposed to mean. It’s explained later on.

Where were we? Never mind, I figured it out instantly because the previous post helpfully listed where I was. Accompanied by a shot of various mind visions, we get a paragraph detailing the description of an ideal seer. I’ll analyze it thoroughly, specifically some parts that stick out, because of how much unlike Rose it sounds.

A Seer would support her allies in battle not with her weapons, but her vision. 

Rose fought with weapons very much, and while Terezi assisted largely in vision, she too is noted for skill in weapons. However, this is a pretty spot-on description of the Sufferer—also a seer by way of Kankri’s title—who had visions of a peaceful life on the other side of the Scratch.

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Something I Feel Cluey About

A recent blog post from Wait But Why, a popular blog about pretty much any subject, talked about a weird kind of sadness Tim Urban, the writer of the blog, calls “clueyness”. It’s basically the feeling of guilt you get after declining a friendly offer or request even though the person who gave the offer probably forgot about it entirely. The word was coined from a story his father told him. Tim’s grandfather bought a game of Clue for his children to play. They came over to him and listened to the directions for the game, but when some friends came, the kids immediately left and he put the game away. One can only imagine how his grandfather must have felt back then, waiting for the kids to come back and play with him and then giving up.

Today I came across something that was in my clothing drawer for some reason:

and it’s something I feel pretty cluey about.

I got it for Christmas about five years ago. I dreamt of having music writing software back then, and asked for it for Christmas. I got the disc shown above from my aunt but I never ended up using it for some reason. I think I couldn’t figure out how to install it or something? I did get into music writing software about two years later but I still feel guilty about never using what I got back then.

There’s a lot of other Christmas presents I feel just as cluey about never using, but this one kind of sticks out.