Cookie Fonster Dissects Homestuck Part 101: Faygo Degradation and Chair Tantrums

Introduction

< Part 100 | Part 101 | Part 102 >

Pages 6015-6054

Act 6 Intermission 5, Part 3 of 5 (not to be confused with Mr. 305)

My Homestuck blog post series officially has a Pitbull reference now. I have no idea why I just did that.

The first thing we see when we check back in on the meteor crew is THIS horrifying panel. Terezi reveals that her eyes are regular seeing troll eyes once more, which is an image that feels INCREDIBLY wrong, and rightfully so. Her eyes are pulsing red as if she isn’t used to not wearing her dragon hood, her mouth is in a weird frown, and there are heavy bags under her eyes that tell us what shape Terezi is in right now.

Karkat’s facial expression tells us more than words ever could. Sometimes the guy just mirrors readers’ reactions to story events SO WELL.

This panel, man. Terezi is surrounded by these horrible bottles of Faygo and clown horns, but she’s still carrying a scalemate plush to remind us that she’s the same Terezi Pyrope we’ve followed since Act 4.

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Cookie Fonster Dissects Homestuck Part 100: Antagonist Origination Station

Introduction

< Part 99 | Part 100 | Part 101 >

Pages 5947-6014

Act 6 Intermission 5, Part 2 of 5

Imagine a gigantic balloon shaped like the number 100 filling your screen right now.

Well, I did it. After four long years, I’ve reached the 100th installment of my Homestuck post series (which will hopefully not be my last Homestuck post of 2019) on the first anniversary of this post series’ resurrection. I worked on this post sort of on and off over the course of a month, because I know well that with my Homestuck posts I’m either absurdly fast or absurdly slow. I’m rather pleased with what material my 100th post turned out to cover: Aranea’s explanation of Lord English’s backstory, a villain we’ve known about since the Midnight Crew intermission.

I must say, having these posts’ numbers in the triple digits now is really goddamn weird. It now officially feels like this is a project I’ve gotten way too carried away with—not that it didn’t before, but this is just the nail in the coffin for me getting carried away. If I keep doing about 50 pages per post, this means that I’ll reach the end of Homestuck around post 140; realistically, probably quite a few more posts than that. The end of Homestuck won’t be the end of this post series though—I will continue with the epilogues, and IF IT BECOMES ACTUALLY GOOD, Homestuck^2 as well. Again speaking realistically, I estimate that I will reach the end of Homestuck in these posts in early 2021, which is a weird date to consider, almost like I’m a Hollywood studio announcing the release date for a movie or something. In any case, 100 posts is one HELL of a milestone.

… Alright, let’s stop rambling and get on with Cookie Fonster Dissects Homestuck Part 100!!!

A fitting image for my 100th post if I say so myself.

Act 6 Intermission 5 Intermission 2 is immediately followed by a scene showing us what John is up to. He’s sleeping on the couch, dreaming in a bubble amidst the cracks in paradox space formed by Lord English to complete an enormous circle of stupidity, which I mean both literally and figuratively. This image humorously calls back to Caliborn’s approximation of a circle with a mess of lines, showing that some things about him just never change.

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Cookie Fonster’s Homestuck Commentary Part 65: Karkat Freakouts Ad Infinitum

Introduction

Part 64 | Part 65 | Part 66 >

Act 6 Intermission 1, Part 2 of 2

Pages 4346-4390 (MSPA: 6246-6290)

alternate post title: Don’t Turn Your Back on the Juggalo

As promised, I’ll go right ahead and discuss the thing of kids and trolls meeting.

The very notion of all these characters here meeting in person marks a transition in the beta kids’ storyline, one that applies to John and Jade as well. After leveling up and earning Gift of Gab, all four beta kids no longer receive commands and are only occasionally playable or narrated. This is because in the whole first half of Act 6, the beta kids’ sections are not so much about getting through the game as they are about checking up on their new daily life in the three-year intermezzo between the old and new sessions, often with discussions of plot stuff to keep the story interesting.

I have mixed feelings regarding this narrative transition. After arrival in the new session, I think it would have been ideal for the kids and trolls’ story to return to being more like getting through a video game, but Act 6 Act 6, the subdivision where that stuff happens, ended up being kind of a mess instead. Not counting Caliborn’s narration interludes, it starts off with everyone really confused about what’s going on, and instead of having the characters work through it all, things get even more messed up to the point of the survivors having to fix the whole timeline. And after that happens, the versions of the kids who do get all the stuff done are from a different timeline (with only a few exceptions), different from the ones we followed for all of Act 6, while the original versions are shafted off to irrelevance. Even disregarding that disparity, a lot of stuff in the retconned session is glossed over (things like planet quests and denizen meetings), and at times it seems just too orderly. I think all this is a result of the story trying too hard to get through events in an even more convoluted way than previously, to the point of destroying certain major story points.

But just for the sake of things, I’ll comment on this whole kid/troll meeting sequence for what it is, without acknowledging that the retcon is a thing. As I’ve done in the past, this lack of retcon discussion will be a self-challenge of sorts, something I’ll see how easily I can stick to.

Alright, let’s begin.

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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 Homestuck Commentary Part 48: Bored Superdogs and Memory Revelations

Introduction

Part 47 | Part 48 | Part 49 >

Act 5 Act 2, Part 21 of 32

Pages 3546-3613 (MSPA: 5446-5513)

Only in Homestuck could this picture make any sort of sense. Even then…

NOTE: I’m really blitzing through Act 5 now (by which I mean going about 30% faster), and boy am I proud of that.

NOTE 2: As school is ending, I have a big project over the next few weeks which I have to work a lot on. This means that I’m slowing down posts somewhat, with the next three posts weekly instead of every five days. Next post coming Sunday.

: (

We now focus on what Jack Noir is up to. He just killed Dad and Mom offscreen. As with Nepeta, it’s a bit of a relief we didn’t have to see them die onscreen; showing a guy killing two loving parents of main characters in love together would obviously be even more heartwrenching than anything we’ve seen so far. Compare this to Bro, who got an onscreen death scene. This is probably not because he is (arguably) not as likable as the other guardians, rather because his death was the culmination of a fight, while the other two were just on a date when it was suddenly interrupted. If John’s dad was in a fistfight with Jack and lost when Jack became more powerful, he would no doubt get a full death scene.

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Cookie Fonster’s Homestuck Commentary Part 46: F33lings Jams A8ound

Introduction

Part 45 | Part 46 | Part 47 >

Act 5 Act 2, Part 19 of 32

Pages 3438-3478 (MSPA: 5338-5378)

NOTE: I’m really sorry about the late post today. Walkaround games always take a good while to write commentary on because I need to capture pictures and use online transcripts and everything. To make up for it, this post is a pretty long one.

It’s time for a third troll walkaround, this time focused on Equius and Nepeta. The main point of this walkaround is to give those two trolls a decent final scene before they bite the dust. And their dialogue really does flesh out both of them. Arguably it’s bad that they got some heavy dialogue and then promptly got offed, but Hussie said that if they didn’t get any such parting dialogue the complaint would be that they got no parting dialogue. 

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Cookie Fonster’s Homestuck Commentary Part 43: The Evil Juggalo Nightmare

Introduction

Part 42 | Part 43 | Part 44 >

Act 5 Act 2, Part 16 of 32

Pages 3321-3359 (MSPA: 5221-5259)

NOTE: Sorry the post’s two days late. So much for spring break giving me a faster schedule.

Up next is another walkaround, similar to Alterniabound but with a somewhat different, more worrisome tone. If you take a moment to examine the items scattered across the floor, there’s so much dramatic irony (thinking Vriska is harmless and Tavros is alive and well) and worries as to where everyone is, especially Gamzee.

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Cookie Fonster’s Homestuck Commentary Part 39: the CRISMATS SPECAIL

Introduction

Part 38 | Part 39 | Part 40 >

Act 5 Act 2, Part 12 of 32

Pages 3133-3195 (MSPA: 5033-5095)

HO HO HO

WV, thinking John is dead, tries to escape his command station but the door jams because the station is out of fuel.

Of course you still have your secret treasure, but it will almost certainly prove to be of no use to you in this dilemma whatsoever. It clearly serves no significant purpose other than to be pretty, and to make your hand glowy.

Sure, whatever you say, Mr. Narrator! Some time later in the exile arc, we learn about plans for dealing with Jack Noir where it’s made clear that the ring will be used for stuff. With that in mind, PM being the final wearer of the ring is quite the plot twist.

Oh yeah, there’s another thing you forgot about! You ate that delicious green nuclear rock earlier in the day, even though it feels like it was more than a year ago.

Here’s something Homestuck occasionally does: linking to earlier pages in order to remind people of things they might have forgotten about. I think this probably should be done more often; for example, I’ve seen people reading Homestuck completely forget about the time Karkat told past Jade her robot will blow up when it is referenced several times later. In this case it’s a reminder of the Chekhov’s uranium. The “more than a year ago” bit is another one of those things that made the most sense to serial readers. But I guess that could make sense to archival readers (most especially those reading at a slow pace) given that as the link reminds us, the uranium was eaten over two thousand pages ago.

Ugh, there he goes again, bothering you. He is so impatient. Doesn’t he realize how time consuming it is preparing for the holidays? He’s just going to have to hold his stupid angry alien space horses.

Wait… you almost forgot, it’s still April, and nowhere near the holiday season. You guess all this wintry weather tricked you into thinking it was.

But wait! Even THAT doesn’t make any sense, since it never snowed on your island, and you were never able to connect it with the holiday season! Boy, are you confused.

But you always wanted a white Christmas, and dammit, that is what you are going to have, even though it’s April, and even though you are giving all these presents to yourself, and even though Jesus Christ is no longer a relevant figure to celebrate on account of the annihilation of humanity!

This is yet another part that made the most sense to serial readers. But it’s not that hard to guess that these panels were posted around Christmas time. I hadn’t previously realized it, but the following stretch of pages is essentially Homestuck: The Christmas Special. And I’m going to say stuff about Christmas specials.

Almost every TV show or other serial work of media will have at least one Christmas special, often in the second season. The classic Christmas special goes something like this: the characters meet Santa Claus and discover through him the true meaning of Christmas. However, in more modern works of media, as well as those geared towards older audiences, the theme of the Christmas special will be toyed with and in some way massively subverted. Think of a TV show or whatever else. Now think of its Christmas special. How much would you say it subverts the typical Christmas pattern? Repeat this process as many times as you want.

The narration quoted above specifically talks about how it’s not actually Christmas even though this is the Christmas special. Homestuck is a work of media that’s all about subverting typical patterns. Before we open presents, I should note that this is the only Christmas special in Homestuck, unless you count John’s alchemy binge, posted near the previous Christmas.

This is one of the most hilarious panels in Homestuck, subverting the pattern of detailed portraits (1234) we’ve been getting of some of the other trolls. The narration says, “Karkat cannot be conveyed with a more detailed portrait yet. He is too angry, and is forced to look like shit. Maybe later if he can manage to calm down.” Better yet, the drawing is very crude but still has subtly flashing screen light effects.

I LOVE how the Sburb interface font changes to Comic Sans for SBaHJ items.

TG: yes perfect 
GG: it is the prettiest tree i have ever seen!!!!! 
TG: ok im going to torrent you another like negative billion artifact grists 
GG: ok great! 
GG: everything about that makes total sense 

Dave is helping Jade make a Christmas themed upon everyone’s favorite comic. This Christmas special focuses mainly on Jade, but it also has people working together to set up a very merry Christmas.

Also, Jade is right on here. Why do you even need negative artifact grist? What purpose does it serve? How can you have negative amounts of grist in the first place?

As you can see from comparing the two pictures above, the conksuck boot above is literally flat and 2-dimensional. This whole SBaHJ-ey Christmas interlude is a nice goofy and silly break from dramatic shit.

GG: is this conksucky enough 
TG: its the conksuckiest piece of fucking shit that ever still somehow qualified as a boot 
GG: ❤ 
TG: you just know imigrants were responsible 
GG: well… 
GG: i am not even sure if i am technically a u.s. citizen! 
TG: yeah see what i mean

It sort of says something about Jade’s life that she apparently doesn’t know whether she’s a U.S. citizen. This implies that she doesn’t know what country she lives in. I’m pretty sure her island’s coordinates are in U.S. territory but I have no idea whether that counts as being a citizen. More on Jade’s isolation from society later.

Jade proceeds to have her own alchemy binge, and I’ll comment on whatever parts I feel like commenting on.

A few times in this sequence, including this alchemization, Jade uses some of her friends’ possessions. How did she get those? Probably Dave just gave her the code.

Jade tries to alchemize earmuffs but ends up making a fluffy ball plus headband instead. As the narration says, why is this thing so expensive? The sizable cost implies some kind of special use, though I can’t think of any use for such a thing.

You have secretly wondered whether your grandpa was actually Iron Man in his younger years. It would explain so many things, including why this armor is here.

This page is another one of these moments where an easily missable bit from a while back is brought to light. In this case, it’s the inexplicable Iron Man suit amidst a room full of knight armor.

Also, it’s pretty interesting to consider the implications of the narration’s statement that Jade wondered whether her grandpa is Iron Man (she should totally tell Jake this). This either demonstrates her grandpa’s status as an impossibly awesome guy or Jade’s status as someone secluded from society. I guess it could be both things.

There’s quite a bit of evidence throughout the comic that Jade is pretty isolated from society (for instance, remember when she dunked a towel in a toilet to try and clean it?), but despite that, she generally acts pretty normal. For example, even though she apparently follows through with the creepy taxidermy tradition, she seems to know it’s weird given that she warns John not to look in the lab atop her house because of her dead dream self. This reminds me of how Kanaya is emphasized in her introduction to be isolated from troll society but isn’t portrayed as oblivious to cultural norms, if anything the opposite. Jake, on the other hand, is portrayed as heavily oblivious to stuff because of his isolation from society, almost deconstructing Jade’s life. The alpha kids are in general deconstructions of traits of the beta kids—taking traits from beta kids and bringing them in a whole new direction—and I’ll have a lot to say about that when we meet them.

Jade makes an Iron Man suit and the pattern breaking count is back yet again. (20) The other kids eventually settle on a single outfit by the halfway point of Act 5 Act 2, but Jade switches between all the outfits she’s made.

If you are going to adopt a new regular outfit, you’d prefer something a little comfier and less ostentatious, and if possible, in less flagrant violation of copyright laws.

I totally forgot this funny copyright joke. Homestuck has never really followed copyright laws, flagrantly including appearances of and even more allusions to numerous works of media. This has some serious ramifications on Hiveswap, the upcoming Homestuck adventure game. I’ve heard that Hiveswap will use a troll alphabet different from the Daedric alphabet stolen from The Elder Scrolls that Homestuck uses.

This image above is an example of one of those interesting bits of trivia about Homestuck: types of grist used to make an object will often resemble the object itself, as will the numbers.

Jade combines some random stuff for experimentation’s sake (as I said I love these sequences where characters experiment with the game) and makes…

…none other than Johnny 5 himself! I was expecting something more complicated but it’s worth the gag.

Jade’s alchemy sequence ends with the narration saying, “Ok that’s enough.” followed by “HAPPY APRIL 13TH, 2009 EVERYBODY!!!!!!!!!!!!!”, rubbing it in our face that this Christmas special isn’t on Christmas in-comic. It’s also a great example of the weirdness of webcomic time; Homestuck is probably an extreme case of this, with years of updates taking place over days.

Also, I’m pretty sure it’s April 14th, 2009 by now, not April 13th. The kids’ game entries are all spaced apart by around four hours, and John entered around 5:30 PM Pacific time, so Jade entered around 5:30 AM John’s time zone. Jade is four hours west of John so it’s at least April 14th, 1:30 AM in Jade’s time zone at this point. When the 24-hour reckoning ended and the session is scratched, I think it would be April 15, 2009, around 5:00 AM John’s time zone.

Pedantry aside, Jade’s alchemy binge is pretty cool but it doesn’t beat the amber smuppets and stuff that Dave made. In any case, merry not-Christmas everyone!

Jade answers Eridan, who I guess is the troll featured at the tail-end of this Christmas interlude. It would’ve been cool if the troll here was Gamzee because Christmas is in his zodiac sign, but whatever. There’s probably some alternate version of the zodiac where Christmas is in Eridan’s sign.

CA: noww that youre done makin all that pointless rubbish 
CA: ivve got somethin wway more wworth your wwhile 
GG: which one were you again? 
GG: wait 
GG: werent you the guy who was always trying to hit on me?? 
CA: that couldvve been anyone 

Eridan has a point here; at least half of the trolls have tried to hit on one or more of kids. I mentioned two posts ago that it’s really weird that so many of the trolls try to hit on the kids, and it seems like they acknowledge this.

CA: so you might as wwell take it and settle your score wwith that awwful wwitch 
GG: but 
GG: im the wwitch! 
GG: i mean witch 

If Eridan was Jade’s patron troll, she would no doubt make this mistake a lot.

GG: i do not have a score to settle with rose!!! 
GG: why would you think that? 
CA: oh 
CA: wwell fuck 
CA: suppose i wwas guessin it wwas natural to presume somesuch relation like that betwween the twwo a you 
GG: i think you are projecting your own attitude on to others 
GG: just because you tend to hate and/or hit on everyone you meet doesnt mean everyone else is that way 

Jade is pretty much summing up the deal with Eridan. Projecting your own attitude onto others always makes for hilarious dialogue, and it’s something a lot of trolls do.

GG: rose just sent me a code for a crystal ball, shes my friend and is basically the best! 

I guess that answers the question of how Jade used her friends’ possessions in alchemy. Pretty much what I presumed.

CA: oh i see so she shared her “magic secrets” wwith you then 
CA: its probably a trap i wwouldnt trust her 
CA: she is a cunnin and treacherous sort trust me i knoww her type 

This troll is hilarious. Did I mention that? Even though Rose called him a complete idiot he still inexplicably sees her as an adversary he just outclassed.

CA: oh wwill you just take the fuckin gun already 
GG: no i dont want it!!!!! 
CA: its a wway more powwerful wweapon than any of that crap you made 
CA: its a legendary relic wwithout equal 
GG: more like a legendary piece of shit! 
CA: youre bein needlessly fuckin stubborn about this im doin you a fuckin favvor here 
GG: yes but i dont like you very much and i feel really icky about accepting a present from you 

Note the phrase “a present from you”. This reminds me of the Christmas stuff that just happened.

Eridan gives Jade the code for Ahab’s Crosshairs and she recognizes it.

GG: hmmm… 
GG: i have seen this before 
CA: howws that possible 
CA: its a one of a kind wweapon plundered from an alternian ghost ship 
GG: i am very sure its the same rifle included with johns present 
GG: but… 
GG: bigger of course 
CA: probably a cheap imitation of the original 
CA: uh 
CA: kind of like that one there is 
CA: so theres your answwer stable loops ahoy 
CA: noww enjoy the utter fuckin domination it affords 

This newly made copy of Ahab’s Crosshairs is almost certainly the one that’ll be sent to the lotus time capsule. Sending the bunny’s weapons to the time capsule is one of those plot points that still needs to be resolved as of the Omegapause. I think there’s a 60% chance that it’ll be explicitly shown how that’ll play out. I say 60% because it’s largely pretty obvious how that’ll happen. The obvious part is how to get the weapons. Each of the four weapons probably has a copy currently available to put in: the Warhammer of Zillyhoo alchemized in the trickster arc; the Quills of Echidna taken from Echidna; the Royal Deringer which I think is a stage of the whole Welsh sword cycle thing; and of course, the copy of Ahab’s Crosshairs Jade just alchemized. The non-obvious part is who will do the task. I’m sure by now most of the characters have realized that the bunny will bring nothing but trouble, so I’m not sure who will be up for the task. Maybe Vriska will coerce Jake, who is oblivious to the danger the bunny provides as far as we know, into doing it? Or did some Derse agent already steal the weapons while we weren’t looking?

GG: yes but…. 
GG: i did not provide the weapons! 
GG: my penpal did 
CA: wwhos that 
GG: the guy who helps me build the present 
GG: we worked on it together but he supplied the bunnys weapons
GG: im pretty sure hes from the future! 
CA: wwhy 
GG: because he said hes my grandson 

It would be pretty interesting if Jade’s penpal turned out to be literally Jade’s grandson. But knowing the mixed-up family relations in Homestuck it’s not at all illogical to guess that he’s not her genetic grandson. If we are to assume that he is her genetic grandson, then this guarantees that some Jade ship will be canon.

CA: wwhat the fuck is a grandson 
CA: is that some kind of pervverse human familial thing 
GG: umm yes 
CA: nevvermind then your procreational biologistics make my fins curl in distaste 
GG: oh no!!!!! 
GG: aaaaa please dont tell anyone i told you about him! 
GG: augh how could i let that slip to you of all people 
CA: settle dowwn jade youre radically underestimatin the amount of shit i dont givve about this 

Surprisingly, Eridan of all people is the voice of reason here.* Pointlessly withholding information is sort of a thing in Homestuck. The aggravating thing about that is, 99% of withheld information is completely harmless to let out, and will at worst be thought of as some kind of prank.

* I’ve been waiting for months to say that.

GG: i have wondered about that, assuming he is right…
GG: he was so nice, and it really did feel like i was talking to family, so i really dont think he was making it up
GG: i couldnt help but try to imagine his parents… 

Here, Jade is assuming that her penpal had parents. That assumption is a bit weird when you consider that before the ectobiology sequence, the identities of John’s mother, Rose’s father, and Dave’s and Jade’s parents are never once brought up.

GG: and more interestingly…….
GG: his grandfather :O
GG: i still wonder who it could be…
GG: although i guess at this point
GG: the options are pretty limited 😮 

I can only imagine Jade thinking that she’ll have to have babies with Dave or sleuth out some other boy playing a Sburb session if she doesn’t want to bang a troll.

CA: ok i think im startin to feel ill talkin about things makin me fathom pink wwigglers comin out a your owwn personal torso 
CA: so change a fuckin subject 

Apparently the trolls know a thing or two about how humans reproduce that isn’t bullshit. It’s never really made clear how trolls came about to understanding human culture, other than I guess deducing certain things from the Trollian viewports.

CA: that gun i just gavve you is somethin of a hatchright to the kid
CA: happy i could play a role in your dirty stinkin lineage
GG: like an heirloom? i guess it could be
GG: do you even have those? if you dont have parents how could you?
CA: no wwe dont knoww our direct forebears and im pretty sure any attempt to seek out or evven inquire about the supplier of your genes wwould be a fine wway to get yourself killed 

It’s pretty interesting how Eridan is describing things about troll culture. It’s an unsettling thought, not just not knowing who your genes came from, but not being allowed to know, and since we’re talking about trolls, death is the penalty.

This bit brought to mind the pages where we learned about troll reproduction, and I just thought up something: when Karkat created the trolls, probably all their genes combined in one big slurry to create the other twelve trolls, and each one inherits genes from all the trolls, but the largest portion from one of them.

CA: but wwevve got our lore and it says wwe all got indivvidual ancestors wwho contribute to most of our genes abovve and beyond wwhat the grubs slurry does
GG: ewwwwwwww
CA: oh shut up
CA: anywway a lot of us believve wwere meant to trace the footsteps of those ancestors evven though wwe can nevver knoww em
CA: and on that journey wwe can come across belongings they once had cause wwe wwere hatched to find em and finish their wwork
CA: i kinda think thats wwhy i found the gun in the first place
CA: but noww im forsakin it because fuck i just found a better destiny than my old crappy one wwhich i nevver got any appreciation for anywway 

This is the first description of the concept of ancestors. It’s sort of a common thing in works of fiction for there to be a group of historical figures, each of whom strongly corresponds to a major character, from some specific time era. The ancestors are a pretty tangential aspect of Homestuck, though from what I can tell there’s quite a lot of fanworks about them. Some of the Homestuck videos I watched before reading the comic were weird stuff that featured them, which was a big factor in my impression of Homestuck.

Once I made a YouTube video that featured a snippet of some Homestuck video featuring the ancestors (among about ten other videos), and in the description I called those characters “some random animated characters”. Then a commenter told me that the characters are from Homestuck and their names are The Signless, The Ψiioniic, etc., which I thought was bizarre. In my first read, I never once reached the part where I thought to myself, oh, that’s the part with all those weird “the this, the that” characters. Although I do recall thinking of the Condesce (and also Meenah) as weird evil versions of Feferi.

Introducing the weird troll session countdown thing whatsit. 10:25 hours before some event, Jack slices the victory platform door in half and the trolls go to the meteor lab; 6:12 hours Jack destroys Prospit; 5:12 hours Karkat wakes up as we saw in Alterniabound; and here we are at 4:13 hours. These few pages are clearly meant to introduce the whole countdown thing, and they’re probably when Hussie had the idea for it. The whole point of the countdown I think is mostly to give people a scale of time for the troll session stuff.

AA: hi 
TA: hii? 
AA: i guess i sh0uld say s0mething 
AA: bef0re i g0 
TA: aradiia, ii am riight glubbiing here, liike two feet away from you. 
TA: iif you want two 2ay 2omethiing two me why don’t you ju2t turn two your left and 2ay iit, iit’2 bad enough that you’ve hardly 2aiid two lou2y word2 two me 2iince you became that 2weaty a22hole’2 2moochbot. 

Yet another moment where people lampshade the constant use of chat clients.

AA: i kn0w 
AA: but this is hard f0r me 
TA: how ii2 iit hard. 
TA: you are a tiin can, robot2 don’t have feeliing2. 
AA: n0 thats n0t true 
TA: ok then, what ii2 iit. 
AA: s0rry ab0ut everything 
AA: and all the bad luck y0uve had 
AA: y0u didnt deserve it 
AA: i have t0 g0 n0w 
TA: what, where are you goiing? 
AA: im n0t sure 
TA: er, cool ii gue22?? 

Here, Aradia is making her goodbyes, and trying her best to reconcile despite being a robot. Her apology gives her a bit of development as a character. First off, she is making her goodbyes to Sollux, her longtime friend, rather than Equius, who she was merely programmed to love. In a sense this is showing some emotions amidst her empty soul. That probably sounds lame but whatever. Also, she recognizes that the manipulative stuff she did to Sollux was rather undeserved, more hints of emotion.

AA: anyway thats it 
TA: waiit. 
TA: you mean for good, wiill ii see you agaiin? 
AA: i d0nt kn0w that either 
AA: but i guess if y0u d0 
AA: pr0bably n0t with y0ur eyes 
TA: what the hell i2 that 2uppo2ed two mean? 
AA: i think y0ull be 0k with it th0ugh 

Yet another bit reminding us of something we might have forgotten about. Back in the trolls’ arc, Sollux talked about the prophecy that he will die, become blind, and die again. Now we’re reminded of the blind part of that prophecy, the second third of it.

AA: 0_0 
AA: i wish 
AA: i c0uld s0meh0w make that em0tic0n smile 
AA: 0u0 
AA: n0 that l00ks stupid 
AA: 0h well 

Here, Aradia is trying to smile. It’s interesting seeing her try her best to make a heartfelt goodbye.

Some people insist those two were certainly never in a relationship.

2019 EDIT: HOLY SHIT, HUGGING? HOLD THE PHONE, THAT’S ABSOLUTELY UNHEARD OF!!!

At long last, robotic Aradia smiles as she gives Sollux a hug and then…

And there it is, fulfilling a promised future event in Alterniabound. Sollux takes off his glasses and sheds weird mustard tears. (I am not at all sorry for the gross imagery this will surely evoke.)

An hour later Terezi watches Doomed Dave wake up, saying that was apparently pointless given he was supposed to get killed in his sleep and then ascend. But then…

And that’s the ultimate failure of the attempt to get Dave to god tier. I already discussed this failure last post. Terezi breaks down in tears at the death of this Dave and leaves the lab. See you next time as Jadesprite becomes a thing.

>> Part 40: The Miracle of a New Beginning

Cookie Fonster’s Homestuck Commentary Part 30: Coolkid Phenomination Station

Introduction

Part 29 | Part 30 | Part 31 >


Act 5 Act 2, Part 3 of 32


Pages 2733-2783 (MSPA: 4633-4683)


The pages I’m covering today don’t actually start with this picture, but I’ve decided to start doing what I’ll call “title pictures” for these posts. So here’s a picture of Dave in some building in a baseball shirt or something. I’ve seen drawings of the beta kids where Dave is inexplicably wearing this outfit while the rest are in their starting clothes.


Last time Rose did a bunch of stuff and so did Kanaya. Now it’s time for Dave to do a bunch of stuff. OK, not quite. First John and Vriska have to do stuff. Man, why do characters do stuff so much?


Where were we? John just emptied his sylladex.



AG: This is the most ridiculous pile of useless crap I have ever seen.
AG: Why did you pick up all this junk???????? Rocks, mushrooms, shoes…….. 

AG: Jegus, John.
EB: jegus?
AG: Yes. Jegus!
EB: how do you know about jegus? do you even know what that is?
AG: I have no idea! It’s something Terezi has 8een saying non stop for some reason.
AG: It is weirdly infectious.
AG: What is it, some sort of human profanity?
EB: no. well, yeah kind of.
EB: it is a misspelling of an adult male bearded human, who was magic. 

I remember reading this bit in my first read-through. Now think of the fact that I’m taking note of this. That’s how much I skimmed stuff in my first read-through. John’s last line is of particular note because it sounds like something a troll would say.

Also, this right here is proof against the misconception that Jegus is a troll word. For some reason it’s really popular among fans to make all the trolls Jegus-spewing machines. Dave is technically the one who came up with the term through a misspelling in a conversation with Terezi and the other trolls started using it as well. Let it sink in. Dave coined the word so many fans think is a troll catchphrase.

AG: John! Is that a frog I see there?
EB: uh, yes. it is.
AG: How do you have a frog already????????
EB: i dunno. i found it, and i decided to captchalogue it for some reason.
EB: frogs are pretty cool.
AG: It seems awfully early in your game for you to 8e finding frogs. Your session sure is weird!
EB: huh. ok…
EB: apparently it is considered illegal contraband.
EB: why would a frog be illegal?
AG: John, shut your trap! We are in a hurry here. 

This is one of many allusions to the significance of frogs in Homestuck’s world. But as usual, we don’t know why they’re significant, leaving readers confused as to what the deal with frogs is. They show up so much that some readers think it’s just plain absurd. I’ve seen readers think “oh come on” when they realized that the ultimate goal of the game is breeding a giant frog.

AG: H8RRY 8P!!!!!!!!!
EB: that was nine !’s.
AG: Oops.

This might be the only time a troll messes up his or her typing quirk that isn’t a mistake on Hussie’s part. It’s a bit weird when you think about it that Gamzee never messes up his quirk even though he’s Gamzee. Vriska blushes at her mistake.

Behold 90’s cartoon kid John, in all his glory.


EB: so, uh…
EB: red sneakers, some jeans, a tee shirt, and another shirt…
EB: this is the fabulous outfit you had in mind?
AG: Yes! Isn’t it awesome?
EB: it’s pretty cool and all…
EB: i was just picturing something…
EB: more elaborate? like maybe more adventurey.
AG: Fuck that.
AG: This is a really hot look for you, John. It makes you look a million times more cool, instead of some kind of overa8sconding daggerlance fl8ling pansy. 

Surprised John apparently didn’t notice that his outfit resembles what Nic Cage wore in one of his movies.

More perspective views. Why isn’t he flying straight up? Is it not possible or what?


EB: ok…
EB: marquise bossyfangs mcsekret, this has been a lot of fun…
EB: but i have to go talk to my pals now, and also rescue jade!
AG: Yes, I know that, dummy! I am in complete command of your timeline, remem8er?
E8: oh yeah. sure, if you say so. 

The Vriska thing in all its glory. I laughed reading Vriska’s line here.

AG: We will not speak again for a while. 8ut for me it will only 8e a moment.
AG: I do not envy the Serketless coldspell you are a8out to endure, John.
EB: that’s too bad.
EB: how long will it be?
AG: Man, calm down! It will only 8e a couple of hours or so.
AG: Sweet Jegus, I have clearly done a num8er on you to engender such a frothing o8session so quickly.
AG: Not surprising. It’s just the 8urden that comes with 8eing so damned awesome. 8ut you will figure that out soon enough John, 8ecause I have you well on your way.
EB: ha ha, i guess… 

It’s pretty worth noting that John does seem to enjoy talking to Vriska. Apparently he likes someone helping him around his adventure or something. This bit is pretty much Hussie saying to readers, “Next time on Homestuck: stuff other than John chatting with Vriska.”

AG: Phase two of my program for you 8egins in a little while.
AG: In the meantime, try not to get corrupted 8y anyone too lame. Especially no8ody with 8rown text or gray text, or any shit ugly color at all for that matter. 

Another funny line I forgot existed. It’s a delightful feeling reading through Homestuck yet again and seeing all these funny bits I either forgot existed or never previously read at all.

This image has some cool artistic bits. Dave’s face in John’s glasses, Dave’s symbol vibrating a little, John’s cartoony perspective, and the sketchy view of the house in the background.


EB: hey dave!

TG: hey
EB: wow, it’s been a while since we talked, hasn’t it.
TG: has it
EB: i think the last time i talked to you, i was doing exactly what im doing now…
EB: which is blasting off from my house.
EB: or was it?
EB: wow, i can’t remember… 

This whole scene seems like a call back to the stretch of pages with John and Terezi and Davesprite’s timeline, at least the parts focusing on John.

TG: man who cares
TG: i mean thats great and all
TG: but i talked to you plenty more times since that from where im standing
TG: ive got to make this quick
EB: oh.
EB: you mean like the trolls?
EB: are you using the troll time chat gizmo?
TG: fuck no fuck that trollian horseshit
TG: its just regular old time travel
TG: im from the future
EB: oh ok. is this dave sprite?
TG: no
TG: just regular ordinary dave from the fucking future nothing special dude come on 

I love that line. “its just regular old time travel”. It’s also a lot like John’s first conversation with Rose in this act, but it’s a Dave who’s been doing even more stuff while we weren’t looking, traveling through time like a sci-fi fan’s dream come true.

EB: well, excuse me, but i still think time travel sounds kind of special.
EB: sorry you are so jaded by awesome shit! 

Yeah, Dave never was like “holy shit time travel thats so cool”. Was he expecting that to be a thing when he learned that he and his friends are literally in a wild superpower video game? Or did he never see time travel as something cool and awesome? John obviously thinks time travel is the world’s coolest thing, but Dave probably realized the burdens time travel carries, especially the kind where you can’t change the past, through, I don’t know, movies about time travel? Yeah let’s say that. Let’s say he watched the Back to the Future trilogy and concluded from it that time travel is dumb.

TG: i need to borrow some boondollars off you
EB: boondollars? i thought they didn’t do anything.
TG: no they do do something
EB: what do they do?
TG: what do you think they buy shit its fucking money 

This is Dave’s genre savviness in action. He knows what’s up with those game mechanics and stuff, even though John’s the one who’s into all these video games. He’s also the one who knew it was a bad idea to play Sburb way back in Acts 1 and 2. Dave isn’t necessarily portrayed as a super brainiac but you have to give him some credit for easily understanding the deal with the game they’re playing.

EB: how far in the future are you from? 
EB: i thought we only had something like 24 hours until, like…
EB: game over.
TG: yeah we do
TG: but chronologically ive been around for at least triple that
EB: wow. how…
EB: i don’t get how that works!
TG: no shit your deal is wind not time
TG: youre on easy street what is there even to think about with wind
TG: like what angle to blow it at to fly a damn kite or how gentle its gotta be to make a picnic go swimmingly 
TG: its kiddie bullshit time is serious fucking business
TG: leave it to the pros ok 

The funny thing about this passage is that although it’s not explicitly stated, it’s made pretty obvious that there’s more to the breath aspect than just wind, and Dave doesn’t realize that because that isn’t his deal.

EB: but, doesn’t going back in time make an alternate reality?
EB: i thought that’s what happened with dave sprite, he came back to make sure i didn’t die and this is a new timeline now.
TG: yeah it can work that way
TG: or not
TG: ive been very careful
TG: this whole operation is strung together with stable time loops
TG: no timeline offshoots cause thats when daves start dying and that isnt no good for nobody 

This whole conversation is pretty interesting to read when you consider that the retcon stuff will later be a thing.

Also Dave uses a triple negative.

EB: so what is the future like?
EB: or uh, the 3x future…
EB: do we win???
TG: oh you know
TG: noirs outta control
TG: rose is crazy jades crazier and youre
TG: well youre you 

It doesn’t take a genius to figure out from what Dave says about Jack that Jade is going to prototype something bad—so bad that I need italics to show how bad it is—into her sprite. It also doesn’t take a genius to guess that Bec might get prototyped, or at least give thought to such a possibility. With a little more reasoning one might deduce something like this: Jack Noir becomes the super-dangerous Bec Noir, the kids have to perform the scratch to banish him to the troll session, he fucks more shit up. That’s only partly true, but it’s an easy thing to guess given that the clues deliberately mislead readers. I’ve read a decent amount of Homestuck liveblogs, and some of them are incredibly good at correctly predicting plot events, assuming they aren’t faking it. All this stuff that readers can infer, from only three words.

TG: and together were up to our bulges and miscellaneous bullshit alien physiology in hot sloppy shenanigans while hatching plans under our feathery asses like a bunch of cage free farm fresh motherfuckers
TG: but im not about to get into specifics cause this is complicated enough as it is
TG: and if i started ranting too much about the future id start sounding like one of these smug alternian shitheads and im not about to drop that retarded science on my good bro
TG: so im staying on track here 

Trolls rubbing on Dave again with troll anatomy metaphors.

TG: egbert stfu and give me your goddamn boonbuck j3gus fuck
TG: ill turn it into a boonmint in an hour and youll get it back ok
EB: j3gus?
EB: *narrows eyes suspiciously…*
TG: no comment 

He’s just not going to admit his buddyhood (is that a word?) with Terezi. This reminds me of the whole running gag of Karkat denying his thing with Terezi, but unlike him, Dave decides to stay deadpan and choose not to respond rather than shouting “none of your business you douche”.

EB: i don’t even know how to give it to you!
EB: they are just more weird gaming abstractions, how do we do this?
TG: you can wire it to my account
TG: ill send you the app 

Homestuck’s early acts are all about weird gaming abstractions (the sylladex, the echeladder, the strife stuff) that are gone through without question, with the kids casually talking about which fetch modus they use. Now John’s actually noting how weird the abstractions are. This demonstrates how Homestuck has evolved—shedding the video game layers as the story progresses. First shedding the captchalogue stuff, then lessening the prominence of the Sburb interface, then decreasing usage of software to get around; all of those eventually become secondary things that are occasionally brought up or done. If you open up a Homestuck search page and search “captcha” or “grist” or “modus” or something, you can get a feel for how this sort of stuff has become less prominent over time, but is still mentioned now and then.

The video game mechanics that characterize early Homestuck so heavily make a comeback in early Act 6 where the alpha kids rehash the introductory patterns of the beta kids with their own twist, but even then it’s later toned down, not to mention that the alpha kids generally have better fetch modi than the beta kids. For instance, while the first 100-some pages of Homestuck are all about John’s sylladex mishaps, as far as I remember the first time in Act 6 that sort of thing happens to the extent of what goes on in the early acts is something like a hundred pages in, where Lil’ Sebastian starts making a mess of Jane’s house, and that might be the closest Act 6 gets to having these sylladex shenanigans.

EB: i’m really pretty busy you know. i have to help jade!
TG: i know
TG: but this takes like two seconds
EB: bluh…
EB: fiiiiiiiine.
TG: dude
TG: dont do the vriska thing ok
TG: shes messed up we talked about this
TG: or will talk
EB: who?
TG: whatever
TG: alright app incoming
— turntechGodhead [TG] sent ectoBiologist [EB] the file “virtualporkhollow.exe” —
TG: gotta go later 

I like how John learned Vriska’s name from Dave mentioning it.

It’s easy to forget that Dave has big eyebrows, as seen in the copy of him to the left.


Up next is a scene switch to the crazy stuff Dave is up to, mirroring the scene switch to Rose. This bit shows that Dave has started doing crazy stuff, similarly to Rose. Just look at his duplicates with goofy costumes.


Dave talks to Terezi, who sends him a comic. Dave’s reaction is as follows:

TG: fuck
TG: bout time
TG: what took so long 

Just like between Rose and Kanaya, their casual lines and conversations so clearly indicate a friendship. Given that, it’s a shame that those kid/troll relationship patterns are kind of broken apart and swirled around like I don’t know what. But I’m not going to ramble about that right now.

GC: TH3 PH3NOM3NON OF TH3 COOLK1D 1S 4 F4SC1N4T1NG ON3 D4V3
GC: 1 H4V3 STUD13D 1T
GC: D1D YOU KNOW TH4T W3 DO NOT H4V3 COOLK1DS ON 4LT3RN14?
TG: oh shit really
TG: that loud sound of shock you just smelled was my jaw hitting the floor 

Their interactions like this need no commentary. They’re just that humorous, littered with referencing each other’s memes and stuff. Like I just said, it’s a shame that their dynamic is scrapped and also kind of forcibly dismantled post-retcon (note the words “kind of”). But let’s forget for a second that any future events exist and go on.

TG: so are we done making money yet or what
GC: OH 1 DONT KNOW
GC: T3CHN1C4LLY W3 W3R3 4 LONG T1M3 4GO
TG: yeah i kinda figured
GC: BUT 1TS 4 FUN W4Y TO STR3TCH OUT TH3 T1M3 YOUV3 GOT L3FT, 1SNT 1T?
GC: >:]
TG: im not complaining
TG: but you said there was something specific we were working toward here
TG: i mean aside from buying up all the nastiest fraymotifs
GC: Y3S BOTH 4R3 TRU3
GC: 4ND TH3R3 4R3 SOM3 YOU H4V3NT BOUGHT Y3T!
GC: TH4T 1S 1MPORT4NT, W3 N33D TO K33P YOU COMP3T1T1V3 W1TH JOHN
TG: competitive
TG: man
TG: dont matter what i do im not gonna outpace egbert
GC: DONT S4Y TH4T! YOUV3 GOT TO B3L13V3 1N YOURS3LF D4V3 

Their interactions are still mixed in with Dave stuff with all his personality flaws and stuff. Terezi does encourage him and legitimately thinks he’s a cool and funny guy, and she kind of goes along with the thoughts Dave hides about being in people’s shadows or whatever? I don’t know.

TG: hey its not like the futures a mystery or anything weve both seen it
TG: well
TG: ive seen it
TG: youve just caught a whiff of it
TG: like a hungry beggar loitering cross the street of an olive garden
TG: just cause a filthy vagrants barred from entry dont mean a dude doesnt know italian foods nearby its a fucking fact to his nose 

I think the mention of Olive Garden is a thrown-in reference to something Hussie joked about at some point. There’s also occasional references to blitzing chakras which I believe came from the same context as Olive Garden.

GC: DO NOT D1STR4CT FROM TH3 1SSU3 W1TH YOUR S4SSY R3M4RKS 4BOUT 34RTH 1T4L14N FOOD
GC: Y34H OK, JOHN M4Y S3RV3 YOU YOUR OWN BULG3 ON 4 S1LV3R TURN T4BL3 PR3 SCR4TCH
GC: BUT WH4T 4BOUT 4FT3R TH4T?
GC: W3 N33D YOU TO K33P P4C3
GC: 1T 1S TH3 CL4SS1C STRUGGL3, TH3 HUM4N 34RTH COOLK1D V3RSUS TH3 34RTH HUM4N N3RD
GC: WHO W1LL W1N??????? >:O
GC: (D4V3 D4V3 D4V3) 

This is the first time “pre-scratch” or “post-scratch” is used as a term in Homestuck. The scratch is one of those things that’s talked about a lot but we don’t know what its deal is for quite a long time.

TG: alright well its not like i even have a problem parting with this useless bullshit money
TG: how much do you need
GC: 413 BOONBONDS
TG: thats all
TG: i can afford to give you a fuckload more than that
TG: how bout i give you an even boonbank
GC: NO!!!
GC: 1T MUST B3 3X4CTLY TH4T 4MOUNT
TG: ok just to be clear
TG: thats 413
TG: not “aie”
GC: Y34H
GC: J3RK >:P
TG: whats up with that number
TG: ive seen it around 

I like how Dave lampshades arc numbers, wondering what’s up with them. I think he wonders what’s up with a lot of stuff in the game. At one point, when reminiscing about the intellibeam laserstation device, he says that sometimes he thinks the game was made by a dumbass, which reminds me of how Homestuck often serves to parody video games. I totally could have talked more  about how Homestuck parodies old video games back in the first few acts. I totally could have talked more about a lot of stuff in the first few acts. Sometimes when I look at my earlier posts, I think, wow, some parts hardly have any substance. If I wanted to I could have edited them to match with how I’ve doing posts—and I have been doing that to an extent by adding some extra commentary to old posts—but part of the fun of the blog is writing it as I go and seeing how this blog is evolving.

But we’re on strict schedule here (not really), so let’s get back to the conversation!

GC: TH3Y 4R3 TH3 NUM3R4LS OF TH3 BL1ND PROPH3TS
TG: whats that mean
GC: 1 DONT KNOW >:? 

We never learn what the deal is with those alleged “blind prophets”. How does Terezi know that those are a thing but not know what that means? 413 is referred to as the numerals of the blind prophets in her introduction page which kind of suggests that she already knew about that beforehand, but only kind of.

GC: 4T TH3 3X4CT 3ND OF TH1S CONV3RS4T1ON
GC: YOU MUST W1R3 TH3 MON3Y TO MY 4CCOUNT 3X4CTLY 6 HOURS 4ND 12 M1NUT3S 1NTO TH3 P4ST
GC: MY P4ST! R3L4T1V3 TO MY PR3S3NT MOM3NT 4S OF TYP1NG TH1S 

If I have my facts straight, Terezi receives the transfer of money about 6:12 hours before the critical moment. Does this mean that from Terezi’s perspective, this conversation is taking place around the critical moment, which is after Murderstuck and all that? I never realized that.

TG: you mean i can do that
TG: then
TG: why werent we just wiring money into the past for these investment escapades instead of doing all this time traveling
GC: B3C4US3!
GC: TH4T W4SNT TH3 PL4N
GC: W3 H4D TO PL4Y 4LONG W1TH TH3 ST4BL3 T1M3 LOOPS W3 W3R3 PR3S3NT3D W1TH
GC: YOU KNOW, M4K3 SUR3 4LL THOS3 D4V3S RUNN1NG 4ROUND 3X1ST3D 1N TH3 F1RST PL4C3
TG: oh yeah
TG: i knew that its just frustrating sometimes its like paradox space makes you do everything the hard way
GC: Y34H T3LL M3 4BOUT 1T 

Everyone realizes that the reality they live in is the bullshittiest thing ever. Dave sends Terezi a silly comic and then the money transfer.


Then we switch to Terezi in the past. She stands on the roof of the trolls’ meteor and sniffs Prospit with her smelloscope, and sees it being destroyed after looking for a second.


Hint enticing, anyone?


Your keen nose penetrates deep into the Insniffisphere I mean Incipisphere and zeroes in on the familiar honey-sweet smell of Prospit. 

This is what I like about Homestuck’s narration. When it’s like a person who slips his tongue about things and is generally sassy like that. 

Look at Gamzee’s face. When HE’s surprised, you know shit must be serious.


Terezi returns to the computer lab to see Kanaya sawing off Tavros’s legs and Karkat passed out on the floor. She starts a memo informing the trolls of Prospit’s destruction which serves largely for more hint enticing stuff.

CGC: B4D N3WS 3V3RYON3!
CGC: UM
FUTURE gallowsCalibrator [CGC] 3 MINUTES FROM NOW responded to memo.
FGC: T3R3Z1 SOM3TH1NG H4S COM3 UP
CGC: OH?
FGC: Y3S YOU W1LL N33D TO CUT TH1S M3MO SHORT
FGC: 3V3RYON3, TH3 BOTTOM L1N3 1S TH4T PROSP1T W4S JUST D3STROY3D
FGC: 1 4M SORRY TO S4Y
FGC: >:[
CGC: >:[ 

If you’re reading this, please stop what you’re doing and draw fanart of Terezi cosplaying Professor Farnsworth.

FAG: He never listens! None of you do, really.
FAG: And now all of your extra lives are waaaaaaaasted.
FAG: What a 8unch of losers! I’m outta here.
FAG banned herself from responding to memo.
CGC: W3LL
CGC: NOT 4LL OF TH3M
CGC: TH3 D3RS3 DR34M3RS 4R3 F1N3 4S F4R 4S 1 KNOW
FUTURE arsenicCatnip [FAC] 3:14 HOURS FROM NOW responded to memo.
FAC: :33 < ummm no not quite :((
FAC: :33 < she is refurring to the fact that derse was just destroyed too 

The whole point of this memo is some hint enticing stuff. Man I should come up with a synonymous phrase so my writing doesn’t sound repetitive.


Terezi receives her transfer of 413 boonbonds and asks Sollux to trace its source. Turns out that’s how the trolls found out about the kids—a stable time loop fulfilled by itself and having no point of origin. What isn’t a stable time loop in Homestuck? The characters all think that kind of stuff is stupid; Jade, for instance, finds it mind-wrenching that her password system originated from itself.

GC: SOLLUX 1 N33D YOU TO TR4C3 4 MON3Y TR4NSF3R
TA: 2omeone 2ent you money?
GC: Y3S
TA: why’2 2omeone 2endiing you money.
TA: and why now of all tiime2, liike we can even u2e iit.
TA: who’2 thii2 doucebag?
GC: TH4TS WH4T 1 W4NT YOU TO F1GUR3 OUT!
TA: ok.
TA: bam, done.
TA: ii am fuckiing iincrediible. 

I like this casual demonstration of how fast Sollux is with computer stuff. “OK.” (beat) “Bam, done.”

TA: 413 boonbond2? damn.
TA: 2omeone here ha2 been playiing 2grub ii gue22. wonder why they’d 2end u2 money.
TA: maybe they know we made them? maybe iit’2 liike a tiip. liike thank2 dude2 for makiing u2 exii2t.
GC: >:???
TA: why 413, why that number.
TA: any iidea?
GC: NUM3R4LS OF TH3 BL1ND PROPH3TS
GC: OTH3R TH4N TH4T, DONT KNOW
TA: well, 2eeiing a2 we don’t know 2hiit about the guy…
TA: bliind 2eem2 liike the operatiive concept.
TA: kiinda liike a bliind donatiion.
TA: and now we’re fuckiing riich.
TA: 2o ii gue22 you could 2ay…
TA: they’re the numeral2 of the bliind profiit2.
TA:  (I am very grateful that WordPress doesn’t make images have these huge spaces around them)

Here’s a little oddity: the trolls have been in their session for eight times as much as Dave has, and they act like 413 boonbonds is a big deal when Dave has, I don’t know, at least millions of times more than that, if the high currency units he mentions are anything to go by?

Speaking of those currency units, it’s worth noting that the units of money don’t all have their values specified. Of the units that are multiples of boondollars, only boonbucks (1 million) and boonbonds (1 quintillion) have their values explicitly specified; other mentioned units can only be presumed through guesswork. This is the difference between Homestuck, a story about a fictional video game, and an actual programmed video game. I’m sure this kind of thing is present in other works of fiction, but it still feels unique; for example, an in-universe game from some famous media franchise might have official clear rules derived outside of the work, but there’s no way Sburb could be made as a real life video game, and some stuff there will necessarily be kind of ambiguous.


Also Sollux’s pun is brilliant. I didn’t realize the word “blind” is also part of the pun until now.

GC: M4YB3 W3 SHOULD T3LL K4RK4T
GC: WH3N3V3R H3 W4K3S UP
TA: ehhhhh, thii2 2hiit’2 probably not iimportant enough two bother hiim wiith.
TA: iif he fiind2 out, he’ll probably want two hatch 2ome dumba22 plan that make2 no 2en2e.
TA: and badger me iintwo doiing a lot of miindnumbiing bu2ywork.
TA: ii’d leave hiim alone. 

Subtle dramatic irony here. Sollux doesn’t think that all this is a big deal, and he correctly predicts Karkat’s plan to troll these kids.

Note that Dave is the only kid listed here and the only one whose timeline appears here.
This begs the question: how did the trolls find the other three kids? Did they find their chumhandles from spying Dave on his computer, or did they ask him?


Terezi, Sollux, and Feferi examine Dave’s childhood in a little sequence that calls back to the Act 5 Act 2 opening flash. Visual callbacks are one of Hussie’s gimmicks. He says that those are used in order to evoke previous scenes and show contrast against them, and this scene is a great example of that: photos contrasting Dave’s upbringing against John’s. But Dave’s upbringing scenes have some humorous commentary that shows what a troll thinks of thinks of a typical(?) human’s life.


I’m not sure how exactly little Dave was thrown like a ball and landed back on his bro or something.
Also, throwback to the crazy shit Dave went through in Acts 2 and 3.


GC: H3Y 34RTH BOY

GC: W41T…
GC: 1 JUST 4SSUM3D YOU W3R3 4 BOY
GC: M4YB3 YOUR3 4 G1RL?
GC: 1 DONT KNOW MUCH 4BOUT YOUR W31RD HORNL3SS SP3C13S, 1 GU3SS YOU COULD B3 >:\
TG: yes im a girl
GC: OH R34LLY?
GC: 34RTHL1NGS 4R3 R34LLY B1Z4RR3
GC: NO OFF3NS3
GC: WH4T 1S YOUR SP3C13S C4LL3D
TG: north american hollering phallus baboon
GC: >:?
GC: 1 TH1NK YOU M1GHT B3 PULL1NG MY FROND, F3M4L3 34RTHL1NG 

For some reason, inaccurate first impressions are kind of a thing between kids and trolls. Dave here makes bullshit up about his race, which is worth noting because it’s the first time any troll talks to a human.

GC: MY N4M3 1S T3R3Z1, WH4TS YOURS
TG: shaggy 2 dope
GC: OK SH4GGY, S33
GC: 1 C4N SM3LL D3C31T
GC: L13S H4V3 4 SUBTL3 ODOR, 34SY TO M1SS 4T F1RST
GC: BUT TH3 MOR3 TH3Y P1L3 UP TH3 MOR3 TH3Y ST1NK!
GC: TH4T 1S NOT YOUR R34L N4M3
TG: ok sorry
TG: its ben stiller
GC: 4LSO 1 DONT TH1NK YOUR3 R34LLY 4 G1RL
TG: nope
TG: sorry to disappoint you dude
GC: 1 4M 4 G1RL NOT 4 BOY!
TG: dont care
GC: >:[
GC: TH1S F1RST 3NCOUNT3R 1S NOT GO1NG 4S W3LL 4S 1 HOP3D 

First encounters not going well is also a recurring thing between kids and trolls. Karkat, Kanaya, and Terezi all have this with their first time talking to a human.

Also, Kanaya says the exact same thing Terezi says: “I am a girl, not a boy.”

TG: i had such high hopes trapezi it started out brilliantly
GC: T3R3Z1!!!!!!!!
GC: 4ND 1 4M NOT TROLL1NG YOU, 1 4M JUST TRY1NG TO G3T TO KNOW 4 L1TTL3 4BOUT YOU 4ND YOUR SP3C13S
GC: 1 JUST D1SCOV3R3D 1T 4ND 1 4M CUR1OUS
TG: excuse me but it says right in the header of this conversation that youre trolling me
TG: persterchum always knows
GC: OH…
GC: OH Y34H
GC: BUT
GC: OK TH1S M1GHT B3 H4RD FOR 4N 34RTH B4BOON TO UND3RST4ND
GC: BUT TROLL 1S 4 V3RB TH4T H4S 4 LOT OF NU4NC3
GC: TH3 WORD C4N M34N 4 LOT OF TH1NGS
GC: FOR 1NST4NC3, 1 4M 4 TROLL!
TG: no shit
GC: NO 1 M34N
GC: TH4TS WH4T MY SP3C13S 1S C4LL3D 

The whole thing about trolling being used as a verb among Homestuck’s trolls is never really explained. I think Jade lampshades how weird it is at one point, saying that there’s no such thing as humanning.

TG: here
TG: http://tinyurl.com/CDandSL
GC: 1 4M NOT SUR3 WH4T 1S PORNOGR4PH1C 4BOUT TH4T
GC: 1TS JUST K1ND OF STR4NG3
TG: i guess
GC: 1TS PR3TTY GOOD THOUGH
TG: its ok
TG: im not thrilled with this direction though i think its too much like my bros stuff
TG: need to figure out my own ironic statement to make
TG: spread my wings you know 

Here, Dave openly admits to feeling shadowed by his bro. This is worth noting because refusing to show emotions is kind of the deal with him, but here he’s freely saying that he wants to have an individual brand. I’m not even going to bother going on a tangent about his arc stuff.

GC: H4NG ON
GC: OK H3R3 YOU GO B3N ST1LL3R
GC: http://tinyurl.com/FORB3NST1LL3R
TG: oh my fucking hell
TG: that is horrendous
TG: in the most beautiful way
GC: TH4NK YOU B3N >:]
TG: god damn
TG: that mouth
TG: its like
TG: i dont know
TG: a fucking pork chop
TG: jegus
TG: i mean jesus
TG: so overwhelmed i cant even damn type 

In the very first interaction between a troll and human, inspiration is sparked in both parties: for Terezi, the memetic word “Jegus”, and for Dave, Sweet Bro and Hella Jeff.

GC: 1 SHOULD PROB4BLY RUN TH1S BY
GC: UH
GC: MY L34D3R
TG: your leader
TG: thats a retarded thing to say even by the standard of your own bullshit made up vernacular
GC: SM4RT4SS!
TG: whos he really
TG: your boyfriend or something
GC: PFFFFFFFF Y34H R1GHT
GC: W3LL OK
GC: 1 M34N
GC: 1TS B33N SORT OF COMPL1C4T3D W1TH H1M 

This right here is an indication of just how obvious it is to everyone that Karkat and Terezi have something going on.

GC: 4CTU4LLY H3S K1ND OF SM4RT4SSY L1K3 YOU NOW TH4T 1 TH1NK 4BOUT 1T
GC: BUT YOU S33M C4LM 1NST34D OF SHOUTY 4LL TH3 T1M3
GC: 4LSO
GC: YOU TYP3 1N BR1GHT BOLD R3D 
GC: YOU DONT H1D3 TH3 COLOR OF YOUR BLOOD L1K3 4 STUP1D W1GGL3R >:]
TG: ok that remark was almost as boring as it was weird 

I guess Terezi likes having smartasses to hang out with. But the calm smartass vs. the yelly smartass—which will she pick??

GC: OK, 1 W1LL G3T B4CK TO YOU 4FT3R YOU B3G1N PL4Y1NG
GC: TH4T W1LL B3 N3XT SOL4R SW33P FOR YOU
GC: TRY NOT TO B3 TOO 1MP4T13NT FOR MY R3TURN
TG: i plan on forgetting about you instantly after this conversation
GC: Y34H R1GHT
GC: YOU KNOW 1 H4V3 L3FT MY M4RK
GC: 1 4M S33R3D 1NTO YOUR R3T1N4S
GC: L1K3 4 B1G R3D SUN 

Dave ends up forgetting to forget as we see a bit later. How recursive can you get?

Didn’t Terezi say this was the crocodiles’ way of being friendly?


TG: what the fuck was the point of this again

GC: WHY D4V3
GC: WH4T 1S TH1S TH4T MY NOS3 D3T3CTS
GC: COULD 1T B3
GC: T34RS??? >:O
TG: this is bullshit
TG: this was a setup all along
GC: 1 TOLD YOU YOU WOULD CRY D4V3
GC: 1 TOLD YOU BRO……………. >8y
TG: ok jegus
TG: dont say it
TG: if you say i warned you about tears or something one more time
TG: i swear to gog
GC: DONT!
GC: DONT S4Y YOUR3 GO1NG TO DO 4N 4CROB4T1C SOM3RS4ULT OR P1RHOU3TT3 OFF OF SOM3TH1NG, J3GUS
GC: 1 G3T 1T 4LR34DY!
TG: ok fine
TG: our memes can cancel each other out this time 

How does Terezi know the SBaHJ reference? Did Dave show Terezi his comics or did she come up with jokes for him to use? It’s probably the former, but I should note that Terezi referenced this SBaHJ comic in a conversation with Sollux, which makes me wonder if Dave’s famous comic series was collaborated with Terezi or something. Terezi’s drawing pulled SBaHJ out of Dave’s subconscious so it wouldn’t be out of the question if her influence on his comics went even further than that.


TG: there now i wont be satisfying your crazy red fetish either
GC: >:’C
GC: NOW 1 4M CRY1NG TOO YOU S33 WH4T YOU D1D
TG: all you get to smell is black
TG: like licorice or something
TG: you hate licorice right
GC: 1 LOV3 L1COR1C3
TG: shit
TG: ok lets say i dont smell like licorice then
TG: i smell like
TG: a coal miners asshole
GC: TOO L4T3!
GC: 1T 4LR34DY SM3LLS L1K3 L1COR1C3 S1NC3 YOU S41D TH4T, 4ND NOW 1 C4NT UNSM3LL 1T 

Both of them pretty much messing with each other; this is how Dave rolls with friendships. This is also why I find those mentions of post-retcon Dave and Karkat acting childish and giggling like in Vriskagram really out of character for both of them, made worse by the fact that their onscreen conversations are NEVER like that. Maybe if they weren’t supposedly all inexplicably giggly I wouldn’t think of Dave and Karkat as so much of a bullshit pairing? I don’t know, I tend to talk too much about that stuff. Maybe I should save my thoughts on that for when it’s all of a sudden strongly suggested they are or were a thing, which is a long way from now.

TG: whatever
TG: anyway
TG: probably bout time i got on with this game
TG: sans these pointless sidequests you want drag me through for kicks
TG: later terezi nice knowing you
GC: W41T!
GC: YOU C4N’T D1TCH M3, W3V3 GOT 1MPORT4NT STUFF TO DO TOG3TH3R
TG: unlikely
GC: OH
GC: H3Y >:o
GC: HOW DO YOU KNOW MY N4M3?
TG: you told me remember
GC: Y34H, BUT 1 THOUGHT YOU FORGOT!
TG: why would i forget
GC: YOU S41D YOU W3R3 GO1NG TO M4K3 4 PO1NT OF FORG3TT1NG!
TG: oh
TG: i guess i forgot i was supposed to forget
GC: W3LL TH3N
GC: M1ST3R D4V3 STR1D3R
GC: 1 4M GL4D TH4T YOU FORGOT TO FORG3T >:D
TG: uh alright 

How recursive can you get? God dammit I should have saved that line for this point.

Also, Terezi said the same thing (“how do you know my name”) Karkat said in his first conversation with John.


This reminds me of some rollercoaster ride I went to years ago.


TG: its like
TG: watching a miracle made of nothing but twitching schroder legs
GC: YOU S33 D4V3
GC: 1 TOLD YOU, YOU W1LL NOT R3GR3T H1TCH1NG YOUR SH1TTY JP3GGY FOUR WH33L D3V1C3 TO MY CONST3LL4T1ON
GC: TH1S 1S WH3R3 TH3 P4RTYS 4T
TG: look at us go
TG: i cant stop watching
TG: damn
TG: those moves 

GC: TRUST M3
GC: TH3S3 MOV3S DONT STOP K33P T4K1NG PL4C3
GC: NOT 4T TH1S P4RTY
TG: i can see im going to have to drop everything
TG: drop it like its simultaneously hot and i just tripped over the rug
TG: dedicate my undivided attention to this shit 

This is Dave’s reaction to Terezi’s dance party gif. I like the way he reacts to things he seriously finds funny.

TG: damn youre right
TG: truth be told everyone will be tripping when im done
TG: once i upset this biznasty with my swift cuts
TG: dudes will phalanx themselves agape like theyre offerin to store my shit in their mouths for the night
TG: rows of glasseyed human fly catchers beholding categorical fucking domination of the dance floor
TG: but they wont catch none cause the flys all mine 

For a second I thought Dave was rapping here.

This reminds me even more of a rollercoaster, the same one in fact. I think it’s something from Kings Island.


TG: i feel like i should be offering some visual rebuttal here
TG: you arent giving me any time though dammit
GC: TH4T 1S B3C4US3 1 H4V3 YOU 4T TH3 T3MPOR4L D1S4DV4NT4G3
GC: 1 C4N P4US3 4ND DO WH4T3V3R 1 L1K3 4ND TH3N CONT1NU3 OUR CONV3RS4T1ON W1THOUT M1SS1NG 4 ST3P!
GC: BUT DO NOT WORRY D4V3
GC: 1T WOULD B3 4 SH4M3 TO H4V3 TO WH1FF YOUR FR4GR4NT T34RS 4G41N
GC: 3V3NTU4LLY TH3 T4BL3S W1LL TURN 4ND TH3 4DV4NT4G3 W1LL B3 YOURS
GC: YOU W1LL H4V3 4LL TH3 T1M3 1N TH3 PR3N4T4L UN1V3RS3 4T YOUR D1SPOS4L
GC: B31NG TH3 KN1GHT OF T1M3 4ND 4LL
TG: oh yeah
TG: i keep forgetting i can time travel
TG: thats fine i guess 

This is the difference between Homestuck and a superhero comic. At heart our heroes, despite gaining godly superpowers as the story progresses, are still four nerdy teenagers.

TG: but seriously what is the real plan here
TG: that has to do with not fucking around
GC: TH3R3 1S NO PL4N TH4T DO3S NOT 1NVOLV3 FUCK1NG 4ROUND
GC: BUT W3 W1LL M4K3 SUR3 4LL OF OUR FUCK1NG W1LL B3 4PPL13D 1N 4 CONSTRUCT1V3 D1R3CT1ON
TG: ok could you try to be somehow even less subtle when you hit on me thanks
GC: WH4T
GC: WH4T D1D 1 S4Y?
TG: man
TG: nevermind
GC: YOU W1LL H4V3 TO FORG1V3 M3 D4V3, 1 TH1NK SOM3T1M3S TH3 M34N1NG OF WORDS 1S LOST THROUGH OUR CULTUR4L D1FF3R3NC3S
TG: no shit
TG: im going to infer that your species reproduces by having sex with a grub in a bucket or something
TG: am i close
GC: D4V3
GC: TH4T 1S 4BSOLUT3LY TH3 F1LTH13ST TH1NG 1 H4V3 3V3R H34RD 4NYON3 S4Y >:\ 

Cultural differences bringing laughs abound again.

GC: R3M3MB3R HOW 1 S41D YOU H4V3 PL3NTY OF T1M3
TG: tell me anyway
GC: OK W3LL T4K3 WH4T YOU H4V3 S4V3D UP FROM CL1MB1NG YOUR 3CH3L4DD3R TO ST4RT W1TH
GC: HOW MUCH DO YOU H4V3?
TG: dont know
TG: i never even looked at it
GC: D3RRRRP, N1C3 JOB 4C3 G4M3R
GC: M4YB3 YOU SHOULD H4V3 4 LOOK 4T 1T
TG: k 

These casual conversations mentioning Homestuck’s bizarre game mechanics give a deliberate vibe of weirdness. I mentioned earlier in this post how Homestuck has shedded its video game layers as it progressed, and referencing them at a point after their shedding can give a sense of nostalgia, humor, weirdness, or all of the above.

I’ve heard that Hussie livestreamed himself drawing this panel, though I have no idea if that’s actually true.


TG: ok after all this hype you better be prepared to fucking dazzle me
TG: are you gonna bring it?
GC: 4LLOW M3 TO PROV1D3 4N 4NSW3R THROUGH 1NT3RPR3T1V3 D4NC3
GC: http://tinyurl.com/H3LLFUCK1NGY3S
TG: awesome
TG: peace out t-z
GC: >:)
TG: oh shit
GC: >:?

GC: WH4T 1S 1T?????
TG: fuck

This is Dave’s reaction to getting bugged by Karkat. It’s interesting how he hates him despite knowing him as his troll buddy’s boyfriend. This is also leading into one of my personal favorite pesterlogs in all of Homestuck so I’ll stop here. Another 50 pages covered.

See you next time as I either write a post to say stuff about this post series or forget about that idea and just write up a regular post about that funny moment and other stuff.


>> Part 31: Shipping Grids and Massive Walkarounds

Cookie Fonster Critiques Homestuck Part 22: Psychic Snaps and Computer Explosions

Introduction

Part 21 | Part 22 | Part 23 >

Act 5 Act 1, Part 2 of 7

Pages 2071-2154 (MSPA: 3971-4054)

It’s that 3-D glasses guy again.

The fourth character in the list of trolls for us to meet is that dude who always wears 3-D glasses for some reason. Like I said when I got to his first appearance back in Act 4, Sollux Captor is one of the most memorable characters in Homestuck. His glasses, teeth, and paired horns give him a memorable appearance; he has powers ranging from visions of doom to eye beams and object levitation; he heavily symbolizes Homestuck’s theme of duality and bifurcation; he is the best friend of the trolls’ protagonist, and has been in relationships with both a very plot-relevant character and with a character with even more tangential treatment than him despite her important assigned role in troll society; and he has certainly done his share of things to the comic’s plot. But despite his numerous gimmicks, Sollux is merely a supporting character. Andrew Hussie specifically made him be a secondary character, while I feel like he could be so much more, like there’s an empty spot for him on the character tier ladder right up there with Karkat and Vriska. And despite all the stuff I said, he’s still an enjoyable character nonetheless. As grouchy as he tends to be, he is very well-meaning, trying his best to avoid the awful things that he doesn’t know are fated to happen.* He puts the game in teams so that there’s a chance of some team winning and thus saving the world like Aradia purported, tries to shut off Sgrub when she reveals that the game will not save the world like she implied, and heavily disapproves of the idea of feeding ghosts to Lord English. Not to mention that he’s humorous at times, with dialogue somewhat like that of Dave. When he becomes blind and his mind mutations shut off like a brain tumor unintentionally removed by force, it’s almost like a happy ending for him. I wonder if he’s still into programming, if that’s something you can even do in dream bubbles.

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