Hug delivered successfully. And now…
that face looks like it might be considering delivering a tongue lashing
where have you been? why haven’t you called me before now? are you screwing with me again and other questions..
No – i’m thinking they’re both flashing back to the last time Heather gave Shelly a big hug.
It has been that long since Shelly had long hair hasn’t it? 😀
wonder how long comic time…
perhaps a year or less?
hard to tell 🙂
Given that i recall two or three winters in there …
Its defently been at least 3 winter has just started strips.
Grrr…… What happened to my post and my Gravatar!!!! As I just said, I know I’ve seen at least 3 winter/Spring has just started comics.
Yup- time to go back and re-read from the beginning. Too much is gone fuzzy or just gone. This strip is too good to rely completely on the comments for clarification, though that is certainly a blessing when I find myself saying whu whu whu????
I don’t think so–Shelly might have been gone for 81,000 years, but it was not even a second for everyone else.
And now my mind is throwing around the possibility that maybe Heather is not entirely human either.
With Paul’s propensity towards throwing mind-bending curve-balls to the readers, it’s not entirely unconceivable….
@Jay-Em – I didn’t get home from work early enought reply to yesterdays post – what are strass stones?
And yes, Kudos (or any other snack bar) who correctly predicted Heather. I guess 80K years is plenty of time to work out your inner conflits.
Strass-stones, or “strass” in short, are fake, sticky-backed gem-stones ,often used on ballroom dance dresses. And more often-than not, used by girls to “bling” their phones and back-packs (aaand fanny-packs) because they are waaaay cheaper than swarowsky-stones.
they the same as rhinestones?
I’m not wearing those either…..
I’ll take a PayDay for my correct guess, thank you. 😛
With the revelation that Shelly is a Sphinx, I no longer trust any character to be “just human”. Amanda’s going to fill that role now that Shelly’s “evolved”, but it is only a matter of time before some craziness warps her too.
Monica’s just a plague to everyone around her it seems, no matter her intentions. (>^_^)>
Shell hasn’t been transformed physically at all. She’s the as when she was born. Her family has the recessive Sphinx genes. Those recessive genes can express themselves under the right conditions. Those conditions (whatever they may be) existed in the Sacred Forest realm. Shelly become Shellinx for her duration in that realm.
And this set of characters has always been “weirdness magnets” (to borrow a phrase). Jin knew that Monica and those around her Shelly, Michelle, Janet have always been special and necessary for the dealing with the Calendar machine. Jin’s Doubt has said that Monica, Shelly and other are and have been portals to the doorways to the Demon Realm. This shows that there are other individuals that are “special”. The disocvery of the individuals and how it affects them is part Wapsi Square’s charm.
Transformed as in ‘character’ (as in the change from the sole ‘normal human’ in Monica’s crew to now a Sphinx), not physically. Give me some credit mate, I can remember what literally ‘just’ happened in-comic about 2 weeks ago.
And I never stated it was not part of Wapsi’s charm. I was just stating that if Shelly, who’s general ‘normalcy’ amongst Monica, Tepoz, and the GGG has been consistent for years can now be upgraded to a more mystical being, what’s to stop any/all of the other normal humans from experiencing such change.
That’s all. I wasn’t making any type of complaint, far from it. I was just commenting that ‘no character is safe now’.
thats a seriously awesome hug
Usually, that kind of messing with the panel borders is the sort of thing Brooke McEldowney does (mostly at Pibgorn, but not infrequently at 9 Chickweed Lane, either.
Brooke does it fourth-wall-breakingly, though. Pablo uses it for just the right effect.
i thought ‘breaking the fourth wall’ was when the characters interact with the audience?
With Mr. McEldowney, it’s more because the players don’t take themselves too seriously.
Characters lean on the borders, use them to pull themselves up from the ground, peek around them, bungee jump on them, and a lot of other stuff.
Pogo used to do some of that – Albert Alligator would strike matches on the borders to light his ceegars…
Strictly speaking, yes – the term refers to the ‘wall’ between the characters and the reader, and to characters expressing knowledge of it (or more generally, to the awareness that comic rules apply).
Having Shelley’s legs dangling over the edge of the pane is a nice touch, but it’s purely artistic – it’s not like she consciously stepped out of the frame… the fourth wall is intact.
I’m with Simon on this one. This is more of a visual effect, must like 3D movies alow an effect off the screen. No interaction between the different panels are happening and the reader is more pulled to the illusion of realizim and give the character substance as she appears to jump off the page.
Personaly I think its an awesome effect that should be used at the right times.
That would be “breaking the *fifth* wall — the four walls are the left, right, top, and bottom borders, and the fifth wall is the “window” through which the audience views the action. In theater terms, it’d be when an actor winks at or directly addresses the audience.
For all the college-level talk I’ve heard about “oo, post-modernist self-referential commentary,” we should remind ourselves that this “breaking the fifth wall” dynamic is certainly older than any post-modernist thought, and has been around probably as long as storytelling — we know Shakespeare does it, we know the ancient Greeks did it… 🙂
it looks nice 😀
nice effect 🙂
agree.. I think it’s perfect.
say it with me now… D’AWWWWWW 🙂
(Especially for Shelly’s faces)
Is that the sound of Shelly purring?
Whoever predicted it – give yourself a Phix cookie.
Heather was the one who helped her get past her fear of CG – and the loss of her mom.
I was still really hoping Owen would show up….childhood friend, puller of finger, hasn’t been seen in ages, yada yada yada
I have to agree, i was hoping for owen. Heather is great too though.
Time for some wild guesses!
What if Heather is Phix in disguise?
What if Heather is ALSO a Sphinx?
Heather, huh? That greeting indicates some interesting ramifications. How much has Shelly changed. It will be interesting to see things unfold.
Now the question is, what’s Heather’s relationship status? Is she still hanging out with that exec or some other girl? or is she now single?
so now i wonder what shelly has to say to heather
this is heartbreaking
who she called really.
a person she is close to (even if she hasn’t been seen on camera for quite a while) and yet not part of the supernatural.
maybe she just wants normal for a short time..
good luck with that if thats the case shelly…
with the way things are going Heather might be Athena in disguise 😛
Maybe Heather is part of the supernatural. Phix was not the only visitor Shelly has in 80,000 years.
i wonder if one of the other timeline-shellys dated heather for real and told shellinx.
or maybe shellinx is the only one who didn’t date her
I love that she called Heather.
As anxious as I am for Officer Sexy McTightBuns to reappear and make with the lovins, I’m equally happy (if not more so) to see that Heather has returned first and is here to comfort Shelly. I’m not surprised at all that Shelly turned to her first. Once she has regained a slightly better handle on herself, perhaps then she can deal with her boytoy.. and Heather definitely seems the deeply caring, yet stoic and composed type (which is what Shelly really needs now more than she needs sexxin) who can get her there.
..also, this hug is so very beautifully depicted, I can feel the raw emotion from here. Not sexy-emotion, the kind you feel your friend gets their arms around you and you finally break down under the weight of it all and your own desperate appreciation for their willingness to be there and try to understand/help. <333
Nice call people.
Side note: Oooooo, I like Heather’s boots. I saw a pair like that at the mall. <3
yea nice 😀
wonder if they’re tan or black 🙂
mostly seem to be tan when they’re like that 😀
or maybe suede
Then you’ll probably like these, too:
similar too a pair of boots i saw once irl 🙂
not as oversized of cause
more victorian but similar!
Bonus points if anyone has read “The Anubis Gates” or similar fiction and knows one of the theories for why boots sometimes have a chain around the heel! 😀
Oh noes! Has Shelly really gone over to the dark side? Maybe it’s time for CG to popup and slap her with a “snap out of it!”
I’m beginning to wonder if this is a dream too. The background is strange and dark like a dream or maybe it’s just night.
Hmmm… that’s could be. I doubt it, but it’s certainly possible.
This is a wonderful turn of events. Makes me happy.
Breaking the frame and a hug from Heather..what more could one need 😛
I really dig Shelly’s legs hanging in the next frame…
walnut coffee cake perhaps
(had the walnut-coffee cake today. it was tasty)
No cheese, though?
Darn, now I want walnut cream-cheese coffe cake.
And a mug of Tina’s best, after her talk with Heather.
While it is neat artistically (and I actually do like the crossover from panel 2 – 3) is Shelly supposed to be sitting on a ledge?
And alas. My hopes for a short Darin cameo have been foiled again. Damn you serene city park!
They could go for beer at Darin’s.. Wouldn’t be too hard to fit that into the “Shelly adjusting to real-world” me thinks.
ooh interesting imagery
reckon she is sitting on the ledge as she is metaphorically putting herself ‘out there’ so to speak?
I think this is it for this story line for now. Expect a change tomorrow in preparation for next week. If nothing else, perhaps getting back to Jin’s problem and the graveyard in Ireland. Knowing Paul, however, it could very well be something entirely new.
a big foot comes and squishes them both
and now for something completly different
(and on another note. i worked out why my linkage didn’t work yesterday. i typed ahref insted a href. doh!)
Bigfoot versus Sphinx: Sphinx WINS!!!!
This looks like an amazing set up for a Friday cliffhanger. Can’t wait for the loop Paul gives us that I get to brood over all day at work tomorrow.
The dangling feet is a wonderful touch.
If Shelly keeps her hair long, it would be a nice indication that she’s at peace with her new situation.
It looks nice, although I also liked the asymmetric pixie-cut she had.
You caught that, too, hey? I noticed that Shel’s hair had… “suddenly”… grown out a bit since she “returned” from the time forest.
Interesting bit of trivia. It was Heather who was with Shelly when she cut it short.
This may seem silly, but who is Heather? It’s been a while since I ventured into the earlier pages of this comic.
ooohh..now there’s a story!
She’s Shelly’s girl-crush from loooong ago. Heather was also the first person to see Shelly break down over her mother’s death.
“Venturing” in the older comics would be a good idea.
Start here and keep reading for… oh… a few years.
Stupid html. Here’s a hard link to it.
Many thanks for posting the link – something new to do in my retirement . And create a file for each year before I put them in my eBook .
Time for an… Archive Binge(tm)!
And now… She asks Heather a riddle.
For some I go fast
For others I go too slow.
To most people, I’m an obsession
relying on me is a well practiced lesson.
What am I?
Or a clock; scans either way.
Also, Love. Phix taught us that an experienced sphinx doesn’t cling to just one answer…and that would be a good answer for Heather.
It’s eggssss, my precious! Egggssss…
ok so I was at least 1/3rd right and I like to put into that warm embrace the “I thought I would never see you again” that I hope is in there.
Hah! I knew it!
VERY nice work!
Heather looks like she’s a sphinx-person too.
OMFG! THAT WOULD BE COOL! O_O
Are they gonna start making out now?
What is wrong with you?!
Testosterone poisoning? ^_^
No, no. The correct terms are testosterone enhancement and estrogen poisoning.
A severe case of poisoning.
Oh, sorry. That should be
doubtful as barring a small feminine crush shelly has not portrayed herself as a lesbian.
Since alot of peeps recently have assumed she would have called justin for a booty-call .. i can see where you could be comming from.
Shelly and Heather need to reconnect, to synchronize emotionally, and get back to where they once were.
If Shelly’s up to Happy Sweaty Time after that, sure.
… I wouldn’t mind it. Maybe her time in the forest re-assured of her thoughts for her? =}
Just make sure to invite the good officer… ^.^
What’s that thingy on the right? Behind Paul’s autograph? Part of Heather’s bike?
Part of the signature.
as fairportfan said
part of the signature – more specifically the copyright symbol part
but it also looks like a headlamp 🙂
mm, hot boots.
Oh, the layout on this is just beautiful!
I feel that the most important panel in the whole comic is the first one. Shelly looks truly at peace, when was the last time we saw this? Considering how out of sorts she seemed to be with the last few comics with the phone. Once she made the call, she seems at peace.
I’m very interested in where this is going.
The rest of the layout is fantastic.
Wapsi Square for the super bloodsoaked flawless fatal victory win. Today’s strip has an awesome look and feel.
Ok, that’s it. Time to start over from the beginning to get caught up on old characters. Been meaning to do that anyway 😉
Love how much the art has changed in 10 years!
and during their conversation Shely answers, “Lets just say I’ve………MATURED a lot since I’ve last seen you.” Its WAY better than blurting out ” HI! I’M A SPHINX!
Noooooo– ooh, wait, this is good! And I absolutely adore this page layout and background design!
Phenomenal art on this strip. The whole thing is just gorgeous. This is easily the most impressive strip I’ve seen in Wapsi to date.
Great job, Pablo!
By the By, for those interested in the progress of the Nudge figurine. have a look at Nudge Basic layout
It’s a start. The Apox is hardening now, and tonight on to the rest of the legs….
PS. Yes, I know it’s hanging forward . Made a mistake with the rod in her back.. easily fixed. 😛
Excellent work – kudos for your talent .
That is so awesome!!! 😀
Way cool, dude. Please keep us up to date on it.
(If you’re working from the last panel of the strip on the workbench, it’s one of my favorite Nudges)
Thanx guys. 😀
I am still pondering if i’ll go for a “comic Nudge” like the vinyls of Bud, Shell, tepoz etc. Orrr… That I’ll pull Nudge in the “real world” meaning: completely realistic (as far as possible with a half-deity)
Making Nudge look “real” is more of a challenge, because of her odd anatomy. As a classical trained artist, it’s hard to let go of normal “human” anatomy ,when making legendary creatures….
I guess I’ll make both heads ,comic and “real” and see which one I like the most..
Choices choices.. 😛 (and I am afraid I cannot do Paul’s art right…)
do both 🙂
Holy hqiz that is massively awesome! 😀
Maybe this is why she called Heather…
And her middle name must be “Leah”.
…and then CG pops up and says, “Who is this?”
Nope. CG’s met Heather.
has she though
i always assumed that was a dream of shelly.
creepy might have met her via the dream but heather won’t know creepy..
in fact..now knowing about creepy more it wouldn’t surprise me if creepy created that dream purely to confront shelly about the keeping alone thing…
when did Heather and CG meet? any chance you could provide a link?
Start reading at the beginning 3/2005 and keep going, CG was not happy at first.
heh.. this is one of my faaaav strips.. so very very sweet. and left open to interpretation!!
Artistically this is one of Paul’s best. Thematically I’m not sure where he’s going with this, because there was an arc where Heather and Shelly had a physical as well as an emotional relationship, but Heather drifted away after meeting a cute chick in Tina’s place. And even though I know they are both fictional characters I still want Shelly to have a happy life for what she has left, after all she has just been through 80K years of Hell +/-.
they were never physical..
from what i remember..
in fact any misleadings of that relationship was all hypothetical.
Correct. Heather had naughty thoughts toward Shelly (“peanut butter and Shelly”), but never acted on them.
There was at least that one kiss…
I do not understand the last two weeks of the strip.
As Shelly is my least favorite character I really do not care to know – but I must say that the amount of back-story work and alternate experiences that just these last few days have exposed shows a strong effort to try and add substance and depth to her.
I did read through all the posts and I still do not understand who died.
Great to see Heather again! It has been too many years.
Better bring Lakshmi out before copyright expires.
it has been abit hard to keep track 🙂
best to have a muffin and wait for a while then reread.
it does help to go through story lines sometimes a few time with a big break inbetween 🙂
(took me about 4 rereads to actually work out what was happening in the calender room)
This was perfect.
All she was seeking was acceptance. Something from someone who could tell Shelly she is still Shelly and mean it.
No questions, no riddles, no answers and no inquiries on where this super-natural sleigh ride has taken her.
Just pure and unconditional acceptance.
Oh. I hate to rain on anyone’s parade, but it has to be more than just ‘acceptance’. If that was all, Shelly wouldn’t have called a former love interest, no matter how good of terms they parted. It seems more likely she would have run to someone less likely to flare at her if the conversation turns inappropriate, but who knows her just as well if not better yet has no knowledge of her supernatural escapades. Namely, Jacqui.
For her to turn to Heather instead, I feel she’s looking for something more than just acceptance. Not necessarily sparking the old relationship fires, but something more complicated.
Shelly made it clear the Heather was never a love interest but she was someone special.
@Sonicthunder: I think Shelly called Heather because Heather’s the only person who isn’t really a part of her social circle that she can open up to. Heather, in this case, makes the only likely sounding board for Shelly’s most speculative thoughts; and she knows Heather has the maturity to listen.
There was romantic tension between them upon a time, but not romance. As far as we know right now, Heather’s still in a relationship… and so is Shelly.
Probably too late of a comment now for anyone to read this, but still:
I hold my suspicions that this is more than just “I need to open up to someone who knows/cares about me but isn’t part of Monica’s magical crusades”.
Primarily because of Jacqui. Jacqui is a closer friend to Shelly, is unaware of Monica’s magical crusades, is very supportive/positive, and has shared more dialogue with Shelly in-comic since Heather’s last appearance (Heather’s last appearance seemed more of a parting-ways on good terms).
Perhaps I am just overanalyzing, but the selection of Heather, simply because of the unique nature of the Shelly/Heather dynamic, indicates there’s something more complicated intended by Shelly.
Heather also had this effect on Shelly (or is that CG?), so prolly another reason for her to call her up just now.
I think you nailed it.
Yes, it is alright to go out and play.
I don’t think that was Heather’s doing; it was just in Shelly’s mind… a way for her unconscious to use a Heather-image to resolv an inner conflict; in this case, her guilt about not preventing her mother’s death. Simply getting to know Heather had precipitated that sequence of thoughts.
I hope that sounds at least somewhat coherent 🙂
This is the one I was thinking of.
(laughs) One of these days, I’ll figure out tagging. This is the strip I had in mind:
My earlier comment’s link (11:12AM) says something similar…Shelly’s abandonment issues surrounding the loss of her mom, the pain of being able to let Heather in despite that, yet still being afraid of it happening again/being alone. Well, she’s just had 80000 years, mostly alone, so it’ll be interesting to see what she’s wanting to share with Heather regarding all that…
I hope that’s why Shelly called her. Because, and I hate to rain on the Heather parade, I see her body language as a little stiff.
Shelly can only be a complication for her, but what relationship isn’t filled with those?
If she’s still with the lawyer, it has the look of a triangle. If not, is Heather willing to go through the ‘mixed signals’ thing again?
But she is friends enough to come see Shelly when she needs it.
I’m just worried about the Friday cliffhanger…
Talking about the old Shelly/Heather days (ummm – maybe i should use a hyphen instead of a slash) – this suddenly looks like foreshadowing…
Looking back there was foreshadowing for YEARS. Throwing engine blocks, grinding the back end off of a car, Tepoz telling her she was strong ‘maybe too strong for her own good.’
Going back through the archives, now, make you second guess every incident that I first wrote off to ‘only when it’s funny’.
I’m worried about Dietzel now…
well he was depicted inside the Temple of the Calender Machine…
at least that’s what we wanted to believe anyway…
There are TONS of strips with Shelly and Heather that would be nice to bring up right now, which is why I’m hoping this vignette lasts for more than a couple of days…
Not likely. It Friday and that means it explody time. Wonder what bombshell Paul is going to have for us today.
Pretty Shelly! 🙂
I actually ‘awwwwww’d out loud at this strip. After seeing the one where the plutonium made Shelly die, this one was the perfect pick-up. Bravo!
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