Comic 1231 - Debacle

5th Feb 2020, 8:41 AM in Ch. 39 - The Aftermath
Average Rating: 5 (6 votes)
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Author Notes:

Jocelyn 5th Feb 2020, 8:41 AM edit delete
In case you've forgotten (and based on comments on the last page, a lot of people did), Father Quenton is no longer at the school. The short version is he was involved in a scandal full of gross negligence, bribe money, and nepotism. The longer version (if you want specifics) are these pages:

Anyway, I like this page and the last one. We see how Brother Arthur is still very protective of the main kids. But we also see that he - now the acting principal - is in a less comfortable position to do so. He still wants to be an ally. He still wants these kids to be happy and be themselves. But his now higher position puts him closer into the spotlight with the diocese, so we see him actually having to call the kids out a bit. While there's no punishment this time, he seems worried about the queer kids of St. Hallvard forcing his hand, or them doing something he just actively cannot protect against in his position. I don't envy Brother Arthur one bit right now.

I also like Rain here, for practically the opposite reason. Her sassing back and defending herself in panel 4 feels good. Remember that other time Brother Arthur called Rain into his office and she just froze up. Rain's come a long way. I feel like I'm saying that a lot lately, but I'm just proud of her. Her growth is so admirable. ^_^

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MavistheRainBeau 5th Feb 2020, 9:08 AM edit delete reply
Semiprotective mama-bear mode: ENGAGE!
Sine 5th Feb 2020, 9:57 AM edit delete reply
This is a nice balance of Brother Arthur trying to show care and compassion, but having to "toe the line" professionally. Also a nice difference in Rain sticking up for herself.

Oh, Rain always has short hair now. Unless I flick back, I always forget it was long, haha.
DocMesa 5th Feb 2020, 10:06 AM edit delete reply
Yeah, I can definitely understand Arthur's position. He doesnt want to be a gatekeeper on anything like that but on the other hand there's only so much he can do to open the door without jeopardizing Rain and everyone else. Its a shitty position to be in. =/
Callisto 5th Feb 2020, 6:09 PM edit delete reply
It definitely adds a different, and I think valid, perspective to the whole thing.

I personally was considering the personal impacts on Rain herself when she did it - Deadnaming yourself isn't so fun, even if you do it in jest.
Barnarnar 5th Feb 2020, 2:13 PM edit delete reply
I just noticed that Rain's words are in an italic font, and looking back I can see that you've been doing that for the entire series, but it took me a zillion years of reading this to notice.
Mild Lee Interesting 6th Feb 2020, 3:35 AM edit delete reply
It took me a while to notice too. Not sure if you have seen it yet, but this is covered in the FAQ: "The italics to indicate that Rain is not using her natural voice. In short, the italics imply they she's trying to modify her voice in such a way to make her sound more feminine. When it's not italic (on the rare occasion), she is using her natural voice." (errors are directly quoted)
Mild Lee Interesting 5th Feb 2020, 6:00 PM edit delete reply
Sigh. And thus we are reminded again of the catholic churchs unhealthy obsession with other peoples genitalia. It's all just so stupid, arbitrary and unneccessary. "Tradition is just peer pressure from dead people".
Mir 6th Feb 2020, 2:45 AM edit delete reply
Brother does bring up good points, but I'm not understanding how Rain was in any shape or form responsible for being voted as prom king; it's not as if she chose to be popular enough for the student body to vote for "R. Flaherty". Unless I'm missing something about the process, that bit just seems unnecessary.
Guest 6th Feb 2020, 10:03 PM edit delete reply
I could be mistaken, but i got the impression from this page that the ballots were drafted after the registration and since she used her deadname, clerical just used that and listed her with the guys. If she'd used her name on the registration, the ballots would've had her correctly with the girls
Kelibath 6th Feb 2020, 4:44 AM edit delete reply
It's not very in-character but frankly I just want to see her push right back in response to this unfair criticism with a solid take-down. Yes, what she did was reckless, but she's certainly not the instigator in this situation for simply wanting to take someone to prom! There would likely have been an issue if she'd written in a male name as well since the system would have flagged it up much earlier on. And in any case the issue here isn't the student struggling with a set of conservative and archaic rules designed deliberately to crush certain things out of the student body. I'd really like to see Rain point out that all of the danger and risk came from an abusive structural framework, ruleset, and enforcer, not from her responses to having to handle these things!
DocMesa 6th Feb 2020, 7:56 AM edit delete reply
How much of that can Brother Arthur actually fix though? Raging at your allies to do more than they actually can is pretty good way to drive them away.
Kelibath 7th Feb 2020, 7:39 AM edit delete reply
Agreed to some extent, but I don't think what he's doing here to Rain is reasonable, either. To me it reads as if Brother Arthur is taking her to task for not thinking things through and risking herself and others too much, and that's understandable if they're in a system which IS dangerous to her -- but at the same time, Rain found a smart way around the restrictions and threats of her circumstances that really shouldn't be permitted in any ethical establishment, and if I were in BA's place I'd not want to see her leave the encounter diminished or brow-beaten for the effort. Perhaps he isn't quite as far along as I was hoping in allyship terms if he isn't solidly reminding Rain her actions should and would be reasonable if only the institution wasn't itself corrupt, even if that fact means they were also dangerous, and worth thinking over in hindsight. I feel like it is at least within his power to admit those circumstances one-on-one for now - and plan ahead some ways to swiftly improve them if his position becomes permanent in future.
RubyRuthNeal 7th Feb 2020, 1:04 AM edit delete reply
The issue surrounding Rain's deadname / legal name will still arise again at graduation time like I pointed out in the previous episode's comments. It's pretty universal that when the graduating seniors walk across the stage at the ceremony that their names are read aloud by an announcer over a loudspeaker system, I suspect being a catholic high school will not change that, and at my own graduation, and the graduations of others I've attended since then, unless prior arrangement has been made, the announcer usually says the full legal name including middle names too. Do we even know what Rain's birth-assigned middle name is? I suspect it is very likely one she'd rather not hear announced over loudspeakers at the ceremony. it will probably be a moot point at that time, but still uncomfortable. At my own high school graduation, we still had a few more days of classes to attend after the night of the ceremony... a Tuesday night if I remember correctly, and we still had the following Wednesday thru Friday of classes to attend. If such is the case for Rain's graduation ceremony too, it would be very uncomfortable to hear her name announced as "Ryan (some male middlename) Flaherty" as she walks across the stage and is handed her diploma.
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